Calorimetry

11 04 2011

It was meant to be.

I had been trying to think of something to knit my sister for weeks. One day while tidying up I knocked over a bag of my stashed yarn. Out rolled the remainder of a skein from these mitts (the owlings ones). I had knit the mitts for her a little over a year ago. So I pulled up ravelry and plugged in my search parameters and ta-da! A perfect pattern. I mean how could I resist?

And talk about an easy knit! It was a lot of fun to whip up in just a couple of hours. I need to knock over my stash more often.

  • Pattern – Calorimetry from Knitty
  • Yarn – Jane Ellison’s Queensland Collection Kathmandu Aran from my stash
  • Button – vintage from the families collection
  • Alterations – none
  • My Ravelry – here





Pink Stripy Leg Warmers

6 04 2011

My color themed photography has hit a bit of a bump in the road. I was prepared for the first 2 days and figured I could then use those days to prepare for the rest of the week. WRONG. First our water heater started leaking and then our fridge went out. Please don’t say that bad things come in threes or I will have to strangle you through the interweb air waves!

Fortunately I still have something pink up my sleeve that I hadn’t posted about yet – these fun little pink and brown striped leg warmers. I made them to go along with Eleanor’s latest passion – ballet. They’ve been getting quite a bit of use both at dance class and elsewhere.

  • Pattern – Legwarmies by Alana Dakos over at Never Not Knitting
  • Yarn – Dale’s Heilo from my stash
  • Mods – upsized a bit by casting on 48 and making 43 thin stripes. This made them the perfect size for my petite almost 4 year old.
  • My Ravelry: here

It’s a very simple pattern but I’ve never done much with striping. Therefore, I decided to play around with jogless join techniques. For the non-knitters out there, this is where an effort is made to disguise where the color change happens. Without it the color change would be more of an upward swirl than a true stripe.

On the left you can see a plain or stationary jogless join and on the right a traveling version. I figured it wouldn’t matter too much as you wear leg warmers scrunched down right? WRONG, Eleanor loves to smooth them out perfectly flat making the join rather obvious. Especially when it runs straight down her shin. Now that I’ve been watching these little stripes running around the house for a bit I can definitely say I prefer the traveling version. If I could get myself to knit a little looser I don’t think you’d be able to see the join at all.

Now. Tomorrow’s color is lavender. I’m a bit worried that I won’t be able to pull it off. Not only am I running out of time, but it’s not exactly a color we have on hand over here. I’ll give it a try but I may not be back until Friday. See ya soon!





She Wore It!!

28 02 2011

And despite the face, she likes her new “raspberry dress”. In case you haven’t heard me complain, I finished this dress over 2 months ago and this silly little girl refused to wear it. Refused! I was especially irked because it took me MONTHS to knit this little thing. Not because it was hard, in fact it’s a super easy pattern. I ran into a little problem until I found the errata and the straps were a bit of a bore to make but mostly my problem lay in that I had hit a knitting slump. I simply wasn’t in the mood. But once I found my mojo, all was good.

Good that is, until I gave it to her. I mean her utter refusal to even try it on had me baffled. That had never happened before.

Lesson learned. She’s old enough now that I have to include her in pattern and yarn choices or risk the consequences. Luckily, this dress is flexible enough in style and has plenty of room for her to grow, therefore plenty of time for her to choose to wear it.

  • Pattern: Paz by Cirilia Rose – no complaints other than I think it should have been written in the round. Also, please note the pattern correction should you want to knit this little jumper.
  • Yarn: Berroco Remix – made from 100% recycled fibers. I found it nice and squishy to work with.
  • Alternations/sizing: went with a size 2 width, but size 4 length – why are knitting patterns for children always so wide? It’s too big for her petite size 3, but that just means a longer life.
  • My ravelry: here

Incidentally, these pouty pictures were taken at the end of a long day at the Walker Art Center. She was ready to go home. But earlier in the day, she was all smiles. Thought I’d post some proof. We just didn’t capture a good pic of the dress when she was smiling.





