Basic Knit (Garter) Stitch

How to knit- it’s how I make mug cozies!

CANVA How to Knit

I love mug cozies. I love mugs, I love the beverages that go in mugs, and I love being cozy.

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For those of you that don’t know, a mug cozy is kind of like a coozie for your beer, but for your mug.

add to cozies

There’s so much to love about a cozy. First of all, they are, in fact, cozy. I use them more during the fall and winter. It’s like your coffee gets a sweater, too. Secondly, they are so expressive. I think they are great for holidays. I’ve had a Thanksgiving one for years, and it always gets me in the spirit of the season. Third, it’s cheaper than buying a new mug for every holiday! I sell mine for $5 a piece.

To come up with my designs, I just kind of broke down, well, Texas. Its colors, its personality, its culture and compared that to my supplies, and before I knew it, I was busting out cozies left and right. I have a Christmas one, of course. It has a snowflake on it, which isn’t very Texan, but hey, it’s Christmas. In my defense, too, it did snow in southeast Texas back in 2004 on Christmas Eve. It was a miracle. Pure magic. I was really young, but I still remember how mucky the snow was, yet how beautiful and white. I remember our puppy having to jump because she was too short to see over the snow on the ground. I remember my little sister had to wear oven mitts for gloves because she didn’t have nay; it never really got cold enough. The color of the Christmas cozy might not make sense at first, but I think it’s perfect- sugar cookie dough.

I have one that is purple with vintage buttons. The buttons came from a jar that my parents just found in the house they bought when around when they had me. The purple reminded me of late fall, when the first real cold fronts come in. I mean cold. Those are the times you start a fire and hang out with loved ones, telling stories, hence the old buttons from the past.

Sticking with the seasons, I have one that remind me more of spring that I named “on the porch.” It’s white with colorful buttons. To me, it reminds me of spring, when it’s just the right temperature outside that you can comfortably sit on your porch and drink your coffee in the morning. The grass is wet from the due, the sun’s bright rays are just peaking from beyond the horizon, and the wildflowers, like the bluebonnets and Indian paintbrushes, decorate the ground.

The fifth one is called “southern charm.” I made it on a whim, to be honest. It all worked out though in the end! That peach-y-ish color reminded me of peaches (duh), and peaches remind me of the Hill Country. If you’ve never had a Fredericksburg peach, you’re not living right. The sparkles on there gave it that little bit of sass, much like a Southern woman.

 

I’m not going to give away my pattern (though any knitter could figure it out). Instead, let’s learn to knit shall we? Soon, the possibilities of things you can make will be endless.

add to cozies as well

 

HOW TO KNIT:

While I’m going to proceed teach you how to knit, I recommend using YouTube or Linda.com to learn as well. I always do better when I can see what I’m learning. Still, I’m going to give you a quick little step-by-step knitting tutorial.

 

First thing’s first…it is tricky when you’re first starting, but don’t get discouraged, please! By all means, pitch a hissy fit, scream, break your needles, throw them, whatever. Lord knows I do. If you do get frustrated, please come back, if it’s something you really want to learn!

 

Here we go.

 

First, this is knitting, so we use needle, not hooks. We aren’t hookers, damn it.

 

Get your yarn, and find the end.

Tie a knot like this:

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Now get your needles, one in each hand. Put that knot on the left needle.

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Okay, now we are going to cast on.

 

  1. Take the right needle. Poke it through the bottom of and behind that knot you put on the left needle. Your needles should look like an “X” with a knot holding them together.

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  1. Holding that with your left hand, take hold of the yarn that’s attached to the skein with your right hand.
  2. Wrap it counter clockwise around the back (right) needle only.

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  1. Now, move the right needle towards you (towards that yarn you just wrapped around it) and catch it with that needle.

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  1. Pull it through the knot on the left needle. You should now have a loop of yarn on each needle with some twisty action going on in the middle.

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  1. Now, take the left needle, and poke it under the loop on the right needle. Make sure you catch it!

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  1. Lastly, slip it over the end of that right needle. You should now have two loops, or stitches, on the left needle.

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Repeat stitches 1-7 to cast on as many stitches as you need for your project.

 

Now, let’s learn a basic knit (also known as garter) stitch. This is a lot more painless than casting on!

Basically, all you do is steps 1-5 of the above casting-on tutorial:

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Lastly, let’s cast-off. It’s very simple.

First, knit two (only two) stitches.

