Tuesday, October 31, 2006

RAWR! and Happy Halloween!

Fluffy Fly Trap wishes everyone a Happy Halloween!

(Note of explanation: Fluffy's big moment is brought to you by its being the scariest, spookiest thing in my apartment at the moment, besides the staggering mound of dirty laundry on my bedroom floor and the teetering pile of books that need reading and absorbing so that I might pass my rapidly approaching prelim exams).

Sunday, October 29, 2006

A Milestone, or, A Finished Pomatomus.*

My arduous journey with the lemongrass STR is complete... or... half way done. There will be a short delay on the second pomatomus as I need an intermission from this chart-intensive pattern. I am happy with the result, however, so I will definitely want to get the second pom going before too long. There is no question that I will knit this pattern again, though it will likely be with a solid or somewhat solid colorway and on smaller needles.

In the meantime, I have turned my attention to the second sock ambition that I had originally devised for Socktoberféte activities... the porphura Hedera.**

Lovely texture and stitch pattern.

And some preparation for my mom's Silky Tweed Aud sweater (along with some necessary movie re-watchin').

Have a lovely Sunday evening, all.

*Okay, I know I have posted the progress of this one sock excessively, perhaps, so I promise not to post about it again until I have a finished mate for it.

**porphura (πορΦυρα): ancient Greek derivative for the word "purple;" denoting mollusks that yielded a purply-blue dye that was used to color garments, which, in later times, became commonly known as "imperial purple" (especially during the Roman Empire) and was the symbolic color for royalty (and still is). The Phoenicians (those Philistines!) were the first to process the hexaplex trunculus (otherwise known as the murex) and extract the purply dye from its hypobranchial gland. Porphura Hedera has a nice ring to these nerd-ears, much as the murex-y color has on my nerd-eyes.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

A Postscript.

I had every intention of posting a finished lemongrass pomatomus almost-knee-high #1 yesterday, and I just couldn't get it done in time for a timely post. So I broke down and posted the "So Close" post [see below]. So I have a finished pomatomus-minus-the toe. I still have a goodly amount of the first skein of STR, but by NO means enough for the second pair, obviously. But all is well! Because I have a second skein on its way, so there is no possibility of a mishap of not enough yarn to finish these socks. And, as it stands, I decided that I couldn't possibly make these pomatomi into knee-highs half-way into the knit; that would have required some shaping at the top section to accomodate calves, and I was too far into the sock to add any in. Not to mention the fact that I am a novice sock-knitter, so adding shape into this pattern probably would have been less-than-successful for me. So, I simply added another entire pattern repeat into the body of the sock, making an *almost* knee-high. It's a nice addition, I think, because I am using the medium weight STR, so the sock is a little on the chunky side, and the added length takes away some of that *clog sock* character. In toto, these socks will likely require approximately one and a half skeins of STR, so in hindsight, it was a little wasteful of me to lengthen the body of the sock. However, I am already brainstorming how I might combine the remains of the lemongrass STR with something else and make a super-cool striped sock, or something. Very little in the way of fiber goes to waste around here, thanks to my anti-salary *cough* grad student stipend.

A special thanks to Elli for her immediate concern for the unfinished state-of-sock.

Friday, October 27, 2006

So Close.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Terracotta: Beautiful Pottery and a New Project.

My mom recently sent me an awesome new piece of handmade pottery (I collect it, ya know!), and it's a really nice, unique piece. It is apparently a dip or salsa holder that fits into a bottom piece that can be filled with warm or cold water, depending on whether you want your dip or salsa to stay warm or cold. It's really cool, and it will certainly come in handy when we have our beer-tasting party. Or any party, really. I love it.

