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Knit Lightly and Carry a Big Stick
Or rather, making it real.  In doing more and more research into the world of knit design, commentary, writing, etc, it's become clear that having a dynamite knitblog (something I previously thought that only people with too much time did) can be a way to break into a real career.  So, I'm actually going to do this-- have a real domain, write up *all* my patterns (something I always intend to do, but forget), review yarns and books (again in the good intentions pile).  I transferred this blog in its entirety over to Wordpress (the design is somewhat more friendly for free-standing blogs, and hopefully by today, it'll be at www.amoralfiber.com .  Edit: it's there now!  whee!
This is going to be a lot of work--I'm going to have to refresh my html and learn some CSS to really make it work out.  I can't afford to pay someone to do it for me, and besides, I'm kind of partial to the geeky achievement feeling of  doing it myself.  I'm going to have to figure out which patterns to distribute for free, and which (if any) patterns I want to distribute for a fee.
There's ups and downs to selling patterns--if I sell them, they'll need to be polished, and I'll probably have to design a header for them and make them into pdfs.  I'd also provide support for them-- which can be a pain in the ass, and frustrate people when *they* think the pattern's fucked, but they're the ones actually making a mistake.  But it's a start--if I can generate interest, it's a good transition to having a design company or writing a book or any of the other pipedreams I have.
So, I'm scared to death in some ways--if this tanks, it's like the entire knitting community rejects me.  Which would suck.  A lot.  But I also figure that if I give it the whole year (how long I own the domain for now), it'll be something that can gauge a lot of things--people's reactions to my patterns and reviews, my own commitment to doing something serious in this arena, etc.  Interweave Knits just hired Eunny Jang of See Eunny Knit, so there's something to it.  Of course, she's better than I am at the moment, but it's something to aspire to, no?

I haven't yet figured out the ins and outs of the RSS feed so that you folks on LJ can still keep track of me.... that's the next project.  I'll keep you posted.  And Al, if you know how you did it, let me know!

Tags:
being:: TGF
feeling:: chipper chipper
hearing:: none- I don't turn on the brainmelting soft rock till I have to!

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Oh, man, do I love Knitty!!!  I've admired the "Very Tall Sock" pattern a number of times, but I never noticed the little "about the designer" blurb until now.  The description is that  "She is an avid knitter, photographer, and a cunning linguist."  The picture portrays her licking her camera.

I love that they're so willing to be irreverent.  Also, it's my life's goal to be described as a "cunning linguist"-- it's my favorite pun ever!

being:: TGF
feeling:: cheerful cheerful

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two-handed fair isle is the best thing ever! I'm so excited-- my boss wanted me to work on creating a newsboy-style cap for the store. Moreover, she wanted me to do it in cotton--not the first fiber one would think of for something that really needs to hold its shape.

So the idea of colorwork came to me-- all the bad things about colorwork (it pulls the work in and makes it thicker) would be *good* things for this hat. My first approach was to do six stripes that would spiral and then follow the line of the crown decreases. This was fine, except that the amount of twisting involved is kind of annoying, so it was taking me forever to do. Plus, I had adventurously tried to do some of the ribbing Continental, which had whacked out my gauge and (again) taken forever.

So I frogged. And I decided that rather than worry about all the twisting (since I still wanted vertical spirals), I would do one-stitch stripes in between the six larger stripes. Moreover, rather than using a smaller needle for the brim ribbing (part of the problem with the whacked out gauge), I'd start the colorwork along the brim, which would pull in the rib more naturally. It doesn't have much stretch, but since it's not an over-the-ears hat, whatever.

Two handed colorwork is a godsend. I can now fly along switching colors without dropping and picking up strands, without ever getting my yarns tangled, and without copious amounts of swearing. It's so damn cool. Plus, because you're carrying both yarns, the strands at the inside lie nice right where they're supposed to-- no too-tight loops or giant gaping strands.

So it's now my mission in life to design things that require two-handed colorwork, yet do not have reindeers in them. Anywhere. Starting with this hat=)





For the store, it will be called the Candy Striped Newsboy Cap. Privately, I'm calling it the Candyass Newsie-- cause who loves a challenge (like learning fair isle) more than a gay journalist?

Tags: ,
being:: home
feeling:: cheerful cheerful

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Wow, that title sounds like an ad for metamucil. Which is both a good reason to delete it *and* a good reason to keep it. I choose the latter, this time.

Ever since we started this damn moving process, I've had the hardest time getting any knitting or crochet done. I just can't sit still that long. Even when there's really nothing for me to do--there's no more boxes, or there's nothing I can lift by myself (believe me, my stupid golf elbow workers' comp injury loves this move). It's really frustrating when you're so anxious that even your anti-anxiety activities don't work.

Grrr.

What I've managed to do is convince myself that the granny-square blanket I'm working on is house-related and therefore productive. I'm getting maybe one square a day done, but at least it's something. I'm ten squares away from being able to start assembling it! It's in cheap Red Heart Soft (the soft is really ok, especially for crocheting. It splits a little too much to be good to knit with, though), in random stripes of olive green and black with a gold accent. When I started, I was using the gold in almost every square, then decided it was too much and started making tons of black and green squares to catch up. It is really pretty, but I don't think it will match the couch I'm getting from my parents--that green has too much blue in it. Oh well, it will go somewhere=)

Tags:
being:: TGF
feeling:: groggy groggy
hearing:: Pink Floyd - Us and Them

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Read more...Collapse )

being:: work
feeling:: bored bored
hearing:: poe- control

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absolutely hate making I-cords? I've gotten pretty good with this continental thing, and I think I'm even growing to like it. But I-cords? The satchel I'm working on has an I-cord bind-off, which I love the effect of (I plan to use it muchly), but I've decided that knitting an I-cord with the yarn in your left hand is suicidal. Let me explain.

