Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Yarn Along - KAL Sunny Days Shawlette

Do you ever knit something and know instantly that it's going to be a personal classic, that you'll make again and again?  I feel this way about the Milo vest, the Taproot family mitts, and now the Sunny Days Shawlette!
This one is going to be gifted to a friends middle daughter who will be 8 on friday.  It is the smaller of the two sizes and a perfect size for her.  I'm planning on making the larger one for myself as my holiday knit in July so I mustn't buy the yarn too soon or we all know what will happen don't we!

I was thinking of a autumn orange as my main color and a steely blue for the contrast, in a lovely pure merino  'made in france'.
My neighbor recently lent me these books, exactly at a time when I need them, especially The Complete Book of Self-Sufficiency (John Seymour).   A few months ago I read and enjoyed, Barbara Kingslover's - 'Animal, Vegetable, Miracle',  that followed her family's journey to self sufficiency.  I've always had this romantic notion of a family farm.  My grandparents were self-sufficient (not really through choice, more necessity) and I have fond memories of collecting eggs, feeding chickens and toasting bread on an open fire at their farm.
My father has many times told me that things were not always so idilic.  But never-the-less,  I have of recent been lamenting that 'it's not fair' - how am I meant to be self-sufficient with 160m² veggi plot and two chickens!
Seymours book is very 'complete' but it's not just about being 'completely' self-sufficient.  It's about doing what you can with what you have!   Good advice Mr Seymour.
So what do I have at the moment?  Lots of dandelions - add a little sugar, well a lot of sugar actually, some lemon and pectin - and voila Dandelion Jelly.   And if it ever stops raining and we get some sunshine I'll will have: potatoes, carrots, leeks, beets, broccoli, lettuce, corn, squash, spinach, peas, beans...

... and most importantly I still have lots of time to spend with my children.
Linking up with Ginny for Yarn Along.


  1. Such a beautiful shawl! And such good book recommendations, too. Dandelion jam, huh? My son just mowed all our dandelions, so I'll have to wait until the next crop is ready for harvest. :)

  2. love the shawl, perfect color combo.
    after reading AVM i wanted a farm as well. and yet here i am in the city with three old hens and a couple garden boxes. lol well, it has to start someplace right??

  3. beautiful shawl! I love the blue!

  4. How wonderful! The shawl is very pretty, and the dandelion jelly looks fab. :)

    I would also love to be more self sufficient, and have a teeny garden, and our last attempt at chicken-keeping ended in them being stolen! :S

  5. What a pretty shawl! I love John Seymour's book - it is so inspiring. Your veggie patch sounds like it's going to bring you lots of yummy pleasure in the months to come :o)

  6. I think the citron is my go to pattern. I like those kind of knitting projects! Lovely shawl by the way!!! I think we will be getting some rain soon and gone will be the sunshine!

  7. I know what you mean about getting hooked on a pattern.. once I made one Milo, I found excuses to make several more. The shawlette is cute as well!
    I LOVED animal vegetable miracle... it was so inspiring for me. I just did a garden post as well. I have never tried dandelion jam!?!

  8. I love your shawl I hope the recipient loves it too! I was just reading about dandelion jelly yesterday it sounds lovely but sadly I cannot eat lemons so I will not be making any. I love Mr Seymour too and my veg plot is probably the same size as yours so I will never be completely self sufficient just as sufficient as possible!

  9. Super, I make Dandelion Honey every year, love it!
    I have John Seymour's New Self-Sufficient Gardener and it is a ver handy book to have!
    I love your shawl looks fab!
    Marigolds' Loft

  10. Beautiful shawl, and a great supply of books to read. Yep...use what you have.

  11. Great shawl! Be happy with 2 chickens! I have none! So take care of those chickens for me, too! I read a ton about self-suffiency a while back and still am interested, but a crazy life speed has taken me from some of it. I'll get back there.

  12. I have been seeing recipes for dandelion jam and honey everywhere this week! With an overabundance of dandelions, I may have to try it this summer!

    I love the colors of your shawl, it is gorgeous. The Milo vest is one of my favorites as well and I have knit several in the past couple months.
    We always had a dream of self-sufficiency as well, and now live out in the country. We don't have quite an acre, so realistically we will never have the homestead of our dreams, but we are taking one step at a time and have a nice garden, a dozen chickens, and still dream of having a couple goats for milk and cheese - maybe once we get out of the newborn/toddler/preschool stage with our kiddos...I will have to look into the book you have recommended; it sounds right up my alley!

  13. I'm totally hooked on the puerperium series, my baby is on his fourth, and I'm trying to pick out wool for number five! And the Different Lines shawl; every woman in my family will have one before too long!!!

  14. Just popped over to let you know that I answered your herbal tea question over on yesterday's post. Thanks for sharing the book tip - I'm going to look into that one as I hadn't seen it yet.

  15. Loving your Sunny Days shawlette! Very sweet. :)

  16. We also love making dandelion "honey" (dandelions, oranges, sugar, but we don't add pectin so it has the consistency of honey).