15 October 2012
57 Simple Improvements
The Simple Things, the monthly mag UK blogs have been buzzing about. Have you read it? What did you think? I'd say it's definitely an improvement on sister publication Mollie Makes, but as the latter really isn't for me - understatement alert! - that's not much of a recommendation. I shan't be subscribing to either title - although the recipes are worth having - but don't let that put you off, I'm not part of the 'new community of mindful young consumers' they're intended for. Just beware the assumption that a simpler life requires you to 'consume' more and you should be fine. And if you're balking at the £4.99 cover price of The Simple Things, try 91 Magazine, it's free on Issuu! Picture me, if you will, tossing The Simple Things aside, rereading Thoreau instead - "Our lives are frittered away in details ... simplify, simplify" - and contemplating how little I really need to be content. A warm, dry home; a plentiful supply of hot and cold water; a comfy bed with clean cotton sheets; simple food, simply prepared; books and yarn, music and conversation; a wood to walk in, or a shore to wander along ... Not that one could easily 'do' a Thoreau in 2012. The man could make no more than "a little pile" of his "whole household effects" while living at WaldenAfter "food, and clothing, and shelter" he required only "a few implements, a knife, an axe, a spade, a wheelbarrow, etc., and ... lamplight, stationery, and access to a few books". I, on the other hand, require half the gizmos and gadgets that make 21st century living viable ... jeez, just the blogging is impossible without a camera, a laptop, and a heap of networking hardware! Poor Thoreau - a man who declared "inventions" such as the "magnetic telegraph" to be "an improved means to an unimproved end" - he must be turning in his grave! I'm** a 'make do and mend' gal. Grandma Eva taught me how to sides-to-middle sheets, patch fabrics, and darn socks (eugh!), and my darling Dad taught me how to glue and solder and nail stuff back together. And suddenly what I've always done is fashionable. Improving what you already have, whenever you can, that works for me. I should blog more about it. And I plan to apply it to knitsofacto. I am forever being advised that as this blog is becoming increasing successful I should switch to my own domain - I do own knitsofacto.com - on a different platform - WordPress.org for preference. But I really like Blogger. So I'm staying right here. Maybe it's a decision I'll come to regret, even be forced to reconsider, but for now I shall risk Google's whims and caprices and challenge the assumption that a blogspot url is not for the serious blogger***. And I shall be blogging about what I learn along the way. Which brings me to another improvement, she types tentatively, hoping that it will be. I mentioned a pending blog revamp a week or two ago and in addition to tweeking knitso's style elements I'm hoping to quite radically reorganise the content. In part I want to have somewhere more logical to share knit related stuff that isn't quite post material, like the hilarious and totally off the wall video below. Not a static page but something akin to a tabbed category. I won't say more just now because I'm not absolutely sure that what I want to do can in fact be done, but if you arrive one day and things are looking a little odd around here please stick with me, it will hopefully not last long. And I have a question for you: how would you feel about on-topic guest posts popping up here from time to time? I'm not sure myself - this is so very much my space - but I do know one or two folk I'd trust to add to the knitso' conversation, if you'd be interested in hearing what they have to say?
For the non-knitters, that's Stephen West, awesome knitwear designer and all around crazy guy!
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Many, many thanks for your comments on my last post. I'm inclined to agree with Liz, I'd be wary of anything that came from the Satis House kitchens, but dry, crumbly, and probably quite cloying seems to be the consensus, and lots and lots of wedding cake. There were a lot of m's - Proustian madeleine's, macaroons, meringues, and marshmallows - to which I shall add peppery mustard and cress sandwiches. Did you know that sewing mustard seeds into the hem of her wedding dress is reputed to protect and empower a bride?
Thank you too to new commenters and Google Friend Connect followers, Selena at Oh, the places we will go, Emily at Fern and Flora, Ilix at Up late ... always, Meike at Gebreidesjaals, who knits the most beautiful lace shawls, Nessa, and Ans Herz Gelegt.
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* Which, plus a birthday, has been responsible for the brief hiatus in posting. It was a good birthday ... I'll tell you more soon.
** I had an interesting conversation with a newbie blogger the other day about the rights and wrongs of writing in the first person, I should have quoted Thoreau then: "I should not talk so much about myself if there were anybody else whom I knew as well. Unfortunately, I am confined to this theme by the narrowness of my experience.".
*** For a site already doing well on one look no further than Poppytalk.
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