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Hello Friends! I’ve been rather amiss from my blog. Life has been more than crazy and has been dealing me several obstacles. I’ve conquered a few but I have several more that I need to climb over.  I haven’t even had much time or energy to spend on my knitting work and designing.

The most recent update is that I’m going on an Alaskan cruise tomorrow. I’ve always wanted to go on a cruise to Alaska, but while I’m lucky to be able to go, this trip did come with several attachments and caveats. The short version is that I was duped into going on this trip and I will be going with my dad, stepmom and my “auntie” and “uncle” family friends. If any of y’all are Asian or Latino, you might know some of the pressures and caveats of “family friend aunties and uncles.” The timing is also terrible given that I have a trade show to get ready and plan for in Columbus in June. To celebrate the wonderful wonders and complications of family vacations and my long hiatus from blogging, I’ve decided to have a “I got duped” sale. Sale ends on June 9, 2012 and is 20% off any products from my pattern store on my website or on Ravelry. Code: AlaskanCruise. Don’t forget that I have more stuff for sale on my website than on Ravelry.

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Here are some quick updates on some of the events in the last 6-8 months:

In January, I went to Phoenix for TNNA, where I had a booth for the first time! I had a booth next to my distributor, Deep South Fibers. I wanted a booth so that retailers can see more of my garments and designs first hand and up close. It was quite fund designing the booth and seeing colleagues and friends. Photos below: My booth at TNNA; Tina Sanders wearing my Weekend Shawl; with my friend and fabulous crochet author Robyn Chachula; a close-up of my photo tiles for the photo/mirror installment in my booth

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In February, I went to Stitches West and taught there for the first time. I got great reviews from all 3 classes I taught and I had the opportunity to meet some wonderful students and knitters/crocheters. While there, I also hung out with my friend Stefanie and the Craftsy team and even did a demo at the Craftsy booth. Speaking of Craftsy, I have some patterns for sale on Craftsy and have a workshop based on Remy, a fun-to-work reversible cable scarf, which is also available as an individual pattern. Photos below: A student from my “Mera Shrug” class showing off her finished project; A sign with my name on it!; Me explaining cables at the Craftsy demo; Remy Reversible Cable scarf for my Craftsy Workshop (project yarn was generously provided by Lion Brand Yarns).

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In March, I went to San Juan Island, WA for the Visionary Authors retreat to power up and work on my book in a very rejuvenating and symbiotic experience of support and idea-sharing with my colleagues. It was truly an enriching experience to spend a week with such a creative, intelligent, inspiring and wonderful group of people. The experience was energizing, tiring, hard and fun all at the same time. We even played knitting charades and ate wonderfully prepared foods by our caterer Deb Nolan. Sarah Anderson, Deb Robson and I even went on a short field trip to a local alpaca farm. Photos below: leaving the island on the ferry; A cutie from the alpaca farm 

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In April, I participated in Yarn Crawl LA, LA County’s first-ever yarn crawl, by being a sponsor. Some of my activities included donating lots of patterns for the prize baskets, trunk shows and brioche knitting demos at Alamitos Bay Yarn Company and Knit Culture. Photos below: a hat trunk show at Alamitos Bay Yarn Company; knitting a secret project with Slipped Stitch Studios mascot Woolfred; teaching brioche knitting at Knit Culture

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Healthwise, I have not been great at all. I had to have uterine surgery a few days before Christmas. For the last 9 months, I’ve been dealing with very acute allergies and really really bad eczema flares on a daily basis. The burning and itching on my skin is unbearable and takes so much physical and emotional energy just to stay sane. With the burning, itchy, dry skin and lotioning 100x a day, it’s been nearly impossible to function or knit, but I trudge along the best as I can and I’m amazed that I even got anything accomplished. I have to earn a living and feed myself afterall. The most frustrating this is that I’m doing everything I’m supposed to do for it and I still don’t know the cause. I’ve tried everything. So far acupuncture and avoidance of allergy-causing foods (that I know of and have identified) have been the best. I feel much better now, but my case is still considered acute and I’ve got a long ways to go. Photos below: my arms very very inflamed and full of hives from severely acute eczema and as red as my Danskos; my inflamed leg; My talented artist sister drew me 2 very cute cards commemorating the loss of my uterus.

