Category Archives: knitting

Right now I am….

Enjoying…

  • The 10 inches of snow we received in Minneapolis this weekend.
  • Watching my neighbors get their snow legs back .(People! Little taps folks. Never rev your tires as you will most   certainly get stuck and need to recruit people to push you out.)
  • The four people I saw biking in the city this morning, including the Skeptic and Spinner. My man obviously enjoys a challenge.
  • My parents, who officially reached full retired parent status today by calling me to give me the road report in Burnsville. They crack me up and I am lucky to have them. 🙂

 

 

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Decorating and celebrating….

  • Our free range Christmas tree, which looks a cross between A Charlie Brown tree and something you might see in a hundred year old Christmas scene. This tree has soul and I love it!
  • We are using The Truth is in The Tinsel for Advent this year and we really enjoy the simplicity and ease of the projects.
  • We are also trying a Jesse Tree this year. I love the ornaments and the message that come with this PDF.
  • By the time I am on my third kid I should know better than to leave a four year old alone with glitter.

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Knitting….

  • Christmas gifts that I wish I could share with you
  • Too many Christmas gifts. Not sure I will make it this year!
  • Baby girl items because I have a brand new beautiful niece who is one week old today!

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Filed under celebrations, crafting with kids, family, knitting

Puffing Along

I am Yarning Along again today. I miss seeing what knitters are doing on their blogs, there just isn’t as much these days, so I always enjoy Wednesdays.

So it’s December. Am I gift knitting? Yes, but barely. I have yarn wound and patterns picked out and what I am realizing is a busy knitting schedule for the next few weeks. But I am distracted by two things.

First of all, the Hexipuff. I can’t stop making them. It’s like having a bag of BBQ potato chips next to me, I just can’t stay away.  And I am listening to A Game Of Thrones while I knit them. I dont’ need to follow the pattern anymore so I can just knit and listen.

I don’t believe I will do an entire quilt, but I think I will be making chair cushions out of them instead. And perhaps a pillow or two. Only trouble is I thought I would be using up stash, but much of my sock yarn just doesn’t look great together, or else I started getting sick of it. So I ended up buying  a bunch of mini skeins and begging for scraps in my knitting group. So far so good though, I have a decent variety now and can easily do a few chair cushions.

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My other distraction is way better than a pile of hexipuffs. I have a niece! A beautiful, 6lb teeny-tiny niece (compliments of my younger brother and his amazing wife 🙂  This family has been heavy on the boys genes…..not only do we have our three boys but I have four more nephews on the Skeptic’s side of the family and one sweet older niece, so it is good to have a little more girl balance in this family. Plus, my brother  lives a mere five minutes from our house, so it is exciting for the boys to have a cousin right in town.  So I have lots of girly knitting  and sewing to show you, but I need to put on a few more buttons and weave in some loose ends.

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Filed under knitting

Yarn Along

I always enjoy the weekly Yarn Along, hosted by Ginny of Small Things, but I never seem to get my act together in time to put one up. Today I finally remembered!

Not that my knitting is that exciting, more on the practical side. However, I’ve been dragging it around to the beach, swim lessons, the kiddie pool, and baseball practice. That means it needs to be able to take a little sand and chlorine, and yes dirt. And despite their practical nature, I’m really in love with this stack of dishcloths I’ve piled up the last few weeks.

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The book, if you can see it on my Nook, is The Sign of Four, but Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. I’ve always been a Masterpiece Mystery fan, and the latest Sherlock Holmes series has been fabulous. So I decided to dive in and read the actual stories and downloaded the entire works of Conan Doyle, all 1755 pages of them! I’m not sure I’ll read them all at once, I have a few other books in mind as well. But they make an very entertaining summer read!

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Filed under Good Reading, knitting

“In December, drinking horchata
I’d look psychotic in a balaclava…”

-“Horchata” by Vampire Weekend

Okay, he does not look psychotic nor is he drinking horchata, but we love this song and I think of it every time one of the boys puts his balaclava on. Spinner’s is the latest in our collection, although it looks like I need to knit one more since someone (ahem, Knittykid) lost his.

