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Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Hats for Twin Boys

My mom and I knit a pair of brown and gold hats from Vintage Worsted on vacation. It is a simple pattern I designed based off a generic prototype. Vintage is a wonderful, machine-washable yarn with lovely colors that is easy to knit. It makes a great gift knitting yarn because it's machine washable, so a non-knitter can care for it easily.




Materials:
Vintage Worsted (217 yards/skein) 1 skein or other worsted weight yarn
circular or dpn US size 8

Note: One skein of Vintage Worsted can make two hats.

Cast on 70 stitches of circular needles. Place marker and join in round without twisting.
*Knit 1 round.
Purl 1 round.
Repeat from * 3 times

Knit in stockinette stitch (knitting all stitches, each round) for 3.5 inches.

Begin decreases:
*K8, K2tog, repeat from star across round.
Knit all stitches.
*K7, K2tog, repeat from star across round.
Knit all stitches.
*K6, K2tog, repeat from star across round.
Knit all stitches.
*K5, K2tog, repeat from star across round.
*K4, K2tog, repeat from star across round.
*K3, K2tog, repeat from star across round.
*K2, K2tog, repeat from star across round.
*K1, K2tog, repeat from star across round.
*K2tog, repeat from star across round.

Cut yarn, leaving a 10 inch tail, thread tail through remaining 7 stitches. Pull hole closed. Weave tails in.

Congratulations! You now have a toddler sized cap with a garter stitch brim. If you have any questions, leave a comment!

Happy Knitting!

Union Long Beanie

This spring I got to go to the Carolina Fiber Fest at the NC State Fairgrounds. It was so much fun to wander around such a massive building with only yarn, sheep art, buttons, and spinners. I found Fiber Charmer in a beautiful booth filled with her hand-dyed wool yarn. I purchased Valhalla, a deep, rich, tonal purple. I'm currently knitting a Union Long Beanie by Connie Chang Chinchio from the book "Weekend Hats." I absolutely love the subtle richness to the yarn and seeing the difference that ribbing and lace make with the yarn.




I'll be showing my other purple treasure from the Carolina Fiber Fest once I start a project with it. Happy Knitting!

Monday, July 30, 2012

Vacation and Gift Knitting

I went on vacation to the beach this past week to Oak Island, NC. It's absolutely beautiful! Besides boogie boarding, swimming in the ocean, and getting sunburned with my siblings, I sat on the beach knitting, mostly gift knits.

I knit a baby boy sweater from the pattern In Threes, that I knit many times last vacation. I was having trouble matching buttons to it, until I realized that it really isn't a "true blue" but is a beautiful tonal of purple and bluey-greens which as a whole, looks "blue." I found a set of pale green buttons that match; I have to find a thread to attach them with and then it will be finished.



I knit two hats from the book "New England Knits" by Cecily Glowik MacDonald and Melissa LaBarre. The pattern is the Brattleboro Hat, designed by Melissa LaBarre. The first hat I knit in a hand-dyed yarn in a colorway called "Autumn Leaves" from my cousin, from Greenberry House, http://blog.greenberryhouse.com. The two leather buttons are from my maternal grandmother's button collection.



The second hat I knit from Malabrigo Rios, in the same yarn for the baby sweater. For some reason, it looks more blue than the other ball even though they were from the same dye lot. Perhaps the pattern changed which colors ended up next to each other. The two buttons are also from my grandmother's collection.




I also knit a basic stockinette hat with a garter stitch brim. It's long enough to keep the wearer's ears nice and toasty.



And finally, a quick shot of two of my models. Somehow, they were a whole lot happier without winter wool hats in the July heat. :)


Friday, July 6, 2012

Rhode Island architecture and seaside

I wanted to post these pictures as soon as I saw how well they turned out!


I took these pictures when we went on the Cliff Walk in Newport, Rhode Island.


We walked around a few of the old mansions on Bellevue. The details are stunning!




I also loved getting to see houses and a church that were built anywhere from the early 1700s to the mid 1900s. It was amazing to see so many different eras and styles together on one street.







Rhode Island is absolutely beautiful! I loved my entire trip, especially getting to spend time with my aunt, uncle, and cousins. I would visit (in the summer) again in a heartbeat. The little towns, like Wickford, were complete with quaint shops, friendly people, and even a yarn store (which was closed due to July 4th). The other yarn store I did get to visit, Unwind, has a collection of beautiful tonal and variegated yarns (and others) and I look forward to visiting there again.

