Little Gnome

17 11 2009

Thanks to Kristin, I got to spend a relaxing afternoon with a group of lovely women learning how to make these little guys. I think more are needed for the stockings don’t you?

Vest to Hat

18 10 2009

Finished this vest up last month but couldn’t get a model at 1st during the warm temps. Now it’s the perfect weather for it.

I did make a fortuitous mistake in the beginning when I did one repeat too many of one of the center cables.  I had been fretting over the fact that most children’s sweaters seem to be too wide and too short and was worried that this pattern was no different. I kept thinking I should have altered the pattern and was seriously contemplating ripping the whole thing apart and starting over. Then I realized my mistake and the fact that my mistake actually compensated for the too wide/too short issue. Perfect! I continued the mistake through the rest of the pattern.


  •  Pattern – Pembroke from Petite Purls (a cute little online knitting mag)
  • Yarn – Ella Rae Classic Superwash
  • Ravelry details here

Skills learned:

  • Cabling without a cable needle (thank you Jess & Sarah!)
  • V neck ribbing
  • Reading charts! (really, this was my 1st time)

What I would change:

  • Keep my extra middle cable repeat mistake
  •  Knit in the round vs. panels

About a week ago I was under the weather and found a a little more than a day to myself with only enough energy for couch activities. I bumped something and a ball of yarn rolled out from under the end table. It turned out to be the left over yarn from this vest. I had recently seen this post on Chickpea Sewing Studio and happened to know a little girls who’s birthday was that week and who happened to be a Harry Potter fan. It was meant to be, right? Apparently, because it whipped up in no time flat and was a complete success. I even included a picture of Hermione wearing the hat in the gift bag to ensure comprehension. The fact that it cost me absolutely no money was a complete bonus.

Pattern – Hermione’s Cable & Eyelet Hat by JL Yarnworks

Modifications – 12 rows of 1×1 twisted ribbing to start with as suggested by Chickpea and Sketchbook.

Skills learned:

  • 1×1 twisted ribbing – nice pronounced ribbing that I swear knits more quickly than normal ribbing
  • Cable cast on – awkward and slow, but stretchy and totally worth it 

Seth very reluctantly modeled the hat for me. It was a teeny bit small on his giant head but fits the recipient perfectly. Afterwards, he took it off and sat staring at it for a bit. 

Seth “This is the same yarn as the vest you made me!”

Me “You’re right!” (feeling very impressed and flattered)

Seth <sniffle> “It matches my vest.”

Me “Yes”  (a little more tentatively this time)

Seth <more sniffles> “I want you to make ME a hat that matches my sweater!!!” <tears>

He’s never asked me to knit him something before. You don’t think I could say no to that do you? Today I showed him several other potential hat options. He emphatically declared that he wanted that hat – same color, same yarn, same pattern. Looks like I’m headed to the yarn store tomorrow. And guess that 1st hat really did cost me a ball of yarn.

Birthday Love

7 10 2009

Look what my mommy made me for my birthday! Knitted and fulled mittens with needle felted flowers embellished with a little embroidery and beading. Not only that, but she even used roving from last years wool dyeing pARTy. They’re very toasty with enough wiggle room to wear some glove liners inside. I even wore them this morning. Granted it was only in the car, but that steering wheel can get mighty cold.

And I now have to admit I think I have a problem. Japanese craft book addiction. It’s sad but true. I’ve been admiring them from afar. I adore the book club posts at icewerks and have been ogling others online. I had been really good at resisting until Jen got me this crochet book for my birthday.

Uh, oh. I’m not sure I can hold out much longer. I mean look at these cute slippers.

What’s worse, is that I only crochet a couple times a year and would by no means claim to be good at it. And if I’m that enamored of a japanese crochet book, how can I resist others? Logically I know it’s the beautiful photography and the clean layout, but logic won’t stop me from hitting the purchase button.

Beach Knitting

28 07 2009

I did manage to get a little knitting in while on vacation.  Some on the beach, but most in our rooms or the car. Had I not 2 little sea urchins to look after I would have sat longer with the needles, under the umbrella, listening to the waves. Ahhhh…..

These were given to my mother-in-law for her birthday that week. The larger green one from Seth, the little purple one from Eleanor. Appropriate, no? I knitted them right in front of her and almost got away without even saying what they were. But I kept it a secret that they were for her. Shhhh…. don’t tell her but there’s a mistake on the green one. I must have gotten distracted by the feel of the sand on my toes and miscounted. There was a time deadline and it’s not that apparent so I let it slide. No one knows but you and me.

Both patterns came from Knit Dishcloth Corner, a little site chalk full of knitted dishcloth patterns. All in French, but most translated to English. Unfortunately, you can only view the patterns in Internet Explorer. C’est la vie. I found these patterns through Ravelry, which I must say is an excellent place to pattern peruse if nothing else.

Purple – Muguets (Lily)

  • Lily Sugar’n Cream yarn
  • 4 repeats
  • Ravelry data here

Green – Vignes (Vineyard)

  • Lily Sugar’n Cream yarn
  • 3 repeats
  • Ravelry data here 

Now. I just need to make some for myself.

Easter Baskets

13 04 2009

From this:

To this:

To this:

I purchased the yarn a year ago with no where near enough time to whip up these easter baskets. So happy I finally completed them this year. I was able to knit and felt all 4 in about 2 months which is somewhat of a mirracle for me.

