Yarnlong: Singled Out and Leiden

IMG_5076I’m reading…Singled Out: How Two Million Women Survived Without Men after the First World War by Virginia Nicholson

After reading the introduction of Singled Out, I wasn’t so sure I wanted to continue. It makes two large assumptions (that every woman is heterosexual and every woman wants to have children) and there was a wiff of large assumptions based on little evidence. Then I realised I put off reading too many things that I think might be ‘bad history’ (almost like I think it will be contagious) and I should read it, if only to learn what I don’t want to do in my own practice.

So far, I’m being rewarded for this perseverance; the author relies on the diaries and other written words of the women being studied and it is so, so refreshing to hear about the First World War from a female point of view.

I’m knitting…Leiden by Natalie Selles

While I was writing my book, I let myself cast on whatever made me happy and didn’t bother with finishing anything. As a result I now have a lot of WIPs on the go. I’m not allowed to cast on anything new until I’ve finished at least some of them.

I figured an easy win was the Leiden jumper because I’m past halfway and it’s a eight-ply jumper (I’m knitting it up in Ashford Tekapo 8 ply).

It’s a very interesting construction, with the panel at the front worked first and then the sides and arms knit sideways. I think I’m going to extend the arms and make it into a sweater.

See what everyone else is knitting and reading over on the Yarnalong

Yarnalong: Quicksilver & Matters of the Heart

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Knitting: Quicksilver by Melanie Berg in Habu Textiles XS-45 20/3 Bamboo

I started this shawl in April of last year. It’s what I knit when I’m between other projects, but more and more I think I should just finish the darned thing. I’m not a huge fan of knitting with bamboo, but the drape it has is amazing.

Reading: Matters of the Heart by Angela Wanhalla

This is a history of intimate relations between Māori and Pākehā, from the early 1800s through to the 1970s. It’s a very tricky topic over a truly ambitious time frame, but Wanhalla is doing an admirable job at the moment (I’m about halfway through).

I did get rather outraged in the chapter about missionaries, who seemingly charged up and down the country, telling everyone they had to have a ‘regular marriage’. It all seemed so absurd, that a few words and the ‘right’ ceremony by the ‘right’ person was the only way to live a decent life. Thankfully that’s all in the past – right?

See what everyone else is knitting and reading over on the original Yarnalong.