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And finally, a few teasers on some projects that have to remain secret for the most part:

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Time has just quickly flown by this summer and I have so much to share!

HAIKU, aka the #LessThan2WeekSweater

Shortly after a fun and successful trip to TNNA, I decided to once again partner with my friends at Anzula to show at Sock Summit 2011. And why wouldn’t I? I love Anzula’s products and yarns — that’s why I have worked may of my Liberation hats in Anzula Squishy (superwash merino, cashmere, nylon) and in Anzula Sebastian (superwash merino, seacell).

For this second Sock Summit, I designed a very nicely fitted tank top out of a new yarn – Anzula Haiku. I named this pattern Haiku as well. With the timing, I really had to get this pattern written, designed, knitted, photographed and published within 2 weeks! (Yes, I know I’m not exactly sane in this respect — my friends remind me of this almost everyday.)  The result is a sexy fitted pattern written in 12 sizes with 8 separate bust fitting options for bust sizes C to GG (I used UK sizing references)!!  If you do the math, that’s 96 different fitting options!!  This is actually a top that will fit me and my 32G breasts! It’s a top that I’ve been wanting to design and write for some time. I have future plans to write additional garments in this style as well, because I really feel that having well-fitting garments is very important, and I want us to be able to knit garments that really fit our bodies.

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I brought  Haiku, individual  Liberation  patterns and limited print editions of my Liberation e-book to Sock Summit and for sale at the Anzula booth.  Several patterns, including  Haiku, sold out by the second day.  All and all, it was a great show.

Gino’s Restaurant & Pico Accuardi

One of the many events I attended in Portland while at Sock Summit was one of Pico Accuardi Dyeworks‘ fabulous sock club luncheon held at my good friend and fellow Visionary’s restaurant, Gino’s. I was a guest and featured designer and shared my Septima Clark pattern with the club. The company and food were spectacular. I ate until I couldn’t eat anymore.

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Being Deb’s friend and hanging out with her also meant that this city girl had other opportunities to eat at Gino’s and visit her farmhouse on Mt. Hood.

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Left: Playing with baby bunnies at Deb’s farm; Right: Her naughty goats that like to steal chicken and rabbit feed.

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Above: I also attended a cocktail party at the Pico Accuardi dye studio, where I was able to have a mini trunk show with the Liberation collection and my Weekend Shawl.

Sock Summit Flash Mob, Sock Hop & Fabulousness

There were many events at Sock Summit, including a flash mob dance. I recorded a rehearsal at the Opening Night reception, a spontaneous dance at the 1980s themed sock hop, and the “official” dance.

Above: Video of the official flash mob. For the other videos, go to my CraftyDiversions YouTube channel.

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One of the events was the Foot to Fleece challenge, in which teams spun freshly shorn fleece (in the grease) and attempted to knit a sock. I didn’t participate in any teams, but I was the official cheerleader for the Pico Accuardi Dyeworks‘ Spin U team. Above (clockwise from top left): Sheep being shorn; sheep pen; the PAD Spin U team; Shannon Okey took a photo of me in my cheerleading outfit when I went to visit the Cooperative Press booth.

My favorite event was the 80’s-themed Sock hop! If y’all know me, you know that my favorite genre of music is 80s alternative and new wave. Bands like Depeche Mode, OMD, New Order, The Cure, The Smiths, Nine Inch Nails, Jane’s Addiction, Pet Shop Boys, Information Society and Erasure rock my world. So you can imagine my excitement for this sock hop. My friends and I decided to dress up in costume for it. The irony is that except for the big hair (c’mon, I’m from Texas!) and bright red lipstick (of course my parents didn’t know), I really didn’t dress too 80s during that time. Sure, I had my share of hideous outfits, but I refused to succumb to the trendy fashions of the time (aka I was not that cool) and never even owned a set of rubber bracelets, nor did I wear large crosses (I did wear an ankh though).

