Thursday, January 24, 2013

"Knitting the Seasons"--an annual exploration of the colours, textures and patterns

In the summer of 2012 as I was settling in back home, I decided to inject a little discipline into my work.  I've called this project "Knitting the Seasons".  Each month, starting in August 2012 and continuing for at least a year, I have picked (or will pick) a theme and then explore the colours and texture of that theme in a variety of yarns and stitch patterns.  I've diligently kept track of these explorations in a sketch book complete with photos.  One thing I haven't been diligent about is writing about it here, so here goes...

August 2012:  The theme was blackberries because we have a beautiful patch in our backyard.

  This past year we had a bumper crop--I was picking every two or three days--eating them raw and freezing them; making vinegar, blackberry puree (for winter time sorbet) and cordial; and of course giving them away to friends and neighbours.

It was while picking them that I decided to try and knit them...

The left hand swatch is a double moss stitch with yarn-overs.  Those free form leaves were fun to do--start with one stitch and increase at the beginning of every row until wide enough and then decrease similarly.  Play around with increasing/decreasing more or less rapidly to get different shapes.

The lower swatch is two stranded garter stitch (like Fair Isle but no purling).  The central swatches are experiments with different sized bobbles.  The upper right swatch is a stripe pattern with a tuck stitch. 
I have a wonderful library of stitch pattern books that I've been trolling through, from old "Harmony" guides and Barbara Walker Treasuries to some fairly new Japanese books with 200 and 300 patterns respectively.  I love the charts and diagrams in the Japanese books--no need to be able to read Japanese!

The next post will be September.  Stay tuned!

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