Love Knits Us Together: Felted Heart Bowls For Synod

Welcome back, my knitting friends! I hope each and every one of you have had a wonderful week. I have, and it’s just flown by! This week, I’m going to talk about a very special knitting project in which I’ve been involved: Knitting Together For Synod 2014. We’ll get to that in a bit, but first let’s take a look at all the other things that have been going on in my knitting world the past week.

Felted Heart Bowls

Some of the felted heart bowls that were blessed at church Sunday morning.

This Week In Podcasts

My podcast debt keeps expanding — I’ve got more podcasts coming in than I’ve made the time to listen to again this week. I have hours and hours of podcasts just waiting for me, and this week, I only managed to listen to three knitting-related podcasts: Fiber Hooligan, Ewe University, and Never Not Knitting.

In Fiber Hooligan: Anne Kuo Lukito redux, Benjamin interviews Anne Kuo Lukito. This was actually their second interview because technical difficulties conspired against them and the first interview was lost. Mad props to both Benjamin and Anne to go to the trouble to record the interview all over again so that the podcasting audience could enjoy it. I especially enjoyed the discussion Anne had about what it’s like to be a designer from several perspectives: designing for publications is entirely different from designing for yarn companies, and it was very cool to hear about what it’s like from both sides.

In Ewe University: Episode 19, Dr. Kelly talks about her Ravellenic experience. Like me, she didn’t knit everything she was hoping to knit during the Ravellenic Games, but it sounds like she had a successful couple of weeks. The classroom portion of her episode was another highly interesting one. It was about the Slow Fashion movement, and the Slow Living movement in general. I first heard about the Slow Living movement a few years ago, in relationship to Slow Food. A friend of mine who has a small farm was telling me about it: about how most people don’t know where their food comes from nowadays. The convenience of mega super markets and fast food chains comes at the price of creating a disconnect between the consumer and the farmer. The solution is getting back to things like a farmer’s market. The Slow Life movement takes the Slow Food movement and applies it to all areas of our lives. Slow Fashion, e.g., encourages buying (or making) clothing that is high-quality, long-lasting, and that you know where it comes from. Dr. Kelly’s discussion goes much deeper into the concepts and really provides some great ideas to think about. Of the three podcasts I listened to this week (all of them great!), Ewe University is definitely on the top of my list. It was also very cool to hear Dr. Kelly mention my friend Debbie on the podcast — it really is a small world!

In Never Not Knitting Episode 79: The End Of The Optimistic Knitter?, one of Alana’s listeners shares a cardigan disaster story. All of the elements lined up together to make this a disaster, and listening to it was like watching a wreck: I wanted to turn away, but I just couldn’t. Alana also talks about all of the patterns in her upcoming Botanical Knits 2 book. Finally, she reviews a cool-sounding book (Knit Your Own Zoo: Easy-to-Follow Patterns for 24 Animals) and is hosting a giveaway on her blog for a copy of that book. You probably shouldn’t go over there and try to win a copy, because with all of the toy knitting I’ve been doing lately, I really would like to win this one. Oh, yeah, it also comes with a skein of yarn.

This Week In Ravelry

It’s been a busy week in Ravelry. I’m still barely keeping up with the forums I read, but that’s OK. I didn’t add any patterns to my queue, and that’s great — my queue is plenty long enough as it is! One thing that has been a big deal in Ravelry this week is the wrap-up of the Ravellenic Games. Last week, I talked about crossing the finish line. This week, the medals were awarded, and I’m thrilled to share that I medaled in all three events I entered: Toy Tobogganing, Junior Ravellenics, and Stash Skeleton. They even game me virtual medals:

Ravellenics Medal

Toy Tobogganing: Knitted toys

Ravellenics Medal

Junior Ravellenics: Items intended for kids

Ravellenics Medal

Stash Skeleton: Use yarn that’s been in your stash for at least six months.

This was, of course, for my Not-So Itty-Bitty Giraffe that I finished last week. Blueberry still loves to give him hugs, and it looks like the name “Raff” is going to stick.

