Several white lambs grazing on green grass. One of them is looking up at the camera.

Fiber art camp

A week of responses to fiber art prompts

by AK Krajewska

#FiberArtCamp is a fiber art prompt challenge hosted by @madgeface@mastodon.art on Mastodon from July 31 to August 6. I’ve had a fun time so far and decided to compile my prompt responses here so they don’t just slip into the void the way all social media eventually do.

Meet me Monday #

These days I mostly knit and crochet, but I have also done a bit of hand spinning and embroidery, as well as some small experiments with cutwork lace. I enjoy learning challenging techniques more than finishing projects.

My first fiber art was crochet. I don’t remember a time when I didn’t know how to crochet. I remember making countless little doilies that didn’t lie flat and I then turned into tiny pouches to carry my kid treasures.

My beloved godmother tried to teach me to knit when I was between six and nine. It didn’t stick. Then my mom taught me again when I was in my early teens. That kind of stuck but I didn’t develop proper skills until my 20s, when I got swept up into the Stitch & Bitch movement and for my first project decided to knit a sweater even though everyone suggested I start smaller.

I finished it — and knit it all with twisted stitches for reasons I only understood much later.

Tool Tuesday #

I had a hard time deciding on my favorite tool for #ToolTuesday. My Addi circulars? My favorite tiny scissors? The clear plastic bins that let me see all my yarn while protecting it from moths? Or perhaps the rubbery stitch markers without which I’d lose my mind?

It could be any of those. But lately, I’m feeling most grateful for my big project basket. I can carry my work in progress from room to room, have all my tools and notes together, and clean up instantly by shoving everything inside.

A round basket with a handle. Inside is a spool of blue yarn, some bit of knitted fabric, and a small notebook.

WIP Wednesday #

Day 3 of #FiberArtCamp is #WIPWednesday and boy do I have a lot of works in progress. I’m only including ones I’ve actively worked on this year.

The body of a blue sweater with delicate cables and lace knitting. The sleeves and collar are not yet done.

My most active WIP, Zigzag from Knitty.com. I started working on it in 2010 or 2009 then put it aside for over a decade. Now it’s back in action.

The body of a black sweater, still on the needles. The collar and sleeves aren’t done yet.

Raglan sweater designed to measure for my spouse. I put it aside in January because I ran out of yarn and I don’t think this yarn is manufactured anymore. I plan to take it to the LYS to try to get a texture match. It’s a raglan so the sleeves need not match. I originally bought the yarn I’m using in 2005 or so.

Butcher’s paper with a grid drawn on it, and a diagram of an island. Bits of yarn are taped to portions. A little bit of the bottom part of the island is filled in with messy crochet.

Mostly a design still. I took a photo I like of Angel Island and abstracted it into color blocks. I want to use freeform crochet to create an impressionistic tapestry, and use up my stash oddments.

The very beginning of a triangular knit shawl lies on top of an open book with the pattern for that shawl.

Shawl just started last night with yarn I bought on vacation. I had to take a break from the blue sweater because I don’t have the right needles.

Throwback Thursday #

For #ThrowbackThursday we are meant to share our favorite projects from the past. I don’t really have one favorite, so instead I’ll share with you the first sweater I ever knit. I finished it some time in 2005 and I’ve been happily wearing it since.

Photo of a hand knit black sweater lying on a light background

It’s “To Dye For” from Stitch n’ Bitch, except I used a smooth black wool instead. I also knit it all with twisted stitches, partly due to inexperience, but partly due to having learned my knitting muscle memory from a craftway that uses a different style of purl and knits to compensate for it. But when I re-learned from books, I combined the two styles awkwardly, and knit in the front leg of the stitch while plucking the purl (when I should have knit in the back leg if I plucked my purls)

Actually it made for a lovely dense texture in the finished sweater, but it was harder to knit than it should have been.

Close up detail of the knit side of fabric in stockinette stitch. The knit stitches are scrunched and twisted.

Fiber Friday #

Rather than choosing a specific fiber, I’m going with a fiber type as my favorite for #FiberFriday. Wool, all the way, wool. It’s just so nice to touch. Wool has a lovely springiness that makes it a pleasure to knit with, beating out any other fiber types I’ve touched. Wool roving is the nicest to spin too, with a fuzzy texture and long, kinky staples that make it forgiving. The texture isn’t as important while making crochet, but the finished pieces feel wonderful. Even bits of wool picked up from where sheep have shed it while grazing feel wonderful. So thank you, sheep!

Lambs grazing at Castlerigg stone circle.