Bits and pieces. Odds and ends. Transitions. Distractions. That's the way things feel at the moment with the bustle of Christmas approaching, with another year ending, and with the prospect of a new year ahead with all its possibility for change.
So, in this distracted spirit, a rather scattered and dispersed entry.
If you asked me, I would probably say that I really dislike things that might be described as 'whimsical'. Whimsy is too coy and too cute to appeal to me. Despite this, I've bought both editions of Ysolda Teague's 'Whimsical Little Knits'- the second of which arrived last week. I'm making the Scroll Lace Scarf from volume 2, using Knitabulous's 'Silkstream' - a rich, deep pink 100% silk yarn. I'm making it very slowly, as I've been distracted by Christmas gift knitting. Ysolda may see her creations as 'whimsical', but they also have the practicality of well-written, easy-to-follow instructions.
I work at a university, and last week the second year Industrial Design students held a market. The students had been given the task of designing a small white pottery vase that was inspired by a particular flower - daisies, tulips, irises among others. They then had to make an edition of ten vases, design and make the packaging, and sell them. Fortunately, my work group and I had read our notices that told us of the sale and were the first customers when the market opened.
What a great project. Some of the students sold all ten of their vases within ten minutes. All of them had sold within an hour. I bought three vases - initially thinking they could be gifts. But they look so good as a group I don't think I can bear to part with any single one.
The packaging (each piece individually made) was almost as wonderful as the vases.
This year I've been having my 'bah! Humbug!' Christmas moments about Christmas e-cards. I love getting real, ie paper, Christmas cards, though I'm not always so meticulous about sending them.
However wonderful the e-cards are - and some of them use beautiful images - they're not the same. They don't have the anticipation of opening the envelopes, the pleasure of reading the message that the sender has taken the trouble to write by hand, and then the indecision of where to display them. And I hate being told that e-cards are more environmentally friendly! They require two sheets of paper (one for the envelope, one for the card) once a year - a minuscule environmental cost compared to the advertising brochures that flood into my letter box - and they provide employment for the card designers and manufacturers and for the post office.
Oh, and I forgot to mention. Most of the e-cards are from companies I've never used or people I've barely encountered - people who would never bother to send me a 'real' card - so they're hardly a saving of any kind.