Big Love

So how are you feeling today? Are you feeling the love? 

Over in the Playful Group, we've been sharing some gorgeous stories about selfish knitting, unselfish knitting, knitting memories, crochet dreams and spinning to die for. Why? Because we're all about the Big Love Along I'm currently hosting. There's even prizes just for entering!

Rules are simple:

  1. Kick off when the Ravellenics end
  2. WIPS and double dipping allowed.
  3. You have to be a group member
  4. You have to tell us your BIG LOVE story.

So what will it be? A skein you’ve loved for a long time? A technique you adore? Fibre you’ve lovingly spun for a friend? Something loving for YOURSELF?

Tell us!

We have some gorgeous skeins donated from Whimzy yarns who collaborated with our sponsor this month, Inspiration Knits, to bring fabulous kits to Unravel. You can read all about the patterns Louise recommends Whimzy for here

On the left is Sokkusu O, (O for Original), a 100% Superwash Merino base in the 'Summer Storm' colourway. On the right is 'Johanna' on Silkie Merino, another 

fingering weight yarn but this time 50% Superwash Merino, 50% Silk. To lucky winners will get a skein each, drawn at random from the FO thread. 

Another Way (c) Inspiration Knits

Then whether you have a hankering for 'Another Way' or a different design of Louise's, you can choose a pattern if you're the 3rd lucky winner in this solidarity along! 

The along has already started and I think I'll close the FO thread at the end of March so come on over and join in the chatter!

Journey Blog Tour

It seems fitting that I'm breaking my blog/recording silence to indulge in this particular blog post. Deadlineageddon very nearly sucked anything playful out of me this month and I feared I might never find my way back to here, my little corner of the internet where I get to talk about fun knitting things, recipes and occasionally muse about life in general. 

Welcome to my leg of the Journey Blog tour. 'Journey' is a collaboration of hand knits from Jane Richmond and Shannon Cook (of Love in the Mommyhood fame) and is inspired by the journey of self-discovery, independence and the path back to yourself. This really resonates with me right now and I felt an immediate affection for this book. In planning my post for the blog tour, I started a thought process that went something like this:

Oh! Self discovery....... a journey.... Vancouver Island.... I should knit something out of my holiday yarn that I bought when I visited the West Coast ...... I should share how I taught my friend to knit while we travelled near the island...... and tie it in and....


You get the idea. 

I was just running away with myself, thrilled to be thinking about knitting one of the wonderful patterns from this book till I sat and made myself re read the words Shannon and Jane start the book with. Before you even launch into the fabulous collection that includes two garment patterns, a shawl pattern, a sock pattern and two accessory patterns, there is foreword that shares the sentiment that drove the publication of this book. Shannon and Jane worked together on Jane's previous publication 'Island' which I was very lucky to review last year. That friendship has taken them both to unexpected places in their creative journeys as they worked worked together to make all their differences and shared interests into this wonderful publication put out by the publishing company they have now established. 

No publishing journey is easy and to do so as friends is incredible. The warmth from the friendship seems to ooze off the pages that are filled with stunning photography by Nicholas Kupiak  (he also did the photography for Island). It made me stop, think, and gather myself. Why would I add a deadline to this? The book is beautiful and makes me want to curl up with it and a mug of something warm and delicous and read it from cover-to-cover. Yep, even the knitting patterns because they are so thoughtfully written and laid out so you just know it's going to be a pleasure to create. 


Spate by Jane Rochmond, (c) Nicholas Kupiak
So instead of frantically casting on, I partook in some imaginary knitting. Wanna know what I made first? I made Spate, the wonderful textured fingerless mitts that Jane Richmond designed for the book. I worked them up in something yummy from my stash that's been marinating for a while and I was so thrilled to find a stitch pattern that showcased such subtle variegation. I knit these mitts to wear while I walked with my little girl and needed my fingers free to help feed the ducks, retie the strap on her shoe or pocket one of the many leaves she hands to me to look at as we walk along. In my journey of self discovery, it has been the balance of finding time to be the person I used to be and a mother. Working out how I reconcile the amount of time and commitment it takes to raise such a sturdy young thing with the knit addict whose every waking hour used to be spent with needles in hand or writing about knitting journeys, is a tricky one indeed. 