Socks

23 01 2011

Lucky us! We got a new batch of Sunday Socks from grandma!

Yes, those are matching mother daughter socks – same yarn, different pattern. Eleanor likes to wear hers peeking out of her cowboy boots.

We are seriously lucky in the handknit sock category. Our goodies from last year, poorly photographed:

The year before that can be found here. I guess we should stop calling them Sunday Socks since we have enough now to wear on other days of the week. But that’s just how special they are.





Hostess Gift

6 06 2010

While in NYC I stayed with a long time friend. Her move to the big apple came after my plans to visit the city but made for a happy coincidence. She was gracious enough to put me up in her apartment in Astoria and made sure I was comfortable. As a token of my gratitude I made her these mitts. Granted she probably won’t be wearing them for a few months but timing was never my strong suit. At least I was able to finish and present them to her before I left.

Pattern – Glorious Cabled Mitts by Karen Adams (need Ravelry access to obtain)

Yarn – Cascade Yarns Heritage Paints (very nice)

My Ravelry – here





A Complete Set

12 04 2010

What do you do when you’re big sis hits a milestone birthday? Well, in my case you knit. And because I’m the teasing little sister, I knit in black.  I couldn’t be too bad after all, I do have a younger sister and will also eventually hit this milestone.

Here’s me modeling the beret. I’d put a pic of my glamorous sis up, but she’s all the way across the country.

Pattern: Speedy Cabled Beret (the term speedy is NOT used lightly here)

Yarn: Rowan Alpaca Soft

Alterations: converted to knitting in the round

Ravelry: here

Since I had plenty of yarn left and I was on a fingerless mitt kick:

Pattern: Last Minute Knit Mitts from Dawn at UK lass in US

Alterations: none

Ravelry: here

I still had yarn left over so I knit a super quick (and slightly boring) long skinny scarf with fringe.

I wish it could have been longer, but not only has this yarn been discontinued, it was supposed to just be a project to use up the yarn. Buying a 5th skein would have defeated that purpose. I think it took me longer to package and mail this gift than actually knit it. I’m bad that way.

Happy very belated birthday big sis!

Ravelry: here





Oops!

31 03 2010

Sometimes mistakes are fun. It’s true. I’m in the middle of making Seth some fingerless mitts like the ones I made his grandfather. I’m using the same yarn and it fades from dark to bright, light green. I’m on mitt #2 and was about 1/3 of the way done when I realized the color changing wasn’t working out. I don’t expect them to be look the same, but I do want them to be somewhat similar. The way it was turning out I was going to end up with one bright green mitt and one dark, dark green mitt. It wasn’t working for me. And this yarn doesn’t tear back very easily. So I cut the yarn, cinched it through the top row of stitches, folded over the brim and wallah! Duckie has a new easter hat.

Reactions from the kids differed. Seth thought my little 2″ hat was hilarious. Eleanor on the other hand had this to say in between teary eyed sniffs “but you’re to make me an ORANGE hat!!!” Per her request, I will eventually get around to making her an orange hat, but I in no way thought that would be her reaction. Ah well, I amused myself.





For Me!!

16 03 2010

After all those fingerless mitts I made for christmas, I finally finished a pair for me! The funny thing is these are actually the first pair I ever started – way, way back in June. It’s not the easiest pattern. There’s a left and a right and it sort of twists around. This all requires a bit of thought which I find hard when there are children around, a friend to talk to or a glass of wine near by – heaven forbid all three at the same time! I also started to think I wouldn’t like the slightly scratchy nature of the yarn, which was probably the biggest mental barrier I had to get through.

After the rush of holiday knitting was done and I was left penniless, I only allowed myself to finish half done projects or knit from my stash. It’s a miracle these ended up the same gauge after 9 months. Truly.

