Category Archives: sweater

Finished Object (not quite) Friday

I have some exciting finished objects this week! Ok, some of them were finished a while ago, but I didn’t have photos to post, so I pretended they didn’t exist yet.

About a month before Christmas my sister, who loudly proclaimed a few years ago that she NEVER wanted anything handmade, asked if I could knit her a baggy sweater. It didn’t matter that it was a month before Christmas, that I had an 8 week old keeping me busy, and a number of other projects to finish- she finally asked for something handmade, and gosh darnit, she was going to get it!

In true knitter fashion, I was up until 2am Christmas Day putting the finishing touches on her sweater, but it was done in time to be wrapped and placed under the tree. It was a simple pattern but I love the look of it, and it was exactly what she asked for.IMG_20150118_093559240 Pattern is Il Grande Favorito, knit with Plymouth Encore Chunky. This was the 38″ bust for 4″ ease. So incredibly simple, and so comfortable.

Almost two weeks ago, I finally finished my husband’s first handknit sweater. This is a testament to true love- stockinette (with some ribbing) in a plain grey. I love my husband dearly, but this sweater tested my resolve. The actual sweater knit up easily, then took 4 hours to seam up. By the time I got to the zipper I just ran it through the sewing machine, because I couldn’t stand to work on it any longer. But it fits him perfectly, and he wears it all the time. 20150118_133529 Pattern is Cambridge Jacket knit with Cascade 220. Size 44″ chest, which gives no real ease. Modifications I would make: increase the sleeve length by 1″, and maybe less increases on the upper arm- they seem a bit loose.

 

This project was just finished a few days ago. I started a baby blanket for Connor back in July, but got so distracted by little sweaters, hats, etc that I ignored it for a while. Plus he got so many beautiful blankets from friends that I didn’t see the rush. But I finally buckled down and completed it the other week.

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Pattern is Honeycomb Stroller Blanket, knit with Ella Rae worsted superwash. I modified the edging to this. The pattern has you pick up stitches on one side, knit garter stitch for a few rows, then bind off. Repeat 3 more times. I don’t like how modular that looks, so I picked up stitches all the way around, then did two increases at each corner every other round. I also did two garter ridges in white, then one garter ridge in brown, two white, one green, two white, then the bind off. I think it makes a much nicer border for this blanket.

And of course as soon as those are off the needles, I have just as many cast on. Another baby sweater, a scarf for a family member, a Doctor Who scarf for Josh, and I’m hoping to start something for myself here soon.

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First Finished Object Friday

A lot of crafters participate in Finished Object Fridays, but I take so long to complete things that I’ve never joined in. This week, I finally have a few items that are 100% done, so why not participate this time around? Heck, if I’m feeling really daring, I might even do WIP Wednesday next week!

On to the finished objects! First up: Baby Sophisticate Sweater for baby Dez. This was knit out of Debbie Bliss Rialto Aran ( I think…I need to find the ball band). This is the 3 month size, and is so teeny it’s squeal-worthy. Go ahead, you know you want to. I’ll wait.

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Next up is Owlet, by Kate Davies. This was such a fast and easy knit (hard to refrain from a joke there…). I really enjoyed this pattern, and am seriously considering knitting the adult version for myself. Or maybe I’ll knit SD one so they can be twinsies at Christmas. Because kids LOVE IT when you dress them identically. This is out of Debbie Bliss Rialto Aran, in the 6 month size. Our families have a history of large babies, so my hope is that this will fit him during the second half of winter.

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And…that’s pretty much it. I’m not finishing much around here, lately. Environmental Law is kicking my butt, and we’ve been trying to spend as much time with SD as possible before she leaves tomorrow. Tune in Wednesday to see what I’ve been knitting on to date.

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In like a Lion, out like a…Lion?

I would apologize for not posting in a month but honestly… I have had way too much going on to blog. March has been a whirlwind of not only crazy unseasonal winter weather, but also activity! Right about the time we moved into our new house, we received some surprising news:

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There’s a baby D on the way! We are so excited, and nervous, and thrilled, and terrified. That contributed a lot to the lack of blogging. I was so sick and tired for the entire first trimester, that doing anything besides getting up, going to work, coming home and going to sleep was too taxing. Plus it’s hard to keep a secret like that when you have a blog. I mean, there wasn’t much I could talk about besides “looked at baby knitting. Was sick all day.” 

