Rules for Feeding the Stash

Friday, November 15, 2019

WIP Wrangling


The past few years I've participated in NaKniSweMo and tried to knit a sweater from start to finish during November, but this year as November approached, I felt overwhelmed at the thought of casting on another big project when I have so many WIPs in various stages right now. So I'm participating in the more chill NaKnitMo, setting a stitch goal of 75k stitches for the month as well as an unofficial goal to finish up as many WIPs as possible.

I've already finished one project (my Villainous CYOAT, which just needs blocking), and I'm making great progress on my Currituck Sound, which has been sitting abandoned since last year. Currituck isn't especially portable right now (I'm in a fiddly section that really ought to be knit on a sofa), so this week I've been carrying around a shawl sample I cast on back in September and then promptly set aside. I'd love to get this finished and written this month, but I also just got the last skein I need for Arachne, and I can't wait to get that off the needles too.

(I also want to finish the sleeves for my Old Harry that's been languishing since last winter, and in a world where I had more time and no hand/wrist pain I'd think about finishing my Guernsey, Recharge, and Cormac, but it turns out there IS a limit to how much I can fantasize about actually getting done in a month.)


Monday, November 4, 2019

Weekends


I've reached the bottom ribbing on my Arachne and I've come to the unsettling conclusion that I don't have enough yarn. This is all my fault—when I was gathering materials, I thought I'd knit the size smaller, and then once I read the pattern I realized I needed the size 49, and it never occurred to me that knitting the next size up would mean I'd need an extra skein for the sleeves. I've ordered the yarn, and hopefully it will be here in a week or so.

This weekend was the holiday bazaar at the Lutheran church up in the city, and I went with my mum. It was, as always, a great day, and I got a ton of great stuff. Walking around a crowded building for almost three hours is no joke, though—I ended up taking a four-hour nap once I got home! Yesterday was a baking day, and I have fresh bread and coffee cake to show for it.

This week we're taking measurements at the dance studio, so I'm going to have some long days. Lee Lee's not going to be happy about that, but I'm leaving Friday night open for snuggles, and hopefully she'll forgive me. 

Monday, October 28, 2019

Catching Up


How have almost two weeks passed already? This month seems to have practically flown by, but a lot has been going on, so I guess that's understandable. Last week I transferred to a new position in my library, and I'm really excited for the move. I'm really enjoying my new position, and I can't wait to finish my training. I'm working in the Oral History department now, and while it's definitely quieter than Interlibrary Loan was, there's a lot to do, and I'm really excited about the work.

Bell choir rehearsals are also going great—there's one song in our program this winter that I don't play in at all, so I'm getting even more knitting time in during rehearsals than usual. My Ripple Bralette is finished and I can't wait to start wearing it—I just blocked it over the weekend, and I don't think I'll have time to get pictures taken until next weekend, but it looks stunning laid out on my futon.

My main project for the past week or so has been Arachne. I fell hard for this pattern when it came out, and I was really excited for the KAL for it...and then I didn't manage to cast on until October 17th. For a couple days I entertained the fantasy that I might be able to finish by the November 1st deadline, but that's pretty clearly not going to happen. That's okay, though. I definitely plan on finishing it in November, and my aesthetic is such that nobody is going to think twice about me wearing a Halloween sweater year-round.

Linking up with Crafting On

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Wednesdaying


Can we have three-day weekends every week? On Saturday I managed a nice long nap, on Sunday I got to snuggle my friend's baby, and I got six library books read. Monday I finally caught up on some housework, and I started ironing fabric for a new dress but had to stop due to an accident involving the hot iron and my foot (I'm okay! It's just a small burn and there's no blistering, so I should be back to normal pretty quickly.)

My Ripple Bralette has continued to prove to be excellent reading knitting. I've finished the body and am working my way though the first of the top fronts. I've added quite a bit of length to this, and I'm anxious to see how it will fit once it's finished and blocked.

