The Amazing Adventures of Tom and Bel

Friday, July 29, 2005

Beauty's Where You Find It

I got my subscription issue of the Fall '05 VK, and I've gotta say, I think they hit it out of the park on this one. As always, some of it's a bit outré (love that '70's style skirt in Koigu), but I think the majority of it is lusciously wearable.
  • Love love love the Color Theory story -- I'm a sucker for any sort of cabled goodness, and they've got it in spades. A couple of these cropped cuties will need lengthening, but that's easily arranged.
  • Drooling over Deborah Newton's gorgeous lace shawl and - surprisingly, Mari Lynn Patrick's Fair Isle cape - it's too cute.
  • There's a black-&-white men's Fair Isle turtleneck that could look v. good on the husband (though I'd recolor it black and brown -- he is a cunning and subtlefellow, my love, and deserves a sweater to match)
  • The slip-stitch vest pattern, I think could be another one for the Boy-O, though of course it will need to be resized. Not a problem, as I am genetically unable to follow a pattern as given. I'm already mentally modifying the ones I like.
Totally digging my fave knit mag this season (visualize embarrassing happy dance here) ...can't wait to get started on fall knitting.

On the other hand, though, the summer knitting is yielding lovely results:

Thursday, July 28, 2005

30 Percent

I try to keep my politics mostly off the blog. I figure that's not why most of y'all visit. But this is important to me, damn it all, and I can't ignore it.

This lovely young woman has a child, and is several months pregnant -- and the story (surprise, surprise) is only now getting a little bit of coverage from the mainstream media. It seems the blogosphere has shamed CNN into paying some attention to the case of a non-white young
woman's disappearance.

Now, I know some people might call me paranoid, but as the old folks say, "just 'cause you're paranoid don't mean no one's out to get ya."

I've known for a long time that the only people whose disappearances get national attention are
folks who don't look like me. Just consider: Laci Peterson, Jennifer Wilbanks, Elizabeth Smart, Natalee Holloway. It's not just about money (though that obviously comes to bear: Latoyia's family certainly can't offer a $1M reward as the Holloways have). There's something deeper going on here. The mass media ignores cases if the victims aren't young white women.

See here and here if you think I'm just BS'ing you. If even the McPaper gets it, why don't the rest of them?

There is a fund to raise money for the search, via All Spin Zone. If you can contribute, please consider doing so. If you can't, at least be aware.
African Americans are estimated at 10% of the the population, yet are 30% of the missing persons cases in the FBI's files.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Betcha Can't

Before we get on to the knitting, ladies and gentlemen, a Public Service Announcement: if you live in an apartment building with walls you know to be paper thin, do not - I repeat, DO NOT, for the love of all things holy, have raucous, ceiling shaking, banshee-wailing sex at 3:30 in the morning which shatters the sleep of the neighbors below you. It may lead to exhausted neighbors, angry notes and bags of dog poop on your doorstep.
I'm just sayin'.

(Oh, all right, there was no dog poop. But there was a very politely worded note that may or may not lead to the desired result. We shall see.)

Now - on with the knitting! I present to you the project with which I am cheating on the project that I was cheating on my current project with my current project:

The sweet beginnings of the lace corset. Those rows are like potato chips: it is impossible to work just one.

Here's a close up of the i-cord edge:

Thus far, a fast and enjoyable knit. If it continues to fly like this, we (the royal we) could be wearing this by Sunday!

Monday, July 25, 2005

What I Did Not Do This Weekend

Hmmm. I know this looks suspiciously like a swatch, but really, it's just a tiny washcloth.

Nope. Totally not a cast on for Annie's corset pattern. Nuh-uh.

What's that, you say? Lace? What lace?

Oh, that. Not lace. Definitely not. Just a trick of the light. You must have something in your eye.

Hmmm. Suspicious - that looks like it's going to be a size too small. Shazzbat!

Fortunately, bigger needles and a good supply of yarn are available. Not that I'm starting a new project. No, sirree!

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

P Control

(Anybody else love that song*, salacious though it is?)
Unfortunately, today's title also refers to the fact that I had to call Poison Control today after accidentally OD'ing on *non-narcotic* cough syrup.
(Yessir, I did graduate from the smartest school in the Big Ten. Can you tell?)

