Category Archives: out & about

Baby’s first knitwear

M in BSJ
Keeping baby warm in wool.

The Baby Surprise Jacket that no-longer-secret pal Tanya knit for my baby-to-be has been keeping Morgana nice and toasty as the weather turns from fall to early winter. (We’ve had real snow here a few days! Just nothing that sticks.) I’ve also been knitting her a few little hats (you can see one in-progress beside me on the couch!), since baby hats never seem to be made to baby-head size, but I also seem to have a great knack for losing them in the house, so there are no photos! Thank goodness baby things are so small and quick to knit — I think we’ve got a chilly winter ahead, and many things to make up!

She also sported the purple BSJ on her first-ever outing — to the Purple Purl, of course! (Let’s get this one addicted to yarn good and early, shall we?) The Purl celebrated it’s one-year anniversary of opening this past Saturday, and some of us gathered Friday night to wish them a happy birthday, complete with surprise presents!

mom & baby at the Purl
Mom & Baby leave the house for the first time, to sit comfortably amid good friends and colourful yarns!

jen & miko & present
Miko loves the new ball-winder — Jennifer might prefer the bubble wrap! :)

More photos of the baby and the shop’s celebration can be found on my Flickr.

On the whole, we’re all doing really well: settling into new routines and roles, gaining confidence as parents, loving the baby-time, starting to leave the house for errands and fun, and even finding a bit of time to knit!



Filed under baby, knitting, out & about, sweaters

Photos, photos everywhere

…But none from my camera. I have been battling near-terminal “camnesia” these days!

Last night I got to attend my first-ever swanky cocktail party for a large urban centre “cultural event”! Upon the generous nomination from an independent musician friend of mine, I participated in the photography project Toronto’s Milles Femmes, one of the “1000 x portraits” series by French photographer Pierre Maraval. I had a very professional little make-up and photo session a month or so back, and yesterday evening got all dolled up to view the installation and ate tiny hamburgers and drank many glasses of sparkling water, both of which were tremendous fun!

If you check out The Making of Toronto’s Milles Femmes website, you can watch a small YouTube video about the project and get a peek at my photo — I’m the last face you’ll see there! Damn you WordPress, why will you not let me embed this video??

And in a very similar vein, this weekend Franklin Habit‘s 1000 Knittters is making a Toronto stop, and I’ll be in the morning group (#22, whoo!). Will I be seeing you there? Or perhaps later that day, for the Yarn Harlot‘s birthday celebration? What fun lies ahead!

But, since I cannot offer any photos of my self, my photographers (ha! like I’m someone fancy!), or even of own today, I’ll leave you with the fun little Flickr mosaic meme:

Flickr Meme Mosaic

1. Alas / Hope is the thing with feathers…, 2. Fajitas, 3. wanker chick with hickey, 4. Burgundy Dragonfly, 5. 16/365: Flickr Halloween Choice #4: Hugh Jackman, 6. Tea Corner…, 7. KELLS PRIORY. KILKENNY, IRELAND., 8. Double Chocolate Cheesecake, 9. The Writer, 10. inhibited creativity, 11. Hide-and-Seek, 12. Amelias Flower

Want to play too?
a. Type your answer to each of the questions below into Flickr Search.
b. Using only the first page, pick an image.
c. Copy and paste each of the URLs for the images into fd’s mosaic maker.

1. What is your first name?
2. What is your favorite food?
3. What high school did you go to?
4. What is your favorite color?
5. Who is your celebrity crush?
6. Favorite drink?
7. Dream vacation?
8. Favorite dessert?
9. What do you want to be when you grow up?
10. What do you love most in life?
11. One word to describe you.
12. Your Flickr name.

Tune in next time for a Secret Pal questionnaire, and perhaps a tale of 6+lbs of camel hair…


Filed under out & about, rambling

The Update Post Without Much Content

In order to celebrate Jodi‘s return to Canada and completion of her MFA (Yay Jodi!), we took off down to Windsor for the long weekend, sharing the ride with Krista and hanging out with people we haven’t seen in far too long, especially all in one place. The party was a tonne of fun (though I pooped out ‘early’ at midnight), and the next day was spent lounging around Jodi’s place until we all got up the energy to lounge around Kelly‘s farm.

