Mittens!

Not a mitten dayThe weekends should not be for catching up, but this weekend that is what I will be doing.  After a wind / rain storm on Wednesday night, we lost power and did not get it back until late Friday afternoon! UGH.  It was such a ridiculous thing too, not a huge storm, but it did knock a huge tree onto power lines around the corner from me.  I had finished my NaKnitMittMo mittens for January on Thursday morning while waiting to see if the Lorax would have school (she didn’t) and if the power would come back on (it didn’t).  Oh yes, and it was 50 degrees! January, you’re so crazy!
Finished Mittens!This is leftover Lorna’s Laces yarn from one of my first sample knitting jobs. The yarn cake was more than my little scale could handle, so I know I started with at least 100g (probably more). I have 46 g left! The pattern is Thames Street Mittens and I love how they turned out! I am really pleased that I was able to finish them in January, currently they are in the running for the Viewer’s Choice part of the KAL – if they caught your eye, would you click my love button? Check out all the other gorgeous mittens people have made! My queue is growing, again! I have started on a pair of fingerless mitts for February already and I hope to continue with the same momentum.

Mitten Picture PhotobombedWhile I was trying to take photos of my mittens (which is not easy), the temptation of the viewscreen was too much for one little person and I was photobombed!!

Have a great weekend!

Yarn Along – Jan. 30

Yarn Along Jan 30
Someone turns into a little ham when the camera comes out.  He knows to say “Cheese” and look at that casual way of posing. Like he doesn’t really care if he’s in the shot or not.  Silly boy.  Anyway, I’ve had a fairly productive week. I am just about at the end of Season to Taste – I have really enjoyed reading this and I have been trying to pay more attention to my sense of smell as I go about the day.  My mittens are so close to being done! I have one more thumb to go. Figures that they are ready when we are having a bizarre January thaw – it is in the 50s today! Like most places I have been like the saying goes, I’ll just wait five minutes and the weather is sure to change.

Good Karma Farm Sample
I also finished this sample knit.  This v-neck pullover is for Good Karma Farm, knit in their Texas Green colorway, which really is a most perfect hunter green. I love this yarn – good thing, because when you knit an XL size in that much stockinette you had better love it! This is more than just a sample sweater though – it is a gift for one of the owners! After I knit the Charleston Tea sweater for Amy she asked me to knit a sweater for her husband!

It feels good to be getting things done! Of course I still have plenty of WIPs that are giving me the eye and projects I really want to work on, along with the next sample knit that needs swatching.  I also need to decide on the next book to read! What are you getting done this week?

Yarn Along – January 23


~ Two of my favorite things are knitting and reading, and the evidence of this often shows up in my photographs.  I love seeing what other people are knitting and reading as well. So, what are you knitting or crocheting right now? What are you reading? Take a photo and share it either on your blog or on Flickr. Leave a link below to share your photo with the rest of us! ~ small things

Yarn along Jan 22      My goodness it has been a while.  At this moment, we are all more healthy than not – in the last few weeks we’ve all had some sort of cold (maybe a mild touch of flu?) and have passed about a stomach bug. I am pretty sure somehow I pulled a rib muscle, so I’m achy still, but I’ll take it – we’re all eating and fussiness is at a minimum. I’ve been knitting away on the sleeves of this sample sweater and I’m in the home stretch now – it needs to be done and in Monday’s mail (if not sooner!).  I feel good about it and it really has been a joy to knit even with all that stockinette! I finished the body of one mitten and am antsy to start the second, but the sweater has to take priority. We are in the midst of a rather wicked cold snap – I could use those mittens! I’m dreaming of a new hat for me, but I was pleased this morning that I was able to pull out a wool sweater, pair of socks, pair of mitts and my Calorimetry to bundle up this morning!

I finished up Pippi Longstocking and have moved on to Season to Taste, which is about a gal who lost her sense of smell after a massive trauma accident. Interesting to read while you are stuffed up with a cold / sinus issues and not really interested in eating! So far I am enjoying it. I’m looking forward to reading how she deals with the loss of that particular sense – smells are so intriguing! I find it fascinating how tied to memory they are as well.  Back when I was a chemistry grad student, I was TA-ing in a lab and there was a bottle of ammonia in a fume hood. The bottle was not capped properly, and even though it was under a running fume hood, I got hit with the vapors up my nose so much it was almost blinding and made my eyes water. I can tell that my own sense of smell has changed but one day I was unpacking items that belonged in my grandmother’s house and WHAM! The scent on those items (not a bad scent in any way) took me right back to her house!

What’s your favorite smell? I love the smell of ground beef browning on the stove-top, with a little bit of garlic and onion! Bacon, too. The Lorax told me she loved the way the bathroom smelled after I cleaned it with some bleach containing cleaners (following our stomach bug incident) – I think (hope!) it was just because it was a novelty to her. Generally I avoid all those chemical cleaners and stick with vinegar the chemical cleaners give me a headache now!

