Friday Gauge Check: Unexpected Silence is Unexpected

Sorry about the sudden silence. I have a post that I’ve been working on literally all week, but it was serious processing and involves a bibliography, so it’s taking much longer than expected. I guess that’s what happens when I don’t put posting here on my goals for the next week!

This week has been one of manifestation, for lack of a better word. I signed up for the spinning class on Sunday, and it starts Monday night. I am so excited!

I went to the local knitting group meet up for the first time on Tuesday, and I had a reasonably good time. Everyone was very nice, as knitters tend to be. The best part was finding out about two local yarn stores that were having sales, but more on that later.

I volunteered as a test knitter for a knitting blogger I followed, and she sent out an email earlier in the week looking for people who could knit up a pair of fingerless gloves by Saturday. Most of the week has been focused on doing that, but I also turned the heels of both the green Simplicity Socks, which is fantastic. I completed the partial pattern repeat of the Argyle State University scarf, bringing me up to 11.

One surprising discovery about the iPad is that I can knit and read at the same time with it. Last night I also discovered I can do it using my Sony Reader, but not as well. The iPad also shows more text, just because the screen is bigger, so I have to turn the page less often. So I’ve been reading Louisa May Alcott, because I figured out how to get free books from the iBooks store before I figured out how to download them from my computer.

Today, though, was absolutely wonderful. As I mentioned, two LYS were having sales – one, Arizona Knitting and Needlepoint, is going out of business, and everything is 50% off if you pay cash. (It’s 30% for any other payment method. Hey, it’s not my tax return.) I bought three skeins of yarn there. I know, I know. But when I walk into a yarn shop, I usually feel inspired. I walk around touching everything, looking at the colorways, imagining what I could make. Walking in there, I felt…almost nothing. I’m more inspired in the yarn aisle at Wal-Mart. There was nothing that I wanted, not even at 50% off. I ended up getting a book that I had checked out of the library and liked (Big Girl Knits, by…someone whose name I can’t see from where I’m sitting), and an Addi Turbo Lace circular needle, 61″, size 3. Hey, I’m uninspired, not stupid. Unfortunately, the needles were really picked over, so most of what was left were big and short or super-tiny (I am currently not masochistic enough to knit with 000 needles). Or Susan Bates. I don’t even know. There were also a bunch of big DPNs (smallest size 10) and some miscellaneous Lantern Moon straights, but I’m not going to buy straights at retail prices, because I really prefer circulars. Overall, very unimpressed. In any other situation, I’d just assume they were really picked over. The wool was really picked over, but there was tons of cotton and ribbon yarn. I don’t knit dishcloths and my only experience with ribbon yarn was a massive failure, so… Jack picked out three skeins of a thick-and-thin cotton that’s mostly fingering weight called Ironstone Warehouse. Rich deep colors, and I think it’s light enough to give decent drape. That’s right- the only yarn I bought, I didn’t pick out.

To get the taste out of my mouth, we headed up to Knit Happens, which is having a really complicated sale for February. If you wear a red shirt on Friday, red yarn is 25% off. If you come in wearing something red that you knit from yarn you bought there, all yarn is 25% off. So I bought some Silky Flamme, which is a bulky-weight wool/alpaca/silk blend, to make a hat out of. Jack and I also mutually fell in love with a skein of Oasis Yarn’s Silk Icelandic Seduction. Because we touched it. Beautiful 100% silk, I’m not sure what I’m going to do with it, but neither of us could live without it. It was on sale, okay?

It was still fairly early in the day, and our ultimate goal was Mesa, for the library and the monthly art walk, so we hit a few thrift stores on the way down. We stopped in at the St. Vincent de Paul, which is probably Jack’s favorite thrift store, because they consistently have the most gorgeous mid-century modern furniture. And that’s where I saw her.

I have wanted to learn to sew for literally years. I keep trying to talk people into teaching me, and everyone always agrees, but nobody follows through. I’ve been looking seriously on Craigslist and in thrift stores for a few weeks without much success. Today, though, I found a Kenmore that is probably a contemporary of the mid-century modern furniture. Solid metal, folds into a table, apparently only missing a minor part that would be easily replaceable. Because of that, she was marked down from $60 (which I probably would have paid for her) to $30. Plus she was 40% off of that. So yes, Bettina came home with me, and she’s now in a place of honor in my living room.

Then there was the yarn. Looking at the yarn and fabric that they had today, I felt like I was looking at someone’s stash. I picked up enough balls of blue yarn for a sweater, and a sea-green blanket that’s probably 3/4 done. It has the needles (circulars) still in it, the remaining yarn, and the pattern. This was somebody’s project that she didn’t get to finish, and I feel like I owe it to her to finish it, and love it, as much as she did. Maybe it was Bettina’s original owner, and finishing her blanket will be a thank-you for the beautiful gift of her well-loved machine. (Guys, she looks freshly oiled. The missing part disappeared after she was sitting on the sales floor; she was in perfect condition when she was donated.)

After tucking Bettina safely into my car, we went to the library, where I got a million sewing books, and then to the art walk, where I added another finch to my artistic collection. (I have a wall of finch art, mostly paintings.) This one is a shadowbox collage, very cool.

So! That was my week. Here are some goals!

Learn to spin. Determine what Bettina needs to get into working order, and procure it. Finish the red hat. Send the test gloves to their new owner. Knit at least one pattern repeat on the Argyle State scarf, and half the leg on the Simplicity Socks. Post here twice. Have fun with everything!

How are you doing? How was your week?

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~ by Amber on February 11, 2011.

2 Responses to “Friday Gauge Check: Unexpected Silence is Unexpected”

  1. Going out with you today was fun. I wish the rest of my week felt as successful as yours, though. =P

  2. Well, lessee…

    I slipped into a depressive episode without realising it that has led to me being VERY short on mental spoons this week. But I also had some good mental-and-physical-difficulties talks with a couple newer friends and that made me feel a bit better. And I’m planning a surprise for Aubrey and took her out to supper last night and am learning a bit better how to manage my studio. so… basically, it’s been up and down. Mostly down, sadly. 😦

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