Tuesday, December 9, 2008

First Hats

The other day I came across the first two hats that I ever knit, so I thought I would share them with you. I used patterns from the book "45 Fine & Fanciful Hats" by Anna Zilboorg.
This book is great! It features 9 different hat styles, each with several different designs. There are ... Angela Hats, Berets, Cones, Egyptian Hats, Onion Domes, Pentagons, Stacked Hats, Stars, and Toques.

The first hat I have to show you is Cone Hat #2 made with Lion Brand Chenille. I must admit this yarn was not the best choice to work with for my first hat and my first attempt at Fair-aisle knitting. It worms terribly!!! It was constantly kinking, and twisting up on itself. Some of the areas where the yarn did this eventually relaxed so there are little bits of yarn sticking out here and there. I really love the overall effect the yarn gives, though. I knit this hat probably about 10 years ago and it was my absolute favorite hat to wear for several years.
The second hat came out perfectly. It is Beret #2 knit with Lion Brand Wool-Ease. I'm really happy about how this hat came out but unfortunately, because of the partial wool content of the yarn, I'm unable to wear it. I'm thinking of making some more hats out of this book, possibly with a cotton-blend yarn. Hmmmm.....Time to cast on!!!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

On Not Knitting

I haven't been knitting all that much lately! September and October were very busy for me. When school began, I started working days again as a babysitter and continued to work nights at the store. When not completely exhausted, I would knit just a few rows here and there. I did manage to finish the knitting on two sweaters (SWTC's Pulling My Chain and Zady's Scaredy Bat Sweater) but now that I've come to the point of finishing them, I'm procrastinating. I also knit up a new Frankenstein's Monster Washcloth for Zady in Peaches & Creme (olive green) and one for his friend Jaeden in Lion Brand Cotton-Ease (lime) just in time for Halloween. Around this time, I decided to splurge on myself and ordered some Cashmere yarn from Yarnzilla.com . I plan on knitting something for myself for a change and could not resist this scarf pattern made with Jojoland Cashmere. I also got a skein of Artyarn's 1-ply cashmere because it was half price! When you think about it, $30 is not bad for a cashmere scarf.

In November, I found myself with a lot of time on my hands but I just did not feel like knitting. A few weeks ago I had to have emergency surgery because of an ectopic pregancy. Everything happened very quickly and I didn't really have much time to process it at first. I've been recovering both physically and emotionally. Needless to say, I've been in a bit of a funk. I haven't felt like doing much of anything lately. I didn't knit at all for 2 weeks. Then I realized that if I was ever going to feel like myself again, I would have to start knitting. Knitting is such a big part of my daily life... at least it used to be. But I was uninspired. Rifling through my huge pile of unfinished projects didn't help, either. So I started off small, with cloths. Most of them are pretty easy, so they don't require much concentration, and they're quick - instant gratification. Just in the past week I've made 3 from the Monthly Dishcloths group (I'm terribly behind on my Kals) and then decided I could step it up a notch so now I'm making the Moss Grid Towel from Mason Dixon Knitting. I'm using Peaches & Creme for the towel because I have a lot of cotton to use up and I wasn't sure I was going to like the pattern enough to order specific yarn for it. (I'm thinking Knitpicks cotlin, if I decide to make more.) It took a bit of a push, but I do feel like I'm working my way back. I still find myself browsing baby patterns but only because I'm trying to stay positive and hopefull about the future. I've decided not to knit any holiday gifts this year because I'm running out of time and knitting gifts should not be stressful, it should be fun!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

A Little Bit Six

My son turns 6 on Friday, which has been a long time coming! He's been "a litte bit" confused about his age ever since his "un-birthday" at school last June. At first I thought the un-birthdays were a good thing- kids with summer birthdays get to celebrate at school just like all the other kids. So all summer long, whenever someone has asked Zady his age he has said "A little bit six!" He's very excited and has been counting down the days on his own little calendar I printed out for him. We're doing a low-key celebration with a trip to the beach this weekend with the grandparents and then a big bash in a couple of weeks with all of his school-friends (which I'm not looking forward to because I'm sooo not a good hostess!) Ah-well - they're only young once.

As for knitting... I have been working on the "Pullling My Chain" Sweater sample knit. It is knit in SWTC's new yarn, Tranquillity. I'm not sure of the fiber content, but it is scrumptious! The sweater is knit cuff to cuff. I'm about halfway done, but I don't have any recent photos but here are a couple I do have...For a portable project, and mindless knitting, I have been working on BYOB (Bring your own bag) from Knitty.com - I've just finished the first striping sequence and am about to start the mesh section. I am using Peaches & Creme cotton in Chocoloate, white, and army (tan). I was going to go a more adventurous route colorwise, but decided to play it safe.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Phoenix Phun is Done!

