An Unexpected Yarn – Make a Mix & Match Coaster from Vintage Fabric and Yarn!

If you’ve read my article in the summer 2016 issue of Creative Knitting Magazine, An Unexpected Yarn, you’ll see that the some new doors were opened for ways you can combine fabric and yarn in the same project.

In the article, I show you how to create your own yarn from cut strips of fabric by using my simple “zigzag method.” You can learn more about how to do that by visiting CreativeMagazine.com to purchase a copy.

In this blog post, I take things a step further and show you how to make the coaster shown below.

Mix It Up Coaster

Example of a coaster with a 4-inch x 4-inch cut piece of fabric, enclosed by knitted flaps that are tacked down by working a running stitch around the entire square. Blanket stitch is used as an optional decorative edge. Finished coaster measures 4 1/2 inches x 4 1/2 inches. (Click image to view larger)

In this tutorial, you’ll see that I changed up the yarn and fabric because I thought it would be fun and so you can see how easy it is to mix and match any yarn and fabric to make these! The fabric shown above is a light-weight quilting fabric. In the tutorial below, I used an upholstery-weight fabric for added durability.

Quick Tip: wind up a bunch of tiny yarn balls to create, “mood boards” by pairing up the balls with a variety of fabrics. You can totally geek out on your stash yarns for this project! I suggest upholstery fabrics that you can easily repurpose from old tablecloths, or why not take a trip to your local thrift store to buy some funky vintage fabrics this weekend! 

Follow these 5 steps to make your coaster:

Step #1: Make base: With a worsted-weight yarn and size #7 U.S. straight needles, cast on 16 sts with MC. Knit every row until square measures 4 inches long. Bind off. Place a safety on one side of base. (This will be the bottom of the coaster)

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After your base measures 4 inches x 4 inches, bind off. You are now you ready to begin making the 4 flaps…

Step #2: Make flaps:  *Hold base with safety pin facing you. and with MC, pick up 16 sts along one edge. Knit one row, purl one row. Bind off. Rep from * along each side of coaster. (4 sides)

Use a crochet hook to easily pick up your stitches and then transfer them to a knitting needle.

Quick TipUse a crochet hook to pick up stitches along the edge, then transfer them to your knitting needle. This makes picking up stitches so much easier! 

Base with all 4 flaps finished.

Tip - block flaps in toward center as shown in photos so they naturally curve inward.

Tip – block flaps in toward center before sewing.

Step #3: Cut a 3 1/2-inch x 3 1/2-inch piece of fabric and place on base with flaps facing you.

Remove safety pin, and place cut piece of fabric in center of base, then begin to sew closed.

Remove safety pin, and place cut piece of fabric in center of base, pin flaps, then sew closed. with running stitch.

Step #4: Fold down each flap and tack down with a running stitch in a contrast color yarn. Work this way around the entire coaster.

Step #5: (Optional) Using a contrast color, work slip stitch or blanket stitch around coaster.

Finished coaster with slip stitch using a crochet hook.

Finished coaster with slip stitch outer-edge, worked with a crochet hook.

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One Design, Unlimited Wearing Options– It’s a Shawl, It’s a Shrug, It’s a Vest … and a Tank Top!

The Trifoglio Shawl, designed by Heather Zoppetti, is a versatile design that definitely delivers multiple wearing options for spring, summer, and beyond.

This design is featured in the spring 2016 issue of Creative Knitting and now that summer issue is around the corner, why not go out with a bang and extend this little number’s “shelf life?”

I think you’ll agree it’s worth it because there’s a conceptual twist to this design–it can be styled in a 5 different ways! (Well, that’s the number we’ve come up. Hey, maybe you can come up with a few more and share them in the comments below!)

Trifoglio Shawl, designed by Heather Zoppetti

Trifoglio Shawl, styled as a tank top, with lace motif facing front, designed by Heather Zoppetti

In the the spring issue, we’ve photo-styled the shawl a few different ways, and as a little gift for you, Heather has so generously created the series of illustrations shown below, which provide you with all the ways to wear this creation.

Styling options: (from top left to right) 1. Tank top with lace motif facing front; 2. Wrap, using one armhole opening as keyhole; 3. Back view, worn as vest; 4. Tank top with lace motif at back; 5. Back view tank top with lace motif worn on back. 6. Neckerchief.

