Progress Report: Volute

I’m writing to you today from my mother’s kitchen in Santa Rosa, CA. As I sit here, she’s putting together a wonderful breakfast of homemade cinnamon rolls, savory buns, sausage, eggs, coffee, and mimosas. It’s raining outside – that beautiful California rain that envelops the world and turns its green – and there are loved ones chattering away in the living room. I’m in heaven! A family wedding has brought me home for the weekend, and it honestly couldn’t be at a more perfect time. Finals are coming at the end of the month, and its going to be an absolute slog to make it there. Coming home for a few days is exactly the treat I need to help make it through. After all, what is more healing then a few days at home?

Like any knitter, I always bring a project with me when I go on a trip. This is a three day visit, so I only needed to bring one thing with me. I chose Volute, my incredible mohair experience, as my project for this trip, and I truly don’t think I could have picked better.

Volute has been on my mind for about a year now. This time last year I was working at a knitting shop here in Sonoma county, and we were hosting a Shibui trunk show just after Stitches West that Volute was a part of. As soon as I saw it, I knew it belonged in my closet. The floaty mohair is absolute perfection – the way the fabric drapes reminds me of flowing water. It’s an excellent layering piece for spring and summer, providing just enough warmth to keep bare shoulders happy without being stifling. And the color! I don’t usually do this, but I’m knitting my Volute in the same colorway as the sample. Ash is a dark grey that gives Volute the perfect touch of witchiness. Seriously, over a black dress, with a moonstone necklace, and a crescent moon crown, Volute is going to be packing a pretty magical punch.

However, while all of my Volute-wanting factored into bringing it on my trip (actual knitting time means it will get done faster!), my main reason for bringing it is that its all stockinette stitch. Volute is basically a large stockinette rectangle that gets strategically seamed together to become a cardigan. Now, I know that some of you are going to be instantly put off by that. Who wants to knit miles and miles of stockinette, and in mohair no less! But let me tell you, it has been such a joyful, meditative experience for me, I’ll be sad when its finally finished. The power of stockinette is that it slows down your brain. It lets you just focus on making the stitches, and feeling the yarn that’s in your hands. I can (and have) gone stretches of time just knitting in silence, completely absorbed in the repetitive knits and purls.

Which is exactly why Volute came with me on my trip. This is a bit of a whirlwind visit, so I’m not necessarily going to be able to focus on any of my projects that require more concentration. But this trip is also a breather from classes, and studying, and the mad dash to the end of the semester. I wanted to bring a knitting project that would be just as relaxing as sitting in the kitchen watching my mother make cinnamon rolls. With its endless amounts of stockinette, Volute was precisely the project to help me unwind, and calm down my mind. So often, stockinette stitch is overlooked, written off as being too boring. But there’s a lot of power in its meditative qualities that can be ideal for relaxation.

What about you? What’s your favorite thing to knit to hel

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