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Wednesday, May 18, 2004

a ChicKnits Dirty Little Secret Presentation


Has this ever happened to you? You have a couple of spare moments in an unlikely place – mine was the Student Center @DePaul University where they have networked computers in their coffe shop. My truck was parked outside with my camera waiting to do a live shot and I had, like, 10 minutes to get coffee, a banana ( nature’s perfect food, Dude! How about that biodegradeable wrapper?) and maybe a cookie which left just enough time to bid on an EBAY AUCTION!

And this was no unique eBay auction. It was an auction for a CONE OF YARN! They’re all over the yarn section like lawn mushrooms after a spring downpour only exceeded in quantity by the proliferation of EYELASH YARN vendors. And you better believe that the Eyelash Craze is just BEGINNING in the US. When I went round to the Walmart in Cadillac, MI last week in search of TLC Cotton Plus, I came up empty handed.

However, ahem, the lovely stock lady had not one, but TWO CARTS full of skeins of eyelash yarn and was busy placing them on the shelf. I asked about the lowly cotton and just got the BLANK STARE of disbelief: “what – you’re one of those weirdos that knits and you want COTTON!???!??!” kindof half turn of the head. She didn’t even answer me so great was her pleasure in fondling the soft acrylique delight of the eyelash FLUFF~

But I digress –

I placed a bid on that auction, then forgot all about it, then of course, WON IT!

And now that I’ve had a chance to play with it, I kind of LIKE IT!

It is worsted weight 100% Softball cotton in a nice non-baby light blue – I think it shall make a perfect LoTech for work. I’m going to whip it up on the Bond USM that I have.

The USM is good for making those Stockinette portions of a project – then you add the ribbing and detailing later. I used mine alot a couple of years ago and have set it up in a permanent space in the flat so now I don’t have to keep taking it down and we shall see what springs forth.

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In Other News…

RIP Audrey!

I have retired my Audrey sweater, I believe permanently. I worked on it several days on my vacation and don’t think I have the stamina to finish it!

The design is not going to be attractive on someone of my build. I knew this going in, but only this morning when I held it up to myself in the bathroom mirror did….

Oooh – you know the rest….

12 responses to “Wednesday, May 18, 2004”

  1. rock chick says:

    Visions of Homer Simpson fondling the carts at Wal-mart. “Mmmmmmm…eyelash.”

  2. maggi says:

    I’ve been wondering about using the USM in combo with hand-knitting, having only used it for blanket squares thus far. I may query you further in future . . .

  3. Anne says:

    Ooooooo – so what’cha gonna use the Rowan Calmer for then? Can’t wait to see! I think I’ll have to finally succumb and buy some of this stuff that everyone has raved over.

  4. Laura says:

    The USM is great! So far I have only made scarves and one “test” cami…which had to be ripped because I ran out of yarn, but it worked like a dream. If only I could set mine up permanently…I’d use it a lot more. It’s easy to add ribbing afterwards.

  5. Mary says:

    I, too, had a sinking ‘I-should-have-known’ moment last night when I finished up the back of a cute -might I add short- tank top, using Kolibri. I held it up to myself in the mirror, and my first thought was “Shouldn’t I be making things that help me look thinner, not fatter?” After all that knitting, it will take some time to accept that I have to send it to the pond. Then what do I do with all that Kolibri??

  6. Stephanie says:

    I must hang my head and admit some knitting terminology ignorance. What is a USM?

  7. langel says:

    Wow I’m so excited to read about someone using the Bond USM! I just got a vintage 1990 USM from my mom-in-law. She bought it and never used it.
    Does it work well in conjunction with hand knitting? How did you learn to do it? hehe sorry for all the q’s :)


  8. Laura says:

    There is a great video that comes with the Bond USM…that’s how I learned.
    A USM is a manual knitting machine. USM stands for “Ultimate Sweater Machine”. Yeah, it’s dumb. And it looks kinda cheesy because it’s made of plastic. But it works great, once you get the hang of it! Bond makes them.

  9. Bonne Marie says:

    I learned to use the Ultimate Sweater Machine just like Laura – with the cool video that comes with it. It’s a little finicky but once I got the hang of it I could make a sleeve in about an hour or so…

    I like to make simple *work* sweaters that are inexpensive and this seems to cut the tedium down on acres and acres of Stockinette St. I would otherwise be stuck knitting.

    I bought mine with one of those Michaels half-off coupons they have every once in awhile.

  10. Sylvia says:

    Cotton softball is a wonderful classic yarn. Makes excellent baby blankets, and my favorite tank is csb. It is not good if abraded because it is, essentially, an unspun pencil roving plied with a high-twist thread. However, it has endless cush and is pleasant on the hands (for a cotton yarn). It is available at Michaels under a different name in baby pastels. Much cheaper bought by the cone. Usual caveats re pre-washing coned yarns.

    DD just finished a slip 1, k11 eyelash boa (Bernat Boa) in peacock and is now doing a maroon one — for the office ladies at school. Eyelash yarn appeals to 11-year-olds. I find it a bit pesky in that it can twist like ribbon and it gets mussy and is soooo plastic.

    One of the 70-something ladies in the library knitting group has been crocheting hair scrunchies using eyelash yarn and a hair elastic. I suspect they will be a hot seller at the bazaar.

  11. Marymarci says:

    I would hope by time something hits Wal-Mart the fad is over. I was in the Wal-Mart in Princeton, NJ last night picking up a hammer and a case of motor oil. Of course I check out the yarn, and the $1/yard fabric, not a ball of Aunt Lydia’s Cotton Denim in sight. WHICH YOU, by the way, TURNED ME ON TO! But there were four flavors of the plastic eyelash yarn in the bins. That settles it, I’m never wearing eyelash again and it’s getting jettisoned from the stash.

  12. Gaile says:

    “Visions of Homer Simpson fondling the carts at Wal-mart. “Mmmmmmm…eyelash.” …”

    This made me laugh. We have SO MUCH eyelash yarn at the yarn store I work in it is sickening. But it walks out the door, 2 balls at a time, day in and day out. I got my fill of knitting eyelash yarn scarves last winter (or so I thought), but am already getting requests for more from friends wanting them for this fall. At least I don’t have to go far to find the stuff!

    Sorry to hear about your “Audrey”. I knew that wasn’t the sweater for me and tried to talk one of my daughters into letting me knit it for her, but it was a no go. Rowan yarns aren’t really popular where I live for some reason, and yet I love them. Just hate paying the price to get the stuff in.

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