i-love-yarn

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My dear newbie yarn benders,

I love you. You’re wonderful and fabulous and energized about seeing a cool project on the inter-webs and have finally said “yes! I think I could do that! This is the one that will get me into knitting/crochet” With all the excitement and joy in the world you go to the craft store, grab the coolest looking yarn (in the best color, duh) and the cheapest needles/hook you can find (If if needles are too intimidating, you opt for the knitting loom. It comes in a 3 pack! score!). You follow the instructions as best you can with dreams of your project turning out exactly like the professionally taken photograph. Oh my naive, beautiful newbie yarn bender, you are on a craft high. Head so far in the clouds that you don’t realize what has happened until it’s done. We’ve all been here at some point, no matter how skilled a person is. 

My lovelies. Please learn from the mistakes that have already happened. Take the time to learn about gauge and value the materials needed. I am most definitely NOT saying buy the most expensive stuff. I am saying that skien of yarn that is one dollar more will likely make you enjoy the finished product bounties more than the value of one dollar. 

Take the top picture. This was most definitely made on a knitting loom. Im personally not a huge advocate of these. They’re great for learning how knitting works. Not great for endless feats of creativity. You’re limited by the size of the loom which limits you to the size of the yarn as well as the size of the object you make. For something that will not ladder (the long horizontal bits between the “V” stitches) you need yarn thick enough to touch the stitch next to it when wrapped around the loom. In the case of the photo, yarn far too thin was used. 

The next picture looks like it could be arm knitting. Which was a fad I loved. Can we bring this back instead of those pony tail hats? The larger the needle, in this case your arm, the larger yarn you need. The original appears to have multiple yarns being used. Perhaps our newbie knitter didn’t realize that’s an option? Lesson here: Larger needles, larger yarn. Smaller needles, smaller yarn. 

The last picture. This crocheted hippo went through the stretcher! oh no! This is a case of right yarn, wrong size hook. When your needle/hook is larger than your yarn and you put it under tension (in this case, stuffing it) the created fabric will stretch (more-so demonstrated in the first picture). Amigurumi is also hard as shit. The people who do it very well are incredible talented. We should all bow before their prowess. Please don’t try an amigurumi (small figurine knitting/crochet) as your first or even 5th project!

General rule of thumb: if you don’t want holes in your work look for yarn and needle/hook approx same size in diameter.

Alas, you have returned for the craft store. Heading the advice you’ve gotten complimentary yarn and needle/hook. TIME TO START THE CRAFT JUICE!

NO.

NOT YET.

“but whyyyy?” you whine

Because we must first test the yarn.

“But tests are boooooring” says the yarn. 

I agree, talking yarn. Tests are boring and terrible and holy crap tell you if you’re doing something right or wrong. This is useful information to know before creating something beautiful with your HANDS

Also my dear newbie yarn bender, practice makes a better yarn bender. Resist the urge to pump out something fast. Pinterst lied to you. It’s not going to take 1 hour. It will take at least 3 hours and two trips to the craft store. Accept this now. Knitting/crochet is slow ASF. Accept this now. Or find a different hobby. 

So loop on some stitches and knit or crochet your joyous heart out. Then measure it once you get around 5 inches. Count the stitches horizontally and vertically. Then refer to the chart above and make sure everything agrees. Got 12 stitches per 4 inches and using DK (3) yarn? Time to change needles sizes or get your gorgeous self some bulky yarn. Or get yourself some bulky yarn anyhow. Treat yo’self. 

i love you newbie yarn benders! Go forth and create and learn

<3 Stitch

Knitting Witchcraft 101, a crash course by witchimplumis

To start this off, obviously there are TONS of ways to do a lot of this stuff. This is mostly the method I use. This also isn’t a tutorial to knitting, there’s lots of great videos out there explaining how to knit, if I tried to teach all of that in this post, it would be at least 3 times as long. Finally, most of this probably also works for crochet, but I don’t know the first thing about crochet, so I’ll let someone else weigh in on that.

