Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Every Time A Bell Rings....

An angel gets it's wings. Yep that's the way the line goes in that age old classic, "It's a Wonderful Life." That's a great image isn't it? Angels all sparkly and white with their fluffy new wings - a really dazzling site to behold. Then there is a saying that goes, "Wow, I wonder what her angel looks like - it must have taken a real beating."

Now, I am only a knitting angel third class, but that's pretty much how I feel after this last angel assignment. I still do not understand why this was so difficult, but I had more dropped stitches and mis-knitted pattern rows than I ever have in the past. I mean honestly, how often do you drop the entire row at one time. I spent more time getting the stitches back on the needle. Someone, ring the bell I'm ready for the wings.

Upon further investigation and in the light of day, I think the "troubles" (as they will now be called) had to do with the needles. They are extra long (so I could knit both squares at once,) plastic and wicked slippery. What did I do to them??? Whatever it was these needles did not want to knit these squares, so I forced them into submission. I think they got the hint after I threw them across the room and turned the air a light sky blue. I think I would have broken them on purpose, but they have a metal core (their secret weapon to keep knitters from doing just that.) In the end, we made peace, the squares were finished and mailed off to their new home in California. And as I was fading off to sleep, I thought I heard a small bell in the distance.

Peace and joy to you all......
The Green Girl

Monday, August 30, 2010

In Sync.....

Well the weekend is over and I got nothing accomplished, I feel slightly like a wrung out dish rag. There was no syncopation to my actions, no rhythm, not a blasted coordinated effort to be found. I didn't get the laundry finished (only three loads - 5 to go.) I just couldn't open the laundry room door - it was like the beast on the other side was laying in wait for me. "Come into my lair little green girl.... See what awaits you... (insert evil cackle here.)" I shudder still to even think about it, but I will have to brace myself and go there this evening. {shudders}

The main knitting project I had on the agenda was to get two angel squares done for a recipient in California. I have been working so hard on the Fall collection ( and I had a little bit of flu last week) that it was admittedly hard to break that thread of concentration and move on to the squares. I need to get them into the mail today and I still have 30 rows to go. Why, you might ask should it take me so long to knit two 12x12 squares when I can usually whip one out in about 4 hours. That's a good question and the answer is this.....knit a row, see that I did the wrong pattern, rip out the row.....knit eight stitches and have them all fall off the needle and unravel at the same time (wicked slippery needles).....and on this went all weekend long. My hands and head were just not on the same page. So, I tell DH that if he wakes up in the middle of the night and notices that I'm not in bed (this isn't so strange as since global warming hit me - insomnia has been it's bosom companion) that I'm in the studio knitting away to finish these squares. As you can see by the previous information, I failed. Failure is a big word, perhaps that's too harsh. Technically I still have 7 hours to knit 30 rows. I should be able to do that. Right???? In between working and people thinking they can have my time for their important issues, I should be able to squeeze in 30 rows. Lunch time will play an important role in today's agenda for just that purpose.
Now, although I'm not done with the squares and the laundry still looms like a Montana thunder storm over my head, the muse did whisper a little something in my ear that had me writing down details so that I will remember to take on yet another project when this one is finished (along with knitting chemo caps, finishing the design work for the Fall collection, making the snugly sleeping bag for my nephew and knitting a sweater for my two year old niece all in the next two weeks and these are just my knitting projects - let's throw in the rest of life for good measure.) The squares I have noticed will make a heavenly knitted blanket and the colors are in the fall color palette. So, In reality, I have at least 15 more of these squares to make or one giant one (havne't decided yet.) So, it's kind of like a two for one. Gal in California gets her two squares, someone gets a lovely blanket for the holidays.
So, hopefully I'm in sync today (it is the beginning of a new week after all) - nothing like a ticking deadline to start off a Monday...

Peace and joy to you all......
The Green Girl

Friday, August 27, 2010

Tinker,Tailor,Solider, Knitter....

I love this book by John le Carre' - of course his character was a spy and that really has nothing to do with this blog entry. I just thought it made a zippy title. OK - I'm tired, it's Friday afternoon and I'm not completely on my game. Just go with it - OK...

