Corvid Knits

A not-so-secret love affair with yarn

November 15, 2014
by Katherine

Bookish updated

I’ve been whittling away at the 100 book long list. I’ve recently finished up with Beowulf and Gone Girl and skimmed the list to check off others I remembered reading as a youngster. Currently I’m sitting at 39/100.

I’ve not been entirely committed to the list as I have snuck in one or two other fun reading books to supplement the slog of getting through some of the more dull entries (do I really want to read all the gospels? no, not really). If you’re ever inclined to read a book about selkies (though they never name them as such in the book), The Brides of Rollrock Island is a delightful bet.


Knitting wise, I’ve run out of yarn for my Drops cardigan and am waiting to order more and the man socks for the husband are progressing along well. Since knitting the first size 11 monstrosity I’ve become a much quicker knitter so the second sock is coming along at a good clip. Though I would be lying to say that I’m not excited to start something a bit more exciting than a black and red striped sock once this one is through.

DC / NYC 2014

October 8, 2014 by Katherine | 0 comments

Several months ago the fella and I took a trip down to DC and NYC. The fella has some family living in DC and it was nice to see them, as we’d been meaning to get down there for over a year. Much of the trip was walking and sightseeing and eating. I did anticipate being there for the 4th of July to be a complete trip. I did not anticipate getting as jazzed up about seeing the White House as I did – serious, I was like a hyper small child who had just been given a pony made of candy and I have no explanation for that reaction at all.


Too many bunnies to count

While in New York it was much the same, with some notable differences. Most of these differences were bunny related. The Air B’n’B we were staying at kept about 2 dozen rabbits in the back yard. They “don’t do nothing for nobody” according to our host, and that was fine by me. There was a lot of walking around to pubs so that we could cool off and drink beer while watching whatever world cup game was on that day. It was neat!









While I would consider going back some day, it isn’t super high on my list of priorities. The more I travel, the more I realize there are so many places I haven’t seen yet.

October 8, 2014
by Katherine

The One Jumper Project

If there is one thing I like a lot, I think it would be sweaters. I like wearing them, I like knitting them, I like smooshing them, and I like looking at them.

The One Jumper Project

This is a neat project, wherein one sweater is worn by a number of people. It’s a nice sweater, to boot – so you should go look at it.


October 3, 2014
by Katherine

Nimona, a thing you should read

As a follow up to my book list from yesterday I have a web-comic that I feel compelled to share because it is just so wonderful. I ended up following several artists on twitter and one of them is Noelle Stevenson, author/artist behind Nimona. It’s a single story arc, which I love – I like an end point to stories. It’s completed, so you can power read the whole thing in one go as I did. And it’s funny and heartwarming and lovely.


Go read this! An then pre-order the book version that is coming out in 2015 because there is a special book only epilogue that you are probably going to want to read.


Noelle Stevenson is also one of the minds behind Lumberjanes which I am really excited to find. I might even pop into the comic store that is on my walk to work!

October 1, 2014
by Katherine
1 Comment


Outside of knitting my main hobby is reading. I decided fawning over cats and singing Kate Bush songs weren’t really hobbies, but if they were they would be in the running!


One thing that I’ve been seeing crop up frequently enough (to be on my limited radar, admittedly) is the concept of being well read. Aside from being a super duper ambiguous concept – for real, who defines that!? – I don’t know that I could consider myself well read by anyone’s standards. I read a lot, like, A LOT a lot. But it’s quite a mishmash of things. A mishmash that includes comics (web and print) and graphic novels (adult code for comics) which many “well read” folks might not consider in the running.


On to a silly personal challenge that involves me getting a library card. Book Riot published a pretty comprehensive list of books last year that they thought would leave one relatively “well read” once completed. I shall read as many of these books as I can until the end of 2015 and see how I feel.



I will be honest, I am not going to read 50 Shades and there are absolutely some on here that I’m not thrilled about because they seem dull. But, it would not hurt me to branch out some. As an aside, I do consider audiobooks to be books – this is maybe because I have The Age of Innocence in my podcast feed from Craft Lit and I’m not above counting it as read once I’ve completed listening.


I am already sitting at 27/100 and I do own some of these and am part way through a few, so that’s a leg up for me. I’ll be tracking on GoodReads primarily and I’ll be working through the scary ones for October.


