Thursday, December 1, 2016

WIP: Toronto Honey Cowl

While grad school has kept me almost 100% occupied (and this blog almost 100% quiet over the past year), I have had the chance to continue working on my Honey Cowl. While visiting my boyfriend's family in Toronto last March, I stopped by a knitting store named Yarns Untangled in Kensington Market. The shop was incredibly cute -- it was not too big but they had a nice, curated selection.


I always like to buy yarn when I visit a new city, and when I saw the Malabrigo Yarn Rios I immediately thought of this modification of the Honey Cowl. The two colors I chose are little closer together than the ones in the original modification, but together these two have a sort of seaside/mermaid-y theme with the blues/purples and then greens/light blues.


The pictures unfortunately do not do justice to these colorways.



The pattern itself has been easy -- good for knitting while watching Netflix or while traveling. I've decided to just knit until the yarn runs out. I hope to have it done before winter really sets in.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Free Pattern: Snow Scarf

In contrast to the pattern I posted last week, this one is for a scarf that is huge, super warm, and easy to completely wrap your neck/face in (thanks in part to some seriously awesome yarn). 

This a modified version of the infinity scarf I made last winter (read about it here). I decided to undo the seaming an make it a more traditional scarf. 



Pattern: Snow Scarf

Materials:


Pattern:

  • Cast on 17 stitches
  • Row 1: *K1, P1, K1 repeat from * to end of row
  • Repeat Row 1 until piece measures 60 inches from cast on edge
  • Bind off loosely, weave in ends





I may retroactively add some tassels.
Stay warm!


Friday, January 22, 2016

FO Friday: Mochimochi Land Snowpeople

*Disclaimer: I was sent a free Mochimochi Land kit to review on my blog by the people at YarnCanada.ca. All opinions are my own*

First of all, these are the cutest things I've ever knit and I can't get over them. I was never big into knitting or crocheting amigurumi or any of those small toy patterns, but these little guys may have changed my mind.

This kit comes from the people at Yarn Canada but the pattern and kit themselves are the creation of Anna at Mochimochi Land. While you can order directly from her, Yarn Canada is helping to bridge the shipping gap for those folks in Canada.



The kit comes in a small ziploc with pattern instructions, stuffing, and yarn. DPNs are not included. 
I did have minor issues with almost running out of some of the yarn (I always leave a long tail when casting on) but was able to finish both snowpeople without dipping in to my own stash. 


The pattern instructions were very easy to follow, and each one took me less than an hour. I found the embroidery aspect the most difficult, and I think the pattern assumes a certain familiarity with embroidery (that I definitely don't have), so the hands on one came out a little weird looking. It also led to more waste on my part of the black thread (and almost a crisis of running out). 

Took advantage of some fresh snowfall to put these lil' guys in their natural habitat

Overall, an incredibly enjoyable knit. At yarncanada.ca, they are selling them for CA$14.75, which may be a little steep for personal use, but would make an excellent gift for the knitter in your life.  I think I may turn them into ornaments for next year's Christmas tree :) 




Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Free Pattern: Poofy Cowl

This is more of a recipe than a pattern as all it is the brioche stitch in circular form (done many times by many talented knitters). So while this is not super original, I feel I've found a combination of techniques, length, and yarn that works really well. I also really like the clean lines of this cowl. Sometimes my scarves are so thick and warm it's almost as if there is too much scarf. This one is perfect for those not-so-cold days when you need just a little warmth.



Pattern Link: Poofy Cowl Recipe


Materials:


Yes, I used a baby yarn. Yes, it is so so so so soft. The yarn is held doubled.

There are two ways to do this pattern. One is to simply cast on like you normally do, bind off loosely, and mattress stitch the two ends together.

The other is to provisionally cast on and graft the two ends together to create an invisible join. You can find a good tutorial for this technique here, specifically for the brioche stitch.

If you find the following written instructions confusing, refer to this video for a visual explanation of how to do the brioche stitch.

