Cowl Gone Wild

So I took a UFO with me on our camping trip last week—a sequence-knit cowl that I had started with some of my handspun.  The fiber was Frabjous Fibers BFL, in their “Green with Envy” colorway.  And “sequence knitting,” in case you are not familiar with the idea, is a method of using simple knit and purl stitches to create organic textures, as described by Cecelia Campochiaro in this book.

Anyway, I finished the cowl.

Mildred had chosen not to come with us—she likes her amenities, and she seemed to be looking forward to having Netflix all to herself. But there I was in the campground, in the midst of Nature, so I got to thinking about all of the people who manage to find the exact perfect setting to take gorgeous knitting photos.

You know the ones I mean. The person who drapes her Fair Isle sweater across a stone wall that just happens to have lichen growing on it that just matches the gray-greens and bronzes in the sweater. Or the person who finds a whole beach that was apparently dyed to match her shawl.

I credit Kaffe Fassett for this trend. Before he came along, women’s magazines and yarn company leaflets thought nothing of plunking a woman in a bright turquoise sweater and foolish orange pants in front of a plain white backdrop. The sweater might have been terrific, but you had to squint to try to block out the horror of it all.

As you may have observed, I am a reasonably lousy photographer. But there I was, in the midst of Nature, deserted by Mildred. I may not have had a dyed-to-match teal and purple beach, but I had to give it a try and work with what I had–to wit, a cowl, my phone, and a New Mexico campsite. Having failed to pack a tapestry needle, I couldn’t work in the loose ends, but these are supposed to be arty photographs. I hoped that the loose ends would add a certain spontaneity, or joie de vivre, or je ne sais quoi, or plain old WTF.

I call this one “Cowl on a Scraggly Rose Bush:”



And this is “Cowl on a Water-Stressed Pine Tree:”



And here is my piece of resistance—“Cowl on a Fence On Colorado Highway 67 Somewhere South of Cotopaxi.”



See, this is why Mildred gets paid the big bucks for standing in the corner of my guest room–a position she is willing to resume, now that she has binge-watched all of the Outlander episodes she had recorded.




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