Monday, August 18, 2008

Cat Bordhi + Cast On Podcast + Caffeine = Inspiration

It's been an interesting day.

When I went to work this morning, I had a killer headache, so I took some medicine. Medicine with about as much caffeine as a cup of coffee.

This was a risk, as I am very sensitive to caffeine. If I eat too many m&m's, I will get a caffeine buzz for a little while, then get tired, restless and be unable to relax.

To help me feel better, and since I'm lucky enough to be able to listen to music at work, I turned on the new episode of Cast On. And Cat Bordhi was the guest. If Cat Bordhi is the mad scientist of knitting design, then Brenda Dayne is the Kung Fu master of podcasting.

With this perfect storm of energizing forces and creative genius, I had quite the rush of designing inspiration at work. A few new design ideas came to me, and I had a couple of break throughs in some of the older ideas I've had bouncing in my head.

I couldn't justify sketching at the office, let alone play with yarn. Believe it or not, I was actively working. Frustrating!

And even if I could have sketched, I don't have an organized way to keep track of these ideas. Even more frustrating!

So I'm starting a design journal.

And yes, I'm talking about designing, which isn't something I've ever really talked about here. Recently I've been almost exclusively using other people's patterns, perhaps playing with yarn choices. But I would like to start designing more of my own projects. They may not necessarily be published, but if they are, I have some ideas, especially for online publishing. Think of a sweater pattern in a worksheet, where you input your gauge and desired dimensions, and customized instructions are automatically calculated. No math or spreadsheet prowess necessary. If you can type in a few numbers, and hit print, you have your very own custom pattern.

Also, I've been making progress on the Ravelympics project.

Ravelympics Day 10

This is how it looks right now. I'm not going to post every day's progress picture, because they all look pretty similar. They can be seen at my Flickr page

This energy has made me overly optimistic about what I can accomplish this evening. My to do list is ridiculous! I just hope I don't crash.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

More Ravelypic Progress

It's not yet afghan sized, but it's getting there.

Day 2

Knitting Olympics Day 2

Day 3

Knitting Olympics Day 3

As you can see, Indy clearly approves.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Starting the Ravlympics

Here are the results of day one of my Ravelympics project.

Curve of Pursuit Day 1

I didn't take a picture on 8/8/08 because I didn't get home till midnight that night, and I was dead tired. We knitters know how to party.

I've found that, for now, this project is relatively portable. I'm sure once it gets bigger that will change.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Getting Ready for Knitting Olympics

This year for our anniversary, Nerdy Husband and I decided to get ourselves presents. He got a Playstation 3. I got these

Swift and Ball Winder

I ordered the swift and ball winder online from Hank's in Gainesville, and on the day it arrived, I walked in to find this.

Card from my Hubby

It was wrapped in Christmas-y gift wrap and came with a very funny card. It just got better. When I unwrapped it, I found a note written on the side from the awesome ladies at the yarn store.

Shipment From Hanks

A ball winder and swift. Good thing too, because I had to wind all this.

Box o Yarn

into this

Knitting Olympics Yarn

That's 24 different shades of Cascade 220. What am I going to do with it? I'm basically copying Brouhaha's Curve of Pursuit. It's gorgeous, and my afghan is as much inspired by her work as it from the pattern from Wooly Thoughts.

That being said, no, I'm not going to knit an entire afghan in 17 days. My goals are to knit every day (which I normally don't do) and make an average of 1 square a day, or 17 squares total over the course of the games. I also want to take a picture of my progress every day.

Although I think I may be crazy to knit a worsted weight 100% wool afghan in August in Florida.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Spinning Class

So, I was lucky enough to get a spot in a spinning class at Hank's Yarn. The shop is great, the ladies that own it are great, and Ginger's a great teacher. It's so much fun.

There's this

Golding Spindle

The Golding Spindle that Ginger was nice enough to let me use. It's amazing, and if I wasn't getting a wheel soon, I'd be investing in one.

It allowed me to make this.

Golding Spindle

Then, there's the wheel.

Ashford Traditional

This week I'm using the Ashford Traditional. I picked it out because I love the look of the Saxony wheel.

Wheel spinning is easier to do than I expected. I've gotten started with this (the same roving as the spindle).

Spinning Class Wool

Which has become this

Traditional Bobbin

I also made a few purchases. Going into a yarn store on pay day can be dangerous. But fiber is a lot less expensive than yarn. I seem to have bought them in pairs.

Wool Purchases

Louet Top