PDA

View Full Version : I've got the hot water bottle blues....


Woodi
11-22-2011, 02:16 PM
I've been knitting a hot water bottle cover for a couple of weeks or months now (months really). Not sure why, just felt as soon as I saw the pattern that I MUST do this....to give as a gift....to someone.....

I'm not a great knitter, but really do love the act of knitting and occasionally get "bitten" by or "smitten with" a pattern

anyways, here's what I've done so far:

http://www.soapmaker.ca/SoapPics/knitbotwat.JPG

This is the pattern:

http://www.soapmaker.ca/SoapPics/watbotPat.JPG

and this is the bottle:
http://www.soapmaker.ca/SoapPics/WatBot.JPG

Do you see my predicament? There's a flap on both top and bottom of this particular hot water bottle. This means that I have to knit a longer neck, and am not sure if the bottom will fit either.

Should I just take scissors to the bottle and cut those flaps off? or will this de-stabilize the thing?

or should I just stretch the thing on, make the neck longer......???

anyways, for those of you who are still reading this, here's a little gift for you. I plan to give a copy of this story with the bottle and knitted cover.

Get your tissues out before you read it.
Miracle of the Hotwater Bottle

By Helen Roseveare
One night I had worked hard to help a mother in the labor ward; but in spite
of all we could do, she died, leaving us with a tiny, premature baby and a
crying two-year-old daughter. We would have difficulty keeping the baby
alive; as we had no incubator (we had no electricity to run an incubator).
We also had no special feeding facilities.
Although we lived on the equator, nights were often chilly with treacherous
drafts. One student midwife went for the box we had for such babies and the
cotton wool that the baby would be wrapped in.
Another went to stoke up the fire and fill a hot water bottle. She came back shortly in distress to tell me that in filling the bottle, it had burst (rubber perishes easily in tropical climates). “And it is our last hot water bottle!” she exclaimed.
As in the West, it is no good crying over spilled milk, so in Central Africa it might be considered no good crying over burst water bottles. They do not grow on trees, and there are no drugstores down forest pathways.
“All right,” I said, “put the baby as near the fire as you safely can, and sleep between the baby and the door to keep it free from drafts Your job is to keep the baby warm.”
The following noon, as I did most days, I went to have prayers with any of the orphanage children who chose to gather with me. I gave the youngsters various suggestions of things to pray about and told them about the tiny baby. I explained our problem about keeping the baby warm enough, mentioning the hot water bottle, and that the baby could so easily die if it got chills. I also told them of the two-year-old sister, crying because her mother had died.
During prayer time, one ten-year-old girl, Ruth, prayed with the usual blunt conciseness of our African children. “Please, God,” she prayed, “Send us a hot water bottle today It’ll be no good tomorrow, God, as the baby will be dead, so please send it this afternoon.”
While I gasped inwardly at the audacity of the prayer, she added, “And while You are about it, would You please send a dolly for the little girl so she’ll know You really love her?”
As often with children’s prayers, I was put on the spot. Could I honestly say “Amen?” I just did not believe that God could do this.
Oh, yes, I know that He can do everything; the Bible says so. But there are limits, aren’t there? The only way God could answer this particular prayer would be by sending me a parcel from the homeland. I had been in Africa for almost four years at that time, and I had never, ever, received a parcel from home. Anyway, if anyone did send me a parcel, who would put in a hot water bottle? I lived on the equator!
Halfway through the afternoon, while I was teaching in the nurses’ training school, a message was sent that there was a car at my front door. By the time I reached home, the car had gone, but there on the verandah was a large 22-pound parcel. I felt tears pricking my eyes. I could not open the parcel alone, so I sent for the orphanage children. Together we pulled off the string, carefully undoing each knot. We folded the paper, taking care not to tear it unduly. Excitement was mounting. Some thirty or forty pairs of eyes were focused on the large cardboard box….
From the top, I lifted out brightly-colored, knitted jerseys. Eyes sparkled as I gave them out. Then there were the knitted bandages for the leprosy patients, and the children looked a little bored. Then came a box of mixed raisins and sultanas -= that would make a batch of buns for the weekend.
Then, as I put my hand in again, I felt the…..could it really be?
I grasped it and pulled it out. Yes, a brand new, rubber hot water bottle.
I cried. I had not asked God to send it; I had not truly believed that He could.
Ruth was in the front row of the children. She rushed forward, crying out, “If God has sent the bottle, He must have sent the dolly, too!”
Rummaging down to the bottom of the box, she pulled out the small, beautifully-dressed dolly. Her eyes shone! She had never doubted!
Looking up at me, she asked, “Can I go over with you and give this dolly to that little girl, so she’ll know that Jesus really loves her?”
“Of course!” I replied.
That parcel had been on the way for five whole months, packed up by my former Sunday school class, whose leader had heard and obeyed God’s prompting to send a hot water bottle, even to the equator.
And one of the girls had put in a dolly for an African child — five months before, in answer to the believing prayer of a ten-year-old to bring it “that afternoon.”
“Before they call, I will answer.” (Isaiah 65:24)

