Saturday, February 24

Tidy house, tidy mind

Looky looky! New purchases!

The cupboard stash upstairs has been tidied into two large plastic boxes (£10 for two from Deptford High St, home of all things plastic); the under-the-stairs stash has been tidied into a lovely linen storage thingy (£12.95 from Muji, much more pleasing on the eye than the plastic ones) and the weekend promises mental stimulation with the latest copy of Selvedge, and my two new purchases that I picked up from Waterstones in Piccadilly yesterday.

I have to admit I was quite shocked by the number of knitting books now available even on the shelves of a non-specialist store - sure, Waterstones' flagship branch is very well stocked on all subjects, but there really has been a boom in publication of knitting books in the last year or so.

Sadly the watchword is quantity rather than quality - I browsed for quite some time and have to say that most of the books on offer were of the 'Twenty bags to knit' variety (and even 'Twenty more bags to knit'!). The majority were aimed at beginners, with a lot of the space taken up with instructions - great for those just starting off, but pointless for improvers. However, I was very taken with the 'Traditional knitting patterns' book; although it's black and white inside, looks like it was designed in the sixties and hasn't been updated since, it is a wealth of information in terms of traditional patterns and stitches, with detailed instructions for each. When I got it home I was even more chuffed to find from the introduction that the author was a good friend of one of my favourite sculptors/artists, Eric Gill! Many of Gill's sculptures and woodcuts were religious, hence my enjoyment of them is purely aesthetic; he was also the designer of a number of typefaces, such as Gill Sans.

Anyhow, I'm looking forward to hopefully incorporating some of the patterns or stitches from the book into some of my own designs. In due course... The crochet book of course is for another long-term project, to create a throw or something using a variety of crochet squares. Some of the examples in this book are rather monstrous, it has to be said (or perhaps it's the combinations they've suggested) but I think that with a bit of care and good taste, I could create a thing of beauty.

Latest project news; slow progress. Despite getting my needles out during a showing of 'Notes on a scandal' the other night (much to the Curse's disgust), the second sock is showing slow progress. I'm just on the main body of the foot, as sockers know this can be the most frustrating bit, seems to take for ever.

The first sleeve of the Curse's jumper is finished, just cast on for the second. I also cast on for a tea cosy last night, on a whim. Two odd balls of GGH Savanna, which is a strange mix of wool, linen, alpaca and a little bit of synthetic - a dark pink and a lighter one, I'm hoping to make the cosy all in one piece on DPNS, although there will be a bit of to-ing and fro-ing. Tea cosies seem to be everywhere at the moment - at least three in the latest issue of Selvedge and I saw one on Ebay the other day that was being very heavily bid on! Have I started a trend?!


Rowan said...

Did you know that Eric Gill carved the sculptures on the front of Broadcasting House? He had to make Ariel slightly less well endowed after some complaints :-)

Rowan said...

The official BBC font is also in Gill Sans, as a tribute to him.

Aren't I full of useless info? That's what comes from working for the beeb for 16 years :-)

Knit Nurse said...

yes I knew the former, but not the latter! I have to admit that I love Jacob Epstein's sculptures more than Eric Gill's if push comes to shove, as they say up north!

rahime said...

I'm jealous of your organization! Most of my yarn is in cardboard boxes and I keep meaning to get some of those plastic bins...