April 1, 2002
Monday Morning April
April is National Humor Month!
In sixteenth-century France, the
start of the new year was observed on April first.
It was celebrated in much the same way as it is
today with parties and dancing into the late hours
of the night.
Then in 1562, Pope Gregory introduced a new calendar
for the Christian world, and the new year fell
on January first. There were some people, however,
who hadn't heard or didn't believe the change
in the date, so they continued to celebrate New
Year's Day on April first. Others played tricks
on them and called them "April fools."
They sent them on a "fool's errand" or tried to
make them believe that something false was true.
In France today, April first is called "Poisson
d'Avril." French children fool their friends by
taping a paper fish to their friends' backs. When
the "young fool" discovers this trick, the prankster
yells "Poisson d’Avril!" (April Fish!)
Here are some
fish for you to color, cut out and tape on
get easier than this!
Don't forget: In England, tricks
can be played only in the morning. If a trick
is played on you, you are a "noodle".
In Scotland, April Fools Day is 48 hours long
and you are called an "April Gowk", which is another
name for a cuckoo bird.
The second day in Scotland’s April Fool's
is called Taily Day and is dedicated to pranks
involving the buttocks. Taily Day's gift to posterior
posterity is the still-hilarious "Kick Me" sign.
April 2, 2002
the April Mirth Just
Keeps on Coming...
48 Hours of Foolish
the Scottish Way!
Lots of my fellow knitters have self-portraits
on their sites and have asked where's mine!!???
Two emails asked if I was really a guy posing
as a girl (since they thought I was obsessed with
Liza Minnelli - I kid you not!) but I am really
just a girl seen here posing with some guys...
My mother really hates this
picture - I think it's because my hair is really
messy... Or maybe it's because no one is KIP!
April 3, 2002
Ce qui est plus gentil
que le miel?
ooh la la...
April 5, 2002
Les bandeaux sont un meilleur
ami de filles…
I finished my cabled headband
and lucky me - it's still snowing in Chicago
so I can have a warm fluffy head!
Wish I could make a few of these for
the Cubbies who have their opening
baseball game this afternoon...
April 6, 2002
Opening Day ChicKnits Spring
My first 2K2 FO made
Hooray for the late
now I can wear this a lot!
Alas, the Cubs freeze
their tookas off in the
Home Opener and lose 3-1...
cool Opening Day
I suggest the Cubs take
Powerpuff Girl Are You? Test!
C'est moi naturellement...
April 7, 2002
et des filles...
Pouvez-vous dire l'Kool-Aid?
My funky first dyeing attempt!
Over the last year, I've
been introduced by my new
knitting friends to the world of Handpainted Yarns.
Ah, a chord of recognition sprang across my brain
like the swift pass of a hand across a harp.
My earliest memory of variegation was my grammie's
afghans. She used Red Heart and made each grandchild
a Granny Square binkie in their favorite color.
Mine was in shades of green; my cousin's was in
purples. (I grew out of the green thing but to
this day my cousin adores purple!) These afghans
were used until they were shredded - which if
you know acrylic is almost impossible to do!
When a friend who's in the Windy City Knitting
Guild told me about a Kool-Aid Dyeing workshop
they were having, I decided to give it a try.
I thought it would be funky and flashy - neon
- good for a hat or two...
Imagine my delight in finding Fiber Artist and
Designer Bethany Lankin running the show! She
has incredible experience using traditional chemical
dyes and came to Kool-Aid as I; an experiment,
BUT, Bethany's taken it to the MAX! She's developed
methods to mix the colors to get almost any color
you can imagine, not just the "straight out of
the envelope" wild bright results you might have
seen. She's made beautiful multi-colors, subtle
solids, and Regia type combinations - Yum...
We started out dyeing some yarn using what she
calls "the Set It and Forget It" method. You mix
your dye in a little cold water then put it in
a big container like a jar or pot. Add a few cups
of boiling water (enough to cover, not swim),
your yarn and SIAFI!!!
After a couple of hours, all the dye will have
entered the yarn and believe it or not the water
is CLEAR!!! The picture on the left is my first
little skein in a ZipLock Bag, which I used because
I didn't remember to bring a jar. I was going
for a burgundy and got pretty close...
I'm telling you it's like a miracle! Bethany showed
us all sorts of methods including sponging on
more concetrated dyes to handpaint the yarn. The
picture on the right is my HP try - purple, burgundy,
orange and a little yellow. I love it! These yarns
are colorfast (Kool-Aid has a lot of acid in it
naturally) but this technique only works on animal
I felt like COLINETTE!!!
Bethany tells us that Russian Kool-Aid is different
than USA Kool-Aid. Different water produces different
results. There is even this little bit of What
Here's some kewl Kool-Aid links:
AND - Hands Across the Water - Theresa
over in Norway at Bagatell and I are simultaneously
trying this out - we just found out we were both
having a Kool-Aid kind of day!
April 8, 2002
every Monday Morning is
April Fool's Mirth@ChicKnits
ever do a double take
on those radio lyrics???
