Wristwarmers in garter stitch - one of the first projects I teach in my knitting class for beginners (girls and boys 8-13 years). Cast on, knit stitch, bind off, a little bit of sewing and then adorning with whatever you fancy. In my case that would be wooden buttons either made of a piece of that Christmas Tree from a few years back, or a branch of cedar found in the park behind our house.
Besides holding yarn and needles properly, the main difficulty appears to be keeping a certain amount of stitches... oh that simple joy when counting the same number row after row! Mine too, as I watch them. Because I know this little wristwarmer could be the beginning of a great love.
*Yarns for these wristwarmers are Beaverslide Fisherman Weight and Rowan Felted Tweed.
Don't ask... the days just flew by and I just couldn't... when there was time I have been knitting, what else, this addiction is hard to fight, especially because there is so much pretty yarn in the world and playing with wool just makes me feel good.
I don't like to write here before I have been answering some of your comments and dear mails or messages I got on ravelry, or thanking for magazines you have sent me, or get back to those quilt photos, or continue posting those photos I took in the plum orchards... but I need to post some pictures and a quick greeting today.
Because today is the last day I feel mentioning Hina Matsuri is still fine because it was only yesterday.
So, dear girls out there: I hope you had a happy day yesterday!!!
It was Hina Matsuri here in Japan, Girls' Day, and we enjoyed some special sweets and sushi, with our dolls on display and new tenugui in our washitsu (Japanese room).
Same dolls as every year... but we have a new tenugui for this season:
I totally love it. We changed the covers for our zabuton to black this winter, so only those little owls on the floor are adding some colour to the room at the moment. Still, I don't think it doesn't look cold. But what am I talking here about those things when all I wanted to post was a quick hello and wishing you well?!
Those are sweet, too...
This picture, as well as the first two of this post were taken at the kominka in Seseragi-koen, Nakamachidai. I think I have said it before, it's a truly lovely place - always changing with the seasons and always something new to discover - and so peaceful.
There's a beautiful, little exhibition of hina dolls and those hanging decoration called tsuribina (hanging dolls) at the moment. If you are anywhere in this area, go and see it!
This might well have been the first of a series of hurried posts to catch up and show you what I have been seeing and making lately... but who knows. I am not gonna promise to return to more consistent posting, promises almost always work as some kind of curse for me and I am better off without. This way there's still hope ;)
Did I say talk to you soon?!
The beginning of a new school term got in the way and I had a bit to prepare my classes. I am now teaching three classes, girls and boys from age six to thirteen and feeling quite happy being given this great opportunity.
Now that those classes are underway, I can think of all the rest, even quilts.
I started going through the photos I took at this year's quilt show and chose to share some detail shots with you first. I assumes you have seen most of the quilts by now somewhere else, fortunately you don't have to rely on me, but maybe you can discover a few new things here and there.
This year was my 7th year at the show and I must say, I wish I was a child again, quilt-show-wise. Once more feeling that overwhelming excitement when entering the hall. Feeling stunned by amazing craftsmanship, smiling at quilts because they make me happy...
I went twice and of course, I did see many fantastic quilts. Even a lot of quilts I would have liked to take home with me. Quilts that inspired me. But overall I had a feeling of being saturated and wished for less embroidery, glitter, less sequins and beads and less ambition. Why not make more simple quilts? Maybe seven years ago those overladen quilts seemed flamboyant to me, while today they often simply looked cluttered. Can't I appreciate a gorgeous quilt anymore because all the talks about decluttering your life?!
Here are my first pictures from the show, I will add more over the next days and weeks.
Again I am talking about knitting and yarn again, when all I should think about are quilts...! Somebody come over and take away my needles because I can't put them down.
Knitting a pair of simple wristwarmers in the most beautiful, woolen-spun, lace-weight Elsa Cormo. I don't care a great deal about soft, in fact I LOVE honest and slightly scratchy when it comes to wool, but this yarn's softness is something I'd like to cover myself with from top to toe. So dreamy. Good I am in Japan because nobody here would care about me wearing knitted trousers... but seriously, I have enough yarn to make myself a sweater (fingering weight) and am tempted to cast on for that soon.
The chair I recently found in a thrift store and it was mine for only 200 Yen (1.7 Euro or 2.5 US Dollars). It was fairly scuffed and in need of severe cleaning, oil and polishing, to get rid of the rust on its legs. But it is well recovered now and a great addition to my craft room. It is low and quite wide, perfect to sit cross-legged on it and knit. What a lucky find, don't you think?!
The fabric you see on top of this little drawer is from a thrift store as well. I have 5.70 m of this beautiful asa no ha (hemp leaf) patterned cotton and it came with instructions to make a jacket for wearing indoors. But I'd rather like to make an apron instead, if I ever manage to dig out my sewing machine again. Keep your fingers crossed because I really would like to have that apron!
While I'm at it, I could show you another addition to my craft room.
Last year I made a footrest/ doorstopper. It originally was a little bean bag I bought at Muji, just to have the filling, because it would have been more expensive to get the filling in a craft store. I made a new cover for it, using fun, brightly coloured fabrics. Some of them tenugui, some vintage, some leftovers from sewing clothes for Dagny when she was little.
Proof that it is used as footrest indeed. Dagny loves it!
I hope you have as much fun with these simple book covers as I have.
They are quick and easy to make and once you finished the first you wonder if there are more naked books that could use a nice dress...