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"Work of the world must still be done,
And minds are many though truth be one."  -- Sir Henry John Newbolt

A day in the sun, dirt under my nails, and I'm reborn.  Yesterday I spent the morning puttering in my garden.  It felt good to be outdoors and not closeted in a dark warehouse.  I even managed to get a mild sunburn.  The afternoon was filled with treats.  A lovely lunch at a Thai restaurant, a decadent cone of dark chocolate ice cream, a new pair of sandals, and a some organic fertilizer. 

Days off after weeks of work feel more like a vacation than a vacation planned.  I like to travel, but there is so much prep involved, especially now with one daughter, two dogs and a house to manage.  Once upon a time I could buy a ticket in the morning and leave in the afternoon.  Those days will soon enough return, though dog passports may need to be obtained.  (Really, there are "passports" for dogs!)  An artist I met through Camp Cool Globes is moving to Rome in the fall.  She has less tying her to Chicago, but still the effort is huge.  I like the idea of being "middle aged" and uprooting myself to a new local, but I'm equally content with sunny days in my garden. 

But alas, another day of work beckons.  I must finish the miniature version of my globe.  It is half completed, so no worries. I'm thinking of some tzaziki and pita for lunch followed by a few Frango mints.  Treats always make the work go faster.

camp cool globes


"Come, knit hands, and beat the ground

in a light fantastic round."  --  John Milton

One round, two rounds, three rounds.   I lost count....   It took three weeks, approximately 30 lbs of polyester hollow braid, 7 #17 47" Anni Turbo circular needles, countless  blisters, an addiction to glucosamine, and nightly soaks with Epsom salts, but my globe has been completed on schedule.  Hooray!  The ribbon cutting is June 1st in front of the Field Museum with none other than Mayor Richard Daley officiating.  So be there or be square!


The press surrounding the project has been intense.  Articles have appeared in Elle, Newsweek, Chicago Sun-Times, and Chicago Tribune as well as on the local news stations.  The cameraman from Fox News managed to sneak a shot of me.  I was getting rather adept at, uhm, avoiding the cameras.  I mean really, who wants to be seen covered in dust with hair askew and a developing 2nd chin?! Ugh.  But, none the less, it has been rather exciting.

I've enjoyed the challenge of knitting a 5' globe, but the real pleasure has come in meeting the other artists.  My studio is in my home, so I rarely see others at work.  In the last three weeks I've learned the basics of mosaics, several new sculpture techniques and more about painting than I ever did in college.  The experience has made me question whether I would do better in a communal environment.  I like my quiet time and ability to control my environment, but I've gained so much from working with others. 

Through this month my daily life was placed on hold.  My daughter helped with taking over the basic cleaning chores without too much complaint and surprised me on several occasions with dinner fixed when I arrived home.  This also explains my writing absence.  But never fear, I'm back. 


Meanwhile, spring has sprung in Chicago.  Time for me to get out in the garden.

pink tank


"... the next war will be a war in which people not armies will suffer, and our boasted, hard-earned civilization will do us no good. Cannot the women rise to this great opportunity and work now, and not have the double horror, if another war comes, of losing their loved ones, and knowing that they lifted no finger when they might have worked hard?"  --  Eleanor Roosevelt

The above work was designed and organized by Danish artist Marianne Joergensen.  It includes 4,000 knitted squares donated by people from around the world.    There are many works being made in protest of the war on terrorism, specifically on the war in Iraq, but this is perhaps the most visual - a tank with all the power of a pompom puff.  Can such combined effort really stop the atrocities being purported in the name of peace?  It is a nice thought, but there are many days when I despair that any government will listen to the will of its people. 

Thanks to whipup for originally posting this work!

free hat pattern #1 - Spring

"Sweet spring, full of sweet days and roses"  -- George Herbert

As a part of my Red Thread Project I am developing a series of hat patterns for any and all to knit and enjoy.  Here is the first, in honor of spring.


In Chicago March is always wet, cold, and grey as a piece of slate. This hat is for heralding in spring long before the roses bloom. It has been designed to fit an average adult female. 


1 skein Manos (or other worsted weight yarn) in color #70
Assorted bits of pink, red and green from previous projects
1 16” #9 circular needle
1 set of #9 double points (you could do the whole project on double points)
1 G crochet hook (or size to match assorted bits of pink and red)
1 set of straight knitting needles in size to work the green leaves
1 tapestry needle
Stitch markers
And of course – scissors


4 stitches to the inch

6 rows to the inch

On #9 needle using Manos

Take time to do the gauge. Really. I mean it. You don’t want the hat too big or too small.

Directions for hat:

Cast on 80 stitches and join circle.

Add a stitch marker to mark beginning and end of round.

Work in Garter Stitch for first inch. Remember that Garter in the round is - *K a round, purl a round* repeat from * to * for one inch.

Switch to Stockinette Stitch and continue for 4 more inches. In the round, this means you are just knitting.

On final round of the body, place stitch markers every 10 sts.

Decrease round is worked as a K2tog after every stitch marker.

Knit the next round. You will continue working a decrease round and then knitting a round until you have only 8 stitches left. At some point, around 40 stitches, you will want to switch to double pointed needles as the crown of the hat is too small to continue working on a circular needle.

With 8 stitches left, cut a long tail and pull it through the remaining stitches. Pull firmly and weave in all tails.


Directions for flowers:

Chain 21 stitches. Leave a long tail.

Turn, skip 2 sts.

Double crochet 3 times in the next stitch.

Continue working a DC 3 times in each stitch. The piece will begin to form a corkscrew.

When only 5 stitches remain, work a DC in the next stitch and the rest in a half double crochet. Bind off.

Leave a long tail.

Directions for leaves:

You will be working the leaves in Garter Stitch.

Cast on 1 stitch. Leave a long tail.

Work an increase – 2 stitches.

Work an increase in both stitches – 4 stitches

Work an increase in the end stitches – 6 stitches

Knit for 3 rows.

Work an SSK (slip, slip, knit) on the right side and a K2tog on the left – 4 stitches.

Work an SSK (slip, slip, knit) on the right side and a K2tog on the left – 2 stitches.

K2tog. Cut tail and pull through final stitch. Work in this tail, but leave the other.


Open up the first corkscrew / flower. Use one of the tails and stitch the corkscrew into a spiral / rosette formation onto the crown of the hat. Bring tail to back of work (hat crown) and tie to first tail. Work in ends.

Continue until all “flowers” are attached.

Sew on leaves where needed visually (I used five). Work in tails.

© 2007 Lindsay Obermeyer

This hat pattern is free. Make it for yourself or friends and family. If you are feeling generous, make one for either my Red Thread Project or another community art or charity project. This pattern may not be used for resale. The hat may not be made for sale. Stitching to make a colorful and stronger community – that is what this is all about!

Let me know if you find any mistakes. I don’t have a technical editor reviewing my work prior to publication.