Monday, November 28, 2016

Start Stop Start Again

The knitting has been so neutral lately, so wearable.  On Saturday (night, significantly) I snapped.  After dinner I sat down with the very lovely cowl neck pullover I've been working on, trying to finish the last few rounds of cabling so as to move on to the more distraction-friendly plain sleeves when I just lost my marbles, grabbed whatever was nearby and cast it on.  Patons Lemongrass (of course that was nearby) Patons Gold, two of my hand-dyed madder skeins, and a stray leftover ball of Mission Falls in Burgundy, for contrast.  Let me tell you, it seemed marvelous in the dark.  My boy was home for the holiday, and as he sat in the middle of the living room floor playing "Blackbird" on the guitar, I worked on these stripes, thinking how lovely it all was, how quirky and interesting the knitting looked, and stopping now and then to admire it.  It seemed very analogous.  It felt wonderful to be making something creative, and the knitting of it, serenaded, was lovely.  Patons Lemongrass, as you know, is a yarn in need of tempering, and that Patons Gold (scored on the cheap at the Fiber Festival last year) is a yarn in need of some zest.  Well! (I thought).  These two can live together in harmony, and can be good for each other--Lemongrass is the friend who drinks and smokes and drives too fast, and Gold is the friend who wants to stay home and make milkshakes while binge-watching Gilmore Girls...  
Doubt became certainty in the cold light of day, and I unraveled it without remorse.  Patons Gold has an appointment with my dyepot today, which can only improve it.  It needs more complexity, although whether Grape Kool-Aid can add any complexity to anything is what I am about to find out.      
Meanwhile, inspired by the beautiful work of Ann Wood, I went for a scrounge in the garage bins, on the hunt for these doll legs I made way back when and then stashed away when the rest of the dolls they were meant for failed to manifest.  The striped fabric came from a tattered antique quilt top, the rest of which I did not find in my bin rummage and it haunts me now.  I can't possibly have gotten rid of it, but where oh where did it land?  Anyway, these doll legs, these unfinished bits of something of my very own, please me so immeasurably.  They are the beginning of something creative.  There will be some sketching, some experiments, some play with fabric scraps, and they will, I hope--I'm sure--emerge.  Two sisters, with interesting hair and probably shawls, and these wonderful, witchy, rag doll legs.
I finished this yesterday, too, as the last of the daylight waned.  There was just no working on it after about three o'clock.  It is, of course, Alicia Paulson's Love and Joy stitch sampler, made from her PDF pattern on Belfast linen in "Rue Green," already in my stash but not quite the fabric she suggests, and pretty small.  I struggled a little with seeing the holes in the fabric, my aging eyes and their trusty bifocals were a pretty even match for the 32-count linen.  I worried that it had finally come to pass that I had got too old to do something I want to do, which made me mad enough to keep going until it was done.  Let's see if I can get it in a frame while it is still 2016.  
I washed fleece, unmade the beds, cut the christmas tree stump into little discs for making I don't even know what.  It feels like there is such a lot going on here, inside and out, and that is a very nice place to be.  


  1. Love this post, loved seeing all your things out, the wee witchy legs, the fleece and yes, especially the unmade bed!! Have a great week.

  2. I love all of your making - though it makes my head spin to see how much you accomplish! (the bed is perfection - I don't suppose you remember the paint??)

  3. My big boys both left, I have been doing beds myself. It is so nice to have them home even if they are in and out with friends all day and night long. It feels quiet with them gone......

  4. I've been washing up and making beds too while rattling around in the house with family gone. Love your makes!

  5. It feels good to get all the beds washed and dried outside as I did last week. And ironing the bed linen at 4pm as it got dark warmed me up. I'm stitching Alicia's sampler too but have reduced the size so it fits into an old oak frame I have. I try and do an hour first thing while the morning light comes into my work room. I'm getting there despite my 56-year-old eyes. When I was around 40-years-old I stitched a picture of Hunca Munca with her babies for my daughter's bedroom. It took me about three years and was exceedingly complex and I remember my mum encouraging me to buy the beautiful Permin kit by saying it was now or never! Little does she know what a compulsive needleworker I've become. On my needles: Romney Marsh undyed lambswool being turned into a Boneyard shawl, honestly Kristen I get the addiction and it is a rather lovely passion to have.

  6. I think some nice colour is infinitely more wearable than neutrals. Uplifting too. I much prefer your clever colour work. Suits you better too. Shame you ripped it out.

  7. Your doll legs really speak to me. Somewhere I too have some striped legs (and arms) waiting for the torsos and faces ... many thanks for the reminder. I hope you find what you have lost. Our weekend was about 15 new windows installed in our old farmhouse. Oh my! It's like having cataracts removed - I can see!!!!