Thursday, March 29, 2007

Harmony Trail - part II

We were back at my sister's house and I had the opporunity to shoot some video and take more photographs. If I can figure out the technical challenges, I will try to post some of the video. I am pretty excited about it.

In the meantime, I still want to know, what is this place?

Back to the topic at hand

I have been a little sidetracked by a number of things, including this:

This is a sweater/coat that was intended to give some practice at two-color knitting and steek cutting. It is from a book called Norskstrikkedesign. It was one of those late nights when I was captured by the siren song of the internets, and I bought the kit from Nordic Fiber Arts. Now, I am not a yarn harlot. I have project loyalty and I have a very hard time starting new projects when I have something already on the needles. So, it took a distinct force of will to actually cast on the first of eight sections that will ultimately be my knit sprawl.

I decided to knit a black boarder around the whole thing to give myself some leeway in terms of how it will ultimately be presented. Also, it allows me to slowly work my way into the yarn and the piece before the fair isle work starts. I mean, not that I'm scared or anything.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Happy Birthday Mom!

Today my mother is 80 years old. She taught me to knit when I was around eight (and then again when I was 14 when it finally stuck). One of my clearest memories of her when I was growing up is of her sitting on the couch at the end of the day, knitting. No doubt that was her first chance to sit down all day but she was not (and still is not) the type to sit with idle hands. Like so much of women's work, we always took her knitting for granted: the sweaters and hats and mittens kept coming and we assumed they always would. It wasn't until I really started knitting seriously myself that I realized what amazingly talented knitter she is. I like to think I encouraged her to see herself as very talented knitter--no one had ever told her that before and, at first, she didn't really even know what I was talking about when I would praise her work. Now, we encourage each other to keep challenging ourselves, pushing our skills, expanding our stash*. She is a wonderful knitter and a very wonderful mother!

Happy BIrthday Mom!

* as an aside: once a factory close-out type store near my mom (Building 19 1/2 for New England readers) was having a big yarn sale, mostly cone yarns but good quality wools. By chance I was going to be in the general area and, while I was probably not going to be able to see my mother, I was arranging my schedule to be able to stop by and check out the yarn sale. This, of course, was completely ridiculous because I have acheived SABLE (Stash Acquisition Beyond Life Expectancy), but, there it was--a yarn sale, we're talking enough yarn for a sweater for $2!. Anyway, I had several conversations with my mother about whether or not I would be able to make it the sale, the yarn she had purchased at the sale, etc. Finally my plans changed at the last minute and I was not going to be in the area and I won't be able to get to the sale at all. I received a phone message late in the day. It was my mother offering to go to the sale and pick up some yarn for me if I would just tell her some colors I might want--the thought that I might miss this opportunity was too much for her! My mother, the enabler.

Into Great Silence

Still playing at Film Forum for another week or 10 days: Into Great Silence.

See it!

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

do you knit in NYC? If so, read on...

Unrelated to sprawl but related to knitting...The Yarn Harlot will be launching her newest book on Thursday, March 22 at FIT here in NYC at 6 p.m. She is hoping to gather 750 knitters in their auditorium to show the world that knitters are a force to be reckoned with. Those who knit already know this to be true but apparently there are some out there who doubt our strength. Fools, all of them.

Click on the link to get all the inside information from the YH herself.

Monday, March 12, 2007

terra incognita

Being something of a mapophile, I love looking at old maps, especially looking at how new information causes the maps to change over time. As a young student, I took it for granted that maps were were based on facts and, as such, were neutral objects that told the truth about a place. It was only much later that I realized that all maps have a point of view that determines what and how they depict what they depict, and that this has the power to shape our experience of a place.

Some of my favorite maps are old maps that have large stretches of land labeled "terra incognita." These, at least, seem more honest. Sometimes I like to imagine my life like a big map with large portions labeled "terra incognita." As I wander through, bits are revealed and ever so slowly small portions of my terra incognita melt away.