KCBW

5KCBWDAY7 - Looking Back, Looking Forward

Day Seven (Sunday 18th May): Looking Back, Looking Forward

While I did participate in the KCBW last year, I didn't complete the Day7 prompt. Somehow I wasn't even aware of it! I do want to participate next year, though so here's my miniature list of things I hope to have achieved by then:

  • A second knit sweater (either for me or a gift for someone else)

  • My first crochet project completed (with some measure of comfort with the craft)

  • My first published pattern maybe?

Not a very long list of expectations, but I'm okay with this. :D

On the Kindle:

White Fang by Jack London

On the knitting front:

The Irish Wellington Socks by Aileen Cahill. I felt the straight up stockinette pattern would complement the self-striping yarn really well. I'm working with Drops Big Fabel in Forest, a fitting colorway with which to remember all of my forest walks while here in England. :D Jason's going to have a pair as well, in his chosen shade of..wait for it..plain black! The simplicity of this pattern will work really well for that too.

I just might gnaw an arm off if I had to work anything like cables with a jet-black yarn. The smaller skeins(?) are elastic thread I plan to use for the cuffs of Jason's pair of socks. Wool is pretty springy, but I think he'll enjoy socks that do a better job of staying up. We'll see how that goes..

Both yarns are 75%wool and 25% nylon. Thanks for your suggestions! I'm very optimistic about the durable quality of these yarns, and am doubly glad to know that it comes in a worsted weight as well! These socks are gonna fly right off my needles, without a doubt.

I made another small stash addition last friday from Quilter's Quest in Bridgnorth. It's a lovely self striping sock yarn by Four Seasons Gründl, and I've got my eyes on the Vanilla Latte Socks pattern. This'll be a nice little change from all of these thick socks I've made this year! There isn't much info on Ravelry about this yarn, so I'm excited to see how this will look all knit-up. :D

This post is part of Eskimimi Makes' 5th Annual Knitting & Crochet Blog Week. To find posts by other participating bloggers, simply google 5KCBWDAY7 and explore away!

Also part of KCCO! I think I may participate from now on with this. :]

5KCBWDAY6 - Views of Others, Views of Yourself

Day Six (Saturday 17th May): Views Of Others, Views Of Yourself.

(Here are some picks from our wandering in Bridgnorth, to avoid an overly text-heavy post.)

bridgnorth_14028621428_o.jpg

Before making my own blog, I spent a lot of time looking through the gorgeous blogs of Alison Brookbanks, Severien, and Stephanie Pearl-McPhee (among many others).

They are each very skilled knitters and designers, with their own unique voice and world. Alison's photos and design sensibility is moody and minimal which appeals to me. Severien's projects are gorgeous, and her writing voice is simple and friendly. Her posts feel like letters to a good friend!  Stephanie's writing style helped me understand that it's okay to not have a perfectly curated and monitored personality for people to take interest in you or appreciate what you have to do! The good she does(with the help of her generous readers!) through her craft and other pursuits, shows how much you can help from wherever you are and can do. Having wonderful knitters and bloggers, helped me out of lurking to just go on and share what I love.

I began knitting a relatively short time ago, and remember pretty clearly the kinds of reactions to it I received. Some were surprised. “You? Knitting?!” (I don’t come off as the type to take up what people would expect to be a delicate, feminine hobby I guess). But the general opinion’s been positive and at least a little bit supportive. :]

bridgnorth_14192124366_o.jpg

It wasn’t until I began selling at craft shows that I got some negative responses to what I do, and it’s usually when they find how much it would cost them to own one of my knits. I’ve had people slam them down on the table like it’s on fire when they hear how much they cost (thankfully yarn doesn't shatter), some straight up laugh in my face, some even politely telling me that they don’t see why this  6-foot-long scarf should cost any more than about $15 because it cost about as much at H&M. I owe it to a lack of understanding of the amount of work and care that goes into these pieces, even if those words really bite. I do what I can to let people know about what goes into making my work, but when all is said and done, Bapsicrafts isn’t for everyone. So I try to let the comments roll off my back, and appreciate the world to me that’s made from the people who happily made my knits a part of their lives. :]

Those who are a little closer to me (read: put up with my knitting while outside or in class) have been super wonderful and supportive of me as a knitter. My mom shelled out a quite a bit of money on these enormous skeins of Red Heart when I was 13 and only dabbling, I’d guess she’s secretly glad that one of the hobbies I suddenly took interest in when I was younger is showing up as a part of my life as a young adult. She and my dad seemed very impressed when I showed off my first finished sweater (which I still have to photograph and make a proper post about!)

bridgnorth_14235450123_o.jpg

Jason for one has been a great supporter of my work too. He tells me that his Christopher hat got compliments often and when asked where he bought it, he’d proudly say that his girlfriend handmade it! He almost never leaves the house without it on, which really makes my heart swell to know!

I think it helps a ton to share what all goes into the craft of knitting. He was very receptive and patient when I ranted about the MILES of yarn I had to frog one night, or my daily gushing about wool socks. He happily held still for measurements, and got to see a yarn he picked out be very steadily and carefully transformed into gloves or socks or a hat. And he was about as upset as I was to find a now cat-sized hat come out of a dryer it shouldn’t have been in in the first place.

