Polymath Enthusiasms

Odds & (Week)ends #24

Tits Everywhere

So today I got to do the equivalent of a supermarket dash, as Countess Ablaze and a coterie of makers launched the Tits Out Collective: yarn, patterns, notions and more, inspired by the Countess’ iconic limited edition colourway ‘If I want exposure, I’ll get my tits out’. Each dyer/designer/maker chose a charity to donate some of the proceeds to. If you want the full story on how this came about, check out the Countess Ablaze site for her blog post, and a gallery linking you to all 287 individuals and businesses involved.

If you’re wondering how on Earth one chooses what, out of 287 possibilities, to buy, let me fill you in on my approach. First I decided to stick to UK businesses (this isn’t some patriotic thing, I just have a limited budget and I’d rather spend it on wool than postage), then I looked at the charities being supported (I’m sure they’re all meaningful to the person who chose them, but aligning my purchases with causes I care about made sense), and finally I looked at what yarn bases were on offer so that I ended up with yarn that would play well with my current stash (in the case of patterns I chose ones that I felt I would actually knit).

I could tell you what I ordered, but I’d rather tell you that I was able to support 11 charities today: Addaction, Alfred Kennedy Trust, Alliance for Choice, Bliss, Cornwall Air Ambulance, Dogs for Good, Insight Counselling, Rape Crisis England, Refuge, Women’s Aid, and Womencentre. I’ve also discovered a whole host of new independent dyers. If you’re really curious about my purchases keep an eye out for mailbag updates over the next month. Better than that, please browse the gallery (here’s that link again) and support this awesome movement.

Finished Objects

On the topic of wool, I though I’d spotlight a few things I’ve finished over the past month or so.

La Vie Est Belle (Dieppe) Cowl

In May I felt the need to knit something simple and bright. I already had some DK yarn caked, so I whipped up this cowl. Unfortunately, I didn’t like the shape when I came to wear it (the downside of a pattern that requires seaming is that you can’t try it on as you go), so it’s sitting in the gift pile waiting to be loved by someone else.

Lanes Cardigan

It took me exactly 3 months to knit this (including a long stretch when it was sleeveless, and another stretch when I couldn’t quite face picking up all those stitches for the collar). This is another knit that I’m not 100% happy with. The yarn is beautiful and I can tell it’s only going to get softer and lovelier to wear, but the sleeves need to be shortened, and I don’t feel that the shawl collar suits me. If it were one thing I might try to fix it, but I’m wondering if the best solution might not be to frog the whole thing, and knit something I will actually wear – I suspect a Strange Brew yoked sweater would be wonderful, and provide an opportunity to use up leftovers from my Wool Explorations.

Maytham Shawl

I fully expected to be gifting this shawl, as I couldn’t see myself wearing a lace half-pi shawl (even in the colours ‘Eat the Rich’ and ‘Fight for your right to party’ on Countess Ablaze Tia Merino), which I was fine with because I enjoyed knitting it so much. Then I blocked it, and, oh my…, it was like being cuddled by butterflies. So I think I’ll be keeping that one. ☺️

From the Mailbag

Also for a charity initiative, I picked up some yarn from Gamercrafting this week. It’s sort of hilarious because it’s Harry Potter-themed and, as you may know, I’m a heathen when it comes to the Potterverse (or whatever the fandom calls it). I once took some online quiz that sorted me into Ravenclaw, so I think I’m ok to own this. 😂 Also check out the cool sticker. And my first Belgariad book arrived – luckily it was Book 1 so I was able to get started right away.

Odds and Sods

  • The Tiny Tyrant and I have been playing an RPG for kids called Amazing Tales. Which would be more fun for me if she didn’t insist on naming all her PCs Cinderella. 😑
  • Potato Update: one of my plants has flowered. So in a month or so I can go digging for spuddy treasure. Fingers crossed.
  • We bought a new hoover. He’s kind of a hit:


Six weeks of summer holidays! 😰 In which I will also attempt to read some books, write some words, and knit some things….

Take care, and don’t let Monday get you down.


Cast on: Wood Warbler Cowl

20170904_142054520_iOS The Wood Warbler cowl, designed by Martina Behm, was the September pattern for A Year of Techniques, and I originally planned to knit this in September. After multiple attempts to get gauge on the recommended 5mm needles, I had to resign myself to waiting for my single pair of 4.5mm needle tips (then being used to knit my lopapeysa) to become available. Then it was October and I moved on to the Good Intentions knit and the October A Year of Techniques pattern, and here we are nearly in November.


Since this is a DK-weight, garter cowl, with only a few increases and decreases to worry about, I’m fairly confident that I’ll finish this one in November too, which means I can add it to the Christmas gift pile. The Schoppel Wolle Gradient is a slightly felted 100% wool yarn, which gives it a somewhat stiff feel when knitting. I believe it will hold it’s shape well, and assume that that’s why it has been used for this particular pattern, which is knit straight, on the bias, and grafted to form the cowl. I ‘m enjoying the revelation of the gradient as I knit, and toying with the idea of knitting one for myself, but swapping the green-blue colourway for something with a touch of pink or orange. I think that decision will wait until I’ve finished this and try it on, however, as I think I may prefer something squooshier and softer round my neck.