Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Aunty Kizzy's Back Porch

Today's post is here. We had a marvelous time at Aunt Kizzy's Back Porch on Saturday, celebrating Natalie's birthday!


Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Pattern for Crocheted Cardigan

Many people have asked for my pattern for the Burgundy Crocheted Cardigan. I've written up the directions and have them in pdf format. Maybe one of you HTML techies out there can help me figure out how to link the blog to the pdf file OR to place this page on my sidebar. I'm seriously HTML-limited! Yikes!
Black Cardi with Cable Opening in Progress

ADDENDUM: Thanks to Mary-Heather for her suggestion about uploading pdf files!!!
Check out this link for the pattern.


Monday, January 29, 2007

Saturday Yard Sale

Yard Sale Queen Christine
We participated in Christine's yard sale on Saturday in Burbank. Larry and I both did quite well and sold ALMOST all of our junk. Of course, since there were several of us selling things, we all bought and sold things to each other! Even though rain threatened, we managed to keep things going until around noon. The rain didn't start in Burbank until 1-ish.
Marilyn Knits Between Sales
Larry Samples Christine's Home-Brew
Ellen Crochets and Sells "Collectibles"

Marilyn, Amy and Greg Shop

Faith and Laurie Drop By to Add Moral Support
Also, Faith clued me in on a Burbank secret. The Handy Market on Magnolia, just west of Buena Vista has an outdoor barbecue every Saturday.
NOTE: Vegetarians....stop reading here.
They sell tri-tip roasts, chicken and baby back ribs. You can see and smell the billowing smoke. They must use some sort apple mesquite in the bbq's. It smells heavenly. We bought a half-chicken, one slab of baby-backs and a small tri-tip. For all three, the cost was about $25! I put most of this bounty in the freezer and we ate the rest. Yummmmmmmmmmmmmmm! Thanks for the tip, Faith! We'll have meat for weeks!

We walked around this small-town market a bit. Looks like they sell delicious sandwiches at their deli counter. They had lots of specials on Saturday and the produce looked very fresh. I didn't want to spend all of our yard sale proceeds in one place, so we hurried home to eat our bbq lunch!

Smoke Gets In His Eyes


Friday, January 26, 2007

Another Busy Weekend

Had a great time at the WeHo SnB last night. I was so busy crocheting and talking to everyone that I didn't even think to snap a photo! We have lots of newbies at the SnB....faboo!

Tonight Larry and I will be readying our stuff for Christine's GROUP GARAGE SALE tomorrow, Saturday, January 27th. The sale starts at 7am....we probably won't be there until 8:30-ish. I'm assuming the sale will go until 1 or 2pm. Christine listed the info in the Recycler and on Craigslist, but here's the location: 239 No. Orchard Dr., Burbank. I believe that about 6 people are participating. It should be great!

Later that night we'll be heading down to Marina del Rey for a special birthday party! I'm excited to go to Aunt Kizzy''s been awhile.

Sunday, after breakfast with the folks at Rutt's Hut in Mar Vista, I'll be heading over to McCabe's Guitar Shop for a ukulele workshop. This is an ongoing, once-a-month meeting so all of us ukesters can keep our uke-chops up.

On Sunday evening, it's another ukulele extravaganza. We're meeting friends at Cantalini's in Playa del Rey for dinner and to hear Ian Whitcomb perform. He's a ukulele master.

Have a marvelous weekend, everyone!

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Top-Down Crocheted Cardigan

Collar & Button Band of Top-Down Crocheted Cardigan
After seeing all of the great sweaters that my friends Ana and Ellene knit, along with inspiration from many of my WeHo SnBr's, I finally just bit the bullet and decided to crochet a cardigan for myself. Since I'm a plus-size person, it's really a chore to knit and/or crochet yards and yards for a sweater. I always lose interest in a project if it's too laborious.
Sleeve and Bottom of Cardigan
I'm a much faster crocheter than I am a knitter, so I researched top-down sweaters on the web. I've KNIT lots of top-down baby sweaters and they always turned out great. I only found a few links to top-down CROCHET patterns. The best one came from It's called "Sweet," designed by Amy O'Neill Houck. I used Amy's basic pattern, but modified it for a cardigan. Then, I added a collar, button band and extended the sleeves.

