Sunday, March 30, 2008

Not a lot of knitting to show...


IMG_1524.JPG
Originally uploaded by kbshee
...as I was a bit busier at the conference than I thought I would be. The conference was a mixed experience...I saw a lot of nice people, but I see the organization going in a not-good direction and there is little I can do about it. I was happy to come home. I did win an award: Outstanding Reviewer for the Journal of Advertising. In academia, you get no money but lots of awards.

Not a lot of time for knitting because I was either busy running around at the conference or I was pooped. And...I took knitting on the plane but on the way down (to Cali) sat next to a drag racer (a drag racer! a professional drag racer!!) and so quizzed him all about being a drag racer for the whole trip. He told me about a reality show called Drag Race High (!!!) which we'll have to check out. He also told me that many women are now getting into the sport. Anyway. It was interesting, but took away from knitting time.

On the right is a new summer top...the garter stitch vest. I'm making it in a neutral colored cotton fleece. So far, so good.


IMG_1522.JPG
Originally uploaded by kbshee
I also started a pair of socks for Tim...I haven't made any socks for him for a while so he deserves a new pair! This is a pattern from my new favorite book: The Little Book of Socks by Charlene Schurch and Beth Parrot. Each of the sock patterns are on a laminated card that you can easily take with you.

This pattern has a slip stitch 'v' pattern on it and the yarn is from a new (for me) company called THe Unique Sheep. I bought the yarn at Woolgirl. You may remember the Unique Sheep is the company that dyed the 'blue flame' colorway for me. Nice yarn. Feels good.

I had insomnia at the confernce, and ended up awake at 5 am on Friday after about 4 hours of sleep. So...I logged on and checked Wollmeise to see if the site was updated. And...yep. It was. I scored five skeins of this wonderful yarn and it made having insomnia worth it, in some weird way.

We've had snow (SNOW!) here in Eugene over spring break. This is a crazy spring, weather wise.

Hope you are all well!

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

F is for Finished Fantasy (Naturelle)


IMG_1517.JPG
Originally uploaded by kbshee
Man, that ABC along can kick one's butt, can't it?

Luckily, I have an F. I finished this little top in Fantasy Naturelle. It is a VK design from a few years back that was designed for ribbon yarn...I made one when it first came out in Berroco Zen. The pattern name, I believe, is Mandarin Blouse. I made a few revisions, especially around the neckline which had what is probably known as a mandarin collar but I just did some applied i-cord and called it a day.

I like it. It was knit in one piece up to the armholes which of course I like. I did short rows at the shoulders instead of a stepped bind off and thus did a three needle bind off for the shoulders (no other way to do shoulders in this knitter's book). It is a bit heavy....it is 100% cotton...but should be pretty breathable.

Off to a conference for a few days.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Panda Hunting at the ETC


IMG_1511.JPG
Originally uploaded by kbshee
I dropped by the new Eugene Textile Center last Saturday. It is a new weaving-dyeing-spinning-knitting shop in Eugene where knitting is definitely the 4th most important craft represented...but that's OK. It is a huge space, and I think I'll take a couple workshops on dyeing there.

A few summers back, I had planned to try my hand at natural dyeing. I got a kit and everything. Well, that was the summer I broke my collar bone, so any fun activities got put on hold. I think I'll plan to try it again this summer.

Anyway...I bought six balls of Panda Yarn. I like the yarn a lot, although many have complained that it is splitty, so keep that in mind. Top: panda cotton in the 'circus' colorway (an oldie but goodie colorway from Crystal Palace). ON the right, panda wool in blues and greens for socks for Tim. And on the bottom left, panda BAMBOO SILK in a lovely purpley violet color.

We had a nice, quiet, rainy Easter and the wreath is still on the door.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Note to self

If it is Easter, maybe it is time to take down the Christmas wreath.

Happy Easter!

Saturday, March 22, 2008

The Blue Top


IMG_1503.JPG
Originally uploaded by kbshee
While it looks like a big blue sack, this blue top actually looks good on.

It is a pattern that is heavily modified from a VK fair isle sweater pattern. It is knit in three pieces...the back, an assymetrical front, and a small piece (upper right hand part of front) to complete the front.

