Sunday, March 13, 2011

A few weeks ago, I took a class with Kathy Zimmerman at Stitches West. Kathy designs beautiful sweaters, and cabling is definitely her signature design element. She's also the author (star?) of an instructional DVD on cabling, and owns a yarn store in Ligonier PA.

Kathy showed off some of her sweaters, which was a class unto itself on proper finishing techniques. She introduced cabling charting, which I already love, and got us started customizing charts. I was inspired by a couple of her cables and immediately started sketching freehand, then translated into this:

Cable design

Then we spent the rest of the class swatching our designs. I knit the bottom chart of of handspun three-ply from Frank the sheep

Cable Design class sample #1

and the top one out of white worsted Plymouth Yarn Encore, which shows off cables nicely.

Cable sample #2, finished

We also sketched out a plan for an entire sweater based on the brown sample! I don't know yet if that's what I'll make from that yarn when I'm done spinning it, but possibly. I'll need to check how much yardage I have when I'm done.

Thursday, March 03, 2011

Jodi Green posted a link to TVO Archives. That is, the archives of public television in Ontario -- a personal wayback machine. I found "The Polka-dot Door", one episode, but more than enough to remind me of watching that show when I was six. Yikes. Today that show seems surreal and creepy.

Some of the interviews and forum shows are interesting to me now. There is an interview with Margaret Atwood at age 36 (she says "I'm old..."), where she comments a lot on how she is perceived and received by the public.
  • "If they're afraid of successful women, you're viewed as a witch. If they view you as a mother figure, they want you to solve their problems."
  • "I was talking about economics and politics, and we all know that girls aren't supposed to think about those things, much less talk about them."
Twenty years later interview on the publication of Oryx and Crake, she talks more about literature and politics than on perceptions of herself:
  • "You do get these ideas for books that come more or less complete, you just work them out."
  • "You can't tell authors what they need to do." on whether authors should be told to discuss politics
  • "America is our big neighbour. And if they go down, we go down. So of course we worry. If a person blows you up on some street or other, he isn't going to see your teeny-weeny maple leaf."
  • "I got tired of people saying, why do you always write about women." (on Jimmy, main character of Oryx and Crake)

Also an interview with Mordechai Richler, 1994, about his book "This Year on Jerusalem", where he talks about his changing opinions on Zionism from 1943 through to the date of the interview.

  • "I'm saying the Israeli's invoke the dead for mean political purposes."
  • "I don't think most Israelis want to be on the West Bank as an army of occupation fighting Arab kids. It's very embarrassing."

And more cool stuff, like a discussion of the letters between Pierre Trudeau and Marshal McLuhan, comparing them to a Philosopher King and Court Philosopher, or a collation of opinions on selling movies, with Sydney Pollack, Robert Altman, John Milius and Roger Corman.

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