My Winter of Hibernation: Knitting

Last winter I busted out the knitting needles for the first time since we moved to England, and kind of went berzerk.  
I had about twenty projects I wanted to undertake, but yarn (especially good yarn) is expe-hen-sive!  Something had to be done.

So I learned how to "recycle" yarn by unraveling sweaters.  Once you learn what to look for in the way sweaters are constructed, you can really cash-in.  I went to the Goodwill Outlet (praise it forever and ever amen), and perused their mountains of sweaters.  I came away with a bunch of 3XXX sweaters made of really nice yarn, many of which were still brand new with tags attached!  Then the unraveling began.

With this sweater alone, I got at least $50 worth of yarn for $1.50.

Plus, it came with the satisfaction of unraveling a sweater, which was irresistible even to Marc.  We spent a couple days sitting by the fire unraveling stuff.  It's like popping bubble wrap, but better.

Now, after a winter of knitting, I still have TONS of yarn left.

In addition to all the projects I have sitting around unfinished, here are some I did finish:  
Kangaroo (with front pocket) and Bunny bean bag dolls for Logan and Eva
Juggling Balls 
Tea Kettle Cozy and Mug Cozy
I should add that Marc will knit, too, when coerced.  And for Christmas we did some teamwork on a knitted shopping bag for his earth-friendly brother Peter.  It's made out of plastic grocery bags.  After cutting the plastic into slits and then weaving it into a "yarn," it knits up into super strong stuff.  We forgot to take a picture of ours but it basically looked like this:

We were working on the project on the train and got so many curious looks and people asking, "Sorry to interrupt, but what on earth are you doing?"

The process was much slower than we expected, so at the end we declared we'd never do it again.  But lately I've seen some pretty amazing stuff online knitted out of plastic bags, including umbrellas and clothes, and I'm tempted to take it up again.

I also made my first piece of "real" clothing for little Eva.  This cardigan took forever, too, but it was really satisfying and inspired me to launch full-force into knitting clothing.

All these hands-on projects were really satisfying to a part of my brain that's probably been dormant for a while.  I don't feel like a full-blown knitting geek yet (right?  ..... right?), and I'm sure I'll never be an expert because I'm too impatient, but if you need an old sweater unraveled and turned into a hat, I'm your man.


TheBenandKaties said...

I think you MUST be a full-blown knitting geek--but I don't think that's anything to be ashamed of. I love all of those projects!

The pregnant one

Super L said...

You're officially a KIPer. A Knit-in-public-er. This makes you a geek. But, hey, you're a Henderson, so it was pretty inevitable, right?

I want a kangaroo.

Katie said...

Noooooo! It was only in public because we were racing to finish it in time! I'm not a geek! I'm not!

....okay fine.