Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Infinity Scarf

I finished the cardigan on Monday!
And I wasted no time starting a new project, a pattern I made over the summer. It's the Ashley infinity scarf.
I'm not too far yet since I've been sick the last couple days.

See more project by clicking below:

Monday, December 28, 2015

FO: Red Sand Cardigan

I finished her today, played yarn chicken till the very end, and it made for a very happy recipient when all was said and done.

The back

Pocket and texture details

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Crafty Christmas

I've been knitting like crazy during the last week in an attempt to finish the Blue (Red) Sand Cardigan.

Over the weekend I added the front panel and i-cord edging and on Monday and Tuesday I was working on the first sleeve.
This project has so far been my biggest undertaking and I've learned a lot. I also took a ton of pictures for you guys:
Sorry guys, I just really like those flowers.

Those pockets... So fun to make!

Artsy-fartsy texture angle...

I also took advantage of a sale Fine Lime was having on yarn and bought this skein to turn into an infinity scarf for a friend of mine:

Hope you all have a wonderful Christmas! I'll hopefully have a finished cardigan to share with you by next week also!

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Planning Time

I have been working on the bottom border of the cardigan all week and I am finally at the 5" mark. I'll be adding an extra couple rows before casting off but it looks the same as last week in a photo. So I'll spare you a repeat photo.

I've been doing a lot of planning today. Now that I have officially finished nursing school (HALLELUJIA!) homeschool lesson planning is all I've been doing this morning. My mother in law gave me some resources that she has relied on for the last 20 years and while its all a bit overwhelming for me, I'm determined to do this. I never planned on being an educator before I got married and had kids. Well, I shouldn't say never. I thought about getting my bachelor's degree in environmental ed. I entertained and really got on board with the idea  of homeschooling because I generally disliked school and I would really like my kids to love it and become lifelong learners like my in-laws.

I know there are a lot of homeschooling crafters out there who follow the Yarn Along link up every week so if you have some resources that you absolutely love and rely on feel free to comment. We are Catholic, if you are able to recommend religious resources that is also appreciated.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

An Update on the Red Sand Cardigan

With the projects for the church sale and my nursing preceptor (links to FO posts) during the month of November, I haven't really shared any progress on the cardigan.

I've gotten to the bottom 5" on the body where that beautiful texture happens and while it started out as a challenge I'm certainly loving how it looks now.

I started the bottom section following the 5-stitch chart instead of scrolling a fraction of a centimeter down in order to double check the chart with the written instructions. Had I done that, I would have saved myself a 5-row frog job. 5 rows x 250+ stitches per row = over 1000 stitches ripped out. Ouch. But totally worth it.

So until next week's update, keep knitting and enjoy that nice wintry weather (for those of you in the northern hemisphere I guess). I've never had such a green, warm December so if any of you can mail me some snow, I'd like a white Christmas!

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Cabled Mittens

I finished the mittens! Feast your eyes on some yarn porn, this yarn was downright beautiful!

The top three photos are truest to the yarn colors but the last one is pretty close too. Have a wonderful weekend!

This is also a pattern from my library from a couple years ago, counts towards the Love Your Library Challenge.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

A Mitten

This pattern is driving me insane. The pattern does not match the stitch count for the small or the large size. And it does not say who the sizes would fit. In the pattern picture, the mittens look quite large on the adult model, so I cast on for the smaller size and barely fit it over my hand. I couldn't get the stupidly written pattern figured out, and trying to visualize how its supposed to look does not look anything like what the low-definition, 80s photo looks like.

The struggle is real.

But, I frogged everything I accomplished on Monday and cast on for the larger size. Because it doesn't count as a gift if no one can put them on.
At least the yarn is super pretty to look at while I knit, frog, and re-knit.By next Friday I'll have a finished pair of mittens to show off.

Friday, November 20, 2015

Antler Hat

I finally have a finished project to share! I actually finished it on Wednesday evening so I could bring it in for the craft sale right away. Our women's guild sorts and prices everything so I wanted to bring it in right away.

I made the adult large size, and it only took a week and a half to get it completed. That being said, my 3 year old wanted to model it for me before I gave it away.

The yarn was in my stash, Paton's North America Classic Wool in the Harvest color way. You can see my Ravelry project page for an extra photo of my little model if you've got an account. The pattern was by Tin Can Knits and if you're not familiar with their patterns, check them out because you're in for a real treat.

I really loved making this hat and I'm really hoping I'll have time to make another one before Christmas.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Winter Things

How did I even miss last week's update?! Time is not my friend lately.

The project on the right is for donation to the church craft sale, the first weekend of December. It is the Antler Hat pattern by Tin Can Knits. I've been admiring their patterns for a while now, and this was the perfect excuse to knit something.

My plans changed slightly for the project I'm making for my nursing preceptor. She came in with a new purse the second day we were working together and she told her co-worker, "I hate boring colors." It was bright turquoise, and while she's in her upper 50s or early 60s she definitely has her bangs dyed purple. So I decided some colorful mittens were just the thing, and I scrapped the plan for fair isle. Once I finish the hat (I'm on the crown shaping at the moment), I'll be starting on the mittens since my last shift with her is the night before the craft sale. The yarn is super soft and squishy, and the label says its anti-pill, so I'm hoping they'll stay nice for a longer time once they become mittens.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

A Much-Needed Return to the Needles

I took my last exam of the semester yesterday and I must say, it it a huge relief to be finishing up my classes.

