July 28, 2005

JULY 28, 2005

Let me introduce you to Star --
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She's an albino angora rabbit. I got to meet her in person -- er, in rabbit? -- on Monday, when I drove out to the pastoral countryside to visit rabbit herder extraordinaire, Michele Camacho. Star, by the way, comes from an impressive lineage -- her mother's name was Starmore.

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Michele holding Pachula, who's more peachy-colored. These bunnies are big. Also, soft -- petting Star was like putting my hand in a cloud.

Michele has a herd of 15 angora bunnies. She uses their fur in her custom-spun woolen blends, that she sells through her company, Toots le Blanc & Co. The bunnies range in color from white, peach, various shades of tan, and black. I interviewed Michele on Monday for an article for the Guild newsletter; Michele is a long-time Guild member and at one time served on the board as librarian. What you see in the photo on the ground behind Michele is a wire rabbit run, and throughout the afternoon different members of the herd got to play in it. Pachula escaped -- jumped right out! But was rescued, after leading Michele a merry, hopping chase around the backyard.

In other news around here:

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Stormy helped me unpack the box of books that came with my new loom. Yes, new loom! I pick up the loom this afternoon, and I'm excited! (Although I haven't quite finished clearing a space for this 40" floor loom....)

The loom is new in the sense that it's new to me -- and it is also in excellent condition, not a scratch on her, not a twisted nor a bent heddle, even though her little cherrywood self was built in 1979. She comes with a box of books from her previous owner -- and I've been treasuring these books these past two weeks while waiting to pick up the loom itself. You can see that there are some gems in here: back issues of Handwoven, the slim green volume of drafting charts that every weaver must have (but I have managed to avoid buying, prior to this). The loom and its accoutrements belonged to the mother-in-law of a woman I know through Guild; the mother-in-law passed away in January, and the family was selling the loom.

A word about Stormy, the rescue cat that I adopted from a nearby pet store: We've had her just about one year. She is very kittenish, although we don't know her exact age. She came with the name of Jewel, which she did not respond to -- I think the name was a bit of pet-rescue hype. We tried various names on her, and Stormy has been the one that stuck. More or less. Scott always calls her Zed. (I think he does this mostly to annoy me.) Recently I was remembering a Siamese that Scott and I used to have, many many years ago -- this Siamese named Fred got himself adopted by our next-door neighbors, who lavished far more attention on him than we did. They called him Freddles. So, remembering all that, I started calling our black cat Zeddles. Instantly, Scott's converted to calling her Stormy.

All for now -- gotta make room for the loom! Oh, but before I run off, here's the obligatory photo of my current knitting projects:

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In the back, a lace scarf from a 1995 issue of Piecework; I've completed the first lace repeat. At left, the sock for my sister continues.... At right, I'm restarting the Agnes sweater from Vintage Style, this time putting a hem in the bottom. Remember that the occupational therapist recommended having at least two projects going, so that you'd switch off on needles sizes? Let's see, I'm using sizes US 1, 2, and 3, respectively. Somehow, I think she had larger incremental differences in mind.

Posted by Karen at July 28, 2005 08:51 AM

Thanks for the enabling and the wonderful bunny pics Karen. I like Zed, it must be a Canadian thing :) Congrats on the new loom!

Posted by: Angela at July 28, 2005 10:35 AM

Those three sizes mean difference in my book! Are you coming to the Stitch n Pitch tonight?

Posted by: marti at July 28, 2005 02:21 PM

I absolutley love those bunnies!,,,
Bet that yarn is reeeealll soft!

We raised rabbits when the kids were younger, and they were so much fun.
Now,, we are trying to downsize our animal kingdom since we became empty nesters ( for at least part of the time) last year,,,,, but I am afraid, so far,its not working,,,,

Just to share with everyone, I am reading the book THE OPINIONATED KNITTER. I waited patiently for this book to be released,,,,, ,
This completes my collection of her books, all are wonderful to own.
(I keep thinking I must make the PI shawl someday,,,,)

What a mind she had, and what great contributions she made to the knitting community, she has a pretty amazing story.
You gain a lot of insight into her life in 2 books she wrote.

Knitters,,,,think this one thru,,,this woman went camping on an island in the middle of nowhere in Canada,,, with her husband for 2 weeks ( yearly) in her 60's!!(not many would do this in their 40's!)
No showers, no electricity, nothing except her knitting needles, paper and pen,,,,

I find her to story to be absolutely amazing. Most definitely, she was a woman ahead of her time, this is a great book to read and re-read... I am enjoying it enormously as she is a knitter that has changed my view about knitting in all ways.

My favorite quote of hers, is," remember, you are boss of your needles and they know it".

Indeed they do(!),, and I learned a great deal from her.
Next summer, hopefully,, I plan to go to the camp and learn a lot, not only in class, but by others that are there also.

Just wanted to share with you all ,,,,,,,,this is a great book , worthy to be read and re- read.

happy knitting to all!

Posted by: Pam at July 28, 2005 07:14 PM

Angela -- "Zed" as a Canadian thing? So Scott's coming to it from his Nova Scotian ancestry?

Marti -- No Stitch'n Pitch for me. But I'm there with y'all in spirit -- have the game on and am just about to pick up my needles for the evening (after moving in the loom). I cheered on Ichiro's triple! And thanks for the vote of confidence in my switching needle sizes!

Pam -- thanks for the book recommendation. I've read Knitting without Tears, but have lagged behind in anything else EZ.

Posted by: Karen at July 28, 2005 09:13 PM

I had to add that I am SO jealous of your new loom!
Boy oh boy,, would I love to give that a whirl someday,,,
I can only imagine the wonderful fabric that can be made,,

I am now thinking of presents( of course this would justify spending money on equipment wouldn't it??)
Remember to keep us up to date on your loom adventures!!

good knitting to all,,,

Posted by: Pam at July 29, 2005 11:55 AM

I call her Zeddums!

Posted by: DD#1 at August 5, 2005 04:21 PM