Saturday, October 24, 2009

Golden Orb Spider Silk Tapestry

There are times like this when I feel so lucky to be living in New York City! It's one place that has so much culture to experience.

Back in September Becky created a short blog post about the Golden Orb Spider Silk Tapestry. I was completely fascinated by what I read on the link she provided. I was even more thrilled to find out that this tapestry was on display at the American Museum of Natural History here in NYC.

This past Monday Mary Beth and I made sure we got over to the museum to see it with our own eyes. So here are the pictures that Becky requested I take if I went to see it.

Interesting Facts:
  • 11-by-4-foot tapestry made completely of spider silk
  • Weavers in Madagascar took four years to make it
  • The color is a radiant gold — the natural color of the golden orb-weaving spider
  • The silk is extremely strong — but can stretch
  • When the silk is woven it sounds like pinging of metallic guitar strings
  • The main threads consist of 96 twisted silk lines. The brocaded patterns in the tapestry — stylized birds and flowers — are woven with threads made up of 960 spider silk lines
  • Peers says they never broke a single strand, yet the tapestry is as soft as cashmere
Mary Beth and I has wished so badly that we could have touched it!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Rhinebeck Wrap-up 2009!

So it was my second trek to Rhinebeck this year and one addition made it even more special. My sister!!!! She was suppose to come last year, but couldn't make it the last minute. However, this year nothing held her back. I was so happy to have her here with me and we had so much fun.

So here's my Rhinebeck wrap-up in pictures:

We drove up early on Friday afternoon so we could get to the hotel to relax and of course knit! Sis and I shared our room with Miss "She-bobble-i-cious" Shameka and Misa. It was quite like having an adult slumber party.

Excitement was had when we saw the sun peeking through the rain filled clouds. It was suppose to rain all weekend, but there was a miracle. Saturday was dry dry dry.

Here's our mini crew walking across the hotel parking lot to have dinner at Ruby Tuesday's.

Saturday finally arrived and we hauled bootie over to the Socks That Rock booth to hopefully procure some yarny goodness that we can only fondle, smell and lust over online. MB and I were very good. We only purchased 2 skeins a piece.

While we were waiting in line to purchase, I spotted these wild animals outside the window! Yvonne and Kim.

After the STR stop, the first order was to hit the ladies room and get some sweater photos, 'cause it was extremely cold and some sweaters ended up being hidden by an extra layer of a jacket.

I'm kindly waiting for MB to finish sending her text so we can get a pic together.

I'll be a dork while I am waiting. "Are you done yet?"

"Here sis your sweater has to show. Let me help you open this pink fuzzy thing you are wearing." (I too had one of these pink fuzzy things - they were very warm)

Yes we are wearing matching sweaters!

Here's our Rhinebeck crew (from left to right): Yvonne, Mary Beth, Me, Shameka (you can see all the bobbles on her sweater, thus the name I called her above), Misa and Kim.

I saw Kim taking pictures of herself amongst the dyed sheepie locks (aka pig tails) and I couldn't resist acting like a dork again.

I did something this year that I didn't last year, make a trip to the car to relieve myself of yarny purchases. Not bad, right? At least MB and I didn't fill the whole trunk.

Walking back to the festival from the car, my eagle eye spotted Angie, making her own drop at the car! I wish I had a picture of her face when I said her name. She was walking towards me, heard me call her name, stopped in mid-track and said "Yeeessss." I forgot I was all bundled up and she might not recognize me. It was awesome meeting her for the first time.

At the end of our very long day we ended up at the Ravelry party. Here's the crew dutifully knitting in the freezing cold weather. We weren't able to snag seats under one of the tents, so we found our own chairs and placed them close to one of the heaters. Unfortunately the heater died and we got very cold, very quickly.

Just to prove I was there....

Finally, my haul! Not too bad and paid in cash. I have 7 skeins each (2 different colors) of some Shelridge Farm worsted (top row), 1 skein each (2 different colors) of some more Shelridge Farm worsted, 1 skein of Spirit Trail Fiberworks worsted, 2 skeins of Brooks Farm Willow (their new bamboo blend - even got these on sale), 1 skein of Creatively Dyed Fingering, 2 skeins of STR lightweight, 1 Sheep Incognito Picture (called "Occupational Therapy" - Statue of Liberty sheepie knitting) and 1 yummy tub of some awesome Herbal Hand Lotion in Honey Almond.

All in all, it was an awesome weekend! Looking forward to 2010.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Rhinebeck Sweater #2

Now that I have officially finished this sweater, I feel it's safe to officially talk about it. I had big ambitions of starting and finishing this in time to wear at Rhinebeck this weekend.

I wasn't sure if I was gonna make it, so I didn't want to talk about it being my second Rhinebeck sweater. Of course, I know some of you are saying "What is she talking about? Of course Miss Flying Needles could get it done in time!". I guess in my mind if I talked about it, it wouldn't get done in time. But, since it did, here's all the details...

Pattern: Heather Hoodie Vest (KnitScene Fall 09)
Yarn: Berroco Cuzco (7 skeins) (Came from stash - bought last New Years in SC on sale)
Needles: Knit Picks Options Circs Size 10.5
Started: September 28, 2009
Finished: Octover 13, 2009
Mods: The original hoodie is oversized. I thought I might run out of yarn and also wanted a more fitted hoodie. I followed the increases on hoodie as per pattern. I only knitted to 10" in st st instead of 12" and then completed the decreases as per pattern.
Buttons: Gear buttons purchased from

Aren't they adorable?

Monday, October 5, 2009

Homecooking Saturday and Then Some

On Saturday's dinner menu was Vegetable Gratin-Souffle. It called for three cups of veggies so I chose Cauliflower, Broccoli and Butternut Squash. After DB and I took our first bite we both said, "MmmmmMmmMmm." Will definitely make again.

No leftovers.

On the knitting front, Ursa is complete!!!! My intentions were to finish the remaining seaming between today and tomorrow. However, I got on a roll and finished the whole she-bang, buttons included.

I purchased the the Swirling Leaf buttons from I thought they were perfect for the fall sweater.

For those of you who will be looking for me at Rhinebeck on Saturday, this is what to look for...

Springtime Bandit will be wrapped nicely around my neck, peeking out from the top of Ursa.

Pattern: Ursa by Berroco
Yarn: Berroco Ultra Alpaca (Colorway: Oceanic Blue) 6.5 skeins
Needles: Knit Picks Options size 6 and 7
Started: August 15, 2009
Finished: Octover 5, 2009
Mods: Absolutely none

My Thoughts On Sweater: Ya'll remember this yarn when it was knitted up into the Gathered Pullover. Ya'll also remember how I wasn't overly thrilled with how big the sweater turned out to be. It was even dubbed as the *Flashdance* sweater. I can honestly say that I am in love with this yarn as Ursa. I am so very excited to wear it and show it off. This sweater really tried me in the finishing/seaming department. It showed me that I have grown in this area of knitting. I am so proud of how it turned out and can't wait to wear it in one week and five days!

Finally, here is an update of *what may be on my needles* now...