Mack’s Absolutely Horrible, Terrible, Rotten, No Good, Very Bad Week

This past week, things fell apart on a level I have never experienced. It started small- an order from a few months ago got list in the mail, and I went nuts trying to sort it all out. And then my vendor application for an event this Saturday got lost two.

I did what any blue blooded American would do- I cursed the I efficiency of the postal service to high heavens.

And then I considered how the term “postal” came about (as in “going postal”), and considered retracting many angry Facebook posts to appease any homicidal post men.

Then my glasses broke. I can’t see more than three inches past my nose, so this was a huge dilemma. All I can say is thank goblins for hot glue guns!!

But the worst my week had to offer was the near death if my dog.

The facts were these:
My mom went out of town with my aunt and uncle (who is a veterinary surgeon). I dropped my mom off at my aunts, and then went home to find copious amounts of dog vomit on the floor. Not good. So I call the local vet to tell them I’m bringing in my puppy, load Beasley up in the car, and lead foot it to the office.

Lets be really clear here, I called in and said it was an emergency, and needed to see a vet right away.

When I got there, I checked in and sat down to wait 40 minutes, with a crying dog. In those 40 minutes, some horrible man told me he was sorry my dog was dying (WTF???!!!!!), and watched the vet take back three dogs that came in after me for things like getting a vaccination, or getting their nails trimmed. I was displeased.

And after those forty minutes, when there wasn’t a soul in sight, my poor dog threw up all over me, and the floor, and the bench, and then collapsed.

I started screaming for help. It took five minutes for a vet tech to wander in and smirk at the fact that I was covered in gross smelling dog puke, and then another 15 minutes for a different tech to take me to a room with my poor dog. By then I was bawling my eyes out, because I was scared, and alone, and more than anything I was upset because my dog needed help and these people seemed dead set against helping him.

The tech whisked him away, and I found out later that Beasley had started to turn blue, so he had been put in an oxygen tent.

When the vet came in, I immediately set to work getting her on the phone with my uncle (a vet), which in and of itself ended up being a comedy of errors. But eventually all if the right people talked amongst themselves, and decided Beasley would spend the weekend in the hospital kennel.

So I called the vet every hour the entire rest of the day, and well into the night.

And when my boyfriend got all of the news, he offered to come over from work, so wouldn’t be in a panic, alone.

When he got to my place, he made sure I was okay. And then he told me I should have my dog euthanized. Because he is and old and stupid dog.

I’ve had better weeks.

I am pleased to say that all of the mail issues were worked out, and Beasley is home again, safe and sound, having survived heat exhaustion and dehydration. I’m much more careful to make sure he drinks more water than a camel.

My boyfriend is currently blacklisted, until I get over his comments.

CIBA Sunday: Welcome to Volume 3!! :)

Good afternoon!

As promised MANY MANY months ago, I have finally started working on my CIBA Archive for the fashion design/art history/textile design/history of fashion/history student everywhere. I don’t have every single one of the volumes, so I am starting with Volume 3, which is the first one in my collection. It’s all about the wall. From ancient hanging, tapestries in castles, and murals, to the invention and politics of wall paper, this volume covers quite a bit!

How many of us actually pay attention to the walls around us? We see them everyday, but they are often dismissed quickly. What color are they? Do they have photos, or paintings, or posters on them? Painted or wallpapered?

I remember how important my walls were growing up. At my mom’s house, when I was very young, I had pink wallpaper, with unicorns frolicking among castles. At my dad’s house, my stepmother spent countless hours to give me an ocean themed bedroom, complete with a gorgeous hand painted mural of fish.

When I grew up and went to big, bad Jr. High school, I moved up to the attic bedroom in both houses. At my mom’s house, we painted the walls white, and I would sketch out huge murals in charcoal, scribble notes on my wall in brightly colored markers, and for some reason glued a deck of cards on the wall. At my dad’s I taped the back artwork from all of my CD’s to the wall, and since I owned quite a few CD’s (this was back before iPods), I managed to cover half of one wall.

Then I went to boarding school, where I duct taped a 10ft. x 7ft. movie poster for “The Lord of the Rings” to my ceiling, and painted a Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings themed mural on the wall.

Now as an “adult”, I have key lime pie colored walls, with eye popping pink, aqua and yellow detailing.

Why does this matter? Through out history, the wall has been used to represent something. It breaks up space into rooms. It’s used to display family history, or achievements. It can be turned into a focal point with a piece of artwork, or to set the mood of a room. For being so versatile, in modern times, the wall is often taken for granted.

So the next time you walk into a room, look around you. Before you sit down in front of the TV tonight, just take a second. Look at your walls. Because for the next few weeks, I will be covering them in the CIBA Sunday Reviews!

