Friday, July 03, 2009

Nupp-tial Bliss

Today in the United States we celebrated Independence Day–the anniversary of our country's formal split with Mother England. It was a great moment in political history, worthy of fond remembrance even if it did mean that two centuries later I'd be unable to get a copy of Marie Lloyd, Queen of the Music Hall that will run in my DVD player.

It used to be the tradition on this day for every family or assembled group to read in full the Declaration of Independence. This is, sad to say, no longer common, as most folks are too busy rushing to the emergency room to treat third-degree burns from illegal fireworks or salmonella poisoning from improperly stored potato salad.

I'm fond of anachronism, so I've started reading it to myself. And I'm corny enough to get misty-eyed over the most famous passage:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men* are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

After that, I patriotically pursued happiness by blocking the Leaf and Nupp Shawl from Knitted Lace of Estonia.

Estonian Shawl 02

Working this piece was an uninterrupted tango of bliss and chocolate kisses. For once, I made it all the way from Point A to Point Z without committing a thundering whoopsie and having to rip back fifty rows. I don't expect to do it again. I think the Knitting Gods only hand out one free ride per customer.

Estonian Shawl 03

A boy can hope, though.

Estonian Shawl 01

[Personal to Nancy Bush: I love you. But you knew that already.]

Estonian Shawl 04


*In some parts of the country, it is customary to append here the phrase, "Except the faggots, of course."

116 comments:

Anonymous said...

It's lovely, Franklin.

PS What about the women?
Margie in Maryland

catmum said...

yeah! womyn? and faggot womyn?

In your hands, the nupps sing. Beautiful work. Congratulations

Tikabelle said...

*That's because faggots are carbonized pieces of wood. In my world and that of Dr. Seuss, a person's a person, no matter whom they love. Keep on keepin' on, my friend. We'll get there; we HAVE to!

Your shawl is gorgeous!

Jaimee Drew said...

It's a beautiful bit of knitting. I can't imagine the felicity of a non-ripped stretch of knitting though...

Get yourself out to play the lotto before your luck gets away and know that there a few of us that agree that equality should be for all, not a few.

Gayle said...

It's beautiful...stunning...sigh, I'm so thinking I have to get the book now...

I also think it would be nice if just our Congress and Supreme Court would at least read the document -- based on recent news I don't think they've been introduced...

Nina said...

Gorgeous shawl! I wish I had the perseverance to make something like that.

Angela said...

You bought that divan just because shawls look beautiful draped over the arm...didn't you?

Laura said...

* Sadly, I live in an embarrassment once known as California. Sorry. Everyone I know, gay or straight, is trying to fix it.

Your shawl is GORGEOUS! I can hardly accomplish lace, let alone lace without errors.

junior_goddess said...

Did you sign a pre-nupp?

Alynda said...

That is one of the most beautiful pieces of knitting I've ever seen. Just wonderful...

Katie said...

Fanfrickentastic that lace is gorgeous! I have no need or desire to have or knit lacy things, but that is most definately drool-worthy. Well-done. Are you keeping it and if not who is the lucky recipient?

E said...

What's funny about the whole "all men are created equal" thing is that I always understood "men" to refer to mankind, not just guys, not just white guys, not just straight white guys.

My mother said that was the moment she realized I had grown up in a different world and that the feminists had won (in a good way of course).

maybe I'll read the declaration of independence to remind myself that today is about a lot more than the bbqs I'm not going to.

AR said...

My Dear late Papa used to say that "all 'men' were created equal but sadly some more equal than others."

Beautiful shawl Franklin :-)
Makes me almost feel brave enough to try a little lace work myself.

Laura said...

*Sigh!* The shawl is utter gorgeousness, Franklin. :o)

meezermeowmy said...

That makes two households: our SIL, the rocket scientist (really) always has a patriotic celebration for his young family. They mark Memorial Day with readings, too.

The shawl speaks for itself. I am amazed by its beauty.

toni in florida said...

Gorgeous! I can't think of a better staging for that shawl than the shot of it draped over the arm of that lovely divan, with the inlaid floor and the window behind. Sigh!

If you figure out what the knitting gods have received (or will demand) in tribute and gratitude for this sublime knitting experience, drop a hint, so the rest of us can pay in advance, so to speak.

thecrazysheeplady said...

Beautiful...and well said.

Purl Buttons said...

What a lovely confection. You should be very pleased.

AnnasMomma said...

You crack me up! I so look forward to your posts.
What a beautiful piece of work and to have the magic of being frog-free! Truly bliss :)
Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Ah, Franklin, the shawl is exquisite and photographed so very well - you never fail to delight!
- Daisy

Sweet Camden Lass said...

Must buy a copy of that pattern. It looks good to create a knitted hug with. ~x~

floatingink said...

