Thursday, August 21, 2014

Momorio

This project has followed me around for a year and a half.  I think I am actually having a bit of separation anxiety here in the space between projects.  The main body was a garter stitch breeze to knit, but that lace edge was not the "quick bit of lace fluff" that I thought it would be.




This has very little to do with the pattern, and mainly to do with my incompetence/fear of reading charts and hatred of doing purl rows in a lace pattern.  Then there was the day I picked it up and knit half a row in the wrong direction before realizing what I had done.  Thankfully, I have a very competent knitting emergency staff (mom) who was able to undo my damage while muttering "do you have to knit soooo tightly" under her breath.  I spent many hours thinking to myself that I should go do just one row, and very little time actually doing them.  I mean, it is only 20 rows of lace.  I am not a disciplined knitter.  I can accept this about myself.

Momorio pattern

My ravelry details



Hurry up fall so this can take up a permanent residence around my neck!







Saturday, August 9, 2014

City Gym Shorts - Toddler Workout

Whoo Hoo!  Third post this year, I'm on a ROLL.  Life with a two year old, blah blah blah... but look, I made SHORTS!  When I saw this post from the Purl Bee come through my blog reader, I just knew I would be carving out some time soon to try them out.  I spent most of the morning today sewing, and then the majority of the little miss' nap time, and by the time she got up I was ready to measure her waist for the elastic.  Ok, when I say most of the morning, I mean I spent a good hour agonizing over fabric and then got to work.



I have been hoarding several cuts of this Heather Ross cotton lawn, it is so gorgeous.  I really wanted to make these out of the unicorn fabric from this line, but I love it so much that I first made a trial run with this little flower print, which for some reason I have a ton of anyway.  Oh, and the bias edging I made out of an old linen shirt that I have had in the make-this-into-something-else pile for YEARS, so I even managed to recycle with this project.  Many pats on the back occurring over here.  I think these shorts turned out great, so hopefully some unicorn ones will appear as well.  Also, I got to finally use my bias tape maker thinga-magiggy and that thing is like pure magic.  These are the size 3 on the pattern, hopefully she will still be able to wear them next summer.


Sunday, January 12, 2014

I Actually Finished A Quilt


I spent a lovely morning on Christmas Eve with a large cup of coffee and some binding to sew.  The pure pleasure I found that morning was primarily due to the knowledge that I was finally, after two years of procrastination, finishing this quilt for my own daughter!  Luckily toddlers need quilts just as much as babies do, and this one is generously sized to cover her for quite some time.  Actually it was Grammy that could be found snuggling under it Christmas morning, because the toddler was way too interested in her new tricycle to care one bit about a quilt.


I used the Zig Zag Quilt Tutorial on the A Quilt Is Nice blog, which is very easy to follow and did not contribute in any way to this quilt taking two years from start to finish.

The fabrics are Joel Dewberry voile from the Heirloom line.  The voile makes this quilt SO. SOFT.



Thursday, January 2, 2014

One Gifted Two Received!

Christmas knitting was pretty slim this year as most of my spare time was spent finishing up a toddler quilt (blog post to come), but I whipped up one cowl for the tween next door and there were two cowl's under the tree for me!  Give and you shall receive indeed!

First up, my project.  Aforementioned tween showed up one morning wearing a cute cowl that belonged to her college aged big sister, and before I knew what happened I had blurted out "I could make you one of those if you like".  Did I mention this conversation took place two weeks before Christmas?  I had been trying to decide what to get her anyway. I knew it would be a quick knit, so a search on ravelry, a dive into my yarn stash, and just a few days of furious knitting resulted in a great present!  If you need a quick knit for a teen or tween or grown person even (I want one now), this is the pattern for you.  As with most great fast patterns it is all about the yarn and a fantastic way to feature two skeins of your favorite bulky deliciousness.  My choice was a Plymouth Handpaint Wool, which probably falls in the super bulky category, and this cowl is WARM.  Yarn details and such on my Ravelry here.


I was gifted a cowl from my Aunt and one from my Mom, both have been getting constant wear since Christmas so I can confidently recommend them both as great gift ideas if you are in need of one (never too early to start knitting for next Christmas).  This cream and blue one is the one from my Aunt, her Ravelry account is sadly neglected so I can't snoop and see if she used a pattern or anything, but it looks like a simple cast on of about 72 stitches, knit in the round in a knit two pearl one pattern with chunky yarn.  Simple but turns out totally cute!  This goes with everything.


