The reworking of the Falling Leaves cowl is going medium-well, but it’s been temporarily stalled because the orange I was using was just a bit too exuberantly orange (think irradiated mega-pumpkins on steroids), so I’ve ordered an alternative yarn, and am drumming my fingers on the kitchen table, impatient for its arrival.
Chris-the-postman will doubtless deliver it soon, with his usual unnerving ability to know exactly what’s in any given parcel/letter he pushes through the letterbox. “Looks like yet another packet of seeds: reckon you’ll be busy back there in the garden,” or “Car tax notice I think, you’ll be wanting to get this sorted out quickly.” It’s a good thing I’m not in the habit of ordering anything dodgy.
This isn’t even the first post that I’ve written on the subject of the quirks of our postman-du-jour. You may or may not have seen this post, which resulted in a reader realizing that we live in the same village, getting in touch, and thus a wonderful friendship was born because she’s awesomely fabulous.
Orange is a troublesome colour apparently, in both print and yarn. (The shade didn’t even acquire a name in our language until people in the English-speaking world first started eating a fruit known as… the orange.) I had a conversation with Sarah Neal, editor of Let’s Knit magazine on the subject of orange being tricky, years ago. Apparently, the colour is notoriously difficult to reproduce accurately and printers dread it for this very reason. Let’s Knit avoid using it for their cover text because of its willful misbehaviour. Fair enough. Some people say that purple is similarly recalcitrant, but I refuse to hear a single word said against my beloved purple.
It’s a pity that I really like orange. And whilst I’m discussing the colour, did you know that the only reason the carrots we eat are orange is because our Dutch ancestors who bred them wanted to produce a vegetable in their national colour? You can buy seeds for rainbow-coloured carrots, but most people seem to stick resolutely to the orange variety.
The cowl will be re-worked soon, and I’ll plonk the pattern down here, in all its funky but non-nuclear orangeness, OK?
In the meantime, I’ve been getting on with making a serious assault on the contents of the book, because following thorough testing on the matter, it appears that the thing is not going to write itself. Until now, I’ve focused primarily on designing the patterns and writing those up, but now I’m hitting the text. This is fun, because it feels like proper Writing-The-Book activity. I’m just trying not to think too hard about how much Writing-The-Book there is still to be done.
Anyway, today in Writing-The-Book news, I’ve been playing with roosimine. Not heard of it? Well you’re in good company because nor have most people. It’s a traditional Estonian stranded knitting technique, in which floats are brought to the front of the work, to resemble embroidery on the surface of the knitting. A comment on my Instagram photo on the matter got me thinking: I’ve long regarded floats as an inconvenience to be managed and hidden – it’s nice to bring them to centre-stage and celebrate them for a change. Yeah people, let’s rehabilitate those pesky floats!
And of course when I’m procrastinating about all the stuff I should be doing, I’ve been pottering in the garden. I’ve been reading a great deal about the principles of forest gardening (no, you don’t need an actual forest – you could use this method in a single tub on a balcony) and am increasingly adopting its techniques in our little garden: focusing on edible versions of the different layers of vegetation from tree canopy down to ground cover, embracing perennials, and finding tasty annuals that self-seed, like these mustard greens:-
There’s always something to pick and eat, although I am still growing conventional annual vegetables in raised beds too. The outcome of all this is LUNCH.
Increasingly, I can wander outdoors and forage for small quantities of ingredients to enjoy. Look at this stir-fry! (My garden Instagram is here, in case you’re curious.)
So whilst I’m growing/writing/knitting/foraging/oranging, I hope that you are finding creative inspiration all around you. May your knitting/crochet achieve perfection, and may any food that you grow taste almost implausibly delicious.
Until next time, my yarny friends,