Category Archives: Fun Stuff

#knitchat 5/26: Unusual Knitting, Unusual Fibers

What constitutes unusual knitting… knitting a space alien, birthday cake, or even an entire village? Maybe unusual knitting can be knitting part of a gigantic knitted bunny that can be seen from satellite views. Or unusual for you can simply mean knitting socks rather than hats.  Unusual fiber or knitting material can include yarn made of milk, soy, or corn… or knitting with wire or Ramen. Yes, someone has knitted with noodles.

#knitchat Questions:

Q1) What is the oddest thing you’ve every knit or wanted to knit?  If you’d like, share examples of strange/unusual knits you’ve found on the Internet.

Q2) What is the oddest fiber you’ve knit with or wanted to try? What has stopped you from doing so?

Q3) Next #knitchat topic suggestions

DETAILS… DETAILS… If you want to know more about what #knitchat is and how it works

  • Where: Twitter (follow the #knitchat hashtag)
  • When: Thursdays on the date listed above at 6:30 PM PST/9:30 PM EST (1 hour)
  • Who: Me you and other Twitter Knitters/Crocheters & Fiber-crafters
  • How: Need a primer on Twitter Chat… check this out: What does this Twitter chat thing look like?
  • How: to post photos – 5 ways to share photos on Twitter
  • How: to shorten your links. Simply paste your link into the field in and shorten it. Copy and paste this link into the twitter feed.

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Filed under #knitchat, Fibers, Fun Stuff

Almost 25 Ways to Get Rid of my Sock Yarn

What do I do with all of this?

Two years ago, I didn’t buy loads of sock yarn at the Sock Summit, because I already had a serious butt load of sock yarn… including a bunch of Drops Fabel and Regia Sock Yarns which have become my fast favorites because of their durability and dependability (I sound like a commercial from the 50’s). I do sometimes struggle with making socks.  You can see the sweater most of the time… socks you’re the only one who knows you’re wearing a work of gorgeous Aran artistry and cablework. So I decided to use Ravelry and my websearching skills to compile a list of things I could possibly create with the multliple boxes of sock yarn I have stashed away. I’ll try to post more as I find them.


  • Fingerless Mitts: Look quite warm and snuggly for your hands.
  • Chihuahua Sweater (double stranded):(though I’d have to make a lot of these just to get rid of my KP Imagination.
  • Vera (gorgeous shawl pattern that eats up to 2000 yards of sockyarn) –  I’m linking to a photo fo the pattern here to entice you. Vera Shawl by Katie Grady
  • Snowflake Christmas Ornaments: forgot about fabric stiffener. These look like great fun.
  • Reusable Tampon (Oy, not for the faint of heart) – I probably will abstain from making these… unless, of course civilization comes barrelling down around me and I can’t buy what I need from a store.
  • Eyeball with Nerve Endings: Make a bunch of these for your Halloween party. Then through them at your guests… then they can say they had the unique experience of being pelted with eyeballs.
  • Monkey (OMG this monkey is so cute)
  • Naalepuder (flower-shaped pincushions): Really cute especially with variegated or rainbow yarn. Original pattern in Danish. Floral Pincushions


This ferret looks smashing in what appears to be Noro Kureyon Sock

This ferret looks smashing in what appears to be Noro Kureyon Sock

Pirate Mittens (Available on Ravelry as a free download):

Pirate Mittens

Pirate Mittens

The Beanis (warning may offend… what is it? It rhymes with ‘beanis’… you figure it out. No I’m not posting photo here.)

Honorable Mentions:

  • Pirate Eye-Patch for your cat. I couldn’t post because the pattern/website no longer exists. But one could easily use their imagination to create one of their own.

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Filed under Aran, Craft, Creativity, Crochet, Fun Stuff, Gifts, Knit, Knitting, Pattern Links, Patterns, Project, Sock Summit, Socks, Stashbuster, Yarn

Ultimate Geekiest Knitting: Programming a Scarf Design

I would love a knitting machine like this but I doubt I’d be able to afford it right now:


I can dream can’t I?

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Filed under Craft, Fun Stuff, Gadgets, Knit, Knitting, Math

Needed some color to brighten up my winter

Hopefully we’ve seen the last of the snow for now. Hopefully.

I meant to post more photos from the dye work I did in December. I finally got around to snapping pictures of the more of the skeins of yarn I dyed.  Here they are for your viewing pleasure.