My Mom is pretty good about her Ravelry account, so I was able to find out that she knit me Eufaula from the Scarf Style 2 book (Mom's Ravelry link with yarn details here).  The color she picked is one of those that goes with absolutely everything and since it can be doubled or worn long it can be more scarf-ish or super cozy cowl style.  With some low temperatures in the single digits for Atlanta next week I know this one is about to get a lot of use in that cozy cowl option!


Wednesday, December 4, 2013

A Bit Too Bitty Bump


I knit this sweater-vest type thing (the Bitty Bump) for this child before she was born.  Last winter, when it would have fit her properly, we had a crazy warm winter here in Atlanta and never even tried it on her.  The joy of this garment was really in knitting it, and thinking about the little person about to enter the world that would wear it.  This season, in contrast, has already seen several very cold days and my husband stuck it on her for errands yesterday.  I couldn't believe it still fit her in the shoulders, and I think she totally rocked it as a shrug.  The pattern is such a fast knit that I am seriously considering unraveling this one and adding another skein of that delicious Malabrigo Rasta to it to make a bigger one.  Of course as soon as I do that we will start to have a 70 degree winter again.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

KCWC - Hot Pink Bubble Shorts

BubbleShorts2

I managed to eek out another clothing item on the last day of the Kids Clothes Week Challenge!  I've been seeing these Bubble Shorts pop up all over blogland this week and they were just all too cute to resist buying the pattern.  The pattern goes up to a size eight, so I think I will get lots of use out of it for years to come.  So much stuff can be stashed in those big pockets!  I always laugh at the pockets on toddler clothes that wouldn't fit a flea in them, but these are definitely functional pockets.  I used up the last of my Echino hot pink linen for these.  I'm very interested to try making another pair in voile, some of the seams with elastic in them with the linen were a bit hard to sew.  Plus, I think voile will give them a whole different look and will be great for the hot summer that will inevitably show up here in Atlanta.  Now I'm off to go clean the piles of linen fuzz out of my sewing machine before I forget!

BubbleShorts3

Friday, April 26, 2013

KCWC - Paris Shirt


ParisShirt2

I've been playing along with the Kids Clothes Week Challenge this week, challenging myself to sit down and sew for at least an hour a day for a week, and I actually have a finished shirt for the toddler!  Major back patting was going on this morning as I relearned how to make, and then accomplished, four button holes.  I really feel like there should be a certificate for mastering that skill on your sewing machine.  The main fabric has a map of Paris on it.  I actually have bought a few different Paris fabrics for this child because we went there when I was just barely pregnant with her and the two are connected in my mind.  The pattern I have made before (still for sale in her etsy shop), but this time I made the shirt version instead of a dress.  The main thing that KCWC has brought me is a ton of adorable patterns now lined up that I want to make.  So much inspiration in their flickr pool!

ParisShirt

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Knitty Morning Out

After a YEAR of my mom casually reminding me that her knit group meets at Starbucks on Thursday mornings, I actually went!  How is it possible that the last time I dropped in on these ladies I was pregnant?  There must have been a time warp I tell ya.  I did a lot of chatting and checking out what everyone is working on, but I also put the finishing touches on Penelope the monster!  I still have to knit the baby monster, but at least I now have part of the oldest daughter's "Christmas present" to give her.

Untitled

Over coffee and knit chat I was convinced to stop by the re-opening of our nearby knitting shop, Fleece.  They have moved even closer to where I live, which is quite dangerous for my wallet.  Penelope and I headed over there to check out the new location.

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After a Grand Opening mimosa and some yarn petting, I was ready to declare this a successful knitty morning out... why don't I do this more often?