I have been working a lot of late nights to try and finish up my Fall 2010 knit collection so that it can be published on Ravelry and sold via (my soon to it operational) website. As I work during the day as well, I find myself dragging today. However, the muse has been sticking it out with me and has really helped me out of a bind today.

One of the pieces in this collection is going to be knit in a fine gauge (US size 2 needle - that's the only hint I'm giving - I've said my peace and counted to 3.) Today I had a goal to knit up a swatch for this piece while I was at my day job. Friday is typically slow. Quite by accident I brought my size 2, 16" circular needles instead of my size 2 needles with a longer cable. To top it off I had grabbed an inexpensive pair with a cable that wasn't very flexible. I started the swatch and the lack of give in the cable was making things difficult. I dug around in my tote bag to see if by any hope I had a spare pair stuck somewhere in the dark recesses of the bag. Nope, not today!

Well, they say necessity is the mother of invention and sure enough today it was (I think my muse is the mother of necessities cousin or something.) This is the conversation that ensued with the muse:
Muse: "How much do you like these needles?"
Me: "Shoo - go away, I'm not doing what I think you're about to suggest. These are knitting needles, made this way for a purpose. "
Muse:"Didn't you buy these on whim in the discount bin?"
Me: "Yes, I must admit that I did, so what?"
Muse: "Then make them into a tool that you will use and enjoy. I'm tired of listening to you complain."

Within two minutes, the needles that you see in the picture were born. I took and cut right through the cable at the half way point - Viola' two needles - then I put a little clear tape around the ends of the cable to make them thicker and pushed them into two needle stoppers.
I love these - the needles are nice and short and the bend forms to my hand -YEAH!!! The cable gives me a little extra space for the stitches and are still a bit flexible. There are probably needles like this for sale already, you can probably do this with needle sets that click together ( I don't own such a set (expense and not given as a gift yet - maybe this year,) )but not in my area, so, well done me!!!

Muse: Yes, well done you - you finally made the needles you've been wanting for FG work - you only grumbled about this idea for the past year. Next time just take my suggestion early on and we'll both be much happier."
Me: (sheepishly) "Yes, muse."

Peace and joy to you all.....
The Green Girl

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Patience........Pays off.......

I noticed when I was a young child that I did not have a lot of patience (little did I know that I had an adrenal disorder that allowed anxiety to rule my life - it's genetic in our family.) My anxiety would creep into the light via nervousness and crying and stay with me at night in the form of night terrors, but as I was girl everyone just thought I was sensitive. As I got older, let's say 14 or so, I realized that the lack of patience in my family was actually very destructive, so I decided that I wouldn't let it destroy me -although this is a condition that has drastically worked it's way in my life; through love, support and lots of work, I've been able to keep it pretty much at bay (I say pretty much because goodness knows I've slipped in dealing with it at times, of which I am not proud.) Now you all know what's coming right? I've had the Epiphany......

When I am working on a design or a change that I feel will make a big positive impact in my life, I want it to happen now - if it doesn't I tend to fee like a failure. Shouldn't it have been the block buster that my muse said it would be? See the muse is always getting me trouble (I have no shame in blaming the muse as she walks hand in hand with the anxiety - I think they're cousins.) Well, once again I've learned a big lesson in patience. Patience pays off!!! The muse needs to take a lunch date with patience and see if they can't put my welfare on their mutual TO DO list (I'd be forever grateful.)

So, back in early July I started researching ways to make my knitting pay off . It has always paid off in ways other than monetary, but I wanted to make that leap to the next level. I started this blog - joined Ravelry (I call it Facebook for knitters and crocheters) - published my first pattern - created an online store front and am working on a Fall knitting collection for publication in late September. Oz Dust Designs & Green Girl Studio lives - finally freaking finally (can't help but be excited when a heartfelt dream starts to take shape,) This has taken two months, not really much time in the grand scheme, but when anxiety lives in your house, two months can be forever - so this is really a big step for me. I've not made a cent yet, but you see the lessons I've learned in the past two months are far more important. I've learned that slow and steady actually does win the race. The speed of time is relative depending on your point of view. I've learned that letting each one of these things happen at their own pace with a little diligence from me equals success. At least in my definition of success.

I know this will be a long journey and that's good. I want it to be a long journey - forever changing and growing. I want this for me - a little thing in this huge world that I can call my creation. And I will patiently nurture it and watch it and support it through all it's ups and downs. And to all my fellows on their own journeys - peace and joy to you along your path.

