Friday, April 27, 2007

Summer IK

I just found out that the preview for the Summer issue of Interweave Knits is online. And I have to say... meh. At the first glance, it doesn't strike me as that great; but then again, I sometimes need some time to let something grow on me. Maybe I'm still angry at IK for always arriving late in my post box; even the replacements they send take ages (there should be one on the way, supposedly mailed on March 10. Still not here.)

It's May next week, and I somehow doubt that the Summer issue is going to be here in time. Last time when I complained to IK Customer Services, the lady there told me to find out the postal service and ask them why it's taking so long. Hello? I'm used to bad customer service here in Germany, but not in the US!

Apparently, the mailing issue is not a single phenomenon restricted to Germany. I've heard from the same problems going on in Sweden, and in Australia (they seem to have sorted them out, though). So, why doesn't IK go and solve the problem with the postal service? After all, I'm a paying customer and I don't see the point in sorting out a problem for IK in my own time. But, what really bugs me is that IK is able to send out subscription renewal letters fairly quickly - however, if the magazine continues to arrive late I might unsubscribe. Being late combined with bad customer services is going to save me some money.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Spring is Summer

blossoms1, originally uploaded by d.knit.

blossoms2, originally uploaded by d.knit.

sun through blossoms, originally uploaded by d.knit.

Near my therapist's place, there are those beautiful (cherry?) trees lining the street. Every spring, they are like an explosion of fluffy powdery pink. Unfortunately, this beauty doesn't last too long, and then the petals cover the ground like a pink carpet.
Spring is strange this year, it feels like summer actually. It's pretty warm these days, t-shirt weather during the day and warm enough to sit outside in the evenings. For me, that an early hay fever season...

The other day I started my first toe-up socks! I'm excited; the pattern is's Baudelaire by Cookie A. The yarn was in my stash for quite a while; I think it's just been waiting for this pattern. It's called "Chinese New Year", and just like the yarn for K's socks it's from ewas sockenwolle. It was the last skein of this colorway, Ewa told me that it sold like hotcakes. It's a wool/polyamide/cashmere/strass mix. The cashmere part can't be too large as I can't really feel it, but I like it anyway. Can you see the dark red running in the basic red? It reminds me of the plushy, velvety red of an old (aka vintage) couch or chair.

baudelaire, originally uploaded by d.knit.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007


On Monday morning (US time), the world stood still in Blacksburg, Virginia. My heart goes out to everyone who has lost a beloved, who was injured, and might still be fighting for their life, and to the family of the shooter. They all must go through a horrific time now.

Such a tragic occurrence should never have happened, and I'm wondering what the guy's motives were. I know I'm probably touching a hot potatoe here; but then I read that someone said, "it would have been less bad if a student or lecturer had a gun and shot the killer" and I think, Hello??! Are you seriously suggesting that more guns would have been a solution, and are, for future incidents? Does this sound like a clever idea?
I know it's in the American constitution, that everyone should be able to defend themselves and carry arms, but the constitution was written a long time ago under different circumstances. Life has changed, quite a lot actually, in more than 200 years. For example, the Bible says a lot about how one should live their life, too, but does society always stick to it? (I know that there are people out there who take the Bible literally, but I'm not talking about them) An eye for an eye? Sounds like a vendetta to me, if we all did this.

Back to my point: Is it necessary in today's United States to keep fire arms at hand? What for anyway? Apart from the constitutional right - what does a regular dude need a gun for, given that they're not a hunter/police officer/ranger/soldier/etc.? I start thinking, what are they afraid of? Anarchy? That can't really be it, or otherwise there would be anarchy everywhere in countries where there aren't many guns (like in front of my doorstep - believe me, everything's in right order out there). Isn't it about time to restrict the possession of fire arms, in order to try and prevent massacres like in Blacksburg in the future? Wouldn't having less guns also mean less abuse of guns?

As tragic the shooting in Virginia was, I hope it galvanizes people as to rethink and hopefully restrict access to fire arms. Charlton Heston said, "From my cold, dead hands" - they had to take two guns from the cold, dead hands of the student who shot himself and 32 others. I'd rather they had taken those guns from the warm and living hands of this student, and 32 more people would still be alive.

Greens and Blues

The other day K and I had lunch together and then went for a stroll in the Englischer Garten, as the weather was so beautiful. We sat on a bench, the sun shining into our faces, and I found this caterpillar, all tiny and green.

caterpillar_1, originally uploaded by d.knit.

I found it so amazing how it moves, and luckily I had my camera with me.

caterpillar_2, originally uploaded by d.knit.

How huge the world must be for such a little guy!

On Sunday I went to a monthly knit group that meets in Munich and Augsburg alternately. This time, they met in Munich.
I've only been to this group once before, so I don't know too many people, but they had nice yarns! A few of them brought their ball winders, and I took quite a few pictures of yarn being wound (there are more in my Flickr account).

redonwinder, originally uploaded by d.knit.

I love this picture, you can't really see the ball but the colors break through anyway. Unfortunately, I don't know what yarns they were winding.

blueonorangeswift_2, originally uploaded by d.knit.

