FO Friday – Mitts & a Monster

Nathair Mitts

I am in love with these mitts! This was my first Malabrigo March project, the Nathair Mitts, in Malabrigo Rios, the Solis colorway.  The cable was fun to work and though it did require my attention, I was able to work on these while watching TV and at knitting night without any mistakes! The yarn is butter soft and squishy and I will be on the hunt for more.  I only used 40grams to make the pair, so I have a decent amount leftover. Maybe I’ll make a cowl and finally have a matching set of accessories!

Mixtro Monsterphoto.JPG

This is overdue. This is a Mixtro monster (yes, another FreshStitches design!) that I made with stash-busting acrylic for the 600 Monsters group.  I finally got the right size eyes and stitched him up, and have sent him on his way. He probably won’t end up with the original 600 in Newtown, but that’s ok – the group promised to find homes for the additional monsters with kids have been through a tragedy or trauma and need a helpful monster to hug. 

Here’s to a great weekend – it’s been a bit of “one of those” weeks!

WIP Wednesday

I have had a lengthy love affair with Malabrigo. I think it was one of the first “nice” yarns I bought myself in my early knitting days. Over the years I have stashed it, admired it, coveted it, and yes, knit with it. Lately though I have just let it simmer in my stash. I decided to join in a few Malabrigo March KALs and doing so has truly rekindled my affection for this yarn. Here I am using Malabrigo Rios to make a pair of Nathair Mitts in the Solis colorway. These are for me and I can’t wait to finish them. The first mitt is done and ready for a thumb! This week I have finished a cowl that I hope to share with you tomorrow, and two items for swaps have gone out in the mail, so I’ll share those on Friday.  Mentally I’m queuing myself up for a few more KALs which I hope is not jinxing it for me. I am hoping to follow through and participate in the March sock knitter’s anonymous challenge by making Carousel socks, the Flame KAL in the Crafty Diversions group, and the Morning Coffee KAL starts next week. I have swatched for that one and am itching to get started! How about you?

JuneBlueBerry Triangle – finished!!

I am so excited that I have finished this particular project – makes me wish it was colder so I could put it to use! Presenting, Juneberry Triangle by Jared Flood, knit in less than 3 skeins of Malabrigo Worsted in the Periwinkle colorway.
JuneBlueBerry Triangle
I still hate bobbles, but I am glad I included a few of them. Certainly this would look nice with a little bit of sparkle / beads in place of the bobbles.
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When I showed it to Dan, his first response was “That has a lot of holes. Is it really going to be warm?” I told him he’d be surprised – and will be jealous of me come winter!

Two done!

Last week I professed my love of Malabrigo. The picture I had included:
Silky Malabrigo in progress
grew up into this:
Shawl
Pattern: Chandra by Caryl Pierre
Yarn: Malabrigo Silky, “Cloudy Sky” – 2.7 skeins used to make the Large size.
I LOVE this shawl! When the knitting was done I immediately wrapped myself up under it and was smitten. Lightweight and warm. Almost makes me glad that there is a chill in the spring air so that I have a reason to wear this.

I stumbled across this little sun hat pattern last week too. A little stash diving led me to some Blue Sky Alpaca Dyed Cotton (bought when I was pregnant with the Lorax, originally intended to become a hat for her). I really am pleased with the end result – it worked up quick, is really soft and should be quite cute for a summer baby of unknown gender. Picture a cute baby under the hat instead of an antsy dachshund only giving me blurry photos.
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Baby Bucket Hat
Maybe Jackson needs a refresher in how to be a hat model.

Thankful for Knitting

It’s bee a wild ride these last few weeks. A whirlwind of good and not so good and really really really frustrating. Through it all, there is knitting. Thank goodness. And while I consider myself to be a fairly equal opportunity knitter, I am even more thankful when I get to do some selfish knitting in one of my favorite yarns, Malabrigo. On one of the swap threads on Ravelry I spotted this gorgeous item by another knitter and playfully asked if she needed it test knit. She said yes so I jumped at the chance to work up Anansi by Caryl. I must itching for spring because her version in yellow Malabrigo made me powerless to look away. So sunny (and her photos are awesome!)! I dug into my stash and pulled out my skein + cake (this is important) of Malabrigo Worsted in the Marine colorway.
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This was such a great knit – the rows, though ever increasing in stitch count, never dragged on and I was able to work on it at SnB and still participate in the conversations.
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Malabrigo makes great pompoms! I used my largest pompom maker and these are just fabulous. I want to wear this all the time!
Anansi
So, I said earlier that it was important that I had one skein plus one cake? Yeah, I have learned my lesson the hard way about using caked yarns from my stash. WEIGH THEM FIRST. I think I had used some of the yarn for a swatch or something and didn’t keep it, because, I ran out of yarn! Ugh. Knitter’s nightmare. I undid my gauge swatch, I spit spliced as many lengths as I could, and I only did 11 repeats. I ran out halfway through the bind off. This is totally my own fault for making an assumption, no fault of the pattern! I found some Berroco yarn that came close enough in color to use that to finish the bind off, and I’m living with it.