Jan in CA
11-22-2011, 04:15 PM
No, I wouldn't cut anything. If anything I'd just make the knitted cable part longer. Knitting stretches though so it'll probably be fine.

Funny..I've never used a hot water bottle. I always use a heating pad or a microwave heated thing. ;)

justplaincharlotte
11-22-2011, 11:23 PM
My goodness, I haven't seen or used one of those in years! What a nifty project. :) Love the cables, learning to work them is next on my to-do list. I'm with Jan on making the cabled part just a touch longer.

Woodi
11-23-2011, 11:06 AM
ok, now don't laugh at me, but I live in the woods in the Canadian north, right?....and I'm surrounded by people who are really "into" the green living thing, which means using as little electricity as possible because they believe that electricity costs are going to skyrocket out of the roof, and the rise has begun already.

Our monthly electric bill is around $175 now (bad), and some of the 'greener' than us people keep theirs under $100, closer to $70.

The monasteries we frequent also use very little, they heat with propane gas, and have solar panels. In fact, they are at the moment designing a new meditation hall, with the help of my hubby, which will be very low in cost to maintain.

So those of you who are so used to plugging things into a socket and sucking electricity out of the grid....can you try to think as I am learning to? What if your power grid goes down, or becomes so very costly.....?

This is my reason for thinking hot water bottle. I hope I won't have to heat the water over an open campfire, but this would, if necessary, be possible...

I do believe such things are coming, like it or not....but slowly. Many people in the west here believe that we can simply keep on eating up the earth and its resources without limit. What a shock those people will be in for....soon enough.

justplaincharlotte
11-23-2011, 05:52 PM
ok, now don't laugh at me, but I live in the woods in the Canadian north, right?....

So those of you who are so used to plugging things into a socket and sucking electricity out of the grid....can you try to think as I am learning to? What if your power grid goes down, or becomes so very costly.....?

This is my reason for thinking hot water bottle. I hope I won't have to heat the water over an open campfire, but this would, if necessary, be possible...



No laughing here. I'm used to going without electricity from time to time after a hurricane. Honestly, I like the peace and quiet I get from it, no TV, no phones, and everything stops at sunset... there is a certain serenity in the old ways. I don't over romanticize it (who really wants to go back to outhouses, chamber pots, or turn of the century medicine?), because there is much that is useful in the modern world. But we would definitely benefit from embracing what was good in the older ways of doing things... Just my two cents on the subject. :)

Jan in CA
11-23-2011, 07:25 PM
Our electricity rarely goes out here, but I'm not laughing. We have lowered our electric bill tremendously by putting CF bulbs, using cold water to do laundry (most of the time) and turning off lights. We recently got new energy efficient double pane windows, too. So I do occasionally use a heating pad or more often heat up my neck pillow in the microwave, but overall we are doing well. :thumbsup:

Olha
11-23-2011, 08:39 PM
Seriously, no laughing. Once we had a power outage for three days because of the blizzard. Luckily, we had hot water so hot showers during the day and hot bottles during the night (well, 2 L pop bottles really) kept us from freezing.

Woodi
11-23-2011, 09:07 PM
Isn't it funny that this old-fashioned rubber bottle design (first seen in 1925 I believe) is still going strong?....pretty much unchanged.

Somewhere they do list a warning that the things can explode or leak if they get too old and the rubber can crack. Slightly dangerous - you would think someone might have improved it by now.

knitcindy
11-24-2011, 08:23 AM
What I'd like to know is where did you get that watter bottle cover pattern? I'd like to make one too!!!

Thanks!!!!!!!!
knitcindy

Jan in CA
11-24-2011, 02:47 PM
What I'd like to know is where did you get that watter bottle cover pattern? I'd like to make one too!!!


