Am really glad everyone enjoyed the Durga Puja photographs! I oscillated between hating the nonstop noise and suffocation by ad-banners, and just soaking in the sheer festive energy and beauty. But I’m still not quite sure what to make of the disconnect between the genuine creativity and interest in using natural, sustainable materials and showcasing important eco-awareness themes within the pandals themselves, and the increasingly unsustainable mode of enjoying them outside and around them – harsh floodlights for the advertisements, the plasticware use strewn all around through the days and nights of pandal-hopping, and the lack of interest in thinking of artificially manufactured and magnified sound as part of the pollution/abuse of the environment. If all these are not actively engaged, the eco-theme itself risks becoming yet another item of consumption, disengaged from the (deafened) neighbourhood. So I continue to oscillate between wanting to stay next year and explore other areas of the city, perhaps even join an effort to talk about some of these issues, and just get the hell out early to some remote hilly place….
Ah well. Last post I mentioned I started working on something. Here it is, the Helena cardigan from Knitty summer ‘08:
I made it for a friend’s one-year-old daughter, whom I am going to see for the first time ever in a couple of hours. Very simple top-down seamless pattern with raglan increases and picot sewed-in edges. Very quick, very cute! I had bought a contrast skein in red to make some stripes along the waist and wrists, but then decided the cream colour looked fine on its own. One of the things I liked best about the pattern is the YO increase along the raglan. See the bottom hole where the raglan meets the armscye – no worrying about the gap created by picked up stitches when joining the sleeve! Looks like a perfect detail in the pattern itself.
Needle: 3.75 mm Pony straights and DPNs.
Yarn: Oswal Continental acrylic, 3 skeins and a smidgen, approximately 80-85 gms. These skeins, frustratingly, don’t mention yardage or metreage, but my gauge matched the pattern’s, so I would estimate approx. 450 yards total – would make it about 130-140 yards a skein of 25 gms?
Gauge: 5.5 spi over stockinette.
Size: 18 months size in pattern.
I made no changes, except to substitute a two-row single crochet border for the knitted one, because I did not have a circular needle to accommodate all the stitches along the border. (Yes, my stuff shipped from the US is STILL not here and two stores I tried did not have a circular needle in the size I wanted.) But I did have a crochet needle, so I first tried a crochet picot border but then gave it up, because it was altogether too much picot in the sweater. I must say crochet borders are easier to do than knitted ones, but I am still not sure I like the look of them as much.
Yesterday I went to this huge market in Central Calcutta called Newmarket, to an old wool store (Guin Wool House) and their adjacent button shop. This was sheer button heaven, with incredibly lovely wooden ones at very cheap rates. I also bought some skeins of a pure 4 ply wool I have never seen before in stores here, called Adreena’s Suprina pure new wool.
It is a lovely variegated brick shade with red and mustard flecks… I swatched for it for another baby sweater in Knitty, but I think it may be too thin, and I might run out of yarn. But it is gorgeous, and looks lovely in lace, no?