March 28, 2007

The Obligatory Post-NYC Visit Blog

This is an extremely picture heavy post. I apologize to those of you who have anything less than cable internet.

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New York City Public Library. I was walking by and I realized I had no "city" pictures. I think this was the first time I took pictures all day, actually and this was pushing 1PM.

I walked down to FIT for the tour, because I was running early (anyone who knows me knows thats a miracle in and of itself) I walked around the FIT musuem, I don't understand fashion at all. We walked down a few steps, a hallway and I saw the following two things, which I have to share with you.

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It's as if they made it just for me! (joke!)

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I wish my classrooms had this sign.

Then I saw this wall. The Wall of Spools.
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Who knew grey had so many different shades? We saw antique knitting machines, that made shirts and socks. There is more technicalness to this than I'm saying but I was very warm and slightly bored. I know, I shouldn't have been bored, but I'd be lying if I said I was super interested. I think if I had felt a little better I would have been more interested.

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The first two are pictures of the machine, the third is what it produces. A circular, shirt like product. Very cool. I was impressed. The fourth picture is a closeup. Kind of blurry but I thought I would include it.

Antique sock machine.
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If they had been cut, it wouldn't look like bright red sausage.
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Some students were using these machines, by now I was ready to pass out from being so warm, so I took a picture of a picture of the actual machine. It's automatic and really cool to watch being used.

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I got myself a bottle of watery goodness and preboarded. I waited. and just a few quick moments before the Craft Yarn Council lady got up to speak, I took these pictures. They are to my right, (I was sitting on the far left) to the back (I was six rows from the front row, directly behind Stephanie's family) and one aimed toward the center.

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I noticed a few seats empty and I was slightly disappointed. Stephanie was phenomenal and I have been calling my friends muggles completely! by accident. She spoke about her stash, which got me to thinking about mine. So I took some pictures of the yarn I purchased, and my stash. I realized its a REAL stash when I have no idea where a skien of burnt orange cotton came from.

Bottom right in the picture. It's sitting happily among its friends.
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I [USUALLY] love the bags they give you when you purchase yarn. I don't knowwhy, but I do.

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I realized when I got home that it looked like I was carrying pornography around. Not yarn. Or perhaps my mind has drifted into the abyss of the streets and highways...

My purchases:
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That's everyone together. This bottom picture could be my favorite that I've ever personally taken. It reminds me of yarn spaghetti. I think its just an awesome picture. I'm sure I'm the only one who thinks that, but thats just fine with me.

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Above is Tahki Cotton Classic that I plan to use for a bag featured in the latest issue of Interweave Knits. I bought it at the Yarn Connection. The Yarn Connection is the provider of the yarn-porn bag.

Below is 50% Cashmere & 50% Merino which I couldn't pass up when I saw the colors. I'm also not on a yarn diet so I figured I could splurge. It was a hand spun I believe, and I bought it from School Products which was HUGE. They had such an amazing amount of yarn. I wouldn't mind taking another trip up there to visit them again. I even got a really good lunch out if it :)!

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We were given balls of Paton's SWS. I knit my square for Warm Up American and decided I'd make another square. It's really beautiful yarn.
We were also given pins and I took a picture of all the other stuff I used/needed to navigate my day because I felt the need to continue to take pictures.

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Well, that was my trip. I have to finish packing, as I'm spending my spring break in Florida. Dad has already promised me a trip to HIS local yarn store. I hope you enjoyed the pictures.

March 25, 2007

Spring Cleaning

I have pictures of Thursday, as well as a whole lot to say on the matter. Thursday was fabulous. Today I cleaned my room, because it needed cleaning and I formally addressed my stash. I figured I didn't have a real stash because I was aware of each and every story behind the yarn. Where I bought it, when I bought it, why I bought it.

I saw a skein of burnt orange cotton yarn that I have no idea where it came from. Where I bought it, or who I was or was not with when I bought it. I don't remember anything about this yarn.

