Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Yarn, Yarn, & More Yarn

This is Nancy.

We’ve been friends for over 20 years. Maybe that’s why she humored me by allowing me to photograph her yarn collection the other day.

This is the door to the Magic Kingdom.

Most knitters have a yarn stash. Nancy has a yarn ROOM.

People like to give Nancy yarn, and she feels compelled to use up every bit of it. If she has part of a skein left over, she’ll buy another skein or two to make another blanket/scarf to use it up. Because she often mixes yarns and knits or crochets with double strands, she often ends up with left over yarn that she feels compelled to work into something else. You can see how her system might spiral out of control. (One year for the holidays I gave her a copy of Odd Ball Knitting. It seemed like a fitting gift in more ways than one.)

Nancy asked me to include this photo of empty yarn boxes to show that she tries HARD to use up the yarn – or to at least make a dent in the pile. (Actually, the stash has shrunk significantly since the last time I saw it. It is now possible to walk in there.)
These days Nancy gives her knitted, crocheted, and quilted projects away – usually to charitable causes. She has two friends who are nuns, and they distribute Nancy’s scarves, baby blankets, and lap robes to the needy and infirm. She donates premie caps to hospitals. She gives her Bargello pillows to the nuns to sell at a church-affiliated shop. The nuns once told Nancy they knew of a woman who liked to crochet but could not afford yarn. Nancy gives them yarn for the “crochet lady” regularly.

Recently, in one of our daily email exchanges Nancy wrote the following:

What I do not understand is how I have given 2 large boxes and 1 large garbage bag of yarn to the crochet lady and my place seems to have more yarn not less. Makes me wonder what exactly goes on in here when the lights are out.

When I asked whether she thought gremlins were lugging bags of yarn into her place at night, she replied:

Something is multiplying when I am not looking. I think it is just sex. The yarns have no control and no condoms.

This is a pile of 6 baby blankets that are ready to be delivered. The blankets are unbelievably light, soft, and fluffy.

Nancy’s Comments:
The crib blankets/lap robes were made with T L C Amore made by Coats and Clark. It is a medium weight worsted and is acrylic so it may be washed. The other yarn was Bernat baby fingering yarn, also acrylic so as to be washable. I crocheted the 2 yarns together using an N hook. I do a base chain of 58 stitches and then double crochet all rows until the fingering yarn is gone. It is finished with an edge of single crochet using the Amore. The size is around 40 X 40 give or take an inch or two. I have used the Amore with lots of different yarns as it is light weight and has a fluffy look. Michaels and Meijer both carry the Amore which comes in several colors, but I have been ordering it from Herrschners as I buy 12 to 24 skeins at a time.

Behind the baby blankets is a really cute scarf that’s destined to go to the nuns.

Per Nancy: The finished scarf is Regia sock yarn which was mixed with Jaeger Matchmaker, all washable. It was knit on 9 needles. I have made many of these with the sock yarn as I like the color mixes.

In a corner of the yarn room, Nancy is working on a counted cross stitch baby quilt. This one is 60 inches long and will take a while.

On Nancy’s needles:

The scarf on the needles is Nashua Wooly Stripes. This is 100 % wool but could be hand washed. Each skein has several colors and it works up in wide stripes or sections. I have been getting this from Brenda. (Brenda owns One More Stitch, an LYS on Madison Road in Cincinnati.) She has a good selection of color combinations and my nun friends like these scarves. The in progress scarf is on 9 needles, 36 stitches ribbed in twos.

Older examples of Nancy’s fine needlework decorate the rest of her condo.

These days it’s all about doing for others.

Nancy sure makes retirement look appealing.

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