Thursday, 7 July 2016

Bronte, a design by Martin Storey

My Bronte in +Rowan Yarns Softyak DK!

If you like Moss Stitch,
this design is for you!

The cable and lace panels on the front pieces
add detail and interest!
(I saved the fronts to knit last.)

The waist and sleeves feature a fancy psso rib!

While the neckline is finished with stocking stitch
and the button bands are k2p2 rib!

Buttoned up, you really see the lacey diamond pattern!

Another unusual design aspect is the fact that the rib and lace panels are all C4B!
 All cables twist to the right!

You might expect that the cables would be mirrored on either side of the lace panel,

 or on either front!

Some knitters might find this annoying!
(Put your hand up if you are in this camp!)

It is these kind of details that made me love this design
.....thank you Martin!

This design was originally knit in Rowan's Summerlite DK yarn!
I love the firm twist of this cotton!

I chose to knit it in the Softyak DK - it's a chainette yarn, cotton and yak that knits up like a wool yarn! (It has a bit of give while knitting and I loved that!)

Summerlite DK and the Softyak DK
 are interchangeable!

The Summerlite is 100% egyptian cotton and look at those gorgeous shades!

Softyak is a cotton/yak blend, chainette construction, and the yak takes the dye differently making the colours in this yarn softer, muted and I think more sophisticated!

That's why I wanted to knit my Bronte with Softyak, 

Softyak (to me) is an all-season yarn!

I found that to knit Bronte, a Summerlite DK design, in Softyak, I had to go up a needle size! (a gauge swatch is ALWAYS a good idea!)

Bronte, from the Summerlite DK collection by Martin Storey!

This cardigan is detailed, stylish, can be worn casually (as shown in the photos above where I wear it over a sleeveless light knit top over linen pants) and it would look great over a summer dress!

If you'd like to see all of the designs in these two through to the Rowan web site....

Both collections give yarn quantities for both yarns!

Softyak DK

Buttons from Bedecked
Cheetah Coconut Button

Now I have to decide what's next? I have fallen behind with my Marie Wallin Fair Isle Blanket squares, but I also have some Pure Linen that wants to be a summer top! 

What do you think? 

Happy Knitting,

xx Anne
(with Lackie and Daisy at her feet, because it is extremely hot outside and we are in the basement chilling)


It's always a bit intimidating to put photos of yourself out there on social media. Yes, the idea is to show your finished knit off, to display how it looks on a real person.

I am a size 16 (there I said it) and as I like to see knitters modelling their creations,  I want you to see how my finished sweaters fit on me. 

By full bust measurement, I should have knit the 20 or 22 even. Remember the Amy Herzog KAL? I watched Amy's videos and one thing jumped out for me. Measure under your arms (over your bust line) and use that measurement to pick your size!!!

I measure 42" there, so I knit the size 18 for a 42" bust! 

On me, this size fits with negative ease...which I could have adjusted by putting in extra stitches just in the bust area. As I didn't think a summer cardigan would be worn buttoned up all that often, I decided to knit it as is.  


Sometimes the hubby takes photos, sometimes I ask my friend Reneé if she has some free time (she's a busy working Mom!)

I am so grateful to Reneé.  She has that sweet spot in her home that gives a fabulous neutral background and the greatest light! She does not hesitate to climb up on a half wall at the top of her staircase and give me great art direction!

Renee is also my Jamberry enabler, er I am wearing Pomegranate Pop . It's been over a week since these photos were taken, I'm still got my Pomegranate Pop nails!

Here's a link to Renee's Jamberry page.

Saturday, 11 June 2016

My new bujo life!

I'm sure you've heard about Bullet's all the rage! (Just put bullet journaling into Google and there are 521K results - Bullet Journal: The Analog system for the digital age!

It seems that busy people are turning away from their smart phones and tablets, to organize their life on PAPER!!!

