More than I thought.

I am tired and work is stressful, so I will be brief this evening. I finished my February Rainbow socks, and I like them more than I thought I would. This skein was my least favorite of the lot. Not to say that I didn’t like it, it just wasn’t my favorite. As I knit it though, some magic in that chartreuse stripe took hold and I really enjoyed the rainbow that these knit up into.

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I’m really digging the matching stripes with slightly miss-matched heels.

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They’re pretty fun. The yarn is from Knitterly Things, on her sparkle base. It’s the February 2017 rainbow club yarn called “The Way It Goes.”

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The March colorway is “Rainbows After Rain” and I’m really looking forward to it. In the meantime, I’ve cast on my next pair of light socks. I could knit Baerenwolle socks forever.

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That’s all I’ve got for today. Well, one more thing… I finished the sweater. More on that later.

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Happy Making!

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Candygram

I’ve been feeling a little like I’m not getting anywhere on anything. I think this feeling comes from working so hard and so monogamously on one project that still isn’t finished.

That one project is my Puntilla. Sometimes I wonder at the wisdom of a fingering weight, over-sized sweater for a first sweater, but hey, it’s simple and I love it. When last we spoke, I believe I bemoaned the endless stockinette that seemed my fortress and prison. After I wrote that, I immediately cast on for a Coastal Walk shawl:

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And that’s how far I got before I thought, let’s at least try on the sweater:

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The novelty of actually trying on a knitted garment really got to me. I thought I could at least make a bit more progress and then I became utterly obsessed. I didn’t knit a single other thing until I bound off the ribbing:

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Oh my goodness, can you stand it? The color is divine and it’s so soft. I’ve cast on a sleeve and am slowly working on that now. This weekend I’ve been deep into rainbow sock territory. I’m past the heel point in the second sock now:

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Sunday afternoon, I was looking around the internet and stumbled across a couple of quilt patterns that I just couldn’t say no to. The first of these is the Candygram Mini Quilt by Heidi Staples:

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Now, when I say mini, I mean mini. This little cutie finished at 4″ x 12″. It took me a couple of hours–my kind of instant gratification. I can’t wait to get it up on my wall! I used scraps for the top and decided on a sort of incongruous lemur print for the back.

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The second in this bit of mini mania is the 4-Patch Heart Mini Quilt by Amanda Niederhauser. I have the fabric she used in stash and that pink and red and green seems just perfect. I’ve got it cut out, half square triangles made, four-patches done–we’re ready to assemble.

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I think this one will go together fairly quickly. The pattern calls for half a jelly roll, but I’m using a charm pack that I cut up. By the way, both of those patterns are free tutorials and really easy to make. I’m looking forward to freshening up my sewing corner wall with some new minis. It’s definitely been a while!

I’m ready to get the sweater and socks off the needles, but it’s nice to look back over the last week and see that I have been moving forward with my projects. Not to mention casting on/cutting up new ones!


Happy making!

Late to the party.

I think I am perpetually figuring out the fun of the hip stuff after the fact. I tend to get into the hip, trendy projects far after they are the talk of the town. Case in point, I’m just now coming around to the whole “make nine” craze.

This is really a new year’s planning type thing, so of course I’m getting around to it in February. The idea is that you choose nine projects–knitting, crochet, quilting, sewing, or a combination–to make in the coming year. I wasn’t really going to join in, until I realized that my ravelry queue already had eight projects. Add in my sock plans and bam! a ready made #makenine was born.

Since I’m already a month into the year, I decided not to include anything other than socks that has been started already. Without further ado, my make nine:

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Photos copyright designers as linked below.

  1. Madewell — Joji Locatelli
  2. Dotted Rays — Stephen West
  3. Box O’ Sox
  4. Eureka Cowl — Jessica Gore
  5. Sunset Highway — Caitlin Hunter
  6. Void — Melanie Berg
  7. Selbu Mittens — Skeindeer Knits
  8. Windswept — A Homespun House
  9. Coastal Walk — Joji Locatelli

I even have all of the yarn lined up–all current stash except the mitten yarn:

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I’ll talk more about all the yarns and patterns as I start each project. I’m really excited about all of these projects. They all fulfill a bit of my wardrobe architect goals, all are within my new color palate–well, except the rainbow socks, but there can never be enough rainbow socks in my life.

I’m thinking about casting on something new today, I’m currently drowning in a sea of fingering weight stockinette. I won’t show the sweater again, as it largely looks the same no matter how many rows I put into it. My February rainbow socks are part of this stockinette jungle, though they are gorgeous and fun to knit:

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The most likely candidate for a Sunday afternoon cast-on-party is Coastal Walk by Joji Locatelli. DK weight with a bit of lace to keep things interesting sounds lovely at the moment. And the yarn is absolutely calling to me. I’ve been knitting quite a bit in the blue-green/mint family lately and this mauve-y pink is just a siren song:

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So, here’s to stockinette seas, Sunday starts, and suddenly succumbing. I may always be late to the party, but I sure am excited to be here.


