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Red Wine mobile Pouch

 

I wanted to make a new cell-phone pouch that i could take to the Ravelry Bangalore Brigade meet on Sunday 26th Aug. Unfortunately I wasn’t too happy with the way it turned out. The design was fine, but I didn’t like the way I stitched it up with a flap. So I left it at home for a re-work. (sigh)

So i thought about it yesterday, and ripped up the side stitches. and re-worked it to remove the flap, and instead made it a simple case. Now came the button, which I so wanted. So i put in onto the wrong side, so it goes through the hole without having to wrap around the top.

For the handle, I decided I wanted an I-cord. So that’s what I learnt and made. It obviously looks like first attempt, but that’s ok for me! πŸ™‚

 

 

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The Dye-ing Experiment

After my last post on thread on dyeing the cotton yarn, I had a couple of people ask me to note down the entire process. So i took that as an excuse to finally dye the last hank of yarn I had. This also meant that it would have to be green because that’s the only dye I have left… any more would mean a trip to Commercial Street, and I really don’t have time for shopping now.

So here goes:

Ingredients:

  • 4-5 ltr vessel that you wont ever use for food again
  • a pair of tongs or a spoon for turning the yarn
  • 10gms of acidic powder dye
  • 1 hank of cotton yarn
  • 2tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup vinegar

Step 1:

  • Ensure the cotton yarn is tied neatly into a hank. This is necessary to ensure that you can manage the yarn while dyeing.
  • Though you are tying it in 2-3 places, ensure it is not too tight. The dye will not reach the inside yarn otherwise

Step 2:

  • Heat about 3 lts of water to lukewarm and add the vinegar. Add the undyed yarn to the water and set aside until cool.
  • Keep turning the yarn intermittently to ensure that the entire yarn is washed well in the vinegar. Drain and set the yarn aside
  • The purpose is to wash off all impurities in the yarn and also traces of other dyes. This especially helps when you’ve tried with food coloring, and it didn’t work. I did this, so I know!
When I put the yarn into the vinegar-water
2 mintues later (check the color of the water in the background)

Step 3:

  • Drain the vinegar water, and replace with clean water.
  • Bring the water to boil, and then add salt and dye and mix well to ensure no lumps remain. Here I added a 1/2 tsp of turmeric just to see if it affected the final green. The last time I’d used the same dye, I got a forest green, So I wanted something different.
  • Let the water boil for a few minutes more and then add the cotton yarn.
  • Turn off the flame immediately. This I learnt with trial-and-error. The dye shop guy told me to boil the yarn with the dye. When I did this, the yarn kinda crinkled up. Not sure why, but when I don’t boil it, the yarn remained smooth. Boiling didn’t affect the softness of the yarn, but just gave an odd look to the yarn.
  • Keep turning the yarn in the dye every 2 minutes to ensure it reaches all parts of the yarn
  • Once the dye has cooled off, and while turning, you feel that the yarn has caught the color properly throughout the yarn, take it out
When I put the yarn in the dye
When the color is catching on the dye

Step 4:

  • Drain the dye and wash the yarn thoroughly until it stops bleeding color.
  • Add a bit of detergent to water, and wash again till it stops bleeding color.
  • You may also soak the yarn in fabric softener to help it maintain softness (I do this)

Step 5:

  • Dry it out πŸ™‚
My Dye Results

Here is a pic of all my experiments side-by-side. Note the difference in the green yarns. Apparently turmeric does change the color, But I need to wait and watch if this effect is permanent. Turmeric isn’t really known for permanent cotton dyeing properties. In fact I always manage to get it off my cotton clothes when I have a cooking accident…

Also note the slightly less crinkly nature of the center yarn. Thats the lastest one that I’ve written about.

Most of what I did was a mix of what I learnt through various websites on dyeing, and a bit of experimentation on my part. Had some hit, and some misses… but that’s what learning is all about!

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Hand-Dyed Cotton Yarn

On a recent shopping expedition to Commercial Street, I found some undyed cotton yarn for knitting. I was supposed to be looking for lace weight yarn and mohair when I found this. Actually, I found the others as well, just added this also to my basket. But as I’d never dyed anything before (school days don’t count!), the shop keeper kindly helped me out with the name of a dyer nearby.

Undyed Cotton Yarn

When I reached the dyer’s shop, he was very clear that all he had were acidic dyes, and they just wont work on cotton. He did give me instructions of how to use it though, always ending with the disclaimer that the color wont hold! πŸ™

Anyway, once I got home, I gathered by supplies: vinegar, food coloring (just in case it works), salt, and a large vessel that I was sure I would never use for food ever. And finally courage: to be faced with something that might not work.

The food color experiment was a dud. But am very happy with the way the acidic dyes caught the color. After repeated washing (including in detergent) it stopped running color, and now looks bright and fresh!

