Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Off and On...

That seems to be the knitter's mantra: "One thing off, another on".  My last couple of weeks are no different, as many things are off and yet several things are also on.

First thing off is a second Lucente, a pattern by my friend Kennita Tully.  She designed it with Thaki Stacy Charles Yarn, but I chose to use Schachenmayr select Solavita in a beautiful green colorway. Definitely not "Fall" but still perfect to throw over a long sleeve tee.  I just love the ease of this pattern and highly recommend it to everyone. 

Second off is my "Woven Colors" Shawl, which was self designed.  After blocking it I decided to tie the end together so it's almost like a shrug. I wish it was longer, it's at an awkward height as it is, but that's what happens when you run out of yarn I guess. Also, the loose, hanging ties are deliberate so I may take them out if I wish.  I love the colorwork motif and definitely want to do it again on something. 

The last two weeks of knitting have been consumed by these wine sweaters, which I did in TX A&M colors for my current location, in hopes they would sell at a bazaar I went to this past weekend.  Sadly, only two (of my six) sold, but I'm hoping to get some nibbles online. 

I caved last night and invested in two new knitting books.  "The Best of Knitscene" and "Knitting 24/7". Both have some beautiful patterns and for the price I couldn't say no. I am already planning my next projects out of them. 

Including this one! The Geodesic Cardigan with some blue-jean lace weight (!!!!) yarn by Lorna's Laces.  Here's hoping that this turns out, because lace weight and sweater should not even be in the same sentence. 

Finally, life does have a few other things happening, one of which is a commission for a former employer.  A painting of her granddaughter, which is turning out decent so far considering I am awful at painting the human.  

Weekly Inspirations:

Art: Although I cannot attend due to work, the EAST Austin Studio tour is currently happening and there are some fantastic things to be seen. Check out the website for new inspirations!
Food: It's been soup weather.  Specifically chicken soup.  I have been teaching myself to make homemade stocks.  Did you know that you can boil down carrot, celery and onion scraps into a delicious veggie broth?
Knitting:  I WANT IT ALL! TexasDyedWool
Life: I have been re-reading "The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants" series since August. I finished book four last night, all that is left is the one where they are grown up - "Sisterhood Everlasting". Reading these for so long feels like a part of me is missing now that I'm so close to being done.  

I hope everyone has a fantastic week! I can't believe it's almost half over again. Where does time go?


Sunday, November 1, 2015

Short, Busy Weeks

It's been one of those weeks.  The kind that seem super busy yet nothing really gets done.  Yea, those.

This week should have been more eventful, what with all the Halloween/Work/Life things going on. But alas, it was not so much. And thus a quickie update.

The best place to start is by letting everyone know that I FINALLY updated my Etsy shop with the abstract watercolors I made last month for a local art fair.  While not knitting themed, they were fun to do and experiment with.  Check them out if you want a cheap, original piece of art!

On the topic of art fairs, I am doing a holiday market in two weeks. I have decided not to focus so much on art as on knitting stuff for this one and am busily preparing lots of winter headbands, hats and such.  It may be Texas, but people still need these things for the (brief) cold snap we will get later. 

I decided to give the cute wooden lap loom a try and have begun playing with color and design.  I am also learning how tight to pull to keep things from sinking in.  I have no idea what I will actually make with these besides random squares, but it's still fun!

Our local poetry group, Mic Check, started a workshop at a local high school this past Monday, while not a stellar poet like many of the others, I decided to volunteer some time. Man, the kids were amazing! We gave them the prompt of writing about being misunderstood or ignored.  The above was my response.

Weekly Inspirations:
Art: The (former) President of Mic Check, the amazing Madi Mae Parker is currently touring the lower states.  Her show, One Thousand Promises, is amazing, She and her partner, Franchesca, performed at Mic Check last week and blew the lid off it!
Food: I am planning to get back into the less sugar diet again this week. Sugar makes me depressed.  First plan of attack! Stop eating this amazing gelato - Talenti. 
Knitting: A fellow member of my knitting group has some real talent for designing simple, FREE patterns.  You should check them out!
Life: Halloween came and went. I went to a party last night, that was fun.  I also traveled to Austin recently for a school tour - I'll talk on that next week.  Seems like there is inspiration everywhere these days, I just need to find it.

Hope everyone has a great start to a new month!


Sunday, October 25, 2015

Let the Rain Come Down...

I currently have a Hilary Duff song stuck in my head. "Let the rain come down, I'm coming clean..."

Down here in Texas it has been pouring since yesterday morning, with no sign of letting up for another day or so. Hurricane aftermath and the change of seasons can really make things wet. 

I turned 25 on Wednesday. It feels like it should be some sort of milestone, but I don't feel much different.  To celebrate me and a friend went and saw the touring production of "Beauty and the Beast" at Texas A&M.  Another friend baked me a cake :) 

I have been feeling really down lately and I finally found a somewhat-solution.  I haven't painted in over two months, but decided on Monday that I needed to. So my spare bedroom is at last a studio.  The above is my current painting.  Small and simple, but ever so exciting!

Speaking of art, my former boss has asked me to paint a picture of her granddaughter.  She exploded my phone with photos and I finally figured out what I want to do.  With the magic of Photoshop I was able to put a different head onto the body pose from another phone.  Crazy right? 

But you gotta admit, this girl is a cute, cute doll. 

Rain has made me lazy.  Lazy enough to pop in movies and just knit. I finally finished the colored shawl I was working on. It's my own design, so I really was just messing around most of the time and experimenting with shape.  I thought it'd be cool if the sides could wrap around a bit and make almost a "Shrug".  I think it's going to work BUT I ran out of yarn so they aren't as long as I'd have liked. 

Instant gratification project in the form of a scarf for my poetry friend who is moving to Missouri this week.  It's colder there than here, so you can always use more scarves right??

Getting back into blogging, I'm going to try for Weekly Inspirations again:

Food: The restaurant I work at is a constant inspiration.  Take a look. Doesn't it all sound amazing? And we make almost everything from scratch!
Art: There are three new artists in Navasota. I've met two of them.  They're a cool group.  Want to learn more? Here's the blog :)
Knitting: I am surrounded by color, being an artist and all, and am constantly finding myself adding more to my Ravelry bundle "For the love of color".
Life:  What can I say. I'm trying.  I think the greatest inspiration in my life right now is Poetry.  I went to another open mic last week and the feature wrote this in the book I bought:

Which came at the perfect time. I'm applying for graduate schools, very slowly, and trying to get my life back in order.

Until next week!


Sunday, October 18, 2015

Back on the Blog

Well friends, it has been almost two months since I touched my blog.  I have had so many things happening that it's just been hard to really want to sit down and share.  But this blog has been on my mind more and more lately, and I have decided to give it another go.  

Taking after my friend and fellow blogger, MySistersKnitter, I am going to try to do a once a week (hopefully Sunday) update, starting today.

Now I can't share EVERYTHING with you all, as that would be boring and take forever! So I'm going to share the highlights of the last couple of months with you instead. 

Best friend Rachel from Kansas visiting in early September. We were able to go to Galveston island as well as a Kelly Clarkson Concert :) 

The end of September brought an art fair that I was given a chance to vend at. It was a pretty successful weekend.

One epic FO. I was finally able to make my tree ideas come true thanks to Stephanie at WC Mercantile.  For the month of October my giant trees are inhabiting her window.  These trees are made of layered cardboard wrapped in fabric with knitted balls on the branches. Not the most sturdy, but I am happy with the result. 

The Hill Country Yarn Crawl happened last weekend. I went with my knit group and we hit 6 of the 14 shops in one day. From top left clockwise my purchases:
The Knitted Wit in Velvet Elvis
Manos del Uruguay Lace (to go with the free shop pattern)
A cute wooden loom with the yarn shop's logo on it and some new cables for my interchangables
Shibui Silk cloud (gray) and Shibui Staccato (Black) for the shop's free pattern
Lovely merino that will be spun into something amazing.
Not pictured - 2 skeins of Malabrigo Sock from my own LYS. 

(Each shop offered a free knit and a free crochet pattern with the yarn for it being on sale!)

Starting another easy top. Lucente by Kennita Tully (a friend/designer/my former Manhattan, KS LYS owner) Super easy pattern and love these colors. 

Fall has at last arrived in TX and I am enjoying my back patio!

Want to see more of what I've been up to, including some finished knit projects? Check out my Instagram, Facebook and Ravelry.

Hope you all have a wonderful week.  My Birthday is on Wednesday (the big 2-5!!!!) and I plan to celebrate all week :P


Friday, August 21, 2015

Beginnings and Endings

I'm not going to lie - I am only updating right now because it's pouring out and I don't want to pack my car in the rain. However, I know that I am overdue for an update and have so many things to share!

My Navasota Residency comes to an end this Tuesday, although it's pretty much over now as most of my things are at the new place and I have been working a new job as of last week. It's been such a crazy year and so many things have happened within my art, knitting and personal life during the time. I'm definitely going to miss the studio time ! I did one final residency blog post over on Wordpress you can check out for more info. 

"Sleeping Moon Ice"

I did manage to finish the painting I referenced in my last post. And I had an extra week so I knocked out another! 