Ohhhh . . . such a beautiful thing.

Social progress is slower than a nuppy shawl, but also a beautiful thing when we get it right.

Never give up.

(formerly) no-blog-rachel said...

Beautiful shawl, Franklin. I just bought the book - maybe I'll have to start with that one.

And what Laura said about CA - my new state has embarrassed the crap out of me. So I'm going to proclaim and retain my Vermont heritage. At least one of my homes has it right and I'm hoping the other will pull it together.

XO

Lynn said...

Stunning.

Kay in New Mexico said...

"...all men..." yes, all, including faggots. Also women, all, including dykes. Also including any and all Other Assorted Weird and Unusual People Who Differ In Any Way From What Is Perceived To Be Mainstream.

Jen Anderson said...

psst--if you go to the Amazon page for your DVD player, one of the comments may have instructions on how to trick it into being Region 0, so you can play American and UK DVDs.

Anonymous said...

your chesterfield looks like a good place to rest and the stole would make me...

marie in florida

shortoldlady said...

Lovely shawl!! Us "wo"men are right behind you!!!

Nigel Pottle said...

The shawl is magnicent. I want to get the book so I can make something equally beautiful. I have a hank of silk/yak yarn in an amazing silver colour that needs something exquisite to be. And if I'm thinking right, it won't go to someone else's home - even though I woud never wear a shawl, but folks could come over and drape themselves in it.
Nigel

Anonymous said...

Lovely...both your words and your shawl.
Suzanne from Big Sky Country

Lisa said...

...swoon...

Anonymous said...

It's absolutely gorgeous, and I love the color.

Rosi G. said...

LOVE!!

Norma said...

*In some parts of the country, it is customary to append here the phrase, "Except the faggots, of course."

Especially in Mother England! ;O)

The shawl is a masterpiece! Your nupps are perfect. I gave up trying those on the Swallowtail Shawl!

And the photographs are perfection.
Knit on, Franklin!

L. said...

What a gorgeous shawl. I hope that one day there will be no need for asterisks to the Declaration. Happy fourth!

Rudee said...

The shawl is beautiful.

And yes, they left out women and people of color, too. Every hundred years or so, they admit that they must include those who've previously been shut out. Talk about baby steps!

Monika said...

Your shawl looks wonderful. I love the color you choose, makes me want to knit it at once too.

Karla (ThreadBndr) said...

Franklin, it's beautiful!

"men" = "mankind" = people, no matter what color, gender, orientation. It just doesn't make sense otherwise.

JoVE said...

a lovely shawl. And one can argue the logic until the cows come home but some people thing it means "men like me". I think they muddle up equal and the same and just figure anyone who isn't the same isn't covered. Idiots.

Fredda said...

The shawl is enviable. The process (no frogging, etc.) too!

The wonderful thing about the constitution is that it is a living document. Let's all make sure that we let our legislators know what "we the people". What part of ALL don't the politicians (and some of the Supreme Court justices) get?

Thea said...

The shawl is just stunning! Love the photo with the divan and the color work on the floor. Looks perfect.

Anonymous said...

The shawl is gorgeous! And as someone who has just ripped back on her girasole for the third time (and I'm only on the third chart!), I'm guessing the knitting gods are laughing at me this time!
Barb

Teresa said...

A beautiful way to spend Independence Day.

Here in Oz we don't have any said documents and Australia Day doesn't sit well with our Indigenous community. Perhaps the world should have 'block lace day' instead.

thetinfoilhatsociety said...

First of all: the shawl is absolutely beautiful beyond words.

Second of all: I am a firm believer that gay people should have the same right to get married and screw up their lives as straight people ;)

Artsy Reader said...

I am in awe of the shawl.

Here in Canada we have "Peace, Order, and Good Government" - which does not roll off the tongue so grandly, but which seems to allow for more acceptance in many cases. I'm sending some peaceful, orderly and well-governed vibes down your way.

Knit on.

Heidi said...

The shawl is absolutely elegant.

chellebelle said...

Stunning Nupps. And in my world all people are created equal, and in the world of my children too. I was at my son's soon to be Jr. High to register him for next year, and two young men were holding hands down the hall way and the only one staring was me. What a long way we have come in the 27 years since I've been there. Thank God!

nosenabook said...

Does this grey one float like the red one? I imagined you having a great photo shoot when I saw all the pictures.

And as for the "...all MEN are created..." I just assume they were bound by the prejudices and mores of their day, and got it wrong. They meant to say people. All PEOPLE are created equal... and now we work to make it more (and more) true.

FiberQat said...

Hmph. Don't they know that fine lace has faggoting?

Beautiful photos of beautiful work. Nancy must be beaming with pride.