Love the colors of this yarn!
I crocheted the sweater out of Canon acrylic yarn called Simply Soft Shadows, Autumn. I used a size "I" crochet hook. Instead of just double-crocheting every row, I alternated two rows of double crochet with two rows of crossed double crochet stitches. The sweater worked up quickly. It's warm and cozy. I may have over-blocked it slightly to get a drape from the yarn, but all in all, I'm pleased with this project and will crochet it again using a more expensive yarn.

I'll wear the cardigan tonight at the chilly Original Farmers Market for our weekly WeHo SnB.


Wednesday, January 24, 2007

The Art of Fine Art Photography

Underhill Adjusts a Painting

Yesterday, Larry had a job at Copro-Nason Art Gallery at Bergamot Station in Santa Monica. For a few years he's been photographing artwork for this gallery and others and for various L.A. artists (SHAG, Joe Vaux, Audrey Kawasaki, Dennis Larkins, Jerico Woggon, Mike Shinoda and more). His transparencies are later used for the print media or to reproduce giclees (fine art prints of paintings). Photographing paintings in the proper light so that the reproduction looks as good as the actual painting is an exact art and science. Larry Underhill has been a professional photographer for 30 years and he knows his stuff!
Affixing the Black & White Register
Since my office is close to the gallery, I brought Larry a delicious sub-sandwich from Bay Cities Italian Market for lunch, plus I wanted to visit and to watch him work his magic in the gallery.

Checking Alignment

There is a precise science to this art of copying paintings. Larry has to set up the lights so that the color and focus are perfect. If he's photographing paintings of varying sizes, then he has to realign, re-adjust and re-measure everything. This is a long and drawn out process in a gallery full of paintings to copy.

Loading the Film

Snapping the Shot

Copro-Nason Gallery recently released a new book called "Copro/Nason Fine Art - a Catalogue Raisonné". There are over 450 images on 275 pages. Larry photographed most of the artwork for the book. It's a marvelous volume containing the history of the lowbrow art movement and over 15 years of exhibition history of the gallery.

Photographer, Larry Underhill

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Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Venice Contemporary Gallery

Venice Grind Coffee House

On Saturday, Larry and I attended the grand opening of a new gallery on Venice Blvd. in Mar Vista. The Venice Contemporary Gallery consists of 3 storefronts in one building on Venice near Grandview. The center store is Venice Grind, a coffee house. On either side of the Grind are galleries. They share a large backyard. This first exhibition featured a group show of paintings, a swingin' d.j., a "live" painter actually doing a performance painting, vintage prints, drinks on the patio, etc. It was happenin'.

Mear One - Painting Performance

Many of our artist friends were showing their work and in attendance, including Dennis Larkins, Joe Vaux, Jenny Lens, etc. We arrived on the early side, around 7:30 pm. By the time we left at 9, people were positively streaming into the space. Apparently, art shows are the new hip hangout.

The Artist Smiles @ Ellen thru the window

Notice Mr. Larry, right, checking his digi-cam

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Monday, January 22, 2007

Yarn Clogs

Ellen-Left and Mary Jo-Right
Dansko Yarn Clogs
Gina at Skein Cocaine (great blog name) has commented on my blog, so of course I like to check out (stalk) my fans. As I was perusing Gina's blog I came across a photo of these Dansko clogs needled felted with bits of yarn. I had to have them! Gina said in this post that was out of them. I searched and searched and eventually found an online source. Of course, the clogs were more expensive at this site, but I didn't care....I had to have them!

Since I've been trying to adhere to Knit From Your Stash 2007, I've found that my yarn shopping compulsion has carried over into other, purses, knitting and crochet tools and supplies other than yarn, books, tacos.

On Saturday, I met up with Marcia, Mary Jo and Christine at the newish yarn shop in South Pasadena called Abuelita's. I bought some lovely rosewood knitting needles, size 8 (no yarn). We ended up going downstairs for lattes, sweets and sandwiches. Abuelita's is a very cute store...nice yarn selection...big needlepoint canvas and wool selection.

Turns out Mary Jo has the same yarny clogs that I have. M.J.'s have more orange yarn....mine have more pink. I love wearing my yarn on my shoes!


