French Braid Progress

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I decided to pick this WIP back up a couple of week’s ago when my boyfriend asked where “the pretty green sweater” was. When I told him that it was stuffed in my closet along with the rest of my WIPs, he insisted that I pick it back up and finish it. I always love a good challenge, so I decided to go along with what he said and actually finish a large project this summer. The hat design (proto-type #2) will just have to wait. 🙂

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I originally left this project at the yoke/sleeve separation row. Since picking this project back up, I’ve knit roughly 9″ on the body and I’m loving how fast this piece is working up. The braided cables twisting along the fronts really make this knit interesting and once one row is finished, I just want to keep knitting more. I absolutely love everything about this cardigan and will probably knit this again, minus the large braid down the back. The pattern can be found here in case anyone out there would like to knit themself a French Braid Cardigan.  More progress updates next week!

:: Pink Grapefruit ::

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I’m finally taking the initiative and designing my own patterns.  I decided that it was time to get creative and unleash some of my ideas, especially after discovering several skeins of Tanis Fiber Arts yarn in my stash.  This yarn is expensive, but heavenly!  And it’s the kind of yarn that you don’t want to waste.  I’m currently knitting with the Pink Grapefruit colour-way and am loving the results.  You can see just a smidge of my design in the above photo.  I’m hoping to have this project complete by the end of May.  Then comes the lovely, but time consuming pattern writing.  Then it’s off to the test knitters.  I’m estimating a mid-June pattern release and hope that other knitters will enjoy this pattern as much as I have enjoyed creating it.  🙂  More updates in the week(s) to come!

WIP :: Ombre Cardigan

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After several months hibernating in my closet, I have finally decided to pick this project back up and finish it.

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I’m in love with the softness of this sweater and how the shades of buttercup yellow blend so nicely with the deeper toned gold. This will be my go-to sweater this spring and I’m so excited to finally be able to wear it and show it off. When I finished the body of this sweater last August, I swore to myself that I wouldn’t knit another sweater using small yarn/needles again.  However, I’m already dreaming of this cardigan in 2 of my favorite colors: seabreeze & mallard. I think the shades of light & dark aqua will mesh beautifully with each other. I’ve already dedicated this summer to that project and can’t wait until I can pick up those size 6 needles with 2 strands of laceweight yarn wrapped between my fingers and begin the process all over again.

In the coming months, I will have several FO posts/pictures to show off. I seem to be finishing all of my spring/summer sweaters this winter, but it is way too cold (temps around -15) to take any finished pictures just yet. I’m hoping to start those FO posts in March, unless February surprises us with warmer temps. Happy Knitting everyone!

Finished : Susie’s Mittens

Picking ThymeI am in love with these mittens!  This is the first pair of mitts that I’ve ever knit and the timing couldn’t have been more perfect.  Maine’s weather turned seasonably cold just as I finished these beauties.  In fact, I got the chance to test them for the first time on December 1 at the town’s annual light parade.  Although, no mitten can withstand 15 degree temps for over an hour while watching pretty, twinkling parade floats.  But, in their defense, they did hold up for almost the complete hour before I lost feeling in a few of my fingers.  🙂

Pattern:  Bella’s Mittens by Marielle Henault (subliminalrabbit)

Yarn:  Reynolds Lopi (used only 1 skein, which I had in stash!!)

Modifications:  I followed another Raveler’s mods and started the mitten at round 16, which shortened the length quite a bit.  The length is actually quite perfect (for me anyway) and the mitts fit neatly inside the sleeves of my winter jacket.

DSC00409These mitts are so wooly and warm… I’m in love!  I’m even considering knitting this pattern again, except modifying the original mitten into a fingerless one for work.  These would be lovely as fingerless mitts!

Ravelry Project Page Here!