Bell choir starts up again tonight, which I've been looking forward to, but it means I need to refigure my schedule. Historically, I've just gone straight to practice from work and brought dinner to eat quick before rehearsal started, but now that I have Lee Lee, that's not really an option. Today I'm going to try riding my bike home quick, letting Lee Lee out and feeding her, and grabbing a quick bite before driving to rehearsal. I think I'll have just enough time to make it work, and hopefully the weather will cooperate for the next six weeks so that I don't have to come up with a Plan B.

Speaking of Lee Lee, she's settling in great. It seems like her favorite spot when I'm at work is up at the head of my bed, right next to the window. I don't know which is a bigger draw for her—being able to smell me on my pillow or being able to look out the window, but I'm glad she's figuring out a routine for when I'm at work. 

Wednesday, October 9, 2019

Rippling


Oh my gosh, I am completely blown away by how successful the launch for Suz has been so far! You can still get 20% off the pattern on Ravelry with code FAVORITE through tomorrow, so be sure to take advantage of that if you haven't yet!


After that weird mess of a summer, I'm working on re-calibrating my knitting projects. I have a couple of small design samples on the needles, but I've mostly been working on a Ripple Bralette for myself. I've had this pattern in my queue since it came out, and when I saw the BIPOC Make-a-long on Instagram, I wanted to join in. My favorite outfits to wear around the house are leggings, bralettes, and robes, and with cooler weather coming, I thought a knit bralette (or two, or seven) sounded perfect.

This yarn is a 75/25 merino/silk from Tanis Fiber Arts, and it's absolutely decadent. The color is so romantic, and I can't wait to find out how comfortable the finished bralette will be (Prediction: So Comfortable). This is a super enjoyable knit so far—it's a great purse project, and I can work on it while watching TV or even knitting. I already have a skein of sock yarn picked out for a second Ripple Bralette! 

Monday, October 7, 2019

Suz


Suz is the perfect TV knitting. Worked all in one piece, flat, in garter stitch, it was made for parking in front of the television with a pile of your favorite movies.


The sleeves and body are worked sideways, casting on at one wrist and working across the body before binding off at the opposite wrist. Stitches are then picked up and the shawl collar is knit on. The sides and sleeves are then closed with just two seams to finish.


Suz is available in my Ravelry Store and is 20% off with code FAVORITE through Thursday, October 10th.


Wednesday, October 2, 2019

Vacationing


I took last week off from my day job at the library, and while it was nice to have a week without having to go in to work every day, it wasn't exactly a restful vacation. You see, I decided to get into cosplay, and between Tuesday and Friday I built the ballgown from Labyrinth.


I've always loved dressing up, and making the ballgown was a lot of fun, even though it meant some very long and stressful days. I definitely want to make more elaborate costumes, but hopefully never again in one week.


The dress is made of some white jersey knit, grey lace, ivory organza, and iridescent cellophane. There's a bunch of beads and gems and fabric roses hot glued to the bodice, and I made the necklace with hot glue and beads and jewelry wire.



I also got a new dog last week! Back in August I was in my cups one evening and in a fit of missing Mystic I decided to scroll through local humane society websites. One dog jumped out at me, and I immediately saved her picture. I have never felt such a pull towards an adoptable dog before. I talked myself out of going to meet her—Mystic had died so recently, I wasn't sure I was ready.


I kept browsing humane society listings, and this dog was still there. Finally I decided that since she was still there last week the universe was clearly telling me something. I drove over and met her and an hour later we came home.


Her name is Lee Lee. She's an 11yo Jack Russel/Rat Terrier mix, and she's a huge snugglebug. I'm so glad I had last week off so we could bond before I had to go back to work, and it's so good to have someone waiting for me when I get home. She's got her issues—she's missing half her teeth, she has skin allergies, she doesn't know any commands, and she's about a pound and a half underweight—but we work together really well, and I'm so glad we found each other.



Monday, September 30, 2019

Echeveria


There is nothing quite as luxurious as a deep, lacy cowl. With plenty of depth to burrow in and a lightweight fabric, Echeveria is perfect for keeping your neck and face warm in transitional weather or dressing up a t-shirt and jeans.


Echeveria is worked in the round from the bottom up.


Echeveria is now available in my Ravelry Store and is 20% off with code SUCCULENT through Wednesday, October 2nd!


