Friday, June 5, 2015

Sometimes, yarn is embarrassing

In my continuing quest to find the perfect temporary outdoor photography spot (aka, 'porch substitute') I took some newly-arrived yarn up to the top floor terrace one evening this week...

... and took pictures of yarn in front of strangers.  I did this for you, people!

The pictures aren't fabulous - not nearly as fabulous as the actual yarn, which is some of the most beautiful Vesper stripey sock yarn I possess, especially the orange and blue one which really sets my heart beating.  Either I accidentally changed the camera setting, or the light is terrible up there, or early evening is not the time to try to photograph bright colours.  I can tell you for free, it's a terrible time not to run into people barbequing supper on the terrace.

The trouble started when I took a basket of yarn into the elevator and thought for one brief moment of wonder that it was empty, and it would be just whoever was on concierge duty who would see me, compliments of our security cameras. 

All the concierges in our new building are super nice and super vigilant.  They watch the cameras for people who shouldn't be getting in, and if you're chatty (hello, image in mirror) you discover they have totally seen you running around with boxes and groceries and trying to meet up with the friend you thought was in the south lobby when actually he was waiting for you in the north one.  I don't mind any of that because a/ did I say they are all super nice? and b/ I love how safe I feel here and c/ it is so, so magical when - before you can even struggle with your key fob - the security doors magically open for you all the way from the main desk because you were recognized.  I just didn't want to be spotted with a basket of yarn and a camera.

There was somebody in the elevator.

Being just as super nice as our concierge team - seriously, I have never met so many friendly, happy people in one place as I have in our new building - she said straight off how pretty the yarn is, so it wasn't like I could pretend I wasn't holding it.  And we had to ride up about five floors together, so I finally blurted out the thing you never want to say, especially to somebody who may not think you are crazypants (yet): Yeah, I'm just taking this up to the terrace to photograph it.


Access to the top floor terrace is through the pool area, and there was nobody in there, so I thought I'd try the yarn against a classic bright blue wall.   The east and west walls there are pure window, floor to ceiling, so it's as good as daylight gets through glass... and I thought maybe I could sneak back downstairs without drawing further attention to myself.

But I knew this wasn't a winner, so I made myself go outside, where - naturally - a very nice man was making supper.  He smiled and said hello as I tried to look confident with my basket in my hands and tried to escape into a quiet corner... where another group of people were enjoying their meal.

Oh look, a flowerbed.

Still not a great setup.  Even the western view was a bit squinty....

This is Toronto's downtown skyline, minus the CN Tower, which is behind something.  I still don't know why we can't see it from the terrace, what with its being almost the tallest thing on the planet.  See that sort of slopey-sided tower on the left with the crane sticking up from the top of it because it's still under construction?  A raccoon climbed up there a few weeks ago.  Seriously.  It went all the way up the side of the crane pretty much to poop on the platform and then climbed back down the ladder while the crane operator watched.

After taking this picture, I decided to try the other end of the terrace and had to walk past my new friend at the barbeque.  As I passed with my camera in hand, he asked whether I'd like him to take a picture of me with it, I think of me and the yarn? but hopefully just of me with the famous St. Lawrence Market in the background... because truth be told, if you're down here you are guaranteed to see people every day having their pictures taken in front of the St. Lawrence Market.

Naturally I made this offer even more embarrassing by offering in return that I try to avoid pictures of myself, and really just take pictures of yarn.


Incidentally: that darker blue strip near the top of my Market photo is Lake Ontario, and it might interest you to know that the lake used to come a lot closer to our door.  In fact, everything from the entrance to the Market to the current position of the lake is built on a very old landfill project, with the fill sourced from garbage.  Kind of astonishing, isn't it.

Anyway: I tried another flowerbed...

And I didn't totally love that either.  Even though there is a lot of purple in the yarns and in the flowers too.  None of the beds are really full yet - it's early in the season, and people haven't finished their plantings yet either.  But I think it's a lighting problem.  Or maybe the fact that I was trying to fit four skeins of yarn into the frame at once.  Bet you didn't notice that part, did you.  FOUR.  And when I say 'at once', I mean they arrived at once, too.  I ordered two of them, and two came as part of the newest club.

About that.  Yes, the two I ordered (I don't remember which two they were) are gorgeous.  But the true reason I bought them?  Terror. 

Julia has introduced a new base yarn with nylon in it, and much as I love everything Julia does with yarn and also, the 100% merino base yarn she uses... I really, really don't like the new base that came in the last club.  And I have a terrible feeling, which I will not write her to confirm because Scary, but which was fed by the words 'at this time' at the end of the phrase that goes Don't Worry Folks! we'll still be dyeing the old base..., that the 100% merino sock yarn I adore is going to go out of production.  So I bought more, while I can.

See? I am totally logical 120% of the time.  Ahem.

On this side of the terrace, you get a lovely look at Toronto's original town hall...

It's the building with the clock tower on top.  It is incredibly pretty to gaze down at, and even prettier inside.  Almost as much of a pretty factor as in this exotic flowerbed...

... which is still not such a fabulous place for a photo.  Le sigh.

On the bright side, this is going to be a fabulous place to knit this summer, don't you think?

and knitting isn't embarrassing.  Not like being asked as I passed my friend at the barbeque one last time whether I got that one perfect shot, almost like there is nothing at all unusual about taking pictures of yarn.

You know what though?  Maybe there really isn't.  Maybe the people who live here are even nicer than they seem, and just accept any unusual behaviour as a given?  Some neighbours on our floor threw an open house party this week and everyone who came was just super friendly and interesting... so that might actually be true.

Guess we've landed in a pretty good place, huh?

Hope you're in a pretty good place this weekend yourself, and I'll see you Monday!


Kate/Massachusetts said...

Tell them you are a knitting designer. Ask for recommendations for places to take pictures of the yarn. You'll probably get lots of help! Not crazypants at all! :-)

Mary Keenan said...

Ohhhh, I like the way you think Kate! Actually I did mention my embarrassing excursion to one new friend in the building and she offered me her terrace for a future photoshoot :^)

Linda said...

Love the yarn! Love the photos! Love this whole blog post! When I read "oh look a flowerbed"! I almost spit my coffee out!

Linda in VA

Mary Keenan said...

Heh... and in bonus news, I might have found a good photo venue today in the hall beside the elevator, of all places!

Mimi said...

Reading this has let me start my day with a smile!

Mary Keenan said...

Glad to hear it Mimi!!