The list, for posterity:

  1. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
  2. The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle
  3. The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton
  4. All Quiet on the Western Front by Eric Maria Remarque
  5. The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay  by Michael Chabon
  6. American Pastoral by Philip Roth
  7. Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
  8. Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery
  9. Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand
  10. The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath
  11. Beloved by Toni Morrison
  12. Beowulf
  13. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
  14. Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
  15. The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz
  16. Call of the Wild  by Jack London
  17. Candide by Voltaire
  18. The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer
  19. Casino Royale by Ian Fleming
  20. Catch-22 by Joseph Heller
  21. The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
  22. Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White
  23. Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell
  24. The Collected Poems of Emily Dickinson
  25. The Complete Stories of Edgar Allan Poe
  26. The Complete Stories of Flannery O’Connor 
  27. The Corrections by Jonathan Franzen
  28. Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky
  29. The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown
  30. Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller
  31. Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes
  32. Dream of Red Chamber by Cao Xueqin
  33. Dune by Frank Herbert
  34. Everything is Illuminated by Jonathan Safran Foer
  35. Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
  36. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
  37. Faust by Goethe
  38. Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
  39. A Game of Thrones by George RR Martin
  40. The Golden Bowl by Henry James
  41. The Golden Notebook by Doris Lessing
  42. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
  43. The Gospels
  44. The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
  45. Great Expectations by Charles Dickens
  46. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
  47. Hamlet by William Shakespeare
  48. The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
  49. Harry Potter & The Sorceror’s Stone by J.K. Rowling
  50. Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad
  51. The Help by Kathryn Stockett
  52. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams
  53. The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien
  54. House Made of Dawn by N. Scott Momaday
  55. Howl by Allen Ginsberg
  56. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
  57. if on a winter’s night a traveler by Italo Calvino
  58. The Iliad by Homer
  59. Inferno by Dante
  60. Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace
  61. Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison
  62. Leaves of Grass by Walt Whitman
  63. Life of Pi by Yann Martel
  64. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis
  65. The Little Prince by Antoine  de Saint-Exepury
  66. Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov
  67. Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  68. Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert
  69. Midnight’s Children by Salman Rushdie
  70. Moby-Dick by Herman Melville
  71. Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf
  72. Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie
  73. The Odyssey by Homer
  74. Oedipus the King by Sophocles
  75. On the Road by Jack Kerouac
  76. A Passage to India by E.M. Forster
  77. The Pentateuch
  78. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
  79. Rabbit, Run by John Updike
  80. The Road by Cormac McCarthy
  81. Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare
  82. The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne
  83. Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut
  84. The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner
  85. The Stand by Stephen King
  86. The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway
  87. Swann’s Way by Marcel Proust
  88. Their Eyes Were Watching by Zora Neale Hurston
  89. Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe
  90. The Things They Carried by Tim O’Brien
  91. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
  92. Ulysses by James Joyce
  93. The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera
  94. A Visit from the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan
  95. Waiting for the Barbarians by J.M. Coetzee
  96. Watchmen by Alan Moore
  97. The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle by Haruki Murakami
  98. Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte
  99. 1984 by George Orwell
  100. Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James NOPE!!!


August 26, 2014
by Katherine

Hello from Glasgow where I am sleepy

After several whirlwind months I am once again living in Edmonton and I managed to get myself married. There has been some knitting but little in the way of completion.

I was just in Iceland and left shortly after a volcano erupted, much lopi was bought before my departure. I’m currently in Glasgow with nearly no set plans for the next three days – though I did have a pint in a pub that is older than my country today, so I guess I can check that off the list.

Also, I now understand intimately what jet lag feels like.

PS this is mostly a test to see if the WordPress app works on my tablet /me being amazed at technology.

May 15, 2014
by Katherine

April, month of little progress

April wasn’t for much in the way of accomplishing things. I read a bunch of books and impulse started a new shawl that only needs another few inches, but all other projects have stalled. This having a full time job and part time school to contend with – it’s for the birds.


The shawl though, it’s a lovely rustic looking darling. I’m not sure why that’s become the thing I want to make – old timey looking pieces – but here we are. It’s a very basic shawl, 16 rows stockinette stitch in a wheat yellow then 16 rows of a textured stitch in a russety brown colour, repeat ad nauseam. The first few repeats were a breeze but it’s getting to the point where it’s getting looooong so things aren’t going quite so quickly. It’s nice travel knitting because of how basic it is, though it is getting a little big for my purse.


The fella is out of the country for another week and a half so I’m hoping to have something accomplished before his return. It’s an overwhelming compulsion now, to maximize my abundance of free time!

March 23, 2014
by Katherine

Knits of the year, a list thus far

The resolution to finish all the WIPs I had kicking around has left me feeling a little uninspired. All I want to do is start a new chunky sweater or lace shawl. *deep sigh of resignation*


The list isn’t so bad. In a few cases it’s just a matter of putting some heels in. Those are nice evening projects which I’m not really dreading. The sweaters will take some time and the shawls, oh they are cobweb weight which I’m not thrilled about – I prefer a sturdy fingering weight shawl because I’m always so chilly. The lace socks I recall being a fun knit so I might jump back on those right away. I need some decent subway knitting and socks always seem to fit the bill.


