Must. Knit. Something.

Funny story.

She came over that evening and she actually brought her knitting. She always forgets her knitting, but on this night she remembered. Then she actually knit on her project as we visited! She hardly ever does that. Usually I’m the one knitting and she knits a few stitches and then talks and then knits a few stitches and drinks her tea and then holds the baby and then… This time she was really flying across her rows, knit. knit. knit.

So there she is knitting in my living room and I had nothing in my hands at all. I had two projects on the go, and both of them were colorwork and I don’t like to knit colorwork while I’m talking (remember the socks? Yeah. That lesson was still fresh in my mind).

So I was sitting idle.

Watching her knit.

Weird, right?

Right. Totally weird.

Desperately, I grabbed the nearest ball of yarn and cast on some longies. Then as I talked and without any planning or thought, I started switching colorways from my scrap bag.

And I was knitting, too.

All was right with the world.

And The Blessing was getting another pair of longies. One can never have too many longies.

Win, win.

I am giddy with happiness at how lovely these scrappy longies turned out. They took days to dry after lanolizing, but this morning they were ready for the photo shoot.

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The Blessing, however didn’t want to do a photo shoot.

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No, she’d much rather crawl around and put leaves in her mouth.

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Or grab for the camera.

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When I finally got her to stand, it was only for a second and then she was down again.

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But she did like climbing on her chair that Uncle T made.

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I realize that this post started out as a knitting post and has quickly turned it’s focus to a cute baby. Can you blame me?

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I didn’t think so.

Okay, so knitting details. Well, for starters, the Ravelry project page is here.

Just for kicks I decided to try Russian joins. It’s clever and I like eliminating the ends to weave in later, but it isn’t very smooth as far as the knitting goes. It leaves big bumps. It’s only longies, so it’s cool, but I doubt I’ll use it again.

The yarn is all Mosaic Moon Targhee Aran. Some of it I picked up in a scrappy swap and some I had on hand. I did use one bit of Mosaic Moon Licorice Twist Aran (the pink zebra at the knees and just before the cuffs) as the legs were looking too blue for my girlie-girl.

These ended up being just a tad too big, you can see that I rolled the cuffs. And I should have used a smaller needle as the gauge is looser than I usually like for longies. But she will grow and they are just too cute.

I am extremely happy with the results.

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Award Winning Knit

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I am so excited to tell you that my color work sweater won First Prize in the Mosaic Moon Mini Skein Contest!

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SQUEEEEEEEE!

Voting for the Crowd Favorite category is still open and will close on Friday.

Will Work For Yarn

In a wonderful arrangement with a friend on Ravelry I traded some labor for some yarn. This is what she asked for –

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Saroyan in O Wool Classic 2-ply, Evergreen
My Ravelry project page here

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The pattern is written for worsted weight, but easily adjusted for any weight by weighing the yarn as you go. In this case, I was working with 150 grams of fingering weight yarn; a gorgeous, drapey, super soft merino fingering weight yarn. I used 37g for the increase and decrease segments and the remaining 80 grams for the main body. It worked out to be about 80″ long and 17″ wide at the center. IMGP1260In return for this lovely piece of work, I received some Mosaic Moon treats.

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Purple Mountains on Mountain Meadow Worsted
IMGP1020_mediumButterscotch on High Twist MCN

And there was another skein of Mountain Meadow that I forgot to photograph before I gifted it to another Ravelry pal.

YUM!

I am also knitting a pair of longies with feeties for this sweet mama. I’ll let you know how that goes when it is done. I can’t seem to get the feet right and have ripped back a few times.

Knitting for cash is fun and all, and I appreciate the opportuniy to make a little money. But knitting for yarn is really awesome. Because, who do I think I am kidding? The cash goes towards yarn anyway!

The Strawberry Sweater

Introducing the “Strawberry Sweater”, so named by The Munchkin.

IMGP0746I can hear you saying, “Strawberry sweater? That doesn’t make any sense.”

I did say that the four year old named it that, right? And when do four year olds ever make sense?

She does have a rhyme to her reason this time, however. When I showed her the photo of the example sweater that I was knitting for her (it’s Pepper, by the way), she focused in on the pretty strawberry buttons and that was all she could think about from that moment on.

Gorgeously dyed purples, greens, and browns – a colorway named “Rapunzel”, her favorite princess, no less! – and all she talked about was the strawberry buttons!

IMGP0753Soft, soft yarn, soft enough to wrap a snuggly baby in, and she told everyone about how “Mama is making me a strawberry sweater”.

IMGP0763I even special ordered Rapunzel buttons to match perfectly, and she chose instead to have strawberry buttons.

IMGP0741So I had them special ordered, too. Purple strawberries to match a Rapunzel sweater.

IMGP0740And today, she is wearing a hand-me-down red turtleneck sweater with plain buttons because she doesn’t like strawberries any more.

sigh

At least I made it big enough that when she does like it again, it might still fit.

IMGP0749Pepper by Elena Nodel in Mosaic Moon Rapunzel on Gaia worsted with purple strawberry buttons from Tessa Ann

Oh, while I am here – this pattern, like every other pattern that I have bought from this designer, is well written, thorough, and easy to use. It is worth every penny.

 

 

 

 

 

Baby Girl Knitting

While I am perfectly happy not finding out the baby’s gender until the moment I push it out, it sure is fun when my friends find out what they are having! Girlie knitting is so much fun, so when my knitting buddy found out she was having another daughter, I was very excited (in a purely selfish, now-I-can-knit-something-gender-specific kind of way). And I knew what yarn I would use, too.

