coiled: May 2008

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Wednesday, May 21, 2008


This Saul Steinberg drawing (from 1971) says it all. Is there anything else? I have (books), here are some images that inspire me.

Embroidered coverlet, Mexican dated 1786, image from American Quilts and Coverlets in the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Wouldn't these characters make charming dolls?

The next few are from Knot ISBN978-4-07-257058-6. Click the photos to see them bigger.

ETA: Sources for Japanese craft books Kinokuniya. I shop at the store in Los Angeles. Here is a link to Knot on Amazon Japan. I haven't ordered from them before so I don't have advice on how to navigate the site. I also found Knot listed on Yes Asia. I have ordered books from Yes Asia before. It's pretty straightforward.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Mother's Day

Abi sent this photo that she took of my mom and me on Mother's Day. We really were that happy! By the looks of that empty cup in my hand, I just finished drinking a very strong margarita.

These are my presents for being a mom. It's not bad having another gift holiday. I love my new books!

Knot. Crochet jewelry and embellishments that are photographed and styled beautifully. ISBN978-4-07-257058-6

Aran Knit. It's hard to resist these lovely cabled sweaters and accessories. ISBN978-4-277-11401-1

American Quilts and Coverlets

Monday, May 12, 2008


This weekend we helped to celebrate our friend’s 7th birthday!
We made her a doll as a gift. I employed Johnny’s help. He was the master stuffer; the parts I stuffed he re-stuffed to look better. There is an art to stuffing. After trial and error we discovered that a size 19 Daisy knitting needle was the best tool for getting to the bottoms of the arms and legs. The needle nose pliers helped in extracting stuffing that had gotten packed too tightly.
Felix tentatively named her Marcia but the naming is entirely up to the recipient.
I dug through my swatch stash and found an exact replica in doll size of my Knitty skirt. And, the best part is that the knitty skirt belongs to our friend’s mom.

Her blouse is made from two swatches I knit for the lace dress in Greetings from Knit Café. I crocheted them together with some bright pink mohair. Her necklace is a string of sequins and her hair is Donegal tweed.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Gossamer Stars Scarf

Yesterday, the mailman delivered my Summer ’08 issue of Interweave Knits. I designed two patterns, Gossamer Stars Scarf and the Tapestry Skirt. Living in L.A. summer knitting is a natural fit for me. I can wear knitted skirts year round and I’ve always been a scarf girl. Today, I’ll talk about the Gossamer Stars Scarf. I noticed that the photograph in the magazine shows the wrong side of the scarf. Not that it matters, I mean both sides are pretty, but if you’re reading the chart you might see the difference.

For once, I managed to take a couple of photos of my project before sending it off. Maybe you can see some of the details in my backyard, knitting photo studio!
The yarn is Fiesta La Luz, luscious to knit with and touch, and the needle size is US 7 (4.5 mm).

I wanted to show my submission swatch. I don’t have the original but a scan of what I sent in. It’s worked in Fiddlesticks Knitting Zephyr Lace Weight Wool-Silk (50% Merino Wool, 50% Tussah Silk); 630 yds [576 m] / 2 ounces; Aegean Blue. I used needle size US 5 (3.75 mm).
If you’re looking for lace weight yarn I highly recommend this one. It is wonderful to work with and comes in a wide range of beautiful colors.

I’ve been asked for yarn substitution suggestions. I think it looks beautiful in both yarns and I say choose a yarn that is pretty, has drape and is monochromatic. It would probably detract from the stitches if you use a variegated yarn.

Friday, May 09, 2008


Gudrun from the Shetland Trader tagged me. I was also tagged awhile back by creative yarn but I never got around to doing it. Both memes are kind of the same, one is answer these questions and the other is, list 7 random facts.

"The rules of the game get posted at the beginning. Each player answers the questions about themselves. At the end of the post, the player then tags 5-6 people and posts their names, then goes to their blogs and leaves them a comment, letting them know they’ve been tagged and asking them to read your blog.

Let the person who tagged you know when you’ve posted your answer."

