chillin’

not as in chillin’ out, but actually feeling chilly—temps here have dropped considerably since the weekend, with a gray sky to go with them. it’s in the 60s today and there is a definite feeling of fall in that air . . . just sayin’.

as promised, i have photos of my newly finished study to share. david got a lot of the heavier stuff installed and organized; now it just remains for us to hang some paintings and for me to tweak and put the last few things away (my credenza has always been perpetually cluttered, but going forward, i’m making a vow to keep it cleared).

i love the things in this room, many of them collected from the curb when i lived in brooklyn, or purchased cheaply from thrift stores and flea markets (can’t you tell, haha?). as we have the funds for it, we’ll get our furniture finds reupholstered, but for now, we just keep them very clean and enjoy the shabby textures. (the rug is not a found object; i bought it at rhinebeck two years ago for the third floor and found when i got home that it was too large for that bedroom and too small for the library. it’s just right for my study, though . . .).

my dad’s old desk look amazing—with years of darkened varnish and dust rubbed away and david’s special brand of TLC applied, it is a rejuvenated version of the piece we grew up with in our attic playroom.

the inside, which was formerly puddled with spilled model-building enamels and glues is now polished and smooth; the drawers are repaired to glide smoothly in and out. it still bears the deeper nicks and scrapes of a past enriched by child carpenters, mechanics, electricians, and pool sharks, but such are the wrinkles earned in a life well-lived and they are dear to me.

my favorite feature is the very old, wavery glass; i could look at that shimmery surface for hours. likewise with the windows throughout our house—the main reason we have not replaced them; i just couldn’t let go.

the effect is echoed on the walls, which are finished with david’s signature hand-burnished plaster and reflect any little amount of available light fill the room. we kept the woodwork light to enhance the effect—just a little limewax and elbow grease.

the front and back workrooms are connected by a short hallway, which makes it super convenient for me to grab supplies, yet ensures a desirable amount of separation from the mechanical clutter.

one space is for standing and moving work and one for sitting and thinking work (that one also doubles as an additional guest room). it’s nice to be able to accommodate both types of traffic flow (i’m a klutz and forever tripping over stuff if i don’t have a clear path).

once the renovation moves downstairs and the first floor gets torn apart room by room, i’ll have a quiet place to continue working.

the next project (and last room on the second floor) will be the main bath—a long awaited one. but while the weather is still good, david is going to tackle the sunroom and upstairs porches to get them looking their best.

our enclosed sun porch is a favorite summer hangout for us—this is where we eat our meals and sit with friends when the weather is nice. it has a great connection to the comings and goings of the neighborhood, minus the bugs. but it desperately needs a cleanup; he’s going to replace the ceiling and windows, polish the paint off the floor, and figure out a better solution for the entryways on each end (plywood inserts and aluminum doors, really??).

speaking of hanging out, instead of our usual sunday spinning class, we instead went to brunch to bid bon voyage to our dear friend anne marie, who is moving to the lancaster, PA area this week; BOO-HOO, we’re so bummed . . . but we already have plans in place to meet up with her a few times and she has made it completely clear that she wants to keep test knitting sweaters (thank goodness!).

anne marie has been a very special part of this wonderful class since we got it started and we’re going to miss her to pieces. i’m just grateful that we can all keep in touch easily these days . . .

and speaking of friends and keeping in touch, i received a nice gift from rustle, husband to my good friend janel. now, i’ve never met rustle (and that is soon to change), so i was especially touched by his kindness in sending me a new gadget he’s developing

the iFaraday stylus for iPhone/iTouch/iPad and other capacitive touch screen devices. i don’t text or email much from my iphone, but when i do, i struggle with the typing—my fingers are big and clumsy and i have to go slow to be accurate (and going slow is just not the way i roll).

i have an apple stylus, but it’s pretty useless—it just doesn’t work unless i pound on the screen. this little stylus is different; it’s quick and light and very accurate—just what i was jonesing for. i love it.

did i mention that it’s fast? it really is. this is the first product of its type that i’ve had the pleasure of working with (and there very well may be others like it), but it’s certainly a keeper for me—it’s going straight into my purse where i’ll clip it to the pocket i store my phone in. it’s just what i need when i’m on the go.

in other news (i know—all i’ve had today is other news), i celebrated the cool breezy weather by washing another load of sweaters

how’s that for a neat segue into knitting content?