Yarn Along – January 9

~ Two of my favorite things are knitting and reading, and the evidence of this often shows up in my photographs.  I love seeing what other people are knitting and reading as well. So, what are you knitting or crocheting right now? What are you reading? Take a photo and share it either on your blog or on Flickr. Leave a link below to share your photo with the rest of us! ~ yarn along

Yarn Along Jan 9
This week I have been reading Pippi Longstocking. For whatever reason, I could not stop thinking about this book, so I borrowed it from the library.  I couldn’t remember if I had read it as a kid, but now that I am halfway through I think I did; so much of it is familiar and enjoyable. This was a good way to get back into the reading groove! I’ve been working on several things.  The Snuggly Monster buddy is ready for eyes, ears & limbs.  The belly is done in yellow and the eyepatch is on the needles. I think the ears / limbs will be solid teal and solid lime green.  I hope to get this done in the next day or two so that it can be given to a brand new baby! On the right is a sample sweater. The same sweater on which I already broke two needles! Knock wood, so far so good and my new needle set arrived today.  In the middle is my current “ooh shiny!” project.  I found the NaKnitMittMo group on Ravelry and immediately had to start a pair of mittens for me.  That didn’t take long at all! I pulled out my Cast On, Cast Off book to try the “Provisional Tubular Cast On” for a stretchy cuff. It was a bit fiddly, but not terrible once I got going!

Christmas Knits

I have to say, I am quite pleased with myself and the gifts I knit for Christmas. There was no frantic weaving in of ends, and for the most part everything work as I intended it to. I found these great handmade gift labels to attach to each gift and include some care instructions on the backside. Each was received in the proper way, so I know I made good choices in knitting for the right people!

I made my first pair of thrummed mittens for my cousin. I found a kit at Rhinebeck this year that came with the yarn and fiber all together – I even went back to the Good Karma Farm booth to purchase a second kit and I do plan on making myself something thrummed because whoo-boy, they are warm and cozy!
Fleece Stuffed Mittens
I had to wing it a bit on the size, as my cousin told me she had small hands – but upon receipt she said they fit and really liked them, so that’s a win!

I am so proud of crocheting my first wearable, the Cardiff Cowl, in Malabrigo Silky for my Godmother.
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This was lovely right off the hook, and after a quick blocking it opened up even more. Win!

I also knit a cowl, Ptarmigan, a BrooklynTweed-Jared Flood design, for my sister-in-law.
Ptarmigan Cowl
The yarn is Delly’s Delight – “Oh So Soft” 100% alpaca – that we actually both bought our first time at Rhinebeck together back in 2009. I have plenty left over and am seriously considering making this again, for myself. I really enjoyed knitting this and it was hard to wrap it up and give it away.

Keeping with my own tradition, I knit another Koolhaas this season. This one is for my Dad.
2011 Koolhaas
I obviously had some trouble getting a good picture of this one – the yarn is Cascade 220 superwash in a really nice chocolate brown.

I was going to make a Koolhaas for my brother as well, but after talking with his wife she told me he would be happier with a plain plain plain hat. After some back and forth for ideas she suggested the Regular Guy Beanie
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I chose a slightly nicer yarn, Mountain Mohair from Green Mountain Spinnery, and enjoy the boringness of this hat pattern. My brother really liked it, so that’s all that matters. Especially if it means he will wear it.

Now I am feeling the itch to cast on *ALL THE THINGS*! I do have a sample knit that I am working on and is my current #1 priority, but I’ve got a mental list going – earflap hat for me, earflap hat for Lorelai, new socks for Dan, next hat for Nate, hexipuffs (which I’m thinking I may switch gears and go hexi-flat and not stuff them). I was generously gifted several knitting books and a set of blocking wires so that only fuels the fire to knit more and knit faster!

Mittens

I can’t remember if I already shared this here or not (and obviously, I’m too lazy to go check). With all the snow we’ve had, the Lorax has gotten a lot of wear out of her purple mittens. I noticed that they were getting a little too small for her and mentioned that I would make her a new pair. Her response, “Princess Mittens?!” My response, “Um, does that mean pink?”. I was quite excited to see the Heart Strings Mittens pattern was shared by Vivere Nel Colore (check out her blog – great designs and a little cutie too!). As soon as they were knit, they were snatched off the table, so I consider this a success.
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The yarn is Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sock in the Neon colorway, leftovers from a pair of socks. Bright pink, orange and yellow – acceptable princess colors I think.

This pattern is well written, quick to knit and there is the possibility for so much customization. My back up plan was to find a princess charm or iron-on-patch of some sort if the Lorax truly had her heart set on princess-mittens (whatever that means to her). Lucky for me, she was excited about these and though we did buy some pink glitter buttons, she chose the star buttons to go on them.
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After our photo shoot she told me, “Now I need blue ones for Cinderella, and yellow ones for Belle, and purple for Rapunzel, and green for Tinkerbell…” Sure kid.
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A rather blurry shot of the Lorax with her princess mittens and her princess valentine balloon bought by daddy.

Unseasonable – part 2

Going with my own trend of knitting out of season, I’ve finished a pair of Bella’s Mittens. As before, these are samples for FiberTrades.com
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These are knit in Brown Sheep Lamb’s Pride Bulky – they are a relatively quick knit. Ravelry details are here. And warm! I wish I had a pair of these back when I was college and graduate school. My time spent in Providence and Syracuse involved a lot of walking and those places do get winter! The blend of wool and mohair results in a little bit of fuzz factor.
Fuzz Factor

It is not the easiest trick to photograph yourself while wearing mittens. The Lorax is still too small to have her take the photo and she did not want to wear the mittens either. She was interested in seeing herself when I flipped the display around, set the self-timer and had the camera on the stairs…
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And then she wanted to do more.
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FYI, a samurai sword makes a great mitten display:
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