Fibrearts: What can you make in 5 hrs?

Yesterday,  B and I drove to the Ottawa Valley from Toronto.  It’s about a 5 hour drive, a drive we have done many times before and I decided to focus on crocheting and knitting the whole way…just to see how much I could do.

It wasn’t for speed necessarily…I didn’t want to go as fast as possible and have errors in my work…but it was more for the challenge of the whole thing.  Not to mention, I will be vending at the Hamilton Pagan Harvest Festival in a couple of weeks and so, more stock? …that’s a good thing!

I didn’t get through as much as I expected, but still, it was a productive trip!  And hey, we have a five-hour drive coming up on Monday as we head home so I have another chance to beat this record! (It also means I can’t take a turn driving…..Shhhhhh!)

Cup cozies!  ...Or are they?
Cup cozies! …Or are they?

So, I worked on a bunch of cup cozies to start.  They’re straightforward and simple so I made half a dozen during the first couple hours of the trip.

At the end of hour 2, the Muse took a moment to drop an idea my way.  Maybe cup cozies aren’t “cup” cozies at all….maybe they’re arm-cozies!

Cup cozy? Or...ARM cozy?
Cup cozy? Or…ARM cozy?

So, I’m still mulling over that idea, but I like the patchwork feel of attaching a variety of colours and patterns together to make arm warmers :)

After that epiphany and the completion of half a dozen cozies, I moved on to a pair of long fingerless gloves.

crocheted fingerless glovesI have to admit that I cheated here…somewhat.  One glove was already finished and the other was about 1/3 of the way so I completed an ongoing project.  Didn’t actually make the two gloves within the 5-hr limit.

Pretty happy with them although they aren’t complete yet.  They still require some ties … pics to come.

Lastly, as we pulled up to my mother-in-laws house, I finished a knitted row of a bulky cowl which is now about 1/3 of the way finished.

half a knitted cowl

As a sidenote, I just bought those knitting needles in the picture above.  They are 25mm and they are FANTASTIC!

They make this hollow wooden clunky sound as I knit, which I kind of like, and they also double as a vampire stake…you know, just in case!

Not Your Plain Ol’ Cotton Dish/Wash cloths!

EDIT: The original cloth pattern was for a washcloth.  The cotton I used is soft enough for that, but I was thinking dishcloth when I made them.  Multi-use! (Although I would suggest picking one or the other)

When I’m planning a trip, one of the biggest challenges I come up against is “which projects to bring along?”

Notice I said “Projects” not “project” because one will simply not do!  I like to think I’m a pretty focused individual but when it comes to my yarn projects, I need to have a variety of things on the go.  Often, I find myself bouncing back and forth between two or three of them in an evening.

So, going away for a week…or even just three days as we did this past weekend, brings with it some hard decision making. ;)

We got back late last night from a weekend away visiting family.  Three days isn’t all that long, so I tried to pack light.  Amanda-lite, which is very different than all other people’s version of “lite”.  Just ask B.  He’ll tell you.

So, I pack a couple of ongoing projects: a Stephen West shawl that has been in progress for quite some time, a version of Hélène Magnusson’s Spring Shawl that continues to be in progress (even though it came all the way with me to Iceland where I learned much about knitting it, and yet didn’t get much actual knitting done on it!), and a couple of balls of cotton yarn.

The cotton yarn was for dish/wash cloths.

Simple, square-shaped, purl/knit, mindless knitting.  Sometimes, that’s what you need.

Sometimes, you have to put down the complicated “**knit 381, wrap twice, knit 63, K2TOG, YO, YO, SSK, purl 145, do a little dance, don’t pull all your hair out, repeat**” fibre project and pick up the “knit across, turn, purl, turn, sigh with relief” project.

Dish/wash cloths are that.  Little sighs of relief amongst the GRRRRRR. (Granted, if you’re GRRRRing all the time while working on fibre arts projects…that isn’t good either.  Just saying.)

So I brought a couple balls of cotton and made two cloths.

The first was from a simple online pattern.

Dragonfly Dishcloth

I like how it turned out.  Lovely little dragonfly, all created with knit/purl stitches and little to no GRRRness. :)

As I approached my second one, I decided that I wanted to create a Goddess pattern.  I googled images of Goddesses and found a couple that I thought would work.  Then, I had to spend some time on Photoshop to create a chart.

Okay, so there was a wee bit more frustration in this particular process. ;)

BUT…it turned out awesome in the end!

Goddess Dishcloth

She’s a little taller than I had planned so the cloth is a bit more rectangular but still lovely and useful!

I have had a few people ask about the Goddess pattern.  I have a really rough paper chart with scribbles and erase marks on hand.  I just need to find some time to sit down and create a proper chart on my computer.

Until then, I already have other ideas in mind for dish & wash cloths.  Going to hold onto them for those in-between days when I need a sigh of relief. *wink*

Fastest Skull Shawl on Record!

A few days ago I received an order from someone in the United States.  They are to be in a play and came across one of my items on Etsy that would be perfect for the character.

They wanted this skull shawl:

Aqua Acrylic b

…but in a variegated purple.

Not a problem as I had colour options available on my Etsy listing.

It was a rush order, as they needed it as soon as possible, so yesterday morning around 9am I started work on it.

Last night at midnight, I finished!

Variegated VioletNot sure how I managed it but I’m thinking it’s thanks to the beautiful day yesterday (nothing like sitting with some yarn and a book out on the porch!), the couple of hours of commuting I had to do for work (sometimes having to ride the subway is a productive thing), the few hours spent watching Back to the Future Part I & II last night (with friends who were cool enough to be down with my crocheting through the movie) and the fact that the shawl was made with a super bulky yarn :)

I think it’s the first time I have finished a complete project of this size in one day.  New record!

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