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Now you poke the left needle down through the bottom of the two stitches.

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Slip that stitch up and over that second stitch above it. Make sure it stays on the needle.

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That stitch you just pulled over? Let it go. Just drop it, tighten up, and knit another stitch so that you are back to having two stitches on the needle. Keep repeating this process till you have one stitch left on the single right needle.

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Snip the yarn, detaching your work from the skein.

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Slip that last stitch off the needle, without losing the loop, and pull the tail you just cut off through that loop. Pull it tight.

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All that’s left is weaving in ends, which I’m not good at, so look for another tutorial. 🙂

 

Congrats! You are now a knitter. Welcome.

Now that we all know what we’re doing, let’s get cozy! Make your own cozy, socks, scarves, whatever!

Stay crafty, my friends! Blessings!

 

~Hannah ❤

Ganado Farmers Market 4/27

Today was such a good day!!! We made some sales, most of which were things that aren’t as popular, so that is super cool. We sold a tea towel, crochet garland, and burlap message board. I have at least three custom sign orders to fill, as well.

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I think the biggest highlight of the day was how much exposure we had. I gave out several business cards, promoted the website and Facebook page, and made friends with fellow craftsmen.

Not to mention, today was just a fabulous day to be in Ganado. Today is the crawfish festival that’s put on every year. There’s the Mudbug Pageant, the parade, of course tons of crawfish, and a concert.

Overall, we’re in a great spot, and I can’t wait for summer!!

 

I was excited to really highlight some of my favorite things: this new wall hanging, the wine rack with the greenery, the pastry/cheese cloths, and this shabby chic message board:

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Thanks to all who came out! Love you guys! Keep shopping local!

Exciting things are a-happenin’

Exciting things are happening over here!

 

So I’ll cut to the chase… we’re rebranding!

Making with Texas has essentially existed for a year. I began working on it during summer of 2017. In August, I obtained my permits and booked my first market. The website and blog followed in November.

Now that I’ve gotten my feet went and figured out a direction, I felt like I needed to make the changes to reflect that.

So what’s changing?

Well, almost everything. The biggest is the name. The name “Making with Texas” worked during this year that I got started. I never just loved the name, but I had to call it something, just for the sake of getting off the ground.

Name, colors, and products will all be making a change.

No details yet, but throughout the summer, the changes will be blatantly obvious!

 

And to reflect the impending changes, I’d like to announce one big change: we’re now on Etsy! I’ve started getting into the digital products business by selling SVG cut files for folks with a Cricut or Silhouette.

Go to: www.wildandcharolais.etsy.com or click on the link to explore our digital files!

Here’s the guinea pig:

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My Coast

This is “Making With Texas,” so I am going to talk more about my Texas. Think of this as a travel piece, if you will, because by the end, you’ll want to come to the Coastal Bend of South Texas.

 

I say in the intro there that this is a travel piece, and in a sense I suppose it is. Mostly, though, I just want to talk about where I grew up. I talk about it a lot in a similar post to this, one that talks about beaches. I didn’t grow up with a beach for a backyard, but I grew up around Matagorda, Port Alto, Magnolia and Indianola, and Olivia. Those weren’t home, either, though. I grew up in Ganado, which is about half an hour from Olivia.

Ganado is small. I graduated with 45 people, which for many people is very tiny, but I wouldn’t want anything else. Our town is so special, too, and I talk about it a lot in another post about the Ganado market.

Ganado was settled in the 1800s along the new railroad. All it had at the time was a bunch of cows, hence its name Ganado, which means “cattle” in Spanish. That said, it does have a large Hispanic population, but a lot of us are Czech or German. It isn’t unusual to hear someone call a beer pivo which is Czech for beer.

In Ganado, we have a bit to do, especially for someone who’s into small town Texas. We have a an old theater that opened in the 1940s, the first in the U.S. to have digital fiber optic sound, and is one of the last to be privately owned.

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We have a monthly market, as well as a few shops, like a western wear store and a fabulous quilt shop. There’s a good Mexican restaurant, barbecue joint, burger place, and a little place that sells Blue Bell. Throughout the year we have festivals, like the Chili Spill and Crawfish Festival, complete with a dance and games. There’s Lake Texana, too, if you’re a fisherman or kayaker. If freshwater isn’t your thing, half an hour or so away is bay. You can to Olivia, Port Alto, Port O’Connor, or Port Lavaca, among other places.

