I am so excited! After finding out about the Secret Pal thing just after the signups for SP8 closed, I can now FINALLY participate in one. On to the questionnaire:
1. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with? What fibers do you absolutely *not* like?
My favorite thing to knit with now is Lush - I have a couple of balls I bought when I had a little extra $. I like anything soft. I hope to finish a pair of fingerless gloves and a scarf out of the Lush before it gets too cold. I am on a budget (I did budget for my pal, though!) so I don't get to knit with nice yarns much. I like alpaca, and I think I would like cashmere if I ever tried it.
I hate whatever the fuzzy, furry, manmade stuff is that is sold under the Yarn Bee name at Hobby Lobby. I am making a scarf out of some for someone (they picked the yarn) and it's impossible to see what you're doing or rip anything out. It's even hard to get the yarn out of the skein - it comes out in sticky clumps.
I don't mind manmade microfiber stuff that's soft - but I prefer natural fibers. I occasionally knit my daughter toys out of acrylic & I don't like to knit with that. I've never knitted with linen and would like to try it sometime.
2. What do you use to store your needles/hooks in?
My straight needles are in a zippered vinyl bag with a pocket inside, except for the long ones, which are in a tall tin (I think wine came in it). I don't use them much. I mostly use circs or dpns. My circs are in a zippered pouch, all mixed up. I keep my Knit Picks Options set in their case, along with a couple of small circs that I bought with them.
3. How long have you been knitting & how did you learn? Would you consider your skill level to be beginner, intermediate or advanced?
I have been knitting for almost three years. I learned from a book. I would consider my knitting skill to be intermediate, my knowledge of techniques to be advanced, and my finishing skills to be beginner.
4. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list?
Yes, there's a link on my blog.
5. What's your favorite scent? (for candles, bath products, etc.)
I like lavender, sandalwood, rose, patchouli, rosemary, almost any kind of flower or herb.
6. Do you have a sweet tooth? Favorite candy?
I like dark chocolate. I am trying to eat healthier than I used to, and don't eat sweets much, but I really like dark chocolate. Anything with caramel, pecans, and coconut, too. I also like chai.
7. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do? Do you spin?
I spin, weave, dye, tablet weave, and I'm about to get my BFA in Ceramics in May (yay!). I also do encaustic painting, beeswax collage, and mixed media artwork, usually relating to women's issues. I am currently beginning yoga (just learning).
8. What kind of music do you like? Can your computer/stereo play MP3s? (if your buddy wants to make you a CD)
Hmmm, that's hard to answer. I don't listen to a lot on the radio now. I like what I guess you could call '80's Modern Rock - REM, the Cure, etc. I also like Crosby Stills & Nash, Pink Floyd, the Pogues, Concrete Blonde, U2, Lorenna McKennit, etc. I would like to hear more Indian / Middle Eastern music - I like the drum rhythms and instruments.
9. What's your favorite color(s)? Any colors you just can't stand?
I like jeweltones, and greens and purples. Don't like orange much. Except I do like red-orange with turquoise.
10. What is your family situation? Do you have any pets?
I have a three year old daughter and a wonderful husband (ten years in January!). We have two outdoor cats.
11. Do you wear scarves, hats, mittens or ponchos?
I don't wear mittens or ponchos much - I don't like not being able to use my fingers and I'm never sure what to wear under a poncho. I will occasionally wear a scarf for decoration, and I love a hat when the weather's cold or wet.
12. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit?
Small items that don't require a lot of finishing. I like to knit fingerless gloves, washcloths, scarves, hats, socks - anything easy to carry around with me.
13. What are you knitting right now?
Socks for Sock Wars, a scarf for Funky Scarf Swap in a lace pattern, a log cabin blanket for my daughter (upstairs hanging-out knitting), socks and gloves for Christmas presents. I need to finish the sleeves for my daughter's sweater, too. This, Sock Wars, and the Funky Scarf Swap are the first knitting swaps I've done online.
14. Do you like to receive handmade gifts?
15. Do you prefer straight or circular needles? Bamboo, aluminum, plastic?
Circular or DPN, depending on project, and bamboo for smooth yarns and nickel plated for yarns that won't slide. One of these days I'd like to try some hardwoods.
16. Do you own a yarn winder and/or swift?
Yes, got lucky & found them secondhand.
17. How old is your oldest UFO?
I have crochet items that will always be UFOs since I learned to knit! But my oldest knitting UFO that I can think of is a little over a year. But I probably have older ones that I am blocking from my memory.
18. What is your favorite holiday?
Halloween. We decorate the house, take Lorelei trick or treating, and go to a friend's house for dinner afterward. There is none of the stress associated with family gatherings, huge dinners, relatives in town, and presents. Just lots of fun.
19. Is there anything that you collect?
Umm, besides knitting needles and yarn? I collect small pieces of pottery by local artists - I pick up a piece when I go to a craft fair, if I can. I collect old weaving / fiber odds and ends - the huge old thread bobbins and shuttles, things like that. I also collect toy cast iron stoves, but I haven't done anything with them in a long time.
20. Any books, yarns, needles or patterns out there you are dying to get your hands on? What knitting magazine subscriptions do you have?
I subscribe to Cast On, Spin Off, and Interweave Knits. The only things I can think of right now that I would really like to have are Vogue Knits and two pair of small size 2 circs. I have never looked at a Rowan magazine, I would probably like to see one of those, too.
21. Are there any new techniques you'd like to learn?
Can't think of any. I love to try new techniques, so when I see one, I go for it. I do want to try knitting a lace shawl, though. I think blocking scares me, I need to learn about that. The scarf I'm knitting will be my first real blocking experience and I'm nervous.
22. Are you a sock knitter? What are your foot measurements?
I don't know the measurements, I can measure when I get home - but I wear a US size 9 or 9-1/2 regular width. *Edited to add: 8" around at ball of foot, 9-1/2" long.
23. When is your birthday? (mm/dd)
Yay! That was easy. Although it would have been easier to answer a couple from home instead of school.