A little motivation.

I have felt extraordinarily motivated in my making lately. The plan is–so far–doing an amazing thing. I’m so excited to get to everything that I have planned, I’ve been highly motivated in my knitting. I couldn’t think of anything else until I got this cowl off the needles:

IMG_20171022_100627.jpg

This is Slipstream by Maria Montzka. I knit it out of Quince & Co. Lark in the Mist colorway. I only needed about 5 grams out of the third skein, I knit 2 full repeats of the pattern. I really loved knitting this. I don’t often knit things that are so lacy, especially not anything that’s overall patterned. It gave me a lot of confidence in my abilities and patience. It also felt good to knit something in a single, solid color. I’m incredibly happy with this finished object.

img_20171024_171348.jpg

IMG_20171026_082714

This is my first make from my plans with my wardrobe architect project. It’s exciting to get started on that and I can’t wait to get to more of those plans!

I got started on a new hat for Astra. She had two requests: orange and mohair. I am more than happy to knit both. I cast it on last weekend. It’s ridiculously fuzzy and soft and squishy. And quite orange, if I do say so myself.

IMG_20171022_100904_545.jpg

I wound up staying up late the other night watching old movies and finished the hat. It’s so squishy and fuzzy, and Astra really likes it. This is Bumble by Tin Can Knits and I held one strand of Knit Picks Swish (100% merino) DK in Clementine together with one strand of Knit Picks Aloft (mohair silk blend) in Koi.

IMG_20171025_084912_156.jpg

Since I can’t seem to keep the socks off of my needles, I finally gave in and put some time into my Halloween socks. During the first football game of Sunday, I finished the first sock and cast on the second:

IMG_20171022_173235_867.jpg

Through my Steelers game and Monday Night Football, I managed to knit to about half way through the gusset. These kind of felt like were just falling off the needles. After the night of finishing the hat, I stayed up the next night and finished the socks!

IMG_20171026_165350_913.jpg

These were fun to knit up. They’re knit out of Hedgehog Fibres Sock Yarn in the Flytrap colorway. This was one of the September club colorways. I really never knit anything with black, but I’m digging how these turned out Halloween-y in a not super Halloween-y way. These are my fourteenth pair for my Box O’ Sox.

Whew! It’s not often I have 3 finishes in week but I’ve got so much that I want to get to, I’ve really felt like finishing things. I’ve started in on a bit more secret making (I can’t seem to help myself) and I’ve got yarn on the way for a new shawl. I just know I’m going to want to cast it on immediately.

I don’t really like having tons of projects going at once–I  know you can’t tell with how much I’ve been casting on lately–and I want to be in the mindset to just give myself over to the new shawl. It’s one of the ones I talked about last week–I can’t wait to tell you all about it!


YoM Day 293-294: Cowl knitting – finished Slipstream!

YoM Day 295-296: Sock and hat knitting

YoM Day 297: Hat knitting – finished Astra’s hat!

YoM Day 298: Sock knitting – finished Halloween Socks!


Happy making!

Quickly.

Sometimes, I become enamored. A particular skein of yarn, a swatch of fabric, even a pattern, sometimes I get the thing in my head. When that happens, other projects can fall by the wayside in my quest to make something with the object of my affection. My most recent love affair has been with this yarn:

unravelanelephant-1508508410380.jpg

This is Underwater Princess on Merino DK by Suburban Stitcher. I purchased this yarn for a brioche project, but I love it so much that I didn’t want another yarn to compete with it.

I thought a hat would be a good project for it. You may recall, I had recently cast on the Fleesensee Hat by Verena Cohrs. I knit almost all of the rib and was looking through some of the project pages for the hat and noticed that a fair number of people were saying the hat knit up too small. I am generally a loose knitter but I have a big head, so I was curious. I pulled some waste yarn through the stitches and tried it on. Too small. Definitely too small.

IMG_20171003_082838_085

I was discouraged about having to rip out inches and inches of twisted rib but I did it. And then I tried to figure out what on earth to do with the yarn. I noticed that the Age of Brass and Steam Kerchief only takes one skein of DK weight yarn to make a cute little shawlette. Sold! I had to order needles though, since I couldn’t wait until I finished my Marled Magic to free up my 6 mm needles.

