Dusting Off The Old Blog

Holy smokes! It’s amazing how must dust can build up when you’ve been away from your own blog for a few years. It has been a crazy few years with many reincarnations of blogs and my crafty obsessions.

But now I have returned with the idea of bring this little blog back into the light. I miss talk about knitting/ crochet and hot guys. I even miss talking about hot guys wearing knitting/crochet.

I will be making a few changes to the blog. Most likely updating the format and definitely changing the name. As much as I loved being called Liver Chick, I think now that I’m easing up on 40, it might be time for a more mature title for myself. (only the title of the blog will be more mature, not the actual blogger).

so, there you have it. I return to the old blog for a new crop of fiber addicts. I hope you enjoy the comeback.

Treading So Lightly

I have been treading very lightly recently. The sudden and very recent lost of my mother should have caused the sudden shift in reality. But it has not. I’m still me and that seems strange.

I’ve been waiting for grief to come. I prepared myself with days off and lots of ice cream, but nothing. I have given myself complete permission to cry, but the tears won’t come. What gives? I see the rest of my family in deep and obvious mourning and yet I feel completely. . . normal. Am I too much in shock? Has my mind just not been able to process what has happened? Or, as my siblings would say, I’m wired differently? I have only ever cried at one funeral and that was the one for my son.  But I wasn’t crying over just the lost of my son. It was the accumulation of all my losses that caused me to cry. The loss of a natural childbirth, the loss of my liver, the loss of good health, the loss of my ability to ever have kids, the loss of my husband being able to pass on his family name, the loss of a grandchild for my mom and in-laws, the loss of what use to be my life.

Then it occurred to me why I haven’t mourned the way I thought I would or should. After my son died, the first thing I thought of was to finish knitting the sweater I was making for him before I got sick. Why would I make a sweater for a child already gone and buried? Because I had to. It was my way of grieve. In each stitch I held on to his memory and also I learned to let him go. It was a strange thing to do, but for me it felt perfectly normal and right. I finished the sweater for him and I have kept it with me.

A day after my mom passed away, I went to Hobby Lobby and bought yarn. I didn’t need any. I didn’t even know why on Earth I had even stopped at the store. I’m guessing I just needed some place that felt safe and quite where I could wander around and just be with my own thoughts. I saw the yarn, felt it and grabbed for skeins of it. It was soft and I wanted it- those were my only reasons for buying it. I came home with the yarn having no clue what to do with it. I didn’t even look to see what yarn it was until I got home. Diva Sequin yarn. I searched Ravelry trying to find a pattern to use the yarn, but nothing looked appealing to me. I looked at my bookcase crammed with knitting books and magazines. What was the use of having all that stuff if I never used a damn pattern out any of it? Shuffling through Vogue Knitting and Knitter’s Magazine I stumbled upon a book that I bought months ago. The Prayer Shawl Companion looked up at me from its space tucked between magazines. I flipped through its pages and fell in love with the Sabbath Shawl. I don’t do lace and had never done anything that complicated before, but I couldn’t take my eyes of the pattern. Why had I never noticed this pattern before. “Because I never needed it until now”, said a voice in my head. I started on the shawl that night.

Each day now I work on the shawl. I find that I feel lost if I go too long without putting in a few stitches. I need this shawl to be made. It is comforting to knit. It’s soft texture and colors are soothing. It is pretty to look at. This shawl has become my way of grieving. With each stitch I remember my mother and I let her go. Her memorial service will be this weekend. Will I be able to cry then? I don’t know. But I will know that tucked in my bag will be my knitting needles and this shawl.

 

My shawl of remembering and letting go.

My shawl of remembering and letting go.

Hello? Is this thing On?

Wow, long time no see. Well, I would like to tell you that I’ve been working on some fantastic knitting book or traveling the country teaching knitting classes, but nope, nothing cool like that ever happened. Instead, my life has been filled with the ups and downs of just getting through life. You know, sometimes life just gets in the way of blogging about life.

So, have I been doing any knitting while I’ve been away? Unless you count the little blankets I’ve been knitting for princess’ ever growing Barbie collect, really not much.