Peace and joy to you all.....
The Green Girl

Monday, August 23, 2010

It's Not Easy Being Green.......

Or so Kermit said in his famous song. Well, the Green Girl now has a green hand. It seems that I have a bit of tendinitis in my right hand. Actually about a 1/2 inch below the middle finger on the palm of my hand. I went to open a door and thought someone had stabbed a needle through my hand - the next morning (Saturday) I couldn't even touch that one very sensitive spot. Have been on Arthritis strength Tylenol (1 tab every 6 hours) for two days. Then this little compression glove was recommended and it's doing a great job. I was surprised as I'm typically very careful to be nice to my hands since I have had carpal tunnel surgery on both hands many years ago. However, I've noticed that since my cancer surgery three years ago, little aches and pains creep up on me out of the blue. Thank goodness they tend to creep away again just as quickly. Somewhere in the back of my mind I keep hearing my surgeon say that my body aged 20 years the day of my surgery. That would make me 67 rather than 47 so I suppose little aches and pains should be expected. Bummer!! Then again, I'm here and that's what matters. So for now I will be the Green Girl with the green hand. Move over Kermit - let's sing a duet...... This too shall pass.

Lesson to all: Don't deny the physical pains you may feel from repetitive stress - just do what you need to in order to get better.

Peace and joy to you all.....
The Green Girl

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Of Mice and Me......

Cinderella had her mice and they were good mice. They helped her clean the castle and sew the prettiest ball gown in the kingdom. You might say they were her angels. Well, good for her! If only....... Where are my freaking little mice helpers?????

Today started out bright and full of possibilities (even though I slept very little last night and apparently even less tonight - it's 3:30am right now.) Dave and I had a lovely little breakfast together and he offered (yes folks, he offered) to go with me on my errands around town and for no other reason than he wanted to spend time with his wife. Lovely, truly lovely. And so we did just that (went out on our errands that is.) And what comes next can only be described as a day gone pear shaped.

I have to say right now that I am in no way complaining about my responsibilities as a knitting angel. I am ranting about my inability to make one little decision that would have saved me from the results of this day and kept me from begging to have furry woodland creatures as my back-up singers in this journey called life.

Our story will now resume. One of the errands was to run in and out of Hobby Lobby to purchase one skein of "dusty pink" yarn in order to complete my Angel Assignment for my Baker's Dozen knitting group. Now, I had this yarn in the stash and thought I had enough to complete the one 12x12 inch square that I was knitting up. Until last night when I realized that, no, no way, I was going to need about half of a second skein. I'm thinking this is no problem as I saw four skeins of this exact color at HL only two days ago, when I was there to pick-up yarn for another angel assignment. So, DH sits in the car as I run into the store only to find that there is not one skein left of "dusty pink" yarn. Okay - that's okay, I'll run over to Michael's as they carry this brand of yarn as well and actually have a larger selection of colors. It would be on our route anyway, no big deal. So, once again DH sits in the car as I run into the store and once again, no yarn! Strike two! I call the local Joann's - strike three!!! I am not ripping this square out and making it in another yarn, this poor woman has been waiting for her square since June because the designated person could not complete the task (we don't ask why - we all have "life" that happens -so absolutely no judgment.) And I happen to have the very yarn she wanted in my stash, so this square is going to be completed in the yarn of her choice. This is now a mission!! Oh no - did I say mission? Ya'll don't know this yet, but that means the same thing as obsession. I will find this yarn and I will get this square completed and in the mail by my Monday deadline. I go back to the car after calling the Joann's that is 30 minutes away - they have the yarn - they are setting it aside for me. Hurray!! Only that means that the nice day I've been having with DH will now come to an end because there is no way he's going to drive with me up to another yarn store. It's just not even an option to ask - he doesn't even have any of his reading material with him in the car to keep him busy while I've run into these two local stores, asking him to drive this distance and sit is cruel - I won't do it.