Along with the pottery, came 10 hanks of beautiful Elsebeth Lavold Silky Tweed yarn in a terracotta-rust-like color, which my mom has had stashed in her closet for a long while and which I told her to send to me so that I could knit her something great out of it. So, there's a new project in my queue: the lovely Aud sweater from the Viking Knits Collection by Elsebeth Lavold. I'm excited about finally getting to knit something for my mom. She's an amazing knitter who has been knitting since she was 5 or 6, but within the past few years she's shifted from a sweater and afghan knitter to a sock knitter. She knit her first pair of socks for me (see them here), and ever since she learned how to knit socks she hasn't stopped. Thus, the Silky Tweed has not seen daylight for a couple of years now, and I'm interceding on its behalf so that it can become something. I am going to try to get some of my projects done precipitately (or as precipitately as I possibly can as a grad student who is teaching this year) so that I can get this one going. It is going to be a beautiful sweater, if I do say so myself.

Detail of the gorgeous color.

Beautiful terracotta of two kinds.

Happy October, everyone.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

In which I disclose perspicacious insight into my very being, or, 48 Things You Could Care Less About.

1. FIRST NAME? Megan

2. WERE YOU NAMED AFTER ANYONE? Nope. Though I just barely escaped being named “Michelle Edwina.” All I can say about that one is *phew*. I’ll take Megan Lee any day, even if I was teased in Middle School because I am Megan Lee and not Megan Leigh. Apparently, you can’t be cool at that age with the “boy” form of the name Lee. All in all, I enjoy being Megan Lee.

3. WHEN DID YOU LAST CRY? Just a few minutes ago when I fixed my eyes on the towering stack of midterm exams I still have to grade. Ooof.

4. DO YOU LIKE YOUR HANDWRITING? It’s alright. Gets the job done in a relatively tidy and legible way.

5. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE LUNCHMEAT? Vegetarian here. You gotta be desperate to eat that stuff.

6. IF YOU WERE ANOTHER PERSON WOULD YOU BE FRIENDS WITH YOU? In theory, yes, but my complete lack of charisma and friendliness (not entirely intentional, mind you), not to mention my often antisocial behavior, would likely repel me from myself.

7. DO YOU HAVE A JOURNAL? Sadly, I have many, each with maybe 4 or 5 entries for the entire year. We'll see how long the blog lasts.

8. DO YOU STILL HAVE YOUR TONSILS? Yes, and planning to keep them, thank you very much.

9. WOULD YOU BUNGEE JUMP? Not today, folks.

10. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE CEREAL? Kashi Autumn Wheat. I’m privy to Kashi products in general, especially after reading about the “cardboard showdown.” That’s cool. You can read about it for yourself here.

11. DO YOU UNTIE YOUR SHOES WHEN YOU TAKE THEM OFF? Nah, too much effort involved. I usually wear tieless, stringless shoes, and the only reason I know the answer to this question is because the other day my boyfriend asked me to take off his shoes for him and I spent several minutes trying to yank his shoes off of his feet. After much yeowling from him, I realized he tied his shoes pretty securely to his feet. And that I am not a person who unties shoes when I take them off.

12. DO YOU THINK YOU ARE STRONG? What, you wanna fight?

13. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE ICE CREAM FLAVOR? What *isn’t* my favorite ice cream flavor? :o)

14. SHOE SIZE? 9 or 9 ½.

15. RED OR PINK? Pink = blech, so red by default.

16. WHAT IS THE LEAST FAVORITE THING ABOUT YOURSELF? Indecision. Wait… no… yes, indecision.

17. WHO DO YOU MISS THE MOST? I second Fricknits'
the Bluths. My life just hasn’t been the same without them. Damn, corporate television.


19. WHAT COLOR PANTS, SHIRT AND SHOES ARE YOU WEARING? Asphalt Decemberists t-shirt and blue jeans. Okay, so I’m a bum.

20. LAST THING YOU ATE? Pita chips.

21. WHAT ARE YOU LISTENING TO RIGHT NOW? The sound of my boyfriend voraciously devouring pita chips.

22. IF YOU WERE A CRAYON, WHAT COLOR WOULD YOU BE? Cerulean. I was going to say Indian Red or Prussian Blue, but apparently those names were removed from Crayola boxes long ago (see).

23. FAVORITE SMELL? Wood smoke on campfires and Christmas trees. Earl Grey tea and coffee. My mom's soap.

24. WHO WAS THE LAST PERSON YOU TALKED TO ON THE PHONE? Does text messaging count? I don’t answer my phone much. Or ever.


26. DO YOU LIKE THE PERSON YOU STOLE THIS FROM? Yeah, knitblogland is great. Except when there is work to be done. Which is always. Wait… damn, you knitblogland!

27. FAVORITE DRINK? Dogfish Head Punkin Ale and good, strong coffee.

28. FAVORITE SPORT? Sport? I’m drawing a blank… I need a definition for this thing called “sport” of which you speak.

29. EYE COLOR? Blue.

30. HAT SIZE? Don’t wear ‘em, so I haven’t a clue.

31. DO YOU WEAR CONTACTS? Nope. I prefer my glasses that are less than stylish and very crooked.

32. FAVORITE FOOD? Pancakes; especially pumpkin ones from Sabrina's. And
Grit-style tofu.

33. SCARY MOVIES OR HAPPY ENDINGS? The Royal Tennenbaums, so neither, really.

35. SUMMER OR WINTER? Winter, definitely.

36. HUGS OR KISSES? I choose the option of maintaining a distance of at least an arm’s length from everyone. Okay, okay, hugs, definitely. Just none of those whimpy ones. If you’re gonna hug me, I want to say “ow” during it.

37. FAVORITE DESSERT? Lately, I’ve been enjoying banana pudding and ‘Nilla wafters.



40. WHAT BOOKS ARE YOU READING? A fascinating yarn called Archäologische Berichte aus dem Yemen (it’s an edited volume of articles by various archaeologists and academics). All about the Bronze Age period in Yemen (that’s about 2600-2000 BCE). Highly recommend it. The kids will especially like it read to them before bed.

41. WHAT’S ON YOUR MOUSE PAD? Some dust and a billion fingerprint smudges.

42. WHAT DID YOU WATCH LAST NIGHT ON TV? It’s been a Twin Peaks marathon at my hous for the past week and a half, now. There’s a fish. In the percolator.

43. FAVORITE SOUNDS? Blustery wind through trees.

44. ROLLING STONES OR BEATLES? Rocks or bugs? Hmmm… nature is cool.

45. THE FURTHEST YOU’VE BEEN FROM HOME? The United Arab Emirates. Pretty damn far. I’ll be going back in December, too, for a little archaeology diggin’ action.

46. WHAT’S YOUR SPECIAL TALENT? Surviving on a grad student stipend for too many years, now. Will. Knit. For. Food.

47. WHERE WERE YOU BORN? Neenah, Wisconsin. Ironic, too, because I am such a southerner, whether I like it or not. Grew up in Atlanta and Athens, GA, y’all.

48. WHO SENT THIS TO YOU? It's omnipresent in blogland right now.

And some pretty yarn for good measure.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Headway, Ahead!

I don't really have anything dramatic and *finished* to show yet (soon!), but I've been knitting... probably more than I really have time to, but nevermind about that.

My Socktober socks are coming along... I've made it through two more of the pattern repeats, so according to the pattern, I am ready to begin the heel flap. I've been inspired, however, to continue on with another pattern repeat. I'm not exactly sure why, but I've decided that these socks would make great knee-highs, or almost-knee-highs. I'm not even sure it will work out, but I've been inspired to try it. Maybe I'm a sucker for punishment, or maybe I am just so relieved that I've figured out the pattern and now can't stop knitting it, but I see some lemongrass pomatomus almost-knee-highs in my future.

Salina has also returned to the scene... to the finished back panel and first sleeve I can now add half of a front panel. So Salina is officially half way done, and there's no stopping me now. I'm determined to be wearing an awesome new tweedy wool sweater soon!

