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Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy 2009!

Wow, what a month! I can't believe how insane it's been and how fast it's gone by.

The semester ended and I got all As, which is a surprise even to me. Work got nuts with all the end of the year stuff and xmas came and went (peacefully, mostly). I've been sick the last few days and my sweet puppy dog had his eye scratched on xmas day so we've been laying low the last few days.

This was the day after, right before we went to the vet. He's getting drops 3x a day and drugs 2x a day so he's looking a LOT better and the prognosis is very good. We're doing a lot of sleeping this week!

Regardless of the end, in all I think it's been a pretty good year!! The yarn business was great fun and I survived grad school (so far). I accomplished a pretty good number of things on my 101 List, but I doubt I'll get them all done. Several require a decent chunk of money and thanks to ye olde economy I don't have much to spare.

Nevermind though, let's get to the knitting. I've also been using the break to finish some knitting projects and here are the ones I got pics of.

Noro Striped Scarf:

Marian Cowl:
Both were pretty quick and easy and already get lots of wear.

I hope you all have a great start to the New Year! Thanks for being yourselves. Big hugs and kisses to you all! I'll be toasting to you from the warmth of my couch/sickbed/best-place-for-kitty-snuggles-ever!!!

(p.s. I've run across some yarn that never made it to the etsy store for some reason, so look out for a blow out sale coming soon!)

Monday, December 01, 2008

Knitta, can you spare some yarn? (charity knitting and contest in one!)

Thanks for all the commiserating and well wishes, y'all! I'm doing good and my knitting carries on. Nate FINALLY asked for something too! An Obama hat for inauguration (hello, deadline), so I'll be casting on that project pretty soon.

But first, a good blogger friend needs some help. Anna is starting a wonderful charity knitting initiative and in knitting terms, participating will only take a minute and some scrap yarn. I know y'all have some of both. If I can do it, you can TOTALLY do it too!

The project aims to help out a local (to Anna) nursing home in need of some love and holiday cheer. Maybe next year we can all do the same for our own local nursing homes, but this year Anna and her granddad need our help.

Will you please donate a few hours, yards of yarn and stuffing to make a few ornaments? Need some motivation? How about a FREE skein of Lotus Yarns in your choice of colorway? Yup. The knitter who sends Anna the most ornaments by her birthday (Dec. 12) wins a free skein of yarn.

Ready? Set? KNIT!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Cast on Craziness

Howdy! Merry Turkey Day and stuff(ing)! Hardy har. Ahem.

Yes, I'm a nerd, shush.

I hope you're all having a great holiday! My plan is to do as little as possible - mostly watching movies and knitting (shhh don't tell my mom). We won't do Thanksgiving until Saturday where we'll meet up with Nate's family for the UGA/Tech game, a birthday party, and a turkey dinner. Do it big, right?

I still knit, I swear. In fact, I've cast on so much stuff lately that I'm going to have to buy a new set of needles because I've run out of Denise cables. Knitpicks perhaps? I'd love to splurge and get the new Addis set, but I don't know that it would be a good investment at this moment, what with Christmas and traveling to DC on the horizon.

Wanna see what I've been working on? Seriously, somebody stop me. I think my castonitis might be a procrastination technique. Or maybe it's a way to channel my anxiety*. Whatever, it's not cool.


I'm about to cast on for Transistion Gloves using these two Dream in Color colorways (Wisterious and Visual Purple), as soon as I can figure out how to buy the pattern.

I'm working on a 3x1 rib sock in some Shibui sock yarn that I couldn't walk away from at Knitch a few weeks ago.

Then there's the Men's Cashmere Scarf from Last Minute Knitted Gifts for a friend in some Berroco Ultra Alpaca.

And a baby sweater (1st birthday) that's two weeks late and still needs sleeves in some Berroco Comfy (or something).

My momentarily-ripped-but-about-to-be-recast-on Hourglass Sweater (also from Last Minute Knitted Gifts) in Noro Cash Iroha. I don't know what I was drinking when I cast on the size 41. OHHAI. I'm barely a 37 bust. Jeebus. Regardless, I want this bad, so I'm starting again today.

And I'll be magically transforming this skein of Twinkle bulky into a moebius cowl this afternoon. Cause, you know, I totally need one. RIGHT NOW.

