Sunday, March 23, 2014

To market...

Yesterday I went to the weekly Eveleigh Market.

Redfern Eveleigh market

Even though it's only a pleasant 15 minute walk from home, and even though it's packed with wonderfully fresh produce, I don't often shop at the market. Partly because it's expensive - though you can argue, and I often do, that the freshness of the produce means you get much better value from whatever you buy - but mostly because I still have to visit the supermarket for those staple items that are not local or in season. And I really don't like household shopping.

But maybe because I hadn't been to the market for some time, yesterday's visit was a pleasure. It's really an enjoyable walk as I trundle along with my old lady shopping trolley. There are morning glimpses of the city skyline across the historic Lawson Street mural:

Redfern City skyline

there's the fun of the Big Issue production site.

Redfern Big Issue

I like the small lanes that link the back streets I walk along:

Redfern lane

and I wonder about the ever-delayed restoration plans for the beautiful deserted old buildings that were once the headquarters for the Eveleigh railway workshops:

Redfern ruin

But yesterday's greatest pleasure was the figs. Plump, fresh, and picked just at the right time. Luscious. Yum.

Eveleigh figs

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Alice May's cardi

Knitting for babies and small children is very pleasurable. More generally, there's something particularly pleasurable about making miniatures; reproducing on a small scale the proportion and complexities of something that's usually on a grander scale.

What was great about this pattern, Connie Chang Chinchio's MacDougal Cardigan, is that it's just like an adult pattern, but made on a smaller scale. There's nothing particularly childish or babyish about it; I'd be quite happy wearing an adult version of this cardigan, which is not something you could say for many baby knits. It's also a very gender-neutral pattern, and though both the designer and I have knitted it for little girls it would be equally suitable for a boy. The cardigan has lots of interesting detail for a knitter - it's made without sideseams, has front panels of densely textured oat stitch, has neat reverse garter stitch striped trim for the edges, and gives you the option of knitting the sleeves in the round by progressively picking up stitches around the armhole. The pattern is very well-written and gives much helpful advice.

The cardigan is for Alice May, the first grandchild of an old and good friend. I was doubtful whether the colour (grey, of course) would be considered appropriate for a little girl, but I've been told it was well-received. All in all, a most satisfactory knit.