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Above Photos: 1. Party Banner; 2. Deb Accuardi, Me and Marisol Sanchez decked out a la Desperately Seeking Susan; 3. Me and Deb in our hideous but fabulous outfits. I even wore lots of blue eyeshadow; 4. Teri Sabah; 5. Crowd dancing; 6. & 7. Two ladies totally knew every single move to Thriller and led a group of people in the Thriller dance; 8. crowd dancing; 9. It got really hot, so I just had to get my hair into a side ponytail!; 10. Left to Right: Deb Accuardi, me, Teri Saba, Joely, Stevanie Pico, Misty, Marisol Sanchez.

Despite the fact that Portland and the Pacific Northwest apparently hate me and the allergy misery hell, I had a great time. (My allergies went into overdrive and went haywire by the end of Day 4 — Even though I take allergra on a daily basis and have been on immunotherapy for over a year, I’m still quite sensitive to allergens. I am very allergic to much of the flora in the region, like Alder, Birch and Cedar.)

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Above: Left – I finally was able to meet Franklin Habit in real life! He’s a doll! Right – Met Sharon Fletcher of Stitch Jones.

I was able to visit with some friends and meet some in real life for the first time. A few folks I was able to visit with Marly Bird, Jaala Spiro, Shannon Okey , Stephanie Tallent, Caro Sheridan, Stitchy McYarnpants, Mercedes Tarasovich-Clark, Carl and Eileen Koop, Erica Owens…I’m sure there are many more folks I missed and I hope they’ll forgive me for having a brain fart right now. I was also quite flattered and humbled when fans of my work and designs wanted to meet me.  Two people absolutely fabulous and talented people that that I was ridiculously ecstatic to finally meet in real life were Sivia Harding and Franklin Habit.

Post-Summit in PDX

After helping Anzula break down their booth on Sunday, Deb (who also has a fabulous podcast, At the Kitchen Table) and I headed for another fabulous dinner at Gino’s with Cat Bordhi and some fellow Visionaries, many of whom I also had not met in real life. We were celebrating the birth of Judy Becker‘s upcoming book, Beyond Toes: Knitting Adventures with Judy’s Magic Cast-On. Dinner was great, but the company was more wonderful. It’s always nice to be able to share experiences, thoughts and ideas with a group of creative, intelligent, like-minded people.

I spent a few more days in the PDX area, albeit a bit miserable due to my horrid allergies. I could not breathe or sleep well. The allergies dashed my short-lived fantasy of buying a small farm or a cute house gorgeous Oregon.  I stayed with Deb and her husband at their farmhouse on Mt. Hood. The beauty of the surroundings and a great hostess made my stay much less miserable. I spent the rest of my stay helping Deb with her 2012 Knitter’s Datebook (coming soon!!) and teaching her the basics of InDesign and Illustrator.

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Above: We went to the top of Mt. Hood, where there were still lots of snow. Deb’s dog obviously loved the snow, and we ended the day with drinks at the Timberline lodge: great view, great drinks, great company….ahh…

Unfortunately, it’s back to reality for me and I’m still playing catch-up. In the past month, I’ve had lots of pattern releases, but I haven’t really been able to post or blog about those. I just recovered from a major chest infection (in the end, I could not fend off the ill-effects of the allergies from Oregon) and am trying to get a project done for Vogue Knitting Live in LA.

I’ll be posting more details about some exciting news later, but here are some of them in a quick nutshell:

  • Roseling was published in Twist Collective Fall.
  • The Fall issue of Knitscene, for which I got the cover, finally hit the newsstands! My patterns Lepidoptera is the cover garment, and inside, I also have a sassy beret, Whittier Hat.
  • On Sept 15, I will be appearing and speaking on a BlogHer panel on Craft + Money at the BlogHer Handmade/ Creative Connection conference. 
  • I will be debuting 2 new designs for at Vogue Knitting Live in Los Angeles on Sept 23-25! The garments will be shown exclusively at the Knit Culture booth. Knit Culture will be posting about the designs on their blog and I will be discussing it and revealing sneak peaks on my Facebook page and on Twitter.

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This morning, I picked up my friend Holly and we drove from our homes in North Orange County, California to Santa Clara for Stitches West. We made really good time and the weather seemed to cooperate with us until we were about 2 hours away from our destination, when a few rainstorms slowed us down. However, all and all, the drive was beautiful and we saw 2 rainbows, which I managed to capture while I drove.  Our total drive time was about 6 hours.

