Sunday, April 29, 2007


St. Peter's Cemetery :: Old City :: Philadelphia
A resting ground for some very old souls, indeed. Shades shaded by glorious rosy dogwoods, dappled and in full bloom.

yellow :: limestone
A bright tulip or two nod their heads sleepily in this placid spot.
Limestone tucked in tight under leafy bedcovers.

A very old soul rests here.
Ancient marker cracked, doubled over, sagging with the weight of age.

red tulips :: monument
In the midst of bustling streets, there are pockets of peace and quiet.

pink :: limestone
Lone beauty overseeing this sleeping place.

pink :: dogwood underside
Floral overhang, a winsome canopy for this somnolent site.

Spectral, or, how I spent a glorious Saturday afternoon.
I love this old cemetery, mere blocks from my own sleeping place. It's quite a pretty place to spend a sunny moment, breathing in old history and marveling at the lovely new growth of the fresh season.

I'll be back soon with news of sock knitting that, happily, involves size 1 needles and substantial, sproingy yarn... ahhhh, frogging the two Lorna's Laces socks was vindicating! I'm enjoying my sock knitting all the more now.

Have a relaxing Sunday evening!

Labels: ,

Friday, April 27, 2007

An admission and a frog.

I am finally, finally ready to admit that I am not a Lorna's Lace-aholic. I wanted desperately to love it, and I tried desperately to love it. So much so that I even tried to knit two different sock patterns out of it.

I fully recognize all of it's great qualities: it's soft to the touch, it's strong (nylon blends are so good!), it comes in an array of glorious solid colors (but yet still handpainted!), it's affordable, and it's easy to come by (who *doesn't* sell Lorna's Laces?). What's not to love?? Apparently, there are things not to love. Apparently, I do *not* love knitting with size 0 DPNs. I hate it. Too many teensy stitches. And the patterns I've attempted to knit with Lorna's all come out either too loose when I used size 1 DPNs, or too small for my feet when I use size 0 DPNs. Sigh. I've even tried adding more pattern repeats when knitting with size 0 DPNs, and, well, I'm just not happy with any of these adaptations to the yarn.

I'd rather just admit that I like a more substantial sock yarn, as hard as it is to frog these two nearly finished socks. Especially because I am so in love with both of these colorways. And I am fully aware that I am in the extreme minority with this most recent discovery. Likely a veritable blasphemer of the knitblog community. They don't call me a Philistine for nothing. Looks like I'll be reverting back to my staple sock yarn.

Anyone up for a sock yarn trade? I'm even willing to do a 2-for-1 with this stuff, since it's been wound and used. I have two skeins of "whisper" and two skeins of "firefly" (plenty for two pairs of socks). I'm willing to trade it for a single skein (enough for a pair of socks) of some nice semi-solid sock yarn, something more substantial than lorna's. Leave me a comment if you're interested. Thanks, Mom!

And a special thanks goes out to pamela wynne: this was what finally enabled me to frog such seemingly pretty almost-finished knits. It was hard to admit, but it had to be done. I'm glad there are others making such decisive sock-killing decisions and taking some of the sting out of mine.


Wednesday, April 25, 2007

sock zealot.

I have socks on the mind. I really have a desire only to knit socks. I have no idea where this tunnel vision came from, but I suspect that it has much to do with the contained nature of sock knitting. And the portability, perhaps. And there is just so much variety in patterns and fibers available for sock knitting.

And thank you so much to everyone who left such positive feedback on my One-Woman Single-Sock Liberation-Movement, otherwise known as doingwhatIwantwhenIwanthowIwant Surviving Crapademia. As a thank you, I've compiled a visual (above; go here for a better view of individual socks) and link-tastic (below) list of the socks that are on my mind, just waiting to be the next singlet. The best part about this compilation is that all of these fabulous sock patterns are ::free::free::free:: and therefore you really have no excuse not to be knitting all of them (simultaneously, even)!

