Wednesday, August 30, 2006

No Time

Yeah so it's only the 3rd day of school and I'm already stressed. Mostly it's anxiety over failing all of my classes this semester. I have this one history class that all I have to do is write a 20-page research paper. Easy right? Not when you are only allowed to use Primary sources (diaries, journals, government documents, statistics from the era you're studying, etc.) I've never done anything like this before and I am so scared I'm going to fail. The teacher said that we were going to have to give in 3 rough drafts before we even turn in the final draft. Thankfully this is the only course this semester that I see lowering my GPA. And I was hoping to get Magna Cum Laude (did I spell that right, oh well no time!)

On the knitting front I've hadn't had much time to work on the yellow and gray stripped messenger bag but I have been walking around with my socks to knit during non-important classes. I tried on the sock Sunday morning and realized that it was too small for my feet. I had only about 3 1/2 inches of work so I ripped it out and decided to jump into this new technique I've never tried before.

I love the results. I would post a picture but it is at my apartment and I'm at my boyfriend's house writing this. But I have to tell you that there is some kind of wonder doing a short row toe. When I was done with it (after the 3rd try) I was hooked on toe up socks. I think if the sock goes well I will be exclusively doing toe up socks from then on. The coolest thing I noticed about the short row tow is that it is the same exact thing as the short row heel; it's just that one is knitted in a different direction than the other.

I'll post again on Friday when I have all but 1 class in the morning and work in the afternoon.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Koigu: The Louis Vuitton of Knitting

Yesterday's comments were pretty interesting. For the most part the majority of you do not share your blogs with people that were in your life prior to the blog. This is very understandable. Most people don't care enough about knitting like we do to actually start a blog and post pictures of our FO's so that perfect strangers can come and see them and leave comments about them. I see blogs as a great way for people who feel "singled out" in their own world to reach out and find people just like them so that they don't feel as weird. Like anyone on the planet earth, we knitters want to be apart of a group too and if that means going on the Internet and sharing our lives with others through the art of knitting, so be it.

Koigu: The Louis Vuitton of Knitting

Yesterday in the comments, Saun wanted to know what the yarn that started with a "K" was? Well that "K" is for Koigu. A yarn that I will NEVER USE EVER! Now I've never worked with the stuff before but from what I've heard in bloglines it doesn't seem like that great of a yarn. Here is a list of reasons why I will NEVER use this yarn

1) Expense -- As a college student I can't afford this yarn. Then again anyone with a normal 9 to 5 can't afford this yarn either! Though the retail price is about $10 according to this website, many vendors are selling the KPPM sock yarn for at least $12.25. With only 175 yards per skein you're paying about $25 for a pair of socks. This is great for a once in a while sock knitter but for you knitters who only knit socks, using this yarn exclusively will one day force you to loose all of your savings and end up on the side of the road with a sign that says, "Will Work For Koigu".

2) The Feel -- When I started to learn how to knit, I worked with crappy acrylic that I got from Wal-Mart. After discovering that I had a LYS not too far away from my Local Wal-Mart I decided to start buying yarn from there. Two years later, I am a complete yarn snob (and damn proud of it too!). Now I still use acrylic when I knit to get paid for it but for things I knit for myself or for close families and friends, I use natural fibers. This is because natural fibers are usually softer than acrylic, more durable and simply more luxurious.

I can't say the same thing about this Koigu KPPM yarn. When I went to the Michigan Fiber Festival last weekend I found some skeins of Koigu sock yarn in a woman's booth. Influenced by the rave reviews I read in blogs on the Internet, I was drawn to the brilliant colors. Then I touched it and it didn't feel as soft as I expected. Then the proprietress of the store told me that there was a pair of socks on the table right next to me knitted using the Koigu. The pattern could be found here.

I picked up the socks and they were hard as nails. It wasn't scratchy against my neck but it wasn't inviting either. I threw the socks back on the table knowing why I haven't bought this stuff yet.

3) Availability -- This yarn seems to be hard to come by. Practically everyone who is a sock knitter in Blog Land is always waiting for his or her LYS to get a shipment of the yarn. You don't know when it's coming or if they'll have any colors that you like sent to your store. The waiting time for this yarn is ridiculous. No wonder Koigu has been able to keep their prices up. Low supply and high demand keep prices up my friends.

