Monday, December 25, 2006

A very Addi Christmas... and a couple of FO's!

I have a couple of FO pictures for you! Sorry the pants are delayed... we've been sick for weeks! UGH!

First off we have the longies. I didn't realize the pictures I got of them were so cruddy... and alas I've sent them to their owner, so can't get anything better. BUT... this was the trial pair for the rewritten pattern and the shaping turned out perfect! I can't wait to use it for a pair for Miss E. She turned all her pants into capri's last month so I need to get busy!

Next up is Bubby Bear! Isn't she cute? She sat atop Miss N's Christmas Stocking this morning.

Speaking of Christmas... Santa stuffed my stocking with some lovely new Addi Circular needles! Yay! And a gift certificate to a LYS that my wonderful DH found for me! With the little ones I've not been able to go find a good LYS. Well, he found one for me. It's AMAZING! Take the 3D tour... you'll drool on your keyboard! I also got SPM's Meditations for Women who Knit too Much. Rather fitting gift from my husband. lol!

I hope you are all having a wonderful holiday!

Sunday, December 10, 2006


The dreaded longies are done! WooHOOOOO! After finishing them I can safely say... even my own kids won't have many pairs of these once their inseam gets that long! Ay yi yi! 12" was a long way down!

Pic's tomorrow in the daylight!

I have GASP nothing on my needles right now! It kind of feels good. I think I might need a short break. We'll see... tomorrow I may sing a different tune.

I got my swift and ball winder. My first ball doesn't look so good. Going to take a touch of practice I see...

Tummy flu going on in Miss N this past 4 days. Ick. Stickin' close to home and just praying that it doesn't spread. DH and I felt icky for a day, but that was it. Nothing close to what's happening with my poor little N.

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Fo's and reasons why I don't knit enough

Well dh finally downloaded pic's off the camera. We've both been slacking in that department. And lo and behold... a couple of small FO's!

First we have... a pair of LTK stripey slippers... sans stripes. Georgia Rose Peace Fleece. Miss E likes to pull them off and floss with the mohair. Bleck! I really want to make a pair for myself... but I'm finishing those longies remember? The ones that laugh at me every time I pick them up...

Second item is really two. I made two of these. One for Miss E and another for a friends baby. Umbilical Cord hats from the StitchNBitch book. I made these from Knit Picks new Swish Superwash. It's SOOOO soft and stretchy. Quite lovely for a baby's hat since they grow so fast.
Is she cute or what?! Who can resist this face?!

Ok, now for those longies... I am FINALLY past the point I was at when I ripped them all out. Just for kicks I decided to do these ones one leg at a time instead of ML'ing them. I'm 8 inches down one leg. And I'm bored. So I've decided to add some "rugbyesqe" stripes to the bottom of the legs. Stay tuned...

Shhh... I got myself a ball winder and swift for Christmas. lol! They were both half off... so really ... I couldn't just let dh pay full price to "surprise" me. He's disgusted though because he loves to buy gifts and as such... I get to have them now! Can't wait to wind away! I just have to figure out how they work...

I also threw in another tape measure into my order. Wink, wink.

AND... the reasons why I don't knit enough. Dishes and Laundry. That's all. I swear... I do dishes and laundry... all day... everyday... I need a maid.

ONE more thing... happened upon a cool blog today. I'd been there before, but not looked in a while. She's got a pattern up for some fingerless mits that do not include cables. I think I'm going to knock these out for my MIL instead of the Fetching. Learning cables when trying to make Christmas gifts in mid-December is probably not the best idea... so I'll do these Mohair Mits.

I'm a little chatty today... got to knit during naptime while the dishwasher ran. See, I have a really fancy 1952 original kitchen. So I have a "roll-away" dishwasher. Can't handwash while it's running, so I HAD to sit and knit. It was good for my soul.


As I was "browning" some onions... and looking at the pot I love and use almost everyday. I realized... I lied to Tanya. I actually said my husband only buys me red coats. I lied.

Here is what I found in my kitchen while cooking those onions... (we're having spag w/ turkey meatballs for dinner in case you were wondering... smells YUMMY!)

This would be a little group of things. Have I mentioned he likes to shop at TJ Maxx? He does. Loves a good bargain... and if you let him know what you like... like oh say... le cruset spatulas and bakers... well... he'll bring you some home...

