Wednesday, January 23, 2013

knit and purl

Malabrigo Worsted + Dovetail Cowl pattern by Carina Spencer = knitting awesomeness. I adore this cowl! Most of my knitting choices are simple stretches of stockinette, seed stitch, maybe ribbing, so this pattern seemed pretty adventurous. But amazingly, it is all based on simple knit and purl stitches, and the suggestion of using stitch markers to define the pattern repeat made staying on track super easy. The final texture is spongey yet intricate and I can't imagine a nicer yarn for the project. This was knit as a gift but I'm so in love with the pattern that I'm pretty sure I will have to knit myself one. And did I mention it is reversible?

I started Freedom by Jonathan Franzen while I was knitting Dovetail and just finished it up this week. I've heard many good things about The Corrections so I think I'll have to try it before making a final decision on Franzen. There were some things I liked about Freedom, but I definitely struggled to finish it. The characters - purposely flawed - were hard to like and there were entire sections bogged down by description. Oh well.

For more knitting and reading love, visit today's Yarnalong.

Sunday, January 20, 2013


If there is one thing this renovation has taught me, it's this: we are not renovation people. We're homebodies. We find joy in being comfortable, in coming home to a relatively clean house that's quiet. So now that we're past the 5 month mark with this project, it's getting harder to let the noise, the dust, the daily, important questions not affect our moods. How do people go through renovations over and over again? And when they do, how do they accomplish anything outside of the reno? (I'm not knitting or sewing as much, let alone blogging.)

But there is good news - the end is in sight! These photos show progress, like having stairs again and having my own laundry machines back. Drywall has been going up all weekend and there is tile on the floors of the bathroom and laundry room. We're getting there. 


Wednesday, January 02, 2013

the girl might knit

In a rare moment of quiet over the holidays I managed to visit a favourite blog. Lori's photos and knitting projects are always so inspiring, and her recent post was exactly the inspiration I (and Sadie) needed.  Lori's simple i-cord bracelet seemed like the perfect solution for my reluctant young knitter. Yes, Sadie has knit a little and corked a little, but being 8, she's not very patient for things that take a long time to finish (oh wait, she does have oodles of patience for reading the same novels over and over and over again - it must be a crafting thing). But as the knitting mom, I instantly saw the opportunity for a quick and rewarding knitting project - and it was just the trick. I-cords are so easy and so fast that Sadie caught on in no time. She finished the day she started which even involved knitting in the car. It's super cute and she now has big plans to make them for her friends. With my stash I figure she could make about 987 of them?

Even though Sadie may not like knitting as much as I do, she does like wearing knitted things - especially socks. I gave her these on Christmas and I'm not completely ashamed to say that she's barely taken them off (hence the pilling already, there was no time to take photos!) Can a knitting mom really take issue with hygiene when a garment is so loved? I have more variegated Koigu sitting around so my cleanliness remedy will likely be to knit her another pair. And soon.

I may not have been blogging, but my knitting has been complimented by much reading. Another novel for my Canadian Book Challenge is David Bergen's A Year of Lesser. This is the first I've read Bergen and I've ordered another now that I've finished this. It's not that I found the story wholly compelling, but I was quite intrigued by the characters and the sense of place. Set in one town over the period of a year, the novel seemed to be a study of the relationships between spouses, lovers, parents and children more than being particularly plot driven. But these relationships were intense, often uncomfortable and they spoke volumes about how dynamics can change quickly, sometimes with very little to explain it. Not altogether different but definitely more compelling to me was Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout. At a school silent auction fundraiser I won (well, "purchased" is more like it) a basket of book club books, which this of course came from. But it was quite wonderful. I equally disliked and loved Olive and applauded Henry for making the most of his marriage with her. I enjoyed how the stories were woven together and was heartbroken by some of the situations. Definitely a book to pass along to my mom.

Joining Ginny for the first Yarnalong of 2013!