Nevermind this Purl Soho Scarf I've been working on for a few months.

There are also two pairs of socks in the works, and an alpaca hat I can't seem to find. I think my hands may have missed the knitting.

This is just too much. I have to finish something, right? Jeez.

Anyway, hope you all have a great holiday! The semester is almost over, so I'll be back soon!

*So I had a freak out day (or two) a few weeks ago and couldn't get myself under control and therefore went to the doctor to "discuss" anxiety meds. He gave me some. I am taking them. The first day I wasn't so sure. I felt extremely fucked up. The second day wasn't much better and I said forget it. I'd rather be freaked out all the time than feel like an insane person. A few days later I decided to give it another go. So far so good. Suffocating under the anxiety = bad. Breathing = good. I'm only able to take half a pill a day, and I discovered the hard way that even half a Xanax on a bad day is TOO MUCH. Maybe an eigth would be ok, but a half knocked me out for several hours. I can't be productive if I'm asleep. I'm absolutely fine though, I've just taken on WAY too much and I can't walk away from any of it. It will work itself out very soon.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

We're Going to DC!!!!!

I can hardly wait for Jan. 20th!

It's seriously taken a few days for this to sink in for me, but I'm SOOOO freaking happy about Obama's win on Tuesday!!! I think I might have political PTSD or something because at first I was just numb. I really couldn't believe it. Now I'm alternating between elation and tears. Sometimes both at the same time.

I know there's a lot of work ahead of us, but I'm ready and I'm working on a few ideas about how I want to contribute. I'm so full of hope right now, I can hardly stand myself. I feel like I can do anything! So I'm harnessing that energy for myself and I'm working on my own 75 day plan. Like I need more things to focus on, I know!

Some pics from the last few days:

Carrie and I canvassing on Sunday. We were so nervous, but people were GREAT and so happy to see us. Carrie's sporting her Sarah Palin glasses and I'm channeling Paris Hilton.

This sticker is seen on many a car in the Athens area. The man who owns Weaver D's (the restaurant that REM's Automatic for the People album is named for) had these printed up. Nate got one for his car and one extra.

The only newspapers I could find on Tuesday. Athens local paper, UGA campus paper and a USA today. Plus my stickers from volunteering and a left over door hanger from canvassing.

Tuesday I helped out at the Democratic HQ in town. I'm so proud to have worked with this campaign and the other folks involved. They were so full of love and hope. 10 or so local restaurants donated TONS of food for our canvassers, voter drivers and poll folks - I was blown away by the generosity!! This group of high school kids were especially enthusiastic and helpful. They can't even vote yet.

One guy had a great set of pictures playing over and over on his laptop. I Kinnear'd it.

I ordered some posters, buttons and shirts from the Obama store today and I'm thinking about putting together a collage or shadow box or something to preserve my cool stuff.

I can't even express what I'm feeling right now. So much love for everyone.


Sunday, October 19, 2008


Cheryl and I got a fun inspiration this morning. Nate had been following some links online since he likes to find great new recipes and he came across this site. He shared the link with me, I shared the link with her, and we raced to the grocery store in search of organic heavy cream and some adventure.

We bought two cups (4 half pint cartons) of organic heavy cream and got started. We poured all four containers into the food processor and after about two minutes we had whipped cream!

Then we realized that we weren't going to get very far without a mixer, so we switched to a hand mixer. After a few minutes we got a slightly chunkier texture.

Then after about 5 more minutes of steady mixing, it suddenly happened. We had butter curds and buttermilk (which I was so fascinated by that I forgot to get a picture)! Here's the straining process...

And here's the resulting buttermilk! Nate's going to make biscuits this week. YUM.

Then we divided the butter into four balls, squeezed out the remaining milk and rinsed with cold water which supposedly helps it keep longer. This whole process took 10-15 minutes and was SUPER easy! I highly recommend trying it!

Next we cut herbs and mixed them into the four butter balls.



Fresh garlic:

And plain salted:

I will definitely be doing this again - in fact, I might never buy butter again. It's that good! I'd like to do a bit more experimentation and find the best blends of herbs and give little herbed butter balls at Christmas!

