Friday, January 31, 2003

5 Years Ago Today...

I delivered my beautiful, bouncing baby boy - 11 pound Maxie!

And, just to answer any questions; 1) No, I didn't have gestational diabetes, I'm 6' tall so I have big kids - and 2) I didn't have any meds (because I'm insane!)

Today will be a celebration all day - party at preschool, celebratory train ride from South Orange to Summit with two friends for pizza and preparations for tomorrow's very low-key birthday party! I love you, Maxie!

A boy and his camel

Today I go to my daughter's school to start teaching knitting to some of the kids there - sort of a 'get to know you' day - what fun! I bought some colorful twine because I've discovered that sometimes twine is easier to learn on (you can see the stitches better...)

Some AMAZING Muench yarn arrived today - Merino Soft - it's for an editorial and I am in heaven! I'm waiting for the 2nd color, I'm doing a wacky, groovy mixing thing with two strands of fingering weight yarn and I'm SO psyched. I love what I do!
Bookmark and Share
posted by Annie at 0 Comments Links to this post

Thursday, January 30, 2003


There's a huge fire just up the street from us - 2 miles away and the smoke is hugely visible. It's in Orange, NJ - we're in South Orange. It's been a bad month for fires in NJ.
Bookmark and Share
posted by Annie at 0 Comments Links to this post

Wednesday, January 29, 2003

My class amazes me

I just love my knitting class - they're so great! Last week I threw cabling at them, not reall expecting all of them to get it, not really expecting MOST of them to get it - but they came through! You should have seen what Jen and Athena did (well, they ARE masters) What a terrific class. My fears are that 1) I'm too wacky - can't seem to tone it down and 2) The class is too elementary for the more advanced knitters.

At any rate, they're all doing MAGNIFICENT projects for the class - from cabled sweaters to lace scarves, felted booties and bags (thanks, Knitty!) and just plain, simple, fun sweaters!

I did a mongo internet search for discount yarns - and Chick Knits once again is the best source for the discount links! Anyway, I did the searches to find yarns for my students - I am as excited about their projects as they (hopefully!) are!

And a shameless plug - I have two items in the current Interweave Knits. It was so fun to see them last night (thanks Jen!) and, as usual, Melanie's put together an eclectic and super magazine with so much for EVERY knitter. Go get this issue - the cover sweater alone is worth the price of admission! PLUS there's a great article on BLOGS (knitting blogs, ladies...) and THAT'S a great thing to read!!
Bookmark and Share
posted by Annie at 0 Comments Links to this post

Tuesday, January 28, 2003

What up?

I've posted to blogger for a couple of days, but for some unknown reason it's not updating. How annoying.

Hannah knit 5 rows on a Lionbrand Chenille scarf that she's making for herself last night. She took the knitting to bed and when I went in to kiss her goodnight she said, "When I close my eyes I just keep thinking about knitting..." Remember when knitting was new and so exciting? I guess it still is to me!
Bookmark and Share
posted by Annie at 0 Comments Links to this post

Monday, January 27, 2003

So very, very cold...

I watched the DATELINE last night about the boatload of explorers who got trapped up in the Arctic in 1914. The cheese factor in Dateline is so fabulous - just like UNSOLVED MYSTERIES - jeez, I wish I had cable so I could see it every now and then!

Anyway, these guys (and one 4 year old girl - go figure) were trapped in the snow, 40 below zero, so that inspired me to walk the mile to my son's school with him this morning. Max is a rough type of kid, up for anything, he'll be 5 on Friday. So we hiked through beautiful,cold South Orange and talked - I love our little morning talks. He comes up with the greatest questions, and is currently fascinated with Death (well, who isn't at some level?)

The BIG family news for me is that my daughter has finally taken to the needles! Yep, 6 year old Hannah, after a few false starts last year when she thought she wanted to learn to knit but was stymied by the actual manipulation of the yarn, has taken to knitting like a duck to water! We were at the doctor's office last week and, to pass the time, I cast on about 30 sts and began working a garter stitch square for a felting swatch. She, bored with the lack of kids magazines, asked me to show her once again how to knit. And voila! She really got it! She knitted like a little champ, came with me into the examining room and sat behind the little changing curtain while I had my exam - knitting away!

This child who NEVER wants to go to bed on time learned last night the absolute best way to extend her bedtime; "Mommy - can I sit with you and knit for a few minutes?" Of course.

