Thursday, January 12, 2017

The Mindless Scrap Scarf

The idea for this scarf came about in the fall of 2016. I thought it would be a great project for taking with me in situations where I would be waiting (doctor's offices, car repair shop, dentist). I would tie together bits of scrap yarn, threading some big metal beads I had onto the yarn as I went. Then I would just cast on a scarf about 8" wide and knit until the ball of yarn was used up.

I ended up with a ball of yarn weighing about 7.5 ounces. It was mostly worsted weight yarn, although a little bit of Baby Clouds snuck in there, and on several occasions, I doubled up sport weight yarn. I cast 28 stitches onto size 10-1/2 needles and started knitting.

I got bored rather quickly. And I got orders. Lots and lots of orders. The ball of yarn and few inches of knitting that I had completed got put into a "project bag" and stashed away (probably when I was puppy-proofing the house for Christmas company).

Then came the wind storms of January 10. I came home from work, chilled from being out in the wind for just a few minutes, and put on a pot of decaf coffee, then went to change into my comfy "home clothes" (sweat pants and a threadbare old sweater). As I was changing my clothes, the light in the closet went out. Hmm... light bulb must have burned out. Oh, wait... the light in the bedroom is out, too. And I had turned the TV on, but it's not on. Power outage!

Coffee had finished brewing, so I settled into the semi-darkness with my cup of coffee and tried to figure out what I could do by candlelight. Counting rows and trying to read a pattern would be difficult. Then I remembered the scrap scarf. Perfect! I pulled out the project bag and got to work. Since it was just garter stitch, knitting each row, I could multi-task while working on it. I pulled up a book on my tablet's Kindle app and read as I knit. So I guess you could say I was knitting by Kindle light!

After one evening of knitting, ball was down to 3.5 ounces
Power was out until 7 PM, so I got in several hours of knitting. The ball was getting smaller, and I was getting excited about actually finishing up a project, so I kept knitting until bedtime.

The next morning, power went out again, so I got to work on the scarf more. Then I finished it that evening. I deliberately left all the yarn ends hanging out. It's just a funky, colorful, Bohemian look. Not for everybody, but I certainly had fun with it, and it's very warm and cozy to wear! It ended up about 5 feet long, so wearing it as an infinity scarf, I wrap it twice around my neck.

Step 1:
Wind a ball of scrap yarn, threading beads on as you go. I started and ended with black yarn, so that the seam of sewing the ends together wouldn't be as obvious.
My ball ended up at 7.5 ounces, with 12 beads (wish I would have added more).

Step 2:
Cast on 28 stitches on size 10.5 needles

Step 3:
Knit each row until you run out of yarn.

Step 4:
Sew ends together.

Sunday, January 8, 2017

January, A Clean Slate

I finished the last of my custom orders on December 31st, so started out 2017 with a clean slate.
5 Christmas stockings... done! 

Well, almost a clean slate. I still had six projects in various stages of completion in bags around the house. And a "hackathon" project I wanted to do (where you take a pattern and make hacks, or changes, to make it uniquely yours). And a laundry list of "gotta make that" projects. 

So, I came up with the following list of resolutions for January: 

Decrease stash by 3 pounds (starting at 164.04) (May be difficult, as a friend mentioned giving me yarn rather than packing it for a move). (Have met the goal, as of 1/25, but if I get a yarn "donation", that will change the status! 
This baby blanket worked up quickly, and reduced by 'stash" by 2 pounds! 

Get patterns sorted out (Took SEVERAL hours!) 
Finish 3 of 6 WIP - DONE... actually 4 of 6 are done! 
1. Tin Can Knits Hackathon 
My Hack: I used three strands of yarn (2 baby yarn, 1 worsted) rather than 1 strand of bulky.

2. Scrap Scarf 

Since this was mindless knitting, I got several hours done during a power outage! 

3. Hay Square 
4. Shark Hat 
5. Catasaurus 
6. Big Mermaid 
One and Two Company Nuru the Unicorn 
One and Two Company January CAL 

Scrap Turtle 

Mini Unicorn 

Mini Unicorn and Nuru

Cactus Pin Cushion

Mini Owl

Stick to $100/week grocery budget - Use what I have on hand! (Didn't do well the first week, doing better since then!)
Check balance of benefits card 
Cash in Ibotta cash (trying to get $4.75 more to cash out for $50 instead of $40)
Find another pretzel/cookie canister for scrap yarn 
Load the knitting needle pouch I was gifted, post picture with thank you 
Write thank you notes 
Hem pants 
Use the sculpty clay I bought to make a fancy crochet hook
List all amigurumi over $15 
List old pattern books on Listia 

January 31 update... I feel like I made good progress on my lists this month! Trying to decide on what to do for February!