"Desperate Evening Sun"

On the knitting front, my sister loved her shawl! Doesn't it drape on her shoulders just perfect?

My other shawl - "woven colors" is very slow going right now. Both the lack of motivation and the sluggish speed that is flat colorwork are causing it to take some time. 

However, I did get some spinning done on the wheel - which is definitely my new obsession.  The second skein of the merino is complete (and already being knit!)

Things are pretty slow around here with all the moving. Once September hits I believe that things will settle down and more consistency will begin once again with my art and knitting time. 

Finally, I purchased some new art for my apartment last week. The one on the left is an assemblage of alcohol ink pieces by local artist - Barbara German - and the right is a painted tile by an Austin based artist (forgetful of name again) from a sale that another artist of mine was having. 

That being said, it's lunch time :) Have a great weekend my friends! 


PS - New apartment photos are coming very soon ! 

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Race to the Finish.

Guys.  I have 4.5 weeks left of my Residency in Navasota. Can you believe it? It's been almost a YEAR since I relocated to Texas! For the record, I am moving to Bryan (about 20miles down the road from where I am right now) BUT I won't have a real studio for awhile.

Given that my time is quickly racing by, I am working on getting 2 knit projects and a large painting done before I have to say goodbye to my time here. It's definitely going to be a stressful last few weeks.

I mentioned in my last post I was going home for a week or so to set up a show at my local library. I got it all set up and it looks great! The reception went well also - lots of old friends made it out :) 

The night before I left I decided to finish up my first skein on the wheel. I couldn't just leave it there for a week! It looks pretty good for a first attempt, but I am excited to get better!

On with the spinning, I decided to start a new batch the other night. This is some merino dyed by the owner of my LYS. I'm trying to go fingering weight and consistent. So far I'm doing ok, but having a few issues with underspinning. 

Before I left I also finished my "Alpha B Blue" shawl.  My first real lace shawl (but not lace-weight!) and only a couple of not-so-noticeable mistakes. Total win!

On the list of finished projects, I have this cute little wine cozy I made for my roommate this is also done. She's been such a sweetheart the last few weeks that I wanted to give her a gift. 

 While I was back in Kansas I could not resist the urge to go into the yarn shop there. Luckily my sister was with me and decided she wanted me to make her a shawl. This is the result. It's got about 15 rows left and I'm trying to finish it by mid August when they visit.
(yarn Louisa Harding Amitola, pattern Revontuli/Northern Lights)

And something for myself is on the needles as well. A self designed colorwork shawl. If I can figure out how to word it, I want to publish this pattern. 

And finally the large painting I mentioned. I have two weeks to finish this one before I have to hit clean up mode. I think I can do it. (right now it's about half done - it's gonna get darker!)

Isn't it crazy how time can just fly by and you can get so much done without noticing? Just re-reading this post has made me realize the last three weeks have been. I hope I can keep this mojo up for a bit longer!


I'm leaving you all with a photo of my family's new kitten - Gizmo - who is one heck of a stinker. He was jumping up my legs, eating plants and chasing his tail all week. 

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Becoming a Monthly Thing

Yup. Blogging is pretty much a once a month, maybe more if I feel like it, thing. It's not that I don't have things to share, but I have so many other places I am sharing things on - Ravelry, Instagram, Facebook - that sharing on here keeps taking a back seat.

Starting off with some new oil paintings. Smaller works on wood. Not my best, but not awful either. I really just needed to knock out a couple more before my show in Salina next week. 

Second "Bad Oyster" shawl and already planning a third. This one was a shop sample for W.C. Mercantile. Playfully titled "Poseidon's Oyster".

My blue shawl is about 8 rows away from being complete, but that is slow going given the current size. I am hoping to have it done for my art show next week. :) Knitted in Alpha B Yarn (which by the way is a very yummy yarn!), this has been a very fun project!

Since I have left overs from my two Bad Oyster Shawls I decided to make socks. I wanted them to be opposites, but alas I did not have enough green to do so. So I just kept going and let them be playful.

And then there are road trips that result in new yarn. This is from Twisted Yarn in Spring, TX. Ella Rae Lace Worsted (oxymoron?). I got it in the clearance rack and now I am dreaming of two color shawls. But I can't decide on a pattern (Just too many!) so I am thinking of designing my own...

And a second yarn shop on my trip, ipurl in The Woodlands, TX provided me with this yummy "Raspberry Lime Sorbet" yarn. I can't decide what this will be, as it isn't recommended for machine wash, so socks may be out.... 

I hope everyone had a wonderful June! I am heading back to Kansas on Sunday for a week or so. I have a show opening there and also family that will be around. I'm pretty excited to get away from here for a bit.