I have this silly notion that maybe these will become heirlooms like my grandmother’s quilts. Pulled out at easter every year, cherished memories, lovingly stored away for the years to come. I’m sure they won’t have the fortitude of a hundred year old quilt. But maybe, just maybe my kids will want to take them with them when starting their own  family some day.

I’d love to show you a great picture of them all gussied up for the big event but a late night, slightly blurry, mom’s so tired from staying up late to do this shot will have to do. Especially since there was no way I was waking up before the kids after staying up late to finish a few last minute crafts, namely  Sarah of Mrs. D. Lighful’s jelly bean bracelets and CraftPad’s bunny finger puppets. Both a big hit and both took me longer than expected.

Click on the picture to get more details of the contents. Seth’s favorite? The sunflower seed packet – be still my gardening mama heart.

Update – Silly me! I forgot to mention where I got the pattern: A Second Treasury of Magical Knitting by Cat Bordhi. The pattern is crazy different but that’s part of what makes it fun.

1st Hat – Again

4 03 2009

I did it. After my first annoying attempt, I completed my first hand knit hat. I even messed with the pattern. Yeah!

Yarn – Rowan Big Wool, 100% Merino Wool

Pattern – Chunky Knit Beanie by Leslie over at a friend to knit with (Thanks Leslie!!)

What I did:

  • Knit on dpn instead of straight needles
  • Due to knitting in the round I dropped 4 stitches off the cast on (thanks to the advice of Martha)
  • The first version didn’t cover my ears as much as I wanted it to, so I lengthen the portion where you decrease stitches. Instead of knitting 2 together for the last two rows, I started to knit 2 together, knit 2 stitches and repeated until I got down to less than 10 stitches. Now it covers my ears and there aren’t any gaps from reducing so quickly!

This is a really quick and easy hat. Perfect for a 1st hat. Supposedly you can knit it in a night, which for a mom of little ones actually  means 3 nights. At least for me anyways. What’s even more fun? Doing it with a group. Each person with their own choice of yarn and ideas on how to alter the pattern. Here’s Martha’s and Jen’s. Still waiting to see pics of Sarah’s and Dana’s.

1st Hat

20 02 2009

This is the first hat I’ve ever knit. Can you believe it? I’ve knit toys, baby clothes, children’s sweaters, ponchos, bags, scarves galore, but never a hat. Until now. And I ripped it all apart tonight.

See that funky V just above the right side of my eyebrow? It was driving me nuts. Nuts I tell ya! And there was another one just like it on the other side. I know exactly what happened. I remember dropping a stitch twice and pulling it back up with my fingers. I must have done it the opposite of what I needed to. (In stockinette instead of garter for those of you knitters out there.) I didn’t even see it until the day after I finished it. Tried to live with it. Couldn’t.

Dear Grandma,

9 02 2009

Dear Grandma,

Thank you for the wonderful hand knit socks. We all love them so much they have become our Sunday Socks.

Please send Saturday Socks.

With much love,
~The Family

Jumping Back In

11 01 2009

I finished this sweater this weekend. It’s made from a pattern in Rowan Junior out of Cashsoft 4-ply. It was supposed to be for Christmas but at least I’m no too far behind. It still fits her and she has room to grow. This is my 3rd time making this sweater as I made two newborn sizes as well. They knit up so quickly that I fell in love with the pattern. Ummm… maybe it was because they were so tiny that they knit up so quickly as it didn’t fly off my needles this time. The whole sweater like many of the projects in this fabulous book are done on size 2 and size 3 needles. For those of you that don’t knit it basically means I was knitting on sticks closer in width to a toothpick than a chopstick. Adds a little challenge, I say.

What I didn’t do the first two times around was the little flower.  Oh, how I love that little flower. Adds a bit of romance.

Crafty Birthday Goodness

26 10 2008

It’s taken me a bit to post this. I went back and forth. Mostly because It shows my face, which I’m not happy with right now. But more importantly, this hat deserves to be blogged about. I mean this hat covers my ears, shades my eyes, doesn’t mess up my hair (too much) and keeps me toasty roasty warm. Perfect for a Minnesota winter. Yet, it’s a might bit warm for a Minnesota fall so it hasn’t been seeing much wear time so far.

It was lovingly made for me by my mom. She rocks! It also proved to be highly entertaining as she gave it to me in the pre-felted state. Fulling knitted items never fails to crack me up. Here’s the before:

I assume you can tell that 2nd shot is of Seth not me, right? It had to go through the wash several times and took about 5 days to dry. Now it’s so thick it can stand up by itself:

My parents also sprung for a couple sewing books: Bend The Rules Sewing by Amy Karol of Angry Chicken and Simple Sewing by Lotta Jansdotter. I’m so excited, I can’t wait to get my machine back from the fix-it man and give one of the projects a whirl. I’ve even bought some fabric already. Top that off with receiving a copy of The Creative Family by SouleMama from the lovely Martha of UNIFORM Studio and I’m set with inspiration for the winter months ahead.

Before I sign off for the night, I’d also like to leave you with a little crafty humor in the form of one birthday card from my SIL and her family:

Ha! Old age and knitting humor in one tidy bundle. Nice one!


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