Posts Tagged ‘knitting’

this is Squid.Image

Ms. Sydney Tertius Pearl.

She has a penchance for handknits… Handknits that are left alone on the counter with burnt cheese on them.  ie. Squid has a (refined, if I do say so myself) taste for eating my handknit felted potholders.


And thus, we have no more potholders.  Mike has started using my linen dishtowels as potholders.  THIS IS A NO-NO.

I had to knit more potholders before I  lost any more tea towels!! (I also only have a colourwork project and a crazy complicated cable project on the needles.  Both of these are driving me crazy right now.  I need something simple to keep my brain happy.)


Basic recipe- take feltable wool and size 5ish needles and cast on 45 stitches.  Knit in garter stitch until 1/2 of yarn is gone. Cast of with sewn cast off. Crochet loop onto corner. x2.  Throw in washing machine on hot. Felt the crap out of them.  Use to remove hot things from oven so partner doesn’t yell about the inconsiderate destruction of linen tea towels.  MAKE SURE TO PUT UP AND AWAY FROM CUTE DOGS THAT HELP THEMSELVES TO THE CUPBOARD COUNTERS!!!

raveled here.


Read Full Post »

I am currently in the middle of a 3 week whirlwind tour of 10 Canadian cities, interviewing for residency positions. This painful and nerve-wracking (not to mention crazy expensive) process is glamourously called the Canadian Residency Matching Service (CaRMS) “tour”.  Myself, along with ALL of the other medical students in the country who are graduating this year, having applied in November for our prospective residency programs, are now criss-crossing the country for a series of interviews, meet n’ greets, and socials, all in hopes of securing a spot in our desired schools/disciplines’ residency programs for the next 2-5 years. As per the name of the ‘tour’ this process is supposed to be a “match” ie. students have some input into their preferred schools/programs by submitting a rank-listing, while schools do the same (ie. if they interview 60 students for 5 spots, they rank everyone 1-60 on how awesome they thought you were). Frankly, it’s all really moonbeams and fairy dust and I don’t really understand how this whole mess works other than I submit a list of programs that I’d be willing to move to/participate in and some magical computer in Ottawa spits out a name on March 6th and then I go wherever it tells me to in June.

For my tour, I’ve applied only to Obstetrics and Gynecology programs. I applied to 13 programs, got 10 interviews and turned down 2 of them (one because of bad timing- overlap with another interview, and one because they got back to me really late in the game and I’d already spent too much money on plane tickets and good riddance). As of today, I’ve participated in 3 interviews: Halifax, London, and Hamilton. They’ve all been pretty good and I think that I’ve shown myself off pretty well, considering my socially awkward tendencies and the strangeness of the CaRMS beast in and of itself.  I have an interview tomorrow in Ottawa, followed next week by interviews in Regina, Saskatoon, Edmonton and Vancouver. Really, all programs in Canada are excellent. They’re all a bit different and a whole lot the same. Ultimately, I would be happy to match to any program that I’m interviewing.

So, anyhoot, what’s a knitter to do when faced with 3 of the most stressful weeks of her burgeoning medical career?

Knit of course.

10 days before CaRMS tour started, in the middle of my General Surgery rotation (read: up at 5 for 6am rounds, home by 7pm each night, call 1 in 3), in my infinite wisdom, I felt the best way to show myself off to these interviewers was by presenting myself in a handknit vest. Nothing says amazing like answering “what do you do in your spare time?” with pointing at one’s chest and proudly pronouncing “this!”.

So I went to the library at took out a neat book called Craft Activism and bookmarked Kirsten Kapur‘s Craftitude Vest

and then it begins

where all my best knitting happens it seems- on call.

One of the great things about a short deadline is there is no room for dilly dallying.  Project monogamy is a must.

all vesting all the time

I knit doggedly



i sit on your sweater

perhaps cat-edly is more appropriate

After blocking everything out front and back, I realized that I had marfed up the very last cable at the top of the front.  This realization was of course on Friday night around 23hoo…. and my flight for halifax was leaving at 5am on Monday morning.