As of today the list is as follows; (Note – list updated as of 15 nov 2014)

1 – Big Alfred Pullover – done the yolk and onto the body, done the body now onto the sleeves

2 – Yolk Cardigan – halfway up sleeve one, main body complete, now for sleeves and yolk

3 –  Adam’s socks – needs heel and second sock

4 – Pine Scarf – about 15% of the way in

5 – purple shawl – need to design and knit border


leggings with mesh sides – needs hips/waistband – given to the donation pile because I hate these so much

lace socks – frogged (love the yarn and the pattern but not together


Harvest Dew Socks – finished

Elizabeth Shawl – finished

green/red/forest socks – finished

tide-pool socks  – finished

March 21, 2014
by Katherine

Knit of the Month – March

I have a new rule. Always knit both of the socks at the same time. Always. Always!

I thought it would just be a matter of finishing up the foot of a sock. I was sure I used the needles suggested in the pattern. Maybe I did, maybe my tension was just a bit off. Two years can change things about the way a person knits. I am much faster, maybe speed correlates with a more snug knitting style for me.

These socks do not match. They are clearly related, but they are no twins. They are close enough that I don’t think the fact that one is slightly narrower will bother me . . . . much.

I haven’t had a really funny knitting mishap in a while so I will take this as a sign that I needed to get my ego checked.



March 5, 2014
by Katherine

Book | The Science of Yoga: The Risks and the Rewards

In keeping with the theme of branching out and writing more, even if there is no knitting to speak of, I bring you a book review. Not so much a review, as a meandering ramble, really.

I may or may not have mentioned previously that in what spare time I have I’m partaking in a yoga teacher training. Not so much because I have an overwhelming desire to teach – as my nerve wracked only class taught left me relieved that it was over. But because I felt I could only get so much from going to group classes a handful of times a week. There was never much in terms of philosophy brought up save for a word or two thrown in here and there. I’m a big fan of book learning, a fact that my worn library card will attest to, but I can only get so much out of a book before it would be very useful to have an actual teacher guiding the process.

I signed up shortly after I moved to Toronto because I knew that even when I got a job I would probably want something a little more going on to challenge myself. Having landed a solid retail job I am working about 45 hours a week but so few of those hours are really challenging. Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy to have the job, but I know I have training to be working above and beyond keeping shelves looking spiffy and helping folks find a well fitting shoe. There is a yawning gulf between being self employed as a massage therapist and running a retail establishment. All of the mental gymnastics I was accustomed to with massaging – all the anatomy and physiology and whatnot – I’m literally not allowed to use in my current job lest anyone infer that I am trying to pass myself off as an expert (you know, for legal reasons).

While I was excited for the program I was worried that there would be a lack of science involved. I know there is a time and place for talk of energy work and I don’t wish to imply that I’m anti-that. I’m actually very pro-that, I get that it is a useful way to explain things to people who don’t care for the science backups. But I live with someone who’s life has been science and academic rigour, that shit rubs off on you whether you like it or not.

This year I decided to supplement my school training with some extra side learning and kept my focus on biographies of Krishnimacharya and books that studied the science of what I was learning. I managed to find two good biographies and was glad to have read them, as they gave me a bit of history on the lineage my teachers approach things from. The one heavier science book I found was a boon to my desire for critical looks and studies.

Oh the many claims of yoga that have been dashed by the actual studies, so many of them. This isn’t to say that yogis are entirely wrongheaded, the claims they make have some basis in reality – just not in the way they’re claiming them. Case in point, the popular claim that yoga is a great way to slim down. Yoga has actually been shown to slow the basal metabolic rate which is very interesting for me.

I know that my unfortunate weight loss was instigated by many factors, but I do attribute some of it to the 5 hours a week of yoga. The reason I do so, now after reading the book and articles in question, is not because it “ramps up metabolism” but because it has taught me mindfulness in eating. I am more likely to eat slowly, eat fewer processed things, and I only eat until I am no longer hungry as opposed to stuffed (ok, I still do that last one sometimes).

The issue I have isn’t with the claim, it’s with the evidence presented. The Science of Yoga presents a myriad of claims and breaks them down point by point without getting high and mighty about it. There is never an air of “oh man, look at these hippie weirdos” and the author does a very clear job of bringing in voices of authority who can speak to the useful nature of yoga as well as the side of it that can, and sometimes does, lead to injury.

If I hope to one day provide classes for groups or individuals, I want to have the know how to back up my claims with reality instead of wooo. Given the availability of studies and research now a days this isn’t tricky (it took me less than 15 seconds to find an article about yoga and metabolism, for example). An educated populous is a strong populous and that is something I am eager to contribute to.