I completed the "Phoenix Phun" set ... a few weeks ago?!! (Wow, I guess I haven't blogged in a while!) It is a tank and cropped jacket knit as a sample for SWTC. You can find the pattern on ravelry here.
Sorry about the terrible photos - I was in a rush to get it off in the mail. These photos make it look red, but it's actually a dark rose color. The tank has a cascading rib which is very striking. The edges of both pieces are finished with crab stitch (reverse single crochet.) It is knit in South West Trading Company "Phooenix" which is a tape/ribbon yarn made out of soy. The yarn is very soft and drapey, but it did twist up a bit on me as I was knitting with it.

I received 10 skeins of "Bamboo" as payment in the tequilla color( a variegated orange-red-brown), along with my next project, which I've been working on non-stop.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Gecko Scarf

Here is the Gecko Scarf I started recently. I don't know what posessed me to start another project!! I've got so many things going as it is. I started a second job working evenings so I haven't had all that much time for knitting lately, or blogging. So, I started this simple garter stitch scarf to take with me to work. This pattern is from Morehouse farm... I still have the yarn from the kit. I'm using Lion Brand Cotton-Ease for this one -my new fav yarn (for the moment). I can't wear wool, so I'm making this one for myself. I was really anxious to see these colors work up together. The taupe is very similar to the color that came with the kit. I added the eyes as soon as I could, to give this little guy some character as I knit him up. I like how it's coming out so far, I'll probably be working on this one for a while.

I am also working on a test/sample knit for SWTC using Phoenix. It is a sleeveless top and jacket set. I've got the top done, besides weaving in the ends, I just have to take a pic of it finished. Here is what it looked like in progress...

I am about halfway done with the jacket.

I'm still working on the Scaredy Bat Sweater but all projects are pretty much on hold until I get the Phoenix set done.

As for the socks on two circulars... one sock is done. More about that later!

Friday, May 9, 2008

Going Batty

My local Wal-mart just started carrying Lion Brand Cotton-Ease. After knitting up some swatches, I knew I just had to a knit a sweater for my little guy out of this stuff. Of course, Zady wants a picture on his sweater, so I started flipping through Kate Buller's "Style Your Own Kids' Knits" - This is where I found the skeleton motif for Zady's last sweater. There are so many cute designs to choose from! Well, I immediately realized that I had the appropriate colors for a bat... so I cast on right away. I probably should have put more thought into the background color. I was originally thinking light gray, but I was eager to start and already had 4 skeins of the lime green. So I guess this will be a good fall sweater because it is looking freakishly halloween-ish. I decided to try out the drop-shoulder crewneck design from the book. I think it will be a little big - The size is 5-6 but the finished chest measurement is 33 1/2"! So I thinking of adding about an inch to the length to even it out. I'm doing a contrast cast on in black and seed stitch borders. It's really coming along nicely, and I am so relieved to be done with the motif because the bobbins were driving me Batty!!! I don't really have too much experience with intarsia, and I did mostly stranding on the skeleton sweater but this motif has larger blocks of color so I thought it would be easier. Again, so relieved that part is over with, and I think it came out great!!! I just have to weave in the ends now.... which will probably take as much time as knitting the whole sweater!
I've just about completed the front. Who knits the front of the sweater first?!? Only me. I was anxious to see the bat motif come to life.I do have some other knitting I'm working on so I don't know when I'll get back to this but I'm excited about it... and eager to see it completed.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Dangerous Business

I recently finished two projects for my Lys. A baby blanket in Plymouth Heaven Lite...
and a Ribbed Watch Cap in Plymouth Encore.
Knitting for the local yarn shop is dangerous business. Only because I end up spending wayyyy tooo much money there. As if I need more yarn right now. Well, I did have to get some sock yarn to try out knitting with two circulars. I got the book "Socks soar on two circulars" by Cat Bordhi from the inter-library loan, and I couldn't wait even one day before trying it. So when I dropped off these two projects I decided to splurge on some wonderful sock yarn. And of course I needed two circulars. I've never had Addi turbos before. I got one 24" lace and one 16" nickel-plated in size 2. I broke one of my size 2 dpns so I should've gotten more of those... I guess I can just finish my tofutsies short socks on two circulars now. But I had to try out my new yarn first. I got one skein of Lana Grossa Mielenweit Fun & Stripes in Blue, Orange and Green. I cast on last night for the Basic Socks in 2x2 ribbing. Knitting on two circulars is really easy - the only part I needed the book for is to know how to do the beginning join. Although, I do love the book - there are some inspiring designs in it. At this point I don't know whether I'll follow the directions exactly or use the sock construction techniques I learned from "Sensational Knitted Socks." I also splurged on 2 skeins of Lorna's Laces Shephard sock in a pretty blue/green and purple combination that my son picked out. Because I had my son with me I also had to get something for him. He was begging me for the knitted cord maker. It's a little tricky to start but he's having fun cranking out cord and knitting along with Mommy.

