Suzanne’s Cloche, Wildflowers…and Glorious Fall!

Fall is here!! Let’s sing from the mountaintops. In this time of the Earth’s renewal in my corner of the world, I am finding a desire to take more pictures of things in decay, and as another process of life, notice this other side of Beauty.

fall 13 yellow leaf in decay

Tulip Poplar Leaf

fall berries sept 13

Unknown berries

goldenrod sept 13

Goldenrod is a true herald of Fall

fall thistle

Thistle

Also fascinating to me the past couple of years are canopies. Just remember to look up! (Or under). Changing perspective on how we ‘normally’ view things is very exciting.

fall 13 canopy

I love the way the sunlight filters down through the leaves….

Knitting! Yes, there has been some! Still with me?

I did manage to release Suzanne’s Cloche last week, inspired by my sweet Canadian friend of the same name. Her and I have corresponded for some time now, she’s my way-cooler-than-me-soul mate-friend who speaks French, and I told her she needs to wear this hat while sitting at a classy little cafe way up North of me. Someday I am going to surprise her by showing up to meet her there too.

suzanne cloche on e back

Suzanne’s Cloche in all its’ red bow glory.

You can find this pattern on my website here, or over at Ravelry here. I would say it is an intermediate level, the chevron pattern really is simple one you get the hang of the increases/decreases. The directions for the stitch pattern are both written and charted. I was very happy to finally put good use to the Dream in Color Classy yarn I’ve been hoarding for entirely too long.

suzanne cloche on e close full

As you can see, it is slouchy as well, though more fitted like a traditional beret. I am so tickled with it. Of course if you wanted on a little less showy, you could (gasp!) not add the bow, or make it in the same color of yarn as the hat itself. My Sydney gave me the best compliment, she asked me if this was my ‘Hello Kitty’ hat. Yes Sydney, indeed it is.

I was super excited recently to get the latest copy of the Willow Yarns catalog in the mail, since there on Pg. 16 was my Wildflowers Cardigan!

wildflowers cardi for willow

wildflowers cardi for willow detail;

Blocking shot, detail of Wildflowers Knot stitch pattern

This draped front cardi was designed in a 50% wool, 50% acrylic single-ply, self-striping yarn called Brook. I was very impressed with this yarn, it is truly lovely to work with. The knot stitch is intuitive once you get going, the alternate rows are simply worked in stockinette stitch. The sweater has a fun construction as well, the back piece is knitted first, the fronts are picked up and worked out from the back, the sleeves and picked up and knitted in the round to the cuff, then finally you pick up and knit the large border collar. I like the longer length of the back too, it gives an overall classy look. The Wildflowers Cardigan pattern is available on the Willow Yarns website here .

Also, I wanted to share with this pretty bag I designed for my new company, available free on their website! You’ve got to love those bobbles as much as I do, I really enjoyed the contrast of these 2 yarns to make them ‘pop’!

bobble bag final phot

Studded Bobble Bag at Premier Yarns

bobble bag swatch

Here’s my crazy little swatch for this project!

Lastly, I am completely THRILLED to be a sponsor for a contest on my favorite podcast, Stash & Burn. Here’s the contest in a nutshell: Challenge – Use 13 yarns from your stash. Pick a yarn, pick a pattern, if it’s not working for you get rid of the yarn! This is an opportunity to look at those yarns that you have been holding onto, but not knitting. Use it, or lose it!

If you have never heard them before, definitely go & give them a listen. They have a wonderful rapport that makes you feel more like you are sitting in the room and chatting with 2 girlfriends about knitting. They talk about their current projects, techniques, and they frequently do reviews of new patterns and books. My small contribution is offering up some free patterns for the winners of the latest round of UILI! Here is also a link to their Ravelry group if you want to join the challenge: Stash & Burn Listeners Group.

I will try to be back sooner than later folks. It has been a while since I’ve written any poetry, so I will leave you with this morning’s bit for thought. Drop me a line and tell me how your world is.

Namaste all.

October Morning

Fog enfolds the gray landscape
In a dewy blanket full of hazy deception
Moving slowly and imperceptibly
Over all it passes and painlessly encapsulates

Circles in our lives, spinning back around
Everything comes home to where it began
Suffering needlessly when you turn away
From the truth you already know inside

Whispers in the deepest part of night to yourself
Are they from inside your own mind…?
Or are those ghosts having a bit of fun with your soul again,
Their own all-nighter, with you as their playground

The struggle will continue as the infinity of our nature
Shall force itself through known paths, again and again
Unless somehow the cycle is set to new course
Upon paths known, but somehow slightly altered

Unseen forces guiding through the deep thick
Of tangled roots in the forest of the mind
Teasing some of them open, cutting others
Until they are forced to change, to find new pathways.

