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Thursday, March 31, 2011

Weirdest Family Matching Outfits. EVER. (Possibly NSFW)

Weirdest Family Matching Outfits. EVER. (Possibly NSFW)

If you dare to be freaked out check this out!

Knitting Legacy

A call to all knitters- teach the children in the way they should go. Like riding a bike, it will imprint within their brains and never leave them. Then when they need it the most- knitting will emerge. They will become a part of the great continuum. That of the art of the craft. No one forgets the person that taught them to knit. That is a legacy my friends.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Beware of Bee Swarms

Well, who knew? I wonder every morning, what might the day hold today?? Yesterday was eventful. DDS appointments for Evan and I at 8 am. Evan has a broken car and I picked him up early to head to our appointment. Evan showed me his broken phone on the way and I decided to buy him a new one after the DDS. No cavities reward! Off to the phone store we went. There I was talked into bundling all of our services together for a $70 a month net savings. After the new phone was pocketed I asked him to buy me a Starbucks as a Thank you.

We walked next door. There in line in front of us were my 2 dear friends M and K. They had just been at my house, where I forgot to meet them. Yes, it was on my calender. But, when Evan's car broke down and he needed a ride, my Mother brain kicked in and off I went. Then the broken phone beckoned. I hugged them and asked forgiveness- which they graciously gave. Thank God!

Now I was running late to meet my niece for lunch at my house before work. Called her and she met us at Evan's apartment so we could see his new abode for the first time. Killed 2 birds with one stone there. She and I did a quick salad lunch and I headed to work while she went to my house to pick up some patio furniture I wanted to donate to her. Whew- all before noon.

I rarely will answer the phone while working with my clients. I picked up because my niece had just left me and it was weird to have her call me. The house was full of bees and they were thick in the air over the house. BEE SWARM! I called an exterminator and he gave me advice which we are following. Kim built a big smoky fire and we have kept it going all day and night. This will only work if the swarm has not had 24 hrs to start a nest. I left the house at 7:15 am and Kim found them at 12:30. So, we are trying to smoke them into a new location.

I have stoked the fire all night and plan to continue all day to cover the 24 hours, plus. Last night as daylight began to wane, they attempted another chimney takeover. Kim and I redoubled the efforts and made the biggest fire I have ever had here. I am so grateful for the cord of wood that Tori and Bill gave us at Christmas. Who knew it had a divine appointment?
So, the fire rages and the smoke billows. I hope the bees find a happy hollow tree in the neighborhood. The irony- it is supposed to be 80 degrees here today! Life...

Monday, March 21, 2011

Knitting In The Fine Arts

Jean-Francois Millet, the famous French painter, is well known for his paintings of peasant life. "The Gleaners is one of his most familiar paintings. I have a modern interpretation in my living room.

Millet could not escape this image. Women had little time to sit with idle hands. She is bundled up, out with a walking stick, exposing herself to the sun for warmth.

There are probably a few children running in the surrounding fields. Knitting allows multi-tasking. You must try it while out for your next walk...

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Backed Against The Wall

Sometimes life just backs you up against the wall. No blindfold and the guns are aimed right at you. You may get some bad news. You may have a demanding deadline looming. You might feel the pressure of any one of the million little minutia that makes your world run. I knit. I look my challenge in the eye, and I knit.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Yarn is Always Appropriate!

Is there a doctor or nurse in your life? This will help to identify their stethoscope in a crowd!

Do you have wood floors that need to be protected? Contrast or match for scratch-free safety and utility.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Knitting Fine Art

Pensive, poetic, summer knitting. Can't wait to do some barefoot knitting on my patio or at the beach.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Knit Green

Happy Saint Patrick's Day to all my knit sisters and brothers.
The crochet "knit bomb" of the statue is hilarious!
Here are some fine examples of "knittin' for the green"- in case you are
feeling the Irish in you. I am drinking Green tea today for a sore throat.
I never developed a taste for beer- except for that one time in Munich at the Oktoberfest...

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Love My Neighborhood

I am blessed to live in a gorgeous location. Just under 2 acres in horse country a few miles east of the ocean. Before the trees grew so big I could see the ocean off in the distance. One of my favorite parts of living at the end of the road in the country is the way my mind decompresses as I drive home. I leave behind the city and people and follow the horse trails home. I am often surprised by my views along the way.

