Like Magic

I love to go thrift shopping. Some people I know are always finding amazing things. Maybe they live in a bigger area than me, maybe they have a sort of aura about them that pulls in thrift store treasures.

However, once in a blue moon I find something great. Not just good, not just nice, great. It was a salmon pink-ish mesh top that looked great over my grey camisole.

Then, one day, as I pulled it out of the wash I got a horrible surprise.


Despite the tag assuring me that it was machine washable my lovely pink treasure had unraveled just under the right armpit.

While my mom said I aught to just throw it out, since so much damage had been done, I didn’t think it was too far gone. There had to be a way to save it, some how.

The fact that the garment was ‘knit’ (I only say knit because of the fabric structure) was what, I believe made her think there was no hope, you can patch knitting. However, this was what made me think I could save it. IMG_7536

First, I gathered my materials. I decided after a fair amount of pondering that I would need a small crochet hook, a needle, and some thread that matched the color of my wounded garment.


Then, I grabbed my crochet IMG_7537hook and started picking up the runaway stitched one by one. Carefully I laddered them back up the front of the sweater doing my best to keep the tension even and all the while thanking my lucky stars that this was a ‘stockinette’ knit garment with the ‘knit’ side facing out, and that is was a simple cotton non-protein fiber which made it easy to see where each dropped stitch pothole was.

Eventually, of course one reaches the end of the bumpy ride, where the stitch came loose. Now, since this is an impostor machine knit it doesn’t really go anywhere. It just… stops. This is where IMG_7538the needle and thread comes in handy. I just sewed the loose stitch to the stitches above it as discretely as I could. Then I rinsed and repeated as many times as their were loose stitches. Some of them had run as far as they possible could, down to an increase where they were created. (I really have no idea since I have the distinct feeling that mass produced knitted garments are vastly different from the ones I ever-so-slowly turn out, and even rather different form machine knits done by real -life knitters, not a soul-sucking industrial assembly line.)


IMG_7540In the end I wound up with this. Pretty good huh? You can’t even see where I sewed the wee runaways in place unless you’re inappropriately close to my chest.

And that’s piece of clothing that was reborn once, and then destined for the trash, saved again. Just like magic



What I Know

  1. We’re leaving for the airport tomorrow after the mail comes (long story)
  2. I need to start finish packing.
  3. I’m taking my skein of Nassau yarn to knit the pattern Super Simple Short Sock by Meghann Holcomb.
  4. I need size US 1 needles.
  5. I’m going to need more knitting.
  6. I’m not going to knit Fightin’ Words. Now that I want Harley Quinn colors nothing else will do.
  7. I’m going to knit Clincher by Ash Kearns.
  8. I need size US 5 needles.
  9. I need to buy it if I’m going to knit it.
  10. I want to wash my Unicorn tail for the edging so it doesn’t bleed since MadTosh occasionally does.
  11. I’m taking two books: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone and Pantomime.
  12. My swimsuit seems to have been sucked into another dimension (yes, I know I’ll need it).
  13. I called my mom to see if she had seen it and she was really low-key about the whole thing.

I think my mom has been replaced with an alien. (But I don’t know.)

DIY Christmas Mittens

I’ll be away for Christmas and my nuclear family isn’t exchanging gifts this year since we’re going on vacation together. This being said, It didn’t really occur to me that I’d still need presents for my extended family. This has left me in a whirlwind of activity, as I frantically try to rustle up some presents for the other members of my, especially the little ones.

Today I made my ‘homemade’ gifts for my nieces. They’re also getting books but i wanted them to have something handmade. I was wondering what I could knit in a day. I mulled over bunny nuggets and bluebirds of happiness, but, when I was cleaning I stumbled across two pairs of pink mittens I had bought for some unknown reason.IMG_7807

I decided to make them into ornaments for the girls to get to hang on the tree. Firs, I made myself a template so I could figure out how to center my older niece’s rather long name. (Ignore the fact that a chunk of the thumb is missing. I didn’t need it anyway.)

IMG_7809Then, I started the arduous process of embroidering all eight letters of her first name as straight across the mitten and a centered as I could. I worked slowly, checking and double checking that none of the letters were backwards and I wasn’t misspelling her name. It went rather well and I was IMG_7812excited to move onto her sister’s mitten because her name was so much shorter. Then I counted. Her’s is seven. Only one letter shorter.

The next step was to, Lord help me, embroider six snowflakes on each mitten. Snowflakes and I do not have a good relationship.

Last winter I had Screenshot_20151213-123111to embroider a bunch on mug cozies and all I ended up with were vaguely spiderwebby monstrosities.  So, for inspiration, I looked up “simple embroidered snowflakes”. Do these look simple to you?!! I mean, hats off to the people who embroidered these snowflakes, but, this is not what I think of when I think “simple embroidered snowflakes”.

I forged on, doing my best to create beautiful, naturally forming, flying ice sculptures. Not spooky, death-nets for flies and other unfortunate insects.

After the snowflakes were all done I embroidered ’15’ for 2015 on the backs so they’d know when they were made. Remember how I said I was worried I’d write something backwards?IMG_7811 Well, the first mitten was, apparently, made in 2012. Luckily, I noticed as soon as I did it. And fixed it.

Scary thought that in a few years I’ll be teaching young people their numbers and here I am, a ‘grown up’ and I’m still messing up. (‘J’s are terrifying for me. Neither way looks right.)

IMG_7818I stuffed them using yarn bits I’d cut off while weaving in ends. Then I cut two ribbons about five inches long each. I folded the ends and held them in place as I sewed them shut along the bottom of the cuff. This means they’ll hang on the tree with the embroidery facing outward, not sideways like so many ornaments do. I might have a peeve.

