Wednesday, February 11, 2015

henny hat

Have you seen Liesl's first pattern, the Henny Hat? It's beautiful. It has a simple lace pattern and just the right amount of slouch. The pattern is well written and includes both charted and written directions. It's a quick knit too, so it's perfect if you're looking for a project to curl up with this weekend.

I was lucky enough to be able to test the hat pattern and a skein of Buckaloo View black walnut yarn. I'm smitten with the rich caramel color the black walnuts gave to this wool-alpaca blend and can't wait until Liesl opens her shop so I can get my hands on some more. Wouldn't this yarn look great as a cardigan?

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See my Henny Hat notes here.

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Have you tried any new patterns lately? I'm excited about Canopy, Charcoal & Ash, and the colorwork patterns in the latest issue of Pom Pom Quarterly.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

january socks (hooray!)

"beauty is twice beauty
and what is good is doubly good
when it is a matter of two socks
made of wool in winter."

from "Ode to my Socks," Pablo Neruda translated by Robert Bly

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Two warm feet and a sigh of relief. January socks are finished! 

Check out the Monthly Sock Challenge to see everyone else's January socks.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

january socks

I'm sorely afraid that my January socks will end up being just a lonely January sock. I had an unfortuitous start when my yarn cake immediately turned into a yarn snarl. I've never had this happen before, and I haven't had the patience to untangle it yet. Instead, I just cut the yarn and kept knitting, which is fine until I run out of yarn.

So then I was knitting away, only it turns out that colorwork is not nearly as enjoyable on double-pointed needles as it is on circular needles. Or maybe it is once you get the hang of it? Obviously, I do not have the hang of it because my tension was too tight to begin with. The sock was then put in time-out for a week while I wondered if I needed to rip it out and begin again in a larger size, but I decided that I since I could get the sock on and it didn't cut off circulation, I could live with it.

Three weeks into January I finished my first sock, and even with all the issues, I love it. I really think it's a thing of beauty, one of the most impressive things (to me) that I've made with my own hands. And I considered framing it and calling it art and most importantly, calling it finished.

But no, I couldn't help myself. I've got another cuff on the needles and less than a week to finish. Hope springs eternal.

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I'm joining the Monthly Sock Challenge, trying to make a pair of socks each month for a year. Needless to say, I'm thinking worsted weight for my February socks.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

pinecone and mulberry hat

A few weeks before Christmas I won two skeins of Woolfolk Får from Monarch Knitting. The giveaway was through the Woolful podcast, which I hope you're listening to already (if not, check it out).

This yarn is cushy soft and a pleasure to knit. Knitter's Review did a great review if you're interested in learning more. The color was much more my sister's style than mine, so I set to work making her a hat (breaking my self-imposed no-Christmas-knitting rule, but it felt manageable because it was the only holiday knitting I did and I had promised nothing, so there was no pressure).

I used Melody's Pinecone and Mulberry pattern because the texture paired nicely with this plush yarn and I could make a hat from a single skein, leaving another skein to play with. This was actually the second Pinecone and Mulberry I've made. The first I made from a wool/acrylic blend I had in my stash, but knitting it in 100% wool was much more pleasurable and made that popple-textured swath knit up much more easily (for reference, I worked on the wool/acrylic hat on and off for nearly 3 months because the yarn was splitty, whereas this wool version took me 2 days).

I imagine there will be more Pinecone and Mulberry hats in my future. Well, at least one. I need one for myself, after all.

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Thursday, January 8, 2015

new year intentions and a marigold marin shawl

Oh my goodness, it's the new year already! My new year so far is full of good intentions. I am always a dreamer and a resolution-maker. This year I've chosen the word nourish to carry me through the year. I feel like I've been wearing myself thin, and I'd like to take better care of myself. Sleep more, take more hot baths, do more yoga, drink more water, light more candles, read more. Nourish seems to encapsulate those intentions.

Of course I have crafting goals too. I (always) hope to sew more. In particular I'd like to make a Scout Tee and a Dottie Angel frock when she releases the pattern. I'd like to try drop-spindling again. And I'm making a realistic list of things I hope to knit this year. Uniform is definitely on the list, along with a couple of sweaters for my boy to wear in fall. I'll also be knitting a hat for the Mystery Hat Swap (there's still time to join if you haven't already!).

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I've been logging as much knitting time as I can on this beauty of a shawl. Every night I think, "Tonight is the night I finish the shawl," but somehow those garter stitch rows deceive me, so that at the end of the night I finally give up and think: "Tomorrow!" Maybe tonight is the night.

The yarn makes the shawl, for sure. This brilliant yellow is Liesl's marigold-dyed yarn. I'm excited for her to open her shop, but in the meantime I've got a skein of undyed yarn and a bag of marigolds in my freezer that are calling my name. Maybe I better add that to the list.

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Did you choose a word for 2015? Or set any craft goals? I'd love to hear.

My past words include: brave, resourceful, action, and intent.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

stockings were hung by the chimney with care


Wishing you happy holidays and good cheer!

P.S. December socks are complete and on my feet, keeping me snug this Christmas morning. 

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

december socks (in progress)

My December socks are sailing along, thanks in no small part to the addictiveness of knitting those stripes. It's so fun to see another stripe emerge and so easy to think "just one more." The yarn is Tokyo Underground by Quaere Fibre; I've been missing Japan lots lately, so this is a small way to remember my times there and tide me over until we can afford plane tickets back. All that's left now is to knit the second toe, which means I should be wearing new socks by the weekend (or sooner).

This is my third pair of socks for Liesl's Monthly Sock Challenge. I'm still taking it month by month, but I'd love to complete a year in socks. I've already lined up my January and February socks! (A heads-up if you're interested in that January sock pattern: Dianna Walla is offering 25% off all her patterns through the end of December with this coupon code.)

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I've been reading Yokes before bed the past few nights, meting out a little at a time so it will last longer. I bought the print version specifically for reading in bed, and it's definitely worth it. This book combines my love of anthropology, history, and knitting, and it's accompanied by beautiful patterns. My favorite pattern is Cockatoo Brae, the cardigan on the cover with the Shetland tree and star. I'd love to knit it someday--maybe next year!

I didn't notice how similar the colors in my socks and the book cover were until I saw this photo. Unintentional, but it makes me smile. Also, I can't help but hope maybe I am the one in Louisville, Kentucky who inspired Kate to sing. Either that or there are other Kate Davies fans around here that I need to find and befriend, pronto.

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I'm linking up with Ginny's Yarn Along and the Monthly Sock Challenge

What are you working on this week?


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