Monday, January 31, 2005

HEY!!! I could get to liking this

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Second try at fair isle, not too shabby huh?

gee there are so many things I can knit now......I am almost light headed with the possibilities.

I am knitting one of the hats from the Anna Zilboorg '45 Fine and Fanciful hats to knit' Book

I bought that book a while ago, maybe even a year ago, that and the Fair Isle Glove and mitten book, never actually believing that I too could knit those amazing things. Turns out it isn't hard!

Blew me away, I tell you. I never thought I could do it.

Now today being the last day of the First month of the year, the traditional time that cabin fever and malaise sets in, I have something to keep me so entranced that I don't notice how gray it is outside. I recommend learning something new and exciting every January and February. (Actually this is something I have been trying to do every year, save an absorbing, infinately fascinating project for these two months, and another one for march.)

so back to the ripping of the two rows I go as I forgot to do the increase in the row before the last

til next time


PS: Bernie starts his new job today, he left at 5am.........oye, and the poor guy did not sleep at wink last night. We hope that there is actual work at this job, not like the last two that promised work, but never delivered

Saturday, January 29, 2005

First try with Fair Isle!

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Ok I had a class today from 10 am to 2(ish) pm
At our local yarn store, Mountain Knits And Pearls.
it was a class in two handed, two colored fair isle knitting
the project was ................ a HAT !!!!
I just got done with it so here it is
the Colors are off
they are actually magenta, yellow and orange....... next try will have more orange
I did it in Cascade 220 worsted on size 7 dp
the colors are 7803 for the magenta,
7826, California poppy
7824, burnt orange
I had a blast and color stranding is wonderful.........
I feel another obsession coming on........
wild colored fair isle menopausal socks?
anyhow........ here is my hat fresh off the needles
I did try it on and it is a bit tight but I really do knit tightly so I think if I had gone up to a nine I would be ok
til next time

Thursday, January 27, 2005

So much for a dream

Remember the Kansas city doll competition?
it isn't going to happen
thaddeaus pulled the cabinet down with all the dolls and the dolls are now broken
I am still in shock and numb, it will hit me tomorrow I think
both him and his sister are in their crates for the night
I thought Bernie was going to kill them.

I don't understand WHY thaddeaus did that?
he isn't that bad a cat, and he is almost 2 so why did he do that?
he knows he isn't allowed up on that workbench

Are we ready for this?

Ok Bernie took the Mahwah job, with great trepidation. We'll see how it goes
meanwhile I have started the magazine articles I owe, so I got the first one written and now must take the pictures while I make the doll to go with it.
I will also be developing a few online classes in doll making for Minidoll U.
Doesn't that sound like fun? I thought it would be a blast so I am working on the first one now.
I will also be teaching sock knitting at the LYS starting in March so I shall be happily busy.
meanwhile I am taking a class this coming Saturday January 29 at the local yarn store "Mountain Knits & Pearls" in two color two handed fair isle knitting, I have my homework done for this class already. I decided on three not two colors and they are in my beloved magenta, yellow and orange. I can only imagine what deep seated psychological traits are attributed to people who love magenta, yellow, and orange in combination.......... but well there you go. Anyway the yarn is Cascade 220 in worsted weight on # 7 DPs so it is going to be a super fast knit.
(spoken as one used to knitting with 1.5 dp's so 7's are huge, I felt like they were baseball bats)
Meanwhile, my beloved Spin Group, Blue Mountain Fiber, will be my sock knitting guinea pigs, letting me teach them my way of sock knitting, so I am more used to teaching a more formal type class. I teach all the time, but nothing formal.
I swear I love the people in the Blue Mountain Fiber group, I am so lucky they let me keep coming back to them. I insure that return by bribing them with soap and toiletries as well as homemade from scratch cookies......hahahah I ain't no dumb Bunny..........
If any of you do get a chance to met one of that bunch count yourself lucky as they are wonderful people. Carole lets me play with her goaties and sheepies all the time, Kris HAS a lamb saved for me! ( imagine that! me a lamb, but it may have to go into the freezer as opposed to pasture due to our zoning) JoAnne and Monica told me I can come play with their Alpaca's and horses any time I want...... Gees Even Linda lets me smush all over her dogs..... finer folks you couldn't find.
shhhhhhh don't tell them I said this, they would blush.

ok so this is about up to date, I am doing a series of costuming articles both for miniature dolls, and for my beloved cloth dolls.
Whatever ones don't sell, I was thinking maybe I would self publish a book? who knows, anything at this moment seems possible. And the book thing really isn't hard.
I know I owe you folks some pictures soooooooooooo
here is one of the little blue eyed one......

she is so cute that I had to share

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Kansas City

ok so there is a show....... a doll show in Kansas City.
with a competition
and I am thinking of entering.
ok, so am I crazy?