4) Their Website -- This is what the Koigu website looks like. The website turns me off complete from this yarn company. It's completely disgusting and unprofessional looking. Why would I support a company that doesn't even have the time to build a proper website? They could at least higher someone to maintain it for them.

In conclusion, I am totally biased to Koigu. I compare it to designer handbags. Louis Vuitton is a major producer of designer bags. My mother is a faithful fan of their products. She has purchased numerous handbags, wallets and some pairs of shoes from Louis Vuitton. One of these shoes was a $500 pair of sandals. There were a simply mule with a metal gold colored strap and brown leather for the foot. I have to admit they were nice (sorry no picture). We went to dinner one night in a fancy restaurant for her birthday and she wore the shoe. A couple steps out the door and the strap that kept the shoes on your foot broke. Did I mention that was her second time wearing the shoes? $500 wasted. Thankfully she returned them and got her money back. But instead of writing off all the products of the company as low quality when compared to the price, she still continues to buy merchandise from Louis Vuitton. That's when I realized that my mother is more obsessed with the label that is Louis Vuitton than the actual stuff that they sell.

Knitters, especially ones that have blogs are influenced by fads all the time. A good example is that this coming fall cable knit anything will be the thing to wear. Why do you think Vogue Knitting and Knit Scene Magazine and other publications have patterns filled with cables in them? And why do you think that knitters all across Blog Land now want to learn how to make cables? It's all about trends and staying up to the times.

Other examples of fad knitting are Clapotis and the amount of Jaywalkers you see on bloglines (I won’t even link to these, you guys seen enough of those).

It's the same with Koigu. Koigu is no better than Trekking XXL or Knit Picks Essentials sock yarn. In fact I would say the latter 2 are a better value, quality yarn. Yes Koigu is hand dyed and you have to pay for the work the designer did to hand paint each and every skein but if hand dyed yarn is what you want, why not support one of our own Knit Bloggers who sell hand dyed yarns (like this one and this one) or go over to Etsy and get some great deals for some truly unique yarns.

Many knitters are anti-establishment out there but many more of us are really just as into the trends as the next person. In my opinion, Koigu is the Louis Vuitton of knitting. A overly priced yarn that is no better quality than it's cheaper counterparts.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Secret Blogger

So as I was waking up this morning I was thinking about what I should write about today on the blog. I thought I could be angry and rant a bit about a particular yarn craze that I don't get (just a little clue the yarn I speak of starts with a K). I thought maybe I could show you guys some progress pictures but my knitting hasn't been much to talk about lately. Then I thought of writing something that I've been wondering about for a while.

How Many People Know About Your Blog

I don't mean the people that you have met through the blog. I mean people like family and friends type people. These are the people that you can actually touch and see in front of you on a regular basis. We knit bloggers only see each other thru our pictures that we post and our words that we write. On the Internet we can create whatever type of persona we want just as long as it is truthful and/or not harming anyone.

For me blogging is like a secret activity. Only 2 people know about this blog within my group of friends. They are my boyfriend and his brother. This is because I don't have Internet connection in my apartment but they do. So all those pictures of a white carpet and a blue couch filled with yarn in past posts have all been taken in his house. My apartment is a small basement studio with dark (sometimes damp) carpet, a kitchen and a bathroom. Perfect for me but not perfect for knit blogging.

So are you the kind of knit blogger that tells everyone in their circle of friends "Hey I just posted something new and I would like for you to read it!" or are a secret knit blogger who enjoys writing her/his posts in the dark corners of their house, living a secret life on the Internet?

Monday, August 21, 2006

Happily Relaxed

So I had another great weekend with fiber this time with my boyfriend. We headed up to Allegan, MI for the Michigan Fiber Festival. We didn't take any pictures but we did get a lot of stuff. I'll show those pictures tomorrow. Afterward we went out to eat for my birthday. On Sunday we went to the mall and walked around doing nothing all day. It was great! I'm still not in "during the week/stressed out" mode this morning because the weekend was so stress-less. I'm lovin' it!

This past weekend just reminded me of how stressful a life we Americans live. We’re not stressed over bombs dropping on our homes but some are stressed over terrorist attacks in their neighborhoods. We’re not stressed over Tsunamis happening in our backyards but we do worry too much over other natural disasters like Hurricane Katrina happening again. These fears are very real and can lead us to live on the edge. But being stressed all the time can really hurt you and not just emotionally or mentally but physically too!

There are many diseases (anxiety, depression) and common day ailments like heart burn, chest pains, high blood pressure, weight loss/gain, tension headaches even hair loss that have something to do with stress (read more about stress here). That’s why I think it is appropriate to suggest to everyone that when life gets stressful, just take a few minutes to breath calmly. Sometimes even your knitting can stress you out so I say put it down for a moment and do something else that relaxes you. This could be cooking, reading, doing complex math or watching junk food TV (you know the type, VH1, reality shows, stuff that's completely useless). Whatever it is that helps you relax more often, DO IT . Your entire body’s health is at risk if you don’t!

Friday, August 18, 2006

Happy Knitter has a Father with New Book on Horizon

Thanks everybody for the warm birthday wishes. I really did have a good day yesterday. Even though I had to work for most of my birthday, my supervisor sang happy birthday to me on the loud PA system we have at my job and many of my co-workers gave me hugs and well wishes too. My friends all the way in Argentina remembered my birthday and sent me an e-mail wishing me Happy Birthday while my sister sent me an e-card. My mother called too.

The most surprising was my father who called all the way from Guyana to wish me happy birthday. In my mind I know that my relationship with my father isn't as strong as it is with my mother due to the fact that he pretty much neglected me as a child. We all lived in the same house but we barely talked outside of allowance and "What did you do at school today?" Now that I think about it and look back at all those times he asked me that question, he was trying to get me to open up to him. He really did care but I was too young or blind to understand. As an adult I’ve realized that we all will die some day and a better relationship with my father has become even more important to me. That’s why it made me happy to talk to my old man yesterday.

Yarn Play

So yesterday as I was surfing new blogs, I happened to find this one. After reading through some of her posts I realized that she designed the Big Bad Baby Blanket found in Debbie Stoller's first Stitch 'N Bitch (Do I really have to link to this? As knitters we should all know about these patterns and the controversy behind them all). She has also done some other work for Vickie Howell and now is venturing off to make her own pattern book. The book is called YarnPlay and based on the cover the patterns inside look promising. The book is set to be release this September. In the mean while for those of you that are interested, you can reserve your copy at this fine online establishment or wait till your LYS has the book for sale. Can’t wait to see what’s inside!

Weekend Plans

So this weekend I’m off to the Michigan Fiber Festival with my boyfriend. I’ll report back to you guys on Monday hopefully with pictures too.

Have a good weekend everyone!

Thursday, August 17, 2006

A Special Day

So 22 years ago on this day, I was born. The exact time was 5:38 am. The location was Brooklyn, NYC. The parents were immigrants from a small English speaking country in South America named Guyana.

Some how I can't believe that I've made it this far. Some of you may think, "Oh you're such a baby, Kelly!" but I think that 22 is a pretty long time. I’ve done a lot of things in the 22 years that I’ve been living. I've been to exotic lands and dealt with small-minded people. I've accomplished so much and failed many times more. I've done stupid things and ended up being lucky sometimes. I've fell in love, got my heart broken, and went through many disappointments and triumphs. What astonishes me is that after all of that crap, after all of the bullshit, I'm still standing. I'm still here.

Everyone seems to reflect on their lives when they reach a birthday. I've done the same thing this morning. Concerning the past, seeing that I can't change my mistakes, I won't. All I could do is look forward, set goals, and execute my plans.

When I turned 21 last year, though the law of the land said I was an adult (well really it’s 18, but that’s not the point), I really still felt like a parasite, financially draining my parents. Now that I am 22 years old, I’m on my own, supporting myself and taking on more responsibility. I'm happy to be an official adult now. Bills, rent and all!