Anyone here read Mighty Girl? I love her. Here's one of her essays that touches my millinery bone. And, oddly, she looks so much like my best friend that eve her 3 year old son was confused when he saw "Mommy's" picture come up on the computer.
Bookmark and Share
posted by Annie at 0 Comments Links to this post

Friday, January 24, 2003

Cool Beads!

Check THIS out for some fun!

And - this just in - - -

I just received some really nice comments from a yarn company design head. Not a guarantee that I'll be selling any designs to them in this go-round, but when the "committee" meets (it sounds so official) I think I'll at least be in the running for some stuff. Inch by inch. Some days I feel like I'm not getting anywhere - then I consider that I do have as much designing and knitting work as I can handle right now, which is better than the alternative!

I had a long talk with a friend today - all about a new scarf business she's trying to get going, just chat about business in general. She has such energy and I feel like I'm lacking that very precious commodity right now. It was a good conversation.

I told her my two goals for this year are;

1) Exposure - Getting my profile up a bit so that I will be invited/asked/allowed to teach at some national venues like this and this or this

2) Publishing A serious book consideration by a publisher would be nice.

I may not make both goals, but it's better to strive than just survive!

I just did 30 situps. I'm going a bit stir crazy with not getting out for my daily walk in this 2 F weather - so, so, so cold. I did walk a mile on Thursday to take the train into the city to try to be chosen to get a free makover on the TODAY show (no, they didn't pick me) and ended up in the audience of the Caroline Rhea show (I was knitting - she made a joke about it in her opening monologue). My big day out - woo hoo! I am a girl who knows how to live on the frigid edge!
Bookmark and Share
posted by Annie at 0 Comments Links to this post

Wednesday, January 22, 2003

Too cold to do much

Man, it's FREEZING here. The Hudson river is frozen almost down to Manhattan - now THAT'S cold!

I am bouncing between several different projects - some theatrical, some editorial, some just plain personal, but in the middle of it all I've FINALLY put up some wire jewelry for sale. Thanks for the nudge, Ellen!

Let me know what you think - and remember, I take custom orders!
Bookmark and Share
posted by Annie at 0 Comments Links to this post

Monday, January 20, 2003

Trouble Connecting

We had to switch from Direct TV DSL to Verizon DSL today because Direct TV's gone out of business (or, at least their DSL division has...) so I'm writing from my husband's laptop. He has a router that we had been using to split our DSL signal among the several computers in our household so I could access the internet from my office, or he could plug his laptop into the DSL from the sofa in the living room, our bed or his office - a great setup!

Unfortunately, Verizon is having a hard time communicating with our router - so we're able to get DSL in one computer, but not having such good luck getting the signal to the other computers! I'm confident that he'll work it out because - well - he's a genius!

Spent a great day yesterday with a knitting friend reworking some chairs, then spent a lot of today reswatching an idea and thinking up some new ones. I have knitting to get to, but I really want to do something for ME now - a sweater, a bag - maybe a pair of socks? I want something for ME!

Tomorrow's my class - I'm looking forward to it! 2 weeks ago 7 of my 10 class members didn't knit - as of last week EVERYONE was ribbing, some we cabling and everyone else was doing twisted stitches. This week we're going to tackle cables for EVERYONE and then regress to garter stitch (I teach weird, I don't get to garter stitch until I know my students know which way their stitches are "facing" when their on the needle)

I also want to start a little colorwork for them - that could be fun, too! It's a sensational class - really great students - I can't wait to see what they come up with for their projects!
Bookmark and Share
posted by Annie at 0 Comments Links to this post

Sunday, January 19, 2003

Swimming in an Ocean of Fiber

My life is full of coincidences - good and bad (mostly good) - and this week has been another example of wacky similarities. Several friends wrote to me on the same day asking "How did you become a knit designer?" Here's a brief history of my life in fiber;

When I learned to knit I was older. A friend's roommate showed me the knit stitch - I went home and immediately forgot what she showed me, but sort of 'made up' my own method and never looked back. As soon as I'd finished my first row I knew that my future would be inextricably tied up in yarn and needles. I never dreamed that I'd have a future in the knitting world (that sounds odd to me - I prefer to think of knitting as a collection of bays, eddys and currents in an ocean of fiber.)