This project has rejuvenated my Malabrigo mojo – and what timing as it is Malabrigo March! I am planning on another project by Caryl – Chandra in Malabrigo Silky Merino, “Cloudy Sky” (and all 3 skeins are waiting to be cakes.)

Girly

The weather is heating up around here and yesterday, the Lorax told me she wanted to wear flip-flops. This was a huge surprise to me – usually we have a melt down in any shoe store and she hates to try things on. I’m the mom who bought the exact same sneakers in 3 different sizes. Ugh. I have been avoiding getting the next pair of summer shoes, but thought maybe I could get lucky now, since it was her idea.

So we went out to the store with her talking the whole way there about “red flip flops”.

I’m pleased to say that this was the best trip to a shoe store ever. She tried on shoes. She looked at shoes, she picked some out, she didn’t fuss. And what did her little heart desire?
First Flip Flops
Heaven help me – she picked out and tried on and loved – light up princess flip flops. She can’t walk well in them, it’s like watching me try to walk in high heels – all stiff legs, but she loves them. And, yeah, they are cute. Sigh. We did also pick up some new summer sneakers, so yay on that!
Test Knit Sock
First Flip Flops
Look at that smug face. She totally knows she won.

The girl knows what she likes. And that includes when she’s ready for a photo or not. I finished up the test sock for J.L. Yarnworks – it really is a sock!
Test Knit Sock
Cuff up.

Test Knit Sock
Cuff Down. It’s a little ruffled-anklet sock – too cute!

I made the toddler / child size, so it’s a bit big for the Lorax – but she wouldn’t help me and try it on. Oh well.
Test Knit Sock
I do plan to make the mate – like most little knits, this sock went quickly!

Trust me, it’s a sock.

This weekend was spent celebrating a “Housewarmthday” party for my brother & sister-in-law – they have a new house and big birthdays – and hosted a fantastic party. I was gifted a rare treat of time to myself – the Lorax stayed behind for quality time with Dad – and I got to relax, eat, drink and be merry without chasing down a toddler. The weather outside was gorgeous! I brought my knitting along and was able to get in some knitting – I think I gave several comedians there some new material by my knitting in public, but whatever. It’s what I enjoy and luckily for me my brother and sister-in-law have no problem with me whipping out the needles in their backyard.

I am currently test knitting a sock for JL Yarnworks
Test Knit
Looking at it this way makes me think it’s a doll or something – I promise, in the next day or so, you’ll see it in it’s sock-y cuteness. I’m working up the toddler size and it is going to be really cute.

I did get gauge (10 stitches / inch on US0!) and I’m using Malabrigo Sock Yarn in the colorway “cote d’azure” – it’s a great dark ink blue. I have fingers crossed that I can get the Lorax to wear the sock with a really cute navy / white dress she has yet to wear. Anyway, love the color, but I do need to be sure that I have really good light to see those stitches!

Pretty Stitches
There is half of the heel flap – I don’t know if it has a particular name, but it involves a four row repeat and I love the texture it creates in the fabric.

I also brought another project to work on at the party, being prepared for assorted levels of light, conversation, alcohol intake (no toddler for me to watch over!) but wouldn’t you know it? I only worked on the sock – the other project (red yarn, DK weight, on US7 needles) I messed up on multiple times – the stitch count, the increases, the cast on. I actually took scissors to it and had a do-over. On the whole, not bad for knitting in public.

I love Mail.

I have had several good mail days in a row – and that’s probably it for a while. I feel like the delivery truck idles at the mailbox just long enough to make me believe that they must be shoving a fantastic package into the mailbox (regardless of whether or not I am expecting anything).

My new planner arrived:
Rhodia
I swear, working in a stationery store spoiled me on paper goods forever. I am very particular about the quality of my paper. I have a few notepads from Rhodia and they are fantastic – smooth paper for pens or pencils. I was quite excited to see the 2010 planner – it lays flat even without a spiral! It’s got the days of the week on one page and a graph paper grid on the opposite side. Love love love. Even though I don’t have a whole lot of planning going on – it’s small stuff like “SnB” and “Donate Blood” and “Breakfast with family” etc.

I traded some yarn for some stitch markers (Acid pH stitch markers – those are little water molecules!):
Acid pH stitch markers
Clarissa sent me a message on Rav asking if I would consider a swap of my yarn for her stitch markers – I was so excited, as I have admired her stitch marker work for a while 🙂

I treated myself to a spot in the Odd-ish Creations “Non Club” group, look at these goodies!
"Non Club" Goodies
There is a pattern for Migration socks, House Hippo, 2 skeins of yarn from Oddish Creations – the blue one (really a blue-green-teal) is Painted Toes Lightweight Merino / Nylon “Stormy Days”, and the purpley one is “Red Cabbage Salad” – Lester Toes, a sw BFL / nylon blend (both are gorgeous!). And there is a bag from Sunshinewalks and a little dachshund stamp and a lobster stitch marker from Yarndemon – so cute!
"Non-Club" goodies
This “non-club” reminded me of some of the WoolGirl kits – you get a lot of bang for your buck, and Kata tailored the package to the buyer, based on a survey she had us complete. Love love love.