Tuesday, August 15, 2006


So this past weekend was the most relaxing I've ever had in a long time. Saturday as you all know I went to Stitches Midwest. Sorry but I wasn't able to take any pictures (a big sign in the front prohibited patrons of the market to do so or they would have been immediately escorted out of the building). Nonetheless I had a great time. Here's what happened:


For the whole week before I was to travel to Rosemont, IL where the event was held, I could not sleep. I felt like a child going to Disney World. When I finally arrived to the market last Saturday, I really was a kid in Disney World! I got several materials from the staff including a bag to hold my purchases and a pamphlet stating the schedule of events for the weekend, a list of vendors and their exact locations on the floor. I decided to walk around the whole area to get a feel of what everything was like. The space used wasn't as huge as some other conventions I've been to before but the amount of yarn per sq ft in that area was more than I've ever seen. Most of the yarns sold were main stream ones (Koigu, Debbie Bliss, Cascade 220), some were trendy yarns (Socks that Rock, Blue Moon Fiber Arts, Great Adirondack Yarn Co) while others were from unknown farms around the Midwest trying to get a piece of the market.

I shopped and shopped monitoring my funds with every purchase. Here's what I got:

These balls will become this pair of socks one day.

Vogue and Knit Scene Magazines. I got the Knit Scene for the Central Park Hoodie by Heather Lodinsky and the Vogue because it’s Vogue.

Two bottles of Eucalan Wool Wash and Malabrigo in Geranio. I’m using the Malabrigo to make a matching scarf for a hat I made while in Brazil this past May.

Going from left to right, the cream alpaca from Peru will be a glove and scarf set for my mother. The cashmere was too steep for my budget plus the alpaca was too soft and beautiful to pass up. The sock yarn is Trekking XXL. These will be socks for me. The gray yarn is Cascade 220, which will be apart of a felted messenger bag that I’m making for my little sister.

After all the shopping, I went to the eating area, which was behind another area filled with chairs and a stage for presentations that were held throughout the day. I sat down and started knitting away at my Wavy scarf. I got many compliments on it as well as my cotton top. I wasn’t the only one wearing something that she/he made. I met several knitters, most of them older than me, that had intricate shawls and practical felted purses while the younger set had on shrugs and belts with pockets large enough to use as a purse.

At around 4 pm CST I realized that I hadn't eaten since 8 am EST that day and decided to get some food from inside (because I didn't want to leave the yarn). However after seeing that 1 slice of pizza cost $4.50 and a sloppy joe cost $5, I promptly left the building looking for more reasonably priced food. As I ate, I read Vogue Knitting Magazine and thought to myself, "Wow not only are the patterns beautiful but the articles are pretty good too!" I think I might sign up for a subscription, who knows.

What was so great about Saturday was that I was in the midst of diversity on all levels in Rosemont. The people were friendly, the vendors were warm and funny and the atmosphere was just heavenly. I thought to myself, “If I’m still in Michigan around this time next year, I got to come back for the classes!”


Sunday I decided that it was going to be a day of swatching and starting new things. Here's what I did:

Everything here is sock yarn for me (Fall is not too far away you know). Going from left to right from the top, the very red yarn is something I bought back in January. I have since lost the label and now do not know who is the manufacturer. I do know it’s superwash and hand dyed. The rainbow yarn is some Lorna’s Laces, the red fading into green yarn is Trekking XXL and the yellow yarn is Primo by Filatura di Crosa.

All and all a wonderful weekend. This coming weekend should be wonderful too seeing that I will be attending another fiber festival with my boyfriend this time (I was alone at Stitches Midwest because he was visiting his family in Canada last weekend). This one should be even more fun as there will be more unknown natural yarns to play with. Also my boyfriend is treating me for my 22nd birthday, which is always good!

Friday, August 11, 2006

I'm Outta of Here!

Sorry I didn't post yesterday but I was pretty busy doing nothing. Thats right, I was lazy! But that is certainly not a problem with me. Moving right along.


So this

became this yesterday.

I was totally bored with the 1x1 rib and how the pattern was developing. In reality, I just wanted this yarn to be a professional looking vest for the office. Though I don't work in an office environment, I still want to make something that I will actually wear. A shrug, like I said before is not the type of trend I want to follow. I'm quite happy that I have parted ways with my failed experiment and am working on a new design that I think would much more reflect my personal style.