If you want to try this all you need is heavy cream, a mixer and a big bowl, and some herbs. Mix, add in herbs, then roll in wax or parchment paper and enjoy!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


Hi all! I know I've been a very negligent blogger, but not without good reason. I'm also switching from bloglines, which got WAY overcrowded for me, to google reader so hopefully I'll be able to keep up with blogs better now.

I'm still taking two grad classes, teaching a knitting class, and volunteering for Obama. I tried to squeeze in a half-marathon training too, but that quickly fell by the wayside. Instead I'm going run the 5k that day with Nate and our nieces. We'll have so much fun, but those girls are running cross country now and they're going to SMOKE us. I'm also dyeing yarn for the Big Ass Yarn Club (first shipment goes out this week!) and also for another sock club. Yes, I'm crazy. Nate helps out by making dinner and cleaning around the house so that I don't go completely insane. Clutter makes me nuts all by itself!

Needless to say, my knitting is falling through the cracks right now. But I'm working on a scarf because I'm an addict and I MUST get my fix.

It's the Purl scarf (Ravelry link) from Last Minute Knitted Gifts (love that book, this is my second Purl scarf) and I'm using Malabrigo in Damask, some sparkly Aura yarn that I dyed (not the color linked - more of a raspberry pink), and Rowan Kid Silk Night in a baby pink. Yes, I'm allergic to mohair. No, I don't care.

There is also possibly a sweater on the needles, but I'm a little too busy to photograph it. My hope is that it will be done by SAFF so I can wear it that weekend (Oct 25th) but erm...that might be ambitious considering everything else.

So, on to the subject of this post! You might not have noticed but I'm kinda politically active. Just a smidge though. I'm opinionated too. Anyway, if your state allows early voting, GO TAKE ADVANTAGE. Georgia has already had half a million people vote and there are still 8 days left! In my county alone 15% of all registered voters have done their civic duty and our Board of Elections sees 500 people EVERY DAY. I know cause I asked when I voted today. Crazy, eh?

I'm going out on Nov. 4th to my precinct's polling place and to the BOE to take pictures and see how crazy it's going to be. I'm a big nerd and I LOVE election day, but I don't really want to stand in line.

So if you're able, go vote!!! If for no other reason than to spare yourself the headache of standing in line! :) It's too important not to!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

oh y'all, i ramble a lot...

I am just teetering on the edge of insanity. It's a bit thrilling and also a little scary.

Because of all the things I'm trying to do at once (work, grad work, dyeing yarn like mad, volunteering for Obama, and sort of having a life sometimes), I'm being firmly reminded that my time management suck. I'd much rather read Ravelry or watch tv or knit than do actual work. So I've found a new best friend...

and here is a taste of my week...(it could be worse, but it's rough for someone who is used to 3 hour naps after work)

I did today's work so I'm chilling with the hubby, knitting, and watching a Kevin Smith DVD. A girl needs some dirty comedy now and again.

And next week, there's this...

Oh yay, I get to pay taxes again. I also need a haircut and we need to have some dude come out and tackle our treacherous lawn. He drove by the other day and stopped to give us a card. Nate went out and talked to him and when he came back in he said "what do you think was the give away that our lawn needs help? the 12 foot weeds coming up the hill?" Um. Yeah. If it were a flat yard, this would not be a problem. But it's a fairly serious hill and we....are lazy. I guess everyone has their 'thing' they don't like doing. Ours is yard work. And housework. And anything else that ends in work.

p.s. I have NO birthday plans. I'm so boring. Suggestions welcome. We tried to get tickets to see the Raconteurs in Atlanta but it's sold the fuck out. Grr.

We *have* worked up the guts to ride our bikes to work a few days a week though. The first time was last Friday and it was an experience. We bought some panniers for my bike and loaded up our work clothes, shoes, and random work stuff and took off. We were prepared for the hills. We were prepared for the scary bridge with no bike path and rude drivers. We were not prepared for the extra weight of the panniers and my lack of a decent breakfast. Big mistake. I barely made it up the last hill and when I got off the bike I was laughing, but not in a haha funny way, in a maniacal 'i think i might die now and i'm prolly gonna take you with me' way. Good times.

Today was much better. Less weight and better food in my belly for the work. The trip back is almost all uphill, but making it home feels so good. Then I stretch and shower and thank the heavens that I lived.

