Posts Tagged ‘FO’

31 Days to Get Organized: Storing Your Finished Projects

Wednesday, January 30th, 2013
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If you’ve been knitting and crocheting for more than a few years, you might have a quite a collection of finished projects by now. Some of you have asked for help on how to store your finished projects, especially if you have big collections of sweaters, accessories, and such. In today’s 31 Days to Get Organized post, we’ll be talking about caring for your handmade garments, tips on how to organize and store them, and how to reduce your collection.

Prepare Your Finished Project Before You Store It

  • The first thing you want to do is make sure your handmade creation is clean before you put it away for an extended time. Dirt will attract critters, so you’ll want to make sure your handknit sweater or crocheted blanket is clean. Follow the care instructions for the yarn you used. Eucalan Wool Wash is great for natural fibers, and some scents have natural moth and flea inhibiting properties.
  • Remove pills that may have developed. Using a tool like a sweater comb or the Gleener Ultimate Fuzz Remover will make quick work of this task.
  • Also repair any holes, seams, or loose ends showing on the right side of your fabric. This may take a little more time, but you’ll be thankful when you pull it out to use the next time.

Storage Tips for Your Sweaters

  • Don’t hang your sweaters. This will cause them to stretch out and get hanger marks over time. It’s better to fold or roll your sweaters and store in drawers or on shelves.
  • If you store your sweaters in drawers, rather than folding and stacking them, roll them after folding in the sleeves. All of your sweaters will be more visible and not hide in the bottom of the drawer.
  • If you have wide shelves, use shelf dividers to separate your piles of sweaters so they stay neater and don’t fall over.
  • Keep similar gauge sweaters together. Don’t stack heavier or bulky sweaters on top of fine-gauge sweaters.

Storage Tips for Your Accessories

  • If you have a lot of hats, mittens, scarves, and other accessories, sort them into individual containers to make it easier to find what you’re looking for. A basket of scarves, bucket of hats, and box of mittens can save you time when you’re rushing to get out the door in the morning. Clear plastic drawers that sit below coats in a closet is a good use of space.
  • Use a storage solution where you can easily see your collection. Shallow boxes on a shelf, a shoe organizer with clear pockets on the back of a coat closet door, or open wire baskets attached to the wall can make finding things easier.
  • Some of your storage can also be a way to display your knitting and crochet work. Show off your felted bag collection on wall hooks, or hang your favorite shawls and scarves on a towel rack for all to see.
  • Check out our Craft Spaces Pinterest board for more storage ideas.

Keep Your Favorites and Find New Homes for the Rest

  • What if your collection has gotten too big for your space? Rotate through your garments, keeping some in deeper storage and the rest more accesible.
  • Weed out the items you no longer wear or use. Find another home for them or put them in your giveaway pile. But take pictures first of your work if you haven’t done so already.
  • Sometimes when you finish a project, it doesn’t turn out like you wanted it to. Don’t get frustrated. Save it for your next yarn swap and include a finished project swap too!

Do you have any other tips for storing and organizing your finished work?

– Dena

Substituting is Hard to Do

Tuesday, October 28th, 2008
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I was really thrilled when this showed up at the shop last week:

There are two reasons – well make that three.  First, I love Storey Publishing’s series of One Skein books.  Secondly (and consider this the full disclosure portion of this post), there are several WEBS staffers (current and former) who have projects in the book, along with a couple of other industry friends.  Congratulations to you all.  Thirdly, I have a wee little projected included as well!

Just a sweet little baby hat, knit using a bulky yarn.  I chose to use Fibre Company’s Pemaquid.  It’s a yarn we’ve carried for awhile and I’ve always been enamored with it.  I selected it because I wanted to use a chunky yarn -I knew there would be lots of stunning lace projects and gorgeous socks and just wanted to be a little different.  The pattern itself is simple and I even incorporated some beads on the tassel.

While waiting for the book to come out, one of the worst things that can happen to someone who has used a yarn in a project that has been accepted for publication happened.  I found out the yarn was discontinued.  UGH!  How did I let this happen to me?  I own a yarn store!  I speak with the yarn vendors all the time!  I made the fatal error that sometimes happens to designers.  I fell for the yarn.  Head over heels, I-must-have-you- and-nobody-else-but-you, in love.  I just had to knit with it!

Rather than be practical and make a quick call or send an email to double check and say “Hey, Pemaquid’s solid for the next couple of seasons, right?” I let the yarn fumes get to me.  I basked in the glory of swatching, knitting a bit, frogging, knitting some more, etc., until the wee little hat was done.  For what it’s worth, the yarn did behave well during the process.  I was a little worried, given its content (60% baby alpaca/30% merino/10% soy) and the fact that it’s loosely spun,  that it might not hold up to the frogging, but it did so quite nicely.  So, there is my hat in the brand new book.  Now, I must find a substitute.

In considering what yarn to use, I had to start with gauge.  Pemaquid knit at 3 sts = 1″ on a #10.  I took a look at our Valley Yarns line and although Berkshire would knit to the gauge I need, I didn’t think the yarn was right for this project both in feel and quite honestly, as much as I love Berkshire, I wouldn’t classify it as luxury.

So, out to the store I went.  I stayed out of the warehouse because selecting a closeout would only compound the problem (although I do think there are a couple of nice options out there).  Now, for those of you who have shopped the store, you know we have a lot of yarn.  That’s true even for those of you who shop on-line with us.  I figured I’d have more options than I’d know what to do with.  Wrong – again!  Although we have quite a few 3-3.5 sts to the inch yarns, the second criteria I was using was feel.  How would the yarn feel on a little one’s head?  Nobody wants an uncomfortable baby!  Uncomfortable babies = unhappy babies.  Unhappy babies are no fun.

Here’s what I’ve got for choices at the moment:

1.  Ariosa from Classic Elite.

This yarn was actually one of the first ones that came to mind.  I knew without looking the gauge would be right and I knew it was super soft.  Ariosa is 90% extrafine merino/10% cashmere.  It has 87 yards and at 3.5 stitches to the inch, I’m confident I can get it to the gauge I need.  The only problem?  Ariosa has  pretty sophisticated color palette.  I was going to leave this one off the list, but kept coming back to it.  For the traditionalists among you, there’s the cream color and a few primaries.  For the rest of us, I’m pretty partial to the lime green.

2. & 3.  Next up are two similar yarns.  Misti Alpaca Baby Chunky and Plymouth Baby Alpaca Grande.

Both are 100% baby alpaca and both are spun similarly (to each other and Pemaquid).  Misti’s has 108 yards and knits at 3.5 sts = 1″.  Plymouth’s has 110 yards and knits at 3 sts = 1″.  The color palettes are different although I think both have nice options (both also have handpaint options if that’s the look you are interested in).  One other point to make with these two options is that I think you would be able to get two hats out of one skein – not 100% sure until I try it out, but that’s what my gut is telling me at the moment.

4.  Lastly, I had to consider the pinnacle of luxury –  cashmere.  Despite Steve’s diatribes about my cashmere stash (which is not nearly as extensive as he thinks it is) we actually don’t carry a lot of it in the store.  I also want it noted that I did not go with cashmere in the first place.  For me, the natural choice was Classic Elite’s Sinful:

Sinful is 100% cashmere and knits at 3.5 sts = 1″.  The palette is lovely and the yarn screams “make me into adorable heirloom quality baby items”.  This is the most expensive of all of the options shown.

So, what do you think?  Do I have a winner here?  Is there another yarn I’ve overlooked (it’s got to be one that I carry – only criteria).  Vote in the comments so I can get knitting!