In my defense, it was hot.
(Okay, that's not exactly germane, but it will have to do.) It was hot and I was sick and tired of the two-day coughing fit my chronic allergies have seen fit to bestow upon me, so I just kept taking sips from the cough syrup bottle. And that method seemed to work fine, right up until the dizziness started. And the sudden maudlin need to cling desperately to my loved one's neck. and the singing of bittersweet show tunes and love themes ("Memories... light the corners of my mind...").

(Hmmm. This may explain why I felt so tipsy after taking the Boy-O out for a celebratory birthday drink. )
Oh, yes, your friendly neighborhood blogger is a bit of a dumb@ss.
A proper knitting blog will resume tomorrow, when I have crawled out from under the influence.

*For the curious, be warned: these lyrics are not PG or work safe. The song is lewd. However, it also has driving guitars and a helluva beat. You've been warned.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005


AS you can see, the recycling project is coming right along- I am astonished to realize that I may be done a lot sooner than I thought. That will entail some decision making - obviously the deep vee needs to be filled in and the cap sleeves must be added.
One thing that's been quite strange in the working of this sweater - it all looked the same to me until I took this shot, but you can clearly see that there is a darker line of purple yarn along the bottom. That's 'unrecycled' yarn from the stash supplementing the recycled portion - the original sweater was smaller than this one.
I may have to throw the whole kit & caboodle into the washer to make it match.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Stuck in the Middle

Not the new Harry Potter, of course - finished that yesterday (took me roughly six hours to read it). I enjoy these so much; they're like candy for a fantasy fan(atic) like myself.

But the recycling project is going a bit slower these days due to a bit of wrist pain (the marathon knitting sessions I'm used to with wool are a lot harder with cotton) and the overwhelming, mindblowing heat. The Boy-O and I are in a big fat hurry for Friday - we're going out to get a room air conditioner ASAP.

In lieu of actual knitting progress, then, I've updated the stash doc project, which you may see here.
I figure I'm about 1/3 of the way through it. (Gulp. Remind me not to buy more yarn, 'kay?)
And Jenna, I will get off my duff and write up the red side trip pattern soon - as soon as I remember exactly what I did!

Saturday, July 16, 2005

Midnight Magic

There's going to be very little knitting in the Casa de Boy-O today, friends.
The hubster's birthday is Tuesday, but since he's got the weekend off, I gave him his present early:

Yup - that's the shiny (relatively) new PDA he's been lusting after for a while. Here's a close up:

It was a pretty good eBay score (if I do say so myself) and came with many key accessories, which made for a very happy Boy-O. The only down side was (and this is a quote): "Can I suck up my pride and use a (dramatic pause) Windows device?"

the hubster and I also received a mystery gift - a pizza stone and a fabulous wooden cutting board that were on our registry, but no longer available on line. Unfortunately, there was no return address on the package (just the store's information)! So, whomever you are, (Mom-O?) thank you! We'll be making pizza this weekend.

Since it was a day for presents, last night Boy-O and I endured this:

And this:

To get this:
My long-awaited birthday gift. Thank you, dearest one.
Ignore that bookmark that's about a third of the way through. I did not stay up half the night reading it. Really. What kind of a non-grown-up do you think I am?
(LOL - it's pretty good so far!)

Friday, July 15, 2005

Gotta Run for Shelter

As I'm sure y'all know, it's Too. Darn. Hot. We can't even stand to breathe in our (poorly-ventilated) apartment. So the free passes we got to this movie last night (with their lovely, lovely AC) last night were gratefully received.
There were moments of real beauty in this movie, though I did not find myself as transported as M. Ebert. The air conditioning, however, was transcendent. ;-O

As for the knitting, it progresses sloooowly. After seeing all the excellent versions of Grumperina's fabulous Tivoli T, I wanted to make one, but I'm not ready to commit - the stash documentation project is making me realize just how much yarn I still have (even after I was able to clear out perhaps a fourth of the original supply by gifting it to the Mom-O).
And I'm impatient, besides - so instead, I am testing out the shaping on my purple recycling project:

Oh, cotton yarn, how you frustrate me. Especially when it comes to decreases: I always discover a gap that I'm not able to consistently tame. I've tried tightening up my gauge, changing the way I decrease, but nothing's worked yet. Fortunately, this is an experimental project and I can let go of my freaky perfectionism.

