Monday, December 19, 2011

Victory Defamed!

By now I am sure you are all sick of hearing my rants about my infamous Christmas tree skirt. I know, you all thought you hard heard the end of it when I triumphantly announced its completion and celebrated by dancing around my tree in a druid-like ceremony.

Well, after a lovely night out with my fiancee on Saturday I was looking forward to nothing other than sleeping in on Sunday morning. Unfortunately, Pickle, my five year old Maine Coon cat, had other plans. At around 7:15 am yesterday morning I awoke to the dulcet tones of a cat choking up a hairball. "How lovely," I thought as I rushed out of bed to clean up the mess.

And of course, as I sprung from the bedroom I realized that Pickle is, of course, nestled on the tree skirt proceeding to cough/throw up a nice chunky hairball. Even with my quick reaction and tremendous speed I did not head him off at the pass.

So, after two years of hard work and sweat, my Christmas tree skirt lasted a full six days before being defiled by cat vomit. I cleaned it up, but let's say that panel might not ever be the same.

Happy Holidays!
Broke Knitter

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Race Against the Clock

It's already December 14th! How did this happen already?

Much to my surprise, the Christmas holiday is upon us. And with only 11 days left until Jesus' birthday, I am starting to get a bit panicky. How did I manage to not finish my hand made presents?! Much like last year, I am caught off guard!

HELP!

This weekend I will finish the hat for my little sister (hopefully, although the pattern is a bit cryptic). The hat and scarf for my soon-to-be mother-in-law will just have to wait a little longer and become, perhaps, a winter gift. A "hey I was thinking about you in the cold this new year" type of gift. Thoughts?

Panicky, and Even More Broke due to Christmas, Knitter

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Accomplishments

What a wonderful thing it is to finish a project that has been haunting you for weeks, months, or even years. Yesterday I finally finished a project that has been haunting me since September 2010. The dang tree skirt. The tree skirt is finally completely finished and sewn together waiting for tomorrow night's special occasion "date-night" of putting up the tree and decorations.

I look forward to putting up the Christmas tree every year. Nothing makes me happier than looking at my favorite ornaments and celebrating the new life Randy and I have begun together.

HUGE SENSE OF RELIEF KNOWING I WILL NOT HAVE A BARE CHRISTMAS TREE AGAIN THIS YEAR!

Does anybody else have projects that are haunting them? Let me know! POST!

Until Next Time,
The Christmas Elf - Broke Knitter

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Bust Into the Stash

Charity knitting is the BEST way to make a dent in your leftover stash!

Meet my new motto! Through this Knitting for a Cause group at the college where I work I have been able to make a MONSTROUS dent in all that leftover 1/2 or 1/3 balls of yarn cluttering up my stash. I have greatly enjoyed doing little baby hats, blankets, children hats, etc. By doing these quick and easy projects I am so motivated and inspired to blow through some of that stash yarn that Randy insists is "cluttering" up our apartment. I think the cluttered yarn adds some character.

Until Next Time,
Broke Knitter

Monday, November 28, 2011

Wedding Fever!

For those of you looking for a knitting post today, I must admit you will be a little disappointed. But Broke Knitter has BIG news! I BOUGHT MY WEDDING DRESS!

Sunday afternoon I trekked out to the bridal salon with my mother and sister (also my Maid of Honor) in tow. I tried on several gowns and thought I had found the perfect one until my bridal consultant, and new favorite person in the world, Jessica, suggested I try on a gown that was a bit unlike anything I had described looking for.

Well, when I came out of the dressing room and saw myself in the mirror I just knew! It was so beautiful and I didn't want to take it off. To cap the whole experience off, Jessica put on the matching veil and blusher and I knew it was all over! I teared up and so did Mom.

Shopping for a wedding dress is by far the most fun and emotional experience I have ever had while shopping. As a newly engaged (and also newly slimmed-down) woman you panic about everything at your wedding being perfect. Now I know that with the perfect man, and the perfect dress, that all will be well.

I promise to update you all on knitting stuff tomorrow. I had a great day with my new knitters and their projects are coming out great!

Until Next Time,
Here Comes the Bride!
Broke Knitter

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Want to Go To Vogue Knitting Live for Free?!

Hey Ladies,
I know I am double posting and it's probably freaking you out. Anyways, I just wanted to pass along this great information that was just sent along from the group at Vogue Knitting.

For those of you looking for a cheaper way to get into the conference, Vogue Knitting is looking for volunteers. For volunteering you will receive:
     1. A choice of a discounted class or FREE lecture
     2. A $25 gift certificate to vogueknitting.com
     3. Vogue Knitting Live Volunteer T-shirt
     4. A non-transferable two-day marketplace ticket
     5. An advance copy of Knitting with The Color Guys by Kaffe Fassett and Brandon Mably

PRETTY SWEET DEAL IF YOU ASK ME! Anyone who is interested please visit: http://www.vogueknittinglive.com/system/files/VKL_Become_Volunteer.pdf

Vogue Knitting Live promises to be a spectacular event. Good luck volunteering!

Broke Knitter

Little Babies Taking Wing!

I had one of the sweetest and most joyful knitting experiences occur yesterday. We had a meeting of our bi-weekly "Knit for a Cause" and one of the girls was SUPER excited because she finished her scarf. She laid her scarf out on the table as lovingly as a mother displaying her newborn child. I was so excited for her!

Now I will say the first 1/3 needed some repair work but the other 2/3 had me glowing with pride! You could see how she was understanding how the process works and even looking out for her common mistakes. I was so proud and I know that she is super excited to donate the scarf to a NYC woman in need.

I am bringing my camera to our next group meeting which is Monday after the holiday so check back to see some of the fabulous work of my new Knitters-In-Training!

Until Next Time,
Broke Knitter

Thursday, November 17, 2011

NYC Manners

One thing that I find very interesting about New York City is every individuals ability to ignore their surroundings and  phase out everything around. I guess with all the crazy homeless people yelling at people (or themselves) on subway platform or loud vocal fights on subway cars you have to tune it out. This phenomenon really seems to dissolve, however, when I take out my knitting on the bus or subway. People all around start to stare and many times people ask what I am making, how I learned to knit, etc.

Today, however, I encountered a "stranger-danger" knitting related experience unlike anything ever before. While standing on the subway platform waiting for the E train a woman came up next to me and proceeded to stare at my moving fingers. That was not surprising on its own, but she then started with this, "You know, you're not doing it right."

I was shocked. While I know that there are many different styles of knitting and that everyone kind of looks a bit different while doing it, I was SHOCKED! But the story doesn't end there. She then sidled up RIGHT next to me and insisted on showing me the "right way" to knit. I could not believe it!

You would have been so proud of me too! I didn't come back with a nasty comment or rude gesture, I just thanked the woman for her interest and declined her offer. Moving away slowly I could feel the daggers she was staring in my back. It was the first time on a New York City subway platform that I was actually worried about being attacked.

Weird dude, weird!

Until Next Time,
Broke Knitter

Thursday, November 10, 2011

NYC - My Home Sweet Home!

For some reason as I walked to streets of the Upper East Side this morning on my way to work I couldn't help but think about how much I love living in the Big Apple. Everywhere you look there is something new and exciting to see. You see things you would never see anywhere else, like a homeless man with a shopping cart to hold his adorable orange kittens (and yes, that is a true story!).

New York City's hustle and bustle never ceases to amaze me. During the normal week the subway stations are so jam packed with people who all move in this amazing blob but never seeming to really step on each other's toes or bump into one another. It amazes me!

I guess over the past two and a half years the things about NYC that amazes me the most is how I have changed and grown. When I first moved to Queens the thought of living in Manhattan was out of the question. The loud streets, the constant crowds and grime just turned me off. However, not I cannot get enough of it.

It's weird to think of myself as the little Boston girl now. While I will never let my love for the Patriots, Red Sox, Bruins or Celtics die I have to admit that the New York City girl that sits here typing away at her computer is here to stay.

Until Next Time,
Broke Knitter in NYC

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Broke Knitter a Teacher?!

I know my mother will be shocked to hear it but Broke Knitter actually helped lead a beginner's knitting class today! I KNOW! It's amazing and you are not going to believe it but I had the patience to do it!

A new off-shoot from the Community Service club has started at the institution where I work. A group of female students wanted to learn how to knit so that they could make some items for charity knitting. How could I say no when they offered to supply the yarn! Well, I jumped right on this opportunity to do some free knitting and I actually had a WONDERFUL time today teaching a few students how to cast on and knit their first row.

