The Charlie pullover came out so well.
The Charlie pullover came out so well.
Friends, I'm guessing that most of you have already heard about Little Free Library. The concept of these "Take a Book/Leave a Book" neighborhood sharing spots took off a couple of years ago, but for some reason, a new burst of Little Free Libraries came to Capitol Hill this spring.
Here's a very basic one on E St at 13th St SE,
a library about to disappear into the greenery on A St SE, just West of 6th,
and a bright, modern library on D St SE, just east of 12th.
I love seeing these little outposts around the neighborhood. They seem like symbols of just the kind of place I want to live -- one that believes in sharing and, of course, in reading and books. Find a library near you, and check out how designers and architects have adapted the concept here.
A few of my favourite online stores have special events in the works, both virtually and in person. If you're in the neighborhood, check it out!
Brooklyn: Thursday, June 11th and Friday, June 12th, Haptic Lab is having a sample sale. Snag $10 kites and $75 quilts. Unfortunately, it's only in person at the Brooklyn studio (darn it! I would seriously buy one of these awesome kites for everyone I know.)
Portland (and everywhere, thanks to the wonders of the internet): Knit Purl is hosting a virtual summer camp. Every Wednesday in June, they are spotlighting patterns inspired by the natural world. More generally, Knit Purl is the best knitting e-mail list you'll ever sign up for, even if you never set foot in Portland. Their well-curated weekly messages will not only make you want to pick up your knitting needles, they'll also give you a mid-week a burst of Portland cool.
And last but not least, DC/MD/VA: It's Metro Yarn Crawl time! The Metro Yarn Crawl started this weekend and goes through Friday, June 14. Pick up a Yarn Crawl tote and passport for $15 and get discounts at knitting stores around the area, including my favorites Fibre Space and Looped Yarn Works. This would be a great chance to use the discount to stock up on something luxurious (or, of course, to buy yarn for holiday gifts)!
It's starting to look like a sweater!
The Charlie pullover is knit from the bottom up: the body and each sleeve are knit separately, and then you knit them together before starting the colorwork yoke. I like this approach, because it means you get to do the funnest part (the yoke) at the end.
We are slipping into the cauldron that is summer in DC, but this project has me looking forward to fall and all the new things that will be in store for Joshua -- including adorable sweaters!
That's me. Luckily, I have been on vacation the last few days, and while no one wants to spend their vacation sick, being at my mother-in-law's lovely house has allowed me to take many naps and watch Miss Congeniality and go to bed at 9 o'clock -- all things I would have trouble doing at home.
In any case, I have been sufficiently sick that I have barely been knitting, so I thought this week I would share what I've been reading...
First, the recently re-tooled O Chickadee:
I have long loved Janelle's blog for introducing me to all manner of fun ideas and items -- from meerkat nighlights to whimsical baby clothes -- but the updated O Chickadee is somehow also practical and insightful, not to mention beautiful.
Next, The Lightning Notes:
My friend Caitie started this blog, which is a great place to stop for a quick shot in the arm when you are lacking courage, chutzpa, or all-around awesomeness. Get started with two of my favorite posts, here and here.
The Charlie sweater is knit from the bottom up with a fun, multi-color yoke -- plus, it's made with washable, chunky yarn, making it both adorable and super practical. Joshua's will be black with red and white stripes at the top.
A few years ago, I received an unexpected, perfect gift.
I grew up with these photos, part of the back-drop of my grandmother's house that I knew by heart but never really thought about. There's my mom, in the bottom right, wearing a sweater that she knit that I still have; my Aunt Kathleen, looking surprised; my grandfather standing next to a red pickup truck. And in the middle, my grandmother as a young woman with a giant smile. They're familiar to me in a way that is unique to childhood -- things you have taken for granted your whole life, that felt like they must have existed before you were born and that you unconsciously believe will exist forever.
The original frame was gold, and the photos were fading. After my grandmother died, my mom had it reframed with museum-quality glass, and it arrived one day on my doorstep unexpectedly, packed in bubblewrap. I was so surprised and comforted by its very being. I love that it has made its way from my grandmother's home in Indiana to our home in DC.
Thanks, mom. Happy Mother's Day.
Have you ever found the perfect gift, and then no matter how impractical it is, you just can't get anything else? This is a frequent problem for me that has sometimes led to absurd situations, like hauling a rose bush across the country as my carry-on bag.
Well, I've thought of the perfect gift for a dear friend who is getting married. She and I have been through a lot together -- grad school, many late nights, a cross-country road trip...in fact, she loves a cross-country road trip, or just about any other opportunity to explore America's back roads. So, when I thought of the Lion Country Afghan, I knew I had to make it.
via Lion Brand
Guys, it's totally happening. I'm doing my map entirely in shades of blue and gray, just to give it a more modern feel. I am only on row 15, so I have some work to do, but I think it will be so exciting watching the states take shape.
It's hard not to feel the joy that comes with spring, but I feel it more acutely now that I have my own garden -- maybe because I am so aware that spring will be gone almost as quickly as it came. Within a couple of weeks, the garden will be at its peak, full of peonies and irises. But for now, everything is soft and sweet, and our shady backyard is carpeted with delicate blooms and unfurling leaves.
Only now, in our 7th spring in this house, have the ground covers we planted in our second year here fulfilled their promise, and I am in love with the bed of violets, bleeding heart, and leucojum under our tree.
The lilacs are blooming in DC right now, which always makes me think of my grandmother, and also of Abraham Lincoln. Yes, I know that is weird. My grandmother loved lilacs, so that part is pretty straightforward. And you may know When Lilacs Last in the Dooryard Bloom'd, Whitman's elegy for Lincoln. It makes my heart ache to think of loss during this loveliest of seasons. On a brighter note, this would be the perfect week for a picnic in the lilac grove at the National Arboretum.