Friday, November 09, 2007

Contest!! Prizes!!! Fugly!!!

Yesterday, I posted this picture:

It's my secret shame: the fugliest yarn in my stash, and quite possibly the fugliest yarn in the universe.

Please, prove me wrong and enter the first annual "That's Some Fugly Yarn" contest. Share that ominous fuzzy mass that you keep shoving further into the recesses of your stash, lest it see the light of day. Only by facing the fugly can we conquor it, and only by sending me phots of your fugly can you win prizes of fibery goodness.

Da rulez:

Send a photo of your fugly yarn (or a link to your flickr page, etc) to abre-los-ojos33(AT)hotmail(DOT)com. Include some variation on "Fugly" in the subject heading.

You may submit multiple fuglies for consideration, but you cannot win more than once.

Contestants are encouraged to include a statement with their entries explaining the origins of the yarn, how long it has been in their stash, if it was ever intended for a project, and generally speaking what they find so fugly about it.

Fugliness will be determined according to color, texture, percieved ickyness of material, and overall impression of ghastliness. Judging will be conducted by myself, Gabby the dog, and my boyfriend Mike, who has a good eye for weird.

A first, second, and third place will be named. Winning entries will be featured on the blog, and yarny prizes will be awarded. Winners will also be invited to donate their winning yarn to the blog, where it will be immolated in a manner befitting its fugliness.

The entry deadline for the contest is Friday, November 16. Winners will be announced By Saturday evening.

Have I left anything out? Okay, get to makin' with the fug already, and good luck!

Now, because it's Saturday, and a promise is a promise....

Somehow I feel that this garment would be put to better use as a tread on a Goodyear Tire. Judging by the models expression, she thinks so too.

I don't even know where to begin with the Fruity Pebbles embedded in the front, but you all are welcome to take a shot at it.

New: The Saturday Snark!

The Knittiot is here to entertain you. Without readers to enjoy my blogging, I might as well be Standing on a chair in my front yard shouting random words out of the dictionary. Which is great for Wednesday afternoons, but what about the rest of the week?

As much as I enjoy writing, doing it for an audience of even two or three is hard. A lot of the time I don't blog because I don't think I'm doing anything remotely funny or entertaining. There's a lot of knitting blogs out there, being written by people who are better writers, knitters, and spinners than I. So to take the pressure off, and to keep chuckin' comedy gold at you, I'm introducing Snarky Saturday. Every Saturday, you can stop by the blog and find fugly patterns and possibly fuglier yarns to point and laugh at. Others might have more exciting projects, or nicer handspun, but no one's better at being a jackass than I. Join me, won't you?

You know, this used to be a perfectly good bath mat. Now it's a Fluffy Fair Isle horror being modeled by the scariest nanny ever. You just try slinging your applesauce at her; the Super Absorbancy of her cardigan makes her virtually invincible. Now eat your vegetables!

Next slide, please:

I am pretty sure that this is the fugliest yarn in the world. It's freaking ghastly. Black Fun Fur is bad enough, no matter how you tart it up, it's still reminiscent of pubes. As if that wasn't enough, someone at Lion Brand said, "Black Fun Fur you say? Let's add some weird white and tan bobbles to it and call it Fancy Fur!" And someone else heard them and said, "Yes, let's do that!"

Let me read the ball band for you, in case the photo's a little blurry: "A fun fur yarn, bursting with kernels of color." Excuse me, I'm not sure I want my yarn bursting with kernels of anything. If it did, I would probably throw a pyrex bowl over it and wait for my boyfriend to come home and kill it.

This is fugly yarn. And it came from my stash. Yup, that's my fugly yarn. I've got three freaking balls of the stuff, and I don't even know how it got in there. I know I didn't buy it; I just looked in the stash one day and there it was. I'm afraid to give it away (like I could), because I'm sure I would get up the next morning, check the stash...and it would still be in there. It's the Amityville Horror of yarns.

So, to review: Blogging is hard, Saturdays are for snark, if you have to wear a fugly sweater then pose like a gangsta, I have the fugliest yarn in the world, which may or may not be haunted.

