Sabbatical is over: A Time to Share

Ready

Maybe you have been wondering where I have been this past year. After writing online for Examiner for 7 years as the “Knitting Examiner” about all things fiber, it was time to take a sabbatical. I recommend it highly. I took classes, lectures, read, knit, crocheted, wove, spun, volunteered, experimented, dyed…immersed myself in fiber and learning. Now, I am ready to pass it on to you in my revamped website.

Set

By no means have I become an expert in any field. What I have always known and enjoyed about fiber is there is always more to learn. If you have been following me in the past, you can expect the same and much more. There will be book reviews, tips, photos, fiber news from around the world, techniques, what’s hot: a quick note (tapestry weaving, knee-length cardigans in autumn’s new color grenadine red, woven wall fiber art, knit/crochet/woven ponchos)…

Go

Now is the perfect time to go through your yarn, fiber, textiles, books, tools etc., organize, donate and frog (rip it, rip it) the projects you will never complete. If you don’t have a fiber studio and always wanted one, maybe take an unused closet and transform it into your space. Have a fiber party, your cast offs are someone else’s treasures and vice versa.

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Yulia Ustinova

hooked sculptires

hooked sculptires

Yulia (Julia) is a crochet artist of voluptuous naked women. She resides in Moscow, Russia. She obtained her degree from Moscow Printing Arts.

Her sculptures are of women at play with a hula hoop, sunbathing, showering… funny, thoughtful and created with a hook.

Granny is no square

For those crocheters who don’t give granny squares a glance, try taking a look at “Granny Squares”. “Granny Squares” the latest book in this genre has over 25 creative ways to crochet the classic pattern and is written by Stephanie Gohr, Melanie Sturm and Barbara Wilder. It is worth a look.

There are many more than a dozen different square designs to crochet. That alone is worth turning the pages. Primrose, Netting and Cornflower squares are my favorites. Color choice and yarn fiber help to make these patterns fit into contemporary home decor and fashion. Granny squares are a great yarn stash buster. No matter what granny square pattern you choose, they all start from the center. For more about this book…

Felt painting

Moy Mackay creates beautiful works of art using fleece, fiber and threads in her book “Art in Felt & Stitch”. It is filled with colorful felt paintings of still-life, animals and landscapes inspired by her home in the Scottish Borders. See how she uses various felt techniques to achieve her paintings.

Felt is one of the earliest fabrics and is older than weaving, spinning and knitting. The book itself is a work of art with the fiber colors jumping off the page in the numerous photographs. Four step by step projects are included with instructional pictures that are clear, detailed and inspiring and numerous. Also included are many examples of her finished pieces.

Read on

 

Skinny scarf trending for summer

The linen stitch, knit into a skinny scarf is the popular summer trend. Worked in lightweight variegated yarns makes a splash of any outfit. Knit in silk, linen, cotton or a blend of these fibers will result in a scarf with nice drape. The linen stitch makes a compact but not rigid fabric.

Following is a pattern for the linen scarf that is worked lengthwise. Tip: Using circular needles as straight knitting needles might be the best way to work with the large number of stitches. Five to six feet is a nice length for wrapping around your neck a time or two.
Here for the pattern.

Beautiful knitted flowers from Nora J. Bellows


Flowers make a great gift but, the book “Noni Flowers” is a beautiful gift in itself. “Noni Flowers” is authored by Nora J. Bellows. It is a book of 40 knitted and felted flower patterns and six projects to adorn and embellish garments, accessories, gift decorations and home decor.

The photographs by R. A. Sullivan are so well done that you feel as though you have just visited a florist or walked through the botanical gardens with Latin names provided. The flowers in all their detail are eye candy.

More about this book and a beautiful slideshow here.

Are you a Guild member?

Guilds formed as trade unions or small business associations for craftsmen over 1000 years ago. Trade flowed through these individual crafters and allowed them to own their tools and materials. Today they have more of an educational and social structure.

In Connecticut the fiber guilds include spinning, knitting, crochet, weaving and other needle arts. Do you belong to one? The cost to belong is nominal and the rewards are great. The CT Sheep and Wool festival will have representatives from some of these guilds that you can meet with and speak to. They also will be demonstrating techniques.

The Handweavers Guild of Connecticut’s mission stage is, “We invite handweavers, spinners and other fiber artists from all levels of experience to exchange ideas and share knowledge, to encourage and educate, to stimulate creativity and to challenge their abilities in fiber art techniques.” For more info on Guilds.