Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Handknitted Designs by Jennifer Fox

Diagonal Scarf - Knit Simple Magazine Holiday 2009

Messenger Bag - Knit Simple Magazine Holiday 2009 (made sample)

Praire Rose Scarf - Knit Simple Magazine Fall 2009

Arrowhead Socks - Stitch 'n Bitch Page-A-Day Calendar 2008

Racing Stripes Scarf - Knitting Page-A-Day Calendar 2008

Retropolitan Cardigan - Son of Stitch 'n Bitch book

I'm a Lil Teapot Sweater - Unpublished

Baby Shower Sweater - Unpublished

Ainsley - Unpublished

Tyson - from pattern

A Hat for Jean - unpublished

Fair Isle convertible mitts - from pattern

Flower pacifier clip - from pattern

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Maryland Sheep & Wool '09

Julian and I drove down for the Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival last weekend. I can't believe it's the 4th year in a row we've gone! It's strange too because it tends to be almost all the same vendors set up in exactly the same spots. Makes it seem as if they've never left all year.

Money's been tight so I had to seriously restrain myself this time around. On Saturday I bought a festival t-shirt and totebag. I couldn't resist one yarn purchase and bought the softest most beautiful "Baby Bunny" yarn from Tess' Designer Yarns. Julian bought his third ring from R.E. Piland. You can see it in the pic below:

We caught a sheepdog demo. Wasn't as good as others I've seen b/c it was a young dog who didn't listen to commands all that well but entertaining all the same. I took a video but can't figure out how to upload it on here. You really have to see how these border collies herd the sheep to appreciate it.

Seems like using the flash made all the sheep's eyes bright blue. Pretty cool effect.

It was cold out both days as you can see from these sheep's coats. Sunday was miserable and rainy. We donned our ponchos and rain boots and returned for a few hours.

In a moment of irony we stopped by A.C. Moore on the drive home. I had started a sweater with a couple skeins of Paton's wool from the giveaway bin at the magazine and needed more to continue. I had a moment of deja vu heading back to the White Marsh Mall I used to visit in my college days.

On the way home we stopped for our traditional Sunday night dinner at Cracker Barrel. Hit a bunch of traffic on the way home and the on and off rain didn't help. We had to go a little farther north than home as we'd borrowed my dad's car for the weekend. After returning it we hopped on Metro-North to return to our sheepless city.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Photo Shoot

I had a really awesome day. I got to help out at one of the magazine shoots. I even met a minor celebrity (although I'll admit I didn't know who she was until someone told me). The studio was in Chelsea. It consisted of a bunch of different really big rooms all completely white from the floor to the ceiling. One whole wall was all windows and looked out on the yard where they keep all the trains that go into Penn Station. There was also a great view of the water and the helipad at Chelsea Piers.

It was interesting to see how they put decorations and accessories together to create backdrops for each shot. Also got to watch the interactions between the crew: the models, photographers, makeup people, art director, fashion director, and the editor-in-chief. It feels like the work we do in the office is very removed from the final product so it was great to see how everything comes together.

I brought in a bag I had re-crocheted for them to shoot. I say re-crocheted because the sample had come to us from a yarn company in colors that we didn't love. Since I've been dubbed the "crochet monster" I was assigned the task of remaking it and happily complied.

I mostly helped the fashion director out. We had gotten in a couple boxes of clothes and shoes so I unpacked them and hung everything up. Then I became queen of the steam machine to get all the wrinkles out. I left after lunch to head back to the office but I'm really glad I got the opportunity. There's going to be another shoot on Tuesday and I can't wait to go.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Hip Hap Birthday

I celebrated my birthday on Saturday with a trip to the Orchid Show at the New York Botanical Gardens. These amazing pics speak for themselves:

This purple one was my favorite this year. It's so pretty and if you look close at the center it looks like a little face.

Alien orchid!

Breathtaking orchid wall.

Can't wait to go back when the grounds are in bloom.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

What day is it?

I had one of those weird days where you feel like you're supposed to be somewhere else. It started earlier in the week when I scheduled an earring making class for my craft group. Then I realized the magazine was doing a fashion show that night and I should probably attend. But I wasn't sure if I had to and if it was worth cancelling a class I had a couple people signed up for. I went ahead and canceled it which was good 'cause when I came in the next morning they asked me to be a model in the show!

So I helped organize the clothes and figured out what I was going to wear yesterday. I thought it was fortunate that I had Thursday free then was scheduled to work at the hospital on Friday. This morning an old co-worker called me to see if I'd be at the hospital and wanted to get lunch. I wasn't so we made plans to hang out another time. Then this afternoon I got a call from the hospital. Apparently I was supposed to work there today not tomorrow. But we looked at the schedule and saw that the dates had been written in incorrectly so it was an easy mistake to make.

I got ready and left for the show. Turns out to be a good thing I went 'cause I felt closer to my co-workers and they really appreciated me helping out. It was a lot of fun too! Julian came along with some girls from my knitting group then Julian joined me for the afterparty at a nearby French restaurant.

