Wednesdays I always have a couple of hours between when I get home from work and when I go off to knit with some friends.  I thought I might try to do a regular Wednesday post of whatever random thing I am working on.  So here’s a start.

A little baby hat for a little friend.  She doesn’t have a name yet but she was born a couple of days ago.  And it’s Minnesota, so she needs a hat.  Why red?  It’s going to be an apple!  I am going to put a stem and a couple of leaves on the top.  I already made her a little stuffed pear and I am going to do a bib with fruit on it too.  So it’s a fruit theme for her gift.  (Pattern from Ann Budd Knitter’s Handy Book of Patterns, with my additions.  Yarn: Queensland Rustic Wool superwash.)

My latest sweater.  I still have to finished the sleeves (which will be 3/4 length) and the collar (ribbed).  My friend Danielle gave me the perfect beach pebble buttons, which will go on this sweater. Pattern is Safire , yarn is Galway Worsted 732.

This is a research project.  There is a local organization here that asked for session proposals for an arts educators convention.  The theme for this year has to do with Native American tribes.  I have been wanting to put together a Native Americans unit for a while for the Textile Mobile.  We already have really fun units for textiles from Japan and India.  So I proposed a session on beginning beadwork in the Plains Indian style.  I have been pretty much obsessed with this kind of beadwork since I was about 6 years old.  This stitch is called the “lazy” or “lane” or “hump” stitch.  It is small sections of 6-8 beads stitched side by side in rows (you are looking at 2 rows in the photo).  It is used to fill large areas, so this is the stitch that is used to cover moccasins or the yoke of a ceremonial dress.  Your goal is to put 6 beads in the space of 5 1/2 so when you pull the stitch tight, it humps up a little, making the rows stand out a bit.  You can’t see it so well because of my color choices, but it is working for me ok.  Interestingly, I read that the stitch was developed to resemble quillwork, which was how these pieces were decorated before beads arrived on the scene.  Porcupine quills are only so big, so larger areas were covered with bands of quillwork stitched side by side.  I am stitching on some lovely buttery leather (acquired on my last trip to Prairie Edge).
One article I read suggested drawing some guidelines on with washable marker, which is a huge help.  I started the second row without and it was harder.  This will be a wide cuff bracelet when I am done.  For the workshop I am going to use larger beads (6/0) and embroidery thread on wool felt.