Saturday, January 12, 2008

Time, Marching On~~

I have a new Resolution: keep track of all knitting projects. (Well duuuh, Dale-Harriet, haven't you been doing that all along?) That is to say, of course I keep track of my toques, they're commissions, so I have a little notebook in which I jot the name, address & e-dress of the fellows ordering them. I also note what color they want, the length they select, and perhaps a little note about it (for example, if they won the toque in an auction).

Like, there's this toque. Interesting, because it almost looks pinkish-red, and in truth it's a brick-y orange-y darkish red. If you know what I mean. As you can see, it's very close to finished which is good; the fellow who requested it is going to participate in a dogsled race next month and if ever a double cap would be welcome, that would surely be it.

I mean to finish it tomorrow, which is Sunday. I'm not a very fast knitter but I am steady - I have "Stardust" (the movie) rented, and I watched it once but I mean to watch it again, knitting steadily - should get pretty close to finishing it before the end of the film and then I'll squieege down the decreases and call it good. Or "George", you know. Then I'll be free to start...........the next toque.

NOTE: I got a new commission yesterday, a fellow who lives in Canada. Because there are still four toques in the book, I am going to literally set everything aside and do a Marathon Knit. I'm wanting, bad, to finish the baby wrap adapted from the Irish Hiking Scarf (and then the second identical one in the other colorway) and the Paton SWS scarf, the one-row pattern, also on the needles. The scarf doesn't have a person waiting for it, so it's going to the bottom of the list...but it's still ON THE LIST. Which will be resumed when I have finished all the toques.

I've had sort of a sabbatical from knitting, I discover, having done just a row or two here and there through the holiday season. I regret it. I need to make up for it. I have spoken.

On the subject of Keeping Track, I'm trying to design a page, which I can then print out, photocopy, and keep in a little binder. I think I have everything I want on the page figured out: name of project; name of pattern; needles; yarn (including color, yardage, &c); dates started and ended; then name, address &c for recipient, and a space for any oddments or notes. Am I forgetting anything? I have a sneakly little feeling that everyone in the whole knitterly world has these wonderful little books with every bit of information about every product they've ever done since birth (they probably also have everything in their stash neatly listed, alphabetical lists of every project they're going to do until they croak, perfect Christmas card lists and spices neatly arranged in matching glass bottles in the cupboard.) Well, it's a start.

Speaking of oddments: I sometimes watch "Project Runway", a reality show about these people vying to become clothing designers. They get these challenges wherein they have to draw some kind of garment, rush out and buy a hunk o' cloth, go back to their studio, and then MAKE A GARMENT. They flippantly cut and pin and tuck and fold and sew and then put the completed garment on a scrawny model and get it judged. Big deal. EXCEPT! I cannot sew. I honestly, truly, earnestly, religiously do not sew. There isn't a pattern made that I can turn into clothing. You know the ones that say "Any idiot can sew this tonight and wear it tomorrow!"? Well, dearies - not THIS idiot. I am in slack-jawed awe of them what does. Oh, I have a sewing machine. If I approach my machine, it begins a low growling in the end of its cord, down near the plug. If I get closer, a very shrill, thin little whine starts - I think it comes from somewhere around the clever little light on the back of the machine that illuminates the fabric. If I'm cheeky enough to sit down, place cloth in the machine and prepare to sew, even if I'm trying very hard to exude Confidence and Sewerly Skill - a sort of trembling vibration overtakes the wheel and I hear a mechanical, tinny voice saying SCREW YOU, FOOL! "Your actions are ill-advised. Move back and step away from the zipper foot."

You need more proof? I once took a workshop in which we made little dolls in the style of the Ojibway playthings enjoyed (and made) by little tiny Indian girls during the fur trade. It involved sewing all around the edge of a gingerbreadman-shaped doll of very soft deerskin. In the process I poked my thumb with the needle. Three times. Deep. A day later it was red, swollen and angry, and in no time there were hot red streaks shooting up my arm. I went to Urgent Care and was told that I had either the worst case of blood poisoning he'd ever seen or advanced beri-beri; the prognosis looked grim and I would either a) lose my arm at the shoulder; b) lose my thumb at the joint; c) recover by taking a whole bunch of antibiotics and signing a Promissory Note to the Devil (in blood-from my thumb) that I would never ever ever ever never again try to sew anything. I opted for (c). NOTE: I'm actually pretty good at embroidery, needlepoint and cross-stitch!

One of my favorite words is "GHOTI". Do you know that one? It's proof that English is the most difficult of any language. To wit: that word (GHOTI) is pronounced "FISH". What? you DOUBT me??'s the "GH" from enouGH , the "o" from wOmen , and the "ti" from naTIon . Comprendez-vous? Sheesh.

RANT WARNING: for some reason the landlord of the house next door (which has stood empty since May and still is) has parked an extra car next to the garage, which means that it is right outside my kitchen window - and is therefore what I get to look at when I have my morning cup o' tea. It's ugly. I hate it. Not that the garage itself is sterling, but this just looks crummy and I'm trying to figure out a diplomatic way to say to the landlord GET THE DAMNED UGLY CAR OUTTA MY MORNING TEA!! Key word, "diplomatically". I am, if nothing else, a lady.

And finally, before I unplug my beloved laptop and prepare to TOQUE till I drop -- we finally are getting some fresh, new beautiful snow to replace that lost in the January Thaw, so here are a couple of pictures in our breathtakingly beautiful Arboretum, across the street from which I live. So to speak. I present, for your enjoyment:

Isn't it beautiful? I love Madison.


kmkat said...

Toque away, lady! Those frost-covered trees are indeed lovely.

janna said...

I have the same inability to sew. I come from a family full of women who sew beautifully. I do almost every fiber-related craft you've heard of -- but sewing scare the bejeesus out of me!

Norah said...

Great work.