The Internet brings out the stalker in me

I’m not a stalker in real life, I swear! (Although I hear that’s the oldest trick in the stalker book, I hold by my assertion). But for some reason all these social networking sites really bring out the stalker in me. Though I like to think that Internet Stalking is not nearly as serious as the real life kind.

Let this be a formal notification to the Internet, if you comment on my blog/Flickr/Ravelry project (or favourite said items) I will be checking your profile and your project listings/photos and possibly even your blog/Etsy store. It’s just the way it goes. In fact, it’s now part of my daily routine to check the Ravelry/Flickr for comments/favoriting/etc., and the good old Sitemeter is my best friend, I’ve even started using the Flickr stats feature too (!!!).

I’m not like keeping lists or anything, no Excel spreadsheets have been set up, well, Sitemeter does that crap for me, but other than that, it’s just interesting for me to watch who’s paying attention. On the blog, it’s mostly Canada (really Montreal & area—mad props to Montreal Knittters, holla if you hear me!), with some Eastern US attention too (send Red Vines), but in the past few weeks, the next group has shifted from the UK to Norway. I think it’s those mittens…but welcome! Never been to Norway, but Sweden’s close right? Spent a fun few days in Stockholm a couple of Novembers ago. Nice town. Country landscape very similar to Alberta in the early winter but with cooler rocks. Loved that Sweden’s souvenirs were also stuffed mooses.

I’ve developed few of my own Ravelry rules. Friend me on Ravelry or Flickr, I’ll friend you back (it’s weird that it’s a one way relationship, like I can consider us ‘friends’ but you don’t have to acknowlege it at all…what’s the deal?). If you favourite one of my projects, I’m gonna check out your profile and projects and it could possibly go to the Flickr/Blog/Etsy store level. If you comment on a project of mine, I’m gonna reply (usually just to say thanks yo!) in addition to the profile/project/blog stalk.

And if you’re Pinneguri (Ravelry) and have favourited a project, nominated them for a Bobby, and continue to berate me for not accepting a compliment, I’m gonna friend you on Ravelry, and blog stalk you (even if I can’t read most of it). She’s made many a fine pair of mitten, so I guess I better accept her compliments as an official mitten expert.

So consider yourselves officially warned….but I wouldn’t worry about looking over your shoulder for me in a dark alley. Stalking is just for the internets.

Blogs that have recently been ‘Janed’ (or read from the beginning, near beginning, or from what Google Reader would load for me while at Boring Job™):

Lolly Knitting Around—recommended by the Google bots
Knits & Pieces—friended me on Ravelry & favourited the Mittens
Hello Yarn—Favourited & commented (!!!) on the mittens & recommended by Google bots
Knit and Tonic—Google bots & I’ve knit her Le’Slouch enough times to actually read her blog

I’m currently reading my way through Cosmicpluto Knits! Not a new discovery, just figured it should be properly Janed (see above).

Now if you’ll excuse me, the Mittens have been favourited a few more times

Japanese Craftbooks & Continued Conversations

Knit nites (and afternoons) have become a big part of my social life here in Montreal lately and the word is out, I have a blog. Sunday afternoon, my blog became a topic of conversation (it began with the general topic of blogs) and I was surprised at who reads my blog. I mean, I do have the whole Sitemeter thing now which I LURV to check obsessively to see if anyone’s been on, where in the world they’re checking from (Germany! England! Japan! California! Missouri!) and how they’re getting here (lots of Fair Isle searches, sometimes for stockings, some image searches and some lovely links from other blog peoples blogs), but I don’t get names or anything, so it’s pretty much a mystery to me.

Why do I blog? Um. I dunno. Mostly cause I want to keep track of my knitting and I’m more likely to keep up with the updating & keeping track of knitting related decisions if it’s not just for me. I always have the internal monologue for pretty much everything anyways so why not get it out of the brain? I try to keep up with the updating fairly frequently mostly cause someone complained that I didn’t post enough but it’s also a good way to keep it part of the regular daily/weekly routine. Oh, and I ALWAYS have an opinion on everything, from toe-up vs. cuff-down, cast-ons to Continental vs. English so me writing it here means I don’t have to drive people crazy with the rantie on such topics.

K. Now the Japanese Craftbooks. Janet, a very lovely knit nite participant who is on a personal quest to make the most crocheted eco-bags in the world, brought in her ever-growing collection last week for us to oooo and aaaaaaa over. I love the crazy amazing things that are done in these books with traditional techniques. There’s one that features Fair Isle projects and it’s so interesting to see how traditional Scandinavian motifs and colours are tweaked/changed/adapted to make something new and modern. There’s no fear of breaking with the ‘tradition’ of such motifs or techniques in the creation some truly unique projects.

