Sunday, 31 August 2014

slowly moving Seattle cowl

I imagine a day when I am a monogamous knitter - where I finish one project before starting the next.  But then the reality of life and myself as a crafter takes over and I'm juggling several projects at once.  Some projects are seasonal, and put aside to focus on something that matches the weather.  I'm not interested in finishing a bulky wool cape in the midst of summer when a cotton tank like Estuary is more appealing.  Likewise I start gifts for my gift bin - scarves or hats - but put these aside to work on projects for me.

Seattle is one of the projects that I started with a great amount of enthusiasm.  I love the pattern, the yarn, and the story it tells.  I put it aside for gifts that needed to be finished, garments that I want to wear, and other projects.  I've pulled it out to work on again... and forgot how to read the lace rows.  Lots of trial and error to get back on track.  It can be tv knitting once I'm back in the groove of it, but not right now.   For now it's slowly moving, a bit at a time.

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

WIP - Estuary

I'm done a side panel (started side panel first so I could also use as gauge swatch), and started a garter panel.  Love the way the yarn is working up, love the speed of the bulky weight.  Notice though that my row gauge and stitch gauge are not going to match the pattern.  The garter 'width' has to match the side 'length' to be seamed together to create a round garment.  We then start from here with the stitches held, plus picked up garter stitches, to knit in the round from mid-torso up.  I will have to rip back a few rows of the side panel to make it match the garter panel, and then adjust the overall length of the tank after that.  Not a big deal... maybe I'm the only one whose row and stitch gauge don't match the given gauge most of the time?  I usually go with stitch gauge (horizontal measurement) and fiddle with the length accordingly.  Onward I go!

Monday, 4 August 2014

subjectivity and icons

The recent Fall 2014 preview posted at Vogue Knitting ( sparked some instant emotion here... but not in the way the magazine editors likely want.  There are many lovely things here, especially the Eileen Fisher sweaters.  Unfortunately, the item that caught my attention is this one:
Photo from

The caption above it states:  "A sweater and shawl take inspiration from an American classic: the Hudson’s Bay Co. point blanket." 

I am sure that the magazine has a host of researchers, writers, and editors on staff and wonder how a blanket that originated in Britain for trade in Canada via Hudson's Bay, and still made in England, can possibly be called "an American classic".  I'm usually nonchalant about these things, but for some reason I am furious with Vogue about this.

Now, I'm first to admit that these were traded in North America with First Nations tribes who lived in Canada and the United States.  The blanket, however, is synonymous with the Hudson's Bay Company.  A decidedly Canadian corporation.  History of this company's roots can be found at  This history includes an overview of the first trading posts and HBC's role in Canadian history:  "For centuries Hbc was a network of remote outposts across this vast country called Canada. Forts and trading posts helped to unite a nation and in many areas have become key cities and towns."  Later, the blankets were used as coats by the British during the War of 1812 when fighting AGAINST the United States.

I recognize that Canadian and American history overlaps, particularly in the early settlement years.  The social, economic and political history of the fur trade, European settlement, First Nations peoples, and the HBC is complex and complicated.  I'm not sure, though, that it can be called "American".  I am sure that this issue won't be one that I'll be buying.

Edit:  I added a comment on the Vogue group, and the copy editor replied to say they've corrected the text to say "North American" instead of "American".  Great response (I wasn't the only one to comment), so I may purchase this issue after all!

Friday, 1 August 2014


July has gone by in a blink - too busy to knit, to blog, to read, to do much of anything other than school-related work.  Now that it's done, I've ignored my stash and bought yarn for a summer tank.  It's Estuary by Amy Christoffers from Interweave Knits.  I'm using a cotton/acrylic blend rather than a wool/cotton blend - Berroco Weekend Chunky.  I love it already - the colour, the weight, the softness of the cotton blend.  Should be perfect for summer!