The farm, as usual, was also great: the lambs have grown huge, the sheep have manicured the property into fine lawns (sometimes to Raven’s chagrin, I think he said one ate a small peach tree), the chickens are still humorous. There was a small rabbit-related tragedy, but I guess that’s just the way country life goes, and a side effect of it all may mean Kelly has angoras in her future…

Midwife’s appointment last week went really well. I loved hearing the baby’s heartbeat! (Probably could have listened to it for hours — anyone know a good fetal heart monitor rental in Toronto? or recommend a similar thing for purchase for the later weeks?)

I have continued to lose a little weight, so I’ve been given the happy directive to eat what I want whenever, and not to fuss about the calorie content (so long as I keep eating my fruit and veg.) even if it’s ice cream. I’m now in the second trimester, but don’t really notice any big changes to how I feel. That mythical “energy boost” can come along anytime now!

Despite the weight loss, there have definitely been some physical increases. I had to break down and get ‘maternity’ pants. Oh, the comfort! Also got an incredibly generous loan of clothing from Emily, so I should be fitly clothed for a while. I long to sew myself wrap dresses and stretchy skirts, but until the creative mojo returns it’s not going to happen.

Week So Far
I taught at the Purl last night. I think it went kind-of awfully (deep apologies to any of my students who actually read this blog), mostly due to my inability to think or communicate anymore. Jennifer and Miko seem to still like me, though, and I’m engaged for another class next week (thank the lares and penates it’s one I’ve taught before).

Otherwise, there has been so little knitting in my like I’m beginning to get despondent. Where are the oversized cardigans, the booties and BSJs? I haven’t even turned the heel on that Noro sock.

I do, however, continue to acquire yarn.


Filed under out & about, pregnancy, rambling, teaching


Even though Tuesday was a regular-ol’ workday, I managed to squeeze in some Inexplicable Knitter Behaviour!

I was up in the not-yet-bright and early (uhg), but caught a few sock-scavenger hunt photos on my walk to work…
Stephanie St
Any bonus points for “Stephanie” street, d’you think?

I bravely did inexplicable things at work…
sock & photocopier
Yes, I took a photocopy of the sock, too. And scored a photo with my boss, who was a good sport.

Krista and I did some mad dashing around downtown after work to get in as many points as we could…

Eaton Centre geese

Henry Moore sculpture

policeman with sock
The policeman was bemused.

TTC driver with sock
The TTC driver was possible harder to convince than the cop.

I scored about 30points all told, which i think is not bad for someone without the whole day to collect neighbourhood signs and landmark-points! You can see my whole scavenger hunt photos at my Flickr account.

Of course, that wasn’t it by far! The theatre was packed with knitters…

who got to enjoy the Skydiggers…
Andy & Michael of the Skydiggers

the scavenger-hunt awards…
Rachel H and the prizes

and of course, Stephanie Pearl-McPhee!
the Yarn Harlot speaks

Stephanie was humorous, thoughtful, open, and engaging, as always. It was so great for me to see her in a public venue again; I got to reflect on how less than a year ago when I went to her last launch I was start-struck and hadn’t ever knit with others before! How things have changed… I also got to meet up with some great folks I don’t see very often, and meet in person others I’ve only known ‘online’ (though looking at that first launch post, it turns out LadyO and I had met before! lol). Then it was off to the pub for shared food and fun.

All in all, it was a fantastic time. When can we do it again?


Filed under knitting, out & about, rambling

Ready, Set…

Are you ready for a day of Inexplicable Knitter Behaviour?

I’ve got my checklist all printed. (Yes, I’ve scouted out likely locations for my sock photos. I’ve got to work during the day, so I’ve got to be efficient!) Likewise cash has been taken out, in prep for prime snack- and book-buying, pretty notebook is at ready (for taking down blog addresses, of course), and little cards have been hastily printed (yes, I am that dorky) for this giving to others (how much am I wanting a set of MOO cards?).

stuff ready for launch

I’ve been in touch with my knitterly friends from far and near (give me a shout if you’re coming!), and hopefully will meet up with some of them before the event — someone save me a seat!) and the rest at the pub afterwards.

This is me! See you there?

A sock is in progress, of course.

sock WIP
Arucania Ranco, basic sock “recipe” (my own, but in the spirit of Stephanie).

Oh, and my camera, of course! Have I forgotten anything?


Filed under knitting, out & about, socks

Linked In

liberate your laceweight!

