Monday, February 27

Ils sont finis!

They're DONE!
I'll say it again - I love the fit of these socks! It's a bit of a struggle to get them on and off, but once they're on it's a dream. You'll notice that they don't quite match up, despite my best efforts. Sigh. I can live with that. The Vesper sock yarn is nice to work with, too - I have another skein of it in Algae sitting in the stash. But I'm not sure if I'm going to buy any more of it in the future. Once I start dyeing I'll just make some of my own!

This weekend I went out to Easthampton to see Brian, and we went to Webs!
I'd been sitting on a $50 gift certificate since September and I finally used it. With that and their awesome discounts, I ended up paying only $40 for $120 of yarn! That feels goooood. Anyway, here's the yarn haul:

Jo Sharp DK Wool in Oak (910) and Porcelain (349) for Eunny's deep-V argyle vest. I can't wait to start this one.

Dale Sisik in color 166 for wristwarmers/convertible gloves for Brian.

And the biggest purchase, 13 skeins of Frog Tree Alpaca sport in colors 37 and 96 for the infamous Union Square Market Pullover.

I also picked up some Inox DPNs in sizes 0 and 8 for upcoming projects (Gentleman's Fancy Socks from Knitting Vintage Socks for Brian, and to finish the sleeves on my striped raglan - perhaps that will be the next thing I tackle).

This weekend we watched Wallace and Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit. How precious was this movie? I think I squealed every time a bunny came on the screen... which happened frequently. We took many many screenshots, but I love this one the most. I gave this movie five stars for pure enjoyment.

Coming up next: hand-dyed wonderfulness from Furryarns! The box is waiting for me at the office, so I'll take pictures when I get home today. And tonight I'm watching Mysterious Skin.

Wednesday, February 22

Une étrange aventure de Lemmy Caution

I set some very lofty goals for the Knitting Olympics, failing to take into account a visit from my mother this past weekend - I barely got a stitch in during her time here. There are projects I intended to finish that still haven't been touched (Lady Eleanor, sleeves for Rogue...) so I think I'll extend this crusade indefinitely. Must finish 6-month-old projects! Post-Olympics I'll try not to start any new projects... but no promises.

So, progress on those neglected pieces that have gotten some attention:
Ohhh these socks are so close to being done, I can feel it. I took this picture yesterday afternoon - now I'm almost almost to the toe. These socks fit VERY snug, which I like, but I'm hoping they'll loosen up a bit after washing. I find the structure and tailoring very pleasing, and the pattern is simple enough to knit without thinking about it (but the resulting sock is still interesting). Bravo, Grumperina!

Butterfly is looking a little rumpled, due to prolonged behind-the-pillow storage (I caught someone chewing on it when it was just stored in my purse). But aside from that, she's definitely moving along. I ordered the specific Rowan beads all the way from the UK, which probably wasn't necessary, but they're sooooo pretty. I also went down a needle size, to US7, because I figure the lace will block to my shape anyway. I'll focus on this once the sock is done.

Tina is ready to be blocked (or mangled by tiny claws):

Tina shawl from Fiddlesticks in Daffodil Zephyr
I've heard of many techniques for blocking in small spaces, but a) I have no carpet, and b) my mattress isn't big enough... and I need to sleep on it, anyway. So I might bring it out to Brian's house, where there's ample room and ample carpet. I need about 50 more pins, though - this shawl is a beast. A soft, gorgeous beast.

Dites donc, c'est pas Alphaville qui faut appeler votre patelin, c'est zéroville!

I'll start by saying that I love French films. I love French in general (after taking two semesters worth last summer) and having a loose grasp of the language makes the films so much better. There are little quirks and subtleties that don't come through in the subtitles. So, about Alphaville: it's a film that wouldn't work if it wasn't French. It's film noir with surrealist tinges. Alphaville, where logic is king and the bible is your dictionary. Where you're executed for crying at your wife's funeral - it's not logical behavior.
I loved the voice of Alpha 60 (or Alpha Soixante) and I loved the voice-over monologues and interrogation scenes. I'm generally not a huge fan of existentialism (then why are you watching Godard, Jenna) but it worked here.

Ohhh Anna Karina, "le joli sphinx." Does she make this film worth watching? Maybe. Yes.

An inauspicious beginning

Hi. Welcome. I'm Jenna, and this is my new blog. I'm combining two of my favorite interests (three, if you count photography), making this a space to discuss both knitting and movies. I'm excited to get started, even if no one ends up reading this :)

It may be a little odd to start a blog with a finished object, but:

Pattern: Ene's Scarf from Scarf Style
Yarn: Laceweight wool from in Jacinto - less than one skein (can you believe it?)
Needles: Denise interchangeable, size 6

This was a fun knit. Many people have had trouble with the beginning of the pattern, but I got stalled on the main pattern repeat. Half-way through I was sure things weren't lining up, and instead of going back and fixing the problem, I put the project down... for five months. I completed it (finally) as part of my Knitting Olympics goal - to finish up all of the poor, neglected projects I have lying around. My progress on that has varied - update in the next post.

As for the yarn, I enjoyed working with it - the stuff has character. It's less evenly spun than other lace yarns on the market. There's not a lot of room for thick-and-thin textures in laceweight, but this yarn manages to pull it off somehow. Also, I found the color variations really nice - I agree whole-heartedly with what Eunny was saying about her Frost Flowers shawl. You can see the variations here, in a close-up of the lace:
As you can see, my points weren't exactly pinned out perfectly - I can live with that.

I didn't watch any Netflix last night (Alphaville is up next!) but I do have a movie to blog about:

Gegen die Wand (literally "Against the Wall"), or Head On, is a gritty romance. The film is set in Germany but its subjects are Turkish. Cahit is a drunk, aimless widower who cleans up empties at a rock club, and Sibel is a young woman desperate to be free from her traditional Turkish family. When the two meet in a hospital, she sees her ticket out and asks Cahit to marry her. The film is an utterly captivating, often violent and painful portrait of their life together - a complicated sham marriage. At first. Parts of the film are difficult to watch (but if you've seen anything like Irréversible I doubt you'll flinch.) But the story is beautiful and heartbreaking, and, I think, deeply affecting.

I wasn't going to mention Head On, but I saw this feature in the New York Times magazine about the year's great performances in film. And, boom:

Birol Unel and Sibel Kekilli

A pleasant surprise. These actors, these people, are so beautiful and wonderful to watch. (The whole piece in the magazine was magnificent, by the way - really incredible and innovative portraits.)

Tomorrow: UFOlympics update (that's unfinished-object-olypmpics, btw) and Alphaville.