Handspun is useful!

I realized after rejoicing in my accomplishment of spinning my first skein of yarn that I had actually only spun up 83 yards, which while it sounds like a lot in fact is not a lot. So I put it into a bag and waited for the opportunity to present itself.

And lo, a friend went through some life stuff, and then she had a birthday, and that opportunity was there.

Behold. Yarn before knitting:

And then yarn after knitting, on a happy new yarn owner:

See, I had enough for about 1/3 scarf, so I made that, created a little pin out of a scrap of leather, and voila! Neck warmer.

Here’s how it’s done:

Take ~90 yards of a bulky weight yarn (handspun is great, but not necessary).

Cast on 25 stitches. I used size 10 needles. Use whichever needle size fits your yarn. You want a scarf about 8 inches wide.

Knit 5 rows in garter stitch.

Knit ~28 inches (or as much yarn as you have so that you’ve got enough to get a final 5 rows of garter stitch plus a bind off) in 1×1 rib.

Knit 5 rows garter stitch.

Cast off, weave in ends.

Now, take a 4-5″ square of heavyish leather (5-6 oz is good, try not to go smaller than a 4 or larger than a 9), and cut it into a circle. Punch two oblong holes in the leather, each about 1/4″ from the edge.

For the stick I used a large-size barbecue skewer, cut down to size and sanded. You could probably use any solid stick-like object (even a stick) as long as the ends are pointed and smooth.

To use with the scarf, you wrap the scarf around your neck, crossing the ends over, and then you thread the stick through the holes in the leather, pinning the scarf under the stick. Nifty! The lady in the photo wore the scarf all day and tells me it is quite warm. I kept a little of the yarn for memory’s sake.

And then today was the big gluttony-fest at work, and in keeping with last year, I wore a sari to work (one I bought at Mirage the day before, no less!):

The girl at the shop was very helpful (if somewhat baffled), and helped me choose some matching bangles. I’m running out of room for bangles. I also have gotten to the point where I’ve worn them so much that I don’t even notice I have them on anymore. I was doing some sewing earlier and only realize they were there when I became aware of an odd jingling noise. Oh, right! Bangles! Silly me.

This weekend is Castle Wars, so for the next couple of days I will be madly sewing. I have no SCA-appropriate coat, and Castle Wars is usually quite chilly. The coat is in pieces in the living room. With any luck, I’ll get it assembled tomorrow and can do finishing Wednesday and Thursday (well, that and if I don’t distract myself in the meantime).

I am so full of food.

About HappyGoth

By day, I'm a graphic designer. By night, I'm a knitter. I'm doing my part to keep Hotlanta stylish. I imagine that if you don't already understand the title of the blog, you're probably confused and perhaps slightly annoyed, but never fear - I do have a reason (and it's a good one). Having gone to hear Stephanie Pearl McPhee, and then having been inspired to blog about knitting, I found myself wondering what to call the blog. I recalled a conversation I had with Mouse and the Chicken Goddess about why it is a Bad Idea to anger knitters - this conversation was following SPM, aka the Yarn Harlot telling the assembled throng about Those Who Do Not Understand Knitting and Therefore Belittle It Much to the Chagrin of Others, or TWDNUKTBMCO, which is not the acronym she used but is the one I'm using because I forgot hers - that is, we are numerous and we all have very pointy sticks, easily transforming into an angry mob. Therefore, knitters = angry mob.
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9 Responses to Handspun is useful!

  1. ela says:

    I hope u fhaal ur sarees Laura?

  2. ela says:

    Laura didheen is worn by all of us because firstly it is easy to maintain in hectic lifestyle. Secondly it gives a nice look and is easy to wear.Hanloom saares are nice too and difficult to maintain. Its ok to wear them sometimes.

    • HappyGoth says:

      Sometimes is the only time I wear sarees! However, the synthetics let me wear them more frequently. Mostly I look for handlooms because I don’t want the art and skill of creating them to die out. It’s such a rich part of India’s cultural heritage.

      But yes – the synthetics are great for everyday, practical wear. I am quickly becoming a convert.

  3. ela says:

    How did you get ur matching blouse stiched? I think u r wearing disheen saree.

    • HappyGoth says:

      Actually, one of the main selling points of the saree was that the blouse was ready-made. It’s a little big, though, so I’ll have to take it to be altered.

      I think you might be right about the fabric, though – it’s a faux crepe de chine, and is super-easy to drape. I get why people like machine-made sarees, although I’ll always choose handlooms when given the option!

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