I drop DH at home, change into comfortable shoes and head up the road. And the beat goes on.... I get stopped by not one, but two trains (one going and one coming.) I finally make it through the worse Saturday back-road traffic that I've seen to date, get the yarn and get back to town and I still have to buy groceries, go home make dinner and try to save this day. Oh did I mention that my battery on the mobile was dead and I couldn't call to tell DH why I was going to be over an hour later than planned. Long story, short - a 1.5 hour trip turned into a 4 hour trip. We finally ate dinner at 7:30pm and didn't watch our romantic movie ( a little film called Aliens) until almost 9:00pm. And all this occurs because when I was standing in the HL two days ago, I decided not to listen to my inner voice and buy that one extra skein of "dusty pink" yarn. So, I ask where were my little mice friends when I needed them. If they made a ball gown for Cinderella surely they could have spun me some yarn or done my laundry (which will be my all day Sunday task now.)

All I can say is, "Lesson Learned." Oh - picture is of square in progress. It's a gathered stitch, but I don't think it photographed very well in regard to showing that aspect of the design.

Peace and joy to you......and all of your little helpers.
The Green Girl

Friday, August 20, 2010

A Giggle, A Laugh, It's all a Little Slap Dash......

Well, it's Friday once again. Almost the end of another work day/week. As I was pondering what to blog today, it came to me that perhaps this should be a blog in honor of all my fellow brothers and sisters of the knitting world. It is all of you that have enriched my life of late. I've been inspired, touched, taken down a peg, built up two pegs... I've laughed till me sides hurt and cried over your touching life stories.

As you may have seen in an earlier blog, I published my first knitting pattern on Ravelry this week. Within two days 19 of my fellow knitters decided to "Fav Place" my pattern. You may be saying, so what - 19 is nothing and in the grand scheme that is a small number, but in my scheme that is a huge number. So thank you to all of you that have paid me such a tremendous compliment. You made my week.

To those of you ladies that discussed the "Failed Design" thread - well all I can say is we had a good laugh. No one will ever be able to call knitting a hobby for boring little old ladies ever again. The designer that shared this situation with us, will forever see her re-vamped and new design in a completely different light. And I'll be there to purchase this pattern if she sells it as I will always be reminded of a few women having a little laugh together on a Friday afternoon on a very hot day in August.

These are just two examples of how you all have touched my life. Thanks a million and have a wonderful weekend.

Peace and joy to you all.....
The Green Girl.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

The Green Girl Friendship Scarf - Pattern

This pattern was inspired by the Yarn Harlot's One Row Scarf (permission received to use stitch pattern in design.)

The YHORS Pattern:
Stitch multiples of 4 + 2.
K2, K1(in back of stitch), P1 - repeat to last two stitches, K2.

Use whatever needle size you need to obtain gauge. You will need a second pair of needles 3 sizes smaller than your main needles.

CO 30 with largest needle size (7)

Work 15 rows in the YHORS pattern.

Row16: Decrease half the stitches so that you are left with 15 stitches on the needle. Then transfer all 15 stitches to the small needles (4).

Work the next 10 rows in stockinette - K1 row - Purl 1 row - End on a purl row.

Row 28: Increase onto the larger needle. Increase each stitch across the row until you have a total of 30 stitches.
Row 29: Purl entire row.

Work 35 rows in YHORS pattern.
Repeat rows 16-29.

Work 115 rows in YHORS pattern.
Repeat rows 16-29

Work 35 rows in YHORS pattern.
Repeat rows 16-29

Work 15 rows YHORS pattern.

Bind off all 30 stitches.


I-Cord - U-Cord - We All Scream for I-Cord.....

They say there is better living through chemistry. A veiled reference to some ethereal high that can be obtained through drugs. Well, I have found that there is also better i-cord's through technology. What's an i-cord? The bane of my knitting existence (see picture for i-cord example.)

Some of you may know the i-cord from childhood when you were given a little wooden spindle with 4 nails in the top and hole running through the center of the spindle and some yarn. You may know i-cords by the name French knitting. All of these things mean the same same - pain in my backside! That was until last night....

Yesterday, I was discussing knitting and crocheting techniques with some of my fellow Ravelers and someone said that making i-cord (which can be done with knitting needles) was the thing she hated most. Well, I tend to agree with her, it's right up there with cleaning the toilet in my book of things that I just can't wait to do (yes - that's sarcasm.) Anyway, then another Raveler jumps into the conversation and she also posted a picture of this little gadget for making i-cord. Now, I'm all about the gadgets - if it's a gadget I have it or will find a way to get it and I can't blame the muse for that one. It's pure genetics right form my dad. I had two coupons for Hobby Lobby and I remember seeing this there - as a few of my fellow Ravelers were swearing by this thing, I thought why not give it a try.

