Sunday, April 29, 2012

FO: Cap Sleeve Spring Shirt

Another little-ish knit for my 4 yo. 

This is the girl's cap sleeved spring shirt, by Shellee Floyd, size 6.  It's knit up in a soft, cuddly alpaca/wool blend  which makes about the cutest spring layer in my girls' wardrobe.  I love the way this fits, wears and looks when layered with a long sleeve tee and pants.  Simple, feminine and bold all-in-one.  It does violate one of my own preferences for kid knits though - it's not machine washable.

An interesting note on construction for this tee is that I started out the yoke with a size 6 needle, but changed to an 8 about about 6 inches, and then to a 10 at about 11 inches.  I like that it created a slight flare without having to figure out increasing stitch counts.  The pattern did not call for this much needle changing, but I am happy with the result.

The baby liked the soft alpaca yarn too!

I am really excited to start on a(nother) cardigan for myself - but am having a hard time committing to a pattern.  I feel a little overwhelmed by all the knitting pattern goodness out there.  Ravelry can be a huge help, however, and I find myself analyzing photos of individual projects - once there's a pattern that catches my eye - to see if I can find one that looks like one I'd knit (color, sizing, etc.).  It's quite helpful for searching out yarn alternatives too.  You'll have to stay tuned to what I pick out for myself next...

In the meantime I've started on Versa, the tunic style, for the older girls and plan to use yarn from the stash.  I have a true rainbow of yarn left overs and there's no better way to use them then in a yoke or as trim!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

FO: spring shrug

baby shrug, 12 mos.

This knitting basket of mine is overflowing with some nice leftover yarns.  I spied this lovely, left-over L.L. Bean-ish green and quickly cast on for a little shrug. 

I've picked up her summer wardrobe and put it into rotation, but the temps here are still chilly in the mornings and into the early afternoon.  Not time to show off her bare arms yet.  And a shrug is the perfect layering piece.  I knit her one about a year ago, so it seems a lovely moment to gift her a new one.

The pattern is Confection, by Tonya Wagner.  It is a delightful, quick knit with minimal seaming.  The 12 mo. size was probably a 2.5 hour project.

Friday, April 20, 2012

FO: 100th project for my 1yo

I just entered my 100th project on ravelry!  I find this to be a surprisingly delightful milestone.  I know that I've knit more than 100 items, but seeing that number - and all those projects - in one place really gives me a sense of accomplishment.  And it is amazing to look back at some of my earlier work and see how far I have come in my craft.

For my 100th project I knit up a little cardigan for my wee girl.  She turned 1yo last week.  I can hardly believe how quickly the months flew by, and find it even harder to remember a time in our family before she was with us. 

The pattern is in threes, and I knit this up in a Coed Mawr (a small scale fiber company in Cambria, WI) worsted weight; size 18 mos.  The buttons are from Jennie the Potter.  Next on my needles is a little shrug to help this cruising babe's wardrobe transition from spring to summer.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Studio Tour

Today I'm guest blogging over at a happy stitch.  Come on over and check out my studio space!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

A Craigslist-tacular Spring Break

new-to-me yarn swift

It was spring break around here last week.  We were busy going here-and-there, visiting family and friends, making holiday decorations, and enjoying eachothers' company. For a few days, the older girls attended a visual arts mini-camp, and the younger set was tasked with helping me do deep spring cleaning. 

In a marathon of craigs-listing baby items (yes, our family is now complete) I realized that I could/should take a moment and craft a 'wanted' post for something I've been hoping to purchase for some time: a yarn swift. 

And wouldn't you believe it! The craigslist faeries were watching out for me.  In less than 24 hours from my post, a woman e-mailed me with one for sale.  A large Glimakra umbrella swift, that to her eye had hardly been used (she was selling it for a friend).  Well just my luck.  The seller even delivered.

The rest of that afternoon was spent taking turns pulling yarn from the swift and winding it into balls.  It sure is a step up from me sitting solo on the couch unwinding skeins by hand.  I've still got an active want ad for a ball winder.  We'll see if one turns up in the near future.  Until then I've got three willing helpers, and one delightful babe full of yarn mischief to wind with.

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Next week I'll be guest blogging over at a happy stitch.  Melissa is hosting a series on sewing/crafting spaces and I'll share my thoughts on the 'essentials' for making crafting happen while herding a family of six.  Come on over for a tour.

Monday, April 2, 2012

FO: Vitamin D

Well, here it is.  And I love it. (Please forgive my tired eyes .  We snapped this photo at 6:45a before DH took off for work.  That is how much I wanted to blog about it today!)

In the end I don't know that it is the most flattering shape on me, but the color, feel, drape and fact that I made it myself! counteract all that wondering quite well.

I really love the weight of this sweater.  It did take an long time (relatively speaking) to knit this up in a sock yarn, but I am really happy that I stuck with it because it made a truly wearable, lightweight fabric.  I am the kind of person that can overheat easily, and this sweater is about as thick as I would want a three season (spring, summer, fall) sweater to be. I could go for a worsted weight during the cold WI winter months, however.

As promised, here are some of the 'before' photos with notes.  I find this kind of thing really helpful as a knitter - it's what gives me confidence that while I may not like what I see when I weave in that last yarn end, a good soak/wash and blocking can work wonders.  See what I mean?

whew, don't like this AT ALL.
looking better already!
blocking really does work!

I am not sure what to knit next.  But I am certain that I going to knit myself another sweater or cardigan.  I did cast on for a little 'In Three's' for the baby, but I think that I am going to spend some time surfing ravelry tonight for ideas.  Any suggestions from you out there?