I made two purchases in NYC which I will gladly share with you. I took some sweet pictures today, I'm pretty proud of myself. I mistakenly showed my mom how much I paid for a skein, and she gave me the type of crazed look as if I just told her I was pregnant with triplets after a weekend-long hotel stay with a heroin addict.

I will share with you shortly, I promise. I've got a big test tomorrow so I need to study :( Early Thursday morning I leave for a week in Florida. I haven't decided if I'll be blogging while I'm there. I promise to take pictures of beaches though. I'm so excited for a good, relaxing vacation.

March 21, 2007

Feeling Like A Kid on Christmas Eve

I hit the gym with a friend of mine today after classes. We used to play soccer together when we were in highschool, and now we both attend the same college. I started telling her about the Yarn Harlot, etc. She doesn't get it, but I appreciate her because she tries to understand how excited I am.

I've been trying to figure out what I should bring with me, to keep myself busy. I am rarely bored. I usually always find something to keep myself busy with and sometimes just looking out the window is enough to keep me entertained. I was thinking about bringing my sweater with me, but I was worried I might drop stitches. I mentioned this to my friend and she had no idea what I meant, so I had to explain what it means to "drop" stitches.

Tomorrow, I won't have to explain why I'm worried about dropping my sweater stitches. (How AWESOME is that?)

I'm so excited. Mildly tired right now, but really excited. Ok enough blogging, I need to pack and get all my stuff in order.

I have a big test Monday so I'm not sure that I'll get to post pictures or blog much this weekend. As soon as I have a moment I promise to tell you all about it. :D !

March 19, 2007

Itinerary - Jersey Style

There's been an update and a general itinerary for the Big Day (Thursday March 22nd). I realize I'm a bit of a link whore, so here's the website for the Evite. Consequently if you click for the intinerary you can see.. well, a lot.

I'm kind of disappointed about the lack of yarn shopping. I'll be frank, I'm splitting up from the group after the Today show. I want to do things if a different order, and I want to visit as many yarn shops as I can. It's that simple. The other thing is that it seems like food costs are going to be high and I'm not rollin' in lettuce folks. I would rather spend as little as I can on food, and more on yarn.

Subsequently, (I'm on a big word kick this morning)I've got a working itinerary for anyone who doesn't have a sock, or would prefer a different route. (I should also mention my itinerary isn't color coded, so I'm at a disadvantage. If you check out Some Bunny & It's a Purl Man's itinerary, its pretty kick ass.)

This is an extremely flexible schedule. It could take fifteen minutes to eat and walk to the Museum of Art and Design after the Today Show, it could take an hour. Same regard for lunch. The only thing I am concerned with is not being late for the book signing/tour. I think an hour is a good amount of time to allot.

early morning hours ~~ travel to NYC
7am - 9am ~~ Today Show
9am - 10 # ~~ Breakfast / Walk to Museum of Art and Design
10am - % ~~ Radical Lace & Subversive Knitting at Museum of A&D
Noon ~~ Lunch.
1Pm -5pm ~~ Yarn shops
5pm-6pm ~~ Traveling to the Fashion Institute of Technology
6pm - 9pm ~~ Representin' with the Harlot
9pm - whenever ~~ Maybe dinner? Traveling home?

# However long it takes to eat and walk.

% I would say it fair to give the Museum two hours. If it takes 1 hour, we'll work from there. If it takes more.. again, this is a flexible schedule.

* Yarn shops

There are a trillion threads talking about different yarn shops to visit. I am going to be sportin' a Metro Card (the $7 fun day one) and somehow figure out how to use the subway - it will probably be the fastest and cheapest mode of transportation. Did I mention easy? I think I have an idea of how to use the subway. Considering these yarn stores aren't right next to each other, we can walk or subway it. The Metro Card pays for itself after three rides (each ride is $2 in case you'd rather pay each time). There are shops in Manhattan as well as Brooklyn, its up to those who want to come along with me.

The Coffeeshop has a thread going about different places to visit. The Harlot herself has this link posted under Yarn Crawls on her Represent page.

