21 October 2016

My Cute Accessories Are Condiments

There is an interesting discussion going on in the comment section at Knitted Bliss. Her post about not participating in Slow Fashion October has obviously struck a nerve with many. Socio-economic privilege, aspiration "hipster" blogging, and yarn snobbery are all being discussed. Head over there to read the many fascinating comments. I especially enjoyed the link to Bristol Ivy's Instagram post on the subject.

The blogger comment I love the most states that she is,
"getting tired of seeing the same type of pics every single day: beautiful yarn with cute accessories around, or the legs stretched out on a beautiful blanket or couch, knitting."
I know exactly how she feels.

Well. Miss Agnes, here is my response: Me in my natural habitat - the local diner with a pint, a plate of food, maybe a book or two and, of course, knitting. The food is plentiful and cheap. The yarn was on sale. There are sports on the TV with the volume turned down so the gentleman in the corner can read his paper. The waitress knows my beer and brings it without being asked. I was a regular fixture there for years and no one thought it was odd to see an older single woman knitting away on a Friday night. When told him I was moving, the fellow at the cash, who always calls me My Dear, said to make sure to come back and visit. And I do. The other day I had errands in the neighbourhood so my Fall KAL Jamenson sweater and I lunched at my usual table.

18 October 2016


Don't you just love wool? With the cooler weather, a knitter's fancy turns to woolen cardigans. Well, this knitter anyway. 

No, I haven't abandoned my promise to stay true to the Jameson pullover. However, I picked up this traditionally Canadian Briggs and Little Regal a few weeks back at Romni Wools. It is to be my future Mary Mead. Anyway, on Sunday we were browsing the local antique market when I came across these vintage buttons. The gold painted glass is going to be a perfect compliment to the off-white wool. This happy find gives me even more inspiration to get through the Baby Cocktails KAL and onto my next project. It's all sweaters here these days.

07 October 2016

A Beach, A Channel, Cables

With the passing of time, if one is lucky, or at least trying hard enough, one gets to know oneself. What I know is that when I get antsy and start to feel trapped, I need to get out, out, out. I forget this sometimes and let the negativity build up to a toxic level. Then it comes back to me - feet tramping on earth, air in lungs, open space - that's what I need. 

We have been blessed with unseasonably warm weather here in the city. It's October? Really?  So, yesterday, in a just a t-shirt, my favourite skirt, and a pair of sneakers. my bike, my knitting and I went for a wander.

30 September 2016


I am so enjoying working Jameson's thick satisfying cables. As the weather cools here in Toronto, it is the perfect kind of knitting to be doing.

26 September 2016

Homeless Heart

Homeless Heart

When I think of finishing the work, when I think of the finished work, a great sadness overtakes me, a sadness paradoxically like joy. The circumstances of doing put away, the being of it takes possession, like a tenant in a rented house. Where are you now, homeless heart? Caught in a hinge, or secreted behind drywall, like your nameless predecessors now that they have been given names? Best not to dwell on our situation, but to dwell in it is deeply refreshing. Like a sideboard covered with decanters and fruit. As a box kite is to a kite. The inside of stumbling. The way to breath. The caricature on the blackboard.

John Ashbery, Quick Question
ecco Harper Collins, 2012

18 September 2016

Oh, think not I am faithful to a vow!

Ha ha! I cannot stay true. How can one possibly do so when the internet dangles such delights? Surfing blogs while bored I found that Thea Coleman, aka, Baby Cocktails is having her Fall KAL. So not only is this pattern called Jameson, my favourite whiskey, but it's also on sale for the KAL. I just happen to have a bag of aran weight Fiddlesticks in my stash that's just itching to make luscious, intriging, cables. So I had to buy the pattern and cast on right away! I just had to. I always was a flighty thing. 

Oh, think not I am faithful to a vow! 
Faithless am I save to love's self alone. 
Were you not lovely I would leave you now: 
After the feet of beauty fly my own. 
Were you not still my hunger's rarest food, 
And water ever to my wildest thirst, 
I would desert you — think not but I would! — 
And seek another as I sought you first. 
But you are mobile as the veering air, 
And all your charms more changeful than the tide, 
Wherefore to be inconstant is no care: 
I have but to continue at your side. 
So wanton, light and false, my love, are you, 
I am most faithless when I most am true. 

Edna St. Vincent Millay

13 September 2016

Modifying the Heck Out of This

I have long admired this peasant blouse pullover from a late eighties Scheepjeswol booklet. I particularly admire the yoke with the drawstring closure. 

Surely this can be updated, I'd always thought. Made more sophsticated?

The recent discovery in my stash of some silk yarn in the exact gauge as the original merino/silk of the pattern solidified my resolve.
So on with the mods!

Slim the whole thing; arms and body. Eliminate the unflattering bulk of folded over ribbing at the waist and replace with a mirror image of the yarnover row in the yoke then go straight into the garter stitch. Do the same for the sleeves and make them three quarter length. Make the yoke more shallow to get rid of all that extra fabric under the arms. Leave the bottom side seam open for a few inches and make the back a few inches longer than the front. Use a simple suede or leather cord for the drawstring.

Good plan? 

08 September 2016

About A House

Words from: Gwendolyn McEwen's House, Breakfast for Barbarians
& Theaster Gates program notes How To Build A House Museum

I live in a room. A high room in the sky. Home but not a house. I am recently obsessed with the ground & why I am not on it - physically or metaphorically.

29 August 2016

Sometimes We Say "Meh"

Not all projects are Love, Love, Love. Sometimes they are just OK.  Now the story of how I came by possession of this yarn is an amusing one. Unfortunately it's not a story I can freely share without breaking my rule to never say anything bad about someone on social media. Suffice it to say, the skein was summarily thrown at me in a melodramatic pique. And then I had new yarn.

It's beautiful yarn, this Fibre Company Canopy. Coincidentally, it is also the yarn called for in Ysolda's Veyla, a pattern I've long admired. So I cast on during the Olympics and had my Games project.

My knitting was just not up to par this time. I got terrible ladders and uneven stitches. The fit is funny. The colour is not great with my skin tone. I think maybe the origin of the yarn put bad karma on the project. Alas.

I have discovered however, that I like the project better on me when worn backwards. It's much tidier in appearance this way. So wear it backwards I will.

23 August 2016

Oh, For A Well Lit Monkey

Another challenge of the new home is "Where in the heck do I take my knit FO photos?". There are large windows on only one side so we get either full morning sun or no light at all. I can't get the depth and softness I used to easily achieve with the diffuse side light of the windows in my last place. I'm having to take over exposed morning shots and soften them with photo software (as with the sock shots below). The effect is not ideal. I guess I may need to find somewhere outdoors to shoot.

Other than that, the knitting goes very well. I finished my Olympic gloves and have swatched and cast on for a pullover. It's been far too long since I knit a garment.

Pattern: Monkey by Cookie A.
Yarn:  Manos del Uruguay Alegria

20 August 2016

Accidentally Olympian

It was never my intention to knit an Olympic project this year. However, I just happened to cast on Veyla the afternoon of the opening ceremonies and despite one huge set back where I missed ten rows and had to rip, this pair of gloves is now about 80% done. Combine that fact with an invite to watch the closing ceremonies with other knitters, and suddenly I am determined to have these complete by tomorrow night.