Knitting 101

Last year for my birthday, I decided that I was going to learn how to knit. A lot of my friends are super crafty and sew, stamp and just make some really cool stuff (check out Unsophisticated Artist and A Spotted Pony to see what a few of them have been up to!). No one could knit though and I do love anything knitted so I chose this as my hobby.

Steve bought me a set of knitting needles and some yarn to start with and I watched YouTube videos incessantly with the guide of Stitch N’Bitch book. Yes, there were moments, okay, several moments of frustration and possibly tears, but once I figured it out, I was a casting on queen. Once I figured out how to cast on and do a simple knit stitch, I set in on making my first scarf. I made it too short, but I made it, and it looked good. I made a dark pink scarf next. No patterns on either of these, just went by what I thought was okay. Pink scarf turned out awesome and I was pumped. So, I made a purple infinity scarf. LOVE this scarf. It’s huge and cozy and just screams ‘it’s winter and I’ll keep you warm!’ Next projects were Brewers scarves for my sister-in-law and best friend. I even figured out how to knit in the round with circular needles for these.

Over the course of the last six months, I would frequent Bungalow Quilting and Yarn in Ripon and the ladies there are AMAZING. You can follow them on Facebook as well. Wonderful yarns & fabrics and probably the nicest people ever. Judy, the owner, has sat patiently with me and helped me rip apart my work and start over. There are knit nights on Wednesdays that I have yet to make it to, but I think I just need to make it a priority because it’s something I really want to do. Even the other customers in the store are willing to help out with anything you might need. It’s truly the coolest, most pleasant store ever. If they only had coffee and books as well, I’d never want to leave. It’d be my sanctuary.

Then I took a break. I’d pick up a scarf here or there, but didn’t ever really sit and just do. I have several unfinished projects that just need to be ripped apart. Then I found Grandma’s Dishcloth pattern and have found my new favorite thing to knit.My great-aunt Rosie knits these all the time and sends them up to grandma. I was stealing them from her constantly because I really do love to use them. She sent me her pattern and then I found it online as well. I’ve made six since summer break began and have plans to make several more. They are a super easy pattern that I can knit while the kids are playing in the sandbox or when I’m watching tv with Steve. I am knitting mine in really fun, bright colors and have plans to purchase more of the ‘hot’ colors as I really enjoy the pop of color they provide my kitchen.

I just tackled my first baby hat and I’m really proud of myself. This involved using two different kinds of stitches and really paying attention and counting stitches and rows. It turned out pretty well. It’s a beautiful, light purple and it’s baby soft and cozy (yes, bad pun intended). When my Grandma Helke passed away, my mom and dad gave me her yarn and knitting and crochet needles, so I’ve been enjoying creating new projects with her stash of great yarns. I’m excited to make a couple more baby hats. I’m not sure if I’ll continue with the same pattern or try a few different ones.  I’d like to tackle a baby sweater and blanket soon as well.

Also, coffee ‘mug hugs‘ are very cute and those will be happening. I’m not sure what I’m going to do with all of this stuff that I’ve been knitting, but I’m thinking it will be nice to have a stock pile of homemade gifts. I also want to knit everything this girl has on her blog – Lisa Lin at Purlin is fantastic and has great YouTube tutorials as well. I may have developed a slight addiction to Ravelry.com as well for ideas and free patterns.

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