Friday, November 21, 2014

mr. roboto sweater

A finish! We've already been wearing the heck out of this one. It's nice and long and roomy, so with any luck we'll get two years of use out of this sweater! The robot buttons are my favorite detail.

Pattern: Kinsale by Terri Kruse (link to my Ravelry project page)
Needles: Size 8s
Yarn: Knit Picks Stroll Tonal Worsted in the Thunderhead colorway (used about 2.33 skeins for the 4T size)
Mods: None! Super straightforward and fast knit!

Thursday, November 20, 2014

my cheater string quilt

I mentioned awhile back that I had a quilt top in progress that had yet to be documented here on the ol' blog-o .... ta da! Here it is! This is based off a Moda Bake Shop tutorial for using jelly rolls to make a string quilt. String quilts are something I've admired for years now, so I'm super super happy to be working on this project. The jelly rolls I'm using are from the "Spring House" line of yarn from Moda. Love, love, love these colors. Lots of turquoise blues, yellows, pinks, and greens. Super happy colors. Definitely a spring feeling to it all. This quilt is for my bedroom, which means it's king-sized. I know I will regret this fact when I attempt to machine quilt it. It has been nearly six years since I made a king-sized quilt, so there you go. So far I've used three jelly rolls of the prints, and 1.5 of the white (Kona cotton in Snow? I need to double-check that). I haven't measured to see how much additional border I'll need to get the desired overall size. For now, this project is getting packed up and put on hold so I can regain use of the dining room table with holidays + company arriving soon. To be continued!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

feeling festive

I'm in complete denial that in about a week we will be feasting for Thanksgiving. Where in the world did November go? Sometimes I swear that we enter a strange time vacuum on Halloween and don't re-emerge until after the new year ... while I may want to deny the passage of time, my crafting is 100% starting to get into the holiday spirit!

I've been in the mood to do some needlepoint for ages now, and when I spotted these adorable needlepoint ornament kits on Etsy I couldn't resist. These are going to go fast! Sooo addictive and fun!

Other signs that the holidays are upon us ....

 My Christmas cactus is starting to show buds!

 Gift knitting in progress. (shh! I'm bound and determined to make a hat for my husband this year...)

 A going-away present for a sister who got a new job ...

And a test-knit sweater for me, me, me. 

So in other words, it's chronic cast-on-itis like usual around here! :-D

Friday, October 31, 2014

minion mayem for your ipad

In the spirit of Halloween, I thought I'd share a little "trick." Why yes, I knit a minion earlier this month ... or is it?

Ta da! It's an iPad cover. This project is a mashup of the Stana Sorter's free minion tablet cover pattern and the facial features from the previous minion softie pattern I knit. I just liked that duplicate stitch mouth and eye so much better! This was a fun, fast one. My only complaint is that even with the applied i-cord edging, the bottom of the opening still rolls quite a bit (notice my hand holding it down in the picture above). But that's not a problem once the cover is actually closed.

Pattern: Stana Sorter's minion tablet cover, free pattern! (link to my Ravelry project page)
Needles: size 6, magic looped
Yarn: Lion Brand Wool, less than 1/2 skein each in Cadet Blue and Goldenrod

Hope your Halloween is only full of treats, and no tricks!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

blocking is magic, part five


I never get tired of blocking. I swear, the minute the water hits the wool the magic begins. I should've taken "before" dimensions, because this baby grew. A ton. This is the prettiest sock yarn shawl I've made so far--the border lace is my favorite by far. Every time I knit with Sweet Georgia yarn I fall even more in love with it!

Yarn: Sweet Georgia Tough Love Sock (colorway: Cayenne)
Needles: Size 4s
Mods: None! Will definitely make this pattern again! 

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

test knit: funky frank loop

A finish to officially end my doldrums! This is the test knit I've been working on this month for designer Ela Torrente--- what a great pattern it turned out to be! Two skeins of Malabrigo worsted (yum!), awesome slipped stitch cables (swoon!), and the pattern teaches you how cross these simple cables without a cable needle (wahoo!). It forced me to officially learn how to purl through the back loop, and a lot of knitting into the second stitch instead of the first stitch on your left hand needle to reverse the stitch order. Easier than it sounds, I promise! 

Pattern: Funky Frank Loop (link to designer's project page)
Needles: size 8s
Yarn: two skeins of Malabrigo Worsted in the Hollyhock colorway
Mods: I knit three more cable repeats than the pattern originally called for to better use the entirety of my two skeins. It also bought me an additional six-ish inches of length to make for a roomier double-wrap.

Monday, October 27, 2014

the tipping point: when your project becomes addictive

So this weekend was the cure my fall doldrums needed. Shortly after my last (whiny) post, I started to focus solely on the cowl pattern I've been test knitting this month. Suddenly, the number of repeats was getting smaller ... and smaller ... and it made me think about that moment in your project when suddenly, before you know it, the end is in sight. And if you're like me, you get a second wind and you feel re-energized. A project that used to bore you to tears is exciting again--no, more than that--it's become addictive. You can't stop working on it. All you want to do is work on it. And you feel amazing, riding this huge wave of project-success-induced momentum. Am I the only one who feels this way at the end of a project? For lack of a better term, it feels like you hit a tipping point of sorts. Up until I reach it, I tend to feel demoralized because the project feels like it. will. never. end. Clearly, I enjoy the excitement of the promise of a new project--otherwise I wouldn't have a current number of abandoned WIPs that reaches the double digits! After the initial excitement fades, I lose some interest until I reach this tipping point and I get excited by the prospect of having the yummy finished object to wear/love/enjoy.

What was amazing about this weekend was that all my projects reached tipping point status. I finished knitting and blocked the pieces of my test knit cowl:

I got past the mid-way point knitting the last border section of my Ardor shawl:

And I finished piecing and cutting the last set of quilt blocks I need to (hopefully!) finish my quilt top: