LIFE'S BETTER IN THE MOUNTAINS

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Knitter's Group

I learned to knit simply because we have a small neighborhood knitter's group (called Knitwits, of course). The group meets monthly and it soon became obvious that I needed to attend whether I knitted or not. My thought was that joining a knitting group without knitting was similar to joining a book club without reading the selections (although a surprising number of people do just that). So I grabbed a how-to book and some supplies and started knitting. There is an amazing amount of Online information, including videos of exactly how to do some of the stitch combinations.

I was amazed at how calming knitting can be. Now, I knit almost every evening. There are times when it interferes with my reading, but not often. I never set deadlines for finishing a project. There is something very satisfying about starting with rolls of yarn and some needles and creating a beautiful article of clothing.

Here are just a few of the things I have done lately:

This is done in cotton for summer. Its wavy pattern and light weight make it the perfect summer scarf. The color of the yarn is "Emily Dickinson" but I couldn't help calling it rainbow sherbet.


Beads complicate a knitted piece. Before knitting actually begins, the beads must be strung on the yarn and pushed far down the skein. The beads are pulled forward as needed. Periodically the knitting reaches the long string of beads and all of them must be advanced along the skein to make room for more knitting.
This beaded scarf is done with red silk yarn. There were TWO knots in the first skein of yarn. Knots are not often a big problem, but if you have beads on the yarn, they cannot be moved further along the skein. The yarn must be cut, the beads removed and then restrung. Bummer!

A similar pattern in white silk with pearl beads.



The Entralac pattern which looks much like a quilted piece.



The clapotis pattern which looks (and is) simple. But it is tedious with lots of stitches. It is begun on the bias with solid rows of stitches. At a certain point, every nth stitch is deliberately dropped. The dropped stitch runs down the entire piece making a pattern.




The process results in a light-weight scarf that is fun to wear.





Sufficiently wide to wear as a shawl, it can be twisted and worn as a scarf.


You may find it amusing that I wear scarves only when it's cold or I'm dressed up in the winter. However, I am amazed at the scarf lovers out there who wear them year round. My dear daughter-in-law is one of those people. I do so love knitting for people who excitedly wear the items rather than sticking them in a drawer somewhere. After I sent the last scarf to her, my son called me to say that she had worn it around the house since the mail came. That warms a knitter's heart.

22 comments:

merrilymarylee said...

OH MY GOSH...WHO KNEW????

You have been holding out on us! BEE-YOU-TEE-FUL!!!!

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Gorgeous, Carolyn.. When we were with Leedra, she showed us some of the things she has been knitting. I've never attempted it ---would rather be digging in the dirt!!!! BUT--what you have done is gorgeous. I'm impressed...

Knitwits, huh?????? Bet you all do a fair share of chatting also, don't you??

Hugs,
Betsy

Leedra said...

Betsy sent me an email and said I had to come visit. Little did she know I already do visit you. I joined Etsy this past week. My knitting is what finally made me take the plunge. I posted 8 photography items and 2 knitting items so far. 5 days into Etsy and I sold a card. I hope to sell my knitting there. The shawl I showed Shelley and Betsy on Friday I finished knitting last night. I had been playing with beaded knitting, but the patterns I have looked at do not have near the beads you have in these (I enlarged and see LOTS of beads).

I find any handwork to be calming. I knitted as a teenager. Then off and on, but have just started again with a bang. Decided I want to take it further than blankets, and found a knitting group as you describe. From there found local yarn stores that I didn't even know existed. Knitting classes to learn more stitches. The excitement just grows.

Have you thought about Etsy?

Cheryl said...

I am a scarf lover and wear them in summer and winter....I love them, and have a huge collection...

I love your knitting....the scarves are beautiful and each one so individual.....I must get my needles out again, I really must....

Just popping over to Fridays are Golden.....I have been busy the last few days and missed your post.....

Rae said...

It's nice that you are so talented. I tried knitting and found the only thing I knitted was the muscles in my neck. I guess I am the odd person. It makes me tense. Being a perfectionist made me constantly undo, redo, etc etc. I am glad there are people like you, who can do my knitting for me.

Sam said...

You are quite talented. I'm not much of a scarf-wearer, but your post reminds me of how excited my mother got when my aunt knitted her a scarf. There is something special about a gift that is made rather than bought.

Rudee said...

Your work is lovely. I've done a few beaded pieces, but prefer adding them on with a tiny crochet hook. It's less cumbersome to me, and I don't have that problem when it comes to knots.

The entrelac looks stunning.

Ruth said...

I love the colours and pattern or your Emily Dickinson scarf! I only knit dishcloths now, but your scarves look intriguing.

Cicero Sings said...

My sister is the knitter in our family ... she can knit like a machine for speed and even stitches. She designs her own patterns sometimes. I am able to knit but it is not my love.

Dog_geek said...

Wow - those are all so impressive! It's hard to believe that you haven't been knitting all your life!

Donna at Mourning Dove Cottage said...

Oh my gosh! They're beautiful. I tried knitting, but just can't get the hang of it. I love wearing scarves anytime (maybe I really should learn how to knit). :)

Hugs,
Donna

George said...

I'm very impressed with the beautiful creations you have made. I find it amazing that you started with a 'how-to' book.

Lynne at Hasty Brook said...

I so want to learn to knit. I had found a class last winter but wound up having carpal tunnel surgery instead.

But this winter...

jeannette stgermain said...

I love the first pattern - in the winter I always walk around with scarves (in Californian summers it's a little too hot for that). I love the first pattern!! Could i ask you to send the directions? Or to show it on your blog? I would love to make it! My email is castlestgermain(at)hotmail(dot)com.
Thanks in advance!

I learned knitting ang crocheting in school 2nd and 3rd grade - and the past few years I've picked it up again. It's like biking, you never totally forget how it goes:)

fishing guy said...

Carolyn: Beautiful work for sure.

Clara....in TN said...

Good morning to a fellow knitter! :-) Your scarfs are lovely. I have knitted just about all my life, but last winter I learned to knit socks. Now I have a pair going constantly. It is my theraphy. I don't remember how I found your blog,,,maybe through Betsy. I'm glad I did. I live just outside of Bristol, TN. There's not many miles between us.

dAwN said...

oh..soo nice! I have never seen the beads in scarfs like that ..I clicked on the photo to see it better..
very nice...
thanks for showing us your art!

jayedized said...

Those are SO beautiful! There's not a one in the bunch of beautiful scarves you've knitted I wouldn't love to have. I'm a scarf-lover and wear one all the time in the winter; summertime ... (so hot here) I truly miss them. It's the first item of clothing I enjoy putting back on as soon as it cools off. I've promised myself for years that one day I would learn. Going through some things recently, I found huge bags of knitting material my mom and her mom used to work from - (so much yarn, needles, ....all there.) Now - seeing these beautiful scarves you've knitted - that's it! They're gorgeous, and they're also such a cherished, handmade work of love to pass along, too. There is nothing that can beat giving or receiving a handmade heart warmer.

KB said...

Your scarves are gorgeous. I'm so impressed. After a major back surgery, I tried to take up knitting during my recovery since I was sedentary. But, I simply didn't have the patience. Now that I'm a little older, maybe I would. Maybe I'll try.

Keep on knitting. Your scarves are are like fine art.

Cedar ... said...

I really like the red and the white ones.

Barb said...

What lovely creations - it's hard to believe you haven't been knitting forever. I think the quiet repetitive movement might be a kind of meditation.

RuthieJ said...

Gorgeous knitting Carolyn! I have only knitted a few things with beads but am starting to see more patterns using them.
Keep up the good work!