Stitches Midwest

Seeing that the Shrug is out of my hair, I can now wear my back up tank top.

This top was made last summer. The yarn is 100 % bulky weight cotton and I used size 10 US needles to make this sucker. It took me a whole of 3 weeks to finish this piece because for the first week and a half, I knitted a pattern I got in Argentina and realized at the end that I didn't have enough yarn (the design was a sleeveless turtleneck). Being pretty familiar with sweater design but never actually knitting a sweater, I simply made 2 identical pieces and sewed them together. Voila! A summer tank top. I'm wearing this with a brick red skirt that I scored for pretty cheap last Christmas at this store.

As for tomorrow's spending, I'm not buying much. I'll most likely buy some sock yarn and some Cascade 220 for a Christmas gift I'm knitting for my little sister. I'm also contemplating some fingerweight cashmere or a cashmere blend so that I could knit some gloves for my mother. I'm not spending much this weekend because there is another fiber festival in Michigan next weekend that I think would have more unique yarns. Plus I'll have more money next weekend so I'm saving till then.

Though I'm not spending much at this years Stitches, I am going to enjoy every minute of it. Why? Because my visit to the market is not to shop till I drop but really just to experience the energy of being in a whole convention center filled with people who are as passiosnate about knitting as I am.

Happy knitting and have a good weekend!

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Neon Lights

So my blog is being featured as the "Blog of the Week" by the prestigious online publication called Black Purl Magazine. It not only features free knitting and crochet patterns but it also has essays written by other people who have knitting blogs. This magazine is perfect for the knitter who is also interested in cultural diversity, travel, and exploration. Go check out this website that is edited by L' Tanya.

Sad Knitter
Lately I've been feeling like I haven't been accomplishing anything with my knitting. I only have 2 projects on the needles but there are so many I want to start its ridiculous. It's just a matter of sitting down one weekend and making a whole bunch of swatches to prepare for future projects. Then there's the Christmas knitting I want to do for my family. I'm working on small items this year. A scarf for my sister, gloves for my mother, socks for my father. I'm using a lot of the patterns I found in this book.

As for the shrug, I'm still going to work on it but I doubt that I will care to actually finish it in time for this weekend. Besides, I have a couple other hand knit garments I could wear. The only reason I will continue with this piece is because I want to see if I could actually write a pattern that works. I like pattern writing and I believe that the only way to getting better at is practice. I'll keep you guys posted.

Monday, August 07, 2006

Things are Changing

Look what I got in the mail this past weekend:

A lovely package of yarn. Thanks for the gift, Sarah! These 2 skeins of South West Trading Company Bamboo will become this scarf someday. Yeah I know I'm late in the game but I'm new to this cyber knitting community.


So over the weekend I was knitting like a mad woman trying to figure out the pattern in the Stitch and Bitch Nation book. I was successful in finding out that I will not be able to knit the shortened version of the wrap because I don't even have enough yarn for that (I only bought enough of the Pima Tencel for a summer tank). I talked to my boyfriend about it and he suggested that I just knit 2 sleeves and then connect them somehow with 2 straps (one for my front, the other for my back). I liked the idea and started working on it. Here is what I have so far:

A close up of the increases

I'm thinking this might become a shrug by the end of the week. Now I'm not a fan of this type of garment but seeing that my arms get cold easily, I think it will be a useful item for my trip to the Stitches Market this weekend.

Here's a picture of the Wavy scarf:

I'm up to the 4th repeat. The pattern is pretty intuitive if you're paying attention to the stitches. However, I'm not in a big rush to get it finished (I do have 5 months till Christmas you know).