I saw a sign at a yarn store from a designer asking for knitters to work up samples - I began knitting for her, and asked myself, "Why on earth aren't I designing this stuff?"

In my typical Virgo way I put together a few design "packets" I was working blind, I had no idea what was required by copying the instruction style - complete with schematics and charts - from a copy of Vogue Knitting. Then I sent my designs to Vogue Knitting. And - surprise! - VK hired me - not as a designer, but as a technical writer!

It became clear very soon, though, that my very unorthodox method of knitting - while fine for me, personally - was a barrier to my ability to write a good pattern in the traditional Western style of knitting. I left (was asked to leave, actually) Vogue Knitting but continued to design for them as well as other knitting magazines throughout the mid 1980's.

At the same time I began knitting for 5th Avenue designers, working up samples for them to send to China to be copied, and found more satisfaction through that because I didn't have to pretend I didn't knit the way I did - Combination Style - which was viewed as WRONG by just about everyone in the hand knit publishing world at that time.

After a few bad experiences with other knitters really coming down hard on me in public about my knitting (one unforgettable experience was the woman on a train in Cologne who took my knitting out of my hands to show me the correct way to knit) I just packed it in. I went to grad school for Costume & Set design and severed my ties to the world of hand knit publishing. I knew I was a good knitter, but I felt like an idiot.

Not much knitting in the 90's - I did various jobs, none of which I will go into here, but most of them in the Theater/Television realm. With my pregnancies I suffered carpal tunnel, so even when I wanted to return to knitting to work up a few baby things I couldn't. It made me sad.

In Fall 2000 I read Priscilla Gibson Roberts article in Interweave Knits on different styles of knitting and - lo and behold - there was a detailed explaination of the Combination Method (finally - my weird way of knitting had a name!) I felt legitimized. Lovely.

I submitted a bunch of sketches to IK and they took one - then another - then I submitted to other mags, and they took one, then another. I still haven't had anything in VK since my return to the hand knit world, but - having seen what the editorial process is like from the inside - I know that has less to do with the beauty of a design and MUCH to do with how a specific design fits into an editorial vision for a specific issue! A really terrific sweater may not be useful in a certain issue - but perhaps in a few months it will be just the right thing! I feel much less fragile now than I did 15 years ago, rejection is easier to take, and that makes success easier to achieve. There's irony for you!

My dream is to write a book - I have several ideas for some good ones - but the knitting book market is so saturated right now and, sadly, so many publishers are really eager to publish a book on SIMPLE AND OUTRAGEOUS KNITS! but not so much on specific techniques that teach a knitter to understand and inhabit their craft. Too bad. Maybe my ideas will be perfect in a few more months (years?) Heaven knows I certainly have odd ideas.
Bookmark and Share
posted by Annie at 0 Comments Links to this post

Friday, January 17, 2003

I'm in love...

I've just finished swatching a bunch of designs for a few yarn companies - still have one company to go - but I wanted to mention a yarn that I had taken for granted before that really has me excited (in a very calm way...)

I love Follies by Classic Elite. This yarn knits up in such an elegant manner - it's soft, cables nicely, has very good stitch definition and drapes beautifully. I'd worked with it before, but I didn't really understand how nice it was until I fiddled around with it again this time.

"Seeds" by Judy Ditmore at Interlacements
& The Red Rayon Chenille is from The Mannings

I finally finished my brother's scarf from Christmas - better late than never! I'll send it off today along with tidbits for the other family members. I bought the Seeds at Stitches East and intended to make something for myself with it, but still have yet to accomplish that!
Bookmark and Share
posted by Annie at 0 Comments Links to this post

Thursday, January 16, 2003

Tikkun Sweater

I'm sure you all remember the infamous screw up sweater? Well, it is screwed up no longer! Last night at the Knitting Meetup I finally started on the sweater - I took the sleeve off of the right front of the cardigan, undid the right shoulder, placed the back shoulder stitches on a holder and started ripping out the right front. I ripped down to the mistake at the meetup, then later when I returned home I knit the front up again (sans mistake) and re-bound off the shoulder using the 3 needle bind off.

All I have to do this morning is sew the sleeve back on the front, and work a few rows of garter stitch as trim around the neck and down both fronts. I am so glad I had the chance to redeem myself from such a silly and thoughtless mistake!

Just when I start to think I'm perfect I discover again I'm beautifully human!