Somewhere along the lines I got hooked on needle tatting and really haven’t had a reason to pick of the needles again. Until now.

With so many of my friends breeding like rabbits these days, I’ve gotten the itch to knit baby items. I am currently working on a sweater from the book Special Knits by Debbie Bliss.

Wait, what about the sock knitting you ask? I haven’t been inspired to produce anymore socks lately. I think my sock knitting muse has left me for good. I think my refusal to make Lady Gaga- inspired socks was what finally did it.  Oh well, it was fun while it lasted.

So, now what will I be talking about on my blog? Not sure, but whatever it is, I’m sure it will be fun and involve yarn.

Right now you can catch me musing about my tatting at simplyjoi.blogspot.com.

Cover of "Special Knits: 22 Gorgeous Hand...

Special Knits by Debbie Bliss

 

Show Some Love to the Brits!

With all the British love going around now that the Olympics have started, I thought it would be fitting to share some British inspired knits. If you don’t already have some knitting in your hands as you cheer Michael Phelps on to winning another gold medal, then maybe one of these quick knits below will get your hands itching to move as you watch those sexy guys playing volleyball.

 

Best of British Bunting by McAree Brothers

 

Union Jack Teacosy by Anna Elliott

 

British Flag by Anna Felder

 

God Save The Queen Gauntlets by Chris Abbott

My Cowl Is In Knitscene Accessories 2012!

Yup, you read that title correctly. I just had the honor of having one of my designs published in Knitscene magazine. Yes, it’s a secret that I’ve been keeping from all of you for some time now, but don’t you think it was worth the wait?

Knitscene Accessories Magazine

This week, I opened the mailbox to see a package from Interweave waiting for me. Inside was a complimentary copy of the Knitscene Accessories 2012 issue along with a tearsheet of the layout and pattern that I can use in my portfolio.

I love the layout and the model that they used. The whole image is fun and funky. Both yarns used in the cowl are from Knit Collage and they were yummy to work with. A simple pattern that even after two martinis you could still knit without any mistakes. 😉

Moon Rings Cowl

The whole process of working with such a well-known company was a great learning experience for me. Anyone who has ever considered submitting a design to any of the Interweave publications, I strongly encourage you to do so. I honestly didn’t think I had a snowball chance in hell of getting published. I just submitted my design to get in the practice of submitting to companies and look what happened!

Moon Rings Cowl by ME!

Thank you God and thank you to everyone at Knitscene for this wonderful opportunity!

Free Knitted Cowl Pattern

Yup, you read it right. I’ve returned with a new pattern and its Free! I designed this cowl called “Give It To Me Straight”,  for Galler Yarns. A quick knit that is unisex in design. Made using Pima cotton, it is lightweight enough to be knitted during the summer and be ready to wear once the weather cools off. You can find the pattern by clicking here, clicking the on the picture below or going to my pattern page.

Give It To Me Straight Cowl

3KCBWDAY7- Craft Whore

Craft whore. Fiber slut. Yarn ho. I am not faithful to any craft. Just when knitting thinks it has me in a monogamous relationship, I have an affair with crochet. And when they are both not looking I make a booty call to loom knitting. Occasional I’ll even have a weekend fling with my hand spindle.

I can’t help it. Crafting with yarn turns me on. If someone ever creates a support group for yarn crafting nymphomaniac, I’ll be the first to sign up and join.

Now, I didn’t start this way. I started out being a fully committed woman to my crochet. For several months I was the ‘good wife’ in my relationship with crochet. We were always there for each other and crochet gave me such joy. But then one day walking through the craft store I was seduced by a couple of long shiny rods. I wasn’t looking to cheat on my crochet, I just liked the attention I was getting from those needles. Well, one thing lead to another and before I knew it, I was see knitting behind crochet’s back. At first it was just occasional visits, but soon it grew to be more. At one point crochet started to suspect, but I always came up with good excuses as to why I’d been neglecting my granny squares.

