Monday, October 29, 2007

Hi, I'm Sally Bear

Actually, the title was translated from "ah-goooo, goo-goo-grrrrr." You see, Sally is a baby bear, and really hasn't learned how to talk yet.

She's adorable, though, waddling around in her little white diaper. She's in the process of "potty" training (so that she learns to go do her business under a designated tree), but she hasn't quite got the hang of it yet.

Sally spends every day at the Smileville Bear Bash, a daycamp for the cubs of the working bears in Smileville. Her favorite friends, Tootise and Toby, are twin baby bears, born just a few months earlier than Sally.

Sally makes a great playmate, loves sweets (like honey!), and is a warm cuddly companion. If you'd like Sally to come home to you (or someone special in your life), click here to purchase her on my website.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007


I know it's hard to consider snowpeople seriously when the weather outside is still warm enough for shorts and t-shirts, but the holidays are fast approaching and I need to be prepared.

Today I spent some time making a collection of stuffed knit snowpeople. They are turning out just as I'd pictured... all fluffy and white with little scarves and matching hats. I started out making their noses with orange buttons, but when I ran out of those, I began using orange yarn instead. A little bit of strategic glue and voila! the yarn sticks out from their faces like little carrots. I really like the way that turned out.

The snowpeople will make their debut at the Olive B Loss Elementary School craft fair on November 9th. Hope to see you there!

Monday, October 22, 2007

I saw the Yarn Harlot!

The Yarn Harlot, also known as Stephanie Pearl-McPhee (or maybe that should be reversed...), spoke and signed books at the Borders in Marlton, NJ on Friday night. YarnMama and I stopped to listen on our way to Cape May for a knitting retreat weekend with friends. No, it wasn't really "o the way" but who cares, it was the YARN HARLOT for goodness sakes!!

She was wonderful, despite having a cold and a horrible cab ride over to the Borders. Of course she brought THE SOCK. Somehow, in spite of having sat in the front row for this very reason, she missed getting me in the photograph with her sock. She got YarnMama, and another woman who had been sitting on my other side, but not me (only my red and white striped sleeves, which you can see in pics 2 and 3 if you stare really closely).

However, I forgive her. She let me hold her sock, and she held mine (and YarnMama's, too).

Thank you, Stephanie, for coming to NJ!!!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

A closer peek at the newest part of my stash

Continuing with the tour of my yarn purchases at Stitches East, we have some yarn purchased in bulk:

Debbie Bliss, to me, is always a good choice. Each and every one of her fibers feels soooo soft, and the colors are strong and the yarn doesn't pill or split. So, when I found a booth selling bags of her yarn at wholesale prices, I dove right in (literally, as they were all in a little "corral" type thing on the ground!). Came up with two: Cashmerino superchunky in forest green, and Soho in a unique green/pink/black variegated. The cashmerino is for my Mom to use --- she found a neat shrug pattern and is itching to try it.

In the same booth I also came across Laines Du Nord Cocotte (80% wool) in a really pretty green/turquoise. It was the color of this yarn that stopped and called to me. I've never knit with it before, and I'm not even sure yet what it is destined to become, but I brought it home with me nonetheless. :)

And finally, another daring new yarn purchase: SWTC's Gianna (50% soysilk; 50% wool) in a vibrant RED. By snagging the 4-skein bag, I also landed a free pattern for hat and mittens to make with the Gianna. Course I may not get the chance, as my Mom really took a liking to this yarn as well....

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

100% Texas Wool

So it says on the label for Solana, this gorgeous 100% wool worsted weight yarn I bought from Brooks Farm. I love this colorway (thanks, YarnMama, for finding it!). This yarn is so soft, but as we stood in the booth fondling the yarns, I just couldn't seem to find the one that spoke to me. All the colors were pretty, but the one perfect one in which I could find inspiration..... It was elusive, but YarnMama (who has a great eye for color!) pointed out this one, which was half-hidden toward the bottom of the rack. Perfect!

