Tag Archives: september

Fall in Pictures

August-September 

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Walking in Vanhakaupunki (literally “Oldtown”).

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The Girl Hat That Was On Fire (Slable by Woolly Wormhead)

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Even though I dislike Juha Tapio and have seen Kaksi vanhaa puuta lyrics used in way too many wedding invitations, the song still makes me cry every fricking time.

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My mother insisted on celebrating my graduation somehow. Because I threatened not to show up if I didn’t get to do the planning, the guests very few and all food vegan. The menu was:

Mushroom Focaccia (recipe from Chocochili)

My father’s Waldorf Salad, recipe for vegan dressing from Papu, porkkana ja hillopulla by Marianne Kiskola

Rachel Ray’s quinoa salad with roasted bell peppers (shown in the photo)

Soyballs from Veganissimo (shown)

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Dessert: modified version of the cake in Puputyttö ja vohvelisankari (featuring Airy & Creamy soycream) and banana-lingonberry cake (Chocochili)

October

More walking:

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Featuring yet another hat! This one I testknit for Stefanie Bold. The cardigan is also a handknit, but was made by my mother at least 20 years ago.

More eating:

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Vegan cupcakes from Niia’s Cupcakes. They have a stand in Forum Shopping Center and I’m pretty sure also do catering and stuff. The strawberry cupcake=piece of heaven.

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(Yep, more hats. Also featuring the Essayist Sweater.)

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We’ve been really enjoying the Great Outdoors this fall: mushroom picking with my father, walking in Keskuspuisto…It probably helped that temperatures were pretty high for most of September and October. However, it snowed last night so this weekend doesn’t look that promising. But I’m very happy I enjoyed it while it lasted!

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Vegan Hostess’ Chickpea Salad

[Bilingual, because I’m participating in a Finnish cooking challenge. The challenge is vegan food and what you would serve to a vegan guest. Details in Finnish here]

Olen jo tainnutkin mainita, että teen usein salaattia kun meille on tulossa vieraita. Niistä syntyy vähemmän tiskiä ja ruoan voi tehdä valmiiksi. Lisäksi kevyempi pääruoka tarkoittaa, että jälkiruoalle jää enemmän tilaa. Mikäs sen mukavampaa 😉

As I’ve mentioned before, I often make a salad when we have guests coming over. Two important reasons for this are that there’s usually less cleaning up to do and a cold salad can be prepared in advance. A light main dish also means that I can bring out the big guns with the dessert 😉

Yleensä käytän aika paljon reseptejä (jos ei muuten niin inspiraationa), mutta yksi menneen kesän suosikkisalaateistani on omasta päästä (vaikkakin niin simppeli, ettei se paljoa miettimistä vaadi). Tätä olen ehtinyt tarjota jo lähestulkoon jokaiselle jonka kanssa syön edes satunnaisesti yhdessä.

Usually I cook from other people’s recipes, or at the very least use them as an inspiration. However, this past summer I came up with a super simple salad that quickly became one of my favourites. I’ve served it to practically everybody I on occasion eat with.

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Summer Chickpea Salad / Kesäinen kikhernesalaatti

Enough for two hungy people / kahdelle nälkäiselle

5 dl of pasta / pastaa

one garlic clove / yksi valkosipulin kynsi

230 g ready-to-eat chickpeas / valmiita kikherneitä

70 g rucola (a.k.a rocket salad and arugula, according to Wikipedia)

juice of half a lemon / puolikkaan sitruunan mehu

canola oil to taste  / rypsiöljyä maun mukaan

salt and pepper to taste / suolaa ja pippuria maun mukaan

 

Cook the pasta / keitä pasta.

Crush the garlic clove / puserra valkosipuli.

Rinse the chickpeas and rucola / huuhtele kikherneet ja rucola.

Mix the pasta with the garlic and chickpeas / sekoita valkosipuli ja kikherneet pastan joukkoon.

Squeeze in the lemon juice and stir a bit / puserra sitruunamehu joukkoon ja sekoita hieman.

Add the rucola and canola oil / lisää rucola ja rypsiöljy.

Finally, add salt and pepper and mix well / lopuksi lisää suola sekä pippuri ja sekoita hyvin.

 

 

 

 

(Un)selfish Knitting

I usually knit just for myself. Being able to wear things I’ve made is part of the fun, and I believe I will always appreciate my handknits more than anyone else would. When I do knit for others, it’s always small items that I then give as gifts. 

I’ve gotten used to thinking of myself as a selfish knitter because I keep most of the things I’ve made. But lately I’ve been wondering…Isn’t knitting something you have absolutely no use for, and because of that giving it to someone, just as selfish?

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Some weeks ago, I was thinking about how fun knitting sweaters is in theory: they have many parts (providing the knitter with some variation in the work), can be made so that all the yarn is used (especially easy if knitting top-down), and are eminently very useful and can be admired by other people (not hidden in your shoe like socks). In practise, however, a sweater for me takes a long time and a lot of yarn. So when my mother told me that a family friend had just had a baby girl, it felt like a Sign. A baby sweater! Of course!

Pattern: “Sock” It to Me (for Girls) from Sock Yarn One-Skein Wonders

Yarn: Blue Moon Fiber Arts Socks That Rock Lightweight, colourway “sweet pea”

Thoughts: I really had fun knitting this. It’s not too plain to be boring to knit, but not too complicated either. It’s an incredibly fast knit, too (took me a week, even with sewing the sleeves and getting buttons!). 

