Sunday, November 30, 2014

A Head for Trouble by Julie Turjoman

Before Thanksgiving I enrolled in a class at Kirkwood Knittery taught by Julie Turjoman.  I had previewed her book, A Head for Trouble: What to Knit While Catching Crooks, Chasing Clues, and Solving Murders, at knit night and signed up for the class.  The class was a great deal because it included the book as well as learning more about knitting.  I did not really ask what the class would focus on, maybe I should have.  I showed up not even sure what we were doing to discover the class was on embellishments and using beads.  I have seen my friends use beads with their knitting projects and thought it was complicated and annoying.  I looked around the room at the quality of knitters and felt like maybe I was in the wrong class.

Turjoman book had impressed me with the clever idea of knitted hats worn by female detective characters in mystery novels set in the 1920s.  The adorable hats were there for us to examine and even try on.  Seeing the construction of the headwear made me want to pay attention and learn to overcome my fear of beads combined with yarn.  I discovered under Turjoman's tutelage and cool visual aid beading is not so bad. I even knitted a cute little beaded leaf, yay me.  I also learned techniques for a flat flower and a ruffled one, again I say yay me. 

My nervousness at being around other amazing knitters turned out to be unfounded.  Everyone was so supportive and helpful. Learning something new is always better when surrounded by fun people.  I am so glad I signed up this class and I love the new book.  I have earmarked the beaded Daisy cloche as something I want to knit.  I liked Turjoman's designs so much I even purchased another of her books on tops called, Knits that Breathe.  Thanking the ladies at Kirkwood Knittery for putting together such a good event.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Building Block #11 & 20 Cornered Grannies

With all the things going on in my hometown, I have felt frivolous blogging about my knitting and crochet.  I am struggling to make sense of all the events that have happened and how I feel about it.  I have opinions, but then again don't we all.  I have decided to stop expressing my opinions and just spend my time on working towards solutions in the way I live my life.  I will continue to judge people by their actions not physical or social traits, I will continue to respect the law and those that enforce it,  and I will continue to be a human in a world full of wonderful and amazing creatures.  Personal manifesto stated is it alright if I discuss my fiber crafting, without too much judgment? 

Stack O' Corner Grannies
I have been trapped in crocheting corner grannies, 20 of them to be in fact.  Our crochet along group assignment was only 8, but I soldiered through to get all 20 done.  In working towards stash busting, I realized that I needed to get all of my corner grannies done before moving on to a different block.  I needed to be sure I had enough of the colors to complete these blocks and judge what I would need for the next block pattern.  I repeat to you, working out of your stash is hard.  I have also discovered I do not love crochet as much as I love knitting.  At the end of a trying and difficult day watching your hometown going up in flames, I want to knit the hopelessness away, not crochet.  With discipline and resolve I stuck to the corner grannies and I am gratefully done with them. 

Building Block #11, The Make One Square
As soon as the crochet task was done, I looked at my calendar and realized my monthly block was not finished.  With a squeal and a flurry of needles I whipped out building block #11.  This month the block was all about the make 1 stitch.  I dislike make 1 in knitting because it always leaves a hole, but following the instructions I did as I was told.  This block is not my favorite, but I do have a better grasp of the make 1 stitch now.  Practice aside, I think I will still continue to use the knit front and back (kfb) as much as possible.  November block done, just in time in for the  December block, the last block.

One final thought, I hope your Thanksgiving celebrations found you warm, safe, and with those you love.  Peace my friends.

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Cornering in on the Granny

I am admitting, I have always wanted to make a granny square.  I am working on a crochet along so I can learn to make granny squares.  In the process I am also hoping to get better at crochet so I can diversify my fiber skills.  I am also trying to use yarn out of my stash.  I am succeeding at all of it, but the last one.  Knitting or crocheting out of my stash is hard.

Test Granny
After a test corner granny with much crocheting and ripping out and weighing of the yarn I was able to work up a strategy to use stash yarn and get the 20 blocks I needed.  I have been hooking away to get these blocks done. I have got one corner of corner grannies done.  Check granny squares off the fiber bucket list for me.

A Corner of Corner Grannies

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Show Me Marriage!!!

Today a judge said it is unconstitutional to deny same-sex couples the right to be married in St. Louis MO, my home town.  I blogged about this case ( and here we are, on the right side of history.  The Recorder of Deeds announced they are ready to start issuing licenses and will be opened 8-5 tomorrow to do just that.  Even the Secretary of State has said there will be no stay on this ruling.  What this means is if you want a marriage license tomorrow, same-sex couples will not be denied. 

When I got the call today with the good news, I was with my wife.  We squeezed hands and as soon as I was off the call we kissed and laughed, then I shed a few tears of joy.  It has finally happened.  Not only are we legally married in our home state, but now if we weren't already married we could go tomorrow and get married.  So wonderful.

We have had some calls, text messages, and facebook inquiries, if Natalie and I are going to get married, again.  Natalie's response was, "How many times do we have to get married?"  I am agreeing with her, we have had a union ceremony, registered as domestic partners, and been married in Iowa.  No big ceremony, no "yes to the dress" thing, and I am definitely saying no to the muscholli.  However, I am ecstatic for all the couples that can finally get married.  I wish them all the biggest congratulation.  Happy Day!!!

Natalie and I singing with excitement over marriage equality in our home state