The Knitted Frau

Adventures in knitting, and other things too.


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So fall is officially here… it’s the end of September, leaves are just starting to turn, and we’ve gotten our first frost.

Which means, I’m back on my needles. And I couldn’t be happier! (To the new mothers whose tiny baby sweaters sat sad, lonely, and unfinished all summer inside of my knitting bag, I am sorry. They are finally done now. And you will have them soon!)

I am lucky enough to have a job where sometimes I get to knit for a good chunk of the day. It’s pretty great. Last week, I started designing a project and today I took it off my needles! I have also just gotten a few folk mitten knitting books and a few books on the history of knitting, and seeing all of the wonderful patterns and reading all the history inside of those pages has really inspired me. My sister had asked if I could make her and her new husband Christmas stockings for their wedding present, which I am more than happy to do. After I finished up those poor, lonely baby sweaters I started to design a pattern for the stockings. I LOVE all the old Scandinavian two-color knitting and had found the geese-and-foxes pattern that is traditionally used up in Maine in one of my mitten books, so I used that as a jumping off point for the design. Here is my graph, in case you want to make one yourself!:

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I used a fair isle stocking pattern by Lisabee Designs as my base pattern (available for free here on Ravelry), but made my own chart and did a short-row heel and rounded toe rather than the heel and toe she uses in her stocking. I loved the idea of using two shades of the same color for the main pattern. It really helps it to not look too busy.

For my brother-in-law, I’m going to use the same design with different colors… I can’t wait to get it cast on! But first, here is the finished product (I haven’t added a loop for hanging yet, nor have I blocked it. Forgive me.):

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I don’t know about you fellow knitters, but knitting gives me such a sense of pride. I love to see my own designs come off my needles, stitch by stitch, and I love giving my projects that I love so much to people that I love so much! There is so much of YOU put into your projects… they are the perfect way, I think, to tell people you love them.

Besides all of the personal enjoyment I get out of designing and knitting my projects, I feel so connected to the women of the past who spent so much of their time and energy knitting… the history of the craft is fascinating and I am loving reading about it. Seeing all of the beautiful and wonderful traditional patterns is amazing. Twisted-stitch socks from Austria, Sanquhar patterns from Scotland, ornate gloves from Spain, mittens from Maine,  socks from ancient Egypt… it has been a global craft for so, so long. Being inspired by these crafts from long ago and being conscious of all the mothers, artisans, fishermen, and craftspeople who did what I am doing today hundreds and thousands of years ago is an amazing feeling. It is history looped around my needles, taught to me by my mother and being continued by my hands.

It truly is an amazing craft, and it is really amazing today that we can share our own personal passions and patterns with each other all over the world through the magic of the internet.

And so, today, thank whoever taught you this amazing skill! They brought you into the wide, wonderful world of knitting!

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It’s been too long… And so much has happened!

Well, it has absolutely been too long. A month since my last post? Ahhhh! I’m slacking. But I promise you, I have excuses.

What are they, you ask?

Mostly, I’ve been in a slow knitting phase. Although I did get my Etsy store up and running! (The Knitted Frau on Etsy) Although I don’t have any sales yet, I’m happy to have it up and running!

I also finished this hat, made out of a super soft merino/silk blend that I thought I would love. Turns out I’m not wild about the colors, but I got to do a little color experiment.

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And started this one:

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This is my first time concentrating on my stitch work rather than color. I just got a wonderful stitch reference book (400 Knitting Stitches, you can find it here) and the wonderful woman I am knitting it for picked out a nice X stitch. I am loving the white after so much color in my last project… and all of my projects.

Speaking of the wonderful woman who chose the stitch, she is my future MOTHER IN LAW! So, that happened while I was away!! My wonderful, bearded boyfriend and I have been talking about getting married for a while, and on my birthday last month he asked my dad for his blessing and BOOM! We’re getting hitched!! (I apologize in advance if this turns into a knitting/wedding blog.)

We are trying to plan our wedding as simply and cost effective as is humanly possible, and one thing that has come of that is a non-traditional engagement ring and wedding bands. We found a couple named Andre and Connie who makes gorgeous wooden and moose antler rings (as well as other lovely things) for their Etsy store, Wooden Things and Me. They are whipping up something extra special for us. (And it is SO much easier on our paychecks than a $4000 ring! Yikes!!!) They do such beautiful work and are trying a new technique on my engagement ring. I cannot wait to see it! I’ll post pictures when it arrives. Their shop is absolutely worth checking out… You can find it here. On top of making lovely things, they are lovely people. I strongly suggest you check out their shop.

Seriously, go do it.

I’ve done a million other things, including going to Purl SoHo (the shop that dreams are made of) and buying this dreamy bright green and yellow and gray merino wool…

20130306-225635.jpg …which I cannot WAIT to get on my needles, but haven’t you heard enough??

I’ll update you later if you really want.

In the mean time, does anyone have any tips for getting views on Etsy? Any places you’ve found cheap & pretty wedding dresses? And killer simple wedding/party planning tips? I’ve just got so much to think about!!!!