Procrastaknit

Everything else can wait until I finish this row…

Hello, it’s me…

… I’m in Connecticut knitting, with new yarn very happily.

HA!  Nothing like a little Adele parody to start off the new year right?  I have so much to share too!

Yes, I have been lacking on posting, but I was creating a Pinterest-worthy birthday party for my 2 year old; who proceeded to get sick with Coxsackie (aka hand-foot-and-mouth); which my husband got; then my brother-in-law got when we traveled to California (we thought we were over it when we boarded the plane) for Thanksgiving; followed by a few short weeks at home recuperating; then having a low-key Christmas; before getting on a plane to travel to the other side of the world so my son could meet his great-grandparents; before coming home just a few days ago to battle jetlag and a blizzard.  That would keep anyone busy, right?

I plan to write a separate post on the Under the Sea themed birthday party and our trip to Japan. For now, I’ll keep this post short just by showing you the photos of the knitted projects I have completed in the past three months, so that we can get back to our sharing our love of knitting.

I managed to do two Christmas Stockings – one for my husband and one for my son – by December 25th.  I have to finish two more by this December. The bottom left pattern is Foliage by Emilee Mooney from knitty.com; but I think I am going to have to frog it.   The Ecolã Hand Painted yarn I got from Brazil a few years ago isn’t a good match for this pattern, the thick and thin texture and the beautiful colors take away from the lace pattern.  The cowl on the bottom right is the Bee Keeper’s Cowl by Grace Ahkrem (free download on Ravelry) – with two bulky yarns it is really warm and perfect for New England winters.

Advertisements
Leave a comment »

Fresh Off The Needles: Baby Hat

I just finished a little baby hat for my husband’s coworker.  It turned out great! Except for one itty bitty little detail… it’s too small!!  We were going to give it to them at the office holiday party yesterday, but when I looked at Baby D’s head, I could tell it wasn’t going to fit him.  So the present stayed in the car all nicely wrapped.  It will be ready for the next baby that is born and now I have to find another pattern for Baby D.  Not that I mind, it was so great to have an instant satisfaction project considering all my other WIPs are ones I have been working on for months!  Here is how the hat came out:

image

attern: Baby's Cabled Milk Silk Cap Designer: Susan Boye Source: Luxury Yarns One Skein Wonders Yarn: 127 Print by Filatura Di Crosa

1 Comment »

Fresh Off the Needles and Hook!

My baby turned one at the beginning of the month and I finished his crochet baby blanket on his birthday!  After a few attempts I figured out how to properly do the Crochet Intarsia that I had mentioned a few weeks back and here is the final result:

image

I couldn’t be happier with how it looks!  I had to do some modifications to the chart, because it appeared to be off-centered so I shifted it a little so there are 8 stitches on both side of the widest part of the mushroom.  Then I sat back to admire my work and noticed that the eyes were also off-center. I thought I had miscounted, but when I looked back at the chart I saw that it was indeed uneven, with ten stitches on one side and eight on the other.  So I fixed that too. In the end, it was a little annoying to keep balancing things out but well worth it!

Another project that I have completed this month is one that has been hibernating in my craft closet since 2010! It is a beautiful tunic in which I had the body, one sleeve, and most of the second sleeve already done. I think I got stuck with the second sleeve when the directions told me to “reverse knit” the decreases. I didn’t know what that meant at the time and so I hid it; out of sight out of mind! I am so relieved, not only that I finished it, but that it fits me pretty well too. Let’s face it, a person’s body can change a LOT in 1,460+ days, especially after a pregnancy.

image

image

Both of these pictures are before blocking, once that’s done it can only get better. Currently I am still working on the blue sweater, I have one sleeve done, I just need to keep adding length to the stockinette body and start the second sleeve so that this project doesn’t end up hibernating for four years too. besides that, I have some colorwork projects going on and I plan to cast on a baby sweater to steek. Yep, that’s happening. No more just talking and dreading it, I’m gonna put my yarn where my mouth is! Wish me luck!

 

2 Comments »

Paying it forward

Earlier this week I taught three women how to knit!  It was very gratifying to pass on this skill.  I used the pattern “Easy Fingerless Mitts” by Roxanne Richardson that is a free download on Ravelry.  It is a great beginner project because it shows the knit and purl stitch and because you have to do two of them you get to repeat the cast on and cast off for more practice.  I have never thought that a scarf is a good first project to learn.  True, you get a better handle of the stitches by repeating it, but beginners either get bored with it because of the length or get discouraged because it looks so uneven with the inevitable dropped and/or added stitches.  So that is why I liked this pattern.

