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Pattern: Diagonal baby Blanket by Lion Brand Yarn
Yarn: Rowan Purelife Organic Cotton by Rowan in Oak Bark
Ravelry Link: Baby Blanket
Notes: 3.5mm needle

 

I am not sure how I feel about this project.  I like that the yarn is organic.  I like the colour.  I like that because you knit the blanket on a diagonal you can optimize the quantity of yarn, I had 6 balls of yarn so started decreasing after 3 balls.  But now that I look at the finished project I’m not so happy with it.  

During the project I did make a mistake that meant I had to undo quite a few rows. But it was easy enough to undo and pick up stiches and carry on. Instead I think my dissatisfaction with this project comes more from a feeling that the blanket is not well suited for her owner (or her mum).  This blanket is too minimalistic and modern in colour for Francesca.

For me knitting is most enjoyable when the right pattern comes together with the right yarn, in the right colour for the right person and unfortunately that is not this project.

 

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Pattern: Molly by Erin Ruth
Yarn Primo worsted by The Plucky Knitter in Peep Toes
Ravelry Link: Molly

Oh my, this is the third time I have knitted this hat. The first was for Antoinette back in January, the second for Angela in a fabulous aqua colour and this red one was meant to be for Elena but I ended up keeping it because I love the colour so much. The pattern is fun and quick, it’s free but a little hard to follow. To help me follow the pattern I write out the repeats and circle the rows that you need to cable on, then strike them off as I knit.

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I also modify the pattern by only doing 15 pattern repeats to be able to knit the hat out of one skien of plucky worsted. This yarn is a dream to knit with and really enhances the cable. I’m a huge fan of plucky yarn and over the past year Sarah has expanded a little so the yarn is much more available, just sign up to her website to know when there will be yarn.

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It’s less than three weeks until our wedding.  Back in January when we started planning it felt like there was plenty of time to plan and execute various hand crafted mementos for the day.  A variety of yarns were purchased as I tried to find the perfect shade, countless patterns archived as “favorite” and even a few attempts.  Now I am curious to see what will actually make it down the aisle. Fortunately everything else is coming together and this Thursday the first wave of family and friends will start their journeys to Europe, travel safe everyone and see you in Italy!

 

Christmas knitting…last minute rush…bad photos.

So it is the middle of October and I have yet to finish a project this year.  This could be problematic given the ambitious list of knitted Christmas presents I have just put together and calls for drastic action.  

For the sake of my knitting mojo I am cutting a couple of projects lose.  This is not going to be easy, stopping a project early and admitting defeat just doesn’t feel right…but having half finished projects around with no desire to finish them is worse and they have to go.

The first project to get the axe was the Flutter Scarf, it is a very pretty pattern but I made the mistake of taking the project to knitting group a few times and because I can’t eat, chat and knit lace all at the same time mistakes were made. I didn’t love the pattern enough to fix the mistakes so I unraveled the project and now using the wool for another project. Lets hope this new project has a happier ending.

The second project to die an early death is my Kozue scarf. Knitting a scarf in 2ply lace yarn was never going to be an easy project to finish.  The main reason I stopped this project is I just didn’t trust the pattern enough – I think the edges of the scarf will curl too much.  Which would be heart breaking considering this is my all-time-favourite wool and the months it would take to finish it.

So two projects in the frogged pile (rip it, rip it) and the thrid project I need to deal with is my Whisper cardigan. Some of the stitches have fallen off the needle. But I’m quitely confident I can selvage this one and finish it off over the next few weeks.

 

So my knitting bag is looking healthier, I have a ton of new wool and patterns and my travel schedule is slowing down so I am hoping for a productive finish to the end of the year. Wish me luck!

Pattern: Fiona on the Fly by Lucy Sweetland
Yarn: Royal (100% Alpaca) by Blue Sky Alpacas in Antique Black
Ravelry Link: Fiona on the Fly
Notes: Cast on 90 stitches

I am in love with this yarn and have a large number of skeins in my knitting stash thanks to South Seas Knitting! It is so soft, a dream to knit with and easy to wear against your skin.  The Royal colours are a little unusual (in a nice way) and I find them difficult to photograph accurately.  This is not a range of yarn I would recommend buying online just incase you don’t like the colours, unless you are mad on alpaca like I am.

