Monday, January 30, 2006

And Then There Was...


I stayed home from work today (lest anyone think I'm a slacker - I had a massive headache, but my doctor has since fixed me right up with a shot in the shoulder - go figure), and so was home when my 3rd Blythe showed up. She's an "I Love You, It's True" Neo-Blythe, and is really lovely. She's my Anthropologie fantasy doll. She's very feminine and comes wearing blue and pink, including pink net socks and blue sandals. She also has a girly flower print skirt. Can't you just see her in anything from Anthropologie? I think after this, I only want one more - a dark haired Blythe with bangs.

I just know I'm going to go crazy making them cute little outfits to wear. Well, at the very least, it's a good way to use up all my fabric scraps! I currently have all their stuff in an Irregular Choice Shoe Box (because it's pink and girly). I hope I don't go so crazy that they outgrow the box... Heck, I hope I don't go so crazy that they end up having more clothes than I do! That would be sad, coming from someone who's sewn her own clothes since the age of 10. ;-)

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Progress is progressing

I thought I'd give you all a quick update on my Swirl Girl. Overall, I'm really pleased with the way the CLR treatment is coming along. Her hair is mostly green-free now! There's still a touch in the ponytail, so I put a little CLR on it, and it should be gone by morning. There was also a tiny splotch of green on her right cheek and that, too, is almost gone. Her ears are finally making progress, which I'm very relieved to see. Here's a pic for you to judge for yourself:

I figure at this rate, she should be mostly green-free by weekend, and completely healed within 2 weeks. Then I'll re-wrap her ponytail, dress her and put her on display.

I'm pretty happy with how fast the green is clearing up, as Swirls are supposed to be notoriously difficult to de-green (is that even a word?), and would definitely recommend this treatment for vintage Barbies.

Sunday, January 22, 2006

New Girl on the Block

I just realized I never posted when my second Blythe arrived. She came last Wednesday, and is really quite cute. She's dressed retro at the moment in her original outfit, but I'm thinking she needs something a little more modern. Since she's a redhead, she'll look best in fall colors, so I expect to see her in lots of greens and browns. Oh, and her name is Georgina or Georgie for short.

Here she is in all her retro splendor:


I accidentally left my knitting notebook at my LYS today, so am going through withdrawals without the directions for my current knitting projects. I finished the Tagliato shawl, which turned out so cute that with the leftover yarn, I created a mini one for Blythe. I knit it on smaller needles than I used for mine, so it's a bit bulkier feeling, but I like how it turned out. I also used a safety pin to close it, because I will be using a kilt pin to hold mine together. It was a super fast knit. Check out the finished results:

As an added plus, I have the two Stitch 'N Bitch books in the background. A big FU to SFSE and a big thumbs up to Debbie Stoller. If you haven't been following it, click on my sidebar for the Stitch'N Bitch controversy. Such BS, and bad business acumen for Sew Fast, Sew Sleazy. Well, if they want to go out of business, I guess that's one way to do it - piss off all your potential customers! Lame-a$$es.

Don't Try This at Home

It used to be that if you wanted to treat green ears on vintage Barbies, you had to cake on the Remove-Zit and leave Barbie on the windowsill for a couple of weeks. I did a search after picking up the swirl ponytail, and have found that the latest treatment is done with CLR. So, I got some on the way home, and after using rubbing alcohol to get the grossest bits of green off Barbie, have pulled her head off and started treatments. Here's the progress:

It can take up to 2 weeks to fade the green ear, so I'm just going to have to be patient. I just hope I see *some* difference in the next day or so to know for sure it's working.

Saturday, January 21, 2006

My First Swirl

I've collected Barbies since I was 10 (played with them since I was 2 or 3), but in all that time, I've only collected a few very early examples. One of the first I picked up was a #4, and she's been the elder statesman in my collection, and the only ponytail. Today, I scored her sister, a swirl ponytail.

If you're not familiar with Barbie, all of this will be gobbledigook, but it's a huge deal to me. As a matter of fact, I bonded with my friend in SF over her collection of Swirls. So, back to my first swirl... This morning, I decided to go to my local thrift store, which can be hit or miss. The last time I was there, I noticed they had some Barbies in the front case, but didn't really have a chance to look at them. Today, I looked. And saw. And bought. They had a few lovely examples of Ken and Midge and a couple of bubblecut Barbies, and one swirl. She was dressed in orange pants and a blue jumpsuit (turned out to be an orange cat suit with Barbie tag - yeah! and a Tammy original playsuit). She also had horrendous green ear. It's so bad, it's gone up into her hair. I really hope I can get it out, as her makeup is PERFECT, and her hair just needs a new elastic - it even has the original ribbon at the bottom of the ponytail. Poor swirl, she was priced a lot lower than the others due to her green ears. The price caught my eye, but the green at first kept me from buying. Until I realized she was also 30% off... So, now I have a green-eared swirl girl with lots of potential. :-D

