Monday, February 28, 2011

Mittens Revisited

I added some ribbing to the mittens. Then I decided they were a little too big and a little too long for me so I sent them to my son.

Here's the fancy plastic needles from Hobby Lobby. They only have them in sizes 6, 7, and 8.

I made another pair of lumpy, hand spun mittens that fit me better.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

New Shirt Image

 I think I have been working on this for a couple of years. Originally I was looking for an old found image I had in my head but never found. Erica loaned me a booklet of craft instructions that had it almost, but not quite. Eventually I had my daughter take a photo of my hands knitting with a piece of white paper in my lap. I tried to do something with it and realized that I needed the hands from the knitters view. About a year ago I had my friend Peter the photographer take a photo of my hands knitting with me on the floor and the hands in the air in front of whiteness in the photo studio at Meredith Publishing where we were working. I tried to trace it with tracing paper and couldn't see well enough and gave up. Just last week I finally traced it with acetate and started working with it and realized that the knitting was too detailed in relation to the hands...then I went to Michaels and spent too much on their fattest yarn and some big needles. Knitted up a little piece and called Peter and demanded he take another photo. Went over to his place and  we set it up in his shop. Me sitting on the floor with my hands up in front of a little table with some pieces of whiteness behind. He did the lighting right like he always does and it was perfect.

I came home and traced the image on acetate. Then I blew it up a little on the copier/printer. Then I cut it out of rubylith, an obscure art material formerly used in commercial art. It is acetate with a layer of red stuff on it. You cut through the red with an xacto knife and peel away the parts you don't want to print. I like it because you get a nice sharp edge and it's like drawing with a knife. Before I got very far on the knit stitches I realized I didn't like the shape of them. I retraced them, paying more attention to the shape of each stitch.

Finally I recut everything so it was just right. I spent 12 hours on this on Monday. I would guess I spent a total of 25 - 30 hours on this project counting all the false starts. I will have it put onto a silk screen and print it on shirts and tote bags.

Image copyright Diane Muse 2011

Then I got an idea for another knitting shirt. I had Peter take a couple of more photos and am working on it today...

Wednesday, February 23, 2011


My friend Linda gave me this whole basket of yarn she dyed with natural dyes made from plants many years ago. First she gave it to her niece. Then the niece was moving and I was in the right place at the right time... A lot of it is hand spun. I finally bought some crazy plastic double pointed knitting needles at Hobby Lobby the other day and spent last Saturday trying out a basic mitten pattern. Of course I had to change it to fit my gauge and I thought I took notes...but of course the first one fits perfectly and the second one not so much. I think I am going to pick up stitches on the bottom and add some ribbing. I am pleased with the basic pattern tho.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011


I usually make a lot of Valentines and this year was no exception. I tend to put it off and then eventually I get started and then I can't stop. I like Valentines better than Christmas cards because there's not so much pressure to send them. Also it's sort of a dark, melancholy time of the year and when I make them I think about all the people I am going to send them to and it makes me happy. And they are really fun to make! Good old cut and paste.

 I also embriodered some Valentine shirts for some friends and family. Didn't use a hoop, just have to be careful with the tension of the thread.