Mosaic Moon BFL/Silk top always comes in a super fluffy braid of yummy fiber goodness, and this braid, dyed in the Colibri colorway, was no exception –

IMGP8353_medium2I spun it up right when it came in the mail and n-plied it to keep the colors pure. Then it sat in the stash, waiting for the perfect project. Ravelry stash page here.

IMGP8437_medium2The perfect project ended up being something straight out of my head, a onesie with frills and a balloony butt. Ravelry project page here. (I pretty much wrote out every step, so if you wanted to, you could make one, too.)

IMGP9332_mediumIt is always so much fun to see how my handspun knits up, and this was no exception. I am very pleased and proud of how even this yarn turned out and pleasantly surprised by the way it striped up.

This was a very hard thing to give away, but there are few as deserving as the recipient. I am so excited to see her little baby girl wearing it in just a couple more months!

 

 

 

Neon Fireworks

When I firsts saw this colorway on the Mosaic Moon Facebook page, I knew I needed it.

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Mosaic Moon Neon Fireworks on Aran Tweed with Dark Purple trim (I got two skeins of colorway and one trim. It was all that was available)

Okay, so “need” is a strong word. But that didn’t stop me from snatching up the first two skeins I stumbled upon on Ravelry, regardless of base. Fortunately, the base turned out to be Aran Tweed (very like Licorice Twist), which is perfect for a baby thing.

Ever since my early knitting days I have wanted to knit a sleeper for a baby. I always knit soakers, longies, shorties, and bloomers, never quite getting around to covering the entire baby with the knitted love. Well, that all changed this week. I didn’t have a pattern, but I do have a pattern for a onesie and I figured I could just add legs to, right? Well, this is what became of my logic.

IMGP8800Now, keep in mind that it isn’t exactly finished. The legs will have snaps to make for easier diaper changes and I am still shopping for the perfect buttons for the top.

IMGP8801I am probably going to get some really girlie buttons and some really boy-ie buttons and put them on when baby tells us who he/she is.

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Rear view showing the short row bum.

This ended up very different from the pattern that I bought (why do I keep paying money for patterns if I am not going to follow them?). I started with the pattern (All-In-Onesie), but it morphed into something else as I went, and I even went back to pull out the collar and do that differently, as well. So, the only part that follows the pattern is the stitch count for the raglan increases and the sleeves. Well, I didn’t knit the sleeves as long as it said, so…

Modifications:

I wanted the button placket at the neck to be knit in the trim color, so instead of casting on the placket, I ignored that direction and just knit around it. Then, I went back and picked up the stitches, knitting the placket in seed stitch to match the cuffs and collar. I put in three button holes.

When I reached the short row section, I stopped following the pattern and knit my own longie pattern from that point on, including my own short rows.

The gusset is of my own making, as I would normally knit for a soaker.

The legs were knit back and forth and the stitches picked up along them for the snap plackets.

After I finished the legs I returned to the top and pulled out the collar to reknit it to match the seed stitch cuffs.

I knit the sleeves an inch shorter than recommended.

When I picked up the sleeves, I realized that I had missed the directions to cast on more stitches when the sleeves were separated from the body, so the body turns out to be several stitches narrower than supposed to be. This is not a modification, it is a mistake. 🙂

I had anticipated my gauge to be off because my yarn is thicker and my needles larger than the pattern calls for. This was fine with me, as baby isn’t even here, yet. As it worked out, I got perfect gauge (mysteriously!). So my 3-6 month size should be close.

And, since I bought two skeins of this fabulous colorway, I have enough for shorties, too! See? (and there will still be some left. Baby will be bedecked in Neon Fireworks!)

IMGP8804There has been some argument here about the gender specificity of this colorway. Some of the kids think it is too girlie to put on a boy. Some think it is to boyish to put on a girl. The Bookworm thinks it is too girlie for a boy and too boyish for a girl (can’t win with that girl!). The Man says it doesn’t matter. I like it for either. What do you think?

 

Making Yarn is Too Much Fun

Mosaic Moon is one of my favorite dyers. This is a BFL/Silk blend in the colorway “Colibri”. IMGP8436

I decided to navajo ply it preserve the colors. This is my favorite way to make yarn these days. I love the structure of the three ply, how round and bouncy the finished yarn becomes. And the smooth motion of chain plying is both soothing and interesting.
IMGP8437I wonder what it wants to be knit into?

What I’d Rather Do

According to Ravelry, I have five unfinished projects in the works.

1. A test lace shawl
that I ran out of yarn for and cannot finish till I get more (don’t worry, there is more. I just have to get it).

2. A crochet project
that I am not really all that interested in working on. Ever. (I will, I am just not interested)

3. A sweater for me
that has a lace panel where I messed up somewhere and don’t even want to contemplate the ripping that is required to fix it.

4. The mitten garland
that doesn’t have to be done until December.

5. A gorgeous silk lace shawl
that I have no reason not to knit, but I haven’t picked it up in months.

All of this means that I have nothing to work on.

Normally, I would happily cast on two or three (maybe more) new projects. I have tons of yarn and lots of empty needles and the queue is full.

But, I am really enjoying my new wheel. I would rather spin than knit.

This scares me a little. Will I ever knit again? Have I lost my knitting fervor?

Probably not. Because I keep dreaming of the things that I will knit with the yarn that I am spinning. Maybe I just lost the desire to knit with any other yarn than my own?

For now, I am spinning this lovely merino/silk with which I hope to make a breathtaking Wingspan.

Knitting is still pretty cool, but for now, I’d rather be spinning.