Saturday, February 13, 2010

Learning A Textile Craft...!

OK...I have a confession to make here!

I started knitting! That's correct, me! I started knitting! How's that for strange?

What happened is this! Several days ago, my friend and fellow blogger, Wretha, put a video on her website here and showed how she had started Loom Knitting!

I have always been a little sad that I didn't sew, or knit, or crochet...since all my sister's did, as well as my Mom. Being the only boy, I never seemed to learn all that stuff when I was younger!

I do like to do things with my know, create something! I have done ceramics, made music boxes, built furniture, all that kind of thing! But when it came to sewing or any other textile arts, I was totally lost!

I tried several times to teach myself, but without any luck. Then came Wretha! She showed me those looms and how easy they were to use...and BAM, I was hooked!

I borrowed a small loom from one of my Mom's friends to practice with and soon decided to buy my own set!

I'm still learning, but I have been able to make several caps and such and I have to admit, they don't look too bad at all!

I was a little concerned about the fact that I smoke, thus causing the finished pieces to smell of the lingering smoke, if you know what I mean! However, I found that if I put the finished pieces in a large plastic bag with a dryer sheet for a day or two...the smokey smell goes away! It never was too bad, anyway!

So now, I can knit! At least a few pieces, and that's a good start! I can create something useful, something made with my own hands, and that I don't mind people looking at!

BTW, everything that I've made so far, mainly small caps, is being given to the preemie ward at one of the local hospitals. Mom's sewing group makes up things to give to the hospital to sort of dress up the preemies in new clothes and make them look a little less sad for the families. The group as allowed me to donate a few things as well!

Many times, when a small baby is still born, or passes very early on...the family wants to see them before they are laid to rest. Having something to dress them in that's new and fresh and made to size helps the family just a bit by doing away with the drab and ill fitting blankets and such from the hospital.

Next, I'll do a few blankets for babies...maybe some booties. Then I hope to make up some Chemo-Caps for those in the hospital and suffering the loss of hair due to the treatments. It isn't much, but it's something that I can do to help out in some small way!

So...Wretha, thank you for introducing me to this wonderful and satisfying craft! Now, if you can tell me how to NOT spend so much money on yarn...!

Oh, and before I forget...if you haven't been over to Wretha's blog for a visit, why not drop in on her and say "howdy!" I know she would love to see ya!

Now, my friends, let's get some coffee and sit at the kitchen table for a bit, OK?


Ken said...


...BTW,when yer done helpin' the young'uns...i want a sweater

...joke,couldn't resist...only on the sweater part,the Blessings was real...i'll settle fer a hat tho'

HermitJim said...

Hey Ken...
Sorry, Buddy Can't do a sweater...but a hat I can do!

Want it in pink or blue? Got plenty of those colors in yarn, believe me! Oh, I do have some yellow as well, but somehow I can't see you in any of those colors...

Maybe you should wait until I get a little better...and I get some camo yarn, ya know?

Thanks for coming by, my friend!

The cottage by the Cranelake said...

I had to learn that in school but I don´t think I remember how one did. I really don´t like it but I do respect anyone that can knit and it´s great that You´re doing it to help others!

Keep up the good work!

JoJo said...

Good Morning My Special One,
I think this is great. I believe I told you I make chemo hats and have made some premie and new born hats for the hospitals. And I also make lap robes for the VA and want to start donating them to nursing homes. Keep up the good work my friend. It kind of makes your heart feel good.
You can pick up yarn at second hand stores but it may need to be cleaned. Walmart seems to have the cheapest yarn, and I found some at BigLot's but watch for the bigger packages not the small as I didnt find that to be a good deal at all.
lots of hugs to you for your special new hobbie.

edifice rex said...

Yea! that's great Jim!
You know, knitting and crochet is one thing I was never able to get the hang of. I can sew pretty good but my yarn work was a mess!

Meadowlark said...

You SOOOOOO Rock! I love ya even more now! I got the biggest smile when I read this.

YoungSon taught himelf nalbinding, which isn't nearly as practical as knitting, but has a certain "cool factor" of it's own.

Peace out, fellow knitter. I hope to see you on Ravelry soon!!!

Meadowlark said...

PS... Wretha rocks, doesn't she!

Eutychus2 said...

I think you're new hobby is fantastic; and the blessings your contributions make will never be able to be measured. God bless you, keep on keeping on!! I'll take just one more cube of sugar in my tea.

HermitJim said...

Hey Christer...
I wouldn't be able to do this without the loom! There is something so satisfying about making something with your own hands, ya know?

Thanks for the visit today!

Hey JoJo...
It is very satisfying to donate these things to people that can use them, isn't it?

I think the lap robes are an excellent idea, for sure! Things like that are always needed at the nursing homes...

Thank you for thinking of the V.A. with your hand made does mean a lot to them, I know!

Thanks, Sweetie, for coming by today!

Hey ER...
I don't know when you would find the time to have a hobby, when all that you already do! I love your pottery and know that you can certainly understand the calming mental state that comes from working with your hands!

Isn't it amazing that we have so many folks out there that are talented in some way, that have hobbies that could be very useful in hard's astounding!

I think that a lot of the joy of a hobby comes from the doing...and not from whether or not others like it, don't you?