So, Spinner’s many faces in his balaclava?

Smiley
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Mischievous
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Serious
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Enjoy your weekend everyone! Listen to a fun song, knit a balaclava and head outside!

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Filed under hats, knitting

Puddle Season

Don’t you know a toddler who needs a new hat?
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A nice cotton hat that is just enough to keep the ears warm?

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Something bright and Springy to keep you focused on those tulips which are sure to be popping out at soon as the last piles of snow melt? (Yes, we still have some big piles!)

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Something for jumping in puddles? Something you could go grab just two skeins for and cast on right now?

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Go for it. All you need are two skeins of Mission Falls Cotton and a child to wear it.

I just put the pattern up:  Springtime Sprouts. No test knitting or tech knitting done here, no sir! This is pattern writing at it’s finest: at my parents’ dining room table while trying to keep three little boys somewhat in tow. But hey, I even made a chart!! So please, give it a whirl and tell me what you think. Any mistakes? Something not quite clear? A different yarn that worked well?

And if you’re for some reason not on Ravelry, leave a comment with your e-mail address and I will send you the PDF.

Hope you enjoy!

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Filed under hats, kids, knitting, pattern

An End in Sight

Today brought the sunshine here in Minnesota, and as much as I loved the cold, crispy 20F walk to the bus stop this morning, it was nice to enjoy the sunny, warm and very melty walk to the bus stop this afternoon. The end of winter is in sight, and although it is one of my favorite seasons all this snow in the city means it’s a pain to get around. I’m tired of climbing mountains and trying to squeeze small people into the min-van in between piles of snow. I’m also ready to be done with the “where is my mitten??!!! (shriek loudly, repeat, repeat, repeat) saga we seem to go through with at least one boy a day. I’m also ready to be done fighting with Spinner about the fact that yes, you do need to wear a coat outside when it is below freezing, and then even a little above freezing. So and end to winter? Yes, I think I’m ready for it.

I’m also ready for the end of this:
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This beautiful, 100% alpaca pile of stockinette and ribbing is destined to be Jared Flood’s Redhook. Did I even mention I cast on for this? Probably not. I think I started it in October? I know I started it at a visit to my parents. Either way, it’s been long enough. But add a button band and I’m DONE.

This item is more painful. Destined to be Xeriscope in Madelinetosh DK, color Mare. Except I do not pay attention to details, apparently, and think that 225 yards is the same as 250. So my scarf is a foot from being done, I am out of yarn, and not a skein of Mare is to be found. And I’m not even sure I want to spend another $20 anyway. Plus it’s not as drapey as I’d like; I think I should go up a needle size. So I might need to frog this one and begin over with a different yarn. Sigh. And another sigh.

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You would do……?

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Filed under knitting, scarf, sweaters, WIP

I am easily distracted

So after my last post and a bit of thinking, I realized that despite the busyness, I want to be posting more. I want to be writing more and I miss it. I thought about this challenge:


I can handle that. It doesn’t even need to be anything big, right?

Right.

Then, two things happened:

1. I watched Twilight for the first time, and decided I needed to read the books.

2. I bought a shiny new  Nook Color with my Christmas money, enabling me to buy all the Twilight books, one right after the other. For example……while I’m hiding in the kitchen reading cooking dinner or when I’m staying up until 1:30 in the morning 10pm.

Needless to say, I was done for and spent the last week and a half with nothing but Bella and Edward on my mind. And yes, I know, not exactly the best writing in the world, but it’s a wicked story and I’m a sucker for a good romance.

