A New Hobby

I have gotten really into knitting lately. Maybe a little too much. So I am going to blame my new obsession on why I haven’t posted a blog at all for the month of March. I was much too busy knitting to stop and type!

It all started several months ago when I wanted a new scarf and had the bright idea to make it myself. I ordered everything, got started and then left it partly finished for quite awhile. When I finally finished it, Tyler joked that I wouldn’t be able to wear it that much longer since it was February and winter was pretty much over. Boy was he wrong…. I found the simplest online tutorial to use through the YouTube channel, Sheep and Stitch. It involves chunky yarn and chunky needles which are extremely easy to work with as a beginner. It also uses the easiest stitch, the knit stitch. When I finally finished it, I had a glorious chunky scarf. It isn’t perfect but I’m pretty proud of it.

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As I was finishing the scarf, I started to look for my next project and this time I was determined to finish it in a timely manner. I decided to make my next project a pillow case because it seemed pretty easy. I also decided to try a different stitch out too. I went back and forth between different online tutorials before I decided to just wing it. I mean the design, not the stitch, there is no way you can just do a new type of stitch willy-nilly.

Most online pillow tutorials go one of two ways. The first is to just knit a giant rectangle and then sew three of the edges together. The second is to just knit a square and sew it to a piece of fabric. Both ways end with stuffing the heck out of it and viola, pillow! I decided to knit two separate squares using stockinette stitch and sew them together. The squares came out pretty much the same size, and my pretty much I mean one was about an inch wider than it should have been. It would really help if I actually took the time to learn about gauge, i.e. how many stitches knitted with a certain type of yarn and needle size make up an inch. I also had to start over at least three times on each square because I kept messing up with stitch. The stockinette stitch, if you don’t already know, involves switching back and forth each row between the knit stitch and the purl stitch. If you are like me and you too get overly involved in watching what was happening on Mad Men and sometimes knit without thinking or really looking you know it causes problems. It took a little over a month to complete the damn thing but I think it looks pretty cool. I only had to restitch the edges twice to make them look seamless and used an old pillow’s stuffing to fill it out. Yeah it is a little lumpy and one corner looks weird but I’m still proud of it.

 

This last weekend I started on my next project, a Campfire Blanket Scarf. It could either be seen as a small blanket or a large scarf. Two of Wands is a pretty cool knitting site. She offers free patterns for a lot of her designs or you can buy them and they don’t cost an arm and a leg. The stitch on this project is the same as the scarf, the knit stitch, but things get complicated because of the stripes. I have to be a bit more precise in counting the number of rows and knowing when to switch between colors. I also have to pay attention to carrying the color not in use up the side of the work. This creates a pretty cool design on the edge but it also makes so you don’t have to cut, tie off, and bind in the yarn every time you need to switch colors. I should note that I have already messed up once in forgetting to carry up the color a row and I am sure it will happen at least two more times. But other than that, so far so good.

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I have a bunch of leftover yarn from both of these projects but luckily I have a plan for them! Warm Up America is a charity I learned about through watching a knitting stream on Twitch. They take donations of blankets of all sizes, hats, gloves, and more and give them out to those in need. They also accept sections or squares of work that volunteers there will combine to make finished work. So my plan is to use what I have leftover to make afghan squares and try out new patterns/stitches, then mail them in when I have a good size stack of them done.

Nothing crazy or very interesting has been happening in our lives recently. I have been trying to start an everyday yoga practice. I was doing really well for almost two weeks but then came along the bumps in the road. I did it for a few days, stopped for a few days, then started, then stopped. It is a work in progress but I am determined to get better at it. I love doing yoga and I love the way it makes me feel and I just have to keep reminding myself of that. I am in love with Yoga with Adriene. She has a great YouTube channel but she also has a great website. I am currently working through her 30 Day Yoga Challenge, True, but she also offers a month long calendar for everyday yoga that changes every month and it’s free! She just has a great way of talking through each practice so you don’t have to look up at the video too much, she keeps you motivated, and at the end you just feel good about your workout and yourself.

I will try to be better about posting more frequently in the future, unless I fall down the knitting rabbit hole again!

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