FugueStateKnits said...

Especially the faggots, dear! Now the lesbians, we're not so sure! Of course were one to believe Mr. Falwell's statements to the effect that AIDS is some sort of judgment, then lesbians must be God's chosen, right?

Seriously though - that shawl is just freakin' beautiful!

Flavaknits said...

Fabulous Shawl! Can't think of anything more Patriotic than knitting!

Mx

Anonymous said...

Wow. It's beautiful. I'm a newbie lace knitter and am making a cowl with ww (until my new needles arrive so I can use lace or sock weight for the pattern), and it is a very simple pattern with one row only that has yo and 2 tog. etc. VEEEERRY simple!!! And I cannot get it right. But I will and I will finish this thing and then I will tackle the finer one and eventually finish it too!!! I will do it. My goal is to make something as beautiful as your shawl. Lovely job! Way to go!!! Wish me luck, please,
samm

Lynae said...

Gorgeous shawl.

We marched in two parades, then did the cookout thing with the neighbors. While playing drinking games with the college kids the subject came up about the declaration and my 11 yr old son recited it for us. Then we went out and blew up part of the fireworks arsonal :-)

Elizabeth said...

1. Beautiful shawl.

2. Tell us about that awesome chaise! Where'd you score it? Is it antique?

kaykatrn said...

Your nupps are perfect! That pattern looks like a good one to try nupps as there are not 5 million of them. I just did my first "no frog" lace, "Flamenco". It is a great feeling to know that you can concentrate well enough to do such a thing! I guess I am going to have to acquire Donna's book. Every thing I see done from it is mind-boggling.

I am with you on the declaration of Independence--as our culture changes, the meaning of those words changes, and "men"should include all humans!

Eileen said...

Your work is exquisite. Looking at it (the shawl, its surroundings and the photograph) gave me chills (sorry to be mushy).

We didn't read the Declaration, but did take in a walking tour about George M. Cohan, followed by a talk about "Yankee Doodle Dandy" and a showing of the film.

Followed by an elegant hot dog-and potato salad dining experience and idiot neighbors shooting off fireworks, it was a good day.

=Tamar said...

Back in the 1950s I was taught in school that "men" in such general statements included all humans. Thirty years later I met a male who had apparently been out sick that day, because he sincerely thought "the brotherhood of man" only referred to males.

Happy Fourth! (Fifth, too!)
The shawl is amazing.

Lynn R said...

NPR plays a piece every July 3 with the members of their staff each reading a line from the Declaration of Independence. I love it and listen for it every year. You could probably find it on their website.

The shawl is stunning and your blocking skills are stupendous. The shawl reminds me of chocolate in its lacy form. Yummy!

Spindlers2 said...

OK, Franklin - as I read and write this, YTHE Nancy Bush has been reading over my shoulder (that's for real, I am not kidding you) so does indeed now know that you love her! And we both think the shawl is beautiful.

Carol in West Yorkshire

Marianne said...

Too cynical, Franklin! We can hear the Declaration read on NPR. Times are changing, especially in good company. The shawl is gorgeous.

Neeley Notes said...

That is one of the most beautiful pieces of knitting I have ever seen. Congratulations on a job well done!

Lise said...

You are fucking hilarious. Seriously.

the Lady said...

Aw, not the faggots! We luvs them! Seriously, gay* men are my favorite yarn shoppers. They come in, they don't hassle you, they know what they want, they leave with it. The end.
*because 99/100 men I've served in the shop have been gay.

Liz said...

Beautiful shawl.

And it must be nice to live in a country which has cared enough to actually put pen to paper and declare what it stands for...

KnitNana said...

Beautiful lace! (But you knew that, right?)

And Abigail A. gently prodded "Remember the ladies"

And John promptly forgot.
(sigh)
Still...the struggle continues.

But I'm probably from one of those parts of the country to which you refer....I think it's appalling. 'Nuf said.
((((Hugs))))

Patti said...

Lovely lovely shawl. I'm almost done with my Lilac Leaf Shawl, just a few more rows then the grafting. I hope mine looks as nice as your's once blocked, right now I'm a bit dubious, it's a cumpled mess. I'm hoping my knitpicks blocking wires show up today too! I like the idea of reading the declaration of independance on the 4th I'm going to start a new tradition around here!

Auglaise said...

Absolutely gorgeous! ^_^

Seanna Lea said...

Ah, I really don't like the word faggot. I grew up on the old fairy tales and that was just bunch of sticks, so how it became slang for homosexuals is not something I've taken the time to investigate.

People are people. The young, the old, the fat, the skinny, the white, the black, the brown and the blue people. (too much Mojo)

Bobbi said...

My first thought when I saw the title was, "Where was MY invitation!?!"