But one day I crochet came home early and walked in on me and knitting in bed. I begged for forgiveness and swore I would end the whole affair. And I did. . . .for a while. The need was too great. I just couldn’t stay away. So now I lead a double life, neither one knowing about the other.

At one point the stress of leading this double like got the best of me and I needed a vacation. So I figured a weekend in Hawaii for myself was a good way to clear my head and get my life straight. Instead I met loom knitting. Maybe it was the sun and sand or fifth Mai Tia I had, but I just remember waking up the next morning with loom knitting by my side. It was a magical weekend that I never wanted to end. When it was time for me to go home we just couldn’t break it off. We promised each other that we would meet every chance we got.

As you can see, once I started down that slippery path there was just no turning back. I’m addicted. And I can’t help myself. You can judge me. Call me names it you want.  But this is who I am. Will I be able to do this forever? No. But I’ll continue to do it as long as I can. My desires far outweight my shame.

3KCBWDAY6- Mad Knitting Skills That Scare the Pee Out of Me

You’ve seen them. If not, stay around the craft long enough and you will. Some of you will be completely fascinated by it. You’ll want to know how to do it so badly that you’ll stop at nothing to learn. The rest of us, however, look at it and want to go running for the hills. I’ll be honest, there are some mad knitting and crochet skills out there that just downright scare the pee out of me.

Popcorn Rose Doily Designed by Ferosa Harold

  Irish crochet is the crochet that sends all my crochet work running home with their tails tucked between their legs. It’s painfully beautiful. However, I stay away from it. Why? because I strongly believe that size 12 and size 00 steel crochet hooks are the work of the devil. Nothing should ever be crocheted that small.

Entrelac Vest by Kathryn Alexander

Entrelac has produced some of the funkiest knits I have ever seen. Every time I look at entrelac work I always want to ask, “Who was it that gave the bio-engineering professor a joint and then tried to teach them how to knit?” There just had to be some level of drug use involved when creating entrelac.

Vanessa Beaded Bag by Barbara Pratt

This should be illegal somewhere. No one should over indulge in crafting like this. Beaded knitted purses may be gorgeous to look at. But when I look at it, I don’t see the beauty and intricate craftmanship. Instead, I see someone who really needs to get out more often.  Just the hours it takes to string all those beads. Hours of your life that You. Will. Never. Get. Back.

Filmy Fern Shawl by Margaret Stove

Hey, the spiders called and said they want their webs back. Seriously, why on earth should lace be knitted so thin that it can pass through the hole of a wedding ring? If your lace is so thin that when someone sneezes it blows halfway down the block, well, that’s just too thin. I love lace as much as the next person, but when the air I breathe weighs more than my shawl I’m wearing, that’s where I draw the line.

Afghan Sweater by Kaffe Fassett

Kaffe Fassett is not a knitting or crochet skill, but he does scare the pee out of me. I’ve heard of people producing strange works while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. But Kaffe thinks this stuff up when he’s sober. I’m scared. Hold me!

So, what mad knitting/crochet skills or designs have you come across that scare the pee out of you?

3KCBWDAY1- Color Me Bad

I’m the conservative type. Upon first meeting me most people get the impression that I’m more in line with the ascetics of Martha Stewart and Michael Kors. Yet, my knitting tells a completely different story. Behind the cover of my needles, I go from mild-mannered middle class young lady to a gothic she-devil! My knitting, unlike my life, leans heavily towards the dark side. Why settle for bubble gum pink and bright mints when I can knit with blood reds and deep plums? My own stash reflects my suppressed dark side with a color palate of  smokey greys to asphalt blacks.

Bright color knitting is this summer's must-see. . . .

 

This dark nature may have something to do with the fact that I’ve always been too chicken shit to go against the grain in my own fashions. I would see the Emo, Vampire and Goth kids at school and always envied their self-expression. I was always the good little girl wishing so hard to break out and be bad!

. . . but its the dark side of knitting that excites me!

 

So, my knitting has become my way of channeling my inner wild child. While other knitters are surrounding themselves with the bright cheerful colors of Spring and Summer, give me the secrets of the night and let my knitting color me bad.