Sunday, January 05, 2003

Christmas, Day Twelve. The day we've all been waiting for. It's finally over and we can get back to getting ready for the next one. I can tell Christmas is over because the City of Pasadena is taking down all the bleachers along Colorado Blvd., put up just a few weeks ago for the Rose Parade. I've found a place to store all the Christmas gifts, including a 16 quart stockpot, and have put away the last bottles of unopened champagne. So, it's over. But it was fun!

The third book from my wish list: Fair Isle Sweaters Simplified, by Ann and Eugene Bourgeois. I had read and heard a lot of references to this book. So when I tried a little fair isle knitting, late last year, I thought I ought to have this book, even if some of the references weren't exactly kind. I mean, we could all use a little simplifying once in a while, right? A major portion of the book is a history of how the company, Philospher's Wool, got started. The trials and tribulations. And ultimately, the triumph. (Sort of a mix of new age and Farmers' Almanac.) Readable but not relevant to the task at hand. There's a section on the Philospher's Wool color ways. Very arty, faux rustic. The techniques section is very informative in it's narrative presentation. It helps if you have some idea what they're talking about though. From what I can tell, the sweater silhouettes are all about the same, a couple of rectangles with sleeves. Not much variation. The fair isle patterns are nice but we're not talking Dale of Norway here. And certainly not Poetry in Stitches or Norsk Strikkedesign. But then, they did say simplified.

(That paragraph was getting too long so I decided to put in a break here.)

Anyway. I am always inspired by Wendy's gorgeous sweaters and the intricacies of her patterns. And I really admire her skill. I know she uses a lot of patterns from that Scottish designer. Her work is what I have in mind when I think of Fair Isle. But, I think I will probably make something, just for the practice, from FIS. I hear their wool is heavy and I note their sizing is generous to a fault. So the first thing I'll have to do is mess around with the patterns. Well, I can do that.

Had a very busy day at Skein. Lots of new customers. Ann Mary was so tickled with herself. She sold some pretty pricey yarn to two different people, both of whom started off by saying they just don't knit anymore. She said that as a former schoolteacher she had learned that it was important to motivate people. I didn't see any of the usual weekend crowd. They were all off doing other things or being sick. Bother! But I have hopes for today.

My cold is still putting up a pretty good fight but I think I have the upper hand now. I've got a couple of new things "on the needles" at least figuratively. Ripped out the new hat. (I'm making this one for Doris. Doris will be 90 next month. She says this yarn is too hard for her to work on. She's wrong. It's too hard for anyone to work on.) And I'm making a new shawl for the shop. Mohair and sequins.Loosely adapted from a Karabella pattern using Berroco Mohair Classic and some sequined stuff from Anny Blatt. Tedious!

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