Thursday, February 4, 2016


Ghost World - Daniel Clowes
I want to read more graphic novels this year and so I decided to start with one I always picked up at my LYS but somehow never bought. Pretty sure I saw a movie adaptation of this 10 or so years ago (with Scarlett Johanson) but can't remember a thing about it. I really liked this story. It's about that weird moment in life when you're not quite a kid anymore but not an adult either. It's about friendship and love and somewhere in between. There was quite a few references I didn't get, either because they were too american or too old for me but still really enjoyed it!

We should all be feminists - Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Small but big. This book doesn't solve anything or share any deep insight on the problem of gender inequality and everyday sexism but still feels so important. One of those "need to gift to everyone" book. Her writing style is a good mix of funny and clever so I would be curious to check more of her work!

Fangirl - Rainbow Rowell
This was a reread for me. Mostly because I got Carry On over Christmas and I thought I'd read both at once! Loved it even more than the first one, if that is possible. (you can see my original review of here!)

Why not me? - Mindy Kaling
I wasn't sure I could get as much from this book as I did from Is everyone hanging out without me (her first book). BUT then came the "love" chapter and it might be my new favorite everything. Considering having it printed on my walls Might have said a bit too loudly a bit too often "YES! Exactly!!" And "oh so I'm not the only one doing/thinking that"! Which is pretty much what I expect/want from this kind of memoir. Well done Ms Kaling. Funny and inspiring as hell!

The Wide Window (ASOUE #3) - Lemony Snickett
Probably my favorite in the series so far. There is just something about gloomy dark kid stories I can't resist! Also, there is a TV adaptation from Netflix coming soon so pretty excited about that too!

Favorite quote: "We teach girls to shrink themselves, to make themselves smaller. 
We say to girls: You can have ambition, but not too much."
Monday, February 1, 2016

TAKE HEART: a review and a challenge

The talented ladies behind the awesome Pom Pom magazine (a quarterly publication of rad knitting patterns) launched a new project recently called the Pom Pom Press. The goal? To publish even more rad patterns with cool knitting designers. And the first one they picked just happened to be one of my personal favorite: Fiona Alice. It's called TAKE HEART and it is beautiful <3 So obviously had to order it right away! And guess what? I want to knit ALL THE THINGS IN IT! Which some others are also into and there you go, a year long knitting challenge began! I thought I could share a little review of the book here, and my yarn ideas for the patterns. Fair warning: get ready to want to knit them all too!

If you bought a PomPom magazine issue before, the format is the same. The paper is beautiful and sturdy. In the first section, for each pattern, Fiona shared the inspiration behind them, a super cute sketch of the pattern and her reasons for the yarn she designed the piece with. The second section has the actual patterns, either written or charted, or both! The photography is absolutely beautiful and will make you want to go to the beach and knit/wear all your knits! There is a total of 11 patterns that ranged from graphic to elegant to modern to romantic. Some would I think make perfect gifts but most you will want to keep all to yourself!

(c) Juju Vail
Take heart: this one was originally published in a 2013 issue of PomPom and marked the start of me falling in love with Fiona's designs. I actually tried to knit it last year but picked the wrong yarn, so now looking for a very soft and lofty (?) one that will be a perfect fit for the romantic feel of the pattern

Three Cliffs: a super lovely and big wrap that I am planning to start so very soon. Fiona chose the Viola yarn by John Arbon and I am planning to do the same, probably in a deep blue color!

Martinique Beach: color work people! This pattern is awesome! Calls for worsted weight which I don't have much of stashed so one I need to think about. Maybe Quince and Co?

Caswell Bay: a hat + mitts pattern, very graphic and modern. She picked a silk + merino yarn which looks just perfect to show the design so might do the same. Yarn idea: Dye for yarn

Queensland beach: a gorgeous cabled headband I need to start like yesterday. Calls for worsted weight. Yarn idea: Gilliatt by De Rerum Natura

(c) Juju Vail
Lunenburg Harbour: a pair of socks super simple yet elegant. Yarn idea: Exmoor sock yarn by John Arbon

Chester Basin: a hat + mittens pattern with the coolest slip stitch technique. Would make a great winter gift! Yarn idea: Garnstudio Drops Nepal

Ketch Harbour: a cool DK weight shawl that fans of Moby Dick should love ;)

Pennard Castle: leg warmers designed in two size. + a really cool stitch pattern! perfect to wear under your boots while walking through the forest in Winter <3 Calls for fingering so finding that in my stash should not be hard, at all!

(c) Juju Vail