How to Make Plarn

One knitting/crocheting material that is growing in popularity right now is plarn (plastic yarn).  Plarn is made from shopping bags, something that we all have too much of in our homes.  Some of the common items that crafters are using plarn for include rugs, sleeping mats for the homeless, bags, and baskets.


Do You Need a Tech Editor?


I had been knitting for a few years before I first heard of tech editors.  As an English major, I had experience with proofreading students’ papers, so it made sense to me that anything that is written needs to be checked for errors.  Two years ago I acquired Kate Atherley’s book The Beginner’s Guide to Writing Knitting Patterns, and it really resonated with me.  After reading it, I found myself critiquing the patterns I was knitting from.

ShawlStar Review


I had the opportunity to review something I was really excited about: an 85-page ebook called ShawlStar.  ShawlStar is written by Elizabeth Felgate and published by Knotions, an online knitting and crochet magazine.  I only heard about Knotions a few months ago.  If you are not familiar with them, you should subscribe to their newsletter because they have stunning patterns.  A few weeks ago, Knotions announced that ShawlStar, which was originally published in April 2018, is being updated and re-released in March 2019.  I am always eager to learn more about knitting construction, and I had been wishing for a resource that would walk me through different shawl shapes.  I jumped at the opportunity to review ShawlStar in exchange for a free copy.


Gwaihir Shawl

A pattern that I test-knitted has just been published: Gwaihir by Lindsay Scarey.  My Ravelry project is here.

I wanted to test-knit this shawl because I love bulky lace.  Also, the shawl is designed to look like the eagle from Lord of the Rings, and I am a big fan of those movies.  This shawl kept us company while we were watching the Olympics last winter.  It is the perfect thing to wrap up in when I'm at home relaxing.

The Danish Sontag Shawl



When I received my copy of Holiday 2017 Vogue Knitting Magazine, I was immediately drawn to Meg Swansen's "Danish Sontag Shawl."  There were a few changes I wanted to make, but I was confident that I would love it.  The only thing holding me back was the cast-on.

I like to read directions over and be able to picture them in my head before I knit, but with this cast-on, I could not picture what it would look like.  I couldn't find anyone talking about it online, so I had to figure it out on my own.  I hope this will be helpful to someone else who might be hesitant about getting started.

The Bleach Test

I recently acquired some partially-used yarn with no label.  There are two different ways to find out what the fiber content of mystery yarn is: the bleach test and the burn test.  While the bleach test can only tell you if your yarn is natural or synthetic, I have read that the burn test can actually narrow down the specific type of fiber, based on how the yarn smells and smokes when you burn it.  Unfortunately, I don't have a backyard in which to do the burn test, and I don't want my kids to see me making fire inside.  They might get ideas...

The bleach test is very simple.  If the yarn dissolves in the bleach, then you know it is a natural fiber.  If it doesn't dissolve at all, then you know it is a synthetic.  If only part of your yarn dissolves, then it is probably some sort of blend.