I’ve finished Clue 1 on my mystery knit along. I love how this yarn sometimes looks blue, sometimes looks purple, sometimes looks gray. I’m really enjoying this knit. Lots of repetitive lacework. Yes, please!
I’ve also finally picked my beads. I love the matte finish, and this color is perfect for this yarn. I think these beads have just enough glimmer to show up.
I also ordered two little glass mermaid beads, and made a stitch marker and a progress keeper to use with my shawl. I’m not very good at beading, but I think I’ve made it work with some zinc coated copper wire and parts from old stitch markers.
I’m ready to turn the heel on Bob’s second Pride sock. Maybe I’ll have a Friday finished object this week?
I spent my floating holiday on Friday framing all my finished pieces for the show in September. I’m pleased with the exception of one piece, which means I need to rework or replace that one. In total, I have three pieces to complete in two months. I can do that, right? I can do that.
Friday was the start of The Lonely Heart is a Hunter Mystery Knit Along (Rav link). I had to start over, but now my cast on is nice and loose and I have no mistakes in my knitting of the first repeat of chart A. I have one more repeat of this chart, and then chart B. Then that’s the end of clue 1! I have to say, I really like lace broken up like this. It’s been a long time since I’ve knit lace, but it’s like riding a bike. Also, this pattern is repetitive, which I like.
To get in the mood, I watched The Secret of Roan Inish on Friday, and Ondine on Saturday. I can’t believe I had never seen either of these films. Ondine was recommended by another MKAL participant. It’s a nice group. Usually, I am overwhelmed by Ravelry chat threads, but this one is smaller and more my speed.
I also decided to try one more time on the bead choice. Truth be told, I really like the matte beads. (I’m not really the sparkly type.) But the ones I have are too gray. I found some matte Tanzanite beads (the color, not the stone) and I think they will be perfect for this yarn. Fingers crossed!
I am also making good progress on Bob’s Pride / Father’s Day socks. I’m just about ready for the heel flap on sock 2.
Nothing to report. Maybe I’ll try to work on my Emerson shorts today.
I have a solo show in September 2021, and I need to make a body of work for this show. My goal is ten pieces. Ten are finished!
I am growing flax, madder, indigo, and tansy. This year I would like to ret the flax and weave a wall hanging with the linen on my tapestry loom, maybe including some natural dyeing. Update: This was unsuccessful, as I over-retted the flax. But I will continue to experiment with natural dyes.
I took the afternoon off because I haven’t been feeling myself lately. It’s been quite cool where we are, so I knit on the porch, watched and listened to podcasts, and read the new book by Alys Fowler. You can see I haven’t made much progress on Bob’s Pride sock.
My Milkshake cardi is coming along. I skipped the waistline decreases because I figured those were for people with a waist. I will do the hip increases, though.
I cast on my swatch for The Lonely Heart is a Hunter MKAL. This lace pattern is repetitive, so I am enjoying it. I look forward to trying the beads with it when they come in the mail. I think I’m really going to enjoy my first mystery knit along.
My garden is a happy jungle.
The peas got a beating from a heavy rain earlier in the week. I’m hoping we can get some pods before the tops break. Even though they are English Peas, I’ve been eating them like snap peas.
Lots of lettuce.
Tomatoes are starting.
Apparently, I planted two different types of basil.
I updated my list today. I think June is when the Year of Projects (YOP) group starts over, but as I update my list as I go, there won’t be much to change.
I’m excited to say I have seven completed wool felt pieces for my show. I hope to finish three more before the opening in September. Bob and I visited the gallery yesterday, and we chatted with the owner. I will send him my current list of pieces tomorrow. This is my first solo show in nine years, and my first solo gallery show, although in 2010 I had a combined gallery show with another artist. I’m really happy I asked for this opportunity.
I’m focusing on my Milkshake Cardigan, but there’s not much progress since yesterday. Here are two photos of yarn I purchased for projects not yet added to my YOP list. 😁
This morning I started working on my Emerson shorts in natural linen I cut out two years ago. It will be good to get those finished, and it will be nice to be able to wear them. I can tell it’s going to be a hot summer.
I think I’ve finally got the garden about where I want it. I planted some cosmos, tansy, oregano, lavender, and creeping thyme this morning. I am trying some short and dirty wool clippings around the transplants. I found slugs all over the baby kale this morning.
My one and only New Year’s Resolution was to listen to more music with intention. Bob and I watched The Leftovers, and Iris Dement’s “Let the Mystery Be” was used for the intro at various times. I’m an Iris Dement fan, but I hadn’t listened to her music in a long time. So I spent a week or two just listening to her music, singing along in the car.
My Milkshake Cardigan is coming along. I love the construction. It’s very straightforward. I love the gray. I love all the stockinette. It’s the kind of thing I like to knit, and like to wear. This sweater reminds me of the Kids in the Hall skit “Are Extraterrestrials Dull?” It will be a quality garment. Yarn is Kelbourne Woolens Scout in Heather Gray from my stash. I decided the Tunis yarn is too special and will still make up the Kiki with it, when I am ready for cables again.
The garden is burgeoning. I wish I had planted more flowers. I might try peonies in here somewhere. I am still fighting slugs. They’ve just about taken out my Gerber Daisies, and it was a mature plant going in. Maybe I should try cosmos since I could dye with them.
The indigo is up, but so far only one madder seed has germinated. No tansy yet. I think I need a trip to the garden center!