I think those are pretty good ways to go, as well as a tour guide on the Represent page has mentioned a few shops I'd like to go to. I'd like to visit as many shops as I can, but I don't want to say, we have exactly 45 minutes in each store! Or be overly adherent to an itinerary. I think the trip could lose its fun.

Send me a message via Knitty's Coffeeshop**,this here blog (comments are enabled, knock yourself out) or email me, the link is on the top left portion of the page. jerseyknitsATyahooDOTcom Change bolded items to @ and .

This is also assuming anyone wants a different schedule than what has been listed. Let me know.


March 18, 2007

I am a wee bit off kilter.

I had, perhaps, one of the most aggravating weekends a person could have. Hence the off kilter-ness. When I had down time I read a lot about Kool Aid dying. When my grandmother passed away, almost two years ago, she left me yarn. We (my dad and I) had no idea my grandmother (Nan) still had works in progress (WIPs). I naturally was the heir to the left over yarn and I have made a hat/scarf/mitten set. Waffle Scarf and Ugly Mittens are made from left over Nan yarn.

Nan also left behind about 10 skeins of a 'natural' looking yarn. I don't know what its made out of, and it looked old and kind of creepy. It was in a bag, and it got left outside in the garage. But I've got an idea now. I'm going to dye it. Thanks to the Kool Aid tutorials I found, I plan to dye it as soon as I have a free minute and know my mom has no idea of finding out how I used her stove.

I found some seriously amazing websites that have completely made me feel at ease with the process. My search started and Eunny Jang's website, See Eunny Knit where she details how to made self striping yarn. Her yarn was already pink when she started. She lists some links at the bottom of her web-torial. Knitty also has a web-torial in which Kristi Porter describe the process and uses glass cups(? that is what it looks like to me) and she makes a series of "samples". As if that wasn't enough, I found a color card which I personally thought was pretty neat.

The final site I found sealed the deal. I mean it spoke to me in such a way that I knew I could do it. I had been on the fence about the entire thing, but this website made me say, "When is mom going to be out of town so I won't have to worry about hurrying to finish dying?"

Let me tell you - not soon enough. This web-turial, brought to us by Streets and Yo, is just fabulous. The end result seriously just made me drool. There isn't a before, but I don't mind that much. The end yarn is so beautiful and delicious. How do you not want to run out into the garage and grab all that crappy looking, gross yarn and buy more Kool Aid packets than a cult end-of-the-world party?

I know the garage is a bad place for the yarn, but it honestly is the grossest yarn I've ever seen. I get itchy and buggy when I see it and I kind of want to run away flailing my arms like.. Kermit the Frog.

I'm making my own, handmade sign for the Today Show. I think it's great that It's a Purl Man is making a sign, but I want in on the action. I want to be on TV, too. So I've got a few ideas for a sign, any one else have ideas? I don't have a cool prize, but we could stand next to each other holding it. Maybe we'll get on tv... oooooh :)

Ok. Dinnertime.

March 16, 2007

Local Yarn Stores

I gotta talk about something else. The magnitude of March 22nd is getting to me. Back to my topics.. I created a list of topics I wanted to talk about because I was trying to update more often. Then I got sidetracked. Here's the list:

Topics to be discussed:
-March 22nd NYC trip
-Yarn stores in Southwest Florida
-Spinning wheel
-Yarn (of course!)

I talked about NYC (more times that I'd like to admit), YouTube annnd today I think I'll talk about Southwest Florida yarn shops. Speaking of yarn shops! Oh I'm so happy about this - a new yarn store opened up in Toms River. I stopped in yesterday with my friend about fifteen minutes before they closed. My other "Local" yarn store is in Red Bank and the people there were never very nice to me. There is another shop in Belmar, but I haven't been to it yet. So a new shop opened up, and its not super close to me, but I'd gladly drive there if the owner is going to be nice to me. I think I get treated strangely because I'm young. Perhaps.

