Friday, May 15, 2015

Friday Five + A New Crafting Addition.

Keeping with what I started last week, I am going to update with mostly photos. Please read the whole thing for a surprise at the end! 

Another gouache painting done, in three days (about 5-6 hours work)

Ever growing pile of white balls that are so boring to knit but will be so epic once they are on top of my tree.

Another new large oil. I have 2 weeks to finish and I'm hoping it doesn't turn too pink.

Gorgeous riverside TX flowers on my walk tonight.

And now for the big news. 

Let's start with a quick preface. Last night at Knit Guild we had a spinning demonstration. I brought my spindle since the lady running it - Debbie - knew I was a spindler. Many of the spinners also attend knit days on Sunday at our local LYS and I have been found saying a couple times how cool it is to watch them spin on wheels.

At the end of the presentation Debbie walked over to the corner and brought this older looking wheel over to where I was sitting. She set it down and said "Lisa, this is your new wheel". And all I could say was "Wait, what?".

She proceeded to tell me that it was a handmade wheel that had been passed on from several different people - started in California - and that it was time for her to pass it on. When my time is right I will pass it on also.

Now the real question is... how do I actually spin on it? I guess time will tell. Until then I will just be staring at it was a smile on my face.


Thursday, May 7, 2015

Thursdays Are...

Studying the color white with oil paint

Honey spiced chicken with chickpea-quinoa salad. 

A finished shawl (as of last week!)

Knitting lots and lots of large, white balls. 

Almost done with a cardigan in under a week. 

Crochet all handspun scarf in the works. 

A new gouache painting larger than I have worked in this medium before. 

A blank wall because a painting has been sold. 


Wednesday, April 22, 2015


It's been too long since I updated this blog. I feel sort of bad about it, mostly because I did truly enjoy posting and sharing. It's just been a very busy time for me and I wasn't even sure if anyone was reading any more.

I have decided, that at least for today, I am going to just post lots of photos with quick captions of what's been going on.

3 whole boxes of quality, sweater quantity yarn donated to me by a local knitter.

Filling the Horlock Galleries with new art. 

All of my babies! 

Blocking my Bad Oyster Shawl.

Hat that is out of yarn :( 

Hand dyed fiber by one of the LYS owners in my town.

Making progress on my spinning grab bag

3-foot tall paper mache tree. My new installation project. 

Weekly Inspirations:
Art: Check out this local artist I just discovered. I have seen better works by him than shown here, but  you get the idea.
Knitting:People just keep designing gorgeous, non-lace shawls. It's kind of addictive to just favorite them. I have over 200 in mine Ravelry list. 
Food: Have you ever tried making alfredo sauce and adding pesto to it? That's what my roommate Heidi did on Monday. It was super delicious and I highly recommend it. Especially if the 2 are homemade to begin with. 
Life: What can I say? So many things are happening here. But it's all good things. I'm just taking life one day at a time.

OHHHHHH AND if you're interested, I have instagram now! My name is Lisa_24_7. Follow me for art and knitting updates! 


Tuesday, March 10, 2015

All the Things!

I think I see a trend starting. Update blog, ignore for a month, update, repeat. Lately, it's just seemed so tough to want to update. Probably because I don't really like stopping to take photos, and what fun is a blog without photos?

Although I have lots of things on my needles and planned, today I am just sharing some recent stash additions and art happenings.

I have been eyeing the pattern "Bad Oyster" ever since I discovered it last month. Fringed scarves seem popular right now and this is a cool pattern to make one. I had a skein of Malabrigo Sock, Archangel in my stash, but I wanted to play with it a bit, so I purchased a skein of Malabrigo Rios in Pearl Ten to pair with it. I am thinking maybe doing dark stripes with laced orange stripes. I'm excited to get started. 

My current LYS, W.C. Mercantile, also has spinning tools and fiber. She has been making up grab bags of random fiber and I was super excited to pick one out. I am thinking of just randomly grabbing a bit, spinning it, then randomly grabbing another and attaching, until it's all spun then I can ply it on itself. Talk about epic crazy fun yarn!

Universal Bamboo Bloom has been super popular around here since the shop started carrying it back in December. While I am not always a bandwagon jumper, I finally caved. She has a self written cowl pattern that highlights the thick and thin nature of this yarn that I will be tackling soon. 