Here is my beloved pot. It stays on the stovetop because I use it almost everyday.

Wait! There's blue! That's because I told him I do like OTHER colors...

And lets not forget the microwave that never fails to get comments from visitors. lol!

Um... so yes, I lied. He buys me more than red coats...

Friday, December 01, 2006

Cool Artist!

Well, I've been busy... Miss N turned 3, IL's visited... and then the Turkey Day. I cooked a killer meal! My first, I was so proud! I know, excuses excuses... I've made a couple hats. And I'm down to the legs of the infamous pair of longies I had to froooog. Bah! I can't wait to be done with them!

My MIL wants some fingerless gloves for Christmas. We'll see if I get to that. I have been planning to make her some of these. They are the Fetching fingerless mittens from Knitty. The cables scare me though... we'll see. MUST FINISH THE LONGIES!

Anyhoo... I found a really cool website that I wanted to post!

Joyce Makes Art

Really cool collage art. I love collage art. I know it's a small... not so glorified niche of the art world, but I find it captivating. So much detail... just scraps of life put together into something beautiful.

And she has pic's up of her studio... I am SOOOOO jealous!

Ok, I'll go knit. If I must...

Tuesday, November 14, 2006


Well, I haven't posted because I've been disgusted with my knitting self. I was trying to zoom through a pair of longies... at the same time my tape measure went missing. You see this is not going to a good place right? Yeah... MAJOR gauge issues. I kept wondering why I was using SO MUCH yarn... UGH! So I'd gotten about an inch into the legs... found my tape measure and realized... they weren't even close. They were HUMONGOUS. Riiiiiiipppppp! I had to start over. Disgusted with myself. Two lessons learned. First, ALWAYS do a gauge swatch - even for commercially produced yarns as they are NOT the same the next time you knit them. Second, look for your tape measure as soon as it goes missing.

So, I'm terribly behind... getting frustrated because there is no way I'm going to get my Christmas knitting done too. So... have to find a few more Christmas gifts. I guess I'll knit the gifts next summer and give them next year or something...

On a happy note I'm working on a quick little hat for a friend who had a baby recently. Super cute! Pic's when it's done I promise!

Sunday, October 29, 2006


Well... some people are impatiently waiting to see pictures of the completed Curly Purly Drop Stitch Scarf/Stole. But some other people are really procrastinating on the blocking. So I took her picture this morning sans blocking by the light of the window. She's sure pretty. Can't wait to wear her!

Pretty isn't she? Details... 7 oz of 100purewool in Ashtil colorway. Knit on size 10 knit picks interchangeables. Now keep in mind this is pre-blocking, so she'll get much longer and probably a touch skinnier after I block her. They are predicting a dusting of snow this evening, so perhaps I'd better get off my arse and block her as she'll be needed around my neck.

Now... suprise! Another scarf! This was super quick to do. Kind of fun. It's a bulky acrylic/nylon blend. Lots of fun... it's going in the Christmas pile.

No pattern per say on this one. I just made it up. It's kind of a "weave" look if you can see the stitches. 3 stitch squares of knit and purl. Details... 150g of Fuzhio by Dynasty Yarn, LHA Lime. I think I knit it on 15's. They were huge. A very odd feeling.

Alright... now enough blogging from me. I must go do a few things while my dear husband and Miss N are at chuch. Miss E was a pill (to put it nicely) about going down for her nap this morning so there was no way in heck I was waking her up! So I'm at home "alone" for a bit. Best get moving!

Thursday, October 26, 2006


I finished the CP! Pic's soon after I block it. :)

My husband... the fiber snob.

So last night I was just cracking up (and feeling smug inside at the same time) at my husband.

I bought some wacky bulky acrylic/nylon blend yarn that I found on sale at Hancocks a while back. I thought I'd make a scarf from it for a Christmas gift. This particular person will shrink anything in sight so giving her wool is not a good idea.

So I start the scarf last night while watching TV with dh. He starts making some snide comments about it not being "real yarn"... "It's just plastic. There is nothing natural about that yarn." he says. "Nothing but recycled grocery bags...". I was just dying. TOTALLY cracked me up. I was so proud! He's becoming quite the knitters hubby!