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Monday, February 18, 2013

Gifts for Knitters

I always love it in December when The Yarn Harlot posts her suggestions for holiday gifts for knitters.  I look through all her links and think to myself, "Yep, this knitter would like that.  Yep, you're spot on with that one Yarn Harlot".  Well, I have a birthday coming up, and at our family Spring birthdays celebration this past weekend I was gifted with some exceptionally great knitterly gifts.  I have other knitters in the family, so they are pretty good at gifting things they know I will like, but if you are not a knitter and you are shopping for a knitter I can guarantee you the knitter you are shopping for will like these:

Noni's Lipstick and Change Kit

Ravelry Info

100a

This is a kit that has yarn, the purse frame and directions for an ADORABLE little felted change purse.  Now, the kit alone would make a great gift for a knitter.  However, my very clever and knitterly mother made the purse, bought me a lipstick and made a tiny little change holder to go in it.  She also topped it off with a K charm and change in the change purse, because she is awesome and detailed like that.  I assure you, whether just the kit or the completed kit, this is a gift any knitter would love.

101a

The second gift I received is a standby favorite any time you need a gift for a knitter... a skein of Three Irish Girls yarn.  You can't go wrong here, and one skein is perfect for socks.  Look at this one, or this one, or this beauty!  But if you really want to go above and beyond, then you find a skein of Three Irish Girls yarn with a colorway named after your beloved knitter.  That is what my Aunt did and I haven't stopped beaming and feeling very important since having it gifted to me.  Also I may or may not have slept with it the first night I brought it home.  I'll never tell.  I mean really, look at this gorgeousness!

105a
107a

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

A start...

I'm very good at thinking about what I should start, what I would like to be working on.  I can spend weeks and sometimes months imagining myself knitting or sewing something wonderful.  Too much internet is often the culprit, too much time reading about clever things that other people are up to.  Sometimes too much work.  Occasionally too much wine (I know not to touch knitting needles or most certainly the sewing machine after two glasses).  Often, such as in this case, the problem is that I pre-read the pattern and there is a little something different, something that will take brain cells to figure out, something I'm not used to... this tiny occurrence can lead to some major procrastination.  Well, today I got started.  As usual, it was a piece of cake once I took it one row at a time.  I feel like there is some life lesson in here that I should be learning...




Sunday, February 3, 2013

Happy Birthday Mom, I Love You More Than Malabrigo


This may come as a surprise to some of you, but sometimes I get a little in over my head on the crafty front.  Some may even say I have wild aspirations about things I am going to accomplish that a sane human would never even consider.  This bag falls squarely in that category.  About a month after my most recent child was born, I decided I was going to make my mom this adorable knitted bag.  Just whip it up really.  Because, you know, I didn't have anything else going on.  It started quite well, I got it knit out of luscious Malabrigo and so what if I didn't have it finished by the time her birthday rolled around, I knew just seeing the outside would make my dear mom happy and that she would understand that I still needed to add a quick lining and handles, then give it back.  Well, AN ENTIRE YEAR has gone by since she first laid eyes on her half-finished present. Shameful!  A total knitted gift fail! However, I am happy to report that another birthday did not pass without it being finished.  Tonight at dinner, her birthday dinner to be exact, I was able to present her with a totally cute knitted bag.  Luckily she is one of those moms that knows I love her even without a finished project in hand, but it sure was satisfying to get this one delivered!  Don't worry, there was another gift as well, I didn't try to eek two birthdays out of one gift.  I'm slow, but not a total slacker.  From now on I'm going to be totally silent about knitted gifts until they are in their intended recipient's hands, finished!  Now, to get started on the oldest child's already promised late Christmas present...


Saturday, February 2, 2013

Penelope Joins the Family

It was several months before Christmas when the middle child asked if I would knit her another monster for Christmas.  She was the recipient of Sammy the Sock Monster a couple years ago and she has slept with Sock Monster by her side every night since.  I have to say he has held up quite well!  I of course couldn't refuse a specific knitting request from someone that I knew would really love the knitted item requested, so we pulled up Rebecca Danger's Etsy page and browsed the available patterns.  Penelope was chosen and then Penelope's status was inquired about every. single. day. for months.  She even pulled the Grammy card... "mom, Grammy says if you are going to get Penelope done by Christmas you need to start her now!" (this was around October and Penelope had secretly already been started).  I met her inquiries with feigned indifference until just a couple weeks before the holiday when her comments began to take on a certain frenzied tone, and then I assured her that Penelope was well on her way.


