Monday, March 12, 2007

An Introduction of Sorts

Welcome to my knitting blog!

I'm new at this, so please be patient with me. I've been thinking quite a while about starting my own knitting blog, so here I am.

First, a little about me:

I am in my "latter" forties. I live in a beautiful town north of the Golden Gate Bridge in California's wine country. I am married to WG (a.k.a "Wine Guy") and we have two beautiful daughters, "E", who's 14 and "JB", who's six. (I am not using their real names to protect their privacy and safety.) I work in a lovely office in a fairly common (and legitimate--shame on your thoughts!) profession. We have a "brain damaged", yarn and FO-eating black lab and pointer mix we rescued from a shelter (her real name is Jazmine--who cares about her privacy and security!) and some fish.

I learned to knit as a teenager when my aunt from Florida visited. She lived in a senior retirement condo "village" where all the ladies sat out by the pool in the hot, humid Florida weather and knit hideous 70's fashions in acrylic yarn. She taught me to cast on, knit, and purl. I knit a square in some acrylic color that doesn't occur in nature under her tutelage and planned to make more for a patchwork afghan.

I never picked up the knitting needles again until E was born--many years later. She was born in December and it was cold, so I bought some Caron yarn (for acrylic, it's pretty nice) and a Leisure Arts book of baby patterns and made her a little cap with a ridiculously large pom pom on the top. And ear flaps! She and the cap were cute as a button together. I was hooked.

ASIDE: I'm not really a yarn snob (I'd just as soon use Lion Brand Woolease as expensive designer yarn), but remembering those scratchy (probably Red Heart) hideous 70's knitted objects still has the power to make my skin crawl.

After I knit the cap, I fell headlong in love with knitting and never looked back. I amassed an embarassing amount of knitting magazines, books, yarn, and tools on almost no budget and very little time.

When I discovered knitting on the internet--oh my!!!!! I read every post on the Knitlist every day and my awareness of the knitting world and my skills inceased exponentially. I went from very simple, basic knitting, to socks, cables, intarsia, and entrelac. I bought a Bond Incredible Sweater Machine and used it just long enough to figure out I didn't enjoy it at all.

I went to my first Stitches and even took classes. I met other knitters that expanded my horizons even more. I would drive to Berkeley, San Francisco, and all sorts of other places to meet my knitting friends and explore different LYS's. I loved to drive to Berkely (about 1 1/2 hours away) just to go to Straw into Gold (boy, I MISS that store!!!). I took up spinning and even bought a wheel (right before I began studying for my advanced degree, so I never really mastered the wheel).

Somehow, knitting survived my post graduate degree program--I worked two jobs throughout and little JB was born in the middle of it all--but still I knit. It has been my anchor. When I'm knitting, the rest of the world goes away, and sometimes it's the only time the stress doesn't feel like it's crushing me.

So what do I knit? I'm an eclectic knitter. I tend to have many WIPs going at one time, plus a host of abandoned projects (I'm slightly embarassed by that, and making an effort to be better about finishing these old projects this year).

I love knitting lace. I've knit an Orenburg Shawl (out of cashmere!), Eugen Buegler's Lace Dream, and I've been in the middle of the Lily of the Valley for longer than I care to admit (I've started and frogged it many times because I find the pattern very complex and I've made many unredeemable mistakes). I love to knit socks, but haven't made many lately. I've knit sweaters for myself (though not recently). I made the "To the Cottage Sweater" from Sally Melville's Purl Stitch for WG (but, he won't wear it because the neck is too wide), the Lion Brand strawberry sweater for JB (she is SO cute in it) and right now, I'm making the Ruffled Surplice from IK for E. I like felting and have made many pairs of Fiber Trends felted clogs and the felted fish (it was fun!)

There are many other AFO's (almost finished objects) lying around that I will report on as I complete them. Also on the needles right now are the linen stitch placemats from Sally Melville's Color book.

And I'm thinking of doing the TKGA master's program.

I love reading about knitting (magazines, books, internet lists, and blogs), I love the process of knitting, and most of all I love the toys (tools and notions). My latest toy acquisition is my KnitPicks Options needle set which I love more than fancy jewelry or pretty household objects. (Thank you, WG, for my birthday present!) In the near future, I will dedicate an entire blog post to my Options needles. The set is just so--sublime!

Interestingly, I'm not big on acquiring yarn stash acquisition unless I have a project planned--though sometimes I can't resist a ball of something lovely, soft and colorful. Still, I have a modest stash, mostly leftovers from abandoned projects and those oddballs I can't resist.

I hope this blog will be a fun place to visit and share about knitting and coping with life in general. I don't promise frequent updates, lots of photos (organizing all the steps from camera to computer to blog is often beyond my tired little brain) or the wonderful caliber of writing I enjoy in other blogs. I'm not artistic and talented in blog layout or anything. But I hope you find this a place to sit down and set a spell, put your feet up, take out your knitting and stay awhile. Welcome to my blog.



Martha said...

I think you are the natual. Loved reading about how you love knitting.

Regenia said...

Wow...It's a match made it knitblog heaven! We both use magic loop and are knitting the ruffled surplice. I can't wait to see how yours is coming. I'll post pictures of mine soon.

You should definitely join in on TKGA's master knitting program. I got the kit and started working swatches almost a year ago and haven't sent even one in yet because now I see and want to correct my mistakes.

Happy knitting!