Left: Olivia | Right: Lake Texana

There are many other cute towns around, especially if you go farther inland, a little away from the coast: Edna, Victoria (downtown is so old and beautiful), and Cuero, as well as up north into Fayette county. Oh, and you can’t forget Shiner!

 

Okay, so many of those towns are a good hour and a half or so from water, but we’re all close together. In one weekend, you could hit our theater and listening room- the Rear Window, Cuero’s beautiful antique shops and come back for Turkey Fest, Victoria’s downtown (you must drop some cash and eat at the Sendera) and come back for Boot Fest, to Shiner for some beer, then to Flatonia for the Czilispiel and the painted churches.

And all along the way, you’ll see cows and horses, beautiful fields of corn and cotton, green very gently rolling hills or the flat land that leads to the water, old barns, wild flowers, wrap around porches, creeks and rivers, and bails of hay.

It’s not much, but it’s home.

It’s Texas.

It’s who we are.

You’re always welcome!

 

~Hannah ❤

 

***Images/logos are not mine. I don’t own them or have any part in them whatsoever, nor did I in anyway edit or change them. I just wanted some visuals for readers , visuals that I myself could not just “get” at the time of this writing. I found them from the following sites via Google Image search:

LAKE TEXANA:LAKE TEXANA: http://wiseabouttexas.com/texas-towns-texana/lake-texana/
OLIVIA: http://www.texasescapes.com/TexasGulfCoastTowns/OliviaTexas/OliviaTx.htm

THEATER:THEATER: http://www.flickriver.com/places/United+States/Texas/Ganado/

 

How to Sew a Double-Fold Edge

How to sew a double-fold edge, as I like to call it. It’s good to know!

How to Sew a

This is a good skill to keep in your back pocket. I use it all the time to make towels and such, but there a lots of other things that have a folded edge. So let us begin. 🙂

 

First, press whatever it is you’re working with so that it’s all flat and manageable.

Next, decide how big you want your edge to be (distance between the actual edge and the stitch), and fold the raw edge inward just short of that distance. Press this to make it stay.

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Fold that one more time, so that it’s double, and press. I like to pin it from here to keep it in place.

Start sewing! Start somewhere in the middle of the side, not on a corner, and put the needle as close to that inner fold as you can- you don’t want to risk not catching some of that folded fabric.

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And voila! Happy sewing!

 

Best,

~Hannah ❤

Printing on Fabric

How I print on fabric to make tea towels.

CANVA How to

One of the things I sell are decorative tea towels. They are just a muslin or duck fabric that I cut up, sew up, and decorate with my own designs. Tea towels are kind of a big deal, especially, I’ve found, in small-town gift shops. They all have cute, funny, or profound sayings on them in gorgeous fonts, and I have even been tempted to buy some myself, honestly. I love little things like that, but I found that there wasn’t enough variety or specialty among them. For instance, the quotes on them are just basic Pinterest quotes that you find written anywhere or the designs were pretty plain. I’m not knocking them at all (like I said, I still might buy some one day). I am saying that I knew I could bring a little something different to the table. Here are some of my designs:

 

Christmas

This Christmas-themed one comes with a couple of variations, but two things that stays the same on all of them are their patchwork-like design and the recipe. The patchwork-like designs are on all of my towels. They almost look like a scrapbook page. I like playing with colors, designs, and layers. The recipe on this towel is for “Rum Balls.” When it comes to Christmas, we go hard. Like I should have been born at the North Pole. Anyway, this is one of my favorite recipes. Sure, we make sugar cookies and gingerbread men, but we also have our own family recipes: peppermint bark (I guess that’s pretty common), cinnamon glass candy, Christmas candy, cranberry bars, trash, and rum balls.

When I see this towel, I think of baking with Mom, my sister, and Mimi in the kitchen, Michael Buble CD on, in our shorts of course, because what is winter? I feel all warm inside thinking about those memories, and I hope that others think of their own Christmas memories, much like I do. If you have anything special about your Christmases, please comment!

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Camper

As you can tell, this one is rather on the simple side. The quote is nothing special (confession- it’s from Pinterest). It wasn’t going to be a Pinterest quote. In fact, I wanted to use song lyrics from Airstream Song by Miranda Lambert, but the copyright print license was $300. No thanks. The backstory on this one is also quite personal. See, I temporarily am living in a camper, and it has been a huge part of my life! It has taught me to live simply and to be less materialistic. This towel also reflects how much I love to… just go. I love to adventure and travel. I love trying new things and beginning new projects. I love to take the next step. I hope when others see this towel, they feel that sense of freedom and simplicity. I also hope they buy it.