Monday, January 24, 2005

I didn't realize how far I'd come

I am on a miniature doll list MSAT,
a question asked on this list was to post your first doll.
well since I been making dolls for about 40 years now....... ( gee I didn't realize I was that old)
I decided to at least try to find some of my early porcelain, which I did!
this was enlightening for me to see, as I hadn't realized how far I truly had come as a doll artist.
I am going to be sculpting again soon so I will find it very interesting to see what direction I am going to be going next.

I found an early porcelain,

a sort of middle porcelain

and a much later one

meanwhile back at the farm........ Bernie is still not sure what job he is going to be taking or even if he is staying as a Ford tech
he is still thinking of switching careers.
it is still bitter cold today and it snowed again
FINALLY an old fashioned winter!
I just wish we had a wood stove in the studio.......well there is always this spring huh?
til next time

I'm having an alien's baby

made ya look
no just wondering if anyone actually reads this besides my closest friends
guess it is ONLY my closest friends
I am still working on the trekking xxl socks,
I am up to the weird ass ribbing on the cuff on the second sock, I can't wait to finish these as they so remind me of the 70's and my long lost waist.
(OH my I just remembered that I was dreaming of hair, viscose, weird fruits and doctors....... I could NOT remember this morning what the hell I had dreamt about last night which is very unusual for me..... that was it!~ I have been trying to dye the viscose a particular color of soft brown and I dreamt about it)

Saturday I have a color knitting class to go to, at our LYS which I am afraid may close due to lack of local interest. That would be terrible as it is a nice place and a wonderful person that owns it, Not to mention that they are the ONLY LYS ( I mean REAL YARN) within an hour
so loosing her would really be bad, but right now everyone is tight with money. Heating oil is almost 2.00 a gallon and it has been COLD. *** our heat is down to 66 Degrees F, as I can't afford a 700 heating bill***
Anyway the color knitting class, which I am going to is for fair isle knitting, which I have been DYING to try for maybe 30 years..... I have to run there prior to get the yarn and do the homework that they want ahead of time........... it's been so cold I haven't gone out and today they aren't open.
I will have to go tomorrow. I hope it's warmer. I apparently don't do WELL in the extreme cold. gee maybe we should rethink moving within pa....... and move to a warmer place like VA?

The laperms have been cuddling together
but 5000 year old Amber has been trying to find the COLDEST place to lay around at. Senile old bat that she is
she didn't want to eat this morning, or yesterday......
she kept informing me that she was too old to eat.......
but that it was ok she would have a bit of egg to make me happy
oh and a little cheese wouldn't bother her much either
and that thick ass slice of roast beef was just the thing for her on her DEATH BED........
so the little manipulative cat got fed GOOD and apparently her will to live has returned as she ate all her cat food breakfast today.

meanwhile, I put in a bid on a pattern for a cat cuddle bed, which I actually could probably figure out how to make without a pattern, but has this way cool TENT thing too.
anyway, once I actually get to town with cash flow........I am going to get some fleece and make them each a cat bed I am going to make a seperate heat retaining pillow for at least Amber, but probably will have to give each one of these guys one.
I also need to do litter boxes today

on the doll making front, I have a real intense urge to sculpt again.
it is getting worse daily
I don't want to use clay like I used to however. I kept getting infections from the impurities in it
so I am going to try this new stuff called "apoxysculpt" I can't wait to order it.
I am going to wait however until we know what is going on with Bernie's job
or until that one Vender actually pays me what she's owed me since June. ( note to self, never believe the vender when they tell you the check is in the mail........ damn I do know better)

Saturday, January 22, 2005

Junk food impaired

please someone tell me what sort of junk foods they reserve for blizzards and other acts of mother nature?
Bernie and I were just discussing this, as we want something to eat but don't really want to go to the trouble of actually cooking right now
yet we are ravinously hungry!
we did make some grilled cheese sandwiches with real cheddar, ( not the sliced processed cheese food stuff, as we usually only get real cheese)
they were very good but as we were discussing this we realized that actually we don't have a lot of junk food.
A bag of chips will last us about 6 months or so
if we actually remember to buy them in the first place.