Friday, January 19, 2007

Friday Sky

Yes, it's windy, cold and clear in Santa Monica today. My office has a balcony on the 5th floor of our building, facing north. I can actually see the Hollywood Sign today!!!

Hollywood Sign on the distant hills

In the words of the iconic L.A. newsman, Jerry Dunphy, "from the desert to the sea to all of Southern California, a good evening." Have a glorious weekend!


Thursday, January 18, 2007

Is It a Hat or a Headband?

Audrey's Calorimetry

Last weekend Jeff and Audrey treated us to breakfast at Jinky's on the Sunset Strip for Larry's birthday. Of course, breakfast was the omelettes at Jinky's.

After A & J gifted Larry with lots of cool b-day gifts, we walked outside to leave. Audrey snapped on her latest knitted fashion, Calorimetry from the latest Here is Designer, Kathryn Schoendorf's description of this piece,

"Calorimetry is a scientific term describing the measurement of heat lost or gained. Knit hats are a wonderful way to block out the cold, but when you have long hair it usually requires wearing it down, not often the most comfortable option on a blustery day. This headscarf allows you to wear your hair up while keeping your ears warm and preventing heat from escaping from the top of your head."

Audrey knitted her Calorimetry with leftover yarn. The directions say that about one skein is requred. I really like this design, but I don't like keeping track of short rows. Even though I learned to knit at the age of 7 and didn't learn crochet until I was around 17, I've realized that I'm a better crocheter than knitter. I might have to figure out how to translate this adorable pattern into crochet terms. You don't need to have long hair for this darling accessory to look good!

So, is it a hat or a headband?
Audrey & Jeff @ Christmastime 2006


Wednesday, January 17, 2007

NELA-Art, The Coffee Show

Artist Clare Graham @ Mor York Gallery
wearing a wire-knit hat from Bali

On the second Saturday of every month, the Northeast Los Angeles Arts Organization hosts an art crawl at various galleries in the Highland Park, Eagle Rock area. This past Saturday Larry and I were participants in a group show at Future Studio called "The Coffee Show." There were 103 pieces of art from around the world in the show. It was really interesting to see everyone's different perspective on coffee. Lots of people attended the show and enjoyed the coffee-related refreshments provided by Gallery Co-Owner, Amy Inouye.
The Crowd @ Future Studio

Mary Jo admires Coffee Art
Brit models her handcrafted Coffee Earrings
Show Curator, Ted Meyer
Future Studio Co-Owner, Stuart Rapeport
Later that evening we visited the Mor York Gallery. I've been there several times, but I always see something new in Clare Graham's workshop. Huell Howser of KCET's "California's Gold" should definitely visit this gallery and help promote the Second Saturday Gallery Night in the Arroyo Area. Owner and artist, Clare Graham creates all sorts of things from cast-offs, including wooden yardsticks, scrabble boards and pieces, pencils, buttons, bottlecaps, pop-tops, tin cans, swizzle sticks, etc. I love bringing newcomers into this space.
Yardstick Screens
Swizzle Stick Wall
Vintage Pencil Screen
Tin Can Wall
Collections @ Mor York Gallery
At the end of the evening we stopped at the Avenue 50 Gallery to view the colored pencil drawings of J. Michael Walker. They were extremely detailed and looked like fine oil paintings! Amazing.

J. Michael Walker Drawing @ Ave. 50 Gallery

We always enjoy the Second Saturday Gallery Night in NELA. You must go next month!

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

La Bodeguita de Pico

Today's post is here. We visited this new restaurant in our neighborhood on Friday. It was very good. We even spotted some "celebs."


Friday, January 12, 2007

Happy Birthday Mr. Larry

Larry, 9th Grade , Sherman Oaks, CA

Today is Larry's birthday. Much like last year, Larry is taking the day off from his freelance photo duties and visiting The Getty and The Skirball Museums to see their current photo exhibits.

Later, we're going to dinner at a new restaurant in our neighborhood, then to an art opening. The celebration will continue throughout the weekend!

I leave you with a photo essay of Larry this past year. Happy Birthday, Darling!
Rockin' Larry
Jaunty Larry
Larry with his movie friends
Larry w/ Dan, Look-Alike Acquaintance
Jollibee and Larry
Larry with Painted Look-Alike
Creature Larry

Summertime Larry

What a Doll!


Hiren's BootCD
hard drive recovery