The meetup last night was great! I (being the anal-retentive Virgo midwesterner I am) arrived at the Borders on Rt. 10 in Livingston a tad early - but that allowed me to scam the leather sofas (A man I'll call "Mr. Fodor", who was reading a travel book, smiled at my knitting when I sat down - at least he didn't recoil in horror!) When the other meetup folks showed up I think we scared Mr. Fodor away - or maybe it was when the talk turned to childbirth? Who knows... We did offer to teach him to knit, but he had other fish to fry.
Bookmark and Share
posted by Annie at 0 Comments Links to this post

Wednesday, January 15, 2003

Imperfect Knitting for an Imperfect World

There are deadlines that I sweat over, stress over - make myself nauseus over - and then there are deadlines that are sweet. Finally reaching the end. I turned in sketches and swatches for two magazines this week, one deadline was the former, one was the latter - but I'm glad both are behind me!

One more deadline today, then two next week.

Update on the screw up sweater - I received the box yesterday (I still have to open it - I want to wait until I can really sit down with it this evening) and I'll be repairing it and making some trim changes to the front opening. I'm glad I have a chance to make the changes, as much for my psyche as for the money or the exposure. Oh, and then there's the little matter of trying to keep a reputation as one who will try to correct her mistakes.

I used to hear my mom talk about folks who, "Were LOVED by everyone..." or "Didn't have an enemy in the world..." and - even as a small child - I'd think, "How in the world can ANYONE be loved by EVERYONE?" I still feel that way.

I know folks who are really great people - worthy of huge love and respect - but everyone is going to piss off someone sometime, that's just the reality of life.

Once I'd realized and accepted this, I felt a lot freer - it made a great shift in my entire life focus. Instead of trying to be perfect - to make NO mistakes - to be loved by EVERYONE, I began to embrace the missteps I'd made as proof of my beautiful humanity. I can't say that I love the pain that a mistake can cause, but I do love the process of working through them, learning from them, growing to be a broader person.

So - back to my imperfect knitting!
Bookmark and Share
posted by Annie at 0 Comments Links to this post

Tuesday, January 14, 2003


It's friggin' freezing here today - so darned cold. Check out my little weather pixie (they're probably not even there, I think they've gone inside for a cuppa Joe!) Oh, egads, I just noticed she's not wearing a coat - what is she nuts?

Freelance designing is - at times - like being in a vacuum. Nature abhores a vacuum. Nature abhores freelance designers. Ah, NOW I have it figured out! Thank heaven for blogs and the designer email list or I'd think I was totally alone at times. Like a twilight zone, I tells ya.

Yesterday I got a call from an editor - a nice call, just checking on some design details - which led to a nice conversation and I felt much less lonely when I got off the phone. It's hard to explain how much a little positive (or even neutral) feedback means! After I got off the phone I felt more focused, happier, more able to finish up some designs - I felt like there was someone on the other side of the mailbox when I send off my designs or projects and instructions.

I think we tend to dismiss how much we impact the lives of those around us by performing (what may seem to us) the most mundane tasks. It is definitely something to ponder. I also think this is why I enjoy my students so much when I teach - contact with the outer world. At heart I'm a homebody, and a little reclusive. An extroverted recluse - how odd - the internet and blogs were invented for folks like me!

I am energeized by contact with others, but I can also get overwhelmed very easily. Oh, and I hate phone calls - so much miscommunication and misunderstanding (at least in my calls) and they always come at a time when I'm not able to think very clearly.

Knit design is solitary - as is any kind of solo creative endeavor - and it makes me remember why I liked theatrical design so much. But the solitary factor is also pretty wonderful - I long for feedback, but too much feedback can inhibit creativity. Go figure.

We're fragile and wonderful creatures, n'est pas?
Bookmark and Share
posted by Annie at 0 Comments Links to this post

Monday, January 13, 2003

Marathon Swatching

I have mixed feelings about this point in the process. This is when I try to condense all of the design epiphanies I've had over the past few weeks into a few swatches - swatches that need to illustrate stitch patterns, color, gauge, general garment construction details (buttonholes, collars, pockets) and must do it in 6 x 8" I become over whelmed with ideas - I start to swatch one thing, and find the pattern doesn't work well with the yarn, but leads me to think of something else in the same yarn. So I chart out a new pattern, and start working on the new idea side by side with the old one.

