Friday, January 06, 2012

Not just knitting

Hello, earlier today Bear asked me 'have you blogged recently?', I had to say not and explain that the things I had been doing and making were presents and I couldn't really blog them without giving the game away.Then I realised that while I have been busy making things that I really can't show here right now, I have been knitting - so I should blog -  just a little bit, and that there were other things that I could blog as well. There is a blanket nearly finished, a mindless washcloth sort of project in a lovely orange cotton linen garn (yes garn not yarn), and bookbinding as I prepare myself to teach bookbinding at Unwind. Bear has been tidying up, in preparation for painting the bathroom and as part of that I've been tidying up in a craft way, making things nice so they can be used. There was also a crafty day last Monday, where K and N generously shared their stamping and scrapbooking materials, and tools and expertise ... where they both introduced me to ink and paper and colour and shape and ... Ok yes I knew about stuff like that already I was just avoiding adding a new hobby. As a result of that crafty day I may have added stamps, artist grade pencils and stamp pads to my stash .... what can I say, but that I am easily lead astray and K and N did an excellent job leading a few of us further astray than we imagined we could be.
  Rosebuddie is nearly done, well as nearly done as having four of one hundred repeats of the edge lace done. I'm not sure if I'm like most knitters but once the end of a project is in sight I tend to focus on that project until it is done, something about being so close to done that it is quite exciting to see the work nearing completion. I had a wee moment when I misread the lace for the edging and repeated a [yo, k2] instead of just the [k2], which gave me an extra stitch, but once I'd sorted that out and amended my ways and knit the edge correctly there was no trouble at all with the stitch count. Funny how a single extra stitch can lead to all sorts of problems in a lace border.
My 'mindless' project right now is a washcloth, in Garn, a Danish yarn that is half cotton and half linen. I like this stuff and wish I could easily get more of it, the linen adds a little something to the cotton, so its not like knitting string and I know the linen will give this softenss and durability as it is used. The dusky orange isn't bad either.
My lino-cut frog stamp was used today, and appart from a little contamination or
dust somewhere it shouldn't be giving my frog a few warts (which frogs sometimes have) worked well. I may have to fine tune the shape of his hands  and head, and body and tummy and ... well the whole of him but that is part of the process just like knitting. He (or she) is a frog in progress and will eventually have the words knit -knit - frog and maybe even a yarn type border to edge them. I suspect my imagination runs ahead of my ability but without such goals then I'd never do anything. The pages sitting behind the frog are printed with a knit graph, in proportion to the width and height of a knit stitch - so ideal for recording knit projects.
The frog stamp may or may not be in this ... a knit journal that is covered in blank brown paper all ready to be customized. And yes - it really is covered in brown paper, the old fashioned parcel wrapping  kind. Part of me wants to add string and a tag ... but I've leave that to whomever ends up with the journal to do if they want.
One of the traditional gifts around here at Christmas is a tin of biscuits, in my childhood there was only one kind, a Sampler. A sampler tin had a wee stack of about 20 different biscuits, some chocolate coated, some with creme fillings and my personal favorite those candy pink creme filled wafers. About 20 years ago the tins seemed to change and were filled with an assortment of Danish biscuts, no cream fillings but lots of little buttery short biscuits in nice shapes sprinkled with sugar. Now-a-days (gosh I'm feeling old with words like now-a-days) the tins seemed to be themed, with the advertising critter of choice, in this case Cookie Bear. Now I like tins, and boxes, there is something nice about having tins and boxes to tidy things away into and keep things safe in and that fit little collections of tools and materials that are useful. This tin was a good size, slightly smaller than A4 and about 6 cm deep ... but Cookie bear had to go, I'm sorry he is cute but isn't really the style of tin I wanted to use.
So I found some frog wrapping paper, white pva glue, craft knife, and spent a few hours transforming the tin into one I could live with. A few layers of water based sealant and look, a tin I'm happy to use. I even covered the 'nutritional information' printed on the base of the tin with brown paper. I learned a few things, like trimming paper whilst it is still wet with glue is not a good idea, and not to panic if bubbles form as they disappear as the glue dries. And that like decoupage - with a few applications of a clear sealant all sort of little rough bits are smoothed away.

Don't worry, I'm still a Knitter, and not likely to stop any time soon, the things here are things that enhanced the knitting, not replace it.

take care ... back soon, with knitting,  promise.

na Stella


me said...

Rosebuddie is oh-so-lovely!!! Bravo on that project of beauty!!!
Good to have you back blogging!!!

Suzanne said...

Nice job on the tin! I love the way the remaining orange 'lip' around the bottom brings out the orange-red in the corner frog directly above it. I'd been looking for a way to repurpose the fabulous owl wrap that encased the handmade book you sent me. Perhaps it wants to cover a tin? Just regular white glue to attach paper to tin? I have mod-podge (decoupage glue and sealer).

Thanks for reminding me about the tins of sugar-encrusted Danish biscuits. It has been years since I saw one. Blast from the past.

KathyR said...

Wow! Who knew that a simple biscuit tin could be so transformed! Hmmm...but are my measuring and cutting skills up to the task? I may get bored one day and find out!

Shirley Goodwin said...

Stella, I have to say I blame you entirely for a sudden urge to own a fountain pen and an interest in coptic binding - as if I haven't already got enough interests on my plate . But I love reading your posts, so keep up the good work.

Knitting Linguist said...

The journal is wonderful! I love the idea of a knitting journal wrapped in brown paper - just like a package, with all kinds of wonderful possibilities inside, right?