Monday, August 31, 2009

the braiding bug

Leah's been playing with kumihimo, a braiding technique. There are lots of fancy and expensive supplies available for kumihimo, but, as usual, we decided to dive right in by making the most of what we had. This video, some scrap cardboard, and colors from our massive embroidery floss collection (much of which was received as a prize when Scott's cross stitch won Best of Show at the Eastern States Exposition) got Leah off to a good start.


She has since finished that braid, which will be a necklace with one of Scott's beads on it, I think, and chosen a new group of colors to try a different braid. It's easy, fun, portable, and its techniques and potential uses leave lots of room for exploration, so kumihimo gets an enthusiastic two thumbs up around here.

She's also sewing doll clothes lately, with the help of Two-Hour Dolls' Clothes, borrowed from the library.


Stitched entirely by hand and embellished with ribbon and beads, her designs are taking much longer than two hours, but that's by choice. Her idea is that as she gets better with making doll clothes, she'll be better at making her own clothes. I think she's already doing a pretty good job on sewing her own clothes, but it still sounds like good practice and she's enjoying it.


I knit barely a stitch last week, but between hanging with assorted knitters at the farmers' market yesterday and then watching a movie last night, I was able to finish the Habitat hat. Pics to come when it's done blocking, but one thing I wanted to mention is how unimpressed I am with the Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran yarn that I used for it. This merino, microfiber, cashmere blend is a beautiful deep, rich red. Unfortunately, there are wisps of undyed fiber spun into the yarn throughout the skeins. The instance above is the biggest I noticed - most weren't such a thick wisp, nor did they continue for 5 twists - but there were many throughout these skeins. They were easily picked out, but at $8/90 meters, I should not have to deconstruct the yarn as I'm knitting it in order to get the glaring white bits out of a deep red hat! The yarn is wonderfully soft, to be sure, but I'll steer clear of Debbie Bliss products in the future.

Hmm...I just checked the Debbie Bliss website because I was going to send a comment about this problem, but there is no Contact link. So then I figured I could at least let other knitters know by leaving a warning comment at this yarn's entry on Ravelry. Sheesh, if I had only read the comments there first! There are MANY others with similar problems with this yarn. This is clearly not a fluke and I will definitely not buy any more Debbie Bliss yarn.
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2 Comments:

Blogger Rani said...

Thanks for the warning! Duly noted.

I think sewing doll clothes is even harder than regular clothes. All those teeny-tiny seems! She'll be a pro in no time.

7:52 AM  
Blogger J said...

Hi Debbie:
Was thinking about this entry while I was knitting away on vacation. I am using a DB cotton which has maybe 93 yrds/ball and more than one of the balls had knots where it was joined and one so far had two knots. To me it seems they could make a small ball like that without any joins, especially at the price.
Jean

8:22 PM  

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