Sunday, November 27, 2011

O Come, O Come

Advent Wreath 2011

We've made it through Thanksgiving and into the Advent season.  This year, I decided to make a new Advent wreath. The old one was too big to fit anywhere, so I took the purple decorations from it and put them on a large candle wreath. Then I put the candle wreath of evergreens inside a wood-looking (resin) Advent wreath/candleholder I've had forever. With new candles, it's ready to go. All I could find this year were blue candles and the pink one. I prefer purple candles, but the blue ones looked rustic and were so pretty, that I used them. Maybe next year I'll actually start well before the Advent season!  (It would be a first!)

In the center, in place of the white Christ candle, I put the Madonna and Child icon given to me by my friend from Turkey. As I recall, the icon is from Ephesus, traditionally the last home of the Virgin, as she was taken there by the Apostle John.  It's on my Bucket List of places to visit.

The Christmas wreath is on the door and another on the wall beside the garage. After St. Nicholas' Day (December 6th), I'll start putting the "candles" in the windows and begin the Christmas decorations.

Making Spa Cloths
Blue Spa Cloths on the Loom
The Cricket rigid-heddle group on Ravelry is doing a spa-cloth weave-along. I thought they'd be really good gifts for Christmas this year, so I decided to participate... well, as soon as I could free up the Cricket loom.  This is a difficult thing as there's always a project on the Cricket!  But I did find some linen yarn at Yarnivore as well as the Grass yarn (hemp and cotton) for the weft.  The first warp I put on was a bit over a yard in length and was a slate-blue linen.  The weft was a marled blue Grass yarn.  I used a #8 knitting needle to form the loops. I have one finished cloth and three others waiting to be hand-finished.

The linen yarn was awfully hard on my hands, so I used Hempathy - a hemp / modal blend - for the warp on my current set.  Again, I'm using the Grass in the weft and will get four cloths from this warp.  Wrapped with a lovely bar of hand-made soap from a local soap-maker, the cloths will make wonderful gifts!