Find these fabulous patterns (and some excellent blogs!) for yourselves, here:
::Charade Socks (socks and pattern by Sandra of I May Be Knitting a Ranch House)
::Leyburn Socks (socks and pattern by pepperknit)
::Boyfriend Socks (socks and pattern by Alice of slippedstitch)
::RPM Socks (socks in photo knit by joko knits; pattern by Aija of sock pr0n)
::Hourglass Eyelet Socks (socks in photo knit by edda-ruska of my lovely red wellies; pattern by Cindy of Cindy's Knits)
::Elfine's Socks (socks in photo knit by Di of clementine's shoes; pattern by Anna Bell of My Fashionable Life)
::Bayerische Socks (socks in photo knit by blogless pie princess; pattern by Eunny Jang of See Eunny Knit!)
::Orchid Socks (socks and pattern by Steph of craftoholic; pattern here)
::Donyale Socks (socks and pattern knit by Nora of Black Dog Knits)
::Seed Stitch Rib Socks (socks knit by Carson of Needle's Edge; pattern by lane cervinia calzetteria: a 2X2 rib with seed stitches in the gutters)
::Eleanor Socks (socks in photo knit by Princess Pumpkin; pattern by Socktopia here)
::Poseidon Socks (socks and pattern by Elinor of Exercise Before Knitting)
::Matahari Socks (socks knit by blogless wool for breakfast; pattern by Steph of craftoholic)
::Zonki Socks (socks and pattern by pepperknit)
::Baudelaire Socks (sock and pattern by Cookie A. of knitters anonymous)

I'm continually amazed at how many knit bloggers are behind-the-scenes sock designers. More people should be knitting these fantastic socks! And, ahhhhh, the font that is Flickr! What more could a girl in the throes of crapademia need besides Flickr and tons of fabulous free sock patterns?? I can think of nothing. (::cough:: more sock yarn ::cough::)

Off to knit more singlets...

Labels: ,

Sunday, April 22, 2007


I continue to have nothing of consequence to report, unless you happen to be enamored by such things as the construct of gender in ancient Egyptian art, or a surfeit of other topics I am finding particularly inane at the moment. Luckily, things of beauty are blooming around me, making my uninteresting work more bearable.

Other things continue to bud around these parts as well. I am relishing sock knitting these days. No, no, not of the absurd amazing variety, like this or this. Any project larger than a sock (of the unexceptional normal-sized variety, that is) is just too overwhelming for my distracted mind to handle at the moment, and it seems that it's all I can do to finish one sock before moving on to the next. Two of a kind? Pairs? Not so much. Singles, please. I can't be bothered right now to follow such sensible knitting rules as project monogamy and warding off single sock syndrome. Knitting is my pleasure and respite from the stresses of crapademia, and it's one of the precious areas of my life where I can do what I want when I want how I want. Who knew knitting single socks could be so liberating?

Happy Sunday!

Labels: , , ,

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Poking my head in, if only for a brief moment.

Hi, remember me? I'm that girl who shows you knitting sometimes. And on very rare occasions, a finished, wearable thing, even. Yes, yes, I understand all of the blank, beguiled looks. It HAS been quite some time since I've actually produced stitches on needles for your viewing pleasure. But wait...

Here's some now! A sock in progress! And... and...

There's more! Another sock in progress!

Left: Child's First Sock in progress, knit in Lorna's Laces Shepherd sock, "Firefly"
Right: Clementine's Baltic Socks in progress, knit in Blue Moon Fiber Arts STR lightweight, "Rose Quartz"

And now back to my regularly scheduled unraveling sanity and the academic work load that never ends...

Labels: , ,

Sunday, April 15, 2007


Have you ever seen something somewhere before, taking special note of it, but then, upon the onrush of a busy and hectic stretch of work and stress, it fades away, forgotten--albeit temporarily--and captivation in it suddenly reawakens upon its unexpected appearance in your mailbox?

I received a wonderful gift last week from the temptress herself, Brooke. Beautiful and utterly glorious Shokay pure yak down. Truly, a most luxurious gift of 100% pure and natural goodness. Apparently, the temptress can read minds as well as entice. She's gifted, this one.

It really is amazing how something so beautiful and luxurious can make one giddy about what one might make from it. I've reveled lately in simply thinking about what I might make.

The proper tools are ready at hand. It's now a matter of decision. And not wanting to spoil such a pretty thing. What will it become, this beautiful yak down?

Happy Sunday, everyone.


Thursday, April 12, 2007

yarn :: art

Handpainted by the Yarn Pirate :: 50% Merino 50% Tencel :: Rosehip

Because sometimes my yarn likes to smile seductively and say cheese. And because I continue to be a very busy girl. Enjoy!

Labels: ,

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Literary Spectrum: Greens, Yellows, Pinks Edition.

Who knew I had so few pink books? In the event that you missed the first installment of Literary Spectrum, it is here.

My week continues to be bothersome and hectic, but I'm surviving. I've gotten a few fantastic treats in the mail to keep me afloat, which I'm sure you'll hear more about soon. Have a great rest of the week!


Sunday, April 08, 2007


There are lots of new treats in the soap shop. Some old favorites, too.