Antrorse by Shannon Cook, (c) Nicholas Kupiak
I then got really flamboyant and cast on Antrorse, Shannon's amazingly snuggly looking sweater design for the book. The clean and simple lines to this sweater are just wonderful but the pattern is repeated enough throughout the body of the sweater that it won't be dull to knit. There's also buttons and every good crafter has a beloved button box. I have buttons hoarded and collected from all over the world, from my mother's stash and even from the Giant's mother's stash. They are precious and perfect for browsing over on a rainy afternoon while you consider your choices. 

I WILL cast on from this book and I will sample some vintage stash to do so because Jane and Shannon have reminded me of the pleasure that can be found in knitting when you just slow down and stop to look at the pictures.

You can find other wonderful posts about Journey from other bloggers and podcasters:

MONDAY || CELTIC CAST ON
TUESDAY || TRULY MYRTLE and THE YARNIAD
WEDNESDAY || TANIS FIBER ARTS
THURSDAY || HEY PORKCHOP, NOODLEHEAD and SKIRT AS TOP
SATURDAY || SINGLEHANDED KNITS

A huge thank you to Shannon and Jane for inviting me to be part of the Journey tour. The fun doesn't stop with this post as there will be more details of the patterns on the podcast next week (yes, next week. I'm committed to that). To purchase your copy of Journey, please either visit Ravelry or Marian Rae Publications. 


Knitting Love

Oh I have some wonders to tell you about. When yarns and great designers collide, magic happens, it really does. I FINALLY finished up some items, including blocking, weaving in ends and photographing, which almost never happens around here lately. So it's high time I waxed lyrical about a few things I've been working on. 

First there was the Uncommon Thread wonder yarn, Lush Worsted in 'Bois', 231 yards of MCN heaven. I bought this for a specific project way back in October when I pictured long knitting times as I started my maternity leave and waited for our baby's arrival. I chose Dryad by my knit crush, Jared Flood. Yum. Delicious cables, intricate details and wonderful bouncy yarn to work it up in. It was a challenge but that was ok. I was going to be impatient for an arrival, I'd be thankful for the distraction. Right?

Wrong.

It went to the frog pond 4 months after Playful Baby's arrival as I just admitted defeat. Cables and charts were not my friend when I barely had time to knit so I ripped it out and chose Setzer instead. It was still Jared, but a lot simpler and 'kinder on a frazzled mind' looking. Silly me forgot my deep seated loathing of wrap and turns but I'm quite pleased with the end result and know The Giant (its recipient) is too. You can see my Ravelry project notes here


I also finally, finally finished my long love affair with Plume by Lisa Mutch. I adore Lisa's designs as they are just so ME. I want to knit them, wear them and talk about them. They are simple, stylish and interesting enough to keep me happy while not being so mind bendingly complicated that I can only work on them in total silence for 15 minutes at a time. Lisa likes thoughtful construction that leads to effective results. I love that. 

I took two very beautiful yarns out of my stash for this knit. More Uncommon Thread, this time both fingering weights. The main body was knit in Posh Fingering in the 'Nimbostratus' colourway, and between the delicate grey and the lustrous silk and cashmere content in this yarn, I immediately loved this shawl. Once I added a bright Cerulean blue in Silky Merino Fingering, I knew that I was creating one of my all time favourite shawls. These yarns are exquisite and I think Ce is possibly a genius. 

It took nearly a year to knit and block but my god, I love it. I worked a few modifications that you can read about here to make the most of the yarn and make it my biggest shawl to date. I can't wait to wear this around me this autumn. I've barely taken pictures of it but I'm sharing already because I'm impatient and waiting 2 more days to take better pictures just might just kill me. 

To Monteray, With Love

I have blogged on more than one occassion about my best knit friend. She's adorable, she's a rock and she absolutely makes me smile all the time. I think that qualifies her as damn knit worthy but as I've blogged before, I always hesitate about what on earth to knit her.

This time I was determined that on her birthday, I was going to give her the perfect wrap. I'd yet to knit her a shawl or something similar and we discussed that we were bored of small triangular shawls for a while. She was leaning towards big and luxurious and possibly in strong neutral colours whenever we chatted about recent designs we liked. The challenge was set and I secretly started plotting. 