Happy making!

True Colors

Well, for the first month, I have done it. I managed to knit two pairs of socks, one light and one rainbow:

 

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This vibrant rainbow is so pretty and so true, it’s no wonder the colorway is called “True Colors.” This is the January 2017 Rainbow of the Month from Knitterly Things. I finished the second sock tube over the weekend, and had thought that I’d wait to cut in the heels.

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But I just kept thinking about them and how it would only take a bit of knitting to finish them up and so finish them up, I did. I love them. Rainbow socks and I go way back, I’ve knit a pair of rainbow-y socks in each of the last three years.

This year, the plan is definitely to up the rainbow intake by a long shot. I can’t wait to get to the next rainbow, but February’s colorway will be waiting until February. Until then, I’m working on a few other projects and some sewing. And only every once in a while stopping to admire my new socks.

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Happy making!

A bed of swatches.

I have been dancing in my pants to start knitting a sweater. I want to knit a garment more than I ever have. It’s probably the one of my challenges that I’m most excited about.

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Image copyright Rafael Delceggio

I’ve wanted to knit Puntilla, by Joji Locatelli, for a very long time. I love the soft femininity of it, the lace detail, the over-sized coziness. Puntilla hits my core style buttons on all cylinders. Feminine, simple, cozy, classic. It’s all of those things and knitting it in a sweet and soft mint color just seals the deal.

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You may recall that I purchased this yarn for a Waterlily; I even swatched and cast the thing on. I didn’t make it far before getting mired in a huge gift project. I never picked it back up and eventually pulled it off the needles. No big loss, as I’d probably only knit about 5 rows of ribbing.

So this weekend, I decided it was finally time to start a sweater. As I started to swatch, I thought that since I’m usually a pretty loose knitter, I’ll start a needle size down. Seeing that it wasn’t right, I bound off and went down another size. After 20 or so rows, I realized I went the wrong direction and should have gone up a size. So I knit another swatch. Washed and blocked it and it was off. Stitches a bit too small. And so, I went up a needle size. Washed and blocked it. Gauge was correct, but I didn’t like the fabric.

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There they are, in all their glory. I finally decided to go with the 3.5 mm (US 4). I like the fabric better. I’m knitting the medium size, to get between a small and a medium. I’m satisfied with the fabric I’m getting and the planned sizing. Hopefully this all works. I feel a little silly that I have so many swatches, but better safe than sorry, right? It looks a bit worse if you add them to all the swatches I knit for the Waterlily…

Yes, that’s right. 56g of yarn in swatches. Thank goodness I bought an extra skein of this yarn! At least I could always rip out the swatches, soak the yarn, and have… 8 mini skeins. Let’s hope that’s not necessary. At any rate, I’ve started the sweater and have finished the neck shaping at the back.

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Because I had a fair bit of time waiting for swatches to dry, I also cast on a new shawl! It’s a wonder what frogging does for your mojo. I started a Canopy shawl by Melody Hoffman. I’m knitting it up in the baa ram ewe I picked up in Denver a few months ago.

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I am thoroughly enjoying this knit, it’s pretty simple but interesting.  The yarn is lovely, the pattern is gorgeous. The only thing is the yarn doesn’t have a lot of stretch to it and I find that my hands tire after knitting it for a while. That’s not too much of a problem, though, since I always have socks to keep me company.

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Have I ever mentioned that I love rainbows? Since the Rainbowalong is coming up, I’m only going to knit the sock tubes and wait till February to cut in the heels.

That’s about the shape of the knitting for the weekend, I think I’m just going to go curl up on a bed of swatches and enjoy my evening.

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Happy making!

 

Intentional.

intentional (in-ˈtench-nəl) adj. done with intention or on purpose; deliberate.

I’ve been thinking about one little word for 2018. A little late to the party, perhaps, but here I am. I’ve been tossing around a few words over the last few weeks. From my new year’s blog postchallenge sprang to mind. But that’s not exactly what I want my whole year to be about. What about flourish? Closer to the mark, but still not quite there.

I want something that will encompass my whole life, not just my making and crafting. What do I want to focus on, holistically, for the entire upcoming year? I thought about the things I want for myself.

For my making, I’m interested in challenging myself, choosing projects that will nurture my craft in some way, and (for things I will wear) curating a style and color palate. At home, Kevin and I are working on a commitment to spending time with friends and with the kids each weekend. Personally, I want to renew my commitment to nourishing my body.

