Weaving for a Better Life

I was in this area years ago, but was not interested in weaving yet – only the finished product.  I was gifted a beautiful jacket, purchased tablecloth sets, a lapghan, drawn by the vibrant colours and patterns.

Now I want to go back there and spend some time watching and learning what they do. They spin and dye their own yarn, and weave the cloth.

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https://www.linktv.org/shows/women-in-focus/the-art-of-weaving-textiles-for-a-better-life

I wish there was more footage of the actual weaving, but the message they bring as well is important – as tourists interested in purchasing a ‘souvenir’, we shouldn’t haggle it down to the cheapest price.  This is, after all, their livelihood, and as they said, they will never go beyond poverty if we are paying for less.

And what about all the discussions I see on the knit and crochet forums, the indignant posts about how their handmade items are worth the price, and therefore should not be questioned or counter-offered with a lower price?  So why do we shortchange the makers of those handcrafted souvenirs that we come across in our travels?

Are they not also worth the time and price?

 

Snowed-In Show and Tell

Well … after being cooped up inside because of the Blizzard 2016, I made the most of that time by catching up on projects … starting new ones … or just playing with yarn.

So here’s what I was able to work on this past weekend.

I finished the second panel for the blanket ….
… and started on the third panel.

The second panel came out shorter than the first panel, so there’s going definitely going to be some sewing, cutting and adjustments when putting the panels together.   

And seeing the finished width, before wet-finishing, I think I’m going to need a fourth panel so that it covers at least a single or twin bed.  Maybe a fifth …

 

The Double-layered Braided Cowl is the latest trend going around the crochet forums.  I had seen the pattern on my newsfeed, and it was the first time that I wanted to pick up hook and yarn and make one right now, instead of just saving the pattern for a later day.  So, after the initial fiddling about, I came up with a cowl, an experimental earwarmer with three braids, and an experimental earwarmer with chunky yarn!  How about that!

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Oh, wait … so now I have a set of earwarmer, hat, and neckwarmer/cowl in the same chunky yarn!

I’m adding this in, although I finished this a couple of weeks ago.  The Granny Shrug – I can’t find where I got this from, but if you google the Granny Shrug, you’ll get to the website.  It’s basically a big granny, then fold it in half to form a rectangle.  Then sew about 20 inches of one edge, which will form the sleeves.  I added a cuff to the sleeve, to make it longer.  I ran out of the black yarn, so I added the purple to finish it.  I could have stopped with the black, but then it would reach just by the waist, and I wanted it longish.  On the other hand, making it that big turned out to be a bit over-sized for me – it fits my colleague perfectly, though, as she’s taller and bigger than I am.  So now I want to make a smaller one that will fit me better, but long enough as well.

So that’s my show and tell for the Blizzard projects.

What did you work on?

 

 

 

 

 

Finishing Off 2014

I thought I would write a post on whatever creative things I accomplished in the last year.  I know I didn’t make much this year, but it is good to gather everything together and see how much you’ve done.  Try it.  You’ll be surprised to see just how many things that you did get done in the last year.

Of course, I didn’t get to start on anything that was on my bucket list (except for the hexagon project).  So we’re trying for that again this year.

The staple … hats!  I finally figured out the slouchy look for the hats … These are actually variations of patterns that I tried to follow, and in the end, I just decided to wing it instead of following the pattern, because the hat wasn’t turning out what I expected it to be.

And more hats!  Here’s some of the ones made for my personal charity/cause – NYC Hats for Hope Initiative. As usual, there’s more which I didn’t take photos of.

I made my first amigurumi/toy – the minion.  I said I was going to make another one, this time with two eyes.  I still haven’t started on that.  Making amigurumis and toys still does not appeal to me … I have no problem with working on the individual parts … sewing and assembling them together kills me.  The hat wasn’t too bad.  That one has two eyes – although you can’t see it from this angle.

The other cause I work on – the Special Olympics Scarf Project.  Here’s some items that I made for some of the states.  Every year I say that I will make one item for each participating state.  Haven’t succeeded yet, but there’s always next year!

The shawls … wraps … scarves … my go-to projects.  My obsession pattern this year was the Augusta Shawl.  Here’s different versions of the pattern, using different yarn weights, etc.

Oh – another obsession pattern – the Bowtie Pi Shawl (available in Ravelry).  I plan on making more of these, with various yarns.

I couldn’t figure out why my shawl was coming out with a curved neckline, instead of a straight edge as shown in the photos with the pattern.  Then I remembered … Fibonacci.  Instead of following the same number of row repeats as the pattern, I had used the Fibonacci series for my row repeats instead.  So I think that’s why the neckline curved in so deep, like this.  I like it better like this, anyhow.  The shawl drapes better over the shoulders, than a straight edge.

And I was on a fringes roll as well.  I like fringes but I usually don’t add fringes because I think that they use up a lot of yarn … but then again, knitting or crocheting a piece takes up a lot of yarn too … and fringes do make a shawl or wrap look really pretty, doesn’t it?

My one big project this year – the African Violets Afghan, in memory of my aunt who passed away last year.  This is as far as I got with it, and it’s a good size lapghan.  I wanted to add another round, so that it can also be used as a bed cover.  So that’s something I’ll be working on some more this year.

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And there you have my accomplishments from the last year.  Nothing much, nothing spectacular.  I know that it’s more of the same from last year, but until I have another incentive to make amigurumis and toys, I’m afraid there’ll be more of this for the coming year.  Oh yes … I still want to make that hooded cape … and that beach coverup … I should start now … while it’s still freezing cold outside … then it’ll be ready for summer!