29 January 2008


a pillow for my brother's house by my sister

Tonia took the excellent leftover rusty brown Maharam felt from my brother's upholsterer and made this simple envelope pillow. She made a button out of the top of a wooden jewelry box that one of our older sisters gave to each of her bridesmaids. I was the flower girl.

(Photo by my brother's iPhone. Check out the flickr iPhone gallery.)

28 January 2008


a very simple toy

Find a stick. Knot a three to five inch wide strip of fabric (silk is most fluttery) to one end. Nick the loose end of the fabric in two places and tear down the cuts to the knotted end. Wrap the knot in yarn. Cap the top of the stick with a round bead (secure with glue if necessary). Wave your streamer to help spring come sooner since we can't be bothered with a winter that won't snow.

20 January 2008


a hat

PATTERN: Norah Gaughan's from her book Knitting Nature
YARN: Jo Sharp Silkroad Aran Tweed
This will go into a dyebath as soon as I figure out which color to make it.

18 January 2008

s'cooler still

Elio made it into the nyrb blog called A Different Stripe. Scroll down to the January 16th post and then poke around their excellent catalog. How about beautifully bound re-issues of the Moomin series by Tove Jansson, Sara?

15 January 2008

li'l shaver

a vest for a friend's baby boy

PATTERN: Lois Daykin's "Harvey" from the Rowan Little Treasures book for Rowan Soft Baby
YARN: Henry's Attic Texas mohair/wool blend I dyed with indigo. I love, love, love this yarn for dyeing. The two fibers take the dye differently and the yarn just glows. I get mine from discountyarnsale.com.
MODIFICATIONS: I worked the back of the vest in RS all knit, WS p4, k2 instead of working the cable pattern. I edged the armholes with a little roll finish (two rows of stockinette and then the usual bind off) instead of working the rib there because I was afraid I'd run out of yarn. I didn't knit the pocket called for in the pattern. Close shaver.

14 January 2008

light of mine

the clay candlestick and embroidered felt mat Bruno made in school as a gift for me

09 January 2008

advent intentions

a felt-on-canvas advent calendar I made over ten years ago

You'd think that since I made this one for my nephews while I was working full time that I would be able to get around to making one for my sons while I'm at home full time. My sister puts it up every year. Each felt ornament represents something familial: bit of blanket, favorite fruits, toys, motifs. I sent the pieces to my nephews with a riddle a piece to hint at what was enclosed. Mrs Lear, my 2008 crafty resolution is to make one of these for our house.

08 January 2008

s'cool for cats

a little red scarf for Elio

We love the Jenny Linsky books (like The School for Cats) by Esther Averill. Elio asked for a scarf like the one Jenny's Captain Tinker knit for her, so I put this one together with one skein of Berroco Ultra Alpaca. It's twenty stitches across knit in garter all the way to about thirty inches with six little (3/4") pom poms attached with braided yarn.

Another great series for children is Cynthia Rylant's Mr Putter & Tabby. Santa tucked Mr Putter & Tabby Spin the Yarn into Elio's stocking--Mr Putter makes tea (and trouble) for his friend and neighbor's knitting group.

07 January 2008


two weeks' worth of miscellaneous vacation knitting/finishing

The gusset of a plain sock made from Colinette's Jitterbug in the Slate colorway. My mom claimed the pair before the first one was off the needles (four and sometimes five dps). I got the yarn from the warm and welcoming Chix with Stix in Forest Park, IL who have a great sock yarn section and the best Malabrigo selection I've ever seen.

A scarf knit horizontal in garter stitch with plant-dyed nubby, boucle, mohair and wool yarns. I left this behind with my sister.

I finished the Deep V-Neck Sweater from Erica Knight's Classic Knits for my mom just in time to give it to her for Christmas. I used Jo Sharp DK Wool in the Monsoon colorway and modified the pattern only to shorten the sleeves by a few inches. A great basic sweater.

Finally desperate to have knitting to do on New Year's Day while Chix with Stix was closed, I grabbed Mission Falls 1824 wool from my sister's handwork basket and made four squares for the afghan she's making using patterns from Jan Eaton's 200 Squares book. I improvised on the bottom two, but the top squares are "Alternating Eyelets" and "Elsie's Rose Leaf."

I also spent happy vacation knit-time with Susan Strawn's Knitting America. Susan is my sister's colleague at Dominican University in River Forest, IL. The book is rich with expertly and tastefully chosen samples, patterns, photos and illustrations. There's a lot of inspiration as well as information between these covers. The "poetry" mittens!

06 January 2008


the bowl my husband carved for my Christmas present

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