And so, with all of that in mind, I have settled on a word. Intentional. I want to spend this year being deliberate. Doing things on purpose. Being intentional.

At home and personally that means being intentional with my time and how I treat myself. Choosing to spend each Sunday morning with the kids, making brunch and playing games. Choosing to eat the foods that make me feel well. Choosing to get a good night’s sleep.

For my making, that means choosing projects that have a purpose. Perhaps that purpose is to grow my skill as a quilter and sewist. Maybe the purpose is to continue the wardrobe architect project. Maybe the purpose of a project is simply to fulfill my love of socks:

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Can’t stop, won’t stop.

I have spoken a great deal about my goals for a handmade wardrobe. The wardrobe architect project has already helped me a great deal to be more intentional with what I purchase and the projects I choose. I have worked on a few projects that fit those goals, and have more on deck. I’ve been working on one, however, that just isn’t ticking the boxes.

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Boho Blush by Andrea Mowry, photo copyright Andrea Mowry

The Boho Blush shawl is beautiful. The color, the drape, the coziness. However. I keep going back and forth on the style. I love the look, but I don’t think it fits in with my overall goals for my style. It’s the fringe. I don’t think I would wear it nearly enough with the fringe. But to me, the fringe makes it! It completes it. In thinking about being intentional, I don’t want to “accidentally” make something that just doesn’t fit in with the vision. My time and the yarn would be much better spent on another project that does check all the boxes.

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It hurts a bit to rip out something like this (especially when I was just talking about finishing it up), but it feels empowering as well. It also feels good to be decisive and free myself up from projects I am unsure about.

I am excited about my one little word. It really feels right and that feels great. I hope to look back at the end of 2018 and see how being intentional shaped my year.


Happy making!

Socks, socks, and more socks.

Well, I have two finished objects for the first week of the new year. Both cast on and off in 2018, both are socks. I wish we were all a little more surprised, but who am I kidding?

You may recall that on New Year’s Day I cast on a new pair of socks. The first sock knit up so quickly I had whiplash:

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Honestly, I knit all but the toe on New Year’s day! The next day after work I finished the sock and Noah came to stay. He told me he had a request for a birthday gift–his birthday is in a few weeks. Of course, I couldn’t say no. He wanted a pair of yoga socks to help keep his ankles warm while he practices this winter. I dug out a pretty blue skein of yarn and cast it on.

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I started with 44 stitches, decided that looked too big. Pulled back and cast on 36. Way too small. Back to 44. Nope, definitely too big. 40. 40 was the way to go. From there on it was a lot of trial and error, as I was just making up things as I went. Once I got the first one done, though, the second flew:

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I used worsted weight yarn and a 3.5 mm (US 4) needle. I cast on 40 stitches but, as demonstrated, your mileage may vary. I wrote down notes about what exactly I did on my project page. The yarn is Fading Tardis by June Pryce Fiber Arts. I think they turned out pretty nicely, hopefully they keep his ankles nice and toasty.

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I also managed to put a little dent in my New Year’s Eve socks–but I’m in no rush on these pretties:

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Since I can’t seem to put the socks down, I’ve finished the New Year’s day socks. I just couldn’t seem to stop. I did think about stopping when I started the heel only to discover I had dropped a stitch right after the cuff and had to rip out the whole leg. I almost put them away. But I powered through and now I’ve got my first pair of the year done!

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So pretty. This pink and green with speckles is killer. The yarn is also my first mohair sock yarn and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Looking forward to seeing how these wear. The yarn is Pistachio Rose Frosting by Nox Yarn on her Flora Sock base.

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In other news, I don’t think I’ve really talked about it here but I joined the Knitterly Things Rainbow of the Month club last year. So each month, I received a super fun skein of rainbow, self-striping sock yarn. I haven’t knit any of them, but I think now might be the time. Once I got the final installment, I lined them all up to take a picture of them together:

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Oh my goodness. I was, admittedly, a little skeptical of how varied and interesting 12 skeins of rainbow stripes could be–but boy did Julia prove me wrong. They are all so different and beautiful. Seeing them all lined up got me thinking… what if I knit them up over the course of this year? I don’t know if I can really keep up 2 pairs of socks a month, but I can certainly try, right? I think I’ll cast on January tonight:

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This is “True Colors” and I think it’s a great way to kick off! If you’re curious, I got the club on the sparkle base. Can you even imagine 12 pairs of sparkly rainbow socks all in a row? I cannot. By the way, sign ups for 2018 are still going on. It’s definitely a lot of fun.

I’ll probably pick up something other than socks at some point soon. Probably. Maybe after I finish the cuff of the rainbow pair. Maybe.


Happy making!