FO: Love Note V

Since I felt like knitting again, I decided I needed to knit a few of the summer knits I planned for prior to staying home because of Covid-19. One of the projects I knew would be a really quick knit was another Love Note sweater but done in cotton and with short sleeves. This is my fifth Love Note! You can see one, two, three and four via those links.

Cotton Love Note

I have had this Cascade Sunseeker in my stash for forever, it is a discontinued cotton and acrylic blend that has a metallic thread running through it. It isn’t the softest but it’s a nice light weight fabric and it held up well on a super hot day.

Cotton Love Note

It’s also machine washable and dryer friendly, so I blocked it by throwing it in with a load of delicates. It pilled just a tiny bit, which is common with a first run of cotton, but I brushed it down and I haven’t seen it shed since. I didn’t make this one cropped and probably knit it as long as the last one I made for my sister, I wanted to be able to throw it on like a T-shirt.

Cotton Love Note

In addition to knitting, I’ve started picking up different masks to see what works best for me. I have little ears, wear glasses and have big hair. I’ve found that the straps that go around my ears just won’t work and crush my ears all day long or make my glasses slide off. My preferred mask style has adjustable elastic that goes around the head and these masks by JCRT fit the bill – added bonus, they have a knit print fabric. When I started buying masks I initially bought black masks because that was what was available and then got worried that my husband, a black man in American, would get shot by wearing a mask because he looked menacing to someone. So I searched and bought colorful ones instead. That’s the kind of thing that I have to think about when making what you would think is a simple purchase. It’s also the kind of example I give when we talk about privilege and differences in America for black people. Having to reconsider what kind of mask I buy is the kind of thing I wish I didn’t have to consider when buying something as simple as a face mask to protect us from spreading or contracting Covid-19.

Cotton Love Note

I’m just trying to do my part and yet somehow, it is a real possibility that we could lose our lives doing what’s right. Just by wearing a mask.

26 Replies to “FO: Love Note V”

  1. 5 Love Notes? There’s a true testament to that pattern! I’ve had it in my shopping cart forever, but just haven’t gotten around to buying it. You’re breaking my will here… Love the mask, but am so saddened by the fact that you’ve specifically got to look for bright colors for your hubby just as a safety measure.

  2. You and your sweater look wonderful. ❤️ I was JUST thinking this morning that I should really finally make a love note! Your post is giving me that extra nudge!

  3. What a wonderful Love Note – the color is fabulous. I was first drawn to your blog by your beautiful smile, just radiating welcome. I, of course, stayed for the knitting, but also your enthusiasm. So, today, I’m smiling because you are and that always makes me happy, but there are also tears running down my face because of the realities you have to face that I do not. It’s so far beyond wrong and always has been.

  4. Beautiful sweater. Beautiful you. Disgraceful behaviors in our country. We must do better.

  5. I hear you loud and clear now. I made masks for my family and never entertained a single thought about my husband’s safety. Not even after Elijah McClain was murdered for wearing a ski mask because he was anemic, and cold aggravated his condition. I guess we can’t think of everything. It’s tiring being an American. No wonder we suffer from high blood pressure, stress related illnesses and reach our tipping point during encounters with police. Black women don’t fare any better. We shall over come though. But I am sorry that you have this added burden to weigh us down.

    Be safe and be well.

  6. LOVE your Love Note!! I keep thinking about making one, but you may have convinced me now.
    I’m sorry that you have to think about things that my privilege, just being born a white woman, lets me never think twice about. I am trying to learn and do better, be more aware. Thank you for your honesty.

  7. I’m happy to see a Love Note in cotton! I’ve been wanting to try that pattern, but getting hung up on finding the right coordinating wool and mohair and then wondering if I would even ever wear it since I don’t like wool next to my skin.

  8. I love love love your new Love Note! Such a bright and cheery color and you look fabulous in it. Your work is awesome and inspires me to keep on knitting, especially when I feel down because of the news of the day and my own fears as a fellow Black woman. I treasure your posts and your honesty. Thank you for being there!

  9. I love that new sweater – I can see why you have knit several of them. SO sorry to hear your concerns about the mask for your husband – I would hope that wearing masks can become something that brings us together by the fact that it shows concern for others as well as ourselves. And I do think the bright colors and patterns help, you can express yourself through your mask. I have ones with dogs and dog prints on them (I am a dog person) as well as one with a Bowie lightning bolt and “We can be Heroes” on it.

  10. So happy you’re back! And I’m happy that you’re well! You bring a lot of gentle happiness into my life and I do worry for your mental well-being and health, even though we may never meet in the real world. As an 80 year old white woman with chronic asthma, three Chinese-American grandchildren and a daughter who lives in London (and I’m terrified I may never see again in real life), your little blogs really brighten my day.
    Thanks for the mask reference. I’m going to try try them. I can’t wear tie-on masks (shoulders are shot) and, although I find over-the-ear masks comfortable, they present a hazard to earrings and my hearing aids. Personally, I think black masks are hot and depressing.