There. I think we've done some good work today. Tomorrow morning, I'll be officially opening the fugly yarn contest. You send me pictures of what's hiding in the bottom of your stash. Entries will be judged by myself and a panel of experts (my boyfriend and my dog), and winners will be determined. Prizes will be awarded. Yarny prizes. Not fugly yarn.

The WIPs Revolt

Thursday, November 08, 2007

As an Aside

The blog is in a serious state of neglect. Sorry about that. I've had a lot of things going on these past few months, and while many of them have been rather large, they really don't make good blog fodder. I do have some interesting new FO's, cartoons, yarnpron, and a very fun new feature--all of which will be up and posted pretty soon.

But today, I've had something on my mind that I'd like to get out. I hope my friends and regular readers will understand if I want to take advantage of the public platform that blogs provide to make a brief public statement. I doubt that it will ever get to my intended audience, but putting it up here will make me feel better. You may want to cover your ears, er, eyes. I'll get back to happy, yarny, interesting things soon, I promise.

This is Gabby, registered as Roeder's Gabrial, AKC # NM657518/03. Breeder listed as Billy Joe Jones, owner listed as Cathy Roeders of Orland, IL. I don't know if Cathy or Billy Joe or someone else was the person who dumped her at the Animal Welfare League 2 years ago, but I would like whoever it is to know that Gabby is now my dog. She's lived a life on par with that of the spoiled dogs of equally spoiled heiresses and starlets. I love this dog. She's been given the best of everything. And she's needed a lot of everything, especially veterinary care, since her metastatic mammary tumors keep returning. She's had two surgeries to remove her mammary tissues, another to remove a rib when the cancer popped up there, and one more procedure when the cancer started affecting her skin. All told, we've spent in excess of $5,000 in nonroutine medical procedures to keep our girl healthy. It's back on her skin now, and in her lymph nodes, and there's nothing more we can do except keep her comfortable and wait for the end. She's a damn good dog and she could have lived as many as five or six more years, if her former owner would have spayed her.
I just though you'd like to know this, former owner, so you can see what happened to the dog you neglected to spay. Dogs who are spayed as puppies have close to zero incidence of mammary cancer. Yet you allowed her to be intact until past the age of nine, when we adopted her and immediately had her spayed. What's even more damnable is, you also bred her, and it looks like you did it more than once. Was it because you were greedy or just ignorant? Either way, fuck you, whoever you are. You killed my dog.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

It'd be okay if you did it and it was a guitar store.

I know, the comic's in black and white. Anyone want to sell me a copy of Illustrator for like twenty bucks?

Thursday, June 28, 2007

We have met the Enemy...

...And she is us.
I may need to seriously consider the possiblity that deep seated emotional problems are causing me to undertake projects with humongous scale. Sweaters and afghans are one thing, but a giant bedspread made out of tiny squares is a very special sort of grandiosity. I have been hauling ass on the mitered square bedspread, and is it looking any bigger?

It is not.
It's tempting to take back all the lovely sentiments expressed in the last post about the blanket--the value of persistence, a physical representation of the passage of time, etc. Instead I just want to say it is a very big blanket, it is very boring to work on, and by the time I cast off the last stitch they will probably just pull it right over me as my shroud.

Now I'm depressed. Let's look at pretty things together, ok?

My spinning pal sent me another package yesterday, and Gabby was not neglected. She's been squeaking her squeaky motorcycle enthusiastically for the past two days, and will run and find it if you ask, "Where's your Squeaky Cycle?"

Merino batts (carded by Ms. Pest herself I believe) and Bamboo for me. Is it wrong to put the bamboo fiber on the floor and roll around in it a little? Not that I did, just saying. Thank you, pest, it's all beautiful--although you're making it extremely difficult for me to decide what to spin next. Extremely.

Hey, some handspun that doesn't look like ass! The heathered gray is alpaca, also courtesy of my pest (she is turning me into such a fiber snob). The yarn below it is 50/50 camel-silk, and it's really a lovely pale honey color, not tan like it looks on my monitor. I haven't gotten around to measuring how much I've got of each, so for now I'm listing the yardage as A Decent Amount.