Lunchtime, Monday 8/16/2010 - Place: Hobby Lobby - coupons in hand. I go to the knitting area grab the last Embellish Knit off the shelf and head to the check-out (via the low-low clearance yarn - got three skeins - I was meaning to try one of them anyway and I figured this was an economical way to do it as they were 80% off.) Now, I'm figuring that the girl at the checkout will only take one coupon for the Embellish Knit as that is their policy. Well, look out because the heavens opened and the angels sang - she took them both (they know me there let's just leave it at that.) I walked out of the store with an Embellish Knit, which promises to make me love i-cord again and three skeins of yarn for 8.00$ (money from my coin stash only) Glory Hallelujah!!!

Evening, Monday 8/16/2010 - Place: My Home Studio - yarn and Embellish Knit at the ready. Well, long story short - you see the result in the picture - One nice lovely little pink i-cord and I didn't even turn the air blue once. Praise Be!!! Then it happens the muse walks into the room sees the i-cord and starts doing her little dance and giggling like a 5 year old. Now I'm making an i-cord scarf - I only need to make 135 feet of i-cord spread among 9 different colorways of yarn. Heaven Help Me!!!

Regarding the Embellish Knit - it's a great little product - after I recover form the throws of i-cord mania, at least I won't be dreading the i-cord any longer.

Peace and joy to you all......
The Green Girl.

Monday, August 16, 2010

The Angel Cometh.......

Well another Monday is almost over. It was an interesting day and not in the Chinese curse sort of way, but rather a day of revelations on many fronts. I have been given my first Angel assignment for a fellow knitter in my personal Baker's Dozen group. Her color choices are dusty rose and dusty green. I think that's a lovely combination and I think I will knit a square with both colors rather than just one or the other. I hope the person that was suppose to knit the square is alright - I think we had heard she was having a lot "life" happening at the moment. Life certainly can be overwhelming. It seems to be overwhelming a few of my friends these days - I'm here if anyone needs an ear to listen.
As you may have seen in a previous post, I finished my personal winter scarf and now have started on one that will be a holiday gift. It's a fantastic mauve color and I think the recipient will at least love the color. Fingers crossed. Poor sock is still sitting on the loom glaring at me for not working on it all weekend. Sorry - you're not forgotten, just set a side for the good of .... well..... anyway.... I'll get back to you soon. Promise.
And the muse is back in full glory. I really think she was on strike until I got this studio completed - now that I have she's
partying like it's - oh pick a year - she's lovin' life!!!
OK - I need to go raid the stash and find a skein of dusty pink and dusty green - then I need to fluff up my wings and be an Angel for the rest of the evening. Too bad I don't still have my 1977 Farrah flip!

Peace and joy to you all....
The Green Girl

Friday, August 13, 2010

The 13th of....... "Let's Celebrate This!!!!"

The 13th of..... The month never matters really ,but when we know that the 13th is on a Friday lots of folks get a little freaked out. I on the other hand have always loved odd numbers, so I've always seen the 13th as a good day. Friday the 12th - bad, bad day - actually most Friday's are good, good days (it is the last work day of the week after all.)

I did a little checking on the history of this poor defamed day and found that if a month starts on a Sunday, there will be a 13th on a Friday. We have at least 1, but no more than 3 such days in the year. According to Wikipedia (and we know it is the true source of all correct information) this date was not considered unlucky until the 19th century and didn't appear in writing until 1953. So, this day has been around only a little longer than I have. How can that be bad?
In honor of this day, I started a new scarf design (actually last night). I won't post pictures until I talk to the Zen Master of Knitting (The Yarn Harlot) as I am incorporating part of her "One Row Scarf" pattern into the design. I want her permission to publish this as a free pattern if possible because a couple of folks have asked for the pattern. Coming from academia, I am very conscious of plagiarism so I need to discuss this with Stephanie first (you all wouldn't want to see me knitting in jail now would you.) If she gives the go ahead I'll publish pictures, if not I'll change that part and then publish. Just getting all my knits and purls in a row first!

