Tuesday, July 23, 2013

New Blog

I can never seem to keep up with my blog.
I had two blogs, each dedicated to a passion, however I never managed to keep them up to date... not to mention it was too much work trying to keep two going at once.
So Death By Knits and Death By Beads have been merged become Death By Design, starting fresh.

Recent Events:

The TTC KnitAlong.
This past Saturday, I rode the TTC (along with 98 other participants, each on teams) to Four of Toronto's yarn stores.
I was on team Garter Stitch, and went to The Knit Cafe, Knit-O-Matic, Mary Maxim and PassionKnit. (see green line below)
I made a shirt on CafePress to show my team spirit just for the day:

The shirt was a bit big for me, and I ended up wearing a bikini top underneath it, but its extremely comfortable and I've worn it around the apartment since.

Our first stop: The Knit Cafe.
 This year's participation bag and contents:
We got a few patterns and some amazing deals for upcoming shopping trips!

Last year's TTC KnitAlong was my first time to The Knit Cafe, and found some lovely yarn, including some Berroco Ultra Alpaca (below is last year's picture of me shopping, in my Green Team spirit outfit).

 This year, there may not have been as many on sale bins, however I did end up finding some more Berroco Ultra Alpaca, and a skein of Anzula Cricket yarn.
After we left the store we decided to take a group picure.
So I give you, Team Garter Stitch!
And while we were taking pictures out front (minus our team captains), two guys came up to us and asked if any of us wanted to be superheroes in a webisode, just around the corner.  Seemed a bit sketchy, but was rather funny.  Only in Toronto do you get propositioned to be a super friend.  I asked about if they needed a supervillain, just to play devil's advocate.
Speaking of the  the randoms, here they are now:

We made our way to Knit-O-Matic, which I had never been to before.  After traveling and knitting on the TTC, and a short walk, we arrived.

Upon entering, I see wall to wall yarn, and a lovely little bird, Pluto, perched upon a shoulder.

I would love to have an entire wall like this... but then again, any fiber artist probably would.

I've never been one to truly like novelty yarn, save maybe the eyelash yarn or ribbon yarn (again in very small quantities), but I did find a skein I fell in love with.  I didn't bring it home, as I wouldn't know what to do with it, but this has to be the coolest yarn I've ever seen:

After looking around this tiny, yet treasure-filled store, I came out with my very own goodies.

This book was the first thing my hands found wrapped around as if it were a lifeline.
Heartfelt The Dark House Collection is full of amazing elegant patterns with a gothic and slightly macabre feel to them.  I knew the second I saw it, I had to have it; and since this was the only copy I saw on the shelf, I clung onto it the remainder of the time I spent shopping.

In addition to the book, I bought two skeins of Malabrigo lace, my first Malabrigo I've purchased for myself.
The colourway is Velvet Grapes:
I also picked out 5 vintage buttons, 2 large with floral detailing, and 3 small with zodiac details; and a shawl stick pin.  I've been knitting a lot of shawls lately, and only have one shawl pin I received in a swap that's a little difficult to use.

After our trip to Knit-O-Matic, it was back on the TTC to the Yong Eglington Centre for lunch and Mary Maxim.

For lunch I munched on some Sushi in the food court.  It was handmade to order and was amazingly fresh, so I think every time I go to Mary Maxim I'll have to have lunch there.
After purchasing the Dark House Collection book, I decided to buy some yarn to make two of the sweaters in the book, using mohair.
I not only found mohair, but some Bernat Satin in orange and green in hopes of making some My Little Pony blanket squares (Granny Smith and Applejack, thought Big Mac's cutie mark as well).  And the Simply Knitting for June 2013.
The black Mohair is Oki super-thin sim mohair, each with 550 meters for 50g.  The other mohair is Mary Maxim's mohair glitter. I was thrilled that the Simply Knitting magazine came with a shawl pin and an extra shawl booklet, even if it is a basic shawl.

After our shopping trip to Mary Maxim, it was time to head off to our last stop, and say good-bye to our captain for a few hours - she was off to assist with the prizes for the final event!
We piled ourselves on the subway for one stop and walked a block or so to PassionKnit.
Upon getting there, we had the TTC kit reveal! And the pattern of the year is (Drum roll) 
TTC Surprise! Having been on last year's TTC KnitAlong, and being unable to purchase the TTC Mitts, I bought both the socks and the mitt kits, as well as the Colour Affection shawl kit and Jacobus Monkey kit, along with a ChaiGoo circular needle for the shawl.

The Colour Affection Shawl kit yarn:

Six skeins of Koigu yarn, 
2 in p2409:
2 in 1164:
And 2 in 2260:

This was a kit I put together myself, so hopefully it will look nice once it's knit up!

This is the contents of the Jacbobus Monkey kit:
I adore the bright pink with vibrant streaks of other colours. The yarn is Koigu in P222, although I'm not sure the colourway for the beige (face and hands/feet colour) yarn.
These little monkeys were sitting throughout the shop, and with every one I saw, I wanted to make one more and more, until I found the perfect kit.

The TTC Kits:
The yarn for the mitts is once again Koigu (It's so fun to say!), in colour p838, which somehow looks different every time I take it out


The yarn is Botany Lace, which is one of my favourites for knitting shawls, in colour PT 1651
 I'm excited to knit this kit as well, it's been difficult to figure out which kit I want to knit first!

After PassionKnit it was time to rendezvous at The Rivoli.
Met by the other teams, we all sat down for drinks, apps, draws and prizes!
 Kicked off by our co-captains (and captains of the Garter Stitch Team) we dolled out the draws for prizes and awards for special recognition.
Last year, I was on the Green Team, and won a prize for Swankiest Dresser:
And though this year prizes were put in an envelope and drawn rather than awarded for noteworthy participation, I did get a special recognition for "Excellence in Extremely Knitastic Team Spirit":
As the night closed up, we had a chance to thank the amazing volunteers who made this event possible
and managed to raise $1600 for Sistering! I'm proud to be a part of such a lovely event, for a second year.  I look forward to next year's event, though this time I'll be sure to check sign ups daily! This year I ended up on the waiting list, and it was by chance (and maybe my willingness to go on any team) that I got in!

After I got home, I spread out all my goodies to take pictures.
My newest family member, Phoenix (My foster kitten who I'll be adopting soon!), decided to come check out my loot:

He's still a little skittish, but he's super sweet!

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