Northwest Woods (probably for a pair of socks for my brother Ted)

Autumn Fire

Amazon Parrot

Note, I’ve discovered the fine art of squeezing the dye and painting the right amounts of yarn.  I was happy with all my colourways except for one. I didn’t include it here, it was supposed to emulate the colors in a peacock feather, but i think I should have used more dark green. I need to overdye this yarn or repaint it.

Sample of the Blouson from Interweave Knits

I also dyed a good deal of peruvian cotton (about 17 skeins) for the 1824 Blouson pattern.  Let me tell you, dying cotton (and I assume other plant fibers) is a royal pain in the ass.  It wasn’t so much the pre-washing of the fibers in a solution of synthropol then soaking them in a soda ash solution, or dissolving the large amounts of salt into the dye water before adding the urea solution and dye. I REALLY REALLY hated the process of washing out the excess dye and other chemical badness in the yarn after the dyeing was over. Ick. I could never truly felt  that I got it ALL  out. On top of that I’m not sure I want to make a simple stockinette stitch pattern like the Blouson… since dyeing this yarn was such a labor intensive process. Two or three skeins of the yarn are a bit darker than I expected. I think I may have soaked them in too much soda ash solution, but I don’t mind the color imperfection. I think it adds more appeal and a hand-fashioned look to the final product.

Not to mention the warning on the package of the dye said something like… the state of California warns that this produce may cause cancer!!!!

I have decided that I will dye up a few more batches of cotton yarn, just enough to use up the dyes I purchased and from now own I’ll only dye wools, animal fibers and nylon. Or I’ll use Kool-aid and other foodbased dyes.  I have a sweater’s worth of Artfibers Rush I need to dye and some skeins of mercerized cotton. Maybe I should invite some friends over… “Hey, share the cancer!”

Luna dyed with Seafoam & Grey Mist (formerly "Sunlight" yellow)


Filed under Colors, Colorwork, Cotton, Craft, Creativity, Dyeing, Dyeing_yarn, Eco, Fibers, Fun Stuff, Knit, Knitting, Socks, Stockinette, Techniques, Wool, Yarn

Getting back into my Delorean

At knit night last week, I really tried give an adequate description of the site. I have sort of an odyssey back through fashion and time when ever I look at the lileks website. It’s true that much of the stuff here comes from way before my time, but I still enjoy the trip. This site houses one of my most favorite kitsch visuals on the web:

The Grooviest Motel in Wisconsin.

You need to click through the entire site, as you get a ‘walking tour’ of this fabulous hotel (which no longer exists). It looks like an architectural nightmare. I can picture indoor astroturf and red shag carpet. So many beautiful things came out of this era… and so many terribly ugly things too. It seems that this was really a time when people were experimenting with style. Is it me, or have we only been re-hashing styles and reliving nostalgia for the past two decades? Maybe the unique elements of fashion are as imperceptible as the impact of history to contemporary individuals.

Were havin Big Hair

We're havin' "Big Hair"

I sometimes think that the Old Navy and “That Seventies Show” together brought back some of the seventies fashion. And just fading from the limelight (hopefully) has been the obsession with the Eighties. I noticed that despite this ‘dip into the past,’ people are still being selective about what the bring back. Fortunately, there’s been no resurgence of ‘bell bottom’ pants or tidal wave bangs. On the other hand, all these people who adore 80’s music revivals seem to listen only the crap top 40’s. There’s no accounting for taste. Perhaps people want to embrace the vacuous and vapid culture of the 80’s because it’s as good an escape as anything else. Perhaps the nation’s young adults are regressing into their childhood because with the impending doom of failed economies and global warming there’s little else where they can run but to the past.

I barely remember the early to mid seventies, my memories include this polyester pantsuit my mother wore that had the following colors in it (avocado green, mustard yellow, and orange-red). I used to call it her “Del Monte brand” outfit. I also remember the old Betty Crocker Cookbook we had (in a ring binder). I think I tore out the page with the space cupcakes by accident. You could see my greasy little finger prints all over the page, all evidence of my obsessive pleading to make them. My mother, wasn’t much of a cook back then you see, plus she was incredibly health conscious so making cakes and cookies was almost always out of the question.

Famolare Shoes - the ones I had looked like loafers with the wavy soles.

Famolare Shoes - the ones I had looked like loafers with the wavy soles.

My other memories of the 70’s include Famolare shoes, culottes in rusty orange corduroy, page boy haircuts for boys, satin roller derby jackets, the old blue Bel Air my dad used to drive, Holly Hobby and “Love Is…” posters, Jaime Lee Curtis, and Magic Rocks and Sea Monkeys. I don’t think we ever owned a circular bed or had a patch of shag carpet in our house. I’m assuming my mother probably immediately saw that as a dust magnet and allergy hazard.