I finally have time to knit again too! The big hurrah to finish nursing school is our preceptorship. Naturally, I have plans to knit my preceptor a nice thank you gift. I've mentioned before how much I hate knitting socks; that is obviously off the table for me. I needed a small project since I only have a month to get it done, and I need to be at the hospital for at least 88 hours.

I've decided on a pair of mittens. I'm going to add a simple fair isle design around the cuff. I don't know if I shared this earlier in the year but my husband bought me a book of traditional fair isle designs and I've narrowed what I like down to these designs:

I've been looking through the stash and my patterns to see what sorts of materials and patterns could work for this. I think I've got it figured out.
It's a pattern from the 80s but I like the big cable. I would alter the design a bit to incorporate the fair isle but I like how how big and cozy the mittens look.

Also, some exciting developments on my sweater:

I've finished the short rows on the bottom and just got to the second row after beginning the pockets.

Until next week!

See more projects by clicking below:

Sunday, August 16, 2015

German Short Rows

I love making a project and learning a new better way to do something I don't enjoy doing. The bettering of the skill usually results in me actually enjoying it.

So when I arrived at the section of the cardigan that called for German Short rows, I looked it up on YouTube and to my delight, it was a much better way to make short rows. When finished it yields short row transitions that are indistinguishable from the rest of the knitting.

Hallelujah, am I right?!

I must tell you all that I probably will not be knitting again until the end of October/early November. Why you ask?

My last semester of nursing school begins Tuesday and I am taking a class that has a huge unit exam every other week. So in an effort to, you know, not fail, I will not be knitting much. Which means I'll have nothing to share here.

I'll be back, I'm just putting all my projects into hibernation until the class ends.

Take care, and happy knitting!

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Fresh Peaches

The bulk shipment of fresh peaches my sister, mom, and I ordered this spring have arrived. No, I'm not sharing with the family unless they just take one. Ha! They're so fresh and juicy and delicious...

But you came for the knitting, and not my breakfast, so I guess I'll share that too.

I've made it to the next color change although I only managed to crank out 25 more rows this week. Lost a bit of motivation but with my last semester of nursing school fast approaching on Tuesday, and a weekend with just the hubby beginning on Friday, I think I might just have enough motivation and time to crank out the rest of the sweater body. Stay tuned.

See more projects by clicking below:

Friday, August 7, 2015

FO: Lizzy Lou Kitty Hat

I finally finished the kitty hat. I messed up the back decreases simply because I was lazy about reading directions. I decided to just finish it in a way that wouldn't look horrible since I'm planning on making another test knit for this pattern. I did originally want to knit it correctly the first time through but once I realized the furry yarn was going to yield dramatically different results I decided to just get through and make a good prototype once I navigated through the pattern once.
Front view

Back view with sides showing buttons

Thursday, August 6, 2015


Just hanging out trying to work on my knitting with this hooligan trying to steal a taste of my yarn every once and a while.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Cardigan Update

I have been working diligently on the Blue Sand Cardigan this week. Every spare minute this week had been devoted to a stitch here, a row there.

As a result, this project has actually been going quite quickly!
Last week I had only just divided for the sleeves.
This is how far I have progressed:

Each stripe is 26 rows wide. I got to the next color change at the end of the day yesterday.
I haven't been doing any reading of my own, unfortunately. But for story time with the kids we read David Copperfield this week out of the Dickens book I got my oldest for Christmas last year.
My five year old, the one I gave the book to, impressed me that he kept interest in all except one of the stories--Bleak House--and he even asked me to read the short bibliography on Dickens at the end of the book. Bleak House moved a little too slowly and the content was a lot heavier than the other stories for him to stay interested but four out of five plus a bibliography is good enough for me!
He asked before his nap yesterday if we could start reading the stories again. He makes me so proud.

See more projects by clicking below:

Monday, August 3, 2015

The Results Are In

One thing I have really enjoyed with participating in our county fair for the last four years is the feedback I get after an experienced eye has scrutinized my projects. The other thing I really like is the objective affirmation that after all these years of knitting, I really am good at what I do in my free time for myself and others.
It's always disappointing when
they don't leave feedback.

This year has really humbled me in the ribbons I earned for my projects.
"Your stitches could be more even."

While the Reserve Grand Champion, Champion, and Blue ribbons on the dragon were an amazing surprise, my sewing projects yielded more surprising results.

I'm not an avid seamstress by any stretch of the imagination. I mostly devote my minimal sewing time to scrub tops to wear to work because scrubs are insanely expensive and what I make for myself would go for twice as much as solid color tops in the store. Not because of skill but because of the patterned fabric, such as Minnie and Mickey, or the super hero fabric, are a lot more when labeled as "licensed characters."

What I have a difficult time with are patterns requiring a little more skill, such as dresses (even children's dresses). "Easy" patterns still usually present a decent amount of struggle for me.

Shocked then, as you might imagine I was, when my mother in law texted me to let me know I had not only earned a blue ribbon on the baby dress I made, but also a Champion ribbon!

I thought the dress would do worst of all my sewing projects. I thought the sewing overall was sloppier, and the tension of my stitches was far too tight. It is really nice to know I was wrong about all that!
This year was my first year entering sewing projects, and I really had a boost in my self-confidence and personal perception of my sewing skills. This was a great learning experience and a great surprise.