Category Archives: roving crafters

Don’t Get Between Me and Knit Night

craft night0007- header

For me Knit Night is Thursday Night. Its more than knitting of course. I was crocheting on my poncho.  Cyn, aka The Sweater Maker, was embroidering a teeny-tiny dress for a little girl that will be taking her first breath in about three weeks. Oldcrazyhooks was hooking her Picnic Basket Shawl. And Sheep Fluffer was doing some hand stitching that I didn’t understand on her next 16th century SCA costume. So Knit Night is kind of a misnomer but that’s what I call it.

(I don’t have a cool nickname, by the way. I’ve asked for one. I’ve begged and prodded and I’ve made several suggestions. But nothing has stuck and for certain inscrutable reasons, you are not allowed to pick your own. Maybe I’m too dull to merit a nickname but if I ever get one, I’ll be sure to run straight back here and tell ya’ll what it is.)

Now its true that pretty much every night is “Knit Night” for me because I’m working on something all the time. Also, I get paid to sit around with stitchers and talk yarn and patterns… I call them knitting and crochet classes… three days a week. But even so, Knit Night is pretty important to me. This week it was especially important since I’m going a bit crazy waiting for my (stupid) website transfer to go through. I needed my fellow crafters to talk me out of hunting up some (stupid) website manager types and scalping them.

When I got divorced I realized that I didn’t have any true friendships. I had people I called friends but they were just coworkers and neighbors. They were people that life had thrown me together with and I got along with them. It didn’t go any deeper than that. I had no real friends. It was a painful realization and I took it pretty hard.

So when I moved to a new town, Austin, one of my priorities was to make friends, real ones. I did that and I’m kind of proud of myself for it. I made all of my friends (with one exception), my first real adult friends, after the age of 35 and I did it at Knit Night. The exception was someone that I bonded with over books. Then I learned she was a crocheter. Then I started taking her to Knit Night.

All of that is to say… don’t get between me and Knit Night. Thursday nights is more than just an excuse to get together and play with yarn. Its how I maintain my precious network of friends. How precious is that network? Well, the very first person who came last night walked up and asked “How is the website? Still impatiently waiting?” Right away I got to pour out my frustrations and complaints and my website-manager-scalping plans. That was just what I needed.

Here is an assortment of other useful and somewhat informative discussions I had at last night’s Knit Night:

  • If you need to hide your chocolate from your husband, buy bags of frozen vegetables, the kind that are resealable. Toss out (or eat) all the vegetables. Load the bag up with your chocolate and then put it back in the freezer. He will NEVER look for your chocolate in a frozen broccoli bag.
  • Ragdoll Cats have been specially bred to treat humans with affection instead of their normal thinly veiled condescension. Apparently in order to get cats to like us, we have to modify their freaking DNA.
  • I make sarcastic comments all the time (like “we have to modify their freaking DNA”). These comments are are filed under Sh*t Jenn Says and them promptly forgotten.
  • Its so hot in Texas right now that everyone is claiming to have seen two hobbits wandering around looking for a place to toss their ring.
  • Speaking of Texas, that bluebonnet post I wrote a zillion years ago was pretty good and I should do more like that. I’m not precisely sure what “that” means but I’ll see if I can come up with something.
  • If When my blog settles down and I can make real posts (that won’t get disappeared on me) again, I need to do more Spinning In Cowgirl Boots. They like those.

And how is the blog doing? Oh gee, I’m so glad you asked. From what I can tell its not doing anything. We are still waiting. I have received one of those automated emails from my future website home letting me know that they are aware of the delay and that my ticket/issue has been auto-escalated. I think they just don’t want me to call and complain again. I think they are running scared. I think they know I’m ready to cut off the tops of their heads and pin them to my bedroom wall.


* My Knit Night group is a great group but they hate to have pictures taken. I have tried to get some pictures from around the table once or twice but not at all recently. They broke me of that I guess. The picture above is an old one from several months ago. You can see just how anxious they all are to show their smiling faces. Not.


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This Is A Work In Progress

Did you know that you can post pictures in the comments on this blog? I didn’t, not until quite recently. Of course the list of things I don’t know about blogging is miles long. I’m pretty much making this up as I go.

But I keep plugging away. Every now and then I learn something. When I learned that my readers could post their own pictures, I had an idea.

Continue reading This Is A Work In Progress

We Are The Makers Of Things

Wrapping up Our Contest

So our Revive-A-Vintage contest is over and I had a blast. It was so much fun on my end to watch the patterns and projects get added in ravelry. I stayed up past my bed time more than once browsing pictures and reading project notes. But, I have to admit, I had a secret agenda. I hosted the contest so I could find The Makers, the ones who will sit down with yarn and needles/hooks/shuttles/looms and actually make things. And I did.

English showgirls knitting
English showgirls knitting backstage for soldiers during WWII (from Life Magazine)

You all are just like them… except maybe you don’t have those awesome legs. I sure don’t!

Continue reading We Are The Makers Of Things

We got Upgraded (and sneak peak at a new pattern)

A round of changes were made to this little corner of the web over the weekend. I’m feeling mighty smug about that. It only took me three pots of coffee, a few hours of cussing, and eighteen books from the Austin Public Library on web design.

Yeah! Feeling smug.

Giving Myself a Pat on the Back

You didn’t notice anything different you say? Good. I hate going to a familiar web site and finding it to be not so familiar anymore. Its such a pain in the butt to have to hunt and peck around for stuff because some wretched person who knows more about web design than I do (i.e. anyone) moved it. So if the upgrades slipped right under your radar, I’m giving myself a pat on the back AND a gold star. Jess and I tried to keep stuff looking the pretty much the same.

That being said let me point out a few changes (lol): Continue reading We got Upgraded (and sneak peak at a new pattern)

Thursday Poll – A few changes are coming

Over the next week or so we’ll be making some changes to the site here at Roving Crafters. Back when we had 32 visitors a day (and I was damn thrilled to have them!) we could get by with a little freebie site from WordPress. But now there are so many more of you and the upgrades I thought we could put off for at least six more months have to be done pretty soon. Continue reading Thursday Poll – A few changes are coming

We Make a Pretty Good Team

I’ve been asked, more than once, where is Jess. This blog is a team effort. I’m on the team. Jess is on the team. Feline Overlord is on the team. Cowardly Boy Cat is on the team.

If you’re a regular reader, than you know where Feline Overlord is. She’s over there trying to figure out a way into my project bag so she can muck up all my knitting. Cowardly Boy Cat is hiding under the bed (the safest place in the world). But where is Jess?

Continue reading We Make a Pretty Good Team

Its Good to Be a Knitter

Justa  quick post for now but I hope to have more up later. Its a cold, miserable, windy day and its good to be a knitter.

I’m at Mom’s and the temperatures has dropped quite a bit. Its in the thirties I think. The winds have picked up, also in the 30’s (miles per hours that is). Even so, the Great Beast Barbarian Princess Dog must be walked. She has to be walked even on yucky weather days. No scratch that. On yucky days is when she needs her walk the most.

So for today’s three-mile trek there will be lots a warm woolies on heads, hands and feet.

 

Hope you’re staying warm! Stay in and drink an extra cup of coffee and think of me.

 

Profile of a Crafter – Carrie

Tonight it is a real pleasure to share the talent and skill of another Roving Crafter with the world. World meet Carrie, aka ctawq on Ravelry.

Carrie is a true multicraftual crafter with decades of experience in crochet and knit. That’s on top of a whole career providing custom sewing for interior designers. I’ve known her for years and I’ve never seen her make anything that wasn’t perfect. People throw the phrase “attention to detail” around a lot these days. In Carrie’s case, it’s not just a phrase. It’s how she crafts.

I had a hard time choosing which of Carrie’s projects I would feature. There were too many! I whittled and whittled and got it down to …oh… maybe a dozen.

Let’s start with her Rose Fillet Afghan. Isn’t it gorgeous? Here is the note she made on it’s ravelry project page:

I started with a flower from a Mystery CAL that I liked then went off on a bunny trail and ended up with this afghan.

Yeah. Sure. That happens to me. I accidentally create a family heirlooms all the time.

Back in the land of reality…She made this afghan for the Manchaca United Methodist Church Annual Craft show. Let me be clear here. Carrie made this afghan and gave it away to be auctioned.

She gave all of these away too:

The two on the ends are crocheted versions of the Wedding Ring Blanket. They went to very happy (and I’m sure grateful!) couples. The three in the middle went to charity auctions.

Last year, for varieties sake, she offered a knit shawl at the annual auction.

She made this Rendezvous, pattern design by Lily Go. It sold nearly $300 in raffle tickets. One of the ladies who tried for it and lost immediately commissioned Carrie to make one for her.

Would it surprise you to learn that she donated the fee for that commission? Yeah, I didn’t think so. Would it surprise you to learn that she made that adorable little gingerbread man too? Yeah, I didn’t think so.

 

 

 

Not all of her work goes to charity. Some of it goes to this little guy:

That’s what her grandson wore home from the hospital. Its almost as darling as he is. Almost.

 

 

Occasionally, every now and then, she’ll keep something for herself. Like this Omelet Shawl which she the first knit she made “after twenty years of not knitting”.

 

 

It would be easy to feel at little jealous, a little envious of Carrie. Easy, until you meet her that is. Her drive for perfection doesn’t come from a need to be the best or have the best. She’s driven by a love for the people who will wear what she makes. It’s why she gives so very much of what she makes away. When you meet her, that love shows. When you see her work, that love shows.

So, if you’re in Austin, Texas this weekend (here is my big, big, super-duper sales pitch!) you should make the time to go to the 39th annual craft show at the Manchaca United Methodist Church at the corner of FM 1626 and Manchaca Road. It’s this Saturday and Sunday. They’ll have food, and gifts, and hand-made stuff. And this:

It’s a Mirabelle Texture Sampler Shawl by Zehava Jacobs and it’s Carrie’s offering this year for the auction. Go and see if you can win it (for me). The funds raised go to support local and international missions. The shawl would make a wonderful gift for someone special (like me).

If you can’t get to the craft show, you have another chance to meet this wonderful lady because she teaches classes at The Knitting Nest.  Perhaps that would be even better than winning the shawl at auction. You could learn how to make one yourself from someone who has mastered both the art of knitting and the art of being human.