Coronavirus lockdown certainly has the ability to squeeze the optimism out of the best of us. It has also brought on our collective creativity. What we seek to do is what we did before. Who we seek to be with is who we wanted to be with before. I am noticing we, as a people, are finding alternative ways within the parameters of social distancing to adjust and make change. Car parades or gatherings on front lawns to celebrate birthdays, zoom meetings to visit loved ones, or making large signs on poster paper to communicate feelings to those we cannot visit are a few visible signs of finding creative solutions. An abundant amount of creativity is seen online such as four second videos on TikTok that make us laugh or ponder, stories on Instagram for promotions or otherwise, song writers being inspired to write new songs such as Kelly Clarkson’s Dare to Love. There are a myriad of examples of people finding creative solutions so life can move forward; just look at what is happening in the field of education, itself.… Meet Sally
Utilizing a quiet day during lockdown, I am catching up on writing about a project completed a few months, ago. When I received my Vogue Knitting Holiday, 2019 and excitedly turned the pages to see the new designs, which has been a total thrill for me for over 40 years, I turned to this, #07 called Parallelogram designed by Laura Zukaite.… Modern Argyle
Well, at this point, this project has been knitted twice. Not by choice, of course, but to eliminate too much shelf time, aka, not be worn. I knit to wear so if there is something about a garment that doesn’t feel right or comfortable, I know its future is doomed. I must say, the fabric that was created by this stitch was the conundrum.
The honeycomb stitch is a type of cable that is dense, especially when using Lion Brand’s fisherman wool . . held double. Not so much dense in weight as the pulled stitches create a kind of air hole behind it. Maybe, you can make this out here, but dense in body.
I think it is interesting to hear of what inspires each of us. For my inspiration, I can’t think of a time when I reached for any Vogue Knitting publication that I didn’t end up wanting to make at least one item from it. Oftentimes, more. This has remained true for over 40 years. Now, currently on Ravelry, such magazines, publications, designers of well-known fame as well as fledglings have ‘groups’ one can follow. From there one can drill down and find things like KALs (knit alongs) and surprise KALs (just that, clues per week to lead to a surprise garment in the end). These things are found in ‘forums’. These niceties are all meant to inspire or motivate the knitter in us. Well, the Vogue Knitting Group is no exception. It offers challenges, and I am right in line to accept them. … Leg-o-Mutton ‘THEN’
Is it a poncho? Is it a wrap? The designer, Vladimir Teriohkin names his design Helio Poncho, which means combining form. Whatever you call it, it could not be easier to knit and exceedingly fun to wear. Think, a few inches of ribbing, followed by a rectangle in straight stitch with a hole in it towards one end, and ending with the same number of inches in ribbing. When complete, pick up stitches around that hole for a nice 8 inch cowl. It is as simple as that. Knitted in Homespun from Lion Brand, a chunky, curly yarn, it knits up quickly and is impressively soft.. Wear it casual with moto joggers for Christmas tree shopping or fancy it up with more formal wear for an evening out, The photographer snapped these photos while I was adjusting the multitude of ways of wearing. We are at a Buffalo-famed ice cream shop, Anderson’s who rents out their lot to a Christmas tree farm every holiday season. Paul Bunyan has stood proudly for years positioned along a main drag to announce the farm’s return to the local community. So, here we are starting out where I’ve slipped this rectangle over my head, short length in front. … The Poncho Wrap
It begins as a knitting project but somehow each garment ends up having a more involved back story. This project was all about finding the right yarn or should I say, the right yarn combination.
Fur varsity jacket. As quickly as I could say those words, fur varsity jacket, I was smitten. Vladimir Teriokhin never disappoints and again here I was ready and willing to embark on another one of his designs.
I love pink, especially pale pink. Inspired by Rebecca Taylor‘s color palette as seen in some of her recent collections and the fact that I am making every attempt coordinating the pieces I knit with my existing wardrobe, I thought I would knit myself a kind of mini collection. With my eye on a knitted modern baseball jacket pattern (foreshadowing), I wondered if the other pink yarn I had in my stash might make the perfect complement as a hoodie.
I have been very grateful for a little online thread on Ravelry set up by a fellow knitter and avid fan of Vogue Knitting, coilycurly. This knitter, to honor Vogue Knitting’s 35th anniversary, has set up what she is calling the “Anniversary Challenge”. According to the ‘rules’, contestants are to knit one project from the VK magazines, from each decade since the publication’s start, from the years ending in 7. That would be a total of four projects to fulfill the challenge and at the same time, honor the magazine for its longevity in bringing high fashion and current designers to the forefront.
Last year, The Knitting Guild of Greater Buffalo brought in designer, Heather Lodinsky, to teach a skill on one of her designs. The pattern was her two-tone slip stitch cable pullover and the skill was using slip stitches in cable work. In my experience in knitting, I had not encountered slip stitches to be used for the design of a garment, only to be done along the edges of knitted pieces. So, I was quick to take on the pullover with the Guild and it led me to do a self-investigation of slip stitches, in general.
For a project that pretty much flew off the needles, it is interesting that I have so much to say about it. I have lots to say not due to any pattern issue or yarn dissatisfaction, but rather the changes I made in how I constructed it. From long tail cast on to sewing on the seam binding along the back neck, I feel these changes led to its success and will lead to the garment’s longevity.
I want to capture, in writing, some of my thoughts from this last week when I was invited to speak to the Buffalo Knitting Guild’s Membership and be the first of its programming for the 2016/2017 season. The talk was advertised as such:
SEPTEMBER 8, 2016 HOW DOES YOUR KNITTING GROW?
Presented by Marja Coons-Torn, Holly Olmstead
Our Guild President and Vice President introduce the theme “Grow” for this year’s Knitting Guild Season with a program to help you grow your skills through photography and technology. We’ll learn tonight how to photograph our knits beautifully and stylishly, just like the top designers do! And we’ll go on an interactive journey into new technology that the Guild will be incorporating this season.
As Grandmother, I was recently invited to the DC area to babysit grandchildren while very intent parents set up house for their temporary move. (no photos because I never knew how to take care of young ones and be a photographer at the same time)
A retirement gift, a plaque from the District where I worked, beckons me. It is as if it can talk and recall; that plaque with the Varsity letter. I hear students’ voices, excited anticipation in the air, their endless desire for learning. It speaks my tongue and reminds me about lesson planning into wee hours. It sounds with the hustle bustle of school life: hallways all abuzz, meetings with teachers and/or parents, the frustrations voiced and the sharing of successes of each day. One glance at this wall plaque of mounted school letter and personalized engraved plate, now hanging on a wall in my yarn room, does all of that every time I look at it.