Lucy, the pattern designer has a great website and some really nice patterns. I have admired this hat for a while – especially her purple version, it has the perfect amount of slouch I am looking for in my hats.  My version is not quite as I hoped, the decreases are not in keeping with the fisherman rib so at the top of the hat is a distinct circle and the yarn is perhaps not thick enough for the look I am after – but in saying all that it hasn’t stopped me from wearing it a lot!  I modified the pattern a little by doing a folded rim like the Wurm hat.

Pattern: Thermis by Kris Knits
Yarn: Worsted merino by The Plucky Knitter in spice is nice
Ravelry Link: Thermis
Notes: 4mm needle

Isn’t this a great colour! The yarn was a complete spur-of-the-moment purchase from a fellow ravelry and not a colour I would normally buy but exactly what I need to spice up my mainly grey and black wardrobe.  The pattern is nice and easy to follow and easy to modify if you wish, I accidentally cast on a few too many stitches but it didn’t really make a difference and the circumference around the neck is still perfect for me.  Oh and the pattern is only US$2.49 – bargain!  If you have time have a look at Kris Knits blog, she is very talented.

Pattern: Tempest by Weaverknits
Yarn: Merino and Merino/Nylon by Wollmeise in admiral and natur
Ravelry Link: Tempest
Notes: 4 mm needle, modified pattern by changing the stripes

In my head this cardigan was going to be a hit, but the reality is a little different! I thought the navy and white stripes would be chic – but instead I look like I’ve escaped from a prison.

The other disappointment was the finishing, my button band is a bit hit-and-miss because I didn’t pick my stitches up properly and there is a wee gap.  I really struggled with the bottom hem and had 3 attempts at it.  If I had actually read the pattern before I started I would have done a small knitted hem rather than trying to do as the pattern suggested. Oh well, on the plus side I have learnt a lot on this project.

I don’t mind having to sew my knitting together – I love mattress stitch and the way it “pulls” the knitting together. But the next cardigan I make will definitely be knitted in the round, sewing should be reserved for when you actually need to.

But in saying all that I could be tempted to make another Tempest….the stripes are fun, maybe a pink version next time.

Pattern: Wurm by katushika
Yarn: Merino/Cashmere/Nylon worsted by The Plucky Knitter in Rutherford Grill
Ravelry Link: Wurm
Notes: 3.25 mm needle for the rim and 4 mm needle for the rest of the hat

Oh I do love the fancy rim-hem-thingie used in this pattern. It’s given the hat such a tidy finish and the double thickness will surely keep my ears warm.  The band is created by knitting for 12 rounds, purling 1 round and knitting for another 12. You then fold at the purl round and pick up and knit the bottom row stitch with your next stitch in the current row (i.e knit the two stitches together) to create a hem, just like you would if folding fabric to create a hem when sewing a garment – so clever!

The pattern suggests a 5ply yarn but I’ve used a 10ply giving me a very thick, warm hat with enough “stiffness” to be able to wear it sticking up or I can push it back for a more slouchy look.  As always the Plucky yarn is a dream to knit with, so soft and the fabulously intense colour makes you want to keep knitting.

I can see me wearing this hat most weekends and now the pressure is on to knit a couple more hats that will be appropriate for wearing to work. These are the sorts of things I have in mind…

Pattern: Beetle Tracks by Kirsten Cardozo
Yarn: Silk/Merino fingering by Knitabulous in Tokyo Rose
Ravelry Link: Beetle Tracks
Notes: 3.75mm needle

It was nana’s 70th birthday last month and I went back to New Zealand to help celebrate the occasion.  I knew I wanted to knit her a red scarf but it took me a little while to find a suitable pattern.  I chose Kirsten’s Beetle Tracks because it has a pretty pattern that is not over the top and quick to knit.  I had good intentions to start the scarf early but in the end we were blocking the scarf at midnight and left the heater on overnight so it would dry in time for my mid-morning flight home. The other thing I liked about the pattern was the length, it’s  a little shorter than most scarf patterns, which is perfect for nana – she is shorter than most people.

The yarn is from Knitabulous and is very soft and luxurious, perfect for wearing next to the skin and a pleasure to knit with.  While knitting the scarf I came across 3 knots but the yardage was very generous and more than made up for it.  I love how blocking brings lace to life…..and birthdays bring everyone together – happy birthday nana.

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