Pattern:

  • Holding the ends of both skeins together, cast on 32 stitches
  • Set up row: *Bring yarn to front of work, slip 1 purlwise, k1, repeat from * until end of row
  • Row 1: *Bring yarn forward, slip 1 purlwise, k2tog, repeat from * until end of row
  • Repeat row 1 until piece measures 22 inches from beginning.
  • Finish in your preferred method




Happy knitting! :)


Monday, January 4, 2016

FO: Walpole Sweater

It's finally done and posted about! (Read more about how long it took me to knit this thing here, here, and here
Ravelry project page here



I worked on this sweater off and on for over two years (so much stockinette in a fingering weight!) and am very happy to finally have it completed. It is definitely my most wearable sweater to date, though it did stretch a bit with (minimal) blocking. As much as I tried to prevent stretching, the weight of it soaked really stretched out the arms. It is supposed to be a relaxed fit, however, so it's not the end of the world.

The yarn (Berroco Ultra Alpaca Fine) was excellent to work with, super soft, and the boysenberry colorway is a lovely. Despite the stretching, it held up well in the blocking process.

The pattern (Walpole) was excellently written, easy to follow, and produced a very wearable garment. The downside was not a surprise: a large sweater knit in a fine yarn with little pattern variation to keep it interesting. I'd like to see a worsted weight version of this sweater.





The pictures, unfortunately, do not do the colors or the style of the sweater justice. Some day I will invest in a better camera and better photography skills.



Thursday, June 4, 2015

WIP: Walpole Sweater (still!)

Silence for a solid 6 months again... but I have some very exciting news to share! I've been accepted to the economics PhD program at UMASS Amherst and will be moving out there in August. A wonderful side benefit of that is I will finally be able to visit the Webs warehouse :)

I wish I had more to show for the past 6 months, but I finally made some progress on an item that had been sitting in the bottom of my basket for a while.

I've been working on this sweater for over a year and a half now and I'm determined to finish it before the summer is over. There's really no excuse for how long it's been taking me... I had a whole winter of being snowed in to make some progress. Instead, I started and did not finish three other sweaters. 

The main thing that has been holding me back is how fine the yarn is. It just means hours of stockinette stitch with not much to switch it up. This past Monday, though, I finally finished the body of the sweater.




The yarn (Berroco Ultra Apaca) itself really is beautiful. It's a bit darker than the pictures show and has a very nice heather aspect to it. Even though this sweater is taking me forever, I know it will be super soft once it's done. 

Now that I've moved on to the sleeves I'm happier as the progress is a little more obvious. I'm also using the magic loop method. I claimed to hate it a couple years ago but I finally go the hang of it and it is so much quicker and easier than using DPNs. I found this tutorial helpful when I was learning.

I deviated from the pattern a bit and made the cuffs of the sleeves tighter. The pattern has very billowy sleeves and I couldn't see myself flapping around in huge cuffs.


I'm leaving for a trip to the West Coast including Oregon and Yosemite and am hoping to get the sleeves done during the plane rides and road trips. 


Saturday, January 3, 2015

The Late Fall-slash-Early Winter of Big Knits

My knitting the past three months has been all about instant-gratification. It was a very stressful fall as I worked to get everything ready to apply to graduate school, and I needed the type of knitting that I could just zone out to.



US Size 50 needles definitely helped


It tried to put on as many I could before my head disappeared completely :) I know, I'm hilarious.


Most of these were part of Christmas-knitting and I was not able to take a picture of all of the scarves before I gave them away. I was able to document a few, though, and if you're up for some instant gratification yourself, definitely give these patterns a try!



~*~*~

Pattern:
Holding two yarns together, cast on 17
Row 1: k1tbl, p1tbl, repeat until end of row
Row 2: p1tbl, k1tbl, repeat until end of row
Repeat these two rows until desired length, sew two ends together
Needles: US Size 50, 25 mm


Made this one for my mom for Christmas!

~*~*~

Pattern: Blue Brambles 
Yarn: Lion Brand Wool-Ease Thick & Quick
Needles: US Size 15, 10mm

So fun I made two!

~*~*~

Pattern:
Cast on 17
Row 1: k1tbl, p1tbl, repeat until end of row
Row 2: p1tbl, k1tbl, repeat until end of row
Repeat these two rows until desired length, sew two ends together
Yarn: Premier Yarns Mega Tweed
Needles: US size 15, 10mm