because i spent a considerable amount of time getting ahead on patterns last week, i find myself with a little more knitting time this week. and with the much cooler nights, the rosebuddie blanket is now moving steadily toward completion.

we have edging, finally. i’ve finished one side of the edging over the last two evenings and if i set to work on it when i’m done here, i may get through another whole side this afternoon and evening.

i like this edging a lot. it’s an original pattern that i devised, using the motif from the main body of the blanket—tiny rosebuds surrounded in garter stitch with a simple eyelet join to the blanket hem.

by repeating a few elements from the larger piece, i think i’ve achieved the cohesion i like to see between border and body. now that the whole thing is rolling off the needles, one repeat at a time, we can see the composition so much better, too. here’s the view from the center out

just look at that chastity color—it might be chaste, but it’s unabashedly joyous, nonetheless; i’m still in love with it after all this time . . .

now of course karolyn has finished hers and since she’s working in colorway meadow, she’s sending her blanket along to me to be photographed. when it gets here, i’ll show it to you; it’s wonderfully different from mine, but still energetic and happy like a spring lawn.

ooooh, i just can’t resist giving you a little peek now—isn’t the limey-green just wonderful? a nice alternative to all that pink if pink isn’t so much your color (or the baby’s).

i’m tooling right along on the second sleeve of my vintage shirt. the spirit trail sunna yarn has got everyone here drooling—lovely, lovely stuff.

i’m working as fast as i can through this sleeve so i can get going on the patterned front piece. i would hold out and put that one off to the end if i wasn’t so curious about matching the gauge and confirming that my shaping will be right.

but still, all stockinette, all the time makes this knitter a dull girl, which has inspired some measurable progress on my fledgling mitt projects. they are the perfect thing when i need to knit just a few rows of something more involved.

lisa totally hit it on the nail when she (very enthusiastically) guessed that the pattern for this lavender mitt was adapted from the bougainvillea sock. i thought that a long, pair of these would set my niece to swooning. i’m using the same dream sox yarn i used for the sock, in a different colorway.

BTW, though dye dreams has been dissolved, stephanie plans to continue offering her hand-dyed yarns on her own. keep your eyes peeled for her new label, dirty water dyeworks.

and then, because one is never enough when it comes to fall fingerless mitts, and because my niece did request two pair, i took out a second ball of left over yarn to knit another pair.

this time in gray classy sox and based on the woodsmoke sock pattern (with a few adjustments). i’m so psyched—this is definitely a pattern i’ve always wanted to knit again, but haven’t for lack of time. mitts are the perfect way to relive the experience, in a shorter, quicker form. love that.

more on both those projects later; i have quite a ways to go before i’m done.
for now, i think i’ll take this chance to retire to my new knitting room and wile away the hours on the blanket edging . . . see you later.

29 Responses to “chillin’”

  1. Amber says:

    Your study looks like such an inviting place to dream up new designs! Congrats on having your creative haven ready for habitation! I love the mix of old and new pieces, especially when they have such personal meaning. I have my paternal grandmother’s writing desk, which opens up to cubbies and drawers inside like your father’s…and I treasure it, too. But what really struck me is that I have the same switchplate covers in my house! And I need a few more…where did you find yours? Mine came from the J. Jill catalog many years back, and I haven’t been able to find them anywhere since.

  2. Jean says:

    I love the baby blanket. I bought the last baby blanket pattern (Cradle Me) and it’s beautiful. Now I’m waiting for the sweater that matches. Is it near pattern completion? Can’t wait! =)

  3. Kim says:

    David’s workmanship is wonderful! I love the clean lines of your new room….a great room for creating!

    The green baby blanket…ooo la la!

  4. Kat says:

    Oh, that border is perfect! I think this might be just the right thing for the last of my Sock Summit yarn.

  5. Katrina says:

    What a beautiful work space! I’m officially jealous!

  6. Beth says:

    Your study is such a lovely room!

  7. Kim says:

    What a cool hand!!! he he he

  8. Liz Arrow says:

    Your study looks amazing!!! The desk is gorgeous! May I ask where you purchased your skein winder? I despise using the niddy noddy and want to buy a skein winder :) Oh, and the blanket is gorgeous!

