So I’m a bit of a scrap hoarder. I have a bin for wood scraps, a bin for leather scraps, a bin for wire scraps, et cetera. This drives my boyfriend crazy. But as you crafters know, all that stuff comes in handy one day. And it’s so rewarding to find just the right thing without having to run to the store and spend your entire craft budget on some silly little part.
Right now, I am working on a tapestry. (That’s a post for another day.) I tried various methods of wrangling the pile of mini-cones on which the fine wool weft was wound, none of which were working quite right. Then a lightbulb went off!
I got out the scrap bins.
A bit of doweling, a plywood tray, and eight might miniature flowerpots later, I am totally organized slightly less disorganized.
Honestly, I tried to cut back on handmade gifts this year.
Of course, that turned out to be boring. So when, in mid-December, my grandmother told me that she was hosting a family gift exchange…
I made these. Hooray! It’s not Christmas without a last-minute project.
Last year, I… well, I started a small fire that happened to melt my mother’s old advent wreath. So I took some wool scraps from the Dorr Mill store and appliquéd her a new one:
Hopefully, this wreath is less flammable.
We also had a solstice party. I made a Yule log.
The log appeared to be in an advanced state of decay, but taste tests were favorable. The meringue mushrooms received especially good reviews.
From my trusty bin of wool scraps, I whipped up some stockings for us and the pigs and tacked them to the wall:
It was a pretty sloppy effort, but the rodents in question were very excited to find parsley in their socks.
And last but not least, look what my significant other surprised me with: an antique reel!
From what we can tell, it probably dates to the late eighteenth or early nineteenth century, and was probably made in Quebec. Any opinions on the subject would be appreciated. Aside from two nails in what is an obvious repair job), the joinery is entirely wood pegs and mortise-and-tenon joints. The wood looks like pine.
Whatever its provenance, it’s in beautiful shape and makes a tidy skein. The reel now lives in our living room where I can admire it from my knitting chair.
I hope you all had a pleasant holiday, if you celebrate any, and that you have a happy 2015!
I finished enough of my 16th-century Flanders outfit to wear at the demo this past weekend. Here’s how it came out:
Flemish garb. Hat tied on because of wind.
Flemish garb without partlet or sleeves
There are a few bits and pieces that I still would like to finish, but at least I had the partlet done! It was essential for sun protection, since my group sadly lost its tent due to high winds. (This is also why my hat is so obviously tied on.) Mugs and weapons racks and people were all blowing over, so my poor lace pillow didn’t stand a chance– I wound a few bobbins but didn’t actually make anything.
I’m still working on Hazel. The light blue is the “hopefully wearable test garment”, and the rose linen is the “real thing”:
(If I don’t finish the straps in time, I could always wear my partlet. Ha!)
Making good progress with the Aynia shrug, but I’ll have to hurry up want it for this weekend.
(I’ve been sitting on this post for ages, trying to take new photos with better lighting. Since it’s February, I’ve given up.)
My friends and I talk about yarn the same way normal people talk about food.
“I broke my diet again, but the MadTosh was too delicious to resist.”
“Eh, it’s little bland, but the texture is unbelievable!”
Perhaps not coincidentally, one of my more frequently used comparisons of weaving and knitting is as follows:
Knitting is like cooking. You’re always moving around, keeping track of five things at once, and it makes me immensely frustrated. (Note that this aspect of knitting is less true the more I practice. I’m getting better at the juggling act.)
Weaving, on the other hand, is like baking. All the hard work is at the beginning, and once everything is set up and running smoothly, it’s only a matter of time before you have a delicious finished good.
I suppose spinning is equivalent to making tea, all soothing and repetitive. And bobbin lace… is confectionery?
Sorry. I’ll quit torturing the metaphor. Here’s a guinea pig.
…Griff’s partner in crime, Edgar! My dad is something of a medievalist (at least, he likes Brother Cadfael) and I thought he might enjoy a little Bayeux Tapestry featuring his dog. This also gave me an opportunity to practice the Bayeux stitch in pleasantly authentic wool on linen. (I did fix the gap in Edgar’s harness, but didn’t take a picture after that.)
Other gift projects included finishing a sweater for my grandmother (pictures to follow), concocting an amigurimi gastropod for my boyfriend (pictures possibly to follow), and whipping up a hat on commission for a friend (picture follows).
Once all that was done, I made a little something for myself: EXTERMINITTENS!
And then, some socks. This week I made a sock knitting kit out of ah Altoids tin and wool felt to contain my stitch markers, measuring tape, tapestry needles, repair hook, 4″ DPNs, and snips. I’m sure it’s been done before, but I’m still quite proud of it.
Happy New Year to you all. Thanks for following the blog!
It’s time for the annual Christmas gift roundup, but it’s going to have to wait until after the workshop I’m giving this weekend to my weavers’ guild. In the meantime, here’s a sock I accidentally made.
Started just this weekend and finished… yesterday. Amazing! I gave those tiny Addi Turbo circulars a try, and I don’t think I’ve ever knit anything (certainly not a sock) so quickly.