How To - Make Dryer Balls with Leftover Mama Knows Luxury Big Stitch Yarn (Or Any Wool Roving) And Add Simple Designs
I've been telling my clients for around a year now that they should use their MKL Big Stitch Yarn Scraps to make Dryer Balls. Today I made a video to show how easy it is and in this post I'll share all the things I learned along the way.
Awhile back my friend Kelly from Knitbrooks sent me a message that put me into such a crazy happy dance, my poor husband thought I was crazy!!
She told me that the team at Our Maker Life wanted to invite me to contribute a pattern to their secret project, Make: Volume 1.
I have had the pleasure and honour of working with Our Maker Life in the past as a Guest Blogger on Tip Tuesday (see what I wrote here). I have always been a huge supporter of Our Maker Life because their very existence confirms my deepest belief: Collaboration over Competition is a viable way to build a business, and way more fun!! I could go on and on about this, in fact I will very soon, but that is a whole other blog post!
Let's get back to Make: Volume 1, that's what this blog post is all about, so read on!
I have spent the last year talking. I've talked to my suppliers, to my woodworkers, to news makers, book writers, fellow entrepreneurs, crafters and business people, when it comes to Mama Knows Luxury I have talked endlessly! My biggest honour has been talking to my clients and the things they say to me make my heart sing! I have always known why I started this business, now I also know why my clients buy from Mama Knows Luxury and the role we have in their personal happiness scenario!!
Photo by @coziknots (instagram), one of our Preferred Makers.
Big Stitch Yarn—the Myths, the Realities, and Realistic Expectations
Will it hold up?
Will it pill excessively and fall apart?
How do I care for my finished item?
These are only a few of the questions we answer almost daily here at Mama Knows Luxury. We have created a yarn info sheet for use while working with our yarn and a care instructions sheet that will help you take care of your finished item. In this blog post we have included photos, as well as links to videos, all of which will help you understand the ins and outs of using big stitch yarn. Empowering our clients to make informed decisions by dispelling myths and creating awareness is something we are passionately committed to!
One of our completed Big Stitch Blankets, at THE MAKERS KEEP in Edmonton, AB, Canada
Why do we collaborate? What's the purpose?
Are we fulfilling our inner fangirls?
Are we taking part in a crazy popularity contest?
Is it blatant, shameless marketing?
It's none of these—we promise!
There's a rhyme to our reason, and it's all about giving our clients everything they need to make the beautiful projects they dream of making.
Stephanie from All About Ami collaborated with us throughout 2016. She designed this beautiful knit throw and provided stunning photo tutorials on her www.allaboutami.com blog. We offer all her patterns as full kits in our shop. She helped us take the guesswork out of deciding what you need to make a beautiful throw-sized blanket.
My oldest daughter has the creative fire running through her veins, just like me. She is always drawing something, making something, or learning something. It's incredible how much one can learn nowadays with a quick Google search and some dedicated YouTube-video watching.
Lexi has been asking if she can try hand knitting with our big stitch yarn for months now. She recently participated in Lemonade Stand by Curated, a craft sale for mini-makers and emerging artists. She worked her butt off to make pom pom emoji pins and pencil toppers and made it through two long days at her very first craft sale. We were so proud of her, and as a reward I let her choose from all 70 of our colors and ordered her a 1 lb skein of big stitch yarn in periwinkle. We finally found time yesterday to split the yarn and complete the knitted infinity cowl she wanted to make, and we made videos and snapped photos as we went. Here's a pic of Lexi wearing her cowl—she is so proud of herself! Crafting with kids is so rewarding, and my kids definitely get high dosages of crafting from me!
Big stitch yarn really is big! You need tools that are at least 40 mm or greater to work with it, or you can use your arms or hands. We always share this video by Simply Maggie when our clients want to arm knit with our yarn. We also love this video by BeCozi on hand knitting flat on a table without using any tools. We work with MD Handfield Designs Inc. to bring our extreme and giant tool designs to life. Currently we offer giant knitting needles, extreme DIY pipe needle kits, and giant crochet hooks, all specifically designed to work perfectly with our big stitch yarn. But what if you want to use a smaller tool? Or add finer detail to your project? Never fear, your yarn can be split and made smaller to increase your yardage and accommodate smaller tools. Read on to find out more!
We recently added basic felting kits to our Etsy shop for use with our big stitch yarn and our Sugarbush Chill yarn lineups, and boy, have the questions been rolling in.
Never fear, we hear you and we are totally here to help!
So let's answer the most important questions: Why would you use a felting kit, and why wouldn't you just weave in your ends?
Pure merino wool is precious and expensive. Whether you are working with extreme big stitch yarn or "regular" yarn, you don't want to waste any, no doubt about it! When you felt your ends for joining and finishing, you minimize waste. Instead of needing to leave many inches at the beginning and end of your work and at all joins for knotting and weaving, you can quickly and easily felt your ends with just an inch or so of yarn. When you invest in a top quality yarn, you want your finished product to look beautiful, even after use. Weaving ends is a tried-and-true technique, and I am not knocking it in any way, but the bigger your yarn gets, the more likely you are to find yourself with ends that refuse to stay weaved in.
We have created several felting tutorial videos to help you as you figure out the process. We promise, it is easy and you can totally do it! Now go finish your luxury handmade item beautifully and have fun!