Other Things

Since August has started lately I've wanted fall to return. This is odd mainly because I've always loved summer more than any other season of the year. The bright burning sun, humidity, heavy thunderstorms, the beach, strolls in the park, family BBQ's and of course my birthday have all been contributors to my love affair with summer. However ever since I've learned to knit 2 years ago, some of my love for summer has been transferring over to Fall. Autumn is such a beautiful time of year in Michigan. The leaves that were once green then turn into burnt orange, bright red, pale yellow and deep purple. These colors influence my yarn choices and the cooler air encourages me to knit even more. Fall is also cool in Michigan because local farms start selling their last harvest fruits and vegetables for the year at pretty low prices. Fall is great because the air is crisp but not freezing and I'm able to wear the things I knit. There is also a certain calm in the atmosphere that I like as many of the people in my small town rather be inside than out in the cold.

Is it necessarily bad to love more than one season? Can't I like both? I love summer for the fresh berries and peaches that are in season but I also love fall for the fresh pumpkins and squash that are available too. Who said I would be a traitor to summer if I dabble into the bliss that is autumn? I see my new interest in fall as a blessing, mainly because I can now enjoy 6 months of good weather rather than 3.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

I Knew It!

I know it is the weekend but I had to share this with you guys. Today's topic has nothing to do with knitting and everything to deal with our lives and futures in this world. There is a documentary that you can find at Google Video called Loose Change that reveals some pretty heavy things about what took place on September 11, 2001. You can find their website and information on how to receive a free DVD copy of their documentary to send to those you know that do not have computers to download the documentary from here. And DO NOT DO ANYTHING ELSE (not even knit stockinette in the round) but watch and listen to the information in the flim. It is alot to take in all at once but I believe it will save all of our lives and sanity.

Friday, August 04, 2006

Money Whoes

So yesterday I found out that I over drafted my checking account over the weekend, leaving me with $99 in fees plus whatever I bought. I ended up giving away half of my pay check yesterday to the damn bank leaving me with about $78 in my account to live off of for next week.

That episode truly pissed me off mainly because that has never happened to me before. To make matters worse, I calculated that I had spent about $50 on gas and groceries to end up paying triple that amount to my freakin’ bank! And just when I thought I would be able to have a little bit of extra cash to at least go to Stitches Midwest next weekend (buying anything may require more money that I don't have), this shit happens.

So you know what this means? Like many fanatical knitters I have a credit card, and if I have to I will use it.

Why can’t money grow on one of these?

Thursday, August 03, 2006

I Think this Broad is Crazy

I’m not a big reader. Now don’t get me wrong, I do read novels, newspaper articles and magazines from time to time but I won’t promise you that a book is always in my purse. Which is why I felt it weird when I got the urge to purchase this book at Barnes & Nobles two weeks ago just for some fun summer reading. From the looks of it, this broad is just a little too crazy for me.

Now don’t get me wrong. I love the Yarn Harlot. I think her blog is fun to read and the way she describes her adventures make you want to jump in on the action with her. What I don’t agree with is her style of stash organization. In one of the chapters of the book, she offers advice to knitters with too much yarn in their stash. She believes that places like kitchen cupboards, the closet, and even the refrigerator are great places to store yarn and the sleeves of sweaters and garment suitcases are great for giving temporary homes to small projects like socks or baby hats.

Call me anal or whatever but that is not my idea of organization. I would just go absolutely freakin’ crazy if I knew that my yarn was near food (what if it gets dirty) in a closet (dirty, smelly shoes) or if my projects were stuffed into sleeves of sweaters never to be found again till 2 years later when I decide to do some serious cleaning in my living space. I’m already a forgetful person as it is. I like to know that all my knitting notions and things are all in one area of my house. Granted she did say that her house is pretty small and that her stash is pretty enormous (which I do not doubt) but having my yarn all over the place just annoys the shit out of me.

So how do you organize your stash and knitting tools? I know that some people like to make an inventory on their computer of all the yards of all the types of yarn they own so that it is easier to pick projects in the future. I’m not that crazy nor do I have that much yarn to forget what I actually have in my stash. Others like to display their yarn on a bookshelf like it’s an ornament that changes ever so often. Some invest in special knitting bags to hold their on-the go projects while others throw everything in their purse or a simple yet effective plastic bag. As for me it’s pretty simple. All of my yarn and FOs fit into a basket, a yellow suitcase and a blue bin. All of my tools are in a separate bag and my straight needles are in a hand-sewn case. My patterns and books are on my bookshelf or filed away for later viewing. My current project and everything that I need to complete it are always in a separate bag, even if I don’t intend to travel with that particular project. One day I might just sit down and make a swatch book so that I could look back at it for reference. If I choose to knit with the same yarn on the same needles I don’t have to make another swatch for gauge! Plus I think it’s a cool thing to have. When I get out of school and buy my own home, I plan on making a room just for me and my knitted things. That way everything is contained in one space and I don’t have to pull out my hair when I can’t find something because it’s all going to be in one place.

