Knitterly Arts Podcast!

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A creative life is rarely a straight arrow path. Perhaps precisely because it IS creative, the path is winding and circuitous, with many side trails leading off the main one which eventually brings you back on track or becomes the new main path.

This is how my own creative life has felt for nearly 20 years. I imagine it will continue. My love for all things yarn and all things art continue to be both what fascinates me and what sustains me. I’m sharing these two loves in a video podcast.

Knitterly Arts is a phrase that comes up in my head when I think about what I do. It encompasses the knitting and the drawing, crochet and painting. My intent for this podcast is to share my ongoing love of these endeavors, as well as how they speak to  me about life and living everyday with an Artful eye on everything.

All of the Knitterly Arts Podcasts will be hosted on You Tube and housed on a separate blog, which is actually one I used to post to a few years ago. You can subscribe to my You Tube channel as well as to Knitterlyarts.wordpress.com to receive notifications of each podcast. This will be the home for each episode’s Show Notes, links to everything I make reference to in the podcast.

If you enjoy either knitting or drawing, or just love making things in general, this Podcast is for you!

Artfully Yours,

Jennifer

Here’s the first episode. Be sure to click on the link above to access the Show Notes. All future Podcasts will only be announced on Knitterlyarts.wordpress.com. Enjoy!

If Knitted Socks Could Speak

TellingSock

I’m thinking about socks these days. How much I like to knit them. How much I like to wear them. How they go so many places as they’re being knitted. How they go even more places once they’re knitted and on my feet. They seem to be the perfect humble work…both the knitting and the wearing goes unseen mostly…and yet provides the most daily warmth and comfort of any of the other knits.

SketchbookSock

I imagine unraveling a hand-knitted sock, and letting it tell of all the places it had been while being knitted. Like a typewriter whose words are bound up in the ribbon, circling and looping round and round, forever sealed up. I like wearing a little bit of my recent history even as my feet carry me and my newest sock-on-the-needles project bag wherever I go.

MorningBeachKnit&Tea

This neon pair started at the beach this summer. They’ve seen a lot of life as well as times of neglect as I tended to other projects, both knitted and painted. They don’t seem to mind. The lure of knitting Christmasy socks propelled me to finish the final inches of the second sock. And now I’m happily knitting in all sorts of lovely holiday memories into this pair which I hope to have finished by Christmas Day. That will be quite a feat (feat, feet, ha!:) for sure!!

End&BeginSock

Perhaps you’re knitting socks too! Or crocheting them! Do tell of the capers yours socks have gotten into over the duration of their stitch-life!!

ChristmasSocksBegun

And…Happy Sock Knitting!

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The above sketch was made in my Yarn Project Only sketchbook. I’m thinking about logging the start and end dates of each pair of socks and all the significant and not-so-significant  events of my life as I knit them.

Pointier Points & Other Weighty Matters

WashclothCraze

I mean, who really cares about whether the points on a knitted washcloth are pointier than previously knitted? I certainly don’t care one way or the other…but therein lies the fun of it all!

NailBitingEndHitchhiker

So, I finally finished my Hitchhiker Shawl, and oh what a nail-biting finish that was! Only about 2 1/2 inches of yarn left on the bind off! Just barely enough to weave in. But that’s all I needed! 🙂

OrangeWashcloth

At the same time, I had been merrily knitting washcloths  my latest obsession, and the thought occurred to me that I could, quite possibly, make the points on my washcloths just as pointy as the points on the Hitchhiker.

PointierPoints

Eureka! It worked! Using the clever little Kfb, turn, purl one, knit one, pass the purled stitch over, worked like a charm to add a bit of pointless pointiness  to the Almost Lost Washcloth. ‘Tis fun, no?

SocksFinish&Start

Other oddments I’ve enjoyed immensely of late are finishing socks…

SoccerfieldSocks

…turning cart heels at soccer games…

ToeExcitement

…the thrill of toe knitting (not to be confused with knitting with your toes)…

Tea&Shawl

…drinking tea and eating a cupcake in a new way whilst finishing the knitting of a shawl design (typing up pattern for offering on Etsy soon!)…

CircleVestBegins

…starting a crocheted circular vest…

CircleVestFini

…and finishing it in a few days time…

WOPSoapBag

…and working on a sweet little project I’ll tell you more about soon!

