Katherine the Great
I like to think of myself as a storyteller. Mostly I tell stories about knitting.

Turns out at least one person reads this blog….and they commented as to how I haven’t posted a full on knitting movie review in a while. Since I take my fans very seriously, I spent last weekend watching movies. See if you can spot the theme.

CHIPS
Ya’ll, Dax Shepard wrote, directed and starred in this movie. He’s officially a triple threat. Michael Pena was talking trash about Dax needing his name on everything so Dax stunt drove for the car chase scene towards the beginning of the film and the credits now read Stunt Driver for Michael Pena: Dax Shepard. This movie is funny and the story and action are solid enough to watch it over and over again. I don’t want to blaspheme, but it reminds me of Bad Boys.

That said, now I need to address a serious issue I had with this movie…the facial hair (SPOILERS AHEAD).

The two stereotypically hot actors (Josh Duhamel and Adam Brody) had gross mustaches in this movie. Adam Brody is one of my biggest celebrity crushes and all I could think was, “just no”. I’m sure the filmmakers were doing some kind of retro mustache tribute, but…..not everyone can pull off a mustache like Tom Selleck. Veto. I also wonder if Dax Shephard was looking to be the hottest guy on set? In which case, well played, Dax.


However, he overlooked the drugged out son sporting an “i forgot to shave for a couple days” beard which is pretty much my ideal facial hair. I blame Indiana Jones (and 17 years with The Husband who likes to sport the short beard). I don’t know who was in charge of making Justin Chatwin (you may recall him as Jimmy from Shameless) look like a druggie, but they could have committed a little more. His mussed hair and fresh beard were perfection, so he looked like maybe he’d just been up super late at a knitting slumber party the night before.

Man up
I wasn’t sure I could buy Simon Pegg as the leading man in a rom. com. and he totally pulled it off. Must be the beard. This movie was cute, funny, and all around enjoyable. I’ve no idea why I didn’t watch it sooner.

Bonus: Lake Bell is sporting a nice cream colored knit hat with a pom pom. What do we think? Seed Stitch? I dig it!













Beauty and the Beast
My expectations were low. This film exceeded them. If you enjoyed the animated version, I think you’ll like this movie…unless you have to watch it more than once. In which case, I’m sorry.

Don’t kill me, but I would have preferred the Beast actor to have darker hair and 2 days of beard growth. The transition from Beast to clean shaven and blonde was too drastic for me. Anyone else on that boat?

Everybody Loves Somebody
I was all set to watch a nice run of the mill rom. com. when we realized this movie needed subtitles. But, not all the time. It was half in Spanish and half in English, so I ended up having to read all the subtitles because by the time I realized it was Spanish, I’d missed it. Overall, the movie was cute, and not half bad. I have to comment that Ben O’Toole is a hell of an actor. (SPOILER ALERT) To the degree that I actually wondered at one point if his wife had died in real life. (END SPOILER)

If you’re bilingual, I think you’d enjoy this film quite a bit. If the filmmakers want to manage expectations, they need to dub it in English or go back to the original title, Todos queremos a alguien.

The Spirit of Christmas
A friend of mine has recently discovered the guilty pleasure that is the sappy holiday romances. She summarizes them this way, “There’s a girl and she’s some kind of high powered professional that’s not into Christmas and the guy is a sweet hometown boy or a Christmas-loving widower and she has to sell off his factory/inn/home only he helps her realize the true meaning of Christmas and they live happily ever after. Sometimes he’s returning from war or maybe a cute kid is looking for a new mom/dad and if you’re really lucky, there’s a puppy.”

Jen Lilley sported a red cabled sweater, a cozy plain gray cardigan, a purpley blue cabled hat and a wine colored cowl-necked sweater during this film. I only noticed some of these. Probably because I’m knitting a cable pattern myself.



















No one is winning an Academy award for these films, but if you’re in the mood for Christmas romance, The Christmas Spirit will deliver and of course, it doesn’t hurt that our leading man (Thomas Beaudoin) is sporting a great beard.


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I find myself looking inward just now. Hot summer days have me slowing down and focusing on what I want out of life. What’s important to me? Am I saying yes based on my priorities or someone else’s?

Any kind of introspection leads back to knitting. Who am I kidding? Nearly everything I think about circles back to wool and needles. Reflecting back on my Karma Sutra socks, I remember starting them to practice lever knitting. I wanted to knit faster. I worked on the new technique for awhile, but never really quite got it. Recently, I’ve been thinking about giving it another shot. This time, I’m motivated by ergonomics rather than speed. I’d like to be knitting brightly colored socks as I while away a hot summer day decades from now. Whether this new motivation will bring success in my quest remains to be seen.

“Pattern”: CO 64
k1,p1 ribbing for cuff
left cross (1st over 1 st = 2 total), k1, p1 around for 1 round
k3,p1 ribbing for leg.
Sweet Tomato Heel by Cat Bordhi in contrast yarn (slightly modified so the contrast yarn only went across the top of the foot for 6 rows)
k3,p1 for the top half of the foot.
*I did something crazy on the top of sock 2 and had to drop 2 stitches from the toes all the way back to the heel to turn them into purls for the ribbing.
Verdict: I’m glad these socks are pretty because they were a little bit more of a pain in the arse than I planned. The fit of the Sweet Tomato Heel is acceptable, however I prefer to knit a heel flap.
Yarn: Must Stash Yarn & Fiber Spiffy Sock
Colorway: Kama Sutra
Needles: 2.25mm Karbonz (first time trying these – they are not my favorites because the join is not perfectly smooth)


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These socks hold more fond memories than perhaps any pair I’ve knit to date. They joined The Husband and I on our journey to California to visit his family and Disneyland.

We worked a visit to the Pacific into the trip so I could dip my toes in the ocean. As I eagerly headed for the waves, my pants already rolled to my knees, I hurriedly approached a four foot sand cliff. Planning to jump down, I stepped near the edge and it collapsed beneath me, cramming damp sand in every crevice on my back side. My entourage was a few steps behind me and found my mishap hilarious. As I’m the biggest beach lover among us and possibly the most experienced faller, I was glad to be the one to go down.

…and I grafted the toes of the second sock Christmas Eve with my parents. Just magical.

They hold so many wonderful memories and now I’m adding more….like DFW Fiber Fest.

Pattern:
Inspired by Helen’s lovely Darkside socks, here is my recipe.
k1,p1 ribbing for 1 inch
Stockinette until the first colored stripe begins and then switch to Vanilla Bean Striped Sock Style (VBSSS)
Continue VBSSS through the first row of the black stripe and then back to stockinette
Heel: Eye of Partridge
Note: I swapped needle sizes up and down during the gusset decreases to get at least one round in each color.
Yarn: Must Stash Yarns – Perfect Self Striping Sock
Colorway: Dark Side of the Moon EPV
Needles: 2.25mm bamboo


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