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Friday, 28 December 2012


Tivoli Cushion
My Christmas gift knitting reached epic proportions this year. I have a habit of setting myself an almost impossible gift knitting list - and then add to that impossible list with a fervour and willful abandon that only the slightly unhinged would even contemplate, right up until Christmas. As I write this, even I am amazed at the volume of woolly gifts I managed to complete - 10 crocheted snowflakes, 8 pairs of socks, 3 felted bags, 3 fairisle pin cushions, 3 pairs of fingerless mittens, 2 Christmas Stockings, 1 beret and 1 sweater.

As a consequence, I thought I might turn to something other than knitting as a post-Christmas 'cool down'. There are many many activities that don't involve textiles of any sort and are equally good fun, right? I have a jigsaw, a couple of board games, there is a jam-packed schedule of Christmas viewing on the TV, I could go for invigorating walks in our beautiful local countryside, read some non-knitting related books on my new Kindle, draw, paint, cook.

I could.


I can't settle to the jigsaw and you always need someone else to play a boardgame with. The TV seems strangely unsatisfying when I merely watch it without something occupying my hands and a walk in the countryside seems so unappealing when it's drenched in rain and oozing mud from every earthly pore. I am enjoying reading - I am . . . just it relaxes me so much that I find myself nodding off after 20 minutes or so. As for the drawing, painting and cooking, they all require a level of commitment and effort, that quite frankly I'd rather invest in, well, knitting.

I give in and choose a post Christmas knitting project. I'm going to appease the selfish knitter that lurks in each of us and knit for myself. It's something easy (so that I can watch some Christmas TV at the same time), something that I can put down without fear of losing my place (so that I can go and put in a few pieces of my jigsaw) and something that will grow quickly into a thing of beauty (which will become a bonus Christmas present to me!) A Tivoli Cushion is just the thing.

My first attempt in fuchsia, storm, putty and grass wasn't quite right

After a false start with a poor colour choice which I really wasn't happy with, I changed to daisy, peacock, fuchsia and putty. I love the vibrancy and energy that these colours produce alongside each other - and this colour combination goes perfectly with the multi-coloured Elk cushion I finished earlier this year.

This vibrant Tivoli will co-ordinate with my colourful Elk

I can knit this Tivoli and enjoy the process, the pleasure of making the fabric and seeing it grow. I can appreciate the colour play and find satisfaction in the thought of owning this thing that I'm crafting. I'll luxuriate in creating something without working to a deadline and find, in the midst of this gentle knitting that I'm ready to make a new list . . . a huge and impossible list of all the fabulous things I want to knit next year.

(posted by Max)


  1. Lovely post, agree with your second colour choices. I find it very strange to watch television without knitting, it seems a waste of time. Can you post a picture of the fair isle pincushions? I am intrigued.

  2. Hi Kate - Helena and I will take some pictures of the AMAZING pincushions Max knitted us and post them here soon. They were a lovely gift! Katarina