I’ve been on a knitting tear since the summer on Protection Island. I think I made four adult sweaters since April. I started the Dublin Pullover in August. I knit it with Jamieson’s Shetland spindrift yarn, which turned out much softer than expected and will definitely use again. It took me about 5 months to knit and a week to sew in all the ends. Here’s one night’s waste yarn.
I needed a wooly board to block it and found plans online. You can buy one for $150 or spend $8 on material and have fun in the process. Mine can block sweaters from 32″ to 48″. I will warn you however, dowels in the hardware store are WEAK! They snapped in seconds on my first attempt to stretch a sweater. I perused the hardware section (one of my pet pleasures) and found an alternative, a 1/4″ metal something or other.
I initially hang the sweater in the boiler room, because there’s a drain in the floor, then move to the wood stove where it dries in 1/2 a day. The stretcher doesn’t stand on its own but balances nicely.
This is the Dublin pullover.
It fits Tim much better than me so he wins.
This vest had gradually gotten smaller and shorter. Now it fits again! I’m pretty sure it was the sweater shrinking, not me getting larger, although I’ve been a little lazy this winter.
In contrast, this last sweater, knit in Lopi bulky yarn, took one week to knit! It was a little big so I purposely shrunk it but went a bit too small. The wooly board let me stretch it to a proper size. The neck remains a little wonky and I have to do something about that. Back to planning and looking for more sweaters to knit and stretch.
We celebrated early with the family away and never brought a tree into the house. My geranium, salvaged from Seguin Island several years ago, brings holiday color to the room.
This year’s family craft project was paper cutting animal snowflakes.
Be careful, it’s another worm hole to fall into. We used the book, 100 Amazing Paper Animal Snowflakes by Marion T. Nichols. For some reason, the templates are available online on this website if you feel the urge.
My work area looked like a warehouse from Thanksgiving until now. I knit, wove and wove. I finished my final ? project yesterday but didn’t take a photograph it yet. I made tablet woven tiebacks for the log cabin’s curtains. Tim also received a wool rag rug for the cabin in the white elephant fiber exchange. The cabin may be complete – never.
There were hats, scarves, slippers, rugs, bath and hand towels to name what I can remember.
We sneaked a quick trip in to Montreal to listen to a choir perform in the Notre Dame Basilica. Despite the slush and the Montreal shuffle it demands, it is a beautiful city in the winter. Our new NEXUS passes let us sail across the border.
My fair isle sweater is almost complete. It’s knit but there about a million ends to weave in. I built a wooly board yesterday from plans I found online to block it. The pattern was for a man and it fits a little wonky. I hope the stretcher will help. For now, it looks just as nice inside out.
Today is a lovely snowy day to sit by the wood stove and finish this task. After I use the snow blower to clear the driveway.
It’s hard to say because where we live is so beautiful and peaceful. Our county has the second lowest population density in New York, so we aren’t driven away by the crowds. We have mountains and lakes and a hand built log cabin. I’ve been following the current Maatsuyker caretakers on Instagram and they summed it up quite well. It’s for the simple life unhindered by schedules. A typical day includes lots of time to create: music; weaving; knitting; and food. There’s always plenty of time and energy to exercise. And time to read and reflect on nature, seascapes, and sunsets. We try to maintain it at home but it’s much harder. I work a few days a week, as beautiful as our home is, we live far from family and travel to see them. Life gets in the way of life?
But here we are.
Tim tears me away from my knitting and weaving to take walks, ride our bikes or swim.
We visit family and friends.
I find inspiration in our local color.
And try to keep it simple.