Sunday, September 09, 2012

More, Baby!

Finished a few little baby projects that have given me lots of pleasure and instant gratification. Below is the Hooded Pullover 60 Quick Baby Knits.The pattern was designed by Lorna Miser and the book, with 60 baby patterns by a range of designers, is absolutely wonderful.
I loved making the sweater. It was easy, with clear directions. And I can't say enough about the FiberNymph Dyeworks BonaFide semi-solid. I've been watching the 90% Knitting Videocast for a long time, but have never bought Lisa's yarn. I KNOW this will not be the last purchase I make from her. The color is vibrant and the yarn of very high quality. Can't wait until my cousin has her baby so I can give this to its recipient! Since my cousin is having a boy and she has two older girls (ages 3 and 4), I decided to make them little headbands and found the great Smidge Headband pattern.
Made two of these cute little numbers in 24 hours using leftover sock yarn and an easily memorizable lace pattern. Gotta love that!

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Baby, Oh Baby!

It's been almost two months since my last post--exactly the time it's taken my to finish my Op-Art Blanket. I absolutely loved making this project for my co-worker's soon-to-be-born baby boy.
I would even think about making it again (although it would have to be bigger and I'm not sure I could stand doing this much bigger) for my son when he goes to college in a year. It needed strenuous blocking, as advertised on Ravelry, but I think the recipients will love it. And the baby isn't due until October!
However, it's now time to knit for the second baby coming in to my life (my cousin's son, also due in October) and then another co-worker who is having a girl in November. THEN I'll get back to knitting for me, except for the four striped headbands that my daughter has requested for her sorority sisters--and I certainly can't deny her that! So tonight, during the Opening Ceremonies of the Olympics, I cast on for my cousin's baby sweater--the Hooded Pullover by Lorna Miser, from the wonderful 60 Quick Baby Knits, a book designed to use Cascade 220. I am using Fibernymph Dye Works Bona Fide DK base, in the Peacock Blue Semisolid Colorway. The yarn is gorgeous and wonderful to knit. I also got gauge on my first try with size 6 needles. Yay! Since I cast on during the Opening Ceremonies, I decided to join the Ravellenic Games at the last minute. I joined Team Sasquatch since that's where all the cool Podcasters are and I am a Podcast junkie. For my third baby project, I'm deciding between two afghans but have already ordered the yarn: Cascade 220 Superwash Paints in the beautiful and cheerful colorway Tropical Punch. So I'm immersed in baby project land, and loving it! More to come with the next finished project, which should be much sooner than this interval.

Saturday, June 02, 2012

Knit, Swirl!!!!

Wow, I didn't realize it's been more than two months since I've posted. I guess I've gotten in the habit of posting when a project is finished, and my Knit, Swirl sweater, Shades of Grey, has taken almost three months to knit. But it is worth it today, as I sit here wearing it even though it is heavy weight and it's in the 80's outside!
This was a fantastic project from start to finish. It provided a number of challenges and new techniques, as well as a lot of enjoyable, somewhat mindless knitting once you got in the groove. What was one of the most enjoyable parts about knitting a Knit, Swirl sweater was the support and camaraderie of the Ravelry Group as well as the hands-on support provided by Sandra McIver, the author of the Knit, Swirl book. I am absolutely sure that these sweaters would not be as popular as they are today if Sandra were not such an active participant in the success of the knitters who make them. Thank you, Sandra!
So now it's on to the Op-Art Baby Blanket, which I am making as the first of three baby gifts I have to make for co-workers' forthcoming babies! This first one is going to be a boy, so I picked two fun colors of KnitPicks Swish DK: Peapod (a bright green) and Dusk (a dark blue). Also bought two books, 60 Quick Baby Knits and 60 More Quick Baby Knits,
so that I'll have more ideas as these babies keep coming! Hopefully you'll hear from me sooner next time. Love this feeling of accomplishing something.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Making Progress!

In the past week, I finished my second Leafling sock. With the 70-degree weather we've been having, I didn't think I'd get to wear them this season, but the forecast is for a bit cooler temperatures going in to next week, so I think I'll be OK. I am really pleased with the way these socks turned out and the way I mastered the interesting, Cat-Bordhi-inspired heel construction.
I immediately wound yarn for my next pair of socks--another skein from the 2008 Rockin Sock Club(!) I think just three more to go after this one! This is an absolutely gorgeous colorway, The Incredible Shrinking Violet, but I was a bit intimidated by the pattern that came with this yarn--it is about 12 pages long, for one thing, and while I am doing the Shades of Grey Knit, Swirl jacket, I want my alternative sock project to be easy and enjoyable. I also wanted to try another toe-up sock in preparation for the class I will be taking with Brenda Dayne at the Lion Brand Yarn Studio in May (yay!!) So, I chose the Trilobite pattern from Wendy Johnson's Socks from the Toe up. I hope to cast on later today using Judy's Magic Cast-On.
The socks and the Knit, Swirl should keep me busy for awhile--hopefully another report to come soon!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Knit, Swirl, Fun!