We are starting with just garter stitch scarves, a good starting point. I am going to use this opportunity to try some of the cable patterns in the back of my Melissa Leapman "Cables Untangled."

Until Next Time,
Broke Knitter

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Knitting Literature

While I feel like time is flying by at work, it seems as though January and Vogue Knitting Live is SLOWLY CREEPING up! I want the conference now!

Last year I really went all out buy new and interesting projects. This year I am forcing myself to relax a little bit and remember that there is only so much of a stash you can have in a 1 bedroom apartment in NYC (or at least that is what Randy keeps telling me!). This year I am hoping to pick up some new books. I would love for some suggestions on neat knitting books whether its a pattern book, a book about fibers or even fiction and literature.

Please pass along any suggestions!!

Until Next Time,
Broke (and bookworm-y) Knitter

Monday, November 7, 2011

Christmas Time Already!

It's November 7th, and while I prepared WAY in advance my to-be-knit Christmas presents I cannot believe that I have actually not started really any of them! HOW DID THIS HAPPEN?

I have 3 projects to do this pre-holiday season. Does anybody else feel like me? Like even though you prepared you don't know how the time got away from you? Well, the time crunch is not going to slow this knitter down. Short time be damned, Broke Knitter will accomplish her Christmas goodies. Who is with me?

Broke Knitter
A.K.A. The soon to be crazy Christmas Elf

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Broke Knitter's Big News!

I must apologize to my readers for not getting back to blogging sooner but I have been slammed lately. But, unlike most of my other blogging absences, this is for reasons much more fun and exciting.

I AM ENGAGED! Yes, finally, after six wonderful years Randy got up the nerve to propose on our anniversary trip to Walt Disney World. It was wonderfully romantic and perfectly sweet.


My Beautiful Engagement Ring
The Leo Diamond from Kay Jewelers

Now the real fun begins! Wedding plans are, of course, coming very slowly and bit stressful but I know that everything will be spectacular and beautiful. We are planning our big day for Boston, MA where I originally grew up. It will be a huge extravaganza and I cannot wait to see so many of my family and friends together in one place!

Anyways, I am now getting super excited for Vogue Knitting Live weekend! It will be marvelous to once again share the experience with my mother as well as our very good friend Diane (who will just be recovering from surgery). I hope we can find some retail therapy to help Diane feel better!

Until Next Time,
Broke - but Diamond-studded - Knitter

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Registered for Vogue Knitting Live 2012

The excitement can barely be contained by this tiny little blog post! Broke Knitter is officially registered for Vogue Knitting Live NYC 2012! Three full days of mingling with the knitteratti, emptying her bank account at the marketplace, and best of all, time with Mom!

Mom and our mutual friend Diane will be joining us this year for the conference and I cannot wait to spend time with these two wonderful ladies! I know that Mom will come with more empty luggage space than full (so that she can tote all her new purchases home) and that Diane will be sure to sport a dragonfly as part of every ensemble.

I am most excited for this year's Gala dinner hosted on Sunday evening. This year they asked that you pick a member of the knitteratti you admire to sit with during the dinner. Broke Knitter is SUPER EXCITED to be sitting with her fave, Melissa Leapman, at this year's Gala. What can be better for the blogger obsessed with cables to be sitting with the Cable Master herself!

Who else is registered for the conference? Please post and tell me what you are most looking forward to! Anyone else registered to sit with Melissa Leapman?

Until Next Time,
Broke Knitter

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Vogue Knitting Live NYC 2012

IT'S OPEN IT'S OPEN! Vogue Knitting Live 2012 VIP Registration is open! I am so excited I literally am nauseous and have butterflies in my tummy. I'll get back to you tonight or tomorrow with Broke Knitter's class and lecture selections!!

Can you tell it's my Christmas?!

Broke Knitter
P.S. Broke though she may be she is looking forward to being even more broke after January's event!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Happy Fall!

Now that Labor Day Weekend has ended it is officially the beginning of fall! Fall is by far the best season of the year! You have:

1.Broke Knitter's Birthday (the best celebration of the year)
2. Octoberfest a.k.a. the best beer season of the year!
3. Thanksgiving and the Macy's Day Parade
4. Halloween
5. Broke Knitter and her bf are going to Disney World to celebrate their 6 year anniversary!

As you can see, I have a lot to look forward to in these coming months. While I am very excited about all of these upcoming events, ESPECIALLY my trip to Disney World, I realize that I don't have much time before the holidays arrive and so too do the expectations for hand made Christmas presents.

Crunch time! Does anybody have good advice for getting Christmas presents done in these tight and busy months?

Broke Knitter

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Strongest Woman in the World

Working in higher education development there are always odds and ends tasks you are asked to help with. Today I was asked to help with new student move-in at one of our residence halls. After a few hours of schlepping suitcases and pushing big bins from cars to the buildings I feel as though I have arms of steel!

My biceps are bulging! I am a little nervous to pick up my knitting needles tonight in fear of knitting so quickly and violently that my brain will not be able to keep up! Of course I kid, but seriously, when did it become to the task of a tiny little girl (a.k.a. me) and a colleague who is recovering from a broken foot!

Oh well....All's well that ends well.
Happy Labor Day Weekend!
Broke Knitter

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Come On Irene

While most people in the area are griping about Hurricane Irene's devastation (and believe me I do have some things to gripe about storm-related) I actually really enjoyed being stuck in my house with Randy all weekend. It was our first weekend of the summer that we were able to sit back and enjoy being by ourselves in our own home.

I must also say that it gave me a lot of time to organize my stash and completed items piles. I had bought two new Tupperware bins and I was able to spend Saturday night and Sunday morning organizing my "knitting closet." Organizing is one of my favorite things and it was so exciting to have gotten all of my things back in order.

I am now ready to start some new projects. Did anybody else get a lot done thanks to Irene?

Broke Knitter!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Colors of the Fall


Picture Courtesy of Fort Wayne Dance Collective
www.fwdc.org
 I don't know about you but fall is by far my favorite season! I really like the cool crisp fall air, the scent of homeyness and baking, and most of all, the colors. Reds, oranges, and sometimes even brown (scary to admit that I am turning into my mother!).

With the fall fast approaching I am very excited to start some new projects that will boast the festivities and colors of the season. I think I am going to make myself a new barn sweater or perhaps a vest. I would love some suggestions. Does anybody have any nice fall patterns or yarns that would best represent the fall?

Until Next Time,
Broke Knitter

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Injury!

I am about to say something I never ever imagined I would say - we had our first knitting induced injury last night. Let me preface this story by saying that its not really my fault! Living in a small apartment in NYC, Randy and I (along with Pickle, our cat, and Abby, our dog) are usually crammed pretty close together when we hang out around the house.

So last night I got out my Christmas tree skirt (yes the dang haunting tree skirt) and started to work on another panel. As loving and adorable as our terrier Abby may be, when Randy and I sit together on the couch she HAS to sit in the middle of us and stay the center of attention. So there we are all squeezed together and Abby decides its a great idea to chew on the end of one of Mom's knitting needles - a big big No No!

Randy and I pushed her off the couch and I scolded her for chewing on my needles and gave her one of her toys to play with. Well, Abby was not a happy camper. She decided it was time to start jumping all over the place as Randy and I are frantically trying to get her to behave. During this whole scene of us jumping around we wind up completely tangled in my ball of yarn and before I know it I hear a very loud "Ouch!" Yes, you guessed it, I had "stabbed" Randy with a knitting needle.

Poor Randy wound up with quite a good solid poke and he actually has a nice little bruise on his tummy. As hard as I tried not to laugh, I couldn't help it. It was like a scene from "Marley and Me." Here we are all tangled up and poking each other while the dog prances around the house.

Does anybody else have good knitting injury stories? If so, please share!
Broke Knitter

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The "Worlds" Of NYC Knitting

I have noticed a very interesting split in what I call the "knitting worlds of New York City." It seems to me that there are two types of knitters:

     1. The more hipster style knitters who love to buy from local/handspun spinners and who love spend most of there time being social knitters
     2. The "elite" style knitters who buy their products from stores where you have to ring a bell to enter and the yarn is all displayed in crates where you have to remove a lid to touch the product.

