On Button Band Isthmus …

I recently finished a few big projects and found myself weighing up casting on a new project versus finishing up a few longer standing WIPs.  In a virtuous fit, I decided WIP finishing was the way to go, especially as I’ve got three cardigans on the needles, all of which I love the look of — and I’ve been feeling a lack of cardis in my wardrobe of late.  I was excited about my plan until I realized, with horror, that all three cardi WIPs were at or near a certain point.  You know knitters talk about getting stuck on sleeve island?  Well, I’ve spent some time there for sure, but recently, I realized there’s another bit of sweater–well, cardigan knitting–that I get bogged down at every time … button bands.  And thus, I’m adding a new location to sweater geography … button band isthmus.

Continue reading “On Button Band Isthmus …”

Yarnalong: Galentine’s Edition

Hi friends, and happy Wednesday!

Did you know Yarn Along is back?  That’s right, in January, Ginny announced the return of Yarnalong, in a monthly format — she posts the first Wednesday of every month.  Obviously, today is not the first Wednesday of February (apparently, this month I’ll be doing everything one week late) but in the spirit of getting back to normal blogging, I figured better late than never.

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Knitting: For me, it’s been all sweater knitting, all the time of late. My EYF Stasis is so close to being done, I can almost taste it.  I also started a Carbeth sweater last week, and that’s been flying off the needles in bulky yarn.  In fact, I thought I’d have both of these jumpers finished Monday or Tuesday, but a case of the flu has slowed me down a bit (hence those cough drops).  I’m happy to report that, in the end, it seems I’ll have plenty of yarn to finish my Stasis (I had been a bit worried at the beginning).  Carbeth, on the other hand, is another story … I’m just shy of the neckline and have run out of yarn! I think my lovely mom is going to come to the rescue though, and send me a ball or two as she has some in stash (thanks Mom!)

Reading: Completely by chance, my books this week seem particularly apt given it’s Galentine’s Day.

I’ve just finished up Mary Beard’s Women and Power.  It was a very quick (like read in two sittings) and cogent read.  It’s based on lectures Beard gave, and I like that the book has maintained the conversational tone of a talk given by someone at the top of their game.  There are issues surrounding women, power, race, and class that I think could have been given a bit more space, but on the whole, Beard gives us a good reminder to think about how authority remains gendered in the modern world.  Who do we think sounds authoritative? Who do we think looks authoritative and why?  For me, there was nothing particularly revelatory, but it was good food for thought, and Beard does of course an excellent job of tracing back some of women’s disempowerment in the public sphere to the classical era.  I do recommend giving it a read!

I’m also slowly making my way through Beatrix Potter: A Life in Nature by Linda Lear.  I learned a bit about Potter’s life in and love of the Lakes District (not far from where I now live) when I read James Rebanks’s A Shepherd’s Life.  Ever since we moved here, I wanted to learn more about her life. I’m still not too far into the book (Beatrix is just reaching adulthood), but so far I’m really enjoying reading about Potter and her love of art and nature.  It’s also got me thinking a lot about how historians write successful biographies.  So far, so good!

What are you reading and knitting this week?  Head over to the original Yarnalong to see what people around the world are up to this month.

Make Nine … 13 … 17… for 2018

Hi friends, and happy Monday!

January is whizzing by, don’t you think?  And I’m still on a planning kick … between my knitting journal and Ravelry’s Challenge and bundles features, I’ve been having loads of fun imaging all the things I’ll knit this year (it’s a whole new world of dissertation procrastination!).  I really enjoyed seeing people’s “Make Nines” over on Instagram over the last few weeks, so I thought I’d share mine here, with a bit of overflow!

Continue reading “Make Nine … 13 … 17… for 2018”

My new favorite sweater

Usually, I’m pretty happy when I finish a project.  Casting off is such a rush.  Blocking and weaving in the ends–while tedious in the moment–gives such a sense of accomplishment.  And in that initial euphoria, I think I’m always predisposed to (temporarily) overlook a FO’s faults and declare it an unmitigated success.  And usually, the longer a piece has been finished, all sorts of little faults present themselves (which is as it should be — I love learning from projects and figuring out how to improve).  The love cools to a more reasonable like.

