Wednesday, January 14, 2009

A knitting post... Koolhaas

The BFG is currently visiting his motherland on the other side of the world. To ensure that the cold in the northern hemisphere does not cause permanent damage to his brain cells and that we can continue to have adult conversations when he comes back, I made him this:

Pattern: Koolhaas - by Brooklyntweed
Yarn: Naturally Harmony 10 ply - 1.3 skeins used
Picture: When I asked him to take a picture for me of the hat, in my mind I had envisioned him with Koolhaas in front of the Little Mermaid statue in Copenhagen. Instead, this is a picture of him in front of his grandmother's old house.

I actually started making this around August last year and completed it. But when he tried it on, it was too long and to make it fit properly, he would have had to roll the rim which I didn't like the look of. So, I just left it sitting there. I figured we were moving towards warmer weather and so there was no hurry to try to fix it. Anyway, I told him I'll try to get it sorted before he leaves. This of course didn't happen till literally a week beforehand. The pattern calls for 5 pattern repeats for the male version, and seeing as it was a smidge too long, I'd rip it back to 4.5 repeats. I think I was overestimating my skills in reading my own knitting. This pattern used a stitch marker which moved every 6th and 8th row of the pattern. So of course, there was no way I would be able to rip it back and work out where I was. I ended up ripping it right back to the ribbing and started knitting pretty much from scratch. I seriously hope he takes care of this hat because there is no way I'm going to be making another one. The cable needle nearly drove me insane. To top it off, I was knitting this on what must have been Sydney's hottest days in his really hot apartment.

Anyway, I've soon got another finished object to share and that is the Minimalist cardigan I was knitting. I've knitted up all the pieces, they are blocked (as well as I could do this) and now waiting to be sewn up. If anybody out there has some good tips on making this process less painful (like any outsourcing companies who might want to take the job), please let me know!! I feel like I need to enlist professional help.

Friday, January 02, 2009

Year in Review

In 2008:

I got a new job - I seem to get a new job every time I move house. I'm not sure why this is, but for the last several years, each time I have moved house, not long after, I find myself a new job. (Someone once thought that I got a new job each time I got a new boyfriend - but I've had more different jobs than I have ex-boyfriends so that can't be it). So having moved house in late 2007, it was time to move on. I wasn't actively looking but I was feeling a bit bored at my last job and I wasn't quite sure how to handle this weird situation with a married German colleague (as in I didn't quite know how to tell him to just f*ck off). Anyway, word got out that I had itchy feet and an email offering me an interview saw me start the new job in February. A job which I LOVE LOVE LOVE!! Okay, not so much love as in - really, I'd rather be working than knitting sort of love.

I met the BFG - I've always found it interesting to see how other bloggers introduced new flames and extinguished the old. For me, I chose to just stop writing about him. But how to introduce a new person in your life without explaining where the old one went? Well, I figured that most people who read this blog are my friends and already know what is going on in my life. Others who found it through Google probably don't really care. So while Princess Mary met Prince Frederick of Denmark - I met the BFG (who unfortunately is in no way related to the Royals).

my Grandmother died - I've always had a strange relationship with my grandmother who passed away in April. Each time I visited, she would ask me "So, when are you getting married?" And each time, I would reply "Not yet" (I'm not quite sure why I didn't try to come up with something wittier, but somehow I don't think she would have got it). Anyway, the last time I visited her before she was transferred to a nursing home, she was still conscious and her question to me again (and mind you, this is from a woman suffering from dementia) was "When are you getting married?"

I finally graduated from my post-grad studies - I realise that academia and I were not meant for each other. I loved going to the lectures, participating in the discussions in tutorials and getting student discounts again. But I hated, loathed and was generally quite averse to the actual assignments required to pass subjects.

I went to Vietnam - When I went to Vietnam in August, I had this thing about photographing all these different signs that had the name (or word) "Lien" on it. I don't know why (could have something to do with my narcisstic tendencies?). From this, I realised that my mother could not have chosen a more common name. I had no trouble finding signs, etc with "Lien" plastered on it. It was on most buses as well. Go figure.

my uncle died - So having gone through my thirty years with no close family dying. In 2008, I experienced two. The thing about Chinese Buddhist funerals is that a) they go on for days and b) there is a huge amount of chanting/praying/kneeling which goes on. I have had longer conversations with my cousins at these funerals than I have in the last five years.

In 2008 I have learnt:

that I am good with small projects - Going by the number of completed small projects (mainly hats and scarves) and the number of completed larger projects (I'm thinking things like jumpers and cardigans) in 2008, I think that I need to work with my strengths (short attention span) and not get too hung up about my weaknesses (commitment phobia). I read knitting blogs every day where people are churning out a finished object every other week. I have come to accept that it is OKAY to not finish a project, that it is OKAY that friends and family don't get knitted presents from me, and more importantly, it is OKAY to have more than one project going at any given time.

that public transport and I will have to learn to live with each other - for my 18th birthday, I bought myself a new car. It probably wasn't the wisest decision for an 18 year old to make as I worked my ASS off for years to pay off that huge shiny red "love of my life". She was a red 1995 Honda GTI (automatic - because for the life of me, I CANNOT work a manual car) and guys on the road used to want me to race them (as if I would want to race my beautiful BRAND NEW car!). Anyway, now that its gone, I have not replaced her. Nor do I think I will in the near future as the environmentally responsible thing to do is NOT to have a car. But seriously, sometimes it kills me not to be able to go wherever I want to because Sydney transport is so crappo. I now buy train tickets in 3 month blocks, own pre-paid bus tickets and even have an inkling as to how buses work and how much I need to pay. A year ago, I didn't even know where the bus stops were.

So, after all that, Goodbye 2008 and Welcome 2009. I look forward to keeping up with my "every year's" resolution of being more organised, knitting more small and (hopefully) large projects, being more environmentally aware, persuading more people to take up running, converting more people to use less plastic (myself included) and convincing the BFG to take shorter showers.