Monday, December 31, 2012

Final Notes on 2012


This year was big.

The yarn shop I was working at closed its doors in mid-February, and I started going to its transplanted Friday Night Knit Group in Issaquah, which has been a great source of friendship, support, and laughing my butt off.

We adopted MacGuyver, aka Mackie/Mr. Boo, in March.  I love him fiercely.  He bounces when he's happy, he licks faces, he tries to eat my engagement ring, he enjoys stretching out on flat wooden surfaces when he's relaxed.  He is my first pet as an adult as well as Lumberjack's and my first pet together, and he's the best rat probably ever.

I started getting more serious about fashion school, and in April, Lumberjack and I made the decision to move to Ballard from our lovely apartment in Bellevue so that I could spend more time at school.  I still miss it sometimes, but it was absolutely the right choice to move.

In August, we went to LA to visit my grandma, and took a day to go look at fabric.  I ended up buying about 85% of the fabric for my line while we were there, and it was a huge factor in my decision to participate in the fashion show this coming April.

I visited Oberlin twice this year - once in late March with Lumberjack, and again in September by myself.  I miss Oberlin and all the people I know/knew there, and it's nice to go back and revisit the people and places that shaped who I am today.

Lumberjack and I went to Reykjavík for Iceland Airwaves.  We saw Sigur Rós, Phantogram, Vacationer, and several really amazing smaller artists and bands.  I had insomnia the entire time and got my first migraine.  We went to Blue Lagoon for an afternoon.  I bought yarn and some really cute fabric (which I should totally remember to share!) and we ate surprisingly good Thai food.  It was a long, hard trip, and it took me several weeks to recover when we got home - but it was a huge learning experience, and I wouldn't change a thing.

Over the year, I've met lots of new people and made several new good friends.  I am constantly floored by their generosity, kindness, and sheer awesomeness.  I couldn't ask for better friends.

Shit started getting real re: the fashion show.  I'm still kinda in denial.

2013 promises to be another big year: the fashion show is in April, one of my best friends is getting married in June in Oberlin, we're getting married in August, I'm hoping to finish the fashion program by the end of the year (which includes Ballgown), and I'm also hoping to apply to the JET program so that Lumberjack and I can fulfill our dream of living in Japan together.

Overall, this year has been one of huge transitions.  It's been hard, but it's been good - I live in a great part of the city; I have a wonderful partner, a kickass family, and awesome friends; I have a dopey rat companion; I'm doing what I love.

Don't let the door hit your butt on the way out, 2012.

Bring it, 2013.

A Year In Knits (And Some Crochet): 2012

This year, I finished:

6 scarves/scarflettes (including 1 crocheted scarf!)
9 shawls
4 hats
8 cowls (1 not pictured)
2 pairs of socks
1 crocheted doily
30 projects

Out of all of these projects, 10 of them went to other people; this probably marks the least selfish knitting I have ever done in a year.  Yay!

So, without further ado, here they are:

Anthro-Inspired Scarflette from 1 skein of Madelinetosh Vintage, colorway Rose. 1-row lace scarf out of Freia Handpaints Flux Lace
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IMGP4060 IMGP5004Lilac Leaf Shawl by Nancy Bush, knit in 2 balls of Classic Elite Silky Alpaca Lace. IMGP0618
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Little Things by Veera Välimäki in half a skein of Tosh Merino Light, colorway Tern. Salt Creek, knit in 1 skein Anzula Cricket MCN colorway BoysenberryIMGP5734 IMGP1125
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If some of these looked unfamiliar, it's because... well, they probably are!  Two were shawls that I knit for professors, and the rest - well.  The rest are either oversights, or I only got around to photographing them a few days ago.  I spend so much time working on projects that sometimes it's sort of anticlimactic when they're actually finished, and sometimes photography and blogging can fall behind a little!

I will also say, after going through all these pictures: I really, really miss our old back porch.  The current porch is a weird shade of brown, and while it makes some colors pop, it really affects some colors in a terrible way that can't even be fixed in post-processing.  Grey is a beautiful, cool backdrop that warm brown can't possibly compare to. If only I could change our porch - but alas, we are but renters.

And as far as my goals for this last year, how did I do?

Well, here they are:

"My knitting goals for 2012 are:

Knit 4 sweaters
Continue the hat challenge, but in a more achievable way: knit 6 hats
Design and publish 4 patterns
No buying yarn from Jan. 1st until my birthday, April 15th
Knit 5 pairs of socks
Knit 6 lace projects"

Sooooooo.  About that.

In 2012, I knit:

0 completed sweaters (but currently have 3 in progress - that counts... right?)
Continued the hat challenge, but only knit 4 hats.
Designed and published... uhh, 1 pattern.  But I knit others!  Which are not written up yet.  So yeah, 1.
HAHAHAHAHAH.  Failed miserably at stash diet.  I did try - but Madrona got me.
Knit 2 pairs of socks.
Knit 9 lace projects.

So, overall, a mixed bag.  But you know what?  I like lists, and I like goals, and I'm going to do it again this year.  No matter how entertainingly, miserably, and deeply I fail at it.

Because looking back at these projects - even if they weren't planned, even if they weren't perfect - I knit a lot of beautiful things (beaded shawl!); I knit a lot of useful things (hats!); I knit a lot for people I love (scarves and hats for Derek and Lumberjack!) and I had a lot of fun doing it.

So, tallying it all up, let's just say that I succeeded.

Happy New Year's Eve.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

A Year in Outfits: 2012

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This year was a little less exciting in terms of outfits than last year.  A big part of it is that the clothing buying has gone way down - for example, the last thing item of clothing I bought was... uh... a $30 thrifted dress that needs repairing, two months ago?

The reason for buying less has been twofold: first, I'm starting to change aesthetics again.  School has made me a lot more comfortable in my body and a lot more aware of what works for my figure, and as a result, I'm starting to gravitate towards more fitted silhouettes again.  I still love slouchy, draped garments, but I've started to enjoy combining them with tailored pieces to maintain more of a balance of the two.

Second, I'm itching to make more of my own garments, because I love how much control I have over the fit.  So, in preparation, I have been more interested in stashing away fabric like a squirrel stashing nuts for the winter.

(Like I needed another hobby where "stashing" is a thing.)

And well, I definitely know the other reasons my outfits have been less exciting this year: I wear a lot fewer interesting clothes on a daily basis.  I'm hoping that this is just part of the natural ebb and flow of sartorial inspiration, and that the creativity I usually expend on dressing is instead focused on patternwork and seam treatments, because right now all I want to wear is skinny jeans and oversized cashmere sweaters.

So, in summary, my fashion brain is growing and changing, and I haven't figured out what to do with it yet.  I'm both excited and terrified by what the next few months will bring.  I doubt that I'll be able to post outfit photos again for a while, but it is really cool to look back and see what I wore this last year.

So onward: to uncharted territory.  With any luck, my garments will be all over the photos in the Year in Outfits post this time next year.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Christmas 2012

This Christmas, as is tradition, I went to the beach with Lumberjack, my brother, my parents, and our obnoxious wonderful dogs.  In years past, it's been a little stressful, but this year I think we all just sorta went with it.  We opened presents two days early.  We went on walks on the beach with the dogs.  We hung out in the hotel pool, and ate macaroni and cheese with snap peas and bacon.  My mom and I knit.  We watched the dogs chase each other in circles around the hotel room.

It was a really nice way to end out the year before jumping into school again.


Hope you and yours had a merry Christmas and a happy Chanukah.  Here's to another year gone by!