Posts tagged ‘Knitting’

January 18, 2011

Handmade

Handmade…  *Sigh* Just the word, brings a simple smile to my face and a warmness in my heart.  I’ve had a life-long infatuation with all things handmade.  I was blessed with a grandma and a nana who created beautiful handmade gifts for us children, especially for Christmas, and a mother who was always creating and coordinating gifts for baby showers and weddings.

My grandmother was a brilliant woman who knitted, crocheted, quilted and sewed.  Each year, we each received hand-knit, woolen slippers from her.  She quilted bed covers for my parents.  But, the best gift of all, she taught my sister and I to crochet at a young age.  If there was a crochet hook and yarn around, we could easily be occupied for hours creating and designing clothes for our barbies and dolls.  I inherited her travel sewing machine which served me well in making costumes and clothes for my sons.

My Nana is an artist.  Her handmade gifts tended to be hand-painted with delightful whimsy and pizzaz.  Each year, we received hand-painted ornaments each year a new theme and design.  Her gifts also were always wrapped in her signature, Christmas themed cloth bags.  Being the granddaughter of a tailor, my Nana could sew just about anything.  She created much of my mother’s clothes, and later created dresses for my sisters and me.  Even though she is very shaky now, she’s still crocheting gifts for charities, babies and friends.  Her greatest gift to me is she taught me to sew.

My mother is a brainy, Rennaissiance women who knits, sews, quilts, spins, crochets, needlepoints, and more.  If there’s a hand-craft, she’s done it (some she enjoys far better than others).  She’s always creating something whether it’s handknit socks for my dad, or a quilt for a new baby.  Her greatest gift to me is her example of giving something uniquely special and heart-felt.

I’ve a beautiful, handmade legacy which I hope continues into the next generations.  My hope is as I highlight my handmade creations that it’ll inspire and even spark a passion for all things handmade.  As I work to build my Etsy shop, I’d like also to feature some of the stunning work others artisans on Etsy have crafted.

These are a few of my favorite things (click images for link):

Are you feeling the LOVE?

She makes linen garments and sells them, and supplies the merchants with sashes.  Proverbs 21:24

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May 5, 2009

KAL Mystery

photo-54I joined my first KAL. It was impulsive. I didn’t ask questions. I wasn’t even sure what the acronym meant. I just did it. Maybe it was the pretty purple yarn. Maybe it was the scent of a mystery (I love a good mystery!). Maybe it was the challenge.

For those of you who are still in the dark, a KAL is a Knit-A-Long. KAL is just one of those esoteric terms found in knitting circles (SSK, YO, dcdec, M1, K1, SSP, FROG, and many more). In these KALs, groups of knitter get-together virtually (Ravelry.com) and knit a project. Along the way, tips and victories and frustrations are all shared. 

Except for a childhood class in purling a scarf (I’m sure I invented the YO – you should have seen the holes!), I am a self-Madame DeFargetaught knitter. I’m now nearly fluent in knit-ease, but I still have a long way to go. The knitters in these groups are die-hard knitters (I’m sure they would have the mysterious French knitter in Charles Dicken’s Tale of Two Cities quaking in her des chaussures!). They perform amazing knitting feats without batting an eye. Clearly, I am way out of my league.

The mystery is the pattern. The clues are released one by one as you are knitting the project. The pattern is a pair of socks, but what will they look like? Clue Two was released yesterday and I am still struggling with finishing clue one. Tobias, the cat, has been circling my yarn as if to mock my efforts (He loves yarn! He loves chewing yarn into little pieces preferably when I am mid-project).

Of course, I’m loving the challenge and I even got my mom to join too.  And, there is still time if you are up for the challenge: 

http://www.knittersbrewing.com/storename/knittersbrewing/ViewDept-260510.aspx

Diligent hands will rule, but laziness ends in slave labor. Proverbs 12:24

April 28, 2009

Victory!

Drake's socks

C'est fini

 

April 3, 2009

Knitting: A Lesson in Perserverence

Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. James 1:4

Okay, so here it is…

I began Drake’s first sock when Graeme was a baby (he is 4 now).  Between home-schooling 2 children, entertaining a pre-schooler  and nursing a little one, my life became quite sedetary.  Not wanted to be completely unproductive, I rediscovered knitting. My mother had been knitting the most amazing socks for years, and it was inspiring!  So, I began, and needless to say, I was hooked!

Considering I hadn’t knitted since I was probably 10, I did pretty well.  The sock yarn was lovely (free knitting tip: beautiful yarn hides imperfections), but I discovered after hours logged I found a noticeable flaw in the ribbing. That just wouldn’t do, so I unraveled the whole sock…

Fast forward two years, and I recovered my sock bag.  I was determined this time, and I was also spending many hours at hockey rinks.  The combination proved to be the perfect catalyst – finally Drake’s first sock was completed!  With momentum in my favor, quickly I began knitting the next sock.  What I didn’t figure into the equation was that Drake’s feet had grown…  Did I mention the younger brothers have several pairs of hand-knit socks now?

Being a hockey mom affords you ample time for knitting especially when your 11 year son absolutely needs to be at the rink 1 hour prior to games and practices.  So, this past season I was able to complete many knitting projects. And again, I began a new pair of socks for Drake.  The yarn is really beautiful with browns and rust and khaki-green in a self-striping pattern.  The first sock is done (and fits!), and the second sock is almost completed…

Did I mention the cat?

Tobias the Cat

Tobias the Cat