Me Too

Like many people one of the first things I do when I wake up is check my social media from the warmth of my bed, trying to force myself to wake up. This morning my feeds were filled with female friends and acquaintances posting a simple statement: Me too.

I’ve been struggling with what to say all day. I’ve been going between avoiding my social media feeds and scrolling through them with great sadness.

I feel like most women know somewhere in there hearts that shit like this happens to literally all of us but somehow we are able to put it out of our minds in order to function on any basic level. It’s hard to ignore today. It’s all over everything. Every single woman is raising their collective silent screams saying IT’S HAPPENED TO ME TOO. It’s hard to look away. I find myself wanting to see every post just to silently acknowledge every person’s trauma, discomfort, secrets, and pain. It’s not enough. Everyone knows it’s not enough. The hashtag will stop trending, our pain will be shoved back down where we’ve stored it all these years, and we’ll move on simply in order to keep functioning.

A few of my braver friends have shared an experience with their hashtags. I spent the day reliving many of my experiences in the quiet moments. I’m sure many other people are reliving much worse things every single day that they just can’t put out of their minds. I count myself lucky to be able to push those experiences out of my mind. Lucky in that the bad things that have happened to me have been mild compared to others experiences. Lucky that within my own mental illness I’m able to shut out things I don’t want to deal with so easily. Today I let those things I push away not only make their appearance but also play out in my mind. I know none of those things are or were my fault. I hope I’m lucky enough in the future for these experiences to not get worse. I hope other people reliving these things in their quiet moments are able to know that they’re not to blame.

I was fourteen. I was at a cafe with my other fourteen year-old friends. We were drinking coffees and hot chocolates. We were chatting and laughing and feeling alive. An old man came up to me, leaned in real close so that no one else could hear him. He said to me “You have beautiful eyes.” That was the first time I remember feeling that my body and my personhood did not belong to me. It wasn’t the last time.

Autumn Adventures

Yesterday the sun came out for like four whole hours in-between the bouts of endless dreariness and rain we’ve been having. The weather seems to be affecting me way more than I’m used to. I’ve been having a lot more panic attacks and days where I just feel like I can’t/don’t want to do anything at all. The Boy and I decided to take advantage of the sunshine – even though he was going on 18 hours of being awake. We drove over to the local nature preserve  and went for a little hike.

Fall weather definitely fucked us up. In our ongoing game of temperature chicken we’ve gotten used to it being pretty cold all the time. We checked the weather before we left – 67 degrees – pretty much the same as in the house. We left with jackets and scarves… Not ten minutes in we were stripped down to t-shirts and sweating our asses off. Despite the swamp ass we had a nice little walk and enjoyed some nature and then promptly took a two hour nap.

#FridayFavorites

Since I’ve spent the week wishing I could wrap myself in as much warm shit as possible and it looks like its going to rain all weekend – tanking my very limited social engagement… here’s a few of my favorite warm and cozy looking things I wish I had the yarn and patience to knit.

I think at one point I planned on knitting this for my mom. Theres just something about those cables and the drape of this fabric that makes me want to snuggle up under it. It’s intimidating to buy all that yarn though because theres always a solid chance I’d get bored half way through.

Yoga Shawl by Andrea Mowry

I think this pattern is the perfect excuse to wear a giant blanket around all the time. I really like how many different ways this can be worn. I could probably get a lot of stuff done while also being wrapped in a blanket.

Persian Dreams by: Jenise Hope

I have been drooling over this pattern for a loooong time now. I don’t even have a good reason for not knitting it already. Stranded knitting is kind of my shit. I just don’t know what color way I would go with. I like the simplicity of two colors or the muted colors but the first image is just so striking and fun.

 

#WIPWednesday

FB0AE9BC-D575-4E76-A9E0-DA2CACA387A1Its another dreary, gloomy day. I’m playing the annual fall game of chicken with the weather – see how long we can freeze in the house before I have to turn the heat on. The weather might win this one early as I’m wrapped in two blankets on the couch, the cat hasn’t left his pillow in hours, and The Boy has the mattress heater turned on while he sleeps. My coffee went cold. I’m avoiding the shower because I don’t want to deal with wet hair for the next four hours. I wanted to quilt something today but my studio feels colder than the living room for some reason. It’s really very tempting to just stay under all these blankets binge watching something and knitting away at my shawl.

But alas the lure of feeling productive beckons. As of yesterday I’ve officially been publishing knitting patterns on Ravelry for one year. Today I have ten patterns available!   Thinking about it blows my mind. I’ve recently decided to get very serious about producing patterns. I started by having my last pattern test knit. I put out a call on Instagram and a few people agreed to help me out. This ended up being a mostly disappointing experience. For my latest pattern, I went with a professional Tech Editor. So far it’s been really good, although getting my first draft back was like getting a term paper back covered in red marks. It forced me to really edit myself though and I ended up reworking a bunch of stuff I was too lazy to deal with in the first draft. All good things. Much learning.

