Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Picture promised of Sweater

OK, here goes... just shy of 4 1/2 inches of the bottom of the back of my sweater. I've been working on it for two weeks, although probably only about four-five hours a week or so. So I can see an improvement I'm using a measuring tape!

Here's the width... it's about 23-24 inches wide.. it's hard to measure while it's on the needles, but good news is that it should fit, I'll just keep measuring as I go so I don't make the same kind of mistake as I did with "a"s sweater.

And more washclothes

This first one is Lacy Hearts Ensemble from Cloth of the Week. http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ClothOfTheWeek/ If I'd known how much I would like the pattern I would have made it larger. I still may make another one...

I tried taking a close-up of the heart, not sure how clear it is... but I tried.

This one is Slip Stitch 2 Ensemble (me thinks they like the word 'ensemble') also from Cloth of the Week. I've done something similar for a baby hat... the bubble one, they're very fun to knit.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Sweater progress

I'm making a short-sleeved sweater for myself, although I can't imagine that I'll have it done by spring. It's a slo-go project as I'm using thin yarn (very soft & shimmery) and tiny needles.... so I can do about three - four rows in an hour... and I'm going to add more rows at the bottom than the pattern calls for as I want it extra long (to cover my bulges from too-low jeans). I figure I should be able to post some progress pics to prove I am actually working on it... LOL

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

More washclothes (I know, boring)

Ok, two more washclothes... I'm thinking I might start making some bigger, then I might donate some to the Humane Society for the animals.... but I'm still needing a few more for my sink shining... so soon, but not yet. Sorry, that means your still stuck with pictures of washclothes....

2 Hip 2 B Square -- courtesy of http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ClothOfTheWeek/

Diamond on Lace -- courtesy of http://groups.yahoo.com/group/MonthlyDishcloths

I'm going to have to work on contrast to help show off the patterns... My next one I just finished is Lace Hearts Ensemble, and it's pretty and I want to show off the pattern.

I picked up some "Peaches and Creme" yarn which is incredibly soft and pretty... only $1.29 at Walmart and enough to complete a couple of cloths each. My hearts that was my first project on it is going to be my washcloth for face washing, and I can't wait to do more. PLUS I'm going to start doing some bath puffs - this is too fun (although I'm sure it's driving you nuts).

Saturday, January 19, 2008


So, because the sweater has taken so long, and I'm about to start another long project, I decided I needed to tackle some smaller projects to get some little "hits" of something done. Plus, it'll help me with my flylady routine of washing my dishes... so, here goes, my first one. (I was supposed to make it in brown, but I had lots of green and figured it would be ok). Good way to use up my cheap-ie (nearly free) skeins of yarn from Goodwill! (Too itchy for clothing).

I've got two yahoo groups I've joined with KAL's - Knit-a-longs. Sometimes you know what it's going to look like, other times, you don't. I'll have a couple of more to post within the week, as I'm going back and doing the patterns since the beginning of the year.

Finished the sweater

OK, about half-way done with the finishing steps on the sweater, I realized I'd made a mistake on the second sleeve (the one I didn't rip out and re-do the second half. At this point, I had a decision. If I kept going and ignored the problem, there was a 50-50 chance that not very many people would even see the problem... and I still only had an hour or so of work to finish it. Or, I could rip out the sweater sleeve, and start a new one (faster than ripping out and fixing the old one since the mistake is in the beginning). This would take approximately another week or two to finish the sleeve (again) and another two hours to get it back to the point where I was when I caught my mistake. Could my mistake had been caught earlier - oh, yeah! So, lesson learned - pay attention to the details.

Now, as you well know, I'm not the perfectionist type... I like it done right, but then again, it's like... hmmm... which is the "right" thing to do right now given that I only have x many hours in the day, it's a children's sweater he'll only wear about a half dozen times before he outgrows it.... etc. I figured out that my biggest concern is that I would probably want to "FINISH" it right primarily so as to not have anyone realize that I screwed up. Well, I've decided I can handle that. So, LOL, it's done!

Even though it's still too big (but looks like it'll fit perfectly next fall), I did try to get "a" to model it for you. So, the good "shot" is of it on the hanger, and hopefully next week I can post the pics I tried to get while it was "on" the consstantly moving target. I'm going to have to use "A"s computer to set up the comedy slide-show. Impossible to hit a moving target!

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Sweater Progress

Still not finished, but I thought I'd show the progress. This is "a"s sweater. He turns five this summer (what the heck?!) and it should fit him next fall (if a little on the big side). The pattern is for raglan sleeves... so the front looks a little like a tank top - and I'm worried about how it'll all fit together, but so far, it's looking ok.

I've finished the front and back.

And a picture of the stitch pattern close up. I think it adds a nice touch.

