Saturday, April 22, 2006

Blue is the Happiest Color

Well, I was feeling pretty pleased with myself - just the upper bodice of the camisole to go and then I could start assembling it. Didn't look real closely at the gauge in which that portion is knit - yikes! The recommended needles were 3.5 mm, but by the time I swatched and reswatched I was down to 2.5 mm. The yarn I substituted for this portion is Mystik DK by Estelle, which splits and snags horribly on these little toothpick needles, so every stitch has to be painstakingly inspected for stray threads before sliding off the needles. It does make a nice looking fabric (thank goodness) but what a nightmare to knit. I can see I have my work cut out for me to finish this in time.

On a happier note, my Louet Sales order arrived yesterday and I adore the color mix. The one benefit to shopping the Internet rather than the LYS (which I would frequent if I had one - sigh) is that you never have to settle for your second best color choice because there's not enough of what you really wanted. I can never truly give my heart to a sweater whose yarn I "settled" for.

Friday, April 21, 2006


Sadly (for my thighs), I am still too sick to head out running. I finished the back of the simple tunic yesterday - holding it up, I'm beginning to think I could wear it without pants - the stillettos are still out, though. I didn't photograph it, because 31 inches of navy blue stockinette is not substantially more interesting than 8 inches. Got back to work on the lacy camisole, since the function I plan to wear it at (if I ever get around to phoning a babysitter) is exactly a week away. I still don't know whether I will look like a free-spirited fashionista or an afghan gone terribly wrong. Oh the suspense.

Since I have no knitting photos to post, here are some inspirational foggy morning shots from yesterday - I love foggy mornings on the prairies - they are rare, but they make me feel like I'm back on the coast. Either coast would do, although the West is warmer - I spent 2 years in Newfoundland and Labrador (not just politically correct provincial name dropping either, as I spent 7 months in Goose Bay, where I met my DH, and the other year and a half divided between St. John's and Cornerbrook) and 7 years on southern Vancouver Island. Where by now, my garden would have been a riot of color for weeks already, and the trees would be showering me with scented petals..... Never mind, the grass here turned greenish mere days ago.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

The Shiny Side

There's really no knitting to show from yesterday - it was a long and painful day at the office, trying to keep up the usual earnest and perky pep talks in a hoarse croak - you CAN quit smoking, you CAN eat real food, exercise WILL make you feel better than expensive herbal stimulants, honest.

So, I thought I would post a shot of the other (shinier) side of my fibre addiction - that is to say, knitting with silver. This is a simple lace pattern - some of them are more technically feasible than others, but they do look quite lovely in the ultra-fine gauge fine silver. I crocheted pearls around the edge which gives it a nice Victorian air and also makes it considerably sturdier.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Faun with Knitting

Thanks to a rolicking head cold, the simple tunic is coming along nicely. The Gedfrida cotton / microfibre blend (which I substituted for the recommended cashmere/silk) is shaping up very well - firm and evenly textured, soft to the touch. My DS graciously consented to test it.

Speaking of Liam, I was knitting to the happy strains of Aaron Copeland's Appalachian Spring yesterday afternoon, when he flew into the living room stark naked to perform a frenzied and rather primal dance. Perhaps because Mr. Tumnus is fresh in my mind, I thought that with his impish blue eyes and wild blond curls, he needed only cloven hoofs and a pair of tiny horns to be the very image of a young faun. His unselfconscious joy was truly breathtaking.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Mindful Knitting

As an awkward newcomer to the practice of mindfulness and meditation, I find it particularly difficult to be still and focused on my breath when I am ill. When the respiratory tract is inflammed and its every movement triggers compulsive activity - wiping, blowing, coughing - I find it impossible to find serenity in my breath, yet I need it more than ever. I have never seen this discussed in my reading - perhaps the masters don't contract such mundane things as head colds.

Enter the knitting. Knitting creates a rhythm my disquieted body can fall in step with, rising and falling with the needles. I find a simple stockinette piece best at these times - the long inhalation of the knit row - the corresponding exhalation of the purl.

With that in mind, I began the tunic from the current Vogue Knitting.