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We went straight to the convention center for the preview market, only open to registered students. During the preview market, I was a guest at the Unwind booth (#1245), where they carry and showcase my patterns, including the full line of patterns from the Liberation collection. Unwind had all the samples worked up in Sweet Georgia yarn. I will do another guest appearance at the Unwind booth on Saturday from 10-12.

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L to R: Laura (wearing Amelia Earhart), Stephanie (wearing Elizabeth Zimmermann) and Suzanne (wearing Barbara G. Walker) of Unwind (booth 1245 at stitches), a wonderful LYS in Burbank

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My hat patterns worked up in Sweet Georgia yarn on display at the Unwind Yarn booth at Stitches West 2011. Left: Elizabeth Zimmermann cloche, Right: Alice Paul

In preparation for Stitches, I printed and sleeved several patterns for Unwind and Anzula (booth #840). Anzula is also selling several patterns from Liberation, but they are also selling kits of the hats. I’ll be a guest at Anzula’s booth tomorrow from 10-12, Saturday from 4-6 and Sunday from 10-11. I also made promo things, including these buttons:

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I brought over 100 buttons, but I am quickly running out, especially "posse" with the black sheep. I didn't expect them to be so popular! The posse buttons were inspired by a joke with my friends that then somehow made it to some fun bantering with Benjamin of XRX on Twitter. Benjamin is now officially part of my posse and I have several witnesses to his induction! 😉 So, if you are at Stitches and want to be part of my posse, come find me to get a button before I totally run out!

Tomorrow promises to be even more stimulating and exciting. One of the events that I’m really looking forward to attending and participating in is the Pajama Party. There will be awesome door prizes! I had already planned to donate a special limited edition printing of the Liberation ebook and enough yarns for 2 hats, but then the gears in my head started turning and I thought how wonderful it would be if my friends at Unwind and Anzula joined me and we collectively contribute to make a even bigger prize. Also donating is another California based artist, Slipped Stitch Studios. (Anzula is based in Fresno, while Unwind, Slipped Stitch Studios and I are all based in Southern California.) This fabulous door prize is a great example of what you can accomplish when you and your friends put your heads together:

SW2011 pj party-AKL

 

Stitches West 2011 posts:

1. The Road to Stitches

2. Yarnaholics Everywhere at Stitches West

3. Stitches West PJ Party – The End

 

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Lately, I’ve been pretty busy with several secret projects, among a few other things. I have two huge secret projects that I can’t really talk about yet, so I’ll just tell you about the three secret projects I’ve been working on for a couple of magazines.
I’ve already completed photoshoots for 2 of the 3 magazine secret projects and have mailed them off to the editors. Call me a tease – here’s the most I can show you of those projects:

The 3rd magazine secret project is still on my needles and is due on Valentine’s day. I’ve had a few setbacks with this last project. One was a knitter error – I forgot to do a couple of increases and decided to rip out instead of fudging them. I ended up ripping out 18 rows, which I calculated was 3136 sts. Sniff sniff. The other setback was when I decided to redo part of the collar because I wanted it to have a little bit more width in the neck.

During all the secret project knitting, I’ve also been planning my Stitches West activities and things like getting things sent to the printer, pattern stapling/ stuffing and planning/organizing a door prize for the Pajama Party hosted by Kimberly (aka Somebunnyslove) Stitches West is next week and happening really fast!! I will be at the Unwind Yarn, Anzula and Bijou Basin Ranch booths a various times throughout the event. I’ll be posting updates of my schedule in the Events/Promo section of my Facebook fan page (I know I need to add one of those pages on my website as well, but until I have time to do that, Facebook will have to suffice in the time being).

My recent photo shoot also included taking photos of the Weekend Shawl (pattern release Feb. 21, 2011) in the fingering weight version. I will also be offering the pattern in a lace weight version, which my sample knitter just finished tonight.

Weekend Shawl (pattern release Feb. 21, 2011). Shown in Fingering Weight version using Sanguine Gryphon Gaia Fingering in color Sundogs.

