Things We Like: The Cure’s Faith

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Let’s start by conceding that 1989’s Disintegration is the Cure’s best album. Period. Followed by 1982’s Pornography in a close second place.

So that’s all fine and good, but I think greater attention needs to be paid to their 1981 effort Faith. Yes, their third proper album generally gets lumped in with Seventeen Seconds and Pornography as a prime example of their early goth or post-punk phase (if you’re into easy, lazy musicological name-checking) but that’s about all you read. The former gets some notice for seeing the band veer towards something darker and atmospheric while the latter gets the lion’s share of attention for being, arguably, the pinnacle of bleak, depressing rock music.

Faith is a quiet, introspective affair with a pervading sense of emptiness, confusion, and loss. You could say it’s the calm before the storm that is Pornography, their next record. On that album, the confusion turns to impatience and the creeping tension bottoms out to expose a complete sense of hopelessness that’s transmitted via dissonance, pounding and line after line of cryptic prose hurled in your face. Seriously, my lengthy explanation here is not nearly as verbose as some of the lyrics found on Pornography.

But the songs on Faith are generally shorter and sweeter: some wispy, ethereal moments (“All Cats Are Grey”, “The Funeral Party”) and some catchy, uptempo moments (“Primary”, “Other Voices”,  “Doubt”) anchored by a few darker turns (“Faith”). The album feels more like an extension of post-punk than anything akin to the campy, self-conscious, theatrical world of goth. Much like Joy Division, the songs are generally spare, skeletal arrangements mustering up just enough energy to fill echoing, emptied out rooms; spiky, meandering guitars anchored by throbbing, purposeful bass lines. Compared to the claustrophobic bombast of Pornography, Faith feels downright frail and nearly invisible.

Faith is the perfect record for a snowy afternoon or chilly autumn evening. That said, I suppose it’s no coincidence that I’m reminded of this album on this day. If you haven’t heard it, please do check it out. It’s one of our favorites.

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Prints: Untitled (No. 1)

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This may mark my first foray into representational imagery. Or, at least, as close as I’m likely to get. Typography, signs, geometry, and pattern are all subjects I’m interested in exploring and this seemed like the next logical step.

This one was also my first preconceived five-color piece (metallic gold, magenta, yellow, goldenrod, and orange). It went much more smoothly than I had anticipated and it may be something I try again. I just couldn’t resist going all the way with over-the-top, pop colors. Selecting a designerly palette of neutrals, pops, and subtle, pleasing hues just wasn’t an option. The pops all wanted in.

She’s now available in our shop.

Knit Progress: Things to keep your hands warm

Since the hats, I’ve circled back to another idea I had for the brioche knitting technique. I thought it might work well to create a small, warm and stretchy pair of minimal fingerless gloves.

My experiment started with a short pair of fingerless mitts with a regular rib at the cuff and base of the fingers. The fabric created with the second yarn in brioche stitch expanded it more the way I expected and I added a button thumb hole, which was a bit tricky, but after a few tries was successful. I think these  turned out pretty cute in the Patons Classic Wool DK Superwash. I especially like some of the pairings you can create with solid and multi-color striping yarns they are offering.

I still had enough yarn to try a second pair. This time I simplified it more by creating cuffs without a thumb hole. These fit nicely – kind of like little extensions for your sweater this fall.  I wanted to try one more variation lengthening the cuff, so I used some other yarn I had in my stash for  a pop of color.

I don’t think I’ll be formalizing these into patterns, but if you want the notes, leave me a comment.

Knit Progress: More Hats

After pulling all of that yarn out to make a large batch of headbands, I took some time to reorganize my stash and take inventory for the festival. Things are looking pretty good, but I thought it would be nice to make a few more hats. Going through my yarn I came across a number of skeins that I had in mind for such projects and got to work.

One of my favorite is the Cascade Yarns Eco Alpaca – a gorgeous yarn that is so soft! The creamy color way was perfect for my meringue hat pattern. I also thought it would be good to make a few more “guy” hats and had fun piecing together smaller remnants to make unique color ways that aren’t achievable with just one skein.

I’m back to a few mitt and cuff experiments for fun to add pieces for the show and then it will be time to focus on making some more presents for the holiday season. Happy knitting!