Pointless Pointiness and all manner of frivolity is very sustaining and enriching to one’s life!

I hope you have a bit of frivolity in your day today!

Slowing Time

PoppieMoleskineLowRes

“Time is a relentless river. It rages on, a respecter of no one. And this, this is the only way to slow time: When I fully enter time’s swift current, enter into the current moment with the weight of all my attention, I slow the torrent with the weight of me all here. When I’m looking for the glimpse of glory, I slow and enter. And time slows…

…It’s this sleuthing for the glory that slows a life. In this space of time and sphere, I am attentive, aware, accepting the whole of the moment, weighing it down with me all here.

Full attention fills the empty ache.”

-Ann Voskamp

LimeSocks&Cloths

This is one of the many reasons why I knit and draw…to enter time’s swift current…to enter into the current moment with the weight of all my attention. To really see and listen and allow the glory of that moment to transform me, to slow down the advancing days and minutes. The mad dash to the end of a school year…the march to a senior boy’s graduation from high school…last moments and beginning ones too.

Slow.

A drop of paint here. A stitch of cotton or wool there.

Attention to it all.

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The above drawing was made this morning at our Ciener Botanical Gardens. Watercolor and a fine liner pen in my watercolor paper Moleskine.

Recently finished pair of socks and my latest craze, The Almost Lost Washcloth.

May Knitterly Arts Newsletter!

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My Knitterly Arts Newsletter for the month of May is now out and about!

Be sure to subscribe to receive it every month FREE in your email box.

Wishing you an artful day!

***

Jennifer

Ebb & Flow

MismatchedSocks

There seems to be an ebb and flow to creating. For weeks, you are knitting something (or several somethings) stitch by stitch. You hop from project to project, keeping it interesting. In my case, I also bounce from drawing to knitting, from painting to crochet, from typing up a new design to making cards and prints for the Shop.

PaintingAmaryllisCanvas

Then you hit a week where several projects get finished! Oh wow! Happy Day! The blanket you’ve been crocheting is suddenly the perfect length. The sweater you’ve been knitting now has all its ends woven in, and the canvases that have been sitting there for a time with lines drawn on them, now have color and paint and they worked out and oh Happy Day!

BabyRibbedHat

But then you move on. You begin other projects, one stitch at a time, one line at a time, beginning….again. This can be an exciting time. But it can also lag a bit for me, having enjoyed the excitement of finishing, of completion, of TA-DAH!

GrannyBabyHat

The key for me, is not to begin too many new projects at this point. So often, as I’ve been slowly plodding away at the previous batch of creativity, I’ve also been dreaming of the next batch. There are always too many. I have to be selective and choose only a few or else I’ll glut the limited time I have with too many things vying for my attention. Three or four works well. Too many more and I’m a spinning top wobbling in all directions, not knowing which project to tackle next.

AmaryllisAll

Easy does it. Slow going. Tortoise steps. One thing at at time. One stitch at a time. Being present to the line, splash, or row I’m on. Leaving the next rows and strokes for a later moment.

BellaWrapMyWay

Draw breath. Draw life. Stitch with focus and flow.

LIVE your creative life!

Gray Winter Days…

GrayWinterDays2LowRes

We’ve been having a lot of these. So gray and cold that even trying to get a decent photo of artwork is quite difficult. This was the best I could do today. I’ll reshoot it another day soon!

But as I was walking yesterday, I kept thinking this:

Gray winter days are best enjoyed with COLOR in your hands.

‘Tis true, n’est-ce pas?

Socks,Blanket,Slipper

I’ve had some “delight”ful color running through my hands lately and it has made me so happy, nearly forgetting the gray skies outside my window.

FinishingGreenSock

SockPattern

Socks!

GobstopperGoodness

My colorful, Crochet2Heal, blanket which I have renamed and will have a proper reveal very soon as I am only three colors away from being finished!

Hitchhikerin Sun

And my Hitchhiker Shawl. Which I took out on the back deck to knit on one of the very few sunny days we had recently! It was glorious to knit in the sunshine and see the gorgeous colors of AndreSueKnits hand-dyed yarn.

I hope you also have some delicious color in your hands these days!

