Yarn Along:: Art & Play

Joining up with Ginny and others for Yarn Along again this week to share two of my passions: knitting and reading.

I have been feeling inspired to try some unstructured, playful art activities at home with PB.  We have experimented with crayons, play dough, and watercolor paints, but her interactions with these materials is sporadic.  I leave crayons and paper out all the time, and she scribbles occasionally, but just hasn’t seemed to really enjoy it.  In reading The Artful Parent blog, I have put together a reading and activity list for the summer, and am making artful play a priority.  First Art is packed with simple, loosely guided activities for toddlers and twos, with the goal of exploration and creative play.  As with most things in life, toddler art should be about the process, not the product.

Over the weekend we went out of town for the day, exploring the quaint mountain town of Sisters, Oregon.  I was surprised and delighted by their local yarn and fabric shop, The Stitchin’ Post.  Sometimes these small town shops are dusty and packed with outdated yarn and patterns, but this was just the opposite.  It was open and cheerful, and everywhere I turned I saw sumptuous yarn, vibrant fabric, and the latest publications.  I have been eyeing Meg McElwee’s new book, Growing up Sew Liberated, as it tours through the blogosphere, and had to bring it home.  As expected, the patterns are charming and lovely.  I am really enjoying her asides about parenting small children, encouraging play, mindfulness, and responsibility.  I’m pretty excited to try my hand at the basic pocket pants, all-by-myself bib, and the embroidered place mat.

And finally, the knitting.  After finishing up my shawl on Friday, I basked in the high of only having one project on the needles.  Oh the sweet freedom and potential!  That only lasted a day before I decided to cast on the first sock pattern from the Cookie A club, Haleakala.  I don’t know if it’s the cashmere in the yarn or the fun of watching the cable and lace motif take shape, but these socks are flying!  I’m already at the heel turn and I’m hoping to have the pair finished in time for Sock Summit at the end of July.  I know myself, however, and fully expect to stall out on the second sock, so I’m trying to ride this wave of enthusiasm as far as it will take me!

What are you reading and creating this week? Do you have any favorite activities for artful play with toddlers?


12 thoughts on “Yarn Along:: Art & Play

  1. I just ordered Growing Up Sew Liberated moments ago on Amazon!
    I was hoping to find it locally, but I just couldn’t wait.
    Fun sock, I like when a pattern draws me in and makes me want to knit, it’s especially helpful in a sock.

  2. You’re so creative, Sonia. I’m sure PB will have fun in whatever projects you think up for her.

    I have some of that Caper Sock yarn that I received in a swap. I’m too much of a chicken to use it yet, though. I know that the perfect pattern will come along someday. 🙂

  3. The Stitchin’ Post is a really lovely shop! We were over there in September. Must be time to go again. You should go to the quilt festival next month! I’ve never been, but I’ve heard such good things about it.

    I used to bake cookies with my kids when they were toddlers. We had a tiny rolling pin, and cute little cookie cutters. Hey! They’re still here! Would you like them? I could send them to you.

    Right now I’m standing in front of my computer on the dining room buffet, catching up on blog reading and knitting the ruffle on my Zen Rain shawlette (for KAL). In my other reading life I’m reading the fourth book in the “A Song of Ice and Fire” series (Game of Thrones on HBO). Fifth book comes out July 12, so I need to get done! have a great week.

  4. Try to get to the quilt show in Sisters. I’ve always wanted to do that. They hang quilts outside all over town and last I heard, it never rained on the day of the show. Sounds fabulous…. and they have a great poster to commemorate every year. I’ll live vicariously through you if you go and if you don’t mind!

  5. I am knitting a lace hat with some beautiful Sublime cashmere silk blend. Great yarn! It is also flying. My little one is obsessed with the chalk board. It isn’t too inventive but he loves it. I might have to invest in that book also. We need some ideas!

  6. Your sock is gorgeous – ride that wave!
    Your hair cut and new photo are beautiful.
    If you haven’t seen Lotta Jansdotter’s Simple Sewing For Baby, check it out. I have several favorite patterns from that book. Fast, easy, flexible patterns.
    Wow, what a gorgeous shawl – great job, great pics.
    Love the pic of your Sweet Pea munching a pea pod. : ) t.

  7. My favorite toddler playtime activity is 2-D art: finger painting, crayon drawings or torn paper collage. On big paper b/c we all need room to express ourselves!
    You may even find some inspiration and design mittens or a pillow using some of PB’s art….

  8. I was just wondering what the wooden thing is in the photo of the sock…the sock seems to be clamped between two sides in it?

  9. I believe it’s called a sock keeper. You slide the double-pointed needles in, replace the cap, and your stitches and needles are safe. I’ve seen cardboard ones at knitting shops and maybe even Michaels.

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