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Tuesday, April 28, 2009


Itty. Bitty. WIP!

Just a pile of the newest things on the needles, waiting in the springtime sun. Cushy tweed. Smooth cool cotton. Classic twist. All neutral.

I’m in love with the variations of shadow; the look of color in daylight not under the sun, beneath a tree, under an awning, left of sky.

ruebonneWhile gardening this weekend, my new building mates and I started talking about the differences in flowers. I’ve planted lots of perennials (coming back year after year) around the place but we always fill in with annuals (those that only go a season) that give swaths of color. For the most part, I prefer the perennials, because, even if they don’t keep blooming and might be more subdued in shade, they have more fanciful flowers, more enticing to bees?

Then there’s those who live in shade and those that like full sunlight. I’ve studied the way the sun moves around our building. The structure faces East, so it starts in the early morning and moves in an arc across the southmost, ending West in the late afternoon. Most of our grounds get limited full sunlight and are in the shade the rest of the day. I started remembering the way *sunny* flowers look and those who grow in shade: zinnia vs. lily of the valley, petunias vs. coral bells. It seemed some of the more refined and gorgeous shapes were those almost lurking in the shadows.

Who doesn’t look good in Twilight?

So my color sense seems to be leaning to the color of subdue.

My favorite so far is the taupe cotton number in the upper right, a summer knit with a past.

projectparisbisect1It started out on a wonderful adventure, traveling all the way to Paris to visit with Becky, way back in the summer of 2005. It ended up in a ball, frogged, afterwards, because it wasn’t a good match for the design I intended it for.

It’s been lurking in the stash ever since, but I think I’ve found a better way to use its nougaty loveliness. I’ve been knitting away on it for days and it’s coming together quite well.

4 responses to “Tuesday, April 28, 2009”

  1. Willa Jean says:

    Can’t wait. The summer sun here (in the desert SW) feels more like an assault than a kiss, so I’m always looking for things to knit that both look and feel cool and breezy. (always good for indoors/layering in the winter.)

  2. Jo Morgan says:

    I agree about the wonderfulness of perennials — they are magic! A few years ago we xeroscaped our yard and planted all manner of them. There is an orange one (like the technical terminology?) that blooms in August and actually attracts hummingbirds to our yard. What a joy!
    P.S. I love the yarn colors in your photo!

  3. Reading Dirt says:

    Bedding annuals have been selected for dwarfed stems with lots of nodes to give maximum intense color. They were originally developed in late Victorian times for carpet bedding, where you mass colors into formal patterns, which is where these plants look their best. The way they are typically used in my neighborhood, though, is to space them about a foot apart like upright little soldiers, poking up out of the bark dust, which isn’t quite the best look for them!

    Not all annuals are like that, though. Old-fashioned cottage garden annuals can be as charming and variable as perennials. So can some wildflowers. And the names of some of the old-fashioned annuals are as fun as their flowers: love-in-a-mist, love-in-a-puff, kiss-me-over-the-garden-gate, and more.

    But yes, they are sun-lovers. Except for a few, like impatiens and coleus, most shade plants are perennials. Shady spots make great woodland gardens, with ferns, trillium, and mysterious-looking native arums.

    And for xeriscaping, deep-rooted perennials are the way to go.

  4. Karen B. says:

    I can no longer garden due to physical constraints, but thank Maude for my perennial inspiration 3 years ago! My pink columbine, hosta, tiger lilies and sage keep coming back to add a bit of color to my life.

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