Monday, March 30, 2015

House-planning, knitter-style

I've been knitting, but I haven't been writing about it.  I've been choosing all sorts of interior details for the house, instead, because the roof comes off in about 6 weeks and I'm supposed to know what's going in before that so we can finalize all the little details like where to reinforce with wood for wall-mounted stuff.

Unrelated daffodils, compliments of Bethy

Some things we have in mind:

Super bendy library sconces on either side of the sofa we're putting in our bedroom, for perfect knitting lighting

Super pretty sconces for the front hall bench in front of the huge new south-facing window where people can put on shoes, or knit in a sun patch

Not just one but three ceiling pendants for the dining room so in winter we can push the table over to one end and tuck knit-friendly armchairs and a footstool in front of the fireplace (plus, an outlet is going into the floor to accommodate a table lamp.  Priorities!)

A dedicated counter for tea making to facilitate knitting

A study with a very very long desk for spreading out pattern notes and yarns

Counter space in the laundry room for blocking handknits on drying mats, if there's any space left after the duct work gets sorted

... you get the idea.

It's a lot of work turning a tiny house into a slightly bigger house customized for knitfestings, what can I say?  but if I meet my deadlines before the end of tomorrow, I will so be here with yummy pictures to show you.  Because I have been knitting, honest!

Hope you've been knitting too, or at least having a super nice day.

Friday, March 27, 2015

The nearly finished knit

There is something downright luscious about a knit that takes forever until suddenly, it's nearly done.

Especially when the knit is worked in the round and is garter stitch.  Garter grows so much more slowly than stocking stitch, being more compressed, and it can also get a little boring after the first three or so inches in sport weight on smallish needles.  More so, when you have something in the vicinity of 150 stitches on those needles.

So. much. garter.

But hey, even slow hats end eventually!  and when they do, it's a really good idea to consider stitch markers.

Normally I miss a few decreases when I'm doing a crown, and being forced to remember it's time for one by the presence of a stitch marker reduces the odds a little.

If all goes well, I should be able to show you how the Yak Hat came out sometime next week.  Fingers crossed!  Have a great weekend yourself, and I'll see you Monday.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Utility knitting: good or evil?

I had an idea for boot socks that I think now is a terrible disservice to outstanding yarns.

Normally I would take some stunning pink yarn leftovers and do a cuff, then add a lovely green, and stripe the two together for a bit.  But after about 16 bazillion socks like that I couldn't help thinking it might be easier to take a colourblock approach.

Now: I'm not so sure. 

If I did pink and then green and then another very similar pink, maybe?  That isn't what I did, though, mostly because that isn't what I had.  I did pink till I ran out, and green till I ran out, and then I added in a sort of heathery denim pink orange mix.

And I just don't think it works.

Sometimes I'm wrong about thinking I'm wrong, and maybe that will turn out to be the case here too.  I have enough of the denim pink orange mix to do the rest of the sock, and if that works, nobody is going to see the green and pink under the leg of my jeans anyway, so the finished socks could still be great.  If it doesn't work and I have to use my orange scraps to finish off the toes, that will be okay too. 

But only if nobody sees the pink and green part of the mix.


What I should do, of course, is rip back and knit the stripes I should have worked in the first place, but I haven't done that and I have snuck both socks onto the heel flap since I took these pictures.  I am knitting these socks for utility: to use up stash, to have another pair of midweight boot socks, and to calm myself down because You Know Why, Moving Edition.

And this is really what it comes down to, isn't it.  Some knitters work beautiful stitches and colour patterns into utilitarian knits simply for pride of the craft or love of the recipient.  And for other knitters, the beauty lies in the purpose served.  Believe me, there is a lot of beauty in yarns that can pull a grown woman down off the wall.

So: is it good to colourblock a sock with gorgeous, hopelessly mismatched yarns, or evil to waste their loveliness on a knit that doesn't do them credit?

I guess we'll find out soon.  Meanwhile: allow me to hope that your current favourite project is going a little more obviously well than mine.  See you tomorrow!

