Thinking about Christmas knitting for others is only one-half of the equation. Thinking about what I'd like to put on my own Christmas list this year is the other.
I'd like my stocking to be stuffed with lots of little knitting notions: stitch markers, a knitting magazine or book , small scissors, darning needles, T-Blocking pins, stitch holders and row counters. It seems I can never have enough of these accessories as they get spread out over multiple projects and stored in multiple bags and locations.
Upgrading to this wooden ball winder by Strauch Fiber Equipment is certainly tempting. All reviews claim it works wonderfully and you don't have the issues that come with the plastic winders. Definitely not a cheap gift, but I think I'll ask Santa to watch for a sale.
While I was photographing this little stocking in our park, unbeknown to me a gentlemen was observing me from several yards away. He thought I'd spied a bird so imagine how disconcerted he was when I plucked this thing out of the tree and popped it inside my purse.
I showed him that no, it wasn't a bird, just a small knitted thing. I didn't even try to explain why I was taking pictures of a miniature Christmas stocking on this sweltering hot July afternoon. There are some things best left unsaid.
So, what about you? Have you started your Christmas knitting?
This is a pattern designed for Rowan Denim yarn (which I've been dying to try) so each square is knit 15% longer than it is wide to accommodate the shrinkage that will occur during the first wash. I'll be making some significant adaptations to the blanket since it calls for several beaded square designs and I'm not into beads on blankets at all. I want this blanket to feel soft and comfy like your favorite pair of denim jeans. I may use a little bleach to create some unique designs on those squares instead.
The pattern is based on a series of different textured /beaded squares using various shades of denim yarn. Of all the afghans I've got on the go, these squares are the smallest and therefore knit up quickly. However, the pattern calls for eighty-one of them which is almost four times the number of squares I need to do for the other two afghans-- we'll see how it goes but I might stop at sixty-four squares since that's still a pretty decent sized throw.
I've only got about a half-dozen balls of the denim in my stash at the moment so if anyone hears of a sale on Rowan Denim please let me know !! (Matching dyelots are not a necessity)
This was a very fun baby knit. The original pattern is written for worsted weight yarn but I started with Bernat's Jacquard Floral Baby yarn instead. This yarn was fun to work with because of the way the yarn creates a sort of floral pattern and stripe effect as you knit.
The pattern on the yarn's label is for a little skirt and that or a blanket would likely give you the best effect from the yarn.
I found that I had to do all sorts of finagling once I got to the sleeves because the smaller circumference did not provide enough scope for the pattern to play out as it had on the body. This may not bother some, but it drove me batty.
(the back view)
The rest of the sweater was all about stash busting. I had some green hemp yarn that was the perfect match for the green leaf in the Bernat floral so I double stranded it and used it for the middle band and the 2 leaves.
The bottom half of the sweater and the edgings are knit in Debbie Bliss Cathay Cotton -- again because it was the perfect color match for the pink in the Bernat yarn. I had to go down a needle size and that made the flare a little narrower but I think it still works.
A couple of other adaptations I made were to have just one set of cirlicue ties at the top and then I chose to knit a smaller leaf and placed it at the edge of the band instead of in the middle. I used the Leaf Applique pattern in Knit Edgings & Trims: 150 Stitches (The Harmony Guides)
Finished just in time to take it with me tonight to a Knit night for the 4th Trimester. Of course with my July sweater all done I guess I'll be getting a jump on my August baby sweater -- imagine being a whole month ahead?
With 2 afghans on the go and one more on the way I needed a place to store all my squares flat. The GAAA squares are the largest at 12" x 12" which made the task a little tricky. I don't keep a lot of square boxes laying around in our small space and I definitely didn't have a one with those dimensions.
But then I looked at other organizing products I've used in the past and I found
the perfect solution in this "China plate storage case".
It's 12" x12"
with a zippered lid and soft fabric lined-interior. The squares are
stacking up nicely now.
On Saturday we drove to Ogonquit , ME and as we drove through York my husband (good man that he is) spotted a yarn store. It was hours before opening time at the Yarn Sellar, but he offered to stop and let me have a look on the way home. You know I wouldn't say no to an offer like that.
Carrie has a lovely little shop here and on this particular day there was a sprinkling of wool-free yarns throughout the store. She also had an excellent supply of wool-free Berroco yarns and the "Love it Colors" were on sale for 40% off. I was able to pick up a couple of balls for my Lizard Ridge Afghan (can't beat a sale like that).
If you live or vacation in the area you might want to try out her fiber tasting later this month.
I love finding new yarn stores to explore, don't you?
I've been wanting to try Bernat's Baby Jacquard Floral yarn ever since I first saw it. Then I came across the Flowertot Cardigan and I thought it would be a really cute match. I'm using the Jacquard for the top and I'm planning to use a solid color for the band and the bottom half.
This yarn is much finer than the worsted weight the pattern called for, so I'm knitting the largest size knowing it will come out smaller. I think I'll have a 6-9 month sized sweater when done.
So far, this has been an easy knit and I've had fun watching the patterning of the yarn come together.
Don't ya just LOVE knitting baby stuff? It's so darn cute!