So, being busy kinda blows, but it beats being bored and I'm learning to multitask better than ever while working on cleansing my procrastination gene. I've had to give some things up too, including voice lessons and the 365 project, but it's for the best right now. Streamlining is good, as is being forced to do things when they need to get done. Amazing concept.

Hopefully I'll be able to blog more now that I'm so super organized. I'll definitely have a sneak peak of the Big Ass Yarn Club shipments at the very least. Those of you who are in the club - it looks awesome and I'm more than halfway done with the first shipment. I'm dyeing extra skeins for me cause I must have a scarf out of this stuff.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Is this thing on?


I did *not* fall off the face of the earth, but it does kinda feel like I'm a few feet under and trying to dig out! I've been a bit of a hermit in certain areas (like not reading blogs - sorry y'all) and a little too prolific in other areas (hi plurk and ravelry and politics - let us not discuss it, i'm on an even keel today). Whoops. Work and school, teaching and dyeing - they're all fighting for control of my time, but I'm staying on top...mostly.

Maybe I can distract y'all from my slackerness with some YARN! I bought some new dyes last week and played around a little while working on Big Ass Yarn Club colorways.

Speak Easy - Herby green, eggplant purple, and a turquoise that goes from bright to light blue.
When I go to my happy place, these are the colors I tend to see lately.

Falling Away With You - my new favorite fall mix of colors. Pumpkin, plum, gold, and an earthy, brownish green.

Edge of the Deep Green Sea - two of my favorite new dyes together. A bright peacocky turquoise, which is not coming through very accurately here, and a dark forest green.

These will be up on Etsy in the next few hours!

Now that work and grad school have taken over my life, dyeing has become a real fun, creative outlet again! I love being inspired and I think the season change helps with that too. Summer's just too damn hot to be standing over a stove going 'hmm, what should I dye today?'.

In other news Nate and I will start riding our bikes to work for a couple of days next week. I am so nervous and excited all at once. It's not a super long ride (5 miles), but it's very hilly and sometimes drivers are assholes. Some stretches of street don't have bike lanes and whew that scares me. I'm excited about it though because at this point the only way for me to get exercise is to do it in the morning and um...that's not happening. If I make it my mode of transportation, I'll have no choice. We'll see how long I can make it last.

I hope you all are having a great September! Keep 9/11 in your hearts tomorrow and hug your loved ones.

(p.s. I'm going to see the Raconteurs at Variety Playout on my birthday (10/1) - anyone in the ATL wanna go?)

*big hugs*

Friday, August 15, 2008

Subscription Buttons are UP!

Oh look, it's Friday! YAY!

Subscription buttons for the Big Ass Yarn Club are up on the sidebar! ---->

Happy Friday everyone!!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

first rule of yarn club...

Y'all. What a couple of weeks! After a month and a half of Deadsville at work, things are ramping up again very quickly. Nothing like a Monday slap in the face with a pile of work and loads of student questions. Not that I mind, it's just shocking. Last week I was the only person in the building after 3 p.m. and it was slow times. This week is in hyperdrive, heading toward Ludicrous Speed. I'm waiting for things to go plaid.

I start Instructional Design and Development graduate classes on Monday. Yay for a big title after my name when I'm done! "Instructional Designer". Sounds serious. And important. I'm excited (for the classes, not the title :P). So Mondays and Wednesdays I'll be in class after work, then on Tuesdays I'll be teaching knitting at the yarn store from 6-8. Busy. Little. Bee. I'll also be dyeing up yarn for the next club - see below!

For an uber-quick knitting update, I've finished the Shetland Triangle (rav links to my pictures) and I'm about half way through Hey Teach for the Ravelympics. I've cast on for the Bellatrix socks but they're starting to look like something I'd never wear so I'm reconsidering.

Last weekend I went to a great baby shower (congrats, Erin!) with LOADS of people and kids and yummy food. April and Herschel hosted - they are awesome, as is their little girl Paisley - love that name! p.s. Herschel, you too can be an internet celebrity. Carry on.

One last thing. (i'm really good at wrapping up two weeks of life into a couple of little paragraphs, no?) Last night Nate and I and some friends saw Gnarls Barkley at the 40 Watt. What a fun show!

And now for the club info!!!!!

I’m opening sign ups for The Big Ass Yarn Club on Friday, August 15th! I'll close sign ups September 15th or whenever the club is full.