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

No, wait: maybe it's all about the warm

If today had a theme, it would be 'warm', because in between HVAC planning (heating, ventilation, and cooling for the lucky among you who don't know that acronym) I am reading a New Yorker article by Rebecca Mead featuring shearling-lined Birkenstocks.

It's actually making me want to buy a pair, even though

a/ I am a staunch Mephisto girl thanks to their footbed and my foot being a marriage made in heaven and

b/ the whole point of the shearling lining is to eliminate the need for socks.  What???

I can't even conceive of such a thing.  But I am pretty sure that the day shearling-lined Birkenstock boots hit the shelves, you will find me with a pair in one hand and my credit card in the other.  I am Canadian.

Today is a very warm day for March, but it's also rainy and grey, and I am glad to be inside at this moment even though I do have to dash out again for a bit very very soon.  As anticipated, the move downtown has me walking a lot more than I was, and I am putting some serious miles on the new Blundstone boots Pete bought me to replace the ones that broke (!! but after 10 years' hard use, so what do you expect.)  These boots are not lined at all, but a pair of mid-weight Stoddart boot socks fit inside nicely and have kept my toes toasty even on the very cold days we had in February.

This sort of thing is nice to think about, because it turns out we aren't going to have 100% heated floors in the new house after all - just in the basement, with ducts and forced air everywhere else.  And maybe some of a different heat delivery system for the bathroom floors because cold tile is only appealing in the summertime, have you noticed?

Just as well.  It would be weird for a girl as sock-obsessed as myself not to be justified in wearing said socks at home.

Okay - time to dash.  Hope you're well and having a lovely day wherever you are.  And tomorrow I'll show you more of that new bit of knitting up in the corner of that photo!

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

It's all about the stripe

I don't know why it's taken me so long to notice that I like stripes, but wow.  I really like stripes!

And self-striping yarn ('Majestic', this time!) absolutely feeds the attraction.  Thank you Knitterly Things for another beautiful installment of Vesper sock yarn... to join my many other still-uncaked Vesper sock yarns.

But not to worry: decorating the walls with unknit yarn is actually a design plan, not a mark of desperation.  ahem.

Speaking of desperation, now that all the previous owners' picture-hanging holes have been filled in and the entire condo painted white, OMIgosh, is there a lot of wall space that needs something pretty.  The trouble is that because we won't be here long, and because I personally took out all those screws and plugs and filled and flattened the fill*, I don't really want to bring more holes into the world.

For this reason I was very pleased to look up from my comfy recliner the other evening to see the walls taking care of themselves:

Or rather, the sun and the window blinds doing the job.  As long as it's not me, it's a perk.

The light is so strong coming in from the west, from early afternoon to early evening, that I am thinking now I should move the new recliners a bit further from the window so they don't fade.

What do you think?

I'll tell you what the new yarn thinks:

It thinks the recliners are lovely no matter what colour they are.  And, being yarn, it might even feel the same if I'd let it enjoy the chair in full sun (but I didn't, because it is too complicated to photograph a stripe on a stripe.)

I often wonder what it is about stripes that make me so happy.

It might be the contrast, or perhaps the simplicity of the pattern.  It might be the perfection of line or the boundary between one thing and the other that keeps them both neat and predictable.  It might be the sense of a defined path - because let's face it, there is something of a relief in a path that doesn't involve decisions or even too much thought.  Or it might be that it allows me to have more colours in the same amount of space I'd have to spend on a solid.  Yum!

What design style draws you in?  Solids, florals, dots, geometrics?  Or are you all about the stripe too?

