Tuesday, February 19, 2013

The (Former) Queen of the Dishcloths

Way back in the 90s and early 2000s, before I was a Knitter with a capital K, I used to go through occasional periods when I would knit dishcloths. Dishcloths make great hostess gifts, and can be combined with dish towels and kitchen gadgets to make a bridal shower gift, too. I am a huge fan of knitted dishcloths for my own kitchen, so many of the dishcloths I knitted stayed to live with me. Back in those years, the only dishcloth pattern that I ever knit was the venerable Grandmother's Favorite, which consists of a lot of garter stitch, some yarnovers and knit two togethers. (Incidentally, a great way to practice those skills if you are a new knitter.)

Sometime in 2007, I realized that I was pretty bored with Grandmother's Favorite, and I started thinking about learning to knit something more complicated. That wish for more complexity became my New Year's resolution in 2008 to take a knitting class. The rest, as they say, is history. I knit my first cardigan and socks in that class, and I haven't stopped knitting since.

Since 2008, there have been very few dishcloths knit around here. In 2009 there was the World Record Dishcloth, which I knit at Sock Summit as a participant in the Guinness Book record for the number of knitters knitting at the same time. Here is what that dishcloth, a Grandmother's Favorite, naturally, looked like:

Last fall, I tried out Knit Picks Dishie dishcloth cotton yarn, my Dishcloth Experiment, and knit a variation on Grandmother's Favorite, eLoomanator's Diagonal Knit Dishcloth. (I photograph dishcloths in places other than my sink, I really do!)

I recently participated in a dishcloth and recipe swap, and I once again chose two patterns that are based on Grandmother's Favortie. Here is Variation on a Theme, my Turquoise Beauty:

I also knit this darling, and very quick pattern, Grandma's Favorite Heart-Shaped Dishcloth, which not only went into the package for my swap partner, but also to two friends as early valentines.  I called my dishcloth project Pink Hearts (As you can see, I moved from the sink to the dish drainer in one of the photos.)

I am rediscovering the fun of knitting simple dishcloths occasionally. I hope to knit down my very small stash (about 12 balls) of dishcloth cotton over the course of this year, and I'll share the projects with you as they come off my needles. If you are looking for a quick, satisfying project, why not join me, and knit a dishcloth!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Photo of the Week: Tangled

41/365: Tangled by jchants
41/365: Tangled, a photo by jchants on Flickr.
The fog created a mood of mystery as it cloaked the trees on Sunday morning.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Interminable No More!

Do you remember this?

I wrote about this cardigan on the blog way back in June, around the time that I renamed the project The Interminable Cardigan. Well, guess what? Only one year, one month and eight days after cast-on, this cardigan is done!

Not only is it done, it fits! This is truly a testament to the power of knitting a gauge swatch, and then washing and blocking that swatch. I will never doubt that wisdom again, especially since the result is a cardigan that I love and I know will get a lot of wear.

Another very exciting thing about this cardigan is that I got to use one of the vintage buttons that I purchased at the annual show of the Washington State Button Society back in September 2011. I happened to see that this show was being held in a nearby town, and convinced Mr. D to go with me. He was sort of reluctant about attending, but once we got there, he was fascinated by the displays of historic buttons. I got to wander around the room to all the vendor tables. I spent about twelve dollars and came away with several beauties, including the one that is now on my cardigan.

Now that this cardigan is finally off the needles, I can cast-on for another one, Cecily Glowik MacDonald's Goodale, which I am going to knit in Hazel Knits DK Lively. The colorway is called Jay Blue—lovely, don't you think?

I'm hoping that it won't be a whole year before I can write another "finished cardigan" post. Stay tuned!

Friday, February 8, 2013

Photo of the Week: Singing Through the Fog

Last Friday was a gray, foggy and quiet day at the park, except for the bird in the tree singing.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Photo of the Week: Mid-Centuty Modern

26/365: Mid-Centuty Modern by jchants
26/365: Mid-Centuty Modern, a photo by jchants on Flickr.
I collect Russel Wright's American Modern dinnerware. These pieces are all creamers: from upper left, clockwise, Granite Gray, Seafoam, Granite Gray and Cedar Green.