Knitting magic is great for anyone, from witches on a budget (yarn, especially acrylic, can be dirt cheap), broom closet witches (it’s easy-peasy to pass off as a normal, non-witchy hobby), practical witches (you get a useful garment at the end!), and more. You can use it on its own, or as a part of a larger spell or ritual.

Intent

Much like all magic, a lot of knitting magic is intent and visualization. Before starting a project, come up with a purpose for the finished product. For this scenario, I’ll use a real project I’ve done. I wanted to make a shawl to help me in the upcoming school year.
When you’re knitting, focus on the purpose that you want to imbue the finished product with. Imagine your hopes for it entering each stitch, and being locked in place with your needles.
When you first start, it may feel mentally exhausting or draining, or it may be really hard to focus and you may find your thoughts drifting away, but as you practice you’ll get better and be able to focus longer. I find that once I start to lose focus the best thing to do is leave for a while and pick the project up later, once I’ve had time to clear my head.

Rs/ws

If you’ve been a knitter for any length of time at all, you know that flat knitting has what’s called a “right side” (the side that shows when you’re wearing/using your created object) and a “wrong side” (the side that faces towards you, like the bottom of a blanket or inside of a cardigan), or rs and ws on patterns.
When working out the beginning of my projects, I come up with two different intents, one for the outside world to see (right side) and one to affect only me (wrong side). So, in the example of my school shawl, I wanted other people to view me as capable in my field. So my rs intent was “I am a learned student of my trade.” On the ws, I choose an intent that helps me to acheive my ultimate goal (doing well in school) so the intent I used was “I have the focus required in my studies.”
HOWEVER, when working in the round, there’s no wrong side. So then how do you go about wrong side intents? Two options: one, have only one overarching purpose for all knitting (such as “I will succeed in my chosen field”), or alternate lines as you would if you weren’t knitting in the round.

Color/texture

Yarn comes in pretty much every color and color combination imaginable. Color associations/color magic are not only possible to do with yarn but strongly encouraged. I use lots of sources for mine, googling “color associations” brings up bunches of pages, or you can use your own personal associations. If you’re going to do this, read reviews for the yarn and check for or ask about color bleeding.

Textures are an often-overlooked factor. Prickly yarn can be used in a defensive spell, or soft yarn in one for comfort and warmth. Always keep in mind what kind of thing you’re making though, and try to work off of that. Some textures are not ideal for some uses.

Materials
Yarn materials are important to fit to your project. For example, you don’t want to make a knit bralette out if dish scrubby yarn (ouch). You have tons of options, but I’ll stick to the kinds you’re most likely to run into cheap-ish. My standing recommendation for all of these is if there is any way at all you can see and feel yarn in person before buying it, do so. I don’t recommend buying in bulk of you haven’t dealt with a brand or line of yarn before.

Acrylic- acrylic yarn is usually extremely cheap and comes in tons of colors and textures, some are shiny, others are really fuzzy, there’s all kinds for all purposes. It’s really great if you have allergies because it’s synthetic fiber.

Wool/superwash wool: usually somewhat coarse, wool is a natural fiber that comes from shearing specific breeds of wool-producing sheep. Some brands will even say specifically what breed(s) or country their wool comes from. In my experience, wool is much easier to work magic with than acrylic, however it will usually also be more expensive, and there are fewer textures and appearances available.

Cotton: cotton is a nice in-between of acrylic and wool. It’s a natural fiber, but I don’t know of anybody being allergic to it. It can come in many different colors, but not really any texture variety, they all just feel like cotton. If you’re not morally opposed for any of various reasons, Hobby Lobby’s I Love This Cotton yarn is by far the best cotton yarn I’ve found, in terms of softness. If you ARE morally opposed however, Sugar n Cream makes cotton yarn on huge spools very cheap.

Bamboo: it’s considered eco-friendly yarn. I don’t know how true that is, as I don’t use it enough to actually look into the carbon footprint of bamboo yarn. That said it feels like actual clouds and looks like them too.

