Posts Tagged ‘eleanor roosevelt’


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.



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.


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


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:


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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I’ve been a little behind in my blog posts lately. I am so smare that I managed to injure myself in my sleep – I somehow injured my trapezius and perhaps deltoid muscles on my left side. The injury has been rather painful and debilitating to say the least, but I suppose things could be a lot worse. Nonetheless, thus for over 2 weeks now, I have not been able to move much, let alone type or knit.  The only thing that kept my sanity is that prior to the injury, the hubby passed on his 1st generation Kindle to me and I’ve at least been able to read and manage the Kindle with one working arm. If it weren’t for the Kindle, I could not have been able to escape staring at the ceiling and finished those fat books from the Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon. Visions of the adventures of Jamie and Claire have also saved me hours of infinite frustration and boredom. (Ahem, so okay, I admit to having fantasies of Jamie Fraser, but little good it did me since there was little I could to do enjoy my fantasies since I could barely even move my head, arm or shoulder without excruciating pain.)

Anyway, I finished the last 3 books during this time: The Fiery Cross, Breath of Snow and Ashes and Echo in the Bone. Now that I’ve finished the entire series, which is a departure from my normal reading list repertoire*, I am not quite sure if I want to reread them now or to reward myself later after I’ve caught up with some of the things that got delayed as a result of my injury, which is still a long ways from being 100% recovered. (* I’ve been know to read mostly nonfiction and fiction works by Asian-American and foreign authors and none of those books have ever been categorized as “romance” though I’d say the Outlander books aren’t exactly easily classified as that either.)

New Pattern Release

I have a knitting update. I released Eleanor Roosevelt, the 5th pattern in the Liberation collection. The hat named after the 1st lady, is a slouchy beret-type hat with a visor. It features 2 shirred panels and is worked flat.

More TNNA Updates

I’ve also be remiss in my Winter TNNA updates.  I mentioned before that I was on a Designer’s panel at TNNA. The experience was rather interesting and being that this was the first panel of its kind, I think that it went well. We received quite a lot of interest and positive feedback, as well as a request to continue the panel in June at the Columbus trade show, which is much larger and better attended than the Long Beach one.

My friend Kristie (also my helper and awesome sample knitter), was kind enough to allow me to share a photo she took of the panel:

Panel Members, from L to R: Chris DeLongpre, Anne Kuo Lukito, Kate Gilbert, Clara Parkes, Eunny Jang and Laura Bryant (click on image to enlarge)

One of the many exciting moments of walking the TNNA trade show floor is meeting new and old friends and acquaintances. Another giddy and silly excitement as a designer is when you unexpectedly spot one of your garments in a booth. Granted, I had some samples in booths of which I was aware, such as Alice Paul and Septima Clark at The Fibre Company booth and Orinoco at the Frog Tree booth, which is exciting in itself. However, it’s not the same as an unexpected good surprise – two in fact!

First, something that I had not expected to see was flyers of the Spring 2010 issue of Interweave Knits featuring the Rose Window Beret (Pattern page link for Ravelers here). Unfortunately, I forgot to take and scan a copy of the flyer to show you all. There was also a galley copy of the issue at the Interweave Press booth.

Image Copyright by Interweave Press. See Spring 2010 preview: http://www.interweaveknits.com/ preview/spring-knits-2010.asp

Another unexpected sight was seeing my tunic on display at the Interweave Press booth. This tunic (I don’t know what the official title of the piece will be yet) was originally supposed to appear in the Spring 2010 issue of Interweave Knits as well. However, just last week, I received an email from editor Eunny Jang (and fellow panelist!) that due to space issues in the Spring issue, she’d like to move it to the Summer 2010 issue. So bar any other delays, consider the following a super sneak preview to the Interweave Knits Summer 2010 issue. 🙂

One of the Interweave staff members luckily didn't think I was too wacky in my excitement (thank goodness!) and volunteered to take a photo of me with my garment. Click on image to see Flickr notes.

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A couple of weeks ago, the American Fim Market, an international trade show for the film industry, was held in Santa Monica at the Loews Hotel.  Mr. CD has a client who has many businesses, one of which is a small film production company. For some reason, Mr. Producer invited us to attend and check out the AFM, so we went on a Sunday, near the end of the market.  While the AFM does hold screenings, we didn’t go see any. We walked around 4-5 floors of the hotel checking out all the rooms.  Each room houses a film or production company where buyers, agents and other people in the industry might go to talk and watch trailers of movies that they’d like to acquire, buy or sell. The hotels also had a dedicated lounge for buyers meetings and every inch of lounge space is also used by industry insiders to schmooze and talk business.

Mr. CD and I didn’t really dare go into any of the rooms, since we’re not part of the industry at all. We just did some looky-loos. Around every corner, stairwell and elevator security was present checking badges. I think there were some smaller-time actors there too the day we went. I think some of the bigger-name actors go earlier and show up at some of the screenings and stuff. Though even if there were actors, I’m not one of those celeb-fans and may not even recognize them.

Photos: Row 1: People schmoozing outside on the patio and in the pool deck area; View from the balcony of one of the floors; Row 2: View from the balcony of one of the floors; Row 3: Suite directory of the various companies at the AFM; Row 3: Mr. CD standing in front off the “Restricted” sign; Our visitor’s badge; Row 4: Mr. CD in one of the hallways; I really like this lamp in the hallways.