I know I've been pretty absent from this space for a while. This summer was really hard for me, for a lot of reasons, and there was a lot going on in my personal life. I wound up in a depressive episode and something had to give. I'm doing much better now, and I'm ready to get back into blogging—a lot happened last week that I can't wait to share with you!

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Birthday Sale!


Hi Friends! It's September, which means it's time for my Birthday Sale!!

Everything in my Ravelry Store is 29% off with code HB29. The code is good through September 14th, so pop on over to Ravelry and get yourself something nice for my birthday! 

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

The Ocean's Daughter


The Ocean’s Daughter is a lightweight, one-skein shawl consisting of two eyelet patterns and garter stitch. Using only basic stitches, it is knit on the bias, and is an ideal choice for a portable project.


The Ocean’s Daughter is perfect for showing off variegated and specked hand-dyed yarns.


The Ocean’s Daughter is 20% off on Ravelry with code SEAMAID through Friday, August 16th!


Monday, August 5, 2019

Rambling


July was a really weird month. There was just so much going on, between my personal life, and the play, and then my dog dying, that I think it's going to take a while to fully recover. This whole summer so far has felt really long and exhausting, and I'm ready for it to be over. I've been exhausted and burnt out for at least two months now, and I really hope that I find my equilibrium again soon.

I pulled out my Old Harry the other week because I needed something pretty brainless to work on, and I've finished the body and have started the first sleeve. I have another sweater on the needles that I'd like to finish this month, so I don't know how much longer I'll keep carrying Old Harry around.

I've got quite the backlog of pattern writing that I've been meaning to catch up on for over two weeks, but haven't managed it yet. This is mostly due to my complete inability to do anything right now except read romance novels and eat cheese. Like I said earlier, I really hope I find my equilibrium. Quickly. I'm trying to keep track of all my self care—eat regularly, eat occasional vegetables, get enough sleep, try to keep my apartment from looking like a total trash pit—but this burnout/depressive episode is really stubborn. The only way out is through, though, so here I am, head down and plowing through. 

Monday, July 29, 2019

Mystic


My dog died on Friday.

We got Mystic thirteen years ago as a tiny puppy with a black wiry overcoat. He loved playing soccer and splashing in his water bowl. As he reached adulthood he lost the black overcoat and turned into this blonde beauty with curly hair on his butt only. When we moved to Florida, he rode on my lap the whole way down, and when I left for college he hid under my mother's bed for days.

He was my best friend.



By the time my family joined me in South Dakota, Mystic had started getting  cataracts. He was totally blind for the last two or three years of his life, and sometimes he walked into things. He had this amazing little bark that was almost like a huff under his breath, and we called him a grumpy old man. He'd been a grumpy old man almost since he was a puppy.

Mystic loved carrots more than anything else. The second he smelled a carrot, he'd be in the kitchen begging for pieces. He loved food in general, and tried every day to convince us that he hadn't had breakfast yet.

Once or twice he even got away with it.


Mystic loved sleeping, and napped for close to twenty hours a day. He had several blankets to choose from, but he'd nest in or on anything even remotely soft. He regularly slept on my knitting projects, on my mum's slippers, and even on my brother's backpack. If it was made of fabric, then it was a dog bed.

He was endlessly patient. He let me dress him up in my clothes and wrap him up in shawls and blankets. I'm certain that he wouldn't have chosen to get wrapped up like a babushka on his own, but he never protested when I tried it.

He loved being up on furniture, especially when he got to be in someone's lap or next to us. He loved cuddles and belly rubs, and he insisted on getting his belly scratched every morning before he'd deign to get out of bed, never mind that he'd been the one to wake me up and had been ready for breakfast for an hour already.

Two of his favorite words were "brekkers" and "bedtime."


Like many dogs, Mystic hated thunderstorms. Several years ago, after much trial and error, I finally discovered that his favorite music was Le Nozze di Figaro, and it was the only thing that could even remotely calm him during a thunderstorm. This video is the most played one on my youtube account.