*renovation tip from Ray: don't pull those drywall plugs out of the wall so you can fill them and paint them over; the effort will draw the edges of the hole outward and produce a ring around the depression you can never really cover up.  Instead, hammer the plug further in before using your filler.  In spite of working with Ray for years and trusting him completely I was skeptical of this approach and dead certain the plug would show.  I was wrong to feel that way because the holes I fixed look awful now and the ones he did are impossible to find.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Instant socks

A few nights ago when I was hunting online for light fixtures, Pete insisted I take a break to watch TV and look what happened:


I'd forgotten how much I love knitting, not having had time for any of that for a while, and before that, only getting knitting time on Sundays, because I was too busy hunting online for taps.  No wonder I've been getting all tired and frantic and crabby and sugar obsessed.

Truly, knitting is a magical fix for what ails ya.

Especially if what ails ya is cold feet - both literal and figurative.  It is so, so scary to think of ripping the innards out of a house you've loved and lived in for 18 years - way longer than I've ever lived anywhere else, and close to it for Pete.

Fortunately I got onto a different train of thought after talking my friend Doe who, coincidentally, was born a few hours before me in a hospital a few miles from mine.  I hadn't caught up with her in a while and I didn't realize she was renovating her kitchen and bathrooms too!  Pretty much identically to the style I had in mind, naturally, because that always seems to happen for us, which will not surprise you if you follow astrology. 

Case in point: we were on the phone together as I was hunting online for doorknobs, and she said "So, have you given any thought to doorknobs yet?"

Doorknob digression:

We had to get new doorknobs for the condo, because after I mentioned to Ray I thought we should probably update the original tiny brushed bronze ones, he removed them, at which point we remembered why it's nice to have a doorknob on the bathroom.  After doing a lot of research and then debating styles and prices and colours with Doe (oiled bronze) and with Ray (whatever matches the light fixtures) and Pete (they cost how much??), we went with Pete's favourite, satin chrome.

This is a first for us because after the really cool and super expensive antique-looking black ones I liked, these were my favourites too and they were the absolute rock bottom cheapest - as in, we got all the doorknobs we needed for the price of one antique-looking black one.  I asked Doe whether she thought I should get them for the house too and she said they were perfect for the condo which didn't really answer my question. 

Or did it?

ANYway, after all that doorknob angst I started the light fixture hunt and ended up on an antique shop website where I saw what they were charging for vintage doorknobs. Which made me take a second look at the house's existing vintage doorknobs, mismatched onto the wrong doors after the last time we painted them.

Why let somebody else profit from and enjoy them when we can fix them and keep them?

Once I thought of that and confirmed with Ray that they can indeed function well again, I started looking anew at our ceiling lights and realized we can re-use most of those as well.  Also the custom shelf I had built for what replaced the original kitchen so it would still look nostalgic, and maybe even our front hall closet door with its fancy 1942 mirror... even though the only doorway it could work for is the basement bathroom and it seems unlikely that anybody on the team will get behind that crazy idea.

Even if they don't, though: keeping the other things is a great way to bring the familiar old house we love to the new house we can actually live the rest of our lives in.

And knit in, of course.

Because as long as I keep on getting new yarn from the Vesper Club, I will be knitting these socks for years, and years, and years.

ahhhhh, socks.

And how was your week?

Friday, March 13, 2015

Weekend tea and knitting

Oh how I dream of weekend tea and knitting.  And while we're on the subject, check out the new old-style teapot I bought to use while we live in a (now) old-style condo:

I have always heard the descriptor 'Brown Betty' for teapots but there are some variations in style, even in terms of the shade of brown.  Check this 'images' link for pure teapot overload!

This particular version is by Adderley Ceramics and is the result of a good deal of research to produce a pot as close to the original as possible, right down to the source of the clay. The marketing says that this shape of pot produces the best tasting tea and I must admit: after 20+ years of using a Denby coffee-shaped pot, the tea really does taste yummier from the Brown Betty.  I'm using the same tea in both, and since the condo isn't nearly as cosy as home it can't be warping the overall experience, so it must be true.

The other thing about this pot is that it's very very shiny and smooth in your hand.  soooo pleasant.

Also it needs a sweater.