But friends, I think Vatsland is going to be different.

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Continue reading “My new favorite sweater”

Friday Favorites

Hi friends, and happy Friday!  Fall’s really here!  The leaves are changing!  New patterns for cozy sweaters and delightful accessories abound!  It’s time to drink apple cider and dark beer again!

For many, this weekend means Rhinebeck (if you’re going, have fun!)  But if you can’t make it, I’ve rounded up an extra large batch of fiber favorites this week for your consideration!

Fiber 

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(1) Arctic Cardigan, Image (c) Madder (2) Image on Instagram by @neighborhoodfibercompany (3) Rail Trail, Image (c) Gal Zucker (4) Goat and sheep pins!
  • First up, the Arctic Cardigan, by Carrie Bostick Hodge, from Making, Volume 2. I saw this cardigan and, I don’t know what it is about it, but I have to have it.  Don’t you think it’d make an incredible staple? As soon as I saw the pattern, I metaphorically ran to the Brooklyn Tweed website and picked Obsidian as my color of choice.  I haven’t let myself buy it yet … but my resolve is weakening every day.  In any case, I can’t wait for my copy of Making to arrive on my doorstep!
  • And speaking of sweaters that I want to live in, Joji Locatelli’s Granito is right up my alley (I know, you all have probably seen her new collection by now as it’s been out for a bit … but I haven’t done a Friday Favorites in awhile, and I wanted to give that sweater a shoutout!)
  • Also, did you see Quince’s new pattern collection?  It’s all gorgeous, but Dalis, by Dianna Walla, went immediately into my want-to-make pile.
  • Jill Draper Makes Stuff has also just released her first pattern collection, Rural Renewal. So many gorgeous patterns, but I’ve fallen hard for Rail Trail, by Kristen TenDyke. It’s a good thing I’m not going to Rhinebeck, because I don’t think I’d be able to resist a kit for this sweater at Jill Draper’s open house!
  •  In wool-related news, check out this temporary wool-filled guest house: #lifegoals.
  • Also, how cool is this idea for showing off swatches?  They’d be awesome decoration for a craft room, right?
  • And last, but not least, I thought I’d share my growing knitting-related enamel pin collection … Mr. N got me black and white sheep pins from Twig and Horn.  They’re grazing at the foot of Buachaille on my Kate Davies Designs project bag, while my mountain goat from Shiny Apple Studio presides from the peak.

Sustenance 

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(1) Smashed Sweet Potatoes, Image from Cafe Delights (2) Applesauce Cake, Image from Smitten Kitchen
  • I baked my favorite fall apple cake last night for a gathering I’m headed to this evening (despite a series of recent dessert fails that I, ahem, haven’t been sharing wtih you).  I’ve made this recipe loads, and it’s never disappointed  … and it made my apartment smell ever so autumnal while baking!
  • Now that the temperature’s dropping, I think this chicken chorizo stew would make for a great meal!
  • The season of root vegetables is upon us!  My mom reported last night that she tried this sweet potato recipe and that it was one of (if not the!) best ways she’s ever had a sweet potato. With such a recommendation, I’ll definitely be trying them this weekend!
  • And last but not least, Mr. N and I made a version of this roast pork on Sunday with a lovely pork shoulder we got from the Farmer’s Market.  It was delicious as the star of Sunday dinner and has been equally good as leftovers … pork sandwiches with pear sauce, butternut squash soup topped with crispy pork, ravioli in a butter sauce with pork and rosemary … you name it.

What’s inspiring you this week? I’d love to hear in the comments — I’m especially in need of food inspriation, which has been a little thin on the ground here of late!

Want more Friday Favorites? You can see them all here