Mary said...

Beautiful, both the shawl and the sentiment.

If you get from the universe what you put into it, Nancy Bush must be a truly wonderful woman. I don't know a knitter that doesn't both love her designs and envy her talent. :)

Next time we get paid, my "Getting Paid" gift is going to be Knitted Lace of Estonia... and enough alpaca lace weight to do whichever shawl I feel up to knitting.

yarnaholic said...

Beautiful shawl!

Sandy said...

The shawl is just beautiful! The second picture shows it off especially well.

Anonymous said...

It is just gorgous. Nupp said.

Victoria said...

Absolutely love the shawl. Nancy Bush did all knitters a great service by sharing the brilliance of Estonia knitters, and you made that pattern sing.

I spent the holiday weekend in Chicago. I love it there. Went to Loopy and got the tote bag with your illustration on the front. So cute. Have you ever been tempted to ask if they'd let you sleep there? No, just me? :)

Anonymous said...

The shawl is beautiful! Congrats.

eJohn said...

Fabulous!! Have you worn it out yet??? :)

Sue T. said...

Franklin, any time you want to hear a great reading of the Declaration of Independence, go listen to the one done by the staff of Morning Edition:

http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=106168024

I promise you won't be disappointed!

Anne O'Nymous said...

The Knitting Deities may shovel knitting karma points at you FOR DAYS if you keep giving them credit and showing stunning photographs of gorgeous knitting like that. (words fail, Anne's flabber has been thoroughly gasted, her found has been utterly dumbed)

In response to your other topic, I wish I could quote part of a speech I heard given by Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. I'll paraphrase what I recall from yearsandyears-andyearsandyears ago: Boston and Philadelphia are not the birth place of US liberty, because, it has been discovered, liberty has a far longer gestation period than previously acknowledged. Boston and Philadelphia are the places where liberty was conceived, rather than born. They are the hotel rooms of liberty. And although we have not yet lived up to all of the promises in our official documents, we are one of few countries even putting some of this stuff in writing, let alone trying to make it happen.

And I am also impatient for the arrival of justice.

Helen said...

I like your chaise. I can just picture you reclining on it.

Alwen said...

I made faggots (bundles of sticks) out of dry autumn olive wood early this spring and I'm happy to report that this horrible thorny pest tree burns beautifully.

Me, I got tears just looking at that first photo.

Judy G. said...

"a thundering whoopsie"? I think I shall add that to my lexicon. You certainly know how to turn a phrase, young man.

Colleen said...

Wow. That takes my breath away.

Liz said...

How gorgeous! Happy day indeed.

Anonymous said...

Wow, this is just gorgeous. I've been looking at the book and daring myself to try knitting one of these beautiful shawls, but now I'm inspired!

Mortaine said...

I am so glad that I'm not the only person who chose July 4 as a perfect day to block a shawl!

Knitting Out Loud said...

Gorgeous shawl! Let's hope the Declaration covers everybody soon.

KnittyLynn said...

Wow. Franklin, the shawl..the PHOTOS..they are exquisite. What a wonderful accomplishment.

bjrest said...

Positively Gorgeous...

Jerilyn said...

You are a crackup Franklin. But the shawl rocks.

The Gravelcat said...

Lovely! Reading your blog is my Habit, Franklin!

Liz G. said...

She turned out BEAUTIFULLY, my dear!

Angeliner Mediner said...

The shawl is beee-autiful! (And so are your wood floors. Love 'em!)

Melanie said...

Gorgeous!

Terri said...

Lovely work.

Heather said...

It's gorgeous!

Okate said...

I was thrilled to find that Dolores is a Twitterer. This made my morning. I hope her texting doesn't drive you crazy.

tricotchick said...

You are a true artist. That shawl is perfection. My hands wouldn't make it past the first row on such tiny needles. Well done, 'tis a thing of much beauty. Thank you!

And although that last line may be customary, it is not acceptable. The time is coming, take heart.

JC said...

...the practical knitter in me can't help wondering what anyone would *do* with a knitted lace shawl. why dontcha twirl up some rag wool hiking socks or a nice schwedda? ...a lace shawl? sheesh!

jokir said...

I won't say anything about the shawl and how I'd really like to take it away from you because I'm sure you're tired of hearing about it. And the faggot business? Well no you're not equal. You're waaay better than that!

Cathie said...

That is gorgeous!

Robin said...

The shawl is just beautiful! Love the color yarn you chose.

Anonymous said...

The shawl is beautiful.
* Never surrender. Never give up.

ponyknit said...

Stunning!

Anonymous said...

WOW!!!! BEAUTIFUL!!!!!

Wow Gold said...

wow ! what a blog

Wow Gold said...

fantastic blog.

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