Saturday, 20 August 2011

Catching some Zzzzz's

This is my 7 year old son.  He fell asleep on the couch during the afternoon - yet he thinks he's too old for naps, ha ha.  Yet, he fell asleep holding on to my kids book of knits, New Knits On the Block by Vickie Howell.  It made me laugh and think to myself that it almost looked like he planted the book there to hint for a particular gift, but that's not his style.  This was a gift from one of my clients, and has some awesome project to make for kids.  I love how it's all categorized in such a fun way - "weekend at Gramma's" for example, means you can knit that project up while your kid's away at Gramma's for the weekned.  I'll be casting on to make a rockin' guitar in black and red.  When I showed the pattern to another client of mine, she was so excited about it that she went out of her way to go get me the supplies I would need, including the stuffing!  That was so nice of her.  And this weekend, I'm doing something nice back for them...
This is the project I've just finished for her son.  It's a Crayon Caddy I've knitted as a big brother gift, because he became a big brother yesterday.  We were all so excited!  I'm going to deliver it tomorrow, but will make it a quick visit because they need their rest.  I am very happy with how this one turned out:  I used Bernat Handicrafter cotton, in green stripes.  He loves green, and it was so easy to make!  It's basically knit in stockinette for about 17 rows,  then garter stitch for the rest and fold over the stockinette for the front.  Then just sew together lines where you want the crayon sleeves to go.  I made an extra crocheted chain to loop around the button for an easy toddler closure.  Note:  I'm going to go back and shorten the chain a bit, so it's not a choking hazard.

Friday, 19 August 2011

Casting on today - Filigree

Today I'm casting on to knit with my magic yarn ball. A friend of mine came by to see if she can peek inside the yarn, curious as to what's inside. But no, this yarn is well wound. No peeking.

It was a close decision, between this and a really neat beret some of my ravelry buddies suggested (which I will knit later). I also was thinking of using this for a shawlette, as there is enough yardage. But instead I will knit Filigree mitts by Robin Melanson. It's from her book "Knitting New Mittens & Gloves". The pattern calls for cotton yarn, but doesn't actually mention the WPI/thickness of the yarn. I guess I could go over to ravelry (since I spend so much time there anyway) and look up their suggested yarn for gauge, but I feel daring today. So I will live a little risky and just start knitting it up with this fingering weight yarn and see how it comes out. After a few rounds, I will measure for gauge or just slip my wrist inside to see how it fits.

This colour is going to look amazing! And with the remaining yarn, I will make either a scarf for a cowl, whatever I have enough yardage for. I always say that, and then end up making another pair to give away. Oh, maybe if I only have a bit left, I'll make me a headband to cover my new botched haircut. :)

Thursday, 18 August 2011

Time to Unwind Some Magic

Well, now it's my turn.  My magic yarn ball arrived in the mail this week, and it turns out my partner is Sassysmom.  This was a secret partner swap, and she was very good at keeping her identity a secret.  I had no idea it was her!  Here are some pictures of my little girl helping me unpack it from the box.

The color is a bit off in the photos, as we had just been taking sunset photos outside and I forgot to re-adjust my settings.

This yarn is a blue dream - lots of different shades of blues, as well as some purples mixed in.  Sassysmom actually got it bare from Knit Picks, then hand dyed it herself.  I just love hand dyed yarn, I find it such a joy to work with.
I spent a good deal of time staring at this yarn, trying to decide if I will unwind it all now to see what's inside, or get the 'real' experience of discovering each item as I knit... and call me silly, but I think that's the best part.  So, do I unwind it now, and see what's in there?  Or do I pick a pattern and see what comes out as I knit?  Decisions, decisions... what do you think?

Wednesday, 10 August 2011

Magic Yarn Balls

This summer, I participated in my first Magic Yarn Ball swap. 
I had a lot of fun getting my partner's yarn ball together for her, and she really liked her goodies.
I was pretty excited when I first heard about this:  you take a skein of yarn, buy some knitting notions, goodies, sweets, or just about anything you think you can manage to wrap inside the yarn ball, and wind the yarn around each item until it eventually resembles a ball.  Sure, it will be lumpy and bumpy, but for the most part it will look like yarn.  When your partner receives your magic yarn ball, the idea is that as they knit something with it, things are revealed as the ball unwinds... or so I thought.  In our swap group, everyone so far has been too excited to wait and actually knit with their yarn ball.  They are so thrilled to have it arrive that they immediately unwind it to find their little surprises, then wind it back into a ball.  I feel glad that my partner GuapaM got to unwind and find lots of great stuff, but I feel bad that she had to go through all that unwinding to find it. I'm talking all the way to the end of the yarn for that last item (custom large buttons from my local yarn store).  I ordered her a cone of fingering weight yarn, and according to the swap requirements we had to do a minimum of 100 grams.  I ordered 150 grams of yarn, but saved 15 grams for me to do a swatch with (for a future order).  Which left me with over 700 yards of yarn to wind, if I did my math correctly.  That took me quite a while to wind.  Here is what her yarn ball package looked like when it arrived there:
I sent her some of my favourite coffee from Tim Hortons, as well as a Noro Coffee Cup cozy that I knitted myself by hand.  I love knitting with Noro!  It's a pleasure knitting with this yarn, but it's even more fun to be able to give it away to someone who will enjoy using it.  This really does keep your coffee warm, and feels great to hold.  The Dare Bear Paws crackers are something I chose because my GuapaM likes crackers, especially cheddar;  and I was sure she hasn't tried these yet.  They are fairly new on the market.  Here is the other picture, which shows all the stuff she managed to unwind from her yarn ball:
I can't wait to see what she ends up knitting with the yarn I sent to her!  She is such a talented knitter.
Wait a second... that yarn looks like it's been wound up with a ball winding machine - now I don't feel so bad about making her unwind so much yarn, ha ha ha!  Not bad, eh?  Look how much stuff I had hiding inside that ball of yarn!  I think I've impressed myself, too.  Sadly, there was no way to wrap the cracker box in yarn.  If you can accomplish that, you have my greatest respect.

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

August finished knitting #2

Ha ha ha, it looks like I mismatched the photos when I sent them in via email. Oops!
So this is the picute of the fingerless mitts I was just blogging about. The other picture in the previous post was of the Noro Kureon coffee cozy. It has become my favourite coffee cozy to make so far, and certainly the easiest. I love how it shows off the colours!

I made both of these for a friends birthday that was yesterday. She loves to drink tea, and also carries her own water bottle around. This cozy does a great job of insulating both warm and cold drinks.

I think she'll like them. I just have to weave in the ends and I'm all done!

Newly Finished Objects

I've just finished up 2 new projects this past weekend. One is a pair of fingerless mitts - the pattern is designed to show off malibrigo yarn, so I will try it again sometime with my beautiful malibrigo skein. For this one though, I chose to use Universal Yarns with gradual changes in green hues, with a tint of blue thrown in here and there. A blend of wool and acrylic, this yarn was easy to work with and I would be happy to try it again in other patterns that show off it's colours. I think I have just enough of it left to make one more pair of fetchings, and since my little girl kept wanting to try them on, I think I might make her some arm warmers for fall.
Sent from my BlackBerry device on the Rogers Wireless Network