I have just enough of the yarn I used for Richard's cowl and handwarmers for such an item.  I had been thinking of making handwarmers for myself with it, and I may still do that... but it looks like the right weight for the Churchmouse cosy pattern I'd like to knit and it's definitely a good colour for the pot.  See?

Now, given that I've had the yarn, pattern, and pot in hand for the last three weeks you'd think I would have had the cosy knit and in use long since, but No.  In addition to my wonderful week of writing, I have been sorting out details like what size mirror can fit in this space without being hit by that door, and can I manage to pull off this party during the same week I am bringing in movers, and do we really want PEX over copper in an area where mice abound and copper thieves do not? 

(If you have to ask what PEX is, please enjoy your weekend beverage of choice with that much more relaxed happiness - and if you don't have to ask about copper thieves, please accept my deepest condolences.  Please also note that I am not including links and pat me on the head for same... I have nothing against PEX except for the mouse thing, but you can't knit with it.  On the upside it does come in some very nice colours.)

Now, the funny thing about needing to address all these renovation details is that they can really crowd out other items like

OMIGOSH I have to get us moved out of this house in FOUR WEEKS!  or maybe five, but not six, because then I'm competing with everybody else doing first of month moves and needing both elevators and moving trucks.


And that is not a good thing, because I could blink and it would be two weeks. 

My friend Holly couldn't find temporary accommodations till very close to her renovation date last fall, and had to find movers and pack up her entire house in two weeks.  She survived, but strongly encouraged me not to do the same.

So: I am going to put my head down and get some serious moving related work done in the coming week, and take another little break from Hugs for the purpose.  I feel terrible that renovating my house is creating upheaval here even here in my peaceful online nest, but it is temporary and, I am assured, worth it.  Also I may be able to sneak back in for ten minutes to show you something pretty.  Who knows?  A textile person can only go so long without yarn and sticks.

Meanwhile, let's concentrate on Emily's wonderful yarn...

And dream of happy days of tea and knitting.

See you as soon as I can - have a wonderful time till I'm back!

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Snow is pretty

Now that we're well into an early-March melt and the subsequent shedding of handknits, I'm feeling a bit nostalgic about new snow.  We do get a good view of it on the terrace from our windows at our temporary condo home...

but (brace yourself for words you would never expect to hear) it is tough to beat the view over the garbage cans at the side of our house:

The little ripples are from squirrels running over the fence top, and the steam is coming out of our neighbour's dryer vent pipe thing.  Very atmospheric, wouldn't you say?

I deliberately left one can with an untouched lid so we could measure how much snow we got over a series of relentless falls:

Not as much as other people got in other parts of the east coast, but eventually, it was almost as much as the height of the can itself.

Brief aside: the cans have really been catching my attention lately.  One day last fall I saw them clustered at the side door and imagined they were about to ring the bell demanding repayment of an under the table loan...

Obviously all the packing, planning, and sink tap choosing is getting to me.  Also I am feeling a bit wistful about garbage cans as well as snow, because at the condo it's garbage bags and they go down a chute.  A tri-sorter chute for organic waste, recycling, and minimal amounts of landfill! but without cans or the thrill of balancing said cans on a snowy curb.

Boy, this is quite a knitting post today! Garbage cans and snow.  Let's elevate the conversation a little with this homey view:

I have gazed out at these trees for 18 years and this is absolutely their loveliest mood.  You can just make out how they protect the roof of our garage, too, by how much heavier the snow layer is on the side facing away from them.

Commuting through snow is very much not my favourite thing, and I know it's caused a lot of hardship for a lot of people this year especially, but when you get to stay inside with tea and knitting - man is snow pretty.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Ignore the voice that says Ew

For my birthday present this year, Pete gave me something truly fantastic: five full days of writing time.  (handknit socks were worn for the duration.)

Cashmere sock glamour shot

This was huge, especially considering how much work we both have to do right now on everyday stuff plus two renovations plus packing to move out. The only way to pull this off was for me to decline all social contact - I had to miss two parties, which was awful - and for Pete to take over everything I do for us.  Except laundry, which is a great background activity while working out how a story is going, and the occasional renovation decision because that kind of has to be me.