Styling options: (from top left to right) 1.) Tank top with lace motif facing front; 2.) Wrap, using armhole opening as keyhole; 3.) Vest, back view; 4.) Tank top with lace motif facing back; 5.) Tank Top, lace motif back view; 6.) Neckerchief. (click image to view larger)

Bird's eye view of shawl to visualize the unlimited ways to wear this openwork masterpiece!

Bird’s-eye view of shawl to help you visualize the unlimited ways to wear this unique openwork masterpiece! (click image to view larger)

If you don’t have a copy of the spring issue of Creative Knitting, then you can check it out here on Annie’s.

Heather created the design with Manos del Uruguay Fino, an elegant sport weight yarn. You can learn more about it here at Annie’s Yarn Shop. All you need are 2 hanks for the first size. I’d say for multiple styling options, you are definitely getting your money’s worth 🙂

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Not in the Knitting Mood? Make Some Yarn Art Instead!

As I was winding a gorgeous yarn from my stash into a nice pull-skein, (or at least trying to) all of a sudden a knot appeared out of nowhere. What an odd phenomenon that knots and tangles occur out of nowhere! How on earth could some simple little strands become an entangled mess?

As I was trying to make heads or tails of where to begin salvaging this lovely skein, I was fully aware of my impatience and frustration. I then began to sweat mildly while I was trying to fix the crazy tangles. I was ready to end it. You know– cut the yarn and be done with it, but I just didn’t have it in me. How could I possibly cut into this exquisite yarn? So, I decided to take a breath, and attend to this twisted maze.

To my surprise, I started to enjoying the process, and began marveling at how the yarn managed to intertwine upon itself. Just a few minutes later, it was set free and wound up into a tidy pull-skein ready to knit my next project!

A perfect little pull-skein. I can't wait to knit!

A perfect little pull-skein. I can’t wait to knit!

So what a “happy accident” this was. I was able to not only save this yarn from an untimely death, but I also cultivated a little patience in the process. I then found myself letting go and began to notice how beautiful the light streaming into my window was. For the most part, the day was dreary and overcast, but all of a sudden, the sun made an appearance and shed some light and inspiration into my little craft room. I had to quickly seize the moment. Carpe diem!

Behold the beauty of a simple strand of yarn.

Behold the beauty of a simple strand of yarn.

Instead of jumping right into knitting, I felt compelled to play with the yarn. I let go like a child at play. Being spontaneous like this doesn’t happen to often in my world, because my brain is constantly looping with “should do’s” every minute of the day, but this moment was so spontaneous and liberating.

Quick-Knit Tip: Don't feel like knitting? Create some yarn art!

Quick-Knit Tip: Don’t feel like knitting? Create some yarn art!

And a few double-point needles for good measure.

Quick-Knit Tip: Print your photos, frame and display them in your craft space.

Letting go felt so good…even if just for a moment. Give it a try today!

Want to see more tips like this? Contact me at: editor@CreativeKnittingMagazine.com, or leave a comment on this post.

For my Lunchtime Quick-Knit Tips Videos, click here.

For more Quick Knit Tips click here.

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The Editor Wants to Know! Where Do You Buy Yarn? Online, at Your Local Yarn Shop or Big Box Store

Hey! Welcome to this week’s edition of The Editor Wants to Know! Today I ask: where you buy yarns for the projects you create from Creative Knitting? Please leave your comment below!

The Editor Wants to Know Your BURNING Knitting Questions!

The Editor Wants to Know Your BURNING Knitting Questions!

Today’s BURNING question:

Where do you purchase your yarns? Do you shop mostly online, at your local yarn shop, at big box stores, or a combination of all the above? If you purchase online, where do you shop most?

 

Share your answer to my question in the comments below and visit the Creative Knitting Facebook Page to watch my video asking you this question. Watch it now! The Editor Wants to Know! Where Do You Buy Yarn?

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The Editor Wants to Know! What is Favorite Color Knitting Technique?

The Editor Wants to Know Your BURNING Knitting Questions!

The Editor Wants to Know Your BURNING Knitting Questions!

When it comes to colorwork knitting, what is your favorite technique? Do you gravitate toward stripes, mosaic, or stranded colorwork like Fair Isle?

What is your favorite colorwork knitting technique?

What is your favorite colorwork knitting technique?

 

Share your answer to my question in the comments below and visit the Creative Knitting Facebook Page to watch my video asking you this question! Click the link below to watch…

The Editor Wants to Know! What is Favorite Color Knitting Technique?

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