With this club you’ll be getting three monthly shipments (mid October, November, and December) of TWO big skeins of handdyed yarn. By the end you'll have two each of a superwash worsted, an alpaca worsted, and a superwash BULKY yarn. No skinny yarn here! And plenty of yardage for a big scarf, a hat and mitten set, or huge fluffy socks! Each shipment is $30 plus priority shipping and I'll have paypal buttons on the side bar on Friday so you can sign up right here.

I'll have two buttons again - one for the full amount of the club and one for three monthly installments. If you didn't participate in the Punk Rock Sock Club, and you sign up for the Big Ass Yarn Club, please shoot me an email with your name and shipping address. Digging through paypal for addresses last time was a nightmare so I created a database to make my life a little easier!

Thanks for playing along!!

Monday, July 28, 2008

how about a real update?

Thanks for all the nice comments on the Central Park Hoodie! I really love it.

The last few weeks have been relatively stressful and my way of dealing with that stress is by doing as little as possible. Except the knitting and rampant tv watching, of course. I've been doing lots of that.

I have made a few life-altering decisions though, amist all of my 'doing nothing' and 'addictive thinking' and 'obsessive knitting'.

Here's a little rundown:

1. I've started training with Cheryl for a half marathon in November. I am officially insane.

2. I got a new bike with some of our stimulus money and once I'm totally confident in my riding skills and have tried the route a few times I'll be riding to work a few days a week. More evidence of my insanity.

3. I've grown tired of morning and afternoon sugar crashes (nutella smothered bagels will do that to you) so I'm trying the GI diet to see if I can help myself stave off diabetes and fatness. It's not very different from the competition diets I did a few years back so I know I can do it.

4. I've just signed up for Ravelympics and I'm doing THREE projects in 17 days. Bellatrix, Shetland Triangle and Hey,Teach. WTF am I thinking?!? Maybe this is a very dumb idea.

5. After many years of irritation I'm considering having my tonsils removed. When I'm sick, 90% of the time my throat is related and my tonsils are HUGE. I also get tonsil stones (do NOT click if you're squeamish - apologies for the extreme grossness) and they're a little painful and seriously nasty. Surgery scares the crap out of me because I visualize all the things they'll do to me while I'm out and it's hopefully much worse than reality. If insurance will cover it I'm going to look into the laser surgery. Less painful, but I'll also be awake. EEEEEK.

I think that's enough for now...

Hope your Monday is a good one!

Friday, July 25, 2008

Central Park Hoodie, part 2

After being finished with the knitting for a little over a week, I've finally sewn on the buttons and completed the second Central Park Hoodie. And I *love* it. So soft and smooshy! I didn't even hate knitting the hood, and I was so sure I would.

Pattern: Central Park Hoodie
Yarn: Cascade Sierra (8 skeins)
Needle Size: US 6
Size Made: 40" bust

Usually I would make a size 36, but since this is cotton and not likely to stretch too much I knit the size 40 and used the US 6 needled throughout rather than switch to a larger needle for the body. I knit the body in one piece to the shoulders then knit the sleeves and set them in. The buttons are "reproduction vintage" that I found at JoAnn's.

Cool, eh?

I'm so pleased with the sizing. It's roomy enough and warm enough to really serve as a jacket for me, with room for a light sweater or heavy shirt underneath, which is usually all we really need around these parts. Yay for happily finished projects!!

p.s. you can sort of tell here - i got my hair cut super short again and it's very pixie-esque. i went to etsy and found this awesome seller and bought a few new funky hair clips for my cute little hair cut.

wanna see? (these are her pics, not mine)


Thursday, July 10, 2008


Originally uploaded by LotusKnitter
I'm posting this from flickr just to see how it works out. Looks like I'll be a grad student again :D

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

purple tuesday

I went back to the salon today. My purple highlights didn't take very well and they kinda went away. But now I have magenta/purpley colors so it's all good.

Plus, they gave me wine.

I guess I have a sort of purple fetish going on right now. I bought these shoes this week:

I think they have badass potential. Also I am a whore for some shoes. There. I said it.

This week I'm working on the last bit of the sock club and some new colorways for the shop. I maybe went a little purple crazy there too. I made some choices about new yarns to carry as well, but you won't see them until the fall!