As I spoke of in previous posts, my Dad lives in Florida. This means I have a cheap place to stay (and eat, tan and goof off) during my breaks from college. In between the fall and spring semesters I spent about three weeks in Southwest Florida. I love it there, its very nice, cozy, a second home if you will. It's nice to spend an extended period of time there because I tend not to see my dad for stretches of time. That kind of sucks, because we're pretty close, but we did what we needed to. In about two weeks, I'm hopping on a plane and spending my spring break there. (I CAN'T WAIT) In December/January I trolled around looking for yarn stores. Thanks to the Yarn Store Map I found two stores in somewhat close proximity to Dad's house and I took a drive. In a convertible. In January. In 80 degree weather.

(Are you jealous yet? I should mention that its currently about 34 degrees [Fahrenheit] and yesterday it was nearly 75 degrees)

I took a nice drive down to the southern part of Naples, where I found Knitting with Nancy. They were very nice and I bought yarn after I circled the store about four times. I just looked and touched and drooled every so often.

I want to make an ear flap hat, but I haven't had the time.

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That's the bag. I kept it. I like bags. Don't ask....

Here are some pictures of the yarn. The obvious "red" color is not quite that red. I couldn't seem to get the color no matter how many pictures I took. So I gave up.

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It is soooooooo soft. 100% baby alpaca, about 110 yards. The label says Plymouth Yarn - Baby Alpaca Grande Luxury Indiecita Brand. It's soooo very soft. I love it. I really can't wait to use it, but I've been so backed up with The Super First Sweater Extravaganza lately. I finished counting last night. I counted everything about 8 times so I knew I had the right numbers.

Progress is slow, but steady and I can't wait to finish it so I can move onto 23,094,098 other projects I want to make. At least two of which I spotted in Interweave Knits.

Stupid weather. I'm out of it today. I've got some homework and hopefully some knitting to get done today.


March 14, 2007

My Little Heartstrings Can't Take it Anymore!

After this post, I think I'm going to watch Bones and work on my sweater. Today wasn't hectic and nothing bad happened, but there is only so much joy and excitement my little heart strings can take.

This is a link to an Evite page that I found coasting around on the Knitty Coffeeshop forum that [I had NO idea even existed, and I'm pretty pissed about my late arrival] I came across in my endevours to hunt down a yarn crawl.

I am a morning person. I eat breakfast. I watch the Today show WHILE eating breakfast. I have got to tell you, I always look at those people with the signs and they're smiley and happy and I always wondered if given the opportunity to hold a sign on [NATIONAL] television, if I'd do it.

The answer, my dear friends, is yes. If given the opportunity - I have to run it by my friend first, this means an extra night in his apartment - yes I would gladly get my spicy little ass up extra earlier to stand in a semi circle around journalists and publicly declare my love for knitting.

I'm going to have to remind my Dad to watch the show. 8 times. I swear. Assuming they talk to us, and assuming I can be short in front of all the tall people. This means I have to wear something really cute. Just... in case.

Then the group is going to eat (excellent idea) and then collectively head down to the Museum of Art and Design and take a peak at the Radical Lace & Subversive Knitting show. I am FLOORED. I can't begin to explain to you how fucking excited I am.

I'm so excited I'm cursing, look what you've done to me! (AHHHHHH) After that it sounds as if they may shop, at yarn stores (I hope) and I'm sure other assorted places.

Senor Padre - ala my Dad, was telling me about this guy who sells coffee from a truck because he was pissed off at Starbucks. He parks his truck IN FRONT of Starbucks in NYC and sells cheap, good coffee.

Link me, cupcake. Mud Coffee I personally enjoy a good vendetta. A good reason to do something. I enjoy the reason this guy waged a small war against a huge, global company. I appreciate him and I want to buy some of his coffee. My mission is to find a truck, and get some coffee.

My Dad was actually in NJ for the past few days - he resides permanently in Southwest Florida. We had breakfast before he left to get on the plane and I tried, desperately to explain to him who Stephanie Pearl-McPhee and Elizabeth Zimmerman are. When he didn't get it, I told him to walk into HIS local yarn shop (he has one closer to him in FLORIDA than I do in NEW JERSEY!) and ask the owner to give him some background information.

