Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Ending the Craziness

 It's finally come to an end.  Yes, cast-on-apalooza is done at the end of this week.  I'm ready for it to end because I haven't had time to go back to the first cast-ons and continue.  It will be nice to focus on one project at a time now.  The above scarf I tried to CO the other day but couldn't get through it with my aluminum needles.  I have been trying to get into my lys to get some bamboo needles but life has been getting in the way and then today I was just too pooped!  I still have until Saturday and I'll be taking a knitting class there then so I can at least get a few rows in at the wire!  Eventually it's going to be a really nice alpaca lace scarf with increases and decreases so that the scarf looks ruched in some spots.  I plan on wearing that one a lot with my work wardrobe.

The other CO that I started is the Persephone Hood by my buddy Denise over at Voie de Vie.  I'm holding a worsted and an aran together and the result is a nice, rustic, bulky fabric.  I cast on with the recommended stitches but it's not working to the gauge noted but that is okay because I want a bigger hood especially now with this polar vortex nonsense.  Either way, I'm excited to add the pom poms on at the end.  It's totally cool for an adult to sport pom poms at her work place, right?

Friday, January 24, 2014


Cast on my two sweaters this week and they couldn't be more opposite!  One is worked in fingering weight yarn (which I think I'm officially crazytown for starting it) and the other is in bulky weight.  I am a bad knitter and didn't check gauge for the fingering weight but after I knit a few more rounds of ribbing I'll check it.  The second sweater I checked my gauge, only because I would've gotten a major beat down at knit night if I didn't and I got gauge on the nose!  Next week is the last week of cast-on-apalooza and it's gonna be a toughie to choose who will make the cut.  I think I have one picked out but I'm still deciding on the last (8th, yes 8th, cast on) project.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014


 Weapons of choice for my next two cast-ons.  Yes, those are some big circular needles for some sweater knitting and not just little kid sweater knitting, ME sweater knitting.  We will see how it goes.  I'm planning on starting Mud Season by Elizabeth Smith and the Plain and Simple Pullover by Veera Valimaki.  I've done a little research and heard some really awesome things about each pattern and then the occasional horror story.  I'm just going to go for it and see what happens from there.  If I no like, I frog!

 Then I cast on (not actually a part of my cast-on-apaloosa craziness) a little baby hat for my friend who is due in April.  I already gave her the little mitts   (picture forthcoming when she gets a moment) and still had enough to make a little hat.  I was done with the hat by the end of the night.  How satisfying after casting on and not finishing anything for a while.
This is the finished product.  I used the pattern from the Baby Football Hat because I like the ribbing at the brim and how the decreases go up at the top.  The yarn is Manos del Uruguay Maxima and it was knit up on size 4 DPNs.  It's a squishy worsted weight and is so soft!  I could roll around naked in it!  Okay, maybe that was too much information but you get the idea!  I highly recommend this yarn if you've never tried it!

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

CO cray cray

Lunch time CO!

After school squeeze
The are my cast-ons for the week.  The top, if you remember is yarn from my awesome lys by Jill Draper in her sock base, Splendor Sock.  The bottom is from my lys as well, and it's by Manos.  I love both of the patterns I am using with these.  No change since last post!  Nothing else to report at the moment but I will say that this green is getting me out of this winter funk I seem to be in.

Sunday, January 12, 2014


 The last couple of days I have been fantasizing about using these two skeins in my projects for cast-on-apaloosa.  The Manos del Uruguay Maxima is so squishy and the green is so vibrant.  I, originally, was going to make a Barley for myself but decided to make another TinCanKnits pattern, Maize.  This pattern can go two ways - fingerless mitts or mittens.  I'm opting for the fingerless mitts and the nice solid color will really bring out the interesting stitch pattern its got going on.

As for the Jill Draper Splendor on the right, I am planning on making the Wingfeathers shawl by Cal Patch.  It's a crochet pattern using fingering weight yarn and one of the smallest hooks I own.  I really love the color combos in this skein and I hope they come together nicely. 
Last but definitely not least, my awesome friend Mel, picked up this beautiful yarn bowl as a Christmas gift for me.  Isn't the color awesome? 

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Something foxy, something new!

 The first FO of the year is Sleepy Renard who is not looking very sleepy.  I didn't really have the patience to stitch lashes and crocheting eyelids but I find this cute all the same.  I used sock yarn and a small crochet hook to stitch this up for one of my former students.  I didn't follow the pattern for the body either, I started another head by accident and and decided rather than ripping to just start decreasing and calling it a day. 

 I'm still spinning this awesome fiber from Holiday Yarns.  I'm about 3/4 through the roving and I love how this is turning out.  I'm not sure if I will keep it as singles or ply it.  I have time yet to think it over.  It was so nice to spin after my knitting and crocheting marathon these last few weeks.

 This is what I had to deal with when I started winding yarn up for the second installment of cast-on-apalooza in our local Ravelry group.  Every time I use lace, I encounter some kind of uber knot.  What the heck!?  I enlisted the help of my friend, Jen, who definitely made a dent in the mess and then I picked it back up on one of snow days we had last week.  

 VoilĂ !  I beat you, stupid knot!

 This was my first CO with the lace from above.  The pattern is called Critron which is the crocheted version of Citron.  It's a free pattern by Martha Simonsen.  It's basically a bunch of single crochets which is going to be a test of endurance for me at this point.  I like it so far but I'm not really dazzled at the moment.  Good thing is, depending on what I decide to do, I finally started this project after having it in my queue since I joined Ravelry.  If I frog, there will be absolutely no guilt!

My second CO was the Storm Cloud Shawlette, by Hanna Breetz, using my own hand spun singles from Pear Tree Farms.  It was a little difficult to get started because my singles haven't seemed to relax since they've been washed and weighted.  I'm hoping that if I block this, they will chill out.  Or, I could be totally wrong and have a very wiry shawl.  Either way, no guilt if I need to frog this in the future either.  So far, neither project has been as exciting to me as picking the yarn and pattern out but, I could also be in some sort of post-holiday funk.  What project are you starting the new year out with?

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Topping Boots!

 The last of the Christmas crafting of 2013!  I made two of my bffs some boot toppers.  The one above is the pattern Boot Cuffs by Carrissa Knox.  I decided to add some funky buttons for a little flair and to break up the brown.  I used Lion's Brand Fisherman's Wool for both pairs.

The other pair didn't get any buttons but more of a flair stitch-wise.  I used the stitch pattern from my friend Denise's Rustically Elegant Shoulder Warmer pattern and added it to the top.  You can wear it up or roll it down depending on your mood.

And there ends the last of my 2013 projects.  Next post I'll share some goals for next year and how I'm probably not going to make any resolutions.  It's also cast-on-apaloosa time in our CNY group on Ravelry and I've already CO one project!

Monday, January 6, 2014

First knitted mittens!

 My love for DPNs is pretty crazy.  I've done most of the knitted projects this past Christmas season in the round using DPNs.  Above is the start of a mitten with 1x1 ribbing that lasted for about 2 inches.  I used Berocco Vintage in worsted weight.  This was a ball left over from Hazel's Easter dress.

 The pattern is called Grammy's Mitts by Tanis Lavallee.   She has you go stockinette all the way up with some simple decreasing towards the end.  I was nervous about putting in waste yarn to do the after thought thumbs.  This was my first after thought anything!

 Not to be dramatic but this part was a nail biter for me.  I hate having live stitches or going back and ripping stitches and re-inserting the needles, I get all sorts of anxiety.  I had to mentally prepare myself by inserting the DPNs where they needed to go and not starting the thumbs until the next day because I was that relieved and proud that I got the needles through the stitches without any major disaster!

Et voilĂ !  It's like the thumbs were always there!  I was pretty pleased with how my first pair of knitted mittens turned out.  My best friend loved them and they looked super cute on her mom.  This pattern will definitely be a repeat, especially once I start making charity mittens for my buddy, Angela.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Love of Barley

 It was the Christmas of the hat for the kiddies this year.  I made two other hats in gray (Lion Brand Wool-ease) and brown (Plymouth Worsted).  Have you seen this pattern or have you been living under a rock?  TinCanKnits' free Barley pattern has got to be the hippest and easiest hat to make ever!

I love how the stockinette stitch is broken up with a garter stitch panel.  The best part is that any way you wear this hat, it looks freakin' awesome!  I'm itching to make one for myself in some Manos del Uruguay Maxima that I have lying around.  This pattern gets a huge thumbs up by me and while you're at it, take a look at the other patterns that are grouped together in the Simple Collection by TinCanKnits.  Oh and did I mention?  It's free!!!!

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Some Amazingly Basic Hats

It's been a while!  I can assure you that I haven't stopped crafting since last post but if you follow me on Instagram, you would see that I was crazy busy knocking out Christmas gifts.  Now for the unveiling!  I start with these two hats made in Lion Brand Amazing yarn in the colorways Wildflowers and Mesa, respectively.  I used the Basic Winter Hat pattern by Brandy Fortune.

I had a ton of fun making the pom poms and using the last bits of yarn from the skein.  Yes, one skein of Lion Brand Amazing yarn each to make the toddler and child sized version of the hats.  I love how the striping turned out and the yarn is easy care for my cousins' kids.  They are super cozy as well and I highly recommend this pattern!