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Brooklyn Knit Chick

Monday, February 26, 2007

Dream jobs?

I'm typing here on another cold rainy San Francisco day. It's my day off from Jersey Boys and as I sit here 3000 miles from home, I can't help thinking about dream jobs. I do realize that for a lot of people (my niece Alana for one) I have a dream job, but everyone has different dreams. I saw my dream job on my TIVO last night. I was watching Shay Pendray's Needle Arts. I usually end up fast forwarding through most of the needle point and embroidery stuff, but today was a great show. They went to the Koigu studio. We got to see them dye the yarn, make it into skeins, package it, the whole deal. It's a family run biz, and if there was someplace like that within an hours drive of Brooklyn, I would be calling them right now for a job.

So here's my question, well two questions really . . .

1) What do all you knitter/blog readers out there do for a living
2) If you could do anything, what WOULD you do for a living.

post your comments, I really want to know what everyone's dream job would be.

When not daydreaming about playing with yarn all day as a job, I've been playing with yarn all day as a hobby. I'm still spinning up that yummy wool, alpaca, mohair I bought on e-bay. Here's my first spool full:

Here's my first plyed spindle full. I used the Andean plying technique.

I ordered a niddy noddy and a "Handy Andy" (a tool for Andean plying). I can't wait till they arrive.

I've also been playing with different textured stitches to see how they felt. I'd like to design a felted purse with textured stitches. Here's a swatch I made with a bobble and a popcorn stitch.


And post felt:

I used some crappy hand spun so it felted REALLY fuzzy. The popcorn stitch completely flattened out, and the bobbles felted a weird shape. I'll keep experimenting. I want to design something cool, but not too weird.

Back to my strange two-way sweater. I'm almost finished. That makes it a 7 day sweater. Not sure it was worth 7 days though. I'll post some pics tomorrow.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

WHAT?? . . . pattern gibberish

So I saw this sweater in last winter's Vogue and I thought looked intriguing . You are supposed to be able to wear it two ways. One way the neck is a deep V and the bottom is a cropped band (or not so cropped the way I'm going to knit it), or turn it upside down and it's a cowl neck. What? Can't visualize it at all, so of course I had to knit it. Unfortunately they only picture it one way, so the magazine doesn't help. Here's the v neck way to wear it.

Has anyone out there knit this thing? The schematic and instructions made NO sense. I even cut out the shapes and tried folding them every which way and it still didn't make sense. (The yellow tabs are post its, I didn't have any tape in the apartment. One of the many joys of living away from home).

Then I remembered, Vogue is notorious for the need for pattern correction. So, I went on to the web page and found this correction, (pattern #2). So I tried my little arts and crafts project again, and I think I understand it.

Here's my second pass at my little paper sweater (minus the cowl/waist band thingy)

I'm still not entirely sure it will work, but I'm giving it a shot. I'm knitting it up in Wool Ease Chunky, a superwash wool I got at Smileys. It's a natural colored wool with flecks of brown, black and grey in it. I think I like it, but I can't tell until it's finished.

It's either nice or looks like a sweater that went through the washing machine with black and grey kleenex. I don't know, I kind of think it's cool.

On Monday I went to another fab night of bar knitting at Chicks with Sticks. I wore my Tubey sweater so I could get a good picture of it.

Monday, February 19, 2007

Knitting and second chances

I've been experiencing a lot of knitting redemption lately. If only life were more like knitting. In knitting when you make a mistake, you can just rip back and start again. . . If a project goes horribly wrong you can frog the whole thing and start again. You can even revisit old projects and fix them using the tricks you've picked up since you originally knit them.

I've had a lot of knitting second chances lately. First there was the winter wonderland sweater that started looking like this

and after frogging and starting again ended up looking like this

Next there was the manly sweater. I knit if for David last winter. I wasn't so great with finishing back then. Also, my gauge wasn't so great back then. The arms, being the last thing I knit, were too big for the armholes. They always had a bit of a poof at the shoulder seam (NOT manly). On David's last visit I took the sleeves out, re blocked the sweater, reattached the sleeves (in a non sucky way this time), and gathered some of the unavoidable fullness under the arm, so there's no poof. Yeah!

Finally there's my felted purse. I made it two years ago. I didn't know about blocking to shape felted items. After finishing my felted tote and blocking it to make a nice flat bottom, I decided to take another look at my old felted purse. Here it is before, dried flat, with a sagging bottom, deeper and narrower then I'd like, with a strap that's too short

First, I knit a strap extension, felted it, cut the old strap and reattached it to make a longer strap.

Then I soaked the whole bag and reshaped it to be wider, shorter and have a nice flat bottom.

I also reshaped the pouch to fit my ipod perfectly.

I also made a perfect little pouch for my cell phone.

Why can't life be more like knitting. Have a fight with your spouse, rip it back until you didn't say whatever stupid thing you said. Make a bad work decision, frog it, and start again. Eat a whole box of Kraft macaroni and cheese, resoak your butt and reshape it until its narrower and higher.