I find this very very interesting. Growing up my memories of knitting shops were always very similar. There was always more product in the place than they knew what to do with and people sat around being social and helping each other out. Finding an environment like this has been rather hard in NYC.

I find it very off-putting to have to ring a doorbell and have a store owner unlock the door for me to come inside and look around. It makes me feel very uncomfortable and makes me feel very pressured to purchase something. It is weird to me the idea that you can't just reach out and touch the yarn to feel its texture.

I always like to do the "neck test" before I purchase yarn. The neck test is something I have picked up from my mother. If you are picking out a yarn to make a clothing item, especially if it is something you want to be cozy in, you have to put the yarn against your neck to feel its texture. Is it soft enough? Warm enough? Does it match with my skin tone?

Anyways, I was very put off by two shops I stopped into last night looking for some notions (along with, of course, my needles!). I don't know about you, but I love to be welcomed into a knitting shop with lots of cheery faces and oodles of yarn. Who is with me?

Until Next Time,
Broke Knitter

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Frustration Anyone?

I think I had the most frustrating thing happen to me last night. I miraculously completed all my UFOs during the past two weeks which made me feel awesome and, to be honest, indestructible. Unfortunately, that indestructibility was about to be put to the test when I arrived home last night and plopped myself on the couch to start a new project.

Now, picking a new project to begin with is always a task and a half. Lets just say that my mind tends to wander and my eyes are usually bigger than my knitting ability. Needless to say, I have MANY projects tempting me in the closet just waiting to be started.

Picture and Pattern Courtesy of Christy Aylesworth
http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/hermione-hearts-ron

After about an hour of flipping through pattern after pattern I decided to start on a hat for my little sister's birthday. I found the pattern on Ravelry, and seeing as how she is a HUGE Harry Potter fan I figured, why not?!

Look at that hat! Nice and easy and I am sure it would be super soft and comfy.

So, I diligently grabbed the beautiful Silk Alpaca gray yarn I had put aside for this project, pulled out the pattern and  enthusiastically announced to Randy the commencing of Hermione's hat. I balled up the skein and I was grinning from ear to ear (starting a new project always gives me this weird giddiness and excitement).

And that's when it happened. I didn't have the right size needles! I know, I know, all you veteran knitters are totally freaked out by this concept (I swear to God that my mother has more needles than the Pope has Rosaries), but as a younger and more rookie knitter this does occasionally happen. As I learn new techniques I pick up more "gear." Since I am very very much a newbie when it comes to lace knitting, I didn't have any size 2 needles. And, for the first time, I am sorry to say, that my Denise interchangeable set let me down!

Anyways, this whole occasion left me very sad and frustrated and  poor Randy was stuck with a moping girlfriend for the rest of the evening. So, #1 thing on today's to-do list is make a quick run over to Knitting 321 (a tiny little knitting shop located at East 75th Street between 1st and 2nd Avenues) to pick up some size 2 and size 3 circular needles.

I will not be thwarted again this evening. Happy Knitting and Here's to No Frustration!

Until Next Time,
Broke and Needless Knitter

Monday, August 22, 2011

Lace Lace Lace

After spending a week living it up in the Hamptons (I know, how chic of me!), I have realized that lace is totally back in. On the beaches and downtown I saw SO MANY women walking around in lacy beach cover-ups or tank tops with lace coverings.

While I have to say this excites me to see so many handmade pieces I am a little scared. My "mother-in-law" was in love with the look and is now dying for a handmade lace knit top to wear over a tank top. Oh Boy! Well, I guess Broke Knitter needs to reevaluate her Christmas present list. Bye-bye hat and scarf and hello tunic. Does anybody have any suggestions for a relatively easy lace top?

Until Next Time,
Broke Knitter

Friday, August 19, 2011

Renewed Spirits

Bronchitis stinks! But having two full days laying around feeling crummy does wonders for the UFO pile! Over the past few days I have been very under the weather and bored out of my mind. So, being the good doobie that I am (and honestly, feeling a little guilty every time I stared at the UFOs), I picked up some objects from the UFO pile and got to work.

Shockingly enough, I finished almost all my outstanding projects! YAY FOR ME! Wow, that accomplishment made me feel so much better! I now have empty space in my knitting cupboard and I am so excited to get started on the next big projects.

I am not the fastest knitter around, so I think it is time to start some Christmas present projects. I think a present for Ellen is the place to start!

Does anybody else have good ideas for Christmas present projects?

Broke Knitter!

Monday, July 18, 2011

Save The Date

GOOD NEWS!!!

VOGUE KNITTING LIVE IN NYC JANUARY 14-16, 2012!!! I don't know how you felt when you got your save-the-date email but I almost wet my pants! This is exactly what I needed to revitalize my passion and excitement.

There have been no notifications yet as to when registration will open but check out http://www.vogueknittinglive.com/ for more information about the New York City Vogue Knitting Live event. It will be hosted again at the Hilton - a very convenient location if I do say so myself.

Getting Excited,
Broke Knitter

P.S. I must start saving now to be able to afford the mother load I will spend in January!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Celebs Do It Too!

One thing I have been fascinated with, especially living in the Big Apple, is the resurgence of knitting among younger people and celebrities. It has become posh to be seen knitting here in New York City. During "Knit in Public Week" you could see people EVERYWHERE in the city knitting. And these weren't your stereotypical grandmothers or cat ladies either.

I have been fascinated with the idea of celebrities knitting. Apparently it is a hot thing for actors to while waiting on set (maybe it's to keep their mind off those cigarettes they are trying to kick). Perhaps one of the most popularly known knitting celebrities is Sarah Jessica Parker.
Sarah Jessica Parker
Photo Courtesy of TimesUnion.com

But the "Sex and the City" star is not the only one known to be knitting in the city. Julia Roberts has become quite the spokesperson for knitting. Why, even Russell Crowe is rumored to be a knitter!

Knitting has come back in full swing. Do you have any favorite celebrities who happen to knit? Leave me a comment of your favorite celebrity knitter and I'll put together a post full of their pictures!

Until Next Time,
Broke Knitter

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Light at the End of the Tunnel

Thank goodness work will officially be on summer "hiatus" (a.k.a. just a bit slower pace) after tonight's Gala event. The lead up to this event has been more than stressful and I know I am ready for the break.

With July 4th approaching and some vacation time on the horizon I feel as though life is slowing just a bit. I am not racing to work and racing home to bed each night and I know that as my life calms my knitting will pick back up.

Taking the advice that one of you gave me in my "Needing Inspiration" post last week, I decided to finish up a project that was easy to finish. I finished an adorable baby blanket that has taken me a LONG time to finish. When I first picked up the pattern for a blanket, hat and sweater I knew I was getting in over my head, but I wanted a challenge. Well, after I ripped the blanket out about a million times it is finally done. Another item to add to the Tupperware bins for the next baby who pops into my life (praying it's not mine).

As NYC prepares itself for the brutal heat of summer and the expectations of rooftop parties and picnics in the park I am finally finding myself able to take more time for myself. Anybody have any great summer plans?

Until Next Time,
Broke Knitter

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Needing Inspiration

I am sorry once again for my absence. I am sure that you are all shocked to hear that work has been a whirlwind these past few weeks. I have never seen people so emotional and at the breaking point like I have here lately.

Anyways, during this crazy time I must admit I have done zero knitting. With the craziness around me I cannot seem to find even 20 minutes to settle down, relax and zip up a few rows. I know that some knitting time would probably serve as a great relaxation but with 3-4 projects JUST about finished I feel the pressure to finish them up. And pressure is something I certainly don't need right now!

That's why I turn to you readers and fellow knitters. I need some inspiring words. Some inspiration to pick up some needles and maybe brew a cup of tea......

HELP!

Broke Knitter

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

The Cutest Thing I Have Ever Seen

The Owlie Sleep Sack by Teresa Cole
http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/owlie-sleep-sack
ISN'T THAT THE CUTEST THING YOU HAVE EVER SEEN?

I don't know about  you, but this "Owlie Sleep Sack" by Teresa Cole absolutely stole my heart. Jen sent this my way knowing my obsessions for cables and babies. And honestly, this is the most perfect combination of those two loves.

Jennifer, you are a genius.

Looks like somebody is starting on a brand new baby project...I am thinking a lilac color for a girl or maybe a pastel/light green (very leafy-like) for a boy.