Thanks so much for coming by today, my friend!

Hey Meadowlark...
I think that doing anything that has a "cool factor" is really...well, Cool! A lot of guys might sort of hesitate about learning a new craft or teaching themselves, but I figure the self satisfaction is well worth it!

At least now I don't feel so left out when my sisters and Mom are showing off their new creations!

I only wish that I had learned this kind of thing when I was younger, ya know?

You're right about Wretha being A really cool person...and I love the fact that she and her DH are actually living the dream!

Hey, I sure appreciate you coming by today!

Hey Eutychus2...
Thanks so much for the kind words this morning! I only hope that these little things can be of use by someone, ya know?

Sugar bowl coming up...and thanks so much for dropping in today!

Did it MY way said...

Morning Jim;

How do you get 48 hours in one day? Another worth while trade added to your ability. Great!

Camo gun cases? Wool socks? Just kidding, What you are doing is much more important. God Bless.

See Ya

HermitJim said...

Hey Tony...
Believe it or not, making these little hats doesn't take a lot of time at all. I can do one in about an hour...

They make a special loom for socks, and I'm thinking about getting one. Also getting into making some leg warmers and such for when we are outside in the cold.

No reason why this couldn't be a very useful hobby, huh? Hadn't thought about the gun cases!

Hey, buddy, I sure do appreciate the visit!

Adorabibble said...

glad you have joined the ranks.
I knit and crochet, and everything else. we have a program at one of the main hospitals called golden threads that deal with the stillborn's, they make outfits (layettes) for the last picture, so they parents have something.
it is a great cause. and when you find yourself with extra time busy work is great and you have something to show for it. I make all most all of my gifts, Christmas and such. everybody I know had 10,000 thing of blankets and ceramics and everything else I make. I am decorating the inside of the building here where I live.
Valentines day will be spent with the ladies of the embroidery guild.
Check out your local guilds. I know up here we have embroidery, needlepoint, crochet, and knitting.
there are always knowledgeable people with the skills that you are interested in, or interested in learning.

HermitJim said...

Hey Adora...
Thanks for all the information and the support.

I think the hospital programs are a great thing. Also the V.A. groups so many belong to.

The main thing is, I guess, to try and do what you can to help someone! No feeling like it!

Thanks for coming by today!

Phelan said...

my father in law (old school biker) crochets.
It is a strange scene, but he loves it.

HermitJim said...

Hey Phelan...
Just shows that we all have a need to give way to our creative side once in a while!

I think it's great, and it couldn't look much stranger than this old gray-haired fat man sitting there knitting, ya know?

I really thank you for coming by today!

Tatersmama said...

I remember seeing Rosie Greer knitting on some show years ago, (Merv Griffin maybe?) and it inspired me to give it a try myself. I still can't do it, but lots of men are doin' it nowadays, (Russell Crowe and Lawrence Fishburn both knit) and I think it's great! Especially when the knitting is benefitting some pretty worthwhile causes!
Good for you!

HermitJim said...

Hey Tatersmama...
Nothing wrong with men doing some knitting, sewing, crocheting! After all, we do cook pretty well from time to time!

We can even be house broken...although it may take a while!

I'm glad you are back with us again! We missed you...

Thanks for coming by!

Anonymous said...

Not a thing to confess Jim. In my time I have used a knitting machine and can (well, could) use a sewing machine to the point that I once made myself a denim suit.

Maybe I should be confessing on my blog.


Wretha said...

Wow HJ! Way to go! I'm glad I was able to get another victim, I mean human "hooked" on loom knitting... LOL

The term: "Yarn Whore" comes to mind, that's when you will do ANYTHING for yarn, and no matter what store you go to, you can't leave without checking out the yarn section. Don't forget second hand stores, look for larger knit or crocheted pieces, afghans and blankets made of yarn, you can rip those apart and re-use the yarn, yeah I know someone put a lot of love and hard work into it, but you can give it a second life.

Thanks for the multitude of links, I really appreciate it, be sure to check out Mikeyssmail (yes, that's spelled correctly with "ss"), he is on YouTube, he is great, he was one of my biggest inspirations, he also does preemie hats and booties for donation, you will learn a lot from him, he even made a video using one of my tips from a video I did (using an ink pen as a yarn guide), check him out.

Thanks Meadowlark! Blush!

As to the rest of you commentators, common-taters, the ones who think you can't knit, don't give up, this isn't knitting with those big needles, this is LOOM KNITTING, it's sooooooo much easier, you CAN make great hats, scarves, socks, booties, leg warmers, mittens and more, I don't "knit" the traditional way either, but with the knitting looms, I'm now a proud knitter. Hats are the easiest IMHO, you just go round and round until you get the size you want, the hardest part is picking out the yarn type and color... and deciding where to stop... :)

For all you tough guys and hunters out there, yes, there are great cammo colored yarns out there, just about any store that carries yarn should have it.


Baby Sis said...

Bubba -

You hats, large and small, look great, and I can't wait for my leg warmers! Need them this am! Try some Fabreze spray on your smoky pieces - works really well.

Enjoyed our visit - nice to just share without trying to solve something for a change....

Bug hugs,