Monday, September 25, 2006

Fashion and yarn

I usually do not buy local newspapers, but today was different for between the biggest Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera was published fashionextra - Mode& Modi. It's not like I'm really interested in fashion, not at all, but I got hooked, for the front page had a huge picture like this:
and first 6 pages are full of yarn articles, or rather "knits in fashion" and how they are making a "comeback". The first page is not worth reading, it's just the editor's 'sad' story how machine knits remind her of crocheted bedcover at her parent's home and dad's sweater her mother knit. (I do not consider most local articles real news articles, the journalistic culture in Italy is literally non-existent, but this is not a place to analyse it). Enough of bad things, so what did I find out?
What is IN?:

  1. All knitted items are IN, but should have some embroidered colorful flowers on them (advisable also on other clothes).
  2. The pullovers-cardigans-sweaters should be more or less sexy-slick, with a necessary accessory - huge collar or extralarge baret/hat. Or, since no fashion designer ever agrees on what is IN, some designers prefer to dress their models in at least 2-3 sizes bigger sweaters and tie abelt around the waist.
  3. Colors in knitty world - pink, but also white, pastels, gray and lilac. D&G has a very nice winter collection.
  4. The beginning of the fashion empire of Benetton. Giuliana Benetton is the lady behind the empire, who at the age of 8 found her life's passion in knitting. First she knitted socks for her younger brother, from old sweaters she ripped, followed by sweaters for the family. She and her brother Luciano were forced to quit school and start working when she was only 10 years old, for the father had died and the mother was sickly. She managed to get a job at a local knitworkshop and made a deal with the owner, whose name was also Benetton, but wasn't their relative, to use the knitting machine from 6-8 pm everyday for her own use. She used that time to try new techniques and work out her own designs. Few years later her mom made her work at the tailor's but she hated it and after the mother realized she was unhappy Giuliana was allowed to go back to knit"factory". At the age of 14 she was the headknitter and had 12 girls working under her. One evening when Luciano had come to pick her up and had seen what his sister was upto, he said: "What if you make the sweaters and I sell them?" It was a golden idea, Luciano sold his harmonica and bought one knitting machine. The empire's seed was planted, in 1966 they inaugurated the company.
  5. Fourth page tells us the story of local knitting workshop which cooperates with high-fashion designers. On the same page we can read about the handknitting mania in US. Including a list of stars who knit (from young Ingrid Bergman to Sarah Jessica Parker), Stitch'n'Bitch club and and about Russel Crowe as the most famous male knitter.
  6. Last article talks about warm headcovers, and how once upon a time big baret or fancy pompom could send you to the teasing list or make you the hottest girl of school. This year you'd better go out wearing this style:

Quite enough I think for now. :)

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Creative crisis

1. My Vogue Knitting and Interweave Knits have still not arrived!
2. The felted bag... well let's put it nicely... got thrown away. Lesson learnt: diagonal-horisontal-vertical knitting doesn't felt well, means: knit in one direction! Then: cables and your nice ribbing won't show, so why bother. And last but not least: no more machine felting - it just doesn't work. Or maybe it does, but not with me.
3. Mistery knit - advancing, though I went through with some crisis with it.
4. The whole family is ill - not much time to sit down and relax with needles while everyone needs attention.

But, due to pretty bad cold my daughter has, I had to crochet something where she can keep her hankies. According to her wish: "like sun"
Yarn: leftovers from various projects before: Cotone Cablè 5, crochet hook 2,5 mm, pattern: my own. And a cute yellow button.

On my small break last week I got to but a new magazine Maglia, which has some sweet designes. And I brought some supersoft Ornaghi wool for future sock - if that Vogue Knititng ever arrives!!!!!

Saturday, September 09, 2006


Okay, I've been very busy this week.
The biggest news is that my daughter went to school without prior planning. According to Italian law she should start school at the age of 6 - that is in a year. But during the summer she found a good friend and her parents put an idea to our heads - to apply her to international school of Milan. Of course it was too late already in August, but when I finally called them last Friday morning they asked me to pass by the school on Monday morning to have a chat with the principal so that we could decide for the following year. So Monday morning early we went to school and brought our daughter along, after a long chat with the principal, who wanted to know her background and our preferences, we met teachers, looked the school and finally the principal said: "Okay, that should be covered now, all you have to do now is to go downstairs to the office and speak to Mrs. A about buses and then settle the bill with Mrs. G." We really must have had very confused and stupid faces, for she realized that there was a gap in our information and asked: "So you weren't notified on Friday afternoon that one place in first grade freed up and that this was a admission interview?"
Our little princess has done first 3 days at school and she was very disappointed that she cannt go during the weekend. :D
That was so unknitty again.

Knitty news:
1. Me and three other activists started a project in Estonia of changing self-made gifts for Christmas - it is more or less like Secret Pal, just very local (I can participate for I will be going home for Christmas and therefore can receive and send my package from there).
2. I am currently working on three things one of them my first felting project and I hope to show the results in a few days.
3. I am pissed of with Italian Post, it seems they have been able to loose my 2 subscription magazines: Vogue Knitting and Interweave Knits. I am going to go and bark at them on Monday. Cross your fingers!
4. I will have to withdraw myself from Secret Pal nr 9 - for the school fee is pretty overwhelming and I cannot take myself any financial obligations at this moment. I do hope to join the 10th one, for we will be better of next year.

Friday, September 01, 2006


What will it be? ;)

My not so knitty-vacation

Remember that in my last post I promised to do a lot of knitting on my vacation.... well... I didn't... even though I brought yarn for 3 major projects I only finished 2 hats!!! For my daughter and her new found friend.
But the break was well needed, for I am full of new ideas and started a new knitting project already day before yesterday. The vacation was full of swimming and snorkeling in the Adriatic sea, I overcame my fright of medusas and diving after taking an apnea diving course (it's amazing, if you ever get a chance to do it - DO IT!). It basically means diving until the depth of 30 meters without breathing or using any oxygen and staying down fine 4-5 minutes! And it is possible, of course first you start with 1-2 minutes and 5-10 meters, but it is very doable after 2 day course even for non-divers like me. It gave me such a high that I kept doing it every day after the course - that's where all my free time went :P. This is completely off-topic of course.
But the hats are like this, cute aren't they?
Yarn: Ornaghi Alicante, 100% cotton, self-striping, used app 30 gr. Cotone Cablé nr. 5 (double strand), 100% cotton, white, apple green, pink, used app. 40 gr.
Needles: 3,25 mm circular, 2,75 mm dpn
Pattern: Ulla, summer 2006

I also joined up secret pal nr 9 today. I have been looking at it with envious eyes for the last two times already, but never had the chance to join up - for we moved around a lot, but now I think it will work, for I have no plan of major vacations for the year end.