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taking away the knit! [01 Jul 2010|01:46pm]
Thanks to the recent LJ upgrades (tags, open ID), I'm bringing back crankyknits into crankyisgood. I still love the username "crankyknits" though and am planning to maintain this area as the gallery and project notes area. So all you knitters, come visit me over in cranky land! I know you want to see the Mountain Colors Bearfoot sock I'm working on for the shop.
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Biking to the yarn shops [08 Jul 2005|08:33am]
[Unknown LJ tag]

Seth and I are riding our bikes to Portland, starting tomorrow, and I will try to ride over to the Yarn Garden and Mabel's Cafe, since I've never been. Then we'll put our bikes on the train to San Francisco, where we'll find some cool local yarnies. When I get back, I'll map all the shops I've ridden my bike to. Want to be part of the adventure? We're fundraising for the Northwest Parkinsons Foundation -- visit http://www.nwpf.org/participant.asp?id=186 to learn more. If you are able to contributed, I'll love you, *and* you'll get a little knit-related souvenir of the adventure as a thank you.

Not much knitting going on around here; I finished the first bearfoot sock and started the second, but that's about it. I'll take it with me on vacation and surely will finish it on the train Monday night!
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FO and possible change to my blog [16 Jun 2005|12:15pm]
pictures of socks withinCollapse )
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Georgia in her poncho [13 Jun 2005|10:07am]

Georgia in her poncho
Originally uploaded by crankyisgood.
Georgia is about the cutest kid ever and super sweet. Her birthday party is, I think, this Sunday and I'm getting ready for playing with kids and answering to adults why we're not married/bearing children yet/still.
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A wristwarmer. [08 Jun 2005|04:54pm]

A wristwarmer.
Originally uploaded by crankyisgood.
As per the photo caption, I knitted these a couple of weeks ago from stash yarn & stash beads on a Very Lazy Saturday. I watched -- oh goodness -- parts of maybe four movies and a whole movie (13 Going On 30). At about 8/9 p.m. we finally left the house for dinner, though we had to walk a couple miles before I stopped feeling sick from sitting on the couch for so long. Luckily (for once) we weren't concerned with eating at a particular restaurant, since so many places close at 9 p.m. here on Friday and Saturday nights. (I *hate* that.)

Okay, back to work.
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Well then. [06 Jun 2005|06:38pm]
Today has not quite been where I expected it to be. Yet at the same time, late this afternoon I remembered that when I'm in the routine of work, it can go okay. You come and you work and you go and you hobby and you get money and you spend money. If you're lucky, you're happy and you have a cute cat. Well, I was looking forward to going with Seth to the Hugo House DIY opening to see Jeffrey/Rosyvelt play but turns out he has band practice. And we have so little food and I have so little money.

Just today I realized I bought Old Crow when I meant to buy Wild Turkey. The latter is much, much better than the former.

So anyway (this is supposed to be a knitting post, I remind myself) I want to do something new. Current projects are full steam ahead and there are a few doomed, seasonally doomed or future-unknown UFOs around which I will mentally release myself of. The problem? My needles are in disarray. I don't know where they are. Although Adam (a guy in Seth's band) pronounced my craft room ("So you have a music room and you have a knitting room") "cool," which was nice, the mess is preventing progress.

Also preventing sewing progress: overstitching is a big pain in my ass. This is maybe the first time I've run into a dead end with sewing. And it's not really a dead end it's just that I don't have the stamina at present to power through it.

Moral of the story is I need to do SOMETHING about the furniture problem in the craft room. And oh yeah, the needles. I need to create a case for my circular needles and catalog them. (Also, I need some food. But you could tell from the disjuncted post, couldn't you?)
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My First Sweater (a February Fix It update) [04 Jun 2005|10:19pm]
So I had some plans to change this sweater, but since I washed it and the stains didn't come out and I started pulling it on as a sweatshirt in the evening and a bathrobe in the morning, I'm newly in love with it just the way it is. I'm wearing her right now, happily.

my first sweater front

Let's talk about this sweater. I have the book around here somewhere, Annabel Fox something something, even though I doubt I'll knit another thing from it (you can tell from my more recent garments I'm not really into the swallowing-me-whole look). Googling reveals that she's designed for Rowan. I had no idea. The story of my learning to knit is not quite pretty and I'm not in the moment to write it (it is a good story in spite of its unprettiness). I'm sure the ladies at Weaving Works helped me find a suitable, inexpensive yarn (though I don't think they explained gauge) and I know I had to go back to ask them what seed stitch (moss stitch) was. (It's on the cuffs/hem/button bands.) And later I went back to buy the purple ladybug buttons, which certainly will find a new home with a kids' knit soon.

