Knit Wit Living

Reflections, Beading, Knitting, Life

Archive for the tag “Knitting”

My Amish Mistake

I wrote a report on the Amish and Mennonites when I was in middle school. I was bothered by one of their practices to purposely make a mistake in their work based on the belief that only God can make something perfectly.  This really irked me because if only God could make something perfectly, then there was no need to make a mistake, because one would naturally happen.  Their “logic” annoyed me to no end.  As you can probably tell, it still bothers me.  Now, when I make a mistake I usually just refer to it as “my Amish mistake” and carry on with my project.

At what point does one really need to undo the work and redo it?

I have started knitting a 47″ wide Missoni Inspired Chevron Blanket because I am insane and didn’t learn my lesson about doing large projects with the Poncho I recently finished.

My Amish Mistake

This is the pattern picture, i.e. what it’s supposed to look like at the end.

There are 361 stitches, and I repeat the 60-stitch pattern 6 times.  It will be beautiful…when it’s finished….

My Amish Mistake

It took me some time to get the M1 stitches correct, but I figured I could carry on and when it was blocked the rows would come together.

My Amish Mistake

I dropped a stitch at one point and pulled the others up through it.  There was still a slight hole but I figured I could go back later with a needle and yarn and make it look normal.

My Amish Mistake

A lot of work!

BUT THEN….I dropped a S1 K2T PSSO stitch.  Damn! There was no way getting around this one.

My Amish Mistake

The one that could not be absolved.

RIP!  Funny how RIP-ping a piece out also stands for Rest in Peace.  Funny or sad.  Knitting humor. Or not.

Get out the Kleenex.  For the tears while ripping out rows and rows of 361 stitches.

Time to start anew.

My Amish Mistake

The Poncho / Ruana is Complete

The Poncho that took me over a year to knit is finished!  It’s not really a poncho, but a ruana – a free form cardigan, perhaps.

I made it for a friend, at her request.

She kept asking me if she had overstepped the friendship line by asking me to make it. I did not, and do not, feel that she had, even if it took longer than she expected.

When I accepted the request, I should have said – if I did not say it – I am not a prolific knitter. I do not knit quickly.  I knit in my spare time, and balance it with my other spare time activities.  Perhaps I did not make this clear.

Regardless.  The ruana is done. Delivered to its owner.  Who told me she likes it.

Here it is.

3 different yarns knit together to make its own fabric.

Poncho

My friend picked the yarn (and was taken aback at how expensive yarn can be). I merely knit it.  And then sewed the pieces together.

Beautiful.

Poncho

Finished.

Poncho

Poncho

(And I’m ready to knit something else now.)

This weekend…VKL NYC!

Vogue Knitting Live NYC 2016 is this weekend!

I can’t believe it’s been a whole year since VKL NYC 2015! The Knitting with Beads course with Laura Nelkin has changed my life. I have been spending the year teaching myself beading, and transferring much of my spending to beading supplies.

And guess what?

I am not going to VKL NYC this year! Instead I am saving my pennies to go to a beading fair next weekend.

My goal remains the same – to combine knitting and beading in unusual ways.  I’ve been spending this year learning basic beading techniques to understand how it works…so that I can rework it.

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Did I mention that beading is fun? And more immediate gratification than knitting!  But there are so many choices, and really, a lot of thinking and processing.  And stringing is not as easy as it looks. Sure, putting beads on a string is easy, but the design, and making sure the beads fall correctly takes longer than I expected.  It’s all very enjoyable.

Beading

And pretty!

Beading Report

I think beading is more prolific than knitting.  There are more options of things you can do with beads, and the projects are a lot faster to complete (in some cases) than knitting.  Plus, bead designs are available everywhere – you are more likely to see people wearing jewelry than a knitted item.

It could become a daunting task to try to come up with new designs. Or maybe not? There are soooo many different types of beads and new bead types being produced that it may be easier to come up with combinations and patterns that are unique.

On the other hand, knitters may come up with new knitting stitches or yarn / stitch combinations more than noticed or publicized.

It is a fascinating world to be creative with so many choices.

So the really cool thing is that I’ve come up with some ideas and looked online to see how other people have done them…and I can’t find anything!  That is so exciting because it tells me that I am on to something new and different.

The first time this happened, I was making a necklace to wear to the opera in Milan. (I know, how lucky am I?!) I bought a fabulous dress and knew that I wanted to wear a necklace that was totally unique and made specifically for it.  I had read about creating large beads from small ones – a fairly common idea – but then I decided to hang them from the necklace like little pendants.  I could not find any advice on how to do that.  What fun!  Like recipes, patterns are usually just recommendations, so this was actually perfect. I could do what I wanted to make it work.

So amazing!