Which brings me to my final point. I think that the key to not wasting time looking for lost items is to know where all of your belongings are. This means that organization is hella important. And contrary to popular belief there isn’t just one way of being organized. We are all different and need to develop systems of organization that work for us not against us. Messy or super-neat, I believe that finding a method that works for you and sticking to it is the only way to be successful in stash organization.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Fresh as a Daisy

So the smell that I've had in my apartment for the past 2 weeks is almost gone. Let me explain.

The tenants above me use to burn incense constantly, as in you go to bed you smell incense and then you wake up and your whole body reeks of the smoke from it. When I moved in I thought it was a once in awhile thing. Then when my boyfriend started to comment about how awful I smelt, I decided that my neighbors habit of continually burning incense was a problem that I didn’t want to deal with.

So the first thing I did was move back into my boyfriend's apartment. I removed all the important stuff that I knew would have been negatively affected by the smoke of the incense (i.e. the yarn) and packed a few things to wear while I was away. I complained to my landlord about the situation and to make a long story short he sent them a letter forbidding them to burn incense because I told him it made me sick. The smoke would give me headaches and caused much difficulty in breathing. The amazing thing is that I don’t even have asthma!

Today I went over to my apartment and found great improvement in the smell. I was very excited and started cleaning it more. I found out that Baking Soda on a carpet is an excellent way to get rid of smoke odors, so I spent the $2.50 on a big ol’ box and dumped the whole thing all over my floor. I plan on returning in a few days to vacuum up the baking soda and start my life over again in my new and improved apartment.

This brings me to a question that I would like to ask you people. What kind of smells do you like? Floral? Woody? Fruity? None? Stink or sweet personally I can’t stand strong odors. I don’t put on perfume but once or twice a year. I find that it is less attractive to smell a person before you actually see that person. I’m more of a soap and lotion kind of gal. A clean, fresh scent that doesn’t overpower the other scents around you does it for me. I’m not saying that everyone should refrain from using perfume or colognes to freshen but as for me and my house, the basics are all I’m using in my daily morning routine.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Thank God it's August!

I figured that since this is a knitting blog maybe I should show you guys what I'm working on. I only got 2 things on the needles. One is a gift for my little sister for this coming Christmas (you got to start early people). The pattern is called Wavy and you can find it at this reputable publication. Here's a pic:

The other project is not quite on the needles but needs to be re-worked to suit my needs. The pattern comes from the Stitch N Bitch Nation book written by Debbie Stoller. The pattern is this:

I know it's kind of late in the summer to start knitting such a "Summer-e" piece but I'm planning on attending the biggest event of the year. This event is Stitches Midwest, which will take place August 10. I'm not taking any classes (read: poor college student) but I am planning on taking the 2 1/2 hour drive over to Rosemont, IL to shop at the market that weekend. Seeing that the event will take place in a Convention center this means that it will be close to freezing in there. As a knitter, I wouldn't dare go to a knitting event in a store bought sweater. So that means I have less than 11 days to re-write, start and finish this wrap.

Now I know what you're thinking. "Rewrite" the pattern? Yes, that is what I shall do. I don't have the proper yarn or even the needles to follow the pattern word for word. Did I also mention that I'm poor? This means that there will be no more stash enhancement until August 12, 2006. I plan on using the green cotton yarn I bought from that big blowout sale Webs had back in May. I know I only have 6 balls and the pattern requires more. I know that my gauge is 24 stitches by 28 rows over 4 inches and the pattern calls for 26 stitches by 32 rows. Thankfully there is a schematic that I can make the re-working of the pattern easier. Updates to follow. Wish me luck!