Silk: we all know what silk is. Silk yarn exists. It’s on the expensive end of cheap stuff, usually only comes in small amounts.

Merino: wool that comes from the merino sheep breed specifically. This wool is really soft, I don’t work with it much because it’s usually really expensive compared to every other kind.

Novelty yarns: I love incorportating these. Some are great for practical reasons (dish scrubby yarn) and others are great for using some of their elements as part of a spell (like feathery yarns or beady yarns etc.)

Stitch types
I don’t think there’s a widely agreed upon set of associations for stitch type/pattern, these are just some common ones I’ve come to associate.
YO/lace- these large, open patterns I associate with “bigger” or more wide effects. Alternately, because they’re basically big holes in the object, allowing your intents to come out into the environment.
seed- just like its name, I associate seed stitch with potential and growth.
Garter- I tend to associate garter stitch with mundane life, alternately with its common use as a border stitch I associate it as a holding stitch, keeping things in (like secrets) or protected.
Stockinette- a super common stitch pattern for fronts of things, especially socks (as per the name). I tend to associate it with appearances, and spells like glamour aids.

Blocking
When/if you block, visualize the water charging your finished object. You can use scented wool wash in scents that are associated with the spell you’re doing, you have tons of options.

Beads, etc:
You can get all kinds of things at craft stores! I found crystal charms last time I went that would look great on a heavier-weight shawl, there’s beads of various different materials and colors, if I went over all of these things it’d take a whole extra post. Play around and see what you like.

Finished products:
Clothing- either for yourself or for others. Make ritual clothing or just a warmth-intent hat. Possibilities are totally endless.
Poppet- maybe make a poppet out of yarn? Stuff it with things you want the poppet associated with? Disclaimer: don’t burn knit poppets unless you are 100% certain ALL ingredients are safe to burn wherever you’re burning them. I prefer to “destroy” my knit poppets by stabbing them with knitting needles, so that I can reuse them, even better, make the end drawstring-style, so you can reuse it with different ingredients. Eco friendly witchcraft!
Spell swatch- I call it a spell swatch but it may have another name by now. It works pretty much exactly how it sounds, knit a swatch of fabric in varying colors, stitches, etc., based on what the spell is. Knit in beads or feathers or hair or whatever you feel like you should. Then pin it on your wall or carry it with you. It doesn’t have to (and probably won’t) look nice, it’s just a little spell to carry with you, like a very personalized sigil.

Other uses: knitting is great for meditation! Finding a simple pattern to knit for a while can leave your mind free to relax and do its own thing, I love leaving guided meditations, binaural tones, etc. on while I’m knitting things like socks or blankets.

wanna one as boyfriends: hwang minhyun
  • superrrr chill
  • doesn’t overdo the cheesiness
  • he just naturally does cheesy things but not to a cringeworthy level
  • serenades you over the phone to help you fall asleep
  • candlelit dinners at home
  • loooves just having privacy for the two of you to have talks without feeling overwhelmed by the outside world
  • doesn’t like to make decisions without your input
  • he always asks how you feel about things before putting things into action
  • doesn’t want to disrupt your schedule or wellbeing
  • shifts his life around to adjust to yours as best as possible
  • skinship takes a while
  • doesn’t like it much in the beginning
  • saying “i love you” meaningfully comes after a verrrry long time
  • avoids saying it at all costs during the beginning of your relationship
  • “i love y-”
  • “y-yarn. i love knitting. it’s my guilty pleasure.”
  • would risk it all to make sure you’re doing okay
  • you said it’s cold? this boy would give you his jacket, buy you two more jackets, a scarf, mittens, earmuffs, and a hot chocolate
  • you said it’s too sunny? this boy would give you his sunglasses, buy you a sunhat, apply more sunscreen for you, and shield your eyes with his hand while he yells “wherE IS SOME SHADE AROUND HERE?”
  • you said you’re tired? this boy would tuck you in, boil up a quick cup of tea for you, sing a lullaby, read you a bedtime story, and make static background noise from his own vocal box to help you sleep
  • “wwwwaaaohhowwww oh waaaaaaooo-”
  • “what is that?”
  • “obviously a whale???”
Fuck Ann-Jo's (except i'll still probably shop there because its close and I like yarn)

