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Friday, June 06, 2008

Real and Imaginary Friends

I have my first, actual, real-life knitting circle friends as of today. [Hi, new friends!] A mom from our preschool found me on Ravelry and invited me to her monthly group. We hadn't said more than hello all the school year — but, after she recognized my avatar in a local Ravelry group, she sent me a nice note. You know when you meet up with one of your imaginary online friends it's as if you've always known that person. Well, it was like that, but even better, because they live in my town!!!! The night had all the best things: good food, funny stories, sad stories, felting lessons, and best of all, good folk. I worked on my Vintage Vertical Stripe afghan — only thirty or forty more rows to go. See that copyright date on this old photo — 2006! It's been a long time coming.

If you haven't signed up for Ravelry, I apologize for all the linkage. Now go over there and sign up for an invite, so you can make some friends, be they real or imagined.

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Thursday, January 31, 2008

Crafts of Yore: Knitted Hats

I don't really knit much these days, because poke-y sticks are just too attractive to the littles. But, I used to knit, for a short time — made some hats, some dolls, a blanket. Ravelry inspired me to take these pics of past projects, and it's also tempting me to knit again. I kinda, sorta want to make a sweater for myself. [Insert nervous nail biting here.] I'm thinking about the Sophisticated Rustic Jacket over at Interweave's Knitting Daily. Has anyone made it? Suggestions on another sweater type garment that would flatter a big breasted, big waisted gal like me?

The beehive hat is from Stitch 'N Bitch Nation. The stripe-y hat is Tychus from Knitty. And, the baby bonnet is from Last Minute Knitted Gifts. I added the fuzzy crochet border. The weird baby head is a leftover Bedfellow head that now gets used as a ball. I left the yarn string on it and the kids love to chuck it. The eyes and nose were done in Photoshop. Sorry, I don't remember too much about yarns and needle sizes.

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Saturday, January 12, 2008

Good Day Sunshine



We interrupt this bad mood with a ray of sunshine.

I got my Ravelry invite yesterday and am adding projects as fast as I can. I always thought the invite part of Ravelry sounded quite snobbish, but, it's just a way to slow things down while they get the Beta version worked out.

A few things I noticed about my projects:

1) I don't invest brain cell on remembering what yarn I used. I think Ravelry will help me with this.

2) I crochet a *lot* more than I knit. I'd like to knit more, so that I can make up my own designs.

3) I like colorful projects. Who would have thunk?

4) I like to make up my own designs. I didn't realize how many times I've done this.

5) I don't write those designs down. Sad.

So, if you are already at Ravelry, make me a friend and I'll make you a friend. And, if you are not there, go sign up for an invite. They're real nice.


Friday, November 16, 2007

Knit Dolls: Make Some!

Originally uploaded by Green Kitchen.

Originally uploaded by Green Kitchen.

Originally uploaded by Green Kitchen.
Remember these knit dolls? I finally found the book that the original pattern came from, "Woman's Day Book of Best-loved Toys & Dolls," 1982. I scanned the pages and they're over at my Flickr account if you want to download and print them out. I'm not sure how that works with a 25 years old copyright. If anyone thinks this is inappropriate/illegal to post I will gladly take them down and write up the basic instructions.

You can make up your own pattern for a knit doll pretty easily — it's basically a rectangle with some decreasing. The boy at the top is the only one I made from the original pattern. There are also patterns for a smaller boy, a woman, and a man. Here's a photo of the whole family.

The Bee Woman in the middle is a pattern that I made up as I went — her hat is a removable stinger. The guy doll at the bottom is based on my husband. He's wearing his basic work uniform: black Dickies and a white T-shirt. I still need to embroider the stripes on his Adidas.

These dolls are pretty easy and very enjoyable to make. The kids like to hold them. Hell, I like to hold them. They're very soft and comfy. The removable hats are fun, too, especially for the 18-month-old set.

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Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Hippie-potamus Generation

Originally uploaded by Green Kitchen.

Originally uploaded by Green Kitchen.

I missed the date, but had wanted to post these funny knit critters for my birthday because they are the same vintage as I am. The patterns are from a supplemental pamphlet from Woman's Day magazine, April, 1968.

