Category Archives: NetFriends

Episode 17.5– News!!

Episode 17.5 is ready.

Thanks to SpinnDiva of Rambling Designs!!

Ms Bean's Shawl

She designed this beautiful shawl and named it after me!! Then turned around, knit one, and sent it to me. In my favorite color!! I can’t thank you enough, SpinnDiva!! We fiber crafters are something else!

Please check out her site and tell her I sent you!

KnitsnThings has a neat way to get around your spinning ADD: Check it out! I love it!

Also, Need fiber pr0n? Have a look-see at:

Tag surfer at;
the “Show me” thread in Spinner Central at Ravelry;
The Fiber Friday threads (as well as other threads) in the Spinning section of!!

Newest books:
Pretty Little Patchwork (
A is for Apron (

Since there is no specific website for Save-A-Thon craft and fabric stores I’ll list the addresses here:

2452 Flatbush Avenue (near Ave U)
824 Flatbush Avenue (bet. Caton and Linden)
57-31 Myrtle Avenue (near Seneca Ave)
166-07 Jamaica Avenue(between 166 and 167)
9 East Fordham Road(near Jerome)
2891 Third Avenue(near Westchester)
1887 3rd Avenue(near 104th)


Change can be a good thing…

Well ladies and gentlemen it is time for change yet again.

First off. BeanKnits and Spins is still being hosted at Podshow but from here on out I will be posting show notes and related photos here on this blog.

But, there’s a bigger change in store. I have joined forces with a variety of knit-and/or-spin bloggers at The House of Wool Repute!

At HoWR, as I like to refer to it, you’ll not only find me, but also some of my favorite fiber bloggers(and maybe yours, too!) Is there a blog you used to love but hadn’t read because it stopped being updated regularly? You might find her there. Or is there someone who never blogged before you’d like to hear from? She’s there too. I’ve had 3 great years blogging independently, and someday I might again. It took some time to decide if I really wanted to keep this site going and post there as well, but I finally made up my mind.

If you’re not interested in all the other posters at HoWR, then you can simply seek out posts written specifically by me. But why do that, when you can get all the fun without having to read several different blogs? Keep in mind some participants will keep up their own blogs as well.

I’ve done an intro post there but stay tuned for my real debut!, with Central Park Hoodie almost done and some spinning pr0n.

I don’t want to get all philosophical and shit, just wanted to let you know I AM alive and that you can still read my blather.. 🙂 So go check out The House of Wool Reputed and thangQ so much, for reading BeanKnits and Spins.

Ladybean(aka Tamara)

P.S.: Keep an ear out for some excitement on the next BeanKnits and Spins podcast! I’ve added a new favorites session: Books!, in which I’ll talk about two great books I just got and what I’m doing with them…(think LACE). hee

OMG! NO you didn’t!(Yes, they did!) :)

It has been said many a time, but it bears repeating: Knitters/fiber crafters are some of the most caring, and generous people I’ve ever met. If you asked me how to spell the word ‘friend’ it’s kklmstv(each letter is a seperate link). Those are the first letters of the names of some very special people. The people who gave me THIS for my birthday!!:

OMG!! They really did it! I’m floored. I know I mentioned my wanting to get a set of the Harmony needles to replace the bamboo needles whose cords annoy the hell out of me. But I never expected anyone to actually get it for me. They all went in and did the knittyest thing! I got this hilarious card too:


Karen came up with a clever way to display all the names: It broke my heart. 🙂

I know I looked a fool dancing and giggling in the street, but girls, consider yourselves hugged tight! I don’t know what to say, Thank you is not enough.

My poor brain was aswim with ways to start NEW projects, but I’d been neglecting Icarus(stay tuned for a new podcast discussing my knitting disaster!), so I simply transfered it to my new needles! I’m using the size 5US tips and the 32″ cord. I do intend to get longer cords and some of the metal tips, but for now I’m in needle heaven!

This is the needle in Icarus. You’re looking at the purl side.

That’s it for today. The earth has made yet another revolution for me today, and I’m gonna chill out as much as possible!

To everyone sending me birthday wishes, Thank you! I love ya!

She shops.. she SCORES!

That, I most certainly did.

Yesterday, Karen and Tania and I set out to the NJ Sheep and Wool Festival (Garden State Sheep Breeders Festival)l and had some good fun.

