Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Episode 149 - We Squee

Melissa and Abby are drinking Blue Lotus Chai

Melissa is still working on the endless ombre basket weave blanket for her nephew and the Moorehouse Farm’s Batwing Poncho.

Abby is working on a pair of self striping socks with yarn from Fab Funky Fibres, found on Etsy. She is using carbon circular needles by Knitter’s Pride that she bought at Black Sheep.

Abby spent most of her time between podcasts on working on her Alabama Chainin a-line dress Abby used Oregon Blueprint to print her patterns.  Dressmakers tools and supplies can be found at Nancy’s Notions and Gold Star Tools. Abby also made an Alabama Chainin stencil called Anna’s Garden

Bitter Cup & Brewing 
Melissa is making the Batwing Poncho into a sweater by adding a tube top to the poncho, Perhaps using her Silver Reed 840 standard gauge knitting machine.  She is also going to ORYCON the Oregon Science Fiction Convention later in November and is looking to pull together a quick costume.

Abby reviewed Good Measure, knit a perfect fit every time by Deborah Newton sent to us by the lovely people at Sixth and Spring

Melissa brought The Night Before Christmas in Crochet: The Complete Poem

Abby went through Nicky Epstein’s Enchanted Knits for Dolls sent to us again by the wonderful people at Sixth and Spring.

Abby discussed Mother Plays with Dolls  by Elinor Peace Bailey

We discussed
Into the Badlands on AMC
Doctor Who
Brooklyn nine nine
The Big Bang Theory 

Join our Ravelry Group, like our facebook page, reach us at AbbyKnitz on Instagram, and Melissa is  MisMAB on Ravelry  

Happy Thanksgiving & play a lot of games!

Thursday, November 5, 2015

148 Going Crazy!

Abby & Melissa are drinking Blue Lotus Chai in today’s podcast.


Melissa is still working on the Batwing Poncho from Morehouse Knitting, and a Basketweave blanket that she has been working on FOREVER for her nephew. Due to life events there has been very little progress on those items.

Abby has made significant progress on her Hitofude Cardigan sweater. The sleeves have been completed and now she is working on the back. This is the only project she has been working on.

Bitter Cup

Abby got off by a stitch in the ribbing of her sweater, and she lost a stitch at the edge. She fixed the problem in the ribbing and has figured out how to fix problems at the edge of the project. Melissa suggested lifelines and we discussed when and how we use lifelines. Melissa has been just carrying her knitting around and not knitting due to numerous life issues.


Abby wants to start a pair of self striping socks.

Melissa has been looking at Knitted Knockers and chicken sweaters

Abby mentioned the Murano Hotel in Tacoma where they have the Madrona Fiber Arts Winter Retreat

Abby is starting a book review of Deborah Newton’s Good Measure. This book is about getting a perfect fit. But she is still really focused on making her own clothing with the Alabama Chainin patterns /studio-books. And in order to do that she needed natural cotton jersey. Since the Alabama Chainin jersey was very expensive Abby decided to dye her own. And that was an adventure. It turned out beautifully though. Afterwards she went out and bought additional fabric. She will use the fabric she dyed for her first garments. The fourth Alabama Chainin book contains a CD that contains ALL of their patterns.


Abby is behind on Doctor Who, Empire, and Gotham. Melissa’s costume for Halloween was Ms. Kringle from Gotham. Project Runway got a long discussion since the finale is coming up. Abby and Melissa are both excited by who is going to the finale. Fun and gorey series are also happening like Scream Queens and Ash vs Evil Dead Regular series like Scandal and How to Get Away with Murder are suggested as great for knitting because they rely heavily on dialogue. And The Walking Dead is still great despite being in its sixth season.