I had started the monster in plenty of time, and really started to relax about a week and a half before Christmas when all the parts were done and only the sewing-up remained.  I still needed to knit an entire monster for her older sister, but that sister was not nearly as obsessed and a week and a half at the end of the year when work would be slow and I was already way ahead on getting Christmas day stuff done seemed totally doable for cranking out a second monster.  So of course, that is when the flu hit.  A week and a half of complete misery.  I did manage to drag my carcass out of bed to see the middle child open Penelope, but she was also my flu buddy and really could only muster so much excitement.  However, this has all been made up for in the month since as Penelope and Sock Monster have become the very best of friends.

The only problem is that the third child seems to think SHE needs a monster too... or she could just have these two she found sitting on the stairs...

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Fall Manic Craftiness Re-cap

I am well aware that this is only my fourth post of the entire year, I have total admiration for any blogger that manages working full time, having a baby and two other children in the house and still finds time to blog!  I know this does happen because I read their blogs, but apparently I am not as great at multi-tasking.  Not blogging doesn't mean I haven't been up to fun stuff though, the Fall season has actually inspired lots of craftiness around here!  Halloween ranks well near the top of the list of favorite holidays at our house, and since I spent last Halloween mostly sitting around on my butt rubbing my enormous belly it was time to kick it into gear this year.

I, like many, have fallen victim to the endless inspiration that is Pinterest.  Also, like many, I often find myself pinning tons of stuff but not actually doing any of it.  I decided Halloween was the perfect time to challenge myself to do at least 5 things that I had pinned to Pinterest.

#1
I always like to make the front steps look festive, so I went on a hunt for some fall wreath ideas for the front door to go along with my usual sprinkling of chrysanthemum pots and waiting-to-be-carved pumpkins.  This wreath caught my eye, and I knew I had PLENTY of fabric to make one.

Source: lilluna.com via Kate on Pinterest

I completed the fabric cutting and tying part in an evening, then the next day decided to add some glittery bats to give it that little something extra.  The Pinterest link for this just takes you to an old Etsy listing, so I used the picture for inspiration and bought a metal wreath base at Michael's and started tying on strips.  I don't know what the original wreath sells for since Etsy doesn't show prices after an item has sold, but the seller's shipping is 12 dollars and I don't think I even spent that much making this (but I did already have all the supplies except the wreath base and black glitter for the bats).  I think it turned out cute and the bats can come off easily so that something Thanksgiving-ish can be added.  Here is my finished version:



#2
I loved this simple looking Halloween garland.

Source: etsy.com via Kate on Pinterest

It looked like theirs was made out of felt, but I knew I already had plenty of fall colored papers, round hole punches, and I found a bat template online.  I went with large bats and then two garlands of different colored orange circles, which I just sewed into a long garland with my sewing machine.  However, I was so excited about the bats that I took pictures of them and forgot about the orange garland.  Oh well, take my word for it, all of them together was perfectly festive.  Here are the bats:



#3 & #4
My neighbor became obsessed with the Halloween trees at Hobby Lobby that they had this year and kidnapped me one day to go buy one with her.  I had to admit it was really cute once she got it up, who knew a black fake tree could be cute?  It needed ornaments though and I told her I would make some.  We always do Halloween together so I had lots of photos from previous years, and this Christmas ornament how-to pin was perfect inspiration for what I wanted to do.



I gathered the lids from some old frozen drink mixes in my freezer and spray painted them black with chalkbaord paint.  Round photos and festive ribbon had these looking adorable!  Here is my Halloween version, I highly recommend this tutorial for Christmas ornaments!


I also was inspired by this pin:

Source: etsy.com via Kate on Pinterest

 to take some old Christmas ball ornaments that I don't use on my tree any more and spray paint them with chalkboard paint as well.  Then I wrote little messages like "Spooky"  and "Boo" with chalk.  These turned out so well that I will definitely be making myself some for next year:



#5
I frequently pin free printables to my holiday boards, there are so many cute ones and I loved these ones to go around candles.  Easiest craft ever and the effect was awesome and enjoyed for several evenings at dinner:



Bonus #6
The middle child wanted to be a dark angel for Halloween and she likes us to make her costumes together.  A dark angel needs a fancy tutu and of course there are plenty of tutorials out there.  This is the one we used, but in black of course, and it was exactly what she wanted.



Here is our version!




