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Wednesday, June 1, 2005

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Paris is calling...


The flight from Chicago to Paris was a breeze - straight through from O'Hare to De Gaulle in about 9 hours - long enough to eat, sleep, and KNIT!

I brought bamboo needles in my carry-on and cast-on for my Bisect Shell while in the waiting area of O'Hare, after going through check-in and security. No one questioned the needles - they were in the plastic sleeve with my pattern. (I checked American Airlines at their website, which indicated that needles were OK...)

Before I knew it, 4 inches had grown from that beginning and the plane was ready to land. After I gathered my bags, I started walking through De Gaulle - my plane was over 45 minutes late and I was starting to panic! I was supposed to hook up with Jackie, who had just flown in from NYC and believe me when I say, the thought of being lost in a foreign airport, barely speaking another language, with my Big Jet Head - was a really disturbing possibility.

LUCKILY while I was wandering over to the Air France Terminal I ran SMACK DAB into the lovely, pink tweed wearin' J-Blue herself and we were OFF! We got to our new neighborhood via the #4 Le Car from Air France (a nice comfy bus) and hooked up with the indomitable FLuffa in Paris, Becky in Bastille! What a fabulous reunion! (And I say reunion, because I felt like I'd know these chicas forever - blogging is like that...) Saturday evening was spent wandering our new neighborhood, the Bastille outdoor market and lounging in a cafe...


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Do-able: Many places are closed on Sundays and Mondays in Paris - Sunday for worship; Monday for the clerks! I love that idea but it can be a little hard to find something to do that's fun when you're jet lagged...

While reading about the City awhile back, I'd discovered that on the weekends and Mondays, there are several Flea Markets around Paris and THAT made me very excited.

The largest of these Fleas is Puces de Saint-Ouen on the North side of town (why do I feel funny calling Paris a t-o-w-n? Could it be the lesson the grumpy old flower vendor on Place Aligre I met in 1995 taught me when he found out I was from Chicago? After he sent a loud snort in my direction, he said, "Pwwaaah, Chicago is but a village compared to Paris..." But of course, he was absolutely correct...)

We decided to forgoe the immense and possibly intimidating huge St-Ouen and spend our Sunday exploring Port de Vanves.

Wear-able: And what did the sleepy little traveler from Chicago find?

Buttons!!! A lovely young woman had a table FULL of vintage delights to tickle the fancy of even the most Hard Core Button Hound (ahem... ME!)

The Puce de Vanves was just big enough to be interesting and just small enough not to defeat those of us with Big Jet Head. The fresh air and cooler weather welcomed us to the City and whet our appetite for the fun to come...

And Baby, it arrived! Towards the end of our ramblings, Jackie spotted a wonderful find that unfortunately didn't fit her. And who did it FIT?

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Moi! These lovely vintage pumps are destined for some Chicago summer fun!

And who could resist a ittle Bijoux Deluxe?

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Just a fabulous vintage rhinestone and oxidated metal flower for my Jean Jacket...

 

NEXT: Friends & Fiber...

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Friday, June 3, 2005






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Femme Cousante
by Mary Cassatt
Musee d'Orsay, Paris


If you told me I'd become an Adventure Diva merely by jetting to Paris and knitting, you would be witness to much eye rolling and lash batting...

But that's just what happened in my world when we mixed a fantastic historical landscape with fiber and FRIENDS! Just like my honorary Parisian Muse, Mary Cassatt, I was an American in Paris, with my craft, but without my KIP, adrift!

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Enter Isabelle (left) and LaŽtitia (middle) , two Parisian knitters extraordinaire who with the Fabulous Becky, put together a day I will never forget!

It Began with a Rendezvous at our Bastille digs, then we jumped on the Metro and went to Marais for lunch. The Paris Metro is one of the most efficient and FAST subways in the WORLD!

I fueled up with a little Croque Monsieur, and it was off to the Races! First stop, Entree des Fournisseurs (8, rue des Frances Bourgeois, Paris, 3e), located off the street in a courtyard. Coming out of the subway, (and I can't recall the stop), all of a sudden, I was overcome with emotion! It was a balmy day; I was with wonderful new friends in an enticing urban playground - more than enough reason to make me weep a little with joy! Paris touches me like no other city ever has - and I was so moved by LaŽtitia and Isabelle taking the time to organize and take us to their favorite places, my tiny eyes were playing misty for me in the warm spring air in no time at all...

Shocking: Cases and cases of buttons became CANDY! in front of my face.

AND, because one is on vacation - one must sample! One must emit squeals of delight with one's beautiful new friend, Uracca! One must be SHUSHED by the saleslady who is closing a sale on TWO beads with another customer...

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Desert is Served : On to Bon Marche (Rive Gauche) for a serving of Plassard et Phildar!