We catered the break with delicious foods from my favourite posh grocery store (Summerhill Market - even the name makes me feel more relaxed) and I spent all five days sleeping when my brain got too tired, eating when I was hungry, and cleaning up the kitchen counter when I was stuck.  The rest of the time, I was typing.

With handknit socks on, of course, as I mentioned earlier.   Because it is really, really hard to think creatively when your toes are tiny ice cubes.  I know because of Day One, when a single pair wasn't enough.

Digression: did anybody else spend any part of last weekend watching Carly Rae Jepsen's video for 'I Really Like You' for the sole purpose of watching Tom Hanks be Tom Hanks, something that is guaranteed to make you feel that all is right with the world?

And if so, did you notice that the title of the book on his bedside table at the beginning is 'The Manly Art of Knitting'?

(warning: if you are a Justin Bieber non-fan, it is essential to focus exclusively on Tom Hanks and maybe half of Carly Rae, on Tom's side, during the big finale. trust me.)

I watched a lot of music videos on my writing break, and did a ton of reading about Burt Bacharach's life and music.  These so-called distractions were very helpful and I wrote not-awful first draft content at record speed.

Because we planned this a few weeks ahead of time, I was able to read a lot of writers' websites and their advice to other writers before I started. Every single one of them said some variation of the thing I know is true and hear often and struggle with every time anyway:

Ignore the voice that says Ew.

Every writer hears this voice and writers are not the only ones by a long shot.  You have heard this voice, sometimes even when you're knitting, which I think is a serious invasion of privacy don't you?

This is the voice that says Ew, you're not going to try to call this effort an accomplishment, are you?  It's terrible.  Nobody wants or needs this.  You should just give up.

This is the voice you must ignore.

After the first day of writing, the voice was so loud in my head I had to play music to drown it out, and when it got louder still I had to turn up the volume on my computer as high as it would go.  I put a sign up beside my screen that says "DON'T LISTEN.  Just keep writing!"

On the second day, I realized I had left something out that needed to go between two sections I'd written the day before.  And that meant I had to read the terrible writing the voice especially hated.  I so, so did not want to do this, but I looked at the sign I'd put up... and I thought of how much work Pete had taken on to clear this time for me... and I went for it.

And what I'd written was really good - or, at least, exactly what I'd been aiming for.

And discovering that still didn't silence the voice.

I don't think anything silences the voice, even not trying to accomplish anything, because it's still there, just quieter, muttering that you're right to do nothing with your time or your life because you're so unexceptional the effort is just a waste of other people's energy.

So: when you hear it?  Ignore it.  Ignore the voice that says Ew.  Feed your mind with positive images and keep on moving.

And go have a great day!

(ps if you want to know how the writing time went, you should know first that most writers feel lucky to keep 500 words a day, and keeping 1000 is something to celebrate.  I started with a 9,000 word manuscript and after five days of editing that and writing new and editing more and writing more and editing again, I am keeping 34,000 words.  I'll let you do the math.  best birthday gift EVER.)

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Warm boots and the socks that fit them

It is such a good idea to buy boots a half or full size bigger than you need, so you can fit heavy socks inside for cold winter days.  Especially if the boots are gorgeous and deeply discounted and not available in your actual size, but that's another story.

During our February cold snap I was especially absent-minded going out the door, and forgot not only the heavy wool sweater I layer under my coat, but also the fact that no percentage of wool in a high performance sport sock is going to compete with 100% wool handknit ones.

My thinking was that I had to go to the gym.  Normally I do this by walking, after running other errands that involved walking, so I want warm toes and also minimal baggage.  The solution: just wear the Vespers. Fingering weight wool socks are cosy and warm, and they fit into running shoes just fine.

But my comfortable winter walking boots come up to my knees, and they love the handknit socks too, and suck them right off my feet when I try to get out of the boots on arrival.  So I decided this particular day (-12 Celcius before the wind chill: I am a genius) was the day to test out a new pair of very grippy wool-blend sport socks.

