A Little Dabbling for Down the Road
The Pink Stripe is Finished
Someday, I’ll know who the recipient will be - someday down the road. But today it is being saved in Grandma’s Someday Box.
Do you see the sleeves? Don’t they look like little scarves with a bit of ribbing? If you can knit a washcloth or a scarf, in light of the circumstances, you can knit a sweater. Really.
Knit the back and front panels like little scarves decreasing for the neck. Seam the shoulders and attach the sleeves. Fold and seam some more. I referred to Nici McNally’s instructions for finishing. For the first time my seams appear seamless.
Edging the sweater is the tricky part. Nici McNally shares a tip on her DVD for picking up stitches. By following this tip my ribbed edging now lays smoothly.
The Story of a Toddler Quilt
I’ve since added fabric yo-yos to the quilt top. They are the same yo-yos pictured in November’s post. I had first cut out hearts to appliqué onto each square but changed my mind. I remembered my lonely pile of yo-yos. “I wonder how well the colors will match,” I thought.
Digging them out of the closet and counting them, I raised my eyebrows in surprise. Not only were the colors in harmony, the pile had the exact number of yo-yos; one per square, no more no less.
Five years previously I made those yo-yos. I was dabbling for the fun of it (and in my initial yo-yo craze) unconcerned where they’d end up. This year the yo-yos met their destiny. You might be surprised at what a little dabbling will amount to down the road.
Because the quilt was only tufted and because they yo-yos were pre-crafted, the project was accomplished in a month of Sundays. That’s all. I tied extra strands of cotton crochet thread to each tuft, to make a sort of decorative fringe that will go fuzzy when washed.
Approximately How Far - Down the Road?
It is good to have an idea of how much time a project will require, especially if it is for an upcoming gift. But when a new interest to dabble occupies you, the amount of time required to complete a project should be secondary.
Some days I dabble. More often I plan. Even when I’ve planned carefully I might have a false start. Have you ever had one? When it comes to knitting I humor myself by calling a false start: “an elaborate gauge.” The blue stripe came to a halt two years ago when I realized, after nearly finishing the back piece, that baby William was already too big for it.
Young children grow fast. I’ve been keeping the stitches “on hold” on a piece of contrasting yarn because I borrowed the needles for the pink stripe. I’ll need to pick up the blue stripe soon because another little boy will be joining us not too far down the road.
A Minute for Cute
I’ve been told that the expected “little boy” is motionless in the womb all night but wakes each morning (and starts kicking) as soon as he hears his big brother’s talkative ramble. Three-year-old William stretched out his arms toward his mother’s stomach, cupped his little hands palms up and said, “You can come out now.”
“He’ll come when he’s ready,” his mother told him.
A Patient Teacher
Letters in my mailbox reveal: all that is separating my readers from learning to knit is an hour of leisure and a good teacher. I found the teacher. All you need to do is find the leisure. After sitting through a number of instructional knitting DVDs I chose one put together by Nici McNally.
(My green toddler socks, knit with self-striping yarn, are meant to dress up the photograph – taken on our attic steps.)
Mrs. McNally is not a hired actress. She genuinely loves to knit and enjoys sharing her skill. She demonstrates each step in clear, colorful close-up photography. The DVD is not preoccupied with the razzmatazz of distracting entertainment. With Mrs. McNally you can take your time to peacefully focus on your knitting. Pause the DVD at her suggestion. “Press play when you are ready,” she says as she guides you pleasantly all along the way.