Monday, July 11, 2005

Growing Pains

I have discovered, to my horror and amazement, that I am old.
Now, I certainly hadn' t expected to discover such a thing for at least a good thirty years, but somehow, the state of fuddy-duddy has crept in on me. Our trip to the Megamall was the final proof.

Ways In Which I know I am An Old Fart:
1) I commented at least ten times to the Boy-O about the ridiculous shortness of skirts on assorted teen-aged girls. (Boy-O, by the way, thoroughly agrees with me on that score -- and also that if you're in the double digits, you shouldn't wear ruffles across your ass. Especially when you are wearing a capelet as a skirt.)

2) Everything was too bright, too loud and too overexposed.
Trend of the fall season? Boleros. Shiny, lacy, sparkly - you name it, they had it. After the seventh shop window with the little jackets in them, I said "Enough. I get it already." The new poncho* has appeared.

3) When I picked up the Fall issue of Interweave Knits, I complained mightily about the arty photography to the Boy-O. Now, I appreciate art as much as the next gal, but dang it, if I can't see the stitch pattern on the knitted coat, I'm not gonna be tempted to make it. I don't care about the dang green bag (on which the focus was razor sharp -- grrr) - show me the knitting!

I bought this issue specifically for Kate Gilbert's fantastic cover sweater, but was pleasantly surprised by a couple of other items (I loved the weekend bag and Teva Durham's lush cardi jacket - which was also out of focus!) and the awesome article on shibori knitting. I woudl love to spend some time playing around with this technique. Anyone know of any examples on the web?

*Speaking of which, Lion Brand is looking for folks to wear the Martha poncho at a taping of her new show (!). Oy.

Sunday, July 10, 2005

StashDoc Debut

The stash documentation project is underway... you can see it here.
Again, the weather is too hot breathe, but the recycling project proceeds apace.
I am trying it on as I go, but can't show it to y'all, since it's a top-down sweater and I haven't gotten past the , er, "fullest" point of my person. Just imagine. Er, scratch that.

More pics soon, but the Boy-O -- who just got an awesome new job! Huzzah! -- and I are off to the megamall to buy shorts/linger in the air-conditioned coolness. I can hardly wait.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Passing at the Speed of Stash

Of course, I'm sure y'all know I was referring to Knitting Project Monogamy.
(The marital sort of monogamy is just fine with me, thank you.)

I'm busybusybusy at work (covering for a colleague on leave, plus helping out in another department), but there has been some progress:

The recycling project continues, albeit slowly. It is becoming a saddle shoulder, short sleeve vee neck. I'm using previously worked Cotton Classic in purple (making the third project in a row, I think. When I like a color, I like a color and it stays liked, thank you very much!), and am adding some unused blue that I had in my stash.

Speaking of stash, the latest additions to mine (courtesy of a mega sale @ my semi-LYS):

While just a few representatives made it into the photo, there are five skeins of Cascade 220 which will become a vest for Monsieur Le Boy-O (from the Spring '05 IK).
There's a skein (& a half!) of Cotton Classic left over from the Red Side-Trip, which I may use for adding a mitered rib neckline and cap sleeves.
(Or I may keep it around to cuddle and call George. I just adore that red!)
And finally, anyone have any great ideas for 10 skeins of lovely, soft Svale?
I just Could Not Leave them in the store. They literally leapt into my basket from the shelf and demanded to be taken home (really, hon, I swear that's how it happened!).

In honor of Chelsea, I'm going to start a stash documentation project like hers. I'm still trying to figure out how to organize it, though. It's daunting, really, when you know you have at least 20 defined sweater-sized projects lying around, not counting the yarn which has not been assigned a project. It's enough to make a girl wanna buy some yarn just to relax...

Sunday, July 03, 2005

So, um, y'all know monogamy is relative, right?

My recycling project. It's just too damn hot for the merino.

More to come soon...