The Yarn Stash

I’ve decided to start knitting through my yarn stash, which I have been collecting for the past 3 or 4 years. I didn’t realize how much yarn I had been accumulating until I started organizing my stash over the summer. This means that I’m officially putting myself on a yarn shopping hiatus until I can at least knit through half of what I have stored in my bookcases, plastic bins, closet, etc. (yes, I stash yarn in as many open places as I can find) My first destashing project is going to be a new winter scarf for me, me, me. That’s right, I realize the Christmas season is approaching and I should be knitting for others, but every year that I attempt this feat, I always end up stressed, frustrated and desperately wanting to throw my yarn/project outside in the snow. Basically, knitting becomes a chore instead of a creative outlet and I don’t want that happening again this year, especially with how stressful the holiday season can be. The only folks receiving a handknit gift this year are my parents and their gifts are super simple garter stitch scarves, one of which I have already completed. I also plan on knitting my friend a pair of fingerless mittens and possibly a pair of regular mittens, but I’ll cross that bridge when I come to it. And, as I’m knitting through the stash, folks I know might be surprised with a handknit gift throughout 2013, which is always a nice surprise. 🙂

The first few skeins of yarn to be used up is my Cascade Eco Duo (approx. 4 skeins).  I purchased the natural colorway, which is a light cream/beige color.  This yarn is super soft and I can’t wait to start working with it.  I had originally purchased this yarn to make a cabled cardigan, but since I don’t want to start anymore large projects in the next few weeks, now this yarn will be knit into a beautiful winter scarf.  I need a new scarf, especially one that is soft and warm.  Emphasis on soft.  The last thing any knitter wants is an itchy scarf wrapped tightly around their necks when it’s cold outside and the snow is blowing.

So, here’s to destashing over the next 6 months or so and hopefully I can keep to my resolution.  Also, my Cable/Lace Kimono Cardigan should be finished this week and I’m hoping to have FO pictures taken this weekend.  I’m so excited to finally have a finished sweater that I can wear… can’t wait to show it off!!

FO: The Long Scarf

I’ve recently completed one Christmas present:  Dad’s Long Scarf.  I had a couple of skeins of hand-dyed Plymouth Baby Alpaca Grande in stash and decided that it would be perfect as a nice, cozy scarf.  A basic garter stitch design was put to use since dad’s request had been for a super long scarf that he could “wrap around and around and around” his neck.  Plus, I was craving some relaxing tv knitting.  (Which was perfect for Wednesday evenings while I watched Nashville!)

I knit this scarf width-wise instead of using the traditional method.  For some reason, in my mind, I thought that this would cut my knitting time in half, but it didn’t.  It took me about the same amount of time that it would have taken me if I had knit the scarf length-wise.  But, in my defense, I did create a pretty cool looking scarf with the garter-stitches going in a different direction.  🙂

The scarf’s length is about 50-60″ long.  I’m 5’5″ and if I place the scarf around my neck without wrapping it, then the scarf will fall to about mid-thigh, almost to my knees.  Here’s the pattern, in case anyone out there would like to knit a long scarf for him or herself:

Gauge: 3 stitches to 1” on size 10.5 needles

CO: 180 stitches.

Knit for 36 rows or however wide you would like your scarf.

BO: use 1 size larger needle for a smoother BO. (I used a size 11 dpn)

Click Here Ravelry Project Page

Slow Progress

I have finally completed the back and both fronts to this beautiful cardigan.  (Sweaterbabe Cable/Lace Kimono)  It has taken me months (since March!) to get this far, but I can see the end is near and I’m getting excited to wear this piece.

I spent the better part of last night picking up 97 stitches for one sleeve only to realize that I had been picking up & knitting the stitches on the wrong side.  Grrr!!  So, I ripped everything apart and started over (at 11 PM, yes, my determination got the better of me) and am now satisfied with my progress.  My goal is to knit this sleeve in a week.  Fingers crossed that I can accomplish this!  🙂

Look how gorgeous those front pieces are!  Now all they need is the ribbed trim & ties for wrapping.  Happy Wednesday everyone!