Pinterest challenge definitely met!  I still have tons of stuff pinned that I want to do next year.  I really wanted to do this prank to the girls this year, but didn't get around to it, there would be lots of squeals on that one!  Oh well, Halloween comes around every year.  I have pinned a lot of cute Thanksgiving stuff as well but haven't gotten around to doing any of it because I have been too busy planning a certain baby's first birthday party!  Eek, one already!


Monday, April 23, 2012

0413


Finding time for fiber activities is proving to be a bit challenging with a 4 month old, 8 year old and 10 year old.  It is soccer season, piano recital season, 5k training season, and chorus performance season... not to mention regular end of year school activities and working full time and the demands of the 4 month old mentioned above.  Phew, it makes me pooped just typing it all!  However, that doesn't mean that I have completely abandoned my loves of fabric and yarn.  The baby's quilt is sewn into blocks and waiting on my sewing table to be sewn into rows (it is going to be so cute!).  I also recently started and abandoned an Imogen Cowl.  Gosh I love that cowl, but my mind is too mushy and constantly distracted by little people to take on a challenging-for-me lace pattern.  I kept forgetting where I was in the pattern and having knitting panic attacks.  Since knitting is supposed to be a fun and relaxing hobby for me I had to talk myself into trying the Imogen Cowl some other time.  I had been knitting it with the beautiful, soft, irresistible Malabrigo Finito that I picked up as soon as it arrived at my favorite yarn store a few weeks ago.  This yarn is so lovely!  It has now been used to start another Summer Wind Cowl, this time for myself.  I loved the one I made for my mom for Christmas and know that it is a pattern I can accomplish in a reasonable amount of time.  Of course, baby-in-the-house time is a whole different sort of time, so we'll see if I still consider it a reasonable amount of time when I finish it.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

More Ponytail Hats!

pony1.jpg

The other present I actually completed and had under the tree was ponytail hats for the big girls.  Last year I made one for the teenager next door and ever since I have been wanting to make one for every person I see wearing a ponytail.  There was a bit of stress around these, mostly because of my inability to alter a knitting pattern.  I'm a very literal knitter, I want a step by step pattern that holds my hand every minute and spells out exactly what it wants me to execute at all times.  I am always in awe of someone who takes a pattern and modifies it to look completely different from the original and if you throw something at me that wants me to interpret a chart I will probably run away and hide under the bed with my wool stash.  The only thing I ever change in a pattern is to almost always go up a needle size or two because I knit hideously tight.  So, my issue was that the Hannah ponytail hat pattern is an adult size, and I wanted to make it for a ten and almost 8 year old.  These children of mine do have above average sized heads, so at first I convinced myself that if I just used the recommended size yarn and much smaller needles then the hat would turn out perfect.  Well, through some evil yarn black magic this not only resulted in a hat too big for a medium sized child, it was too big for me!  Of course I told myself differently the whole time I knit it and waited until I had finished, cast off and plopped it on my head to admit that yes, it was huge.  So, I turned to my stash of Cascade superwash and decided to try a much smaller weight of yarn along with the smaller needle size (notice that there is no mention of ever actually altering the number of stitches in the pattern, my brain touched on this idea for a moment then yelped and hid).  This seemed to work great and when I finished I had two hats that I was quite sure would fit.  I patted myself on the back and added buttons.  I considered sneaking the hats onto their sleeping heads in the middle of the night to make sure, but my husband's look of disapproval made me realize my size obsession was getting a little out of control.  I gave the hats a quick bath to relax the stitches, because blocking is magical, and then the panic set in.  The Cascade superwash seemed to stretch quite a bit after being wet.  I laid the hats out in their correct shape and put them in front of a space heater and waited for them to fluff up and be perfect.  I called my mom and panicked.  I poked at them probably every hour and was never totally convinced that the hats, which were previously deemed perfect, had not stretched beyond wear-ability.  Eventually I let it go, as you have to do with all handmade gifts under the tree, and told myself if they didn't fit I would just try again after Christmas.  I don't think I could have possibly been more excited on Christmas morning when the girls tore into the wrapping and immediately donned perfectly fitting ponytail hats. Craft stress turned into that glow that comes with a well executed and well received handmade gift (and several Christmas morning mimosas).

pony2.jpg


Maybe next year should be another item where size doesn't matter, and I probably should start working soon since there are now THREE little girls to knit for!