 

One of other things I’ve been working on is brainstorming a design for a Fan Appreciation Knitalong. I posted a poll in my Ravelry group and the resulting vote is that folks want to have a non-mystery KAL with a shawl pattern.  The timing of it couldn’t be more perfect, as I will be able to get extra inspiration upon seeing all the lovely things and yarns at Stitches next week.  If you are interested in joining the KAL, just join my group!  The KAL will be FREE. After the KAL is over though, I think I will be putting up the pattern for sale for everyone else. As part of the KAL, I will be posting about and documenting everything, from my design process to the final project.  I’ve never done something like this before and am really looking forward to it.

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Above photos from Stitches West 2010 – My friend Cindi has had a big yarngasm; Some friends sharing drinks at the Hyatt lounge.

Speaking of KALs, there are some folks who are planning to start another KAL on Ravelry for Pfeiffer Falls. They are planning to start on Feb. 21. So, if you are on the the people who still have it in your queue, this is a great time to cast on! I’ll be checking in on the group to see everyone’s progress and offer help & encouragement where I can.

 

photo © Interweave Knits 2008

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After a few failed submissions, I finally made it into Twist Collective, and I couldn’t be happier! Yes folks, I had tried to submit to Twist 2-3 times prior, but unfortunately, it wasn’t in the cards for me at the time.

I finally achieved my goal with Issara, which was published recently in the Fall 2010 issue. What made this even more exciting for me is the fact that Issara is the cover for my particular storyline, Roxham Farm. I was already a fan of Twist Collective and of the artistry and designs in each issue. Now that I’ve experienced a small taste of what it’s like to be a designer in Twist, especially with the multiple layers of review that goes into each pattern, I am even more impressed.

Named after a good friend’s daughter (a Laotian name), Issara is a snuggly coat worked in bulky yarn with simple lines. The WOW factor lies within the back pleat and the oversized reversible cable collar that can be worn up, down, or somewhere in between.

The Idea & Design Process

Usually, when I design, I like to incorporate a feature element and/or versatility.  And since I’ve been on a reversible cables kick lately, I really wanted a garment with a dramatic reversible collar. Thus, Issara was conceived. While I had a clear idea of what I wanted, some of the key elements in the concept required some tweaking and experimentation during the actual pattern-writing and design process.

Collar

In order for the collar to lay nicely on the shoulders when worn down, it needed to flare a little – I really didn’t want a straight funnel collar. To make a nice flare, I knew that I would have to work increases into the actual cable pattern instead of bunching it all into the beginning or set up section of the collar. I experimented with a few types of increases into the cable pattern. Lifted increases won over other types of increases because it met 3 main criteria: (1) increases had to be as invisible as possible, (2) they had to compliment and work with the stitch pattern, and (3) they had to look good on both sides.

Waistline

Initially, I had intended the waistline to be a true empire waist. However, as I was working with it, I realized that the weight of the yarn in the skirt of the coat (especially with the pleat) may pull the waistline in a less than desirable way if I raised it to a true empire.  So, I change the plan a little and worked the waistline roughly about 1.5″ above a natural waistline so that there is still an elongated silhouette, but without having to carry the extra weight if it was set much higher.

p2-1 Issara sketch

Issara sketch

Pleat

Because the coat is worked in a bulky yarn, Twist editor Kate Gilbert and I had some concerns that the pleat might be a little too thick and cumbersome in the back with all the layers. I really wanted to keep the pleat because I think it gives a nice balance to the dramatic and slightly flared collar; thus, I was determined to make it work. I experimented a little and I figured out a way to thin out some of the bulk in the pleat folding process: I bound off every other stitch in the center panel of each side of the pleat 2 rows prior the pleat fold. The photos below show the differences (click to enlarge) between a regular pleat fold and my thinned out version.

Issara Swatch1 - front Issara Swatch3 - back

Close-Ups

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Photos above, clockwise from top left (click photos to enlarge): (1) work-in-progress shot of the skirt shaping; (2) the finished pleat from the private side (WS); (3) collar detail from the public side (RS); (4) collar detail from the private side (WS); (5) waist line and back pleat; (6) back view of coat with collar worn down

Overall, I found the sample a relatively fast knit. Seriously. I’m not just saying that because I’m the designer or as a fast knitter. It goes much faster than one anticipates because it’s worked in a bulky yarn. The slowest part of it, IMO, was the blocking, which took forever and a day to dry.  Next post: Tips/notes on modifications, blocking, etc.

