Sunday, March 28, 2010

More dyeing and some knitting

We'll start with the knitting as I don't feel like wrestling with Blogger to get the pictures into an order that I find pleasing. I'll work and work, and Blogger will still format my blog as it sees fit.

Thus, the first photo you see is the Citron. I've finished with section 8, and I'm now working on the ruffle. Each row of the ruffle has 829 stitches. I have less than 8290 stitches left to knit. Sounds kind of horrifying, doesn't it?

Next we have Keith's second sock in progress. I decided to show it next to the first sock so you wouldn't think I was just recycling pictures. I thought about that when I planned to take a picture of sock 2 and I realized that sock 2 by itself looks no different from sock 1 sitting alone.

Next you will see my efforts at dyeing yarns. I'm learning that it never turns out the way you think it will. The two blue yarns are
using up leftover dyes from the day The Chicken Goddess came over and dyed up some lace yarn.

Her yarn didn't turn out at all as she thought it would either. The green yarn is my attempt to try what she had, using more acid as fixative. It didn't work as expected either.

I'm gaining a whole new respect for dyers who are able to get results they can repeat. I've not even tried to repeat anything yet,

but I'm taking lots of notes (and some pictures when I remember).

Once again we have a gray, misty day here in Georgia. It's rained so much these past 6 months I feel like I'm living in Seattle without the benefits of being in Seattle.

Hopefully it is sunny where ever you may be.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Experimenting with dye

I've been experimenting with the acid dyes to see how they work in real life situations. Such as how long does it really take turquoise to be absorbed? (Ages and ages) Will this technique I've thought about work? The first photo is Mr. Chubbers inspecting a skein of sock yarn that I dyes with leftover yarn from sampling. I like the color, but it didn't go penetrate the skein. One side dyed more darkly than the other.

Picture 2 is the results of something I wondered about, so I tried it
out on some leftover Galway Worsted in white. There's only about
75 grams of yarn there. Possible enough for a small hat or some wristlets.

The two greens are using up leftover dyes again on Lamb's Pride Bulky in white. I think I'll take better pictures of the darker one and sell it on etsy. I'm personally not wild about the color, but I'm sure someone will like it. I do like the lighter one, and I'm planning to see if I can reverse engineer it. (Anyone from Area 51 out there willing to come help?)

I've got others that I've not taken photos of yet. I'll get them up soon.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

So much fun!

I went to a drag show last night that was a fundraiser for the Dixie Bowling League and American Cancer Society.

I'd never been to one before last night. It wasn't from lack of wanting to go. More from lack of friends who'd go with me, and not enough nerve to head out to one by myself. Especially as back in the day (the 80's) most of the clubs were in the types of neighborhoods where it wouldn't be safe for me to head out by myself. So not entirely lack of nerves. There was some good sense involved too.

However, I've always wanted to go, especially after watching Tim Curry over and over in The Rocky Horror Picture Show and watching La Cage aux Folles. When a friend said that a coworker would be in this show, and it was for charity, I leapt at the chance.

I had a blast. We got there early, as we had been instructed to do, so we were on the second row, right in front of the stage. Although I had brought my knitting, as did Hali, it was too dark to knit and almost too loud to talk while we were waiting. When I'd looked up the club online before leaving, I saw that it was in the location formerly known as The Chamber. The Chamber had been a leather and fetish club, so I must admit that I didn't know what to expect. Would we stand out like the suburbanites we were? Fish way out of water? I'll admit to a certain amount of relief to see we weren't the only ones there. In fact, I was now almost disappointed that the crowd looked so normal.

Soon enough the show started, opening with Sister Chlamydia and some naughty nuns singing about fellatio while a pregnant, smoking nun ran around collecting donations.

I spent the next 2 hours mostly laughing while occasionally wishing I'd thought to bring ear plugs to soften up the piercing music of all those wailing divas whose music they used. While I know the music I prefer would not do drag well at all, sometimes the music that does is a little annoying. I'll know better for their next fundraiser, because I'm going (as long as I can get some of my friends to go. I probably shouldn't be roaming around that area alone at night either.)

Afterwards we looked for dinner. One must remember when leaving suburbia that people actually go to restaurants after 8:00 p.m. In suburbia, even on a Saturday night, you can go into a restaurant after 8:30 and get a table most of the time. Of course, as I've mentioned before, we rarely go out on Saturday nights anyway. Why mess with mobs when you can go out on a different night? We tried 2 restaurants before deciding to just get pizza. It's too bad really, as I had wanted to go someplace a little fancier with incredible food, but lets' face it - pizza is always good.

