Modern Art Shawl 

I’m a little worried I might have a stinker on my hands. When I bought the yarn, I was hestiating at Knitty City between a lace-weight Dream in Color in a wine color and this vareigated Fleece Artist yarn. The Dream in Color yarn was actually cheaper, yardage-wise, and a semi-solid. I had actually planned to buy a solid or a semi-solid color. But buoyed by the success of my other vareigated shawl, and lured by the splotches of hot pink in the Fleece Artist skeins, I bought the variegated. I fear that it may turn out looking like a ground-up Rainbow Brite doll, but even so, I’m going to wear it around, because it’s taken quite a lot of work to knit. Plus, I hate ripping.

Knitting Skull 

My boss found this shirt in a package of stuff sent to our office last year and dropped it off at my desk, and now that it’s finally hot, I can wear it. It says “Needle Dudes.”

On another note, Adam and I were talking about how local yarn stores can compete with the internet, and he wondered if they had tried teaching knitting in schools, to breed future customers. I started laughing because I had recently read a David Sedaris article where he talked about visiting tobacco factories as a school field trip (complete with free cigarettes), and I remembered that a friend (and occasional commenter) had mentioned going to the local bread factory as a child. I don’t think we went to anything as super-branded as a tobacco factory as a field trip when I was kid (though I do remember visiting some television show which starred someone from Laugh-In, which was way before our time, and thus, not very impressive). It seems a bit intense to try to sell yarn (or tobacco) to kids through school, though I do remember during a crochet phase in my youth, sending away for some sort of yarn newsletter that came with sample cards on their newest yarn. (I have no idea how I found this company or their address, since this was years before the internet, though I suspect it may have been through this book I had, which had the addresses of many weird clubs kids could write to and ask for membership. I remember being particularly taken with the idea of joining a sugar-packet collectors club, which speaks highly of my coolness factor in elementary school.) We had a sewing class in junior high, which required buying fabric, and I know many Waldorf schools teach their students to knit, so maybe knitting in the schools is a good way to create future customers.



Posted in Shawls, Uncategorized at May 27th, 2008.

I actually have all four pages of this Daniel Clowes comic, thanks to my neighbor and FOA (Friend of Adam’s ) who is an art school alum and who mailed a copy of it to me after we saw the movie. My scanner seems to be broken though, so I’m just linking the first panel from Wikipedia.

Anyway, I’ve realized this whole “art” idea is great! Now I can justify my ugly knitting! Who knew that any of my readers and commenters went to art school? I love it! I did not go to art school, though I did major in history, which is bullshitty in its own way, particularly if you wrote the kinds of papers I did. (Including my totally awesome paper “The Semiotics of the Autumn 1996 Men’s J. Crew Catalog.” And no, I did not go to Brown.)

I read KnitKnit a while back (and I saw Sabrina Gschwandtner speak at that American Craft event I went to) and I thought it was fairly interesting. It’s a mix of people who definitely see knitting as Art, fashion designers, and handknitting designers. They each gave a pattern, so it’s actually quite an eclectic collection, and an interesting book, if not necessarily the most useful.

I’m not really sure if I’m a process or a product knitter. I think I’m kind of a product knitter, because I wouldn’t knit something just to learn a technique, yet I often choose to knit ugly things. I think I might be is a knitting-product knitter, versus a clothing-product knitter. I knit things because I like the look of the finished object, versus the look of the finished object on me. Though I have a tendency to buy extremely weird clothes too, so it might be a life problem.

By the way, I know this blog totally ignores actual news–like the earthquake in China, the problems in Myanmar, or even the election–but I’m not sure I have any useful thoughts to offer on any of those situations.

Posted in Printed Matter, Uncategorized at May 13th, 2008.

New Shawl  

Did you know that part of the Berlin Wall (above) is in New York? Who knew? It’s hidden away in Midtown, near the Museum of Modern Art. Anyhow, I have a total dearth of exciting knit-blogging fodder, or exciting life-blogging fodder. (Not that my normal posts are SO exciting, but anyway.)

I’m knitting another shawl, out of variegated yarn. I realize that these are weird and possibly ugly, and the fact that I spend the majority of my free time and disposable income on crazy colored yarns to knit potentially ugly accessories, is, perhaps, a bad direction for my life. This could, if my life was a novel, or some kind of art project, be kind of tragic, and a metaphor for modern American life or something.

By the way, in my boring life, I’ve recently went to this year’s Whitney Biennial, and it was so crappy. (Beyond the low quality of the art, there was a really low level of craftsmanship to the work.) Plus, a whole bunch of the explanations seemed, um, bullshitty. So maybe I will try to justify my craft projects with similar explanations: “New York Minknit’s work posits the question of how chance and gender interact in modern life. By using variegated yarn, the artist is showing the randomness of choice, and interprets the concept for the fiber arts. Shawls have traditionally been worn by older women, many of whom have been forgotten by modern society, and by crafting shawls using traditional needle-work, she reinvents the definition of third-wave feminism.”

Or maybe I just love ugly shawls. 

Posted in Shawls, travelingproject, Uncategorized at May 11th, 2008.