Until Next Time,
Kissing and Snuggling Babies
Broke Knitter

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Vogue Knitting Live...The Follow-Up

In all the hulla-balloo related to January's Vogue Knitting Live event I found myself constantly caught up in the drama and excitement of a large scale knitting conference. True, as a virgin in the ways of the Kniteratti, I was in a little over my head. Now that a few months have passed I have been able to digest all that I learned, bought (a.k.a. charged to my credit cards) and cherished.

I realized that I learned a lot more than I had even realized during the weekend. I realized the skills I picked up, especially from my "Intro to Lace Knitting" class with Brooke Nico includes skills I am using every day. That class taught me to challenge myself. I learned that lace isn't as scary as I thought it would be and I am so happy about the lace project I purchased. My fingerless gloves and scarf are coming along beautifully (I will post pics here soon I promise!).

I also realized that while all the yarn and patterns I bought were great, I think my best purchase was "Continuous Cables" by Melissa Leapman. As anyone who knows me will tell you, I am OBSESSED with cables. It is wonderful to pick up this book at any time and try out the plethora of cable pattern squares in the back of the book. With this I can make little washcloths to test out the look of the cable or I can incorporate it into anything I am currently working on. While I haven't been bold enough yet to try out incorporation I do now have a couple of pretty cute washcloths. This book was a great purchase. Melissa was truly an inspiration and an AMAZING teacher. I hope she comes next year!

I cannot even describe to you how useful my "Yarn Substitution Made Easy" class has been. I remember when I first signed up for the class I kind of used it as a filler for my package. When I told my mother about the class she was so excited for me and I couldn't understand why. Now I know! This process, while now becoming much more simple and more second hand to me, was a NIGHTMARE before this seminar.

I guess the things that most excited me have started to wear away. The glitz and glam has finally settled but instead of feeling let down or less excited I think I am more so. My skills have definitely grown by leaps and bounds and I am now very anxiously awaiting next year's NYC Vogue Knitting Live. I know I will be stalking the website waiting for class postings and perhaps you might even see me sitting outside the Hilton.

Anyone else starting to get excited? I would love to hear about any other great conferences and festivals that people have gone to. Any suggestions?

Until Next Time,
Broke Knitter

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

The Joys of Pets

If anyone knows me and my household you would know that we have a small safari. With little Pickle, our 5 year old Maine Coon cat and Abby, our 1 1/2 year old terrier the fur is constantly flying and shuffling paws on our tile floors is the constant backdrop. However, it seems that these two can always come to a truce when it is time for Mom to knit. At this point in time they both sit anxiously at my feet waiting for me to unwind a bit of yarn that they could perhaps get their paws on.

I am not joking when I say that they sit and wait for me to pull some yarn from the ball. Pickle then starts jumping and swatting, trying to pull the yarn down for his own amusement. Abby likes to jump for the yarn once Pickle has a hold of it hoping that she can coax her feline brother to play with her.

So, needless to say, sometimes I feel like I am knitting in a war zone.

Until Next Time,
Broke Knitter

Monday, May 16, 2011

Countdown to January 2012

Ever since I saw the email from Vogue Knitting with a "Save the Date" tag line for the 2012 Vogue Knitting Live Conference in New York City I have been giddy. I cannot wait for next years secondVogue Knitting Live. I have to say that those three days changed my life. With all of the Knitteratti in one place I felt like such a celebrity.

Honestly, thinking about have to wait another 8 months seems cruel to me. I wish that I could afford to go to September's conference in L.A. but unfortunately this little girlie is a little on the broke side.

Anyone else getting excited at next year's prospects? What would you like to see at next January's conference?

Until Next Time,
Broke Knitter

Friday, May 13, 2011

Rivalries....

Today I devote my blog post to something that will surprise most readers - the NYC vs. Boston sports rivalry. Growing up in Boston I was bred, and I honestly mean bred, to hate all New York sports teams. We cannot help it. I think there is something in the umbilical cord that creates a need for red.

Tonight Randy and I are going to the Yankees vs. Red Sox game here in NYC. I am very excited for the experience. I decided that while I have some cute and fun baseball things from Boston I do not have a whole lot of cold weather New England sports gear. This winter I am going to knit myself a few pieces that will stand as a tribute to my far away sports teams. Any good patterns with Bruins logos? or Patriots? or Celtics?

Please pass along any advice. GO RED SOX!

Until Next Time,
Broke Knitt"ah"

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Spending the Whole Day Dreaming...

Again, I apologize for my brief absence. Work is not so good. Every night I schlep myself home an hour and a half barely dragging. Work has been not good. It is really wearing down on me. I am trying to stay upbeat and positive, but it has not been working so well lately.

It is during weeks like these that I find myself imagining myself in a the corner of my dream knitting shop. You know when you get aggravated and we are told to "find out center," well my center is in a nice rocking chair in the corner of a bustling knitting shop. I don't care if that makes me the oldest 24 year old on the planet.

I have noticed there are many knitting shops in NYC. Some of them are wonderful, others...not so much. I wont name any names, but I have to say that I think NYC could use more comfy cozy knitting stores. Any other thoughts?

Until Next Time,
Broke Knitter

Friday, May 6, 2011

April Showers Bring May Flowers

At the suggestion of my Mama I decided to dedicated today's post to the beautiful May weather New York City is finally experiencing. Nothing is better in the Big Apple then sitting outside and eating a meal with friends, sharing a drink with some buddies or wandering in the park.

However, it is mighty hard during the beautiful and sun-shiny days to accomplish any knitting. I know I am breaking family tradition by not enjoying Little Beach and the chance to knit in the sun I will take my lashes. It is just so hard to be inside in this weather.

I think when Randy and I move to Manhattan I will find a nice place in Central Park for weekend knitting extravaganzas but until then.

Until Next Time
Broke Knitter

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Christmas Comes Early


This year I have decided to be proactive. Who do I need to give presents to next Christmas time. Those of you who know me would say I am organized (some would even say uptight, anal or obsessive) so I made a list. There are a lot of people! Anyways I am going to get ahead of the curve and start thinking of who I would like to make gifts for this coming Christmas time.
Courtesy of KnitPicks
www.knitpicks.com



I know I am going to make this simple hat and scarf set from Melissa Leapman's "Cables Untangled" for Randy's mother. I am going to start looking for yarn for this project. In the version of the book I have I like the photo much better because the model has a really pretty pink version. Any suggestions?

Courtesy of Blackhorsefree's Ravelry
http://www.ravelry.com/designers/blackhorsefree


I am going to make the Irish Hiking Hat and scarf set  for Randy's father. I am thinking of doing this in a nice Kelly or forest green color. Any suggestions?



Other than that I am getting my list together. This dang tree skit will be beautifully adorning my tree come November and I will have a plethora of handmade (not homemade!) items at my disposal. I am very proud of myself. Who wants to jump on the train to the North Pole early this year?

Broke, but encouraged, Knitter

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Fiberlicious

Lately for me yarns have been all about texture and feel. I find myself wandering into different shops throughout the city just sticking my hands into baskets looking for something that "feels right" (Don't worry, I make sure no cheese curl fingers before I enter the shop!).

I guess I have always been a toucher. I get that from my Mama. My mother can always be known to pick up a ball of yarn and do the "neck test" - where she rubs the ball against her neck to see if it would feel nice. While it looks a bit silly it definitely does the trick!

I am just about to being a project for my little sister, a replica hat from one of the Harry Potter movies. The pattern called for an alpaca blend and I must say the yarn I have I cannot stop touching the yarn. It is sooooo soft. I would love to just sidle up to an alpaca and snuggle in.

Until Next Time,
Broke Knitter

Monday, May 2, 2011

A Gift for Newlyweds?

Today I really could use your help and advice. Randy's sister is just recently engaged and I am trying to think of something personal I could make her and her fiancee as an engagement/wedding present. I am so far thinking of matching Christmas stockings, but I am at a loss...

Does anybody have a good idea for a wedding present? Any good Christmas stocking patterns?

Thanks for the advice.

P.S. When will it be my turn?????

Broke Knitter

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

The Ball Keeps Rolling

Ahh....a few minutes to spend on my blog. I am so happy when I can find five minutes during the day to check in with my own stream of consciousness. I am so glad that so many of you check in as well. I apologize that my postings have been a bit sporadic lately. Life here at the College has been bonkers. Every night I get home from the gym, curl up on the couch and drag myself to finish a row or two. It has actually been kind of depressing.