Sadly we suspect that we are junk food impaired.

we were trying to figure out what we would have if we could even get out of the door, let alone down the mountain to town and even find a store open.

egg rolls and shrimp were mentioned, as well as golden raisins and dried apricots.
of course I threw in a vote for icecream and cheesecake but you all knew that was coming, as the icecream and cheesecake would be a no brainer.

what do you folks all eat?
(no Beth, not the pork rinds, I have to draw the line somewhere, and I drew it right before the pork rinds)

I think that an event of this is sort of the superbowl of nature right? I mean you are all hanging around the house and all you really can do is eat and watch the snow fall, worrying the whole time if the electric will hold out as it is like 17 degrees out there........ or will you have to abandon your humble and somewhat messy home for somewhere that is warm with alternative energy that does NOT rely on the "grid" and will accept your cats.

so what all constitues junk food?
as a kid in an old world italian family halava was considered junk food and canoli.
now I am older and I realize that stuff like that is actually real food, not junk food
so that possibly doesn't count.
neither do Twinkies as I have never had one and I hear they have been discontinued anyway.
nor peeps, which I finally had and I was not impressed.

so any suggestions?
I would love to know what you all think of as junk food
don't be shy, tell me your favorite natural event pigout fest food........
till next time

just to give you folks something to look at

Hosted by

ok this is one of my older horse and riders, if you think you may recognize it you are probably right, as it was the cover of  the june 1995 issue of NSN

I love doing the horse and riders, with the medieval inspired ones at the top of the list.... they are going to be made again in the relatively near future, as my fingers have been twitching to do them again.

Ok then Mar, this ones for YOU!
til next time

lady is waiting for snow

well there is to be a huge storm or so it is being said on the TV.
we are to get pounded with something like 15 inches and high winds
I am hoping that the news etc is all wrong.
not that I have anything against snow or mother nature.
but the kero back up heaters are not working right and at -2 F I am thinking......
we are pretty much screwed if we lose the electric.
we do have a fireplace but no wood
although one neighbor said to come get wood by them, which of course we have been reluctant to do
And would someone please tell me, what is it about snow storms that makes you want to eat everything in the house? ( or is it just me???)
I am starving......... (watch out all are looking well fed to me... nice plump little rumps...... with a white wine sauce? JUST KIDDING the cats are spoiled as always)
ok so I made cookies....... and left some dough in the fridge, I will bake more today as I really want my mixing bowl back.
I did dishes too so if we do lose electric we got mugs to drink from
we got water saved.....none for drinking but hey melted snow works too you know.
I really wish for this winter we were better prepared, we usually have been in the past but this year was not our best.
ok meanwhile
I started work on a 1760's english lady, which I am hoping to have done in two weeks
I have to write a how to on her so I will start takeing pictures shortly
I will update later when (or should I say IF with this storm?) bernie gets home and the storm is over
til next time

Friday, January 21, 2005

some knitting and a petulant child

GASP!!! actual knitting pictures!
( actual pictures again!)
I know I haven't posted pictures in a bit, I am a lazy person.
I freely admit it
lazy as a dead toad.
( that is pretty lazy you know)
so I haven't posted any pictures.....but now WOW~~!!!
we are lousy with all these stinkin pictures!
ok first up
thad petulant child doll I am working on, she is 3.25 inches high and fighting me like crazy-what can I expect? look at her FACE......she is annoyed......

and all of her

gee I hope the pictures aren't as big in real life as they are in preview, and I have reduced them!

