Sunday, November 9, 2008

Stash Busting with a Superstar

Those of you who didn't take a workshop this month with Theresa Gaffey really missed out. She was absolutely wonderful! Not only was she a friendly and encouraging teacher, but she was also an all-around nice person, truly pleasant to talk to.

I took the stash busting workshop on Sunday afternoon at the library. With the upcoming economic climate, it seemed like a good time to think about how to use what's at hand. Theresa demonstrated a technique I'd seen in Cheryl Oberle's Folk Shawls book, the "Knitted Ruana." The fabric is garter stitch, and each row is worked in a different piece of yarn. Because of the bumpy, interconnected nature of garter stitch, even a very bright color can harmonize surprisingly well amongst others. Long tails are left at each end and turned into decorative fringe to finish the project.

Theresa's example was a purple blanket that I wouldn't have minded if it had "accidentally" gotten left behind here in Atlanta. You can see from the picture that the technique makes it easy to blend a variety of different types of yarn. Even a novelty yarn that would be too crazy on its own can work nicely with a chorus of other, plainer yarns.

Here are some other samples from the day, knit by Jan, Linda, & Valerie:

This would also be a great project for a knit-in. Everyone could bring scrap balls of yarn or even pieces that are already cut into pre-determined lengths (e.g. 10 feet). Theresa was very generous in sharing her stash with us and encouraging us to try different things. She also encouraged us to share our bits with each other. More proof that working with what you have can be very rewarding, indeed.

Edit: from the December meeting Show & Tell, Linda knit this stash scrap throw pillow. Pretty!

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