Baby Knits! (more In Threes cardigans)

I have now completed three In Threes baby cardigans and started a fourth. Yesterday, I was riding in the car home to North Carolina from Rhode Island for 14 hours! I knit until it got too dark to see and knit a “In Threes” cardigan from cast-on to everything minus the last two rows. I think from the time I wasn't checking road signs, exits, etc., I knit for about 10-12 hours. It is an amazing pattern that quickly becomes intuitive and easy to do while copiloting. This morning I bound off, sewed in my ends, and sewed the three buttons on. This would be a perfect pattern to teach basic increasing to beginning knitters, button holes, and casting off. 




For the sweater I left with my aunt, I made a matching hat. I knit 1.5-2 inches in garter stitch (in the round), and then knit until it measured about 5 inches total in length and then gradually decreased. It was very interesting to see how the self-striping yarn changed so much in the hat compared to the sweater. The sweater "pooled" a bit, but to me, that was okay and even interesting how there was a side that had more blue, and the other had more brown. 
When I was at Joanne Fabrics with my aunt choosing buttons for the In Threes baby sweater I was knitting for her, I found these adorable sailboat buttons. What sweeter momento could I have than sailboat buttons from the Ocean State? They looked close enough to the second In Threes sweater I had started, so I took the chance and got them. 




They matched perfectly! The sweater is knit from a swingy, 100% bamboo tape that feels perfect for summer, beach knitting and wearing. 
I also finished several baby projects I had, mainly using stripes to incorporate those little balls too small to use for an entire hat, but too big to toss. 



I also finished sewing on the arms and legs for another Wrap-Me-Up Puppy. The blanket for the puppy was crocheted from the same purple as the hat above, so I'm thinking they might become a gift set. 


Have you had more time to knit this summer? Are there any projects you've been working on? Please comment below!

Monday, July 2, 2012

In Threes Baby Cardigan and Rabbit: More Baby Gifts

I have started another “In Threes Baby Cardigan” by Kelly Herdrich. It is knit with a 100% bamboo yarn in the same aqua-green as the baby hat. As with the blue multi sweater knit (almost to completion yesterday), it is made in the 0-3 month size. I’m just going to finish them and then find some willing babies and mothers to see what size mine are really turning out.


I finished a bunny rabbit a month ago, knit from the rabbit pattern from “Last-Minute Knitted Gifts” by Joelle Hoverson. It is one of the best gift-knitting book I own and very possibly my favorite pattern book. Its photos are artistic and beautifully portrayed and the directions are clear.

The inner ears and scarf were knit with the yarn I hand-dyed. I really loved how the Kool-Aid dye project turned out when worked into the rabbit. The body was knit with a skein of very soft 100% acrylic from Joanne’s.



Happy Knitting!

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Seaside Knitting

I am visiting my aunt, uncle, and cousins in Rhode Island. We’re enjoying the gorgeous seaside and parks. I also got to visit a lovely yarn shop called Unwind (http://www.unwindri.com/). There, we found a skein of Berroco Vintage, a multi with sand, brown, and two different shades of gray-blue. I’m almost finished a “In Threes Baby Cardigan” by Kelly Herdrich. The pattern is simple and quick because it uses a worsted weight yarn. I almost completed the smallest size baby sweater (minus three rows) and ran out, so I’ll pick up another skein in a few days. It also went by quickly because I’m using a multi, so I get to watch the colors change. I’m on the lookout for seaside-themed buttons, either anchors or boats. I highly recommend this pattern! I’ll probably be knitting another one this week. It only took me one day!





I cranked out a baby hat with a sock yarn that’s a cotton and nylon blend. I’m working on a second hat, which is fun, because the self-striping is working out differently for the second hat.





I also finished another seaside colored hat, made from a 100% bamboo yarn in an aqua/green color from the baby hat pattern in "Last-Minute Knitted Gifts."



I’m happily knitting along at the RI seaside, enjoying the cool breeze, but mostly keeping out of the icy water after the token swim.

We've gone kayaking and horseback riding, both things I haven't done before. I had a blast! Getting off the horse after our trail ride was a bit interesting. I was hanging on to the pommel, sliding down, and my feet just kept going. I didn't realize how huge my horse was! Standing on the ground, I think his shoulder was taller than my head.




What are your favorite seaside or summer projects? Are there any particular “vacation knitting” patterns that you love? Please post your thoughts in the comments below. Happy Knitting!