Sunday, August 31, 2008

Premature Evacuation

Everyone liked that title when I told them about me and Patrick bringing my car to his Aunt's house the other day. It was our pre-evacuation. I really wanted to make sure that I wouldn't have to drive in a seperate car than Patick and somehow get lost while we were evacuating. I've been known to get lost driving a lot. I really didn't want to get stuck in the wrong lane with the contra-flow and end up somewhere far away from Patrick.

All is well at this time. We are just waiting for Gustav to come, hoping that everything will work out. Wish us luck.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Attention: The MidCity Art Market has been postponed to September 6th!!!

Updated: The August MidCity Art Market has been postponed to September 6th due to the threat of Hurricane Gustav. I havn't heard anything about the Morgan City Shrimp and Petroleum Fest, but will let you know if I hear anything.

September 6th is the MidCity Art Market. The market is the last Saturday of each month at Palmer Park. Palmer Park is at the intersection of S. Carrolton and S. Claiborne Ave in Uptown New Orleans. It is from 10:00 am until 4:00 pm. If Saturday is rained out, the market will take place on Sunday August 31st. Come out and support art in New Orleans. See Lane Lefort Photography to view some of the available photographs. Purchases can be made from this website, or come out and see Lane.

August 28 to September 1 (Labor Day Weekend) is the Morgan City Shrimp and Petroleum Festival. An art contest and sale is part of the bigger festival.

October 18 -19 is the Bayou City Art Festival Downtown in Houston. Here is some information from their website: “October 18 - 19, 2008 SATURDAY AND SUNDAY10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Both daysAdmission is $10 for adults and free for children 12 and under.The downtown skyline serves as a dramatic backdrop for art, music, dance, and interactive activities at the Bayou City Art Festival Downtown.The annual, juried, fine art event boasts a stress-free outdoor gallery brimming with 300 artists working in 19 artistic media. Adding to the festive outdoor gallery are wine cafés, an interactive Creative Zone for children, restaurants, Broadway in Houston’s Broadway Café, and a performing arts stage with on-going multicultural musical and dance entertainment presented by The Houston Arts Alliance.The festival is showcased in front of City Hall and around Hermann Square on the streets of Walker, Bagby, and McKinney, as well as Sam Houston Park. For more information about the Bayou City Art Festival Downtown, please contact the Art Colony Association” This will be Lane’s first time at this event.

Lane also participates in the Gretna Art Walk. The Gretna Art Walk is on hiatus right now, but will return in September. It will be every second Saturday of the month between September and May. There is also a weekly Farmer's Market every Saturday between Third and Fourth Streets in Gretna, La. Participate in the Farmer's Market Participate in the Art Walk

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

The USS Cairo in Vicksburg, Mississippi

While I was in Vicksburg last week, we visited the National Military Park. This park has many monuments honoring the soldiers who fought in the battle of Vicksburg. The monument that made the biggest impression on me is monument dedicated to the soldiers from the state of Illinois. It is a building made of marble and Stone Mountain granite. My favorite aspect of this monument was the Mosaic of tiles that made up the seal of the state of Illinois.

Another attraction of the park is the Ironclad Gunboat, the USS Cairo. The USS Cairo was sunk by a torpedo on December 12, 1862. The good news is that there was no loss of life due to the ship sinking. The Cairo was submerged for about 100 years in the Yazoo River (In the museum I thought it was the Mississippi River, but after reading about it online, I realize it was the Yazoo, they are pretty close to each other around Vicksburg). In the 1960's, most of the ship was recovered and reassimbled , using new wood in the places where the original ship had deteriorated. Next to the ship is a museum, with artifacts and information about this Ironclad Gunship.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Morgan City Shrimp and Petroleum Festival is this weekend

Morgan City's Shrimp and Petroleum Festival is August 28 to September 1, 2008. My favorite part of this festival is the art contest and sale. The festival takes place in Downtown Morgan City. Other hilights of this festival are the blessing of the fleet and the boat parade, which take place in the river. For more information, either see the official website of the Shrimp and Petroleum fest at or email me.