When you slide stitches over (or, in this case, slip them back onto the left needle), you're working yarn is already three stitches to the left. Why in the name of zeus would you keep the yarn in your left hand while you're trying to work a stitch three paces to the right?

See? (excuse my one-handed photography--you try to take pictures of yourself knitting!)


I can make it work, but why struggle unnecessarily? When I knit English, the yarn is already on the right because that's where you hold it anyway:


Ashley just arrived, and she informed me that she holds the yarn in front of the needle, even when she's knitting, which solves the working yarn issue. I've never noticed that she knits that way, and I've never seen anyone else do that--maybe another technique to try when I'm not all techniqued-out.

Tags:
feeling:: tired tired

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As a quick project to distract me from the backgammon board, I attempted to frog and restart a rag scarf that I designed a couple weeks ago.

The concept was this: I wanted dropped stitches and a sort of "destroyed" look, but I didn't want to just wait until the end and drop straight little ladders of stitches.  I wanted the ladders to be randomly distributed and not all the same length.  So I designed a "roadblock" stitch that would stop a dropped stitch in its tracks.  And it worked!  The effect was fun, and dropping a stitch every 3 rows was entertaining.

However, I mistakenly thought that a 1-1 ratio of roadblocks to dropped stitches would work.  In reality, too many of the holes were too big, leading to the scarf looking a little *too* destroyed and snagging on anything within five feet of me.

So, I tried to frog it.  And guess what?  The same stitches that keep dropped stitches from unraveling from above turn into little knots when you try to frog them from below.  So I have to trash the whole thing.  It was $2 Bernat Satin acrylic, and the whole scarf took me maybe 2 hours, so I'm not too torn up about it (so to speak), but it's still a little bit annoying.

Oh well.

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This backgammon board that I'm making for my dad's birthday is just wigging me out!  It's probably the ugliest thing I've knit in a long time-- some of the short row transitions left big ugly holes despite my best efforts, and I decided to learn to knit continental right in the middle of it, so the gauge is kinda wonky (although, given that I see beginner projects every day at work, not *that* bad).  I lost a stitch somewhere in the last set of triangles and, since I couldn't figure out *where,* just made one and kept going.  There's no ladder, so it's not a dropped stitch-- I think I might have grabbed one extra when working wrap(s) together with a wrapped stitch.  Bah!


My goal in picking it up this morning was to knit one more set of triangles before doing some housework.  I knit two rows and then came here.

You wanna know where I'm at in the pattern if I finish that next set of triangles???  "Knit rows 3-82 three more times..."  Granted, the pattern uses short rows, so that's a little misleading, but still!  Then after that I need to knit the pieces and a little bag to hold them.  Talk about demoralizing.  I'm at that point where I can only think bad thoughts about it-- "He won't like it anyway;" "These colors are horrid together; "I'll probably fuck up the felting part and then what good is this?" etc.

Le sigh.

Edit--why doesn't LJ want to link to picasaweb?  I hate uploading pics directly to LJ (I don't know why, I just do.)  Whatever.
Edit2-- I also love how uploading a photo automatically switches one into Rich Text mode, but then ignores your html tags so your formerly bold text just looks like <b>this</b>.  Dumb, dumb, dumb.

Tags:
being:: home
feeling:: annoyed annoyed

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So, this is the very first entry into this journal.

First of all, the name "amoral fiber" celebrates my knitting philosophy--there's no right or wrong when it comes to yarn, just different. Sometimes really, really different. Sometimes, "Why in god's name would you knit that horrid thing?" different. But that's OK, cause knitting is about yourself (and sometimes the people you love a lot). So, knit weird! Knit amorally (or even immorally, if you dare).
To celebrate the inauguration of this fiber-related journal, I documented a typical work day yesterday. I'm guessing that most of you reading this know me, but if you don't, I work at The Golden Fleece in Santa Cruz, CA. It's pretty much the best thing ever.

Day at TGFCollapse )


In other news, the satchel I'm making required a fourth ball of Malabrigo, which I was *really* hoping I wouldn't need. However, I'm about 2" from being done with the flap, which is when I can begin doing the fun contrast stuff. And this way I'll have extra purple to play with the colors. So, dark purple for the body and the flap, light sage green for the edging, pocket, and strap. I think I'm then going to do some freeformy-spirally embroidery in the green on the body of the bag and then a little matching motif in purple on the pocket and maybe the strap. It shall be much fun:)
I'm making my dad a felted backgammon board for his birthday, and that's going less well--I'm bored with the colors, it's in scratchy Cascade 220, and I have to do the pattern repeat umpteen times. Bored! But I've gotta finish it, cause I want to have it to take home next weekend. So that's gotta be the focus for tomorrow:)
More soon!

Tags: ,
being:: home
feeling:: mischievous mischievous

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