This is my wish for you.
~EAH

The Unseen Guest ‘Listen My Son’

It all begins with a V….

Lately I find myself becoming obsessed with abstract art. Linear shapes, unusual lines and compositions, strange (to me) color combinations, interesting compositions of textures that seemingly don’t fit together, yet are completely harmonious together. I feel my mind expanding in new and exciting directions.

fringe assoc yarn wall

Cool color combos (photo courtesy of Fringe Association)

hollywood club door

Old Hollywood Club Door from flickr.

Oddly enough, most of my Colorspiration board photos thus far I’ve pinned are doors. In case you’ve been living under the same rock as me, there are some really fantastic doors out there in the world! It makes my plain black one seem rather dull in comparison.

Also, chevrons. I am absolutely crazy about this trend, and I thought it was a new thing for me, until yesterday I re-discovered this hat pattern I had favorited on Ravelry back in, let’s see…wait for it….September of 2008! This has been a long time hidden love for sure.

chevronloves medium

Yeah, it’s actually called the Chevron Love Hat, created by Julia Vesper – and it’s only $3 for this gorgeous pattern!

The newest Knitscene is littered with chevron designs. My breakaway fave is this sweet little pullover:

emmanuelle sweater mercedes tarasovich clark knitscene

Emmanuelle Sweater by Mercedes Tarasovich-Clark (don’t the colors just give you warm fuzzies??)

The new Interweave Knits also followed suit, with this amazing intarsia chevron sweater that made the cover, that reminds me of the female version of the Dude’s sweater in The Big Lebowski:

plowman medium2

Plowman Cardigan by Alex Capshaw-Taylor

I’ve never been a big fan of the Cowichan sweater, but c’mon, I’d be so rocking this cozy cardi while holding a White Russian in hand! I digress…

I even broke down and bought this gorgeous bag I found on Etsy a few weeks ago, and I’ve been using it every day since:

chevron bag

I heart my Chevron Bag from Retrofied! She has other color combos too…

I’ve been holding back on getting this Chevron wood necklace, and you know, my Birthday is in May, and I wouldn’t be mad at all if you sent one to me….ha. You, however, should totally go get one. Because it’s awesome.

chevron wood necklace

Chevron Stripe Necklace in multiple colors by birdofvirtue

You can see where I’m going with this, right? (Right??)

chevron beret progress 1

Oh….yes. (Insert happy magical sounds here.)

Chevron Beret goodness, out of Dream in Color Classy in colorway Grey Tabby. Taking a break this weekend and working on this lovely design has just made me totally giddy inside.

chevron beret progress

What’s the red for, you ask? That would be for the bow I’m going to put on it. Yup, that’s right. It is going to All Girled Out. Of course for the pattern you’ll have the option to not make the bow (I don’t know why on earth you wouldn’t want to, but I know you’ve gotta have options people…).

This is my inspiration photo for the bow idea:

anthro bow beret

Tenney Park Beret from Anthropologie (isn’t is just adorable?)

I won’t blame you one bit if you just go and buy that one for $38, but I have this burning desire to make my own. Better of course, you know, with chevrons. Because if you know anything about me by now, it’s that I don’t do plain.

I expect to have this finished up for you by next weekend, check back with me. Have a lovely day and don’t forget to take a break sometime, all of us need to.

Ocean – John Butler (This song is simply beautiful, if it does not move you I don’t know what will. Watch the first minute if for nothing else than to see how beat up his guitar is – awesome.)

Going through the motions…

Last week I quit this blog. I had had it, with a lot of things. I thought I was wearing my heart on my sleeve too much and nobody really gave a shit on what I felt, talked about or shared.

After breaking up with my blog, at first I had the ‘good, I don’t need THAT’ feeling. Slowly…and with a good bit of stubborn reluctance, I realized something. I DO need it. Not for confirmation, not for the ‘oh wow, that thing you are making is so cool’ comments, I need it for me. It’s an outlet, albeit a small one for all the randomness that permeates my brain.

Even though I hold back….a LOT mind you….there is something slightly satisfying to me about put words down to print. Those few e-mails I have had from people telling me that my words mean something to them as well, that is just the icing on the cake. I am here solely for me. (Well, maybe just a tiny bit for you too.)

As much as I am a self-proclaimed Yogi, I have been lax in my own attempts at living in the moment. I am finding myself constantly fast-forwarding to an unforeseen future, then at other times dwelling in a ‘what’s the point’ past.

My yoga has been terrible, I am rushing through these perfect motions that I know so very well, and thinking about the next thing I need to do, which is entirely missing the point.

