Movin' on out....

Well, folks.  Since I haven't actually posted here in longer than I care to admit (though if you compare the date of today's post with the previous you may see for yourself) I plan to move all knitting updates to our family blog (http://bradandalison.brainfuzz.net).

I have been knitting during the absence of news.  Since my last post, we have had a little boy who has received numerous hand knit items.  Currently, I am working on "Steggie" from knitty for him.  I hope to complete it before he grows past the size I am knitting.

I took a drop spindle class to finally spin all that previously mentioned wool.  Totally excited, just need to get some ducks in a row to make it happen.

My dear husband still has just one sock from me.  One of my deployment goals is to finish the other one before he returns home from Iraq.  Ha!  Unfortunately, I sort of made up my pattern and now have no clue whatsoever about how to repeat the pattern.  Bleh.  He may just have two differently patterned socks with the same yarn, clever, I know.

Anyway, you'll find my knitting updates at our family blog from now on.


Past, Present, and Future

A few years back, 2006 ?, Brad and I visited England.  While there we found a really neat craft farm where I purchased a lot of wool.  Why?  I wanted to have a keepsake from England that wasn't a t-shirt or paperweight.  I don't want to have a keepsake of a big pile of wool either.  So, I have future plans for this wool - carding and spinning with a drop spindle!

I found this merino yarn earlier this spring on a trip to NYC.  Brad and I stopped at the Greenmarket in Union Square where I purchased this yarn from Catskill Merino Yarn.  I really didn't have plans for the yarn other than to purchase a few skeins and then see what happens.  I love the orange color and the white yarn makes me think of cream.  The orange knit really nicely into the Zig-Zag scarf you will see later in the post.  The undyed yarn's future has yet to be determined. 

Finished this a few weeks ago and just haven't posted.  I need to find some buttons for the front but the button holes are awfully small so I may need to find another option, like snaps or a zipper or something.   Anyway, I really like this little cardigan because of the wonderful textures.  Hopefully my baby will grow into this sweater during a season that he can actually wear the sweater, i.e. not summer.

My favorite local librarian, Sue, who also happens to knit recommended this book, 101 Designer One-Skein Wonders.  I am so glad she did because I have found so many really cool patterns.  The one I am currently working on, Baby Squash Hat, can be seen in this picture.  Right now, it doesn't look much like a hat but it will get there, I promise.

The Zig-Zag Scarf pattern came from this book too.  I really didn't need another scarf I guess, but I did need to learn a technique used in the scarf, the short row wrap.  All the zigs and zags come from these short rows.  With a better understanding of short rows I can knit one of the soaker patterns I found, Curly Purly.  Also, many socks require a short row heel.  Woo-hoo! 

and Future...
Since we are planning to cloth diaper, I want to knit some wool soakers to cover the prefold diapers.  I learned recently that the long ones ("Longies") can sell for as much as $50!  That is just a little too rich for my blood, especially when I can make my own.  Here are some examples of what I plan to make.
Here are some great tools to help me card and spin all the wool purchased in England.  I have had plans to card and spin all this for a while but have been delayed partially because I needed the right tools.  Well, now I have them so nothing (except procrastination) can get in my way!

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Hats, Hats, and more Hats

I love to knit baby hats, I will just say that from the start.  A few reasons, they knit quickly, don't require much yarn, and are just generally adorable.  Anyway, so to recap these hats.  The first hat is a night cap, think about sugar plums and fairies dancing through your head when you see this hat. The yarn is a DK weight wool/acrylic blend in light pink and an oatmeal/light tan color.  The pattern came from a great book which I would someday like to own titled, And so to bed...: Handknits and Things by Lucinda Guy.  Guy created some of the cutest knits for children including cute little owls, pajama holders, foxes, sweaters, hats, and so much more.  I definitely see myself knitting more patterns from this book.

This lovely little cabled hat knit really quickly, like maybe 2-3 hours.  I don't knit all that quickly so if you do, then this would be a really blazin' fast project.  I used Lion Brand Cotton Ease and size 8 straight needles.  You can find this easy pattern here.  This is the ten cable hat.  Because I knit the pattern on straight needles instead of circular I needed to do a little "reading between the pattern lines" to make it turn out correctly.  But I have to say that this turned out really well for never having knit cables before.

This hat is my own creation knit in the round on size 4 double pointed needles.  I wish I had written down the pattern as I went along because now I really like the hat and cannot remember how it came to fruition.  Oh well, I guess it is truly one of a kind.  My favorite parts are the 4 I-cords up on top which give it a funky look.  If you like to/want to knit baby/toddler hats, this site has a great collection of patterns.  Some patterns link to sites like knitty.com and others, like the cabled hat, come from individuals who can create some awesome stuff.

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Knitting Knews

Well, if I had this much time on my hands and didn't knit, boy there would be something wrong.  If you don't already know, Brad and I recently moved to Ft. Lewis Washington.  While he works and has things to do all day, I pretty much veg out.  At first, I enjoyed the chance to watch TV, go on walks, and just chill.  Now, I feel ready to pull my hair out and start talking to myself due to boredom!  To stave off insanity I have knit a few things that I want to share with you.

This pink hat knit quickly and I learned how to make a real pom-pom to put on the finishing touch.  I plan to make more in smaller sizes and a variety of colors for babies of all sizes and genders.  Currently this hat is a prototype for my friend Gina who photographs babies.

This matching hat and sweater are for an undesignated baby at the moment.  I may keep it for Joshua but who knows.  I actually don't know if the sweater will fit a baby as the sleeves are short and the bodice is rather boxy.  So while the length may fit a 3-6 month old, the sleeves may be goofy and the body too wide.  All in all, I like sweater because it was fast and easy to  knit but next time I will make the sleeves longer and wider.

That's all for now.  I will keep the needles clicking so I don't develop some weird boredom twitch.  Take care!

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Honda Odyssey - the best van for knitting

While spending many hours in the back of my parents van I discovered the perfect knitting knook while traveling.  Room for the yarn, a snack, and something to drink.