Here is the progress that my students made and the sample that I made with some left over gray Madeline Tosh.  The first two, had already knitted in the past, they just needed a better understanding of how to do it and a quick pattern to see some progress.  My friend with the white yarn had never knitted before and had a difficult time at first.  I told her it was partially because the turquoise yarn she had originally chosen was too close in color to the blue metal needles she had bought, which made it harder for her to see her stitches.  So I gave her some bulky white yarn from my stash and size 13 wooden needles so she could see things better and that helped her a lot!  She was so excited she actually texted me at around midnight last night to show me that she had used up all of the white yarn.  That is so satisfying to see someone feel accomplished! I hope they embrace this craft with as much love as I have.

image

image

image

 

Leave a comment »

Fresh Off The Needles: Cashmere Tie

I just finished knitting the tie that my hubby requested as his first father’s day gift.  (Ugh, I am terrible with deadlines!)  There is no one more knitworthy in my life than him.  He sees how much time and effort I put into the things I make.  He enjoys and takes good care of the knitwear I gift to him (I’m surprised his socks are still holding up!).  And unlike the dog and the baby, who have no idea as to what is going on, he appreciates the handmade items.  So when he asked for a knitted tie, I was so happy to oblige him that I busted out the fancy cashmere yarn to fulfill his request.    All he asked was that the tie be a solid color so he could easily pair it with his striped work shirts.

The pattern is a free Ravelry download called Father’s Day Necktie by Mary C. Gildersleeve.  The yarn is Jade Sapphire Mongolian Cashmere 2-ply in a light sage green color.  The pattern called for a worsted weight, so I did an extra pattern repeat to add width to the tie and repeated it 25 times before starting the decrease.  By the time I got to the end of the tie, I just made my own decreases and casted off – I had the pattern memorized and was too excited to cast off to go looking for the proper way that the designer ended.  In the end the hubby loves it and I am excited that I have enough of this luxurious yarn left over to make something for myself!! Here is how it came out:
image

image

PS: Did you know that some designer brand cashmere ties can sell for over $200!?  So don’t feel bad if you have to splurge on the yarn, you’re getting a very good deal!

1 Comment »

Hibernating Flower Shawelette Finally Blooms!

I have not done many lace projects, and in December 2011 I was overwhelmed with three different WIPs on my needles! Something had to give and so I put aside the Petal Shawelette Designed by Bonnie Evans (Book: Sock Yarn One-Skein Wonders) to hibernate into my craft closet “for the winter”… HA! Years later and that shawl made a cross country move before it ever saw the light of day again.

Earlier this year my lovely new LYS offered a WIP Help class and I decided it was now or never for this shawlette. I didn’t know where I got stuck or why my stitch count wasn’t adding up, so I went for a little help. All it took to keep this shawl moving forward was a closer reading of the instructions. Turns out all I was doing wrong was not following the pattern. I thought that after Chart B I had to move onto Chart C, when in fact I needed to repeat Chart B! Once that was made clear by one of the knowledgeable and thorough staff of my LYS, I zoomed through the pattern happy as can be that it was finally starting to look like the photo in the book.

Of course I was also working on a few different projects and with a new baby, this shawl took a few more months to be completed. But complete it, I did!! I finished the leaf edging over the past week while sick in bed with a horrendous sinus cold. Now it is blocked and I just have to debut it!

Leave a comment »

Fresh Off the Needles: Baby Items

I’ve finished two baby projects recently: a cap for a friend who is due this month and the Baby Surprise Jacket for my little guy.

My friend doesn’t know if she is having a boy or a girl, so I chose a gender neutral aqua from my stash to make this cute little hat.  Silly me though, I added the pompom to give it a nice finishing touch, but didn’t realize that by doing so it no longer was machine washable since it would likely fall apart in a second.

wpid-20140516_225800.jpg

Pattern: Foolproof Baby Hat            Designer: Clara Parkes                              Book: The Knitter’s Book of Yarn           Yarn: Cascade 220

 

This was my first try at making Elizabeth Zimmerman’s Baby Surprise Jacket and having done a few other patterns designed by her, I am a fan of her awesomeness.  I also loved the yarn that I found at the Connecticut Sheep and Wool Festival, Lismi Knit a local dyer here in CT.  It’s a superwash worsted weight that created a self striping rainbow, check out her Etsy shop if you’re interested: http://www.etsy.com/shop/LismiKnits The combination of the pattern and the yarn was pure bliss.  Unfortunately I did run out of yarn with just a few rows to go, so I added a few rows with some white yarn from my stash.  I made the last few rows with bobbles to make it look like clouds, I wasn’t sure if it was tacky or cute, but only one person in my knit night group said it was tacky, the others all thought it was cute so I stuck with it.  Just gotta block it and add the zipper so it can  be considered done.

I am also happy to announce that the sweater that I started before I knew I was pregnant will fit after all and I am making a lot of progress on it.  Look:

Pretty Heritage

1 Comment »

Fresh off the needles: Baby Socks

Tuesday was the 6 months birthday of my little Japazilian and his little friend, M.  M’s parents watched them while the hubby and I went to one of his work functions (kinda sucks that it fell on this date).  So as a little thank you/ birthday gift for M, I’ve made these little socks for him (his mom loves the color orange).