And now back to my regularly scheduled programming...

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Something is Blocking.

A small miracle may be happening here in a day or two... a substantial finished something may be making an appearance. It's been dry around here with respect to FOs of late. Not because I don't knit, of course, but because I am knitting too many darned things to ever finish one of them... because I've been rotating between knitting about four different sweaters, at some point I am going to have an avalanche of FOs (or that is the illusion I am harboring, anyway), but soon enough, I will have an FO. Let the FO deluge commence.


Monday, October 16, 2006

Everybody Loves Chocolate.

The list of Future Projects keeps a-growin', this time no thanks to brainy Alison, who, through no fault of her own, introduced me to the ever-so-awesome-and-cute Buttony sweater, which, as it turns out, I must have. So, upon reading the incredibly short instructions (surely a record!), I saw that the model sweater was made from Debbie Bliss merino chunky. And... upon googling up some DB merino chunky, I hit upon a littleknits super sale on some...

chocolate DB merino chunky.

A 10-pack for $24.99. Surely, it would be a crime to not act on such an instance of good fortune. A crime, I say. Especially since I've been pondering a chocolate sweater ever since I saw 'Nabler Anne's cute chocolatey cardigan. And because the instructions for the Buttony sweater are so short and the yarn used to produce it so bulky (size 9 needles!), certainly this could be knit up in no time at all...

... and now back to socks.

Saturday, October 14, 2006


My Socktoberfest socks are coming along... albeit *slowly*. I cast on my Pomatomi and completed the ribbing no sweat:

Pretty yarn! I love, love, love STR a ton. Such nice, soft, perfect yarn... no inconsistencies in the fiber at all... just smooth and beautiful yarn in a great lemony-grassy colorway. (I feel an obsession coming on...) Yay for finished ribbing! (Not a fan of ribbing, really.) *Then* came the actual pattern. My first few attempts at following the first chart were less than successful. I've followed one or two other pattern charts, but this one is weird in that it has a YO as the first stitch. This is actually kind of confusing when knitting on dpns... or I found it to be, at least. I am also a novice sock knitter, so knitting on dpns is something I am not yet a total master at yet. So it has taken a few tries to figure out the initial YO... but... finally... I have this!

I've worked through one pattern repeat of the first chart. Phew! While it's taken me awhile to get this far, I am completely at ease with the pattern now, and I should be able to fly through the rest of the sock.

I'm liking the colorway of the yarn with the pattern so far... the colors seem to be following a fairly regular striping pattern. Good combination, I think.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

1 Jenny Lewis + 2 Watson Twins = Awesome Concert.

I went to see Jenny Lewis and the Watson Twins at TLA here in Philly two nights ago. It was a kickass show. Jenny Lewis rocks. And is great live. Everyone should listen to Rabbit Fur Coat (click the link and enjoy). 'Nuff said. Sorry, no photos from the show... I was too busy enjoying the music to document it.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Making up for sock time.

Just in time to propitiate for my tardiness to Socktoberfest-ivities, my sock yarn arrived! And behold, no tweed to be seen! I am new to sock knitting, so based on what I've gathered from the world of knitblogging, I've settled upon some Blue Moon Fiber Arts medium-weight sock yarn in the Lemongrass colorway and some Sundara sock yarn in the Grey over Periwinkle colorway. I am excited to try both of them, and will be doing so imminently.

With any luck, the lemongrass sock yarn will be transfomed into Pomatomi.

And the Sundara yarn will be transformed into Hederas.

Decision-making is the first step toward production... Socks, ho!

Sunday, October 08, 2006

An FO and an Anniversary.