Well, when I heard about this I was frankly intrigued, because I'd never really got the hang of keeping all of my appointments on my iPhone. Some things got recorded there, others on the kitchen wall calendar, and the worst thing was the things that didn't make either of them and were floating around on pieces of paper or the backs of business cards!

Let's face it, I'm retired and lead a fairly normal (i.e. mundane) life :) so I don't have tons of appointments.

Last year I was particularly busy with personal appointments. I'd had dental surgery that went wrong, requiring emergency oral surgery, which then required many follow up appointments; then there was my cataract surgery....gosh I'm sounding like a bit of a crock eh??? Adding these appointments into the regular round of scheduled events, vet appointments, grooming (both myself and the dogs)...well, a couple of appointments got messed up - either the time or date got confused and I realized I needed to be more organized. Luckily, all that is behind me now and I've finally decided to incorporate creativity into my scheduling!

One of the great things about Bullet Journaling (or Bujo as the trendy types call it) is that it is totally customizable! You don't need to do it exactly like so and so can develop your own style over time to suit your particular schedule and life style! It is a forgiving style of journaling, as usually you use a clean note book...a gridded dot book is the favourite choice of many!

A great example of this is a friend of mine who works, has a travelling hubby, has 3 kids, a home based business....whew, makes me tired just listing it all here! You can imaging the schedule in that house, and the appointments! But when summer rolls around, she winds everything right back and focusses on the her needs change during the summer months and she can adjust her journal accordingly! 

So, when I realized that I could take this journal idea and personalize it for what I needed, that's when things started to click.

So I'm adapting this whole journal thing to not only organize, but record my life. I have a new motto....
Live Every Day...
as if it were your last!
(Not being maudlin here....but frankly, some days I forget to smell the roses. I might also not recognize that I live in a lovely garden. Gosh, the metaphors eh? So I've decided.....don't put things off, don't get caught up in things that don't concern you or that won't matter tomorrow, take time to enjoy every day and SPEND OUT!)

What does Spend Out mean? It means to stop hoarding! To trust in abundance! Read this and maybe you will understand it like I finally do...yes the light bulb has come on!

I have a problem....a lot of us have this same problem! We acquire things that we love. We love them so much that we put them away "for good". What is this? Do we feel guilty about buying it in the first place and hide it away so we don't think about it??? Do we feel that we aren't worthy so we put it away for that perfect that we can pull it out to use??? We are missing out on a lot of joy by waiting for that perfect day....think about it!

I am so like this with jewellery, yarn (yup I have that yarn that I just can't decide what to do with so it just sits on the shelf or in the bin and I go out and buy more) and stationery! Yes, stationery! 

The jewellery thing I got from my Mom who had jewellery that she never wore! It wasn't like she had a lot of jewellery....but the items she had she hardly ever wore! The yarn thing, well you are probably a knitter if you are reading this....and I bet you know exactly what I mean! You see a skein of speaks to you. You have NO IDEA what you are going to do with it but you MUST HAVE IT! So you buy it and it comes home with sit on a shelf because you have to find the perfect pattern because, well, you can't get any more of this it must be the perfect design! Even worse is the yarn that you know is discontinued! Whoa, don't knit it up and enjoy it, you can't get any more! (I am determined to work through my stash yarn! Yes, I will still buy new yarn....but I need to shop my stash first!)

Now the Stationery thing I inherited from my Uncle Alex. He was quite the character. Infuriating at times...entertaining at times....and he loved stationery! When he died he was living in a retirement home. The bottom drawer of his tv stand was FULL of stationery! Pads of paper, pencils never sharpened, even some watercolour paints never opened! Yup, all that stuff came home with me! So I know that this aspect of my personality is definitely an inherited thing :)

OK, back to the journal... (so easily side tracked ha ha ha)

It is a bit paralyzing for someone like me to sit down with a pristine note book of any kind and actually put pen to paper. Once I was asked in a knitting class if a fellow knitter could have a piece of my paper. I look at my brand new note book and...gosh....NO! She wanted me to rip a page out of my new note book! Imagine! I take my paper products seriously!

