Sunday, March 22, 2015
It feels strange to be back in this space after so much time away. February passed in a fog of cabin fever; we were cooped up on bitterly cold days and were more than ready when the last snow of winter melted.
Now my boy and I are wholeheartedly embracing spring. He begs to eat every meal outside, even when we have to bundle up in coats and hats. We water our pea plants and check to see how much the tulips and daffodils have grown. It's easy to mark their daily progress and see where rabbits have taken a nibble or a bite here and there. I'm trying my hardest not to begrudge those rabbits their first taste of spring.
I planted those bulbs in the aftermath of my miscarriage last fall, orderly rows of tiny white daffodils, tall yellow ones, and tulips in white, yellow, and pink. I needed something to hope for, and so I buried those bulbs like promises to myself that come spring things would be better. All winter long they slumbered in the frozen soil, and I must admit that on more than one occasion I doubted they would sprout.
But they have!
I sometimes feel silly at how much delight I take in our daily ritual of checking on the sprouts, but I do delight in it nonetheless. My son and I share in the joy of these growing things. It's not a new baby, but it's new life, and I'll take hope where I can find it.
Wednesday, February 11, 2015
Have you seen Liesl's first pattern, the Henny Hat? It's beautiful. It has a simple lace pattern and just the right amount of slouch. The pattern is well written and includes both charted and written directions. It's a quick knit too, so it's perfect if you're looking for a project to curl up with this weekend.
I was lucky enough to be able to test the hat pattern and a skein of Buckaloo View black walnut yarn. I'm smitten with the rich caramel color the black walnuts gave to this wool-alpaca blend and can't wait until Liesl opens her shop so I can get my hands on some more. Wouldn't this yarn look great as a cardigan?
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See my Henny Hat notes here.
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Have you tried any new patterns lately? I'm excited about Canopy, Charcoal & Ash, and the colorwork patterns in the latest issue of Pom Pom Quarterly.
Sunday, February 1, 2015
"beauty is twice beauty
and what is good is doubly good
when it is a matter of two socks
made of wool in winter."
from "Ode to my Socks," Pablo Neruda translated by Robert Bly
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Two warm feet and a sigh of relief. January socks are finished!
Check out the Monthly Sock Challenge to see everyone else's January socks.
Sunday, January 25, 2015
I'm sorely afraid that my January socks will end up being just a lonely January sock. I had an unfortuitous start when my yarn cake immediately turned into a yarn snarl. I've never had this happen before, and I haven't had the patience to untangle it yet. Instead, I just cut the yarn and kept knitting, which is fine until I run out of yarn.
So then I was knitting away, only it turns out that colorwork is not nearly as enjoyable on double-pointed needles as it is on circular needles. Or maybe it is once you get the hang of it? Obviously, I do not have the hang of it because my tension was too tight to begin with. The sock was then put in time-out for a week while I wondered if I needed to rip it out and begin again in a larger size, but I decided that I since I could get the sock on and it didn't cut off circulation, I could live with it.
Three weeks into January I finished my first sock, and even with all the issues, I love it. I really think it's a thing of beauty, one of the most impressive things (to me) that I've made with my own hands. And I considered framing it and calling it art and most importantly, calling it finished.
But no, I couldn't help myself. I've got another cuff on the needles and less than a week to finish. Hope springs eternal.
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I'm joining the Monthly Sock Challenge, trying to make a pair of socks each month for a year. Needless to say, I'm thinking worsted weight for my February socks.
Sunday, January 18, 2015
This yarn is cushy soft and a pleasure to knit. Knitter's Review did a great review if you're interested in learning more. The color was much more my sister's style than mine, so I set to work making her a hat (breaking my self-imposed no-Christmas-knitting rule, but it felt manageable because it was the only holiday knitting I did and I had promised nothing, so there was no pressure).
I used Melody's Pinecone and Mulberry pattern because the texture paired nicely with this plush yarn and I could make a hat from a single skein, leaving another skein to play with. This was actually the second Pinecone and Mulberry I've made. The first I made from a wool/acrylic blend I had in my stash, but knitting it in 100% wool was much more pleasurable and made that popple-textured swath knit up much more easily (for reference, I worked on the wool/acrylic hat on and off for nearly 3 months because the yarn was splitty, whereas this wool version took me 2 days).
I imagine there will be more Pinecone and Mulberry hats in my future. Well, at least one. I need one for myself, after all.
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Thursday, January 8, 2015
Oh my goodness, it's the new year already! My new year so far is full of good intentions. I am always a dreamer and a resolution-maker. This year I've chosen the word nourish to carry me through the year. I feel like I've been wearing myself thin, and I'd like to take better care of myself. Sleep more, take more hot baths, do more yoga, drink more water, light more candles, read more. Nourish seems to encapsulate those intentions.
Of course I have crafting goals too. I (always) hope to sew more. In particular I'd like to make a Scout Tee and a Dottie Angel frock when she releases the pattern. I'd like to try drop-spindling again. And I'm making a realistic list of things I hope to knit this year. Uniform is definitely on the list, along with a couple of sweaters for my boy to wear in fall. I'll also be knitting a hat for the Mystery Hat Swap (there's still time to join if you haven't already!).
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I've been logging as much knitting time as I can on this beauty of a shawl. Every night I think, "Tonight is the night I finish the shawl," but somehow those garter stitch rows deceive me, so that at the end of the night I finally give up and think: "Tomorrow!" Maybe tonight is the night.
The yarn makes the shawl, for sure. This brilliant yellow is Liesl's marigold-dyed yarn. I'm excited for her to open her shop, but in the meantime I've got a skein of undyed yarn and a bag of marigolds in my freezer that are calling my name. Maybe I better add that to the list.
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Did you choose a word for 2015? Or set any craft goals? I'd love to hear.