Knitting. Okay, so the other day, when I said I'd cast on a Shetland Triangle .. I didn't get very far. In fact I got just far enough to fall out majorly with the yarn I'd chosen. I prefer yarns that can be tugged gently without breaking ... this isn't that yarn! Bottom line, it's spun from fibres with a short staple length - merino lambswool and cotton - hence its tensile strength is on the low side. So, not the optimum yarn for lace ... ever tried knitting a nup* without tugging? But all I did was cast on - kinda' necessary, whatever I'm making - and the darn stuff broke twice! Truly, I'm loath to diss something I know others love, but Holst Garn's 'Coast' clearly needs careful handling!
Nature. Also rather fragile are the dried hydrangea heads I've been admiring all winter. This one's tucked into a tiny old perfume bottle, along with a cluster or two of alder cones. It's lost all its colour now and is starting to crumble, and I wanted to photograph it before it disintegrated any further. To archive its fading beauty ... Sabi, 'the bloom of time'**. Of course the fact that I've reduced it to pixels rather undermines the exercise, I need an actual print.
Reading. Dear Sweet Home, which is at first glance a Japanese book about storage solutions - wooden boxes, linen bags, glass jars - but which, to borrow from Leonard Koren, is also about 'materiality, pared down to essence, with the poetry intact' ... Wabi-sabi again, and inspiration for my studio, which is almost ready for the big reveal! When I get a moment I'll scan some of the page spreads for you. And Ron McMillan's Between Weathers: Travels in 21st Century Shetland, which I mentioned previously. It ties in with another Japanese aesthetic concept, Ma, a consciousness of place.
And that's me, disappointed by yarn, delighted by decay, and distracted by Japanese aesthetics. What's happening with you just now? Do tell!
Linking with Lou's Nature in the Home, and Ginny's Yarn Along.
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* A traditional textural element of Estonian Lace knitting, akin to an elongated bobble.
** As in the Japanese Wabi-sabi.