Sunday, October 28, 2012

Had a crank-tastic weekend! On Friday night, with Sandy making her way up the Atlantic, I decided to drive to Florida's east coast. Elaine and Dennis (two other, Florida crankers) and I had decided to get together for this weekend. We all drove up to Elaine, who lives farther than I thought...north of Daytona Beach and a good 3.5 hour drive! I left work early on Friday and tried to drive the majority of the trip in daylight. When it got dark and I still wasn't there and it started to rain and I realized the guy at the oil change place wasn't lying to me when he said "you really need new wipers", I was not a happy camper!

Arrived safe and sound and got up bright and early. Now when you go to one of these things, there's no such thing as packing light. The machine alone in its case is the max you can get on a plane. Then there's the accessories that weight about 20 pounds more (another case), then there's yarn (another bag), then there's the work table (giant, cumbersome, foldable thing) and in proper society ... then there's a change of clothes, deodorant and a hostess gift. Living in Florida, I threw a short sleeve shirt, shorts and a pair of sandals in the yarn bag and headed out the door. It was freezing when I got up for coffee at 8:30AM. The storm had really cooled things down. I was sure happy to see Target right next door to the Dunkin' Donuts because I knew a hoodie was in my future! It's so comphy, I put the air down a few degrees and wore it all day! I hear the judgment but when you live on the surface of the sun, you have to take what you can get, when you can get it, however you can get it!

Anyway, we had a great day! We shared ideas, talked about techniques, taught Dennis how to make heels, totally failed with Elaine trying to produce fair isle on the machine, had lunch and for me, simply enjoyed being with other people who enjoy working with these machines.

I learned that I needed a handle on my latch tool and a much bigger screwdriver for my yarn carrier. Some polymer clay and a trip to Lowe's today and both were accomplished. I fashioned the clay to the handle and had to bake it in the oven.



Me: How does this work?

Craft Store Employee: You shape the clay, stick your metal tool inside it and just bake it in the oven.

Me: But will the metal part melt in the oven?

Craft Store Employee: No, you have to bake it at 200 degrees.

Me: 200 degrees sound hot to me.

Craft Store Employee: Your tool is made out of steel.

Me: (Before I could stop myself) So steel doesn't melt.

Craft Store Employee: (with just the right amount of sarcasm) Not at 200 degrees.

Me: Fine, I'll take it.

Craft Store Employee: What color do you want?

Me: Ooh, really? colors?

Craft Store Employee: (dripping with sarcasm as he walked away) Have a nice day!

Me: (in my head) What? No can I assist you with anything else?

Both tools came in very handy today! The ribber worked great for the leg!


But after I finished the heel and worked down the leg, I had a perfect latch tool scenario waiting for me inside the cylinder.


This is usually the end of the line for me, a definite start over but with the new handle on my latch tool, I was able to fix the problem in no time plus the instruction from Elaine! Thanks Elaine!!


For those of you who may use a CSM and read my blog...I made this sock with Jenny Deters Wrap Heel. If you're using the "1 UP 2 DOWN" heel, try this wrapped heel. Look at that decrease holes at all!

I love the fully ribbed leg but I'm still not sold on the 1x1 rib, there's definitely a 3x1 rib in my future.

That's a wrap! Get it? yeah, yeah, they ain't all golden. :-)

For those of you actually in the path of Sandy, stay safe!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Laura's Post

My cousin Laura got an iPhone and has miraculously found interest in my blog with the aid of this new technology. A tap on her phone's desktop vs putting my URL in her computer's favorites and visiting every now and then is apparently supremely easier! So after what, 6 years of blogging and increasing my readership by one, she's harassing me if she doesn't get a weekly update. "Do you know you haven't posted since 9/11?" Keen detection Ms. Marple, I'll get right on that. I love her to death, she's my best friend but I think it was easier to force her to visit periodically when I posted something significant.

Anyway, a few weeks ago I took a trip to Sarasota for a little R&R. Lovely trip ... beach, eat sleep...repeat. One of the highlights of the trip was a little jaunt to the local yarn shop...A Good Yarn. Nice location, great selection of yarn, amazing customer service and not once did anyone give me the "why is this guy in the store?" vibe. I've posted about them before but in their new location, I enjoyed it even more!

If you remember, when I lived in Bonita Springs, I would occasionally shop at one of the LYS in Naples if I needed a needle or something specific. There was an elderly woman whose daughter regularly dropped her off at the store like it was a senior center and every time I walked into the store she'd SCREAM, "there's a man in the store, there's a man in the store!" She'd clutch her purse and stare at me until I left. The owner shouted at her once, "We know him, stop screaming, he knits and better one than you do!" The other patrons would all look at me with that blank stare, "isn't that cute" and inquisitively wonder what was wrong with me or what happened to me that forced me to turn to knitting instead of meth like any other normal guy facing adversity in his life. I was self-conscious the first time and subsequently, always annoyed.

This trip was needless to say, refreshing! I was so genuinely welcomed as just another knitter and even invited to join them at the table! In knit-speak that means you're on the A list! With a skip in my step, a little stash enhancement was in order.

Lorna's Laces Shepard Sock - loved the boldness of this and can't wait to see the color repeat!

Mad Tosh Merino Light - this color is spectacular IRL, iPhone can't do it justice.

because I couldn't decide between the red/grey vs. this green/gold!

TriCoterie - not from the shop but Vicki's Destash. She's having dental work, I had to help, I'm a good friend. 

I also picked up a lovely, deep red sport weight, Scrumptious by Fyberspates. I know, you're thinking sport weight not sock weight? Yes, sport weight! Contrary to all appearances, I do still hand knit as well as CSM. That big holiday with the guy in the red suit is coming and apparently, I'm supposed to finish projects and give them to people I love on the guy in the red suit holiday.

Like that's gonna happen. Did we just meet? And that's knitting content!