Now, proclamation for the day - Go forth - knit, purl, have a glass of wine, relax by a pool, or whatever makes you happy. Let's celebrate this (day)!!!!!

Peace and joy to you all.....
The Green Girl

P.S.Permission granted - pattern Published as free on Ravelry - The Green Girl Friendship Scarf. Enjoy!!!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Hip to be Square......

Quick update on the Wizard of Oz - Ding Dong the Witch is Dead - my lifelong dream of playing the Wicked Witch has been dashed. It was not meant to be. I'm heartbroken for many reasons, but as a good friend said, I now have more time to create and knit. I know many people that have dubbed me the Wicked Witch in private (students) were looking forward to openly calling me the Witch. Sorry to spoil your dreams, folks! (Ha ha ha ha ha - insert a little cackle.)

Anyway, about a week or so ago I joined the Bakers Dozen group on Ravelry. Each sub-group has 13 members and each month you knit a 12x12 square (your choice of design - MOM's choice of color, fiber, weight). Each member ends up with 12 squares to make into a throw or whatever creative object they wish. The MOM (member of the month) requests a color, fiber and weight option. It's a great group of people. Your group can consist of people around the world or just within your own country. I was placed in the US/Canada 3 group as they had lost a member. My month will be February 2011 (guess what my color choice will be?).

So, since I have had some free-time (no rehearsals for the Witch) I got to designing and knitting the squares for the August and September MOM's. It was a lot of fun and a bit of a change from all the socks, scarves, ponchos, mittens and hats that I'm knitting for the holidays. If you are a Ravelry member you can see the particulars for the squares on my Ravelry project page.

Now, instead of being the Witch, I have decided to become an Angel. Big change I know! Anyway, an angel is someone that steps in and knits a square for a group if they have a member that is "dealing with life" and can't get a square done for a particular month. I doubt I'll be up for any halos (the witch lives deep inside me), but I'm glad to help where I can.

So, Ding Dong the Angel lives (that doesn't sound right, but you get the idea.)

Peace and joy to you all......
The Green Girl

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Audition Anxiety and Socks

Today is the day - the day DH and I both audition for parts in "The Wizard of Oz." As you will have read from an earlier posting, I have wanted to be re-cast as the "Wicked Witch of the West" for the past 30 years. I have never asked to be cast for just one part, not ever, I love the theater and I'll do anything, usually! This part is different and I don't know if I can be a part of the ensemble and watch someone else with the part of my lifetime. So, this is an all or nothing type of thing this time around. I'll live with the final decision.

DH is auditioning for one of several parts. Dave has a lovely voice, always has, but yesterday was the first time he's ever danced in his life. We didn't even dance at our wedding. However, the opportunity to be the Tin Man or Wizard was too much for him and he's been practicing the audition dance non-stop since the class yesterday. I must say he has become 100% better with the practice. For his sake I hope he gets a part. This will be his second performance if he does and I think he's having fun.

Anyway, I'm more nervous than a cat in house full of rocking chairs. I've practiced my song, learned several of the character's speeches, so I'm ready. I'm up against some stiff competitors though and they've been in this group a lot longer than I.

So, in order to keep myself under control I've been knitting socks and a scarf. I switch off every now and again to keep myself sharp and relaxed (Ha as if I could be relaxed - who am I kidding.) Good luck to all my fellow Wicked Witch wannabes.

I'm off to see the Wizard......

The Green Girl

Thursday, August 5, 2010

AKB Sock Loom -Review

I finally received my Authentic Knitting Board Sock Loom today. I was waiting for them to arrive at the local Hobby Lobby and sure enough they came just in time to use a 40% off coupon. Yeah!! So instead of 24.95 - it was 14.97. It came with an Instructional DVD, Allen Wrench, Knit Pick and of course the loom.

I am getting ready to start a new sock class for looms and I always like to show the latest tools so that the students have an opportunity to see and practice what's available. This also means I'm amassing quite a nice loom collection to go with my regular knitting needles. What's one more gadget anyway?

I find that the loom has one major improvement, the metal pegs now have a round/flattened head and a grove along the body. This makes picking up the stitches far easier than their older looms of which I was not a fan.

