• Handicrafts

    Yarn Along April 2019

    photo of book and knitting

    Knitting another baby blanket with KnitPicks Shine Worsted (of course), a variation on this well-loved pattern. I’m on the second book of All-of-A-Kind Family, although I’m obviously much above the intended age range (I don’t have much mental space at the moment, and I like to read books I feel I “missed out” on in my childhood), I’m enjoying them (also, five girls, one boy is a familiar situation!).

    I’m linking up here on Ginny Sheller’s blog

    and here for Crafting On.

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    Yarn Along: January

    I’m linking up with Ginny Sheller’s Yarn Along here.

    I’m still working on Christmas knitting. One of my resolutions last year was to finish gift projects on time. Ha. Clearly that needs to be this years as well.

    I started Suzie Sparkle’s Jasmine Dress (I LOVE the styles she has) in Knitpicks Shine Worsted in Sailor (I love this yarn; I love that it is in two weights, the feel of it, the cost; it’s my go-to for babies with Valley Yarn’s Goshen although Knitpicks is easier to order from). The pattern is for DK, so I’m usually as smaller style based on my gauge, fingers-crossed that it will turn out. I’m making the long-sleeved option, and I think I might want more eyelets in the skirt, and a ribbon around the waist, we’ll see.

    I’m reading Odd Girl Out which is a sort of memoir from the author about her adult diagnosis of autism. I just randomly found this on a blog, I think and thought it was interesting. You usually hear of boys with autism. I’m a third in I think. Interesting story but I hate present tense writing and this is pretty wordy.

    I whipped this bonnet (the pattern is $2, but I think it was free when I got it) up for my niece in November with some left-over Knitpicks Shine. I had several more balls of different colors, so I’ve finished two more of different sizes (one for my niece next winter) plus have a fourth on the needles.

    I’m quite proud of this even though it’s late. My mom bought my niece a 12 month baby dress at a boutique in Baltimore when visiting friends months before she was born, and she wanted me to make a shrug to go with it for Christmas. Of course it was blocking (I will break this procrastination!) when we opened gifts. I made the pattern myself with help on the number of stitches for cast on and sleeve increases from other raglan patterns (because raglan is easy, I knew I could come up with a pattern rather than buy a similar, plus I like mine better!). This is Knitpicks Shine sport in Robot I believe, and the clasp is from Knitpicks as well (I’d collected a few over the years). I haven’t given it yet, I’m wanting to finish the sweater dress first and then go visit, and I can take a photo of the shrug with the dress Mom gave.

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    What I’ve Been Up To

    I’m in between job assignments until next Wednesday.

    I’m still trying to figure out what I want to do in regards to work (i.e. what will I hate least). So, I’m in school with computer classes. I’m still planning on taking my Accounting CLEP and taking both computer and accounting next year.

    In the midst of all this, my niece was born. We’re all obsessed. I’ve visited twice, and I think we are going to visit again this week-end. She definitely looks like our side of the family, in the first photos I saw she looked like Babysister, then when I saw her, I could see her daddy, my brother, but then I quickly decided she also looked dead like Travelgirl’s baby photos. We need to dig out all our baby photos to compare.

    I’ve of course, made her some baby things. This was my first attempt at smocking; I’m now hooked, but since I don’t plan on only using gingham fabric, I’m planning on investing in a smocking machine. I found the elephant flannel on fabric.com and did a simple mitered corner hem. The blanket is simply “Old Shale” (this is NOT “Feather and Fan” although it is often incorrectly labeled so, even in print, I think). I’ve also helped stock her already burgeoning library with the darling Frances books by Russell Hoban and a Disney princess collection.

     

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    Yarn Along and Crafting On Link Up

    I linking up with Ginny’s Yarn Along and Nicole’s Crafting On.

    I have, of course, more than one book going (and 2 more projects on the needles although I’ve been focusing on this one for awhile), but this was the prettiest arrangement. The blanket is Purl Soho’s Mosaic Blanket which is free and actually very simple. I think it is rather stunning.

    Kristin Lavransatter is going to have to wait a bit while I finish or at least catch on up my local library’s summer reading program (they do one for adults and it is so fun this year) and the epidemics book.

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    What I’ve Knit Recently

    An Age of Brass and Steam Kerchief made with copper colored Knit Picks Diadem for a friend with an autumn birthday.

    Matching baby and toddler knit dresses for the same friend’s little girls. I used a cardigan pattern as a loose guide, but I also was figuring things out as I went along (hence why the sleeves aren’t as striped; I didn’t want to have to end in the middle of a stripe or not on the third stripe; I should have calculated the stripe size based on the sleeve lengths). Eventually I want to do these patterns again and work out the issues and then I’ll post here and on Ravelry.