Then I tried a stitch pattern and decided I didn't like it so I frogged it. He about died. "Oh, how can you do that?! I can't watch." LOL! I told him I don't exactly enjoy ripping things out. He said "But you giggle the whole time!" I said "Because if I didn't I'd probably cry."

Interesting night of knitting conversations at my house last night.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Thoughts on the CP

Sooo.... here's where the CP is at. I have a dilemma though. I have started the second ball of yarn but the repeats of color are different. You can see the first ball kind of did diagonal stripes. Now the second just looks pretty random. Do I care? Is it worth ripping out and alternating skeins every few rows? Will anyone notice when it's wrapped around me?

I reeeeeeally don't want to frog. I can feel the end is near... I don't want to frog now! :(

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Guilt Knitting

My dear sweet husband told my almost 3 year old to ask me what I was knitting for her. gasp! As if I was greatly ignoring her! Jeez... SO, to show him, I told her to get into my yarn basket and get the yarn I bought FOR HER. (rolling eyes...) Which she did. And I made her this hat and scarf from it in an evening. It's hilarious. I got the yarn out of a clearance bin and figured it would be good for this. It reminds me of crayons. It was cheap and fast to make so I won't be heartbroken should it go missing in a snow drift at some point. It's SUPER bulky - Lion Brand, Jiffy Thick and Quick. It knits up sooo fast. Which is good beause I have other projects I need to finish. She is now happy to have a hat and scarf. No patterns, just winged it. Turned out really well! It's knit on 17's. When I pulled out the size 17 tips my lovely husband said "those look like tampons". My thought was... um... only if you want to injure yourself! Ouch!

I pulled back out my CP scarf and worked on it for a little bit last night too. My online friend Tanya is making one for her mom and inspired me to pull mine back out for a bit. I stayed up waaaay too late working on it though and E decided to wake up at 5:30am today! Ay yi yi. Coffee anyone?!

I've also got a pair of longies on the needles for my online friend Leah. A pair for her older son. The color is yummy but I can't show you because I think she reads this. Gotta wait until I finish! :)

Off for more coffee...

Friday, October 13, 2006

Cutie Capri's

Well I just finished a pair of Capri's for E. With the weather the way it is she's wearing longies in the morning and shorts in the afternoon. And this lovely yarn was just itching to be something. I had made a Ribby Wrap from half of it, but E outgrew it before it got much use. And it was so pretty... so I ripped out the Ribby Wrap and wound it back up for these. Most knitters would call that insane, but I just wanted to USE this yarn! It's funny though... her rise is so long, and her legs so short in comparison. lol! They look like shorts for a bigger child. Maybe she'll be able to wear them as shorts later.

It was a bit of an experiment in how far you can get with 4oz of 2 ply Targhee. The only yarn left was the tiny bits I cut off the ends! I tied every last piece together to make the drawstring long enough! I really love them. Targhee makes my knitting look so perfect! I love it. I also worked out a better way to pick up stitches for the gusset. Works much better. No tightening up loose stitches in there at all! They're knit on my knit picks's 7's. Magic looped the whole way again. The colorway is just gorgeous! It's called "By the Lake" by Marina at Stitches Under the Sun. She just sent me a custom colorway I had her do on BFL... it's SOOOOO gorgeous! I can't wait to knit it up!

I ended up selling off the "pale rose" otherwise known as "rosey brown" purewool. It was just too brown. I was going to make the girls sweaters from it, but I wanted something girly, not brown. So we'll see... I have realized I have enough projects to do that I probably won't be able to do the sweaters until next year maybe. I'm starting to think a superwash would be a better way to go with those anyways. We'll see.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Oh I want to roll around naked...

Who wouldn't want to roll around in this stuff?! There are 20 hanks of 100purewool. The softest stuff on earth! And two hanks of "everyday wool" from Bungalow Buns. It's very soft too. I love it all! YUM, YUM, YUM!

In this pile there are... 2 shawls, 2 kids sweaters, 2 pair of longies, a hat/scarf/gloves set for my dh.

I was a bit dissapointed in the "pale rose" as it's not pale rose at all. It's more like Rosey Brown if you ask me. I was going to make the girls sweaters from it, but I think it's going to be something for me now. I like the color, just not for the girls. Oh well... darn... something for me. I've got 6 hanks any ideas?!