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Pattern: Gwynedd from Knitscene Fall 2010

Yarn: Leftovers from my Wondertunic -Le Fibre Nobili Super Tajmahal

Thoughts: The model in the magazine has a similar head shape than a friend of mine, who also celebrated her birthday recently, so I made the hat for her. I still think the hat’s cute, although I’m not sure whether she plans to ever wear it…

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Pattern: Pavone by Woolly Wormhead

Yarn: Artesano Superwash Merino DK

Thoughts: I wanted very much to knit this pattern in this yarn, but didn’t have enough yardage to make it in my size. I decided that I’d rather make it in a smaller size and give it to someone than try to make the bigger size and run out of yarn. Luckily I found someone who accepted it 🙂

But even among this sort-of-selfish knitting, I have managed to finish one true labour of love:

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Pattern: Cauchy from Sock Innovation

 Yarn: Wollmeise Twin (80% merino, 20% nylon), colourway “maus alt”

Thoughts: These socks took f o r e v e r. Really! I started them in July 2010 and finished in August this year. Mostly it was because of my decision to use 1.75mm needles for superdense fabric, but also because that damn pattern isn’t as easy to memorize as one might expect. While both socks have the same number of rounds, they are not identical because I sort of made up my own zigzags. I also changed the stitch count, did a different cast-on and my usual short-row heel. So very little of Cookie A’s pattern remains, really.

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beauty is twice beauty

and what is good is doubly good

when it is a matter of two socks

made of wool in winter. 

Pablo Neruda

 

Hat knitting: the bookish edition

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Here’s my Rikke hat. I love the colour of the yarn -at first glance it appears just brown, but in the right lighting you can see subtle shades of purple and green. Very forest-y, I think. My progress has been slow because I’ve been attempting to read at the same time (actually pretty easy on the knit rounds, somewhat more difficult to manage on the purl rounds.)

The second book I picked up after The Help was just as good although very different: We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson. Very hard to classify, that one. An atmospheric, quirky horror story. Some review/analysis compared it to Henry James’ Turn of the Screw but luckily it really wasn’t much like it at all, since I heartily disliked James’ novella.

Now I have started Barbara Pym’s Excellent Women and it is looking good so far. I can hardly believe my luck, since usually only about one out of five books I start reading turn out to be any good. And now three in a row? Better knock on wood!

The Knitter’s Happy Place

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It is still fall, it is still mostly raining. But I have had a few free days and am at peace with my knitting again.

Besides the free time, some other things helped me significantly:

– biscuits (as a result of the happy discovery that Pirkka Adele biscuits are vegan)

– coffee (drank from my knitting bunnies-mug, no less)

– small, colourful knitting (in this instance a cowl) 

-blogs (especially Mooncalf Makes)

 

I have decided to not feel guilty about unfinished sweaters, or being forced to buy mittens because I can’t be bothered to knit a pair. This is supposed to be a fun hobby and (as The Yarn Harlot writes) there is no knitting police. In this spirit, I finished an orange cowl out of Malabrigo Worsted and then cast on a Rikke hat (I was even so rebellious as to not use the specified cast on method). 

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My hunger for colour has also led to some re-organisation around the house. So far this has meant that I am also more often inspired to clean up, so I’d say it’s a good thing!

 

 

Colour cravings

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The weather has been wreaking havoc here, and almost killed my knitting. Rain, storm, drizzle -if it includes water, we’ve had it this month. And this week the rain has hardly stopped at all, making everything seem even more dreary. On top of everything, it is still too warm to wear most of my knitwear!

So isn’t it only natural that as I fight my way through a storm on a gray September evening, I crave for colour -the brighter, the better?

I have been both buying yarn like a madwoman, and casting on new (colourful) things. Hardly anything has, however, gotten finished. I feel like I don’t know what I want to do and so keep trying to do everything: socks, a sweater, scarves, hats…

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This is my measly FO-pile; I’m including the book (The Help by Kathryn Stockett) because colour-wise it fits Project Spectrum and also because I love love loved it. The knit objects are both hats, and nothing to write home about. The green one is also my first contribution to Single Skein September (the other one was started in August, and therefore doesn’t count). 

FO: Coffee Tunic

More sweaters!

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This was probably my oldest UFO, started in 2008 or 2009. All I remember is that I bought the yarn from Karnaluks in Tallinn and cast on fairly soon afterwards. I knit 12cm of ribbing and a few cable twists before I got bored. I finally dug up the project in August and finished the thing in just two weeks.

The Pattern: Coffee Tunic (free via Ravelry or the designer’s blog). Mine isn’t really a tunic-length because I was afraid of running out of yarn (I didn’t) and doesn’t have the collar because I didn’t feel like knitting a lot more 2×2 ribbing. The cable turn also happens every 10th row instead of every 12th because apparently I couldn’t count back in 2008. Yay.

The Yarn: Lana Cervinia Super Tajmahal, about 8.5 skeins. The hem already started pilling as I was knitting the top, so I can’t recommend the yarn for garments. A typical new-knitter yarn purchase I think; totally unnecessary and impractical but oh so soft and on sale. 10 skeins cost 20€.

Needles: 3mm. Please note that the recommended size listed on the ball band is 5.5mm. How very funny.

Comments: Fits surprisingly well, quite comfortable to wear. Also my first succesfull sleeveless knit garment and therefore good practise for (gasp) the BF vest in my queue…