Monday, October 12, 2015

147 Gnomes, Bunnies and Tribbles

Latte: Melissa is working on the Morehouse Farm's Batwing Poncho and the blanket that she is knitting for her nephew. Abby is making the Gecko Scarf, also from from Morehouse Farm. She’s making it out of Cascade 220, on Lantern Moon mahogany dpns. Abby mentions that she got three scarf kits from Morehouse Farm: the alligator, Cat/critter, and frog. She’s also STILL working on the first part of Hitofude, but closing in on at least that part. Grande: Melissa finished a totally cute pink miniature Cthulu. Abby finished, as promised, a Mochimochi Gnome from a pattern by Anna Hrachovec. She used the help of a Wanda to get the arms through the body. We mention Huge and Huggable Mochimochi also by Anna Hrachovec. Bitter Cup: Melissa has found that the Batwing poncho will not exactly fit her, but thankfully, there are nieces who can enjoy it. Chai: We went to Rose City ComicCon, where we saw Nichelle Nichols and Walter Koenig from Start Trek TOS. Some of our favorite artists were: Fanboy Museum, Pixelosis, Caged Fairy, and many others. We saw incredible Lego creations by the Portland Lego Users Group. Some great comics we discovered were: Marbles by Ellen Forney, Devil’s Panties, Oh Hell, The Comic Critic and Krampus. Geek Chic tables are beautiful and to be lusted after. We also attended the Oregon Flock and Fiber Festival. Melissa tried spinning on a Jenkins Turkish Spindle and on the Hansen Mini-Spinner. Jody MacDougall makes fantastic glass buttons. We both bought Felted Possum Yarn from Fly Designs. We fell in love with the angora bunnies. Dave Yocom makes truly beautiful turned wooden yarn bowls. Brewing: Sewing obsessions! Authentic Star Trek patterns. Melissa talks about a Victorian/Star Trek mashup. Abby has become obsessed with Alabama Chanin sewing and wants to make a whole new wardrobe of hand sewn clothing. Rachel Herron recently made an Alabama Chanin dress for herself and it is stunning. Sofa: We talk about TV, especially Documentary Now!, Drunk History and Scream Queens. We’re looking forward to Supergirl and the new season of The Walking Dead. Edibles: We talk about what it’s like to live in Oregon now that weed is legal.

Monday, September 28, 2015

146 - Whimsy!

Apologies for all the ambient noise. We will do better next time!

Latte: Abby is working on the same things she was knitting last time! Melissa, however, got inspired. Melissa is crocheting a very cute Cthulu, if such things are possible (they are!). For those who may not know, Melissa gives a brief introduction to Cthulu and his (its?) ilk. You can learn a lot about HP Lovecraft here. And you can find your own cute Cthulu hat on ravelry. Melissa mentioned our beloved Portland game store, Guardian Games. [No trip to Portland is complete without a visit!]  We mention Creepy Cute Crochet. 

Grande: Melissa finished a mermaid and an octopus from Teeny Tiny Mochimochi. She also made an adorable moose in cotton yarn from Knitting Mochimochi. Melissa spoke about Gumballs, tiny skeins of yarn  from Knitted Wit that can be purchased at Twisted in Portland. Melissa also referred to Hexipuffs, which Abby has sworn she will NEVER make. Abby shared that she has been painting, partly as therapy, partly as self-expression.

Abby mentioned that she belongs to ORA, the Northwest Jewish Artists Guild. If you are in Portland, please come see her in her first juried show: Celebration of Art! It’s on October 18th, and details can be found here

Brewing: Melissa is giong to make Morehouse Knits Batwing Poncho. It is too cute! Melissa explains the value of ponchos for keeping warm at work. Melissa also waxes rhapsodic about Morehouse Knits, so go to their website and buy stuff! (no affiliation)
Abby wants to knit everything, especially the Queen Bee sweater by Mary Scott Huff, but there’s no budget for the yarn, so what to do in the meantime? Maybe knit a vest? Or one of the dozen or so Katniss cowls on ravelry? We mention Outlander as well. Melissa likes to buy her yarn and bundle it together with the pattern and set it aside in a project bag. 

Special Event: Melissa unboxes the Janie Crow Persian Tiles blanket! You can see a video of the unboxing here

Taste: We review New Lace Knitting, Designs for Wide Open Spaces by Romi Hill. Abby wants to knit EVERYTHING in this book! Melissa gives brief reviews of Anna Hrachovec books: Knitting Mochimochi, Teeny Tiny Mochimochi and Adventures in Mochi-Mochi Land. Melissa also brought Twinkie Chan’s Crochet Goodies for Fashion Foodies AND Knit Your Own Dog AND Woodland Knits. So much whimsy, so little time!

Demi Tasse: Abby reports her discovery that, if you are an subscriber, you can return a book you don’t like and get your credit back!

Sofa: We are excited about Fall TV! Specific shows that we like are: Black Mirror, Mr. Robot, Sherlock, Doctor Who, Gotham, Childhood’s End, Outlander, Ash vs. the Evil Dead, Daredevil and Jessica Jones. Podcasts Abby has been listening to include Will Wheaton’s Radio Free Burrito, and The Black Tapes podcast. 

Monday, August 31, 2015

We welcome Guest Barista Melissa to the podcast!
Right out of the gate, we began talking about Doctor Who Lego Dimensions, inspired by Melissa’s TARDIS earrings.
Netrunner is mentioned briefly.
Melissa mentioned Twisted and Happy Knits, both Portland yarn shops.
Melissa is both a knitter and a crocheter, and her ravelry handle is MissMAB.
Coava Coffee is mentioned.

Grande: Melissa has no finished objects. Abby has finished two pairs of self-striping socks, one using yarn from Stray Cat Socks in the color Lollypop, with the Fish Lips Kiss Heel, and the other from Yarn vs. Zombies with an afterthought heel. Abby also finished Romi Hill’s Carson and Louisa Harding’s Ribbon Shrug out of Malabrigo Chunky in Molly. Abby used Knit Visualizer to generate a chart for Ribbon, which only had written instructions. 

