Saturday, November 29, 2008

Handknit Holidays

Thanksgiving weekend has been a lot of fun so far. For me, it really kicks off the holiday season. And in that spirit, I've been Christmas shopping, crafting, gift wrapping, stamping etc etc... And I love it!

First up, a little baby santa hat to go with a Dr Seuss onesie that I found. How cute is that!

The pattern is Kathy Pasusta's Santa hat from 'Handknit Holidays'. I think this pattern is a lot of fun, and most of my family have a version of this hat. I love the book too; there are soo very many things that I'd like to make.

On the topic of gift knitting, I'm looking for advice:

I found these great gloves, and would like to make a scarf or shawl to go with them. It doesn't have to match per se... just complement.

I looked through my stash (I love purple, and just knew there would be something that worked) and sure enough one of my highly coveted Sundara sock yarns would complement the gloves beautifully. But what to make? I only have 350 yards of the purple. And I also have some espresso brown Koigu, if needed, to add to the project.

One thought is the stained glass scarf (ravelry link), also from Holiday Knits, and maybe modifying to add a few cables? Too boring?

Or maybe something like 'through the loops' version of the silk kerchief?

Or what about a ruffle scarf of some description? (Ravelry links). Hmm I'm thinking I like this best...

What are your thoughts? Suggestions are welcomed :)

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Knitted mug cosies

...just what every home needs!

The pattern is 'Mug and French Press Jackets' by MK Carroll. I think they are adorable - perfect for that person on your gift list that seems to have everything.

And if you are looking for some last-minute knitted gifts, this could be just the ticket -- they only took a day to whip together. This pair will be going out to a sister-in-law with a selection of yummy teas.

One note: the jackets need to fit pretty tightly in order to stay on the mug. So I'd recommend a gauge check, or tailoring the pattern sizing to the desired mug. (At first, mine were a little 'baggy' and when I lifted the mug, the little jacket slipped off! To fix this, I did some very slight felting in order to shrink it just a touch. That did the trick.)

I'm now tempted to make one up for myself too. It would certainly get some interesting looks in the office, don't you think? ;)

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Back to prettier things

Whew! Now that Rowan Major is out of the way, I can back to my prettier knitting projects:

1. Rowan Geno
I've finished the bulk of the knitting on this one. Just need to find some quiet time to sew together and knit the button band. I have high hopes for this FO...

2. Araucania Hexagons
I keep adding to this in my few spare moments. It won't be done for Christmas. But I think the recipient will love it regardless of when they receive it.

3. Red silk ribbon scarf
Continues to grow. I really ought to focus on this one as I would like to give it away for Christmas. (No picture update as it really is just more of the same).

4. Mug cosy
Have you seen these mug cosies? I love them! I'm making a couple to go with some mugs and tea caddy for a Christmas gift.

5. Hourglass
Still plugging along on this -- I'm on the sleeves so these are my portable knit right now (nice size project to tuck into my bag, and good mindless knitting).

And that's it for the time being. I hope I have another FO to share soon...

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Rowan Major

Here's another FO for Joe that I've been calling his ugly sweater:

The yarn is Rowan Spray, and this particular colourway had been sprayed with an acid/lime green. Pretty harsh on the eyeballs isn't it (at least with the first handwash some of the colour leaked off and the end result is much mellower... but still a little zany!).

The pattern is Rowan Major from the booklet 'The Next Big Thing'. I made a few modifications - no epaulettes, no pocket covers, and I knit it all on a US 15 needle (instead of the recommended US 17 for the bulk of the sweater).

This was far from an enjoyable project - first of all I had the longest circular needle ever (from an afghan I had previously made) and so I'd end up wrapping the lengthy cord under my leg, or round the back of my neck to try and prevent myself from getting all tangled up in it! Quite the sight. And then the pockets were a bit of a pain to do as they start right at the bottom edge of the sweater and you have to figure out how to join them into the cast-on edge correctly. Yep, just glad this one is done.

But here's the deal - Joe loves it! So all's well that ends well.
I just need to find some big buttons to officially finish it up and then he can make good use of it when walking the dogs (now that the weather looks like it is going to turn chillier again).

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Mini snowmen scarves

I'm starting to feel the excitement of the holiday season. I've started my Christmas shopping, and my Christmas crafting...

To avoid any last minute rushes (like last year) a couple of my stamping friends got together this weekend to start making our Christmas cards. I'd seen some scarf wearing snowmen on Ravelry (goodtobegirl's 2005 holiday cards) and decided to make something similar using the Stampin' Up 'Let it snow' stamp set.

I love these little guys! And it was a great way to use up a smidgeon more leftover sock yarn.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Noro roadtrip socks

These have been a long time in the making: I cast on in May when Joe and I took a roadtrip from Colorado down to the border of Texas and Mexico. With all the miles and miles of driving, I was convinced that I'd have them completed by the time the journey was over. Hmm... wishful thinking! 5 months later here they are in all their stripey glory:

You know, at first I didn't like them -- the striping wasn't distinct enough at the cuff of the sock. And then there was the splash of turquoise that seemed so out of place. But now that they are done, I really am quite fond of the effect. And I love that they aren't exactly the same.

As for the details:
  • Yarn: Noro Kureyon Sock Yarn
  • Needles: Size 2
  • Pattern: My basic sock recipe. (This time I cast on 68, instead of the usual 64 on account that I'd gone down a needle size). And to create the skinny stripes I simply worked 2 rounds from one end of the ball, and the next 2 rounds from the other end of the ball.

With this 'portable project' complete, I'm already winding the yarn cakes for my next portable project that will be keeping me company on my trip out to California next week. No better way to while away the hours in airports and on planes...