In art world, I finally finished a painting last week. It's my largest to date, at 50 inches long. I can also happily say that is is my favorite. I love how it turned out with color and shadow. 

I am hooked on trees, now that I have a large tree painting, and want to do a whole series. That being said, I decided to actually make some trees, with polymer (oven bake) clay and knitted balls. I have 5 of these made and they are currently arranged into a still life to start my next painting.

Weekly Inspirations:
Knitting: On my needles: Rainbow cowl (just finished), fire opals tee (starting front panel) and handdyed coffee cozies. Notice how none of them have recent photos? 
Food: Ever think of Chickpeas as a sweet desert? Me either, but I found this recipe and had to give it a try. Luckily, the peanut butter masks the chickpeas and overall it's a win!
Art: I have new artists moving into the residency this weekend. Heidi and Jessica. Both are super talented and I cannot wait to spend six months making art with them.
Life: I finally have a bit of financial freedom, with my first paycheck coming in last weekend. Explains all the stash additions right?

Hope all are having a great beginning to the week. Mine is pretty good so far :)


Thursday, February 12, 2015

On My Needles

Another week is flying by and I feel like I have been widely unproductive. Despite the fact that I really have gotten a lot done. Anyone ever feel that way?

On my needles this week I have three new projects.

Last week I talked about how I am designing all of my socks this year. The next pair has begun and I am really liking it. I settled on a mock cable pattern that I altered a bit to look like large "V's". basically giant knit stitches that have been knit. Clever right? Lately I have really liked putting the stitch motif on everything. From shoes to mugs to scarves. So why not put them IN my knitting too? I still need a name for this though, suggestions are welcomed.  :) 

At this point, you are probably thinking I am having a love affair with purple. That's kind of true, although I started the above before my socks. The sock yarn was grabbed at random from my stash. And these are the only two purple yarns I own. Go figure.

But seriously, the above is a new tee, Fire Opal Tee, from an issue of Knitscene. What I like about this project is the way it allows the yarn to really shine. It may not look like much now, but once it's done you drop some stitches and the cables suddenly appear. I wish it knitted up faster though. 

Finally I have the Gap-tastic cowl started also. This is my new "movie theater" knit. It has quite a few mistakes from my last go, but I guess that's what happens when you try seed stitch in the dark. Honestly, I don't mind. It keeps my hands busy and uses up old yarn. Win Win in my book.

Weekly Inspirations:
Knitting - I'm knitting a scrap yarn bra! Before you get any ideas, it's for a fundraiser. I hope it works out. I'll share pictures when it's done.
Art - I have a couple of pieces in the show "From Every Fiber" in College Station, TX. The whole show is amazing. Art ranges from a giant knitted portrait to homemade paper flowers to felted paintings.
Food - If you have a Trader Joe's near you, I highly recommend buying a jar of the Satay Peanut Sauce. I had some that I have been putting with veggies this week and it's been a real treat.
Life - It's been 60/70 here all week. The best weather for coffee shop patio knitting. This week's adventure took me to The Village Downtown and an amazing Sangria Sunrise (who said coffee shops had to include coffee?)

I hope that the rest of the week and the weekend brings you great joy. I am hoping for a relaxing one.


Friday, February 6, 2015

Sock Stories

Since 2015 began I have been hooked on socks. I have other projects on the needles too, but it seems like the sock project is always the one I focus on. No surprise I have finished two pairs already!

I discussed my "Show off stranded socks" in the last post, and since then I have started and completed one other pair. 

When the time came for my next pair, I decided to literally reach into my stash bin and grab a skein of yarn. If it was sock yarn, it was my next pair. The lucky winner was Merino Twist DK by Sweet Fiber. This skein of 100% superwash merino was given to me in a swap last summer and has been hanging out in the bin since. 

Such a dark yarn needed a nice lacy pattern, and I just couldn't find one on Ravelry that really fit the bill. So.... I designed my own! 

Nothing goes better with lace than waves, and I found the perfect motif in my "365 stitch calendar". Sadly, it didn't translate well to working in the round, and I had to change things up a bit. I was able to find another wave pattern online and went to town swatching. After ripping out the toe (these are toe up) for the 4th time, I finally got the design down! And the rest flew off the needles. 