So (obviously?) I also didn't know how to seam. And it wasn't until a few years later that I realized I twisted all my purls, which gives this sweater a kinda cool detail texture. It has pockets, which I love knitting (and sewing) pockets. Hm. One can understand, looking at this sweater, why I knitted only periodically for years until it really became cool and Knitty came out and my friends started knitting and, perhaps most importantly, I started working at Hilltop, giving me access to good yarns and lots of friendly advice and plain old experience. The blog world has been my most recent source of inspiration, which is super fun.

Other February Fix-it updates: I actually have worn my vintage cardigan lots more since writing about it. Thursday I cut off the vintage beads to replace them with more mundane, better-fitting, modern buttons--but now I can't find them. So that's waiting. And I did chain embroider along the shoulder/neck of my Big Wool sweater but I'm thinking I need to frog the whole thing and knit it on smaller needles. This is something I haven't done before, really: finished, worn, frogged and reknit the same sweater, better. May this first time be successful. May I still want to do it in the fall, when I want to wear the sweater again!
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On temptation [02 Jun 2005|10:27am]
The bead store that used to be a couple of miles away in Ballard just moved to Stone Way, mere blocks away and on my way to the PCC (the hippie grocery store, our grocery store, for non-seattleites). Also it's just down the street from vellumblue. Perhaps we should meet up after work at the bead store instead of at lunch at the yarn store...

It's a funny swap; Archie McPhee's used to be on Stone Way and is now in downtown Ballard (further from me than Fusion Beads was, to be precise) and these days I ride my bike to Ballard in a minute for interfacing at Joann's and trinkets at Archie's. Stone Way now has the kite shop that's been there forever, Gypsy Trader (consignment shop?), a million veterinary offices, the bookstore my dad's attached to, the Stone Way Cafe, the Pacific Inn (a pub sometimes very nice sometimes filled with ageing frat boys drinking jaegerbulls)... lots of small businesses. It's a fairly busy street... It's interesting to see your city change. I wish I could buy a house here right now, such as this house I'm living in now that almost went on the market for $385K a month ago.

Anyway. Beads. You all can shop virtually with me! Fusion Beads

I'm not even a beader; I never am charmed by my own finished bead projects, but I do like to do beaded knitting, and they have a reasonable supply of buttons.
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Cyd! [01 Jun 2005|09:57pm]

Originally uploaded by crankyisgood.
Cyd was very comfy today. I love her. I'm not so thrilled about my forehead.
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Craft room pictures [31 May 2005|09:49pm]
If you're an lj-er, you've seen this already on my other journal. The rest of you, Read more...Collapse )
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Secret knitting revealed! [23 May 2005|09:25am]

Originally uploaded by julieclarkireland.
Declan appears to be pitying the fool who made him giant floppy booties. (There are several more pics in which he appears to be enjoying the floppy booties if you check out yoshimi's flickr page by clicking on the photo.)

Yay for cute babies, the best knitwear models ever.
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hello. [21 May 2005|02:45pm]
I am totally sucked into craftster.org right now.
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more text updates, woohoo. [19 May 2005|02:59pm]
What do I have to tell you about knitting? I don't have pictures, but I expect some from someone else soon since a Secret Knitting package went out in the mail today. Other secret knitting must remain secret! I am plotting some nice bright booties for my co-worker's new baby, too.

On Monday, I traded Florence for Cyd and am so glad. Cyd's extra fine merino makes her a perfect sweater for chilly wet spring nights. I didn't wear her today because I'd planned to visit the schoolkids, which plan was cancelled by mercurial worklife. So anyway, I am promising you a picture of Me in Cyd soon. I should look warm and happy. It is just possible that I will have Florence back to wear her to some nice warm summery event (or that I will borrow her for an upcoming wedding).

In sewing news, I did create a hat for Seth based on one of his old bike hats, with a pretty good level of success. The next ones will, I'm sure, be better, but I'm not planning to make another just yet. I also jumped into my first button-down shirt; it's all cut but not completely marked and waiting on the dining room table. But I've been staying at work late too much and so have little time for sewing. But I did decide that I absolutely had to hem some pants on the machine yesterday morning, and they look okay, so there. All this practice is starting to build my sewing confidence.
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same old, same old [13 May 2005|01:47pm]
First, some full-length pictures of Florence. Thanks to mizrobot for taking the pictures. Anything you don't like about the photo quality can be blamed on the fluorescent lights and newfangled camera, not her photograpy skills, which are devine.