I was excited to work at AnnJo’s because I love crafts, specifically yarn ones. But idk if this is a problem with all stores or just mine, but they raised so many orange flags that it turned into a big red one that said “leave here asap” and so I did and am now very much hoping to get a pet store or veterinary receptionist job.

THINGS THEY DID THAT WERE SHADY AS FUCK:

- The entire fiasco I had with my proof of citizenship stuff. They first claimed I’d be fine with my birth certificate and state ID, y'know, like every other job I have ever worked, but when I came in suddenly they’d only accept a social security card I didn’t have. I’m halfway home, my dad promising to drive my ass downtown and get one when they call and say a receipt would work. I get the receipt. No, that won’t work. I point out as gently as possible that the federal government made a list of acceptable documents and the birth certificate is one of them and (this is the part i said less gently) that it’s illegal for an employer to pick and choose among those documents. Next day they suddenly accept my birth certificate. This entire thing took a month from the time they said they’d hire me.

-Their break room was a table in the corner of the stock room with all the stock workers just sort of moving around the people on break

-I was the only new hire in the training class, and there were maybe four other non-manager staff working there total.

-They searched everyone’s bags at the end of their shift. You know, in case your loyal employees stole from the stock room they ate their lunch in.

-Only a manager can check employees out. You know, because your brilliant and friendly cashiers are idiots who will let their co workers scam them.

-Couldn’t take our aprons home and had to hang them upside down on a rack. You know, in case someone tried to smuggle something through the door/forgot something in their pocket and somehow didn’t set off the door alarms.

-I quit on the day of my third shift upon being informed I was to operate the cutting counter by myself despite my only prior training being an hour on my first day watching a girl cut fabric and then having a manager stand over me and tell me how wrong I was measuring it. I also could and would get written up for measuring and cutting wrong despite having no idea how to do so. Brought this to supervisor’s attention and asked for perhaps a little more training. She practically glared down at me and only said “You’ll learn.”

-tomorrow I have to argue with them for my two shifts worth of paycheck because I earned that $40 by being semi-trained and also its the law they have to pay me.

tl;dr my local annjo’s was somehow a worse place to work then hellmart and so i quit and now i presumably have to argue with them for $40 of their important money that goes to not training people and making sure employees dont steal by being cuba.

Cot Blanket

Handknit cot blanket, made on 2.25mm needles and knitted in cotton embroidery thread.

Okay, this just BLEW my mind!  Knitting with embroidery thread!?  That’s crazy, BUT amazing all at once! And how effective is this?  SO good!  Made by    Spellstone and found on Flickr.

To get started on something like this, here’s a simple pattern for a knitted triangle:

Directions

Cast on 2 sts.
Row 1 (RS): K1, yo, k1.
Row 2: K1, yo, k2.
Row 3: K1, yo, knit to end.

Knit until the triangle is the desired size you want and then repeat. (This is the basic pattern I make when making a quick and easy triangle shawl.  I love garter stitch and yarn overs!)

A Day In The Life Of A Knitter...

1. You Get The Whole “Isn’t That For Old People?” Question….You’re reaction might be: 

2. “Can you knit that” You can’t but what the hell nothing ventured nothing gained right? 

3. Then there’s that one kill joy “You aren’t knitting that right and omg you dropped a stitch you’re horrible at this, you should totally do it this way- blah blah blah blah blah" 

4. Spotting Yarn that just makes you sigh…

5. Having to explain WHY you went over your Yarn Budget…That Malabrigo ain’t cheap huh? 

6. Having random people ask you to make stuff…..after they’ve teased you for knitting.