I am the stupid cable that shows where Kirsti obviously fell asleep and kept knitting

So after wailing, crying and pleading with myself that it was “fine” and “no one would notice the difference”, I went to bed.  Actually, it’s more like Mike put me to bed because I was pretty much hysterical.   I couldn’t seem to explain to him that with my life spiralling out of control, I *NEEDED* this sweater to work.  If I couldn’t control the sweater and complete it in time, then I would surely fail at CaRMS, fail out of medical school and end up living in a cardboard box. Nothing like extremes when dealing with botched knitting at midnight.  Saturday, I woke up took a deep breath and ripped it back.

Oh G-d. Oh G-d. Oh G-d.

insert hyperventilation here

And everything was okay, really.  I managed to re-knit everything by Saturday night and sort of steam block it out.  I stitched together the seams and picked up the arms and neck and had it all soaking in a tub by Sunday afternoon.  I dried it out in front of the heater over night and it went into my bag in the am.  And it fit! and it looked sharp! and I. MADE. IT. WITH. MY. HANDS.

dear internet- this is my belly

nothing says professional like handknit vest when EVERYONE else is wearing a suit

Cable fixed

I may not look like everyone else, but I'm happy and comfy and DAMN proud of myself. (note- I am NOT wearing a t-shirt and jeans with this vest to my actual interviews- that would be super unprofessional).

Documented over on Ravelry.

I have to say, one great thing about such a cramped deadline is that there was no room to languish.  If this project had been done under ‘normal’ circumstances, I’m pretty sure it would have sat in a cupboard for months (or years) until I “had the time” to sort it out.  Not to mention how long I would have procrastinated sewing it up and finishing it.  I’m actually happy that I had to “deal with it now” because I did deal with it and now I have an awesome, unique vest!

Here’s to hoping it’s just one of the kooky thing that makes folks remember me and think that I’m awesomesauce, so that when March 6th rolls around I’m not planning moving to the 8th choice on my list!

Read Full Post »

nothing says ‘baking prairie heat’ like a wool hat
raspberry marigold

the pattern is Marigold by Marnie Maclean in Patons Merino from my stash.

Read Full Post »

Today there was mail!

Well packaged mail! from The Small Object

I mean, seriously…the cutest packaging ever.

I bought 2 vintage twine holders and a pencil box.

Because, well, because they’re really cute people who will hold my yarn!

isn’t that the happiest yarn holder you’ve seen in your life?
for G-d’s sake. he’s wearing a top hat! all jaunty like!

Now there’s actually a reason for these cute little fellas- Inspired by the folks over at Mason-Dixon Knitting recently, I started the Lace Ribbon Scarf from Knitty.

It is a beautiful river of soft chocolate that makes me so happy to knit. EXCEPT! that the lovely washable wool that I’m knitting it with is in a cone.

A cone that bounces around all over the place and falls on the floor and picks up dog hair and lint and crap. This does NOT make me happy to knit.

Now the offending cone of yarn will be well ensconced in a happy twine holder and I will be happy ALL THE TIME! well, at least while i’m knitting this scarf.

Also- photos of the cute pencil box

In other exciting news-
the garlic chives are all blooming!
Which means: Garlic Vinegar! So pretty and so yummy for salad dressing!

Read Full Post »

Because I have a blinding cold and I’m supposed to be doing this

instead, i’m doing this:

These are socks for solstice 2008 (how’s that for a headstart?!) for my father-in law. As I have blogged before, my father in law is a big fan of the handknit socks. Since he doesn’t seem to discern between the award-winningly ugly and the subtly pretty, i’ve decided to make him terrible garish socks on purpose for this year. this is as garish as I could find in my stash. I’m sure he’ll love them.

Since I’m keen on wasting time that should be spent squishing biochemistry into my snot-filled brain, I will tell y’all the story of the evil socks first seen here.

My friend elise has thrown herself full force into veganism. She is very involved in all things vegan, including forsaking yarn that comes from animals. Even when I was at my peak of *hardcore* veganism, i still was (and am) okay with wool. This means that I have never knitted with anything but wool. I hate synthetics and have had no need to use any ‘new’ or ‘fancy’ fibres, since wool has always done everything that i needed it to. Anyhoo. In November, for Elise’s b-day, I decided to respect her anti-wool stance and make her a pair of socks that reflected her beliefs. So I went out at bought some cotton ease thinking that I’d whip her up a pair of cabled footies (since cotton ease has a similar gauge to the ones i’ve made in wool). So I started knitting.
And I started cursing.
I HATE COTTON. It hurts my hands. It doesn’t have memory. You can’t spit-felt your ends. After weaving in the ends, they still stick out awkwardly. The yarn doesn’t stick together. I hate everything about it. EVERYTHING.
after many painstaking hours, I finished the stupid *&%# socks.
for all their torture, they were pretty.

