Saturday, October 25, 2008

Strike a Pose

One day I found myself with a little time before I was suppose to meet some friends at Dewey's Pizza in Kirkwood. Rather than hang out in front of the restaurant, like a pizza junkie waiting for a fix, I walked down the block to the Kirkwood Public Library and decided to look at their knitting book selection. I found a whole cache of bound Vogue Knitting Magazines from the 1990s. I fondled the periodicals, but did not have the leisure to thumb through them and see what treasures of knitting gems awaited me between the covers. Fast forward about four months and lo there I was with the time to do just that. I gathered the stack up and found a sunny alcove and began the loving look through the pages.
I found 5 that I needed to get to know better, with my municipal library card I borrowed these babies. After two weeks with the VKs I decided, it is a good thing the nineties are over. There were some horrid fun fur sweaters and plaid, machine knitted suits that needed to die an early death sandwiched between the covers. The southwest themed sweaters only lacked the howling coyote, to truly be awful. But I also found some articles that I really enjoyed.The article with a very young Lily Chin, sporting a flip was particularly inspiring. She talks about learning to knit and then learning to rebel against all the rules of knitting. She reminded me of one of my knitting mentors, which of course made me spend some time at Office Max today making copies of selected articles for said mentor.

Despite some awful designs, some are as beautiful today as they were when first published. Timeless, would be the word for the above Lily Chin original. I love the soft, prettiness of the yarn and how it works with the cables. Of course, I have yet to knit anything out of a VK, my skill level is just not there yet. One day I hope to knit something just as beautiful from VK, one day.
I also liked the articles about chenille yarns, the Shetland Islands, and the article about knitting and literature was very charming. The journalist points out that in the story, "Breakfast at Tiffany's" Holly Golightly does not knit, her roommate does. Hmmm, Hollywood take liberties, never. All in all I have enjoyed my time with these magazines. It is going to be hard to return them.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Et tu...

In the shortest post of my blog I will say with umbrage, ET TU SUGAR'N CREAM? There is nothing I hate more than merrily knitting along and finding a knot. Especially when it is so unexpected.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Nashville, Part Deux

So last week in the life and times of the knitting obsessed, our two heroines took themselves to the land of Opry to bask in the presence of the Mason-Dixon Knits twosome. You heard the gushy, gush about how fabulous it was and how I was on their national blog, blah-blah stuff. So famous knitters aside. I had a great trip with my beloved Cuz. Above she is showing off her almost finished shawl to some super nice knitters from eastern Tennessee.
I can't remember this lady's name, but she was working on some socks. She scooted right over to make room for the us while we waited for the room set aside for our group.
The talented Tara ( was also working on these socks for her husband. They are Seminole football fans and she wanted to knit her hubby some Nole socks. Okay that is not was is so astounding about these socks, cause I could care less about football. She dyed the socks herself and even mixed the dye from her own kool-aid recipe. These colors very vibrant and were striping up like a dream. It is funny beloved Cuz and I used the same yarn and kool-aid, we even followed the same directions. Trust me our yarn did not come out looking this good.
The equally talented Lindsey was working on this adorable duck-billed hat. She had already finished a pair of duck-footed booties to match the hat. Wish I could post a photo of them, those booties are just so damn cute. It amazes me the endless variety of things that people knit.
Not only was the knitting fabulous, but the food was equally as good. We stopped at a yarn store Angel Hair Yarn ( and after ohhhing and ahhhing over their shop, the lovely knit divas sent beloved Cuz and I over to the Noshvile Delicatessen( for lunch. We did some serious eating here, I had a truly tasty rueben and beloved Cuz had some concoction that had her lips smacking for awhile. I wish I could find someplace that yummy in St Louis. On the way out of town we stopped at Jacks and had some seriously good bar-b-que served up by some of the nicest people I have ever met. If I had to use one word to describe the people I met in Nashville it would be welcoming. I can't wait until the next time I get to visit that fair city.

The only really negative thing that happened was the four hour traffic jam and the accident which slowed our egress out of town. But I can't blame the good people of Nashville for that one, we should have just stayed an extra night. The trip's timing though couldn't have been better, it was a much needed balm on my soul.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Knitting with Rock Stars or Mason Dixon Does Nashville

Oh yes, that is my cousin and I cozying up to the wonderful knitters, Ann Shayne(on left) and Kay Gardiner(on right), the writers of Mason-Dixon Knitting. My beloved cuz and I took a road trip to Nashville with the express purpose of meeting these ladies. We both agreed that before Cuz spawns her newest project, baby Deuce, we should do something fun together. We decide, Nashville here we come. Tennessee does this wonderful thing once a year called the Southern Festival of Books. Over 250 authors went to downtown Nashville for a weekend to schill their books and see their fans. It was awesome. Books were everywhere, people selling books, giving away books, talking about books, and signing books.