I might get a real life second chance soon. I can't talk about it yet, because it's not a done deal. When it is, I'll let you know if I can make life imitate knitting!!

There was some real life second chances at Jersey Boys this week. Chris Jones, our Frankie Valli had a personal day on Wednesday. Our Frankie understudy went on for the first time on Wednesday night. He did great! All in all a fantastic first performance. There were some moments that be improved but there always are. We had no idea when he would get to go one again . . . until we got a call from Chris that his flight had been cancelled. That meant Rick was going on again. It's so great for an understudy to get to do on twice in a row. He got a second chance and he was even better!!

In other knitting news - TUBEY IS FINISHED (the crowd goes wild). I love it! It took me forever to choose the colors for the stripes, and I'm so happy with what I chose. It's 100% alpaca that I got it last year's Smiley's sale. I made it out of Filatura Lanarota Puno. At $3.00 a skein, that makes a $27.00 sweater. I love when I get a super cute garment for way less then I could buy it at a store. Here's the colors from the pattern.

I only used 4 colors for the stripes instead of 5. I didn't like the brown color, so I doubled the eggplant where the pattern called for the brown. I also got a pink instead of the purple and used a more neutral color for the yellow.

I have to wait until I go to work to take a good picture of the sweater, but here are some bad in the mirror photos I took.

Not having David my inhouse photographer is hard!!

Today is my day off which means, time for some spinning and cast on my next project, and of course my knitting group. More later.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Mountains and hand knits

David left Monday and it's back to my same old routine. . . eight shows and 10 hours of rehearsal. Knit, work, knit, sleep, knit, work etc.

Last week David and I left right after the Sunday matinee to drive to Yosemite. We were staying in the lodge in the park. We got in a little before 9:00 pm and had a nice little dinner by a roaring fire in the lodge's pub. The next day we got up for a fabulous day of hiking in nature's beauty in hand knit sweaters. What could be better. The morning was crisp and cold, but it warmed up to high 60s by mid day. Here are just a few of the GORGEOUS pics from this winter wonderland.

I highly recommend going there in winter since at times you feel like you have the park all to your selves. There are deer everywhere. This is what greeted us first thing in the morning -

He was so still that David said "look at the fake deer"

We set off on our first morning walk and crossed a little bridge to this view

Here's me & David wearing our hand knit sweaters (by my hand) in front of one of the falls

Later in the afternoon we took a drive to the famous tunnel view

On our way back to the lodge we came across over a dozen deer just grazing by the side of the road

We rounded out our first day of hiking with a sunset view of 1/2 dome

The next day was even brighter and more beautiful. Here's our first hike of the day to Yosemite falls

In the world of knitting . . . I whipped up a little potato chip scarf out of some left over yarn. It's pretty cute, although it's a little shorter than I wanted.

I could have used much larger needles and it would have been longer and loftier. However it stays on your neck by just twisting in on itself, so you don't have to wrap it.

I think I'll make another one on much larger needles. For anyone out there in tvland (I know I know it's the "blogesphere", but I hate that word), who have never knit this scarf it's the world's easiest pattern:

row 1 - CO 90 stitches
row 2, 4, 6 - inc every stitch by knitting into front & back
row 3, 5, 7 - knit across
cast off

Tubey is coming along nicely. Here's how it's looking so far

More later. Gotta go to work. I'm very excited our Frankie understudy is going on for the first time tonight. I think he's going to be fantastic. I'll give you all a full report next time.

Of course, I have to take my computer to the mac doctor, so it may be a few days from now

Friday, February 02, 2007

Tubey and understudy fun

I'm sitting in the Mezzannine lobby with the Four Seasons doing a little dance brush up. I'm taking the opportunity to get in a quick blog post before my hubby arrives and I won't be near the computer for the next ten days.

Today we had another put in rehearsal for the second wave of understudies for Jersey Boys . It was also a put in rehearsal for our new ASM to call the show. She did a great job. Especially considering it's her first professional calling job. She calls the show tonight. It's really kind of exciting being around to watch someones very first ever professional calling job. I'm sure she will be great.

The creative team was back in town casting for the next tour, so they were all here for the understudy put in. I will so miss our asst choreographer when he leaves. It's been great having him around.

David gets in tonight and we are going to Yosemite on Sunday night through Tuesday afternoon. I can't wait . . . look forward to lots of pictures being posted.

In knitting world, Tubey is coming along. I'm so tired of my sweater sleeves ending up either too short or too long, that I decided to keep both sleeve's stitches live. I tried it on . . .

and one sleeve felt tighter then the other (of course). The way this is knit is with a crochet cast on, then knit one sleeve, remove the cast on and start knitting down the other side. I always loosen up as I knit. That's why I prefer sweaters that are knit in the round. That way you avoid the, back is smaller then the front, sweater syndrome. I decided to block the sleeves to try to even out the width. I'm blocking them before I attach them to the body, because it will ultimately affect the length of the sleeve.

Here it is drying on my sad little make shift blocking board (ironing board). I must buy a blocking board one of these days.