Introduction: Needle Arts
This is my entry for the Make-to-Learn Youth Contest. (I apologize for the orientation of the photos.)
My answers to the questions are:
What did you make?
This is a collection of some random items that I had made over the past few months. The different art forms I used were, Knitting, Crocheting, Sewing, Quilting, Painting, Dying, and Spinning, yarn.
I learned how to Knit and Crochet when I was 8 years old. I immediately had a talent for both. I began investing large amounts of time into the crafts when I was about 12. Once I had gotten really good at those two crafts I branched out into many different crafting areas. I love working with my hands and turning ordinary things (like string and sticks) into other things (like sweaters, socks and toys).
For most of the knitted and crocheted items I used acrylic yarn, with the exception of the brown shrug. I used 100% wool for that. I used a G-6 steel crochet hook for the crocheted items, and I used various sizes of knitting needles for my knitted projects. The two sizes I used most were size 9 US and size 6 US.
How did you make it?
I get inspiration to make things from anywhere. Sometimes inspiration comes in the form of one of my younger cousins asking for a toy. Sometimes I get inspired by seeing a toy or a character and thinking "I want to make something like that!".
Most of the time I will make the things on my own, but if I am making the toy or whatever for someone I will ask them periodically if it's how they want it.
I usually make my own patterns when knitting and crocheting so, if I am trying to make something from a photograph (which is what I usually do), I will crochet along and check it against the photo. If it doesn't match, I rip it out and start again.
Where did you make it?
I usually retreat to my bedroom when I am working on knitting or crocheting projects. When I spin yarn, I move my spinning wheel into the TV room and watch mystery shows while I spin the yarn. I have set up my sewing machine at my desk in our school room.
The great advantage about knitting and crocheting is that you can take it anywhere. When I knit my first sweater, I took it with me everywhere and knit it. It actually knit up a lot faster than if I was only working on it at home.
What did you learn?
Probably the hardest project to make out of all of these was the brown shrug. I was watching a fantasy TV show when I imagined that shrug. Then I wanted to make it into reality.
One challenge that I did not foresee was the exact amount of yarn that I would need. I discovered after I had finished the body of the shrug and was almost done with the first sleeve that I didn't have enough yarn. Ordinarily this wouldn't be too big of a problem, but then I discovered that the particular yarn I was using wasn't sold in stores anymore. I looked in all of my local stores that would usually have it, but none of them did. Lucky for me I was able to get the yarn eventually, but I had to order it online. If I were to do it over again, I would spend more time calculating yardage, so I would know exactly how much yarn I would need.