Mystikal's "Shake it Fast"
Take a bath! Wash yourself...
Show me what you're soapin' with...
Shake it fast! Watch yourself!
Show me what you're workin' with...
April 9, 2002
STARTITIS: the Movie
The latest episode of
my yarnaholism, starring in
alphabetical order: Cleckheaten Tencel Wool DK
Opening Scene (Wide Shot): Woman walking
to mailbox and opening it with no expectations
since Tuesdays are grocery flyer day.
Cut (CU): Beautiful french manicured hand
goes into box and pulls out a pile of colorful
Cut (CU): Woman's perfectly made-up face
with fashionable frosted mauve lips in a big perfect
Dissolve (SwishPan): (simulation of woman
running to closet where yarn is stashed)
Dissolve: CU same french tipped hands furiously
moving back and forth. Viewer will be confused
and think the woman is beating a drum or clapping
but her hands are moving too fast to tell...
Cut (CU): Very intense eyes that are made
up like that chick Gwyneth with too much black
liner that's slighty traveling in a smudge close
to the nose.
Cut (MS): Woman draping new partial shawl
across arm with a wistful look on face, with slightly
pursed lips. Audience will know her satisfaction
at not being a whiner about having nothing to
wear over those cool sleeveless dresses she loves
so much but hates wearing to her friend's over-air-conditoned
Marketers say at this point
all the movie's viewers will break into tears
and hug themselves in empathy because after all,
they're all freezing their freakin' a**** off
at the Cineplex! Guarawhnteed...
April 10, 2002
Betcha by Golly WOW!
Hip Hip Hooray for
From Kansas City, JJ writes:
"I just finished my first *big* knitting project
- the ChicKnits Ribby
Pullover! it took 4 months (of on-and-off
knitting) but it turned out amazingly well and
actually fits! and it's still cool enough outside
to wear it! hurrah! . . .I can't wait to make
my 2nd sweater now."
"I think several people at the museum where I
work want to make it now too! I wore it to work
today and showed it off to all the knitters there
and the pattern is definitely a hit."
"It's by no means perfect, and I didn't block
it yet, but I'm darn pleased with myself :) I
ended up added about 1-1/2" of ribbing to the
bottom 'cos it was rolling up and was a teensy
bit shorter than I wanted at the end. And I think
I improvised on the neck a bit as I had more than
60 stitches left after decreasing as instructed
for some reason. And I had to rip it back some
after binding off when I realized that I bound
off WAY too tightly and I'd be lucky if the darn
thing would fit over my 1 year old nephew's head!"
"But these were good lessons to learn, and I'm
quite proud of my first sweater."
"I used Plymouth Encore Worsted Weight (75% acrylic/25%
This is neater than the fresh Rhodesian Ridgeback
puppy my neighbor Jack got today!!! (Puppy's
name is Moose!) Imagine my delight in getting
this email from JJ about her first sweater - OWWWWW!
Now I want to make another Ribby myself - I think
I'll make mine a cardigan. I have some lilac Adriafil
cotton blend yarn that's just a beggin'...
I need to tweak the pattern a bit (thanks JJ for
helping me troubleshoot it! I'll fix the bottom
ribbing and make it a couple of inches longer).
I'll post the new "cardie" pattern when it's done.
Phase Two becomes you . . .
April 11. 2002
not singing in the shower
I am going to a double baby shower tonight and
I've run out of time... I was going to make some
little handknit gifts but couldn't get a hold
of the most important ingredient I needed! Frustrating
as all H.
So what did I do? Went to Wolf Photo and searched
their huge selection of picture frames. Two. Alike.
What do you do at a double shower???
OK. I found the sweetest 3-D silver metal scooter
with a red flag on a pole with a clip on it so
you can post your baby's picture. It even has
rubber wheels and a kick-stand. It's about 6"w
x 5"h. I wanted to go for a ride. And they had
it in duplicate. I added 5 rolls of color film
(on sale) to each box and I'm ready to GO... (Not
so deep pockets emit groaning beeps...)
Alas (actually HOORAY!)
the missing ingredient came inside this yesterday...
April 12, 2002
Wrap it Up Baby...
The little bad muse told
I can't buy any more yarn if I don't eat my
vegetables and finish those winter projects!
Spring has sprung here in the Midland, and we
are a bunch of laughing leaping gnomes. Hopefully,
I will be leaping into this luscious "jacket".
It's still a little nippy in the dark hours and
wool is just the best wrap-up around.
I loved my ruffled ice
blue long cardigan so much I made another
and it's blocking and just needs a TON of finishing.
I still have to make the ruffles around the front
edge and the belt. I think I started this in January
- it's been my "knit it on the #66" project for
a long time now. This is probably the first thing
I've made on the bus that people are not asking
if it's a baby sweater - the color is too adults
I actually used the yarn called for in this Rowan
pattern that I got at the wonderful Colourway
in Wales. They have great sales!