NJsheepwool 001

We landed here a little before noon, I think. I was operating on 3 hours! of sleep so forgive any errors. 😉 There were the usual staples; fiber vendors selling all manner of sheep, alpaca, rabbit and yak(fiber and livestock in some cases!); food vendors(not so much actually), and ready-made knit and woven crafts, as well as sheepherding demos and fleece and skein contests.

I’ve got a scad of pics for you right here(I know that’s what you really want 😉 ).

The other highlights of the festival were spinning on a Majacraft Little Suzie( that girl can GO!) and this: a little video I took of some ducks.

What I really wanna tell you is about that set of Denise Needles you see in the flickr set.

SCORE!! dude score!

The girls and I had heard about a lady not too far from the fairgrounds selling out her shop from her home. We did our deeds at the festival and ran straight for it. All kinds of yarny goodness, a bit of fiber(though nothing out of the ordinary–there was even an old Louet wheel!), a stack of back issues of Interweave Knit or Crochet, Knit Simple, you name it, and other non-craft related items..
And then I saw it… The Denise set. I looked in and at a glance all that seemed to be missing was the end caps and upon futher inspection(like, this morning? lol) I noticed the stitch holders are gone but damn if I didn’t get a hot deal.. All this for the sum of $3.50USD!!! Yes, you read that right. Mind you, the kind lady quoted it at a $1 but even I felt cheap too go for that so I offered $5 and we settled on $3.50!! I still can’t believe it! Granted, in the past I have mentioned that I wasn’t too thrilled with the Denise set but, I still have the long 50″ cord and right now the KP Options sets are just not in my budget right now. Maybe next year.

I was on a tight budget for this trip(it was last minute so that kept me from really binge shopping), but still managed to come home with some treats. Karen, ever so generous, had brought a box down with her and I got to take home the fibery goodies you see in the picture set. Go look! 😀

I’m gonna go play with it right now. See ya!

If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

There I go messin with stuff and trying to be cute again..

I called myself customizing the Pi shawl from EZ’s Knitter’s Almanac. The pattern in the book isn’t bad, but I figured I’d try my hand at ‘re-designing’ it by replacing the stitch patterns there with something else. I rummaged through my Treasury of Knitting Patterns, book 1, by Barbara Walker for something different and yet not too difficult. The pattern had to have an intermittent row of purls, since the shawl would be in the round. That narrowed it down some, with most of the remaining contenders being some variation or another of what’s in the EZ book.

Then the task was to find something that would jibe with the current stitch count of 288 without too many left over stitches. I figured I’d just make sure that edge was the part that got folded over when I wore it. I thought I’d found something and set to work.. After a while I started doubting my choice.. not because it was a 44 row repeat, but because it just seemed too.. loose. Yes, I know lace is supposed to have holes but these just didn’t seem right. I kept on. after about 22 rows in I decided to spread it out and take a look. Sure enough, it wasn’t going to show well even after blocking.. The needle I was using, a size 4.5mm, was too big for the laceweight and this design. I wasn’t about to knit the whole thing on 3.25mm’s, especially if I had to rip the whole thing.. and I didn’t think the shawl would look right with part of the thing done on 3’s and the rest done on 7s. *sigh*

This is all there was after I took out the needle:
disaster strikes!

A little over 15 inches wide. I’d actually missed the part where I COULD have started using the EZ pattern suggestion but I didn’t to do that so I didn’t rip back to pick up where it would start. So, it’s all a ball of yarn again. At least I used a lifeline.

But all is not turmoil, for yesterday I received a nice morsel of knitting goodness. Cristi sent me some Socka solids!! ThangQ Cristi!!

Socka!! Solids!!

I wanna jump in that burgundy first, it’s so nice.

I have quite a bit of yarn similar to this already but it’s this boring oatmeal beige. I could dye it but since it’s not a plain white the colors will be muted. I will still dye those up someday though..

So, I can eagerly get to planning for all those cool sock patterns that call for solid yarns..

All in all the week wasn’t too bad.. I have other WIPs so maybe I should just concentrate on them for a spell..

Now, where was I?

It’s been about 3 weeks since the surgery and I’m doing a lot better. Getting around more and feeling almost no pain. I haven’t needed a painkiller in over 2 days(knock on wood). 🙂

To celebrate I cast on another pair of socks.

bmpprog 002

BMP socks

I’m going totally from stash with this. It was a rough start too. I was going for a sort of reverse look with a white background and I have this lone skein of ArtYarns Supermerino 4 that I hadn’t a clue what to do with. So I divied it 65/35 and dyed it two colors. It started out as yellow and I’d planned on making it orange and green. I must have added too much RIT or something because I wound up with red-orange and NAVY BLUE. Don’t ask. So much for that. So, I’ve subbed the ArtYarns with Lorna’s Laces, in Lorikeet.