The needles came last Friday night and I had had a really rough evening. To cheer myself up, I cast on the shawl. Since it’s DK and a fairly simple pattern, it started showing progress pretty quickly that night:

IMG_20171014_104219_580.jpg

The next morning I knit a few rows on it and then came back to it that Saturday night. I knit and knit, and then woke up and knit on it with my Sunday morning coffee and…

IMG_20171015_123019_274.jpg

I bound the thing off before I made lunch. It absolutely flew. I gave the shawl a bath and blocked it fairly aggressively and it came out beautifully.

IMG_20171019_093611.jpg

IMG_20171019_093549.jpg

IMG_20171019_093526.jpg

It’s a great size for a small shawl. Enough to put over your shoulders or throw around your neck, but not so small that it falls off all the time.

A quick FO like that can be so gratifying, not to mention a great way to satisfy that drive to work with a particular material. It is so fun to go from loving a yarn to wearing a finished piece knit with it.

I’m in a weird place of wanting to cast on a million things–still!–and getting completely addicted to my knits and wanting to finish things. A weekend knit like this shawlette was just the ticket.


YoM Day 286-288: Shawl and sock knitting

YoM Day 289-292: Cowl knitting


Happy making!

Speaking of catching up.

It seems like ages since I wrote a regular ol’ blog post. You know the kind, where I just chatter along about the things I’ve been working on? Well buckle up and grab a cup of something hot and tasty, this is going to be a long one.

Let’s start with the dresses. I made two dresses out of that dark grey cotton jersey, one for Astra and one for me. They actually came together pretty quickly and are adorable, if you ask me. Astra and I agree, they’re awfully comfy, too. Astra’s dress was the Delaney Dress by Peek-A-Boo pattern shop and mine is the Moneta Dress by Colette Patterns.

 

I think I’ll have to make myself another dozen Monetas. It’s incredibly comfortable and figure-flattering. I’m a fan.

In the sock world, I’ve got a bit going on. Still working on Kevin’s socks, but I’ve got one nearly done. I tried a few things for a toe-up heel and then finally decided to stick with what I like, which is a cut-in afterthought heel. So, I have one sock tube done. I cast on the second toe so that I would be ready for football this weekend:

IMG_20171012_091020

On the road trip to the anniversary party, I was determined to finally finish my Hedgehog socks. They had been on the needles since August! I finished them in the car on the way down, but had left the mate at home.

Now that we’re home the pair is finally together. The yarn is Hedgehog Fibres Twist Sock in the Down By the River colorway. I’ll say it again, I love this base! I can’t wait to knit up some more socks in this squishy BFL.

IMG_20171012_091255

img_20171012_091128.jpg

IMG_20171012_091238

Thankfully, I brought another skein of yarn on the trip. Back in August I subscribed to the Hedgehog Fibres sock club. I’ve been dreaming of subscribing for nearly forever and I finally just went ahead and signed up. I received my first shipment a few weeks ago:

IMG_20170921_172624.jpg

I’m absolutely dying over the lighter skein, Iceberg. That pale blue and speckles slays me. The darker skein, Flytrap, is waaaay out of my comfort zone. Something struck me about it though, it seems perfect for Halloween socks. So I skeined it up and took it with me, thinking it would be a great October cast on. I managed to knit the entire cuff of the sock during Kevin’s turn at driving:

IMG_20171009_130918_283

Since then, I’ve turned the heel and finished the gusset on the first sock. I think they are perfectly spooky and fun!

img_20171012_090856.jpg

In other news, I finished the big seed stitch section and started section 7 on my Marled Magic shawl. It’s gigantic and amazing.

img_20171012_090711.jpg

I’ve had some pretty itchy fingers lately, I want to cast on everything! I cast on the Fleesensee hat:

IMG_20171003_082838_085

I was really enjoying this one, and the yarn is heart-breakingly pretty. It’s Suburban Stitcher DK in the Underwater Princess colorway. However, it was too small by quite a bit, so I’ve ripped it out. The yarn is now going to go to an Age of Brass and Steam Kerchief, if my needles ever get here.

Since that certainly wasn’t enough, I also cast on the Love Ewe Baby shawl. This is my first foray into two-color brioche and I am completely besotted. It is so squishy and soft and pretty!

IMG_20171006_083131_049

Right side.

IMG_20171006_082434

Wrong side, even though nothing about this is wrong!

I’m using Swift Yarns in the Swift Simple base, a 100% Merino singles base.  My colorways are Princess Bride (soft pink) and Tropical Vintage (speckle). I’ll add in some Marilyn (hot pink) when the time comes.

I think that’s everything I’ve been working on. I have the knitting bug something awful. There have even been a few days crisp enough to break out some wool!

IMG_20170929_163122

I’ve also been on a major planning bender. I’ve got a fun, big project in the works. I’m considering doing a bit of a series on it for the blog but we’ll see if I can tear myself away from the knitting long enough to write it up. I’ve done a bit of organizing lately, but more about that another day. For now, I’ll just leave you with a picture of a cat who loves yarn.

img_20171012_093843.jpg


YoM day 272-285: Quilting; sewing; sock, hat, and shawl knitting – a bit of everything!


Happy making!

Catching up.

Visiting home often means catching up on things. Always it’s catching up with loved ones–updates on life, work, family, and news great and small. This year, I’ve also been playing catch up on birthdays. Partly I can’t get my act together to finish things in time to mail them and partly I like to give gifts in person. That might be selfish, but it’s the truth.

On our visit home for Judge and Crystal’s anniversary party, I was able to see sweet Madelyn for the first time since her birthday. I got to hang out with her a teensy bit and chat, and finally gift her a mini I made, mostly just because I thought she would enjoy it.

The design just struck me as something she would find sweet. As I got the pieces laid out, I was really struck at how clever the design is. The pattern is the Patchwork Apple Mini Quilt by Sassafras Lane Designs. It’s a free pattern and I highly recommend it.

IMG_20170926_205427

I sewed one leaf wrong, but luckily fixed the other one. I think I only had to unpick one row and resew it — that’s a lot of teeny pieces and seams!

IMG_20170929_130548

I just love the scrappy, patchworky look of those apples. And the apple core slays me! So cute. I added a yellowy-mustdardy backing because that’s Madelyn’s favorite color and some soft yellow polka dotted binding. I think the finished product is pretty stinkin’ precious. Madelyn is also pretty stinkin’ precious, so it works.

I did do one new thing on this little guy. I added corner pockets to the back to make it easier to hang. This one fits a ruler pretty nicely, so hopefully that works well for Madelyn.

IMG_20171006_105509.jpg

IMG_20171006_105430.jpg

It was great to see Madelyn on Sunday and get to catch up with her, even if it was just for a little while. I always love talking with her. Happy birthday, Madelyn!


Happy making!

It’s tough to know what you don’t know.

I’ve been thinking about learning to sew garments for a while now. I am really enjoying sewing and learning, so this seems like a natural next step. There are also a lot of inspiring knitter/sewists out there, and I’d like to join their ranks!

After a fair bit of research, I settled on the Sorbetto top by Colette Patterns. It’s a free pattern and advertised to be very beginner friendly. It is beginner friendly in that it is very simple, you only cut out two pieces and the instructions are written very well.

With all that said, I had no idea how much I didn’t know about garment sewing. I had to google and youtube nearly every step. How do you arrange the pattern? How do you cut it out? (hint, I still did that sort of wrong) Why is my fabric bunching up so badly? How do you handle darts? How do you finish seams? Much less, how do you do them separately? Here are my lackluster, yet finished seams:

IMG_20170909_144118

It was at this point that I discovered that, years ago, Colette Patterns hosted a sewalong for this very pattern. My game really stepped up after that. They had even more detail and instruction in the sewalong than the pattern. I still had to google a few things, but I was at least moving a long better.

It finally came time to attach the bias binding that I made to the neckband and armholes. I could not get it to look right! So I started back to googling. Evidently there is a handy foot that helps with edgestitching, but not a good one for my machine. While I was practicing and googling and looking at the sewing machine manual, I realized something.

It would appear that I have been threading my machine incorrectly for over a year. I’m always cursing the tension and the stitches look uneven and it’s a huge pain. Well, I had been not using the last thread guide the entire time. It is now well employed, and my stitches look so much better. I’m trying not to kick myself too much for that one. With that, I set to work finishing the neckband and armholes.

IMG_20170914_002730_813

I thought I would really like that part. I love binding quilts. Turns out it’s not the same. I am not a fan. But with that and a hem, it’s all done.

IMG_20170914_114942

It’s a real top! It even goes on my body! The fit could use a bit of work and there is lots of room for improvement, but my first garment is finally complete. Some of the details:

IMG_20170914_115010

I really like it. I like the style, the fabric, and most of all that I made it! I did learn about a million things in the process of making this top. I am really excited to make my next garment and utilizing those skills plus learning new ones. Making is such a process!


YoM day 250-251: Sock and shawl knitting

YoM day 252: Sock knitting, quilting, sewing

YoM day 253: Sewing

YoM day 254-257: Shawl knitting


Happy making!