Sunday, March 11, 2012

The Line-Up

I have been hitting thrift shops for the past several weeks, grabbing all the 100% wool sweaters I could find that were of a "winter palette". Soft blues, soft pinks, grays, off-whites. I even scored some great cheap cashmere. It was nice coming across so many vintage sweaters with "made in the u.s.a." and union labels. Quite a few sweaters that are out of fashion, and/or with stains and holes will be able to repurpose themselves in my project.

I have been felting. A lot. Just a note: you CAN felt in a front-load washer. There is a myth it cannot be done. It can.

Only 2 sweaters of the bunch would not felt. I'm not sure how the manufacturers do it, but they can treat wool so it does not felt. There is no way that I know of to be able to tell if the sweater has been made with this process, but since I only ran into this problem twice out of probably what - 40 sweaters - it's not a big deal.

My project is going to involve cutting the sweaters into squares, zigzag stitching them together side by side (not 'right sides together' or overlapping. there will be no seams). Then I'll probably put a backing like a regular quilt. No batting needed.

We'll see how it goes. I'm kinda winging it.

Broomstick Lace

Inspired by the Broomstick Lace Scarf from episode 3-106 of the PBS show "Knit and Crochet Now!", I could not resist giving this old-fashioned approach a try. Very pretty and very fun. The stitch groups are large, so  it whips up pretty quickly.

Right Side:

Wrong Side: (just as pretty as the front)

Don't they look like the ends of peacock feathers?

Sunday, January 29, 2012


I needed to make a little something special for a birthday friend. Who couldn't do with a little fairy godmother? From Kajsa Wikman's adorable "Scandinavian Stitches" book, I found this darling pattern. I had no tulle for the wings, no tiny beads for the eyes, and no polyfill stuffing, but one of the most challenging things about homecrafting is making do with what is on hand. I'm not the most resourceful person, but found some scrap organza that worked fine for the wings, I did a simple stitch for the eyes, and used some scrap wool/pillow stuffing to fill her up. I tossed in some dried lavender for good measure.

There is something particularly "spiritual" -for lack of a better word - about making dolls. I've made a few, and it's not only that they come to life as you are piecing them together, their little characters materializing before you as you go, but if you listen closely to them, they'll tell you if they want a bow in their hair or a flower. They'll tell you if they want flowers on their leggings or stripes instead. They'll tell you if they would like to hold something in their hands or be free. Most of all, they'll tell you whether or not they want a little heart stitched on their butt.

LuLuBell and I have become fast friends, but her home is somewhere else, and she'll be very happy there.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Finished Jovie Hat

Phew! That took a bit of doing but it was worth it. So many lovely cables. I want to use these honeycombs in other projects.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

WIP Update Jovie Hat

After 6 inches of K1P1, I'm into the cables. After the first set, I realized that one of the 6-stitch cables goes right to left and the other goes left to right. I'm not sure if this was intentional with the pattern, but I'd like for the cables to be symmetrical (the honeycomb cables on the hat are symmetrical), so I'm going to frog back and change one so it matches the other, and keep them that way for the rest of the hat.

Frogging back to fix a cable mixup like this is a bit frightening. If you run into something like this, Yarnharlot has this spectacular tutorial on how to fix them.

Honeycomb cables:

6 stitch cable leaning R/L
The other 6 stitch cable leaning L/R

Wish me luck!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

WIP Jovie's Slouchie Hat from the move "Elf"

Getting a skein ready to make Jovie (from the movie Elf) hat. A very kind person by the name of Megan Ortmann replicated the pattern from the film and posted it on Ravelry for free here. Isn't that sweet?

Lots of cables and my first pompom-to-be (and what an impressive pompom it is!)

Wish me luck!