Hmm, a post with no pictures. I'll post some later. I've got some I need to take still to share with you. I'm almost finished with my Citron shawl. I've started on section 8 (giggle). Section 8 always makes me think of Klinger, and who could be more appropriate to think about after a drag show?

Saturday, March 20, 2010

A picture or two

These are pictures of a redtailed hawk that landed in our backyard earlier this week.

Knitting pictures coming soon.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Returning soon

I know I've not been blogging. I've kept busy, and I promise I'll be back soon.

With pictures!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Yard work

Today, while it was relatively warm and partly sunny, I looked at the mess that is our yard and decided to do a little work. Plants are starting to bud, and leaves are getting ready to burst forth with that bright, new green of spring. It was definitely time to tackle.....The Rose.

We have a rosebush that we got when Keith's dad was selling his house. It was a stubby little bit of a plant in a pot. I hastily planted it in the mulched area of my front yard, thinking I could move it later if need be.

The rose flourished there. It grew at an exponential rate. If it had been Audrey, I would have heard it yelling "feed me" all day and all night.

If Sauron grew roses, he would have this plant. Each stem is densely covered with thick, extremely sharp, curved thorns. Each is like a tiny scimitar waiting to rip unsuspecting flesh.

If you needed a terrible hedge to surround your moat, this rose would be it. Branches sprout willy-nilly, bending, twisting, curving, growing with groping tips, some as long as 8 feet or more.

In the summer, it's a lovely sight. It's covered with tiny, pale pink roses. Unfortunately, they don't have much fragrance. In late fall and winter, it has red-pink rosehips.

This massive, brambly menace needed to be pruned most desperately. There are small trees growing in the middle of it where I can't reach. It is taking over everything that grows near it, and for the past couple of years I've not dared to weed around it as it seems thorny runners out too.

Today, however, while the branches were bare, I laid shears to its bark, and pruned it. I probably pruned at least half of it away. I was able to get to the small trees that grew inside it and cut them down. I filled two yard waste bags with what I can only describe as hazardous waste, as thorny as that rose is. In fact, I could see thorns ripping through one of the bags. My gloves got caught on thorns. My jacket got snagged by thorns. My thumb was pierced by a thorn, and it's slightly swollen and red.

The rose is by no means under control. I could probably go prune another bag of branches off it, and it would still be able to snare an orc. I'll admit this rose always makes me think of the scene in The Return of The King when Frodo and Sam are just inside Mordor and find themselves ensnared in brambles with gripping, tearing thorns.

I do plan to make it up with the rose. Its roots are slightly exposed, as it looks like some small animal has been digging around them. I will make an offering of fresh soil and some mulch, then I'll quickly leap back before those groping branches and talon-like thorns can rip my flesh from my bones.

And maybe someday, when I have a medieval castle to call my own, I'll take this rose with me and plant it as a deterrent to Jehovah's Witnesses.

I so love Ravelry

Yesterday I was bemoaning the fact that I would have to sit down and figure out the increases for a larger Citron. This morning, whilst drinking my coffee, I had an idea. Why not look at the pattern on Ravelry? Perhaps the designer has given us the information all neatly written out for a larger shawl. Lo and behold, it was there! Thank goodness I don't have to figure all that out. Now, back to knitting.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Forgive my lack of posting

I've been busy this week.

I've started working with my acid dyes.
I discovered I'm going to need a bigger sink.
And I've been knitting on the Citron Shawl. I've finished all the repeats the pattern called for, and now I'm working on some extra repeats to make a larger shawl.
One of my knitting buddies figured out the extra repeats, but when I examined them, I saw she spaced them evenly across the row. If you know me well at all, you know I've got a touch of OCD. Yes, I've got to sit down and figure out the spacing so that it is like the pattern. I'm not looking forward to it, although I don't think it will be very difficult. It will just take a little fiddling with the numbers to make it work out.
Hopalong hasn't been to the vet yet, and that's not due to lack of trying. He seems to be healing up nicely, and he demands lots of petting every time we go outside. He has even been rubbing on Sassy, which has confused her some. You can see it in her face, "why is this cat doing this to me?"
Cowkitty has shown up a few times to get a meal, but he's not here regularly. Hopefully things will settle back down in feral world, but I've seen another new to me cat twice last week. I'll keep the trap ready for another spay/neuter/rabies vax adventure.
Have a great Saturday. We still have sun, which is the longest we've gone without clouds and rain since September. This is day 3 now.