Only 100 days left, and I’m in stitches (Day 265)…

knitted scarf

This is the very first scarf I ever made — a bright orange, mixed-up-texture thing done with a garter stitch on honkin’ big needles. My mom helped me buy the yarn at Romni, then taught me how to cast on, keep the tension consistent, fix any dropped stitches and finally cast off. I’ve made other scarves since, as well as a few not-quite-symmetrical mittens, but there’s something about that first one — it’ll hold a special place in my closet.

Knitting is of course a very environmentally friendly hobby. There’s barely any packaging with a ball of wool, no machinery is required other than what’s used to spool it, and there are fewer transportation and shipping costs associated with the final product. Now, you can even get bamboo yarn, which feels wonderfully soft, and organic fair-trade yarn.

As the weather here in Toronto starts dipping down to the freezing point, I’m realizing I need to stock up on winter gear. My change today, then, will be to knit as much stuff as I can rather than buy anything.

Oh, and P.S. — Today officially marks my 100-day countdown! Woohoo!

17 Responses to Only 100 days left, and I’m in stitches (Day 265)…

  1. Catherine says:

    Yay for knitting! My all time favorite hobby! If you wanted to really get into “green knitting” you could go to the thrift store, buy some wool sweaters, and unravel them for the yarn. That’s my cheap, green yarn of choice.

  2. marcia says:

    thanks for reinforcing my knitting obsession! i really enjoy your blog and find your efforts to be greener very inspiring. thanks for writing!

  3. Kathryn says:

    Or if you really wanted to get into “green knitting”, you could acquire some raw fleece and a drop spindle and spin your own.

    I’m just sayin’…

  4. limesarah says:

    Spinning is indeed wonderful 🙂 You want to get roving, though, not raw fleece, unless you’re prepared to clean it yourself (which will make your entire apartment smell like a wet sheep).

  5. Vanessa says:

    Oh my lord… raw fleece?? That’s so hardcore!

  6. E to the M says:

    Knitting is the best. 🙂
    Congratulations on your 100 day count down!

  7. Chile says:

    Beautiful scarf, Vanessa. Learning to knit is on my list but it keeps getting bumped by other things. I started to learn crocheting but got swamped by other things, too. And then there’s sewing, which I would have really thrown myself in to learning had I bought that treadle-machine I wanted. (Seller changed mind after family protested.) So, for now, I’m just going to have to admire your scarf and have stitch-envy.

  8. Ditto on the knitting and the spinning! You can also know it’s fair labor — unless you’re your own slavedriver.

  9. Jennie says:

    Something else you might be into…buy a sweater from a thrift store (ie: goodwill, sally ann), rip it apart and knit from that yarn. Reducing, Reusing and Recycling in one act! There are tutorials available online that show you how to take apart a sweater, but provided it’s not a cut & sewn industrially-manufactured sweater, it’s pretty logical.

  10. i didn’t know you could knit… but I do think you knew I needed new mittens.

  11. Stella DeGree says:

    I was just about to make Jennie’s suggestion. You can find some sweaters made of beautiful materials that are perhaps to loud or Aunt Matilda-ish that would make a perfect scarf.

  12. Forget sweaters from the thift store – I get most of my wool and other yarn new in balls from op (thrift) stores. I’ve just finished making a pile of hand knitted cotton washcloths for Christmas presents – at a cost of 27 cents each since I got the cotton from an op shop…

  13. L.M. says:

    To green your knitting even further, you can knit with dog hair – I’m not kidding, there are people who do that.

  14. Sarah says:

    Come join Ravelry! (http://www.ravelry.com) There are a ton of fantastic projects, and at least one group devoted to Green Knitting. This sounds terribly like an ad, but it’ll draw you in like no tomorrow 🙂

  15. Caitlin says:

    I second both the Ravelry suggestion and the unravelling thrift store sweater suggestions. And I found your site when one of my favorite knitting blogs linked to it– I had a feeling there might be some knitting connection there.

  16. RobinB says:

    You might want to look further into the whole bamboo fabric thing. A friend of mine who is a clothing designer tells me that the processing used to make fabric from bamboo is nasty, and overall it’s a pretty non-green fibre to use in that form.

  17. Kathryn says:

    Using raw fleece isn’t that hardcore, when you consider some of the harsh chemicals used in commercial wool processing. And you don’t always have to buy an entire fleece… you can find people willing to sell the dirty wool by the pound.

    And I’d be careful about buying sweaters to unravel… check to make sure there are no side seams. Commercially produced sweaters are often cut out of large pieces of knit fabric, which, when unraveled, will give you a ton of very short pieces of yarn.

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