31 January 2014

The Perfect Yarn

You'll recall my determination to knit Arrowhead and to find the perfect yarn to do so? It was at Eweknit that I found it.
I walked in on the cold Sunday after Christmas and told Caroline that I was looking for a sock weight in a tonal at about 400 yards. I said that after their sale discount, I wanted it to come in at under twenty bucks. I was hovering around another brand at the time.
"Have you seen our Madeline Tosh light fingering?", she asked, magically directing me to another corner.
Shortly thereafter I found myself vacillating between a blue/gray and a taupe-ish gray. Then I saw the label. Dr. Zhivago's Sky was the name of the blue/gray. I, with my love for all poets Russian, held the last remaining skein of a yarn named after Pasternak! Well of course I bought it.
It's a single so I don't know how well it holds up. It sure does make nice round and plump stitches though. The gentle saturation of the dye also means great highlights in those textured stitches but without the harsh contrast of variegation that so often obliterates fine stitch work.
Yarn choice really does matter. As I learned when  I was a  less experienced knitter:  Just because you think the yarn is attractive doesn't mean you should make that particular project with it.

26 January 2014

Pale But Not Pastel

Don't you just love it when life events cooperate with your knitting? 

A few weeks ago while at Eweknit, I came across their store sample of the Garter Yoke Baby Cardi and admired it so that I felt an immediate strong desire to knit one myself. Given my usual indifference to the knitting of all things baby, this urge seemed even more significant.
Then, a week later, The Daughter announced that a favourite colleague at work just shared that she is expecting her first child. Well naturally, at the next knit night I purchased appropriate yarn for the sweater. How could I not?
I chose this Debbie Bliss Ecobaby cotton. It's got a slightly larger gauge than most baby yarns and i need a slightly larger cardigan. This child will be born in summer. She/he will need a fall sweater to be waiting in the drawer for those chilly evenings in the stroller. Also, I simply prefer cotton for a baby and this one is smooth and comfy.
I just love this shade of green. It's not mint, nor is it pastel. It's just very, very pale. With bright buttons, this is going to be a stunning baby fashion.

22 January 2014


Remember this? It was the header pic of this blog for quite a long time. It's a detail of some handspun I bought on Ebay way back when I first started stashing and was still using Ebay. It was a lovely thick and thin in pink and lavender tones that I had little intention of ever using. It just sat in the basket looking pretty. You know. Pure stash.
Well, it's gone; a victim of the damn beetles. I lost a fair bit during that unfortunate incident and am mostly over it now, but this loss was a particularly hard one to bear. Alas.

Enough now. Moving forward.
I have been quite productive knitting-wise lately. I'd hoped to be equally productive blog wise in this new year. I'm just waiting for a nice enough day to take a bunch of photos for the blog. Fingers crossed that the day may be tomorrow. Stay tuned.

08 January 2014


So I have this old friend. 

We met in 1990 and were very, very close for a long time. Then a few years back, we had a falling out. I won't bore you with the details other than to say that I was very angry and because of that, he and I have had no contact for the past 3 years. Recently, I started to regret the harshness of that decision but didn't know how to reach out in a way that wouldn't be messy and awkward. 

A few months ago I started to get heavily back into a favourite poet, Gwendolyn MacEwen. I remembered seeing a good edition paperback of her masterwork, A Breakfast for Barbarians, at a used book store in his town the last time I visited him. "A double opportunity for contact," I thought.  I emailed my friend, saying hello and asking if he could perhaps have a look. Was there an off chance that it might still be there? A few weeks later, I received in the mail, a hard cover, first edition of the book. He had sought it out on the internet and had it delivered to me.

Moved. Blown away. Amazed. 
Humans are endlessly surprising.

Since then, we have been tentatively working our way back to friendship. It may never be as intimate as it once was but we're trying to figure it out.


in that sublayer of sense
where there is no time
no differentiation of identities
but co-presents, a static recurrence
(that wolf is stone, this
stone is wolf)

your bones have interlocked
behind my brow
your meanings are absolute
you do not move
but are always moving

in that substratum I hold, 
unfold you at random;
your eye is a giant 
overfolding me;
your foot is planted
in the marrow of my bone, 
today is tomorrow.

vision does not flinch
perspective is not jarred
you do no move
but are always moving

you do not move but are always moving
Christ O Christ no one lives long
along that layer;
I rise to see you planted
in an earth outside me, 
moving through time
through the terms of it, 
moving through time again
along its shattered latitudes

Gwendolyn MacEwen, A Breakfast for Barbarians
The Ryerson Press, 1966