In the end, I love them and highly recommend the pattern. I’ve gotten use to the yarn and no longer notice the scratchiness. They are absolutely perfect for these chilly early spring days. I can take photographs, use binoculars, zip jackets and buckle seat belts… All without removing them once. I was out for a walk over my lunch hour yesterday and some random guy comments on how much he likes them and then actually asked me to give them to him!! Adding a “can’t you help a guy out?!” to try and convince me. As much as I wanted to make some smart aleck remark, I kept my trap shut, pretended I couldn’t hear over my ear phones and kept walking.

Details:

  • Pattern – Spirogyra from Knitty by Lynne Vogel
  • Yarn – Cascade 220 Heathers
  • Ravelry – here
  • What I added/wasn’t specified in the pattern – a sewn bind off, so much stretchier than a traditional bind off
  • What I would change – nothing (and that’s unusual for me)

I think I might NEED to try her spiraling leaves mitt pattern. But first I must fulfill my son’s mitt request and then knit up something OTHER than mitts or I’ll completely OD on them.





Fingerless Mitts

16 01 2010

I got on a big fingerless mitts knitting kick in December. I knitted up a pair so quickly in November that I decided I could make a pair for each person coming to visit me for Christmas. I’d love to show you that 1st pair, but not only is it difficult to photograph but it hasn’t been given to it’s intended yet. Maybe sometime soon. If you’re a knitter, you really should make a pair or two or three as the case may be. Easier than a pair of socks, more challenging than your average scarf or wash cloth. They’re also a fabulous fashion accessory or comfort item.

First up, a pair for my younger sister. Owlings by Kerrie James. Knit from some squishy Kathmandu Aran tweed. I added little black beaded eyes on one owl for each mitt. I also altered the pattern by adding 3 rows of seed stitch to all edges to prevent the rolling that might naturally occur if left as is. I know the color is a bit funky here. It’s because I always forget about white balance when taking pictures in the snow. The true color is more like the dark purple on the right. (Ravelry here)

Next up, a pair for my father. I really liked the way the Jacoby pattern looks in the intended yarn. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find that particular yarn and it was only 2 weeks before christmas. Since I had my heart set on this pattern, I found a replacement yarn. And though I’m fairly happy with the results, I wasn’t as thrilled with how easy the yarn was to knit with. I do have plenty of yarn left over. Enough for 1 or 2 more pairs in fact. And guess what? Seth has requested a pair to match his grandpa’s. So it looks like I’ll be downsizing this pattern in the near future. (Ravelry here)

Finally, a pair for my mother. As I had already gone over budget with her gifts I decided to look through my stash. I pulled out 2 skeins of a nice dark, dark green Mission Falls merino. I’m fairly certain I got these from Martha when she was unloading some of her stash. (Thanks Martha!!) The pattern, Warm Cafe Latte Wristies, knits up quick. So quick that I finished in just a few days. However, I wouldn’t recommend knitting them that quickly as I ended up having to take ibuprofen to ease the pain in my forearm. Unfortunately, the pattern is only available if you have access to Ravelry. I like the pattern. My only complaint would be the thumb gussets. It’s too roomy in the palm and curls in at the top edge due to the stockinette stitch. If I did it again, I’d slow down the increases and finish off the thumb edge in one of the pattern repeats. Oh, and this is definitely intended for someone with long fingers. Had I done the number of rows it suggests for the thumb you wouldn’t be able to see any of my mother’s thumb at all. (Ravelry here)

Can’t you just see snuggling on the couch with a pair on, reading a book? Or going for a walk with them on a crisp fall or spring day?





Neck Gator

8 01 2010

Steve and I chose not to exchange gifts this year. The kids each got us something so it’s not like we weren’t going to get anything. And technically we pay for those gifts anyway. By doing this our money can go toward a lovely little spring project of a new front and back door on our house. Unfortunately, this decision was made after I had purchased and started knitting him a little gift. So I gave it to him anyway. It was pretty small after all.

Plus I had wanted to knit this up ever since I saw Christina’s last year. It didn’t hurt that when I had pointed out the neck gator to Steve he had immediately asked me to make him one. I just followed her simple directions and finished in less than two knitting group get togethers. Easy peasy!








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