Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Autumn is for Making

Last weekend the first wave of deliciously chilly weather passed through DC; it actually felt like autumn and we dressed accordingly, wrapping ourselves in handknits that had not seen the outdoors since sometime last spring. The knitwear, crisp air, and crates filled with winter squash at the supermarket (and at the farmer's market) – these are all reasons why fall is my favorite season.

 I also love fall because it usually marks the beginning of crafting season for me. While I knit pretty much year-round, I don’t attempt many other craft projects. But with the Halloween/Thanksgiving/Christmas trifecta within sight, I can’t help but stray from the knitting path.

Crafting season must begin with a craft store expedition, so early Saturday afternoon I strapped Addie into her car seat and we embarking on our first mother-daughter shopping trip. We braved the Northern Virginia traffic (brutal, especially on a lovely weekend day) and stopped at not one, but two craft stores. I was tempted to visit all four of the local spots, but prolonged car trips do not mix well with a ten month old who is never thrilled about outings that involve a car seat and driving. We survived our two-hour journey beautifully; Addie loved taking in all the colorful fabric and seasonal d├ęcor at the craft stores and I emerged from each with provisions for several projects.

I’m devoting a lot of this year’s autumn crafting time to decorations for our home. It’s the first year I feel like I can really settle in – I don’t have a wedding for which I am frantically constructing dozens of paper flowers or making last-minute doily runners, and I don’t have blank nursery walls badly in need of wall art or a soon-to-be baby who needs just one more hand knit sweater. Okay, my soon-to-be one year old could always use a new hand knit sweater, but these I save for week nights after she has gone to bed.

 For my first craft of the season, I chose a yarn wreath, since our poor naked front door badly needed a cheerful adornment. Sadly, I cannot take credit for the brilliant idea of wrapping yarn around a wreath form. It is, apparently, a thing, as evidenced by the hunderds of results that return when you ask google to search for the term "yarn wreath." It's a good thing I wasn't trying to engineer a completely new to the internet DIY project.

I’m pretty pleased with the finished result. I chose some rust-colored wool and a bit of deep brown handspun Jacob from my stash, and instead of felt flowers, I made rolled flowers from strips of fabric leftover from a wedding craft project. To finish it off, I added a few leaves cut from mocha-colored cashmere scraps and tiny flag bunting.

Here’s to a successful first autumn DIY!


  1. what a beautiful wreath, excellently done!

    1. Thanks! It's hard to get anything done with a curious baby around, so the fact I even finished this makes me proud.

  2. Replies
    1. Yeah, my hand was forced by the too-cute yarn wreaths I unearthed around the internet. Before my little search, I wasn't entirely committed to the idea, but the cuteness! And they're satisfyingly easy to make, too.