Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Daily Llama

The Llama has decided to be a kind of rectangley thing that is to be made into a purse/bag thing. I finally have a design I like, edged in a textured stitch and with an Aran vibe to it. I hope it turns out nice. I think it will and I think that I might write up the pattern and sell it for a dollar. I'm not sure about my pattern-writing skills, chart-writing skills, or whether the pattern is something someone wants. But I figure that if somebody wanted to give me a dollar for it, that would be okay and then I'd have a dollar.
The bag itself is meant to be sold. I have to figure out how much to ask for it, but I've got time yet. I think maybe I could do a couple embroidered hankies as well or some quilted popholders. I like making popholders.
Oh, the selling stuff.
I don't remember if I've posted about this here, but I may have talked about it other places. I want a laptop. I can get a refurbished one and I get a discount for being a student, but it will still require pennies I don't yet have. My plan is to make some stuff, save some pennies (literally pocket change in a little elephant bank on my desk), and if someone wants to buy some stuff from me, that would be neat and then I'd have some dollars for a laptop. I have twelve dollars now and that's just from pocket change.
As for the Llama, it's been quite the lesson in mindfulness. You have to pay attention when working cables, so I have to just sit and pay attention to nothing but the llama while I'm working on it. Otherwise, I have to tink a row. I had to tink one of the rows maybe four times because I wasn't paying attention.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Made of Love

Husband bought me this fiber, so I spun this yarn and made these gloves, but there was more yarn, so I wanted to make something really spectacular. I'm making mittens. They're a little snug because I didn't give any ease in my measurements and didn't sufficiently account for how much fair isle draws up, but that's alright. I can wear them and they're just beautiful! I love this yarn so much.
So. very. much.
These mittens are so warm and so full of love. My mom recently said of the gloves I made her, "When I put on my little knitted gloves I feel so loved. It's like you are wrapping your little hands around mine to keep them warm. It is hard to explain. I also love my socks, but there is a really special feeling I get when I put on my gloves. You must have blessed them." I cannot tell you how awesome that is.
Do you believe?

I'm a rainbow, too.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Llama and the illusion of control

I have this llama fleece, right? There are parts of it that are really really soft, but there are a lot of guard hairs in it and a goodly amount of VM. I could try to picky-picky through it and make a big mess trying to remove these imperfections, but I'm not going to. It is what it is. One big thing I've learned in the past few years is to let go of the illusion of control and I think my spinning skills have improved because of that. When I first started spinning, it was very even, very thin, and very tight and now it's a little lumpy, a little thicker, and a little less tightly wound. Just like me. Well, I'm not really any lumpier or thicker, but I am less tightly wound. Anyhow, I like the yarn better that way and I like me better that way.
I have this stupid broken bit in my brain that is very confused about the right order of things. That part of my brain is convinced that I can have control over every single little detail I touch, up to and including every single fiber being spun into yarn. I don't listen to it as often as I used to and it seems the less I listen to it and the more I let go of this idea of control, the easier things are. They yarn is lovlier and I'm happier.
So, I'm going to let this llama be what it is. It's llama with VM and guard hairs in it. I'm considering making a stuffy llama out of it so it won't be something worn next to the skin, but whatever I decide to make, I'm going to try to do something that appeals to the nature of the yarn rather than forcing it into something that isn't going to make me happy.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

An updated stash is a happy stash

I could use more yarn, though. It took me maybe fifteen minutes to update my stash on Ravelry to include almost all of the yarns I actually own. What I need is sock yarn. In a serious way. How am I to stash shop for socks when there's no stash to speak of? It's...it's... no less than appalling! I have monies for yarn. I get $60 in spendy cash every two weeks. I have $35 unspent buckaroos in my purse as we speak.
So why? Why do I have no sock yarn?
I simply just have not been shopping for yarn. I have not been perusing, finding something shiny, and purchasing. I've been knitting faster than I've been acquiring yarn and getting rid of or trading the stuff that I really don't want (crap yarn that I don't love, mostly).
The above stash picture is some palette from Knitpicks I got for making a scarf, hat, and mittens combo. I'm strongly considering a chullo. I should have a chullo.

Friday, January 02, 2009

¡Año Nuevo, Vida Nueva!

Happy New Year, all!
It's kinda cheesy to say that each new year brings new promise, but it does. It's nice to think you can leave all the crud of the past year behind you and start new. Sometimes I do that daily, sometimes hourly, but the new calendar year is nice for just dumping whatever emotional baggage you have to stuff that happened in the last calendar year and look at the world with new eyeballs.

Yuletide knitting went fairly well. Here's a couple things I made. Above is a pair of fingerless mitts for big brother and to the left, a washie for my mom. I made a lot of washies this year and gave them with fancy soaps. I didn't make anything big or complicated for anyone because my brain has been hijacked by school. There were two items that kind of fell flat. I made another pair of fingerless mitts and a pair of socks out of a yarn that, as it turns out, is kind of crap. The socks were also too small, but it was not my fault. I swear they were the right size when I finished them. The little dude grew between the time I finished them and the time they were given to him. Next time, I shall make them too big.

Now that I've taken the better part of December off, I need to get back in the lab, but I do feel refreshed and ready to take on the world! Well, maybe not the world, but I'll be taking on much more of the world this year than I generally take on. I'm going to Chile and perhaps also Argentina in February and at least to Poland, and possibly also to London and Munich in the summer. I'll be chasing butterflies as usual. The ones in Europe are already dead and preserved, so they'll be easier to catch. I'm very excited, of course, but it isn't quite real yet. It's not real 'til I'm on the plane.

I'm having a stash crisis. I have...very little in the way of stash. There's one skein of sock yarn and some little random bits of things. There's some palette that's already dedicated to a project (hat, scarf, and gloves/mittens combo) but that's really it. I've ordered some sock yarn for January socks. They'll probably be plain ol' socks, but they'll be blue handknit socks and that will be awesome. They're January socks 'cause I have this plan to knit myself one pair of socks for each month, animal fibers for cold months and plant fibers for warm months.

So far, it's being an awesome year. We just got back from eating out at La Siesta and we did it with budget money that was leftovers from grocery money. At the end of the pay period, whatever is leftover in the grocery envelope goes in the dining in/dining out envelope. No cash in there, no restaurant food. Leftovers from the gas money envelope goes in a car stuff envelope. Sometimes we have enough for tires, sometimes a tree air freshener, but it's a system that works for us. Anyhow, I paid everything I could pay, including every medical bill I was aware we had, and we still had $200 left in the bank. WOOT! I went to OfficeMax and got some stuff, including new plastic envelopes for the above envelope system and a stapler.