Giveaways · Knitting · Knitting Needles · Projects · yarn

GIVEAWAY! Two Handwork Hardware Chatelaines

As knitters we use some essential tools all the time: stitch markers, progress keepers, scissors, crochet hooks for picking up stitches and needles for weaving in ends. Having all of these in one place for a project is really helpful. That’s not usually the case with me – or at least it wasn’t till I was gifted a chatelaine created by Handwork Hardware.

Victorian-era Chatelaine
Victorian-era chatelaine by Flickr/Wilhelm Storm (www.flickr.com/photos/w-storm)

Winning was a surprise. I was their 200th Twitter follower and received a message saying I’d won a chatelaine. I had no idea there was a contest going on, and (I have to be honest here) I had no idea what a chatelaine was.

Turns out it was invented in Victorian times to hold knitting tools and was designed to be suspended from a waistband, belt loop or knitting bag handle. Who knew? Apparently, the ardent knitters and founders of Handwork Hardware did.

Fast forward about 150 years — architects Cornelia Griffen and Judith Van Cleve have designed a modern-day chatelaine. The outer casing is sturdy and tight; there will be no little tools falling out of this chatelaine. And it’s bright red so you can find it among your yarn should you choose not to suspend it from something.

Handwork Hardware Knitting Chatelaine
Handwork Hardware Knitting Chatelaine

It contains all the essential tools I listed above, and it’s become indispensable for my knitting projects.

And now, through the generosity of Handwork Hardware, I have two to gift to two lucky winners, valued at $15 each. Just use the form below to enter (U.S. residents only, over 18 please, no purchase necessary). You’ll also receive occasional news from BellaKnitta by entering. The giveaway starts today, March 18 and ends April 18 at midnight, Eastern time. Good luck!

Giveaways · Knitting · Projects · yarn

GIVEAWAY! Bernat Maker Home Dec Yarn

AllFreeKnitting.com is giving away two skeins each of Bernat Maker Home Dec in Green Pea and Lilac Fence Variegated, gifted by Yarnspirations. Bernat Maker Home Dec is a bulky weight, cotton blend, tubular yarn, and feels somewhat like a T-shirt fabric. The deadline to enter is March 19, 2017, at 11:59:59 PM Eastern Time.

Bernat Maker Home Dec
Bernat Maker Home Dec

Each ball is 8.8 oz (250 g) and 317 yards (290 m) and is available in 16 coordinating colors, including 8 solids and 8 variegated yarns. It’s an easy care yarn that can be machine washed and dried at low temperature, and is recommended for home decor projects such as blankets, pillows, and bathroom items.

To enter, click here and enter your information. Winners will be reached by email.

 

Charity Knitting · Knitting · Knitting Needles · Projects · yarn

If You Want Happy Feet, Wear Handknit Socks

I finished my first pair of socks last week. And now I can’t stop thinking about them. That little pair of rather plain, workaday tube socks (beginner pattern from a library class) made out of Patons Kroy Grey Marl and the tiniest Knitter’s Pride circulars I’ve ever seen, has become a turning point in my knitting life.

They’re part of the reason I haven’t posted to BellaKnitta in almost a month (plus a huge freelance editing job that kept me busy). It was a simple enough pattern: Knit 8 rows of K2, P2 rib, then knit in whatever pattern desired or in stockinette to the toe, then decrease on double pointed needles. (Not even a heel to deal with – yet – that’s the next class.)

Starting the socks
Starting the socks

I had very rarely used dpns, maybe once, so getting my hands and fingers positioned correctly to not be poked every few stitches took some time. But what a sense of mastery after I’d done it. I quickly finished the second sock, and wore them with the pants I had knitted them to match.

They were soft, so soft, and cushiony; Dr. Scholl’s® has nothing on them. I walked around work that day on luxurious gray cottony clouds. It was the first time I had ever worn handknit socks and it was heavenly. I can’t remember wearing much else that felt as good as wearing those handmade socks.

They were also made out of love, as we know all knitting is, and in the days since I’ve come to realize perhaps that’s why they feel so good. Feet have many nerve endings and if you believe in reflexology, nerves in the foot connect with every major organ and region of the body. When you wear a handmade sock you’re sending that love all over you, and when you give a pair to someone, they feel the love you’ve knitted, too.

Because there are no accidents in this world, while I was having my sock-knitting experience I received a bulletin from my house of worship asking for donations of new packaged men’s underwear for its Midnight Run participation for the month of March. Midnight Run is an organization that gives supplies during the evening to the homeless in the metropolitan New York area. I asked if I could donate new handknit socks, packaged up, and the answer was an enthusiastic yes. I told the other knitters in my prayer shawl ministry and I think a few of us are planning on doing it now.

