Hello! Welcome to Ivory Pumpkin. Here you'll find snippets of things that I like and, hopefully soon, of things that I've created. Please stay awhile and browse.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

The Joy of......


I know I recently asked if there were any knitters out there in blog land. I had finished up all the projects I was working on and found myself with empty needles. I received many suggestions from friends on Ravelry and have decided to make my first pair of socks and crochet this shawl below.

If your interested the pattern can be found here. It was designed by Lyn Robinson.
Knitting is.....relaxing, meditative. Especially if I'm knitting or crocheting something that has a straight garter stitch or single crochet pattern, something repetitive like that where you don't have to think too much is very soothing. Something about the fibers moving through my fingers and creating something out of a long piece of yarn is soul satisfying. I especially love using my bamboo or rosewood needles and any luxury fiber.

Knitting has made a pretty big come back in the last few years. Even teenagers are picking it up. A couple of PBS craft shows have  popped up dedicated to fiber arts and there are hundreds if not thousands of artists that are spinning, dying and painting fibers of all kinds. Not only is yarn coming from the traditional source of sheep but, there is yarn from different kinds of sheep. Oh, yes sheep, goats, bunnies, yaks, alpaca's are all shedding their furs for us. Did you know that you can even have yarn made out of your pet's fur? Yep. You can brush your dog, save the hair, send it off to be cleaned, carded and spun into fiber. And, dog yarn or chiengora and it is sometimes called, is supposedly 80% warmer than sheep's wool! Here's a photo of yarn made from a Newfoundland.

I've been to several fiber events where these vendors have shown samples of yarn spun from dog hair. I saw some beautiful white yarn that was spun from a Samoyed and, it was sooo soft.

I realize fiber arts are not for everyone but, I think everyone should try it at least once. Almost everyone I talk to about knitting or crocheting has tried it when they were little. Their grandma or aunt showed them. I remember having one of those knitting mushrooms when I was little. You wound the yarn around the spokes and went over or under with a little hook and you ended making a long tube. I also, had a teeny weeny sewing machine. I had a little toy oven too. Geez, was I a homemaker in the making? But, I digress.

My mom showed me how to knit when I was a kid. I fiddled with it on a off over the years and only really got serious with it in the last 5 years. She learned when she was in kindergarten. She said all the girls had to learn when they were little. I guess the thing with that is that it is something that has stuck with me over the years.

So get yourself some needles or a hook and some yarn and go for it!


  1. Your shawl is gorgeous! I love the colour. Your post was very interesting to me and I learned something new, including making yarn from dogs. That's interesting to me considering I have 3 dogs ... one of them being VERY hairy!

  2. I L♥VE working with fiber! I taught myself to knit when I was in high school. I then learned to crochet about 10 yrs later. I find both to be very relaxing. Haven't done either for quite some time. I had no outlet for the things I made so I quit making.

    re:Dog Hair ~ I have a spinning wheel and have spun hair from a Great Pyrenees into yarn. So soft! A friend of my Mom's had two dogs and she would save the hair for me to spin. Once spun, I returned it to her so she could crochet with it.
    The shawl is gorgeous. What color are you going to make? Socks are fun! Enjoy yourself!

  3. I absolutely LOVE that shawl, Joanne! I am so uncrafty and perhaps when you feel comfortable enough with your knitting, that is if you're not already, you might be persuaded to start selling your items, like the gorgeous shawl in your shop? hint-hint ;)

  4. Your shawl is gorgeous! And what a lovely color you selected. My hubby is collecting our dog fur - it would be really interesting to knit using their sweet fur. Except my little boy would probably want to eat it - he thinks it's a treat! Theresa