Happy Birthday to me!

Knit Twenty Two should now be called Knit Twenty Three, but changing the name every year would only create confusion.

What did I do on my birthday? I finished class at noon because my organic lab was cancelled and took my truck to the shop. I also found a patter that would work perfectly with the Araucania Nuble I picked up in Tulsa, Oklahoma when I was out there at the beginning of the summer. At the time, I had been working on smaller projects and thought the yardage would be fine. Since then, I have expanded my horizons and desperately wished I had picked up a second skein. Today, I was pattern browsing and a free birthday present popped up. Diving in – a recipe to create a triangle shawl with small amounts of fingering weight yarn. 110 grams total, 30 grams of one and 80 of the other. Perfect for a small sock yarn skein and some leftovers. I’m going to use Araucania 8 – this colorway looks like the beach – and some Knit Picks Palette I have in my stash that goes perfectly. Not my ideal yarn combinations, but the colors look great together and I’m trying to use up my stash. I have enough colors that I may use three different colors…we’ll see how it goes as I get further into the pattern.

In other news, I have finished a few projects – some from the Ravellenics – that I haven’t shared on here! I’m immensely proud of my Sugared Violets shawl. I finished it in two weeks (even though I was up until 5 am working on the picot bind off…) and love the beads I added to it. No matter how hard I try, I cannot capture the beads without doing a close up of them and then it takes away from the whole effect. The beads are in the center of each violet in the lace pattern. They’re gold and they catch the sunlight absolutely perfectly when I wear it. I’ve received numerous compliments on it – one friend told me she was impressed by me last time I wore it. Its made with Malabrigo sock in Tizano Red.
I love it.

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I also finished Tiny Owl Knits’ Catching Butterflies. This pattern is the reason I joined TOKland and I’ve just now finished them. The photo isn’t as good as my Sugared Violets photo (I really need to take them out to get some photos). The yarn is Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sport Multi that I picked up from a small shop in Huntsville, AL. I had started a lace beret with it, but the yarn fought me the whole time. I think it turned out for the best – I adore these fingerless mitts.

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Last but certainly not least is Molly. Molly is a goose I made and not to blow my own horn, but she is just the cutest thing. She’s another project I’m unbelievably proud of. The pattern is free on Ravelry – Betsy’s Goose. The choice to make the white goose was simply one of cost – I already had bits of orange to use for the feet and the beak, so I’d only need to buy the white instead of three colors needed for the Canadian goose. I’m quite pleased with the results.

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I’ve also recently finished two tests that I crocheted – I’m expanding my horizons! Those will come at a later date, though…

Olympics, Ravellenics, and projects galore

I’ll be honest, I have not watched a single part of the winter Olympics. The only sport that I was interested in during the summer Olympics was the equestrian events, and they were not on our television channels when they were suppose to be. That being said, I did join a team for the Ravelry Ravellenics that ended up creating their own games after the whole Ravellenics debacle – if you’re on Ravelry, you know what I’m talking about. If you aren’t, its really not worth getting into.

During these games, I had a few projects in mind. Honestly, I am only close to finishing one of them. That being said, I have learned a *lot* of new techniques. I began my first pair of colorwork mittens – my first real colorwork project. I did a small drink cozy in the past and decided that I wanted to try something else. 

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While I expect it will be far too warm for them by the time my mom receives them, I’m quite happy with them and at least she will have a pair of mittens for next winter. 

I did finish a felted fox purse for a friend of mine that I ended up entering into our games even though it was not an initial project I had in mind. I quite like the pattern – I’d highly suggest it for a cute, quick, woodsy themed gift. The only problem I had was lining it; there were little directs for making the lining. Sewing is not new to me by any means as my mother is an accomplished seamstress/quilter and for the majority of my life, I have made my own projects. Once I spent more time trying to make a lining for the fox than I spent knitting and felting it, I decided the fox really didn’t need a lining and was quite cute as it was. Perhaps other are more skilled than I at lining objects. 

I am working on a sugared violets shawl for myself – I hope to have it done not just for the end of the games, but for a concert I am attending this weekend. There’s quite a lot of simple stockinette stitch and I decided to attempt to learn continental knitting to past the time. I succeeded! While I am slower at continental knitting (for now) I can do it. I need to learn to relax, though, as my knitting and my hands are very tense while working continental. I’m sure that will come with time – my hands were far from relaxed the first time I picked up a pair of knitting needles. 

 

Changes coming to Knit Twenty Two!

No worries, I will still be here. The blog will still be here. I am picking up more fiber crafts – I have learned to crochet and I’d like to expand those skills, and I am also working on my spinning skills. I’m no longer using just a drop spindle…I received a spinning wheel for Christmas! In the next few weeks I hope to remodel the blog. Keep an eye out – once everything is how I envision it, I hope to post at least once a week.

Whew, its been a while since I’ve had time to post!

I have been busy. First, finals. Those went well. Once I got home, I was busy with Christmas knitting and Christmas decorating and Christmas. Since then, I’ve been busy packing. Mom’s moving from our apartment to a house, so we’ve been trying to get everything packed up so she doesn’t have to do it all on her own. Tonight I’ve finally been able to sit down and blog.

I think we should start with Christmas gifts! Now that everyone has their gifts, I can share the photos without worrying about them finding what they’re getting.
For my best friend, I made her a hat that she liked – I had made myself one ages ago, and she loved that hat. The pattern I used was chunky slouch cap, free on Ravelry. Its super quick and easy, and I love the outcome. My best friend said its a “magic hat” that makes any hair style (or color) look good.

jessa

For mom, I made Tiny Owl Knits’ Amy March’s Slippers. While they’re adorable, I’m not thrilled with them. They don’t stay on her foot; I’m going to have to pick up the live stitches and make a bigger back for them and possible thread elastic through the back. Its definitely a little disappointing, but I’ll do what I have to for them to fit – my mom has perpetually cold feet (maybe that’s where I get it from?) so I know she’ll appreciate them when they finally stay on her feet.