  9. Angela says:

    OMG!! The baby blanket is absolutely beautiful!! Can’t wait for the pattern. (I know I’ve said that about 25 times already.) :-)))

  10. Janelle says:

    You and David have a knack for wonderfully transforming things and spaces. Thanks for sharing these photos – they are very inspirational!

    I’ve been hoarding a couple skeins of Dye Dreams sock yarn – I guess I should go ahead and knit them. That purple shade is just lovely.

  11. Anne Littlebird says:

    Definitely an amazing studio! Congrats Davd! Anne you are so lucky.

    The blue tape on the desk doors is a nice touch. :)

  12. Jocelyn says:

    Your new workroom is SO my kind of space! It’s lovely — how could you not get tons done in a space like that? You guys are definitely going to miss Anne Marie; give her my best wishes for a safe move :)

  13. Madeline says:

    Your studio is fabulous! I can understand how pleased you are with your Dad’s desk. David is a true craftsman.

  14. Tece says:

    Wow…your work spaces look awesome…and very conducive to getting a lot accomplished, which is your forte! Kudos to David , too, for his fine workmanship and finishing skills. Loving the baby blanket and its edging!

  15. Ruthie says:

    The edging on the baby blanket is perfect! The pink blanket is so feminine but the green one is so masculine. Interesting how the same design done in different colorways changes the entire “feel” of the piece. Great job as usual.

    I love your new space! I remember the comments about the new rug…I’m glad you could use it there where you spend so much of your time. Lately I’ve been wishing for a quiet space like that in which to knit…and nap. *sigh*

  16. Ann says:

    Love your new study as it’s so well equipped. Love the mosaic coffee. I used to do quite a bit of mosaic & have a few pieces in the house.

  17. Mary says:

    What a superb job David did on that beautiful desk (and the rest of the study). You can see his love for you glowing through his work. And how great is it that the desk surface, though lovingly restored, still leaves behind childhood marks and memories.

  18. Donna says:

    Oh, the studio is just perfect! Kudos to David for his marvelous work. It’s amazing how found items can come together with the right eye, which both of you clearly have. Enjoy it! And Rosebuddie is charming, really lovely.

  19. Naomi says:

    I am pea green with envy! I love your room!

  20. turtle says:

    it is getting chilly, had to turn the furnace on for a shot yesterday morning to take the bitter chill out of the house, today 80′s tomorrow back down to low 60′s … during the day! Feels like fall already in the pacific northwest…and not a ripe tomato in sight yet, le sigh.

    Love how your room came out. Isn’t it a nice feeling to have so many favorite comfy items nearby.?

    as always wonderful knits!

  21. Johanna says:

    Very nice workspace! I finished my sprossling. I loved knitting the pattern and the sweater turned out very nicely (if I do say so myself – hee, hee)! I used a sport weight yarn (Reynolds soft sea wool purchased on sale from Webs) in a brilliant red. I am already planning another in a lighter, fingering weight yarn. Thank you for your designs. They are lovely to work with!

  22. nancy schwartz sternoff says:

    your workspaces are so wonderful anne. i especially appreciate your dad’s desk/cabinet – those pieces connect us with so much good memory. it all looks just gorgeous. enjoy you deserve it! and thank you mr. knitspot, from all of us, for the view into your house!

  23. What a wonderful study – so harmonious! And based on how neat the rest of your house looks, you are allowed to have a messy credenza – haha.

    We will miss Anne Marie too, and her wonderful sweaters!

  24. Tara says:

    Such a lovely space, Anne. I’m currently in reno heck as well, I hope my space (bedroom) turns out as nice as yours!

  25. Rani says:

    I envision beautiful yarns withing that glass cabinet. It’s a beautiful piece of furniture. I can’t wait for the baby blanket photo shoot!

  26. Diane says:

    Anne, what a nice room you’ve got. I’m sure you’re going to find it hard to leave even if it’s just to go to the kitchen. It’s the kind of room I dream about. I’m going to start looking more closely at the furniture on the curb now that I’ve seen what you can get.

  27. Dolores says:

    David – WOW!!!

    Anne – WOW!!!

    Great work, both of you!!!

  28. amanda says:

    your workspace really turned out well, it’ll be a great place to work in. david did a wonderful job.

  29. Vicki says:

    Great knitting, no suprise there. I love the furniture (not shabby at all), I love the spaces and the light. Enjoy! sorry your friend is leaving. all I can say is what you already know, you and David are a great team!