Friday, January 26, 2007

new hair and housekeeping

I went for a long overdue cut & color today. The ends of my hair were soooo fried from previous colorings and all the extremely low humidity we have had lately. So off when the dried, fried ends and in went some layers. I also got some very slight, wispy bangs.

I like it, but we'll see how it wears since I don't have time to blow my hair out daily.

day 26 of 365/photo a day
#26 of 365

Now, onto the housekeeping:

Comments: I try really hard to reply to people's comments, but since I migrated to the new Blogger, I'm no longer receiving commenters' email addys. This means that unless the commenter has a *public* Blogger profile with a valid email addy, I can't reply. This is one of the reasons I wanted to install Haloscan for comments. Unfortunately, Haloscan does not play well with the new Blogger so we're back to missing email addys.

So in the meantime, if you would like a reply to one of your comments, please try to leave a valid email address.

And here are some answers to comments that I couldn't reply to via email:

hunny asked about tips for taking 'better photos', and what camera I use. I have two cameras- a small point & shoot (Canon a540) that I keep in my bag, and my work camera (Canon Digital Rebel) which is a DSLR. The P&S is what I use for snapshots, while most of my FO report photos are done with the DReb.

I personally do not believe that an expensive camera = better photos. There are things you can do with a DSLR & good lenses that you can't do with a point & shoot....but bigger megapixels and more $$ do not guarantee good photos. Most of good photography is understanding the light and how to make the best out of the light you have.

There are tons of books out there that will help: Understanding Exposure is a great, easy to read book. There is also The Digital Photography Book or The Betterphoto Guide to Better Digital Photography. All of these would be a good start.

And then there are the myriad photo sites on the web: Betterphoto, ILP, DpReview are just three of them. Flickr is home to some of the best photographers around...and there are plenty of forums to learn in.

Other than that, my biggest tip is start taking photos. Seriously! Take your camera out of "Auto" mode and put it in AV or TV. Turn off the flash (99% of my photos are taken with only natural light). Find a well lit window (no direct sunlight) and start taking photos of something that doesn't move. Have fun! Play with your camera settings and see what happens. A lot of learning to be a good photographer is about just taking pictures. Like so much else in life, a little practice will really help.

Ween wanted to know the yarn requirements for a size 4 Pirate Sweater from Zoe Mellor's book. The pattern calls for :
-4 (50g/94yd) balls of Rowan Handknit DK in main color (navy blue)
-2 balls each of A (red) and B (ecru) Rowan Handknit DK
-You also need a pair of US5 and US6 needles.

I don't much care for cotton, so I'm using Cascade 220 Superwash (220yds per 100g): 2 balls of the navy and one ball each of the other colors. The 220 is a worsted weight yarn so I'm also using bigger needles (US6 and US7).

LizK wanted to know what I think of the Swish Superwash I used for the small men's Drive Thru sweaters. So here is my Swish Superwash Review:

IMO Swish is pretty good stuff- it's softer than the Cascade 220 superwash I'm using right now. The price is about the same if you consider that the 220 comes in 100g balls and the Swish is in 50g balls. The only reason I went with the 220 for LittleMan's new pirate sweater is because the Swish doesn't have a white/offwhite color.

Both of the boys' sweaters have held up exceptionally well. I've washed LM's sweater at least six or seven times now and it still looks really good with minimal pilling. There has been a bit of felting around the cuffs and neck edges, but nothing too bad.

I also noticed that the yarn shrank a bit when I washed it the first time. SaunShine has an extensive review on her blog that talks about the actual amounts of shrinkage she experienced with Swish. The shrinking on my sweaters wasn't quite as severe**, and even with the shrinkage I'm not too concerned about the long-term wear of the yarn. It has held up quite nicely against all the abuse (and food) two little boys can dish out.

I would't hesitate to use Swish again for another project. I just wish Knitpicks would come out with better colors!

So, that's all the housekeeping for now....I'm off to enjoy some hot cocoa and my new hair.

**I think some of the differences in our experiences can be attributed to different washing machines, different water hardness & washing methods, etc.. We have a front load washing machine that requires very little water & detergent. It is also very gentle on clothing, which is probably why my sweaters didn't shrink as much as SaunShine's, and why they haven't pilled at all.


canknitian said...

LOVE your new hairdo! I'm sure it will be easy to do everyday, it's just a matter of letting it do it's own thing while exerting just a little control on the days when you can't blow it dry.

About the blogger email address thing -- Jackie at one thread two thread -- figured out that not only does the address have to be valid in the profile, anyone who has migrated to the new blogger needs to go back to their profile and click "yes, share my email address" again. I keep meaning to post that on my blog, but I thought I'd share it here seeing as how you're more on the ball than I am! :)

Liz K. said...

First of all, your hair looks gorgeous!

Thanks for the quick Swish review. After reading Saun's review, I was a little skeptical. I guess we all have our own experiences with different yarns.

a. said...

i think it looks great! i'm sure hubby thought it rather sexy ;o) i am religious (mostly) about getting mine cut and colored every 6 weeks (it grows fast) -- it is my quiet time away from the kids.

btw when you get a comment from "a", it's me, amanda/clothesknit. for some reason blogger cut off the rest of my name on the new version...

Woolfairy said...

Your hair looks beautiful! About the wool versus cotton, do you find the boys get too hot in it here in socal? I tend towards looking for cotton patterns for exactly that reason, which only partly explains the Big Dig sweater I'm currently making. :)

margene said...

The hairdo looks fabulous. You've inspired me to give my guy a call...I've put it off TOO LONG!

HomeJewel said...

Great cut! I'm with you on low maintenance.

Thanks for the photography book recommendations. I've put them on my Amazon wishlist. I do have free classes to use up with Ritz camera, but perhaps I will retain more if I read up a bit first.

Obsessed with knitting said...

fantastic haircut - can't wait to admire it in person!!