Archive for May, 2009


Don’t be alarmed – that is in fact  knitting that you see before you. Lace knitting in all its un-blocked glory.

So, my mojo disappeared. I don’t mean that as if there was an evening or two where I didn’t knit while watching television. I mean that my mojo took a look around, packed up it’s stuff and hit the road without leaving a forwarding address. No goodbyes, no hugs, no warning. Just gone. My yarn was lonely. My hands didn’t know what to do with themselves. I didn’t know what to do with myself. Yes, there’s sewing, which I really enjoy, but sewing  is not overly portable. I can’t just throw my sewing machine in my purse and head out the door. That’s just awkward.

I tried to force my mojo to come back. I started a pair of striped Noro socks. No good. Mittens? Not happening. Hat? I think not. When the prospect of socks, socks, doesn’t even get me excited, we have a problem. I was beginning to panic. What if my mojo found better digs and had no intention of ever coming back? What would I do then? How would I tell the yarn? Mojo, you need to come home.

After a couple of weeks, I think my mojo missed me. It would show up briefly – poke it’s head in and pat some yarn, look at some patterns on ravelry and leave. Gradually my mojo and I spent a little more time together – a row here, a row there. It hasn’t been easy, but my mojo and I are making it work. We even spent sometime cruising for yarn on the internet the other day and had to put the credit card away more than once.

I think that might be a good sign.


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Miss Knit’s LBD

I’ve been doing some sewing. I mentioned a while back that the Man had given me some sewing lessons as a gift (NOT an Easter gift, just coincidentally given around Easter time. He’s an odd one sometimes). I  showed up at my first lesson with a project bag I had previously made, and declared that I wasn’t really interested in making a basic tote bag, but would rather make a skirt. In my possession was the traced out  pattern  and the fabric. I wanted to get started.

Now, I am not someone who enjoys doing things the easy way. I could have chosen an easier pattern, but that’s not my style. I chose the skirt featured on the cover of Stitch, a new magazine put out by Interweave Press.  I like the asymmetry of it and it’s something I would buy. Now, I am not a sewing neophyte. I can hold my own with a sewing machine. My goal with theses lessons was to learn how to correctly interpret a a pattern and learn some solid, professional finishing  techniques. I did not quite achieve my objective. I was disappointed by the the finished product for a few reasons (and there are no pictures of it because it’s in the process of being refashioned into something else). The biggest reason was the finishing. I am a knitter. When someone shows me a finished item, I always look at the “wrong” side after I admire the “right” side. The wrong side is just as important as the public side of an item. The wrong side of my skirt was just very wrong. Not to mention that my teacher insisted on assembling the skirt without looking at the directions and as a result the skirt I got was the mirror image of the one in the magazine. Not a big deal until putting it on becomes an exercise in frustration.  Bah.

Frustrated, but having learned a few things, I decided to give it a go on my own. Not with a remake of the Stitch skirt (which I may revisit because I do like the style), but with a dress by Vogue. Labelled “very easy, ” I figured I could handle it myself. With the exception of asking the Man’s mom for help laying things out on the bias (new to me), it was smooth sailing. And after a bit of custom fitting, I’m pretty pleased with the result.






I’ve even worn this out and about doing errands – a big step for some one who finds wearing her own creations a little bit nerve wracking. A good sign I think. I was encouraged by my success and set about to make another dress – a wrap dress this time. It’s all finished, but there a couple little adjustments that I’d like to make before it’s grand debut.

And just before I go, here’s me, showing off my guns. Awesome.


And in case you were worried, there was some knitting. Photo-less knitting, but knitting nonetheless. My mojo is creeping back, stitch by stitch.

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I enjoy tasty baked goods. I like cookies, pies, scones – pretty much anything really. Yesterday I decided  that I needed, needed something sweet with my tea. What goes better with tea than cookies? Nothing. Except maybe Russian Tea Cakes. These crumbly, shortbread-like delights are a perfect match for the hot beverage of your choice. Enjoy!


You’ll need:

  • 2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup finely chopped husked hazelnuts, toasted – or the nut of your choice. I like pecans.
  • Powdered sugar

Sift flour and salt together. Using electric mixer, cream butter in large bowl until light. Gradually add 1/2 cup sugar and beat until fluffy. Add vanilla. Mix in dry ingredients in 3 batches. Mix in hazelnuts. Refrigerate at least 1 hour or up to 12 hours.

Preheat oven to 400°F. Form dough into 1-inch balls. Space 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake until just firm to touch, about 15 minutes. Transfer to rack and cool slightly. Roll in powdered sugar. [I put the powdered sugar in a paper bag, add a couple of cookies at a time and give them a gentle shake. Way easier]. Cool completely. Roll cookies in powdered sugar again. Store in airtight container.


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