Remember to not stab yourself

I've been embroidering a bit recently.  I'm not terribly wonderful at it (yet) but I feel like I'm making a bit of progress.

Embroidery floss and WIPs

I have learned a couple things about embroidering over acrylic paint or paper:
  1. Always use a thimble, goddamnit!  A painted canvas is stronger than the top couple layers of your skin.  Needles are pretty pointy at both ends.  Using a sharper needle is also a good idea.
  2. Also: puncture the canvas/paper from the front (even if your needle's in the back).  This one is less painful if you forget, but it does make things look nicer.
Pretty pictures are nice, so here are some other things I've embroidered:

On an unrelated note...
"On an unrelated note..."

All wrapped up
"All wrapped up"

You may have already won
"You may have already won"


Damn my sticky fingers

The worst thing about sex is having to get up and wash your hands before you can start knitting again.  Lame!

Slightly related: String Theory has BULKY YARN OMG!  My yarn diet is seriously being tested.  Ok self: when we've used up enough yarn, we can buy ourselves some gorgeous bulky stuff to make ourselves something awesome.  For our very strict definition of "enough."  Now get off the internet, we should have been asleep hours ago.

Slightly more related: get wet wipes.


Metric vs. Stupid

Can I just complain for a little?

It's about the metric system.  Well, not exactly, it about the lack of use of the metric system, particularly in knitting.

I am continually (CONTINUALLY) frustrated by patterns that list needle size by US size (or UK size, Canadian size, etc).  These numbers are ENTIRELY ARBITRARY!  Worse, they are incomplete (there's no US size for a 3.mm, 7mm or 7.5mm) and inconsistent (for some reason, at larger numbers, they start being labelled 15, 17, 19, 35, 50).  What is this nonsense?  These large sizes are not proportional to the metric sizes - maybe there was a system at one time, but I don't really care because if there was a system it was clearly a terrible one.  To be accurate about what needle you are using, you should always just use mm.  ALWAYS. 

It's not just needles, either!  When you're given a gauge, it's assumed that 10cm = 4".  This is accurate enough for thicker yarns (bulky, worsted, DK), but when you're working at gauges like 28st = 10cm/4", that quality is actually off by over a mm, meaning your gauge can be off by half a stitch or more.  I'm aware that most people just don't care that much, but damnit, if I'm making a gauge swatch, it needs to be accurate, otherwise what's the point?  Obviously, I'd rather if patterns used cm, but if that is too difficult then it would be nice if they at least specified which measurement they were using.  (Some people do this, it's true - yaay for them!)

The point is that everyone should just switch to the metric system already.  Hasn't it been long enough?  There are a million demonstrations of why the imperial system is broken and unwieldy, and I'm not going to go over that here - I think I can assume that anyone who's actually thought about it prefers metric for pretty much everything.

The only exception I had, personally, was for measuring household-size objects.  Cm are clearly too small, and m are clearly too big.  Luckily, because the metric system is great, there's something in between: the rarely used decimeter.  I don't know why this isn't an everyday unit of measurement, because it's great!  A decimeter (dm) is 10 cm.  I'm still adjusting to using it - I have a ruler that's a dm that I'm carrying around, so my eyes can get used to approximating it more easily.  When I guess at measurements, in the past I'd guess things like "a bit less than a foot" or "maybe a few inches" - I'm not talking about accurate estimations (that's what cm are for!) so this works out really well.  My waterbottle is "2 and a bit" dm, my mouse is "between 1 and 2" dm.

Clearly this is a good idea.  If you like to measure smallish things inaccurately with your eyes, you should Try This At Home.


Gettin' it done

In other news, I've been super good about my yarn diet so far this year!  I haven't bought ANY yarn since x-mas (except stuff for a commission, but that doesn't count because it's a commission and I don't have to pay for it).  I am slowly but determinedly working through my stash.  I know it's only been a month an a half, but damnit, that's enough time to be proud about!  But not enough time that I get to buy myself yarn as a reward.  (That's just my yarn-brain talking.)


Away we go

Do you ever get the feeling where your thoughts are kind of floaty and unfocused?  Your body wanders around, eating food, reading books, putting on sweaters, fucking around on the internet, picking up yarn, taking off sweaters, and you aren't really all that aware of what's happening?

Which one should I do first?

Yes, well.  This is an inconvenient time for a floaty head.  I need a brain that is paying attention in order to work on various school tasks that are due rather soon.  Knitting could possibly help - or I could just want to keep knitting.  Oh dear.