Life in a Knitted Sock

Purp:blackstripsock

As I browse through the photos I’ve taken, some instagrammed, some not… I realize there’s a lot of life lived during the span of time it takes to knit a pair of socks.

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A new pair begins when I’ve finished the last pair.

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There are the soccer games and practices, mentioned in this recent post. There are times of “babysitting the butt” (a term we have affectionately dubbed when we sit outside while the smoker does its thing with a pork “butt”; which is actually a shoulder, I think.:)

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There are coffee visits at the end of a long day of teaching.

ArmchairTravel

There are armchair travels to France via my current favorite movie, A Good Year.

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There are lap-sitting cat times…

…which do become a bit tricky trying to kitchener the toe with a cat in your lap…

Purp:Black4a

…who is also shedding enough fur to spin into a ball of yarn!

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And finally, there are the trying-them-on-times to just sit and ponder the next pair you’re going to cast on.

Yes. A lot of living all wrapped up in the knitting of socks. Each pair is a little bundle of small events in an everyday life.

I like that.

**Wondering what yarn this is? Schoeller/Stahl’s Sockina Color #138. 🙂

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My current pair of socks on the needles went with me this past week on a “knitting adventure”. Without being so veiled, I spent the week in a hospital in Chapel Hill having surgery. I am home now to continue the next phase of the adventure–Rest and Recuperation.

Oh the tales these stitches could tell!

Adventure

AdventurePacked

I’m headed off on an adventure tomorrow. Not exactly the kind of adventure either you or I would want to go on, but adventure nonetheless:

*There is travel involved.

*I’m packing a suitcase.

*There will be new experiences.

*I will meet new people.

*I will return different than I was before.

OnthePrecipice

This kind of adventure feels like jumping off a high precipice into a world of unknown. No, I’m not going to Paris. 🙁 Though, with the  money that this adventure will require, I could probably take several trips to Paris. But I digress.

PackedforAdventure

I do not plan on blogging about this adventure, but I have planned a couple of yarny posts for you along the way. I will show you, however, my Paris Box, filled with goodies I’m taking on this trip:

1. Current sock knitting. I’m loving this Red Heart Sock Yarn with Aloe!!

2. Perfect, easy summer knitting: Another Magic Cake Ruffle Shawl yet without the fingering weight yarns wound together. I’m using Noro’s Silk Garden Sock Yarn, which is a DK weight yarn. (Remember this “one” lonely ball of yarn?) I’m knitting Paula Emons-Fuessle’s shawl with size 8 needles and the yummy lime Silky Wool cake is for the ruffle.

3. A new, recycled sketch journal given to me by the wonderful faculty and staff at the school where I’ve been teaching art.

4. A few comforting reminders for the stay. (Thank you Kay and Sheri!)

5. Macy. Who always cheers me. And cheers me on in creating the very best out of any situation. If you’d like to get to know Macy a bit better, check out these posts here, here, here and here. Thank you Ellen!

Thank you all, for your continued presence with me here in blogland. This adventure will continue knitting together a new life for me, and I look forward to all that will come of it in the future!

Kaleidoscopes & Sock Yarn

Kaleidoscopes

I have a couple of kaleidoscopes. I’ve loved these things since I was a child. My husband’s parents gave me one many moons ago. The other is a cheap one I picked up somewhere. The cool thing about kaleidoscopes is that everything they need for their beautiful, intricate, colorful patterns is already there, built into the body of the scope.

A little light, and a turn or two of the end piece, and you’ll see a breathtaking world of patterns and designs. I was inspired by a friend recently to think of my life as a kaleidoscope. Everything that happens to us turns the end of the scope of our lives another notch, maybe two, thereby rendering a brand new pattern and design in technicolor.

I love that.

sockpattern

Much of today’s sock yarn is like this too! You see the multi-colored ball of yarn and you have no idea what patterns will emerge as you begin to knit your sock. It’s quite addictive. You keep on knitting wondering what’s around the corner next row: solid stripe, swoosh of color, fair isle patterns of all kinds. I love to remember, as I knit, that this is how life is: each day, every season, bringing a new and different design with it’s own colors.

It is all there in that ball of yarn, just like the pieces of colorful glass and beads in the end of a kaleidoscope.

Each stitch, row, and turn reveals a new beauty.

All I have to do is keep on knitting.