Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Recent Activities

Recently, I've been thinking about trying to get my granddaughter interested in yarn crafts, and I asked her mother if she had tried out loom knitting. No, she hadn't but was interested in it. So I did some research, and decided to buy a set of 4 circle looms to start. So last Friday, I went to Hobby Lobby to get the looms, and planned to stop at the library and get some books.

I am in a Ravelry group called "A Good Yarn", which is composed of fans of Debbie Macomber. Well, I've read many of Debbie's books, but not the one everyone in the group seems to be reading, which is Twenty Wishes. While I was at the library, I picked up Twenty Wishes, Where Angels Go, The Big Book of Knitting, and Kids Knitting.

I was casually skimming the Kids Knitting book, and it talks about kids making their own knitting needles, which, as it turns out, is not very difficult at all, and something that any child could do. Since I had some old dowels out in the garage, I decided to make a few, which I did. I now have everything from a 3.25 mm (bamboo skewer), about 5 mm (chopsticks), 3/16" (4.76 mm), 1/4" (6.35 mm), 3/8" (9.5 mm), 1/2" (12.7 mm), and 5/8" (15.8 mm) wooden knitting needles. It is fun to do, and they can be given away along with an article made on them. One of the interesting things about making your own wooden needles, is creating interesting end caps for them.

I am currently knitting a second pair of fingerless mitts, and have a hat on the circle loom.

Shameless Self-Promotion

I've never been one to build myself up to others. I always figured if people got to know me and wanted me to be their friend, so be it. However, it always feels good for someone to brag on you once in a while. My friend Julia Gregory Poirier, a.k.a.Yarnmaven, recently put in a plug for me, and it felt really good. See My Friend Frank on her blog.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Pattern for Felted Netbook Bag

Felted Bag for 10" ASUS computer

Finished size 11 1/2 in. x 8 1/2 in.
1 skein of Lion Brand Fisherman's Wool
Size US 15, 10mm needles

This project is knit with two strands of yarn. Pull the inner and outer ends, and knit with them held together.
A test patch is recommended, about 8" x 8", then felted. On mine, the row shrunk about 6%, but the length across rows shrunk 23%.

Using the two strands of yarn, cast on 37 stitches (about 12 1/3 inch). Knit garter stitch until the block is 24-25 inches long, then taper.

Row 1: k 2, ssk, k until 4 sts remain, k2tog, k 2.
Row 2: k across.
Repeat rows until 5 sts remain, bind off.

Fold 12" up from beginning and seam the sides to make a pocket.

Wash in a top-loading machine, in a bag, 15 min. on high agitation.
Allow to air dry 2-3 days. You may want to pull it into the shape you want.
Using pointed scissors, cut a buttonhole vertically in the end of the flap. Finish buttonhole.
Place button (1 1/2 in. button) on the body of the bag.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

A Long Time Coming

Wow! It's been a long time since I said anything here. I started knitting back in August, and shortly thereafter joined Ravelry. Since then, most of my online activity has been posting projects on Ravelry. I've also been knitting and reading a lot. I read just about everything I can get my hands on by Debbie Macomber, even some of her old stuff that has been republished.

I have knit 6 scarves, one hat, and a pair of fingerless mitts so far. Oh, I also knit and felted a slipcover for my 10" ASUS netbook (twice, since it didn't felt right the first time), and washcloth.

I have joined a mitten knit-along for the month of January, and it's a lot of fun.