What’s new in knitting? Well, I started a baby sweater! This is the owlet pattern by Kate Davis. I needed an easy pattern to start out with, and I have wanted to knit an owls sweater for ages. This seemed like a great one to start with. I’m already binding off the neck, and only have to graft the sleeves, weave in ends, and block it.  This sweater will be done in no time!

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Oh, J’s 2013 birthday socks? I finally  finished them last week. They are done, ends woven in, and sitting on top of his dresser. I am so glad to have those done. I never want to look at that pattern again. 

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Other than that, not much going on. My full-time job has me working more than full-time right now, so any free time I have is spent doing homework for my graduate class, or trying to keep up with housework. I’m hoping now that I’m in the second trimester that I’ll be able to keep up with things a little better. In the meantime, I plan on spending the rest of this gloomy, rainy, sleety Sunday sitting on the couch with a hot mug of tea and some knitting to relax with. 

 

 

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2013 in Review

Hello, 2014! This past year has been such a crazy, busy, educational one that I hardly know where to start with my summary. A year ago this month I decided to go back to school. This was a tough decision; my husband is currently a full-time student, and I work full-time.  After much thought though, we realized that we can handle it financially, and tax-wise it was most beneficial for me to do it now. To date I have completed 19 graduate level credits, and am almost halfway through my program, while still working full-time (much of the time out in the field). 

This year we really tried to buckle down on following a budget. It was definitely rough with me travelling so much for work, but we are figuring out where our downfalls are. In an effort to try and save as much of our CSA produce as possible, I decided to learn how to can. With only being home on weekends, food wasn’t getting eaten before it was going bad. This was a great way to keep money from going to waste, and it’s giving us delicious fruits well into winter!

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I also decided that this was a great time to start a side business! My timing is, to say the least, awful. There has been so much going on that some days I feel so overwhelmed I could cry, but it has been worth it. I’ve gone from making bags and hoping people will notice them, to having a fully stocked website, an active facebook page, a presence in local craft shows, and the latest achievement- bags for sale in our new local yarn store! This has not been an easy road and there are still many challenges ahead, but I am sure I can handle it.

Knitting has been slow this year. With all this chaos, knitting has sadly fallen by they wayside. Even so, there have been a few finished projects this year! Below is a gallery of my 2013 FO’s.

Ok, so technically the Opulant Raglan is currently blocking and still needs ends woven in, but the knitting was finished before the year ends, so I am counting it. 

I will be casting on my annual New Year’s Cast-on-along project here soon. My goals for this year are varied; can more, stress less, knit more, run more. We’ve already decided on doing two sprint triathalons this year, and I cannot wait!

Do you make resolutions, or set goals instead? Or do you just ignore all of that, and just plan on enjoying everything 2014 sends your way?

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Finally Making Some Progress

I finally feel as if I am making progress on my spinning, knitting, and sewing projects. Not having classes two nights a week really does give me a lot of free time! The hardest part about wanting to update on all of this is figuring out where to start. Guess I’ll start with the spinning. Last year a dog got into some combed top I was working on, and strew it all around the house. It would be impossible to spin it as prepped top now, but with my fancy new hand cards I could turn the top into rolags pretty easily and spin from that!

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This is my spinning set-up from last week. In the front are the rolags I prepped from the affected fiber. The bobbin on the back left is full of 3oz of merino/mohair singles. The bobbin on the right is another 3 oz of the same fiber, chain plied. In the back you can see my yarn bowl and WIP.

I was hoping to spin a bulky single. Unfortunately learning to spin rolags in a truly woolen manner was a bit difficult, and I ended up with thick and thin singles, about a worsted weight. The colors in this photo are the most accurate for the pink fiber.

 

 

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Here are the singles. About 200yds, 4oz. I spun it up as a gradient, from dark magenta to a pink so light it’s almost white. I really wanted a thicker yarn, but if I ply this I’ll get a really awful barber pole effect, and I’m just not sure I want that yet. We will see. I have time before I need a winter hat from this.

 

 

Here is a swatch knitted up. It’s not bad, but this is on size 8 needles. Definitely worsted. 

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Here is the finished product of the chain-plied mohair. This skein is about 275yds, 3oz. I ended up with about a sport weight yarn. I’m still plying the second bobbin, but it should be around the same. I’m ok with that, I just need to figure out what to do with 500yds of a mohair blend. I’m not so sure it will make great socks. Maybe house socks? It could make a nice small shawl, too. That’s the hardest part about spinning- trying to figure out what to do with the yarn once it’s made! 

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Oh, and here was my super fancy set-up to skein this yarn once I was done spinning it:

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I know, don’t you all wish you had this impressive layout? I can’t wait until I have a craft room, and a table that has enough of a lip to attach my swift. 