There were a few options but I went straight to my favourite designer and of course, returned there after looking around and realising that if you want classic, stylish and simple designs, you go to Lisa Mutch. Lisa is behind Northbound Knitting, a sponsor and adored friend. I think she's fab and what I like about her designs is her ability to think about long lines, pleasing contrasts and the soft unending appeal of garter stitch. I chose Eris and I think I got it right. 


Eris is a long, asymmetric shape that provides blocks of colours. I was convinced and I set about shopping in my stash to see what I could find. Three colours are tricky, especially when you're trying to match another friend's colouring. I chose two easily but the third? I hope I got it right: gun metal grey, a soft beige/ natural and a pop of red. 


I'll be reviewing the yarns in the next podcast but for now just wanted to share how much I enjoyed working on this pattern. I really hope it's worthy of my lovely friend.

Sometimes Life Happens

I usually record the podcast ahead of time so that I have enough time to fit the shownotes, planning, editing and music searching in comfortably and stick to my recording schedule. This week, life kind of kicked my butt and I didn't get time to record ahead of the weekend. As the weekend has gone on I realised I was never going to find the time or energy to record. 

So rather than force myself to sit in front of the mic, I'm postponing for a week and will be back next Sunday with something a lot more playful than I'd have managed after finishing my work shift today. Sorry folks.

In the meantime, I will announce our Woolly Wormhead winners!

The random number generator has spoken and commenter number 3, TracyC611, chose the gorgeous Buzzba pattern.

(c) Woolly Wormhead



Our second winner is commenter number 22, CathWood, chose Rennie.

(c) Woolly Wormhead
Please ping me on Ravelry (greentrianglegirl) or via email aplayfuldayATgmailDOTcom to claim your prize!

Speak soon..... I'm off to bed..... zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

It's been FAR too long

I realise as I start this post that I cannot remember the last FO I shared here on the blog. It's best I don't check. Let's pretend it's only been a month shall we? I've always thought we were good friends. Let's keep this little fact between you and I, yes?


So, here's a very unseasonal but very lovely FO. The design is the 'Eternity Scarf' by Michelle Wang and I cast on after a bit of an obsessive period of stalking eternity loops. I wanted all my scarves to be round for some reason. I also wanted texture and something to show off the lovely Berry Colourful Yarnings yarn that I'd been sent for review. 

The yarn in question is BC Yarning's Worsted MCN base in the colourway 'Cinna'. It's an 80% Merino, 10% Nylon and10% Cashmere base that is sproingy and pleasing to work into a squishy fabric. This is not a lofty yarn, nor one that has no life to it. Instead, I'd describe it as full of energy and yearning for ribbing and swaths of stockingette to showcase the variegation of the colour. I began with this:


And found the textured sections really pleasing close up.....


I'm not convinced I've got the size right as it won't go round my shoulders as planned but it loops really satisfyingly around my neck and I know it's going to wear well due to the twist of the yarn. I predict a very stylish Autumnal key accessory. So I'm thinking a good yarn for high wear accessories and I'm eyeballing the DK I have in my stash too...... hmmmmmmm....

Tag You're It! Feat. Susan Crawford




A Playful Day is kindly sponsored by Superknits, the home of super yarns for super knits. Please show your support for our playful friend by clicking on the link above- go on, spoil yourself!!!.


A Playful Day is also kindly sponsored by NorthboundKnitting, uniquely hand dyed yarn, spinning fibre and modern knitting designs. Please show your support for our playful friend by clicking on the link above.


A Playful Day is proudly sponsored by Candy Skein, hand dyed yarns sweet enough to eat! Please support our playful friend by supporting the banner above.


Show notes:

Don't forget to claim prizes!
The Scrappy Cowl Recipe
A great reaction to Giving

Events:
Team Sasquatch


Guest Susan Crawford tells us all about her wonderful knowledge of vintage knitting and her upcoming title Coronation Knits.

Songs:
Fly, Fly, Fly by Adrina Thorpe, available on Music Alley
Crazy Rhythm by Bing Crosby
Contact me at: aplayfulday@gmail.com
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