Here are her pics (note that she's now nekked - this is nude art, not Barbie porn):

head on - perfection

side shot - ewwwwwwwww

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Pimpin' the Neon

I have a tendency to hold on to things in my life - we can debate the merits or lack there of, but it's just something I do. So, my car is fast approaching its 10th year with me. For the last 7 or so I've been thinking about selling it, but the *no car payments* thing has really kept me from doing so. Last fall, I even went so far as to list my Neon for sale on No one even so much as nibbled at it. Not that I could blame them, Neons are much maligned. But, hear me out, there will come a day when they will be collected. In fact, I think the day is coming soon. But, that's besides the point. It wasn't until I listed Barney for sale that I realized how much I still like her. So, that has brought me to thinking about pimping her (and not in the pimping her out sense of the word but more of the bling bling type of meaning).

So, first things first. I made a list of all the things that are mechanically wrong with her that really needed to be fixed (as opposed to the idiosyncratic things that I can live with for now). The biggest (or so I thought) was to replace the exhaust manifold - which was replaced early last year. Found out this morning that Valley Dodge are a bunch of MORONS and wouldn't know a cracked exhaust manifold from the crack in their a$$. Look, just because I'm a woman doesn't mean you can take advantage of me. My dad's big and he can kick your little scrawny a$$ to the curb. Heck, I can kick your a$$ too, but you really don't want to piss me off that way - it's not pretty. So, it turned out, the exhaust manifold was NOT cracked, it was just the donut that's hooked on to it had gone bad. (See what I mean about Valley Dodge being MORONS?) Cool, much less money, but now I have a surplus exhaust manifold. Could be a good thing since I intend to keep the Neon around for awhile, but annoying in that I didn't have to buy the part after all. The other thing was an oil leak. I actually have two. One is just the way the car's designed, so whatever, and the other has to do with the oil filter. That will be fixed once the part gets in. So, now for under $200, my car is going to be in good working order. Much less than buying a new car.

Now that the mechanical stuff is out of the way, I'm going to see about getting Barney detailed, and then swap out the radio (one of the idiosyncratic things) for one I got cheap off Just swapping one stock radio for another, nothing fancy. That should keep her (and me) happy for awhile. And then we'll be able to toast to our 100,000 miles together in the next month and a half (not while driving, of course - drinking and driving don't mix).

If you're wondering why she's named Barney, well, let's just say they're both the same color. Although I think Steve Martin described her best as a "frisky lip-gloss pink Dodge Neon." Seriously. Don't believe me? See page 12 of the paperback version of "The Pleasure of My Company." And if you notice a slight resemblance between me and Clarissa, that may or may not be a coincidence. ;-)

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Craftopia update

I love long weekends - I stretch two days worth of whatever over 3 days and don't feel guilty about taking long naps and doing nothing for hours at a time.

Took a very long nap this afternoon after doing laundry (which, trust me, was very overdue), and am pretty sure it will manage to upset my sleep schedule this evening. Since that is the case, I will probably have hours to work on knitting and sewing while I await sleep to overtake me.

So, in honor of the crafting that awaits me, here is an updated list of current knitting projects (one of these days I will map out the sewing projects, too), with changes in bold:

1) Gedifra Tagliato shawl - about half done
2) Gedifra Tagliato mini-sweater from
3) Gedifra Cicco Gold Paris Loop from
4) Gedifra Cicco Teal Paris Loop from - on needles, about 1/4 done
(I totally scored on the Cicco off ebay - yeah! 3 balls each color, so both my Loops will be slightly shorter than the original pattern)
5) Colinette Pt 5 Capelet from Teen Knitting Club (I actually made this first as a sweater from Yarn Girls' Guide to Simple knits and frogged it cos it was HUGE, then made this capelet on size 17 needles, but it stretched out so frogged it again and trying it on 15 needles this time). Reknit this about 3 times over the last week, but FINALLY got it - on 17s. Just need to sew the two pieces together and it'll be DONE.
6) Astrakan scarf (to match the hat I made last week) - DONE
7) Patons Up Country bolero designed by Veronik Avery (off - lovely!) I was off gauge, and had to rip the back out. Found I could make gauge if I knit tight on the 10 1/2s.
8) Debbie Bliss Merino DK Julsey shrug (off I actually finished this, but made it about 3 inches too wide, so it does a weird baggy thing under the back of my arms. I thought about steeking it, but think it really does just need to be done properly. Ugh. Have been thinking about this - I think I just need to shorten it 3", which is a hell of a lot better than ripping the whole fcuking thing out.
9) S. Charles Cabaret shawl
10) Rowan kidsilk mohair branching out (from
11) Tahki Stacy Charles Cotton Classic in a gorgeous teal - not sure exactly what I'll do with it, but I have a strong suspicion it will be a summer top
12) Some vintage 80's rust colored yarn that I plan to use to make a modified mini sweater from (mixed with some Rowan Yorkshire Tweed)
13) Eco forest green for an ubernaturel from
14) Eco lavendar - currently working on a ribbed scarf, but may make another shrug
15) Some gorgeous BonBon Gourment Collection to make a 70's style vest

