Sunday, January 30, 2011

Period Drama Addict

I have a confession to make. I am hopelessly addicted to period dramas, particularly those presented through Masterpiece Classic on PBS. I love everything about them! The clothes, the language, the manners and houses draw me back week after week. I know that on the surface sharing about what I watch on  television has nothing to do with knitting... but actually it does.

Every time PBS has the decency to air a new period piece on Sunday nights, I shut myself away in my bedroom, not to be disturbed by anyone, and sit on my bed transfixed. Like when you get caught up in a really good book or are happily distracted by the tune of favorite song, I am easily swept up into these stories. Now here is where the knitting comes in to play. After I have seen a film once or twice, I usually add it to my "knitting film" collection. See, I like to put a movie on when I knit, but it has to be something I've seen before so I won't be so distracted that I drop my yarn-overs. My rotation currently consists of a lot of Jane Austen (Sense & Sensibility, Emma, Wives & Daughters, Cranford) with the occasional current movie just because there's knitted items or someone actively knitting in it (Jane Austen Book Club, Twilight- I know it's junky but I love it anyway). I'm also a big fan of Masterpiece Mystery, but I digress.

So for the last week I have been eagerly waiting for the conclusion of Downton Abbey, PBS's most recent period drama. I attempted to knit something mindless tonight while watching it, but was so struck by the gripping storyline that I gave up after a few short rows (and I was using size 17 needles). At 10:23PM, with only a few minutes of the program left, it hit me that there were an awful lot of unresolved parts of the story. And then it ended. I couldn't believe it! I looked around the room with my jaw open as if someone would appear to say, "no, you aren't crazy. It isn't over yet, you silly woman." But of course that didn't happen. What did happen was a little blurb appeared on the screen stating the production for Series 2 has begun. I raced downstairs to share my frustration with my husband and then searched online only to find out that we (the USA) aren't expecting to air the second series until next winter. OH. MY. GOD. I have to wait a whole year before finding out what happens between Lady Mary and Matthew? Gasp! How will I ever cope? Knitting. Knitting will have to be the answer. Well, and more period drama watching too....

Does this ever happen to you? Do you have any period dramas to recommend or films you like to have on while you knit?

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Giving Back

A week or so ago, I came across a terrific knitting pattern on Jennifer Casa's website that satisfied two important needs for me. Firstly, at the time I had been frustrated with a time-consuming  project and was therefore desiring a quick-knit fix. Secondly, my stash was in need of a little busting.

Neighborly is an adorable child's vest complete with unique features like a separately knit collar, wide shoulders and a hem. In just two short evenings I was able to feel the delightful satisfaction of creating something cute for my daughter that she'd easily be able to wear for the next year. I used 2 skeins of Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran and 1 skein of Three Irish Girls' Lindon Merino. The button was made by someone in my local knitting group. Here is a picture of Emma's Neighborly.

Since Jennifer Casa kindly offered this pattern for free, I thought I would return the favor and offer a new pattern of mine for free too. Like Neighborly, my Little Bobble Scarf is a stash-busting quick-knit fix. It takes less than 100 yards of DK weight yarn to make and can be whipped up in a few hours.

My 21 month old daughter, Emma, is modeling it for me! 

Happy knitting! 

Monday, January 17, 2011

And so it begins...

My husband is downstairs playing a football game on our Wii next to my daughter who is building with wooden alphabet blocks, while I am finally sitting down to start this blog - something I've been toying with for quite a while. Despite the calming sound of Billie Holiday playing on iTunes, I am sitting at our computer a little nervous, anxious and very excited about starting a new chapter in my life.

I have spent many happy hours reading wonderfully written and entertaining blogs about a very particular subject: the joy of crafting. For me, craft + life = happiness. So I thought I'd share a glimpse of my craft and my life with the world.

My craft? Knitting. I. Love. Knitting. I could go on for hours on the subject, and believe me, I will in future posts by revealing what's on my needles, sharing new designs, describing beautiful yarns and discussing the general wonderfulness of this soul-soothing skill. So stay tuned!

My life? A daily adventure of balancing my passion for caring for my family (one husband, one toddler and two step-cats) and finding time throughout the day to delight in all things domestic (cooking, baking, gardening, sewing and knitting).

I hope you will come back again and again to read posts and share comments with me. Most of all, I hope by reading this blog, you will feel inspired to find ways to incorporate your craft or passion in your daily life.