Issues so far... I'd already knitted the front to look exactly like the back, had it nearly to the end when I realized I messed up. So had to rip out about thirty rows back to where you have to shape it for the sleeves and neckline. Only took an hour or so to re-knit that area, so not the end of the world.

Finished one sleeve, and it wasn't until I was working on the second that I realized I had mis-read the pattern a little bit (me being cheap, I didn't make a copy of the pattern that I could write on, which would have prevented this issue)... and it's about two centimeters shorter than it's supposed to be.. ugh! So I'm going to have to rip out about seventy rows (All the way down to where it's at it's widest!), good news is the sleeves knit up pretty fast, so it should only take two hours to re-knit the sleeve. I'm waiting until I finish the second sleeve and pin the pieces together to see how it looks before I do it in case I want to make other alterations. Bad enough doing it twice, I don't really want to do it three times.

About two-thirds of the way done with the second sleeve (I do think it'll fit together much better!), and I've caught a couple of mistakes I made in the knit pattern last night when I was working on it when I laid it out for this photo. So, good news is I don't rip anything out but the couple of stitches I messed up, down a couple of rows, and then I can fix them. Problem is I think one of the issues is about ten rows down.

Oh, well, live & learn.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

Baby blanket

The Aunt (bless her) that taught me to knit, had far, far more nieces and nephews than I do... with 9 sisters and 1 brother, and an average family size of 4.5 kids each! She was one of the few Aunts who took time and effort and made sure that we ALL got Christmas gifts while growing up, Wedding, Graduation, Baby shower gifts. They were all hand-knit by her! Stockings and scarves, gloves and mittens, afghans, baby blankets and baby outfits.

In honor of her memory, I'm going to try to start commemorating special events in the family with some hand-crafted items. My first attempt to a baby blanket turned out pretty adorable I think. Now, if just another niece or nephew's wife were to turn out to be expecting!!! LOL

My only complaint about it is that I found the most awesomely soft, silky baby soft yarn for the colors in the blanket. I spent quite a bit extra to purchase the "baby-soft" white yarn in bulk, because I couldn't find white in the same yarn that the stripes are made out of. It's soft, it is.... but next to the extremely soft & silky yarn? eh, not so much. It's a bit of a dissapointment for me. So, since no one's expecting, and this didn't turn out as well as I had hoped, I think I'll donate it, and try to find better yarn for when I do have a family member to knit one for.

For my grand-niece and grand-nephew, and "a" I'm probably going to try to find a "FUN" child's blanket to make for them. I've seen one where you basically use color to design trucks or dinasours... I'm sure I can find another one that's "girly" pretty easy for my niece. But, I've got other projects in the works first, so we'll see how they turn out. Maybe tomorrow I'll post my progress with the sweater I'm making for "a".

My new favorite scarf

I picked out the yarn and project to make this for "A"s last girlfriend. BOY, am I glad they broke up (for more than one reason)... AND I got to keep it! YEAH!

Tuesday, January 1, 2008


This last spring, as I spent too much time at a local hospital... I picked up my knitting & crocheting again for stress reduction. My two pre-teen nieces had gotten a learn to crochet kit from my sister for Christmas and were struggling... so I tried to teach them to crochet. They were like me at that age, it was possible but didn't seem like it was worth the time it would take. So, I doubt they finished their projects....

One night as I was trying to figure out what color scarves to make for them for Christmas I thought up these cute little purses... Not sure if I really have a good eye for design as they are kind of silly, but I really wanted to make the contrasting section and needle-point their initials in them... Thinking back now, I really wish I had made that as an outside pocket and added more around the edge of it to help it stand out, oh, well... maybe another project in the future. I figured they'd love the fun fur, but maybe it's over-kill? Hopefully, they'll like them anyway. Funny thing is that after I'm finished I can knit-pick myself out of liking all of my projects. But, that said, if I was eight and someone gave me one of these, I would have loved it. So, I'm hoping they aren't nearly as critical as I am.

Collection of Hats & Scarves

Yes, I did brave the mittens, though I don't know how many more I will do, they were fun, but took a LONG time!!! and are too small for my little guy!

This is my little guy's scarf "made just for him" he reminds me each time he puts it on.

Scrap yarn I didn't like, but couldn't throw away...

This one is my absolute favorite, but it's too small for my year-old niece :-(

These next two were made with knitting looms, I'd never tried them before, they are quick and easy and a ton of fun, but I'm still exploring what they "can do" and the knittings a LOT looser than I like to do for some projects...

This one is a bit "itchy" because of the older style of yarn.... but get this, the yarn was only 25 cents for the whole skein; and I still have half a skein left... just not sure what I'll do with it because it really is kind of itchy! ugh!