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Some other designs not shown (because I can’t give it all away):

Texas

This design is definitely unique, starting with the quote from Lonesome Dove. I made these without thinking of any copyright matters (oops), but I tried so many times to reach out to De Passe Productions, and… nothing. Despite my uh-oh and wasted effort, I still wanted to share this design anyway because it’s one of my best designs and is close to my heart. The nature of the design itself is just so homey. I grew up around this kind of stuff. My grandpa is a rancher, so of course, I grew up around cows and horses. I raised turkeys all throughout my ten-year 4-H career. My parents have goats. I used to want to be a bull rider. I would spend hours at night as a kiddo roping a dummy by the fire. The denim (which came from my boyfriend’s jeans that he tore while stacking hay) and bullet (also the bf’s), all represent my upbringing and the great state of Texas.

 

Spring

This towel is for my spring-lovers out there. It comes in a variety of colors as well, but the one thing that stays the same is the recipe used on the front. It’s my Great-Great-(Great?)-Aunt Albina’s pickle recipe in her handwriting. As any gardener knows, when you plant something (and it’s successful), you won’t be able to eat all the produce yourself. So what do you do with the surplus? You preserve it. That could be canning whole, putting up sauces or jellies, baking (i.e. zucchini bread) and freezing it, freezing things whole, or pickling. I remember this one day my mom, Mimi, and I were pickling a ton of cucumbers one day, and I swear I smelled like vinegar for a week. I want people to see this and flashback to the days of vinegar, tons of dishes, and popping jar lids.

 

Summer

This was the most difficult one to do, for some reason. The fabric was wonky. Anyway, it is very Texas-y, literally. The seashells that I used on the towels (also in an array of layouts) came from Port Aransas. That’s my favorite beach, and it was only an hour and a half to two hours away. I’m pretty sure they’re from Port A. The only other beaches I go to are Matagorda, Magnolia, and Rockport, and they certainly aren’t from Matagorda or Magnolia (both of which I do love!). So these towels, like the Texas towels, also have a part of Texas on them, making them even more special. I bet Bed, Bath, and Beyond can’t say that.

 

How I Make Them

 

This is one of the most magical things I have learned how to do. The possibilities are seriously endless. I present, printing on fabric at home, a skill I’m perfectly happy to share!

 

You’ll need…

-freezer paper

-iron

-fabric (something like muslin)

-printer (check your ink!)

 

I use this technique to make decorative tea towels for my business. I use recipes, quotes, phrases, etc. to add a personal, unique touch to something so basic, like this:

 

You aren’t here to shop, you’re here to learn, so let’s get to it.

First, cut your fabric to the size of a piece of paper, which is 8.5”x11”.

 

Next, take a piece of freezer paper the same size as or slightly bigger than your fabric. Iron the wax paper, waxy side down onto the fabric. The freezer paper just makes the fabric sturdy, so it doesn’t get all jumbled up in your printer.

 

Trim it up and boom. You’ve got a piece of fabric-paper.

 

Put your fabric in your printer so that when it prints, the ink comes out on the fabric, obviously.

 

Now all you have to do it print whatever it is you want onto your fabric, and you’re set!

 

I recommend taking another piece of freezer paper and ironing the waxy side down onto the ink, so that the waxy stuff will transfer onto the ink and set it. Also, it probably goes without saying, peel the paper off the fabric!

 

I will say, though… wash at your own risk. The things I make with this couldn’t be thrown in the washer, regardless of the inked fabric, just because they have other embellishments on them that prevent that trip to the washer, so I am not too sure about what would happen if you did. You probably could wash it on cold, “hand wash”/ “delicates,” but please be careful! Whatever happens, this is not my fault because I warned you!

 

Best of luck to y’all! May you always be inspired and craft. God bless!

 

~Hannah ❤

 

P.S. If you are seriously super serious about getting something serious printed on fabric, but don’t trust yourself doing this, don’t trust your printer, or know for a fact it needs to be thrown in the washer, there is an answer!

Spoonflower is an online custom fabric design shop for buyers and sellers alike. You can go online to their website (https://www.spoonflower.com/) and get your creation printed on a variety of fabrics!