Friday, April 11, 2008


I've been thinking that It's been a while since I knit myself a sweater... I've been knitting so much for other people I thought it was high time I made something for myself. A long sleeve sweater is somewhat of a commitment, though - i usually get bored with large projects and move on to something else. Besides, wasn't it like 70 degrees yesterday? Not quite sweater weather. Then I found this pattern for "Bob" with Short-sleeves. It's knit in the round - seamless! with waist shaping and those raglan sleeves that I love -okay, there is a little seaming... So I cast on with some yarn i had (Caron simply soft) just to get a feel for the pattern and sizing - if I like it maybe i'll make another with nicer yarn. I'm not super crazy about the rib pattern on the yoke - but I'll give it a try. Sometimes I think I totally hate a design element and I fall in love with it afterwards. Go figure. Right now I am working on the front raglan shaping. I think in about a week I'll have a new Spring sweater to wear.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Itty Bitty Alligator Scarf

My son has a new friend to add to his knitted toy collection. When I got the Baby Alligator Scarf kit from Morehouse Farm I was so eager to cast on that I didn't bother to check gauge. Besides, gauge really isn't that important with scarves, right? Well, it is if you want the scarf to be the right length. The scarf dimensions are supposed to measure 4 1/2" W x 36" L. Mine measures 3 1/2" W x 30" L. When I bought the kit from the website, I also ordered the recommended needle, size 5. The actual pattern recommends size 5 OR 6. I tested for gauge afterwards and finally did achieve gauge with size 8 needles. Here you can see the difference...

Trouble is, I don't like the scarf at that gauge. I actually like the firmness I get with the size 5 needles, and the skinniness of the gator does not offend me - so what I think I will do, since I have plenty of yarn left over from the kit, is rip out the tail portion and knit it to the appropriate length. I think I may hold off on this until next fall, because right now it is a cute toy... and it's no longer scarf weather here.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Easter Chick

Another cute Easter goodie is the Easter Chick which hides an egg underneath. So fun for the little ones! My first attempt came out a little small... for this one I used Peaches and Creme cotton and size 5 needles (instead of size 4). I added two rows of ribbing and 2 rows to the head area. The pattern can be found here http://www.clevercreations.com/knittingpatterns.html

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Easter Peeps

Here is a perfect Easter project! This pattern is so cute!!! - and quick too. I knit a couple of these in one evening. I plan on making a bunch more for Easter baskets. You can find the pattern here http://kat-knits.blogspot.com/2007/03/some-easter-peeps.html

I used Caron simply soft and size 5 dpns. I think I might try Crystal Palace Cotton Chenille (white) for the next one. I placed the wings pointing forward so it looks like the chick is waving!

Monday, March 10, 2008

Skeleton Sweater

I'm ready to reveal the skeleton sweater I made for my son, Zady. I started this on 1/28/08, using Leisure Arts booklet # 2996 "The Complete Book of Raglan Sweaters." I got the graph for the skeleton from Kate Buller's "Style Your Own Kids' Knits." I used Caron Simply Soft and size 6 and 8 needles. Because of the placket neck, it was made in pieces, rather than in the round. I thought the seams would drive me crazy, but they weren't sooo bad. I used matress stitch so the seams are nearly invisible. The directions sugested 1x1 rib for the sleeve cuffs and bottom edge but I did garter stitch for 8 rows to match the collar and placket. My son picked out the bone button. The motif was a little tricky because there wasn't large areas of color like you would normally do in intarsia, so there was a lot of stranding on the back, which made a slight bit of puckering. I think the placement of the skeleton worked out well, I was definatley worried about it, because of the placket. Size 6 fits him perfectly! I'm excited how well it turned out - and so is Zady... he's anxious to wear it to school tomorrow.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Knitted Babe Zoe

Here is my first knitted babe - named Zoe. I've been wanting to knit the pirate in the "Dream Toys" book for my son but I don't have all the yarns to make the appropriate costume so I decided to make a practice doll from the "Knitted Babes" book. Well, my son immediately fell in love with her! He calls her the "string arm doll" and named her Zoe (because his name starts with Z.) I knit this doll at a tighter gauge than recommended to get a denser fabric so she came out a little small - which is fine - except now I have to figure out all her clothes on my own because the ones in the book would be way to big. So far, I've only knit her a pair of underwear- so she wouldn't be completely naked. I also need to work on giving her more hair so that when she is being carried around, she doesn't look like she has a mohawk. I used sportweight cotton this time but I think in the future I would use wool, or a wool blend.

