Saturday, December 31, 2011

Well received gifts and a secretive swap

My Aunt Mary Ann and cousin Tori absolutely loved their gifts last week!  Tori put on her scarf and didn't take it off all Christmas day.  I was so happy to have my hand-knit items be so well received!

Speaking of gifts, my friend Jackie and I are doing our present exchange at the end of January.  We both had a lot of Christmas knitting to do so decided to postpone until a later date so we could relax a little bit. I decided on the pattern I am knitting for her last night, and am now looking for the perfect yarn.  Because it is a gift, and I know she looks at my blog, posts will be secretive again.  
However, I was wondering - who are your favorite independent yarn dyers? I am looking for a unique bulky/chunky weight yarn and would love for some recommendations for a dyer. 

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas!!

Santa has treated me well so far with a super cute project bag from Slipped Stitch Studio with squirrels and a buried treasure map of hidden nuts on it (Nate jokes that I'm the spastic squirrel from Over the Hedge...and my mom agrees) and Addi Clicks.  Santa, and by this I mean Mom and Dad, is awesome.

I hope everyone who celebrates Christmas has a magical day.

I am now off to spend the rest of the day at my aunt's and then going to see a movie with my mom tonight.

Friday, December 23, 2011

{FO} Helm

*Sigh* I had a nice, long post written.  And then I accidentally deleted it, and before I could say "un-do" blogger auto-saved.  Curse you, Auto-Save.  Grr.

Helm was such a fun knit...and has been by far probably one of the most challenging knits I have done.  Rachel was so happy to receive it and she was so impressed with how much I have learned in less than one year.  I'm impressed too. Both with the amount I've learned...and the fact I was able to part with this hat! 

Nate's family came over on Sunday, and we had a mini Christmas.  Janet and Sarah loved their gifts as well. Totally one of the best feelings in the world! I can't wait to see my aunt and cousin for Christmas and give them their presents.  Hopefully I will have my mom's hat done....and it will fit.  I think it might be too small. Which means my small noggin' might have a new hat, but I was really hoping to give it to the madre.  We will see.

Here are some more detailed views of the gloriousness that is Helm:  

Thank you Stephen West for designing this beauty!

Little Red Helm Pattern Notes:
Pattern: Helm by Stephen West
Yarn: String Theory Merino DK in Garnet
Needles: US 5 and US 6

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

{WIP} From 16" to 40"

Helm is coming along nicely.  I am almost done, and should hopefully be done by the weekend. This has been a great, challenging knit.  This is my first pattern by Stephen West, and I'm impressed - the pattern is very straightforward and very easy to follow, and the design is lovely!
 I finished the main body Monday night, and switched the 16" circular needle for the 40" circular on Tuesday.  That was a fun process...lots of needles, including a cable needle hiding behind my ear.  Sorry for the bad picture - only artificial light in my office. 

I am starting to think ahead to my next project which I think will be another hat with bulky yarn and big needles. I have one week to knit a hat for is hoping I can do it! Does anyone have any patterns for bulky hats they particularly like?

Monday, December 12, 2011

Bunny Nuggetin' Around the Christmas Tree

I received my package from my swap partner today, and I love my mini bunny nugget ornament! 

 I also received a pair of socks, earrings, a cinnamon scented pencil and some fuzzy wuzzy Christmas yarn. 

Friday, December 9, 2011

{FO} Peppermint Ivy

My swap partner received her package in the mail, so I can finally show you the completed project! I participated in the Mini/Ornament Swap in the Danger Crafts group on Ravelry. I had watched a few swaps over the past few months and really wanted to try one - so when this one came up I thought it would be perfect! I would get to knit my first monster AND it would be a Christmas present.
 Meet Peppermint Ivy :)  I used the Holly, Ivy, and Steve: The Christmas Hooligans pattern by Rebecca Danger.  Obviously, I didn't make all three of them, but I picked Ivy because I thought she would be the most fun. I improvised a little bit - instead of the hat being a solid color, I used some of the sparkly glimmer yarn to make a band.  And instead of tassels I used the sparkly mini pom-poms. I also did not have a mini pom pom maker, so I used cheater poms from Michaels.

With the swap you have a questionaire, so I based my package on the fact that my spoilee said they liked peppermint - not mint, peppermint.  So, I made Ivy up in minty colors, and the rest of the package played with that theme. The swap has a $10 limit for goodies, so I gave my spoilee a pair of peppermint socks, peppermint scented hand sanitizer, Peppermint Bark, and (not pictured) Christmas stitch markers.  

I can't wait to receive my package from my partner! I won't lie....I'm stoked.  I keep stalking the mail man.  

Peppermint Ivy Project Details:
Pattern: Holly, Ivy and Steve: Three Christmas Hooligans by Rebecca Danger
Yarn: Knit Picks Palette and Knit Picks Stroll Glimmer
Needles: US 1

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

{WIP} Helm

Hello friends! Going back to work has massively cut into my knitting time...not cool, not cool at all.  But, I'm pleased to present you all with a new WIP! 

I just started on Stephen West's Helm this week.  I'm changing things up a bit folks.  As you all know I usually tend to make my hats using the Magic Loop method...and word on the street is this hat is very confusing using that I will be using a US 5 16" circular and switch to the magic loop once I start the decreases.

String Theory Yarn
But right now those decreases seem a long ways away...for you see, I'm learning something new with this hat.  And that is short rows.  West utilizes these short rows to create a "subtle ear flap" and man, do I almost wish I could just pick up stitches and add an ear flap a la the Gnomey Ga-Nomey Hat.  My first attempt I did about 7 rounds before I finally realized that maybe it wasn't looking the way it was supposed to be looking - I had holes and I was also adding increases.  One would think I would Youtube how to do a short row in the round before starting a project...but nah. I'm a cool knitter kid now, I know what's what.  ... Not. So. Much.  Apparently those wonky wrapped stitches that occur during the Wrap & Turns get knit or purled together...not treated as two stitches. Oops.

It hurt me to do so but I frogged all the way and re-did it, and it looks so much better already!  It's a tough project to work on during the commute because of the amount of counting that goes on, but we'll see...I want to get as much done this week as I can. I'm way behind on my holiday knitting!