This Week On My Needles

After all of the Ravellenic knitting, my needles have slowed down considerably this week. I made some more good progress on Dad’s second sock — I’m about 2/3 of the way done with the gusset. Once I finish the gusset, it’s pretty smooth sailing down the foot an to the toe. If the stars line up, I think I might be able to finish that this week. I also almost ran out of days in the month before knitting a baby hat for the February monthly charity in the IBK group on Ravelry. The February charity was looking for baby outfits. I didn’t have it in me to knit a whole outfit, but I did knit one of my favorite baby hat patterns: The Baby Bear Hat. I love this because it knits up quickly (I cast on after coming home from work Friday evening, and completely finished before going to bed), and is super-cute. Seriously, who doesn’t love a little baby with bear ears on their hat?

Baby Bear Hat

The baby bear hat is a quick, fun knit.

And it’s even a little cuter when you roll up the brim:

Baby Bear Hat

The baby bear hat is in stockinette, so its brim looks super-cute when you roll it up a bit.

On Saturday, I posted it to Australia, so I hope it has a wonderful journey and reaches its destination safely and as quickly as international first class postage allows! I’m so glad to have knit this hat in under the wire for February, and I’m looking forward to participating in the March charity.

Love Knits Us Together: Felted Heart Bowls For Synod

Last year, I heard about a project that the Moravian Southern Province (in the United States) was doing in preparation for Synod 2014. Please read the article that was printed in the Moravian magazine last year for all of the details, but the short version goes something like this. In a few months, Moravian delegates from all over the Southern Province will be meeting to work on some of the “church government” issues that need to be addressed on a regular basis. These meetings take place over several days, and are often long and can be draining. A pastor at one of the local churches who is on the Synod Planning Committee had the idea to knit a felted heart bowl for each of the delegates and keep the bowls filled with candy during Synod. The candy would help fuel the delegates while they’re working on all the issues that come up. At the end of Synod, each delegate would take their bowl home with them as a reminder that we are knitted together in love.

In September of last year, I made my first little felted heart bowl. It was my first time felting. I had heard so many people tell me how awesome felting is, but I just didn’t see what the big deal was. After felting my first heart bowl, I “got it,” and started thinking about what other things I could do as a felting project! Here’s the first heart bowl that I knitted:

Little Felted Heart Bowl

The first of several little felted heart bowls I made for Synod 2014.

Since making that first bowl, I went to a workshop for making bowls last October. Then, in November, I led a workshop at my church where I ended up teaching a friend how to knit, and helped several other people with some of the techniques (like picking up stitches) that are employed in the felted heart bowl. Several of the workshop participants took their bowls home to felt themselves, and a few gave them to me to take home and felt for them. Additionally, other members of the congregation who weren’t at the workshop knitted and felted wonderful bowls for the project. In the end, our congregation contributed about 15 bowls to the project.

Felted Heart Bowls

The felted heart bowls that were blessed at church Sunday morning look pretty impressive on the altar.

What I thought was really, really cool about the project was when all the bowls came together at church Sunday morning. During the service, we blessed the bowls. But looking at all of the bowls, knit by a half-dozen different people, it was really amazing to see how the same pattern produces such different results in the hands of different crafters, with different kinds of yarn. I think the Synod delegates are going to feel loved, and are fortunate to be able to have such a nice keepsake to take home once Synod is over.

Felted Heart Bowls

All of the felted heart bowls that were blessed at church Sunday morning.

If you’d like to learn more about Knitting Together For Synod 2014, I encourage you to check out the Love Knits Us Together FaceBook page.

Have you participated in a large project where lots of people come together to knit things for others? Tell me about it in the comments!

Until next week, keep on knitting for the ones you love!

-greg

Ravelry: KnittingDaddy

2 thoughts on “Love Knits Us Together: Felted Heart Bowls For Synod

    • Thanks! It’s such a great project — I’m not a fast knitter and after having done a few of these bowls, I can knit one up in about 3-4 hours. It was a great introduction to felting, too. The pattern is Little Felted Heart Bowl by Marion Matthews and is available as a for-purchase download from Ravelry. We made our bowls bigger by using chunky (or two strands of worsted held together) and bumping up the needle size to at least 11.

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