Go to Ravelry and type water bottle cover in and you'll bunches of them. Here's two of many...

http://hyggenook.com/2010/12/freebie-download-cable-knitted-hot-water-bottle-pattern.html
http://thecakeplate.blogspot.com/2008/07/cabled-hot-water-bottle-cover-pattern.html

Woodi
11-24-2011, 08:12 PM
That's the pattern! Have fun making it.

I sewed it together but don't want to close the bottom....I think you need to remove the water bottle to fill it up. But I need to add an inch or more to the bottom too...I'll do k1p1 like the sides.

http://www.soapmaker.ca/SoapPics/WatBotDone.JPG

justplaincharlotte
11-24-2011, 10:50 PM
Woodi, can you fold that bottom piece of the bottle into the knitted piece? Maybe then you won't have to knit anymore...

Jan in CA
11-25-2011, 12:10 AM
Maybe just pick up stitches and do an inch or two of garter stitch. The different stitch will make it look intentional rather than the mistake of not making it long enough. I think I'd add a couple snaps to close it so the cover doesn't slide up.

Olha
11-25-2011, 09:31 AM
Turned out nice!

Did you consider just sewing up the 'shoulders' on the bottom and leaving the 'neck opening' for this piece of rubber that sticks out? If it's stretchy enough you could use it as an upside down sweater :)

Woodi
11-25-2011, 11:18 AM
Thanks gals!

this is what I did last evening: I added 3 rows of seed stitch to the bottom on one side, intending to do the same on other. I am also thinking that maybe two buttonholes might work in one of these sides. Then I can just button it closed. I don't like snaps nor velcro, and I have many large buttons.http://www.soapmaker.ca/SoapPics/HotWatPlus.JPG

By the way, a full hot water bottle is now inside this knitted cover...

Closeup of that bottom: (looks raggy doesn't it?...haven't blocked it at all, yet. Will do. Then I will show you the final outcome.
http://www.soapmaker.ca/SoapPics/PlusClose.JPG

Gosh this has been a long project! Thank you for your patience with me, knitters. I'm now 64 years old and likely won't get much better at knitting, and I drool over the lovely things others do...but I still love to knit! (and lumpy things look so cozy, don't they?) hehe

I can see from this photo that my cables are holey at the edges...hoping some blocking might disguise this. This is acrylic yarn though, so not likely to change much.

Jan in CA
11-25-2011, 01:44 PM
Perfect! The seed stitch looks great! I think I'd just toss in the washer and dryer if it's acrylic. At least I'd try that first probably. You can always pull it out when it's almost dry or dampish and lay it flat.

I just said snaps because I was thinking they might be easier than buttonholes, but you're right..snaps are a pain to sew on.

Woodi
11-25-2011, 05:35 PM
Thanks for all the kind words, and to Jan, I just love you! :heart:

You are always so perky and cheerily positive. I'll bet you could write a book on the subject, or at least make a poster, hehe
The suggestion to wash it and put in dryer, then lay flat will be what I do, sounds good.

I love seed stitch, so will finish with more of that...still slow-going. I may have used too small a needle for this type of yarn.

Stay tuned for the finale! coming soon....

ArtLady1981
11-25-2011, 06:28 PM
I like the hot water bottle because it can be used independent of electricity. All you'd need is access to hot water, which can be boiled over a campfire if needs be!

I think this little hot water bottle sweater is so adorable. I'm with Jan...I wouldn't take scissors to it. However, can that extra flap thing at the bottom be folded up? Could you use 'duct tape' to fold it up and secure it to the bottle to get it out of the way?

I can't believe I'm suggesting the 1,001th way to use duct tape!

Woodi
11-25-2011, 10:39 PM
Well I don't know what got into me, but I just couldn't stop working on it today - so here it is now 9:35PM and it's done! These green buttons were the only ones I could find. I kind of like the contrast, but should have sewn them on straighter. Maybe tomorrow I'll straighten them out.

I taught myself how to make buttonholes, not great ones, but they work.

It was fun to cuddle it tonight while I watched Revolutionary Road. What a depressing movie though! Well done, great acting, but such a downer.

http://www.soapmaker.ca/SoapPics/HotWatBotFin.JPG

justplaincharlotte
11-25-2011, 11:46 PM
Woodi - how precious! Nothing yummier than cuddling up to something warm on a cold evening!