    You’ve gotten me started on Love Notes. When I first saw yours on the blog I vowed I’d never make one. Holes where the boobs are? Show my bras? Mohair? The impossible yarn. Well, it’s been cold and damp here in the Pacific Northwest, so I thought “what the hell” and made a very warm one from Purl SoHo’s mulberry merino and their mohair silk with only one row of lace. It’s really soft and warm, knit up very quickly and no bra visibility. Now I’m on number 2: charcoal glitter sock yarn and Qing Fibers mohair/silk. Made all 2 1/2 panels of lace. Still, no real see through problem, if I wear a black bra. This one is much lighter weight but still warm. I’m now thinking of a cotton or linen one, but I’m still trying to figure out what to substitute for the mohair, because I like the fuzziness. I also like the fact that, unlike most of what I knit, this pattern uses very little yarn.
    Anyway, keep on knitting and blogging. You do more good than you may know.
    Fondly,
    Joanna Koss

  11. Great color for you. And thanks for the link…looks like we will be wearing masks for a long time, so I have begun searching for nice patterns and construction. It pains me that you and your husband need to worry about this on a level that many of us cannot imagine. But one hopes that change WILL happen.

  12. That color is amazing (says the woman wearing a bright orange t shirt with green paisley clogs….)! I had thought that sweater pattern was so-so until I saw this version. I am sorry you have to give so much consideration to the implications of your mask wearing. I am glad you are speaking plainly about this reality.

  13. It’s a great,comforting knit! I just finished #4, tunic length with 3/4 sleeves. Take care.

  14. Thank you for your honesty regarding the black mask. I appreciate you sharing your truth.

  15. Regarding mask fit, I prefer a mask with ties to ear elastics as well. But the ties can be finicky, so I have a couples my mom put two toggles on; one for the top tie and one for the bottom. Works great! Especially quick for my toddler too! Good luck!

  16. You are the Love Note Queen! It looks just as good in cotton. I’m planning on making a DK version this Fall. Covid is stressful enough without having to be careful about which mask to buy because it could cost your husband’s life!

  17. Love that orange! In the beginning of mask wearing I didn’t know which was scarier: wearing a mask or not wearing a mask. I was afraid someone on the street would blame me (Asian American) for ‘kung flu’ and wondered, does a mask make me more or less of a target? Now I’m grateful that in our state (MD) mask wearing doesn’t seem to be an issue the way I’ve heard it is elsewhere. Love your knitty mask and thanks for the link!

  18. I need to knit a Love Note. I tend to get too hot in pullovers in the winter, but one in a cotton for summer—I could do that!

    I appreciate your honesty about safety and mask color. Reading things like that helps me to retrain my thinking to see those kinds of patterns on our culture. Seeing those patterns, I can work on how my behavior could reinforce or challenge them. Then I can make better choices.

  19. All of your Love Note Sweaters are beautiful. I am in awe of your knitting skills. I made many masks but did not have to think about whether my sons or husband would look like wearing them and if they would be in danger by doing so. I am so sorry that you have to think about that, and I have read about this many times from others. I hope we all wear masks for safety and that there is no reason to doubt anyone reason for wearing one. Here in Florida it is amazing to me how many people are still not wearing one, endangering all those around them. Stay safe.

  20. I love reading your monthly column, as well as you IG account, because you help me think of my knitting outside the box. Even though I’ve been knitting for years, I still tend to stay in a comfort zone & knit with the yarn that’s suggested. That’s fine, but it’s not always within my budget so I’m terrified I’ll mess up expensive yarn. But you open up other possibilities I never thought of! Like with using sunseeker to make a Love Note sweater! YES! I have that yarn & since it’s just been marinating in my stash, I can try knitting this sweater, which I have to admit intimidates me just a little. No, heck, A LOT. Many thanks for being inspiring.

  21. And…can I also just say that YES, I am humbled & dismayed by your sharing fears about your husband & mask wearing. I haven’t had to worry about that & I recognize what a role that plays in your life, your fears, your encounters, oh damn, everything little & big thing in your life. Can I share a story? Last year, I told a neighbor to park her car in my driveway since the road by her house was being worked on & she couldn’t park in her garage. A few hours later, she texted to tell me her husband was on the way to get her car & to not be concerned. I LOL’d her back & said I enjoy handsome gentleman walking down my driveway, but then I realized she’d notified me because they’re black. Remembering this story brings me to tears & a realization of how unjust & prejudiced American society is. Sending you hugs.

  22. You touch me with your personal sharing as a black woman of the concern you have regarding the most healthy choice we have, to wear a mask at this time in the US.

  23. I grew up in mid-America in the 60’s and 70’s and have been doing battle with learned racial biases my whole life. Thank you so much for making the (probably uncomfortable) choice of sharing those issues and decisions that you and other people of color have to face on a daily basis. All of this, just to survive in America. Please continue to educate us on the daily struggle. Thank you!

  24. That certainly is a consideration white people don’t have to make. And very scary. The first thought that sprung to mind as a “safer” mask choice is a light blue one which people might associate with a doctor or hospital medic and thus less “threatening.” On the one hand it is offensive to have to concede to other people’s thinking in terms of a color choice. But on the other hand the alternative, in this case, is much worse. In the course of my day I encounter black men and women with masks on often and it never occurs to me to feel threatened. I think I am the norm in this regard but it is the abnormal (of which I am sure there are plenty) that you have to think about, On a happier note, I love your bright orange Love Note! Chloe

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