Lately, with the longer days and warmer weather- my eyes have seen a walking zoo. Magical to me to drive and pass a mother and daughter walking their Alpaca. Sometimes, I see a Llama on a leash. Mini Horses out for a walk are commonplace. This morning a Mr and Mrs out for a walk with a big white Cockatoo on the man's shoulder. Then I park my car in my driveway and the neighbors 3 little pigs run to the fence to greet me. Bliss!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Van Gogh Knitter Sketches

Vincent Van Gogh is well known for his heavy paint application and saturated colors. These pencil sketches of everyday life and the knitting presence make me love him even more than I ever did. Document what you see. Everything is art. Express yourself...

Monday, March 14, 2011

Good Idea Today

I have lost my Gingher scissors. I had three different small pairs. I love those little sharp scissors. They may be floating around in project bags somewhere? But, the point (get it?), is that as of this moment, I cannot find one single pair.

All I can find is my pair of snub nose children scissors that I use when traveling by airplane. Perfectly adequate to snip yarn, but not ideal for fine work. I still have my large shears, but they are so sharp, you should need a license to carry them around, let alone use them!

Knitter's love them some Ginghers. Once a fellow Knitwit lost her Gingher point protector and the entire session ground to a halt while we all crawled around and searched every where for the missing sheath. Protecting the point is important. I have my point protector- but no scissor. So sad :(

So- my solution is to join Michael's Craft Store online where I can download a 40% off coupon. With that coupon in hand, I am off to buy a new pair.

Cat In Training

My cat Cotton is in training to sit around my neck so she is not on my lap and in my knitting. She is fond of the cable on circular needles and attacks them on sight. The yarn running through my fingers is irresistible. So, I gained a faithful friend that I love, but, my knitting hours are shortened by her presence on my lap.

This is my plan- wrap her around my shoulders and plant a treat up there as a reward. She does not shed much at all and I am pleased to say the only time she impacts the knitting is when she sits on my lap. So lap time becomes a special treat and I can continue to knit fur-free and paw free! She thinks my Ott lights are obnoxious.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Now I Have Seen Everything!

Free Pattern: Toilet Paper

This is a free and easy pattern for everyone to enjoy. Please check out the Mochimochi Land Shop for more patterns that you’ll love!


Who doesn’t need a roll of knitted toilet paper? Great as a bathroom gag, an unconventional scarf, or the perfect Halloween costume: a toilet-papered tree!

This pattern is super-simple and can be made with a variety of yarn and gauges. I used a 4-ply wool yarn for the paper so that it would be relatively thin and paper-like, and I used a light worsted yarn for the cardboard core so that it would have a little structure.

You’ll need:
4 ply wool yarn in white (I used Pear Tree Australia 100% merino, one skein of which made 7 toilet paper squares)
Light worsted weight yarn in brown (I used Peruvian Highland Wool)
Small amount of black yarn for embroidered features
Size 4 straight needles and size 5 double-pointed needles, or sized to your yarn
Stitch marker
Tapestry needle

Gauge: Doesn’t matter!

k= knit
k2tog = knit 2 stitches together
yo = yarn over


Pattern starts here!

With white yarn, cast on 33 stitches onto straight needles
Work 34 rows stockinette stitch (knit on right side, purl on wrong side)
Next row: [k2tog, yo] to last stitch, k1
Purl one row

You have just knitted one toilet paper square.

To continue to make squares, work 32 rows stockinette stitch (instead of 34), then work the row of [k2tog, yo] and the purl row, then repeat, beginning with 32 rows. For the last square, work 34 rows again, and cast off.

Make as many squares as you like!

To embroider on faces with your black yarn, make two small horizontal stitches for each eye, and embroider on a mouth with backstitch.

Cardboard Core

With brown yarn, cast on 22 stitches onto 3 double-pointed needles, place marker, and join in a round.
Knit 36 rounds, or as many rounds as you need to match the width of your toilet paper, and cast off.

Sew the end of your toilet paper to the “cardboard” with backstitch.


Enjoy your newfound friend!

© 2007 Anna Hrachovec / Mochimochi Land

Please do not copy or distribute any part of this pattern without permission.
Please do not sell items made from this pattern without permission.