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August is going to be an interesting month for me. First the good stuff:  In August, the Fall issues of  Twist Collective and Knitcircus will be published. I have a garment in each of those ‘zines and am very excited to see the final layout and photos of my garments. I will also be devoting much of August solely on a very large secret project that I’m cooking up.

Above Left: Snippet of one of the projects on the needles. You can see my draft pattern in the background. Right: Part of the main body of the 2nd project and a tiny sliver of a contrasting element. C’mon, did you really think I’d reveal the secret and actually show you details? This is all the hints I can give. Y’all will just have to be patient and wait for a few more days until the publications’ release.

And now, something not so exciting, but hopefully will be very good in the long run…I plan to start an elimination diet on Aug. 1. I’ve contemplated doing the diet for a while now, but I always came up with some sort of excuse and lacked the motivation. Given my lifelong problem with allergies, which seemed to have worsened in the last 2-3 years, I definitely need to do it now.

IMGP2242 For over 6 months, I’ve been undergoing Allergen immunotherapy. And while I’ve seen some minor improvements already, the process is slow, time-consuming, frustrating and not to mention, costly (insurance covers most, but those copays add up). The treatments involves me getting weekly injections of custom-formulated serums of chemical and environmental allergens. My allergist generally starts patients on a tiny, tiny injection (we’re talking about like 1 drop) serum that’s diluted to 1:5000 (1 part serum to 5000 parts saline). Whereas the majority of people tolerate that very well, I was so sensitive that I experienced an anaphylactic reaction to that first injection and the Doc had to administer epinephrine as a result. So, she had to take me waaaay down and started me on a 1:50,000 serum. I am finally on the 1:5000 serum that “normal” people tend to start on.

Anyway, even with the immunotherapy, the highest allowed prescription for Allegra (other allergy drugs like Claritin & Zyrtec do nothing for me), inhalers, Advair (low-dose steroid), lots of $$ spent on super expensive mattress covers & filters and regular sinus rinses, I still get random eczema, hives, and other allergy-related reactions and breakouts that require me to supplement with OTC drugs like Benadryl and Sudafed.

Whatever the cost, difficulty or inconvenience, I don’t want to ever go back to this:

I’m really tired of it all, especially since my allergies aren’t that controlled on top of all the medications I’m taking. I suspect that there are foods contributing to some of these other issues, whether I’m just sensitive or even truly allergic to them. I already know that I’m sensitive or allergic to sulfites, preservatives, citrus and some melons. While the process will be very hard as I’ll have to give up things I love to eat, I think (I hope) that in the end, I will be much happier, more energetic, sleep better and just be much healthier.  I am scheduled to have some food allergy testing done in December, and while food allergy testing can help, the tests can also register false positives and false negatives. With me playing my own food detective, I can probably pinpoint some of the other culprits and help my Doc to formulate a better diagnosis for me.

I actually suspect an allergy to cherries, one of my favorite summertime indulgences.

So with the Doc’s approval and my desire to have a better daily life, hopefully free of daily headaches, more energy, more sleep, better breathing and no more itching, I’ve committed myself to start the diet starting August 1.  After doing more research and reading, it appears that given my ultra-sensitivity to so many things, I will need to eliminate lots of foods that other people on elimination diets can eat, which is a bit of a dismay. 😦 Because of some of my known and tested allergies, I need to eliminate foods that are commonly associated with those allergies.  I’ll have to cut out all fruits, some of my favorite veggies and all grains (even rice or quinoa!) during the elimination period; it’s the only way that I can really test to see if I am sensitive or allergic to some of those foods.

The plan: Make my diet public to hopefully help me maintain the motivation. I’ll do a 3 week elimination period and only test low-suspect foods like broccoli, carrots, bananas and rice first. All other foods will be eliminated for 1 month before I start challenging and re-introducing them, slowly and one by one. I’ll be keeping a food diary of everything I eat (or rather, don’t eat!) and my reactions and how I feel everyday and before/after each meal.

Saying goodbye: It’s so hard to say goodbye to some of my favorite foods, and it’ll also be hard to see all the food-related post my foodie friends make on Twitter and Facebook. In “prepping” for this upcoming very restrictive diet, I downed lots of swiss cheese and a quart of ice cream in the span of 3 days. The rest of this week will be filled with indulgent meals of pasta, sweets, chocolate, breads, tofu and sushi.