I also did another trade, yarn for yarn and received this lovely skein of Malabrigo Sock, color cote d’azures:
Malabrigo Sock

And then, the Intention Yarns club shipment arrived – it’s an assortment. Mini skeins are so flipping cute!
Multiple Intentions
It’s pretty. Beachy.

I think that covers the mail. What else can I share? I made another round on the granny square:
Granny Square
I don’t know if I should stop or keep going. I’ve done this one, but feel like an expert now 🙂

I’ve got a dead Monkey
RIP Monkey socks
Gah. Hole in the toe. Don’t feel like darning it – wondering about reclaiming the yarn (like Ina did. Same yarn too, spooky!)

I’ve got half a crocheted headband to finish, 3 blanket squares are done but I want to block them some before showcasing them, one project that is hush hush, and several others to wake from hibernation. Next post I hope!

Scowls, Cowls, and Sniffs

Like most people, my little nutshell is experiencing a bit of frenzy as the Christmas season is in full swing. The knitting is progressing nicely for the most part – I’m taking a few days off from a current sample / test knit because a deadline was lifted (thank goodness) and other projects took priority for a bit.

Like this:
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Scowl by Samantha Roshak. Second time I’ve test knit for Sam – this was a great use of my sock yarn (Connecticut colorway, j.knits yarn) – I used up 80% of the skein I think, and I became really good at Judy’s Magic Cast On (if you haven’t tried it, it’s really neat, and not hard once you get the hang of it). This really is a great pattern – a bit different than most scarves / cowls I’ve knit. I liked the construction, in the end it’s reversible and is great for guys or gals, wrapped around your neck and secured or just tucked into a coat, warm but not too warm, superwashable. In the end, I have sent on this scowl to Alabama to my downstream pal in a “Plurk Cowl Swap”!

I received a cowl from my upstream pal in yesterday’s mail:
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Lisa made this for me – the pattern is Tuesday Evening with Rowan Felted Tweed – it’s lovely!

Then there’s this:
TotTopper Sample Hat
Little Miss Muffet hat – I’ve signed on to be part of the sample / testing pool for Tot Toppers – this little hat is made with Frog Tree Alpaca Sport, in a periwinkle blue with a chocolate brown ribbon. Who can resist that? As a fellow knitter would say, Stinkin’ Cute! The whole line is adorable – I would suggest the Tot Toppers line to any knitter looking for a new hat – the patterns are well written and the end result is so nice! Ignore the fact that I’m modeling a baby hat on top of wine bottles. This is the 3-6 month size and Lorelai’s head is way too big now.

And this:
Baby pants
Malabrigo Twisty Trousers – knit on commission 🙂 I’m currently working on a hat to complete the set, should be done in the next day or so. The Mom is ready to pop and is in mad nesting mose (her words, not mine) so I am very happy that this is done before her baby arrives – this was so much fun to knit. Plus, Malabrigo. ’nuff said.

Perfect gift for a two year old? PlayDoh. I had been wondering about this for Lorelai for ages now and for her birthday she received multiple PlayDoh packs and two different accessory sets – a barnyard pals and a burger maker. I had found several “homemade” play dough recipes I kept meaning to try, but we just didn’t get around to it. Well, no need now! We had a snowy-slushy-cold-crappy day this week and we pulled it out and she had at it. And has asked to play with it multiple times a day. And she will play with it for 20 minutes or more at a time! Excellent. Of course, it’s on her terms – we do a little bit with the molds but she has more fun squooshing the playdoh in to one part and moving it back into the yellow container with a chopstick. Whatever, it’s all good for her development. And good for my cleaning knitting time.
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Thank you Uncle Dan, Aunt Virginia, and Uncle Matt! And her buddy, A, who also got her a playdoh set!

Batwoman Here.

I almost can’t believe I did it! My Batshawl designed by Emilee! One skein of Malabrigo Lace – and I have leftovers!
Wa na na na na na na na – Bat Shawl!
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I’ve yet to remove all the pins to actually try it on, so certainly there will be more photos. Now that I see it pinned out, I think perhaps I should have done one more row of bats – that would have made it just a bit bigger / longer. Luckily, I think the forecast for saturday (when I plan to wear it at the outdoor wedding reception) is 60-ish, so I should be good. Or I could layer it with the satin-y wrap that came with the dress, it’s purple, it could work. I’m so proud of this – I finished a project! Almost makes up for the bag of in-progress projects that I found in the yarn room, but that’s a whole other post.

All I can think of when I look at the shawl / think about the shawl isn’t the original Batman theme, instead it’s a clip from “The Wild World of Batwoman” that was on Mytsery Science Theater 3000 – at one point, Batwoman answers the phone, “Batwoman here” – one of the most ridiculous scenes ever, in a very ridiculous movie. Guess which one is her.

Batwoman out.
🙂