Tuesday, February 26, 2008

This tart looks enormous, but it's really mini. It was my backup dessert for Sunday's dinner after the guest list went from 10 to 4. I was going to bake cupcakes, but I couldn't justify baking for only 4 people. So, I had myself a Sandra Lee moment.

This is a ready-made graham cracker pie shell. Miniature sized. Into it, I put the following: Nutella mousse made from one small(ish) jar of Nutella and about a pint of whipping cream (whipped, of course) folded in. I topped it with some slices of poached pear (which are not pictured) but now I'm thinking a little round slice of banana would have been perfect and just the right size. Or two segments of a clementine. It was truly one of the most glorious things that I have ever eaten.

We also had white bean fritters with roasted shrimp and Tuscan-style beef stew (Though I did change the recipe quite a bit.) with creamy polenta. I came in second in our Oscar pool, which, alas, means nothing, except that I came in second.

More on the knitting/crafting front soon! I promise!

Saturday, February 23, 2008

My week, in images:






Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Ah, yes. Knitting. I remember when I used to do this all the time. Here's a little sample of my latest, top down sweater. Remember the one?

I'm really enjoying knitting with this yarn. It's Baby Twist, from Alpaca with a Twist. As someone with really loose, unpredictable tension, I'm surprised that I'm not having more trouble with it. It's supposed to be worsted weight, but I'm getting 6 stitches to the inch on size 4 needles.

I've already put the stitches for the sleeves on holders and am knitting the body. I'm doing something different with this sweater and putting darts in the front, instead of making the decreases on the side. You can't really see much of the stitch definition, though, because this fabric is so fuzzy.

I've stayed home sick today. This is my first sick day in about 7 years. It feels strange, like I'm playing hooky, though I know I'm really sick and it's OK to be home. I'm nursing this cold and for the first time in four days, I feel like knitting. I'm getting a little bit of work done on a new project while watching a long forgotten favorite. It keeps me in good spirits.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

My week, in images:






Friday, February 15, 2008

Earlier this week I checked out the Goodwill near my studio. I didn't find much. Not much, that is, except for a fun fur graveyard.
And you wondered where novelty yarn went to die.
Now you know.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Almost since I started knitting, oh, back in 2003, I've kind of been winging it. There's a lot of pondering, in the knitting world, about process vs. product knitters and I am definitely the latter. I see a yarn and the yarn says to me (sounding a little like Pooh Bear), "Oh dear, I would really love to be a little cap sleeve pullover with a cowl neck!" And so I set out to make one.

Calculating and sketching all along (Wouldn't Mr. Hendrickson* love to see me now!!) I come up with something that looks like the picture above. Not a pattern exactly, but a rough guide for me to follow as I knit.

Since Barbara Walker came into my life, I haven't looked back. I use her top down method almost all the time because it's easiest for me to creep along, making changes as I go, if I'm knitting from the top. Most of my knitting happens on the couch, watching movies, so a lot of it is stockinette. I've never been able to keep anything but the simplest stitch pattern straight in my head and, frankly, fussy sweaters just don't look so cute on me. Hence, the abundance of stockinette, which I don't mind, cause I can watch TV while I do it!

Sometimes I wonder if I'm missing out. I lament the two inches of lace shawl that are hibernating at the bottom of my closet. But then I realize that in knitting, as in with the rest of my life, I have to accept myself for who I am! I admire and am inspired by the knitters who make beautiful lace and, at the same time, acknowledge that's not for me.

How liberating!
* My 9th grade algebra teacher.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

*Sigh*. Work has been really tough this week. I'm desperately fighting that "the honeymoon is over" feeling in the pit of my stomach.

I'm not sure, but what I think is happening, is that I've never had to do this kind of work for three months in a row before. It's mentally and physically draining and usually, you get a little break between gigs. Not so when you are a staff member somewhere.

I'm not complaining, though. Not at all. Any job that allows you to knit during the downtime is A-OK with me, Boy-o. And there is a lot of downtime - waiting for approval on shots and hanging around while photographers fiddle with the lighting. All knitting opportunities for me! While others and flipping through magazines, I'm making myself a sweet alpaca sweater!


But I'm finding that having a regular 9-6 job has put a crimp in my production time. I've also started going to the gym down the street from the studio and by the time I get home, it's 8:30 and I have to eat dinner and there's only really 2 (if I'm lucky) solid hours of crafting time!!!! I'm starting to freak out! My To Do list is out of control!

But I asked for it. I asked for the perfect job that would let me do what I love and give me health benefits at the same time. Oh yeah, and the knitting at work thing.

Now if I could only get my sewing machine up there.

(P.S. Maybe I should stop calling the people I work for "suckers". They might catch on to me!)