Friday, December 21, 2018

Dad's 2018 Knit Christmas Socks

I did it, I did it! I miraculously finished my dad's socks before we left for Kentucky. I thought I was going to have to resort to car knitting. Phew.

Pattern: Hermione's Everyday Socks by Erica Lueder (Free on Ravelry)
Yarn: Unidentified scraps from my stash

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Knit Birthday Socks for Liz

I can't think of anyone who wouldn't want a cozy pair of knitted socks, which is why eventually all my friends will end up with a knitted pair of socks from me at some point.

I made this pair for my friend Liz of cozyblue. The sock yarn is leftover from my Sunset Highway sweater, and I even weighed the yarn and felt SURE I had enough yardage to make two socks. I guess you can see that didn't work out...

Pattern: Waffle Rib Socks by by Carolyn (Jill) Ferneau
Yarn: Hedgehog Fibres Sock in Budgie

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Waffle Knit Socks for Jake

One day, my cousin Jake told me he would like to up his sock game. I think he was starting to be jealous of all Alex's hand knit socks.

In the past Jake has given me some of his art, like a drawing of a lumberjack and a drawing of a kid with a worm (which I realize is hard to picture, but trust me that it's really cool). So I figured it was only fair for me to give him some of my art.

Pattern: Waffle Rib Socks by Carolyn (Jill) Ferneau
Yarn: Pandora's Yarn Luxe

I bought this yarn at Southeastern Animal Fiber Fair (SAFF) last year, and I used it to make one other pair of socks in a different color for my friend Jessica. This yarn is no longer available, but it's nice, soft, and fun to work with.

The one difficult part about making socks for someone new to hand knit socks is that they can't put them in the dryer like they can regular socks. But it's nice to convert someone over to the hand knit world for the first time. Knit socks really are the best.

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Fall and Winter Lace Shawl

I stored this shawl kit in a drawer for about two years, picking it up and putting it away again during that entire time. This is one of those projects that looks beautiful when it's finished, but there was a lot of sweat and complaining going on while I was knitting it.

I started to sort of dread working on it, which makes me think perhaps I should stay away from lace knits in the future. But ahhh, isn't it pretty?

Pattern: Fall/Winter Shawl by KnitPicks
Yarn: Alpaca Cloud Lace Yarn

Here are some things you might need to know about my completion of this shawl:

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Test Knit: Rhubarb Stalk Socks

I always have at least two knitting projects going at once, but sometimes I see a test knit opportunity that I just can't pass up! In this case, I was actually happy to pause on that crazy lace shawl that I'm still working on... Ugh.

Pattern: Rhubarb Stalk Socks by Buckaloo View Designs
Yarn: Junkyarn Smooth Sock in Candace

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Rice Stitch Knit Socks for Alex

Socks are practically the only knitting project I ever travel with, so when we went to Scotland and Ireland, this is the project I packed. These socks are for Alex -- what a surprise!

Yarn: Woolen Boon Classic in Los Bluejeans
Pattern: Rice Stitch Toe-Up Socks designed by me

Friday, September 7, 2018

Sewing a Moneta with a Peter Pan Collar

Summer ain't over yet! My go-to dress pattern these days is Moneta by Colette Patterns. I probably have about six of these dresses, mostly in knit fabrics from the juvenile section at Joann. I figured as long as the print is distracting, no one will ever know it's the same dress. Shhhhhh.

Fabric: Knit fabric from Joann

Friday, August 17, 2018

Family Tie-Dye Day!

My niece always has a DIY project in mind when we visit, and this time she wanted to tie dye some t-shirts.

No one wanted to miss out, so we all tie dyed a shirt using a Tulip One-Step Tie-Dye Party Kit which, according to Kinsley, "had a really good selection of dyes." (Why does she always sound like an ad?) 

Here are some photos from our family tie-dye day. We can't think of a better way to close out the summer!

Kinsley made a couple of shirts, and for this one she used the bullseye technique. 

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Whitehorse Knit Sweater

I'm sloooowly working through my yarn stash! This sweater has been on my list for a while, and I was determined to wear it this fall as a transition piece.

I couldn't get my little bobbles to pop out onto the right side and stay there. Anyone know a trick for that?