done, ready for blocking

prettiness aside, i was so sick of them. i was in such a rush to get them out that I blocked them at work and laid them next to my space heater in hopes of speeding up the drying process to just get them the frick out of my life (not nice things to say about a gift, i know).
and of course, karma bit me in the a$$.

i burnt them.
seriously. BURNT them.
so i started re-knitting them.


denver helped.

but even he got bored.

eventually they were done. again.

no burn marks.

moral of the story: “cotton sucks”.
or maybe “it’s don’t rush things, even if they suck”
or maybe it’s “focus on biochem instead of wasting time on the crafting blog”

who knows really.

Read Full Post »

i missed the post people on wednesday. they left me a lovely and enticing slip, encouraging me to head to my local post office and pick up a package.

I wasn’t expecting anything. I hadn’t ordered anything recently. No one had told me that they were sending a package. this was the best of all packages…

a surprise package.

the shape didn’t give any details away.

postage is from the states?

Woohooo! ROCKING SOCK CLUB 2008! I totally wasn’t expecting this so soon! I thought for sure that there would be an email or something!

So much awesome in one small package!!!

including a notorious sock knitters club bumper sticker, gauge diary and a sheet to record family/friends sock sizes!

most importantly, the gorgeous yarn in Dragon’s Dance colourway and the pattern, Serendipity.

and buttons! and a swatch skein! the cuteness! the exclamation points!

I can’t wait to get knitting! woohoooo!

Read Full Post »


Bad blurry self-photo taken by my aunt who, this photo completely not-withstanding, is actually an amazing photographer.

Louet Gems Merino, 2.75 mm
Rib and Cable Socks by Nancy Bush from Interweave Knits Fall 2005



pattern from interweave knits online. Made with random handspun and store bought wool/ wool blends on 2.75 mm needles.


Voted as “Livejournal’s Sock-kit-swap ugliest socks“. Birthday gift for Mike’s dad. Bob has repeatedly told me that he loves them and doesn’t think I’m colourblind. Basic ribbed sock pattern. 85% wool, 15% nylon. 2.75mm needles.

There is NOTHING WORSE than yarn that looks good in the ball but secretly has orange and black fake-fair isle hidden inside.

so i ripped out the icky stripes in the yarn leftover from Bob’s socks

and made these for ariane
Basic sock pattern with cable rib 2.75mm needles. 85%wool, 15%nylon


Summer socks for a boy with broken feet.
Mike has to wear hiking boots all summer due to an awful car accident 5 years ago. With these socks, at least, he doesn’t have to fold his socks into his boots when he wears his shorts. Basic ribbed sock pattern, 15% silk (because he chose it and how do you say no to a broken boy who wants silk?), 5% nylon, 80%wool, 2.75 mm needles.
Mother’s Day bed socks for a mum who has cold feet. 2.75mm needles Basic rib sock pattern. 80% wool, 20% nylon


Jaywalkers from Magknits. 85% wool, 15% nylon 2.75 needles. Just a note on these socks- they are huge! I followed the instructions for the size that was supposed to fit my measurements and ended up ripping them out and making the smallest size. They are still loose on me. If you make these, GO SMALL.


Birthday Socks for the cutest red-head in town. Yarn gifted from
jen kim‘s stash 80%wool, 20%nylon. 2.75mm needles. Basic ribbed sock pattern made extra long for Katie’s *cough* dainty ‘japanese princess’ feet.


Socks for friend Maija and her partner Barbara. Basic rib sock pattern
15%silk, 5%nylon, 80%wool. 2.75mm needles


SIP (Sock in Progress?) for Bob (Mike’s dad)
85% wool, 15% nylon (random leftovers from several balls)Not “award winningly” ugly like the first pair I made him. 🙂
It actually makes me sad that he likes the ugly ones as much as these!


Sushi roll of sock-goodness for my ‘grandma’ Dinny.
6.5mm needles, Patons Classic Merino.
Basic stockinette sock pattern modified from ‘Cable Footies’ in One Skein by Leigh Radford

Here’s to wishing everyone a 2008 full of good yarn, warm socks and sharp needles.

Read Full Post »