Monday, August 18, 2008

In Vicksburg This week

This week, I'm in Vicksburg, Mississippi for work.

If you know of any fun places or good restaurants in Vicksburg, let me know.

Here are some upcoming events:

MidCity Art Market: August 28th from 10am to 4pm at Palmer Park.

Morgan City Shrimp and Petroleum Festival August 28 through September 1 (Labor Day Weekend)

Bayou City Art Festival Downtown in Houston from October 18-19.

The Gretna Art Market will be back next month!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Tutorial: Increasing: Make One M1

To increase the number of stitches on your row, you could make a yarn over, but that leaves a hole. To increase almost invisibly, a make one, abreviated M1, is a good choice. Book between two stitches you should see that there is a line of yarn between these stitches.

Step One: Knit to the point where the increases is needed.

Step Two: Insert the right needle into the line of yarn between the two stitches.

Step Three: wrap the yarn over the needle.

Step Four: Pull the yarn through the line.

Step Five: Continue knitting the rest of the row.

Here is the video, it shows me knitting one, then doing a M1, then knitting one, then a M1...

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Cades Cove Campground

Last month when Patrick and I went to Tennessee, we stayed at the campground at Cades Cove. This is a very scenic campground, with many things to do. The park service has activities like hikes and tours all over the area. One of the most popular thing to do when staying at this campground is to ride bikes on the Cades Cove loop on the two mornings when the park is closed to vehicular traffic.

This campground is a little rustic. There aren't all that many amenities. There is a restroom and a place to clean dishes. There is also a little grocery store and snack bar located by the entrance to the park. The campground also has a beautiful stream not far from where we were camping.

The amenities that it is lacking include electricity and running water at the sites. It's near impossible to get a cell phone signal in this area. There also aren't any showers at the campground. The shower part was probably the hardest part for me. After days of trying to get clean with the limited resources at the campground, we drove to the city of Townsend. We went to a campground called Lazy Daze. This campground wasn't very scenic, the campers seemed pretty much on top of each other, but they did have showers and a pool and most of the other comforts of home. It cost us $5 each to take a shower, but it was really worth it.

After our showers, we went to a barbaque restaurant in Townsend , and had a really good dinner. I think the restaurant was called Little River Bar-B-Que and it overlooked a stream and we sat outside on a screened in portion of the restaurant. My favorite part of the dinner was the cherry cobbler we had for dessert.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

The Traditional Knitting Needles

I would call straight knitting needles, the most well known. When I knit with circulars, people always ask questions about them, really wondering what those strange things are. When I knit with straights, people usually know that I'm knitting. In movies and on TV, most knitters use straights. I think that is because straight knitting needles just say knitting. Its that immediate though of "She's Knitting", when they see someone with straight needles.

How do I feel about Straight needles? I honestly don't use them all that much, as I said in last week's post, Circulars are my favorite. The way I see it the best way to find the absolutely best needles, is to try different kinds of needles and find the ones that feel the best. There are advantages to using straight needles, one is that there isn't a cord to worry about. The knitter doesn't have to worry about the connections coming apart. Another advantage is that the needles are the same diameter the entire length of the needles. This is a good thing because some knitters have problems with pulling the yarn too tightly and that can lead to problems if the yarn is so tight that the stitches can't go over the connection and back on the needles. Another is that the two needles are seperate, and I'm sure that is an advantage for some knitters. They are also made completely of the same material. This keeps the stitches more consistient, I really don't think most people would notice the difference between the two materials, but there probably is a group of knitters who can tell the difference.

Do any of you use straight needles and know of any other advantages to using them?

I hope that was informative. If you have any questions, just leave a comment or send me an email.

Monday, August 11, 2008

I have a question for you...

This Week’s posts are:
Tuesday: a description of straight knitting needles,
Wednesday: A little about the campground where we stayed in Cades Cove
Thursday: a tutorial on the make one (M1) increase.
Friday: A Project Profile on a headband I knitted.

I also have a question for all of you. I have put up a poll on the left column of the page. Which posts do you like the best? Here are the options: Upcoming Events Mondays; Knitting Tool Tuesdays; Whatever Wednesdays; Tutorial Thursdays; or Project Profile Fridays. Please note that you can vote for more than one type. I've been trying to stick to this format the last few weeks, and I would really like to know what I should spend more time on and what I can spend less time on or even fade away. Thanks for your feedback!

Here are some upcoming events:

MidCity Art Market: August 28th from 10am or 4pm at Palmer Park.

Morgan City Shrimp and Petroleum Festival August 28 through September 1 (Labor Day Weekend)

Bayou City Art Festival Downtown in Houston from October 18-19.

The Gretna Art Market will be back next month!

Thanks and I hope you all have a great week!

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Project Profile: "Shaped Triangle"

My current work in progress (WIP) is a shawl from the book A Gathering of Lace. The name of the pattern is “Shaped Triangle” and it was written by Katie Nagorney and Ann Swanson. The reason I picked this shawl is because the pattern looked easy enough and I wanted a triangle shaped shawl because I’ve been seeing people wearing them lately and really liked the way they look.

This is made with some of the yarn that I bought when I was in Gatlinburg, Tennessee last month. The store is called Smokey Mountain Spinnery. I sort of lost the ball band and can’t remember much about it. It’s a very light weight yarn, that I initially bought to make socks, but then I really looked at it and decided I wanted to make something else with this yarn. I love socks, but I just didn’t see this particular skein of yarn turning into socks.
One thing I like about this pattern is that every other row is just purl stitches across. The pattern for this shawl is easy to memorize. After the initial 11 rows, the pattern repeats with two rows on the right side of the shawl and purl stitches on the wrong side. (The right side is the side that will be worn on the outside and the wrong side is the other side, usually worn toward you.) It repeats for a while, and then the pattern changes, leaving a more elaborate pattern toward the end of the shawl.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Tutorial: Binding off - The K2Tog Bind-off

Binding off is a term used to describe the process of combining your stitches to finish off the project, or it can be used when some of the stitches on a row need to be finished and others don’t, like for a button hole.

Step One: Get to the point where you want to end your knitting.

Step Two: Hold your knitted item in your left hand and your empty needle in your right hand. Hold the yarn in back of the knitted item.

Step Three: Stick the empty needle into the back of the first two stitches on your other needle.

Step Four: Loop the yarn around the end of the empty needle.

Step Five: Pull the yarn that you just looped over the needle through the two stitches.

Step Six: Drop the two stitches off of the needle. Now the previously empty needle has one stitch on it and the other needle has two less stitches than it started with.

Step Seven: place the lone stitch on the previously empty needle back onto the other needle.

Step Eight: Repeat steps three through Seven.

Step Nine: When you only have one stitch left on your needles, pull the yarn, making the stitch larger, so that there will be enough yarn to either weave in the ends or sew it together with another piece.

Step Ten: snip the yarn, making sure you have enough yarn attached as mentioned in step nine.

Step Eleven: pull the yarn, this will fasten the end. Step Twelve: continue with the pattern, either weaving in the ends or sewing the piece together with the pieces it attaches to.

Here is the video:

Links to this tutorial and my other tutorials can be found on the left side of your screen.

Thank You and Have a Great Day!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

The French Quarter Wedding Chapel

Patrick and I went to The French Quarter Wedding Chapel Friday night. Its a cute little chapel, located at 333 Rue Burgundy. We had a great time!

The chapel has an interesting tradition of whenever someone gets married there, the couple takes out a dollar or a check and both sign their names on it. This tradition started years ago, when a bride was married there and said, when do I get to sign my married name? The minister said that all of the signing was finished and that you really don’t sign your married name. She very much wanted to sign her married name, so the idea of signing the dollar and hanging it from the ceiling became a tradition.

The minister told us how there was a rumor that Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt had gotten married over there the week before and how he had many phone calls from the press about that. He said it wasn’t true, but reporters from around the world continued to call all day and night.

Here is a picture of the alter and of a stained glass window that I thought was pretty.

The place is pretty tiny, so the bouquet and garter tosses were both done outside on the street.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Circular Knitting Needles.

Circular Knitting Needles are my favorite kinds of needles.
The anatomy of a circular knitting needle: Most Circular knitting needles consist of a knitting needle that has a point on one side and is tapered off, it is connected to a cord, which is connected to another knitting needle with the same characteristics as the other needle. The needle parts can be made of Aluminum, bamboo, or any material that other needles are made of. The cord is usually made of plastic, or a wire or a wire covered in plastic. The needles can be any diameter, and the cord can be any length.

Why use a Circular Knitting Needle? They are very versatile; they can be used to make circular pieces as well as flat pieces. The circular knitting needle works well for projects that have many stitches across, such as a blanket. Circular knitting needles also reduce the stress exerted upon the knitter’s hands and wrists, helping the knitter to avoid injuries. Yes, knitting can lead to injuries other than poking yourself with the needles!

Circular knitting needles can be used to make socks or sleeves two at a time. There is a method that uses one needle called the Magic loop method and another method that uses two needles to make socks and things like that. Does anyone know what that method is called? It might just be called “knitting on two circulars”? At knit night last month, I actually got to see someone doing the Magic Loop Method. Now I want to learn how to do it. Making socks two at a time seems like it would have a lot of advantages. One advantage is that the socks should be a lot closer to identical. Another is that the “Second Sock Syndrome” shouldn’t be a problem. When you are binding off one sock, it won’t take very much effort to finish the other.

Circular needles also come in sets, which are very helpful. I have a set that I bought at Michael’s that was made by Boyle. I bought this particular set because I had a ½ off coupon from Michael’s, and thought they would be useful. They are very useful, especially when trying to determine which size needle to use to get gauge. The set comes with a few cords of different lengths and needles in most sizes available. The biggest problem I have with this set is that the cords and the needles screw together. The reason this is a problem is that sometimes they come loose or even the needles will come off of the cords, which is annoying. Knit Picks has a couple of sets, and I think their connections are different and seem like they would be better. There is another company that makes them also, called Denise and these are supposed to be nice too.

Don’t be intimidated by circular knitting needles, they are easy to use and very versatile.

Monday, August 4, 2008

This week

This week I have some things planned.

Tuesday: The Circular Knitting Needle what is it, when to use it and why?

Wednesday: French Quarter Wedding Chapel. Some pictures and stories about the chapel that Patrick and I went to Friday Night.

Thursday: Tutorial: Binding-Off The K2Tog Bindoff

Friday: Work in Progress: A shawl I am working on.

Here are some upcoming events:MidCity Art Market: August 28th from 10am or 4pm at Palmer Park.Morgan City Shrimp and Petroleum Festival August 28 through September 1 (Labor Day Weekend)Bayou City Art Festival Downtown in Houston from October 18-19.

I hope you have a Great Week!

Friday, August 1, 2008

Project Profile: Under The Hoodie

Under the Hoodie is the first sweater I ever made. It is from the book Stitch 'N Bitch: The Knitter's Handbook. Its a very comfy sweater that I made with Lion Brand Wool-Ease yarn. I love it when a pattern teaches me how to use a new technique and this one uses a three needle bind off to finish off the hood. I'll probably do a tutorial on that bind off eventually.

Patrick and I are going to a wedding tonight. It's in the French Quarter, so I'm hoping the rain stops so we don't get soaked walking to the chapel. Congratulations Robby and Christine!

Laney and Dozer say hi!

I hope you all have a great weekend!