Skip to main content

Why Sewing is Better...

Last week I mentioned that I didn’t have any knitting project at all in the works. Yesterday I dug my yarn stash out of a very dusty and dirty corner of the storage room (so excited about getting settled at home again soon) along with some pattern books and ideas. I spent too much time today trying to match yarn to pattern and found this to be a pretty frustrating pursuit.

Compared my level of sewing experience, I am quite a newbie knitter. But it seems to me that unless you choose the pattern first and then buy the yarn specified in the amount specified it is really complicated to find something more involved than a scarf to knit. The issue of guage is the biggest hurdle. I have a lot of yarn (thanks to my MIL!) and a lot of patterns, but when I find a yarn that matches the gauge in the pattern I find that I don’t have enough of the yarn, or it is the wrong color (“boy colors” vs. “girl colors” are a big deal for my little kids) or the pattern requires circular needles and I only have straight in that size, etc. The list could go on….

Of course I could just stick to scarves, small bags, dish cloths, and that sort of thing but I get bored with small things quickly and how many knitted scarves or bags do you really need? I really like knitting sweaters for my kids and there were a few minutes today where I thought designing something myself was the only way to go. That thought only lasted a few minutes. I’m really a long way from being able to do that.

At long last, I did make a decent match. I’ve knit the “The Wonderful Wallaby” before, for my son. It’s a great pattern – knit in the round and the only finishing happens under the arms with about six stitches to graft. The end result looks like a hooded sweatshirt, but it is a sweater.

The yarn I’m using is Lion Brand CottonEase. I’m not too excited about the color. It’s very…um…pistachio-y. But, the sweater will be for my younger daughter and she’d be cute as can be wearing a paper bag. So, I think it will be okay.

It feels good to have something on the needles again, but I was reminded of the many reasons why sewing will always be my first love.


Popular posts from this blog

Shopping Bags

Most stores in our town charge you a nickel for a plastic bag when you check out. I love this practice and the way that it encourages people to bring their own cloth bags or reuse their plastic ones. My habit of bringing along bags to the grocery store is well established, but I used to find myself stuck at places like the drug store or farmer's market or other impromptu stops. Then I picked up a bag at an upscale kitchen goods store that rolls up quite compactly. Now I keep that in my purse, so I always have a bag with me.

I like my bag so much that I wanted to replicate it for the art sale. The final result is a hybrid of the bag I purchased and these that I made last year.

The bag is a little bigger than the average plastic grocery bag. The velcro tab is used to keep the bag rolled up, but also can close the top of the bag when it is full.

Most of the bag is a single layer of cotton, but the handles are faced. There is a double row of top-stitching around both edges of the handl…

Grocery Bags

More gifts!

These are just like the still-all-too-ubiquitous plastic grocery bags, but they're fabric. 

I followed this tutorial and you actually use a plastic bag as a pattern.  The instructions are very good and include a pocket so that the bag can be folded up and is easy to keep in a purse or a car's glove box.

Mostly for the sake of the gift recipients, here's how to fold up the bag....

1.  Lay the bag pocket side down and fold it length-wise using the edges of the pocket as a guide.

2.  Fold it in half, aligning the top of the handles with the bottom of the bag.

3.  Fold in half again and then reach into pocket with your hand and turn the whole thing (pocket included) inside out.

Happy shopping!

Christmas Table Runner

S asked me to make a Christmas table runner for her shop. Her only suggestions about what it should look like were "not too fussy or busy."

I decided on a simple applique of three trees on a linen background. The runner is 60" long and 13" wide.

For the trees, I used a lightweight fusible product and then straight-stitched around the edges. I like the raw-edge applique look, but don't use it very often.

The border and backing is an apple green color that didn't photograph well. I was happy with the mitered corners, but they don't look so good (a little lumpy) in the pictures. I do really like the narrow folded border inside the green one. I only had a small amount of the striped fabric, but think this was a good way to use it.

I was so happy with this when I finished it a couple of weeks ago, but now that I'm looking at the pictures, I'm less than thrilled. I'm really hoping that it is just the pictures, but it looks wrinkly and rumpled to me…