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Wearable, Skill-Stretching, and Varied

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.

Most likely, embroidering over my Holla Knits project bag, using Allyson’s tutorial, will be the easiest project I tackle.  But it’s something I’ve never done before, and am anxious to try it out.

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.

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