japan

Knitting Class: Finished Projects!

This week, the ladies of Ubuyama finished up their first sets of knitting! As you remember, the first week they made a basic scarf with tassels. The next week was a seed-stitch cowl and today they finished their pom-pom slouchy beanies! Here are some pictures of their finished works; let's congratulate them!

They were all beginner knitters, so both them and I are very proud of what they achieved in a month. They have really good tension and their stitches were very nice and even.

For next week's lesson they want to make leg-warmers, which I think will be a good introduction to measuring gauge and adjusting the number of stitches for better fits.

My First Knitting Class

Last Friday I had my first knitting class! The students were a group of four older women from the village. The lesson was at the village community center, about 15 minutes away from our house. While the population of Ubuyama village is small, the actual size of the village is not!

The ladies seemed quite excited to knit projects together. Two of them had previous knitting experience, while two of them had never knit before. There was a lot of chatting, lots of "Sensei, is this correct?" and lots of tea and coffee drinking. Roston and I also received a bag of vegetables as a thank you! Yum!

For the first lesson, I taught them how to cast on, the knit stitch and how to bind off. They are going to be knitting their first scarves! The lesson will be showing them how to add the tassels to ends and learning how to knit in the round for their seed stitch cowls. Exciting!

Knitting at Cafe Slow-Beat

My husband and I like to drive around and eat at the local cafes we come across. This week we stopped at Cafe Slow-Beat, a small cafe with a rustic edge to it. And of course, I had to take my knitting projects and he had to take his camera.


Kikyou Shawl

I'm having fun getting creative and more elaborate with my shawls and I'm really happy with how this one turned out. This is meant to be a sister shawl to the Sakura Shawl that was shown recently, keeping in the theme of Japanese flowers. So this one is named the Kikyou (Bellflower) Shawl.

Photos @ Roston Willis

Can you see the bellflower motif?

This shawl was constructed the same way the Sakura shawl was: first working on the edging then knitting bottom-up on the body. The finishing touch was a picot edging at the top.

100% Wool

My biggest shawl to date

Picot bind-off, stockingette body, bottom lace edging.

This shawl took about a week to knit, most of it was spent working on the bottom edging. It was one of the more complex patterns I had ever knitted, especially the bellflower lace in the middle. Also, this was crafted using the thinnest yarn I have ever worked with, a step down from the fingering yarn that I'm used to working with! I'm glad the hard work paid off, I'm really proud of this shawl. And yes, the pre-made shawl is for sale, if you are interested.

Sakura Shawl 桜 (Pre-made for Sale!)

I've made three variation of this shawl within the past two months and finally I can show some better pictures of it.

The first variation I made was actually a shawlette/wrap, that could be held in the front with a button. Unfortunately, I don't have any good pictures of it, so you will have to take my word for it that it was rather cute.

The second variation is a full length shawl, using the same yarn as the shawlette. I gave that one to my mother as a good-bye present. This shawl was crafted using Mini Mochi yarn, one of my favorite yarns to work with.

The third one was made using a blend of merino wool and silk, and let me say that this shawl is so soft, light, fluffy and warm! It is also super smooth and it drapes beautifully. 

Also, this shawl going onto the market for $150, free shipping and handling. It will be on this website for a few days before going onto Etsy. This is a one time deal of getting this shawl in this yarn content as the rest will be either in merino wool, gradation wool, or pure silk. Remember, commissions are (generally) cheaper than pre-made items! 

For those who don't know, Sakura is Japanese for Cherry Blossom. Of course I had to make a shawl based off that.