The conversation begun by these books brought me to mention these amazing herringbone gloves I had come across on the internets. (Here you go Janet). The finished gloves totally look like haute couture/Saks Fifth Avenue store bought gloves and are definitely next on the list. I do also need something in between the Endpaper Mitts and the Squirrely Swedish Mitts. I think the chance colour combo from the previous post (mustard plus heathery brown/eggplant) will be absolute perfection.

Another knit nite conversation was the change in photography style of the latest Interweave Knits. I’m still waiting for mine to come in the mail and getting kind of cranky about it’s late arrival, I usually get it before it hits the news stands man! Back to the conversation. Someone brought up the change in photography and how poorly they were matched to models and how the shots were styled. Having not received the latest issue yet, I couldn’t contribute to the rant.

But as I have opinions on everything, especially things related to my professional life as a Graphic Designer, I got into a rant about the general change in design and layout of the magazine in the past year or so. I really prefer the old design. The ‘redesign’ to me is a step back rather than forwards. The bleed edge top graphics combined with the title treatments on the article and pattern pages especially bother me by how they clutter the white space. But I do enjoy the pattern pages and photo montage layouts. They showcase the knit projects using the usually strongest part of Knits, the photography.

Now usually the photography has this awesome ‘knitwear in its natural habitat’ feel to it. Candid feeling photographs of people wearing sweaters, scarves, socks etc. while doing every day things. Only sometimes the photos are sometimes a little blurry. Not the best thing when trying to showcase projects. Showing detail is kind of a big deal. While I appreciate that they tried to fix this blurriness in photographing the latest issue, based on the internet preview pics, I think in trying to fix the blurriness, the overall appeal of Knits photography was lost.

Instead of lovely candid photos of real looking people in great sweaters we now have an almost Sears catalog of possible projects harshly lit in overly styled and very artificial feeling locations. Overall not an improvement. Oh and I really dislike the photo chosen for the cover. There’s just not enough colour punch and interesting composition to keep my attention. I think the Alicia Tabard on the beach would be a way more compelling cover, even if it’s not Christmas-y, the icy blue still indicates a general ‘Winter Wonderland’ time of year.

But I like lots of the projects inside. Really that’s what its about. Good articles and good projects. It’s still a shame when something gets changed but not improved.

And I finished the second Mitten Swap mitten despite my inability to concentrate at the last couple of knitting meetups. Oy. I need to start drinking coffee again or something. Still have to weave all those pesky ends and staring at a monitor all day is not good preparation for studying the yarns to work things in with the whole gentle shifts of colour thing. I figure they’ll be ready to ship out by the weekend.

These aren’t my socks

Pattern: Striped Sports Socks with i-cord bind off
Yarn: Briggs & Little Sport, Sheep’s Grey and Royal Blue
Start: Mid July 2007
End: October 1, 2007

They belong so someone much taller than me. Hopefully they’ll still be knee-highs (or something close) on her. Next need to stick them in an envelope and send them away.

Well, you readers fulfilled your end of the bargain and commented, so I’ll do my part and post more. Most surprising is that I’ve got subscribers….WHOT?!?! That’s kind of crazy to me. This may make my posts a little more coherent and stick to one (ish) topic. So today is some finished socks.

Oh and I understand those of you who are non-blog commentors. I generally don’t comment on people’s blogs that I read all the time. But I’m going to endeavour to comment more as well as post more.

ahem hem hem.

I’ve been told I don’t blog frequently enough.

WHOT?!?!??! Really? There are people that read this thing?

I know my mom doesn’t cause I haven’t told her about it. I know my Secret Pal does as s/he’s always up on the comment spam (which is much appreciated). I dunno, I post when I feel there’s something knit-worthy (aren’t I SO hilarious?) that needs recording in some way. Um. I could blog more.

BUT I ask one thing. Comment please. I really have no clue how many people actually read this thing other than those few that have commented. I’m not asking for brilliance (cause I sure ain’t giving it). Even just a ‘You should post something today!’ works for me or a ‘That colour looks like crap on you’ or even an update on how many more inches your sock is. Silly random movie/tv show/book quotes or trivia is welcome too. I dunno.

I’ll post more if you comment, sound fair?

[this message is brought to you by knit nite sillyness on Monkland. Sometimes tired turns into quite silly quite quickly. Now I’m off to bed]

Ten Second Tidy!


I know I already posted today and I don’t want to be that person who posts every 10 seconds but I though I should mention the sidebar tidy that just happened.