An understanding non-knitter is the best kind of person I can knit for and know. I think there’s no better feedback than that moment you catch someone dear to you remembering to set a hand-wash-only piece aside so no accidents happen, or beam when someone says a nice thing about their gloves :]

This post is part of Eskimimi Makes' 5th Annual Knitting & Crochet Blog Week. To find posts by other participating bloggers, simply google 5KCBWDAY6 and explore away!

5KCBWDAY5 - Something a Bit Different

(I'll write more about the wip in the video after 5KCBW :D)

This video was a real eye opener. After spending minutes (more like a half-hour) looking at the #howiknit tag, I'd use words like shaky and fumbly to describe the way I make my stuff. Everyone's work is so steady and orderly! So patient and..and ladylike! What the HECK

Also I think it's safe to admit why my wrists are in such bad shape(the pain gets so bad sometimes that it's hard to stay asleep, crap.)  Pretty positive what's really got that going turbo is how and how often I knit. Oops. I really should consider taking a break from drawing/knitting for a while, or at least take it easy and remember to take frequent stretching breaks.

The good news is that Monica of Sweetpurls and I are thinking about learning continental together with maybe a relaxed KAL! Some practice learning a less taxing technique like continental sounds like a great idea. If it doesn't work I'll just find some braces and find a new hobby that doesn't leave my wrists sounding like a popcorn bag in a microwave and check back in rav in a few weeks. Yeah, I know. Weeks?! Impossible.

This post is part of Eskimimi Makes' 5th Annual Knitting & Crochet Blog Week. To find posts by other participating bloggers, simply google 5KCBWDAY5 and explore away!

5KCBWDAY3 - Experimental Photography And Image Handling For Bloggers

Day Three (Wednesday 14th May): Experimental Photography And Image Handling For Bloggers.

I've been meaning to explore ways to better show the emotional/environmental context for my knits. It's present when we knitters look at our work I think, we see a pair of socks we made and it brings us back to a moment we spent making it--maybe around good company at a knitting circle, maybe sitting down on a perfect morning, maybe in the middle of the most stressful day yet--it's always there.

The last big one I had were those Ribbed socks completed earlier this month. That day could not have been better; I took hundreds of photos! A foot would be blurry in one shot ("this would be terrible for ravelry, I wouldn't measure up!"), or a stick would be in the way("this is garbage compositionally").

I'm glad I had the chance to experiment with two of the types of photos that don't see the light of day usually. :D Among other things that I tried today:

  • Messing with filters/levels (well, I always did, but they're veeery apparent this time!

  • Moving the watermark outside of the photo itself and working with transparent PNGs (although flickr might have flattened them and made them opaque)

  • Adding writing. I've been wanting to fit my cruddy handwriting into photos! It feels more personal than using someone's typeface.

Anywho, this was fun! I'll definitely make a habit of this in the future. I tried some things that didn't work out too well, but that's half of the joy of experimentation! The other half would be finding stuff that does work. :]

This (somewhat late!) post is part of Eskimimi Makes' 5th Annual Knitting & Crochet Blog Week. To find posts by other participating bloggers, simply google 5KCBWDAY3 and explore away!

Have you tried anything new with your blogging or knitting? What worked/didn't work? What's surprised you?

5KCBWDAY2 - Dating Profile

torse-sept-in-charcoal-and-yellow_14170506036_o.jpg

Fun loving vegan, looking for a special someone to keep warm.

I'm fun loving, bright, and flexible(WINK~). Looking for a good friend or more to leave the house with once in a while, though I'm no stranger to staying in and chilling in front of a movie. Cool with a fling, but open to a longterm meaningful relationship. I can take it.

Likes: Long walks in chilly weather, good tea and scones, campfire songs, ghouls(little green ones)

Dislikes: Clothes dryers on "High"

If you're down to meet, drop a line! Let's be good friends. :)

This (somewhat late!) post is part of Eskimimi Makes' 5th Annual Knitting & Crochet Blog Week. To find posts by other participating bloggers, simply google KCBW5DAY2 and explore away!

5KCBWDAY1 - A Day in the Life

Day One (Monday 12th May): A Day In The Life.

Describe a day in the life of a project that you have made, or are in the process of making.

My WIP's don't use words, but they do get a lot across! Here are some highlights from various days in my knits' lives. :D

"???????????"

"(ノ◕ヮ◕)ノ*:・゚✧"

"( ゚ヮ゚)"

"(ง'̀-'́)ง"

"(ಠ⌣ಠ)"

This post is part of Eskimimi Makes' 5th Annual Knitting & Crochet Blog Week. To find posts by other participating bloggers, simply google KCBW5DAY1 and explore away!

4KCBWDAY6 - a tool to covet

Write about your favourite knitting or crochet (or spinning, etc) tool. It can either be a tool directly involved in your craft (knitting needles or crochet hook) or something that makes your craft more pleasurable – be it a special lamp, or stitch markers.
128The gang's all here.
top protectors, stitch marker and yarn winder from knitpicks, athletic click counter from amazon[cheaper and feels much more durable than the kachakachas--I recommend].

