Friday, January 30, 2009

What's new Chez Loopy Alpaca

Have you guys seen Tracery? I finally got a knitting pattern out! This one is is Universal Yarn Summer Linen, a Dk weight linen/cotton blend/ I has a deep scoop neck, a slight a-line, short sleeves, and is knit in pieces bottom up to the yoke, where all are joined for a raglan shoulder. Will try to get a photo of it on an actual person when it isn't snowy out side - it seems sort of silly to have snow in the background of a pattern for spring/summer.LL had a couple of friends sleep over last Sunday night because there was no school Monday. Imagine my surprise (and delight) when I got up Monday morning and they were all crocheting. Photos cropped to hide kids' faces - and notice they all have the same electric orange mail polish on? They did that too!

This is M, she didn't get past the chain stitch, but had a really great time chaining.
This is A - she loved her scarf so much that she went to A C Moore and bought crochet hooks, pillaged my stash, and made another one before she went to bed on Monday night! She even wore this one to school, so I know she wasn't just humoring me with the crochet interest.
LL is on an amigurumi kick - this is her current favorite, Chiquito! He was made of leftover Cascade 220, and is from the book Amigurumi World: Seriously Cute Crochet


LL wants you all to know that she is officially a contract crocheter now, and is making some ami store models for our LYS. I told her she isn't official until she actually finishes something and delivers it. Silly mommy...

Busy swatching and trying to get organized. I don't think a weekend will be enough time...

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Want to see my new collection of patterns?

There it is!

Or at least the first half of it. I remember the days when yarn arriving was a good thing, now it comes in boxes the size of kitchen appliances and makes me a nervous wreck! That's a hell of a lot of crocheting and knitting that has to be done right there...

Overall though, this indie pattern publishing thing is making me happy. I had a successful weekend at TNNA selling to the LYS via Universal Yarn who acts as my distributor. I got some great feedback from store owners about what they wanted to see and improvements I could make on the clerical end of things. I have learned that I should focus my time on things I am good at (writing and designing) and let others do what they do best (selling and organizing). It only took me a few decades to figure this out, but better late than never I suppose.

On the non-indie publishing front, I saw the first draft of the cover for Hooked for Life last week. They are still tweaking it a bit, but it's headed in a good direction. I also saw the first round of photos for DIY Afghans from Leisure Arts - also needs a few tweaks, but headed in a good direction. While the vast majority of my work on those two projects is finished, it will still be a bit of a relief when both manuscripts are off to the printer.

Snow day yesterday for LL, she spent the day sledding and making amigurumi - her newest addiction. Will show you some of her work tomorrow - right now I have to go run errands!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

I'm baaaack!

And freezing my butt off! What started out being planned as a simple trip to San Diego for TNNA took a turn for the better when I got the opportunity to go to Rosarito Beach in Mexico for a few days ahead of time to interview various artists in their studios. It's jobs like that that make me love what I do!

This is the view from my room - I stayed at the Rosarito Beach Hotel, which started construction in the 1920s, went through various and sundry developments over the years, and had its most recent addition completed just last year.

This is the view from the pier seen above - the early part of the hotel is to your left, the part where I stayed is the squat building in the center of the photo (I had just about the center room) and the behemoth in the background is the new condo hotel, which I got to tour. All of the parts are wonderful in different ways!


I stayed two nights, and as I said, spent all of my time meeting local artists in various disciplines, which was incredibly cool. Oh, and crocheting, I spent a lot of time crocheting because as usual I was a day late and a dollar short on an afghan I had promised to deliver to Premier Yarns in time for the CHA show, which I think starts tomorrow. I did in fact get it finished, although not in Mexico, but I will show you that one when the pattern gets published. Anyway.

Everyone kept telling me it was unseasonably warm - I sure wasn't complaining about 75 degree weather and beautiful ocean breezes - but I really loved what you see below.
The sunsets were unbelievable!

More from TNNA as I have time - I am still trying to get organized on all of my various projects! Getting Loopy is back in the saddle this week - please join us!

Monday, January 12, 2009

Extremes

Here is Rosewood, the latest pattern from Hooked for Life. It is crocheted in a bamboo ribbon yarn and comes in three sizes - XS/S, M/L and XL/2X.


I went from the relative peace of New Year's weekend to crazy busy getting ready for TNNA. And no I get an email from a friend in San Diego who warns that the weather there is odd - 80 degrees in the afternoon and 40 degrees after dark! Not sure exactly how to pack for that - I am not a dress-up/grown-up clothes kind of person, so my conference-suitable outfits are somewhat limited.

Off to finish knitting a sweater, will try to blog from CA but no promises!

Thursday, January 08, 2009

A beary fun adventure

Sorry for the bad pun, sometimes I just have to succumb, you know? This is Boyd's Bear Country, and amazing store near Gettysburg, PA. LL and I went there before Christmas to do a little last minute Christmas shopping, and I have to say it was a whole lot more fun than I thought it would be.The store was highly decorated for the holidays and I have never seen so many stuffed animals in my life - and that includes LL's room! There was a museum display on the history of the company, a build you own bear area, restaurants, themed areas with all the bears and hares displayed, I could go on and on. While we were primarily shopping for others, and LL knew she was getting a big Christmas pressie so not much else under the tree, I didn't think it was fair to drag her in there and tell her she couldn't bring anything home, so I told her ahead of time that she could pick out an new animal friend. We looked and looked - found something for biggest big sister, a couple of cousins, and a nephew, and then we came upon this -
The bear nursery! All sorts of different bears were in the window of this area, styled to look like a hospital - the nice lady that waited on us was even wearing scrubs, which you can see in the background! Ll selected this little white sweetheart with green eyes, and named her Angelique.

Of course as soon as the new mama brought my grandbear home she said it needed some crocheted or knitted clothes, so I whipped out this little cap - pretty darned cute if I do say so myself. Custom fit of course, with little ear openings so as not to squish her pretty little head! Yarn is Bella Stripes by Universal Yarn. I wrapped it up and put it under the tree, so LL had something besides her Wii to open on 12/25.

I suspect some new bear accessories will be on my hook or needles soon - I had a really great time doing this, and you can't beat bear-sized outfits for instant gratification.

My buddy DC came over today to help me get organzied. Thanks DC! And now I have to move on to the next thing on my list...

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Happy New Year!

Is is 2010 yet?

This is what I have been trying to finish for the last week or so - three new patterns from Hooked for Life - and three more that aren't quite done yet.

In addition to the final edit on the new book - YAY!

And three afghans for a yarn company - YAY!!

And LL is home from school which is good but bad, because she thinks I should hang out with her rather than get any work done - BOO!!!

And why does TNNA always have to be right after the holidays? I crocheted through Christmas dinner and the Planet of the Apes marathon on New Year's Eve (hey, don't laugh, I love those movies!)

Seaside Jacket
Two Infant Car Seat Blankets
Estival


Isn't Estival a great word? It means "summery". I liked how it sounded with Astral, which is another one of my patterns. I may have to go hunting for -al words now.

LL got a sewing machine of her very own for Christmas and is sewing up a storm. She also got a Wii - and spent half the day 12/16 complaining that her shoulder hurt. She was not amused when I pointed out that 7 hours of Wii will do that to a girl...

Anyway - back to pattern writing and post-holiday clean-up, which never seems to end.

Happy New Year!