ArtLady1981
11-26-2011, 12:06 AM
That's so darn cute, Woodi, and useful to boot!!!

ArtLady1981
11-26-2011, 12:29 AM
Here' (http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/cable-knit-hot-water-bottle-cover)s the pattern that you used, Woodi!

And as Jan said...the Ravelry database turned up a 4 pages of cute patterns (http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/search#query=hot%20water%20bottle%20cover&sort=best) for hot water bottle covers!

The hot water bottle cover below is permanently fitted over the hot water bottle. You seam the bottom and sides...stuff the hot water bottle down into the sweater...then seam the shoulders and side neck.
http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_bzohfr_xGkE/TOpxwlBfTuI/AAAAAAAABOs/GkQ6DWWEcfI/s320/MILHWBC2.jpg
Click here (http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/cabled-hot-water-bottle-cover-cozy) for pattern. I like this one, too. I like Celtic cables.

Jan in CA
11-26-2011, 12:33 AM
Thanks for all the kind words, and to Jan, I just love you! :heart:

You are always so perky and cheerily positive. I'll bet you could write a book on the subject, or at least make a poster, hehe
The suggestion to wash it and put in dryer, then lay flat will be what I do, sounds good.



Aww thank you! :aww: :hug: I can find something positive in almost any situation since that is my nature. I like being happy. :)

Your hot water bottle cover looks great! I like the contrast of the green buttons, too. BTW.. buttonholes are kind of frustrating for everyone, but they do get easier and better with time. Fortunately once the item is buttoned you can't really see them anyway. ;)

NorthernIrelandKnitter
11-26-2011, 08:51 AM
Your hwb cover looks very cosy, Woodi!

I have read or heard the story about Helen Roseveare and the hot water bottle before, but it still brought a tear to my eye when I read it in your post.

Gillian

Woodi
11-26-2011, 08:18 PM
Oh no! Artlady, are you trying to drive me mad? That celtic one looks so gorgeous, and now I'll want to make it too! I already have someone in mind for one, my niece- she just had a baby.

but this one item took me forever and a day. What's that you say?.....the more you make the easier it gets......well, mebbe.

Thanks for the Ravelry page!

borealowl
12-05-2011, 03:27 PM
I just finished my second cozy a couple days ago - hoot water bottle cozy, on my Ravelry page. The first one had a flap in the back which keeps coming open and I plan to put velcro on that one. With this one I just stuffed the empty bottle down the neck folded and put the water in afterwards. I just fold the bottom flap up on the bottle. Nights here in Alaska can be pretty cold so I put the bottle in bed about ten minutes before I get in and then sleep with it up against my back. Really makes a difference. I bought hot water bottles and made cozies for them for three of my friends this Christmas.:knitting:

Woodi
12-07-2011, 02:55 PM
borealowl lives in Alaska?....wow, that's so far north to me, and some think I live in the north, heh.

Your hotwatbot cozies sound like a perfect gift for freezy friends. Nice!

Jan in CA
12-07-2011, 03:46 PM
VELCRO?? Velcro is usually a bad match for knitting. It really sticks to it and makes it fuzzy and fills up the velcro with fuzz, too. Every time I wear this sweater I made it gets stuck in the velcro flap on my purse. Drives me crazy!

borealowl
12-07-2011, 04:43 PM
borealowl lives in Alaska?....wow, that's so far north to me, and some think I live in the north, heh.

Your hotwatbot cozies sound like a perfect gift for freezy friends. Nice!

Yes, I am in Fairbanks, in the interior, one of the coldest spots here. Where are you in Canada? I have made several trips up and down the AK hwy. and love it there.
Yes, my friends live in cold houses in northern areas and I thought this would be a perfect gift for them. Hopefully they like them.

borealowl
12-07-2011, 04:46 PM
VELCRO?? Velcro is usually a bad match for knitting. It really sticks to it and makes it fuzzy and fills up the velcro with fuzz, too. Every time I wear this sweater I made it gets stuck in the velcro flap on my purse. Drives me crazy!

Yes, I can generally agree with you on that - I hate velcro too but it worked out well on a kindle cover I just made. The hot water bottle cover just had a flap and no buttonholes but keeps coming open so that's the best solution I can think of.

salmonmac
12-08-2011, 07:12 AM
A success! You realy stuck with this and it turned out very well. And, now you can do buttonholes. Grreat work.