I only knit. I mean I’ve sewn a zipper into a knitted bag, I’ve lined a knitted purse, I’ve put buttons on a knitted cardigan, but knitting is the only craft I’ve indulged in for a couple of years. It’s been a time of stress, the kind that just happens when children hit high school and college and people get sick. So when I did have had time to make things, I fell back on my default craft: knitting.
But that doesn’t mean I haven’t wanted to try different things. In the last couple of years, I’ve been collecting a good number of pins, bookmarks, and actual print books that would encourage my trying some sewing, or dyeing techniques.
This is where the Handmade Fashion Challenge 2015 comes in. I read about it on both Canary Knits and Candy and Bagel. So, when I saw Teresa’s post about the Challenge on her blog, I thought maybe it is time to do some of that… after the wedding, that is. I won’t be making things that will coordinate together, but I will be challenging myself to make things I might normally buy and/or things that I can wear often. Wearability is always an issue for me with the knitting. I like wool, but Texas doesn’t. So I’m focusing on either light weight yarn or different kinds of making altogether.
(top row: Morning Mist Tee, drilling stones: Jennyhoople.com, solar dyeing: themagiconion.com, Spring-tastic socks. Bottom row: January Yarns and Industry Shawl via TrulyMyrtlePhotos, Purl Bee City Gym Shorts, and Holla Knits project bag tutorial.)
First up, is my one allowed work-in progress, my Morning Mist tee. It’s linen and fingering weight- enough said.
With the jewelry, I’m hoping to use found objects from different hikes I’ve been on or trips to the shore. I want to go beyond wire wrapping beach glass, so I’ve pinned some how-to’s on drilling through natural items on my Pinterest. I’m not sure exactly what I’ll end up using or making, but you get the idea.
I’m not a seasoned sock knitter. I don’t have a personal sock recipe or a memorized heel technique, though it would be a pretty useful knit for me, as we have cold, hardwood floors. I’m hoping to remedy that while experimenting with natural dyeing for my Springtastic Socks. Again, I have no idea if I’ll use onion skins, or black beans, or flowers yet. There’s going to be lots of spur-of-the-moment decision making here.
This brings me to the real challenge in my future: the Purl Bee City Gym Shorts. This is why I decided to join the challenge in the first place. If I can get a handle on sewing, I feel like I really could transition to a mostly handmade wardrobe, if I want to. And these shorts have been killing me, popping up on blogs and instagram for months. Seeing Teresa’s pair was the final push I needed. So, this will be my first “real” hand sewing project. Bag linings don’t count, to me.
And last, but not least, is my Industry Shawl I will be test knitting for Libby of Truly Myrtle. I wouldn’t say shawl knitting is a challenge for me, except when I flub on blocking them. But I’ve found they will get more wear than sweaters around here. Besides I’m using some January Yarns‘ Staple Sock in a favorite color.
So, there you have it, my late summer plans: wearable, skill-stretching, and varied. We’ll be using the #hmfc2015 tag for instagram and I guess other social media. I don’t really use any other media that accepts hashtags so… you’ll find my updates here and on my instagram.