If that makes any sense.

It has longer-than-average ribbing which gives it a nice fit at the waist, and applied i-cord around the neck, the armholes, across the seams (bad seaming job...no more stepped shoulders for this knitter) and then some icord attached to the seam between the two front pieces.

At some point, I'll cut off all the danglies.

Brown Sheep Cotton Fleece, a seconds dyelot, and it feels great.

And I finished something!

Friday, March 21, 2008

My Colleagues Love Me...


IMG_1502.JPG
Originally uploaded by kbshee
because I know nothing about college hoops but insist on being part of the pool. My picks tend to be based on 1. selecting schools where I have friends and then 2. the better ranked team. And since Tennessee is a contender for the first time in years, I've gone with them all the way. Some of you know that my PhD is from Tennessee, and while I don't bleed orange by any stretch of the imagination, I always look for a "heart" pick versus a"head" or "gut" pick. See #1 above.

I'm seaming up my blue top, and should have that to show you soon.


Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Since I have no knitting to show...


showImage.aspx.jpeg
Originally uploaded by kbshee
..I thought I'd show you the cover of my most recent book, which just got published this week. It is a book for small retailers teaching them how to use the power of Word of Mouth to compete in today's competitive market. Hence the name, Building Buzz to Beat the Big Boys.

Yes, it is a stupid title, and one that as an academic I'm sort of embarassed to have my name on, but oh well.

I wrote it with my friend and Oregon alum Steve O'Leary, who owns a small ad agency in SoCal. It was a treat to have a co-author who is so much fun.

This is the third book I've had published, all of the others are academic too, this is probably the most 'general' of all of them.

Anyway...thought you'd like to see it.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Stella Says..


IMG_1497.JPG
Originally uploaded by kbshee
Happy St. Patrick's Day!

I think I've told my lame "What's green and sits outside?" joke every St. Patty's day since I've had the blog, so I'll skip that for today. Instead, a rare photograph of little Stella where you can actually see her face. She is celebrating today by doing what she usually does on St. Patrick's day (and every other day of the week)...pacing most of the night, serious chasing with Jessie Cat in the wee hours of the morning, and a good long nap today.

Enjoy the day to all of you Lassies and Laddies!

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Diamonds are Forever


IMG_1501.JPG
Originally uploaded by kbshee
The Diamond Aran had its debut yesterday. It is hard to show the details on the sweater in a single picture, but here you can see the pretty sleeve details, all pointy like!

It is a beautiful sweater and quite warm, so luckily we have a blustery day yesterday when I could wear it. The color is especially nice.

Yesterday was the last day of winter term and my graduate class had a poster session which was a huge success. This has been one of my favorite classes of all time in my teaching career, what a treat for me! So next week is finals week (grading, meetings) and the week after that is spring break (conference in Cali). Generally, this is the tough time of year since there is very little downtime between the two terms. I think I'm pretty much all set for Spring term; now i just need to get set for the conference.


IMG_1500.JPG
Originally uploaded by kbshee
And speaking of treats....I had mentioned my love of the Easter Candy "Birds Nests" the other day and thought I'd take a stab at creating them myself. Now, I'm not much of a cook, and creating these involved basically:
-melting a bag of chocolate chips
-stirring in a bag of coconut
-pressing them into nest shapes
-putting jelly beans on the top
-putting them in the fridge to harden.

My guess is that unsweetened coconut will make a more 'authentic' birds nest than the sweetned I used, but I'll cope.

Thanks for playing the movie game. I'm still looking for answers on #1, #3, #9 and #10!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Movies! Fun!

Rachel did a fun thing at her blog: she posted quotes from her favorite movies (she got the quotes from IMDB) and then asked readers to guess what movies they were from.

So. I'm copying from Rachel. Here are quotes from ten good movies. Take a guess!

1. Soon, we must all make the choice between what is right and what is easy.

2. The strawberries taste like strawberries. The snozzberries taste like snozzberries.

3. I was just thinking what an interesting concept it is to eliminate the writer from the artistic process. If we could just get rid of these actors and directors, maybe we've got something here.