I have now decided I would rather lose my socks than lose my toes to frostbite.  It was a real throwback to my student years, when I put fashion over function and suffered daily in - oh dear, sometimes cotton socks inside boots without proper insulation.  So glad I'm past all that now, even if I did choose to live for 18 years in a house with no insulation at all.

Heavy socks are also so, so important in winter.   I hope you have a few pairs yourself, even if they aren't handknit.

Monday, March 9, 2015

Another episide of rediscovered yarn

In another edition of Yarn I Almost Forgot, I finally got some very special sock yarn out of the stash.

This incredibly beautiful stuff is a bison blend which I bought a long time ago... I don't know, five or six years back, maybe?  when I either didn't knit socks at all, or hadn't knit them for long, and didn't feel confident about them.

(actually, I still don't feel super confident about them.  when I knit a pair of socks for somebody else in the fall I tried them on and realized I've been making mine about half an inch too short.)

Well, with a move imminent and new yarn purchases at close to a standstill, I decided I am ready to knit with the very expensive bison/merino blend and I went digging for them.

And wouldn't you know, they aren't quite what I remembered?

They're laceweight.  And not just 'laceweight' that is really 'fingering or close enough', but actual laceweight.  I tested.

I don't knit with laceweight.  I just can't go that small, so I am going to have to do something else with this yarn, which will have to involve it being held double, which I think rules out socks because there won't be enough yardage.

What do you think?  Weaving?  Cowl?  Another hat?

Or maybe another year or two in the stash, on the off chance I get around to trying a Haapsalu Shawl?

Friday, March 6, 2015

Birthday socks

Every year around this time I try to knit myself a birthday present (don't worry, it's not today!)

It's a good idea, don't you think?  I mean: not many knitters get knit for.  This year of course I've been Rather Occupied but a few days before the big day I found time to knit the second toe of my Geranium sock.  I was really glad I'd put in the time on them earlier because it's ages since I've had a chance to do anything nice for myself.

I was also glad I made them a little big - longer and wider than I'd normally do for myself.  This way they trap more heat and feel more like slippers.

Probably I could also slip another pair of slimmer socks underneath, if I was really cold.  I used to do that when I was getting bundled up to go out in too-big, unlined skates.  Did you?

There is a lot of purple going on here in the toe, and I found it more weird as I finished the second than when I had finished the first, but I am not complaining.  All three yarns are very soft and cosy and that's everything you want in a good thick boot sock.

And comfortable warm socks handknit by somebody who loves you?  That's everything you want in a birthday.

Hope you've had a good week and have a great weekend, and I will see you Monday!

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Every home needs bunny plates

Living in two places means two sets of dishes... so I dusted off the box that contained the remains of our old set of dishes to move downtown.  And then I bought bunny plates.

Guess which ones we use the most?

I love the bunny plates so much.  I bought four bowls first... and then I picked up four sandwich plates... and then I could not rest till I sourced and brought home four dinner plates.  If mugs were available I would be all over them... and I hope what we do have never breaks because the bunny in the middle never stops making me smile.

(the plates are designed by the very clever and talented Carly Dodsley, who has done soooo many wonderful dishes!)

Other good finds for the new digs:

These supercheap, completely undamaged white FireKing milk glass bowls from the antique shop next door...

We've been using the little bowls for ice cream and the larger one for salad or chips or for whatever you need a medium-sized bowl.  Eventually I will mix dry ingredients in it for baking, but for now I'm just cheered up to see this bowl in the cupboard when I reach for a glass.

(I must say, I'm really enjoying the light and shadow offered by the living room window at the condo too.  It's not the porch, but it's pretty cool.)

At the same shop I found this bit of embroidered linen on clearance:

I loved the colour combination.  I need an iron, though.  That's one thing I was not buying two of, so the pressing will have to wait.

