Sunday, July 28, 2013

Too Early for Halloween?

We have arrived at the end of July, so why am I talking about Halloween?  It seems like, with the start of school, Labor Day weekend and shutting down the garden for the season, that August and September fly by. All of a sudden we're closing in on Oktoberfest and - bang - it's Halloween!

So - planning ahead for the mad rush of the season - here are a couple of ideas to work on while the days get shorter and cooler.

Image of Monster Magnet  Image of Ghost Magnet  Frankenstein  Ghost

Costume ideas
Image of Crochet Beard  Image of Toddler Owl Hat Beard Owl hat

Capelet of Invisibility
Image of Capelet Of Invisibility

It might even help to keep you warmer if the night is chilly.

Image of  Cat Headband and Wrist Warmers

Cat paws and ears

And an amigurumi spider
Image of Amigurumi Spider Ornament

None of this looks too demanding. You might be able to fit a few Halloween things into the busy schedule of the next couple of months. Don't let it sneak up on you.

Happy crafting.

Kathi Linz

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Two New Knit Books

Jackson County Public Library has picked up two new knitting books. They are both about knitting for little ones.

Itty-Bitty Nursery by Susan B. Anderson has knitting for both wearables and toys. You can find pattern s in here for a knitted tea set, a teddy bear, a bunny rattle, and a mobile as well as hats, booties, and blankets.

Just Like Me Knits by Brandy Fortune is a knitting book with a twist. This book has patterns for sweaters, dresses, vests, and hoodies in two sizes so that children can wear clothes that match with their dolls.

These books are in the New section for the next couple of months. I will also take them down to the next knit and crochet meeting for our ladies to look at.

Happy crafting,

Kathi Linz

Sunday, July 14, 2013


Plarn and tarn are eco-friendly ways to make yarn-like material.

Plarn is yarn made from plastic - usually grocery or garbage bags or the plastic they slip around newspapers to keep them from getting wet. Please see my older blog posts to find links for plarn projects.

Tarn is made from old t-shirts although you could make something similar from other items, like umbrella material, jeans, old sheets, etc.

Tarn is great to work with because t-shirt material can be cut without shredding and is soft when running through your fingers. It's strong enough to weave into a hammock - although it might be a little stretchy for a weight-bearing project. It is very versatile, being useful for knitting, crocheting, or weaving. It can be cut in narrow strips for smaller hooks and needles or thicker for larger hooks and needles. A throw rug could be made thick and cooshy while a bath mat could be worked from thinner strips to dry out more easily.

I don't have permission to copy anyone's photos for this post. For information on how-to and free patterns, please check (Noreen Crone-Findlay is an authority on the yarn arts),,,, and many other websites and blogs. You an always type "tarn instructions" or "tarn patterns" into Images of your favorite browser and find tons of interesting ideas. Click on the ones you like and your browser will pop you into the website with the pattern you are curious about.

The sister project with this type of material is weaving, since tarn is thick enough to make into woven rugs quickly and easily. I once found a tutorial showing how to weave a round rug using a hula hoop as a frame. I've found that I can make a small throw rug by weaving between two legs of a card table. (Turn the card table on its side and use the top two legs.)

I found a picture of me weaving for a special event at the library.

Another technique for making rag rugs is shown at This video demonstrates a twined weaving technique.

If you are really ambitious, you could use tarn to braid a rug. The old way of braiding had you ironing all of the edges to the inside of the strip so they wouldn't fray. Tarn doesn't fray, making this project a whole lot easier.

So dig out those old t-shirts and a pair of scissors and have fun.

Happy crafting,

Kathi Linz

Monday, July 8, 2013

60 Quick Baby Blankets by Cascade Yarns

The library has a new knit book with 60 patterns for baby blankets. Honestly, this one makes me wish I were a better knitter. I love the look of these blankets!

The book is called 60 Quick Baby Blankets: Cute & Cuddly Knits in 220 Superwash and 128 Superwash from Cascade Yarns

For the next couple of months, this book will be in the new book section. After that, you can find it back in the knitting section.

Happy crafting,