4. Someday, and that day may never come, I'll call upon you to do a service for me. But, until that day, accept this justice as a gift on my daughter's wedding day.

5. I think it would be fun to run a newspaper.

6. When we were working with Bob Dylan and we moved to Woodstock, everybody referred to us as the band. He called us the band, our friends called us the band, our neighbors called us the band.

7. So come up to the lab and see what's on the slab. I see you shiver with antici... pation.

8. Rock stars have kidnapped my son!

9.Some people find it ironical that although we run a travel agency, we've never been outside of Blaine.

10. Well, this piece is called "Lick My Love Pump".

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Spring in Blue-m


IMG_1494.JPG
Originally uploaded by kbshee
Here's the blue top I've been inventing for a while (it's going to have sort of an assymetrical, asian looking neckline. But this is the back so it's pretty boring).

It is Brown Sheep Cotton Fleece in a very pretty blue color.

Not very exciting, but nice just the same.

It has fairly long ribbing in place of waist shaping, which is my new favorite design technique.

I'm still a bit info overloaded, but feel like I have a wee bit of a handle on things, at least for today.

Although the one sentence=one paragraph formatting of this blog entry may mean otherwise.

Monday, March 10, 2008

The Internets, They Overwhelm Me


IMG_1493.JPG
Originally uploaded by kbshee
I'm a bit on edge.

It all started when I installed an RSS Feeder. Or is it a reader? Or is it a Feeder Reader. Ouch. My head..

Wait. Let me go back. It all started when I got involved with a couple of online thingees that are related to my work at school. One is a website where Bad Environmental Advertisers are chastened and Good Environmental Advertisers are applauded. It's called the Greenwashing Index and it's a cool thing. I write a brief article for it every few weeks. The second is a website connected with my new book on Word of Mouth Marketing. it's coming out in a few weeks, and the web site is under construction and not very good at the moment but I've been writing content for that too. And the third is a site that is a cumulation of Web 2.0 articles for my graduate class.

So. I get an RSS feeder and THERE IS ALWAYS SOMETHING TO READ. And when I read something I have to decide..do I save this?Do i write an article about this for one of my sites? Do I do a blog post or a wiki page? WhatdoIdowhatdoIdo?

It becomes a little much. I try to keep up with the RSS feed but I'm having a bad case of information overload.

Yikes.

Here is a Happy Spring Sock in Happy Spring Sock Colors. This is the famous feeding frenzy yarn, Wollmeise. And you know what? It is really a terrific yarn. Feeding frenzy some yourself if you can.

Oh my. The pink tube. I washed it and thought I blocked it, but it stretched out so much now it is a Long Pink Mini Dress for a 7 foot tall Barbie. It's soaking again.

Deep breaths.

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Feeling Curmudgeonly


Picture 2.png
Originally uploaded by kbshee
I sort of hate Daylight Savings...not sure what the point of falling back a few days ago only to spring forward today, when it isn't even spring.

And Easter? Why is it in two weeks? Shouldn't it be in Spring? Like April spring? The only good thing about having Easter this early is that one of my favorite candies of all time, Chocolate Birds Nests, have been at the store since Valentine's Day.

Edited to add, for Carol: If you're not familiar with the glory that is a Russell Stove Bird's Nest, here is a link:
Birds Nests .

And Ravelry? It's just too much. I can't keep up with the forums AND with posting my stash AND with posting my works in progress AND with connecting my blog posts to my stash AND my works in progress. I. just. can't.

But what I can do...and I never thought I would...is use the 'queue' feature to figure out what I wanted to knit and what yarn I had in the stash to kntt with us. I took a little photo so you could see my spring knitting plans. A bit proud of myself over this.

But then. I couldn't figure out where to start? Do I start withsomething that will take me a long time, or something that I can whip out fairly fast in order to move on to another project? And the problem with that is that the fast stuff is sleeveless, and I can rarely do sleeveless here until May or June. So it would just be sitting around.

I finally said "just pick something" so I cast on for the Mandarin top using Fantasy Naturelle. Just because I've knit this before, and this top is one of the first things that I thought looked not-"Happy Hands at Home" as Tim Gunn would say. So I'm knitting another.

