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Archive for September 7th, 2011

Koigu Abundance: What would you do?

Wednesday, September 7th, 2011

I finished knitting a deadline project (photos when it’s OK with the publisher) and then dug through my sockyarn. Lo and behold… I found this (click to see detail):

This is ten full, unwound skeins of Koigu Painter’s Palette Premium Merino (KPPPM). PLUS at least five half-skeins. It’s total, incredible abundance.

Koigu is a wonder of hand painted yarn. Some of these skeins have perhaps a dozen or more colors in the skein, and none of them look “muddy” from it. Koigu is literally hand painted by a Mother/Daughter team in Canada. It’s art, just one skein is enough to make me smile.

I’ve been collecting this yarn since 2001. At least a few of the skeins are gifts (thanks to my brother Eric and my Sis-in-Love Diana/Otterwise). Right now I’m not sure if I know any shops within driving distance which carry it. None are in the Mid-Mitten group of yarn shops.

It gives me endless pleasure, arranging the skeins in different orders of color. I can pick only those with some turquoise/blue in them. Then I make a rainbow as best I can. Then I decide that green is my focus.

You know, when fairy-Goddaughter Isabel was about 3-4 years old, she delighted in small items, either buttons or these hearts I knit for her 4th birthday.

She would sort by size and by color. She would stack them, then put them in lines and circles on a table. She would put them one by one into my hands and then have me let go and dump them on the table to do it again. I think this yarn is my 52 year old version of Isabel’s buttons!

It has been 10 years of collecting. I did make 4 pairs of socks from this type of yarn early on. (photo at Left is my Goddaughter Sara as a young teen with her Koigu socks).

However, since this yarn is 100% merino, it is actually not very long-wearing in a sock. (I might consider a sock with a solid-colored wool/nylon foot and a Koigu cuff…) However, it sort of begs to be something bigger… something where I can use at least three of the colorways together.

I don’t wear triangular shawls, so that’s out. If I did… Koigu has a shawl pattern called Charlotte’s Web (click for photos) which is popular.

I might consider a stole. I think maybe I’d like a diagonal knit one such as Clapotis (with random striping from one color to the next). Or who knows, maybe one knit in a huge tube and then cut and raveled, like Kristin Nicholas’ Over-the-Top Shawl (the one I’m supposedly already knitting) or the Colourflow Wrap by Christa Giles.

Or a swing top, perhaps? The Ophelia Tunic sweater by Lucy Neatby is designed for handpainted fingering/sockweight yarn. It would be fun and easy to randomly stripe one color into the next on that one, I think.

There is a lovely crochet blanket using this yarn in solids, called Babette (click for photos). Crochet, though, uses up so much yarn! And honestly, I think I’d rather wear this luxury than put it on a couch.

I’m soliciting ideas from those who wish to contribute. If you were me, what would you knit? If it were your yarn rather than mine, what would you make?

Creativity Anywhere – the Grocery

Wednesday, September 7th, 2011

The premise which started this ColorJoy blog, is that many of us are creative, perhaps even artists. However, often we don’t acknowledge that artfulness.

I did not call myself an artist until I was in my 30’s, although I worked in 3D most of my life. I don’t draw or paint, so I disregarded my talents.

Soup can be art, gardens surely can be, as can the creation of a space where a group of people feel comfortable and welcome.  I just love finding creative expressions as I proceed in normal days.

A few weeks back, I took a friend, who is without a car, to the grocery store. Someone in the meat department made a temporary sculpture from their homemade sausage. The olives for eyes really make this work.

I’m not much of a meat fan… haven’t had pork in over a decade. However, the “bloom where you are planted” spark grabbed my attention. I am sure I’m not the only one who smiled when they saw this!