I'm looking forward to my visit, and eventually finishing my Topic List - which covers two of the yarn stores in his general radius. What a brat, he doesn't know how lucky he is...


March 12, 2007

It's Definate.

I was trying not to get my hopes up. About the Harlot on tour in NYC thing. I really was. But I secured the lettuce (also known as cashmoney - or chedda, depending what atrocious MTV fake-ality show you watch..) over the weekend and I will be in NYC March 22nd.

Let the excitementness explode. I am so thrilled that it may burst out of me, and therefore I needed to create a new word. So THERE Webster's. I also have secured a launching pad from which my little excursion will help ...launch me. Technically, I could drive or train it home. No big deal. Except my guestimation is that I will be completely exhausted and although driving or training is possible, I'd rather not.

The fantastic thing about spending the night in a north Jersey apartment is that mid morning Friday, I am tentatively planning a trip to Modern Yarn which is in Montclair. I've been there before, and I am the proud owner of a iKnit shirt.

Excuse me for a second while I bask in my awesomeness, because I had the shirt before it was cool, and it was officially cool in the Winter 06/07 issue of Vogue Knitting's Knit 1 magazine.


(still basking....)

(almost done)

Yeap, okay I'm over myself.

I've been thinking about being a total whackadoodle, what do they call them? Those slutty chicks who follow rock stars around the country. Perhaps it used to be done quite a few years ago. Before I was born. Which was slightly more than 20 years ago..


That's what they're called! Yes! So I was thinking about being a groupie minus the traveling part but I'm missing a key element to being a groupie. Are you ready for this?


Really big boobs. They are (in my opinion) the quintessential thing to being a whackadoodle groupie. And poor Stephanie, would be the rock start in my creepy fantasy. I have to tell you, thanks to Sheila (Knitting By Moonlight)I'm hooked. I'm double pointed needled. I really truly enjoy the Harlot. If I remember long enough I'm going to throw one of her buttons on my site. I am, honestly, so impressed with her writing and her adventures. But I digress.

I have tiny boobs. They're visible enough to discern me from a boy. From the back I've got nice girl hair, so you'd know I'm not a boy. I don't know if boy's have asses like mine, either. Still digressing.. Boobs are tiny. Can't be a good whackadoodle-boob-signing-groupie with size A's. Even in a push up bra. Assuming I owned one. They're tiny.
I guess it depends what I wear, if its easily pull-down-able. The jury is still out, but I think they're leaning towards an acquittal.

I mean with the media supposed to be there... and a Sharpie marker? What would the muggles think? (What do the muggles think when a blonde bimbo with double DD's get her stuff signed by [insert creepy male author here] ? )

NYC, here I come!

March 10, 2007

Interweave Knits and Knit 1

I picked up copies of the latest Interweave Knits and Knit 1 magazine. I enjoy Knit 1 because it feels like its geared more towards me than other magazines. Naturally I scanned through Interweave while in Barnes and Noble and I found a lot of super cute things I would actually consider knitting. I usually find magazines or books to be kind of disappointing because for every cute, potential project there are 8 ugly things. I also tend to knit by the ass cushions on my seat because I kind of dislike patterns. Perhaps its an authority thing, who knows. Perhaps I had a bad experience with a mitten pattern and I think all patterns are like that.

The latest issues of both magazines kind of make me want to sit down, read a pattern and knit from it. None of this crazy seat-of-my-pants knitting.

I haven't made much progress on My Very First Sweater. I think my increases are off so I've been counting and recounting and counting some more. I hope to start knitting again this week, considering its about half way through the semester and I'm getting annihilated with midterms and other such things.

I know I'm about a month late in acquiring the magazines, but better late than never.

In a non-knitter note, I'm glad to see Ms Barba was kicked off Idol. Kind of angry about Sundance and the other guy. Seems all the preteens are running up high text messaging bills this month....