Another FO!

My adorable E modeling her new pants. They are super soft and squishy. Yum! Green Peace 100purewool knit on size 8 knit picks. I magic looped them the whole way down and didn't really mind it. I love my KP's set more the more I use it. They are such nice needles. And ML'ing with them is easy since the cables are so flexible. I'm not sure either of the pictures really captures the color of the yarn, but it is very pretty - nice subtle variations in color.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

TONS of yarn...

Did I mention I have TONS of yarn on it's way to me! Oh the yummy goodness! Can't wait!

Finished First Longies!

These are for a friend. They turned out really well for my first pair! :) Knit Picks, Wool of the Andes yarn. Knit on US 6's. I even magic looped the legs! Not as fiddly as DPN's IMO.

I've got another pair that hve about 2 inches on the legs. These are for my little bean. Will post some pic's eventually...

My scarf is coming along nicely. I've paused on it a bit to get these longies going. I forgot how quickly the weather turns on this side of the mountains! Brr... poor little bean is chilly!


Last night I watched a documentary on Frank Gehry. It was awesome. When I left the architecture profession, I was so burnt out and bitter from my employer that I didn't want anything to do with it. It was so fun to see the documentary last night. It reminded me why I loved studying architecture. It made all my creative electrodes ignight. I think I sat there watching it with a grin on my face.

He spoke about how the joy is all in the process. Ripping it apart and starting over. Coming up with things from scratch... just getting there. It's all joy. But by the time it's done being built years later, he often can't stand to look at it because he just sees how he'd change it. That is so true of any artist I think. We look at the world with eyes that always see what can be improved. We can't rest.

The man is such a genius. Love him or hate him, he is changing the way we think about architecture. Amazing. Someday, dispite my hate for travel, I will go to Bilbao. To me that is just the most amazing of his work. I'd also love to see the Disney Concert Hall. Who knows, maybe I'll do a Gehry tour. When I was in college I got to go on several tours of the EMP under construction. It was amazing to see. His brain thinks about architecture in such a different way than we have for centuries. Just amazing.

Friday, August 25, 2006

A day in the life...

Want to know what I'm really doing when I'm dreaming up fanciful art and time to make it?!

Let me introduce you to my day...

Miss N convieniently came down with a horrid cold today. The day
we went to sign all the paperwork for both sale and purchase. The
lady at the Escrow office was really enjoying her sneezing all over
her desk. I felt bad, but we have no baby sitter but Grammy and she
was at work. So in we trudged with our two kids, one sick. Who also
of course needed to go potty in the middle of all the signing... and
then her talented Mommy dropped the roll of tp INTO the toilet while
trying to tear off some and hold Miss N from falling into the potty at
the very same time. Then I got the joy of fishing the thing out of
the public toilet. GROSS.

This evening after Miss N went to bed Dh left... Miss E woke and needed
to be nursed. So then in the midst of that N peed her bed and
started crying/wailing... Oh joy. I raced her into the bathroom,
washed her off - poor kid had a good fever going by then so she
started shaking horribly. Dried her off and dressed her again...
Ripped apart her bed, threw it all back together. Picked her sister
up off the floor where she had rolled from my bed. AGH! Our mattress
just sits on the floor right now, so other than being in an odd and
uncomfortable position, she was just fine. But unhappy none the
less... her boob went away and she was stuck on the floor alone.
Nursed kiddo two back to sleep, then went back in and gave kiddo one
some tylenol and put her "lady music" on for her and rubbed her cheek
for a bit. She seemed ok... I was doing laundry outside her room and
heard her singing to herself after that. :)

Did I mention I found out this morning at 9am that the movers were
coming tomorrow and not Monday? Frantic packing and organizing going

So yeah... that's my day. lol! Want to trade? Next week we'll be
living in a hotel until we get the keys on the 31st. That should be

Yeah... so that's a day in the life of me.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006


I'm in denial that I'm moving in 6 days. Nope... not thinking about it... My husband just called to tell me that we're signing all the paperwork tomorrow for both sale and purchase. A little scary to think about. Can't wait to be done!

Anyway... I've been up to "denial" projects.

First... finished these wool shorts up for an online friends little boys today. I am just hoping that they fit!