I was thrilled to find not one, but two versions of Cotton/Linen yarn. This lovely smoky aqua Plassard jumped into my bag destined for a lacy shell...

After refreshments (YUM! - chocolat from the impecible Debauve & Gallais) at the apartment (and much wonderful sharing of projects) we were ready for Part Two of our Adventure...

All hands on Deck @Benjamin Cafť: or on the Needle as the case may Be! Paris Tricot!

Here's the lovely Stinkerbell, herself, who I strong armed into modeling the Cutaway Cardigan.

Merci Kayla ! Êtes non seulement vous beau, vous êtes un bon sport !

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It was absolutely thrilling to meet and knit with all of the Parisiennes! I so appreciate everyone's patience with my fractured French, especially the lovely Nathalie (with her beautiful white Aran), Emilie and Caro, who shared her poncho and converstion with me at the Tricot-In.

AND a Kir Royale all around to fete the FABULOUS (not to mention, beautiful and charming) KATE GILBERT the cover girl sweater extraordinaire of Fall 2005 Interweave Knits...

Félicitations et succès continu, Kate!

And I raise my glass in thanks to all the talented new friends I found on my wonderful adventure.

Merci tellement beaucoup - votre bonté ne sera jamais oubliée !


NEXT: Culture Shock?

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Monday, June 6, 2005

  Monday Morning Mirth  

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Paris Hilton & Paris Latsis

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Quelle surprise!

Paris and Paris!!!

Non! Not the City - the LoveBirds!!!

Join me in celebrating all that is Love & Roses as P & P announce their engagement in this traditional month of weddings...

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WHO is Paris Latsis?

Paris H comments on her fiance...

Sidebar Obsession: don'tcha ever wonder why parents name their kids the things they do (starting with MOI!) My ever favorite namings are those whose first name is exactly the same as their last. In my case, this would be Bonne Bonne (bon-bon for those wondering how my name is pronounced -nay bonneeebonneee). How about Steve Stephens (I love that one!) Paul Paulson. Peter Peters...

You get the drift - any favorites?

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Tuesday, June 7, 2005

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"Hey BonneBonne, where's the Knitting? Whatever happened to the airport knitting? Have you stopped knitting or what?"...


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VOILA! Here is the first part of the Bisect Shell! After I landed in Paris and had my first SitDown&Knit with Fluffa and Jackie-Blue, it was ripped and re-knit. Something dubious (yarn jet lag?) happened over the Atlantic to my gauge - some stitches were loosey-goosey; others right on. So, OFF with its thread!

It made it through a second pass when I was overcome with Yarn Envy! One just can't sit on the couch next to another knitter and ignore their work. One must interupt one's own work (and the other knitter's) with questions about their project and fiber, non?

And when it's the most excellent Becky knitting, you know it's gonna be G-O-O-D. She was working on a fine little sweater out of something called Phildar *Phil Lin* a cotton (40%), linen (15%), and viscose (45%) blend. (VISCOSE: read about the beast here.) I was a lost(found) cause and ABANDONDED ship on the GGH Java yarn (beautiful stuff but the fabric it made was too-heavy for the Bisect), right at the 4" mark AGAIN.

Who could blame me? The Phil Lin is beautiful - light weight, summery - and I was a goner...

When we found ourselves in La Samaritaine department store (after a fine lunch at Henri IV wine bar on the Ilse with Jackie's wonderful friends from NY), what do you think I did?



Well first of all, I was overcome with gratitude that the store had such impecible manners that they put THIS right in front of me to welcome me to Paris!

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What the? Immediately cross my path with some b.Lime and what do you think I will do?

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RUN right over to the Phildar Boutique and get an eyeful! The Phildar people are absolutely meticulous about the presentation of their wares. They are set out with care and attention to detail; not a Thread is Out of Place.

Here you could see the entire range of offerings and I quickly found the Phil Lin, in a color becoming dear to my heart: Natural!

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Wednesday, June 8, 2005

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ROAD TRIP! That's right, after a week of workin' for the Man, too little sleep, laundry, unpacking then packing (heaven help this child), I'm off again for a Family Car Trip...

See the USA! In a Chevrolet! (Or maybe a Ford Taurus?!)

My Aunt moved to Atlanta late last year and my Mom and other Aunt have been pining to see their Platinum Twin, so OFF we go! We rented a car and will be sightseeing and trippin' for the next week or so...

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Any suggestions for *MustDO Atlanta* ?! I've only been there once for a 3-day weekend a long time ago and don't know my way around...

MustDo Knitting FUN? My Aunt Joan is my newest partner in Knitting Crime and we just might have to Sample the Scenery so to speak while we're there...


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Monday, June 20, 2005

  Monday Morning Mirth  

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Atlanta? No...

NOTlanta! My kin are actually just outside of Jonesboro, GA!

And when in Jone(sboro)...

