Thursday, September 08, 2005

Best Quote I Heard All Day
Sometimes the most positive thing you can be in a boring society is absolutely negative.--Johnny Rotten

Unfortunately, I was right, according to Carol S.

ClothsForKatrina. A new Yahoo group. Warshcloths for refugees. Just what I would want after spending a week on a rooftop or in a foul stadium with no water, food or hope. A knitted warshcloth.

How fucking stupid.

Simply, um, Boring
I used to look forward to the Jamieson books. Until the Simply Shetland books took over. Simply Shetland is the North American distributor of Jamieson yarn. Joe or Kathy could tell you the whole story re: David Codlington and Greg Courtney. This is all entangled with the late, great Tomato Factory, She Who Litigates in Scottish Courts, and that whole debacle.

Unfortunately, the latest book, Simply Shetland 2, is simply boring and at times, simply awful. I ask you, what the fuck does Nicky Epstein have to do with good design and Shetland yarns?

Sorry, but I'm not from the school of dangling felted or knitted objets. Perhaps "growths" would be a better word. Applied knitted crap on top of knitted crap = knitted shit.

What's worse, Ms. Epstein is now leading their Shetland Isles Escapes, during which tour you take a seemingly endless workshop with her over the course of the tour and felt a bag (hopefully not this bag). I can't think of anything more incongruous than having Nicky Epstein as your guide through the Land of Shet. Perhaps no one else would do it. And I'm sure having a knitting "celeb" is some kind of draw. But not for serious Fair Isle knitters, of which group Epstein is not known to be a member.

Some dim positives about the book: An absolutely lovely Fair Isle by Hazel Hughson. A number of Carol Lapin's designs, although her work is looking very same-ish these days. Same colorways, same stripes. Too much of a rut.

I'm not buying this book, obviously. And it's too bad because this is the first one in the series that I've decided was not worthwhile.

I'm waiting for cooler weather to get back to the QAL. So in the meanwhile, besides working on my own lace design, I started Fibertrends' Field of Flowers shawl, designed by Evelyn A. Clark. The yarn is Lorna's Laces Helen's Lace, color Tahoe. Wonderful to work with. This is a fairly basic Shetland-style shawl, "-style" meaning that the center square is worked flat. The square's pattern is easy--isolated cat's paws.

Obviously, this has not been blocked but rather given a slight yank to open up the eyelets a bit for the picture. The bottom pink yarn is my provisional crocheted cast-on. These stitches will be used for the border, which is Old Shale, the ole favorite. The edging is a pretty but basic lace edging.

I've been busy working on my own lace stuff. Below is the chart of a design that I've decided to shitcan for various reasons.

I'm much happier with my new stole design, which incorporates a reworking of a more complex lace pattern from Susanna Lewis's book Knitting Lace.

Incidentally, if you are interested in learning how to design lace shawls of all types, there is no better book from which to learn than Martha Waterman's Traditional Knitted Lace Shawls. It's published by Interweave Press (who else?) and I've learned a ton from it.

Because I Can
I rarely play the Grandma card heavily but I really liked this cartoon Liz did on Paint, freehand no less. She wants to be a professional skateboarder and cartoonist. It's doubtful Tony Hawk has much to worry about.

I particularly like the shirt. She's a pretty rare and handy cartoonist. Never mind that she put the apostrophe for '05 in the wrong place. I won't tell.

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