Tuesday, March 14, 2017

KUAS Podcasts: Episode 9- the one with all the wips

I just uploaded a podcast today!
There's lots of FOs and Wips. At 28:45, you can see my review of Noro's newest book (and the giveaway prize for our Hat KAL). 

P.S- because this book review is so late, I extended the "Quick Ombre Hat" KAL until April 8th!

If you like these podcasts and would like me to continue making more, please subscribe! <3

Sunday, March 12, 2017

FO: Quickie Ombre Hat

Good morning, readers.
This was one of those weekends where staying home and resting up was essential.

I started a hat KAL this March for the Quick Ombre Hat pattern as part of my Noro Knit Accessories Book 2 giveaway, and felt it was the perfect time to start that project. I ended up knitting all afternoon (and evening) on it and actually completed the hat in a day. Boy did that feel great!
 Pattern: Quickie Ombre Hat by Emily Dormier (free pattern)
Yarn: Paton's Classic Worsted Weight Wool in white and teal, about 1/3 of skein each 
(pattern calls for 100 yds each)
Needles: US 7 (16'' circular), US 8 (16'' circular) and size US 8 dpns
Started: 3/11/17    Completed: 3/11/17
Mods: see the end of this post
I knit this hat while catching up on some podcasts (and while discovering new ones). It was the perfect distraction from life.

I knit using the stranded method of holding the main color in my right hand (thrower's style), and holding the contrasting color in my left (continental style). When my hand cramped, I then separated the strands so that my contrasting color was always at my right, and I would switch off "throwing" the yarn, which is a little less efficient (but not too much slower since I don't don't really knit continental style anyways).
I'd say it was a success. The middle section was a little tighter than I'd like, but no harm to foul.
I did have a "whoopsie" moment with the color-work on the whiter half of the hat. Can you see it? I accidentally knit two blue stitches in a row, thus throwing off the pattern and lining up the blue stitches in the form of a column instead of staggered. Once I realized it, I cursed a bit, then moved on (having the "screw it" mentality). No one will notice.
I used my extra large Clover pom pom maker (which is always a treat). I wrapped 75 times per side, which made it full (but not overly dense). I think next time, I will go to 85 wraps.
This is a very easy and fun pattern, which I highly recommend to beginners and even well seasoned knitters. The pattern does run "small" on adults, so I casted on more stitches and lengthened it quite a bit. I also changed the ribbing pattern.

Here's my mods:
1.) CO 98sts using size US 7 circular needles (16'', or a long magic loop). Knit a 1x1 twisted rib for 2'' (*k1tbl,p1*). Change to size US 8 needles (16'' or a long magic loop needle).
2.) k2tog, k48, k2tog, knit to end. Knit the next rd straight.
3.) Work entire charted pattern as written.
4.) Knit 2 rds straight before decrease instructions. 
5.) Mod to the 1st decrease rd: *k5, k3tog, k5, k2tog* across the rd. Continue the pattern with NO more decrease mods. Use size US 8 DPNs when the stitches get too tight for 16'' needle.
6.) Make a multi-colored pom-pom.

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Mardi Gras Freebie (today only)!

These socks were inspired by the Medieval "Carnival" tradition of everything being "topsy turvy" with the peasants and elite. Hence the reverse stockinette stitch on the heel, foot and toes. The ribbing is unique too. I hope you like the different takes on the sock.
Have a fun and safe day today!

Monday, February 27, 2017

Enter to WIN Noro's newest book!

Sixth&Spring contacted me several weeks ago to see if I would review their two newest books that are coming out this spring. Of course I jumped on it! They also mentioned that I can run a give-away for them. This book is filled with colorful and textured scarves, shawls, hats, gloves and more! You don't want to miss it.

I've been wanting to run a proper hat KAL from this blog, so what better way to kickstart one than to have a fabulous prize?!

March's HAT KAL: 
"Quick Ombre Hat" pattern by Emily Dormier (FREE pattern)

One winner will be chosen at random from this KAL to win the "Knit Noro Accessories 2" book that will be released this April.

Projects must be started between the frame of March 1st and completed & posted in the FO thread no later than March 31st. The winner will be announced April 1st.

Please click on the threads below to enter and read the complete "rules" information:
WIP thread (chatter thread)
FO (no chatter) thread

Please consider joining the KUAS Central Ravelry group as well. Have fun! I look forward to seeing your color combinations! :) I'm digging the dark and light effect. May the odds be ever in your favor!

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

FO: Zoe Hat

It's been a cold and mostly blistery winter (again) in the northern Chicagoland area. Today is the first mild day in a while (40 degrees F), and we are enjoy it every bit!

It's been dark and gloomy the past couple of days, so I've been waiting to photograph this FO in some natural light, but had to compromise with what little daylight is coming through this overcast day.

I just feels like a pour-yourself-a-steamy-cup-of-tea-and-finish-the-ending-of-your-book (which I did) kind of day.