BUT GOOD NEWS! It took a full year (mostly because I get bored with projects) but the baby blankie is FINALLY TOTALLY DONE! Woohoo! It is such a great feeling. I struggled through the sweater and hat and I ripped out the blanket about 10 times but I finally persevered and I did it. Such an exciting day!

Who else feels accomplished? I would love to hear about your big projects too!

Until Next Time...
Broke Knitter

P.S. No more cheese curls!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Sticky Fingers

Okay, so I learned a very important lesson last night - Don't knit and eat cheese curls at the same time.

Last night I was sitting working on the infamous tree skirt and watching television. I was munching on a few cheese curls and before I knew it I had a red and orange tree skirt panel. OOPS! Well, that took some cleaning to get off.

Any other valuable lessons that can be imparted? I would love to hear!

Until Next Time,
Broke Knitter

Monday, April 18, 2011

Mission Accomplished

VICTORY IS MINE!!!

If you cannot tell by my caps, I am pretty psyched this morning. Randy was away all weekend, and while I missed him terribly I was able to finally finish up several of those pesky UFOs lying around the house. I have to say I am feeling quite accomplished this fine Monday.

I was very excited to finish up a car seat blanket I had been knitting for Baby Caileigh. I felt bad that I had never completed the matching blanket for the hat/sweater combo I knit her last Christmas, so this kind of makes up for it.

Speaking of that pesky blanket I never finished, I made MAJOR progress on that baby. 16" down - 6" to go! Then just some borders and I will have a beautiful pink blanket for the next girl baby that comes along (hopefully that wont be too soon - I can store things!).

I also got moving more on the toddler boy's sweater I am making for Randy's cousins family. SO CLOSE! Just need to pick up the sleeves and I am on my way! I am very excited because I finally got to try out the kitchener stitch on this project as I worked on sewing up some of the odds and ends. Wow, I really am impressing myself. Kitchener stitch is pretty!

I have to say, I am feeling like there is nothing I cannot do. I hope that I can inspire some of you to pick up some long forgotten project and get moving.

Until Next Time,
Broke Knitter

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Time to Rotate

Yesterday our office was invigorated with enthusiasm for today's weather - sunny and 60 degrees! What a thought in April! With all the cold and rain and snow NYC has experienced this winter and "spring," many of us have felt down and out. But now that the weather is starting to turn in our favor, Jen brought up a great point - What do we now do with all those fabulous projects you started early last fall for "winter gear" that, now, in April, only consist of a sleeve?

With each passing season so too passes our inspiration to finish certain projects. It's hard to pick up and start a bulky winter sweater in July when just holding the dang thing makes you sweat. But realistically, at the speed that I knit, I have to start in July.

So I guess it goes without saying that now that Spring has Sprung it is time to get out those "summer items" from last year that never were finished - like that adorable pink baby blanket for the baby who is now walking (oops, sorry Catie). I guess somebody else better have a little girl soon, because now I am prepared!

Does anybody have good advice for motivating yourself to start a project early? Like with my infamous tree skirt, I am always thinking about 3 months behind. Thanks for your advice.

Until Next Time...
Broke Knitter

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Time Goes By

Wow...I do not know how I let so much time elapse between posts. Needless to say I have been chained to my desk at work. I just decided to do a little desk clean out since it seems my desk has become every one's drop spot and I found a cute pattern book Jen had lent me about a month ago!

Anyways, the wonderful boyfriend leaves for a bro-cation tomorrow...a.k.a. five days of boozing with his college buddies. I am looking forward to some alone time to spread out in bed and knit knit knit!

My plan for the weekend:
Finish some UFO's - Almost done with Randy's cousin's baby sweater and must finish my two little blankies for other friends babies. Can we do it? Yes We Can!

Until Next Time,
Broke Knitter

P.S. Thanks Mama for posting! LOVE YOU!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Off the Grid

I apologize for my recent absence. Lately my body has been fighting a nasty nasty cold, but again my knitting passion has prevailed!

Not only did I fall off the grid literally with my absence but lately I have become OBSESSED with chart patterns. After learning about chart knitting with Melissa Leapman at Vogue Knitting Live I have been fascinated with the technique and my new ability to make such intricate and exciting designs.

Because of that I have started doing some lace knitting (AHHHH!). It's scary and super intimidating but I am loving my fingerless gloves and scarf I just started. It is very exciting to be straying from my usual color choice of purple or tan!

Until Next Time,
Broke Knitter

P.S. I need some comments here loyal readers! Tell me what is on your mind!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Always in Stitches

I have made a new knitting discovery! Why is it that while I am knitting I find myself being more chatty and, to be honest, a lot of the time, sillier. Something about knitting calms me down and helps me process a long day. But it also makes me want to chat. I think something about the rhythm and calm turns me into an even Chattier Kathy.

I also find myself laughing more and sometimes being quite goofy while I knit. For some reason, knitting works just as well as a stiff drink to loosen me up and get me having a good time. Does anyone else agree?

Broke Knitter

Thursday, March 24, 2011

One Stash to Rule All Stashes

The saying goes that you aren't truly a real knitter until you have a stash. The whole concept of a yarn stash cracks me up. Now I am not judging those of us (including myself) who have piles upon piles of unused yarn lying around, whether its the odds and ends you can't seem to part with or the plethora of perfectly bound balls we didn't think we could live without, but isn't a stash a hoard?

As someone who previously worked for an animal shelter I have seen my share of hoarders. Isn't a stash the starting of hoarding? Is there any knitter out there who cannot say that at times they haven't felt like they need more more more?!

The stash is a thing of beauty. It always fascinates me how I love to pick up more and more yarn when I probably have the perfect yarn sitting at home or at Mom's house waiting for me. I remember as a young girl going to visit some of my mother's friends from the knitting guild and being AMAZED at their knitting stashes. Some of them have whole rooms they can barely enter due to their enormous hoards of yarn. Ahh....a house full of yarn, is there a much better dream?

A stash is quite an amazing thing. Today I am offering a challenge. I would love a little contest to see who has the stash to rule all stashes. Send in your photos of your stash and I would love to see what you guys have just waiting for the perfect project!

Until Next Time
Broke Knitter

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Don't Sweat the Small Stuff...Cherish It!

So you are all probably pretty sick of hearing me rant about working too much. Well I am sick of it too! I am making a stand now to stop complaining about work.

Last night Jen was my "Phonathon helper" so she stayed late at work with me. We spoke to the students about some of the projects we are working on, and they were VERY excited. Two of them actually expressed an interest in learning how to knit. So I said to myself, "Self, maybe you should start a knitting group on campus." And that is what I am going to do. I know several students on campus who expressed interest last fall in starting a knitting circle, so I am making a pact to do that!

Another very important revelation came to Jen and myself yesterday - cherishing the small projects. Just because you are super busy doesn't mean you cannot find time to find success in your knitting projects. It can be very discouraging when you work on a big big project, say, a Christmas tree skirt, to feel like you are getting anywhere when you find yourself strapped for time.

Jen suggested I pick up some small, "quick and dirty" projects during Phonathon time so that I can feel accomplished. I have decided to do just that! I started a quick and easy st stitch baby blanket in Plymouth's nice and plushy "Heaven." I am using a light and dark colored purple and I am super excited to finish it up this evening.

Two day project - now that's what I am talking about!

Inspirational Message of the Day - Don't Sweat the Small Stuff...Cherish It

Sometimes you need to step back and relax. Admire the work you can complete and love every minute of every project even if it feels silly, small and dinky.

Until Next Time...
Broke Knitter

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Work Work Work All Day Long

I am so overwhelmed! Why is it that our jobs take over our lives?! It makes no sense to me. It is very frustrating that our culture is so entrenched in our careers. Have you ever noticed when someone says, "tell me about yourself" we automatically respond with our career information.

I have been working an extra week's worth of time each pay period. Knitting has become my only respite and I find myself rapidly clicking those needles each night as I process the day's events. Anyone else feel the same way?

Broke Knitter

Friday, March 18, 2011

Knitting MochiMochi

Jen gave me the CUTEST book to borrow that she picked up from designer Anna Hrachovec herself at Vogue Knitting Live - Knitting Mochmochi. This book is 20 patterns for "super-cute strange designs" from knitted alligators and chicks to even fun slippers that look like a little monster is eating your foot.