I've been a busy knitter lately! Finished the Uisce Shawl that I started last summer and that was put aside (along with my Transverse Cardigan) while I was in my sock-making frenzy. I like the Uisce and would like to make something else from the Four Elements Booklet that I bought for this pattern--maybe the Talamh cardigan? Carol Feller's instructions are clear and the deep waffle pattern was fun and interesting. A beautiful piece and I have worn it two days in a row already! Have to get some scarf/shawl wearing in before it gets REALLY warm!
Still chugging along on my Leafling Socks. The heel construction didn't turn out to be too bad, and Sock #1 is beautiful. I can now confidently knit sock two knowing the number of rows, the fit, and the fact that I weighed my yarn after Sock #1 and have more than half the ball left, so I know I won't run out. I made the legs about 7 1/2", which I like better than the 5-6 inch length that many sock patterns are written for. The Socks that Rock Medium-weight skein is evidently big enough to handle the longer length--probably because I have relatively small feet.
So now it's on to my first "Knit,Swirl!" sweater--Shades of Grey. I'm using the Berroco Lustra and Boboli that I bought at Down Cellar's Super Bowl sale. So far, so good--on a business trip this week, I had some quiet time in the hotel room and I turned on some knitting Podcasts and did Welt #1. I even successfully joined the 520 stitches in the round without twisting--even using Sandra McIver's detailed technique for preventing twist, I was holding my breath through the entire row until I knew I didn't have a Mobius!
I will be working on this sweater for some time, I think, and then have a new project queued up--the OpArt blanket for a co-worker who is going to be a dad (with his wife who is a former coworker). I'm waiting to see whether it's a boy or girl to decide on colors--either the black and white of the original, or possibly a rainbow effect like one I saw on Ravelry.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Transverse Cardigan Is Done!

It feels great to have completed my first big project after my long hiatus making hats. The Transverse Cardi is really pretty and fits well. I followed a lot of suggestions from Ravelers, and while I am very happy with the way this sweater looks, I might try it again in a solid color and sticking more to the actual pattern (more cropped and without the wide band on both fronts). Now that I have made it and have seen how it all works, I think I would be more confident in trying it again and knowing how it would turn out. It is a really fun, ingenious construction. Even met the designer, Ann Weaver, on Ravelry during this process and that was fun.
Now I await casting on my first Knit, Swirl jacket. Before tackling this large project, however, I'm catching up on the Leafling Socks that I started last month. The bright green tonal is definitely not a colorway I would have picked myself (this is several years' old Rockin' Sock Club yarn), but I love it. I think I will smile looking down at my feet once these socks are done! So far, the leaf pattern on the leg is coming out very pretty. We'll see if I can handle what is reported to be a tricky heel construction. I ripped these back and cast on 66 stitches for the leg rather than 60; I'd rather have them a little higher (probably 7" leg, and a little looser rather than binding around the calf. I decreased down to 60 after a couple pattern repeats on the leg and will stay there for the rest of the sock.
Back to knitting!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Back to Reality

Well, my school fundraising event at which my friend sold my hats/headbands has come and gone--and not one item sold. I am somewhat disappointed in this, although the items were priced a little high for students. Unfortunately, the prices barely reflected the cost of materials and my time (priced extremely low). Now I guess I'll try a few more aggressive marketing techniques on my Etsy shop, but honestly, after my marathon of hat/headband knitting, it has been nice to get back to knitting for myself for pleasure.
My first project after the hat project was the GAP-tastic cowl. I had bought some luscious Malabrigo Chunky almost a year ago for this project, and I have been getting frustrated seeing every other person in Manhattan wearing an infinity scarf that I knew I could make! I only used two of the three balls of Malabrigo I had purchased--the cowl is still 10" wide and about 60" in circumference after blocking (which gave it a beautiful, drapy feel), which is way big enough for my 5'2" frame. I ADORE the Velvet Grapes colorway and would love to use it again. It also looks absolutely fabulous in the seed stitch of the pattern.
With the leftover skein of Malabrigo, I immediately cast on for the Axel Mitts to match. I like them because the cuff at the fingers is knit long, so you can cover your fingers completely or roll it back if the day isn't as freezing as it was today! So far, I've made mitt #1 in two nights and expect to be finished with mitt #2 by the weekend. Then, it's back to the sweater and shawl I started last summer (!) and I may also cast on some socks to take with me on a business trip next week.
Despite my failed attempts at knitting for dollars, I am happy to be back to exploring my wonderful stash and knitting nice things for ME!