Celebration is in order! Michael's Banker socks are finished, and just in time to commemorate our 2 year anniversary of our first date. The socks, my first completed pair of socks, turned out fantastically, I think. I really enjoyed making these socks. The pattern was simple, but nice for acclimating me to sock-knitting. I am definitely up for knitting more complicated patterns the next go 'round, though. The Mountain Colors 100% wool is absolutely fantastic. I love the subtle varigation of a somewhat solid, and the deep blue color of this yarn is super-nice. I am already scheming how I might acquire some more of this yarn in the more substantial 4/8s worsted weight weave or the new 3-ply wool so that I can make a hoodie out of it. But, as it is, I have enough sweaters to work on!

Michael's Banker's Socks
Pattern: Mountain Colors Designs Banker's Socks
Fiber: Mountain Colors Weaver's Wool Quarters, Deep Blue Solitary Colorway
Needles: Size US 2 dpns
Completed: October 2006
Notes: Even having to accomodate for a whopping size 13 foot, I only used one 350 yd/100 gram skein, and even had a little to spare.

Detail of socks on new owner:

Detail of the toe and stitching:

Detail of the 2x2 ribbing:

So, Michael got socks for our anniversary (and some cushy new cycling gloves!) and I got an awesome, awesome necklace that I absolutely adore. Happy 2 year anniversary to us!

Friday, October 06, 2006

Sidetracked: in which *Sock*toberfest was mistaken for *Sweat(er)*oberfest.

Despite my careful planning and good intentions for the month of sock-knitting, I have deviated from said course in the last several days and *may* have cast on yet another sweater. Okay, I *did*, is the thing. I know, I know, as if Salina and Joy weren't enough. But, in order to *treat* myself for such diligent progress on Salina and Joy, which are comprised of row upon row of small stockinette stitches on size 3 and 5 needles, I cast on the Central Park Hoodie, which will be knit from satisfyingly thick Yorkshire tweed aran and on size 8s. And while the cablework is admittedly easy, it is nonetheless something *other* than stockinette... And behold: what has taken me several weeks to knit in the forms of Salina and Joy, I've accomplished in mere days!

Cast on...

Already, progress!

In no time at all... a completed back panel.

Detail of the stitching and cablework:

The CP Hoodie very much reminds me of one of those compressed washcloth capsules that you throw into water and it grows before your very eyes...

All in all, Sweat(er)oberfest has been a great success so far!
Now, about those SOCKS...

Sunday, October 01, 2006


...has arrived! And, while I have not cast on any new socks *yet*, I have been doing some planning for the month devoted to sockery. First, I should preface by admitting that I have limited experience with knitting socks. In fact, I have yet to finish knitting a complete pair of socks. I have knit two whole socks thus far in my knitting career, but neither yet have their mates.

This month, being Socktober, will hopefully inspire me to finish the two pairs of socks I've started and encourage me to attempt some more socks. My first goal of Socktoberfest is to finish Michael's Banker Socks. I have just the foot gussett left of the second sock, so I foresee a long-overdue FO (and a happy boy with warm feet!) in the near future.

I have also been collecting a number of sock patterns in my *Future Projects* side bar, and I am eager to try some of these out. I am especially interested in attempting the Pomatomus pattern after seeing those recently completed by Elli. I've also been inspired by january one's Socks that Rock knee-highs (scroll down through her August 2006 archives). Way fantastic! I'm not sure I could pull off the knee-high look, but I wanna try it! I am also particularly fond of Baudelaire and Hedera. And dare I admit that I've not knit the star sock of knitblogland, the knitters' *secret handshake*, if you will... Grumperina's Jaywalker? So, there are some decisions to be made, here.

In the fiber department, I have made some recent Socktoberfest-related purchases... hurdling toward me through the mail system at this very moment are: 1 big skein of Socks that Rock in Lemongrass and some Sundara somwhat solid sock yarn in "Grey over Periwinkle" .

So, I've got all the makings for a fine Socktoberfest féte... I just have to settle on a new sock project. I am all decisioned out these days... I need suggestions! Any ideas for my Socktoberfest socks??