    I knit this seed stitch scarf (I knit it long enough to be an infinity scarf and added buttonholes) ages ago and had it blocked and ready for when I could purchase the perfect buttons. I finally ordered these darling flowers (when you order, pick the “with hook” option and then make a note to seller that you would like the hooks on the bottom like shank buttons).

    Baby blanket #1 (there will be at least 4 this year for 4 family babies!!!). I just made this pattern up; one square basket weave, one square garter, one square moss, and one square seed stitch. I already had this started and had my fingers crossed one of my cousins would have a boy, and sure enough.

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    Discovering Knitting: How I Became a Knitter

    I don’t remember exactly my age when my grandmothers first introduced me to knitting, but I know I wasn’t near a teen. One grandmother gave me a family knitting basket and needles and also a learn-to-knit set. My other grandmother gave me my first lesson . . . which didn’t stick.

    A lady at my childhood church often brought her knitting when she worked as the church librarian. And once she brought a lace shawl once. Purple and delicate and elegant. I set my heart on lace.
    When I was around 13, this lady invited some ladies and girls to a knitting class at her home. I struggled in the beginning; I ended up knitting back and forth combining left and right-handed methods instead of switching the needles and so instead of garter I had a twisted stockinette! Also, a couple other girls our age attended, and we often spent time talking and running around outside.

    But I was truly interested. I loved seeing everyone’s work, especially our teacher’s. And our teacher gave us knitting catalogs which featured gorgeous yarn and patterns (I especially loved the ethereal lace), and I loved pouring over these. I eventually began to progress, but after awhile the group stopped. As I didn’t have access to many patterns and lacked purpose, style, and resources, I knitted sporadicy at best during much of my teenage years. I continued to look over the catalogs, and my sister and I received an excellent book that I still use as a reference (I got another copy).

    Over recent years a couple things happened which combined to act as a catalyst to my knitting. I got jobs (rather essential to a hobby). A lady at church showed me how to knit Continental style which for me at least is much faster. I looked up the online stores of those old catalogs and learned about Ravelry via a blog. Other bloggers inspired me. So, I began to knit more. I ventured out of my comfort zone to learn lace and fingerless gloves and baby sweaters. We also joined up with the more serious knitters of the older group sporadically.

    And now, I need to start venturing into more difficult territory. I’ve balked at sweaters which I really need to work on that because that is one of the most practical items for me personally.

    If you know how to knit how did you learn? What inspires you/where do you find patterns?

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    Everyday Knitting Project Photo Dump

    December 8, 2016: All of these I finished well before Christmas, but I am in the midst of Christmas posting and don’t want to lump that many together, so the Christmas ones will be first.
    I knitted this L’Enveloppe for Mom. I want to knit one for me, but I’m very particular about what type and color of yarn I want.
    I knitted this Standing Stones Cowl for me. I got it as an e-book with another cowl with a discount provided to readers of Ginny Shellar’s blog.

    I used a garter ridge chevron stitch from a knitting book in the round for this cowl that was a birthday gift.

    This is another birthday gift, and I think that it is cute, but don’t buy any pattern for it. I bought a pattern (and I think there was a cheaper pattern!) for this because I thought the top is knit in the round and was more intricate than it was. Don’t buy, you can figure out how to make it yourself; I should’ve known that because so many posted the same pattern. The top is a diagonal garter ridge or diagonal rib rectangle that you seam and gather. I bet you could knit it in the round in some way and have more professional finish (you need the cherry to cover the heavily gathered top in this case). I shouldn’t have had to pay $5 for that; its legal to charge, but its unethical. I should have known better; I feel cheated. 
    I’ve had copyrights and patents in two classes this semester (after the first I went through and removed all photos that weren’t mine from the blog). Any work is automatically copyrighted, but what that means is that the actual physical work or wording cannot be copied; the design or idea or pose or plot can be (can you imagine how few books there would be otherwise? lol). So the physical pattern cannot be scanned, typed out, etc. So, a person’s particular rendering of an unorignal idea is protected but not the idea. For good reason, many ideas aren’t that unique and could be created by many people simultaneously. Like this one.
    Patents are far more serious; they are to protect serious innovation. Patents have many requirements and must be registered. I highly doubt any knitting pattern will be patented (I don’t know if any would even qualify) and any detailed, original design will be super hard to copy anyway. And no patent would ever protect something as unorignal as this. 
    I didn’t want to pay for the Holden pattern because it wasn’t original enough in my mind (it isn’t), but I couldn’t find the plain pattern stitch (I did find a scarf with it) until after I purchased it, and figuring out the pattern stitch for a shawl is beyond my interest-skill balance (actually, it might not be that hard), so I am less dissatisfied with that purchase, but I need to be careful. Most patterns are around $5 and you can buy a book with several liked patterns for less than a few Ravelry patterns. And many of the patterns for sale aren’t intricate enough even in books and knitting magazines to be worthy of a purchase. Make sure you look really hard for free and try it yourself if it isn’t a complicated pattern or you could spend a ton of money for little creativity. Only really intricate lace designs or unique patterns (like the first listed) are really worth it. Others are somewhat worth it if they do a lot of the calculations for you or you could not find the stitches (like the first cowl).
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    Christmas Knitting

    I forgot to take a photo of the $1 gift; it was a cream version of the twist headband in this post. The beret is this pattern, and I love it as it looks like a real beret instead of a beanie when worn. I’m going to use it as a base for all other berets I make because it is the only true beret I’ve done. Also, I blocked it with the opening on the bottom of the plate and drew it up tighter with yarn stitched around, and this may have helped with the shape a bit. I think that mine looked better than the photos on the pattern page, so don’t be worried to try it.