All Gone with The Wind, all the TIME!!! We took a tour of Stately Oaks and the town and what you see above is my favorite poster (in Japanese) advertising the movie...

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Tuesday, June 21, 2005

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click HERE for a picture visit...

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Thursday, June 23, 2005

that tiny sticker price magnetized me and
before I knew it
I had a bundle of this
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in my arms...

Now, I'm probably a day late (but NOT a dollar short) in finding out that my Happy Pal LB Cotton Ease is DISCONTINUED! Everybody is talking about this online - blogs, forums, etc. and it only took me one trip to a local Joann Fabrics to find out this was TRUE! (And to scoop up a little bluesy for myself, just to console myself, but of course.)

Why it was just yesterday that I used CE to make this...

And this...

And now this...

It is my all time favorite for Buckets bup.jpg too -

WHAT THE ----?!

Even Family Circle Easy Knitting had 4 patterns this spring in this yarn and POOF! Good-bye...

Dontcha wonder what they are thinking when this happens? Don't we need basic workhorse yarns MORE than we need what you might call FOUFOU? (Not a real yarn name, as far as I know... :) But you get my drift......................

If you WANT people to become lifelong knitters, they have to use basic yarns to make WARDROBE for themselves and family. If you want knitting to be just a Flash in the Pan, repeating its popularity every 20 years or so, then just keep throwing this other Stuff at us and we'll just Go Away...


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Weekend, June 25-26, 2005

ChicKnits New Threads Weekend Edition
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BRAVO! Sarah W's fabulous Ribby Cardi for her husband, the HANDSOME Quinton...

Bravo! Bravo!

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More Ribby Goodness...

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Beautiful beneath the pines, the lovely (& talented) Bonnie Evans elevates the Ribby Cardi to a new and wonderful level!

AND, she puts a new spin on the process...

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visit the
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for all the glorious details!

...Want to be in Gallery Ribby? Send me a picture of your Ribby with knitting details to be included in the gallery...

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Monday, June 27, 2005

  Monday Morning Mirth  

Maybe my brain's gone soft (really?!) because of the incredibly HOT MUGGY weather here in Chicago - or because of the poignant comments y'll left about the CE discontinuation meltdown BUT I thought NOW is the time to show some LOVE and have a little contest!

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All you have to do is identify just WHAT THE ABOVE is a picture of! Send me an email with the word CONTEST in the subject line and your answer in the body of the mail. A random drawing will select the winner of:

6 - Balls of Cotten Ease in the color *Candy Blue* (yum) & a printed out pattern for ChicKnits Scoop du Jour (in a plastic sleeve--we go all out over here...)

The winner will be announced next Monday, July 4th!

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June 30, 2005

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I was *window shopping* around the Web yesterday, looking for new and wonderful things and decided to put together a little list of yarns that one could use for the ChicKnits Scoop du Jour...

Basically, I searched on the gauge the sweater calls for (18 sts / 24 rows or Aran or Heavy Worsted) using these resources -

Yarndex

Wise Needle

Google

Knitter's Review

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Here's my Partial List:

ArtYarns "SuperMerino"

Arucania "Nature Wool or Cotton"

Black Water Abbey "2Ply Worsted"

Blue Sky "Dyed Cotton"

Blue Sky "Organic Cotton"

Brown Sheep "Lamb's Pride"

Barlett "2-Ply Worsted"

Christopher Sheep Farms "2-Ply Worsted"

Debbie Bliss "Cashmeriono Aran"

Debbie Bliss "Denim Aran"

Dzined Merino "Wool/Hemp Worsted Weight"

Dzined "Wool/Hemp/Mohair Worsted Weight"

GGH "Samoa"

Karabella "Aurora 8"

King Tut "Egyptian Cotton"

Noro "Cash Iroha"

Noro "Kureyon"

Noro "Shinano"

Noro "Silk Garden"

Rowan "All Seasons Cotton"

Rowan "Kid Classic"

Sirdar "Romance"

Wool Pack "10 Ply"

The two little buddies sitting on my couch are the original Scoop in Rowan All Seasons Cotton, and it's sibling, the CE Scoop (white).

COOL HINT #1 (thanks Mary S.): Notice any difference? On the original grey Scoop - I made the ribbed edging on the body 4 inches; on the sleeves, 5 inches.

You can make the ribbing however long you want it (up to the length as stated in the pattern) ! Just be sure to knit an equivalent amount of Stockinette st to equal the pattern's written amount of ribbing when you are completing the piece...

COOL HINT #2: A LITTLE steam on that ribbed edging will make it lie open and flat. LIGHTLY steam it while spreading with your hand - be careful not to overdo it (or steam your little fingers :)

COOL HINT #3: Not sure how to block cotton or a cotton blend? Go HERE for some tips and tricks...

...please send me any and all yarn suggestions - anybody tried the TLC Cotton Plus at this gauge?

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