I’ve been seeing the word “hygge” everywhere lately, and I found myself intrigued by the concept. Hygge, pronounced “hooga”, is a Danish word that seems to be all about coziness, warmth, and mindfulness. Visitdenmark.com says, “In essence, hygge means creating a warm atmosphere and enjoying the good things in life with good people”. Doesn’t that sound lovely? It seems to me that the concept of hygge is perfectly suited to a fiber lifestyle, especially here in Maine. Over The Rainbow Yarn’s Stitch ‘n’ Spin groups are pretty much the embodiment of hygge — lovely people sitting around a table, working on soft and cozy projects, and forming new friendships. Sometimes there’s even chocolate.
Winters in Maine can be long and dark, and I occasionally start to wonder whether spring will ever arrive. Remember when it stayed light out after 6 pm? Me neither. But now that I know about hygge, it’s almost as if I’ve been given permission to hunker down, don my wooliest socks, and knit the winter away. (In this scene I’m also picturing myself in front of a woodstove, with a mug of mulled cider and a kitten. Hey, we’re all entitled to our own hygge fantasies.) I think that the happiest country in the world is onto something here, and I intend to explore this concept further for you, loyal readers.
The scarf you can see in the background of that photo (behind a candle and my mug of tea) is our version of Pink Fluffy, a wonderfully simple garter stitch scarf by Andra Asars, and possibly the most hygge item in the shop. I also have to say that I think my Caribou Cowl is pretty hygge too. It’s soft, cozy, and very meditative to knit. This month, you can download it for free from our website!
As I was eating breakfast and browsing Facebook this morning, an article caught my eye, and I knew I needed to share it with you. It was on an archaeology website (many of you already know that I’m an archaeology nerd), which isn’t my typical source for knitting news. The title of this article on digventures.com was “Guy Knits Jumpers Of Famous Places, Then Goes There And Wears Them” and it’s as amazing as you would hope. The fiber artist’s name is Sam Barsky, and since he started knitting 16 years ago, he has made over 90 sweaters. (I don’t know about you, but I suddenly feel like a slacker.) One of my favorite parts of the post was the statement that, “Sam realised that he didn’t have to stick to patterns, he could just knit whatever was in his head”. You guys, this is what our Boss Board is all about! We want all of our knitters to feel as confident as Sam. It also makes me happy to read an article about a male knitter that isn’t, “Men Can Knit Too!” or “Man Bucks Stereotypes, Knits Sweater”, but instead just treats him as any other (extraordinarily talented and creative) fiber person.
I’ve also been overwhelmed by the number of you who are knitting pink hats for the Pussyhat Project! I never expected it to take off the way that it has, but it warms my heart every time someone comes in looking for pink yarn. If there are any procrastinators out there (*cough*me*cough*), I’m going to try to order in some pink super bulky yarn for some last-minute hats. All of you have gotten me thinking that perhaps it’s time I took a stand myself and attended the march in Augusta on January 21st. Just now, when I typed “Pussyhat” into Ravelry under “projects”, I got 105 pages of results! That’s 105 pages of strong, confident knitters and crocheters who will not be ignored. Fiber folks are the best.
Finally, my faith in humanity got a nice boost this morning from another Facebook post, this time from Rockland Main Street. Apparently some kind soul has been tying fleece scarves (ok, so not knitting, but give me a break on this one) to lamp posts on Main Street in our town, with lovely notes. These scarves are free, and anyone in need is encouraged to take one and stay warm. This time of year, I worry for members of our community who might not have adequate winter layers. I saw a man walking down the street in shorts a week ago, and desperately hoped that it was by choice and not because he had no other clothes. If any of you know this good samaritan who is working to warm people’s hearts and necks, please give them a hug for me!
Happy New Year, everyone! I’m ready for 2017 to be fantastic, how about you? Let’s make it the best year we possibly can.
If projects or tasks are lingering towards the end of the year, I always like to try to wrap them up before New Year’s Eve. It’s always satisfying to complete stuff, and even more so when you have the incentive of a clean slate and a fresh start when the clock strikes midnight. With that in mind, I’m pleased to announce that I have finally completed my Caribou Cowl, and the pattern should be available shortly! (Stay tuned on Facebook!) Made from one skein each of Berroco Folio Luxe and HiKoo Caribou, this cowl is cozy and sophisticated at the same time, and easy-peasy to knit.
Object in photo may be softer than it appears.
And now… I get to start something new. You guys, I swatched. I did. Usually I skip this rather important step, because I’m impatient/lazy, but today, I decided “New Year, new me”. (Also, I really want this to fit.)
Since this is Plymouth Encore Mega on size 13 needles, it took me all of 10 minutes. It’s making me think that I should swatch more often. Also, don’t be like old me — always, always swatch if you’re making a sweater. Be like new-2017-me.
Tonight or tomorrow, this adorable little swatch will be ripped out, and I will CAST ON FOR MY AZEL PULLOVER! At last! It shall be mine! All miiiiiiinnne! (And by “mine” I mean “the store’s”.) Mwahahahahahahaaaa!
Here’s wishing you a triumphant fresh start to this new year. It’s going to be better. We’re going to make it better.