Monday, August 29, 2011

Do you tawashi?

A tawashi is actually a japanese word for a specific type of scrub brush, but the term has expanded in the crochet realm to these cute little thingees that people started making and using as scrubbies for their dishes.  
Tawashi anyone?

I came across these first on etsy.  What caught my eye in particular was the fact that they were made out of acrylic.  Cheapo acrylic yarn, the scratchier the better.  I had always followed the yarn commandment that says, "Thou shalt only use cotton for handmade yarny kitchen thingees."  But much to my surprise acrylic does an extraordinary job of scrubbing dishes. I even scrubbed my lasagna pan without soaking it first with above tawashi and it took no time at all and nowhere near as much elbow grease as it usually would.  Hmmmm... looks like I'll have to take back my vow to never ever buy Red Heart Supersaver again.

I used this pattern to make the tawashi above.  The crochet part was super simple, but I had to watch a video  I found on ravelry to understand how to put it together.  So I made a little picture tool to show how it's done in case anyone wants to make one.
Do you tawashi?

When I looked up "tawashi" on Flickr and ravelry I found that people are cuckoo for these things.  Sort of like useful amurigami.  For me the awesomeness of tawashi all lies in the idea of maybe never having to buy a sponge again.  And the fact that you can throw them in with your regular laundry. Because I've always been a little creeped out by the whole sponge crawling with bacteria situation.  Speaking of which, supposedly tawashi made from acrylic is so good at removing food particles from dishes that you don't even need to use soap. (Of course, I still will use soap, but how cool is that?)  There is also some Japanese yarn that has been treated with silver ions to make it anti-bacterial.  Yarn made especially for tawashi making! But I'll stick with my Red Heart stash for now.

So far I've just tried this one pattern, but I found all kinds of super cute tawashi pictures on Flickr.
Here are some of my favorites: 

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Goodnight Summer

I am boycotting summer.
I'm just over it.  I am so done.

Merriam-Webster defines boycott as - to engage in a concerted refusal to have dealings with (as a person, store, or organization) usually to express disapproval or to force acceptance of certain conditions

Every year around this time I start yearning for Fall and the end of summer.  But this year I'm in a downright protest against summer.  Here in Texas we're on the 900th day of 100+ degree weather, not to mention one of the worst droughts these parts have ever dealt with. (Okay it's not really the 900th day, but that's what it feels like.) I mean we didn't even get a real Spring for crying out loud! No rain = no flowers.  I mean the trees are just gasping out here, folks.  

So I was walking through my local craft store sometime last week when I came across this:

Here it comes...

Now, usually I scorn the putting out of the holiday things months before the actual holiday, but this year I almost did a little dance! And I thought, "Darn right! If the craft stores can start preparing for Halloween in August well then so I can I!"  And right then and there I decided that I'm just not dealing with summer anymore.  As far as I'm concerned it's time to start preparing for falling leaves and cornucopias.
So there!

And here at Casa Moi, that means it's blanket making time!
Goodnight Moon inspired Granny Squares
This one is going to be for Mr. Boy.  He's pretty much grown out of all his baby blankets, and when I made this one for my friend last year, he loved it!  So I vowed to make him a Granny of his own.

I chose to use the colors from Goodnight Moon because he can just stare and stare at that book for... well... minutes.  He's a 3 year old boy after all.  So no one activity can generally keep him occupied for more than a few minutes.

And I'm also making a baby blanket for a friend who's expecting and whose baby shower is coming up on September 17th.  But I can't show you pics of that one yet because you never know whose watching.

So I'll be a busy, busy, crocheting bee for the next few weeks!