 

 

 

 

This weekend we are heading up to the lake to spend the holiday with family. I’m bringing the Border Leicester, as I said earlier. Gertrude, all her supplies, and the hand cards are coming along, too. I plan on getting a good start with the Border Leicester this weekend. I’m hoping I bought enough of it- the original intention was to knit myself a sweater from it. If I am low on fiber though, I’ll have to decide if I want to blend it, or do a colorwork yoke to try and make the yarn last. I may kick myself if I find out I didn’t purchase enough.

The trindle went out in the mail today to get fixed/replaced. I’m hoping he is able to fix it. I really love that little spindle and was very excited to spin on it this past weekend. I’ve learned my lesson though. Never take a trindle out of the house!

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Failing miserably

I really do fail miserably at this blogging thing! Life has just been really hectic the last few months, to say the least. so…where did we leave off?

Ah! January. Well, I met most of my resolution. I finished the swallowtail shawl.

And I completed the log cabin socks for my Texan friend. I am sure he loved getting them in april. :)

I finished my blackrose socks, but have no finished picture. Just trust me, they look and wear awesomely. In addition, they accidentally went through the washer and dryer, with no damage! This had me worried, since I am pretty sure Claudia Hand Paint sock yarn isn’t technically listed as machine washable.

The big accomplishment though? ARWEN IS DONE!! At a year and a half in the making, this is a huge accomplishment. I wore it every day for at least a week. I am a little sad it’s too warm to wear it now.

Avalon got put into time out for having different dye lots- I have already ripped it back 3 times, and just was NOT in the mood to do it a fourth for now.

I haven’t been blogging for a variety of reasons. first, work was pretty busy the first part of this year, wrapping up projects and kicking off new ones, which meant that by the end of the day I really didn’t feel like blogging again. In march, I found out my SO is being sent overseas for a year, leaving mid-June. Dealing with that and all the drama associated has kept me reasonably distracted from blogging and knitting too, unfortunately.

I have also been working on a stealth project. The item is done, but won’t be revealed for a few more months. Trust me though, it’s worth it!

I have been spinning a bit more lately- finished another roving from Christine Marie Potter. Her stuff is gorgeous, and I love working with it! This is her Snow White colorway, in corriedale. I spun about 400yds of navajo plied light worsted weight yarn.

I promise to be back later this week to share stories of this year’s MDSW, and honor my 1 year of blogging! (infrequently. but hey, it’s better than never, right?)

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Time Flies

I am so behind on updating this thing, it isn’t even funny. Life has just been hectic lately, and keeping up with everything is just impossible. I will try and recap all that has been going on in my knitting life though.

The Mechanicsburg Knitting Group is doing well- we have new people joining every month, and they are all such great women. I look forward to those weekly get togethers! I am worried we may need to relocate though- we are currently meeting at a Panera, but if the group gets too much larger, I am afraid we may cause a bit of a disturbance. I can’t really think of anyplace else that would work for these meetings though. There aren’t a lot of places that like people sitting around for a few hours socializing (even though almost all of us at least buy a drink there).

Project-wise, I finished the Log Cabin socks, and they are now waiting to be mailed out. I cast on the Riding to Avalon sweater, and am about 6″ into it. It is going well, and the Malabrigo silky merino is a good yarn for it- not too thick or heavy.

The Cardigan for Arwen is coming along too. The right side is now over halfway done, with half the sleeve knit. I just needed to finish the sleeve, and do the hood. It will be so nice to finish this after over a year!

Finally, the current project of Pride. The Marine Boy is a huge Ohio State fan (whereas my family is all die-hard Penn State fans) and wanted an Ohio State hat. Now first of all, going into any yarn store in central PA to buy scarlet and grey yarn? HA. But, I did (although the colors are off a bit. I showed him!) and I knit him the O-H-I-O hat pattern from Tuscan Grove. I added one repeat going around, since he has a bit of a large head, and because it was my first attempt at colorwork and I knew it was going to be knit pretty tight. I finished it in just 10 days (pretty sure that is a record for me) and gave it to him in time for him to go wear it to the OSU/Wisconsin game this weekend.

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And, just because I think he’s pretty adorable in the hat, here’s another one:

Ohio Hat

I think that is all for now. I am starting to get holiday knitting lined up, which is going to consist of a Penn State version of the hat for my brother, mittens for my grandmother, and hopefully a new sweater vest for me, with the yarn I bought!

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