But I've also been knitting. A lot. And thinking and reading about knitting.
I'm a lifelong knitter. Like, nearly every day since I was 7. And with this bitter cold weather we've had, all I want to do it wrap myself up in a whole heap of wool.
So I've been poring over knitting books and websites lately too.
Ravelry is so amazing. If you are a knitter and you haven't found your way there yet, come on in! It has transformed the way I think about this craft, plan my project, buy yarn... the works. If you are a Ravelry member, you can come look at my portfolio!
I'm participating in a couple of "challenges" right now: a "sock" challenge (knit a pair of socks that incorporate lace!) and I'm test-knitting a soon-to-be-published pattern for a designer. So, both of these have kept me pretty busy - those needles are on FIRE!
But I've been reading about knitting too. Again, one of my favorite sources of knitting books? Yep, the library.
Metropolitan Knits: really chic designs. Interweave Press is my favorite publisher in the knitting world.
Knitting Everyday Finery - ho hum. Cute designs, but nothing that really strikes my fancy as I GOTTA MAKE THAT! Nice for beginners, though.
Sock Knitter's Handbook: Even though I knit half a dozen pairs of socks each year, there is still more to learn. Various heel and toe designs, best practices for fit, etc.
Cast On Bind Off. WOW. For many years I used a SINGLE cast-on technique, and a SINGLE bind-off technique. In the last five year or so I've branched out and can do, say, about 3 cast-ons and bind-offs without a visual reference (and a couple more by re-watching the YouTube tutorial). Like the rest of the books, I borrowed this from the library, but I plan to buy this. Extremely useful reference for choosing best technique for the challenge at hand. Details can make or break a project.
Sock Knitting Master Class: Heaven on earth. Gorgeous, inspiring designs. (Also published by, you guessed it, Interweave.) Even though I probably won't make most of these (socks tend to be my "portable project," so I don't usually makes ones that are too "fussy" and require a lot of my attention while I knit - which is why I LOVE self-striping yarn) I really appreciate the beauty and creativity of these designs... taking something most people don't even think of (a sock!) and turn it into art! There's even a DVD included with this book. Now THERE's something I'm sure my husband and son can't WAIT to
How great is it when two of my greatest interests - reading and knitting - collide like this?!