I have been trying to sort out how to deal with the storage of knitted projects vs. other things I label and came to the conclusion that really it’s just all about the knitting. So I’ve sorted all the labels into groups to be nice and organised.

You may notice that I’m not using the usual WIP, FO lingo. That’s cause I don’t like it. In fact I have a general aversion to acronyms in general. Other people can use them, that’s fine by me, but I don’t want to and you can’t make me!

These acronyms just continue to remind me of the shallower, trendy side of knitting in the new millenium. While I appreciate that there are so many people turned on to knitting these days, I don’t like the inference that it’s some kind of fickle fad. For me, it’s not. Knitting has pretty much always been a part of my life. Not usually something that I use to define myself and there are many people I know who don’t know and have never seen me knit. It’s just something I do. Like read, garden or watch movies (I see a LOT).

It’s new for me to be public about my hobbies and only know people because of knitting so it’s been an adjustment. I’m reluctant to change, but I think it’s a good thing to take knitting off my couch and participate in Knit Nites which I really do enjoy.

But I still refuse to knit on the Metro or bus. Knitting is for me, not to create a spectacle. I’m not judging those of you who do the knitted commute, and mega props to that chick I saw knitting a sock while crossing the street that time. It’s just not my thing.

There’s my two bits.

One of these days I’ll get around to knitting up a proper header. I’ve got it all planned but have yet to cast on.

reuse, reduce, recycle or just repurpose.

Right. I haven’t posted much of anything on this since I signed up in 2003. I have opted for using other blogging things and have become a fractured person. MySpace is for music events. LiveJournal for keeping up with my real life peeps who are scattered about the world and a blog on my website for keeping my parents and remote family members up to date on my life.

This blog will stay fairly anonymous, a challenge for me. Writing without people already knowing me or at least having met me. The closest you’ll get is from my previous posts and the cartoon version of me as my profile picture.

Strangely Blogger hasn’t figured into any of this in the 4 years that I’ve had an account. But now I think I shall use this for my crafty endeavors. I knit. I crochet. And I am rediscovering embroidery. The first and last thing I embroidered was my backpack in grade 8 where it was all free form flowers, suns, and a tree I think. I made up stitches to make it all happen and I’m sure it’s more impressive in my memory than in reality. Sadly no pictures have survived and the backpack went back to Eddie Bauer in exchange for one without a broken zipper.

I am currently working on a lovely knitted lace shawl adapted from Eunny Jang’s Print ‘O’ the Waves Shawl to use one skein of very lovely handpainted yarn by Virginia van Santen as that’s all that I have. Unfortunately this has meant I am now reworking the border for the third time. I keep running out before getting remotely close to finishing going all the way around. I really hope third times a charm as I really don’t feel I can take much more out of the body of the shawl without completely reknitting it. And the cashmere at the beginning of the body can’t survive another reknitting.

Finger’s crossed.

and she chooses a template

Ok. So the first post was a bit heavy. I think even a bit much for me. I mean it took me three years to even thing about trying to follow that one. Woah. Chill Jane. Keep it light.

Short update. Jane has graduated University (yeah!) in april of 2004. Spent just over a year working for said University, bought a car with her very own car loan and then decided to run away to London instead of doing what all her fellow design graduates are currently doing: buying condos and/or moving in with their boyfriends. Too real and permanent for me right now. Yuk.

So at the beginning of September she flew the coop and was unemployed for a month and a half in a very expensive European city only to finally find a design job within 20 minutes of where she found a place to stay (yeay!). She has since had many adventures involving many (North) Americans and a token Aussie, New Zealander and German for good measure. Travels have included many destinations within the UK in addition to Sweden, Austria and Italy (such good pizza OMG!).

This has only served to whet her appetite for travel and living outside of Edmonton. She plans to return to the Great White North when it’s (thankfully) green and nice out on 10 July 2006. After staying for an undetermined short period of time she plans to relocate once more to the lovely Montreal where she hopes to get more into interactive design while trying to persue a film career (uh, directing not acting).

So there you go. Oh and I must add that I LOVE the National Rail system in England. It’s the best.

an ominous moment, the initial entry to the newly established Bloghouse. Another attempt of mine to make my mark on the infinite internet. will anyone read this? will i really have anything worthwhile to post [does anyone?] will anyone be able to find this small ripple in the ocean of information and distractions? can one small site trully make a difference? is proper spelling really important if you can still understand what i mean to say?

I am a graphic design student currently, and will try to make my mark a unique expression of my personality and preferences. But it’s not ready yet….. just you wait kids.