Good news for you all also, I decided to publish the pattern! You can find it here - "Midnight Surf Socks" And if you use you the code "2015SOX", you can have it for $1 until Friday, Feb 13th.!  It hasn't been tech edited (yea...I know...) but I read it over three times and really worked to make it perfect. 

With this pair done, I decided I wanted to keep the "Grab and knit" trend going, even though I have two other projects on my needles. I also want to keep designing the socks myself - I have decided that every pair of socks I knit this year will be my own personal design! The next pair? With the solid purple shown above. Blue Ridge Farms Subtle Shades. I am thinking something a bit more solid, since the yarn is solid it can show off design work more. Maybe cables, or twists or both or lace. Who knows.

Weekly Inspirations:
Knitting: I haven't posted mine on Ravelry yet, but one of my other projects is the Fire Opal Tee in Cascade Ultra Pima Cotton. I started it last week because I needed something new on my needles.
Art: I started teaching this week and working with the kids is giving me lots of new ideas. I actually am really enjoying coming up with fun projects like scratch art and homemade sketchbooks from envelopes.
Food: This week I tried a baked oatmeal recipe and fell in love. You will too if you check out my food blog!

Well, I hope you enjoyed reading my adventures. Any ideas what kind of stitch would look good on that purple are happily welcomed. :)


Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Been Too Long (again)

One would think that having no real job, but lots of time to create would give me time to photograph things and update on here more. Yea right....

I have lots of new knit things to share today! Maybe that's why it's been so long - I was waiting to share all at once.

I don't think I've ever started a finished a pair of socks in a week, so doing so with this pair made me really happy. The reason, not so much. I started this pair right before having to emergency fly home to attend a funeral for my last living Grandmother. It was a sad time, many tears were shed (but not me - I don't get emotional).  But back to socks. I was able to get the first one completely finished in transit back to KS.  I stayed the whole week just for kicks, and ended up finishing the second one during that time. The yarn is Verdant Gryphon Bugga! that I received as a gift. It's probably been my favorite to work with, what with the cashmere content. The pattern is Show Off Stranded Socks by Anne Campbell. Yet another "Almost Vanilla" project that I loved! 

After finishing the socks at home I ran into a dilemma. I had packed my sweater project, but in the rush I didn't pack enough of the yarn. So I couldn't finish it like I hoped. And I had no other projects other than my needles and the left over Bugga! I COULD NOT spend another day flying and layovers without a knitting project. The result was a quick Hobby Lobby run (when you're poor and it's a hat, you make do) for some basic white DK yarn. I was able to start and almost finish this hat that day as I traveled back to Texas.  The pattern? Fruju Hat. It actually calls for self-striping, but there is no reason you can't just use two yarns ;). Yet another pattern I will remember for the future.

And now the big reveal. I am farely certain I have mentioned my "Tell it Slant" sweater on here at least twice. The yarn was purchased at my new (and favorite) LYS, W.C. Mercantile on my birthday weekend with the intention of making this sweater. I loved the pattern and design and use of short rows. And my use of blue really helps it pop! I ended up redoing the sleeve cuffs three times because of length, but otherwise there were really no kinks. My only wish is that the neck wasn't so scoopy. But I could have fixed that if I really wanted to. The pattern is "Tell it Slant" by Mary Annarella. The yarn I used was HiKoo Simplicity. I have a little less than one whole skein of each color left, which means I need to find it a good colorwork project to become. 

The irony is that it is currently 70 out here in Texas. But I am still wearing this as much as I can, after all, a good sweater means you don't need a jacket!  And it's fairly light weight, so I think this spring I can still get away with it.

Weekly Inspirations:
Knitting: I am currently designing some toe up socks to use with this yarn. It took me forever, but I think I finally got a good thing going. 
Art: I hit up some art shows in Houston last weekend. I got to see some really inspiring works. Especially at this show. And the interesting thing is that I realized after that I remember seeing Jackie Titleston in a magazine in undergrad and loving her. So amazing to see it in person!
Food: No new recipes, just random experiments. But if you feel like reading a rant, I posted my opinion on restaurants and calorie lists on my food blog. 
Life: Maybe I should eliminate this category. Life is usually everything I already talked about on here. 

I hope that weather you are enjoying the warm weather or snowed in and cold you are able to have a good week !