March 09, 2007

The New York City post

I got sick this week which is why I never got around to blogging. I really wanted to. I thought a lot about it, but homework comes first.. when I wasn't doing homework I perfected being a lump on the couch. I'm still sick but I've been DYING to talk about this trip AND (like that wasn't enough) my finances are still way way WAY up in the air so who really knows.

Soooooo I have a PayPal account if you want to donate to the Poor College Student/Knitter Fund. Yeap. I threw that out there. Just in case that guy from Georgia wants to throw me a few.. million.


A girl can dream:)

I decided that I wasn't going to simply see the Harlot herself. I was going to be slightly touristy because if you haven't already heard, The Radical Lace & Subversive Knitting is on display at the Museum of Art and Design. Go, click on the link, and bask in the wonder that is fiber related. It astounds me what people come up with. Little tiny gloves? Holy crap that's fantastic!

As if that wasn't enough museum for one day, just a hop skip and jump away is the Museum of Modern Art, which is always just fantastic. I don't think I've ever been there, you know, afraid of the city and all.

For lunch, yes I have lunch plans picked out, Chipotle is perhaps the BEST taco/burrito/Mexican I have EVER had. A long time ago I took a flight to Los Angeles and was introduced to the bundle of joy burrito. As a snack for the five hour flight home I had one of their burritos, made just the way I liked it and it was amazing. I couldn't wait to eat it and I am drooling thinking about it's burrito-y goodness. The past few times I've been in the city I've stopped at a store to eat.

By now, and far away from my original destination, I should be heading to see The Harlot in her mightiest. I've been told I can buy a book at the signing which is nice, probably what's expected of me. I haven't decided if I'm going to ask the Harlot to sign my boobs. The event, held at the Fashion Institute of Technology will be about 750 knitters representin' our fiber and needles. The media might show up, no real word on that yet and there may also be a Yarn Crawl, again, no real word on that.

Then I'm going home.

But I wanted to leave you with a really happy link. Even if you can't get into the city on a Thursday night, you can always hug. Free Hugs Campaign I'm SERIOUSLY considering making a shirt of my own (you know.. finances....). I probably wouldn't stand on the corner of any street in NYC without a friend to keep an eyeball on me. I'm a tiny person.

But the general idea is you should hug people. Hugs are FANTASTIC! and everyone can use one even if they don't think they need one. Hugs are free so everyone can afford one or a million. Hugs warm the soul.

That's my NYC post. Local knitters are meeting, I've decided to go even though I know I'll be the only person who hasn't gone through menopause. That's the only thing I find is slightly isolating about being a young knitter. The young part.

KNIT! STITCH! BITCH! Be a Bad ASS! have a goooooooood weekend:)!

March 06, 2007

The Pre-NYC post

This a hold-me-over post until I have enough time to sit down and tell you about my plans for the end of the month, in the city that never sleeps. I used to be afraid of the city, for no real reason. I suppose as a child the city (I'm speaking about New York) it was a really big place to get kidnapped. We visited every so often, as I barely live two hours away. I also happen to live about two hours away from Philadelphia, which I liked much more than the city. Here in New Jersey that's what we call it, proximity, blah blah blah. I always found Philly to be more welcoming although I believe the crime is worse in Philly than NYC but I digress.

Only recently have I seemed to quell my fear of the city. I have a friend who travels there often to do work, and I tagged along with him on a trip or two. I fell in love. When you sit down and think about it, Manhattan has everything. Chipotle, yarn stores, a thousand different other restaurants, colleges, museums.. It is alot of living packed, sardine style, onto an island. I believe I've only ever visited Manhattan, so I can't speak about the other boroughs.

That said, I sat down and tried to think of all the stuff I could possibly want to do, and want to see and still make it in time for The Harlot's general talking to. I've got quite a few things up my sleeves and we will see if, well, first of all if I go. Secondly if I can get all my things done and thirdly, yarn.

On an Idol note.... fellow Jersey girl Antonella Barba is giving us a bad name. A really bad name. That's all I'm going to say.