New additions:
16) Naturgarn in deep gold which will become this. I like the one on the left, but will add the peplum from the one on the right.
17) My first cabled sweater out of more Patons upcountry. It's the one called the "Perfect Turtleneck" sweater.
18) A gorgeous Patons Brilliant sweater in gold from the current issue of Interweave Knits. It's knit on sz 4 needles, so this is going to take awhile...
19) More Patons Brilliant - but in Burgundy this time, to make a shrug a` la the one I espied at Zara in Vegas last week.

So, here is what I've learned looking at the new list: For every 2 projects I finish, I take on 4 more. Great... At this point, by the time I finish all of this, my list will have doubled!

On the plus side, my yarn buying does seem to have slowed down a little. I went to my LYS with mom yesterday, and didn't buy ANYTHING. Now, that's restraint! ;-)

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Bad Girl

Didi's been disturbing my co-workers most of the day, and so she's been placed in time out until it's time to go home.

I showed her to M, and he found her so disturbing that he loves her even more. He also loves how photogenic she is. Then he said, "I could see how this could become an obsession and how you couldn't have just one." To which I then confessed that I already bought another... He wasn't surprised. Thank God we're both collectors or we'd have a hard time getting along. A similar pathos is essential to a healthy relationship. I told him I'd probably end up with 5 total... We'll see if I keep my word. One thing's for sure - she will not be sleeping anywhere in my room or I'll be having nightmares. It's the eyes.

I Present To You...


Damn she's cute. And heavy! I had no idea. Oh, and her head's a little flat. I can totally see why kids were scared of her back in 1970s... But, she has serious potential. I want to dress her all in black, as she's really just a beatnik at heart. ;-)

Don't believe me? See her now!

She's playing nicely with my motion buddy. I like her already.

Edited to add: I finally realized I misheard her when she told me her name - it's not Didi, but "Deirdre". You know dolls, they're not so good at annunciation, and I've become a little hard of hearing after all those rock concerts I went to in high school. So, now we know ;-)

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Infected By Blythe

I saw Gina Garan's book, "This is Blythe" back in Fall, 2001 and added it to my amazon wish list in January, 2002. Now, four years later, I am finally going to pick up my first Blythe. I no longer need to stare longingly at the disturbingly gorgeous pictures of everyone else's Blythes. I will now have my own! I am oddly elated by this, even though I am, ahem, legally of the adult-persuasion. Up til now, I've been a staunchly Barbie Girl, with a few dalliances into Dawn, Tiffany Taylor and more recently Bratz and My Scene. So, what started the recent obsession? This did.

So, which Blythe am I getting? Well, I actually got two (shhh - don't tell M, he thinks I only got one!), but the first one I purchased is coming via mail. So it turns out the second one I purchased will be the first one in hand since I am picking her up at will call in the morning!!!!!! Woo hoo! She's a Madame Rosebud, and I can't wait to dress her in black - the better to show off her pink (yes, pink) hair. Don't believe me? Take a look for yourself.

I've been thinking of a name for her, and I know I should wait until I see her to be sure... But, I'm feeling a little inspired by Didi Cohn in Grease - I mean, the hair, c'mon - it looks just like her! So, it's a toss up between *Pinky* and *Didi*. Didi's character name, *Frenchy*, just does not speak to me... So, I'll unveil new pics and her official name tomorrow.

Now that I've told you all about my first Blythe, you're probably wondering what the other one was I purchased. Well, I'm a red head, so I have this thing for red-haired dolls... So it really should come as no surprise that this was the other Blythe I purchased.

Yes, I think she'll do just fine! And, of course, now that I have two, I'm already thinking of which others I'd like to have. It's a sickness, I tell you. I have been infected by Blythe.