    The pink shawl is my third Holden, and my first attempt at knitting with beads (I improvising the number and placement). The photos do not do the crystals justice. This was for my grandmother.

    The L’Enveloppe was for my sister, and I didn’t do the decreases correct (I think the seed stitch version instructions were confusing, if not wrong in keeping the pattern, so I improvised it to my detriment), so it is far longer than the pattern. Now, because of the asymmetrical nature, I don’t think it looks wrong, but I thought I would note this for anyone who might try the pattern.

     

     

     

     

     

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    Yarn Along: Entrelac and A Little Taste of Poison

    I am linking up again after a period of laziness here at Ginny Sheller’s Yarn Along. You will have to forgive the iphone photo. And the junk at the bottom; my room will never stay clean.

    Since I am knitting two items and reading two books (just kidding, I have several books and knitting projects started, this are just the most diligently pursued at the moment). My sisters and I enjoyed the first Uncommon Magic book, A Pocket Full of Murder, and we are happy to finally read the second installment, A Little Taste of Poison. Don’t you just love the titles? The covers, especially the first, are adorable. If you haven’t read any R.J. Anderson, you definitely should. Her Faery Rebels trilogy and Swift duo are amazing (they are connected, but not a series). Unfortunately only the first two titles are available in the U.S.; I ordered the others via Amazon.uk. Worth it.

    I’ve been making my way through Mildred Taylor’s Logan family saga. I meant to read the stories chronological order, but I got mixed up a little although not in the “main” story. I am working on my first entrelac project, a blanket. I mean for this to be slow since it is so huge and to complete other projects at the same time. I am knitting a cashmere blend scarf with this gorgeous textured triangle stitch also. I really need to stop the scarf and shawl deluge a bit and work on sweaters. I am aiming to work through “Handknit Garment Design” class on Craftsy to design a couple sweaters.

  • Handicrafts

    Yarn Along

    I am linking up here again.
    I actually finished this book yesterday. Wow. Read it, but prepare to feel the horror. The descriptions are not graphic, but between the style of writing, cruelties mentioned, my previous WWII college classes, and my imagination, I really got the feel of cringing fear. I still don’t think it is Book Thief level in my liking, but as for understanding the spirit of fear in WWII, I think it is far more accurate. (Yet another reminder, that most Americans, even the British also, really don’t understand the horror of events in which we are only partially involved; we are so insulated. The war was not on home soil, and the wars fought on U.S soil did not destroy daily life for the entire nation). Quite unlike the rather silly Code Name Verity. Mentioning hard things does not evoke the proper tones, the touch of horror the protected and pampered need to feel.
    Anyway, I am working on Standing Stones Cowl in fingering. I bought two patterns with a reader’s discount offered via Ginny Sheller’s blog several months ago. I have finished knitting another medium size accessory, but I still have some finishing work to do, perhaps blocking. I finished a scarf except for buttons, but I want to wait until I get the “perfect” ones before I picture it. One of my mom’s friends had preemie, so I knit a preemie hat (that one is not pictured), and then a baby shower at church caused me to knit a regular baby hat, so I decided I would start stocking up on small baby knits. The cream one below was for the shower, the top two are preemies, and the bottom is for a normal baby. I would like to add socks, headbands, and booties to my stock as well. 

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    Katniss Cowl

    Well, I finally finished my sister’s cowl that I promised like a year or so ago.  I left out the triangle piece because it did not fit after I sewed the rest of it together. When I showed my mom my accessory and the original, she liked mine better, but I am not super thrilled with it. Of course maybe it will fit my sister better than me. And rustic has never been my look anyway.

    I found photos of the back of the original as well.

    Here is an article regarding the original which costumers hand wove rather than knit.

    I used tutorials/patterns including this, this, and this for the top cording. I am left-handed, so I found this part somewhat difficult. I did only two rows rather than three and mine ended up too short in length. I should have done that part last.

    I used a couple tutorials for herringbone, and here is one (for this stitch I needed some videos).

    This is the pattern I used for the body. I think I did a little extra on the top piece and I decreased two stitches every knit row (slip 3, rather than the usual 2, knit decrease and leave one on left needle as before) for the second piece.