making

Hands on April

Hands on April

Feels like ages since I last wrote a post over here! The reason is simple - no, I am not neglecting this little corner, my friends - my camera was broken! It is fixed by now, after a long train trip to the capital on my own for the first time (oh oh if I did have fun!) and there is so much I want to share.

The works on the land are evolving. We started clearing the house, which had a huge mimosa living inside, and so many broken tiles and stones. The caravan spot is ready to receive our future dwelling. We have even planted some green friends! A couple lilacs and a fig tree our previous neighbors offered us, which I find such a beautiful way of still keeping them close. I want to show you pictures of this all, but let's have patience. We are staying at the guest house these days, which is the most comfortable place for us to be at the moment, while we (anxiously) wait and wait until we can move in our trailer. And in the meanwhile, we are enjoying the company of the loveliest couple of renters, who have a child just the same age as J!

April was a month of much work in the land and also of waiting. And of creation! I weaved many dreamcatchers to stock in the shop, which to my surprise and joy flew away soon, and found myself elbow deep in new knitting projects - I even gave my sewing machine a teeckeeteeck!

Knitting a jumpsuit

One of the curious facts about us as parents is that we may only have bought one piece of clothing for J since she was born (I'm pretty sure it was a hat. A tiny hat with strawberries). Not because we're great at sewing or knitting, but instead we were blessed with more hand-me-downs than we could possibly count. I fall for hand-me-downs - I find they carry something truly special after having passed by so many children. They're vibrant!

And then, some of them hold a particular feeling. I'm talking about handmade clothes, knitted with love or sewed with grace. Well, I don't really need to describe the magic of handmade to you.

Amongst the clothes our friends have passed us came this jumpsuit.

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Our friend's mother knitted it for her grandchild and the story goes that it made many travels back and forth until it had just the perfect measurements - no pattern here. Although simple, the details are so captivating: the embroidery and the matching color on the buttons sewing bring a smile to my face.

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I've been wanting to knit something like this ever since it arrived, but there's this thing with knitting, only two hands for way too many projects... And this seemed so much more complicated than anything I'd done in my short pilgrimage along knitting. So when a mother-to-be kindly asked me if I could knit a jumpsuit for her baby, my answer was "Yes!...If I can do so". It was the perfect excuse.

I didn't feel very confident I could reproduce this model only by looking at it, so chose a pattern from Ravelry and put my needles into work, in a completely new realm for me, used to vests and hats (and very few of those!).

But it kind of worked out. Against all odds, my needles proved to be reliable. It made me so happy! I improvised a bit in the end and added a hood - heep heep!

Every time I look into a finished piece I think of Florine, who visited our small hut about five months ago, and sat patiently with me teaching me the difference between knitting and purling and how to read a pattern. I may be the living proof that anybody can learn how to knit - trust me, I'm really clumsy. So clumsy I once fed a friend's cat clay litter instead of food.

Next time I venture into a jumpsuit, which is way simpler than it looks like, I'm going for thicker wool and larger needles, to make it cosy like J's.

I'm thinking my next project to be Bristol Ivy's Peace de Resistance. All funds proceeding from this pattern are being donated to charity, so if you're unsure of how to take action in these seemingly dark times... This is a good place to start from.

What's on your needles, folks?

Flax

Flax

Christmas gifts keep on leaving my needles! This Flax sweater was so easy to make, and probably what is my first project without a flaw (at least that one can tell - ah!)

J is just modelling for it. I knitted it for her, but turns out it will be gifted to a baby that is a bit too big than the wee cardigan I had made him...

Salves

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Harvested during full moon and macerated for weeks by the windowsill, these flowers turn into lovely plant medicine for our family.This year we made our biggest batch of salves, from matricaria maritima, calendula officinalis and hypericum perforatum.

We actually made so much this year that the process could also be called getting ready for festival season - if you know what we mean.

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Oh the joys of clarifying beeswax from the neighbour's hives... Not. Big, giant, exquisite mess! "Now where's that leftover block I bought in a store a couple years back?"

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Big jars, small jars, and some bug bite salves too.

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We have enough for the whole year, plus to gift to family & friends. And, hopefully, to pay a few groceries too.

Which salves are you making this season?