Monthly Archives: March 2011

further evidence my brain hates me

This is what keeps me awake at night. Thinking up s*%t like this.

A friend showed me a picture of someone else who was going to make a knitted sweater for a Lego Minifigure and that was all it took to set my brain on fire. How to do it? what would work best? Do I have any small enough yarn and needles?

I did not have any knitting needles smaller then 0 so I decided to try my hand at crochet. I have an itty bitty hook (don’t ask me what size, I’m not a hooker) and some “thread” for lack of better description. (Years ago I was going to try to crochet little snowflakes for everyone for Christmas. Then I remembered I don’t know how to crochet.) And with my primitive crochet skilz this is it what came out:

no legos were harmed in the making of this photo

So in order for my brain to move on, I had to get this out of there.

and clearly its been raining too long and we are all going a little stir crazy.

Why does my Brain hate me?

I am at a cross roads in my life like never before. Closing my business is going to be a relief most of all. I’ve overcome the feelings that I failed. I didn’t fail. The economy failed me. It had a good run. It took me a while to come to that realization because, I’m not usually one to give up. I am glad I was able to keep it so long. It served its purpose: for me to be home while the kids are little. Lil K will be starting school in the fall, so really this is only a few months sooner then anticipated.

I keep thinking, “Oh, I should make this and start an Etsy store” but realistically what will it accomplish? More time spent but no real monetary profit. Maybe enough to serve my crafty habits, but certainly not enough to support another child in private school. I’ll need to grow up in a few months and rejoin the world. That part terrifies me. I’ve grown fond of my quiet little nest, wearing pj’s and sitting on the couch to work. I like my online community. I’m not looking forward to having to actually interact with people (other grown-ups (or mostly)). But I don’t have to do that until the end of the summer. I have time to mentally prepare for that, I guess.

As much as I’m kinda liking this “no plan” free flowing thing. That eensy weensy part of me that is a shred of type “A” keeps creaking up, “No plan!?! No plan! What to do, what to do?” I have all these wondrous ideas of stuff to do with my time for the next few months. (but I know most of them won’t come about) Why can’t we have it all? Time AND money. It seems that life only gives us one of those at a time. We either have the money we need (through a real 2 income family), but no time to enjoy it (because we’re working all the time). Or we have lots of time (or theoretically – like today, I’ve accomplished nothing really, but I’ve been busy all day), and no extra money to spend. Soon I’ll have less time, but more money (well sorta…it’ll be going towards education)

My brain seems to be going non-stop these days. I keep thinking of things I want to knit and stuff I want to sew for the kids, things I should blog about (that disappear as soon as I get me browser open). I really should be actually keeping house, cooking healthier and playing more with them. It seems like my brain has me in a choke hold and instead of getting stuff done with my new free time, I’m just stunned and really don’t know what to do with myself.

march 30: tidy mind, tidy stitches 2kcbwday3

Day Three: 30th March. Tidy mind, tidy stitches.

How do you keep your yarn wrangling organised? It seems like an easy to answer question at first, but in fact organisation exists on many levels. Maybe you are truly not organised at all, in which case I am personally daring you to try and photograph your stash in whatever locations you can find the individual skeins. However, if you are organised, blog about an aspect of that organisation process, whether that be a particularly neat and tidy knitting bag, a decorative display of your crochet hooks, your organised stash or your project and stash pages on Ravelry.

I have to say I’m not an organized person. I try like heck to be. But it just doesn’t happen. I used to be. I used to remember every detail of everything, too. I think I filled up my brain too early in life. Or maybe that I’m just usually too overwhelmed to bother? I go through bursts. I will be great for a little while, then I fall backwards.

My knitting organization goes in bursts as well. When I have a lot of projects on the needles things can get a little hairy. Scraps all over, needles flying, random skeins just lying there. Usually, though as the projects are finished, I “clean up”. I do have a modest sized stash, which helps keep the mess at bay.

My main stash is organized in to 3 large Rubbermaid bins. One for sock weight (I’m in a couple of sock clubs), one for worsted/dk nicer stuff, and one for my junk yarn (that I pull out when the kids need something). I also have a bin for my fiber and extra bobbins, patently waiting for my spinning wheel to be put back together. None of those bins are more then half full so I have room to grow. They live on a shelf in my laundry room.

My tools are mostly organized, but still very primitive-like. I have a Hello Kitty pencil case that holds my stitch markers, needles, stitch holders and other tiny bits. I have a second long narrow pencil case for my dpn’s and this case I made for my circulars. This system works mostly ok for me. Its a p.i.t.a. when I’m trying to find all 5 of a set of dpns amongst the zillions I have. I am constantly having to find my needle sizer thingy to figure out which size needle I’m looking at. I keep all these little boxes and my wip’s in my farmer’s market basket that lives right near the couch where I do most of my knitting. When I go someplace else to knit I just toss those boxes along with my wip into a bag and go.

I keep my finished projects organized through my Ravelry Projects Page. I do post knitted things on my blog as well, but try to not bore my non-knitting readers too much, so I keep it to the “good” ones. I am currently participating in Raverly Nerd Wars, I’ve been making a post about each completed project (mostly to better clarify that project and how it ties into team spirit), or so my fellow teammates can refer back to it. It will be nice to look back at the end of the tournament and see what I’ve accomplished in the 3 months.

I guess I’m more organized then I thought…maybe some of that will filter into my non-knitting life. One can only dream.


march 29: skill + 1UP 2kcbwday2

Day Two: 29th March. Skill + 1UP
Look back over your last year of projects and compare where you are in terms of skill and knowledge of your craft to this time last year. Have you learned any new skills or forms of knitting/crochet (can you crochet cable stitches now where you didn’t even know such things existed last year? Have you recently put a foot in the tiled world of entrelac? Had you even picked up a pair of needles or crochet hook this time last year?
Tips: Don’t be abashed at admitting your own skill and progress. If possible, include pictures of projects that you gained new skills from.

I looked at my Ravelry Project page only to see I haven’t really branched out this year. Most of my projects are pretty straight forward. There are a few exceptions that I am pretty proud of from this past year.

Back in April-ish of 2010 I took a class on intarsia. I made my hubby a sweater in that class. In January of this year I designed my own sweater using the skills I learned in the class. It was a simple stockinette sweater with some shaping to make it girly. I added some fun nerdy intarsia. I can not take credit for the intarsia bits, I found the charts here. However, in the class I took, I did learn how to chart on my own. I really had a great time with this sweater. It was the first time I knitted something with out a pattern and it just all fell into place nicely. Math works! The arms gave me a little bit of a stumble, I had never done short row shoulders before and could not find a pattern that had the same number of stitches to emulate. I tore out the first arm 3 times. I love the end result.

I have enjoyed knitting many intarsia-stranding-fair isle projects this past year.

DSCF0819 DSCF0753

My most appreciated skill that I mastered just a few weeks ago was cabling without a needle. What a time saving skill to have. I will be able to take on more complex cable projects now. (but why does everyone keep it a secret?)

In the next year I’d like to try my hand at entrelac and maybe some beading.


Knit and Crochet Blog Week Day 1