He hated being apart from me. If I thought he was getting too bratty and wouldn't let him up on the sofa with me, he'd go up to my room and pull a blanket down from my bed to make a nest. Once, when I went away for the weekend, I came back and he laid down next to me, holding my hand between his front legs with all the might that his little fourteen-pound body could muster, insistent that I not leave him again.

Mystic taught me that I could love wholeheartedly and unconditionally. Even when he threw up in my bed, when he kept me up all night making nest after nest in the duvet, when he was at his most ornery, I loved him. I loved him so much that sometimes I didn't think I could hold it all.

He loved me, too.



I was with him at the end. He'd been sick for a few days, but I didn't think it was serious. Almost by accident, I had a cold on Friday and decided to stay home. Almost by accident, I decided to get Mystic from his kitchen quarantine and bring him to bed with me to snuggle. I'm so, so thankful that he wasn't alone.

Mystic was the best possible dog. He was even better than any of us could have asked for.

He was my best friend.

I miss him.


Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Tech Week-ing Along


I can't believe it's only Wednesday. I'm completely exhausted, and I want nothing more than about thirteen hours of straight sleep. We have our first dress rehearsal tonight, and the show is really coming together great. I'm managing a few rounds on my Villainous CYOAT for the Outfit-A-Long each night, and now that I've separated the sleeves from the body it should go even more quickly. I'm hoping to be able to squeeze out elbow-length sleeves on this, but we'll have to see how far my yarn goes.

I am eating a lot of dry cereal and rice ramen this week, and I'm looking forward to having time to cook a real meal. Tech week is always hard on me, but this year it's even tougher, for a few different reasons, and I'm really looking forward to next Tuesday, when the play is over. My apartment is a disaster, my plants are neglected, and there might be a new life form growing in my fridge, and I'm really looking forward to getting some time and energy back to deal with those things.

Monday, July 8, 2019

Voting and Tech Week


Happy Monday! First piece of business, Hell Creek has been nominated for Pattern of the Month over on LoveCrafts. If you have an account, you can vote here.

It's tech week for Mama Mia, and I'm already exhausted. I had a four-day weekend, and I pretty much just slept through it. I had rehearsal Saturday and Sunday, and I'm going to be going straight through next Monday. The show really is coming together, though, and we finally got to start working with the band last night, and I can't wait to see how we keep making this show more and more fun over the next few nights.

Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Outfitting Along


I've been fighting something this week that hopefully is just allergies—my doctor just put me on a new regime for the next week or so to see if we can get me feeling better. Play rehearsals are still going well, but now they're going even later in the evenings as we work on really pulling the show together. Next week is tech week, and hopefully after our stumble-through tonight we'll be in good shape for it.

Because the 4th of July is on a Thursday this year, the university system has given us Friday off too, so I have a four-day weekend to look forward to. It's just what I need to get myself rested and ready for tech week and production, and I'm really looking forward to having four days off.

Last night I finished my shawl sample, and my goal is to get it blocked and written and sent to my tech editor this weekend. It's a bit mushy right now, but it's going to be gorgeous once it hits the water and opens up some. Since that's done, I'm now focusing 100% on my cropped CYOA Tee for the OAL. My plan for my outfit is to wear this over a dress that is about half finished—the bodice is done, but the skirt still needs to be assembled and attached. I'm not worrying about the dress until after the show is over, but the top is great backstage knitting! 

Monday, July 1, 2019

Whoops


Wow, apologies for the really bad lighting in that photo, but as you can see, my Zinone is finished! What you can't see is that it's actually too small. The armholes are too tight, and the whole thing fits more like a crop top than a t-shirt.

I'd been having suspicions for a while that this would be too small, so I'm not completely surprised, but it's definitely frustrating that I didn't listen to my gut and check it earlier. I was in such a rush to get this done that I didn't want to take the time to block it on the needles and see if it would grow as much as it needed to, and now I'm paying for it.

I really love how this yarn knit up into this top, and I definitely want to rip it out and reknit it, but...not right away. I'm going to let it sit in time-out for a while. This month, I have a new shawl sample that's almost finished and I have just over four weeks to bang out my OAL projects, so I don't have time to dwell on my own bad choices! 