the latest socks

close up of the blue waste yarn for the afterthought heel

this is actually how cold it is out.....the rhodo's leaves are tightly curled, poor thing is freezing cold, but it will unroll it's leaves and be fine as soon as it gets warmer...
we are to be getting a bad storm this weekend I hear.
and the back up heaters aren't working well
oh and since I was 'helped' in taking pictures, here is my assistant, ( no one else was awake)

there's my big boy, gee isn't he handsome?
as to the snow storm, I suppose that we need to get the kero heaters together, the ignition of the large one doesn't work, I think we need a new one. however we CAN light it with a bamboo skewer and we probably will have to if the electric goes out.
( I will then also be wishing for a generator huh?)
we do have water, food, & candles incase. but we don't have batteries for the flashlights.
I do have the important stuff, cat food, litter, crates and blankets...... as well as sock knitting yarn......and extra kerosene just in case.
gee we aren't all that prepared.
normally in an average snow storm, we don't lose power and the house gets warmer.
I probably should make stew or something similar for Bernie. He is going to be cold when he gets home.
ok folks
till next time

Wednesday, January 19, 2005

January's slump & a cat's life

It's been cold in NE PA, and we have the heat down to 64 as the price of heating oil is more then I swear I paid for this HOUSE!
Leave it to the cats to find the warmest place to be.
Amber keeps going up on the top of my doll mold storage rack, Calpurrnia sits in the front of the heat duct DIRECTLY over the furnace...( and she is the FURRY ONE!)
Thaddeaus sits on me, or more precisely.....on my chest under my chin.
Now, Thaddeaus is a BIG cat, and while I may be a chubby thing, I am very little. Under 5 feet tall now.
So there isn't much ROOM under my chin ( or chins as actually I have two)
meanwhile I am trying to stay warm wearing leggings under my jeans, hand knit socks, hand knit/felted clogs, a teeshirt under my sweatshirt, a scarf around my neck and a hat on my head. Over this I have been putting a fleece lounging robe!
I am scary if I have to open the door for anyone.
I been drinking a Lot of homemade hot cocoa..... I swear that stuff will warm the dead.
All this cold has lead to the investigation of alternative heating appliances, as also last week or so we had an ice storm and a lot of folks were out of electric and heat for a while. We were out about 3 hours.
All I worried about were the cats.
The cats have fur coats
The cats have me well trained
I consider their welfare first
( and the cats are now saying 'yes, as it should be')
I swear I made arrangements not for US but for them if the heat hadn't come on that day!
I had it all arranged for them to go to a home with two cozy wood stoves, and two other cats and a dog.......with a human that doesn't have kids but loves animals.
This also made me realize that I simply MUST knit them cat beds, which will be felted and lined with foam and fleece so that the little furry darlings will stay warm.
Never mind that they have a ton of fur, never mind that when it gets nippy the Laperms will run around and cuddle.

Amber, being as she is 4006 will not actively mess with the laperms But thaddeaus does cuddle up with her occationall, and I believe would love to cuddle up with BOTH girls........ he is such a despot I swear
he is a king in his own little furry cat brain around here......The girls yell at him all the time but he doesn't hold that against them
This for some odd reason cracks me up....... I just can't help but laugh at him.
I wish I could convey how funny he is..... trying to keep 'his' girls in line.....and they both being torties........ give him hell.
gee I really need a life!
til next time

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

are you tired of dolls yet?

ok so I am doing dolls right now
( and socks out of trekking XXL which I love btw..... I want the 801 and 803 iffen anyone wants to say...... get rid of some????)
ok here are the photos of a newer doll
and yes ladies and gentlemen.......that is REAL cloth of silver......

ok what do you think??
(you know....... look below, there is a comment let me know ok?)

Monday, January 17, 2005

Baby it's cold outside

I know.....lame, but it IS cold out.
The rhododenrums leaves are curled up tight as a pipe.

you didn't know that? rhodo leaves curl up tightly in the cold........the colder it is the tighter they curl...... who needs a thermometer??? Welcome to vi's place where there is no end to useless facts and knowledge

ok where was I?
oh yeah........cold.
Ok I can tell you that a menopausal women with hand knit wool socks, hand knit and felted wool clogs, a pair of sweatpants under her jeans, a tee shirt and sweatshirt, a wool scarf and hat on......IN THE HOUSE can and will still be cold in this kind of weather.
meanwhile I am furiously knitting my newest pair of socks....... in trekking XXL cause I am convinced that if I just keep knitting socks, spring and warmth will well as feeling to my toes