Florence, the full front.

Florence, the full back.

What's on the needles now? No progress on the sock, but I've started some gifts, which will not be named. I have encountered the Problem Of Which Knitters Dare Not Speak: hand problems. Bike-riding induced hand problems. But it's not all that bad and we're working on the long-term solution (fix the handlebars, which probably means replacing the stem, which is certainly easier said than done).

What's up next? aside from ongoing repair/improvement/finishing UFOs (updated catalog t/k), I'm not sure. I have accumulated a good bit of stash lately and am itching to burn a bit of it. But I also really want to create a bolero or similar item to wear this summer. Can we make those two goals come together????
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Florence! [11 May 2005|03:26pm]
I swear to god I'm working on the annual report and I have NO TIME for anything else but since I had to upload work pictures... yeah, well. Maybe later/some other time before I give her to HT for three months I will get someone else to take some decent pics.

Florence at work 3: Context

Click on the pic to see two more posted on Flickr. You'll especially want to see the waistband. I knew it would poof a little and I'm living with it, though not thrilled about it. Overall, well, could I be happier? Not really. She's sooooo pretty, if I do say so myself. I guess every time someone asks me if I knitted this garment (three or five thousand) and I say "yes" and then they stop and just STARE at it, I have a little MCS.
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I hate renting. [03 May 2005|09:19am]
Last night I felted my Clapotis. This is the first time in my whole life I have ever unintentionally felted a knit. (It's not the first time one of my knits has ever been unintentionally felted: I learned the hard way back in elementary school not to lend my sweaters to Kari, whose dad does all the laundry indiscriminately.)

I put her in the garment bag with the cold water wash and she felted up. Not entirely. I will show you a picture later. I was planning to show you a picture sooner, and now you will never see her in her glory (unless I knit another; I think I have almost enough yarn, but I don't think it's going to happen) and this reminds me of when I was a heartbroken 20-year-old without even a picture of us together to console me.

This washing machine at my house is brand new. Yet it has only two cycles: Normal and Casual. WTF? You can set it for hot, warm or cold by adjusting where you set the dial along the cycle; rinse is always cold. There is no gentle cycle. No "soak." No "knit" or "permanent press" (which never did me much good anyway). It has a small capacity. It spins the fuck out of my clothes. The new dryer is not much better. It has three buttons: power, temperature (up position is "normal," which is to say hot; down position is "low," which is to say never gets anything dry) and start. It has three dial sections: timed dry (20/40/60 mins); natural (damp dry, normal, extra dry and some other one); synthetic (damp dry, normal, extra dry etc.). Who the fuck knows what these mean? I can tell you the dryer twists everything up so you can't pull out your PJ pants from your long sleeved tees without pulling the whole knot of clothes out and flinging socks everywhere.

This all happened because the ancient washer was rusty (but it had gentle cycles! a soak cycle! a selector for what wash temp you wanted (all rinse temps were cold)! and the dryer had this tendency to whine and not start sometimes. It also seemed somewhat of a fire hazard. But it was voluminous! It had an alphabetical dial that actually made even less sense than the new one, including some categories that didn't work, but IT DRIED CLOTHES in less than an hour. huge amounts of them. I knew how to make it "air only."

And when it was time to replace the w/d set, it turned out they had to be less than 26" wide. Because there's a door in our house that's only 26" wide. The landlords had to saw apart the old w/d to get it out that door. Hence this CRAP.

Someday I will understand these newfangled machines. But I will never, never wash my handknits in this washer again. Time for some no-rinse soap and to start keeping the kitchen sink cleaner, I suppose.


And in project updates: I finished the dress and wore her to HT, but need to replace her zipper and take in some ease at the back. Florence is seamed and BEAUTIFUL, but is also amazingly horrifically full of ends that need weaving and trimming. No, really, it's seriously bad. Oh yeah and she needs buttons. But expect to see pics of dress, poor partially felted Clapotis and FLORENCE by the end of the week.

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Progress report [29 Apr 2005|11:54am]
No progress on this, really:

Sock in progress

I brought her along so I could knit if there is any opportunity today, though.

Florence has been sitting around moping. I like seaming, pretty much, but I really am resisting tucking in her endless ends, and many must be tucked before I can seam. I should do it 1/2 hour at a time.

