Saturday, May 02, 2015

Late Spring Knitting

Hope you all had a lovely Easter (or Passover or Ostara or whatever spring holiday you celebrate). I started the first 2 projects featured here during Lent and finished them right around Easter. I made hats for the children of some good friends of mine; I had made them both hats a couple of years ago, but they have since outgrown them and needed new ones. 

For the boy, I made an orange beanie using leftover sock yarn. The pattern, if you can call it that, is my own. I did rib knit for a while, then switched to stockinette, and then when it seemed deep enough, I did the spiral decrease for the top. It looks really cute on him.

For his older sister, I made a tam o'shanter using some wool-silk hand-dyed yarn from the stash. I had used this yarn to make a Clapotis scarf for myself a while back. The pattern is from Ann Budd's book of handy knitting patterns. I still have plenty of this blue-green-yellow yarn left over, so I might make another project for myself, such as some gloves.

 Finally, I knit yet another cowl for myself. This one uses Disco Diva yarn from Mia Bella in the color way Oranjello. I finished this late last night and haven't blocked it or even woven in the ends yet. That's a Sunday afternoon project. I knit it in the round using a zig-zag lace pattern from a Barbara Walker book.

It's getting warmer, but I think I'll still have a few opportunities to wear it before summer. It has been a chilly spring so far, and it's always cooler here by the lake.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Lenten Knitting 2015 Continued

These 2 hats are made with the same yarn. The only difference is the size and stripe pattern.

The gray is Lamb's Pride from Brown Sheep, and the red is Full Circle from Knit Picks. Most likely, I'll give them to Afghans for Afghans the next time they have a campaign, or whenever I get enough things made to justify paying for shipping (and waiting in line at the post office).

Holy Week starts tomorrow. Lent really flew by this year, at least it did for me. I'm currently knitting a hat for a friend's son, but I fear I'll run out of yarn before I get it big enough for him. If/when I finish it, I'll post a picture.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Lenten Knitting 2015

As I typically do during Lent, I devote my knitting to other people, not myself or even my own family. This year I'm participating in a pay-it-forward initiative that someone started on Facebook. Only one of my friends was interested, and I decided to knit her a lovely cowl. I kept it simple and did seed stitch stripes in the round. The yarn, Naturally Caron Country, has been discontinued, unfortunately. It's a machine-washable wool-acrylic blend that's very soft and was fun to work with.

I had plenty of yarn left over, so I used it and some additional gray acrylic yarn from my stash to make a scarf for the Christmas at Sea program, which is an Episcopal charity. A lady at my church collects these scarves and sends them to the parent organization every year.

Finally, I made a baby beanie using some bulky yarn I found in the stash. The labels are long gone, so I can't give you any info on the fiber or manufacturer. I don't know who will get this hat. I'll either give it to a friend who is expecting or save it and mail it to Afghans for Afghans at some point.

I plan to do a few more charity hats using more yarn I dug out of the stash. As always, pictures will be posted as I finish them.

Saturday, February 14, 2015

One Big Skein of Sock Yarn, Two Projects

A while back I decided I could use some fingerless gloves to wear under my mittens for the times when it's really cold outside and I need to grab my bus pass or my keys or need to text without exposing my entire hand. Sock yarn is the perfect medium for gloves, especially if it's a machine-washable wool-nylon blend, so I dug around in my stash and found some Adorn sock yarn by Three Irish Girls in the colorway Kieran. (I don't remember when or where I bought it, so that tells you it was in the pile for a long time.) I used the glove pattern in Ann Budd's Knitter's Handy Book of Patterns. The only alteration I made was to eliminate the very tip of each finger, as you can see below.

I'm happy with how they turned out, and they fit perfectly under my bigger mittens and have kept my hands extra warm during the recent cold snap.

Because this skein of yarn was 430 yards long, I had plenty left over to do a pair of socks for myself. Again, I used the pattern in Ann Budd's book. It's a basic pattern with no texture or embellishment, and that's how I like my socks. Lacy or cabled socks are pretty, but I don't like holes that could snag or textured lumps that could rub against the top of my shoe. That's just me, though. I freely admit that I have sensitive feet. And when you have a yarn that knits up into such lovely stripes, I don't think it's necessary to gild the lily.

Believe it or  not, I still have quite a bit of this yarn left over, so I'll save it for baby hats and other small projects. I'm very happy with how it has performed.

Up next, I'm making something top-secret for a friend. I can't post pics until I've finished it and mailed it to her. Stay tuned!

Monday, January 19, 2015

First Finished Objects of 2015

I've been knitting steadily so far this year and have finished a few small things. I've made a couple of baby hats with leftover sock yarn. This one uses Knit Picks Felici.

 This one uses yarn I had in the stash. I have no idea what brand it is. It will probably be given to a friend whose baby is due this spring.

And this one is a first birthday present for a friend's little boy. The hat I made him when he was born got lost, so I made him a replacement.

Finally, I made something for myself: a luxurious cowl made with Knit Picks Diadem in the color Emerald. I love wearing it. That alpaca-silk blend is so soft against the skin.

I'm currently working on a pair of fingerless gloves for myself using some sock yarn I found in the stash. Yes, I have a LOT of sock yarn loitering in my stash. I didn't really make a New Year's resolution, but I am going to try to use up as much stash yarn as possible this year before I buy anything new. No, really. I'm going to do it. Stop laughing.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Christmas Knitting 2014: The Finale

Last night I finished my final gift: a set of Christmas-themed dish cloths for my sister-in-law's parents, who are putting me up for a few days next week. I've brought them different host gifts in the past, but the mother really likes these cloths and specifically requested more.

They're made with Peaches and Creme worsted weight cotton. I have a ton of this stuff in my stash. They have a huge variety of lovely colors, and it's super sturdy and machine washable.

So that's it, I am done for Christmas 2014! While I'm on vacation next week, I plan to finish some socks for myself that I started ages ago but put aside for gifts, and I want to make another cowl scarf for myself. You can't have too many of them (OK, maybe you can, but I don't care because I like them so much).

Happy holidays, and best wishes for 2015!

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Christmas Knitting 2014 Continued

This week I finished a cowl scarf for my sister-in-law. I used Knit Picks Capra, which is a wool-cashmere blend.

I used 3 different shades of blue-green (they look a bit darker in this photo than they are in real life. I divided the lightest shade in half, then held 2 strands together, switching colors when one ran out, so that all 3 colors were paired with each other. I used size 15 needles and knit 120 stitches in the round, using K3 P3 rib. It's that simple, and but the results are gorgeous. This yarn is softer than a kitten.

Last time I forgot to post a photo of the scarves I made for Ujima Village, a youth homeless shelter here on the south side. I only had time to do 4 scarves, but they turned out nicely. I hope they'll be put to good use.

Right now I'm making a few Christmas-themed wash cloths for my sister-in-law's parents as a host gift. They're letting me stay in their guest room for a few days between Christmas and New Year's. I'm looking forward to getting a whole week with my nephew.

If I get them done before I leave, I'll post a photo of the wash cloths. If not, I wish you the happiest of holidays.