I'm a very organized person, but a level of haphazardness is necessary for this part of the process - which is what makes me NUTS! I don't have a working studio, per se, so my living room is overflowing with half finished swatches, sketches, plastic containers of carefully labled yarn and needles abound! I do my best knitting work in the evenings, but the light is better in the mornings. Do I sound particularly whiney today?

It's not that I don't do swatches at other times - I do - but most of the new yarns from the yarn companies come around the same time, and generally just a few weeks before the next round of designs are due. I can take some of the yarn and 'plug it in' to an existing sketch if the marriage between fiber and design is a happy one, but often the new yarns are very inspiring and demand their OWN new design - and one can only knit, sketech and put together design packages SO fast. This aspect of freelancing sucks, there's no way around it. There has to be a better way to communicate ideas.

Oh, well, in the art community they still require SLIDES for most juried exhibits - what a rip THAT is in this day and age! Ah, everyday I sound more and more like the curmudgeon - if only I could be so clever!

Back to my knitting.
Bookmark and Share
posted by Annie at 0 Comments Links to this post

Saturday, January 11, 2003

Missing List

I want to apologize to my knitting class - I meant to email you guys this week just to see how you're all doing, but I wasn't allowed to photocopy the class roster with all of the the email addresses. There's some rule about not taking personal info out of the Baird Center, etc., and one must comply with the rules!

If any of you are reading this and want to email me so I have your contact info at home, that would be great - otherwise I'm going to try to stop by the B. Center and copy down by hand the email addresses.

One of the main reasons I wanted to email you (aside from checking to see how your first week of combination knitting is going) was to appraise you of a local knitting MEETUP event in Livingston, NJ at the Borders Books on Rt 10 (Athena, the goddes in our midsts, has been very active in getting it going! Thanks Athena!)

I think it will be a blast - it's on Wednesday, the day after our class, but I wanted to mention it in advance for any knitters in my class - or the area in general - who may want to join us!

Also, I failed to mention that we have a lot of Yarn Stores in our area - well, not as much as I'd like, but there's never enough for me! There are 3 in Montclair, one in Garwood (Knitter's Workshop, Inc., 345 N Avenue, Garwood, NJ 07027 (908) 789-1333 - very well stocked) and a really terrific one in Millburn (All About Yarn, 303 Millburn Avenue, Millburn, NJ 07041 USA (973) 379-9118 )

I've also heard great things about The Knitting Basket (26 Diamond Spring Road, Denville, NJ 07834 USA (973) 983-5648) but haven't visited it yet.
Bookmark and Share
posted by Annie at 0 Comments Links to this post

Friday, January 10, 2003

First, some knitting!

A friend's coming over today to see my "studio" - what a grand word for a dining room full of yarn! I should take a photo of my office (12' x 6' room) and post it - I certainly get as much as one CAN out of limited space!

Last night I finished an adorable Porkpie Hat - ribbon and lace and just so cute! It's for Cast On, so you'll be seeing it soon. I've been experimenting with double knitting eyelash and suede for a shearling effect - the problem with doing stuff that's so out there is that it's hard to find ONE yarn manuf. who makes a wide enough variety of yarns to cover an entire wacky project! Oh, well, a girl can dream...

TNNA is happening out in CA and I'm seriously thinking of going to the one in Ohio (when is that, June?) I think it's time to really start getting noticed, get myself out there more - if I ever expect to publish a book on Combination Knitting (or knitting chairs, millinery, etc.) then I have to get out there and RAISE MY PROFILE. What I'm doing is fine, but I need to set a few long-term design goals, too.

Now for something political (what is UP with me these days...?)

Words Fail Me

I sit here in stunned silence.

Read this and think about how much YOUR family could buy with $425K a year and this and think of the thousands of families destroyed by AIDS every year

And finally, Joe Bergman, quoted in an editorial by Bob Herbert, says it much more eloquently that I could:

"I don't know if we can change the heart of C.E.O.'s into thinking, `Well, you know, I'm getting $30 million, but I can save some jobs if I give back $15 million and live on just $15 million this year.' They never think like that. And until they begin to think like that, we'll be at their mercy."
Bookmark and Share
posted by Annie at 0 Comments Links to this post

Thursday, January 09, 2003

View from the Soapbox
Caution: No Knitting Content in this post!