Pattern: Whitehorse by Caitlin Hunter
Yarn: Debbie Bliss Rialto DK in Emerald

Friday, July 20, 2018

Fingerless Mitts from Adorable Alpacas

In April, Alex and I visited some of his family in New Mexico, and we were lucky enough to squeeze in a visit to an alpaca farm, Que Sera Alpacas in Santa Fe. (See adorable alpaca photos.)

These are the first projects I made from the alpaca yarn. (And trust me, more alpaca projects to come because I LOADED UP on yarn there!)

Pattern: Fingerless Mitts by Suzanne Wadsworth
Yarn: Que Sera Alpacas DK in Dark Opal and Que Sera Alpacas Confetti (Black)

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

A New Knit! Comfort Fade Cardigan

I've had my eye on this pattern since its release. It just looked so cozy and wonderful. When my frequent buyer card at Black Mountain Yarn Shop filled up, I knew I wanted to use it on this!

Pattern: Comfort Fade Cardigan by Andrea Mowry
Yarn: Autumn and Indigo in Jaded, Seneca, Old Winter, Heron, Cadet, and Bleached Aqua

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

No-Fade So Faded Knit Sweater

I knit two fingering-weight sweaters, and it's not even halfway through 2018. Woohoo!

I've heard from several knitters that the famous trendy So Faded sweater is perfect for any fingering-weight yarn project. I spotted this galaxy-esque yarn at SAFF this past fall, and I knew I had to have it for something.

Pattern: So Faded by Andrea Mowry
Yarn: Fiber Seed Sprout Sock in Interstellar, Hedgehog Sock in Electric leftover from my Sunset Highway sweater, and oddments of Malabrigo Sock in Reflecting Pool leftover from my dad's Christmas socks

It's clear that I didn't have a plan for this sweater, but that's ok. The sleeves aren't as long as I thought they could be given the yarn I had, and I ended up throwing in some scrap yarn for the cuffs and neckline which I hadn't originally planned on doing.

The good thing about having a huge yarn stash is that you can do practically ANYTHING in an emergency. The Malabrigo matches the green from the Interstellar yarn exactly, which was kind of creepy.

This sweater is soft and comfy, and I'm excited to wear it when the weather calls for it.

Monday, May 14, 2018

Ultraviolet Knit Socks for Jessica!

These cool socks reached their New Jersey destination last week just in time for a cozy Saturday night. I've mentioned Jessica before on my blog. She's a fantastic crafty lady, and we exchange handmade gifts for birthdays and Christmas.

Since I'm always scrambling to knit/make everything around the holidays -- the best time to actually wear socks -- I decided to make her some socks earlier in the year when I'd actually have time for a bigger project.

Pattern: Stepping-Stones by Clara Parkes from The Knitter's Book of Socks
Yarn: Pandora's Yarn Luxe in Ultraviolet, purchased at SAFF last fall

I'm usually late with her birthday gift, and she's an April baby, so these socks are kinda useless until winter. But she found a way to make them work, even in near-summer temperatures.

Let me also say how proud I am that I actually made something with yarn I bought back in the fall. I usually stash those SAFF yarns forever, but I found a use for this lovely yarn really quickly.

I am determined to reduce my stash a bit this year. My big problem is that I have to stop the bleeding and stop buying new stuff. It's so hard! These socks are a good first step, though, yeah? (Unintended lame-o pun.)

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Spring-Perfect Floral Bun Wrap

I bring you a little something different today. I've been dabbling in way more than yarn lately!

Pop over to Factory Direct Craft to get my tutorial for this pretty little Floral Bun Wrap.

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Men's Knit Cabled Cardigan

I haven't finished many projects lately, but the one big one I've been working on is this cardigan for Alex.

Alex refused to wear cardigans, mostly because he's a school psychologist and that's a cliche uniform for his profession. But I annoyed him for long enough that he finally relented. Heh heh. I present Alex's first cardigan!

Pattern: #17 Man's Cable Cardigan by Josh Bennett, featured in Vogue Knitting Winter 2009/10
Yarn: Berroco Vintage in 5189 Charcoal

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Lots of Cute Fuzzy Alpacas (and their Yarn!)