This hat is one that I picked out for our 1/1-2/1 2017 KAL on my "Knitting up a storm, the blog" facebook page group. I have posted a video on how to work these 2-st cables without the use of a cable needle. If you attempt this pattern, or any with tons of 2-st cables, be sure to check out that video. You'll have to be part of the group first to see the video.

I enjoyed this knit. The cables were not hard, the texture is interesting. However, the hat itself is not long or slouchy. It almost needs a little bit of blocking to get more ease. At least using the yarn I did, it's almost suited more for the head size of a pre-teen.

If you're looking for a more slouchy hat, you'll want to throw in several more rounds before decreasing and/or use thicker worsted weight yarn than suggested (like an aran weight). The brim of the hat just reaches my ears.

Pattern: Zoe Hat by Alexandra Davidoff
Yarn: about 1/2 skein of Malibrigo Yarn Merino Worsted in "Mint" (approx. 100 yds used)
Needles: US size 5 & 7 (9'' circular needles), and US 7 dpns
Modifications: the ribbing-- I made a 1x1 twisted rib instead of 2x2 standard ribbing
Casted on: 1/1/17      Completed: 1/15/17

I used a fur pompom. It seems to be the all rage now for knitted hats. Ironically enough, it's hard to find at a franchized craft store. I ended up finding this pompom from HobbyLobby on a keychain, since they did not sell fur pompoms in the knitting or sewing section (No luck also at JoAnn's). 

I removed the keychain part of the pompom and no one will be none the wiser. I just wished that I could have found a natural light brown pompom that would have matched this hat a little more. I think the contrast is a little too stark for me.

Saturday, January 07, 2017

FO: Antler Hat (Toque) #2

Last Thursday, I gifted my husband his very own Antler Hat (also refered as Anter Toque). I made his brother a silver one for Christmas, and he seemed to be eyeing it, so I decided to make the same pattern for him as well. I chose this color because he owns a pair of gloves that match pretty closely. This color really goes with everything.
Yarn: Cascade 220 in Charcoal Grey
Needles: Size US 6 and US 8 circular needles
Method: magic loop
Cast-on date: 1/1/17         Completed: 1/5/17
Modifications: 2.25'' ribbing and only 6 antlers before doing the decreases

While at the craft store, I decided to pick up a new set of cable needles. I own metal ones in various shapes, but I find that they are too slippery and long. Clover makes a set of plastic cable needles that are a bit shorter and with a square nook to hold the stitches. I found that they were a bit easier to work cables with, even though they were flimsier.
I tried all four needles, and found with this project, the medium white cable needle was the easiest to work with, and stitches didn't slip off. I just wish that the ends were a bit sharper.

My husband is very pleased with his gift. Now that it's done, I'm off knitting something from my pattern queue: the Zoe Hat. We are doing a KAL in my facebook group during this month. Join us!

Friday, January 06, 2017

FO: Flax Light #1 (4-6 yr old size)

The first of my Flax Light Sweaters for my 6 year old twins is done! This project took longer than I anticipated (especially with me also working ony my adult "Flax Light" sweater) Here's the first post about this sweater.

Pattern: Flax Light Sweater by Tincanknits
Size: 4-6 year old
Yarn: 4 skeins of Paton's Kroy Sock Yarn in the colorway "flax"
Needles: US 2 and US 5 circular needles (magic loop method)
Started:  August 19th 2016           Completed: December 30th 2016
Modifications: .5 inches longer on the arms. 

I haven't posted much about this project on this blog, so let me share some of the sweater's journey:
It was knit mostly during late summer and fall. I thought maybe I could finish it before Halloween. Whoops.
Acutally, most of it WAS finished by Halloween (you can see that it was still warm out), but I also wanted to have my pumpkin spice colored adult flax done in time for Halloween too. When that deadline passed, then it was for "Thanksgiving." That has passed too. EEK!
The sleeves only needed about 4 more inches to be completed! So, after working on my annual "Year in Review Post" around Christmastime, I realized how I have left a project that was nearly completed alone in a bin to languish. I was determined to complete it in time for the New Year...so I knit the rest of the sleeves around Christmastime. 

I decided to work the sleeve's two-at-a-time, like my socks, so they are the same length for sure. I may have been enjoying a few treats while knitting. :)
I love watching FOs soak in the tub, and seeing the yarn bloom as the bubbles dissipate. It's the little things in life, right?
I blocked out the sweater to be just an inch larger in the body. I am so pleased with the results. The sweater is absolutely beautiful. The texture on just the sleeves is very smart---it's just the right amount of detail in the right places, and so simple. Not busy, like some sweaters. I can't wait for my own sweater to be done!
The colorway for this yarn was gorgeous too! Since the name of this pattern has "flax" in it, I happend to stumble upon that color at the store and couldn't resist! 
Here's Sam modeling the sweater for you. Unfortunately, they think it's too scratchy, and I'll have to put a colored shirt on underneath. They don't care for it much, really though. It's a tragedy. Their opinion: it's scratchy and a boring color. *sigh* Next time, I'm going to use acyrillic for them!