As I mentioned in my last post, it’s basically summer in South Carolina. It’s already too hot to sit under a pile of wool and work on a sweater, so I’m enjoying some smaller, non-wool projects these days.
I’ve been working on using up some recycled sari silk yarn, so in addition to the throw pillow fronts I finished last week (details to come!), I’m making a knitted bowl. Right now it looks like a weird rectangular sack, but I’m planning to work some thin wire into the rim and the base to make it a bit more sturdy. It’ll probably end up as yarn storage or perhaps a gift.
My other delightful UFO, which is slightly less portable but still small and summer-friendly, is an octopus. I’ve made many of these over the years, and they’re fantastic for using up yarn scraps (both for the color blending and as stuffing) in addition to being downright adorable.
I make these octopus plushies in two parts, then connect them. I start top-down, splitting the bowl shape into eight tentacles and binding them off to create the top side. Then, I make a circle that ends up about the same size as the top, connect it at the V between each tentacle, and make the bottom of each tentacle by picking up the side of each row from the top side while knitting each row of the bottom. Somewhere along the second or third octopus, I figured out that if I add twice as many rows on the bottom side, the tentacle will curl in a really fun way.
It’s tough to commit lots of time to knitting while traveling, but these two projects are perfect- both are very repetitive and simple, and I can easily pick them up and put them down without worrying about losing my place. The first is a straightforward keep-doing-what-you’re-doing-until-it’s-done sort of project, and the second is so improvisational that as long as I follow the recipe, I can’t really mess things up.