I was trying to figure out which of these I would like to make, and honestly, they are ALL adorable. For anyone looking for cute little knick-knacks to knit their grandchild or toddler in their life, please check out of a copy of this book. The designs are adorable, fun and very easy to make!

Until Next Time!
                                               MochiMochi - Broke Knitter


Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Happy St. Patrick's Day fellow readers. Today I want to spend some time talking about two of the greatest people I ever knew, and the best knitter that ever lived. This is my first St. Patrick's Day without either of my maternal grandparents.

My grandmother was the greatest knitter who ever lived. She adored knitting. Grammy turned to knitting when she left teaching in public schools - but you know the saying - "Once a teacher, always a teacher." Very soon after she started knitting she began teaching classes. My grandmother adored teaching. I don't know if she just adored being the center of attention (something I have obviously picked up from her) or just her passion for sharing knitting with others, but she was a wonderful teacher.

She and my grandfather were so happily in love and married for more than 50 years. Without them I don't know who I would be today. My grandmother, while not only a great knitter, was also a great Irishwoman. The woman loved green, loved shamrocks and LOVED a good party. St. Patrick's Day was such a special day to them and I am sure that they are having a blast together partying these days.

St. Patrick's Day is a very special day for me because it is a day to happily remember two of the most influential people in my life. St. Patrick's Day is a day to celebrate all that they taught me. Whether it's Grampy's famous pulling his finger off trick, or Grammy's long tail cast on measurement where you HAD to touch your finder to your nose, today is a day that I am having a great time just remembering.

In their honor I am wearing (for those of you know know me..spoiler alert) my green velour jacket, my green scarf and an adorable green wool hat my mother brought back with her from Dublin. Today I will proudly get out my needles and knit knit knit thinking of the woman who started it all.

Love You Grammy and Grampy!

Broke Knitter

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Getting Ready for the Big Show

Why is it that children can wear the most adorable bright colors and people think it's cute. Then again, if I venture outside of earth tones and maybe dare a pastel I look like either:

1. A crazy person
2. A homeless person
or...
3. A crazy homeless person

Today I am missing the days of brightly knit hats that look like dinosaur tails matched with a pair of comfy tapered sweatpants. Gone are the days when you can pretend to be whatever you want to be.

I have decided that because tomorrow, St. Patrick's Day, is a day when the fools come out in full I have decided to be festive and wear all my crazy greens. Doesn't matter the shade, texture, whatever. I am going to be the cutest most festive little Irish thing tomorrow.

Until Next Time..
Party On Garth!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Book Worm

I guess it is time to admit to myself and the world again, I am not a very cool person. But it's okay. I have realized that I have never been cool, why not embrace the fact that I love knitting, cats, and of course, books.

And that is today's topic for discussion - books. I LOVE to read. Having a 3 hour commute each day leaves lots of time for knitting and reading on public transportation. To be honest, I hate the commute but at least I have some hobbies to keep myself entertained on the long trips.

Anyways, I wanted to talk about the most recent book series I just finished, the "Hunger Games" trilogy by Suzanne Collins. For those of you who like to indulge from time to time in young adult novels, this is the PERFECT set of books for you to read. I know I am off topic today, but I just had to share how much I enjoyed these books. I will warn you, they are a bit dark.



The basis of the trilogy is about Katniss, a teenage girl who lives in a post-apocalyptic America where the government controls everything in the outer districts. To quell the districts from fighting against the government, the Capital hosts the hunger games each year in which one boy and one girl from each district are sent into an arena to fight to the death. The final victor promises their district glory and food for the year.

Well, of course, Katniss ends up at the hunger games. The stories look at the morals and ethics behind the games and about standing up for what you believe in.

This is such a wonderful trilogy I just had to share how much I enjoyed it. Does anyone else have good suggestions for reading?

Until Next Time
Broke Knitter

Monday, March 14, 2011

Tardiness

Hello Fellow Knitters,
I apologize for being a bit tardy in  my posting. I am sure you were all waiting for an update on the conference. Not a knitting conference (boohoo) but still a great experience. Unfortunately I did not get a chance to finish Abby's dog sweater, but I am determined to finish it this evening! I promise to post some really cute photos as soon as I wriggle her little butt into it.

Anyways, I am going to make a baby sweater for Randy's cousin who had a baby this past winter. I was thinking of doing a 1 year age/size sweater for a little boy. Any pattern suggestions? I am open to anything!

Until Next Time,
Broke Knitter

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

A Trip to Remember

Exciting! Jen and I have arrived safely in Providence, RI and we are excited to spend two days meeting some other development professionals and learn from some of the best. It's exciting to learn new things. I feel like I never learn anything these days.

Thank you for your suggestions for projects to bring. I brought the evil fated Christmas Tree skirt that I promise to have finished for next Christmas time. Seeing as how Randy and I just took down our fake tree (yes, in March) you can understand how much I love the Christmas tree.

Anyways, does anybody know of any good yarn stores in the Providence, RI area? If you make a suggestion by comment I promise Jen and I will go visit.

Let me know!

Broke Knitter
YAY TRAVELING!

Monday, March 7, 2011

Awaiting Inspiration

I am a very lucky girl. Very very lucky girl! I am heading to Providence tomorrow morning for a 3 day conference for work. Jen and I are very excited to get out of town and learn learn learn! Even more excited, the two of us get a chance to sit around a knit a bunch in the next few days.

However, I am having a very tough moment. I need some inspiration. What should I bring for projects? I feel so overwhelmed with how many projects I could do, but what should I do?

HELP!

Friday, March 4, 2011

Vogue Knitting Spring/Summer Preview

I have been thinking a lot lately about the Vogue Knitting Spring/Summer preview we saw at the Vogue Knitting Live conference. So since I have been thinking about it, I figured I would check out the preview again on the website. Click below to see the Vogue Knitting Magazine Spring/Summer Preview:


Okay, so here is my thought. These pieces are beautiful. Don't get me wrong! I just am really not feeling the whole white thing. I don't know about you, but I tend to be a smidgen on the messier side. I don't care how beautiful and sunny it is, me and white do not mix. If I am wearing white I am destined to be offered Raisinets or some Tomato based anything. It's quite embarrassing. You can dress me up, but you can't take me out.

Any other thoughts on this preview? Knitted bikinis anyone?

Until Next Time
Messy Broke Knitter


Thursday, March 3, 2011

The Spring That Never Was

So it's time that people in NYC started asking, "Where the heck is Springtime?" It's March already! Shouldn't we be getting a teeny tiny respite from this frigid weather? This morning I came to work in matching ensemble knitted hat, scarf and mittens. I must say, I did look like quite the put-together young lady.

I know that winter affords the ability to wear many a hand-made item. However, I think it is time for some warmth. Is 50 degrees asking too much? Help me out here Mr. Sunshine. I thought Mr. Groundhog said it was time for some warmth.





For giggles, here is how ridiculous the cold is...This is a photo I took when visiting my parents house this winter. Check out our "hidden key" on the front porch.






Until Next Time...
Huddled for Warmth
Broke Knitter

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Nightmare

So it has officially happened - knitting has not only penetrated my day to day activities, but my nighttime ones as well. (Oh wow, that sounded kind of sexy, but no that's not where this is going I can assure you.)

Last night I had a horrible time sleeping. I guess it was the stress after a 14 hour work day, but I digress. I finally drifted off to a peaceful sleep in which I had a wonderful dream that I was lounging on the beach with a Corona in one hand and my needles in the other. I took a nice long sip from my beer, lay back in my sun chair and began to knit. However, this is where it all went wrong. For some reason, every time I knit a stitch it just didn't do anything. I continued and continued trying, but no matter how slowly and carefully I would knit each stitch,  nothing came of it.

I thought this quite a weird nightmare. Anyone agree? Any dream analyzers that can tell me what this means?

Restless Broke Knitter

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Sweet Victory

Sweet Victory! I have done it. I have finished up my odds and ends! NO MORE UFO'S IN THIS LADY'S HOUSE! Who is surprised (and quite frankly, Mom, if you don't post here about this I might die of shock).

Seriously though, I am having such a moment of pride I can barely contain myself. This weekend I sat myself down and I said to myself, "Self, you can do it. Get rid of these last few projects you don't want to finish up."

I don't know why, but lately I have been having a bit of knitting ADD. I was so excited about all of my purchases at Vogue Knitting Live I just wanted to get going on everything! So, of course, I was a bit over my head and over zealous.

