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Wednesday, January 25, 2012

The Nine Foot Knitted Wrap!

  I recently finished knitting a shawl, which now I call a wrap since it is a bit out of control for a shawl.  When one knits on circular needles, it's hard to judge exactly how long the piece actually is since it all hangs together.  Because I'm under 5'3" I didn't want a real wide or long shawl, so I was careful to stop before it overwhelmed me.  What I didn't realize until I washed and blocked it last night is the length--it is over 9 feet long!
  When I tried it on before blocking, I hung it over my neck and each side reached almost down to my shoes, so I will have to wrap it around me in some creative way in or der to wear and not trip over it.  Oh, and blocking might make it a bit LONGER.   But let's hope not....I'm actually doing more to stretch it width-wise.
  Surprisingly, I have yarn left over from this!  The purple edging and blue variegated were both purchased over a couple of years at Stitches West, so since it's coming up again next month, I'm glad I've gotten into that part of my stash, just in case I buy more yarn this year (picture all my knitting friends reading this and laughing at that absurd comment).
  Now for the tell-all about the shawl/wrap.   It's supposed to be a chevron pattern.  When I started it, I realized the pattern repeated every 43 or 44 stitches, so since I didn't want to have to count it out every time, I placed stitch markers along the way.   I thought I was being brilliant, but in reality, I was screwing up the pattern--because it has increases, which means the stitch markers should technically move each time.  About halfway through knitting, I realized my error, so what to do?  Should I just keep going so it looked like it was meant to be knitted this way or start doing it the right way, even though half would be different from the other half?  Okay, since most people who read my blog do know me, it will come as no surprise that I changed it halfway through just to see what would happen.
  I have now renamed the stitch pattern--no longer a 'chevron' pattern...I've renamed it exxon.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Etsy or Website?

I've been trying to decide how best to sell my jewelry and textiles online.  I haven't had much luck with my website, but then I really don't do as much with it as I should.  For someone who likes to write, I pretty much dislike writing descriptions of my work.  It's doing the business part of art that's hard--I'd rather spend my time creating the work.   And it's not just about all the pictures that need to be taken and in what light?  on what?  where?  Then measure, describe, remember what I used to create it and on and on.
 Just think about eating out these days--we used to read "hamburger with cheese", but today it says "a generous portion of the finest organic-bred beef topped with savory melted cheddar and organic greens and condiments on the side."  And that's the generic version!   I can't just write a crocheted wire necklace with a mixture of gemstones and glass beads in blue!  Hell no, it has to sound like it also tastes and smells good! Well, you get what I mean.

  I've been toying with putting some of my work on Etsy, which is the handmade Garden of Eden.  I realized this morning that doing Etsy would still mean writing everything out and measuring, taking better pictures, etc.  So instead, I'll start by working on the existing for those who don't know, and I'll post more on Facebook with what I'm doing.
 I'd love suggestions from the gallery...any ideas on how to get this moving?  Someone I recently met suggested  pictures of a "model" actually wearing what I've made--for example, a side view of an ear/neck with an earring so people can judge the length and see how it hangs.   I know the cocoons would look better on someone, though I tried that once and let's face it, I need to find someone else as model.  Here's one taken of the Italian wire mesh necklace I made last it better on a body?  What do you think?

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Random Rants--found objects in odd places, odd people and what they do on the road, odd losses

  I've decided to carry my camera with me more often because you just never know.  Last week I had a fun afternoon in a friend's art studio in Princeton, and as I was leaving, Connie noticed two pineapples sitting across the street.  I know it sounds like the beginning of a joke...Two pineapples were sitting across the street from an art studio and one says to the other....  So, no joke and they weren't talking, at least not to us.  Where did they come from and why did someone just leave them there?  So odd.

Didn't take them home; didn't eat them.  Just left them there for others to also ponder.  
 The next day, I'm on my way over the hill and there's a woman, maybe in her 30's, behind me in a Mercedes.  At the stop signal to turn left onto hwy 92, she pulls off her shirt and is left in what looked like a black bra.   The light changed before she could maneuver into another shirt, so onward she drove all the way up 92.  She passed me at one point, so when we stopped at the light at the water, she finally was able to finish getting dressed.  I didn't think about getting the shot till after we'd started driving again, so this was all I got:
Too bad I didn't think about my camera sooner...but still was pretty funny watching her antics.   And they worry about using cell phones in the car.  
  The following day I was on my way to a friend's so passed through Princeton again and there was a Peruvian food truck parked and serving.  On my way home, I stopped and ordered a lomo saltado, which is beef strips, onions, french fries, and lettuce on a perfect roll, which is advertised as being specially made for them.  The sandwich had just the right amount of spicy sauce and a delicious combination of ingredients.  I've been thinking about finding them again soon.  Turns out they're owned by the owner as La Costenara, a Peruvian restaurant that's nearby on the coast.  I had JUST gotten a Groupon for dinner there the day before!  Nice odd coincidence, if ya ask me.  

 Dropped in on my mom yesterday after an visit to Costco to bring her some things.    I used to always see Lois as soon as I got off the elevator.  Her favorite spot was to sit in these comfy chairs next to her apartment, but in the corner of the hallway.  She would always greet me and often comment that Mom's weekly soup was on the way.  She stopped sitting there sometime this past year, but her apartment door was almost always open and I could hear the TV.  I noticed yesterday that although the door was open, no TV and her place was empty with drop cloths in the entryway.  Mom told me she died about a month ago.  There's really nothing odd about dying--we're all going to get there eventually--but when you get used to seeing someone in a spot and suddenly she's no longer there, then gone for good, you can't help but recognize that as a loss, odd because I really didn't know her.  I'll always be reminded of her when I see those chairs.
   Goodbye, Lois.  
  And one last thing about death...Mom says when someone dies there(she lives in senior housing), people will say what a shame it is, and she says, "No it isn't.  Lucky them!"  Hell, most of them have lived 80-90-100+ years.  Death and taxes.....