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Simple little things

Butterfly and the Knitter

What does a knitter do when sees a marvelous butterfly?

Knitting and Crochet inspiration

 

Puts a ball of color matching yarn next to it and takes a picture, of course.

Knitting and Crochet inspiration

I found this precious creature on my balcony while reading the book.

Knitting and Crochet inspiration

I started to crawl towards it, holding the breath. It was slowly moving its wings up and down, but not flying away.

Knitting and Crochet inspirationKnitting and Crochet inspiration

Knitting and Crochet inspiration

Knitting and Crochet inspiration

Can you believe these colors?!

Taking these pictures was THE challenge. I have a new found respect for the professional photographers. Being practically bent in half and squeezed under the table with the camera in hand, as a pilates instructor I thought – “Gosh, I’m glad I’m flexible!”

As a Montessori teacher – “It would be great to have these pictures in our classroom for the observation and investigation activities”.

As a knitter – Such a delightful color pattern for the sweater!

I hope you will have a nice weekend. And don’t forget to look around – there is always something wonderful to be found.

 

Vogue knitting top
Finished Objects, Knitting

Off Shoulder Tank. Vogue Knitting.

Ever since I learned how to knit I wanted to make a marine style sweater or a dress. As soon as I found the cotton yarn in ivory and navy blue shades, I started the hunt for the perfect pattern. I was looking for something as simple as possible in a plain stockinette stitch. Off Shoulder Tank by Cathy Carron from Vogue Knitting Spring/Summer 2008 was the perfect match.

Vogue knitting top
Vogue Knitting Spring/Summer 2008. Designer Cathy Carron

I love how simple and feminine it is.  The deep waist ribbing is very flattering. Especially if you knit it very tight – it feels like you are wearing a corset.

Knitting top. Vogue Knitting

 This top was such a quick knit, I finished it in five days. I absolutely loved the idea of the ribbon woven through the eyelets along the neckline. Red and navy blue ribbons were the perfect last touch for my marine top.

Knitting top. Vogue KnittingOverall, it is a gorgeous summer top, that can be worn with jeans, white pants or long white skirts.

Knitting top. Vogue Knitting

Thank you, Vogue Knitting! It was a joy to make.

Knitting and crochet book
Books, Crochet, Knitting

ABC of Knitting

I would like to introduce you something special. The knitting book. Well, it might be not very special right now, but if we consider the time and place this book was written, it is truly unique.

Knitting and crochet book

The book was first published in 1978. 36 years later it is still one of the most popular knitting books in Russia. They say there are no knit courses in Russia that are not based on this book. ABC-book of Knitting doesn’t only contain the techniques, patterns and tips on knitting, but it contains history.

The book was first published in the Soviet Union. My Grandma told me that it was very hard at that time to buy even food, forget about the yarn. This book has the spirit of that time. There are pieces of advice how to work with the old yarn from the unraveled sweaters, how to dye yarn (not for the sake of the “hand dyed” label on it, but because there was not much of a choice of colors) and even how to change the size of your needles by sharpening them!

Knitting and crochet book

I know from the stories of my Grandma how happy and delighted she was if she had the opportunity to buy some yarn, no matter what fiber, color or weight. Just the yarn. Can you imagine living in a country without constant access to the yarn?!!! There was no choice of knitting magazines, no patterns to buy. Sometimes some newspapers would publish one-size instructions for the sweater. This book really makes me appreciate all the privileges we have now – the choice of yarn, knitting magazines, independent designers, online and live workshops, beautiful yarn stores.

No matter what, all these restrictions didn’t stop thousands and thousands of women to create absolutely unique pieces, true artifacts. ABC book was the first one who put all these years of practice into theory and helped a lot of people to learn to knit and crochet. Though some patterns are definitely too old-fashioned to knit,

Knitting and crochet book
I’ve never in my life thought of knitting a pair of tights, how about you?

… the collection of knitting techniques and little crafty secrets is priceless.

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This book is so important to me, that it had to cross the ocean to be on my coffee table.

Knitting Hat
Knitting

Kids Knit

This cute little hat was made by one of my Montessori students.

Knitting Hat

Boy, am I proud! I started to work in this classroom last year and naturally knitting and crochet became an extra activity during the art time. We have a little shelf with yarn, hooks and needles, which makes me so happy.  Now I can say for sure that two of my students are full-time knitters! They don’t care about the recess – they knit! Now looking at this hat I feel like I’ve served my duty of bringing knitting to younger generation. 🙂

Knitting Hat

Crochet, Finished Objects

Crochet Lace Stitch #tbt

As soon as I found this lace stitch in one of the Japanese crochet magazines, I wanted to use it immediately. I loved its construction, it looks absolutely stunning in a garment.

crochet_top_beige_2

The stitch pattern is easy to remember and really addictive. You just want to keep going and going.

crochet_top_beige_1

Actually I found it so addictive that I made several garments with it – two beach cover-ups for my friends, a top and a light pullover for myself. It was interesting to see how the stitch “plays” with different colors – my favorite neutral shade and a strong violet.

Crochet Top

Knitting blog Crochet Lace

As the stitch is pretty busy, it doesn’t give you too many opportunities for shaping. For the waist shaping I used hooks of different sizes and a couple of filler stitches. Other than that it’s a perfect crochet stitch – easy to remember, fast and absolutely gorgeous!

Knitting blog Crochet Lace

Knitting Cardigan Vogue Knitting
Knitting, Work in Progress, Yarn

Textured Cardigan. Vogue Knitting

The first days after the hurricane we were completely cut off from the rest of the world, as the fallen electricity poles and trees blocked the way out of the house. Obviously all the classes at school were suspended. So, among this mess, I had all the time on my hands to start something new, fresh and challenging.

I found my almost torn apart Vogue Knitting Winter 2012/13 edition in the bedroom, floating in the water. I dried it on the sun and was happy to find out that all the instructions were readable.

Knitting Cardigan Vogue Knitting

I chose the pattern for the Textured Jacket by Shirley Paden that I wanted to try months ago, but never had time for it. Well, after the hurricane I had no more excuses – I was stuck in the house, the school was off, no electricity and no Internet.

I chose the local yarn, 100% mercerized cotton of light beige color that I always have in my stash since I’ve tried it for the first time. This shade looks classy and elegant with any garment and any stitch pattern.

Knitting Cardigan Vogue Knitting

I remember starting this project 1 year ago, but I stopped after having knitted the swatch. The stitch pattern seemed really time and yarn consuming to me, but oh, so beautiful.

Knitting Cardigan Vogue Knitting

Knitting Cardigan Vogue Knitting

This stitch pattern doesn’t let you relax, you need to follow the chart and the instructions row by row really carefully. But that was exactly what I needed – to stay focused on one thing at a time. So, it was a win-win situation – I didn’t let myself to become overwhelmed with the last events, but create something absolutely stunning.

Knitting Cardigan Vogue Knitting

I am still working on it, modifying it a little bit. Let see what will come out of it. I’ll keep you updated!