Wednesday, January 30, 2013

I need a break.

I like having a routine. I like making sure things fall into place every day. I still like surprises though; there's that, at least. But if a deviance isn't worth it, or is just a nuisance, then I'd rather do without it. It's a blessing that I spend at least 30% of my time daydreaming, else I'd end up being the most boring person in the world and boring myself to death.

A few years ago, I was the opposite. I hated having a routine, I just wanted to do things more spontaneously. Nowadays, I find myself appreciating the daily grind. I like the fact that I just go to work, go home, sleep early, wake up early and repeat. Weekends are a bit more "fun" 'cause they're for going to gigs, meeting up with friends, drinking. But it's still part of the routine. It's comfy. And that's starting to scare me a bit. What if I turn into one of those people who stop living?

And who knew desk jobs would be so tiring? Everyday when I get home, I always try to remember what makes that particular day so tiring. Is it the commute? The having to sit down for 9 hours? Staring at the computer? I can't put my finger on it. The commute isn't that bad. In fact, this part of my daily routine is where I feel the most energized. I really don't know.

I guess I'm just starting to have some feelings of unrest again. Is it because this is the longest time I've spent on one single job? I dunno. I do appreciate the stable income though. A lot. And I don't want to let go of it just yet because Marc and I have PLANS. Big plans.

Well anyway to get to the point, what I really want right now is this:
I wish for at least one weekend of doing nothing but lie in bed, watch some movies, eat cheetos and drink tea.

Hmm, who am I to complain about having social activities in my life??? Haha. Don't get me wrong, I love seeing my friends and going out, but lately, I haven't found time to just sit back, relax and do the things I love doing on my own.

So let's see. I'm hoping this Sunday's the day!


What have I been up to lately? (in bad photos):

I've begun charting some options for my shawl-in-progress' border.

I've learned how to do the fishtail braid from the top of my head!
You can't see it here though. hoho

I've been working on that endless shawl.
And lamenting the striking change in color. Boo. Iz ugly.
It looks like mismatched lipstick against bad skin.

I bleached the lower half of my hair, hoping to create an awesome ombre look.
But ended up not bleaching it enough.
I'll work on it some more before Saturday, and hopefully get it to the shade I want it to be.

Wow, look at me, actually trying to be trendy. I noticed that about me lately... I think I'm becoming more and more concerned about how I look. A sudden bout of extreme vanity? Or just genuine care about my overall well-being? More on that in my next post... When I get to writing it.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Shawl update: Boring is the new thing.

I've knit only 4 rows since last Thursday. Sounds pretty meager, yes. But I'm knitting a top-down shawl, and this means that the number of stitches increase every other row. Oh, it makes for such slow progress.

And to add insult to injury, or whatever correct expression should be used, check out my new problem below:

I am about to finish the first ball of yarn, and I thought I had another one in the same color.
I don't. *tears

The other ball is a brighter pink! Ohhhh maaaaaan. I don't even like pink!

I can't buy another ball of the first color cos I bought these as a set from Bheng. There is no other chance for me to get another one. And I don't want to bother looking it up online either. This shawl pattern is an experiment, and I'm really just trying out the pattern I came up with.

I'll try to figure something out, try incorporating or merging the new color in somehow. Maybe try knitting with the two colors together for a few rows, though I'm worried about what that will do to the texture and structure of the FO. I also hope the shift in color won't take away from the pattern. It's a new pattern that I'd like to share for free.

P.S. Oddly enough, the impending color change issue is making me a little bit more excited to continue the shawl.

I'm alive!


I'm still alive. I'm still trying to get back into whatever prolific mindset I had last year. A lot of things are happening within me (oh, I'm not pregnant! Just conflicted. lol) and can't seem to get things settled enough to think straight.

I keep thinking that every weekend could be a fresh new start for me, but I still can't get myself to do the things I want to do. I may be living too much inside my head; daydreaming and planning are all I really do nowadays. But I know I have to DO something. An easy FO could probably help get my feet back on the ground.

While I try to decide on my next easy project, here are a few photos from the last couple of weeks to help distract from the lack of the kind of productivity I want around here.

My cousin and his wife celebrated their 10th wedding anniversary with a masquerade:

My cousin and my mom.
My cousin and her daughter.
Me and my goddaughter.
Cute nephew!
The lovely couple.

And for more random:

Our cat as a hamster!

A new burger joint opened near our house! Woo

One of my friends fell in love with a hat I made!

And a couple of photoshoots happened this past weekend:

Friday, January 11, 2013

Just a thought...

Or possibly a sign of *cough* maturity? haha.