IMG_7820In the end they looked so cute. I hung them up on my lamp and admired them briefly before affixing them to the correct packages and getting them ready to mail tomorrow.


2015 Christmas Ornament

Last Year I decided to make Christmas every year based on something that was happening around that time. It didn’t have to be serious or deep, I just had to be relevant. To my life at the time. The ‘not needing to be serious or deep’ part is how I’ve now ended up with two video game themed ornaments. Last year I ended up with one that mimicked the ‘bird or cage’ pendant from the Game BioShock Infinite (I talk about that game a lot, don’t I?).

This year I created a Vault 111 Ugly Christmas Sweater Ornament. Since I designed it from the ground up, I thought a little pattern was in order. FrontBackYou might be wondering what ‘Vault 111’ is. The game Fallout 4 is the fifth installment in the Series Fallout. They’re open world RPG (Role-Playing) video games. They take place in a post-apocalyptic future. The over-arching story is that atomic bombs were dropped on the United States during the fifties (presumably). It’s very Ray Bradbury (think There Will Come Soft Rains).

The Vaults are featured in each game and they were designed as massive, community wide, bomb shelters, where humanity would live until it was safe to return to the surface. In Fallout 4 the basic idea is that you were cryogenically frozen. You emerge from Vault 111 knowing that your son was stolen and you, now thawed, must find him.

That’s the basic idea anyway, there’s a lot more going on but I don’t want to spoil anything in case I’ve piqued your interest. The  sweater is based on the jumpsuits worn in the vaults.

I hope you like the pattern if you understand the reference. Let me know what you think.

Episode 24: Paternal Socks

Click here for episode 24

In which I have acquired a cold and significant amount of yarn.


Flying North, by Maria Montzka

Baa-ble Hat, by Donna Smith

Fightin’ Words, by Annie Watts

Captain America Knit Hoodie, by Beth Kluckhohn


Walking the Walkers

Turtle Purl Yarns

Knit Picks Brava Worsted

Knit Picks Wool of the Andes

Knit Picks Felici, Nassau


JunkYarn Podcast, Hosted by Kemper Wray (AKA WrayBot)

YarnderWoman Podcast, Hosted by Melinda (AKA YarnderWoman)


You can find me on:

Ravelry: Kninernat

Instagram: Kninernat

The Ravelry Group: Knitty, Nerdy, & Natural

Wash Day

Thursday afternoon I washed my hand knits. It was something I had been fantasizing about for the past two weeks.

IMG_7751 I filled the bathtub up with about three inches of lukewarm water and then started adding my knits. There were only a few tense minutes; when I added my koolaid-dyed hat and thought the dye was running (see the middle right of the tub), but it was just the reflection in the water, and when I was adding my helix socks (ever since their run-in with the washing machine my mom’s fault, not mine I haven’t been sure how they would feel about going for a swim). Everything went swimmingly though, pun totally intended.

IMG_7753I sat for a while and read some more of the back issues of YarnHarlot.  while I waited for the yarn to fully soak itself and and to let go of whatever dirt its fibers were holding on to. I didn’t add any soap because I don’t have any specifically for wool and I didn’t know if a mild shampoo or conditioner would work. (Hair is pretty much the same as wool, right?)

As I fished out my knits I laid them out on spare towels. (Look! All the socks I’ve ever knit for myself.) My Wisp opened back up beautifully, despite being six years old (give or take). In the end, I had three rather soggy rolled up towels filled with knitwear and a tub full or murky water and fuzz bits.

While the tub drained I spread my two largest shawls, Shattered Sun Shawl, and Thunderstorm,  across my bed. (Don’t be fooled by the neatness of my bed. The rest of my room looks like a bomb went off. The unpacking part or winter break is still woefully incomplete. This is mainly due to me saying things like ‘I know I brought my Flying North Socks home’ or ‘My camera battery is in here somewhere‘ and then proceeding to dump entire bags of things onto the floor.)


I then  artfully draped all of the other items across a chair in our Play Rec Room (The new name just won’t take) We have more photogenic chairs in out living room, but I don’t think my mom would appreciate wet wool all over the couches and chairs she has refinished and upholstered herself.







It’s a dangerous thing to take a personal day twenty four hours before the start of finals but, when you wake up to the feeling of someone whacking you in the face with a shovel (Even though there was no one in my room…) and even the sweet brown nectar of coffee won’t appease it, it’s best to admit that maybe it isn’t the best idea to try to come up with a mock IEP (Individualized Education Plan) for one’s final even if it’s the next day!.

Instead, I stayed in bed and rested. I did about half of my work before I nested down into my quilt and started reading the back post from Yarn Harlot (Don’t judge me. You can’t say you’ve never tried to read eleven years of blog posts. You haven’t? Oh. You should try it, it’s fun.)

At about three thirty I looked up from my nest, and scanned my dark room and decided to get up off of my butt for a minute or too. I decided to take pictures of my finished Flying North socks. I quickly got up, grabbed my socks, my camera (Which, sadly, I’ll be handing in Tuesday, now that the semester is over, and so is my digital photography class), and found the brightest spot in my room- my windowsill.

PS~ I really like the new mosaic picture cluster thingy WordPress now has. I do NOT like that they won’t let me embed YouTube videos anymore.

PPS~ The yarn is from here and it’s sent in two twin balls so  your socks can be identical

PPPS~ In case you’re going to ask, the dragon doesn’t have a name and I’m not sure if they ever will.

PPPPS~ If you feel like sharing your own FOs, there’s a forum for it in our Ravelry group