(and anyway, when you've got ice cream that isn't going to eat itself, and cute bowls for serving it, who wants to iron linens?)

Wednesday, March 4, 2015


The maple singles are blocked and caked and ready to go:

but I still have no clue what to knit with it.

And really I can't knit anything with it till I'm done the Yak Hat - that project is made up almost entirely of the black (okay, really it's incredibly dark green) that goes with this set.

Meanwhile: I am just really enjoying the way four cakes of similar handspun look all lined up on the porch at home.

I'm looking at this yarn and wondering what to make, and I'm thinking about podcasts and wondering whether to start doing some.

It might be fun for me to speak some of my blog posts instead of writing them down - or rather, to free-associate for five minutes.  And it might be fun for you to hear my voice once in a while too in between photographs of yarn on a porch.

What do you think?

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Plied yarn and broken dishes

I have such a thing for vintage dishes, and hands down, this oddly-shaped plate is my best find ever:

It's a Franciscan design and it was the sandwich part of a soup and sandwich set.

I used to have two of them, and up until last week they came out for every gathering at our house - I'd load them up with crackers or veg and then put a little vintage dish onto the soup area filled with dip or goat cheese.  Every time I'm in a flea market or antique store I look for more from this set, but I rarely see any and never unchipped.  Even then, they are priced so much higher then the $2.00 price tag on each of my two.  (You can usually find a few pieces at eBay but there's no thrill of the hunt there. Well, no $2 pricing anyway.)

Sadly, our kitchen at home is so small I had to store them with other much-loved dishes on an elevated on the top shelf of a cabinet and after about twenty years of their peaceful coexistence there... Pete's sleeve caught on the leg of the rack.  Everything came crashing down, luckily smashing to bits on our counter and floor rather than on Pete because they are being replaced and he could never be.  Neither survived unscathed.  This plate, and one small dessert plate from a different set, and the bowl from the cream and sugar for our everyday dishes were all that survived.

I am so glad I have that much!

And I am so glad I finally had time to ply this yarn and get it into a skeins for blocking.

It came out seriously bulky and warm, and although this year's exceptionally cold February is finally over I am pretty sure I still have time to wear new hat.

I am feeling good about the chances of such a hat looking good with the Yak scarf, too - aren't you?

Breaking much-loved dishes is sad, but buying new ones isn't... and I had a few really good finds when we were setting up a campsite at the condo.  I'll show you those another day soon!

See you later alligators, and best wishes for some knitting time till then.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Inside the new knit nest

Last week something very exciting happened:

We got new chairs for our temporary condo home!

Okay, it's just furniture.  But we're all knitters here, right?  and we know why furniture is important.  The last time we bought a comfy chair was in 1996, and the condo is pretty much empty still - not to mention almost entirely white - so it's a relief all around. The fact that the chairs are crazy amazing to sit in (in any of their three positions, because they recline) is just a bonus.

Actually I am afraid to sit down in them because they are so restful it is so hard to make myself get out again.  Which would be great except there is still so very much to do before we can call this move complete.

Not so much that I couldn't justify taking a break to use our new desk space though...

Pete gave me this Lego set for Christmas and I have been saving it to play with downtown where I knew there would be a clear horizontal surface to work from.


Every new knitting nest needs a mascot, especially if it's one that can be rinsed off in case of drifting drywall dust.

And every mascot needs a friend.

And a nest of her own.

Seriously though: we should all be happy that there is a nice place to sit at the condo, because I have done zero knitting there up to now.  Mostly I spend my waking at-home hours perched on a hard wooden seat planning renovation things. With luck the presence of a relaxing chair will tempt me away from all that hard work and Hugs will be able to stretch out and relax with lots of wonderful knitting photographs.

I did remember to bring my bag to the house this past weekend though, so I do have lots of very pretty fiber things to show you... but you'll have to pop back in another day to see it.

I hope your schedule is allowing you some chair time these days, even if all you have the energy to do is enjoy taking the load off your feet!  Take care of yourself and I'll see you tomorrow.