Wednesday, February 27, 2008

We Love Surprises!!

While reading one of my favorite blogs, Chickenlips Knitting, Sharon posed a question in her post about Rod Stewart that only an older-than-dirt person like me would probably know the answer to. It wasn't a contest, but just a question that amused me in my ancient-ness, and so I answered in my comment.

Imagine my surprise when, while later reading her next blog entry, I saw my name mentioned at the bottom of her post....together with the words "I wanna send some yarn." Whaaaaat? For moi?!! In case you don't know, Sharon is a yarn-dyin' Diva of the finest degree and her yarns are lively and colorful and---I have drooled over them many times! It couldn't have been more than just a few days later when.....

"Hey, Mom! Is that the mailman?"

Why, yes! It was! And this is what he brought.....

A wonderful surprise for me! A yummy skein of Sharon's Stitchjones sock loveliness, called "Closer to the Heart." It's hard to capture the colors accurately, but trust me, it's gorgeous! And so soft, too.

Thank you so much, Sharon! I love the yarn and it will truly make a rockin' pair of socks that I can show off under my clear Converse sneaks! So sweet of you to send me such a nice gift, and the note you sent along was equally lovely!

"Can we make some socks from this yarn for me as well? I do have extra toes to cover, you know!"

"Hmmph. I don't know about this sock thing...and more yarn?. I think I disapprove."

"Oh, don't listen to him....he's always a grump. I approve!....Now about those socks...."

We do love a surprise around here---especially in the form of the gift of wool from a very nice person! Thanks again, Sharon! (And BTW, who would have ever thought I'd receive a knitting-related gift for knowing something about Rod Stewart?...and being old enough to know it...heh.)

(If you'd like to see some more of Sharon's great yarn, be sure to go take a look at her new online store.)

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Thanks, Nikki! :)

A few weeks ago I entered a contest on Nikki's blog, and I won! I was so excited to win her contest, even though my history with blog contests has not been the greatest (more about that another time, so as not to detract from the thanks to Nikki and the display of goodies...).

Nikki was so sweet and actually "stalked" my blog to see what I might like. So not only was she nice enough to send a prize, but she cared enough to personalize it as well! She sent some lovely wool in shades of denim blues for a future felting project, which I absolutely love, some stitch markers (always very handy and used often by me), and a cute little sheep figure and sheep card. She even sent a prize for my precious minions as well---a catnip mouse!

Thanks so much for the lovely prizes, Nikki, from both myself and the minion posse! You are a lovely knitblogger, indeed!

While the wool was well-protected from the mitts of ravaging minions during the picture-taking and put away snugly after the photos were taken, unfortunately I cannot say the same about the fate of the poor mousie. I had to beat the minions off of the unfortunate creature long enough to get a picture, but then the carnage began---there was nothing I could do. First the toe-cat had a go at him...

After some fierce, extra-toed abuse, this was followed by a steal by the techno-cat....

who then gave the ill-fated mousie an advanced level thrashing of the worst kind....

....the dreaded bite-claw-kick combo! Ouch! Poor mousie. Let's just say he's not looking so good right now.

However, the cat posse would like me to say in their defense, that the mousie had a snarky smirk on his face from the minute he arrived here that they just didn't like, and he had the nerve to come around smelling like catnip, so of course he had it coming to him! They would never condone an unprovoked attack. Almost never. Not sometimes. (Well, mostly always...but they are minions, after all).

Thanks again, Nikki! We all love our prizes :)

>^oo^< >^,,^< >^--^<

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

My Warm and Fuzzy Heart(s)

I have always loved Valentine's Day. Not so much for the commercially-required purchased shows of affection for our loved ones (paper valentines, flowers and chocolate, all marked up 500% in honor of the occasion), but rather for the celebration of my favorite iconic shape---the heart! I am a lover of all things heart-shaped and Valentine's Day simply gives me an excuse to combine my love of heart shapes with my love of fiber and felting!

As you know, I adore felting and the resulting firm-but-fuzzy felted objects produced by the process. To me, felting is a magical illusion carried out with the addition of some warm water and friction to a usually somewhat floppy knitted object to produce a lovely, fibery piece of art.

How else but magic can you explain the ability to turn this basket full of non-descript pieces of knitting....

into these....

and these!!...

Yes, it's magic I tell you! I have completed many a felting project and I never cease to feel that little squeeee! of excitement every time, as I mold the felted objects into their final shapes for drying---and these little heart baskets and coasters were no exception!

The pattern I used to make these hearts is a Fibertrends pattern called "Heartfelt Expressions" by Evelyn Clark. I used Lamb's Pride Bulky and size 13 needles, dropped them in some hot water and woolwash, stirred vigorously and....Voila! Fuzzy hearts!

Since it's hard to see scale in these pictures, the coasters are all about 6 inches or more across the widest point, so quite generous in size. The hearts are about 6 inches wide by 5 inches long at the opening, and a bit wider at the base. The pattern has various options for bind-offs and height of the baskets or trays. I did each one a little bit differently in those respects, but I love how all of them turned out!

My Valentine's Day will be spent at Madrona, spending some time with the lovely Miss Evelyn Clark herself, and probably crippling my checkbook at the marketplace...

Happy Valentine's Day to all of you! May your hearts be warm and fuzzy....

ETA: Thank you, blogger, for that lovely last pic....I love you, too....