Saturday, November 26, 2005

Chuggin' Along. . .

I've finished 18 of my 35 Squares. . . too bad I can't go to grad school for crochet! I'm done for the evening though, as I promised myself I'd type out at least eight pages on my papers tonight. There's no good t.v. on, and my fingers are tired, so no excuses!!! I do think I'll sign up for the master crochet program in January though. . . it would be nice if I were certified to teach! But which one to choose. . . the CGOA Master's Program, or CYCA Certification?

In other news, Melissa has received her tote! I can finally post a photo of it, and you can see comments here.

It took a little over eight ounces of Caron acrylic in cream (ultra washable!), and I used an I hook. It's adapted from my aran afghan pattern, but the form and strap are my own design. The base is reinforced with "ultra stiff" plastic canvas (felt pretty regular to me!) tucked into a double-thick crocheted strip. Overall, I'm happy with how it turned out -- I've never made a tote before!

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

First a guru. . . now a princess!

The Traditional Princess
You are generous, graceful, and practical with both
feet planted firmly on the ground. You tend to
be a little on the old-fashioned side. You
value home, hearth, and family life and love to
be of service to others.
Role Models: Snow White, Maid Marian
You are most likely to: Discover a hidden talent
for spinning straw into gold.

What Kind of Princess are You? - Beautiful Artwork (Original Music is BACK!!!)
brought to you by

Progress Update!

I finally picked up some more microspun this week, and finished my pineapple shawl. It's going to go to my advisor (yes, I changed my mind again!), who's been super supportive and helpful this semester. I can't believe that it's already the end of November, and that I'm almost finished with my first semester of grad school! It's been very stressful, but I've also been lucky enough to make several great friends, not to mention my luck in finding Crochetville! I've also finished the tote for my swap partner, Melissa, and will be getting it in the mail ASAP. I probably shouldn't post the pics just yet, but you can find a good shot here, and a closeup here. Sorry, I can't resist showing it off a little! The pattern is (obviously!) inspired by my aran afghan, but the form, strap, and finishing are all my own design.
My seraphina shawl is progressing along, but it's going to the back burner for a while so I can finish my extensive list of holiday gifts! My sidebar is getting out of control! I'm working it up in KnitPicks lace yarn (the name escapes me, but the colorway is Autumn), using a G hook. I need to start working with bulkier, faster yarns! I'm also finishing a dress for Abby, which (thankfully!) is close to completion. The front and back pieces are finished, so all I have to do is sew the sides together and finish the neck and arm bands.
In other news, my papers are progressing along. . . oh, and I saw the new Harry Potter! I agree with Sue, the special effects were great. I thought the editing was a little choppy though, and overall I prefer the third movie.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

What kind of knitter are you?

Taking a "break" from delving through sources. . . kill me now!
Knitting Guru
You appear to be a Knitting Guru. You love knitting
and do it all the time. While finishing a piece
is the plan, you still love the process, and
can't imagine a day going by without giving
some time to your yarn. Packing for vacation
involves leaving ample space for the stash and
supplies. It can be hard to tell where the yarn
ends and you begin.

What Kind of Knitter Are You?
brought to you by

Not-so-wintery Wonderland!

It's a freezing 80 here in Tempe today. . . and I wore a hoodie this morning! My mother would be so disappointed if she knew! Seriously though, John and I are convinced that our bodies are reprogramming themselves to this heat, and that we're going to suffer bigtime when we go home for the holidays!

In the spirit of the snow we're lacking, I crocheted a few snowflakes and ::gasp:: successfully stiffened them! It was surprisingly easy -- I mixed one part water with one part Elmer's glue, and presto! After lots of pinning, wax paper, and about 12 hours, my snowflakes are B-E-A-utiful! I'm thinking of working up a few more in my spare time (har har) to add to Christmas presents.

In other crafty news, I've run out of yarn on my pineapple shawl on the *last* row, and won't be able to get out for a while to get more -- funds are ultra low at the moment while we plan for gifts and things! Melissa's tote is almost finished, but I'm having trouble choosing a button. The one I picked up a few days ago isn't quite right, so I'm going out to return it this weekend sometime. I think I'll make John come along with me, because he has a surprisingly good eye for such things! I'm infecting him with my craftiness!

Oh, and I've begun work on a seraphina shawl for *someone*, so my 35 Squares are definitely going to be on hold for a bit! Thankfully, classes are over by December 5, so I'll have 12 days of uninterrupted crafting bliss until I head home to NY!

