Monthly Archives: January 2010

Looking back, looking forward

Knitting-wise, 2009 was a fairly expansive year for me. I didn’t do everything that I wanted to do (somehow I thought I would have produced more than 5 sweaters…pardon me while I polish my ambition), but I did do quite a bit. I delved into pattern sale publishing for the first time with the Viper Pilots socks, and now more than a hundred other knitters have been tortured challenged by that pattern just as I challenged myself to produce them. I taught a knitting class for the first time, and attended many others thanks to the wondrous event that the Sock Summit was. I saw myself published in print for the first time, in Canadian Living magazine. I started partnering with Canadian dyers Tanis and Michelle for some design collaborations, and look forward to working with them again in 2010. I learned to spin and purchased my own wheel. It’s been a good year as far as fiber crafts go.

Every year I do a roundup of my Finished Objects, and every year it always feels a bit like the year end comes too soon, like…wait! I wasn’t done yet! I had at least 3 more pairs of socks and half a sweater left in me! Come back, 2009! But the calendar must tick over as it always does, and as we’re not quite a full week into 2010, I still feel good putting up a few images here for posterity – not a complete list this time, as this time I like letting some of the bright pictures just speak for themselves. Thanks for the knits, 2009.

2009 Knitting

The Finished Objects of 2009 (a few of which still need proper photographing) reel in at 13 accessories (mitts, hats, scarves), 4 shawls, 6 sweaters (if you count the baby-sized one from my steeking class, heh heh), and 16 pairs of socks, for a total of 39 finished objects. This is a few more than I accomplished in 2009, but becoming more broadly spread out – fewer sweaters but more accessories and a couple more shawls than last year. I think I need to finally divest myself of my assumption that I am a ‘sweater knitter’ and recognize that I am an ‘anything that challenges me the right way’ sort of knitter.

I also took up spinning this past year (that is, on a wheel), and I realize with a start that it has been a few weeks since I’ve even touched my poor Majacraft Little Gem. It would be a shame to waste the momentum I had coming through the summer and fall as I started to get the hang of the whole process. Let’s make that a goal for 2010: dedicated spinning time.

2009 Spinning

It seems hard to believe that the Sock Summit is now more than 5 months in the past. It was pretty darned awesome and I am glad that I have that set of memories to look back on for 2009. I met so many wonderful knitters there and feel lucky to have been a part of that experience. Thank you again, Stephanie and Tina and your colleagues, you are awesome.

Sock Summit 2009

Thanks for some good stuff, 2009. Here’s hoping 2010 has even better things ahead.


Filed under year in review

As it turns out

I am entering the New Year with one active project on the needles. (I am not counting that sock that I sort of started as a last-ditch gift effort because it only has two rows on it. That is not a WIP, it is a first draft.) This striped scarf is in two colours of Noro Silk Garden, after the ubiquitous inspiration of Brooklyn Tweed’s Jared Flood. I accomplished about half the scarf through subway and airplane knitting.

I’ve had half the yarn for this scarf since the summer (the black/blue #272 skeins), but then decided I wanted a different pair of skeins to partner with it, and found the #243 pink/blue/green ones at the Romni sale. It’s a more moderate contrast but combines tones and colours that I like, so there are some places that are much less visibly contrasted than others. I like how it’s turning out so far.


Since a few of you were wondering – yes indeed, I knitted in airports and airplanes, on both the Toronto and the New York (Newark) ends of my trip. I was reminded alternately to remove my earphones and to place my coat/bag in the overhead bin, but no one ever said boo about my knitting. This allowed me to finish a glove on the way there and knit away on my scarf on the way back.

Although I realize that knitting needles may be perceived differently to different air carriers and security checkpoints in different parts of the world (and WOW believe me am I not interested in pulling at that discussion thread here and now), I have not yet (touch wood and turn three times and spit) had any problems taking knitting with me on a plane in North America. I fly a few times a year in Canada and the United States, and my general approach is to bring knitting with me with needles that, if necessary, I could stand to part with. I check the Addis in my suitcase if I need to bring them. Most of the time I am travelling to destinations that would allow me to purchase replacement needles in a jiffy anyhow, and I would rather err on the side of “take knitting and assume it will be fine”, because that way I get to have knitting with me. To err on the side of “don’t take knitting because something bad might happen” is also reasonable, but that way means I don’t get to have my knitting with me. ;)

I have, in this manner, successfully travelled with bamboo straights, metal circulars, metal DPNs, and wood DPNs. So far so good. (I will say however, that this approach doesn’t stop me from fretting. I still fret a little bit. But wouldn’t you rather fret with the chance of still having knitting with you? I would.)


And while we’re on inquiries – the afternoon tea I had in New York was at Alice’s Tea Cup. It is pretty much always busy, so a person is wise to go in, anticipate having to put in one’s name and cell phone number and come back when a table frees up, but it is worth it for a decadent lunch or treat. The scones are delicious. I strongly recommend visiting the Upper West Side location, because then you are walking distance from Knitty City, but then, you were going to visit Knitty City anyway, right?

Also, the red cabled/bobbled beret in the previous post was my incarnation of Jared Flood’s Laurel beret, and I owe it (and my Tibetan Clouds stole) a proper photo post. Soon.

I hope your last gasps of weekend/holiday are enjoyable. I’m going back to the real world kicking and screaming and don’t care who knows it. Knitting, I’m so glad you’re with me.


Filed under accessories

Give my regards to Broadway

It’s 9am, do you know where your holiday is? As I wait for my plane to board back to Toronto (with plenty of time, having arrived stupidly early), I face the cold harsh need to face reality beginning to sink in. The real world is for the birds.


I’m going to knit away on my striped Noro scarf on the trip back, plot out a few knitting projects for 2010, and ponder possible resolutions. (As it turns out, I brought exactly the right amount of knitting with me, who’d have thought?)

Thanks for the visit, New York, let’s do it again some time!










Filed under Uncategorized