Kiki Mariko 2 finished

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After multiple trips through the washer and dryer, my second Kiki Mariko rug is finished.

As you can see from the picture at the top, it is a little bit wonky. The felting came out a little bit unevenly, but I think I’m going to say that just adds character.  And this is a rug for us to rub our feet on when we come in from outside, so perfection is not required. It is really soft and dense and squishy, all that a rug should be.

And it used up nine skeins of bulky yarn, making a nice dent in the excessive yarn stash!

It amazes me how much felting shrinks and tightens yarn.  It is almost a third shorted than it started.  This is what it looked like before it went into the wash the first time:

Rug before felting

(It wasn’t as distorted as it appeared in the photo – the flare is an optical illusion due to the angle I took the pic from.)

I felted it as a tube, putting a cotton line through the ends to tighten them and reduce the ruffling that can happen at the edge of felted projects.

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It worked better at one end than the other, but trimming took care of some of that later.

After four washes, I cut the tube along the center of the steek.

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It was really wildly shaped at that point!

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Another trip through the washer flattened it out a lot more, and then I trimmed off the steek remnants and evened out the sides.

It is supposed to have a blanket stitch edging to finish it off, but I don’t know that it really needs it.  It isn’t going to ever unravel – the individual strands of yarn are fully stuck together.  My other idea, just for looks, it to add a canvas binding.

But for now, I’m going to use it as is.  My toes are happy!

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Kiki Mariko

Time to get another TV knitting project going.  I couldn’t see starting another cowl after finishing three in a row, but I wasn’t yet done with circular needles, so I turned to one of my Mason-Dixon knitting books and cast on a Kiki Mariko rug.

So many good things will be accomplished with this project:

I’ll have a rug to replace the old towel currently protecting the carpet in front of our sliding glass door.

I will get rid of at least half of a very large bag of Lamb’s Pride bulky yarn that I’ve been collecting when it went on sale.  So much space will be created in the yarn storage!

I will not have more cowls right away.  There is no need for more cowls.

I will get to knit with size 15 needles, which amuse me with every stitch – so big! So shiny! Musical metallic tings with every stitch.

I will get a rug to replace the Kiki Mariko that I knit some years ago and lost during a move.

(My kids loved that project.  I can’t believe how small they were then!)

This rug is knit as a huge, loose tube with a steek.  After felting, the steek is cut and a flat, dense, tough rug is the result.  You can see how much it shrinks in the before and after photos above.  In official measurements, it went from one full kid to 3/4s of a kid.

It is a very quick knit.  Each row adds about 3/4s of an inch in length.  Other than wrestling the stitches around the thick tube of the circular needle, it is about as easy a stranded patterns as it is possible to make.

Let the vacation knitting begin!  (I am officially on Winter Break in 4 minutes.  Go, clock, go!)