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Reading, Writing, (some) Crafting

Today I'm being good, and trying something new. . . using crochet as a reward for schoolwork well done! I need to get my rear in gear on a few papers coming due very soon, and for once in my life, I'd like to NOT be up all night before they're due, stressing and cursing and drinking far too much coffee. Instead, I'm using my yarn as a motivational tool. Wish me luck!

I have loads of WIPs, as you can see, and even more WIMs. The best part about having to fly for six hours to get home to NY is that I'll have plenty of crafting time on the plane, especially because le fiance will be sleeping the entire way. I was not blessed with the ability to sleep on either planes, trains, or automobiles, I suspect because he was blessed with enough ability for both of us! I need to get a few gifts finished for my favorite Arizonians soon, though, and I really need to finish Melissa's tote. I found the yarn I needed yesterday, so today I can finish the strap and get everything sewn together. I don't have my sewing machine here with me, so it'll stay unlined -- I had a hard enough time choosing a button anyhow, so I can't imagine how long it would take to select lining fabric! Hope that works for you, Melissa -- I'm sending along a few goodies to make up for it, don't you worry!

Oh, and did I mention that Drew (The Crochet Dude!!!) has commentated on my blog?! I've said it before, but I'll say it again -- you're awesome, Drew, and I love your Monet afghan!

Friday, November 11, 2005

Crafty Update. . .

This has been a very busy week! My 35 Squares are currently on the back burner while I work on a few other projects, namely Abby's Post-Christening Gown and a shawl for the nice lady I do laundry with, Angel. Abby's gown is progressing slooooowly, mainly because I'm knitting it with toothpicks (okay, okay. . . size 3 needles. A little bigger than toothpicks!) and using sport weight yarn. Argh! It's gorgeous though, and it's a Debbie Bliss pattern -- so one day maybe I'll get it back from my SIL for my own daughter!

Angel's shawl is an adaptation and enlargement of a doily pattern, a popular trick at Crochetville. I'm using this pattern, and working it up in a beautiful periwinkle shade of LB's microspun. It feels like heaven, and I really don't want to pass it up!!! I'll probably make a twin for myself over Christmas!

I'm also in the home stretch of Melissa's tote, which needs to get in the mail by the 20th! I ran out of yarn on the handle/sides, so I'll be going out tomorrow to stock up. I go through Caron 1-lb in cream so fast, it's a wonder the company can keep up with me!

I don't feel too bad about my 35 Squares though, because I have 8 in the bag already. I'm shifting gears a little, and making it for my Grandfather now instead of my Dad. My Dad will get mittens. . . much more practical for his daily commute to Vermont, and I owe G'pa an afghan anyhow!

Monday, November 07, 2005

Something knitted. . .

My best friend Jess is turning 21 this month (finally, lol!), and I knitted this scarf for her over the last couple of weeks. I used Lionbrand Cotton-Ease in Strawberry Cream, and it took just over 1 skein to make it 5' long. I followed the pattern for the Liesel Scarf, by Mary Joy Gumayagay. This will be Jessica's second annual birthday scarf, and the last one was pink as well. I don't know why, but I always seem to choose pink for her! She hasn't complained yet, so here's hoping :) Happy Early Birthday, Jess! I hope you're not reading this!

Sunday, November 06, 2005

63 Squares FINALLY Finished!

I put my 63 Squares together on Friday afternoon, and finally found the time (and the nice neighbor!!!) to take a few photos. Unfortunately, Minerva is a huge fan and wouldn't let me get the camera in for more than a few seconds!

The edging went together especially well, and was so simple! I plan to use it on future 'ghans, as it looks far more complicated than it actually is. Thanks so much to Julie and Sue for helping me get through this massive project! I couldn't have done it without you, ladies! Sue, I can't wait to see how yours comes together :) Here's a larger, clearer image of it. Don't mind the wrinkled appearance. . . cats raced across it only moments before! Can you say washing machine?!

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Aran Afghan Photos!

I finished this afghan at the end of September, and sent it off to my sister in NY before photographing it. She sent me two beautiful pictures of it today!

The pattern is from Blue Ribbon Afghans, which has several great patterns and a few blech ones (pretty standard)! I made it using Caron One Pound yarn in Cream, and it took almost eight skeins. It covers a full bed nicely. The pattern goes quickly, and is very easy to memorize. Always a plus! I highly recommend it :)

Monday, October 31, 2005

WOOT! Putting it all together!