Pattern: Baby Socks Designer: Marie Connolly Book: The Expectant Knitter Yarn: Knit Picks Palette in Apricot

Pattern: Baby Socks
Designer: Marie Connolly
Book: The Expectant Knitter
Yarn: Knit Picks Palette in Apricot

I knit them holding the yarn double and followed the 12-18 months instructions since there was no 6-12 months. I also continued the ribbing until it was time to turn the heel.  The only other mod I’ve made is when decreasing for the toes I always ended up with 8 stitches instead of 6, so on the last decrease row I K1, Double Decrease, K1.  The Double Decrease was slip one, K2tog, psso – for some reason I can’t remember the abbreviation for that technique right now.

Loved the pattern; quick and easy and simple!  I could have finished it in one day, if hubby was able to watch the baby for a few hours. Will definitely make it again.

Leave a comment »

Fresh Off The Needles: Sandpiper Cowl

Today I woke up at 4am and was too restless to fall back asleep. Best thing I could do was finish knitting my new cowl so that something pretty by my face to distract people from noticing the bags under my eyes.  Now my Strandlaeufer (Sandpiper) Cowl by Ankestrick (Ravelry name of pattern and designer) is all done!  Minus the blocking, of course, but I already wore it out today, so it’s considered complete.  🙂

Since so many people complained of the edges rolling up, I modified the first few rows with a P1, K3 ribbing in the dark color, but it did not really work. As you can see by the photos it still folds.   My gauge is is 20 stitches for 4 inches. It’s not as loose as the photo from the pattern and I don’t think blocking it will help much. More likely than not this project will felt and shrink a bit in size, to make it a cozy and really, really warm neck hugging cowl. Considering I just moved to New England I think it’s probably for the best anyways.  Maybe blocking will help it, maybe it won’t. Either way that’s how it’s staying

I ran out of the light blue color a little after completing the four solid rounds.  Because of I had bought this yarn at my old LYS in Virginia and didn’t want to wait for it to be mailed, I modified the proceeding rows to create a diamond motif with the white.  Sadly, I ran out of the blue just 18 stitches short of my marker on the last row of the pattern.  Darn, I was so close! Oh well, that’s how it’s staying.

I should’ve realized when I casted on that the yarn (Kashmir Alpakka by Sandnes Garn) is mostly alpaca, meaning it has no memory and no elasticity to it.   Meaning, that the ribbing wouldn’t keep it from flipping and showing the inside strands.   I decided to forgo the ribbing with the white cast off edge and just did the plain knit as indicated in the pattern.  The way I figured it was going to roll up anyways, so at least it should show off the small little pattern I created instead of covering it up completely. So that’s how it’s staying.

 

The end result is about half the size of the original pattern with some of my own unique modifications and I am quite happy with it as is.  I have no doubt I will get a lot of use out of this cowl!

Leave a comment »

Fresh Off the Needles

Yesterday I finished a cute vest for my little guy, check it out:

Pattern: Baby Boy Vest and Bow Tie  Designer: Patti Ghezzi Book: One Skein Wonder Socks

Pattern: Baby Boy Vest and Bow Tie
Designer: Patti Ghezzi
Book: Sock Yarn One-Skein Wonders

My apologies, I know the photo is not the best because I took it with my cell phone camera.  I changed the cable a little bit because I wasn’t liking the look of the original design.  The edging of the sleeves are a little uneven, but I think it will help having one slightly wider to put it on a squirmy baby.  The pattern does say its supposed to fit a 6 month old, but it looks so small!  The yarn is stretchy but it fits my hot water bottle that I am currently using to soothe my constant lower back pain.  I’m not so sure I can wait until April or May to dress him in it, we shall see when he’ll be able to sport it.  If it is too small, I figured I can just put it on a teddy bear and decorate the nursery with it.

To finish off this little vest I had to buy new double pointed needles – honestly I don’t know how I managed to finish so many hats without a set of size 8 DPNs.  Anyways, last night at my new Knit Night I bought a set of the Knitter’s Pride Karbonz that I wrote about a few posts back.  I was slightly disappointed but also pleasantly surprised at these needles.  Disappointed because the tips are metal and a bit dull for my preference, but pleasantly surprised at how smooth the body of these needles are – like buttah!  I’d imagine that they could be very useful with sticky yarns, like mohair, but very troublesome with slippery yarns, like bamboo.  Another thing that was surprising about these needles was the warning label that it came with:

The contents of this pack (needle or any other item) have to be used carefully for needlework only.  These should be used with all due care as these may cause injury if used improperly by an untrained/unfamiliar person.  Always restrain children’s access to these tools and store these securely.

Seriously!?  Well, I suppose if their claim to fame is being durable enough to manufacture a space ship they are certainly strong enough to cause harm.  Overall, I’m very happy I got them and I am sure I will get many more use out of them.

Leave a comment »

%d bloggers like this: