Friday, August 17, 2007

Retail Therapy

I woke up with a migraine today that no amount of Advil will kill, so I decided to go for a walk before the predicted weekend rain sets in. It’s warm but not hot, with a refreshing breeze and alternating sun and cloud which is pretty much my favourite type of weather. I started by heading up to Three Bags Full (my “other” LYS) to see Wilfred the Moose installed in his latest venue. He was missing one antler because it wouldn’t quite fit in the window space — it’s a very small shop — but he was already intriguing passersby. It wasn’t obvious that his other antler was shed since I didn’t even notice until Francesca pointed it out! While I was there, I missed buying the last copy of Cat Bordhi’s new book on knitting socks. It was bought right out from under my nose! But I was assured that more copies would be in shortly and I left my email addy to be notified when it was. At least I got to flip through the pages of somebody else’s copy. Sniff! If only I was a half-hour earlier. However I did succumb to a ball of Tofutsies, the sock yarn with superwash wool, cotton, soysilk and a smidge of chitin from crab and shrimp shells. The latter (pronounced KITE-in, not CHIT-in) is supposed to make the socks naturally antibacterial which is somewhat doubtful but it does feel nice and soft. The colourway is sand-and-sea (turquoise, green, tan, yellow) and I may make my MIL a pair out of this. It reminds me of the Oregon Coast which she loves as much as I do. The crab and shrimp shells certainly add authenticity!

I continued up Main Street to Ruby Dog’s Art House, a fantastic supply for bookmaking, altered books, scrapbooking, ATCs, paper arts etc. Yes, Ruby the dog was there and I got to pat her elderly yellow lab head. This treasure trove has everything from old wooden type to glass slides and a whole lot you wouldn’t even think of. Some is bulk purchase and some is individually priced. I bought 4 pieces of book board offcuts (8.5 x 17.5”), 2 large rolls of bias rayon strips (black and brown), and a package of 5 brightly coloured small loose-leaf paper clip rings (the kind you bind pages together) and the whole thing cost me $4.43. Don’t ask me what exactly I’m going to do with them. Yet. I think the bias tape would be great knit on huge needles though.

Crossing Main St. and heading back down toward my house, I checked out a new grocery store that just opened. Didn’t buy anything but noticed that it has lots of organics which were well-labeled as such. It’s the kind of neighbourhood that would be concerned about organic products though I’ve noticed that even the mainstream grocery chains are getting into it in a much bigger way than previously. A good trend, I’d say. I don’t always buy organic but often will. I also choose local rather than imported if I can. Just makes sense.

Continuing on down Main, I couldn’t pass by my most-LYS, Birkeland Bros Wool, without getting sucked in through the door. (Hi, Pearl!) I decided to buy some of the merino/tussah silk top to join the merino/tencel I bought earlier this week. My Spectrum study group wants to use them for felting where the non-merino part adds bubbly texture to the felt. I need to test both of these blends and see which works better. But not today. I did manage to stay out of all the other shops on Main St. There are antique shops, cafes, funky dress shops, second-hand record shops, art galleries and a whole lot more. It’s just one of the reasons why I love my ’hood.

Meanwhile, back on the loom, I got the rest of it threaded, treadles tied up and warp wound on yesterday. ’Splain to me though why the first section of the warp is a good six inches shorter than the other 3? I wound them on the same warping board under pretty much the same tension. At least I thought I did. It’s perplexing! I even went so far as to unwind the warp off the loom and rewind it back on, just to make sure that I hadn’t screwed something up. Nope. Still the same amount short. See?

(Note that my kitty assistant Ms. Polly is snoozing on the job back there behind the loom.) Luckily I have some extra warp to absorb the error. I just chopped the rest of it off to match the first section. Feels like a big waste of yarn though. In spite of having trouble remembering how to throw the shuttle all the way across the loom (boat shuttle becomes submarine), I got about 20 inches woven so far. Only 340 inches more to go. It doesn’t look too bad at all — at least to me:

But pardon me if I don’t weave any more on it today. It isn’t very restful for my migraine-affected eyeballs. I think I’ll go spin since I don’t have brains enough to knit on anything complex. I’d probably have to frog and do it all over again tomorrow.

In other news, there’s been a bandit on my back deck who insists on knocking my water garden’s spout into the drink. The evidence is here:

Can you see little toes like miniature human hands? Don’t those look like raccoon footprints? This guy is starting to become pesky. Now you know why I don’t let my cats out early in the morning or late in the evening. Too much wildlife around here. In the middle of Canada's third largest city.


Sue said...

The blanket is looking great so far! Maybe the shorter bout is due to a missed peg?

Anonymous said...

Kathy from our WNK recently completed a pr of socks from Tofutsie. She did have some difficulties with the yarn splitting, but the in the end she had a gorgeous pair of socks to look at and to wear. I'm sure you too, will be thrilled with the end result.
Looks like you are going to have one gorgeous blanket for your bed.

Anonymous said...

Blanket is looking good! You had quite the day for someone with a migrane, the weather has changed, hope the change in the barometer has had good results.