Here is what she looked like before I sewed her together...

Friday, February 15, 2008

Valentine's Day Cloths

Happy (belated) Valentine's Day. The last few days I have been working on these sweet Valentine's Cloths...

I used size 6 needles and the finished size is 9" W x 10 1/2" L. I made a mistake on one of the rows...ARGHHHH (I'm a little bit of a perfectionist when it comes to my knitting!)

And I made 2 crocheted hearts -

These were super quick to crochet! The pattern is "My Heart Dishcloth" http://members.aol.com/JSchlossma/heartdc.html

I used size H hook with Peaches n' Creme yarn.

These were some fun "Love Day" projects...

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Heavenly Headband

I've been ogling the kits at Morehouse Farm for quite some time now. Well, I decided to treat myself this year and ordered three of them. I got the Headband, Baby Alligator Scarf, and Gecko Scarf.
I cast on for the Headband right away.
I ordered the "Mermaid" colorway but the color that I recieved wasn't quite what I expected. I still think it's gorgeous! I love this yarn! It is sooo soft, and I'm usually sensitve to wool but wearing this headband hasn't really bothered me - so far!
I think the yarn is Morehouse Merino 2-ply and I used size 3 needles. I used approximately half the skein. The headband is knit in a 1x1 rib (with garter stitch borders.) I followed the directions for length and it fits perfectly! I've only worn it a couple of times around town so I'm anxious to see how it holds up while outdoors for extended periods - like at the ski area...

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Bear Blunder

I recently received a new book in the mail - Knitted Toys by Zoe Mellor. I immediately found a project that I liked and could use up some of my stash on. A striped Teddy Bear named "Flat Ted." I cast on right away and had most of the knitting done in two days. Then I made quite a blunder while seaming.
I thought the whole project was lost until I looked over the photos of the beginning. The stripes DID match up so ...what happened?!?!
Now I'll have to redo the seam- but I guess that's better than redoing the whole thing. I think I will knit the arms in the round to avoid seaming! I used Caron simply soft in Mint and White on size 6 needles.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

A Very Knitty Christmas

I hope everyone had a great time over the Holidays! I was just realizing that all of the knitted gifts I made came from free patterns at Knitty.com -didn't really plan it that way - thay just have such great patterns...
The picture above is of the Branching Out Scarf knit with Ornaghi Filati bamboo in "peach." I love how this scarf came out!!- so soft and luxurious feeling. I think the total length was 60" but I didn't get a pic of the final project because I had to wrap it immediately after finishing it - on Christmas Eve! I didn't even bother blocking it... My bad. Here is another pic of it in progress -

I made 2 pair of the Fetching wrist warmers out of Lana Grossa Bingo each in adifferent shade of blue. Size 6 dpns - they came out a bit snug... Here is a pic of one -which I already posted on this blog - the other I didn't get a chance to photograph.

And then there was the Foliage Hat in Brown Sheep Lamb's Pride worsted "Orchid Thistle" - also on size 6 dpns - ribbing in size 5. Again, a little snug...

My mom only got half a gift because I didn't like how tight the cuff was on the Knucks fingerless gloves. Competely my fault for doing just a regular bind off. But she tried the one I had finished on and said that she liked it the cuff didn't really bother her. They are made in Noro Shikisai on size 4 dpns... Below you will see the lonely one -

I actually did make something that didn't originate from Knitty for one of my sister-in-laws but we didn't end up exchanging gifts - (yet?) I'll be happy to keep this one to myself. It is a washcloth from a Fiber Trends pattern...Bathtime Blossoms. This one is called "Old Shale" - I meant to do the soap sack as well but never got around to it. I used Rowan 4-ply cotton and size 4 dpns. It was a little challenging to start but I eventually got the hang of it!

So, there you have it- a Very Knitty Christmas!

Saturday, January 5, 2008

New Year, New Blog

I'm starting the new year off by starting to use blogspot instead of yahoo 360 -which has been annoying me lately, with all of its glitches. I hope some of my 360 friends will find me here - I don't want to lose touch with you guys just because I moved to blogspot. Use google reader to keep track of your blogspot updates. http://www.google.com/reader/ It's the best!

You can check out my older posts by going to http://360.yahoo.com/knitter_by_nature

Check back soon. I will be posting pics of FOs from 2007. As soon as I figure this blogspot thing out...