I honestly haven't been feeling inspired lately with my knitting. I have a few guesses as to why, cos I really can't put a finger on it:

1. I haven't given myself new yarn in months.

Gasp! Don't worry, I'm still sane. But yes, new yarn makes me happy and excited... I still do have a lot of yarn hidden in my tiny little stash compartment; I guess not being able to see what I actually have makes me feel dull.

2. I'm stressing too much about making and perfecting my own lace shawl pattern.

I can get obsessed about things. Extremely obsessed. You can ask Marc. And since I'm obsessing about this, I think I kind of blocked out all other possible projects from my mind.

3. My mind is pre-occupied with LIFE.

We recently decided to sell the tiny apartment we were paying for, and just move in and rent someplace together once it's been sold. This is opening up a LOT of possibilities and exciting new things for us. It will be our time to begin our life together. I keep thinking and planning in my head, I'm so excited!

Well I guess I just mapped it all out here. All of those are most likely the reasons why hahaha.

Anyway, I forgot to mention in my previous post that I have another project on my needles. I plan on turning my recycled sweater yarn into a cool stripey hat! But the yarn is actually making me rethink that decision... I think I want to turn it into a wide scarf too! Ahhh. I wish I were more determined and less wishy-washy.

Case in point: I was inspired to write this post to talk about what I think will inspire me to knit more, but here I am talking about my recycled sweater yarn. Sorry!

So yes, here's my thought: I should knit more for others! (maturity?!?)

Two of my friends are having their birthdays in a few weeks, and I think I'd like to knit them gifts this year instead of just buying them booze. heh. And I also want to bring to life some amigurumi ideas I had from way back 2010. Must. Have. More. Resolve.

Let's hope these ideas won't side-track me from completing my shawl though XD oh man.

What's on my needles? First Lace Shawl design attempt

As I mentioned in my previous post, I received Miriam Felton's Lace Shawl Design class on Craftsy for Christmas from Marc. I'd been eyeing this particular Craftsy class for a long time because I knew it could help me understand lace better.

After finishing off my first ever lace shawl using the pattern Gail (Aka Nightsongs) by Jane Araujo, I realized that lace knitting was fun and challenging in the best way possible. I got crazed for a bit and tried several tiny attempts to make my own designs. Alas, it was too complicated for me, or maybe I just didn't have the patience to really TRY.

And so I looked online for some tutorials for lace design. I found Miriam Felton's class on Craftsy and I just knew I had to have it. I couldn't yet justify the expense to myself, so I hoped (and hinted) that someone would get it for me for Christmas. :D

It's amazing! With the class, you get to watch the lessons over and over again. You also receive a few PDFs as supplementary "readings". I thought top-down triangular shawls were easy to knit: just start with a few stitches and increase 4 sts every other row. But inserting a lace pattern in there is difficult! You have to factor in important things like symmetry and, of course, aesthetic (which is relative). This class has taught me a LOT and has helped boost my confidence.

I'm in the middle of trying out a shawl of my own, using Barbara Walker's Snowflake stitch pattern. Even before receiving this class for Xmas, I already had an idea/concept for a lace stitch pattern, but I still haven't gotten it down pat. So for now, I wanted to practice what I learned from the class using just a simple stitch pattern to make sure that I understood what I had learned:

So far, so good. I managed to apply what I learned about possible adding more increases to make sure that the symmetry is preserved. The stitch pattern is cute, but honestly, I think it's starting to get boring -_-. I haven't really gone that far from that sample in the photo. Boo. But I gotta stick to this if I wanna improve!

There's another factor that's keeping me from being too excited -- The yarn I'm using is acrylic, and will not block at all. I hope these little eyelets will still look good, though.

Wish me luck and patience!

If all goes well, I shall be posting a free pattern for this :)

PS: How to keep from getting bored? Start a simultaneous project? Any suggestions? I'm feeling a bit uninspired!

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Happy New Year! 2013 is here!

Wow, I haven't posted in a while. Where do I begin?

I got so busy last month, what with work literally eating up my whole day. December is the month when I have the most files to process. It's my time to shine in the office, so to speak. haha. I'd get so tired at the end of the day, so that when I'd get home, all I'd do is just plop down on the sofa on front of the tv.

I did not knit AT ALL since the Lace Drawstring Bag. I did not sew anything either. I was so tired most of the time, that I opted to not give any handmade gifts this holiday season as I'd originally planned. I stressed myself out too much, I got sick towards the end of the year too -- down with the flu all between Christmas and New Year's Eve.

I can't say my holidays sucked though. It was jam-packed with family gatherings, meet-ups with friends, and even some alone time/me-time (no thanks to the sickness).

Here's the end of my 2012 in some (blurry) photos: