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Sunday, September 25, 2005


Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run . . . . .

(Extract from 'To Autumn' - John Keats)

This is me coming over all poetic because, for some reason, the onset of autumn always makes me feel a little bit sad in a nostalgic, poignant sort of way coupled with a sense of awe at the beauty of the autumn foliage when it appears. It's only in nature that we see such an array of sheer and subtle variation in colour: browns going into golds, ochres, coppers, cinnamons; reds merging into burnt oranges and clarety purples; greens with slight hints of the blue about them and so it goes on. When my Hip Knits "harvest" (a close up of which is pictured above) came through the post yesterday, the first thing I thought on opening the parcel was that Kerrie had excelled herself with her dyeing expertise and had managed to instil some of the essence of autumn into this particular batch of silk yarn!

As if this wasn't enough to titillate my senses, also included in the parcel was this!

It's Sari Silk, of course, and it arrived as an extra little something because of a slight delay in delivery which wasn't even Kerrie's fault but was down to the Post Office! How's that for quality service. I was really happy to receive this little bundle because I've often admired the Sari Silk that I've seen in photos but never had the chance to see it "in the flesh" or fondle it until now!

On top of all that, another parcel arrived! It was this - Modular Knits: New Techniques for Today's Knitters by Iris Schreir. This book is amazing or, rather the new techniques described within its pages are amazing and, I have to tell you, totally addictive. Basically, this book teaches you to knit what looks exactly like entrelac or domino knitting without any cutting and joining of yarn or picking up of stitches! There are instructions for lots of different basic shapes and patterns incorporating them. What's really great about it is that you can be knitting away and thinking that what you're knitting doesn't look that impressive and then, all of a sudden, you see these really neat geometrical shapes emerging that look just like you spent hours knitting entrelac! I could hardly put my knitting down to blog this because I'm just so fascinated by the sheer mathematics of it but I didn't want to keep it all to myself.

Anyway, the upshot of all this is that the Harvest Hip Knits Silk is no longer destined to transmogrify into the autumnal clapotis (love that word "transmogrify") because the formula has now become:

Modular Knits book + Harvest Hip Knits Silk = Starburst Shawl

On the left is a photo of the Starburst Shawl taken from the Modular Knits book. It incorporates triangles and diamond shapes framed with an openwork pattern created by yarn overs that are dropped on the following row.

I've made a start on it, shown below. On the needles, it's difficult to appreciate the bit of pattern just knitted because each piece is knitted at an angle by doing short rows. I have, therefore, taken it off the needles to photograph it. Why? Because I feel a bit reckless and devil-may-care today!

I also managed to harvest something in the way of a finished object! It's Ginger from Rowan's Summer Tweed Collection. It's a very simple knit but the beauty of it, to my mind, is the simplicity so that the attention is not distracted from the yarn itself which, personally, I like. There are no edgings or bands knitted on this top at all which means that the edges themselves have to be very neat. This was done by picking up the loop lying between the penultimate and last stitch on each row and slipping the last stitch and then knitting them together on the following row.

The photo on the right shows the front of Ginger and the one on the left shows the back. As you can probably imagine, I won't be wearing it for some time!


  • At 11:12 pm, Blogger Marie said…

    The Harvest colourway is breathtaking. I will definitely have to get some of that myself when it's back in stock. The scarf pattern looks very interesting, and I think it's a great choice for your silk yarn. I love it when someone finds a new pattern. I'm sure the clapotis would have looked absolutely great in the Harvestcolored silk, but it will be so much more interesting to follow your progress on an unfamiliar pattern, and it looks like a really great pattern!!

  • At 10:24 am, Blogger Beverley said…

    Well Hazel, that yarn is amazing and I shall have to look out for that book myself. Also love the top you made, looks really nice, I might look out for that pattern.


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