So post-a-week had to wait two weeks,  but now I’m seriously hoping to get a bit of focus back on this thing. No promises of course, I’ve learned at this point in my life I should commit to very little. But let’s say I’m inspired again and that is exciting. And I can at least promise not to go crackers and turn this into a Bella and Edward blog. I will stick to knitting and sewing and how to raise three boys without going crazy.*

And because I owe you a picture and a finished object:

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My Ostrich Plumes shawl, finished and blocked two days before my brother’s wedding. Raveled here.

 

And yes, the Nook Color is awesome, and I have wasted just as much time messing around with it as I have reading.Not just for reading,  it is the new knitting tool of my dreams…..every PDF I have easily carried in my knitting bag, with access to Ravelry wherever there is wifi.

 

*Hide from them, read cheesy vampire romance novels, and feed them cereal for dinner when they come looking for food.

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Filed under finished objects, knitting, shawls

Every boy in Minnesota…

…needs one of these:
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It’s a balaclava, officially the Gusseted Helmet Pattern by Ellen M. Silva. The only mod I made was to knit the head one inch shorter before the decreases. If knitting it again I’d make the neck an inch or so shorter; you can see it’s curling up on him.

I finished this in early October when we were having a bit of  a fall heat wave. He loved so much he wore it to school, even though it was 75F by the afternoon. It’s in his favorite colors, John Deere colors of course. Not only is it very practical for these harsh winters, but it doubles as spy gear, which is extremely important when you are seven. He would not let me get a full on view on the whole project (“I am a spy, mom”) but he did want to show off his second favorite thing, which is the fact that he’s flying through these Harry Potter novels faster than I devoured Little House when I was the same age.  He’s actually on book seven now, and I’m trying to catch up to him with book six (my plans after this post). All I know, is I’m just dying about those brown eyes looking out at me…..

Now if only it would snow. We’re so ready.

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Filed under finished objects, hats, kids, knitting

Because this is still a knitting blog….

My knitting ennui seems to finally have come to a screeching halt. I feel as if I have projects coming out my ears, which is not good considering the large amounts of sewing I need to do. But cooler weather has the tendency to make a Minnesotan begin to knit frantically. Just in time for the cooler weather, I have two new cowl patterns to share with you, one for today and one coming up soon.

The first is the simple one to write up, my Ribbed Ridges Cowl:
Garter Rib Cowl

I came up with a simple pattern designed to show off this beautiful handspun I picked up from Aisha Celia a few years ago. This style of cowl I call an “indoor” cowl as I wear it all day long. Perfect for these days when the house is cool but it’s too soon to turn on the furnace.

Yarn: bulky, about 100 yards

Needle size: 10.5, 16 inch circular

Gauge: 7 stitches to 2 inches

CO 56 stitches and join into the round.

Round 1: Purl entire round.

Rounds 2 and 3: (K2, p2)  entire round.

Round 4 and 5: Knit entire round.

Repeat rounds 2 through five until your cowl is about seven inches in length.

BO: K2tog, slip stitch back to left hand needle, K2tog, repeat. Do so loosely for a nice stretchy bind off.

Sew in ends and block. Be pleased you used up a lovely skein in such a quick and useful manner, and stay warm!

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Filed under knitting, pattern, tutorial

About Hats, Part Two

Yes, I was still without a hat. And suddenly it hit me. After all that searching I had a pattern, and yarn, in the right color just waiting for me in my closet. A week of knitting and I had this:

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Here you see the Argyle Lace Hat from Boutique Knits.  An easy knit, enough stockinette to be mostly mindless with just enough of a lace pattern to keep it interesting. So easy, that I forgot to decrease on time and started the decreases too late. So the shaping on top is a little different but I still like it.

This hat reminded me of how nice it is sometimes to just use the yarn called for in the pattern. No gauge issues, no running out of yarn, no endless swatching. Which makes me wonder, how many of you typically use the yarn called for in a pattern (or something generally similar?) With my first hat, if I had just used the suggested yarn I would have been done in two days, not two weeks. But would I have learned as much? I think there are benefits to both.

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Filed under hats, knitting