The spacing of the pegs is 3/8 inch. They say that the loom can use any sock weight yarn. I think that if you want a dense sock, you might try using two strands of yarn if you use a very light weight sock yarn. It seems that a #3 yarn would work perfectly. It looks like that is the weight of yarn being used on DVD. I will try a couple test swatches in the next few days. If I had to pick a yarn this second, I would try the Yarn Bee Snowflake yarn (can be found at Hobby Lobby and I love it for socks.)

The loom is made of wood and is not overly heavy. I must say that Da Loom has spoiled me with their new high impact plastic looms. I really wish these other companies would find a way to go to that type of material.

It is adjustable and has a slide similar to the Da Loom and KISS rectangular sock looms. This loom can be adjusted to knit socks for babies to adult men. The slide and the end piece have 5 pegs each and the two long sides have 25 pegs/each. Total pegs = 60.

The Instruction DVD: I must say that as an instructor I spend a lot time watching instructional DVD's and online tutorials. All of the folks that take the time to make these videos and put them out there for the rest of us should be highly commended. They are a great resource for students and instructors alike. Now, all that being said, the DVD that comes with the sock loom should get a knitting equivalent of an Oscar. The video is sharp and clear, the close-ups of the stitches are very easy to follow and the narrator has a clear and easy speaking manner. This is by far the best instructional video that I've seen to date. It's worth buying the loom just to get your own copy of the DVD. Honestly!!! It's going in my knitting arsenal as one of my top 5 process tools. If you decide to use another loom, I think that's fine. I'll never give up my Da Looms, but because this loom has a larger peg spacing it makes it far easier to understand how the process works on a rectangular loom. From cuff to toe - there is a nice section for each phase of making the sock.

I'll try to remember to put some pictures of the test swatches on the blog when I get them done.

Hope this helped.

Peace and joy to you all...
The Green Girl

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Following the Yellow Brick Road.....

There is something that I love so much that is scares me to write about it, to let others know how important this thing is to me, but this blog is my safe place to let the world know the Green Girl so I shall share with you all, the one thing I enjoy even more than knitting. I have been participating in local/regional theater for the past 30 years. I've acted, directed, made costumes, organized props, worked the lights, you name it and I've been involved (and I've never had any intention of doing it professionally.) I love the theater -it feeds another part of my creative side, it makes me feel whole. Perhaps I have been acting since I was old enough to walk, playing "Pretend" (as the Aunts called it) when I was little, was my favorite activity. I was a doctor, teacher, princess, explorer, you name it. I can feel the excitement filling me up even as I write this blog. What a high - no drugs required!

This past year, my DH and I moved from Seattle back to the Chicago area and I have become involved in the local theater group. I have to say that this group is the most amazing group of individual's that I've ever worked with and that is due to one particular director. Paula never treats us like a groups of amateurs (which of course we all are.) She says, "This is the production that we are doing and this is how we are going to do it." Meaning that we aren't going to cut corners because we aren't a professional group. And goodness knows, it works every time. The audience gets an experience that makes them feel as if they spent a night at any professional theater. Paula is truly the backbone to the success of this group (at least that is how I see it.)

This Sunday, is the audition of my lifetime. The Green Girl is going to audition for the part of "The Wicked Witch of the West" in the Wizard of Oz. Now, at one point in the distant past I was cast in this role, but due to my parents objections at the time, I was not able to accept the part. So, this audition has a little extra meaning for me.
And if I am not cast, yes I'll be sad, but I will be there to cheer the rest on to what will be a fantastic performance! Hopefully I'll break a leg and when I wish upon a star, I'll wake up where the clouds are far behind me (to quote the song.)

Now, I have recently joined a knit a square a month group on Ravelry and although I have not been added to a group yet as they have to have 13 people, I am designing a Green Girl square that I will knit for each person in the group (pictures to come). If I am cast in this very special role, I will of course be knitting these squares in the wings during rehearsals (when not chasing after Dorothy and her little dog of course) and I'll send a picture along with each one so that the recipient will feel the special vibe that the theater can give to an item knit when surrounded by the muse and all her sisters, brothers, and munchkins.

So, off I go to follow the yellow brick road......
Peace and joy to you all.....
The Green Girl.