Just hours prior to going to the AFM, I had finished I finished my Eleanor Roosevelt (aka elephant, oops) hat just hours prior, so I wore that to the AFM.  I also brought the other hats from Liberation, hoping that perhaps I could find a nice location to do some photoshoots with the hats.  However, Mr. CD is not a good photographer at all and there were just too many people around.  While the ones below are find for internet and screen-viewing, they aren’t good enough for print.

After the AFM, Mr. Producer invited us for drinks on his boat, where his lovely wife and her visiting father joined us. The boat is docked at Marina del Rey. I assume they entertain quite a bit being that they are Hollywood schmoozers and the fridge on the boat is stocked with lots of cheese, beer, liquors and wine. I devoured some of the cheese they served and 2 glasses of a good Kendall Jackson Riesling.  As Gigi, one of my favorite little munchkins would say, “ooh,  fancy” (Gigi is the very prococious daughter of my friend Zona. As a childless curmudgeon, it’s not often that I would like a kid that much, but Gigi makes it very easy.)


Above: The marina and all the boats; me wearing Eleanor Roosevelt on Mr. Producer’s boat; View of the waters from the boat; succulents from the hotel garden; deck view into the living quarters of the boat.

We mostly sat on the deck of the boat, overlooking the waters. I spent a little time inside the boat talking with Mrs. Producer, who is a beautiful, petite and nice woman. (According to Mr. CD, she used to be a model.) The interior of the boat is really nice and cozy. The flooring and cabinetry has some very shellacked hardwood and a cute kitchenette.  There’s a living room, dining room, 2 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms.

Again, I’m not sure why Mr. Producer invited the 2 of us – we’re nobodies, aren’t in the industry and don’t schmooze well (not really the types anyway. We’re boring like that – spending most weekends at home by ourselves). Nonetheless, it was interesting and fun.

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After an attempt to squish and reblock that elephant hat, I realized it was useless.There were too many oops in it to fudge: the gauge was really off AND it was over-stretched in the blocking process. I had to undo and rip everything out.  Just look at the difference between the visor section and the template. The knitted part of the visor should not be about 25%-30% bigger than the template. The gauge in the Oops Hat was about 6 sts x  9 rows. The pattern gauge should be 7.5 sts x 11 rows.

After I ripped out all the pieces, I measured the hat body. OMG it was huge, at about 9.5-9.75″ for one piece. The hat is constructed of 4 pieces: 2 wider hat body pieces and 2 skinnier panel pieces.  The shirred panel measured at about 8-8.5″ each, which means that the Oops version had a head circumference of about 35-36.5″ (89-93cm) around!! Seriously, elephant!!

After I ripped out the hat, I wound the yarn only my swift and blocked the skein to get all the kinks out. To restore some of it’s springy qualities, I beat the wet hank of yarn a few times on the counter (got some good agression workout), then hung them to dry in one of our guest bathrooms.

To make things easier when I reknit, I kept each section in its own hank and marked them using different-colored ties.

When I looked at the pattern for reknitting, I realized that while there definitely were some knitter error with the gauge, there was also some designer-error. The designer-error probably would have been caught had my test knitters finished on time. Due to unforeseen reasons 1 dropped out and 2 were really late on their deadlines. They were supposed to finish right when the sample knitter was about to start, but apparently that did not happen. Maybe this hat had a hex on it.

Anyway, the designer-error occured in the miscalculation of the CO sts. My error would have made the hat bigger – probably make the medium-sized sample fit an Large or X-Large head rather than a medium head (unless the medium head has big hair).

After I fixed and recalculated my errors, I reknit the hat and even remembered to take some photos of the finishing work so that I could put up a tutorial for Amelia Earhart and I have photos to do the tutorial for this hat when it’s ready for release. BTW, this hat is called Eleanor Roosevelt.

A sneak preview of Eleanor Roosevelt, which I wore when I went to the American Film Market trade show on Nov. 8 (I’ll write about that in a later post).

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We’ve all been there, right?  I know I have. Um, many times in fact. I recently did something really terrible and had a near panic attack at 2 a.m.  (I’d love to tell you about it, but I can’t because it’s related to a secret project.)

In preparation in getting Liberation out in a timely manner, I employed a few sample knitters to help me make some of the hats. So far, nearly every single one of them have turned out great, been on time and had great finishing work. (And finishing really make these hats.)

being a little goofy with the oversized Eleanor Roosevelt hat.

However, Eleanor Roosevelt has hit a snafoo.  A really good knitter had a bad day with the hat. It appears that she may have been overly agressive in the blocking and ended up over-blocking all the pieces horizontally.  The result? Gauge that is really really off and a hat that can probably fit an elephant. Okay, so I’m exaggerating about the elephant.

So, what was supposed to be a finished size of 19.5″/ 49cm ended up being a little over 24″/ 61cm! My poor sample knitter is so stressed about this and didn’t know how to fix it. (If you are reading this – don’t stress! I have confidence it’ll all work out in the end.) I’m not sure how I’m going to fix it yet either – I still need to examine everything a little closer.  I think though, I will disassemble everything, attempt to reblock to the right size and see if it’ll work that way. If not, I will have to try a new plan of attack, or ripppppppit and reknit.

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