First thing I've decided?

KISS! (Keep It Simple Silly!)

I need two journals.....yes I do! I don't like to carry a huge purse on a regular day.....just my wallet, keys, cell phone. Now that I have new transitional progressive glasses...they are the ONLY glasses I need, so that eliminates a lot of bulk in my hand bag! (See, the KISS theory has been applied even to my glasses!)

One of the 48 page Field Notes memo books will fit the bill perfectly!!! Quick and easy place to write down appointments, reminders, telephone numbers...anything that I come across while out and about that needs to be remembered....write it in the Field Notes Anne!!!!

Then there will be my "L&D Journal". You might think that stands for Lackie & Daisy Journal. Well I suppose it has to, but it is going to be the record of my life! (I am stealing this title from my Knit Friend Diana who I discovered has been doing this "Life and Death book" thing for years. She is a two bag person - one is her hand bag, the other much larger bag contains her current knit project and other stuff including her "Life and Death " journal. When you see Diana, she ALWAYS has two bags with her.)

So to start, my journal will be a daily written account of things I do...things I think about...things I want to remember! (I may transfer things from the Field Notes to this journal, maybe not!)

See? The KISS method has been applied to my BUJO!

Lots of BUJOs are very of art really! I'm starting with a hand written daily journal, using my Roterfaden journal cover (had this for years but never used it), a lined note book insert and a lovely new Lamy fountain pen that I just bought, brought home and filled up with Turquoise ink!!! That is a record for, open, use! OMG it was so stressful LOL!!!

Once I've gotten over the whole "you might make a mess of a page" thing, I'll start making customized maybe a list of books that I want to read? movies that I want to watch? When it's read or watched, check it off? Simple!

From a knit point of view....maybe I need to record ideas....need to see if this can be recorded like this. Right now I use Pinterest to organize knit ideas....

I do know that I am going to start a separate note book in my Roterfaden to use as a knit project diary. I am so bad at keeping all of my knit records on post it notes and then they are out of order, or I can't remember what order they should be in, or I lose I need to record my project progress in a journal that will be harder to lose! (hopefully). I'm thinking about how to do this and will do a blog post on how I set it up for my next knit project, ok?

That's the great thing about creating a "bullet journal" - you are in charge of each and every page. You can customize it to meet your detailed or as casual as you want! 

You are in Charge of your Journal!

Happy Knitting and Journaling :)

x Anne
(with Lackie and Daisy at her feet because it's rather hot out right now!)

Some Links to get Lost In!

Roterfaden Taschenbegleiter - which means Roterfaden pocket companion!

I got mine, as I said, years ago at Phidon Pens in Cambridge, Ontario! My Roterfaden was a special edition colour combination back in the day and I still love it!

Lamy Fountain Pens - a fountain pen makes you slow down and think about your writing! My recent purchase was a Lamy vista transparent pen! This is actually classed by Lamy as a "young writer" pen....I guess they mean it as an introduction to fountain pens? I also have a Lamy Safari green pen that just didn't look good with my Roterfaden, but I think this transparent one is perfect!Lamy pens also from Phidon (see link above).

Phidon Pens in Cambridge, Ontario! There are so many brands of fountain pens. A trip to Phidon reveals that there are fountain pen collectors...they carry multiple fountain pens in beautiful leather cases that slip into purses or breast coat pockets! Phidon has a huge selection of colourful Leuchtturm journals for those of you who like a bound journal!

ic! Berlin - very cool high tech screw less glasses frames! While they are known for their metal frames, mine are made with a hypoallergenic plastic acetate made with organic cotton fibres! Imagine!

Field Notes - another pit of stationery love to fall into!!! OMG a wooden box to store your old Field Notes book in! Check it out! Oh no - they have colourful small field notes! 

I got my Field Notes at my local Indigo book store!

Whew, I kept getting sucked out into the internet and had to fight my way back!!!  Don't get lost!