Favorite Things: Back to the Yarn Stash!

I’ve returned to my beloved, much-neglected pastimes — knitting and crocheting! I can thank my husband John for the inspiration. My husband is a gifted pen and ink artist who works with beautiful colors. I was able to match yarn to the colors in these two pieces, which hang above our living room sofa:

Midnight on the China Sea, by John G Evans

Faith as Big as Texas, by John G Evans

I’ve been working on throw for the back of the couch with these colors. I’m making randomly-sized squares using stockinette stitch with seed stitch borders. I was surprised that I was able to match the colors so well, especially the yellow.

It’s good to hear the knitting needles clicking again. Definitely one of my favorite sounds!

Join us at Katherine’s Corner  and this week’s co-host, Doberman’s by the Sea for Thursday Favorite Things.            Thursday Favorite Things

Knitting With Intention: Shawl Ministry

Although knitting is usually a quiet, solitary pastime, the craft can connect us with others. One of the best ways is through what is called a “shawl ministry” or “prayer shawl ministry”. Often–but not necessarily–organized through a church, a shawl ministry is a group of knitters or chrocheters dedicated to making shawls for those in need–such as hospital patients, those who are grieving, or the homeless. The group of knitters/chrocheters may simply be several friends who meet at someone’s home.

A prayer shawl is different from other shawls because it is created with intention–that is, the knitter usually prays for or reflects on the person who will receive the shawl. The shawl pattern itself may involve spiritual symbols; for example, a Christian-themed pattern stitches may be based on multiples of three, to symbolize the Trinity.

For more information and ideas, visit ShawlMinistry.com. This site emphasizes the “inclusive, unconditionally loving” spirit with which these shawls are made. You’ll find a Patterns and Instruction page with easy knit or crochet instructions. I made the knitted version for a friend, and it made up very easily and quickly.

If you’re looking for a way to make a difference in someone’s life with your craft, think about creating prayer shawls. You’ll be blessed!

If you love to knit…

My sweater-in-progress!

During the past 2 years, I’ve been discovering the fun of knitting. I’d been afraid to venture past the “easy” project level, but have finally ventured into “intermediate” territory! This Christmas, my mother-in-law gave me some knitting needles which I needed to make a certain sweater pattern. The pattern is J21.0005-10K–the silver cardigan–in the Coats and Clark Crochet & Knit Easy Style book. For yarn I’m using Red Heart “Classic” in Light Sage Green.

Do you love to knit? There are some wonderful online sites and communities for knitters of all skill levels. Here are some of my favorites:

Yarn Brands:

Coats and Clark Patterns, yarns and helpful links.

Red Heart An affordable yarn that’s celebrating its 75th year. Check out Stitch Nation, an affordable 100% natural yarn by Debbie Stoller.

Lion Brand Yarn Beautiful colors and textures of yarn. The website offers tutorials, community and a  page which connects you to charity projects.

Communities:

Ravelry My favorite knitting site…you need to register to get into this site but what a treasure! A community which helps you learn, organize your projects and even spin your own yarn. There’s even Ravelry Wiki, a community-edited guide!

Knitting Daily One of Interweave’s communities…check out Interweave Knits magazine, too!

For years, friends and family valiantly tried to teach me how to knit. I bought many, many booklets and magazines, but couldn’t follow the instructions. Know what? I found a knitting kit for kids, and finally was able to learn! It’s called Knitting: Learn to Knit Six Great Projects by Klutz. Been knitting ever since. Hope you’ll give it a try…have a great weekend!