Tuesday, October 30, 2012

On The Needles - Julian's Milo (Part2)

If it weren't for these weekly "On The Needles" posts, I don't think I would be posting at all.  Thank you Nicole and Ginny for your weekly Yarn Alongs : )

I am 90% finished with this little Milo vest.  I love the way it turned out.  Lucky for me, the recipient's birthday party was postponed to this week.  So, I had a little more time to finish his gift.  I think I will do a single crochet edge around the armholes to stabilize them.  The yarn is my Luna Grey Superwash Merino DK in the colorway, Abyss.  Have I mentioned how nice this yarn is?  It's not splitty at all and has a really great sproinginess (yes, I do believe that is a word).  I will try to get a photo of adorable Julian in his vest and share it with you after the party.

Happy Halloween, everyone!     

Saturday, October 27, 2012

On The Needles - Julian's Milo

A dear friend turned three yesterday (Happy Birthday, Julian!).  Of course a hand knit birthday gift was in order.  As he's a very busy farm boy, a Milo vest seemed perfect!  This is my first Milo, although it's been in my queue to knit for some time.  I dyed up some super cool, deep gray-blue superwash merino DK for the project.  The color is just right and will be great at hiding farm crud.

The color is more accurate in the second photo.  

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

On The Needles - An Unoriginal Hat

In the spirit of Nicole's KKCO (Keep Calm Craft On) blog series, I am sharing what's currently on my needles.

I am the first to admit that I suffer from Knitting A.D.D.  I get all fired up about starting new projects.  Yet sometimes struggle to finish others.  What's up with that?  Why is it more fun to cast on for a new project than it is to finish up an old one?

In any case...Despite having not yet finished my Give A Hoot mittens, I have started Stephanie Pearl-McPhee's ever popular Unoriginal Hat.  I couldn't resist this amazing colorway of Malabrigo Rasta.  It screams autumn, doesn't it?  There's something about Malabrigo...It's just so comforting to knit.  It has to be the softest merino in the world!

Thought I'd share a few pics I took this morning in our yard.  
Nothing's more beautiful than fall in Colorado!

Friday, October 12, 2012

Little Lamby Knits Giveaway

Pop on over to Nicole's blog, Frontier Dreams, for a great pattern giveaway.  The drawing will be held on Tuesday, October 16th.  Good luck!

Oh, and for those that haven't seen...I am doing a fun discount in my shop for October.
Receive 20% off your entire order when one or more skeins is orange (or partially orange).  Use coupon code: Halloween20

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Sprial Blanket of Awesome

I finished the Spiral Blanket of Awesome.  

I must say, I really love it!  

The yarn is really soft and the colors work so well together. 

My Ravelry notes are rather extensive.  
(I used lots of little tricks/tips on this blanket that I think would be helpful to others.)     

Sorry for the not so great photos.  
Why is it that whenever I have the time/patience/child cooperation, 
the lighting is never quite right?  

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Another boy? Oh boy!

We recently found out that my brother and his wife are expecting their third boy this winter.  That makes 5 grandson's for my parents (and 0 granddaughters).  Let's just say that when we all get together there will be lots of noise and lots of activity!

My sister-in-law is a knitter.  She could probably knit just about anything for her new baby that I might knit for her as a gift. Which means that I really had to get creative on this one.  The tricky thing was that I wanted to start the gift before I knew that the baby was a boy.  I got a little hint that the baby's room colors would be pink and brown if it were a girl or aqua and brown if it was a boy.  So, I figured I would just start knitting something brown and add the gender specific color at the end.

I kettle dyed some really soft 50% alpaca / 50% wool worsted weight yarn (watch for it in the shop soon) in a soft, muted brown.  I must have overdyed that yarn 4 times to get the exact shade that I wanted.  Brown is trickier than you might think.  Who knew?  I didn't worry about using superwash wool, as I am confident that my sister-in-law knows how to properly care for handknits.

I wanted to knit the baby a blanket.  Believe it or not, I have never knit a baby blanket.  I guess I just figured it would be totally boring and cost an arm and a leg to knit.  The nice thing about a blanket, however, is that the baby can use it from the time it's a newborn all the way through it's childhood.  A sweater or hat has a very limited lifespan for a baby, you know?  They grow so fast!  

Finding the perfect pattern took me weeks.  I figured a blanket pattern that was knit from the center out would be great, as I could just add a colored border at the end.  And, I wanted the blanket to be really special as I envisioned it becoming a family heirloom (I can dream, right?).  My first thought was to knit the gorgeous, lace blanket, Undercover by Beata Jezek.  For whatever reason, however, I had a lot of trouble with the pattern.  After frogging it for the third time, I decided to try something a little less "involved".  (Someday, when my kids are older, I will be able to sit and knit a lace blanket with no mistakes.  Until then, I am better off sticking to patterns with less counting!)  Then, I came across Sharon McMahon's The Spiral Blanket of Awesome {Design Your Own}.  It was perfect.  I was a little worried that my yarn would be to plain for such a simple pattern.  But, the kettle dyed brown had just enough variation to make it work.  When I received the news that the baby was indeed a boy, I dyed up some aqua yarn for the border.  The pattern calls for either a ruffle (for a girl) or garter stitch (for a boy).  I wanted something a little flashier, however, as the yarn was pretty mellow.  I decided on a horseshoe lace like this.  It's pretty without being too feminine.  Just right.

The funny thing about this pattern is that because it's knit in the round, it looks a bit like a giant hat as it's being knit.  I can't tell you how many people looked at it quizzically then asked, "Is that a.....um...hat?"  Like they were thinking something went terribly wrong and I had no idea how to knit.  Funny.  I can't wait to finish it up and "open" it....like a flower blossoming!  So cool.

My Ravelry notes can be found here.

Can't wait to see that sweet boy wrapped up in his fuzzy alpaca blanket!