I have so many sweaters I want to knit, but I keep queuing cables and colorwork patterns. Then I balk because my brain is not up for that. I guess I’m still decompressing from the pandemic year. So I’ve decided to make a Milkshake Cardigan (Ravelry link). It’s the most basic cardigan ever, which I need to replace my thrift store cardigan that had started unraveling. Now I need to decide which DK yarn in my stash to knit it with. I’m leaning toward the Tunis yarn, because it’s so yummy. This is my first Joji Locatelli pattern to knit, though I’ve been following her patterns for sometime and have heard good things. I also purchased her new Straw cardigan pattern. It’s beautiful, but has cables on the shoulder seams. Nope. Not right now, anyway.
Part 2 of A Visit to Tarheelbilly Farm is live on The Just Craft. I had some sound issues, which I did not expect since recording in the fields — which I expected to be problematic — turned out fine. But recording on the porch of the house was much more complicated. It has me questioning my ability to make a good podcast, but I am going to try to think of it as a learning experience. I did the best I could with the sound in Audacity, reducing the noise and amplifying Charis’s voice. I felt that what she was saying was so important I had to do my best to get the episode out. She is very candid about her thoughts and feelings on racism in the knitting and fiber arts community (and the events of 2020 in general) and even though I struggled with the sound, I’m proud of this episode. I think I’ll take a break before I start the next one, though.
I’ve been steadily working on my felt art for the gallery show in September. Some pieces I really love, some not so much. Some get stitching, some don’t. It’s intuitive but I am finding that I tend to stitch on cultivated landscapes and don’t on wild ones. So there’s a method, even if it wasn’t conscious at the outset.
Oh, I forgot to mention I joined Kate Davies’ Bluestockings Club! Again, I think the first pattern may be a little more than I want to undertake at this time. But it’s lovely and I’m sure I’ll get around to it eventually.
I’ve started a new pair of socks for myself. I’m in love with this yarn, which is Honeybees and Violets Please from Bone and Birch. Other than the socks, I’m knitting on my Hansel Hap. I’ve just about talked myself into focusing on the Arrowhead Cardigan instead of casting on a new one, so that I can wear it in the fall.
My garden is exploding. This is the middle, where there’s a lot going on. I accidentally broke off a pea shoot yesterday while weeding, so I ate it. It was delicious!
Full length of the garden. Elderberries in front. I’m not sure how well they’ll do here, but we’ll give it a try. The sunflower transplants are struggling in the back. I found out what happened to all my seedlings back there. Slugs!
For Mother’s Day and my birthday, Bob put together a flower bed for me out of some old wood he found in the barn. We went to the local garden center yesterday, and while I did get the foxgloves and coral bells I wanted to attract hummingbirds, the bed is looking a little sparse. We’ll see how these do. The smaller two are ground cover, so maybe they’ll spread out.
I did get the lilac bush I wanted, and a rose bush too! I didn’t really want yellow roses, but these had the best scent so I couldn’t resist. I also got hollyhocks, coneflowers, and a Joe Pye Weed for under the bird feeders.
I’m trying out wool pellets in the lilac and rose bush plantings to condition the soil, along with some compost. I’d like to add the wool pellets to the vegetable garden, but I’m going to wait until it needs a feed.
These lilacs smell so good! I have a small bouquet by my bedside.
My new podcast episode is up for The Just Craft! I had a wonderful visit at Tarheelbilly Farm, and am releasing the episode in two parts. I am so grateful to Charis and her husband Ben for spending time with me. It was a lovely day.
The sheep in front is Hollis, whose fleece I knit my Paris Toujours Shawl with. I met Hollis! And a few other shweeties as well.
This is Charis’s hand knit sweater she made with her Tunis yarn. She spun the contrasting gray herself. It’s so squishy and lovely!
And I got a sweater quantity of yarn! I had already purchased two skeins of Clancy’s fleece, and the eight new skeins are from Julie. They are close enough that I think I could use them together if needed. Because I don’t want to dye the yarn and loose the sheep smell, I’ve decided to knit it au naturel into a cabled cardigan. And because I was so pleased with the Franca I knit for my Mom, I’ve decided to knit Kiki by Cocoknits.
3. Celtic Myths Shawl – Cables and it’s a good week to pay attention. I’m so close to finishing it. I think I will try to knock it out.
4. Hansel Hap – since the start of this will be good TV knitting, I will cast this on later in the week so I have it ready when I go back to work and need evening wind-down knitting. The Ramsay Farm Shetland yarn is calling to me. So squishy and smells so good!
5. New socks for Bob. One should always have a pair of socks on the needles.
6. New socks for me. I have some very springy sock yarn I would like to knit into some shorties.
7. Onipa’a Shawl: “Stand Firm, Resolute. Be true to yourself.” I did and I was. I fell in love with this pattern and bought some gorgeous Finn and Kid Mohair yarn from Mindful Folk Farm during Botanica last weekend, dyed with Logwood, to knit it with. It’s gorgeous. Early birthday gift to myself.
8. Skipwith Cardigan: Number 1 in my queue because I would like to wear this and soon. It’s a fingering weight cardi. Even if I do cast on, is that likely to happen? 🙃
Okay, see now I’m overwhelmed and don’t know what to do.
In other news, it’s taking me forever to finish the body of my Anker’s Summer Shirt. “Just a few more inches,” “Just a… few… more inches!” “Ok, two more inches!” “One and a half more inches!” At least it’s short sleeved.
Things are popping up in the garden! It’s getting a little chilly at night and I’m worried. Hopefully the microclimate is a real thing and not a mass delusion by overeager gardeners in northern climes.
Last week I toodled around town with family that was visiting, and bought this pillow in a little shop. JoJo is not as amused as I am, but she does love our new-to-us couch.
Pete has emerged from hibernation. I planted all kinds of flower seeds here, but so far the only thing to emerge are volunteer sunflowers from the bird feeder. I think there are a few sweet peas, too.