I'm so troubled by the fact that the rich are getting richer in our society, and the middle class are becoming poor - the poor are becoming destitute.

The gap between rich and poor was closing in the 60's and 70's under the war on Poverty & social programs like Head Start.

Unfortunately the gap started opening up again in the mid 80's and - except for a small amount of holding steady in the mid-90's - is leaping as wide as the grand canyon. Internationally, as well.

Anyone here remember in A Christmas Carol when the Ghost of Christmas Present has the two urchins hidden under his golden, velvet robes? The twins of Want and Ignorance. These two boys found in Newark could be those twins - made even more pathetic by the realization that one of the boys WAS a twin and his body was found in the next room. Should we add another urchin under the robe and call it VIOLENCE?

Our society will pay - and in ways we can't even imagine - as long as the status quo holds and there is such an unequal distribution of wealth in our country. I hear the president and other prominent gov't officials talk about the tax cuts that benefit the upper 1% of the population - I hear them say, without a hint of irony, "Those people worked hard for their millions, they pay the most in taxes - why shouldn't they get the most back..."

Why doesn't anyone challenge this horrible sentiment? Of course they work "hard" for their money - do you honestly know anyone who isn't working HARD these days? Is the waitress who works 2 shifts at a minimum wage job then goes home to care for two kids working any LESS hard than the executive who has good working conditions, a great health plan, vacations, education benefits for his family and - most important - an "in" for his own kids to a good school, good job, good future? Does no one see that this tax plan will just widen the income gap?

Why the hell SHOULDN'T those who have been fortunate enough to earn MILLIONS (or even hundreds of thousands) in our amazing and great country NOT be required to payback into the system that allows them to earn more than in any other country in the world? Of COURSE they should pay more taxes - and even after paying 40% of their income they'll STILL have 15 times as much as that waitress who -if she's lucky - will get back $76 a year in tax breaks from the Prez's tax program. Of course she pays less taxes - she EARNS less.

Gary Markstein, Copley News Service

Why are we so blind? Well, nothing sells like advertising, and if the richest corporations want to keep pushing corporate welfare bills through the government they can afford a LOT of advertising for "their" candidates who will rubber stamp these givebacks. This virtually insures that the money keeps circulating around the top - floating around, caught in an updraft - while the most helpless of the poor - the children of poor (and working class) families - sit waiting for a buck or two to trickle down into a decent school, after school program, health program, head start program - all of the things that children of wealthier parents never have to go without.

Oh, one more thing we might be able to fund with a more equal distribution of taxation - a decently funded NJ DYFUS (Division of Youth and Family Services) program
Nevertheless, the state says its workers handle an average of 35 cases each. That's well above the Child Welfare League's national standard of 17 cases per worker. The caseworker who had closed the Williams case was handling 100 cases, said Hetty Rosenstein, president of Local 1037, which represents 2,000 DYFS workers - Washington Post, 1/8/2003

Here's the math: 100 Cases + 1 Overworked Case Worker = Tragedy.
Bookmark and Share
posted by Annie at 0 Comments Links to this post

Wednesday, January 08, 2003


I had my first "Combined Knitting Class" last night - I've taught this method for a long time, but never so overtly - I feel so FREE!!! I will never again hide who I am!

Enough of the dramatics. My class is really great - what a lovely and funny bunch of women! EVERYONE knit and purled by the end of the evening, some so beautifully, and the folks who are already accomplished knitters were very game about leaping into the comcept of knitting "backwards" from what they're used to!

Even though it felt awkward for some, everyone was enthusiastic. What fun!

I'm afraid my class must think I'm slightly insane, though - I was absolutely GIDDY last night and I'm a little chagrined at how absurd I must have seemed to them!
Bookmark and Share
posted by Annie at 0 Comments Links to this post

Tuesday, January 07, 2003

Ah, Happy Memories...

Tonight is the 7th Anniversary of the Blizzard of '96. How do I remember? Well, you see, a certain little redheaded girl was born in October 1996 - you do the math ; )
Bookmark and Share
posted by Annie at 0 Comments Links to this post

Happy Birthday Katie!

Pretty pathetic when I miss many friend's birthdays, but I remember Katie Couric's, huh? (Well, it doesn't hurt that they announce it on NPR - and check out Matt when he actually HAD hair)

It's cold here, windy, but a lovely blustery day. After walking my son to his school I'm going to hunker down for a day of knitting. I'll finish up that Tartelette project today, then move on to some serious designing for a new round of submissions.