The mineral sea salt soaks turned out just gorgeous. This stuff is heavenly to soak in. A supremely beautiful mélange of pure Dead Sea salt, Epsom salt, Breton organic gray sea salt, and Himalayan pink salt. And so, so good for your skin.

I had a great birthday weekend full of wine drinking, cake munching, and sock knitting. Thank you all again for every single one of the well wishes! I may be truant from blogland this coming week, as it is looking like a hectic one, but I'll try to keep Flickr updated when possible, and I'll certainly be around to send out some soapy goodness, if anyone feels the urge to treat themselves!

Have a grand week!


Saturday, April 07, 2007

Breakfast of 30 year old champions.

Just so you don't think I had to eat this birthday cake, here's the one I actually got to eat. Turns out that not only is M capable of giving me the perfect birthday present, he can also bake the perfect birthday cake. Of the carrot variety. Yummy. Carrot cake is my absolute favorite. Nova, I hope yours turns/ed out as perfectly as mine!

Thank you, thank you, thank! you! for all of the birthday wishes! And I was especially happy to see some of you came out from 'neath your lurking rocks to leave me new blog fodder such nice comments!


Friday, April 06, 2007


That, my friends, is how old I am today. I can't say I was very thrilled about it. That is, until I got this...

That, my friends, is something that I've needed for a very long time. Something that was always just a wee bit too expensive for me to want to fork out the cash for. Thank goodness for milestone birthdays and boyfriends who know what their girls want. He's witnessed my frustration of winding skeins of yarn off of backs of chairs and from around knees all too often. And, because he's a smart boy, he knew that 30-year olds really do need their own swifts. Beautiful wooden ones.

And because my mom and my big sister know me all too well, I also found this beauty waiting in my school mailbox for me. Wasn't I just saying something about green yarn and how it has some sort of weird magical quality? Apparently, it willed itself into my mom's and my sister's minds. They're smart cookies. They, too, know that 30-year olds can never have too much green yarn.

Never. Have. Too. Much. Oh, just look at all these cakes. Yum.

Off to have some big time birthday fun!

Labels: ,

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Renewal and Revival.

Spring has been fickle lately... one minute she's here, the next minute she's overcome once again with cold and gray. But she should be here to stay any day now, any. day. now. And with the turn of the season, a new bout of Project Spectrum colors regales us. Despite my complete and total devotion to gray (and, lately, oaty goodness) fiber, I'm happy to begin thinking afresh, in greens, yellows, and pinks.

Greens, especially. Green fiber just has this alluring, magical quality about it, no? And what a perfect color for this time of year, new shoots and all.

And, because Project Spectrum is meant to push the boundaries of tried-and-true comfort colors (ahem! gray, my dear friend! neutrals, I love thee!), I might even cautiously stick my fork into a few more colors than I might normally choose to associate myself with. I have a few things stashed away deep in the crevasses for such an occasion.

And since spring IS, after all, the season of renewal and revival, I am feeling the desire to revive a lonely, single lemongrass pomatomus who desperately needs its mate.

Greens, yellows, and pinks commence!

Labels: , , ,

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Soft as a bunny's bottom.

I'm making great progress on the Cottontail Cardigan... I see, now, how when you are totally infatuated with a certain yarn paired up with an intriguing pattern, things tend to just fly across (and off!) the needles. I am finished with the back panel, and it really seems like it has taken me no time at all.

The shaping though the waistline is most fascinating. As are the combinations of textures throughout this sweater. And all of these captivating details are captured so crisply by the Cottontail yarn. I have decided that Norah Gaughan is a genius. I am her newest disciple.

Here you can see the magic of Norah's method of shaping--the ingenious switch to needles two sizes smaller than the main needle size just in the midsection ribbing panel. But because the midsection panel is still ribbing, it stretches easily to conform to whatever size it needs to. It's like an elastic waistband for your pants, only not a fashion faux pas at all, because Norah has made the elastic pretty.

Pretty, pretty details. Love the combination of seed stitch, garter stitch, 3x3 ribbing, and lacy ribbing. Who would have thought such a busy combination would be so fetching?

My adoration of the soft, ever-so-slightly furry Cottontail continues. And speaking of things soft as a bunny's bottom...

You can now find new Silky Hand and Body Creams in the soap shop. I guarantee that this stuff will work wonders on dry, rough skin. Check it out if you are at all interested in having skin soft as a bunny's bottom. And, as knitters, we could all use a little help on the hands.

Happy April, everyone!

Labels: ,