Sunday, July 10, 2011

Reworked project: yarn bombed my house

After reading an article about local yarn bombers, I decided to use 2 of the knitted strips to cover one of the porch support poles on my house. I think the pole cozy jazzes up the front entrance very nicely.

Reworked project: crocheted scarf

Here's one of the knitted strips reworked into a crocheted scarf. I've solved the problem of the multitude of yarn ends by covering the loose strands with crocheted flowers. The loose ends are pulled through the flower centers and knotted. Voila!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Getting creative with old unfinished projects

Not all my stash is skeins of yarn. I have some still-born projects that never got to completion. The photo shows one of these. I had all these odds and ends of acrylic yarn that I thought could be worked into an interesting afghan. Unfortunately, I forgot that lots of color changes means lots (LOTS) of yarn tails to be dealt with. And if there's one thing about fiber crafts that I truly hate, it's weaving in loose ends. I made a little headway, but got discouraged & packed the pieces away. Well, to continue with my destashing resolution, I pulled them out to see what I could do with them. I'll post my results here in coming days.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Off the Needles: Another pantyhose rug

The theme for the June meeting of the Twisted Threads book group was green knitting -- using recycled materials instead of adding to the landfill. I made this throw rug to show how used stockings can be recycled into rugs. I've been making these rugs for several years. They make great bathmats because the nylons give them body and the cotton yarn is soft and absorbent. I also think the addition of the nylon helps them dry quicker in the clothes dryer. The one shown was made using black knee-high stockings cut in circles and chained together to form yarn. I use 2 strands of cotton yarn and one strand of the nylon. The pattern is just garter stitch large needles (size 10 1/2 or 11). I cast on using 2 strands of cotton and knit a couple of rows. The 3rd row always has 3 strands: 2 cotton and 1 nylon. By limiting the use of the nylon you reduce the bulkiness and give your hands a break for 2 rows out of three. This is not a project you want to work on for long stretches since the weight of the yarn can cause fatigue. I just repeat the 3-row pattern until I get the length I want and then I end with a couple of rows of just cotton strands and then bind off. The result is a hard-wearing rug that will hold up to years of laundering and feels good under your feet.

You can recycle other materials in this project. I've used cut up strips of old underwear in another throw rug, and you could also use old t-shirts or other similar materials. I'll probably recycle my old pj's this way when they wear out.

Off the Needles: Chenille Shawl

My friend Linda gave me 8 skeins of a discontinued Noro chenille yarn and challenged me to do something with it. Here's the result: a simple shawl using the same pattern as the shawl I made last June from Knitted Shawls, Stoles, and Scarves by Nancie Wiseman. I edged it with a simple crocheted edging which adds interest and also stabilizes the sides. Can't wait to see Linda's reaction when I give this to her.