Back in October, at the Indie Untangled Trunk Show, I made one of those fourth-quarter, last-possible-minute acquisitions.
The countdown clock was literally ticking on the screen above the show floor. It was do or die. With the instinctual madness that comes when you see a yarn and a design that you cannot possibly live without, I scraped up a pile of Emily Foden’s Viola Yarns, along with her new book from Pom Pom Press, Knits about Winter.
I’d never seen her yarns before, and her book was new to me, too. Hello Emily Foden! What a discovery for me. Emily’s up there in Mooresburg, Ontario, a couple of hours northwest of Toronto. Winter is for real in those parts, and Emily’s book captures the stunning beauty of that frozen world. It is truly a mood, this book.
The ridiculous thoughts that accompanied this purchase are probably familiar to anybody who has gone bananas at a knitting event. I ignored the fact that MDK provides me with a large supply of yarn available at all times. Never mind the fact that I had at least three sweaters queued up, ready to go. Never mind anything—Viola, you’re Nashville bound!
The pattern that got me is the one shown on the cover, the Eastwind Jacket. It had a drapey, droopy look to it that seemed wildly cozy. The toggle buttons were horn. All great.
I told myself that there would come some wintry moment when this would be the thing I could cast on and hibernate my way through during the darkest days of the season. Or something.
And I promptly deposited my bag of treasure by my desk and left it to marinate.
It turns out, I never let go of this dreamy plan. On December 21, the first day of winter—the solstice, the shortest day of the year—I started making this Eastwind Jacket. A little more than a week later, I’m three quarters done.
The pattern calls for two yarns to be held at once: we’re marling! Carrying this Romney Merino with silk/lace creates a color that is neither of the two shades.
The Mohair Lace wins the day, with its silvery haze. But the Persephone is in there warming it all up. This is one of the most amazing yarns I’ve worked with—the color shifts from minute to minute. I can’t take two pictures in a row that show the same colors. Emily! Way to go! (I’m going to need another skein of Cosmic Mohair Lace, so please cook one up for me! I now know that your shop updates require varsity-level click-through skills. The next one is scheduled for January 14, for those who are interested.)
There will be pockets lined in a contrasting color, though in Emily’s world, contrasting means not all that contrasting.
All the edges are selvedge stitches that will become seams on the outside of the jacket. I am not as good at remembering to slip that first stitch of every row as I would like to think I am. But I’ve got the hang now.
Two rows of contrasting color at the hem and collar. I can’t wait to block this thing.
It’s been such a quiet week for me, since we closed up MDK for the holidays. The two lads have been home, from New York and Boston, so it’s been a vacation where my primary goal was talking. Catching up. Trying to suss out what’s up, juicy conversations about life, love, the past, the future. You know, if you sit long enough with somebody, stuff starts to get pretty interesting.
So, as this year ends and a new one approaches, I guess I’d wish the same for you: that a bit of knitting worms its way into your mind and distracts and focuses your attention at the same time. That you have a great conversation with somebody you love. And that we can all finish this year doing the things we love to do.