To live and enjoy every day to its fullest, use my gifts to help others, I travel to wherever passion finds me.

What Will She Paint?

So many friends I met here...!

Thursday, January 29, 2009


I'm NOT changing my theme to knitting, but at the end you'll understand why I went through all these detailed steps!

The vent of the air conditioner in one of the other rooms of our office does not work as well as in my counseling room. This makes my room kind of breezy. My answer to that problem was to knit sweaters fitting with my short sleeve tops. On the photo below you see a "shrug." Kinda bulky, but very comfy.

I am very particular about my clothes.
Maybe I could wear suits, so certain patients would not treat me like I am a pushover and demand I get their coffee for them. I tell them then calmly that I do not take care of other therapist's clients. Or, another effective approach to deal with their grandiose demand is to go up close to them, look them square in the eye and say, "Ask your therapist...but I don't think he'll do it."
It may sound harsh or rude to some of you, but some people think that psychologists are lovey-dovey and that is the sign for them to take advantage of them. Fortunately, this does not happen too often.
Back to the suits. Suits are at times unpractical when you are doing play therapy or sand therapy, and you are on the floor with the child (client).

My First Purse! After one of my sweater projects I knitted this cool purse (Interweave Knits was ahead of the crowd) with a pattern that goes from left to right (a deviation from the usual bottom to top) with boucle (curly) yarn. I used a pair of handles that I had saved for 2 decades, "just in case." I was so enthused that I wanted to make another one. Not in one other magazine, book, or internet could I find a pattern - the story of my life. So, I finally adjusted the only pattern I had and knitted a smaller purse for a teen with seersucker looking cotton yarn.

Seersucker Purse.
In the 5-6 months that I looked left and right for patterns, I started making my own patterns, each for a different purpose and event.

Grocery Bag
A grocery bag needs to be able to expand, so no lining, and it needs to be foldable. This bag is not a French invention as sometimes is portrayed. In most countries of the world they have their own version of a grocery bag. All my other bags and purses have a lining, because I always carry pens and pencils with me. Felting is not an option for me, because it wipes out the very structure of the stitch that I love!

What Did I Get Into?
Plenty of times I ran into problems with making my own patterns. Amazingly, one morning I woke up seeing the solution to the problem right in front of me. It looked like a video instruction was dropped from heaven to where I was laying in bed. I was beside myself. I could not attribute it to ESP since no one except my hubby knew I was making the bags. Obviously if I had the smarts, I would have figured it out myself, but what was this then? Never found out why I received these solutions, but I am glad "it" happened.

Click on the image to enlarge to see details

A small knitted evening purse with gold lining and long shoulder strap, so you won't have to lay it down, and then forget to take it with you when you leave, like Forgetful-Me does - often!). This is my own design, where I used the pattern of the cuff of the shrug (first photo) for this evening purse. The fold of the flap is purposefully designed as a wave.

When these solutions kept falling out of the sky, I began to pray for them when I got stuck. Since God created such complicated things like the universe, and you and me, I knew my bags were a sinch for Him. Only, I had not expected that He would be interested in such a trivial problem like a purse. And for what? Just for my own enjoyment! (Hold that thought!)
After months, I finally found a large internet site that had a crochet pattern for a bag and a hat. What a relief! Now I could crochet without ripping it out 8 times, or pull out my hair - how nice. I had built up quite a collection of purses and bags, when the following happened.

Field of Dreams
Now we come to the part that you know from my blog post in Dec. (2 little Christmas Traditions), when I knitted an Icelandic hat for my son in China and the orphan without legs, whom he had given his lunch to.
After knitting those two hats, I heard a whisper in the quality of the movie Field of Dreams. Probably the most well known phrase in that movie is, "If you build, they will come." The whisper I heard was, "If you knit the hats, you can keep the bags." That whisper made it easy for me to spend my free time in the winter to do something for others. It also added a new dimension to my life, because I decided to sell the bags in a boutique, so I could buy more yarn for the hats.

Knitting at a Coffeeshop

thought (Epiloque is too official of a word here)
From how I deal with demanding patients you know that I am not even close to Miss Goodie-2-Shoes, but this is my "thank you" for having a warm house when it's cold outside and not having to beg for food. Let's face it, it could be you or me. Hope you don't forget the less fortunate in your neighborhood when it's freezing outside.


~PakKaramu~ said...

Pak Karamu visiting your blog

Lillie said...

The bags are lovely especially the grocery bag. A great idea indeed.
Sorry that you had to meet such demanding ppl at work.
Thank you for visiting me and link to my blog:D

jeannette stgermain said...

Thank you Lillie - I looked at your profile, and is it a group you belong to that blogs together?

Having to figure out my own patterns for the bags was a good practice for making patterns for the hats. Are you Chinese? (Because of your Chinese New Years wish)- then also read Adventures of an Artist: Bridges - it's about China) -I think you like it.
Don't worry about demanding people - I like it that I have the "know how" how to put them in their place, :)

Lillie said...

Yes, I'm Chinese, A Malaysian Chinese and a Straits born. Which means I am losing my Chinese roots..LOL You've lived in Indonesia?
Been to Malaysia by any chance?

The group blogs are actually a group of dedicated cross-stitchers who had come together and organized yearlong exchanges.

jeannette stgermain said...

Lillie, in my comment at your blog I forgot to tell you that I have never been to Malaysia - the only Asian country I visited is China.
Have to admit, I am not patient enough for cross-stitching. Right now, I am (trying!) making socks and I'm going nuts, because it's so little, LOL

Peggy said...

Hi jeannette,I love all of your bags, just shows once you pick up needles you can do anything with them. I have never thought of knitting bags, I agree with you about felting. I cannot see the point in spending time knitting and then ruining the whole thing by boiling or agitating in the wash!
best wishes

jeannette stgermain said...

Thank you , Peggy, from your comment I gather that you knit too? But for painters like you and i, it seems painting comes first, and our other creative endeavors come second LOL