Miriam Felton's Juno Regina (knitty.com); Berroco Ultra Alpaca Fine
Brandywine Shawl by Romi (Rosemary) Hill; Ella Rae Lace Merino
Bonne Marie Burns' Sandrine; Knitpicks' CotLin
The choir season ended for the summer,
Gnarled Oakwoods by Anne Hanson (Twist Collective); Berroco Ultra Alpaca Fine
Amy Swenson's Watershed; doubled laceweight wool
but we’re going back now and again for the occasional sing. Plus, I’m working on a duet with Susan F, a very talented clarinettist whose talents I hope and pray will eclipse my lack thereof;
I started about seven (yes 7) new projects, all of which are lace (summer, what can I say?) and one of which was a re-purposing of another project I wanted to postpone. I am soldiering on with a sweater begun last summer;
As yet unnamed by Joan Gavigan (FSK); wool fingering weight from Knitman's Kitchen
And one of the new projects is actually another design of my own. It started out as a lace shawl, but I realized I was dreaming if I thought I’d get it done sometime this century, so I decided to make it into a lacy edged scarf. A few tweaks are needed for the actual charting of the stitch patterns and I have few more repeats of the edging and then the blocking to complete, but it’s not too terribly bad for a third pattern.
Work has been really busy because in the summertime I like to catch up on visits that the dark and bad weather of winter cause me to miss.
Oh, and did I tell you our youngest graduated from college? Actually in the past six months, our youngest two graduated from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC) both
magna cum laude, both working their way through and I could not be prouder of them.:)
Ok, back to the knitting. For some reason, lately I have been fascinated by lace knitting patterns. Yes, it’s summer and it’s the sort of thing you want in your lap in 90 degree (F) weather, but I love the way you can use one skein of fingering weight yarn – about 450 yards – and in a relatively short period of time have a little shawlette or scarf that looks lovely with work clothes. I don’t think these will go out of style any time soon, either. There are so many lovely patterns out there. There are the two big lace books I know of:
A Gathering Of Lace (Meg Swansen et al.) (in my library) and Victorian Lace Today (not in my library, but trying to justify putting it there:)) and the “little” lace book from Interweave, Lace Style; No Sheep for You (Jillian Moreno & Amy Singer); Anne Hanson of Knitspot, Rosemary (Romi) Hill, all the designers who contribute to Knitty.com and the Twist Collective, even the Aran knitting folks like Janet Szabo are putting cables and lace together in lovely ways (actually Janet’s been doing that for a long time:)); so you might wonder why I would have the gezungas to try my hand at it. I just figured why not. I don’t have 1/10th the artistic talent and flair for style that these ladies have (oh and let us not forget Kieran Foley of Knitlab fame, one of the guys in the business), but I wanted to see what it was like. Frankly, it’s a LOT of work and the ultimate effect of all that time and effort for me was this: I really really appreciate the work that knitwear designers do and they deserve every penny they charge for their efforts. But then, I knew that already. I just know it MORE now!
I’ve been saving some of these (no, most of these) lovely patterns on the Kindle in case I’m out somewhere and looking for something to knit. In addition to knitting patterns, I actually do download books to the thing. In fact, one book I have been really enjoying is John Waters’
Role Models. John Waters is definitely an acquired taste, although there are those of us who naturally gravitate toward him, and even after years of therapy it won’t go away. Having his book on the Kindle is like a high tech way to avoid paying attention in class. The only problem is, I’ve had to keep from chortling out loud while court was in session, thus almost earning me “three hots and a cot.” The chapter on Johnny Mathis is alone worth the price of the book. Hey, I may dress like a conservative Bible belt grandma, but under this courtroom attire beats the heart of a filth freak. I haven’t read ahead, but I wonder if Divine is included in his pantheon? Well, I’ll have to finish the book to find out! If you’ve ever lived in or near Bawlmer, Merlin, you develop a sort of pride in this native son of Merlin. I will never forget one of my favorite lines in his movie, Pecker as a group of New York art fanatics make their way down to Bawlmer and are riding a train (or was it a bus?) through parts of the city, one woman says in awestruck tones,”Oh look, honey, it’s a … ROWHOUSE!!!” (Well that and the local Bawlmer actor, whose name I never get right – but if you know it, let me know!) insisting on some “gay ID” for out-of-towners trying to get into a gay bar.) I have two connections I know of to John Waters – tenuous connections indeed. Once, my son was getting his autograph at UMBC where he, too, attended college for a time. As he walked away, he sang out, “John Waters’ Pecker is the greatest,” to which Mr. Waters, in his inimitable style said, “Why thank you!” The other even more tenuous connection: A former colleague of mine, Tim W., went to elementary school with JW and in fact JW was the first kid who ever spent the night at his house. Their school has reunions and he offered for two of us (another then-employee of the Howard County Domestic Violence Center) to go as concubines (his wife Ronnie was not amused, LOL) to the next reunion so we could meet him. Like I said, tenuous.
Today is Sunday, but I don’t think I’ll be doing the usual Sunday dinner thing. K and S and baby Johnny are coming over, but D and D and the grandgirls are sort of 50/50. A really nice friend from choir had an extra ticket for the BSO to see the German Requiem and some Samuel Barber and I’m not passing up that opportunity, so Gram is going to be MIA tonight.
That’s OK, have to behave myself tomorrow!
Until then, God be with you ’til we meet again!