In other knitting news, I am going to take a class in two handed, two color knitting!!!!
on January 29, at Mountain Knits and Pearls......(NAYY)They are in Stroudsburg pa.
I always wanted to learn two color knitting and so far haven't gotten around to it
so this is the perfect midwinter malaise breaker ( thank you to the person on KR that told me how to spell malaise) now visions of multicolored hats, and Latvian gloves dance in my cold little head.
I probably will get back to this blog with some long over due pictures this week
of the socks, of the newest doll, and of course.........of the cats.....
poor ancient amber doesn't like pictures anymore but the other two........ well they hog it up for the camera, didn't you notice?
till later

Friday, January 14, 2005

Thaddeaus Peabody and Miss Calpurrnia Peabody Bigglewood

Well today it seems Mr. Peabody isn't up to his usual snuff.
He's been wanting mommy.
Ms Bigglewood however is more then making up for her brother's lack of terrorism.
I am cleaning ears with mineral oil
and plotting to..............(shhhhhhhhhhhhhhh, please this is top secret)
my little darlinks are going in for a bath........(in you say??? why in the SINK)
we now have a sprayer in the sink so we have a shower for the cats.

the manical laughter you would be hearing now in the background would be I am sneaking around with towels and such hahahahha
we'll see who has the last laugh about this one

I am adding calpurrnia's latest picture, look at the coat she got since this picture of the two of them together!!!

Thursday, January 13, 2005

2nd place?

The new cloth doll I had posted about here made a 2nd place at the PA Farm show.
I still haven't named her
Anyone want to volunteer a few names?
I am thinking something that goes along with Esmeralda, her 'older' sister.
I am getting her back sometime this week.
I will be working on some other stuff for our local county fair that happens at the end of summer.
My spinning group got me into doing this.
I still have a couple of articles I am supposed to be writing for the doll and the minature magazine. ( I have to get some drafts out to them soon, everyone nag me ok?)

I am working on that little porcelain child from 1902-1907. And knitting yet another pair of socks. This time in Trekking (pictures of each to follow)

today was vet day for Thaddeaus Peabody, who the vet has decided, has an allergy! and it is affecting his skin.
We will be starting weekly baths soon. My little curly headed son is happy, healthy, and sassy.
His little sister is being taught to be bad in his place!
(remember those big blue eyes?) hahahaha THAT is MY girl.................. even though she is her daddy's darlink!
Really it is amazing the difference in Thaddeaus since we went and brought his sister home.
Now we are going to go and get their great gramma and they will be a full family here.
I really love the Laperm breed, even though they are a very very active breed, which I didn't think I wanted...... what did I know?
now they have us wrapped firmly around their little paws.

Ok, now it is about 6:30pm, we had to do the cats ears, ALL the cats ears........
then Calpurrnia had a few mats, which laperms are not supposed to get...... well we didn't get her done because the blunt tip scissor broke....... I have to get her another blunt tip scissor huh?
I didn't go to spin group tonight
I did however tell everyone that they'd better miss me, have a moment of silence......(well with me not there, it will be pretty quiet and peaceful huh?)
and that they would mourn me not being there when it was time for cookies........
cause I always bring the cookies........ hey the way to someone's heart is food no?
either that or bribery with our handmade soaps or maybe a cream or two???
Kris is going to be our new sales rep. She is taking payment in soap...... now THAT is a great arrangement huh?
soap traded for spinning fibers, soap for eggs, soap for chickens, soap for sales reps......
we are up to our ears in soap right now, beings as alot of the small venders that carried us have closed now.......

Monday, January 10, 2005

here a doll there a doll

ok from a few years ago
Jo March
this was from a clients collection that I liquidated.
I never did get the other sisters of this book done, but I plan on doing them eventually

Wednesday, January 05, 2005

another day in the neighborhood

I have been busy, first someone had the bright idea that I should enter a doll in the pa farm show.
they convinced me on SATURDAY to do this doll
now I find out on SATURDAY that it must be made in 2004.
I have to remake a new rag doll.
no sweat, after all I have that pattern I have been perfecting for a few years right?
I have worked out the kinks and it is almost perfect right?
guess what?
I can't find it
I have to make a new pattern plus test it, plus dress this doll in four days.......
can I do it
well I did!
amazed the shit out of me
even after I wasted two days perfecting the new pattern and redoing the head a few times cause no one liked the heads I was doing
finally I got something everyone thought was ok
you all be the judge

diabetes inducing?

note her hair is needlefelted into her head.
I am going to pick up my knitting needles again shortly, I have two pairs of socks to work on.