It is a deep burgundy Rowan calls "Brazil" and
it will look mahrvelous with a shocking pink shirt
or that lilac shell that's almost done. I am fascinated
with this color combo. My version of early spring:
earthy little bud covers with a ruffly rhodedendron
Just Ducky Baby Shower: I never ate so
much in my life! At least since Christmas!!! One
fine fine baker brought the richest chocolate
mousse pie; another a strawberry cheesecake. M&M's,
brownies, cake, Hawaiin Punch(!!What the...) and
I even had a little salad...
Super Shower What the... one of the preggies got
three identical Duck Bathrobes - they were adorable
with little bills on the hood. But 3!!! And the
theme of the shower was DUCKS... What are the
odds of that; there were two stuffed ducks as
centerpieces and little duck candles everywhere.
A huge Duck Cake that had 3-D feet made from graham
crackers covered with orange frosting!
I won gift bingo (you marked on a card the gifts
received) and got a cool cucumber bar of soap,
then left it on the table when I left! Just like
I do when I ask 'em to doggie bag it at the restuarant.
1. What is your favorite
restaurant and why? Cafe Absinthe, North Ave
in Chicago - mouthwatering prawns!
2. What fast food restaurant are you partial
to? La Pasadita on Ashland Ave in Chicago
- the best, bar none, barbacoa tacos in the world...
3. What are your standards and rules for tipping?
20-25% (this is Chicago) Sometimes, I've left
100% of the bill because I put myself through
college waitressing and if someone is extraordinary,
they deserve it. I"ll never forget my roots...
4. Do you usually order an appetizer and/or
dessert? Only if they seem too good to be
real, then I always share.
5. What do you usually order to drink at a
restaurant? Cocktail w/appetizer: Below 85
degrees / martini; Above 85 / margarita, no salt.
With the entree: wine apropo. After: expresso
or a brandy or grappa.
April 13, 2002
I see London, I see France....
Is it wrong to be a fashionista
with champagne taste on a beer budget?
Is it just me or do our knitting magazines
and books seem hopelessly behind what's on the
racks? While shopping for a wedding shower, I
just happened to notice the many fine new spring
clothes for 2002 and do not recall seeing any
of these things repped in Vogue, Interweave, etc.
But I wanted them - I'm actually trying to make
wardrobe here. I have a closet full of knitted
stuff that is basically unwearable because it
was out of fashion even when it was just finished!
I need basics with a little flair! Simple with
a frisky turn...
So I did what any red-blooded American would do:
I went EURO!!!
Current Faves: perennial favorite Rebecca
and new (for me) Bouton
d'Or #76. More fresh looks than you can shake
your needles at - although the most of the really
cool stuff isn't shown in the Bouton page.
I'm making Rebecca
out of Rowan AllSeason's Cotton and it is delightful.
I started it last Sunday and it has a peplum with
ribbed detailing that is hard to explain so
Get this pattern
AAHHhhh... I'm dreaming of the day I can afford
Dolce & Gabanna bathing suit the model is wearing.
It appears I have the BedHead part down.
April 14, 2002
Le petit a sophistiqu? est juste habill?
comme l'enfant de diable "the Omen"
I think my brain was having lunch on the Left
Bank because if I'd looked a little closer
at the first couple of inches of my anti-airconditioning
shawl, I would've seen that the yarn I'm using
is NOT the yarn for this pattern.
The pattern is called Wave Crest, a variation
on one of the most traditional knitting patterns,
Old Shale - the Baby Blanket favorite...
I found it in Folk Shawls by Cheryl Oberle - she
uses it in a design called the North Sea Shawl.
Really beautiful! However, she uses 100% wool
and the shawl is steamed and blocked perfectly
My yarn is 80% Tencel which makes it a very well
behaved traveler, but it cannot be steamed or
blocked FLAT ENOUGH to do justice to this pattern.
It looks like the Baby Blanket for Damien... All
poofy and lacey where it should be geometric and
DRAT! I guess I'll have to design
So I decided to try to find a pattern that would
required little blocking and found something called
Lace Blocks and put together this:
I am going to make a "stole" with
garter edges to prevent curling.
Materials: 13 skeins Cleckheaton Tencel
Wool - ~1300yds DK yarn
Needles: #6 & #7 needles
Dimensions: 22"w X 72"l
CO 111 sts using #6 needles. Work 9 rows
Change to #7 needles.
Work the first and last 5 stitches in garter stitch
on both the RS & WS to form a stable edge.
Rows 1, 3, 5, 7: K5 (border), K1, *(yo, sl 1,
K2TOG, psso, yo, K3); repeat from * to last 9
sts, yo, sl 1, K2TOG, psso, yo, K1, K5(border)
Row 2 and all even rows: K5, purl across to last
Rows 9, 11 13, 15: K5(border), K4, *(yo, sl 1,
K2tog, psso, yo, K3); repeat from * to last 6
stitches, K1, K5 (border)
Row 16: K5, purl across to last 5, K5
Continue in pattern until about 1" from
desired length of stole.
Change to #6 needles and work 9 rows garter
April 15, 2002
Monday Morning Mirth
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