Update 10/8/07: Thank you, Natalie, for mentioning Mr. Toilet Paper on the Craft blog!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Sheep on the Brain

Wensleydale Sheep- I just want to start knitting straight off their backs! It is Spring time.
The clocks have sprung forward and the freesia are in bloom all around my yard. Yesterday I lay by the pool in 80 degrees and dried up the last of my bronchitis. Everyone is out doing yard work. It is the season of Hope. The lambs symbolize my hope!

Harness the Wind

Vintage Knitting Machine Creates Weather Data Sculptures


Here at PSFK, we’ve noticed that knitting seems to be a craft which is quite amenable to technological mash ups. The latest knitting contraption is the Wind Knitting Factory, created by Marel Karhof. A vintage sock knitting machine creates a scarf for as long as there is wind gusting through the bespoke wind turbine. Each scarf has its own label which tells you how long it took to knit and on which date it was knitted providing a pragmatic mapping of weather data.

Merel Karhof: Wind Knitting Factory

[via Another Mag]

Friday, March 11, 2011

Knit What?

PHAT KNITS is a series of giant threads used to create, knitted or not, interior products.

Wallpaper* by Nick Knight

Thursday, March 10, 2011

I Got the Flu Shot??

I am sick. Man down. Sore throat, ears, swollen glands,hacking out my lungs and I cannot talk.
Ummmm. I need to go to bed now. Nurse!!

Knitting in The Knews

The graffiti knitting epidemic

A bunch of 'graffiti knitters' are on the loose in the UK – hellbent on liberating us from the forces of drabness. Maddy Costa hits the streets with a woman called Deadly Knits

  • Article history
  • Knit the City take the Thames
    Purls allowed … Knit the City take the Thames. Photograph: Frantzesco Kangaris for the Guardian

    It's a blustery Sunday afternoon on London Bridge and I'm exercising my right – or at least, the right of freemen in 11th-century London – to herd sheep across the Thames. They're not real sheep, thankfully. They're tiny knitted creatures, with spindly legs and multicoloured bodies, and snapping at their heels is a gnarly-looking wolf in sheep's clothing.

    Confused? Welcome to the world of graffiti knitting, or yarn bombing as it's generally known. If you haven't encountered it before, you might just over the next few days, as knitters across Britain celebrate wool week by "tagging" lamp-posts with knitted doilies, wrapping public statues in scarves and sending knitted animals scurrying about city streets. I can't say exactly where, though, as it's all hush hush.

    My introduction to yarn bombing came courtesy of Knit the City, a tight-knit (sorry) London-based crew with fanciful names: my accomplices today are Deadly Knitshade, the Fastener and Shorn-a the Dead. For their Knitmare Before Christmas project, they attacked the statue of a ballerina outside the Royal Opera House with figures inspired by The Nutcracker, while Web of Woe found them installing a 13ft spider's web, replete with trapped insects and fairies, in the "graffiti tunnel" beneath Waterloo station.

    Knit the City was established in April 2009 by Lauren O'Farrell, whose first act was to rechristen her group's activities yarn storming. "In London, you can't go throwing the word bombing around," she says. "Yarn storming sounds more creative than bombing, which is destructive. It's a bit more kooky and eccentric." You might say the same of O'Farrell, who started knitting five years ago to distract herself from the treatment she was undergoing for cancer and, in March 2007, celebrated getting the all-clear by tying a 550ft scarf around the lions in Trafalgar Square.

    "Kooky and eccentric" is also a good description of Magda Sayeg, the Texas woman credited with starting the yarn bombing movement. Sayeg was managing a clothes shop in 2005 when she was struck by the ugliness of its steel-and-concrete surroundings. Overwhelmed by "a selfish desire to add colour to my world", she knitted her shop a door handle. Then she knitted a sheath for the stop-sign pole across the road. "People got out of their cars and took photos in front of it," she recalls. Seduced by these positive reactions, she began splattering bits of knitting across the world: over parking meters in Brooklyn, over a bus in Mexico, most recently over the gun carried by an 8m-high statue of a soldier in Bali, neutering its violence.

    "In this world of technology, over-development, fewer trees and more concrete," says Sayeg, "it is empowering to be able to beautify your environment." It's a quiet political message, but a potent one – and knitters around the world have followed her lead. The results range from the comic (woolly hats and looped moustaches on statues) to the soppy (Swansea's Yarnarchists attaching knitted hearts to street railings on Valentine's Day this year).

