The last week or so has been about finishing things up work-wise and getting more time for personal projects. This winter, I am on Mission: Cardigan. I am in the home straight of a small collection of accessories – all will be revealed in a few weeks’ time! – but I can happily say that I’ve finished my first winter knit of the season, the (not-so) Bleak cardigan from Kim Hargreaves’ North:
The cardigan made its debut last Thursday and I was so pleased with the feedback it got! It’s one thing when you finish a project and think you’ve done a good job, but to have so many other people say so is amazing, truly upllifting. I have loved knitting it, and most importantly, it fits really well and is useful. I made Bleak to wear with full skirts, and now that I have it I’ve been wondering why on earth it took me so long to make a cropped cardigan like this. There will be other cropped winter cardigans to come, no doubt. Before I get to those, there are a couple of winter knits that I’ve started, and as their progress will be popping up on here and especially in my Instagram feed in the weeks/months to come.
This raspberry pink delight is going to be the Heart cardigan from North. It’s a long-line companion to Bleak, but I’m shortening it, replacing the moss stitch within the diamonds with garter (I prefer having different textures at the side and within the cable panels, a la Bleak) and using yet more stashed yarn. This time it’s Kid Classic in a long-discontinued shade called Plush, twinned with Fine Lace in Quaint. It makes for a very subtle marl; I love Plush and didn’t want to bulk it up with a competing shade of pink. I only have about one-sixth of a repeat so far, but here it is anyway!
This next cardigan is Drew from Kim Hargreaves’ Storm. I’m running Kid Classic and Fine Lace together again (almost made myself yawn), but it’s not a 100% substitution this time. The Kid Classic is the Grasshopper green and it’s with Fine Lace Patina. I wasn’t keen on using Kidsilk Haze for this one – the accessories I’m working on are in Rowan Cocoon and I think I’ve had enough of fluffy mohair for the time being! I don’t normally wear green; I like it more than it likes me, but this shade seems to work. Hopefully others will feel the same…
That should keep me out of trouble for the time being, but I have even more cardigans lined up! One will probably be another Bleak cardigan using some old Kid Classic in Lavender Ice. This was a naughty purchase when I visited the Grayson Perry exhibition in Birmingham this spring, but it was £3.00 a ball! I know some people will understand 😉 AND – it was old school Kid Classic, before Rowan changed their spinner of this yarn. I love how the soft purple is shot through with white; it adds texture and interest to what could be just an average purple.
The last cardigan I’d like to make for now is the shell lace companion to the Pisces pullover I finished a month or so ago. It’ll be a pattern mashup or pattern hack, as sewing bloggers call it (I think). This Lima has been in my stash for a while (big surprise) and I’m sure I’ll enjoy this cardigan as much as I do the sweater. It’s nowhere near cold enough for this or any of the other projects, but I want to be prepared. It would make a change 😉
Apart from poring over potential additions to my wardrobe I’ve been looking at some amazing textile art again. The Knitting and Stitching Show at Ally Pally is next week and I can’t wait to see the exhibitors there, but until I can share some of what I saw, here’s some of the loveliness I’ve seen in the last week or two:
First up are some snaps of the Deeply Felt exhibition by Cathy Needham, currently showing at Fringe. It’s free to go in and you can see gorgeous felted artwork like this:
I have never seen felting quite like this! The Cornershop was amazing but the level of detail and embellishment on these exhibits was wonderful. I have to keep reminding myself that an extremely talented human being made all of this by hand. Truly, a labour of love.
This next group of images features some extremely imaginative embroidery:
Immediately left is a sculptural piece by Meredith Woolnough. It is so light and delicate, I can’t help thinking that it would fall to pieces if I touched it. Below this is an embroidered eye by Sam Gibson and a moth by Yumi Okita. These are stunning, and there’s more to look at – a whole collection of moths and another of eyes! The jolie-laide of moths has been captured brilliantly and again, the details are marvellous. The eye looks like a line drawing until you get close up and appreciate the quality of the needlework.
Illustration is something I wish I could do really well. My last share is some work by David Ginn, which I found on the Colossal blog. Apparently he goes around Ann Arbor, Michigan, drawing cute animals in unexpected places. The entire post made me smile and I urge you to have a look if you fancy a giggle or just want something imaginative and cute to look at.