Anyways – since I’m kind of refusing to leave my nest on the couch today except for more tea and the resulting potty breaks – It’s time to go through my old patterns and apply some things I’ve learned over the last year to fix ’em up.

#FridayFavorites

Screen Shot 2017-10-06 at 10.08.10 AM

Today I woke up to a day that belongs in November. Everything is gray; it’s so cold; all I want to do is cuddle up on the couch and binge on Netflix. So before I do that I thought I would share some of my Ravelry favorites.

The Bird by Karin Aida

I think I found these socks around November of 2016 sooooo…. clearly they resonated with me. I never got around to knitting them though. November is always mad rush of Christmas knitting. Plus these have a drastically different stitch count for socks than what I tend to use and I never bothered to do the math or buy thicker yarn to make these. Maybe this year… I know The Boy would get a kick out of them.
Sunwalker by Melanie Berg

I’ve had two skeins of  Malabrigo sock yarn sitting in my stash for almost three years now. Part of the problem is that it feels too precious to knit with – I’ve been waiting and waiting to find the perfect project to use it for because I don’t want to waste it. The other part of the problem is that it’s variegated and I just don’t have any clue what to do with variegated yarns. They’re sooo beautiful in the skein but as soon as I start knitting I hate it. Long story short, this pattern might actually be perfect for this yarn.

Pomme de pin Cardigan by Amy Christoffers

Theres just something about this pattern that I really like. It’s such a grandpa sweater shape and color but the lace makes it less frumpy and much more feminine. It could also be the way the woman holds her body in each photograph – the sweater seems like such a security blanket that it makes me want to knit one for myself.

 

If you’re perusing Ravelry this weekend, all of my sock patterns are currently on sale through Oct. 7 at midnight using the coupon code: hellofall

 

 

 

 

 

Creative Constipation

sept socks heel detail

This weird thing seems to happen when I finish a knitting project and run out of seasons of a show at the same time. I find when these two things coincide that I suddenly lack any motivation to knit something new or find a new show to watch. It’s not like there’s a shortage of television to watch or yarn in my studio, but some crazy thing happens in my brain where I have no motivation to start anything new for a few days. This time it seems to be lasting for about a week. I’ve had my new pattern open in Illustrator all week- barely worked on; I’ve had my socks blocked and hanging on a door handle- unphotographed.

It’s one of those weirdly bright overcast – perfect for shooting my work, so at least I managed to get one thing done today. I decided today to force myself to sit here and try and finish it (which turned into procrastination via. blogging). I don’t know if this happens to anyone else, but it gets pretty frustrating.

What do you do to light the fire under your creative brain when you’re in a rut?

 

# WIP WEDNESDAY

Since I’m finishing up my latest pattern I thought it would be cool to go through my design process. I think without even realizing it, we’re constantly consuming media all day. While there are definitely terrifying things about that aspect of our culture, I’m going to try and focus on the positives of this. As a visual, and an observant person I choose to see the inundation of information as a constant source of inspiration for my practice. Whether I’m scrolling through Instagram, falling into the black hole that is Pinterest, or selling my soul to Netflix I’m constantly taking in visual information and therefore collecting a vast bank of inspiration.

The ah-ha moment for the pattern I’m working on now came about while I was test knitting a sock pattern for another designer. I was casually knitting in front of the tv, watching Vikings on the History Channel (Such a soap opera, but full of incredible textiles). I kept seeing this woven screen in the background of one of the sets and every time it caught my interest.

Vikings-woven screen

It’s very possible I’m not just into this show for the textiles…

At first I was thinking about a weaving project and doodled it a few different ways in my sketchbook.

I ended up finishing the socks I was working on and needed to find another project for myself to knit. After doodling it a few more times I started playing with it in my knitting software and the pattern was born. Two weeks and a computer crash later I’m about to write up this pattern and find some test knitters.

Here are some in-progress shots I’ve posted on Instagram. Follow me there and be the first to get pattern information, more #wip updates, and cute cat pictures.

Here goes nothing…

After having my entire life flash before my eyes two weeks ago (don’t worry it was just my computer taking a giant shit – but it’s fixed now!) I made the decision to finally, actually, really start blogging. Over the years I’ve left a trail of abandoned blogs scattered throughout the internet but third (fourth? fifth? twelfth?) times the charm, right?

At this point my brain wants to work on so many projects and do so many things that I can’t even pick something to focus on. Should I knit like crazy? Should I make a million quilts? Should I pick all the black walnuts on my driveway and dye everything brown? Should I start playing Skyrim? Hopefully I’ll be able to harness some of this mental energy and get something done.

Follow along with me and maybe see some insider information on my design process, maybe learn how to do some cool things, maybe even get really excited about the history of textiles. Who knows? I can guarantee cat pictures though.

 

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