Arthur

I think small indulgences are a very important part of life, and one of my favorites is lipstick.

I almost always choose Chanel.

For a birthday, for Christmas, once in a great while for no reason, I will get a new color.

I saw so many great photos online of women in this shade, and I fell in love with it.

Arthur.

yessssssss

This was a birthday present, and it was perfect as a birthday present, such a fun, exciting red. It’s so bright, it almost glows.

Here it is on my face, but my application wasn’t very careful. Well, that’s a given, since my application is never careful. I’m one of those slap it on straight from the bullet people.

also given: crazy brows

I love that it’s one of those lipsticks I can throw on if I haven’t done any other makeup and it feels like enough. Sometimes I wear it full strength and other times just patted onto my lips, depending on how dramatic I want it to be.

It’s a Rouge Coco, which have been reformulated recently, and it feels great to wear. Very creamy, non-drying, and it fades down conveniently, by which I mean in a relatively low-maintenance way. As it’s fading, all I have to do is smoosh my lips around a little and everything’s nice and even-ish again.

Comfort

It’s cold outside, and I couldn’t have been happier to wake up and see frost all over the lawn. My boys’ clothes smell like pine sap and woodsmoke. The darkness comes earlier and earlier and by then I’m wrapped in a blanket on the couch with knitting. It’s so good.

On Wednesday it will be in the 70s again, but for now…

These mitts are made from a pattern called Cedar Shake (link to Ravelry) and it’s found in the book  Juju’s Loops, which can be purchased here (click link).

I’m not the first to confess love for the gorgeousness that is Loop in London, but that doesn’t stop me from gushing every chance I get. There is a shop I’ve never visited, but when I discovered the books and knitting patterns, I felt like I had finally found what I was looking for, have you ever felt that? You see something that reminds you of what you love about being alive? The photography feels quiet and peaceful and happy; the garments and pictures are beautiful in a way that feels like home. They inspire me to keep knitting and making things with my hands.

I think I’ve become informally committed to knitting every single pattern they release. I don’t want to stop. Everything is so beautiful.

My version is made in Madelinetosh Tosh Merino Light; it’s the Fig shade. I like the way they make my arms look like branches.

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This tea. Wonderful. It’s a Lapsang blend, so it’s smoky, but not too smoky. It’s not heavy or too tannic, and it has a delicious flavor. It’s soothing but also if tea can be sexy (can it?), this is kind of a sexy tea.

 sexy. perhaps.

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Moving on. Have you tried this yet? Oh, my.

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I was sick with a cold last week and my neighbor sent me some of the last of her zinnias. People can be so incredibly kind. They really did help me feel better.

One of My Very Favorite Shawls

 On my birthday, I like to go to Longwood Gardens. It’s early May, the ground is damp, the air smells like mud and even if there’s sun, there’s still a chill. I’m sick of winter, but it’s almost done and there are early flowers, some of my favorite ones, at times war-torn from cold and wind.
That’s what my shawl was made to look like, and here it is at Longwood on  my birthday. It’s got the colors of muck and moss and cold shady places, but also of flowers, light, and water. It’s soft and almost blanket-sized. I use it as often as I can.
Plus it’s possibly the best type of square ever invented: granny.
 

I have all these little bits of wool left over from larger projects, so I picked out everything that could possibly work and put it together kind of randomly. These are all Madelinetosh yarn, Tosh Merino Light, to be exact. So, fingering-weight single-ply wool and if you haven’t tried it, you should. It’s gorgeous. For the scallopy edge I used a laceweight wool, Madelinetosh Prairie in the Opaline shade, and Tif Fussell’s instructions given here (click link).

For anyone curious, here are the shades of wool in the shawl, in order from the center outward:

Luster

Logwood

Olivia

Dusk

Antique Lace

Celadon/Mica–switched in the middle of the round

Burnished

Olivia

Luster

Nectar

Dustbowl

Mica

Mourning Dove

Dusk

Candlewick

Edison Bulb

Flour Sack

Antique Lace

Olivia

Dustbowl

Nectar

Burnished

Maple Leaf

Antique Lace

Flour Sack

Edison Bulb

Mourning Dove

Dustbowl

Burnished

Olivia

Farmhouse White (?)

Maple Leaf

Opaline scalloped border

October

It’s that time of year when I can shake off the summer’s stupor and remember I have a blog.

I will consider it a huge triumph if I can ever think about anything during summer, anything at all.

I’m not a summer person.

 Anyway!

It’s October. I’m a knitter. Things are looking up.

Here’s a start on Christmas gifts. A shawl.

The pattern is the Narnia Shawl, written by Lily Go. I’ve done this one before, and it turns out very nicely. I love how intricate it is, and the finished shawl was a nice size when done in a worsted weight yarn.

The yarn I’m using is Malabrigo Rios in the Azul Profundo shade. It’s proving a difficult color for me to capture. These photos don’t look like it at all, but I think in person it’s kind of a Prussian blue? Maybe?  It’s deep and dark and mysterious.

It’s not a color I would choose for myself, but I think it’s beautiful.

Here’s an aerial shot of the patterning thus far:

The handpainted yarn is very satisfying to knit, I think, because there’s just a little variation in what’s running through my fingers. Not enough to be chaotic, though. I also enjoy how, with a semisolid shade like this, light and shadow are artificially created. The colors look richer.

Okay! Time to get on with it. The day is getting away from me…

Hansel

IMG_5434

Over the long weekend, I finished this shawl. Here I’ve shown it folded in half. It’s actually a large square. So large, in fact, that I’ve not yet blocked it because I have no idea where I’d lay it to dry.

I used this pattern by Gudrun Johnston, and I enlarged my shawl by knitting until each side had 150 stitches. Also, I placed the stripes differently than called for by the pattern.

The yarn is Madelinetosh Tosh Merino Light in the following shades: Antique Lace, Dustbowl, Flour Sack (discontinued), Luster, and Olivia.