Goodbye, my friends, I hope I get to see you again. I know that I may not taste some of you for a very long time, if ever again…

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See part 1 of my TNNA post here.

Designs on Display

Aside from all the wonderful people that I get to see and meet every time I attend TNNA, one of the highlights for me as a designer is seeing my garments on display at the various vendor booths. It’s a great way for cross-promotion and how can one now be happy saying “Look, this is mine on display!”

At this particular show, my garments were on display at the following booths: Stitch Cooperative, Bijou Basin Ranch, Mountain Meadow Wool and The Fibre Company. I usually try to take photos of my stuff at the various booths, such as this photo of the Empyrean Tunic on display at the Interweave Knits booth, but I forgot to take pictures of the Stitch Cooperative and The Fibre Company booths.

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Photos above show my garments at the Bijou Basin Ranch booth. Clockwise from L: (1) my color work hats; (2) my color work hats Spectacle beret and the Mahika beanie; (3) Kate Oates modeling the Mera shrug (it has reversible cable edging!); (4) Mera on display.

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Photos above, clockwise: (1) Me modeling Cocoon at the Mountain Meadow Wool booth. The Cocoon pattern will be released in mid-July; (2) Valerie of  MMW posing next to the wrap on display at their front table; (3) from a recent photo shoot taken on World Wide Knit in Public day

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Photo above: While working and hanging out at the Stitch Cooperative booth, I had an opportunity to flip through Annie Modesitt’s new book, 1000 hats. I was pretty elated to see that pretty much all my submissions made it into the book, so much so that I hardly noticed that smack in the center of the cover is my Threesome hat, modeled by my friend Jeff and his cute daughter Gigi.

I Missed My Garment at the Fashion Show

The Fashion Show is a TNNA event that occurs the Friday night before the TNNA exhibit hall opens.  It’s where designers, yarn companies and publishers show their products and garments to the industry and buyers (retailers, LYSs).  Because I didn’t get into Columbus until Saturday morning, I missed the show.

It was quite unfortunate, because I later found out from Lisa Shroyer and Sharon Riggs of Interweave that their boss, Marilyn Murphy had elected to wear my Empyrean Tunic (Interweave Knits, Summer 2010) to accept an award she was receiving! Click here to get to the Ravelry page for Emyprean.

Interweave posted a video of Marilyn Murphy’s acceptance speech.  You can’t see much of my garment, except for the neckline, because the podium pretty much blocks everything. However, nonetheless, it’s a nice speech.

Cool Booths

One of the the most fun booths (besides the Stitch Cooperative one, that is ;)) is Ysolda Teague’s booth, which was located caddy-corner from Stitch Coop’s. Ysolda had a quirky, creative and brightly inviting booth with garment samples of her work and other designer friends works.  Everyday she had a little tea party, where folks stopped by to chat, socialize and have tea and snacks. One of the main highlights of her booth was a photo booth! Click here to see her photo booth photos.

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Photos from top: (1) Ysolda’s photo booth wall; (2) Melissa Werhle, me and Bobsolda and me wearing one of my favorite Ysolda garments; (3) Melissa, who was my roommate for one night, and I hanging out during teatime on Ysolda’s couch.

Other Events & Goodies

Among the many TNNA events, there are usually other business and activities to be conducted, such as several meetings I had for the Association of Knitwear Designers and a dinner for designers, editors, publishers, etc. hosted by Marlaina Bird. I didn’t take any really great photos from the designer’s dinner, but Cecily Glowik-MacDonald, Jess Forbes (Ravelry), and several others did! You can find all their great photos and many others in the Flickr Hello from TNNA group.

By the way, I love this photo of Kristen TenDyke and me that Cecily took, and I absolutely love this portrait of Jess.

IMGP4876 Monday night, after TNNA officially ended, some of my friends and I went out for a nice fun dinner and shopping, where I spotted these sexy shoes.  I didn’t buy them, though I think they look freaking hot, but I just know that I can’t rock 5″ heels (that I’ll only wear very infrequently) without doing some serious damage to my face or ankles when inevitably trip and fall.

Until next year Columbus!
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