Ha! Bet you thought it would be another few months until you heard a peep from me again! Not so!
I’ve been very busy getting my life back together – working two or three jobs to build up a savings, finding a new place to live… I spent the first months here crashing in the attic of my father’s summer house, and while I was grateful for the help, it was hardly a permanent solution.
Housing here on the island is a premium commodity; to find a good year-round rental takes time and connections. I finally moved into a beautiful house, probably as nice as any I’ve ever lived in, with a good friend who makes an ideal roommate. There is plenty of space, hardwood floors and huge windows overlooking the marsh, and an ample fenced yard for Rudy. The house is in a great neighborhood, set back a ways from the village, so there is little traffic and noise in the summer when the tourists are here. All of this at a price I can afford easily even in the off-season; we’re renting from an old friend who decided to put her house up for use by year-round residents rather than cashing in on the seasonal weekly-rental. I am feeling extraordinarily blessed.
As my new life becomes more settled, I am finding time to create again.
Here in the south, winters are not as harsh as in Alaska or Maine (understatement of the year!) I have had little need for heavy gloves and sweaters, though warm things in lightweight yarn and patterns are certainly usable during the fall and winter months.
I knit myself a pair of ‘Toast’ mitts to warm my wrists and hands while walking and riding my bike.
The pattern is as simple as can be, just a stockinette tube knit to lenth. I opted for no thumb-holes so they really are more like wrist-warmers than fingerless gloves. They’re great for morning coffee as well.
Then I decided a nice cowl to go with them would make me happy. I was right.
“Pretty Thing,” pattern by the Yarn Harlot
Partial skein of Peruvian Link 100% superfine alpaca
This was another great pattern, and fun to knit. I found the chart really easy to follow, and in fact the pattern was easy to memorize after a few repeats. I will probably be making a few more in the same pattern, as I get a lot of complements on it.
On a whim the other night, I started a project that has been in the works (at least in my imagination) for nearly five years.
When I lived in Alaska, my friend Kari owned the local yarn shop and she carried some handspun yarn. I fell in love with it, with the shifting colors and slightly-nubby texture, and wanted to knit myself a sweater from it. I couldn’t justify the $150 price tag for the yarn, so I did the next logical thing: I started to teach myself to spin.
Numerous drop spindles led to the purchase of a wheel; many skeins of handspun yarn, pounds of various fibers, handspun shawls, hats, socks, and gloves later, and I still hadn’t knit up a sweater of handspun. Last autumn I did spin a pound of Targhee wool (from Susan’s Spinning Bunny, in her “Blueberry Patch” colorway.) I finally pulled it off the shelf and am knitting in into a self-designed (read: making it up as I go) pullover.
So far I’m calling it a success! (Though in retrospect, buying the handspun yarn probably would have been the more economical choice… Luckily I’m more into being experience-rich than financially-wealthy.)
All for now, and I promise there really will be more soon!