Finished sock
Finished sock

I’d like to think that when the men wear our handknit socks they’ll feel some of the love we’ve knitted in. I’d like to think it will give them a feeling that someone loves them in a harsh world — but if all the socks do is keep their feet warm and dry and happy, that will be enough.

Sock-Knitting for Charity Groups

Wool-Aid and Ravelry Wool-aid Group

Hearts for Warmth and Ravelry Hearts for Warmth Group

Ravelry For the Children of Pine Ridge Group – Knitting for the Ogala Lakota Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota

Walking with Orphans and Ravelry Walking with Orphans Group

 

Giveaways · Knitting · Projects

Happy Valentine’s Day! The Winner Is…

I could not have imagined such an enthusiastic response to my first dryer ball giveaway! Thanks to all who entered. Our lucky winner is Carrie Pippins – congratulations, Carrie. This set of six organic wool dryer balls is yours (one is hiding in the photo). Hope you like the colors!BellaKnitta Wool Dryer Balls

Wool dryer balls are a great alternative to fabric softener – no chemicals, less expensive per load, long-lasting, and they reduce static cling. I’ll be writing more about them in general – and about BellaKnitta wool dryer balls in particular – soon.

 

 

 

 

Giveaways · Knitting · Projects

Gradient Yarn Box Giveaway!

Caramel-Chocolate Gradient Yarn Giveaway

Enter AllFreeKnitting.com’s giveaway for a chance to win one DIY Gradient Yarn Box in Brown including five skeins of yarn. This giveaway ends February 12, 2017, so hurry!

The Gradient Yarn Box contains five skeins of 100% acrylic yarn ranging in the caramel to chocolate color family, courtesy of Premier Yarns. On a cold winter’s day, what couldn’t be better than cozying up with a hot chocolate and 72 yards of delicious yarn?

Giveaways · Knitting · Projects · yarn

Beaded Cowl Kit Giveaway!

compass-cowl-kit-giveaway

If you’ve wanted to knit with beads, why not try to win the Compass Cowl Kit, gifted by Javori Designs, in the newest AllFreeKnitting.com giveaway?

The Cowl Kit comes with yarn, glass beads, a threader to string the beads on, and a pattern. It’s a one-skein project made with soft Berroco Weekend DK yarn. You have a choice of seven colors: Cobalt, Crimson, Emerald, Fuchsia, Midnight, Sand, and Teal. The kits come with beads designed to stand out according to the color you’ve chosen.

You can enter once per day, and you’ve got to act fast on this one – it ends on January 29 at midnight. Click here to enter and good luck!

 

Giveaways · Knitting · Projects

Organic Wool Dryer Ball Giveaway!

If you live in the knitosphere, at some point or other you are going to come across felting, that magical process by which 100% wool becomes a fabric through agitating for a while in your washing machine or being stuck with a needle. My romance with felting began with a simple pouch and evolved into a quest for chemical-free laundry. Along the way, I discovered that you can drop felted wool dryer balls in the dryer instead of fabric softener, so I made myself a set.

Susan's wool dryer ball
BellaKnitta wool dryer ball

In a friend’s Facebook post I mentioned what I’d done and he asked me to make him a set. So I did, and then another friend asked, then another…and a little cottage business was born, BellaKnitta Wool Dryer Balls. Here are some fun facts about dryer balls you can find there:

What are wool dryer balls? They are balls made of 100% wool that you toss in the dryer with your wet clothes. They tumble about and act as a natural fabric softener.

Why should I use wool dryer balls? So many reasons!
1. They make your clothes soft and scent free without the toxic chemicals found in bottled fabric softener or dryer sheets. Moms love them for drying baby’s cloth diapers.
2. They eliminate static cling.
3. They dry your clothes in about one third the time, so you get your wash done faster.
4. Because your clothes dry faster, you use less energy and pay less money to do your wash.
5. They’re just so darn cute and will love living in your dryer!

How many do I need? Six is sufficient for a normal dryer load. For a jumbo load, you may use up to 12.

How big are they? About the size of a tennis ball.

How long do they last? A set should last from 500 to 1,000 dryer cycles. When you notice it’s taking longer to dry your clothes, then it’s time for a new set.

How do you make them? I make each ball by hand out of 100% wool roving from a family farm in North Carolina. Roving is the sheared wool that when spun makes yarn. I use a process called needle felting to make each ball, and each ball takes from 30 to 40 minutes to make. This process does not use energy or water, as other felting processes do, so it saves precious resources.

So…don’t you want some wool dryer balls? You’re in luck — I’m giving away a set of six. Just use the form below to enter (U.S. residents only). You’ll also receive occasional news from BellaKnitta by entering. The giveaway starts today, January 15 and ends February 14. Good luck!