Now, I loved how this turned out... it was self-striping yarn; although for some silly reason I thought I had to work in extra wide blue bands, not through the whole thing, but just at the ends! I'm still not sure why, but eh, it's different. Only issue was that it was truly intended as a gift for my nephew, but the hints of white in the blue area is actually almost silver and a little too girl-y for a farm boy! Next trip in to the store though and they had all this type of yarn on sale at 75% off! So now I've got purple, pink and orange besides the blue.... haven't decided on a project yet as I don't tend to wear stripes, but it's just too pretty! Maybe a small child's afghan for my niece?

Now, the purple hat is because after making the pink one (near the top), I just had to make a larger one that would fit my niece, and unfortunately I didn't have enough of the pink yarn left after the first hat. AND the store was out of pink. It is SOOO soft! Only thing is I wish I'd used more of the white "fur" around the rim as it turned out a little skimpy when it was all said and done. The second hat was a WAY too fun project to make the "bubbles" I'm trying to figure out how to use that style of knitting in a "boyish" set of colors and still have it look grown up... am guessing that it's going to be too baby-ish for my guys, but it was tremendous fun to work it up. In fact, I ended up working on this one until the late hours each time I turned around because it was just fun to do and I never wanted to put it down. It doesn't look nearly as nice on the reverse-side, so I couldn't figure out how to make a scarf to match it.

This was supposed to be a gift for my sister, but she "REALLY" doesn't look good with stocking hats! She put it on and I took mercy on her and told her to swap it out for one of my shawls I'd made. The yarn was originally bought for a lap afghan I was going to make for myself... until my brothers said it looked like something a cat coughed up .... DO NOT TELL MY SISTER THAT! Anyway, I pulled out the start of the afghan as I completely lost interest in ever making it and thought a nice scarf and hat would be complimentary to my sister's white winter coat. The pattern for the scarf is a lot like the multi-hued blue one above, and is designed to "curl" around itself. I just love the way it turned out, but - LOL still hate the color now.... darn it anyway... as I still have two large balls of this yarn left and can't think of anything to do with it!

Made to replace the blue & white self-striping scarf for my nephew... just love how this turned out, although the scarf isn't a tube scarf, it's all rolled up on itself. But it should still be enough to help keep my 3-yr old nephew warm. And the white "V's" are too easy to add and really help make it more attractive than simply red.

This was an experiment - just love the fun fur yarn colors....! I'm not much for wearing fur except perhaps with the mittens, hats and scarves, but if someone could carry it off on the neckline to a sweater in this gorgeous blue, I think it would be really something. Not something I could pull off, but it would be stunning on the right woman.

One of my first non-hat non-scarf projects

OK, OK - hats and scarves are easy... so this was my first non-hat; non-scarf project. I was eager to try something "different"...

This is a small rug about the size to put in front of the sink. Really thick and cushy... IT'S SUPPOSED to curve in at the ends the way it does... LOL .... only maybe it should curve in consistently - oh, well, the good news is I love the colors! It isn't actually a varigated yarn... can you believe it? It was actually made with THREE (!!) yarns that were double-sport weight. Thank goodness it's small, as towards the end there, I could barely hold it up as it was SO heavy on the needles. I used a deep brown, a rust, and the nuetral was a ivory that had specks of rust and brown in it to coordinate beautifully. It's been through the wash already a couple of times and is so soft and wonderful. When I was making it everyone suggested I make it into a blanket, but it would have been WAY TOO HEAVY. Lord it's like a quarter inch thick as it was.

Very simple pattern... here's a close up of the "panels" that make it up.

Knitting again

My left-handed Aunt taught me to knit decades ago, and while I was "able" to do it, I didn't really take to it. Something seems to happen though when your children are small and sometimes we turn back to our "mothering instincts". When my eldest (now 19) was little I picked up knitting and crocheting again. I did a few Christmas ornaments and odds and ends and put away the knitting needles again.

However, now that my little one is now four, and I actually have a little time on my hands... and a stressful life to deal with. I've turned back to knitting again. I have to say, that I am incredibly suprised with the wonderous and glorious world of new yarns that are oh-so soft instead of itchy and picking up my knitting needles and crochet hooks has captured my attention as few other hobbies have lately. I've been knitting up a storm ever since my last trip to the Mayo clinic.

I've started this blog to share some of my items... figuring that my regular blog can continue to be my sanity check, and this one I can go off and obsess about "creating".

Most of my earliest projects were given away long before I ever thought about blogging about knitting. Several of my projects have only recently been captured in pix, delaying the gift giving. So, my nieces and nephews will probably be getting their gifts quite late this year... so I could snap a few pix before wrapping them up and sending them off with the postman.

I'm looking at lots of new patterns and ideas and tend to only stick to the pattern when I'm nervous about it turning out. We'll see how it goes.