Monday, May 31, 2010

Drops 107-1

I love this jacket! As soon as I saw this I knew I wanted to make it...or at least attempt it. The yarn, if I want to use what the pattern called for, is rather pricey so I ordered yarn from Smiley's instead. I expected this pattern to be very complicated and over my head but because of youtube, garn studio's own tutorials and so many other sites all over the net, I was able to see how to work the domino diamonds. This pattern is rather simple to follow and works up quite easy.

The only problem I have, because I didn't use the muskat that was used to create this jacket I don't have as much color and actually loose some of the beautiful detail. If you look this jacket up on ravelry you will be amazed at some of the color choices that were used to make this jacket. The lovely varigated yarns add so much more depth to this pattern but mine is lost.

The diamond pattern is very evident but the layers of color is missing. None the less, this is the best garment that I've ever knitted and it shows that I do have some skill for knitting. I have a long way to go before I'd say I'm good at it but this is a good start. Because I tend to be so critical of myself the mistakes I know I made nag at me at night when I should be sleeping! It's very hard not to rip & repeat everytime I make the smallest opps but I'm trying.

I'm glad to be nearly done with this jacket too. I have to finish the right side and make the sleeves to finish up. I didn't make my end of month deadline but, so what, I'll eventually be done and on to my next project.

Keep stitchin'

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Take the shirt right off their back

Ok, not literally but he did give me his shirt. Yesterday was 'Bike to Work' here in Maryland.

No I did not ride a bike to work, plz. So since I'm working on building my tarn collection I'm always looking at people's shirts to see if they are cotton. Just something I do, just like I'm always looking to see if a sweater is knit or crochet and whether I could reproduce it not. Anywho, this man comes to my job to register for services and he has this green t-shirt hanging over his shoulder. I can some orange, some white and even some black that turned out to be blue in it. So I'm talking with a co-worker excitedly about the red tarn ball that I've already made and how I need cotton tees with lots of color in them and I point to the man's shirt and say, "Something like that shirt right there". He hands the shirt to me!!! I couldn't believe he was serious but he didn't ask for it back. That's when I saw it was one of the bike to work t-shirt from the rally that was held Friday morning.

So now I know how to get more cotton shirts, just walk right up to someone, look them straight in the eye; don't be afraid to hit them with the puppy face; and simply ask for the shirt off their back.

Once my tarn was complete it became evident that the colors aren't showing which is a little disappointing. I am reading up on dyeing with RIT so I can try my hand at dyeing fabric. There are some cool sites, including ehow with tons of info about dyeing fabric. Just watching the videos was exciting to me. So stay tuned for some adventures in tie dyeing!!
Keep stitchin'

Tuesday, May 18, 2010


I made tarn! What is it? It's simple cutting an old t-shirts into a continuous strip to make a ball of yarn. That said ball of yarn is knitted or crocheted into something wonderful like a bag, hat, rug or maybe a pillow, to name a few. The only rules, which really aren't rules, is that you should use old t-shirts not brand new ones. Thus the recycle part comes into play. There are lots of tutorials on the web to help you learn how to make your tarn. After cutting up your first tee you will be an expert, at least at cutting.

Craft Passion is a very nice, very clear picture tutorial.
Eloominator is another tut that shows you using that cutting wheel thingy. lol I have one too but don't ask me what it's called.
Polka Dot Pineapple, yet another wonderful tut with excellent pics and instructions. PDP is really into recycle/upcycling so she has all sorts of great ideas for using up old jeans to make coasters, wire and scraps of fabric to make flowers and even painting window screen pink to make poinsettias!!

To make sure I didn't ruin a t-shirt I practiced with a piece of paper first. Just get a piece of paper and tape the ends together to form a tube, you've got the perfect practice piece. This will help you get used to where to make that first diagonal cut. If your diagonal cuts are off you will end up with a bunch of single loops instead of one continuous piece. Once I had the paper yarn down I was ready to make my own t-shirt yarn!

Since I've added links to such wonderful sites with instructions I'm not going to bore you with a tutorial myself. Instead I'll show what it looked like after cutting my strips leaving the one inch at the top, stretching after the diagonal cuts into one continuous strip and finally, my tarn ball! Oh, and check out my sewing scissors with the animal print hand, they make me feel like a real seamstress...not.
So what now, what to make, what to make with my first tarn. I have already started begging for more tees from the guys who for some reason don't want to part with them, hmmm. If you follow on ravelry take a look at some of exciting rugs, hats and bowls there on the From Trash to Treasures and Got T-Shirt Yarn groups. Oh, I almost forgot Petite Purls, great website with patterns for the cutest tutu, blanket and an awesome red hat. You will find it hard to believe these things are made from cut t-shirts!

Keep stitchin'