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For dad, I made him a Heidi hat. I know it was designed as a woman’s hat, but to me it is definitely more masculine, especially in a solid color and a heavy yarn. I added a brim on it, and the hat says to start the decreases after 6 inches. I went to 7 inches and I would still prefer it if I had gone to 7.5 or even 8 inches – its very snug. If I hadn’t blocked it really heavily over a bowl, it would not have gone over my ears, much less my dad’s. Other than that, I was quite happy with the pattern and how well it looks. The photo isn’t as pretty as the rest – I didn’t have it finished when I did the photo shoot with the others and gave it to dad without snapping a picture first, so its just a quick shot I took when I visited him. The color is a much, much more masculine blue than what the photo shows. Really. Its not prius powder blue, its prettier. I promise. The colorway is “cobalt” if that gives you any idea.

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My sister is a huge Burberry fan. Because of this love of Burberry, I based her gift off of the Burberry Inspired Cowl. I say “based” because I used a bulky weight yarn and altered the cable locations. I think its okay to post the pattern I used since I linked to the original and I did alter quite a bit. I posted what I did on my Ravelry project page, but for those of you who don’t have a Ravelry account, here it is:

  • Using super bulky yarn (I used one skein of Lion Brand Wool-Ease Thick&Quick Solids) cast on 30 stitches with provisional cast on.
  • Rows 1 – 6: Slip the first stitch of each row, work in stockinette (even row: purl. odd row: knit).
  • Row 7: Sl 1 stitch, knit 2, C8F, knit 8, C8F, knit 3
  • Row 8-14: Slip the first stitch of each row, work in stockinette (even row: purl. odd row: knit).
  • Row 13: Sl 1 stitch, knit 10 , C8B, knit 11
  • Row 14: Purl
  • Repeat until desired length. Graft ends together.

And here’s the results:

carli

Finally, we have my niece. On her Christmas list she had asked for beanies and legwarmers. I didn’t have a lot of time, so I made up a quick hat pattern for her. As far as I know, she loved it – as soon as she opened it she put it on and she didn’t take it off all day. Here’s the pattern I did for her hat:

Using a super bulky yarn (I used one skein of Lion Brand Wool-Ease Thick&Quick Metallics), use the long tail cast on and cast on 44 stitches.

  • Join in the round, work K1, P1 rib for five rounds.
  • Round 6: (k1, p1) x 2, kfb* to end
  • k2, p2* around until the entire work measures 9 inches.
  • Next round: K2tog, p2tog* to end
  • Last *two* rounds: k2tog to end
  • Break yarn, thread through live stitches

 

abbie

 

And that concludes my Christmas knitting. Since then, I have made a few other projects (surprise, surprise). I made a star crossed slouchy beret (which, if you ask me, is more like a beanie) as well as one of Caitlin Ffrench’s bulky weight shawls and a few hats – one crocheted! I have also started a weather scarf – you know, dedicate a certain yarn to a range of temperatures and knit each day based off of that day’s temperature (I’m going off of that day’s high). I think it’ll be fun! Needless to say, the polar vortex that came through definitely shows on my scarf, even though our highs weren’t in the negative (we reached 1F), our windchills were in the negative thirties.

 

 

 

I’ve picked out a lot of green yarn lately.

This started back in October when I picked out yarn for my Dragon Watcher’s Hood. Just in the past week, I’ve completed three other projects using some lovely green yarns. I can be picky with my greens – some tones wash me out. However, I am learning to embrace the wonderful green shades that do flatter me.

Back to that Dragon Watcher’s Hood. I finally have a good photo of it.

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The yarn for this is awesome! Its Stonehedge Fiber Mill Shepherd’s Wool in worsted and the color way is blue spruce. Its a gorgeous, rich green with flecks of blue. Its really soft and toasty, too! I’d definitely suggest it.

More recently, I have finished a heart shaped shawl from Lion Brand’s Homespun. I know this is probably one of the most hated yarns out there, but I will be honest: I like it. No, not for complex stitch patterns, but if you use a very simple garter/stockinette pattern on large needles, it cooperates pretty well. And wash it. Its probably the softest acrylic I’ve ever used. I found a shawl cheat sheet that I used and I love the heart shaped style – no hassle getting it to stay on your shoulders!

shawl

Didn’t it turn out well? I added the picot edging just to add a little more to such a simple shawl. I think it really finished it off.

Finally, I have a hat and cowl set I finished. I have just enough of the yarn left to make a very small pair of mitts, too! This yarn is wonderfully soft and I can’t stop touching it when I wear the hat. I used Tiny Owl Knits’ Orchid and Fairy Lights and Bedknob and Broomsticks patterns to make the set.

orchids

bedknobs

set

Christmas knitting is taking shape!

In the past week I have finished three gifts – one for my mom, one for my sister, and one for my best friend which I mentioned in my previous post. Now I just have one for my dad – for which I still need to figure out what yarn to use – and one for my niece, that I know what I’m doing, but I’m essentially making my own pattern for. When I’ve finished it, I’ll post the pattern for anyone who is curious as I’m pretty sure my sixteen year old niece won’t be searching for my knitting blog as her preferred artistic method is pencil (or paint) and paper.

This leads me into a question for all of you seasoned knit givers. How do you wrap your knits when you gift them? I don’t often use gift bags; I prefer to use paper and tape and bows. Lots and lots of bows. I was thinking about buying boxes, wrapping the knits in tissue paper, and then wrapping the box up. I still get to play with wrapping paper and tape, and yet they aren’t getting a wrapped yarn lump as a present.