Figuratively, of course. I’m not going to break into your houses to paste pages from the articles on your walls. That would take entirely too long! 🙂

Next week’s article review: “The History of Mural Hangings”, by Grete de Francisco.

Knitting Thursday: The Red Velvet Cupcake Clutch

Ahh, how I love apocalyptic storms! For the past week, every single day, there seems to have been a disaster warning: Floods, tornadoes, twisters, hail, lightning storm, the Four Horsemen- you name it, and there’s been a warning for it. So the weather has been horrible, and since I run amok using SEPTA, I’ve pretty much been hiding out in the house. As if the weather and sudden lack of mobility weren’t bad enough, yesterday I snapped my only pair of glasses in half. I hot glued them back together, since with out them, I can only see three inches past my nose… But it’s only a temporary solution. SO this week, the stress has been high, the flood waters have been high, and Murphy’s Law has reigned supreme.

But enough about me! How many of you guys tried on the crochet pattern? ::waits patiently::

Hiawatha crocheted clutch

Well, that’s okay, because I tried it out, multiple times, with different yarn weights. I had trouble getting it to look like the picture, mostly because I had never crocheted before, but considering that I learned to crochet on this project, it’s not too terribly difficult, and it comes together faster than I thought.

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This was the first one I made- I chose yarns that would match a dress sample I planned on shooting to put in my store. I knitted the entire thing with double strands, using medium weight 1.75 oz. yarn. SO I ended up with a REALLY chunky purse, that reminded me a whole lot of the red velvet cupcakes my boyfriend makes me on my birthday. Because it was so big and bulky and floppy, it doesn’t really hold it’s shape very well. So I’m going to line it with stabilized fabric, so it doesn’t stretch out when I use it. It only took about five hours… and two of those hours I spent cursing the skies because my yarn kept getting snarled and tangled.

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This was the second one I made, using a fairly thick crochet yarn. It took a lot longer, since the yarn was finer, and I had some trouble with my ability to use a measuring tape, so it ended up being two inches short of how wide it was supposed to be. But I like how it ended up. There wasn’t any instructions for a wrist strap, but it wasn’t really that difficult to figure out. I just lined it with some scrap fabric from the dress, and am going to sew a little zipper to the top.

The great thing about this pattern is that it can be used effectively with many different yarn weights and yarn types to make different sized bags, without having to change the directions. Assume that a larger yarn will give you a larger bag and proceed from there!

For new readers, here is the link for the pattern: http://www.flickr.com/photos/96766844@N02/8905422138/

If you have any trouble viewing or copying it, just email me and I can email you a copy of it!

Happy crocheting! 🙂

Knitting Thursday : Hiawatha Clutch No. 633 Pattern

I have MANY, many little archives that I take care of in my house. I recently was gifted a CIBA Review archive from my uncle, which was THE COOLEST thing. But I also have a vintage/antique clothing archive that boasts four 1950’s hats, a few 1940’s dresses and a 1890’s silk velvet coat with fur trim (which, yes, I did eventually stop wearing, when I recieved a lecture from my History of Costume professor…), and a small collection of vintage knitting magazines that span the 1920’s all the way to the mid 1950’s.

Now, I love knitting and crocheting… but I’m not particularly good at it. I think it’s the time involved. Anyway, I’ve spent the past three years knitting (and unknitting, and then re-knitting again…) a 1950’s sundress. THREE years.

And the worst part is that I keep looking at even more complicated patterns, and think to myself “You know, I could totally make that in two weeks.”

Anyway, I’ve seen people selling PDFs of vintage patterns on different sites. Which at first I thought was a genius idea. Until I REALLY thought about it. These patterns aren’t available to everyone, anymore. Time has destroyed or lost countless copies. They should be shared with people! For FREE!

Hiawatha crocheted clutch

SO that’s exactly what I’m doing! I’m sharing a vintage pattern for this adorable little clutch, from Hiawatha (now out of business). I would say that to get it right, your best bet would be to take the pattern to a knitting store and ask if they could suggest alternative yarns to use. I plan on running out later today to pick up some supplies to try out this pattern myself! (I will probably be conned into spending half of my savings by the nice sales person… they LOVE it when I wander in cluelessly…)

I’d love to see any photos of finished projects from this pattern. What I would love even more is if people could post any feedback or suggestions for this pattern!

SUPPLIES (as listed in the pattern):

HIAWATHA Metallic Corde Art 64, 3 tubes  (Or suitable yard for a sz O hook)HIAWATHA 3-Ply Lamee Yarn Art 74, 4 tubes (Or suitable yard for a sz O hook)
Sz O crochet hook
Bag Lining N0. 5749   (I suggest just purchasing a third of a yard of fabric and make your own lining)

And here is the link to the pattern instructions: http://www.flickr.com/photos/96766844@N02/8905422138/

Happy crocheting!