Latte: Melissa is working on her “year blanket”, which is full-sized, out of various blues, in a large basketweave pattern. Melissa is also working on some toe-up socks, but she’s thinking about frogging them. Melissa has ordered a Persian Tile blanket kit from Janie Crow. Melissa also mentions Twinkie Chan. 

Abby is working on Hitofude out of Tosh Merino Light, which is fingering weight, not sport weight, in Tomato. It is going slowly. She is also knitting the Delias Eucharis socks from The Knitter’s Curiosity Cabinet Volume II in Hazel Knits Artisan Sock in Baroness. She is going to McGuyver the heel flap to continue the patterning down the back of the heel.

Bitter Cup: Melissa has a Silver Reed 840 knitting machine, which has given her grief, especially in the casting on.  Yarn barf has ensued, and a repair to the machine will be necessary. Abby began knitting Miss Dashwood, by Bonne Marie Burns, out of Fibra Natura Flax, but put it down for a week or so and subsequently messed up the edges, which was beyond her ability to repair. Frogging has ensued. 

Stir: Abby is spinning some vintage Crown Mountain Farms fiber which she ran through her drum carder, and then, having decided to spin long draw (woolen), hand carded into rolags. Progress is slow but steady. 

Sofa: Melissa and Abby talk about some favorite games, and discuss what makes a game “knitting friendly” or not. Abby made up a word, but please note that the plural of impetus is “impetuses”. Games we said we like include, the knitting-friendly: Firefly, Carcassonne, Tsuro, Dead of Winter, Pandemic, Forbidden Desert, Forbidden Island, “good old D&D”, and the not so knitting friendly: Munchkin, Exploding Kittens, Fluxx in its many incarnations, Cards Against Humanity, King of New York, and Abby’s very favorite game, Android: Netrunner. Abby mentioned The Winning Agenda, an Australian podcast about Netrunner, on which she was a guest several weeks ago. 

At the end, Abby mentioned that she is knitting a “Recovery Gauntlet” for a friend who recently had hand surgery. Stay tuned for updates. 

You can reach Melissa via her blog here.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Announcing the Summer of Reading that Will Change Your Life

Greetings, it's been a long time! I am embarking on a summer of reading life-changing books, and I invite you to join me. Here's the skinny:

The Summer of Reading that Will Change Your Life! Here are the books I've picked to read between now and Labor Day. Will you join me? If any/all appeal to you, please post which you want to read so that we can discuss. I have no particular order in mind:

This Changes Everything by Naomi Klein
Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro
Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer
How Can I Help by Ram Dass
Play It As It Lays by Joan Didion

Who's in?

Monday, February 2, 2015

144 Sunny Afternoon

We welcome guest barista M. K. Nance to the podcast. 

Grande: Nance has finished a trio of hats called Sudice. Each hat has a Polish name , and are knit from Three Fates yarn. You can find the hats here. Nancy also finished a hat from Lakes Yarn & Fiber called Fernan. Abby finished her Hitchhiker from yarn she spun from the (now defunct) Crown Mountain Farms fiber in San Francisco Nights, and Copperline mitts by Elizabeth Doherty out of Zealana Rimu DK. They are soft and lovely!

Latte: Nance is knitting a hat from Black Trillium Lilt in Blue Suede Shoes. The hat has no name — yet. Abby is knitting vanilla socks from Stray Cat Socks self striping yarn in the color Lollipop. Abby is also making Carson by Romi Hill from Collinette Jitterbug. There might not be enough yarn, but she plans to improvise if need be. Abby is also knitting Conina socks for Laura, but they are going very, very slowly. 

Brewing: Nance talks about how she learned to knit. A teacher thought knitting would give seven-year-old Nance the dexterity to learn to tie her shoes. Nance mentions NÃ¥lebinding, which you can read about here. Nance’s design process begins with an idea, often a stitch pattern she designs in Stitch Mastery. 

BONUS: If you purchase one of Nance’s hats on her ravelry store between now and February 5th, use the discount code mentioned on the podcast for half off!

Abby is still pondering knitting a sweater! She would love to knit Queen Bee by Mary Scott Huff, but doesn’t currently have the yarn for it. She also talks about taking on brioche knitting, finally. 

Caffeinated: Abby is excited about the New York Times Cooking app, which is available for iPad and Android. 

Sofa: Abby has been watching Project Runway All Stars. HBO did a wonderful documentary called Banksy Does New York. We also mentioned Exit Through the Gift Shop which is related, in some ways. We are loving the new podcast Invisibilia. Don’t miss it! Nance recommends Anzac Girls, an Australian TV show. 

Events: Madrona! Maybe we’ll be there, maybe not. It’s undecided. 

You can check out Nance’s website here