I'm not the type to just buy new supplies, books--anything-- without looking at it for a very long time first. As far as knitting tools go, I made do with paperclips, making tick marks on a sticky note, kneaded eraser tip protectors. You name it, I might have tried it to see if they could work just fine [and for the most part, they did].
These took a while, but I picked these overwhelmingly purple things to be part of my knitting workflow and journey, and have been very proud to have them in my life.


4KCBWDAY5 - something a bit different

4KCBWDAY4 - colour review

What are your favourite colours for knitted or crocheted projects. Have a think about what colours you seem to favour when yarn shopping and crafting. Only after writing this part of your post should you then actually look to see what colours you have used in your projects.  Make a quick tally of what colours you have used in your projects over the past year and compare it to the colours you have written about. Now think back to your house animal - do the colours you have chosen relate to your animal in anyway - if you are in the house of peacock, for example, are your projects often multicoloured and bright?


Most of the clothes in my closet are muted, neutral in color, and pretty basic in style or construction. I've spent most of my knitting "career" working through an inherited stash of super bright and almost obnoxious looking acrylic yarns. Most of the fun and challenge of working with this stash is trying to pull attractive color combinations from what I've got in the basket. And I'll admit, it got a little fun.

'inherited' yarn stash
Now that most of that acrylic stash is done, I'm finally free to acquire my own stash and I think my own taste for muted or earthy colors is finally showing up! The sock yarn may be an exception. I'm just too excited about how the yarn stripes up to care about how bright the socks end up when worn.
Besides, brights make a great accent to a neutral outfit, so I can wear any pair of loud socks knowing they'll match whatever else I've got going on. :>

acquired yarn stash [so far]!
Out of the [soon to be[ 4 things I've knit for myself, two of them are in an orange shade. The first being my first pair of socks in the comfy sport sweet potato, and this now pilly and gross looking washcloth I made for myself [the poor thing gets thrown in the wash with all my darks(read: any and all of my clothing) so it's dim and ratty, and still just about indestructible].
I guess bright orange is my dominant color by default, but in just a few months I think we'll get a more accurate representation of my color-tastes and -tendencies. xD

As far as being curious goes, I guess I could argue that I'm like the monkey and the manatee alike. It's clear that I'm in love with muted and subtle colors when curating for my shop or considering stash for future projects--very comfy manatee-ish behavior imo. But I've been on a real sock yarn kick, picking up any beautiful skein I see to see how it looks knit up--curious try-new-things monkey behavior!
I'm pretty happy with this little balance I've got going on. Who knows, I may end up leaning toward one or the other with time.

4KCBWDAY2 - a mascot project

Your task today is to either think of or research a project that embodies that house/animal. It could be a knitting or crochet pattern – either of the animal itself or something that makes you think of the qualities of that house.

The first project that comes to mind when I think 'Monkey' would be the endpaper mitts (by Eunny Jang) I worked on as a custom order for bapsicrafts. It was, to me the definition of jumping in and learning new things while knitting.
I only took an instagram picture of the finished gloves :[
The cast-on method was one I've never heard of before, the needle size, yarn weight, among other things. It was scary when I finally read through those instructions, but hey. After frogging and reworking the first glove until it was perfect, the other three were a breeze to knit and were really enjoyable. I took serious pride in these gloves, and was hungry for another interesting and new project to start on when this one was sent off.

4KCBWDAY1 - the house cup

A bit like Harry Potter, but not quite, this year’s Knitting & Crochet Blog Week is split into 4 houses. Don your favourite knitted or crocheted hat and let it guide you to which house you will be in.


I think I identify most with the House of the Monkey.
As someone who hasn't been knitting for very long [it will be a year next month!], everything is a leap into the exciting unknown for knitting! It's part of the fun of this craft, always having something new to try out.
While I really enjoy the rush of starting projects and browsing new patterns and yarns on ravelry or at stores, I find that I really don't have a big problem with focusing on whatever projects I have at hand. My knitting's pretty monogamous in the sense that I typically have just one going on personally and one going for the shop.

In my short history I haven't been affected with Starteritis, and have had only one UFO lurking in the back of my mind that I've since finished up. I enjoy having an uncomplicated knitting life, free of any guilt of projects that I know I should be doing but just don't want to. The rest of my life's got enough of that as it is!

The runner-up to this choice of house may be the Manatee.

Looking into what the house of the Manatee represents, I'm brought back to the reason why I took up knitting last year in the first place. Knitting was therapy in ways drawing just couldn't be back then. My projects could have been simple or complex, every stitch was comfort. And I wasn't nearly as into the flashy or complex as I was with enjoying the simple pleasure of binding off something completed with my own two hands. Coulda been a washcloth or a colorwork design of my own, I felt great even if I made lots of mistakes in it.
Friends hear it every damn day, knitting's a miracle. I'm making string into the shape of clothes! How is that not a victory in itself?

Hey, maybe I'm actually a Manakey/Monkatee. But if I had to live in a common room and could only pick one it would have to be the Monkey house. No offense intended, but Monkey knitters might make better company.