The yarn above was wound on an orange umbrella swift which made such a nice contrast to the blue color... the yarn was really gorgeous.
I turned the heel on K's green sock on Sunday and am getting closer to the toe decreases now. I still have his sweater to seam, but that's of no hurry now as he'll only be able to wear it next fall anyways. I also want to knit more from my stash - I have some cotton yarns (I think it's cotton) from ewas sockenwolle left that I'm thinking of knitting into sneaker socks. Then there's the Victoria Tank that needs some armpit-unpinching, and some socks for me, and Sockapalooza 4 of course. I can't wait for that! But still: so much knitting, so little time...

Monday, April 16, 2007


was what I thought when I looked at my blog just then, "it's been a week since I last posted!" I'm usually trying to post on a more or less regular basis at least once a week, but lately I didn't feel like blogging much. Not even like reading my blogroll much either. I'm still knitting and making plans for future knits, I also signed up for Sockapalooza 4 and can't wait till it starts, but blogging? Meh...

Oh, well, it'll come back to me. Plus, I want to post some pictures I took lately, like the ones where K models his green socks (I forced him to do so), or the ones I took yesterday at knit group (that's a group that I usually don't go to) when the ladies wound some balls, or the ones with a caterpillar crawling on my hand in K's lunch break in the Englischer Garten. And I'm thinking of reviving Video Day - I completely forgot about it last Thursday. On that day I went to my parents' place for my dad's birthday on Friday, and I returned to Munich on Saturday. And I'd like to talk about which hat I'm not going to make for my nephew's birthday (which isn't until November anyway) due to something my sister said, but I'm not sure if she reads this blog and I better not talk about it. I'll see.

Anyways, I hope you have a great day - the weather here is unbelievable! It's so nice and sunny outside, actually I should go and sit in the park as the forecast says rain and cool for Wednesday. I'd take my knitting, too.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Failure? No, I'm not

I'm feeling relieved. Relieved that the pressure has gone, that I've gained more time and that I don't need to be afraid. Any more, or at all. What looked like a step backwards might in fact turn out as a leap forward.

To put you in the picture: No, the K_sweater isn't finished yet. It doesn't matter any more, the weather is too warm anyway. Instead, I have started socks for K, even though he might not wear them for a while; but they're still a nice little project, not too large so I can take it with me to knit groups or when I visit my parents next weekend. The baby hat project is postponed till some time later - my ex-coworker's baby is due in April, and I've decided to make him (it's going to be a boy) a hat large enough so he can wear it this fall.
My Masters thesis is not done, and I applied for an extension of 3 more months due to my anxiety. It was pretty much in the last minute that I realized it was too late, there was too much to do and I couldn't handle it. I freaked out, totally, as such a long extension also postpones my other exams (more written and oral), but hey, what's another 6 months? In the very end, this doesn't really matter; the main thing is, I feel good and I get to make my thesis good. If the regular amount of time is not enough for me, then hey, so what? I know that I have a problem, and even though I'm already in therapy because of this, psychoanalysis is not the kind of therapy that takes effect the next day. Plus, it doesn't address the symptoms but their reasons. My anxieties regarding exams and exam-like situations are a symptom for other fears, so I need to find another way to deal with them. Although, knowing that I'm already doing something that helps me in the long run is good to know.

It's now 2,5 weeks ago that I received a packet from Canada. Way back in February, Cynthia had decided to let go some of her stash (for free! how cool is that?), and I secured some of that. The yarn arrived on a really crappy day, and it helped me quite a lot then. Thank you Cynthia! I'll get those squares for Warming Grace in the mail real soon.
The contents of the packet were really yummy: a selection of Jo Sharp Cotton DK in various colors,

and some Pure Alpaca that I can't wait to try out!

The colors are quite different to the photo above: the blue is not a solid color but contains a lot of speckles,

and the brown has a strong red-ish undertone:

I'm hoping to combine both of those colors in a sweater or a cardigan, but I'll see where the yarn takes me.

K picked some yarn for socks quite a while ago, and just recently I decided to give it a go. I wanted to make manly socks, but with some sort of pattern to make them interesting enough to knit. I came up with a simple cable and rib pattern:

The main green is a rich emerald tone, combined with a lighter green (I'm glad there's not too much of that in the yarn, as I'm not so fond of this shade). The yarn is from Ewa's Sockenwolle, and she called it "Cameron Highlands". The Cameron Highlands are not in Scotland as one might think from the name, but in Malaysia. According to the greens in the picture, Ewa did choose the right name!
Here's a close-up of the cable:

I wanted to make small cables, and I like them a lot! The first sock is done already, and last night I started the second while watching some Twin Peaks. K bought the dvd and got me hooked. Tonight we'll watch the last 3 episodes, and I think the sock will grow a bit more.

Now, I'm off to eat some dinner, or else I'll faint onto my keyboard... which might not be such a good idea.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Video Day - The Manly Art of Knitting

Spring has arrived in Munich... the sun is shining and it's beautiful, even though the wind and the shade are still pretty chilly.
My knitting is progressing, the K_sweater isn't finished yet, but should be soon. I also started some socks for K, the first is coming near the toe decrease already. Received some yarn, too. I'll post some pics soon, and tell you more about other stuff in my life, too.

But now to the video - a day late, but better late than never.
Knitting men, again.

Have you ever knitted a hammock before?