Wabi-sabi is a Japanese philosophy that embraces the imperfect, ephemeral, and incomplete. I'm always screwing something up, but it often comes out more beautiful, more instructive, and more fun for it. Come make mistakes with me!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Tutorial : Knitted Hair Bows

I love textiles.  Ribbons, fabric, yarns - you name it, I can waste two hours coveting it.  The problem is that, except for yarn, I don't really know what the heck to do with the stuff.  I'm just starting to learn to use my sewing machine (more posts on Me vs the Machine to come), and I just couldn't think of anything to do with ribbons.

So I started making hair pretties!  Check out my Etsy shop to see my barrettes and bobby pins.

I never thought of using my knitting chops to make hair doohickeys until my friend posted this pic on Facebook:

And lo and behold, I thought "I can do that!" Cue the looming-disaster music.  Actually, taking a close look made me realize that a knitted hairbow is really just a rectangle tied around the middle.  What could be easier?

So I knitted a rectangle out of pretty yarn (Noro Kureyon, for the curious):

Pinched it in the middle:

 And wrapped around the middle to anchor it.

Voila! Bow!

But can I be happy with moderate success?  Of course not.  I had decided to cast on at the short end, but the sides of my test bow looked a little sloppy.  So I switched to a slipped stitch edge to make the sides neater.  (This just means I slipped the first stitch of each row purlwise, rather than working it in pattern.) 

Then I thought, why not try casting on the long edge?  I think too much sometimes.  Bad idea.

Sitting back to admire my handiwork on a chunkier bow (Spud & Chloe yarn), I realized that the original picture looks more like the purl side than the knit.  So I flipped the bow around, and I liked that even better! Yay!

Then just for kicks I decided to make a tiny bow on sock yarn.  (Atacama alpaca ..love!)  And this way by far my favorite, and will be available for sale as a clippie / ponytail holder on my Etsy shop - as soon as I get around to buying some clippies or elastics.  Keep an eye out for it! 

Have you tried knitting or crocheting hairbows?  Share a link and your advice!

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