Still sometimes when I look back into my childhood, I find it reassuring. Perhaps it’s because all those old things seem fresh and new again. It’s as if I was looking at them with the eyes of youth.


Filed under Fashion, Fun Stuff, Humor

New projects and cartoon musings on a sweater for the original dork

Addendum: I found the link to the Scooby Doo parody from the Venture Brothers. You can view it here:

I want to knit for me…. for me and no one else! This selfishness usually occurs right after the holiday knitting frenzy and does not subside until maybe May. I’ve been ill lately and on some days I was too weak even to pick up the needles. Work has been keeping me busy and it’s been about two weeks or so, so I’m in a serious state of withdrawal and the selfish knitting thing will probably help me recuperate. I think I want to make a quick sweater so i’ve been considering making Marilyn in Gianna. I thought of using coral color… but then I paused and thought… orange sweater… why doesn’t ‘orange sweater’ feel right or sound right? OH,yeah… the chunky black glasses, you dork!

Every time I wear an orange sweater I feel like Velma from Scooby Doo. Yes, an Asian Velma. Curse that Velma! I shall never wear an orange sweater again… at least until I get a new pair of glasses.

Scooby Doo stopped being cool when Sarah Michelle Gellar and Freddy Prinze became involved… though most will argue that this happened long before this when the evil little character whose name shall not be mentioned was introduced to the cast.

So how about red? A red sweater would be nice.

All this talk about the Doo reminds me of that great episode of the Venture Bros. with the parody cast from S.D. I couldn’t find a clip of it on the Tube, so here’s another favorite clip:

Come on… he’s in Depeche Mode!


Filed under Fashion, Fun Stuff, Knit, Knitting, Pattern Links, Rambling, Yarn

This makes sense

I know I should now start learning fair isle. It might explain why my most recent book purchase was Scottish Highland Knits.

What kind of yarn are you?

You are Shetland Wool. You are a traditional sort who can sometimes be a little on the harsh side. Though you look delicate you are tough as nails and prone to intricacies. Despite your acerbic ways you are widely respected and even revered.
Take this quiz!

Quizilla |

| Make A Quiz | More Quizzes | Grab Code


Filed under Fun Stuff, Knit, Knitters, Yarn

She’s NOT blinding me with science

Ah, Thomas Dolby…where are you now? I started listening to Miriam’s Knit Science podcast late last year. She does a wonderful job researching styles, techniques, and various topics on the subject of knitting. Her work has been sort of an inspiration to me. Who knows, I have been thinking… maybe I’ll start a knitting history/comedy podcast, but first I need to get a few projects done and focus on some work-related content creation.

In episode 20, she has very informative piece on the origin and manufacture of bamboo needles.  When I was in college I remember buying a bargain set of bamboo needles with sizes 3-10, an amazing steal for what I paid for them (about 10 dollars). I actually still have some of those needles in my collection; though the smaller sizes are a little bent or warped.  Before I bought these needles I used only plastic or metal ones. This was back during the “Dark Ages” when Red Hart was practically the only yarn you could find if you didn’t live in a culture or a large city where knitting stores were accessible.

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Filed under Fun Stuff, Knit, Knitting, Techie

Jam and Jerusalem Craft Night

I’ve recently been really into this show (of course a BBC item) called Jam and Jerusalem. Here’s the first section of the fourth episode. Remember Absolutely Fabulous… this is a creation of Jennifer Saunders. Also, it features an actress from one of my favorite shows ever Father Ted… I’ve included all segments from my favorite Father Ted episode. The Trilogy was a boxed set birthday gift from my very astute brother, Ted. Father Ted, Father Dougal and Father Jack are all priests who have been banished by their diocese to Craggy Island, some God forsaken island. Sorry this has nothing to do with knitting, but I was on a BBC humor roll.
Jam and Jerusalem Craft Night


Father Ted, Father Dougal and Father Jack try to give up Cigarettes, Alcohol and Rollerblading




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Filed under Craft, Fun Stuff

Electronic knitty

Check this out… I think it would be great to apply to a knitted garment just for fun…. hmmm my rusty wheels are spinning.

Lilly Pad Arudino Tutorial for Electronic Embellishments for Textile Projects 


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Filed under Challenge, Craft, Creativity, Embellishment, Fashion, Fun Stuff, Gadgets, Garment Design, Knit, Knitting, Science, Techie