    There is another reason, Sayeg thinks, for yarn bombing's appeal among knitters: "It has inspired them to do something beyond the functional." O'Farrell agrees: "We're changing the face of craft. Now I feel that I'm an artist instead of just a knitter." Both admit they haven't the patience for conventional knitting. "What I love about yarn bombing," says Sayeg, "is that you can knit something in 30 minutes. You can finish a stop-sign pole by the time you finish watching a movie." O'Farrell has knitted just one jumper in her life – and that was for a one-week-old piglet. "I'd sit in front of a pattern and think, 'Look how much knitting I'm going to have to do to make something that other people have made before.' Eventually, I decided I didn't want to knit anything normal."

    It was the potential for marrying art and knitting that appealed to Rachael Elwell, a fine artist based in Salford. Since discovering Sayeg in 2008 – and doing a bit of yarn bombing herself, notably a cosy for a garden shed – her work has taken a turn for the woolly. This month, she's running a project called Crocheting Accy: once a week, she sits in the indoor market in Accrington, teaching passers-by how to crochet, then transforming their creations into a floral installation. Like Sayeg, she has been amazed by people's reactions. "I've come to realise that knitting has a strong community vibe to it," she says. "Everyone's got a social connection to it."

    This might explain the increasing desire of councils and art institutions to commission yarn bombers to create official works of art. In August, Belfast was comprehensively yarn bombed at the instigation of Craft Northern Ireland, a government-backed organisation supporting the craft industry. Sayeg has been invited by cities across the US to liven up their public spaces, and O'Farrell is finding it increasingly difficult to separate her guerilla activities from the teaching and charity events she is engaged in as part of her day job, managing the knitting community, Stitch London.

    The nostalgic appeal and cosy image of knitting also accounts for the yarn bomber's ability to evade the authorities. "There is a side to it that is unsanctioned," says Sayeg, "but you'd have to be the most bored police officer to want to arrest me." Knit the City have been questioned by the police only once, while tackling a phone box opposite Big Ben. "The minute we said it was a craft project, it was fine," says O'Farrell. "They gave us a stop-and-search notice that said, 'Seen decorating a telephone box on Parliament Square.' Then one of the policemen took pictures of us on his phone for his wife."

    • More details:,,,

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Workroom Needed

This is the dining room table when I am trying to complete projects. No matter what I am working on- I have no dedicated work space. So I take out my beading, sewing, knitting, painting, gluing, writing, computing, whatever, and it takes over the house and every room has some stuff. It is creative dandruff that dusts every room in the house. Having company and needing to clean becomes such a challenge that I mostly don't.

I need music and a TV in my project room. Good light and a door to shut. Tables all the way around the walls would also be great. Make that a flat screen mounted on the wall. A sewing table with my machine and the ironing board ever ready. A large cork board for my ideas and articles and inspiration. A great chair on wheels and hard wood floors to roll around on. Hey- it is my fantasy....

Monday, March 7, 2011

Ski Hat With Snowballs for Baby

This little gem is knit in cotton for comfort and fun. I hope to see a picture of the little boy that was gifted with this hat! Fun to knit, fun to wear. The pattern is by Jil Eaton in her book- "Minnies-quick knits for babies and toddlers" page 76

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Schaefer Is Shagilicious

This is a small scale shawl knit out of Schaefer Hand Dyed Heather Yarn. This yarn is so soft and has such amazing body. There is a touch of nylon in it so it has flexibility. It is also machine washable.

The photo does not do it justice. The pattern is free on Ravelry, or you can Google the Lacy Baktus Knit Pattern.

The colorway is a cool collection of the red spectrum. The blue undertones are evident. You cast on at one of the ends and increase to the middle- then you decrease in a mirror image to the other end.

It is versatile as a scarf, head wrap, shawl, or even a hip wrap- if you have saucy little hips you want to highlight!

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Resolution Inspiration

This is a sweater commissioned by my cousin for her expectant friend.

I knew about it for months. I had the yarn, but I designed the pattern to incorporate cables and seed stitch. The 100% cotton is washable and the buttons are leather. So hand wash is best. It turned out nicely.

The problem was- I was not in love with this project. It felt like pulling teeth to bring it out and work on it. I finished after the little man was born and he received it at the age of 2 weeks. It is sized as a one year old's jacket.

I was paid to do it. My new year resolution- knit what I love and sell it. No more special orders unless I have complete creative control. I learned a valuable lesson about myself.

Lesson learned- best resolution ever.