I've always loved colorwork, but I'm really going through a strong intarsia phase right now - heavily into the colors and patterns of the central asian region (listening to a lot of Borodin) Do we live in an amazing time, or what?

Tonight is my first Contemporary Knitting Class at the Baird Center. Because everyone is coming into the class at different levels I'm going to try something new. I'm not going to start by teaching to cast on - I'm going to knit up enough small swatches (on the needle) for the students and pass them out so we can begin by KNITTING. I've always thought it's a shame that the hardest part of learning to knit is the cast on and the first row, and that's where one would naturally begin. But I'm thinking that once the total beginners are able to get a few stitches under their belts they'll feel more natural about casting on -and for the more experienced knitters it will give them a chance to jump right into learning the combination method! I'll let you know how my little experiment works out...

I feel like I've had so little time for surfing the blogs that I love - but I ran across one yesterday that's terrific... Alison's which reminds me - if anyone has a blog they'd like me to add to my list at the right, just email me and I'll put it up.

Also, I've NEVER had any luck with my archives - anyone have any suggestions?
Bookmark and Share
posted by Annie at 0 Comments Links to this post

Saturday, January 04, 2003

Back to the grind...

It's been hard getting back into my working mode. Answering the emails is a full time job in itself! Don't get me wrong - I LOVE hearing from knitters, etc., but there's also so much garbage to wade through. Yikes!

The previously mentioned screw up sweater is apparently not included in the issue it was to appear in. I feel bad on several levels; bad for making the stupid mistake, and bad that the editor didn't get back in touch with me to work out the issue (it really was fixable).

Just last week I finally I received the contract for another piece running in the same issue (a month after I was required to send in the pieces). I signed and sent in the contract for sweater #2, but there was no mention of the screw up sweater.

Assuming the intention is not to run the sweater, therefore not to pay for the piece (or to offer a "kill" or no-run fee), is this really the most ethical way to deal with designers? On the other hand, because there was a mistake on my part do they have any responsibility to pay me anything at all, or a partial fee for the knitting & pattern writing involved with this piece; or does the flaw absolve them of any need to complete an implied contract (all dealings were via email so there is a written paper trail, but an offical "contract" had not been signed and returned).

Believe me, I ask these solely to better define the currently amorphous relationship between designers and publications. Communication is a great resolver of issues. Whether I'm paid or not is not a huge deal to me, I would be happy to retain the rights to the design and reshop it to another publication or publish it privately (it's a cute little design!) I find, though, that sometimes in the knitting world - as in any artist/editorially based realm - there is so much secrecy involving issues that would benefit from the light of day.

Okay, enough whining, I'm currently working on two other sweaters for a magazine and they make me SO HAPPY! I'll let you know when they're published, but they're both fun, Fun, FUN! I'm so in love with K1C2's Tartelette ribbon - just lovely. Wonderful. The colors are juicy and lively, the blend of them that I'm using is all autumn leaf tones, my absolute favorites! Makes knitting more of a joy than it already is!
Bookmark and Share
posted by Annie at 0 Comments Links to this post

Thursday, January 02, 2003

Life as we know it...

The kids are back in school - Hannah caught the bus as we caught up with our neighbors... Max is back in his school today, and so happy to see his friends! Haircut for the boys this afternoon, life is grand.

Spending a good deal of time updating my online portfolio, scanning images and just generally catching up on stuff that I've let go. I have a TON of stuff to knit up, but it will get done - it will. I'm still looking for those self-knitting needles that I've read about...

I'm also going to send out a new Theatrical Knitting Flyer - time to get things going on that front again.
Bookmark and Share
posted by Annie at 0 Comments Links to this post

Wednesday, January 01, 2003

Oh, man...

I had my first Apple Martini last night. We had a fabulous New Years' Eve (perhaps a little TOO fabulous) and I'm spending most of the day sleeping it off. No knitting today.

Here's my resolution. No more Apple Martinis.
Bookmark and Share
posted by Annie at 0 Comments Links to this post

Alison's Scarf
Link to pdf file of cable/trellis lace scarf

Hannah's Poncho
Link to pdf file of multi-sized poncho


advanced web statistics