Have you heard of Ravelry?


Slowly but surely, beta-tester invites are being extended to those who sign up for this really cool knitting and crochet community where users can interact in ways you never thought about! You can search for others who’ve used the same yarns you’re thinking of, worked the same patterns you’re planning on, and you can check others’ stashes, and patterns on their to-do list!! Discussion boards, avatars, and you can put in pics of your WIPs and FOs! Go sign up, or wait for the site to open to the public, which should be real soon!

I’m gearing up again for spinning. I’ve gotten quite a bit of new fibers to play with and I can’t wait to start experimenting with dyes and spinning up the results! I hope I don’t have anymore of those RIT accidents. 😉

I am by no means a food enthusiast; I just like to eat! The other day I ‘discovered’ a new snack: frozen seedless grapes. I went and bought a bag of grapes and put them in the freezer to speed chill them; I like my fruit cold as possible. I forgot them and well, they got frozen! But I took a few out, rinsed them(kinda forgot that part, oops!), and bit them..OMG I’m in heaven!! They’re so good!! Who knew! Crunchy like M&Ms but much healthier!! This is especially what I need, since I’m trying to get rid of all my excess weight.. now I can eat and not feel so guilty.

Sewing is on hold while I do more research on how to get things just right. But if you’re sewing-sick and need a fix, check out Dogged Knits, Oiyi’s Crafts, and Skip to my Lou, right there on the sidebar. And CooknKnit has a new sewing FO up as well. Go! And tell em I sent you. And well, no, they’ll probably see it in their blog stats anyway, hee.

Miss me?

I’m back got dammit. Hurt up and recovering but back. Just give me a little time. Surgery went well, and according to the doctor, everything in question is benign! I did lose some blood, and being anemic just makes that worse, but nothing along the lines of needing a transfusion.

Spinning by wheel(my preferred method) is still out for a bit so I might have to feed my crafting insanity with some new crochet(yeah, you read that right!) projects. I am also stewing up some sewing, though not a whole lot, as I don’t have a huge fabric stash (yet 😉 ) and pressing the pedal is tantamount to treadling a wheel. At least when I need to rest I can stitch or hook away while sitting up in bed–no feet needed.

The Gift of Friendship is truly that, as while I was recuperating in the hospital I got some lovely and exciting gifts from knitting friends. Among them were a beautiful bouquet of flowers(damn, why didn’t I take a pic!?) and “Teach Yourself Visually… Handspinning”! Thank you ladies, so much for your generosity and kindness. You made my heart smile! I’ve browsed the book and will do a more involved review in a future post.

I did manage to eek out a dress before going into the hospital:

wrap dress 003

This is my rendition of the One-seam Convertible dress, as found here. Keep in mind it’s not HER pattern but rather her interpretation of such type of dress and showing us how we can make our own. ThangQ Rowena!!
It’s been a long time since I sewed clothing for myself and after seeing the many dresses made from her tutorial I had to give it a shot. I cut my head out of the pic because I was tired and deranged looking.

The dress(or rather my skills in making this dress) need improvement. I’ve since picked up some tips on how to get better coverage for an undergarment, and I also learned a little more about fabric stretch and how it can really fark up a pattern 🙂 I had another RagShop coupon to use so I just grabbed what I liked. I need to slow down next time I go fabric shopping.

As for knitting, speaking of the Gift of Friendship, I took the scarf with me so I could work on it while in my hospital room. No, I’m not crazy taking lace to work on while on strong pain meds; the pattern is easy enough to remember that you can tell when you are in the repeats so as not to make a mistake. I spent more time zonked out than knitting anyway, but managed to put some miles on it, so it’s definitely longer than the last time you saw it. I probably won’t photograph it again for the blog until it’s done.

In the meantime, I’m also making progress on another pair of plain socks. Gotta use up that stash! Koigu PPPM in a color I don’t remember. Bought this way back in 2005 when I was full of that shop called Purl. I tried knitting something with it before, so I’ve since lost the ball band. (I need to stop DOING that!).

Well that’s it for this one. On with recovery!

ETA: OMG these pain meds must be better than I thought! Where’s my brain? To all the blogging, crafting moms out there, Happy Mother’s Day!(US)