Friday, May 29, 2009

In the Bag

One of my rites of summer is the quest for the perfect summer bag. It usually takes me till late July to find a somewhat suitable bag. The perfect one is out there--but I've never found it.

One summer, I saw a woman carrying an orange bag. It was perfect! The color was just right. The size was just right. There were plenty of pockets. I stopped her and asked where she'd gotten the bag. She gave me a sad smile and told me she had bought it at a sample sale the previous year. It had been the only one in the showroom and it was her understanding the only one made. She agreed that it was perfect. And, no, she wouldn't sell it to me.

And so the search continued. I knew the perfect bag was out there and that someday I would find it.

I think I finally might have found it.

My checklist:
Must be light to carry. Yes! The fabric is a waterproof vinyl.
Shoulder bag. Yes! And the straps are neither too long nor too short.
Must have plenty of pockets. Yes! There's just enough for my stuff.
Must not be black. Yes! Every bag I own is black. I want something different for summer.
Right size. Yes! It's roomy without being bulky.
Must be tailored looking. Yes! I don't like the hobo bag look.

A couple of more views:

I hate schlepping both a purse and tote, so everything has to fit into my handbag.

In the front pockets: cell phone in one; camera in the other.
My metrocard is in the back pocket.
One side pocket holds a Purell bottle; the other is for a water bottle.
Inside, there's a zippered compartment for my wallet. And there's enough room in the main section for the Kindle, my date book, a knitting project, make up bag, small notebook and pen.

That's all my necessities to get through the day.

The other afternoon, I was walking along Madison Avenue and a woman stopped me. She wanted to know where my bag was from because she thought it looked, "just perfect."

Yes, it is!

Except. . . well, except I wish it came in beige with red trim.

(For those interested, it's a the small cargo bag from Delfino.)

Thursday, May 28, 2009

The Magical Fix

Many, many, many thanks to the talented Aryn of Knitty City, the best yarn store in NYC, for fixing the mistake.

I wasn't exactly honest yesterday. What you saw was not only the mistake, but also my attempt to fix it. And I wasn't going down that road by myself again!

Yarn Journey, a zillion million thanks to you for suggesting I ask my LYS for help. I would never have thought to do this. I probably would kept the shawl as it was and gradually grow to dislike it. All I would ever see is the mistake.

Aryn worked magic with the crochet hook. Isn't she amazing?! And, yes, Aryn is smiling in the photo. She was having a good time.

Perfect! I'm so pleased!

From all the fiddling, the stitches that were affected are a little loose. But blocking will take care of that. More magic!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

To Rip or Not to Rip

You see that nasty piece of wonkiness above the red marker? The huge hole. The K2tog that isn't. A missing yarn over.

I was gonna keep it a secret. Not tell you. Not make it public.

But then I saw that a certain knitting diva has a similar problem. And she shouted it into knitting cyberspace. If Ann can embrace the wonkiness, so can I.

In the comments, some people advise her to rip it back. But many others are advocating for a sleight of hand. I have full confidence in whatever Ann chooses--the shawl will be fine. Her ripping back will go smoothly. Or if she does a duplicate stitch, it'll be perfect.

I don't have such confidence in me. I have visions. Visions of stitches running hither and thither if I rip it back. Visions of bobbles if I attempt to duplicate stitch and weave.

So I do nothing. I'm paralyzed with indecision.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Stitched in Groton

Seeing the multi-talented Sonja's embroidery project reminded me that I've forgotten to write about a wonderful store I found in Groton, CT during our recent road trip.

Salt & Light Stitchery--no website--is a tiny, pretty store

chock-full of vintage and "period inspired" goodies. Quilts, loom-woven placemats, tatted hankies and pillowcases, hand-dipped candles, lace doilies, hand-made soaps and

embroidered tea towels and hankies

and embroidered pillow cases

I was in heaven!
Did anything follow me home? But of course!

Store information:
Salt & Light Stitchery
179 Thames Street
Groton, CT
phone: 860-449-0120

No affiliation with this gem of a store except as a happy customer.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Always on my Mind

I'm feverish and achy and coughing. It's just a cold---WebMD assures me that this isn't swine flu.

Knitting? Nope. It takes too much energy to move the needles.

However, that doesn't mean that knitting isn't on my mind. Downloaded a new knitting mystery.

I've only read 7% of the book (I love, love, love how Kindle tells us how much of the book we've read.)--but, so far, it's perfect for this feverish knitter.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Quirky and Tricky

Last night, at knit group, somebody asked me why I had a pin in my project.

I've mentioned before that I'm a slow, distracted, impatient knitter. But I'm also a product knitter--I like to know that all this knitting is getting me somewhere.

So, every morning, I place a little gold pin on the row where I begin knitting. I then see exactly how much I get done (or not done!) each day.

It's a little mind trick. When I see that I'm actually accomplishing something, I don't feel as if I'm in a knitting abyss and I continue to knit.

Here's another trick I'm using on the Summer Lake Shawl:

The multi-talented Sonja once sent me interlocking stitch markers--one green, the other red--to help me keep it straight when I had to increase every other row. Green=go and red = stop.
After I did the increase (green stitch marker), I'd flip to the red as a reminder not to increase next time.

I've used the trick of flipping stitch markers on many projects since.

For the shawl, I'm flipping blue and purple.

Bear with me, my explanation is somewhat convoluted:
Blue sounds like two. Two is close to three. AHA--this is the row where I begin with three knit stitches.
Purple reminds me of "for purple mountain majesties. . . " For = four. This is the row that starts with four knit stitches.

Like I said, convoluted--but, hey, it works!

What quirky tricks to you have?

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Must Focus!

Hubster and I were on the road again this weekend

Look at all that spring green (and some pink, too.)

And all this green kept reminding me of the gorgeous Shi Bui sock yarn in my stash. Enough for a shawl.

NOOOOOOOO! Must stop thinking and step up the knitting.

I'm giving myself a deadline for the Summer Lake Shawl--a month. After all it's called the SUMMER Lake Shawl for a reason! But if slowpoke, easily distracted me doesn't make that deadline--I'll aim for two months.

Some knitting on the road was done. But slippery yarn and bumpy roads make for a lot of setting-aside of the needles.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

H is for

the heavy rain today

at the new Yankee Stadium.

This would have been the view from our seats

If there hadn't been a rainout.

But during the rain delay, we had fun gawking at the sights

and we were happy just to be at the Stadium.

Though if I were this person, I wouldn't be too happy.