Apparently, one can be “harlotted” by other bloggers as well!

My Eye-of-Partridge shawl just got a shout-out from Amy, in solidarity for her “Liberate your Lacewieght” campaign. And boy-howdy, must she have some readership, because they’ve all stopped by here today!

*waves to new blog people*

Thanks to everyone who’s left me a comment, and to the vastness of you out there who have climbed my “stats” page to new heights, providing me with great entertainment :) I hope you’ve enjoyed seeing my mindlessly-easy-but-very-fun shawl pattern, and think it would be awesome if other folks knit one too. (I have a few other patterns, too, if you’re interested.)

I’m just sorry that the blog’s been so dead around here otherwise! I’ve barely been out to knit-nights, let alone done any actual knitting. Maybe I should cast on a stockinette ‘tube’ scarf a la Amy — I think that’s about all my brain has the power to deal with lately!


Filed under free patterns, knitting, originals, out & about, rambling, shawls

Happy Holidays!

Back again from the Grand Holiday Tour, and hoping everyone had as happy holidays as I! Apart from being internet-free for the better part of a week (and none too active before that) many things have been happening!

I survived my pre-holiday bake-a-thon, including Icing Night (a new tradition of mine), and all my friends and family got cookie trays.

christmas cookies

Thanks to the Pioneer Woman, I had beautifully decorated sugar cookies this year.

I finished all my holiday knitting (mostly). Some things were gifted to other folks than I had originally been knitting for (Koolhaus, Endpaper mitts), but everything worked out just right.

The big one was a Swallowtail Shawl I was knitting for my MIL — finished knitting at 5:30pm Christmas eve, blocked in secret later that night, ready for sneaking under the tree in the morning!
swallowtail shawl
Swallowtail’s lacy tip.

I myself got some fibery gifts: Vogue Stitchionary #1, a 1/2lb Coopworth and 1/2lb merino-silk blend to spin, oh, and just a tiny bit of something else…
qiviuq yarn
My brother in the Yukon loves me!

Also received, not as a Christmas present but coincidentally timed…
wheel whorl

And now I’m back home, looking forward to New Year’s parties, hanging out with friends, spending days in my pyjamas, and knitting things just for me!
knitted clog

FiberTrends felted clog, pre-felting — it’s huge!


Filed under fibre, FOs, knitting, lace, out & about, rambling, spinning, yarn

Just My Week

This is just my week.

I’m overtired, working overtime, and still have a very long work-week ahead of me…

I have in no way finished knitting, shopping, or baking for the holidays…

It is cold and icy and snowy and I am wearing impractical boots…

And yet

I have fibery gifties in the mail for me, which will arrive like a surprise from Santa when I’ve forgotten about it entirely…

I have made great new friendships with some terribly nifty knitterly folk, and am doing things that would probably make you all jealous, so I won’t go into the details I can barely keep from typing they’re just so darnedly, unexpectedly cool…

I have a partner who recognizes my stress, does all our laundry on his day off, and is willing to pick me up and drive me to the yarn shop so that I can have some down-time in the company of knitters…

So really, when you think about it, I guess things aren’t so bad.

In fact, I’m a pretty lucky blogger here. I have spindles made and ready to (hopefully) sell (!), and have been getting a huge kick out of all the links you folks are sending me for my contest. If you haven’t entered yet, just pop over there and leave me a comment — I think with a few more I’ll be needing to shop for at least three prizes! If you already have, or are just bored, pop over there and read some of the great links!


Filed under contest, out & about, rambling

Crafts and Cocoa

EDIT: This post has been stolen by some sort of horrible blog-bot and appears in full at “” THIS IS NOT ME, and I am really upset that my words and photos have been stolen whole-hog. Anyone know how to make this stop?

Dru’s off on a Boy’s Day Out (read: all-day video game-a-thon), so I’ve had a nice quiet afternoon to myself. I spend a few hours on Queen St. West in fabric, bead, and button shops, which are all glorious and overwhelming in their own way, and did a very good job of a) getting what I needed and b) not going to any yarn stores (ok, so I went into Americo, but only becuase I knew I wouldn’t buy anything there!). My haul for the day was: 1) beads, for spindle-whorls, 2) spindle whorl shafts, 3) adhesive, and 4) lining fabric. (I am so restrained!)

glass beads
Glass beads for whorls.

plastic beads

Plastic, but very pretty, beads for whorls.