I set aside the pair of longies I was knitting until my longer cable came so I could magic loop the legs. Well in that period of a few days I got bored and started another project...

It's the Curly Purly Scarf pattern. It's an extra wide scarf as you can see. Almost a stole, but not sure of itself yet. The pattern warns that it stretches out a lot in leangth in the blocking. So it's going to loose some width I'm sure. It's currently around 16 inches wide in the body. At the cast on it's only 14. I think the finished width will be about 12-14 inches. A wide range, but this is soooo loose it's just hard to tell what it's going to be! It's super yummy yarn though. 100purewool in Ashtil colorway. So soft. Can't wait to wrap it around my neck! Should look great with all the red coats my husband keeps buying me. I'm not sure why, but I think ALL but my wool peacoat is red now. It's silly really. It's fun to be working on big needles. 10.5 US is what I'm using. SOOOO different from the other project I have on the needles... size 6 US... seems tiny in comparison.

Speaking of which... here's where they are currently at...

They WERE all the way down to the legs. Gusset and all. But last night around 1 am I finally admitted that I hated the shaping method I used and FROGGED it all the way back to the waistband. GASP! It was so late my brain was numb so it wasn't painful. lol! Hopefully this time I will get it right! They are for one of the same little boys getting the shorts above. I have yarn for the other brother to have a pair too. Just need to get my pattern stright! I decided I am going to be patient and do it right. I SHOULD have ripped back a LONG time ago, but I had blurred vision apparently. That or the denial about the move seeped over into my thinking about my knitting.

I'm planning ahead and boy do I have a list of things to knit now! Sheesh. I decided I'm going to make Clapotis for my mother-in-law. She is the only person I know who would first off, appreciate the effort. AND can follow washing instructions for some nice wool yarn that will be oh so yummy! My own mother can't handle anything if it doesn't go in the washer and dryer. She is not into "delicates". I think it would be perfect for my MIL because she gets cold sitting at her desk at work. This could just be a pretty scarf on her way in, and a shawl when she's chilly. I'm also considering making her a matching pair off fingerless gloves. I remember my days in the office... my hands would get so cold they would ache as I worked on the computer. Then there's the sweaters I want to make for my girls... dh wants hats... Baby needs longies... And I want to make Lady Eleanor! And I want socks. lol! LOVE wool socks.

Anyway... I should clear this fog of denial that I stink and hit the showers.

Friday, August 11, 2006

Delusions of Grandure

Yes, I have them... oh this week they are strong. I have a hankering to knit a shawl. Not the lacy grandmother type, but something cozy... made with some gorgeous colors. That's what I'm dreaming about. Now... to match the yarn I'm thinking of with a reasonable pattern...

I am now dreaming of 3 shawls, or stoles rather. They're small shawls so they're called stoles I guess. I don't know the precise terminology.

Clapotis is gorgeous and looks nothing like something my grandmother would wear.
This scarf pattern would be so YUMMY made into a "stole". I'm eyeing this yarn. I've also considered this one. Can't decide.
And Lady Eleanor isn't she gorgeous?! How could I resist putting this on my list to make?! It will have to wait until I get a little more skill under my belt though.

I'm thinking the Curly Purly is the front runner right now. With Clapotis coming in a close second. Really they would both be great... Clapotis could double as a scarf... a REALLY yummy one, and I AM moving to a snowy winter climate after all. But I have no idea what yarn I would like to use... granted I have limited yarn exposure, and a very limited budget... I need ideas.

Anyhow... while I dreamt about the shawls, I finished these...

I don't love them. The color in the picture is too bright, but they are still too bright for my liking. Too "royal blue". Ah well. They were my first and a might good first at that. I did manage to do the gusset without much trouble. However, halfway through the body I realized that there were no short rows in this pattern. I really like short row shaping. And then I finished and realized that the legs were not big enough to fit the intended recipient. Now isn't that a bit irritating. But the pattern didn't seem concerned with thigh circumfrence. And I wans't until I got there and realized they wouldn't work. So, I've drafted a new plan. I'd say pattern, but it's really still the same basic pattern with my modifications.

Oh, and I-Cord... somebody shoot me. Ick! It's a true test of patience. But worth it as it's so much nicer to use than a crochet chain or braid. Oh well... makes it nice.