My squares are done, most are edged, and I've officially crocheted the first five rows (of nine total) together! That's more than halfway! I'm hoping to have my 63 Squares good and done by Saturday, so I can really get going on Jessie's birthday scarf and Abby's dress, which needs to be done be Dec. 17. Her mom (future SIL) wants her to wear it at the post-christening bash, which will be so much fun :)

What sucks the most right now? Knowing that I'll be IN CLASS for most of Halloween! Totally unfair! And when class is over, I have HOMEWORK to do! Nooooooo! (sorry, this is bitch and moan day. Will regret in the AM. . . please disregard.)

Saturday, October 29, 2005

Weekend! Finally!

So my lecture went fine, I guess. . . we're all our own harshest critics, but I know I should have slowed down a bit in the beginning. My prof seems to think it went really well, and that's all that matters! Right? Right?

Anyhoo, better news. . . I have two and a half squares to go before I can begin to assemble my sampler afghan. I can't wait to be done with it, so I can start on the next one, a much more manageable 35 squares. Should be able to knock that out in a few weeks ;-) But seriously, I can't believe that November starts on Tuesday. That's just wrong. . . so much writing, so little time. Hopefully I can have at least 20 pages of my major paper done by Thanksgiving, so I can focus on my other work. Oh, and my TAship. And my research. And my knitting. And crocheting. Eek!

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Crochet away the day. . . and work all night!

I'm currently taking a break from editing exam questions for next week's test in art history 102. . . I'm also trying to distract myself from worrying about the lecture I'm giving on Thursday (on African art! Should be good!) I've finally got a few pics of the hat I designed, and of the square I made for Aunt Tina's comfortghan. Check them out:

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Chuggin' along. . .

Today was. . . an 8. Not spectacular, but pretty nice overall. The weather has cooled a bit, a maintenance guy came to fix our AC and play with the kitties, and five more squares for Aunt Tina's comfortghan arrived. I can't wait to get them all together, so I can share photos of how beautiful they are! I'm really amazed at how much work people have put into them. So far, I've contributed four squares to various 'ghans, and I feel really good about the reciprocity. Crochetville is a wonderful place!

I'm currently working on square 50. . .yes, FIFTY, of my 63 Square Monstrosity (new name. . . I like it). I've updated my photos, and here are a choice few:

So, call me crazy, but I'm thinking that I won't keep this one after all. I know, I know, I NEVER keep anything for myself, but. . . these colors match my best friend's mom's living room perfectly! And she's the nicest lady on the planet! I will do myself a favor though, and save it to give to her at Christmas. I have a bad habit of gifting people anytime, all the time. . . and I need to work on it, for the sake of my bank account!

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Merrily we crochet along. . .

I finished another eight squares over the weekend (45 down, 18 to go!), and *gasp* broke my promise to not work on anything else by recreating my hat pattern! It's justified though, I swear! I have to submit photos of it! Really!

Oh, and can I just say that I love Photoshop? I was working on scanning several images for a presentation I have next week, and took a short break to play around with a pic of John (le fiance). . . et voila!

Very Warhol, no?

Thursday, October 20, 2005

RAOK! What a great day!

I came home tonight to the nicest little surprise -- a little wooden kitty and two beautiful handmade stitch markers!

Thank you, Fairy in Texas!

In other news, the squares for my Aunt Tina's comfortghan are arriving a few at a time, and slowly building into a pile! I have eight so far, with nineteen more expected! The outpouring of support from Crochetville has been really wonderful. Thank you, ladies!

And finally. . . the most exciting. . . a hat I designed was accepted to the 2007 Crochet Pattern a Day calendar! It'll be my first published design ever! Too bad I already sent my prototype to Hannah. . . I guess I'll be busy recreating it this weekend!

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Afghans Galore

This is the semester of afghans! My 63 Squares are progressing right along, and I just finished #36. I've also begun a 12" square for a separate project - a comfortghan for my Aunt Tina, who's just been diagnosed with breast cancer. I'm going out this weekend to pick up oodles of yarn in yummy colors to crochet her a collection of caps. We don't know yet how extensive the cancer is, but we're very hopeful that it's still isolated.

If you'd like to contribute a square, let me know!

Friday, October 07, 2005

Healthier and Happier, but still Mysterious!

John is up and on his feet today, and may actually be able to get some sleep tonight! He's still in some pain, but at least he's able to function. Unfortunately, we're still not sure what's causing his headaches, and still need to get in to see the neurologist. Hopefully we'll have an answer soon!