If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook, you know I had an awesome experience at Que Sera Alpaca Farm in Santa Fe. I took so many pictures, and I know I was probably annoying everyone with my multiple posts. So here, in all their glory, are the cute alpacas we met that day.

Friday, April 20, 2018

Patching a Huge Hole in Knit Socks

I knit a pair of socks for my dad every Christmas, and recently he showed me a pair from 2016 that were loved and well worn. He was planning to throw them away. GASP.

It seemed like such a waste to just throw away the socks. (I could never do that!) So I decided I'd try to patch them. I had no idea what I was getting into.

I posted the holey socks on Instagram and received so many awesome suggestions from other knitters. Many suggested traditional darning, but looking at the hole (the hole above in particular), it needed a much heftier job than that.

Friday, March 30, 2018

Softest West End Knit Cardigan Ever

Cardigans might be the best sweaters in the world. I starting knitting this one back in the winter, but I only had the opportunity to wear it once or twice before the weather warmed up. Even now, it's proving to be a great layering piece.

Also, the yarn. Looooove it. Want more.

Pattern: West End Cardigan by Hannah Fettig from Texture
Yarn: Purl Soho Flax Down in 1620 Lavender Opal 

I bought this yarn in New York last summer when Alex and I went on our annual visit to see his family. My friend Jessica and I hit up Purl Soho, and we could've stayed there all day! We totally enable each other when it comes to buying fabric and yarn; that's why I love her so much.

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Epic Fail: Men's Knit Boatyard Pullover Sweater

Sometimes projects don't work out the way we think they will. That's the case with my latest sweater that I knit for Alex.

Pattern: Boatyard Pullover by Hannah Fettig from Texture
Yarn: Berroco Remix in 3972 Fern

This pattern is lovely, but I don't think the yarn I chose pairs well with it. The idea for all of Alex's sweaters is that it's a yarn we can wash in the machine, but maybe dry flat.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Magic Loop Basic Brimmed Hat Tutorial and FREE Pattern

I'm a big fan of magic loop, so when Craftsy asked me to design a magic loop hat and tutorial, I was more than ready to share my obsession with knitters who are new to the technique.

I originally started using magic loop only for socks, but then I went crazy and started using it for things like two-at-a-time sweater sleeves and even mittens. Sometimes I still pull out my trusty 16" circulars, but magic loop makes things so much easier, especially for things like hats that require multiple needle sizes and different types of needles.

Pattern: Basic Ribbed Brim Hat designed by me (FREE!) plus Magic Loop Tutorial
Yarn: Cloudborn Superwash Highland Worsted in Charcoal Heather (hat) and Graphite Heather (pompom)

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Sunset Highway Knit Sweater

Wooooo! I have to admit it: when I first started drooling over this sweater, I never actually thought I'd make it. Luckily, one of my LYSs, Black Mountain Yarn Shop, hosted a knit-along starting in January. It was the perfect selfish knitting project after months of focusing on holiday gifts!

Pattern: Sunset Highway by Caitlin Hunter
Yarn: Hedgehog Fibres Sock in Shiver, Hurricane, Budgie, and Electric

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

More Stripey Knit Socks for Alex and Knitting in the Car

Socks are that pattern that I always have going on in the background in addition to another bigger project. Usually those socks end up going to Alex.

Recently, I went on a ladies' road trip with my friends to Hilton Head, SC, for my friend Cat's birthday. I always bring a project, but right now I'm working on a cardigan that I'll probably only get to wear one time before summer. I knew my fellow knitter Sami would be knitting on the trip, but I didn't want to bring that huge sweater with me. So I started some travel-worthy socks instead.

Pattern: I made one up! Basically a P1, K4 ribbing across the top of the foot, toe up, short row heel.
Yarn: The Fiber Seed Sprout in Acorn

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Free Pattern: Knit Marled Seed Stitch Cowl

A few winters ago, I taught Alex how to knit. He made one scarf in garter stitch, then sent it to his mom. She got very excited and asked him to make her a seed stitch cowl using this yarn that she chose. But he lost the knitting fever, and he never made it.