I'd hoped to wear out my new dress last night, thinking it could possibly take only an hour to put in the zipper. However, I didn't realize I had to hand sew down the bodice lining. Done, and many basting threads pulled, but no zipper. Then there will be hemming (got practice at least with that lining) and hook-and-eye installation. Then to find the perfect shrug or bolero to knit to go over my shoulders -- did I mention it's a halter top? A not-so-revealing halter top thanks to McCalls' big bust eases? I have little-to-no bust. You shall see when I am able to wear the dress in and get a picture.

I rescued my ponchette from my desk drawer and have knitted just a few rows this week--just enough to remember the pattern, phew. When will I finish her? Will I like her, or will I find an unsuspecting rube to adopt her? Or: will I rip her and reknit her? Only time will tell.
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Almost as boring as pictures of another row. [26 Apr 2005|02:56pm]
I shouldn't even be typing because my right hand/wrist are having conniptions.

Last night's progress: a need for cat food, to make keys, to do laundry and the dishes delayed crafting. Notice I hadn't mentioned my Bedroom Disaster or Kitchen Disaster or Cat Food Disaster or Sudden Installation of a Back Door Lock yesterday. Some of them were surprises.

So I sewed the bodice lining into the dress incorrectly, then resewed it correctly. And okay this is a not-so-revealing halter top dress. Why not so revealing? Because the halters (???) are kinda wide. I should have known and done some flat-pattern adjusting but maybe next time. It's still going to be a cute dress.

By 10 p.m. I was feeling too tired to work on the skirt, so picked up Florence's sleeve. I'm not done with her yet.

I am now going to go outside and take some pictures. Just a few, because then I need to come back in and work furiously on getting ready for a BUNCH OF CRAP tomorrow.
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Craft room disaster and other weekend fun [25 Apr 2005|01:45pm]
For better or worse, "craft room disaster" is neither the title of a film nor grammatically accurate. "My craft room is a disaster area" would make a more accurate sentence. My craft room is a disaster and I'm not sure what I did with most of the useful items formerly located in my giant, impractially-heart-shaped sewing basket. (Note to self: maybe it's time to make yourself a practical sewing basket or otherwise get rid of the thing. Note to reader: I'll try to get a picture for you so you can see what I mean.)

Missing Items That I Could Really Have Used Yesterday:

Pattern tracing roller
Any sort of chalk instead
Tracing paper newer than circa 1965 (purchased at the thrift store and yes, I did get it to work)
Either/any of my seam rippers (I have either two or three. Haha. or more. Doesn't it seem [haha] like you're always buying a new one?)
Sewing machine manual (just want to look at how THEY say the tension should work)

Also: how the hell are you supposed to understitch the lining in a 1" area? I am going to have to find a picture someday to explain this question/problem (I already turned out my bodice pieces or I'd try to photograph THAT for you).

Oh and next time I decide to sew a dress with any gathers, just shoot me in advance. Ergh. But maybe by then I'll be an expert--who knows. I took a little break and when I came back, it was better.


Florence is closer than ever to completion. I finished the fair isle border of the last piece (second sleeve) on Saturday night with knitterly friends at Zoka and am up to the cap shaping now. I'll finish the knitting tonight and... and I suppose I should block the whole thing but I don't think it's going to happen. The back/fronts are already joined and the button/hole bands & collar already knitted-on. I think I'll just steam it on a mannequin at HT.

Alright, now back to work. Ah, work. Why must it suck up so much time???
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all words no pictures [20 Apr 2005|11:27am]
Florence: Oh, I forgot to mention we stopped by HT on Monday night and picked up size 2 and size 6 addi naturas. Later I remembered that my size 6s are right here in my office drawer on the Calmer ponchette I've been ignoring--pretending I'll work on it at "lunch" here. So I think I'll trade them for either shorter or longer circs, or a size 4 or 5 circ. I'm thinking I'll probably go with shorter or longer and had better make sure I don't already have an 16" 6's, whatever the material, already, because those are not all that useful to me. So anyway! I finished the pretty collar on pretty Florence. My hands are tired regardless but I still love the naturas over the turbos, hands down. I understand some people snap their naturas but this has so far not been a problem for me. Yay! I still have a sleeve to knit--thank goodness, back to laciness--and a lot of sewing and weaving to do, so I don't think I'm going to make my Saturday goal.

I picked up an older Adrienne Vitadinni book and am considering ripping Edda and using the Kid Classic for some lacy sweaters instead. But I should just finish Edda; I will be glad next fall to have her against the chill air. Then I can pick up some prettier colors to do the lacy sweaters in, anyway. After I finish Florence, I should really pause on store models because I have several UFOs and lots of baby knitting to think about!
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