Friday, June 18, 2010

Doctor Hoots

All done! One pair of Doctor Hoots mittens (Owlie Owl Mittens) in Needle Food's 'Fire in the Kitchen!' and Spud & Chloe cream. To be totally honest, the red did run slightly on the second mitten - I left it to soak just a bit too long. Oops. But it's not bad and let's face it, you mix cream and red, you have to be prepared for the odd run. The mittens are too big, really, for me, but I love the expression on the owls and most mittens fall off my hands in any case, so I don't mind. And in case you were wondering, the name was inspired by this piece of fantastic art.

Speaking of Doctor Who (you'd know that if you clicked the link), I was winding up some Needle Food 'Dining in Denim' ready for a Tilting TARDIS project, when it stuck me how gorgeous it looked next to the Malabrigo Sauterne. It reminds me of the colours in the Van Gogh episode of Doctor Who, which is gorgeous on many levels. I now have an obsession with The Starry Night all over again. I had my impressionist phase in my late teens. I'd spend hours at the art gallery, chatting to the security guards and haunting the cafe. I love the cafes at art galleries - there are some brilliant cafes at the Louvre, though I don't recommend the loos... which are hidden in some very odd places in the panelling. Alain de Botton starts The Consolations of Philosophy talking about looking for chocolate milk in a museum cafe, which made me feel a little less odd about my love of cafes in art galleries and museums.

I'm still in the spirit of overhauling old overcoats, too. This is a wool and cashmere duffel coat that has been all over Europe. It's cosy, but the toggles were all loose, the shoulder pads (which I'd always hated) were askew, and it needed TLC. I took out the needle and thread, got rid of the shoulder pads, mended toggles, and added some knitted bows to the pockets. Yes, I'm on a knitted bow kick. But they're just so darned cute!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

HD Knitting

Does Legolas the elf braid his own hair? I'm not convinced. It's tricky. I've been trying out what is, in effect, a herringbone braid, but it takes nimble fingerwork to achieve on your own hair. Here's an early attempt.

Towards the bottom there, you're starting to see the actual effect as it should look. I'll just keep practising.

But as I was braiding, I was thinking about how this little everyday activity feels so much like what I do in my knitting. I'm searching for pattern definition, whether in a braid or in my stitches.

So it made me think about HD knitting: high definition knitting. I've got a couple of projects on the go that are all about finding the pleasure in HD.

There's my Doctor Hoots (nearly there!). The palm pattern pops in the alternating cream and red in a way that I didn't really expect as I first started out. (And you can see one of my stitch holders from the Needle Foodies sock club being put to good use there.) I won't even mention how the owl eyes pop - although, I've just found an error in my second Hoots that I'm biting my lip over at the moment. Can I get away with the quick fix of a duplicate stitch or should I tink back? We'll see.

And then, because, yes, I have given into my craving for scarf satisfaction, I began a scarf in Woolen Mill St Yarns's Aragorn, using My So-Called Scarf. I'm not entirely sure how long I'll manage to make this scarf...

Still, the stitch is amazing with variegated yarn. This is my true ideal of HD knitting. It's got texture, form, and each shade of the yarn pops. True HD knitting. I'm sold.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Walkin' in the Rain

This is what happens to your jaffa and coffee macaroons when you get a bit too enthusiastic about walking home in the rain. They're just a little squished, though, and they'll still go really well with a cup of choc mint rooibus from T2.

At the moment, I'm still looking at how pretty they are.

I did nearly get caught by a cyclist as I was walking along, under my bright pink umbrella, singing far too loudly. Yes, I'm afraid I am one of those people. I was singing along to She & Him on the iPod, not so much hitting the notes as making a really good attempt to find them through experimentation. But it was very wet and there was no one else on the street... I thought.

So now I'm quietly drying off and thinking about what knitting I should take on my next adventure. I have yarn now for a Tilting TARDISes project, but I am still musing over the other selections. I've realised I have a scarf craving. This is not a craving suggested by all the scarves I already own. On the bright side, if I'm ever locked in a tower, I should have enough scarves to make an escape rope.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

There's Always An Errant Knit Stitch

It's hard to see, right? But it's there. Deep in the rib. A mischievous knit stitch that is in totally the wrong place.

And you know what? I'm not going to rip or tink or frog back to it. I'm going to leave it there. It thinks it's funny... well, it can just stay!

I probably leave perfectionists in a state of horror, but I like the little hand knitted quirks. I've learned to embrace the imperfection and love the imperfection. That and my knitting mojo has been off of late.

But right now, I'm off to the supermarket to buy more treats for sad little chickens. Incidentally, has anyone else noticed that there has been a remarkable amount of chicken action in Doctor Who of late? Huh... maybe it's just me...

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

A Splash of Pink

There's a dearth of really, really, honest pink yarn out there. I fulfilled my desire with this little bundle from Little Red Bicycle. So, so soft and... yes, absolutely pink.


I did have to really, really want this yarn. There was a conspiracy against my paying for it. But with patience and good humour from the seller, we got there!