Maroon and dark green cotton yarn

So i now have 2 gorgeous hanks of cotton yarn: maroon and dark green! And I still have 1 hank remaining… gotta see what to do with it! πŸ™‚

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Chocolate Fantasy – Mobile Pouch

Every trip to Pune isn’t complete without the requisite craft shopping trip.

This time it was to Samrat Stores @ Laxmi Road. And found the cutest variegated cotton yarn. Ma loved it instantly and said it reminded her of chocolate. And so I decided to make her something special with it.

The final result was a simple mobile pouch, with the cutest wood button (even if I say so myself!).

Chocolate Fantasy
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The One-Day Coasters

I’ve been struggling for some thing as to what to make for the current placemat/doilies/coasters C/KAL going on in my Ravelry group.
Finally decided to challenge myself and make a knit lace doily. Easier said than done.

I couldn’t work the delicate stitches on DPNs or Circular needles (which I was using for the first time ever!). So decided to make a ‘trial’ mat using spare DK variegated yarn. after 10 mins i realized this was going nowhere. I just couldn’t understand the design!!!

So my solution was to continue doing my last stitch over and over again till I got a coaster. And it worked!!! I just skipped the lace part, and kept repeating the center “base” part of the design. πŸ˜€

So I’ve finally got a quick and easy coaster. that takes approx 2hrs to churn out!! πŸ™‚

Project Complete! πŸ˜€

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The Yarn Bowl

This was made on a lazy afternoon, when I was fed up with knitting my shawl.. Well, not fed up per se, just majorly tired of doing it! πŸ˜‰

So out came the superglue: Fevicol MR, stock of which had been left over by my carpenters. Followed by peices of knitting yarn left over from various projects.

The problem with this project is that I should have used embriodery thread instead of wool. And glue, instead of Fevicol. Fevicol is too stong a glue for this project. And the wool fibers kept getting stuck to my hand mnore than the bowl, which made a simple exercise a real pain.

So what I actually used was:

  • 3 colors of woolen yarn of varying lengths
  • a salad bowl for shape
  • clingwrap for the bowl, to prevent glue from getting on the bowl.
  • 1/2 cup of glue/fevicol
  • a lot of patience πŸ˜€

After covering the blow with clingwrap, I tried dunking short length of the yarn into the glue and then wrapping them in the bowl. This was a bad idea as the fibers were sticking more to my hand and less to the bowl. So strategy changed, and the glue was applied to the bowl, and i delicately laid out the wool over it.

My delicasy lost patience after half the bowl was completed. And the bowl was DONE! πŸ˜‰

I kept it in the sun for a day to set properly. The next day i removed the salad bowl and left the yarn bowl to dry for 1 more day. Here i expected the clingwrap to come off. But since it stayed on, I just trimmed the edges to give the bowl a neater look.

It is now my ‘water-proof’ trinkets bowl! πŸ˜€

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Lace Shawl

This was made as a part of my Ravelry C/KAL. And I dont think I’d ever have completed it so fast, if it wasnt for the deadline! πŸ˜€

There a few things about knitting that I also learnt with this shawl:

  • Lace knitting: The very basics, but definitely a start.
  • Needle Size: Looking beyond needle sizes US 2 & 3. Used size 8. A bit unwieldy initially, but got used to it soon enough!
  • Blocking: Never did this before, and didnt have the “blocking boards” everyone uses. But managed to come up with some decent in-house substitues! πŸ™‚

The design itself is a very simple one. It is called Old Shale and is and old Shetland lace design. It is a 4-row pattern, with only 1 row of actual work. Simple, with such gorgeous results!

So here are the pics of my first every lace shawl:

Peach Yarn from Vardhman
The finished product
The design
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My First Coasters

Am in process of taking baby steps in making something. This was a bit intimidating to me initially, because in the website I first saw this (http://thattessgirl.blogspot.in/2010/10/coaster-woasters.html), it was just so beautiful! I wasn’t sure I would be able to understand the instructions and do it as well.

Well, I did get the instructions wrong the first time (looking back, I can’t understand why!). But I prevailed. And this is the result:

I mixed 2 yarns to make the stitches tighter. But when I changed the yarn (mauve replaced blue), the size seemed to have shrunk. The yarns are not different… so am not sure exactly why this happened.

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Knit Scarf – Reversible

This is probably the only knitting item that I have completed within 1 week. πŸ™‚

Size
About 7 inches x 66 inches

Gauge
About 4 sts=1″ in pattern stitch

Materials Size 6 Imperial (5 mm) needles
3 skeins of sport weight yarn
60% wool / 40% acrylic

Instructions: CO 36 sts.
Row 1: *K1, YO, k2tog; rep from *
Rep Row 1 until you are almost out of yarn.
BO and weave in the ends with tapestry needle.
Cut tassels measuring 3″ and tie at the ends of the scarf using crochet needle.

You can also Find it on Ravelry: