From Hershey to Headband

Whether you live on a city lot or a million acres, you can always keep a few rabbits. I raised them for our table when we lived in town. They are quiet and won’t disturb the neighbors. If you choose one of the angora breeds, the luxurious fiber can be made into beautiful and practical garments. Last year we added French Angora rabbits as a complement to our Shetland sheep. One of our bucks is … Continue reading

Sliding into Winter with Warm Fingers and Toes

Each year I search out new patterns for socks & mittens in my quest to find the perfect blend of warmth & easy construction. I’m no frills when it comes to hand work and don’t like to spend time working on intricate patterns. Quick and easy is the first criterion in pattern selection. Next, is yarn weight. Worsted and sometimes bulky is really all I spin. Warm, wool mittens are a must here where winters … Continue reading

Nifty Little Slippers

Sorry no pattern this time. I made these from patterns in my favorite felting book, Knit One, Felt Too. I used yarn from my feltiest Shetland and modified the slippers by needle felting layers of dyed locks. The needle felting made the slipper substantial, almost like a shoe. The bottom is coated with bright yellow plastic coating as explained in a previous post. It has a sort of hippie look…

Embellished with needle felting
Coated with plasti-dip

 
The plain Jane before dressing her up a little


Next I made a pair of slippers for my daughter. This is a different pattern from the same book. It is so easy and works up quickly. It is the felted version of a pattern that was popular in the ’50s. Theirs was done in a cute checkerboard fashion with little felted balls for decoration. I just knit it from natural colored Shetland wool. I then knit a big square with yarn from a dye job gone wrong, felted it & cut soles to add to the bottoms. We know how fast the bottoms wear thin. Plus the additional sole makes them cushy & warmer on our cold floors.

Side view

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Knit Pattern for the Best Winter Socks

Recently, I knit a couple of pairs of women’s winter socks. These are the warmest socks I’ve ever worn.

The secret is the thrums which are the white, fuzzy things inside the sock. Thrums are pieces of wool roving that are folded & knit into the sock. They provide an extra cushiony layer of warmth. Thrummed socks aren’t more difficult to knit than regular tube socks, but they do take more time.
To make your own pair of warm winter socks you will need:

  • Worsted weight wool yarn
  • Set of #3 double point needles
  • Set of #5 double point needles
  • Wool roving
  • Large eye needle 

Gauge – 20 stitches on #5 needles = 4 inches

Ribbing
Using #3 needles, cast on 48 stitches. Distribute stitches evenly so there are 16 stitches on each needle. Mark the beginning of the first round & join. Work 20 rounds in *twisted rib.

Tube
Change to #5 needles & knit 3 rows.
You will now begin to add the **thrums. I added one thrum into every 3rd stitch with 3 plain rounds between every thrummed row. For a sock that comes about mid-calf, I repeated this pattern until the entire sock measured 12″ & then began decreasing for the toe. My foot is 9″ long. If your foot is longer or shorter, just add/subtract an inch or two.
Shaping the toe
Needle 1: K to last 3 stitches, k2tog, k1.
Needle 2: k1, sl 1, k1, pass slip stitch over, knit to last 3 stitches, k2tog, k1.
Needle 3: k1, sl 1, k1, pass slip stitch over.
Round 2: Knit even.
Repeat the above pattern until you have 24 stitches on your needles. Leave a 12″ tail to graft the toe.

Graft the Toe
Place 12 stitches on each of two needles. Using a large-eyed needle:
1.  Place the needle into first the stitch on the front needle as if to knit and slip the stitch off needle.
2.  Put the needle in the next stitch on the  needle as if to purl and leave on the needle, let yarn go under the first needle and working on the back needle, insert needle into the first stitch on the back needle as if to purl and remove from the needle.
3.  Insert the needle into the next stitch as if to knit and leave on the needle. Go under the needles and back to the front.
Repeat from these steps until you have one stitch left and secure in place.

*Twisted Rib – K1, P1. Knit into the back of each knit stitch.
**How to make thrums & knit them into the socks http://www.yarnharlot.ca/blog/thrumfaq.html

Tips
For extra warmth, add more thrums to the toes.
Even though these are thick winter socks, the bottoms will wear thin if you walk around in stocking feet like I do. Put a pair of footlets/Peds over the socks when walking around without shoes/slippers on.

Paid Endorsement Disclosure: I may receive commissions/revenue from affiliates or advertisers for endorsements, recommendations, and/or links to products or services from this blog. It doesn’t change the cost to you and helps offset expenses on this frugal homestead.

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Adding a Waterproof, Non-Slip Coating to Knit Slippers

Felted wool slippers keep my family’s feet warm during our long cold weather season. Knit or crocheted slippers are treacherous on linoleum floors. Add in the water from rain and melted snow and the danger of falling is greatly increased. Besides, who likes getting wet feet from stepping in the a puddle of melted snow? I was looking for a long-lasting, waterproof substance that would keep my loved ones from slipping on our cold ceramic tile floors. The plastic dip that is used to coat the handles of tools is made to order for this purpose. It costs $8 to $10 and one can will coat about 3 adult-size pairs of slippers.
It is important to apply it in a well-ventilated area.

Things to have on hand:
Paint brush
Naphtha, xylene or toulene to clean the brush after use
Newspapers or paper bags to protect the work surface
Masking tape to create an edge

How to Apply the Plastic Coating

  1. Put the slipper on your foot and determine how far up the sides, toe and heel you want the coating to come. Use the masking tape to outline the area.
  2. Give the product a good stir.
  3. Brush the coating on the slipper soles up to the masking tape.
  4. Find a place outside or in the garage to allow the slipper to dry. You can leave them inside, but be prepared for the fumes and leave a window open.
  5. Let dry for about 30 minutes.
  6. Touch up any missed spots and then re-coat the entire area.
  7. Wait 8 hours before wearing.

Paid Endorsement Disclosure: I may receive commissions/revenue from affiliates or advertisers for endorsements, recommendations, and/or links to products or services from this blog. It doesn’t change the cost to you and helps offset expenses on this frugal homestead.