Thus the big basket of UFO's sitting in my and Randy's 1 bedroom apartment. But God bless his soul for not freaking out about the barrels of balls.

Please check out my Ravelry page (YoungPadawan) and check out how those last few items finished up. I still have a few new things to start, but I am so excited and feeling so accomplished.

Special thanks to Nicky Epstein. I LOVE her Fascinating Belle Epoque Shrug. I am actually wearing it proudly at my office today. Nothing makes a statement like red!

Until Next Time,
Broke Knitter

Friday, February 25, 2011

Dress to Impress!!!

Today I am devoting my blog piece to my friend, and knitting partner, Ms. Jennifer. Jen brought in this stunning piece this morning to the office to show off. Can you believe it? Jen bought the yarn needed for this only a month ago at the Vogue Knitting Live event and it is already completed? This pattern, the Ishbel by Ysolda Teague is stunning. For more information on this pattern, please visit

So please everyone, take your hats off to Jen today. This is an absolutley stunning piece. I have to say I am actually very jealous. My handwarmers and scarf in my "fancy knit lace pattern" are the devil to me. I guess I have to get more used to working with lace before I will even like it. To leave Jen your comments, please either post here or visit her Ravelry page

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Absence Makes the Heart Grow Fonder

I must apologize for me recent absence. Let me give you guys a quick recap of the last 10 days.

1. Spent two days sick as a dog with a stomach bug. I could go into more detail here, but you don't want it.
2. College friends in town for the weekend. Best weekend ever! Love spending time with old friends. How is it that even after spending months apart, when we all come back together again it feels like no time has passed at all?
3. Working way too much...as usual

The Phonathon has started back up here at work, and so now I am relegated to sitting at my desk and slaving away for hours upon hours. It is really really difficult.

Anyways, because of all this hubbub I  have not had much time to knit. However, I  have started a new project. Against Randy's wishes (and probably my better judgment) I have started knitting a sweater for little Miss Abby, our 1 year old terrier. I know she doesn't need it but it's just too darn cute! Updates to follow and I hope to have a picture up here tomorrow or Friday. Does anybody else have great dog/cat knits they have done? Please post!

Until Next Time...And I Promise That Will Be Soon,
Broke Knitter

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Sick As A Dog

I am sorry faithful readers that I have been a bit out of touch. I have an AWFUL stomach virus. So awful in fact, that I cannot imagine picking up my needles for fear of transferring these germs to my wonderful handmade pieces.

I promise I will return again as soon as I am able.

Broke Knitter

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Dreaming....

When the world gets really busy and I don't know how to handle another minute in my office I think about my dream. In my ideal dream I have the cutest sweetest yarn shop. I haven't decided if I am in the city yet or not, but here are some things that my ideal shop would have...

1. A BIG area in one corner for at least two large class tables. This way there is plenty of room for knitters who are taking classes.
2. A few nicely dispersed couches and armchairs for those who like to spend time relaxing and knitting with me and my fellow employees.
3. A "yarn tasting" area. (Okay, so I stole this from one of the booths at Vogue Knitting Live but I LOVED it) In this area knitters could test out some of the new yarns I have just brought into the store. Do they like knitting with it? Is it something they could use for their next project?
4. A bragging area. Here I would love to have two or three projects on display for 2 weeks. Customers could hang their handmade items for all the world to see and admire.
5. Lastly, I want a "bragging rights wall" that has photos of the handmade items people make for their friends/children/grandchildren etc. with a preference toward people wearing the items they were gifted.

In my ideal little shop nothing can bother me. I really don't care about being rich in this world. Money really doesn't buy you everything. I just want a quaint and comfortable yarn shop where I can spread my love for fibers with the rest of the world. Is that too much to ask?

Broke Knitter

Monday, February 14, 2011

Valentine's Day Celebration

Love is in the Air. Cupid has shot his arrow straight into my rear end. However, this year I am not only celebrating my wonderful love for Randy, the most wonderful man in the world, but also for knitting.

My Salute to Knitting!!!!!

Knitting keeps me warm when I am cold.
Knitting keeps my hands busy so I don't eat.
Knitting gives me the ability to design, create and embellish.
Knitting allows me to be creative.
Knitting allows me to show my love in a tangible way.
Knitting allows me to keep a piece of my heritage alive.
Knitting allows me to clothe those who need clothing.
Knitting allows me to shape new ways of thinking.

This Valentine's Day salute your other loves in life. I know I certainly spoiled myself today when I finished my beautiful RED (how appropriate!) shrug from the Nicky Knits collection.

Until Next Time...
Still in Love
Broke Knitter

Friday, February 11, 2011

Luke...You Must Go to the Degobah System

So as my title implies, this Young Padawan is heading home for the weekend to the land of her fore-knitters. I am very excited to travel to the Degobah System where I can spend time practicing with the jedi-knitting greats.

Okay, sorry for all those of you who don't get the Star Wars references. When my grandmother became very ill due to rheumatoid arthritis she became very very frail. Since she was the master knitter, I started calling her Yoda as a joke. It was a personal favorite in our house. Then I started to call my mother Obi-Wan. I like to think of myself as a young Luke Skywalker, still learning the ways of the force. My brother, of course, makes the joke that I could be Darth Vader. Only time will tell.

Sorry for the digression and I am sure (and hopeful) that many of you are giggling at my silliness. But can you tell how excited I am to go home and see my Mama?! I am sure that I will have great tales of wandering skeins when I return on Monday.

Yoda now calls me home - "Learn and travel, you must."

Until Next Time..
Have a WONDERFUL weekend
Broke Knitter

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Cool Cat

Wow, so I have gone a shockingly long amount of time without revealing how much of a "knitter" I am. You heard it here today, the Broke Knitter has a cat. Of course she does. Can I be any more stereotypical? I guess I have realized that I enjoy a nice cup of tea, my knitting and my kitty cat and there is nothing wrong with that. I might as well embrace who I am, it's not like I am trying to impress anyone.

Anyways, I needed to share with all of you this photo from this morning. My cat, Pickle, is probably the most stereotypical cat on the face of the Earth. He enjoys pets and treats, but honestly, he really could care less if I disappeared. He is such a disengaged cat. He is also the King of the Castle. Our bedroom is his domain. Many days I come home to find Pickle sprawled out on the bed, snuggled into my pillows and even sometimes under the blankets like a little cherub. However, Pickle is also a major bed hog. Here is what I woke up to this morning. P.S. the purple pillow is my pillow.

Is this a cat or what? I am so sorry I was intruding on your space this morning Mr. Pickle.

Having worked at an animal shelter in the past, I know that Pickle is not the only cat who thinks that his Mom and Dad live only to take care of him. Please feel free to share your personal cat and dog stories.

I leave you for the day with my all time favorite animal saying, "Dogs have masters. Cats have staff."

Until Next Time,
Broke Knitter

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Cowl is the New Pink

Living in NYC, especially during one of the coldest winters on record, I have become fascinated with people's "cold weather" garments and accessories. Whether it is hats, mittens, shawls, wraps, scarves, etc. You name it and I love it! I have become obsessed with trying to figure out if things are hand made or not while sitting on the subway or the bus. It is amazing to me how often I am seeing more hand made items. I think it is definitely a trend that is increasing.

One thing I have noticed above all else, is New Yorkers fascination with cowls. They really are the hippest thing to have this winter season. Now, trust me, I am by no means a fashion expert, but cowls are EVERYWHERE this winter. Maybe it's because this is my first winter commuting into the city by public transport, but I think that cowls are really on the rise.

Young and old, male and female, rich and poor. Everybody is wearing cowls. So, of course, this has prompted me to start a new bulky cowl of my own. Check out my Ravelry page (YoungPadawan) and check out the progress of my Baby Alpaca Chunky Cowl. It's a free pattern download! I link to it right on the project page.

Until Next Time..
Stay Warm
Broke Knitter

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Danger Will Robinson...Danger!

The last few days have been quite quite trying. I am using all of my favorite readers to help me circumvent some of the stress. Abby, our beloved 1 year old terrier "puppy" decided she wanted to get very very sick. I am talking gross sick. Let me tell you, I used to work in an animal shelter. I saw some of the most disgusting medical things I could imagine, but this was nasty. Anytime the word puss can be used then you know you have a problem.

I have now scrubbed my apartment like I have never scrubbed before. Needless to say, I was very hesitant to pick up my knitting and weave little Abby germs into my delectable fibers. Need a knitting fix big time!