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Progressing


It's been a bit of a wild week over here. I'm fully in the thick of play rehearsals—we have just six more regular rehearsals before tech week, which feels almost unbelievable. How are we this far along in production already? It feels like we only just started rehearsals!

My shower drain has been completely blocked for twelve days now, with no sign of my property manager coming to fix it yet (I'm hoping that today is the day), and the other night I broke a vial of insulin and spent a large portion of yesterday morning panicking about getting more, because it's too early to get a refill and the cash price of insulin is ridiculous (fortunately, I have an amazing pharmacist who figured it all out for me, for which I am extremely grateful).

I've been making good progress on my Zionone, despite not knitting as much as usual, and I'm hoping that I'll be able to finish it by the end of the TTTKAL on Sunday. I really want to get this finished this week so, 1. I successfully complete the KAL, and, 2. I can start working on my OAL projects and not feel bad about having to set this top aside again. I'm freaking out about the OAL because the top I'm knitting for it has barely been started and my dress for it is one I'm hand-sewing, because that's totally a reasonable thing to do. I'd love to successfully complete the OAL since it's going on hiatus after this year, but July is going to be more than a little crazy, so who knows.

Monday, June 24, 2019

I Stand with Ravelry


Yesterday Ravelry banned support of Donald Trump and his administration. The Ravelry team has determined that they cannot make Ravelry an inclusive space if they allow support for white supremacy, and support for Trump and his administration is "undeniably support for white supremacy."

I am so, so proud of Ravelry for taking this stand, and I am so proud to be a member of a community that is caring, compassionate, and willing to take a stand like this. Ravelry will undoubtedly get some pushback from this: white supremacists don't like being told that they cannot continue openly supporting white supremacy in certain forums. But an important part of anti-facist work is to make it difficult for facists to be openly and vocally facist. By banning support for Trump and white supremacy on Ravelry, the Ravelry team have taken away a space where these people can be openly hateful.


Monday, June 17, 2019

Weekends


Saturday evening I stepped out my back door to see a momma bunny spread out over her brood of babies. I've never seen baby bunnies before, and they were so precious! The mom immediately ran to the next yard to try and distract me (such a good mom!). I kept a good distance and managed some blurry cell phone pictures to capture the moment.

This weekend was super busy. I managed a short nap each day, thankfully, but I didn't really get much else in the way of downtime. I'm hoping that tonight I can relax and finish a library book or two and maybe get another inch or so knit on my Zinone. Since I'm alternating two skeins on Zinone right now, I ended up working on my new shawl sample more this weekend, just because it's a bit easier to cart around through parks and back and forth from events. As is the theme with me lately, this photo does not do the colors in this yarn justice. It's much more variegated in person.

I only have one more play rehearsal this week, on Tuesday night, so I'm hoping that this week I can get some recharging in. On Wednesday I have to go up to the city to see my endo, which I'm not really looking forward to in the wake of my ER visit a couple weeks ago, but maybe he'll have an idea as to why my blood sugar got so out of control.

Linking up with Crafting On

Friday, June 14, 2019

A Week


Oh man, has it really been a week since I've posted here? This week has been crazy and long and I am so excited to be at the back end of it. You know those days where nothing seems to go right? It's been like that for the last two weeks. Play rehearsals are going well, but there's a lot going on and I feel like I've barely had a chance to breathe.

I've made a little progress on my Zinone, but I got distracted by a new shawl sample, so this has been on pause for the past few days. Tomorrow is the halfway point of the TTTKAL, so I probably need to focus on banging out the lower body of this now if I have any chance of finishing it by the 30th. It would be great if I could figure out how to accurately photograph this color, but I'm still not having luck. Oh well.

Tomorrow is the Pride festival up in the city, and I'll be going for a couple hours—the dogs have a grooming appointment, so I'll drive up and drop them off, then go celebrate at Pride until the dogs are ready to get picked up. Next week is my town's first Pride festival, and I'm really looking forward to participating (as much as play rehearsals allow). I'm hoping that even  with all the planned Pride festivities that next week will be a bit calmer than the past two, but at this point I'm kind of expecting something else stressful and crazy to happen. 

