Hedgehog Knits

Adventures in knitting from the eastern edge of Canada.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008


At long last, my first freelance piece has been published. I'm pretty excited.

Three-finger trigger mitts, knit by Nick's grandmother, "Muddy".

It's an article about heritage knitting (specifically mittens) in Newfoundland. This has been my pet project for the last year or so. The publication is called Downhome Magazine, and it's basically a Newfoundland lifestyle periodical that is very popular, especially with people who have moved away from the province and want to stay connected. We loved getting our subscription when we lived in Ontario.

There's a short teaser (and one of my photos) on the Downhome Life website, and I know that the magazine is available across Canada at Chapters.

My first pair of Newfoundland mittens.


Monday, March 24, 2008

One fine-gauge sweater deserves another

Another couple of weeks have come and gone with scarcely a peep from me. I've been caught up lately in trying to spend some time outdoors, especially now that daylight savings has kicked in and there's still some daylight to look forward to when I get home from work. There has also been a little celebrating of St. Patrick's Day (we take our Paddy's Day very seriously here), my 30th birthday and my MIL's birthday (on the same day), and Easter, all within the one week. And then there's the spare bedroom that we're painting, a project that somehow managed to drag on for over a week. Finally finished this morning, thankfully!

So I certainly have not been bored.

Needless to say, there has still been knitting. Take for example my finished Jitterbug gloves:

Women's gloves in Colinette Jitterbug, colourway 77 "dusk", own design. Worked on 2.25 mm (cuffs) and 2.5 mm dpns.

These still haven't been blocked, but I've been wearing them for a couple of weeks now. This was one of those cases where I'm glad that I chose what the yarn wanted to be.

I have also finished the back and the first sleeve of Gatsby Girl. As the sleeves are entirely K1P1 ribbing, this was no small feat! At this point, I am convinced that the amount of stretch in the pieces should result in a sweater that I can wear. By that, I mean that I will physically be able to get it on. I am still not convinced that it will not look entirely silly on me, but I am wiling to continue the experiment in "negative ease" for the sake of a good learning experience if nothing else.

In the meantime, the new spring editions of both Knitty and Interweave Knits appeared and distracted me into all sorts of daydreaming. The printed silk cardigan and the flutter-sleeve cardi from IK will definitely be short-listed. Knitty, for the first time in ages, contained several patterns that I want to knit for myself, but Marjorie caught my attention right off the top. So much so, that I have already started in on it.

Because just what I need to break up the fine-gauge cable work of Gatsby Girl is an even more cabled fine-gauge sweater! Why do I do this to myself?

Rather than the recommended alpaca, I decided to use stash yarn. It's Silke-Tweed by Garn Studio, another bargain find from Wool-Tyme in Ottawa. It's a silk-wool blend very similar to Elsebeth Lavold's silky tweed, with that wonderful crunchy feeling of raw silk. I think it may be discontinued, which is sad, because at 200 m per skein, the the mileage is excellent. I started thinking that I may have to chop the sleeves shorter to get a sweater out of the 7 skeins that I have, but I'm now thinking that I might have enough. On 2.75 mm needles, it's not exactly flying by, but for some reason I can't put this sweater down. I wake up in the morning wanting to knit on it. I've been working on it in the car. My wrist and elbow have been starting to act up, but it still holds its appeal.

I have also been scheming up some future projects and put in another Knit Picks order. I've got supplies ont he way to knit the Ivy League Vest, inspired by Glenna's lovely example, plus another sweater's worth of wool, possibly for Argyle. Luckily, or unfortunately depending on your taste, "sweater weather" never really ends in Newfoundland. It just happens later in the day during the summer. So I'm perfectly happy going on knitting with wool when everyone else is starting to make the switch to cotton tank tops and the like.

Thanks for dropping by!

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Thursday, March 06, 2008

Discovering my Roots

I've been spending quite a bit of time lately delving into my heritage. I've had a little knitting heritage project on the go (more about that in the near future), and I recently started recording my family history at ancestry.ca. It's amazing how much genealogy you can dig up in just a few hours of internet research. The next step will be picking the brains of my relatives and undertaking a little research at the provincial archives, just up the hill (I love living downtown!)

Cabot Tower (built in 1897), atop Signal Hill

I've also been rediscovering some of the great walks and historic areas of the city. A hike last evening on Signal Hill proved a little chilly, and the trails were very icy, but I'm sure we'll be heading back up there when the weather warms up a little. The hill, overlooking the very strategic narrow entrance to the harbour, still bear physical signs of a military history dating back to the eighteenth century, and as recent as artillery from the Second World War.

Fort Amherst, as seen from Signal Hill. The grey structures below the lighthouse are the remains of a WWII gun battery

What an amazing, rugged bit of coastline we live on. It's prettier and a little greener on a sunny summer day, but sometimes you have to wonder what the first settlers from Europe were thinking when they made landfall and decided to call this home.

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