While planning the jewelry to take on my trip, I realized I had many necklaces but very few earrings. So I decided to take the major components of the different necklaces and make one pair of earrings that would go with them all.  Call it funky, definitely call it unique. This is what I ended up with – and love! because I don’t think anyone else would ever put this combination together!

Beading Report

Now, I’m playing with the herringbone stitch, which is a simple stitch but looks terribly advanced! For some reason, I enjoy doing the tubular rather than the flat stitch. I think it’s more interesting to watch the product develop as a tube.  This is a fairly standard spiral herringbone design, but in the middle section I have Swarovski crystals spiraling in the opposite direction.

I made a point to have both sides match up.  While not unique at all, this was a major challenge for an asymmetrically-driven crafter.  It was a gift for a very symmetrically-oriented friend, who appreciated my extra effort in this regard!

What I’ve Been…

I have been remiss in posting and want to give a quick update of what I’ve been doing…

ABBREVIATED VERSION
knitting
The Poncho
reading
I Am Pilgrim
beading
Herringbone stitch
eating
No sugar
planning
Trip to Italy
playing
Golf
doing
Tidying Up along with the usual procrastination and daydreaming (all part of the process)

UNABRIDGED VERSION
knitting
The Poncho for my friend. This pattern is two 50″x24″ rectangles that are sewn together to make a poncho. It’s quite creative, but very slow-going because I have been so distracted lately.
reading
I Am Pilgrim for my book club.
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I keep reminding myself that I joined the book club to read books that I normally would not pick out on my own. This is one such book. It’s about spies and terrorists and murders and 9/11. All things that are very bleak. I have been depressed about the state of the world while I’m reading this book.
beading
Herringbone stitch – I am digging this stitch! I think it looks more professional than the peyote stitch and I am having such fun with it.  (Just a visual reference below – another post with my own projects to follow…)

eating
No sugar…again. I fell off the No Sugar Wagon awhile back – a little in my coffee, a sweet now and again, and before I know it, I’m eating a lot of sugar. Now I am avoiding it along with gluten, and it makes the No Thanks choices so much easier. I am sleeping better and am not hungry or have any cravings.  There was cake at work yesterday (I am a frosting fanatic!) and I looked at it…did think about that frosting…but walked on by and did not go back. Yay me!
planning
Trip to Italy – coming up…going with college friends. Can Not Wait!
playing
Golf – oh my goodness. I am addicted! I played twice last weekend. I think that it’s mathematical, exercise without thinking you’re exercising, and social. And you only play against yourself really, so no one else is depending on you to do well, like in a team sport.
doing
Tidying Up along with the usual procrastination and daydreaming (all part of the process). I tidied up my books, er, let me clarify, my non-knitting, non-beading, non-craft-oriented books. I had some from college and decided I could let go of them. Now I’m trying to decide if my art books should be donated to Goodwill or given away. I want to make sure they go to nice homes.

The trip is almost upon us and I’m sad that I’m already making plans for when I get back…except that they include golf, knitting, beading and getting together with friends.  Oh, yes, and book club.  It will be interesting to hear everyone’s opinions.

Also, use that reply box down there to offer up other book club suggestions. I’d love to see what other clubs are reading.

Arrivederci!

Still beading

Knitting, beading, so many options!  One thing I will say is that it’s a lot less expensive to make “a little purchase” of beads than yarn!  Unfortunately, the bead merchants are just as prolific at sending out enticing emails as the knitting industry.

I haven’t really accomplished much lately.  I’m knitting a poncho for a friend so feel compelled not to do other knitting with such a large project on my plate.  It’s not particularly complicated, just time consuming.  More on that in another post.

I’ve been mulling about beading now. I really am inspired to do something unique – hard to do in this day and age!  I’ve decided that I need to understand the basic elements of beading so I’ve been reading a lot, and trying my hand at this new art. My problem is – and always has been – that I like to get ahead of myself.  I don’t like the tedious practice of learning, instead wanting to jump into the advanced skills.  I know it doesn’t work well that way…

Well, I want to share some ideas that I tried but came out rather clumsily. A lot of the beading patterns show rope like chains, so I thought what if I used an i-cord instead of a rope.  What if the i-cord had beads in it?  I tried placing the beads in different ways on the stitches.

beading

beading

I’ll admit it’s interesting, but I don’t like the end result.

I found a shop on etsy, where the woman knits necklaces, and knits the pieces to look like beads.

knitting beading

knitted beading

It’s interesting. I also saw this old ad/pattern of knitted beading

knitted jewelry

What’s old is (or can be) new again?

I tried stringing beads along an i-cord, but am not enthralled with this either.

beading

and with a decorative beaded element (on the left)

knitted beading

Luckily I have plenty of time and lots of ideas.  And a poncho to keep me busy.

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