Shepherd's Wool (by Stonehedge Fiber Mill) was another YarnMama find. The people in the booth weren't very welcoming (didn't even say hello), but their yarns were very well priced! YarnMama braved the chilly ambiance purchased anyway. When we were looking at our new stash on Saturday night, I realized that I was a silly, silly girl not to snap some of this soft wool up! So I went back on Sunday, and this time the people in the booth were pleasant. Perhaps they were very tired on Saturday by the time YarnMama and I reached them! Anywho, my color choices were Misty Blue and Milk Chocolate. They are destined to become a striped shawl, based on what I learned in my "Shaping Shawls: Triangles and Trapezoids" class.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

It's over...... :(

I waited so long for it, and it's over. Stitches East, that is.

It's been a whirlwind 4 days. I'm exhausted. But I learned soo much, and I bought so much yummy yarn! I am desperately itching to cast on some new projects with my new yarn, and practice all the stuff I learned! It's my main to-do for the week, yes it is. Fellow Newark Knitters, expect to see some new yarn on Tuesday night!

Here's a quick "taste" of my weekend, in bad cell phone pictures: :)

the entrance to "mecca"--- a beautiful 5 huge aisles full of fiber and fiber-related goodies!!
YarnMama's & my yarn purchases, spread out in our room

all of YarnMama's lovely yarn (and sock blockers!)

my lovely yarn purchases (minus what I bought on Sunday!)

the Baltimore Basilica

I'm a bit too tired to blog in detail now, but I promise more info on the classes, etc later... maybe in small daily doses. :)

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

It's STITCHES Time!!!

I can't believe it! After waiting for what felt like an EON, it is finally time to pack for Stitches. In my workroom, I have a wonderful mess of needles and yarn on the floor, picking out all that I need for my classes. And then I get to pack clothes and go to bed... and wake up in the morning to set out on my adventure!

I am thrilled that my mom is able to come with me for one day. I pick her up bright and early tomorrow so we can see Baltimore AND see the beautiful yarns. Then on Friday she'll go home, classes will begin, and the Yarn Mama will be joining me for classes and revelry (and Ravelry, too!) and fun. I cannot wait to experience the Yarn Market with several years of knitting under my belt (the first year that I went I was a novice knitter, and hardly even knew what I was looking at enough to really appreciate it).

I'm traveling light so as to have plenty of room to bring back lovely new fibers, so the laptop is staying home (thus, no updates until I return). But fear not, I shall share.....

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

This is the way we bake our wreaths, bake our wreaths, bake our wreaths... early in the morning.

I have no idea what nursery rhyme or children's song goes like that, but I remember is singing it in the mornings with my mom: "This is the way we brush our teeth, brush our teeth, brush our teeth..." What that has to do with making wreaths, I will never know. I cannot explain the strange connections my brain makes, especially when I still feel sleep deprived. (I've figured out why, by the way, but that's a story for another day, maybe.)

I realized that I don't have many wreaths ready for the winter holidays, and so undertook the first step: inserting pinecones into the wreath frames. This is sticky business indeed; all the sap from the pinecones gets EVERYWHERE! And it only comes off with nail polish remover, at least as far as I have learned.

Once the pinecones are nestled into the frames, we bake them for several top-secret reasons! :) Although I love the way they look when done, this step is the stinkiest!! I try to do it only when Dan isn't home, so he won't wrinkle his nose and remind me how much it smells (as if I could forget!). I open all the windows on the first floor (the cats love it and go nuts, trying to sit in each and every window!), and turn on the fans. It'll still take until dark to get rid of the heavy pine-y odor. I wish I could take a picture of the thick smoke that's filling the downstairs right now!

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Returning to the Curiosity Shoppe

Yes, I have had the honor of being asked into the Curiosity Shoppe's new current showing, beginning Friday (last Friday, that is) and lasting through the end of November. For now, they are displaying and selling some of my jewelery. It was hot off the jeweler's table, so I don't even have pics to upload; you'll just have to make a road trip out to South Street and see for yourself.

Curiosity Shoppe is located at 527 South 4th Street (which means they're just off South, on 4th).

And.... as far as I know now, they will be carrying some of my knit bears, the Smileville Bears, and some shrugs/wraps for the Nov/Dec 2-month rotation. It'll be a great chance to do some last minute holiday shopping!!