> To Knit is Divine: Mom's New Dishcloths

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Mom's New Dishcloths

This is my first update in a couple of weeks, as life got in the way of blogging. On Tuesday, November 21, my sister Debbie lost her 3 1/2 year battle with Ovarian Cancer. She was 51. I flew down to Halifax for her funeral and to spend a few days with my parents. Go hug someone, okay?

While I was in Halifax, I was able to deliver the dishcloths I had made for my mother. You see, a few weeks ago I was chatting with Mom on the phone, and the conversation turned to knitting (I know, shocking, isn't it?). Since somehow she got the impression I could whip off a dishcloth waiting for the bus (which of course is a complete exaggeration. I also need the bus ride), she asked me if I could make her a couple of dishcloths, as hers had lived their useful lives and needed to be replaced. Nothing fancy, she says, just plain old dishcloths.

About a week after that conversation, we were talking again and she commented that she still hadn't received the dishcloths. I hadn't realized tha
t there was time pressure on this request. I started to envision my parent's apartment with a sink full of dirty dishes with no way to wash them until the new dishcloths arrived (of course, if you have ever seen my mother's kitchen you would know what a silly image this was). So at the next available opportunity I picked up some cotton* in the appropriate colours and begin to fulfill this request.

I ended up making five. I know, she requested "a couple" of "plain old dishcloths", but I got carried away. I'm sure you're not surprised. I finished up the fifth one the evening before leaving for Halifax, so I didn't get a chance to take pictures of them individually before I left. I did take one "group shot"

The rest of the pictures were taken from my parent's house the day I was leaving to come back to Ottawa. They're not geat pictures, but they will have to do for now since I can't easily re-shoot them!

First up, were a couple of "Ballband Dishcloths" from Mason-Dixon Knitting (shown here with my mother's seriously cute kettle). I love this pattern - great looking dishcloths. But when I was knitting the first one it seemed too big, so I took it out and cast on fewer stitches than recommended. Now, in retrospect, I think I made them a bit too small. Next time, I'll go back to pattern as written.

Pattern: Ballband Dishcloth from Mason-Dixon Knitting

Modification: made over 33 stitches instead of 45 stitches

Yarn: Bernat Handicrafter

Colours: Burgundy and White; Sage Green and White

Needles: 4mm

Dates (started and finished): Burgundy one - November 17, Green one - November 21

I browsed Barbara Walker's A Treasury of Knitting Patterns to get dishcloth ideas. There are lots of great patterns in there fits the bill (must have bumpiness - adds to scrubbing power). I picked a couple I particularly liked, such as King Charles Brocade

Pattern: King Charles Brocade from A Treasury of Knitting Patterns, over 37 stitches
Yarn: Bernat Handicrafter

Colour: Sage Green

Needles: 4mm

Date Started and Finished: November 19, 2006

I also did one using the Ripple Stitch from the same book, but I did this one on the diagonal, so I needed to work out the increases in pattern. I really like the results, so I will likely make one of these for myself as well. When I do, I'll try to get a better picture to show (the colour is the same burgundy as the other dishcloths here, but this over-flashed one is the only one that shows the design). I'll write up the pattern too, if anyone is interested.

Pattern: my own, using Ripple Stitch from A Treasury of Knitting
Yarn: Bernat Handicrafter
Colour: Burgundy

Needles: 4mm

Date Started and Finished: November 18, 2006

There was one other, the best of the lot, in my opinion, but you will have to wait to see it. As this one was put into immediate use, it was wet when I tried to get a picture, and none of the ones I took do it justice. So I'm going to knit up another one and take a better picture before I show it here. I will be writing up the pattern for this one as well.

I've also finished some other knitting, including Travelling Roses the Second (which still needs to be blocked) and a scarf to match my Brioche Stitch Hat, but these will have to wait for another post.

* The last time I made dishcloths using Bernat Handicrafter, my hands ached terribly and I vowed not to use it again. But since I had a deadline, and didn't have time to explore alternatives, I used this yarn again. And my hands were fine. I think the difference was in the needles. Last time, I used straights. Since then I've been using my Knit Picks Options needles almost exclusively, and I really do find them easier on my hands.


Anonymous kathy in juneau said...

I'm very sorry to hear about your sister. Sending good thoughts to you and your parents.

I just figured out what I can knit for my M-I-L without fear of it being ruined in the wash .. dishcloths, but of course!! Thanks for the inspiring post.

2:58 PM  
Blogger J. said...

peace leanne...

3:16 PM  
Anonymous Paula said...

heehee. I know but I won't tell.


7:58 PM  

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