Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Crafting My Ride

First off-- thanks to everyone who played along with the giveaway and to all of your concern and good wishes. They're truly appreciated.
Our winner is Daisy.

She wrote:

when i saw the pictures i didn't understand the "therapy theory" that lay underneath it all, but then i read the post and i was like:

- what? oh my god! broken? oh no ortopedic boot, ok. what? surgery in the thumb? wow. what more? what? an accident? phewwww that was close...


the skirt is amazing and so is the print. but i'm not so sure about the ric-rac myself, i think it tinkles :)

and just to imagine a patchwork dress... i'm sure i would have had a car accident if it had been me hehehe

So, Daisy, please email me at and I'll get your tutorial and fabric to you ASAP.

I've previously mentioned that I was participating in the Commuter Challenge during the month of May. I'm not new to riding my bike and, years ago, my main form of transportation was a bike, but the idea of relying on a bike to run errands was a long ago concept until last month. I'd come to view bike riding as something I did strictly for exercise, so I wasn't expecting the strange sense of empowerment that using pedal power to help navigate my daily routine would bring. What's perhaps even odder is that my sense of being in control seemed to change depending on the task being accomplished. For instance, I felt great about riding my bike to the bank or the farmer's market or a coffee shop, but I felt amazing about biking to my knitting group. There was something just a little more special about riding rather than driving there. I started to view riding my bike to knit the way I see knitting or sewing--that of having a real hand in crafting the things that I need or use. Somehow, riding made me feel like I was crafting that need as well.
Mind you, I really enjoyed loads of technological advances while I was busy crafting my transportation. I love my insulated water bottle, filled to the brim with ice water and I'm not going to deny that my first response when I walked into knitting group was, "aah...thank goodness someone though to invent air conditioning." But, I am enjoying the paradigm shift that this past month's biking has brought about and, despite getting soaked in the rain yesterday on the way home from the gym, am planning to continue relying on my bike to get around.
While at knitting group, I worked on probably my new favorite project.

This is a free pattern available here. I used the recommended yarn, Classic Elite's Sprout. It's part of their new line, Verde, and is a wonderfully soft, slightly nubby, organic cotton. Best of all, it's bulky weight, so it knits up super quick.

It's a fast knit and the top down pattern is easy to follow. Unlike many top down knits though you don't place the sleeve stitches on waste yarn and come back to them after the body is finished. Rather you knit the sleeves as you come to them. I was a little suspicious of this concept but decided to let the pattern lead me and it turned out great. I'm so jazzed about this top that I ordered yarn for a second. This time in this color way.
The color is called "Summer Rain". I think it's supposed to sound refreshing. Around here though summer rain is usually preceded by a goodly amount of summer humidity. So, I think I'll call the color pale gray instead. Either way, I'm set for next week's knitting group.


K said...

I know what you mean about riding. For one thing, you can see in all directions. For another, you can dance with a bike. Harder to do with a car. Still, it's like a being a gazelle out there among the lions -

Kathleen Kibblehouse said...

Great color and style for summer!

Mary Lou said...

I love the top. I'm going to download the pattern..
Can you believe I'm 61 and never learned to ride a bike??

Cheryl Arkison said...

Mary Lou - poor you! There is no such thing as too late to learn. Go for it!

I recently got a new bike. Perfect for my rehab and for toodling around the neighbourhood. Can't wait for my basket to arrive (I will not be knitting one!)

Sachiko said...

I just discover your blog... you are so creative! Love the sewater, thank you for sharing!

Robyn of Coffee and Cotton said... you made me download another knitting pattern. :D I love the green you made it in! Yup, Summer Rain here does not sound refreshing

mo said...

That sweater is so cute. I love the sleeve- so flattering!

stephie @ narrativeself said...

I am so in awe of you Malka! How do you fit everything in?! Are the places you cycle to relatively nearby? Then there's the gym, dyeing and quilting, knitting, you have more hours in the day than the rest of us?!!! I would love to be as organised as you, so if you have any tips... Love the jumper by the way, it's a great shape and colour and looks beautifully knitted too :)

Ravenhill said...

that green is so cheecky and gorgeous!!!