Tuesday June 18, 2013
I have unofficially declared it to be the Summer of Socks, because socks are an easy, portable, fun project for summer that it's not too hot to knit wherever you happen to be.
A little practice sock is a great way to start sock knitting. © Sarah E. White.
Whether you're an old pro at socks or on the fence about casting on your first pair, there's a lot to love about sock knitting. In fact, I came up with seven good reasons to knit socks, and I'd love it if you'd add yours to the comments below.
And if you're one of those knitters who hasn't yet taken on the sock, I hope the information and resources I'll share through the rest of this month will help you lose your fear and cast on with confidence. It's just yarn, and they're just socks; no big deal!
Monday June 17, 2013
As soon as I was done knitting this little treasure bag my daughter asked, "Can I have that?" That's a pretty sure sign of the success of a project.
Knit Treasure Bag. © Sarah E. White.
I took it back from her so I could write up the pattern, but it's already being used to hold the girl's rock crayons. I figured it would also be good for holding actual rocks, or (in a different colorway, maybe) toy cars or other treasures and trinkets your kids like to keep on hand (or in their pockets).
It's also a great project to use just a bit of yarn. I used about 70 yards of a ball of Berroco Floret, a pretty blend of acrylic and cotton that's soft, machine washable and should stand up pretty well to all the use it is sure to get.
Friday June 14, 2013
There are tons of different ways to get stitches on the needle to start knitting, but most of us probably only use one or two throughout most of our knitting careers.
"The KNITFreedom Video Guide to Cast Ons" by Liat Gat.
That's a shame, because it's fun to learn new skills and try out different cast on methods. Also, some techniques are actually better than others for particular uses.
Liat Gat shares almost 40 different ways to cast on, as well as why you might want to use a particular method and tons of good tips for whatever cast on you use, in her video series/ebook "The KNITFreedom Video Guide to Cast Ons."
Here you'll find lots of good basic information like how to make a slip knot or what to do when you run out of long tail three stitches from the end of your cast on.
You'll also learn some fun cast ons you might not have heard of, like my personal favorite, the Chinese waitress cast on. For sheer entertainment and educational value, you can't go wrong.
Thursday June 13, 2013
Sometimes when I'm surfing the Internet I don't really even know how I find things, but I run into some fun things this way. For example, I recently happened upon the website of Holly Chayes, a lace knitting enthusiast who happens to have just launched an ebook all about different ways to shape shawls.
by Holly Chayes.
Shawl Geometry is a 36-papge ebook that includes 16 different ways to shape shawls. There are squares, rectangles, triangles, circles, wedges, triangles with wings and more. Each pattern is described in detail and shown in schematics as well as in a little Stockinette Stitch sample so you can really see what the design looks like.
These basics can help you get started designing your own shawls in just about any shape you can think of. It's definitely inspiring if you like shawls and what to get your feet wet designing them without having to figure out how to shape a shape from scratch.
Do you design your own shawls? I'd love to hear the details!