Variety.

We have entered fussy land in our family.

Or maybe you could call it ‘expanding culinary experiences’. You see, for years, we have lived on porridge for breakfast. Each and every morning. All through winter. And Bircher in summer. Of course I don’t do things by half and so my porridge is a bit more gourmet than the plain old name would suggest.

I may add…

  • coconut and/or coconut milk with a splash of vanilla.
  • cinnamon and grated apple
  • toasted slivers of almonds and a knob of butter
  • poached fruit

I was cruising nicely in the mornings, smug in the knowledge that my offsprings were starting their day with a royal breakfast, tummies warm and low GI.

But then, as the oldest was approaching the ominous 9-year old phase, she baulked. Did not like porridge anymore (copied by the adoring youngest…). The matter was made tricky by middle child, who won’t eat anything else but. So for a while I found myself morphing into Nigella, lip smacking and voluptuous, cooking a variety of breakfasts to cater for 3 hungry and demanding mouths.

And then I came across a fabulous article (on 9-year-olds interestingly), and the idea of a Breakfast roster came. Leaving the middle child aside, who is happy on a variation of oats, we rotate the menu.

Monday is Smoothie Day (oats, banana, egg, apple, cashews, linseed oil, yoghurt and milk). That is when I really pack it in….

Tuesday is Porridge Day

Wednesday is Lazy Weetbix Day

Thursday is Eggs on Toast Day

and Friday is now Semolina Day. Fab recipe for this very european porridge is here.

And to tell you the truth, I don’t like eating the same thing over and over either. But everyone is different. Middle boy and hubby would be happy to eat porridge and pasta for the rest of theirs days and be blissfully happy. Not a complaint. Not so the rest of the crew. And that’s ok.

As long as they are still starting their day on a full and warm tummy I say.

But what has this got to do with anything?

Well, I was just thinking about variety in knitting. I used to only use 8-ply, 100% wool. Ok, that was a long time ago. But things have changed so much over the past 5 years or so. I wonder what has started this change in trend?

One thing that has opened my eyes to a variety of fibres and colours is certainly Ravelry. It has made knitting and crochet modern and cool. It has given this once nana craft a new twist.

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That, and together with a trend towards a more sustainable lifestyle.

Everything crafty, be it quilting, knitting or crochet can now unashamedly be put next to the ueber cool crafts like textile printing, upholstery and wood-turning. Add to that bio-dynamic  gardening and local gourmet food and we have a recipe for good, slow and clean living. Or just a little step towards it at least.

There are several ideas and thoughts that happen around our craftyness I think. It is for  one the act of sitting down, slowing down and get our hands moving. As the world around us gets faster and faster, craft slows us down. And that is certainly true for myself. While we live in the country and things move at a slower pace than in the City, I still feel we have less time. Or there is the feeling of having to rush, having to be on top of things all the time. With all the latest information available online, I sometimes feel that I am missing out on something.

And when I get that feeling of being overwhelmed, I do like to sit down and spend a solid hours or so knitting. I let my mind go empty and my breathing slows down. I don’t think much while knitting…

What I do see though, is the colour that is moving through my hands. The variation in tones and patterns forming. With some yarns I have to keep patting the growing fabric, hold it against the light to see it shimmer. With some skeins, you never know what the finished fabric will look like.

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With other skeins, it is all about texture and drape.

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And with some, it’s both.

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There is the anticipation of having the perfect skein and finding the perfect pattern to go with it. There is the hunt for that perfect green (or grey) to match what we have dreamed up in our heads.

People are now interested where the yarn comes from, how it was produced, what colours have been used. Even WHO dyed it. There are now so many amazing indie yarn dyers all putting their personal stamp on their finished yarn goodness.

There are those who only knit with hand dyed yarns and would not even consider knitting with a Jo Sharp or a Debbie Bliss yarn. Some are in raptures when feeling the amazing softness of Alpaca, Cashmere, Camel and Silk and the curiosity of Possum yarn.

And when it comes to patterns, we have a mile long lists of favourites. And even when time is limited, I still drool over a pattern I know I probably never get around knitting, but I still imagine what colours I would choose…

And finally we see the interest and passion for artisan crafts cross age and gender. What binds it all together is the hand craft, the natural essence of it and the accessible creativity.

So, will I leave you with three of todays favourite finds.

The Cassis Shawlette in 4-ply

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Trapezoid by Kristen Johnstone

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And Bolting by Stephen West of course….

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I wish you all a sun-filled, slow and relaxing weekend

PS: ZigoZago is doing a POP UP Shop in Castlemaine from 14th – 25th August @ the gorgeous Little Makers in

227 Barkers Street Castlemaine (check the website for opening hours closer to the date)!

Be sure to pop in to feel and pat all your favourite yarns….

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4 thoughts on “Variety.

  1. i love this journal post, it is something i talk about a lot to people who look at me strangely when i say i knit and that i order all my wool online so i get the wool i want not the crap at a certain national chain store. And i can have sprt weight, worsted weight , natural fibres, organic fibres etc etc
    And i am obssessed with Bolting….. i am thinking it will be my summer project ( i love cassis too )

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