1) What was I doing 10 years ago?
Hmmm, 1997 was a big transition year for me. I broke up with my then boyfriend and moved to an apartment by myself, started a new job and met my current boyfriend. Phew. Oops! Ten years ago would’ve been 1998, not 1997. Duh. I can’t recall 1998, so it must have been okay. I was working retail in Beverly Hills, thinking about being a schoolteacher, and painting a lot.

2) What are 5 things on my to-do list for today (not in any particular order):
Answer emails, take the kid to have his TB test checked (needs to be done for entry into public school), return the book I bought my mom for mother’s day since she already owns it (I knew she would love it!), get my ass in gear with submissions looming ever so close, and work on a doll for a present (needs to be finished by Sunday).

3) Snacks I enjoy:
Rice pudding, Pinkberry – original flavor with chocolate chips, (sounds like all I eat is dessert), a little cheese with my white wine, suddenly I love white wine but not like a connoisseur, no, I like it watered down with ice cubes, but is that a snack? I like fruit, fresh strawberries, crisp apples, and sweet oranges; and trail mix with walnuts and raisons.
Want to hear a Pinkberry story? You do! Felix and I went the other day. The day he wore his poncho. While I was daydreaming and relishing every bite, he jammed his finger into a little tiny hole (cut-out) in the chair. He says to me, “mommy my finger is stuck. It’s been there a long times.” He had crammed his ring finger at a weird angle so how ever I tried to pull it out he would scream “IT HURTS”.
So, consequently the manager heard us, ran over with lotion and I desperately squirted lotion all over the top and bottom of the chair. Finally, I got the finger out but not before I had visions of firemen and rescue workers sawing the chair in half.
Needless to say, we left hugging each other and very tired from the drama.

4) Things I would do if I were a billionaire:
Hahaha. I don’t know! The typical things that people do when they suddenly have money SPEND IT.

5) Places I have lived:
Okay, I started to write down the places I lived but it is so incredibly long. I deleted it at the point where I would have been a teenager because I couldn’t deal with walking down memory lane. Let’s just say I have moved A LOT. It’s too much!

So here is the random facts part: As you may have noticed I don't follow directions very well. It's not for lack of trying. I went to therapy once and the therapist told me I was an airhead. I didn't like that!

I like to be alone but only with people around me. Doesn’t make sense? I like having the choice to be alone otherwise, I get lonely; I know I know, I sound like an airhead!

Do you want to play along? Tag, You're it!

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

poncho style

This is hand-knit wearing in action. My kid won’t wear a sweater for five minutes but he wore a poncho all day.
He asked me in the morning, “Mommy, you made this? Did it take a lot of times?”
“Yes. I made it and it took a while.”
“Oh, mommy it’s beautiful. What’s it called?"
"A poncho. It's pretty cool, you look like you're ready to ride a horse in the old days".

Then, a few minutes later I overheard him telling our little three-year-old neighbor, when asked what he was wearing, “it’s just a dress. My mom made it and it’s beautiful.”

We ran around town today like two kids on vacation. On a weekday afternoon, we were the only riders on the train.

ETA: The pattern is Prankster Poncho from Boho Baby Knits and the yarn is Filatura Di Crosa 127 Print (#36 Teal).

Friday, May 02, 2008


I’ve been knitting squares. It means more stash busting and some much-needed mindless knitting. I really do knit to relax but I also use it to challenge my abilities to use math creatively as in writing patterns in multiple sizes.
I guess I need a little bit of both and like to alternate between challenging and relaxation projects.

Also, last week I taught a class on embroidering knits. It was great fun but a lot of work to prepare for. I knit quite a few squares for the class and had square fever afterwards.
For the class, the squares are done in stockinet stitch. I had the students work a sampler using the face from the beatnik doll found in Boho Baby Knits.

I also had the owl face ready, but we didn’t have time to get to that one. The owl face is one of the decorations on the bonnets from Boho Baby.

All these other squares are for a blanket. They are garter stitch. Ah, lovely, easy, textural, lays flat, garter stitch I love you.

I got on a kick with planning patchwork blankets and can’t stop. Right now, I’m working with what’s in the stash, Brown Sheep Nature Spun sport weight in a variety of colors that I used to make my dolls. I’ve been studying the color card and feel tempted to buy more colors. This is how THE STASH gets to be so huge, there’s always a need for more!