Or they might love the florid start in life it gave them, and that would be an excuse to act outrageously all their lives.
My name is Vanessa, which I've always thought of as a bit exotic, which I'm not. My family shorten it to Vaness, which seems less exotic and I like that. And years ago, I had a friend who would call me Ness, which I found very endearing, and thought was very 'me'. No one else has ever addressed me as Ness, but then I haven't gone about establishing that as my name.
It's quite hard work getting people to call you by a different name, when they've always been 'such-and-such'. I know someone who went from Catherine to Kate, and I think of her as Kate now, though it required studious thought for a while, every time I said her name.
I quite like the idea of being called Rose Grey, or Lulu Rose. But at the end of the day, I've had my given name for forty years now, and I'm quite happy to live with it.
I've started illustrating a new children's book, for Walker Books, so I'm back at the drawing board. I've been playing around with a new look for this book, and rather than using my usual watercolours, I'm experimenting with acrylic paint, which I don't use very often, gouache paints are the closest I get to acrylics normally (with that saturated opaque colour you get). I'm finding them very gloopy compared to watercolour paint. I love using watercolours, I always have, but sometimes it good to force ourselves out of being comfortable, because you never know where it might lead.
I first saw the pattern being knitted up on the blog Pale Blue Door, (which is a very beautiful blog I have to say), and I thought it looked like a gorgeous cardigan to knit, Barbara's version is here.
It is beautiful, beautiful yarn. 100% wool, but feels more like knitting with something soft and buttery, like merino wool. It's just described as 100% American wool, so I don't know what type of wool it is.
I've just discovered that Loop in London has started stocking Quince and Co yarn, and they have Osprey in stock. Loop now has a blog, and they feature the Annabel cardigan in one of their posts, you can see it here (scroll down a bit). Their version has just three button holes, and longer arms, and I like this style a lot.
You're going to think me mad, but I have already knitted this cardigan, but using stocking stitch, rather than the garter stitch in the pattern. I undid all that knitting and started all over again for two reasons. One, the stripes were lovely in stocking stitch, but of course they curled at the edges. And two, this is knitted with very, very expensive yarn, and it was whilst I was talking to my sister on the phone, (and I mentioned that I had finished the cardigan), I was trying to stop the curling of the edges by sewing on ribbon, and not doing a very good job of it. My sister said there had been an extortionate customs fee to pay on the yarn, which had come all the way from the States, and I suddenly stopped to think. Very expensive yarn, and here I am with a garment that isn't as good as it should be. This cardigan is very quick to knit up, so I thought it wouldn't be too painful to unravel my knitting, and start over, following the pattern to the letter. The cost and quality of the yarn demands I give it the respect of knitting something successful, which I will love and wear.
I'm very glad I've done this, I feel good about it. I'm also knitting one size up, previously, I knitted the small size, which was silly of me, it's meant to be a comfy cardi, not a skin tight second skin.
I wouldn't be surprised if I had this cardigan finished by the end of the weekend, it's that quick to knit this garment, and it's a relatively easy pattern too, a beginner should be able to master this (with a little guidance possibly, but only a very little).
Well I'm off to make a cup of tea and do some knitting, and try and fulfill my "finished by the end of the weekend" optimism.
Have a good weekend! Vanessa xxx