Until Next Time...
Hopefully with more knitting time under my belt...
Broke Knitter

Friday, February 4, 2011

Knitting Under Duress

Does anybody ever feel like you get in a little over your head with your projects? I hope that some of you are raising your hands, because I don't want to feel like I am in this one all alone.

When I attended the Vogue Knitting Live conference, I was blown away with how much I could absorb. And while I was still pretty tame in the marketplace, I was definitely a little "eager" to get started on my projects.  I guess my biggest issue is boredom. One side of me is extremely organized, and, what most people would say is anal retentive. The other half of me is loving the creative process and wants to flit from project to project.

I am now feeling very torn about what I should do? I think that I am going to finish the two open projects I have before I pick anything else up. Then I will reevaluate. Does anybody have any advice?

Broke Knitter

Thursday, February 3, 2011

I love babies. Who doesn't? Those cute little smiles, peach-fuzz hair..Oh they are wonderful! But seriously people, stop having them all so close together.

Over the past year my life has experienced a dramatic influx of babies. Whether it's friend, family members, family friends, you name it! So, that being said I have to admit one of my biggest pet peeves with being known as a knitter - Becoming the "gift" knitter. Everyone I know asks me, "My so-and-so just had a baby can you make me a sweater? A hat?" All that good stuff...And you know that of course they pass the gifts off as their own...no credit to your truly!

As much as I love cute little hats and sweaters, I am very very sick of baby knits. I have now taken a stance against baby knits for the next few months. No more baby knits for six months.

Broke Knitter

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Salute Your Shorts

For those of you who were raised in the 90's, I hope you enjoyed my throwback reference to a great 90's Nickelodeon show.

Today, I wanted to spend a few minutes sharing with you some of my favorite knitted pieces I have seen on Ravelry so far. I have to admit, I am quite addicted to the site and I am always logged in. I might not look at it all day but I definitely page through it during a few minutes of down time. Ravelry has become an inspiration for me, I always find something new and fun.

Here are some of the greatest things I have found on Ravelry.



This is Catherine's "Tempting Cables" sweater. I think it is just amazing! (If you haven't figured it out by now, I am CRAZY for cables)
http://www.ravelry.com/projects/Catherine/tempting






This is Suvi Simola's "Baby Cables and Big Ones Too."
Published in  50 villapeikkoa it is just so elegant.
http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/baby-cables-and-big-ones-too







Lastly, this ADORABLE little girl knit is the "Oriental Lily" from Georgie Hallam. This pattern is available as a free Ravelry download. YAY!
Look out Caileigh, you have a new outfit on the way.







Does anybody else have any special patterns they find they cannot help but just adore?! Send them my way. Feel free to comment.

Until Next Time...
Broke Knitter

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Spread the Love....

Coming from college in Upstate, New York, I figured that the worst of my snow experiences we over. That is until I learned how messy snow can be in NYC. I cannot believe how much snow we have had here lately. Now, don't get me wrong, I thoroughly enjoyed sipping tea with my knitting and some good quality talk shows during our two snow days so far, but enough slush!

One thing I have to say about living in this cold weather, it has really only acted as a catalyst for my knitting passion. What better reason to knit than to keep your friends and loved ones warm on a cold day?!

That's why today, when everyone in New York City is grumbling about snow and slush and ice I am saying take stock of all that we have. While I call myself the Broke Knitter, I am so fortunate that I have a coat and mittens to keep me warm this winter time.

I am urging everyone to knit something for charity in the month of February. It's a month of coldness, but also the month of love. With Valentine's Day right around the corner, show humanity some love. Knit a hat, a scarf or mittens to be donated to a local group. I promise you wont feel so dreary thinking about a child in need warmed not only by your yarn, but also by your love.

Broke Knitter

Monday, January 31, 2011

Can I Get an Amen?!

When all the world seems like chaos and you just feel so tense you might crumble, there is nothing better than retreating to the solace knitting. Can I get an Amen?!

The last few days have been very challenging for me. Work has been not only overwhelming, but also very very frustrating. It feels wonderful at the end of the day to just sit back with my knitting. Everything just seems to melt away.

Today's subway ride was a mess. MTA has really been dropping the ball lately. I found myself completely zoned out, enjoying my Theta state and I, of course, missed my stop. Now for any of you who have experienced something similar, you know that this is the most awkward and embarrassing situations ever. Lesson of the day - Enjoy your knitting but listen to the subway announcements.

Until Next Time..
Broke, and Apparently Lost, Knitter

Friday, January 28, 2011

The Vogue Knitting Live Marketplace

Thank you trusty readers, for letting me string you along all week in the pursuit of the complete Vogue Knitting Live experience.

The Vogue Knitting Marketplace...also known as my Mecca. I was blown away by how many people were thronging the craziness of the marketplace. It must also be said that I showed some restraint. I did not completely burn holes in my pockets, although I did leave with several unique and exciting purchases (to see them, please visit my Ravelry page - YoungPadawan).

Anyways, here were my thoughts on the Vogue Knitting Live Marketplace. Please feel free to send your comments along.

1. The lighting was bad. I felt bad that some of the booths were so dark, it really did not show off so many of the unbelievable yarns in the booths. I.E. Decadent Fibers! Good job gals getting yourself some good lights!

2. Bijou Bison (I think that was the name) - Man can you wine and dine us! I LOVED the idea you had of a "wine tasting" party. They had a nice squishy comfy floor to walk on and admire their products. Then they had a few couches set up where you could relax and inside cute little martini glasses sat several of their fancy yarns. The idea was to come and relax, try out a new yarn and see if you like it. GENIUS!

3. I LOVED the Furnace Mountain Alpacas booth. I know this may seem weird, but they had the BEST photos of their alpacas. I fell in love with their product the moment I saw the cute photo of a baby alpaca after his first shearing. That cute little Q-Tip head...how could you not love it?

4. Nicky Epstein  - Why oh why must you take all of my $. Nicky's booth was packed all weekend, and I really enjoyed actually getting to meet Ms. Epstein herself. She made a point to be present at her booth and I really appreciated it (not to mention it was a nice little marketing tool)...

Overall, I was very impressed with my first conference marketplace. Granted, I have nothing to compare it to, but we all have to start somewhere right? What did you guys like and dislike at the Marketplace? I am more than happy to hear what people bought...PLEASE SHARE!

Until Next Time..
Broke Obsessed Knitter

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Vogue Knitting Live Take 3

I am sorry to be posting so late in the day, but today's SUPER EXCITING SNOW DAY has thrown me off my course. Anyways, I am here to finally report on things that you have so anxiously been awaiting. So, Vogue Knitting Live Take 3 = Meal Times and Events...

Friday night there was a cocktail reception. The Hilton has the most beautiful ball rooms. It was a great experience. It was nice that there were 3 separate bars. My mother and I wandered for a few trying to mingle with the knitting elite. It was super exciting to be waiting in line behind Debbie Macomber. So I introduced myself, and she was just so sweet! One thing that really fascinated me about the whole Vogue Knitting Live event was how the teachers/lecturers/kniteratti just wandered amongst us "normies." It was such a nice experience to realize how down to earth and passionate so many of these designers are. I really enjoyed it.

Saturday night's Gala dinner turned out to be an event. I sat down at the table and poured myself a glass of (thank god) white wine. Now, I was wearing a very cute outfit that I had planned on wearing to work on Monday morning. Well, I had barely placed my glass of wine on the table when the waiter came over and knocked it over ALLLLLLLLL over me. GREAT! To make matters worse, the waiter was rude and so to was the Hilton staff. The Vogue Knitting Live staff members were wonderful and very accommodating, but needless to say, I wrote the Hilton a rather heated complaint. I understand that accidents happen, trust me, it could happen to anyone, but the hotel was so rude to me when I asked for help getting my clothing laundered it just crushed my Saturday night spirit.

The rest of the meal on Saturday was wonderful and I enjoyed the Summer issue of Vogue Knitting preview. I ESPECIALLY cannot wait to see how the "touched up" photos of the models in bikinis look when the magazine comes out.

Anyone have any comments on the two events? Sorry I was kind of blunt, but Saturday's mishap really killed the mealtime experiences for me.

Until Next Time..
Broke Knitter

P.S. I PROMISE to talk tomorrow about what everyone wants to talk about - the rising credit card debt that is also known as the Marketplace