So if the schedule hadn't been written incorrectly I would have had to work today and wouldn't have been in the show. I have a feeling this is going to lead to something more substantial. Maybe I've just been watching too much Lost recently. There's all these debates on the show about time travel and how you can't change what's meant to be. That got me and Julian talking about alternate realities and how time isn't always a straight line. I'm not sure what the truth is but I'm pretty happy right now so I'm glad I've ended up where I am.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Today was a pretty low-key day. I worked from home on my nutrition research. I'm doing a piece about eating healthy at restaurants. It was easy at first to give general recommendations and for common cuisines like Italian and Mexican. Now I'm getting into more unfamiliar cuisines like Thai and Greek so I've had to do more research.

Later I met my crafting group for Open Knit Night. I got a little confused because the people I thought were coming couldn't make it then other people came as guests so it was a different crowd than I was expecting but fun all the same. Now that I've been organizing knitting groups for a while it's interesting to see how people come and go over time. Sometimes people move away or get busy with work and stop coming. Then new people either move to the neighborhood or take up knitting and become the new regulars.

I came home and played with Little Kitty for a while. It's crazy how much energy he has to chase after things. No wonder he gets so antsy when I don't pay attention to him and starts climbing all over and getting into stuff he shouldn't. I'm going to try to make more of an effort to devote some solid playtime for him. Maybe he'll stop attacking the Big Cat so much. He bit her today on the neck and came up with a big tuft of hair but I think it's because she's shedding more than anything. He looked like he had a goatee with the hair hanging from his mouth. Will have to start brushing her more...and I thought cats were low maintenance.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Crafting Journey

Today was a very interesting day. I went up to Westchester with the head of the book division to help out on a crafting book we're putting together. The author, Coleen Mullaney, had just gotten a shipment of supplies in and needed help putting together the crafts and getting all the instructions written out.

She was an interesting person to meet. She writes books and articles on entertaining and crafts especially for kids. It was a little surreal for me to leave the city and be in a big house with kids around and see what it's like for someone to make a career out of this sort of thing. I worked on some projects involving plastic canvas, yarn, and lanyard. I did the basic samples then took the more involved stuff home to finish this weekend.

Later Wendy dropped me off in the city as I had a private knitting lesson scheduled. We actually managed to get back early. Then Julian texted me as he was in urgent need of a cake carrier since he'd volunteered to bake for his office's monthly birthday party. I had just enough time to slip over to the Container store and then back to the atrium for my lesson. I taught Roz to cast on and knit which she was really excited about.

When I got home Julian had made a bundt cake and a tray of brownies but said they were all for the office. Booo! Luckily for me he stayed home from work today and got in the Passover shopping that I had originally planned to do today. He gave me a brownie after he'd cut them. It was soooo rich it's a good thing he's bringing the rest into work tomorrow. Well, back to crafting!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Earrings, Earrings, Earrings!

I gave my first earring making class tonight and it went really well. It had a good turnout with 6 people. Everyone enjoyed being able to choose their own beads. Learning to make wire wrapped loops for the first time can be tough but everyone managed to bang out 3 or 4 pairs.

As for myself I really liked teaching. It gets easier every time I do it. I'm learning to break each task down into steps and to be more clear with my instructions. I like helping each person figure out what went wrong and how to fix it and love that moment when they first do it right. It's interesting to me how different the designs other people make using the same beads I use.

Everyone was excited to take more beading classes. I'm going to set up the April schedule soon. For more information visit: Crafty Like a Fox

Monday, March 23, 2009

Little Devil....er Kitty

Little Kitty came into our lives over the holidays. I find myself having a love/hate relationship with our kitten. When I come home he's super sweet and just wants to be held and purr against my neck. When he's half asleep on the couch he'll let me pet him and is really cute.

Other times he can be such a terror. In the morning he plays a game called Jump on Jen's Head and Dig Your Claws into her Hair. If that doesn't get a good shriek he moves on to part two: Bite Jen on the Face Just Narrowly Missing Her Eyes. He'll keep doing it until I get up and feed him his wet food. If I'm being lazy on the weekend I'll pull the covers all the way up over my head but this only works until I come up for air. It's also a constant battle to keep him from walking all over the kitchen counters/my beading table/the jewelry box on my nightstand, etc. As I write this he just jumped on the coffee table to lick crumbs off my plate.

We've had to cover all the little trash cans in the apartment as he'll knock them over and rummage around for pieces of plastic to crinkle and tissues to shred. His favorite is Q-tips. Clean or dirty-he doesn't mind. Over the last couple weeks he's knocked both the soap dish and cotton ball cup into the bathroom sink not only breaking them but chipping the sink. I won't even talk about what he does to my yarn. Let's just say he takes after me as a fiberphile.