On Friday I'll be seaming the shoulders and sleeves on the dread CPH. I really hate seaming/sewing. Really, really hate it. It's threatening to stop my progress. Blerg. I figure if I seam the shoulders now the sleeves will be easier and then I'll go ahead and pick up stitches for the button bands to get the misery over and done with. And it was moving so quickly...

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

purple haired freak

I love pay day. This time I got my hair all purpled up. Well actually, it's black with subtle purple highlights. So subtle you can't even see them inside, which is perfect for work, but get me out in the sunlight and everyone around me starts doing double-takes. I'm totally in love with my new hair guy. He's straight, cute, tattooed, plays in a band, and just generally rocks.

Thursday, after the dye job: Boo. It's really impossible to photograph and looks more reddish brown here.

And inside, it's just black again.

Thursday night: Karen and I at 31 Flavors (see? it's really black!). Coffee ice cream makes for blurry pics.

I also stopped by the MAC counter again and got some yummy new eyeshadows. Beauty Marked is a dark black with red sparkles and Satin Taupe is a shimmery dark brown. I had a really hard time deciding what I wanted, cause I kinda wanted all of it.

This weekend was a bit nutty. Saturday consisted of an early morning blackberry picking party, IKEA, a wholesale yarn drop, and a pool party. Then Nate and I put my new computer desk together, which is similar but not exactly like the pic I posted last week. The top is the same but IKEA doesn't sell the white tressle legs anymore so I got bookcase-esque things. Pictures soon. We also got new dressers like Pam's (thanks for the idea!!), a new end table, and a metric shit ton of stuff to hang on the walls. Again, pictures soon.

Sunday was also insane but in a different way. A huge storm blew threw town and caused power outages everywhere. Lightening struck our neighbor's tree, which knocked it down and into the power lines, ripping the power lines and meter off her house. The power lines and pole collapsed and caught fire, which caused another pole to snap in half and also catch fire. Good times. So our power was went out for 6 hours just as I was about to dye yarn. Boo. If I had been a good blogger I would have raced over and taken pics, but I was a little afraid of the live electricity on the ground and thought maybe my life was worth more than a photo of poles on fire. Sorry.

One more thing: I started the 365 project today, woo! I joined a few flickr groups and added today's pic - my big eyeball.

I might be a little sleepy and in need of eyebrown maintenance.

(p.s. Happy birthday, Pete!!! You're not old, you're vintage!)

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

New Yarn Options?

I've been looking at adding to my yarn bases lately, so I've begged for samples from a few places and some packs arrived today so I wanted to share with you guys! I got about 10 samples, but I picked the nicest and/or most practical choices. I like to try to stick with superwash yarns for ease of care, but two of the three choices are NOT superwash, so keep that in mind if it's something that's an issue. Let me know if any of these appeal to you! I'm not going to do a poll (way too tired tonight for that), so please leave a comment real quick with a yay or nay vote for each one.

#1 100% Superwash Merino, Bulky weight, 120 yds. This yarn is really soft and squishy. The twist is not super tight, which allows for some of that softness and I can already imagine it being an absolute dream to dye and knit with.

#2 60% Suri Alpaca/40% Merino, Worsted weight, 220 yds. Um. This is the first thing I pulled out of the box because my knitter sense went WILD. No wonder what with all that alpaca! Also very soft, but a little furry thanks to the alpaca content. I'd wear it though. And drool all over it.

#3 70% Merino/30% Cotton, Bulky weight, 170 yds. I'm not 100% sure about this one. The cotton ply makes the twist a bit uneven. It's cool looking though. It's soft and lofty, but I'm betting that the cotton strand that's plied with the wool isn't going to dye, so it might be...interesting looking. I'll dye up a snip and see. I'm open to it if y'all like it!

I'm still on the look out for a different fingering wool/nylon blend, but I'm pretty happy with the Louet fingering and I'll be offering their sport weight as soon as they have more in. I'm not quite as wild about their heavier weights because the twist is just SO tight to me. I've found a superwash worsted that I'm happy with, so I didnt' post it, but you'll see it soon enough. I'll probably dye up the occasional bulky or worsted for the shop, but I'm thinking they might just be optional bases for custom orders.

Input, please! Anyone? Bueller? Bueller?