I came across the yarn a few months ago. So this year for Hanukkah, I decided to make the cowl and give it to his mom. Both he and his mom had forgotten all about it, which was clear from the look on her face when I gave it to her!

Pattern: Marled Seed Stitch Cowl (my own design). Download it for free on Ravelry!
Yarn: Cascade Yarns Pure Alpaca in Magenta and Grey (Two strands held together)

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Kinsley and I Collaborate on a Mini Weaving Project

My niece, Kinsley, is a seriously awesome kid. She's 6, and she is very into crafts.

My mom has to watch the shopping cart very carefully when she takes her to a craft store, because she's likely to pile the cart full of LOTS of things. Last time she visited us, I asked her if she'd be interested in making a little wall hanging using this mini loom that came with one of my Mollie Makes magazines. (I'm such a sucker for the little kits that come with the magazine.) Of course she said yes.

Friday, February 2, 2018

Jessica's Meadowsweet Knitted Shawl

My friend Jessica and I swap DIY gifts every year. Last year I made her these Vespergyle Mittens that turned out so awesome! This year I took on a project that was larger but (not surprising) much easier than those crazy colorwork mittens.

Yarn: Schachenmayr nomotta Rainbow color #42
Pattern: Meadowsweet by Fancy Tiger Crafts, from the book Wool Journey: Shetland

I found this yarn at a fiber swap a few years ago. There were LOTS of skeins included, and even though I had no idea how I would use it, I knew I had to have it. Even after making this shawl, I still have lots of it left. (P.S. The yarn is discontinued, but you can still find it on sites like eBay and Ravelry.)

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Alex's Oooh Girl Knit Socks

Socks are the perfect project for car knitting, so last summer when Alex drove us up to New York, I brought these in-progress socks along with us. (Yes, I'm posting a project I finished last summer. Heh.)

Pattern: Ribby Holiday Socks by Alicia Morandi (FREE pattern on Craftsy!)
Yarn: Twist Fiber Studio Pisgah Fingering in Oooh Girl

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Brrrr! Fighting the Cold with a Knit Pennington Sweater

It's frosty out there for Asheville weather. I'm talking achy-hands cold that won't even be stopped by bulky hand knit mittens.

While the cold is no fun, there is one reason I love it: I can bring out ALL THE KNITS. This week I found myself wearing this gorgeous sweater that I test knit for Christina Danaee back in August.

Pattern: Pennington by Christina Danaee
Yarn: Mirasol Yarn Sulka Legato in Light Aqua and Grey

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Win a Copy of Protest Knits and Really Cross Stitch

It's been a while since I hosted a giveaway on my blog, but when these two books came in the mail I knew it was time for another one.

I don't usually get political on my blog. If you don't stand where I do, that's ok. That's why I love crafts: they connect us all in ways we never imagined. Even if you don't agree with me on social and political issues, we can still connect through yarn and fabric!

But if you do have similar opinions on today's world, you'll be interested in this giveaway: Protest Knits by Geraldine Warner and Really Cross Stitch by Rayna Fahey. (See the bottom of the post to enter to win.)

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Mom's Stephen West Knit Exploration Station Christmas Shawl

This year for my mom's Christmas gift, I wanted to make something a little different than usual. I've made her shawls in the past, but she always told me she has a difficult time styling them.

I was already into Stephen West's designs, and after meeting him last year at Black Mountain Yarn Shop, I was inspired to try another of his shawls.

Yarn: Primrose Yarn Co. Cosmic Helix in Primetime and House of Mirrors, plus some gray from my stash

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Happy Crafty New Year! Top Instagram Photos of 2017

Happy new year! For those of you not on Instagram, here's a little recap of my top 9 photos of 2017.

Clockwise from top left: Sami in her Bristol Ivy Brooke Sweater and me in my Agrotera Sweater by Amanda Bell; Alex and Nietzsche in their weenie costumes; Me holding Yoko's sweet bunny at Echoview Fiber Mill in my Amy Herzog Options Sweater; Me in my Arm Knit Cable Scarf; Alex's knitted sock collection; Steve and Liz's fox wedding gift; foxy brooches for my crafty friends; the first winter snow of 2017. Center: Me in my Stephen West Dotted Rays shawl.