Thursday, November 09, 2017

Rest and Renewal

In the last month or so, I've been taking a bit of time to catch up on a variety of projects. I took time off to participate in Spinzilla, I've worked on some around-the-house work that needed doing, I've taken up cross-stitch, and I've been making plans for future projects. I've still been knitting, but it's been a combination of work knitting and just for fun knitting. I had taken a bit of time to tidy and plan with my stashes (spinning, personal knitting, work knitting), and found the need to clear my plate a bit to prepare for some of the future projects that I want to get done.

Spinzilla output: All this spun in a week on a spindle!
The thing about making a hobby into a job is that it's not a hobby anymore, and so I've filled the gap with spinning, and recently cross stitch. I also draw, and I used to garden (I'm planning to go back to gardening in the Spring, so this winter I'm hoping to set aside some time for making those plans), and for quite awhile, it seemed like it was hard to justify taking the time to work on creative pursuits outside of knitting, or, in other words, like I wasn't working hard enough to justify taking time off from work. Adding in spinning helped a little, but it still results in yarn, which I then mentally assign to knitting projects (more work, in a sense). Cross stitch feels more like drawing and painting, but new enough to me that I'm launching in with a bit more enthusiasm and less worry over improving my technique like I do when I draw or paint. I'm new to it, so any work done on it is improving my technique, after all.

Halloween cross stitch. Pattern from Cloudsfactory.

I'm not completely taking time off though, and have been still working on proposals for new knitting work, re-releasing older patterns when the rights revert back to me (like the Bangor Pullover), and also self-publishing some new patterns (like the Braeside Cowl).

Bangor Pullover
Braeside Cowl
Also, I've been doing a bit of knitting for fun! It's been ages since I've made myself a sweater, so I'm treating myself to some time spent knitting Ásta Sóllilja by Kate Davies! This sweater is worked in Ístex Léttlopi, and my parents brought me the light grey wool that is used for the body of the sweater when they returned from a trip to Iceland. I love the colours that Kate Davies picked for the design so much that I was determined to use the same shades for my sweater.

Ásta Sóllilja in progress!
In the meantime, in an effort to get a bit of life back into this sorely neglected blog, I may well toss in a bit of crafty fun from non-knitting projects now and again, hopefully a tad more frequently than of late! Other places to find updates from me include my newsletter (use form off to the right, or follow this link:, Instagram (as @jessiemckitrick), and my Facebook page (, so please feel free to join me at any or all of those!

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