SO now... I'm starting over. Bah. Hate that. Upside is I need more yarn!

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

what's behind artistjess?

So... what's artistjess you might ask? Well... as it turns out, I'm an artist and my name is Jess.

That might have been obvious. I have a major in architecture and minored in art. Really I wish I would have had the guts to major in art, but that didn't seem "prudent". I felt if I (and my Dad!) was paying for an education in something I should be able to make money with it when I was done. After changing my major a million times in the first year I somehow landed in architecture. It was a cross of being artistic and being able to make money. Or so I thought... turns out it was more about paperwork and details and code than anything else. School was fun though... lots of fun! So after working in the field for a few years I retired. And became a stay at home mom. What a crazy career that is. Oy vey!

But the artist in me never rests. It's this drive that is in me every day. If I don't have something to show at the end of the day I'm restless. It's a crazy thing. And so, the artist in me gets to come to the light. No worries about making money. Now it's an outlet for me. I've sold a select few of my pieces under the name "J.Bird Creations". But being a mom to such young kids I don't have the time to pursue a real market for my work. Nor do I have the space to work in. The dining table is my studio... not terribly condusive to getting much done.

And so... here's the exciting part...

We are about to move out of our condo... east of the mountains into a house on the other side of the state. Where real estate prices are actually affordable - for the moment. We are waiting for our condo to close and then 2 days later the house we have an offer on to close. And this house... oh this house is a blessing. A real and true blessing and gift from God. All I wanted was a yard for my children to play in, and a garage/shop for my husband to play in. And I honestly didn't have any stipulations other than that. I am just so grateful for a home and a piece of land to play on. But I got something too... such a gift. Something I dared not dream of ever even having! This house... has a room off the garage... a perfect little room... that shall be my studio! My very own art studio! A room where I can make my creative MESS and not have to clean it up by dinnertime! A room where I can just make my nest and stew in it. Oh how lovely that will be. It almost brings me to tears really. I feel like it is such a gift. And a sign from God to get off my keester and bring more art to life.

My husband... wonderful and encouraging man that he is. Has already gotten shelving, flat storage, and worktops to install in there for me. He works for a construction company that does laboratories and these are all things that were made wrong or whatever and headed for the dumpster. But hey... it's all gold to me! All I need now is a chair and stool or two.

I just can not wait. What a special and very unexpected blessing.

I like to mainly work in watercolor, but also enjoy collage. Most of my work combines the two methods. Here are a couple terrible pictures of a few pieces. The first is 3 pieces from a series titled "Waterview". And the second is titled "Fiery Sunset".

I told you they were terrible pictures! I need better ones... and more of them I suppose.


So... what have I been working on...

Well, I started out knitting for my adorable girls of course! I decided to make an "Apron Top" for my baby girl. My dh kept telling me it would be too small but I insisted it was not... uh... you be the judge of this number.

So as you can see... I had to suck it up and admit my dh was right... darn it!

Then I moved on... decided to forget the baby and use a model that could actually stand up. Big sister! How cute is this?!

In the mean time some yummy yummy wool yarn arrived. And I just had to make something from it. Soakers and knitting in the round still scared me. So I bought the pattern for a Ribby Wrap . It turned out great and I was even impressed with the ease with which I followed the pattern. I'm horrible at following instructions. Which is a rather odd quirk seeing as I have my Masters degree in Architecture... a career in writing instructions.

And then... I decided to bite the bullet and knit in the round. So I made the baby's new top using this method. What was I so afraid of?! Easy peasy!

Add in a trip to the Target clearance rack for a $1.98 skort and... wah lah... a little sisters coordinating cutie patuti set was born. Now just admire the set... the models were not in such fine form, but that's what happens when Mom is just too excited to take a picture and really... it's bedtime.

First Post!

My new "thing" is knitting. I've wanted to do it for a million years and now I finally bucked up and learned! Since I was directed to I no longer had the excuse of not understanding what was going on in the pictures in books. And I didn't have to worry about trying to find time for a knitting class. I could just sit here after my kiddies were sleeping! How wonderful! Anyway... I've been totally inspired by reading knitting blogs of women I know and some I don't. So I decided to start my own. To inspire myself and maybe to inspire others to throw caution to the wind and create to their hearts content.