This is the fabric I bought:
lining fabric
Burgundy-purple kasha lining (a satin-fronted, flannel-backed lining, perfect for winter coats).

It is going to go into this coat:
winter coat

I bought this coat in early September last year because I loved it (and still do). It is wool (a passerby once has even guessed part cashmere); it has amazing Victorian-esq details and very clever feminine seaming; it is warm and lovely. Unfortunately, on top of being shamefully in need of a good de-linting* and missing a button**, it is also quite dreadfully ripped inside:

coat - inside

I don’t even have pockets anymore. This needs to be fixed! And, since I have the technology (sewing machine on loan), ability ( I’ve even made a complete winter coat once before, with much advice from Kelly), and bloody-mindedness (what, like I’d actually pay someone else to sew it?!?), I will be doing the work myself. This involves pre-washing the fabric, cutting the entirity of the old lining out from the coat, using it to get my pattern, cutting out the pieces, sewing them together (properly, without taking my usual no-pins, kamikaze, git’er done approach), and hand-stitching the hem. Which I don’t feel like doing today, and you can’t make me! :P

I have spend several hours making spindles, though, so barring the adhesive issues (anyone know of a mega-adhesive that works like a gel or putty?) I feel like I’ve acomplished some good today. Now I’m going to curl up on the couch with my knitting, drink some hot chocolate, and relax!

And speaking of hot cocoa… there’s going to be a new swap starting up for Jan/Feb, the Mmmm…Hot Cocoa chocolate and yarn swap! Channon tipped me off to this, and it sounds like it’ll be awesome. There’s a contest on to spead the word, so when sign-ups open on Dec. 15, tell them you heard about it here!

And speaking of contestsdon’t forget to enter mine! I’m leaving it open until Friday, and I’m loving discovering your favourite blog posts! Don’t be shy, leave me a comment!!

*I am such a geek that even typing “de-lint” I think of one of my favorite authors!

**I tried to find buttons, but I guess after being nearly lost in the labyrinthine fabric stores and barely avoiding the catfights at the bead stores (wow are those bead ladies pushy!), I just didn’t have the stamena to endure the wall-to-wall boxes of buttons. I can always go back later!


Filed under contest, crafting, DIY, drop-spindle, out & about, sewing


… but now it was understood that something quite exceptional was being planned for that autumn. Bilbo was going to be eleventy-one, 111, a rather curious number, and a very respectable age…

This is my eleventy-first blog post. In the grand tradition of hobbits everywhere, I think this curious number is quite special, and deserving of a bit of a party, don’t you?

Well then, as everyone knows, at a real hobbit party it’s the guests that get the gifts! While I can’t provide something for each and every one that visits here (and I know there are a fair number of you!), I think I can find a present or two around here somewhere…

Unless my stats page is lying to me, I have a much larger readership than commenters. Let’s say that the more comments I get, the more yarn I’ll give away… maybe increase at ten, 25, 50, and so on?

I’m betting that just as hobbits are drawn to a party with the promise of good food and ale, so are knit-bloggers drawn to a blog contest with the chance of free yarn! So come sit under the party tree, and leave me a comment with a link to your favorite blog post (best story, most amazing photos, funniest tale, deepest thoughts, whatever, from wherever!) for a chance to win some sock yarn or other such fiber-treat!

* * * * * *

In other news, I’ve been having a blast over at the Purple Purl! Jennifer and Miko are doing an amazing job establishing exactly what their tagline says: “Cafe…Yarn… Friends”

Purple Purl
The Purple Purl (photo taken last week).

While the cafe’s not fully-functional yet, their tea selection is awesome and I have heard exciting rumours of an exclusive cupcake designer! There is yarn, oh so much yarn! Yarn in all shapes, fibres, sizes, and colours… and spinning fibre too! And there are friends, both old and new. It’s such a friendly place, and even though it’s only been open a few weeks, people are coming out in droves — last night there were almost 40 knitters at one point! And Miko just bought a beautiful old Saxony-style spinning wheel that I happily played on last night, keeping me up well past my bedtime. There are a few other exciting developments regarding me and the Purl, but I’ll leave it at that for now… All in all, I am loving my new LYS (it’s just straight down the street… if I take a streetcar, that is!) and am looking forward to many more happy knitnights!


Filed under contest, out & about