These lovely ladies from Mason-Dixon filled a court room full of knitters and their families to talk about their newest book, Mason-Dixon Knitting Outside the Lines. They passed around knitted items from the book and engaged all of us in the story of how knitting led them into the odyssey that became . They made me laugh and feel good about my own knitting adventure. I had the added bonus of meeting knitters from all over the state of Tennessee, we talked yarn, projects, and techniques. We were instant friends ready to just sit and knit together as we got to know one another. Above is the talented Tara (on left) and Lindsey (on right) who had projects that made me lust after their skill. Tara particularly touched my heart when she told me she taught herself to knit during a time in her life when she was very unhappy. I thought, I know that story. Everyone was so welcoming.
Ann and Kay were so approachable and excited to meet the twoseme who drove from St Louis to meet them (See: for proof, Tempesttea in her 15 minutes of knitting fame). Kay especially made me feel less like the neophyte knitter and one of the crowd when we both pulled out our knitting and found stitches had jumped right off our needles and we had to quickly save our respective projects. I also really liked that Kay wore my favorite color and was knitting something in the same beautiful shade.
It was just wonderful, this was just the medicine I needed for my soul this weekend. Thank you to all the wonderful Tennessee knitters who opened their knitting bags and hearts to the chubby girls from St Louis.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Knit Masterpiece

Okay for the non-knitters this is a knitty-knit-knit post, and for the knitters this is the oh-my-god when is she going to stop flapping this throw in our faces kind of post. Please indulge me today, I need the little victory right now. Last summer I bought 5 skeins of this Noro Silk Garden. I spent a couple of months hoping I would stumble across a cache of a few more to make myself this awesome Lady Eleanor wrap. Well I may have stumbled, but no yarn turned up and I decided Lady E was a little above my knit abilities. So 5 skeins of Noro languished in my stash. I thought some project will present itself.
Enter my friend Debbie. Debbie has been sick, the last couple of years and has recently moved to New Town in St Charles. When she saw me knitting she hinted that she would like a throw for her new digs. I caught the hint, actually I would have been in another state to have not caught that suggestion. So I thought, hmmm, I do have that Noro and Christmas is coming. But still I did not have enough for a throw. Again the yarn went back to languishing.
Then I picked up a copy of Mason Dixon Knits and drooled over their mitre square afghan. I drooled some more and then a bulb went off over my head . Finally, a purpose for the Noro Yarn. I picked up more yarn in a complimentary color. I scoured through some other mitre square patterns and started knitting. Then I made a mistake and had to pull out three squares. Then I made some more mistakes and pulled out a few more squares. Slowly it started to come together before me. People would stop me as I knit at Borders, Knitorous, Ornesto's just to droll over the throw. But something wasn't quite right I needed an edge to pull it all together and more yarn in black had to be purchased. I learned to crochet to do the edging. I discovered I don't like crochet as much as knitting, but...

I present to date my most beautiful knitted project. The throw isn't perfect. I can point to all my mistakes, but I am reveling in just how beautiful it turned out. It is 42 inches by 48 inches and just yummy to touch. Come Christmas, I am going to have a little trouble letting go of this baby. I hope Debbie loves it as much as I do.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

The streets were dark...

I found this crazy quote website called . I was thinking about Raymond Chandler quotes and found a few I like:

The streets were dark with something more than night.

She gave me a smile I could feel in my hip pocket.

I knew one thing: as soon as anyone said you don't need a gun, you had better take one along that worked.
I am still thinking about the feeling in the hip pocket. Does he mean his wallet, or his gun, or his guy part. I will be thinking about that one for a while.

I also the first quote's suggestion there is a texture of evil in the darkness.

The quotes were suggested to me by the Martin Scorsese's 5 part documentary auspiciously titled, A Personal Journey with Martin Scorsese Through American Movies. He presented a section on film noir and Chandler, naturally, came up. I like film noir and of course being a bit obsessive I had to go to the web and do some research on Chandler.
The whole concept of a documentary on what Scorsese thinks of films is just a tad narcissistic, but hey he has made a fortune on his visions of the world and I have not so maybe I am just being a bit self-righteous. I have only watched the first two episodes and found them horribly dry, but I am hoping it will get better. I think I would like the series more if he had profiled his own movies. I do like his gangster films and I am intrigued on his inspiration for some of his characters. Regardless the commitment on my part has been made to finish the series so I can return it to the library by Wednesday. Bring on the caffeine.