And more good news. . . I've finished another five squares of my 63 square 'ghan, bringing my total to 26! I can't wait to finish this one, and move on to the next -- the squares look even prettier than those in this pattern! Pictures will follow soon!

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Baby Afghan

The pattern is from Leisure Arts pamphlet #3015, "Absolutely Gorgeous Baby Afhans Book 4." I modified the colors using Lionbrand Babysoft in bluebell and white. It was a little finer than the "sportweight" it *claimed* to be, which made gauging the blanket a huge pain. It also turned out scratchier than the original skein felt, although it softened up a bit after I used Woolite. I wouldn't recommend using it!

and a close-up:

Anyhow, on to the good stuff: I finished three more squares of my 63 Square 'Ghan, which will soon be followed up by a second 63 Squares!

Loooong Day!

Well, good news first: the baby afghan I was working on is finished, so now I can return my attention to my 63 squares -- I mean, my art historical research! Just kidding, really, I'm getting much better at balancing the two.

Now for the bad news. . . crocheting is back on track, but life is on hold while I care for John for the next few days. He's been having headaches, and while the doctors have ruled out an aneurysm (they were insistant that he take an ambulance to the hospital!), they have no idea what's wrong. Tomorrow morning we're heading out to see a neurologist, so hopefully I'll know more in the next 24 hours. In the meantime, I'm crocheting my heart out to keep from worrying.

Monday, October 03, 2005

Finally! Pics of the Snowfire Afghan!

I finished this blanket just before moving out to Arizona, for my future MIL to use on her new boat. It took over a year, mainly because I was so sidetracked with other projects! Once I put my mind to it, I was able to finish the last forty squares in only a couple of weeks.

Simba, enjoying the fruits of my labor!

Friday, September 30, 2005

1 down, 2 to go. . .

So I shipped Hannah's afghan out late Wednesday afternoon, and ::gasp:: it made it to New York by noon today! No wonder the USPS is broke; priority mail was only ONE DOLLAR more than 8-day! Insanity! She's promised to send me photos of herself wrapped up in it, along with a few detail shots. Posts will follow shortly! My mother also loved it, calling it "french vanilla ice cream colored -- yummy!" Leave it to an art teacher who spends her days with 5-10 year olds to liken my crocheting to dessert :)

My 63 Square 'ghan is progressing steadily along, but may be sidelined for a few days while I whip up a baby blanket for my mom to give at an upcoming shower. She called this afternoon "just to ask" how quickly I thought I could crochet one. . . and before I knew what was happening, the Aztec books were on the floor and my car was maneuvering itself over to Michaels!

Sunday, September 25, 2005

Two More Squares, so little Aztec. . .

Between chapters, I've been crocheting up a storm. I can't help it. . . I'm just so bored! The Crochetvillers have been great, and I'm just so psyched to get this afghan together.

I'm already planning to make a second one for my grandfather, to decorate the room he'll be living in when he moves into my parents' home this coming spring. I've been promising him an afghan for a while, and he seems to really like the sampler square ones, like the one I'm making now. It's a lot like the ones his grandmother Pearl used to make. . . incidentally, I'm a lot like her!
Check it out: Square 34, finished 9/24 at 10 pm, and Square 40, finished at 10:30

Saturday, September 24, 2005

63 Square Afghan Crochet Along!

With Hannah's afghan finished, I need a new project to keep me occupied between chapters! I've finished my first square, #21: Flower Square. Check it out!

. . . update. . . rather than do work, I've finished #55! Only 61 more to go!

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Crochetville Purse Swap!

Just signed up for the purse swap on Crochetville. I hope I get someone who wants a purse and not a tote, because I have a teriffic pattern I've been dying to try! Then again, I could make a pretty slammin' tote, too. . . decisions, decisions! Need to get back to my research now.

Friday, September 16, 2005

New Project. . .

Just finished up some readings on SW archaeology I was getting behind on. Have decided to begin a new side project, taking a break from the massive afghan I'm currently crocheting for my sister (which is long overdue, in her approximation). Anyhow, the project is Toni Maddox's Dayflower Lace Scarf.

Plans to post pics soon. . . stay tuned!

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Sleepless nights. . .

Spent too many hours reading and thinking today, and am unable to sleep. Alas, my first official post is not about knitting or crocheting, but about my inability to do either today! Perhaps tomorrow will be more productive, and perhaps I will find the time to post pictures of my current project.