I've tried to get him toys and keep them out so he's not bored. He has a kitty gym to climb. I'll wave wands around for him to chase. Several times a day he'll attempt to play with Big Cat which involves him attacking her and her trying to shake him off until she gives up and runs away.

I know these are all typical kitten things but it can be really frustrating when you just want to sleep or have some quiet time and it's constantly like, "Little Kitty get down!," "Little Kitty stop that!," "Little Kitty leave Big Cat alone!" Sometimes I wonder how I'll ever deal with children.

Just when I think I've had enough I realize I couldn't let him go. After listening to me complain my mother offered to take him for a while so her cat would have a playmate. All of a sudden I realized I'd miss him growing up. I'd have no one to make up little songs about. No one to keep me company while I unload the dishwasher (while trying to load himself) and protect me from the sock balls while I fold laundry. So Little Kitty is here to stay....now I'll just have to convince Big Cat of that.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

You Should Really Get Your Eyes Checked

Today Julian and I went to get our eyes checked. He's been squinting for ages and was in denial that his Lasiks surgery was no longer effective. I'd never thought about it but getting the surgery doesn't mean your eyes will be 20/20 forever. Anyway we found a place in Forest Hills that takes his insurance and he ordered some cool rimless square glass with blue plastic arms.

I got my eyes checked too and my prescription is pretty much the same. I did try a new pair of contacts since mine have never been comfortable and are "a generation back." I always thought I had a severe astigmatism but apparently it's only a mild one and the eye doctor thought I could get away with non-astigmatism lenses which are thinner and more comfortable. Am I the only one who for years thought it was called just "stigmatism?"

Afterwards we went to Macy's to get a few things. We both had gift cards to use. I got a pair of jeans and some "intimate apparel" as they so nicely label it. Julian got some shorts. I got a little annoyed because I brought all the coupons they sent me but there are so many rules and I couldn't use them on my jeans b/c DKNY was excluded. Booo!

Then I got home and put all my new beads away in their containers. I definately have enough beads now! Tomorrow I have to work at the hospital. Preparing self to tell people they have to eat more protein...

Friday, March 20, 2009

Give Me a Bead!

I did it. I went to the bead show. I had gone to the one back in the fall and there were definitely more 'show specials' this time around. It's really overwhelming with tables and tables of gleaming crystals and beads of all types. Then there's all the vendors selling lengths of chain in gold, silver, and copper in all different shapes and sizes. There's tons of findings: clasps, bead covers, etc.

I loaded up on beads then also picked up some chain and pre-made necklace cords. I got a cool gadget called a wig-a-jig. It's basically pegs put into a block and then you can wind wire around it to get different shapes. I read a book on wire bending on the way to the show and they recommended getting one as it's faster and more consistent than doing it by hand. The vendor I bought it from specialized in selling all kinds of wire in different gauges and colors. I've been wanting to start knitting with wire and now I have no excuse to get started!

I had a good strategy of getting there 2 hours before they closed for the night. That way I could only do 2 hours worth of damage. It forced me to just look around, buy stuff I wanted, then get out. Afterwards I stopped off at the regular bead store to stock up on more storage trays. I also bought a memory wire cutter as I started experimenting with that recently and realized I can't use my regular side cutters on it.

I'm excited to get started! Maybe tomorrow...

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Knitting group

Tonight I went to knitting group at Michelle's apartment. It was prettty low key as a couple girls who are roomates had to drop out due to a toilet overflowing emergency. 'Nuff said. Anyway, Michelle had a really cute puppy that looked like a combination between a fluffy wig and a mop. We noshed on crackers and cheese and chips and guac (while keeping the puppy away from the food). There were still six of us there and it was fun to talk shop along with current events and other stuff. For more info on my group check out Upper East Side Knitters.

Otherwise, I've been home a lot this week as the hospital only put me on for one day which was Sunday. I still have my internship on Mondays and Wednesdays which gets me out of the house. They had advertised for a freelancer so I applied this week. Cross your fingers for me.

Tomorrow I'm planning to go to the Whole Bead Show. That should be fun. I'm going to have to set a time limit for myself as I have a tendency to get real sucked into those kinds of things. Ok, kids. Time for bed. G'night!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Making Stitch Markers

I taught a stitch marker making class tonight for two really nice women. I'd never taught it before so was a little nervous how things would go but it worked out great. We started by learning about the tools and supplies, chose beads then I taught them both simple and wrapped loops. Their creations turned out fabulous and we even made plans to do it again.

These wooden beads are really lightweight and colorful.

Maureen sported green for St. Paddy's Day.

Knitting stitch markers can also be worn as pins on sweaters, jackets, or shawls.

Ronnie proudly shows off her creations.

Check out my group Crafty Like a Fox for more info on classes in beading, knitting, and crocheting.

Life: Part 2

June 1st 2008

"God Bless the Broken Road"

Fuzzy florals

Scalloped edges

Sint Maarten/Saint Martin

Life: to be continued...