Today, for a small while, I slowed down. I paused in the motions, I felt my body, what is was feeling ‘in that moment’…and it was beautiful. I felt the uncomfortableness, the ‘I don’t want to do this anymore’, and I worked through it.

I found my breathe again.

I was reminded again, very poignantly, that at every moment, of every day – if you stop, for even but a moment, you will see the amazing beauty, frailty, incredibleness and humanity that is THIS life, the only one that we know thus far….and it will either break you, consume you, enthrall you, or do any or all of the above.

May you never lose that. May you always keep on going, even when the world, the winds, your own self tell you that you shouldn’t. Keep doing what you do. I firmly believe that the smallest ripples do create the biggest waves.

Hey, YOU – go and fucking DO IT!!! Don’t make me come on over there!

e feisty

Be well friends. I need you more than I might like to admit.

Hallelujah – Jeff Buckley

Dirt & Bugs

Walk into my garden, leave your shoes behind
They have no place in this little corner of my mind
Join me and sit, right there in the dirt
Feel it between your toes as I lift up my skirt
My scabbed knees are of no mind as I sit cross-legged, feet apart
Ladylike in most ways but still a tomboy at heart

Tell me your secrets, do not be afraid
For here you won’t find judgment, here you are on display
For you are my Friend, a term not lightly given
Deservedly so, for your life has been well lived in
My eyes gaze into yours and inside you know that they see you
The Real You, they hug your soul with a kindness that is true

Let’s flick off the bugs and eat all of the peas
Let’s stay here until it gets dark, as long as we please
Laughing and crying, joking and trying
To simply be together, the time is of no matter
Just bring yourself here and you’ll see
I’ll reflect you and you’ll give yourself to me.

~EAH

Too early…

queen annes lacde

Queen Anne’s Lace – delicate and lovely

Up too early, again.

Mind races, and the battle begins. Sleepy Self wants to stay in bed for ‘just 5 more minutes’, while Go-Getter Self say, ‘Rise & SHINE Sleepyhead, you’re already late!’ Blergh.

I reluctantly give in to Go-Getter, stumble my way to the coffee pot for fuel for this vessel. Put on the radio and before it begins, I already know exactly what song is going to play. Of course it’s that one, the one that makes you think too much before you’re even fully awake. That’s OK.

I’m taking it easy today. Which means I might be kind enough to myself to only do half of my to-do list. These days the nights are easier, falling asleep isn’t as much of a problem when Productive Self keeps you dosed up to the eyeballs with ‘To-Do’s’ and ‘To-Don’ts’ and ‘To-Sometimes’ and ‘You-Really-Should-Squeeze-This-One-In-Too’s’. Are you tired yet reading this? I am.

Hi Lovelies! How are you? This has been a good week, my Sydney went back to Philly with my Dad, so ‘just having one’ is easier and a small bit of a break. The downside is this is the one that still requires diaper changes…

Now it’s time to inundate you with pics of various things….if you follow me on FB, sorry for repeating some of these. I can only come up with so many great shots a week!

gravy making aug 13

Last night’s gravy was d-e-licious. Of course I need to add more toms, but it was sooo yummy. My new must-have ingredient when I make my own sauce is adding anchovies. It will add a depth of flavor that is fantastic, even most non-fish eaters will love it too. Meals have become less-extravagant lately, and I’m always glad when I can lose myself in the kitchen for a few hours…

wwc trail mountains

On the way to the trail…

e in car new hair aug 13

Being cheeky in the car…

butterfly party aug 13

Amazing Butterfly Party, this was so awesome to watch.

butterfly moth aug 13 1

The elusive Hummingbird Hawk-Moth, one of the most amazing creatures I’ve seen here.

nature center rattlesnake

Rattlesnake at The Nature Center

nature center mia goat

Petting goats, I think this goat wanted to come home with us.

nature center screech owl

Little half-blind Screech Owl at The Nature Center

nature center buddy bear

Is it wrong that I wanted to cuddle this bear so hard??

mia conference call waiting

Baby Destructo destroys house in 5 minutes flat while mama waits on her conference call….

pom beret on mia

Then she models a pom-pom beret for me…

luna moth 080913

I was completely thrilled that this little fella decided to stay on my window for 1/2 a day. Luna Moths are magical.

E starts a new project. This is a collaboration between myself and Maya of Springtree Road.

springtree road praline

Don’t you want to just reach out and squeeze it??

This yarn is called Praline dk (shown in colorway Limestone), and it is a delectable blend of 80% superwash merino / 10% cashmere / 10% nylon. Knitting with it is a delight of soft, squishy wonderment! Here’s the back of my sweater thus far….

shetland lace cardi beg

This is a simple, yet effective Shetland Lace pattern from the first Barbara Walker stitch dictionary. I like the way it accentuates the variegation in the yarn, so pretty.

Wishing good things for you this week. I’m going to get back to it! I leave you with the latest poem, I’ve been writing up a storm (she says, tongue in cheek) in the mornings. I think it gives my wandering mind a bit of rest. Enjoy.

The Storm

A wet wind, whips her hair and stings her face
Unkind wind no matter which direction she seeks
Walking quickly, faster still to move from that place
Until she manages her way to the creek

Only the creek is gone, in its’ place lies a river
Torrents of water rapidly pacing through
She takes off her jacket and makes her way in
Then gets swept downstream in the flood of her own undoing

She hits her head on a rock and away goes the world
Until she feels dirt underneath her hands again
Washed up on the shore of a new beginning
This land is quiet, peaceful – and she starts to mend

Her shattered mind, picking up pieces along the way
She carries them in her skirt, her shoes are long gone
She sees the sun, beams so bright they hurt her eyes
As she slowly walks towards a new dawn.

~EAH

The Head and the Heart ~ Lost In My Mind

Out of the bag…

So, dear ones. How are you? How is your summer/fall/winter wherever you are? Summer has been most pleasant here in Western NC, which I am grateful for on a daily basis.

Recently, I was contacted by a yarn company called Universal Yarn, which is based out of Charlotte, NC. They were expanding their design team and encouraged me to apply. Well I did, and now I’m one of their independent designers!

Which would explain my absence here. Since I have started, it has been a wild and crazy ride. I can honestly say that this is the most fun and challenging job I’ve ever had and I love it! Apparently I was very ready for a good challenge, and with all the growth and pattern development happening, let’s just say I’ll never be bored. For my crazy mind, that is a good thing for sure. They have some very unusual yarns, which is twisting my brain into knots trying to come up with creative uses for them.

I’m hoping to be able to share with you soon some of my design projects for my new company. Most of these will be offered up as free patterns on their website. I will still work on my own label, but will be producing less since I have a lot less time on my hands now. I hope you will still stick around to follow my journey!

couture jazz yarns

This is some of the wild and crazy yarn I get to work with!

couture jazz vase

I cut some pieces off and covered this vase with them. (It’s a stretchy, pre-knitted tube, called Couture Jazz.)

This week, I also have my Dad in town staying with us. This past weekend was a lot of fun, as Asheville had it’s yearly downtown festival, Bele Chere. It’s really sad since allegedly this will be the last one, due to budget cuts. I hope some people fight for this, since it’s a yearly tradition to a lot of us!

bele chere mia mermaid

The balloon artist gave the mermaid a tattoo, since ‘she’s an Asheville mermaid!’

bele chere sydney monkey hat

It’s a monkey in a tree!

On Sunday, Dad and I went for an adventure down to Lake Lure. We rented a canoe for 4 hours, and I didn’t get nearly as burnt as I expected – AND – I caught a bunch of fish!

lake lure e fish july 13

Catch of the day

Once I got on that lake, all my stressed pretty much melted away. Now I just need to get a kayak. Then find the time to actually go on a lake! I’m just grateful for being able to have that time with my Dad, it’s pretty special.

lake lure black eyed susan

Flower & Mountains at Lake Lure

lake lure white flower mountain

Be well, my friends. Do something amazing.

A Notice

When you give something your whole heart, your whole self
Time slips by almost unnoticed
As you get lost in your current dilemma
Your life, your passion, your soul
All folding into one
When the pain creeps it almost goes
Unnoticed.

What is this feeling I have been avoiding?
In the recesses of my mind it lives
The fine art of avoidance continues
As I try to find ways to fill the time
So as not to ponder upon such things
Yet they remain…hidden.
In that most sacred spot

The soul is a mysterious place
Full of memories, dreams, hopes
Despair, loss, drama…and a well
Of lost feelings
Do you tap into the bucket and pull those up?
Or cut the rope…

~EAH

Damien Rice – ‘Delicate’

House of Heathens

garden cherry tomatoes july 13

The little cherry tomatoes are coming!!

The summer after we first moved into this neighborhood, my next door neighbors decided to have a sort of ‘block’ party at the end of the road. Which basically meant they posted some signs, a few people made food, set up some chairs, and an extremely awkward congregation followed.

This neighborhood is a fair mix of people – age-wise, there are probably mostly elderly people here, but over the last couple of years, a lot of younger people / families have been moving in. This little ‘party’ had a mix of both.

My little Mia was a mere 6 months old at that point and we had the built-in excuse for not staying too long with ‘the baby needs to nap!’ line ready to go. SO. We walked down the road with the stroller (me with nerve-calming wine sippy cup in hand) and tried to introduce ourselves (at least I did, D is way too shy) to our new neighbors. When asked where we lived, I would usually tell people that we had bought the ‘cops house’, as two police officers lived here before us.

My well-meaning next door neighbor brought her little boom box to the party to play some music. The pastor who lives across the street from me asked her to turn it off (she was playing oldies I believe) because it was ‘giving him an ulcer’. Seriously. OK, no music. More awkwardness ensues, as if that were possible.

I tried to act cool as the older ladies were fawning over Mia and playing ‘pass the baby’ like she was a sack of potatoes. Then one woman says, “I know where you live. You have the house with the gargoyle.” Well, yes – in fact we do. The tone of her voice gave away her displeasure with us daring to have that thing in our yard, and she apparently took some sort of offense with that.

Since then, it’s been sort of an ongoing joke between D and I. I am highly amused by the fact that most of my neighbors are Christians and could be offended by a concrete statue, and the irony that it portrays the very kind of statues that to this day grace the tops of most old churches to ward off evil spirits.

gargoyle outside house 1

Don’t let those cute faces fool you…this is a bad house, full of bad people.

gargoyle outside house close

Gargoyle with his drinking buddy Ivan, I’ll save his story for another time…

Now whenever I tell people I meet in the neighborhood, I proudly tell them that we are in the house with the gargoyle. Everyone seems to know where that is. Which is fine by me. Last week I met a new neighbor who bought one of the houses in the new development at the end of the road. I told him where we lived and he said excitedly said “I really need to get two of those!” Progress.

…Still here??…

Oh, and by the way I finished something! (That’s for me…me…me.)

ainslee on e front 1

This is my dolman-style summer pullover. Please bug me to finish the pattern, because you really need one!

Super comfy and easy to wear, this is the top I designed for a bathing suit cover-up, or to wear over your cami and shorts, like I have here. I’m going to try to get an actual pattern together in the next week or so. Hope you guys like it!

ainslee on e close white

This was too much fun and I’m kind of sad it’s done now. Easy, pretty lace that looks way more complicated than it actually is.

ainslee on e in white 1

Pull down those shorts!! (I thought this one was slightly silly.)

ainslee on e back closer

ainslee shoulder detail

Have a great weekend all.

The Path

Love lights the path to futures unknown
To leap with a faith that all will be well
It is your choice as to whether or not follow
To trust your heart and in it dwell

For what your truth is right now
Was not known to you long ago
The pillow on which your head gently rests
Is yesterdays thoughts come aglow

I choose Love to guide my wandering mind
Across this land of questions so full
It will lead and in its wake I will follow
For all of my days I will feel its thrill

For what is your life right now
But a series of choices you’ve made
Follow your soul lest it be taken
By others not so well behaved.

~EAH

Eilen Jewell – High Shelf Booze

Chill…out…

That’s the title of this post, simply because it’s an attempt at reminding myself what I need to do. Life has been moving in such a frenzied, hectic way lately that it’s been near impossible for me to relax at all.

calla lily

Oh calla lily! How your sweet pink blush mesmerizes me…

Our 4th of July was very, very wet & soggy – which meant all fun outdoor activities were cancelled. There were flash floods and some local streets were under water, so this was not something to be trifled with. I made some awesome burgers and potato salad (which was a particularly good one) with corn. All-American I suppose.

I think the highlight last night for me was sneaking out to my front stoop, stopping to take a breath and hearing those lovely rain droplets. I find it interesting that the fireflies still come out at their appointed hour, despite the falling rain.

Watching & listening to Sydney and her BFF next door, running around and yelling in the rain with their little hooded towels draped over their heads, squealing every time they heard fireworks. (Which I have no idea who/where/how they were still setting them off. Crazy drunk people, just sayin’!)

sydney giant lollipop

In lieu of pics of last night, here’s my girl with her giant crabby patty lollipop….because, why not?

I wished I could recapture some of that childhood magic, when you live in that one moment and (truly) nothing else matters. It did my heart good to see my daughter being happy and giddy in the rain. For those of you in the States, I hope you had some fun (and more exciting) adventures yesterday.

christmas tree elf

Teeny, tiny Christmas tree (my own design) with elf, since I’m working 6 months ahead of schedule now! Sort of fitting to make this on the 4th, I think. We’ll see what this turns out to be.

Have a blessed day. Take a nap for me. ~E

“Lucy Pearl” by Jerry ‘Boogie’ McCain

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