Last, this just came today: Two Chasing Rainbows silk hankies from Crown Mountain Farms. Go give them your money, they take really good care of you. The colors are Copper Slate (left) and Peacock Plume (right). You can tell I'm already diving into that one. Obviously, I have issues with restraint.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

We Have a Weiner!

It's me!
Merideth held a really fun contest on her blog, inviting everyone to answer the age old question: If you were stranded on an island and could have only three kinds of yarn with you, which would you want and why?
I took that as a gilt-edged invitation to be silly and have some fun (like I need an invitation), so I wrote up my entry, Robinson Crusoe style, and sent it in. Her and her husband liked it so much they awarded me third place! And there's prizes involved! Feel free to pop over to Merideth's blog and read it here.

In knitting and spinning news..bah, I'm not doing anything you'd be remotely interested in. I'm on a mindless simplicity jag. A diagonal garter stitch scarf. A cabled headband for my mum's motorcycle trips. A wee cotton sweater for my sister's soon to arrive baby girl. I'll try to knit something blogworthy soon, I promise.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

And that's why the kitchen smells like vinegar

Never one to underdo things, I decided today would be a good day to dye up a big mess of yarn. I decided this at about four in the afternoon, when I impulsively bought a box of food coloring at the supermarket. What the hell, I thought. I'll just mix up a bit of dye, pour it on, pop it into the microwave and then take it easy for the rest of the day.
Instead, I embarked on a dyeing rampage, sacrificing at least a good pound of fiber to the gods of Saturday Afternoon Boredom. It was much better than getting the oil in the car changed.
My, er, victims-- the Spunky Eclectic roving that my spinning pal just sent me, a bit of handpun silk, and a skein each of handspun colonial superwash and Corriedale.
It's mad scientist time as I get ready to go to work on the roving...
... While the handspun simmers in a fragrant bath of water and vinegar. Good grief, what have I brought upon myself?
I hate wrapping it up in a Saran Wrap. There's just no tidy way to do it.

Several hours and a colossal mess later, I have:

Four ounces of wool roving. This turned out a lot paler than I had hoped--but awfully purty anyway.

Here's the superwash, possibly my favorite of the four. I kind of went crazy here, pouring colors on top of colors and letting everything run together, so I'm afraid this is a one-shot yarn. That's a bummer, because I want ten more exactly like it.
The Corriedale. The brown bits were olive green, until the dye ran on accident and I decided I liked brown better.
I'm glad I decided to dye the silk; it was hard for me to spin and I really didn't do a very good job of it. I'd cringe a little when I saw it peeping out of the bin, thinking that I'd made a terrible mess out of good fiber. Now that it's chartreuse and olive green, I feel much better about it. Sorry if the colors are a bit hard to make out, it's just really, really shiny.

Join me next Saturday, when maybe I will singlehandedly re-roof the house.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Holy Crap!

Look at the package my spinning pal sent me!

Yes, all that came out of the one box. I'm still pretty much agog. And this is the "little box"; my pal keeps alluding to a "big box" yet to come. I'm almost kind of scared. Look at all this fiber--what more could a girl possibly want? A goat? Pal, are you sending me a live goat?

Eventually I was able to stop petting everything long enough to take some pictures:

In the back: Moorit Roving and undyed roving from Spunky eclectic (yay, I love to dye!). In front: superwash merino in two very pretty shades of blue.

I can't lie, this next one's my favorite:

More superwash merino, this time in wine and a beautiful shade of steely blue gray. I love these colors together, and the roving positively glows.

Alpaca! Natural gray on the left, and two heathered shades of pale blue/amethyst alpaca-merino on the right.

Sorry, this picture just wouldn't turn out right. You're looking at a great boofy mass of combed mohair locks, plus two more little bags of mohair. I've never spun locks before, but I can't wait to try. There's a bag of sparkly firestar nylon that I'm going to try to ply with the mohair. Try being the operative word here, since I can't ply for beans, but I'm hoping to change that soon.

My pal also sent me a box of watercolor pencils, since she knows I like to doodle. My late uncle and grandmother got all the artistic talent in the family, nevertheless-

This really made my day, thank you for being so thoughful.