Check them out, there are more:

Pages 2-3
Pages 4-5
Pages 6-7
Page 8

Also, thanks so much for the birthday wishes for my boy. Seems like this year is going to be short on craft and long on kid chasing. I'll try to make up for it with photos of my crafts-of-yore and other tidbits. I'm still sewing clothes and wrote up a glue-set zipper tutorial for Sew, Mama, Sew, which I believe is going live tomorrow.

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Monday, January 01, 2007

Rainbow's End, New Beginnings

Originally uploaded by Green Kitchen.

Originally uploaded by Green Kitchen.

Originally uploaded by Green Kitchen.
I've been trying to get my year-end post together about the holidays and some fantastic swap goodies, but sickness invaded our house for a third time in December. So, I'm going to wait until I have more time for that one — maybe combine it with my blogiversay, which is coming up January 6th!

Since today is a new beginning I wanted to post this blanket I made for my friend Sara's new baby, born December 24 at about 2:20 in the afternoon. Now, this isn't just *any* new baby. This is a baby that I got to see come into the world — a first for me! Sara made it look so simple. She's truly an amazing birther — it's her special power. Me, I take up to seven hours to push out a baby; she took FIVE MINUTES! I heard Silent Night on the way to the birth and it made me all teary about mothers and babies.

Sara's a relatively new friend, about a year and a half. We were destined to meet. We have about ten different ways we are connected (husband, brother, craft fair, homebirth, etc.), but it took about 35 years to get together, even though we grew up and live in the same town. If I had known her just a little bit longer she would have been at my son's birth last May. She did fulfill the special job of making my belly cast for me. You can see the belly cast in the photo with the rolled blanket. Thank you, Sara, for all the good birth juju. I really didn't mean to invite myself along to your birth. ;)

I started the blanket back in August or September. It's definitely the longest knitting project I've ever worked on. I'm sure you all recognize it from Mason Dixon Knitting. I knew Sara wanted rainbow colors for her blanket, and, just happened upon the MDK book while I was with her. We both loved the example of the garter stitch log cabin that had the rainbow divided by warm and cool colors. What could be easier than an all garter stitch blanket? Ha!

The Mason Dixon book gives the basic instructions for how to make the knitted log cabins and leaves it up to you to choose the yarns, size, layout, etc. I picked all washable yarns: Superwash wools (Bazic Wool,Primo, Cascade 220 superwash, and a couple others); Wool/Acrylic blends (Lion Brand Wool-Ease; Plymouth Encore); and a couple of thrifted acrylics because I wanted the bright colors.

I finished the blanket a few days before the baby came. I'm really happy with it. It's got a nice drape. It feels snuggly. Welcome to the world Avalon.


Friday, February 10, 2006

Simple Knit Dolls

Simple Knit Dolls
Originally uploaded by Green Kitchen.
Worked on straight needles, these dolls are very easy to make for a beginner. These were some of my first ever knitted projects, right after simple ribbed scarf and straight needle hats. They're really fun to hold--soft, squishy, and somehow different than a fabric doll. I got the pattern for the middle doll out of a toy making book from the early 1980s, which I'll post when I can find the book (must tackle six-foot craft pile to find it). But, really, you can do it without a pattern, which is what I did for the other two dolls. The left doll is supposed to be my husband (Dickies, white t-shirt, Adidas, and a beard--tee hee) and the one on the right is a bee lady (gold and black striped sweater, grey skirt, and removable stinger hat). I crocheted a circle for her base, and small circle shoe soles for my husband's Adidas.

Basically, for the middle doll, you work a rectangle from the feet up to the collar of the sweater, switching colors as you choose for shoes, pants, and sweater. The shoes were knit, pants were pearl, and sweater knit with a k1 p1 rib. Bind off and then pick up stitches to work the face. If I remember correctly, the head has the same amount of stitches as the body, but is shaped at the neck later. I switched yarns to give him hair, which you can't see because it is under his removable hat. As you get toward the top of the head start to decrease at the end and beginning of each row. The rest is just finish work: sew up the back seam, stuff, and hand stitch to shape the neck, arms and legs (this was the hardest part for me, to get the needle through the fill, perhaps wrong needle). The eyes, nose, and mouth are simple embroidery with yarn.

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