Friday, June 7, 2019

Summer Knits and Shakespeare


I can't believe we're already at the end of the first week of June! This weekend is the Shakespeare Festival, so I'm going to be spending the next couple nights in the park watching A Midsummer Night's Dream. I have a few friends in the production, and the festival brought in an amazing director this summer, so I'm really looking forward to it.

I'm just two rows away from joining the front and back on my Zinone, and I'm really looking forward to stockinette in the round. I really love how this is knitting up, and I'm really looking forward to including this top in my summer wardrobe. I was nervous about trying to get this top done for the TTTKAL, since I have another top I want to finish for the OAL and I was unsure if I could finish two fingering-weight tops in two months, but I'm happy with my progress from this week, and I think I'll be able to make it work.


Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Happenings


Oh, where to start? Sunday was the first rehearsal for Mama Mia and I'm already having a blast with this show. I really can't wait to see what the next five and a half weeks hold, because this really is a super fun show. Unfortunately, late Sunday night/early Monday morning I had some blood sugar issue and had to go to the emergency room. I'm much better now, but that was not a fun way to spend a night.

This year's TTTKAL is now underway, and I pulled out this Zinone that I cast on for last year's kal, but I didn't even get the upper back finished before I shoved it onto a bookshelf. It's really zipping along now, though, and I'm already at the neck cast-on. I've been knitting this during play rehearsals, and while I'm super impressed that I managed to get through the lace, I'm definitely glad to only have to knit plain stockinette from here on out! This yarn is a merino-tencel blend I dyed at a workshop a few years ago, and it's just the prettiest shades of lilac and purple. It's really hard to photograph so far, this photo doesn't do it justice at all!

Friday, May 31, 2019

Sweatering and Weekending and Getting Busy


It feels like this week has dragged on forever, despite it being only a four-day week (thanks, long weekend!). I've been crazy busy for the past two weeks, and while I'd love to take my chance to relax tomorrow, I've let a bunch of stuff at my apartment go undone, and I really ought to catch up.

Rehearsals for Mama Mia start on Sunday, and with them comes the summer craziness. I don't know what my rehearsal schedule is going to be like, and I'm hoping for at least a couple days off each week to relax and regroup. It's all fun, though, and it's only six weeks, and I really do enjoy almost every minute of it.

Last week I started a new cardigan for myself. I'm totally winging it, and I'm not taking any notes as I go along. It's some old kitchen cotton from my stash, and the plan is for it to be an oversized cardigan with bracelet-length sleeves. It's a silhouette I've been wanting for a while, and I think the kitchen cotton will give it the structure it needs without being too hot, so it should be a great layer for work. I don't know how much I'm going to get to work on this in the immediate future, though—this year's TTTKAL and the OAL both start tomorrow, and I have plans aplenty for both of those! 

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Hell Creek


Hell Creek is named for the Hell Creek Formation, which spans parts of Montana, Wyoming, North Dakota, and South Dakota. The formation dates from the late Cretaceous period, and is a rich source of fossils from marine and land reptiles, fish, dinosaurs, mammals, amphibians, plants, and invertebrates.


Hell Creek is a slightly cropped, boxy top, intended to be worn with 0-4in/0-10cm of positive ease. The top is knit from the bottom up and seamed, then stitches are picked up for the collar, which is worked in the round.


Hell Creek is intended to be worn with 0-4in/0-10cm positive ease and is shown in size 48in/122cm on a model with a 43in/109cm bust.

Sizes: 30 (33, 36, 39, 42, 45, 48, 51, 54, 57, 60, 63)in/ 76.5 (84, 91.5, 99, 106.5, 114.5, 122, 129.5, 137, 145, 152.5, 160)cm at bust

Yarn: 425 (465, 610, 620, 665, 710, 750, 795, 840, 885, 1030, 1075)yds/389 (425, 558, 608, 650, 686, 727, 768, 810, 942, 983)m sport-weight yarn


Hell Creek is 15% off on Ravelry through Thursday, May 30th, with code BONES!