I worked on it last night during "The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford", a 2 hour 40 minute movie that I thought we'd give up on....but it was really a terrific movie. It really builds a great picture of the two main characters...Jesse James and Robert Ford...although i have to admit there were a lot of minor characters that I just couldn't keep straight. Luckily it didn't matter all that much. Anyway...if you're looking for a good, long movie, think about that one.
It is a wee bit bloody but nothing you can't deal with if you've ever watched The Sopranos or The Wire.

Enjoy your Sunday-with-one-less-hour everyone!

Friday, March 07, 2008

Springing Forward


IMG_1492.JPG
Originally uploaded by kbshee
I finished a pair of socks last night: using the purple yarn from Lucky Lurker Sock Club and I think this marks the 'official' end of Winter Knitting. These socks went lickety split, which I love. And I love that yarn.

But. I am itching, ITCHING, to start knitting some spring and summer tops. So today my challenge is to go through patterns and yarn and see what I can make from the stash. I'll organize this all on Ravely so if you're interested in what I"m doing, stop by there!

I've thought a lot about how to approach knitting this spring, given that I'll be a bit busy in class and that I have a gazillion projects I want to do. I also want to do a fair isle sweater in wool but figure I'll wait til summer when things slow down a bit (I don't mind at all knitting with wool in the summer). So spring will be spent on cotton tops and doing colorwork socks and gloves. And if I"m jonesing to do cables, I'll do those on socks too.

That's the plan. On the needles now are the wollmeise socks in spring colors (and oh? I love this yarn. It's as good as most people say it is). And I'm doing an assymetrical top of my own design (which means that I'm stealing the good bits of someone else's pattern).

So off to organize at Ravelry! Wish me luck!

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

E is for eleven plus one


E is for eleven plus one
Originally uploaded by kbshee
Today is Cody's 12th birthday, or his Eleventh plus One birthday in honor of the ABC along.

In true fashion, we totally forgot it was his birthday until we were walking the pups after dinner when it hit me. That's OK. Cody had a good day....this morning he ate a little bit of plastic (long story, but nothing to worry about...this is a dog that eats ring markers) and so he had a tortilla for lunch just to keep things moving through his system. He also had a nice walk and a visit with some neighbor dogs at the park. As most of you know, 9 months ago we didn't think he'd be here for this date. We're thrilled he is, and continue to cherish every day he wakes up feeling good. Happy Birthday little guy! We love you so..

My Diamond Aran is blocking after a disastrous and unsuccessful attempt to make celtic knot closures. Please don't ask.

I've been working on two pairs of socks where I"ve managed to drop stitches on one sock in each of the pairs. Anybody think my knitting mojo is a little off?

Monday, March 03, 2008

DisappointKnit

So, I finished the 'big pink tube' last night (the Snow White pattern). I tried it on. I looked in the mirror. And thought the following thoughts:

1. Maybe I should have thought twice about knitting a pattern named after a Disney character.
2. Ribbing can be problematic on Women with Chests.
3. Sleeves that flare out that are even half an inch too short look geeky.
4. Maybe blocking with help?
5. Maybe not

So I'm putting it away for a while. I'll sew in the ends, I'll block it, I'll put on a different undergarment, and I"ll try it again. Stay tuned.

Sunday, March 02, 2008

Blue Flames


IMG_1353.JPG
Originally uploaded by kbshee
Remember this?

About a month ago I posted about how I wanted a yarn with these colors in it. In addition, I emailed a copy online shop owners to see if they had any yarm that might work. Sherry at The Loopy Ewe found some Jitterbug in the 'jewel' colorway which was close but no cigar (but of course I bought it anyway).

I also emailed Jenn at Wool Girl to get her thoughts. She didn't find anything that was a close match (although Madelinetosh in Umoja is close). However, she did get in touch with an indy dyer called The Unique Sheep and....


blue flame - for Kim.JPG
Originally uploaded by kbshee
....voila!

I'm really pleased...in fact, I bought two skeins, one for me and one for a pair for Tim. You can buy this too....the name of the yarn is Blue Flame and it is listed under "The Unique Sheep" at Jenn's shop.

I love the Internets. Don't you?