Friday, December 20, 2013

A Sweater Finish!

This sweater all started with the sale bin at the local quilt/yarn shop.  We couldn't resist digging through all the colors, and my friend found a bunch of this yarn and fell in love.  It's a cashmere, merino, and microfiber blend in a pretty chocolate/maroon color.

Since she didn't knit, I volunteered to knit her daughter a copy of the Soledad sweater that my daughter was wearing at the time.  This is the third time I've knitted the sweater, but this yarn was just a little bit thinner than the first two versions, so it turned out a little slimmer, but super warm.

I added a couple inches to both the sleeves and the body, so that it can be worn even if one of those growth spurts happens.  She also wanted a higher neck, so I just knitted until I ran out of yarn, which turned out to be an extra inch and a half of collar.

The best part of this pattern is that little cable section that runs along the sleeve and down the side.  I have a couple other cable patterns that I want to try inserting in there.  I'm nervous about modifying a pattern, since I still feel like a novice knitter, but it doesn't seem that hard to change the path of the cables.

I really hope my friend likes the sweater, and more importantly, that her daughter loves it too.

Linking up with Amanda Jean for Finish It Up Friday!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

WIP Wednesday!

So sure, there's cats and dresses going on over here, but this is my latest work-in-project.  I'd heard of this yarn for quite a while, and I finally got my hands on it, pattern figured, and the rest of my knitting off the needles I needed.

The yarn in question is from a friend's time working on a sheep farm.  When she left, she was given a tub of this yarn, spun from the sheep she'd been tending.  I'm also told that it was dyed with plants found around the farm, which is amazing considering how bright and happy that blue is.

Now that I've got it, I'm making a striped jumper.  I didn't realize until after starting that the whole thing is done in a seed stitch, which means this won't be getting done quickly, but will have an amazing texture.

Linking up with Lee for WIP Wednesday!

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Catvent Quilt-a-Long!

Anyone else loving the #Catvent Quilt-a-Long?  I've gotten a few cats behind, but I'm still loving my little kitty assignments from the internet.  It gets me to the machine on days that I just want to make a nest for myself and hibernate all winter, and it's a great starting project for those days when I have so many things to do that I don't know where to start.

I love going to this little drawer of scraps to pick colors for the new cats.  I'm going rainbow-y like the original, but picking colors based on how many prints are called for in the cat and how many prints I have in like colors.  I was sure that this far into the QAL, this drawer would be looking sparse, but those scraps have been multiplying while I'm not looking.

This isn't a rushed project, or a project that I need to have done for a deadline, but I'm pretty excited to see all of this come together.  I keep staring at the spot that it will hang on my wall, and it looks emptier every time I walk by it.

I'm also trying to imagine different quilting designs.  I love the idea of quilting faces on, but kind of want to keep it simple.  I don't know, any ideas?

Linking up with Blossom Heart Quilts for Sew Cute Tuesday!

Sew Cute Tuesday

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Sew Mama Sew Giveaway Winner!

Congrats to Susan, #180, for winning my Sew Mama Sew giveaway!  I've sent out an email and will get that to you when I get your address!

And thanks to all my other new visitors!

Friday, December 13, 2013

More Parsley Pants... With Hearts!

So I made another pair of Parsley pants for this little girl.  Not a big deal, but a nice little thing that I can point to and say I finished this week.  And it's been a hell of a week.  (Basically, her face says it all.)

We got our first real snow of the winter, complete with ice and slush, and I got into my first snow related car accident.  Ugh!  No one was hurt, except for the trees that kindly stopped the skidding and the front of my van, but the van really had it coming.

I was bummed because of the new expense of a car, but a bit glad to be rid of my minivan.  So a bit of an emotional up and down week.  Luckily, I have an amazing group of friends who had a laugh with me over the vans demise.  And I got to take a day out and go test drive new cars with just hubby.

So not a whole lot got accomplished this week, but I did make those pants!

Check back a little later, I'll be picking the name for the Sew Mama Sew Giveaway!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

WIP Wednesday!

It's WIP Wednesday!  Time for me to get out all my projects, realize that there's way too many of them, only photograph a few, then go procrastinate and work on none of them!  I'm only half joking since I don't actually pull them all out.  I probably couldn't fit everything into one picture.

But anyway....  I am actually working on the #Catventquiltalong.  I love that it just takes about 15 minutes to finish a cat.  I've gotten one of every rainbow color done, the whole Roy G. Biv is there, so now I just have to fill in spots with more hues.

I'm finally digging into that stack of rayon that my mother picked out.  She asked for a couple copies of her favorite dress for Christmas, and naturally I said yes, even though I'd never worked with the fabric before.  After completing a dress for myself to practice, drafting a pattern, making the first dress and having my mom try it on, I'm ready to just bust out the rest of these dresses.

And I've finished the sleeves to this little commissioned sweater and I'm on to the body.  I got this far before deciding to check my gauge, and I'm concerned.  The gauge is correct, but I'm trying to replicate a sweater that I've already made, and that sweater's gauge is too big.  I'm taking a break from the knitting until I can try it on the little girl that it's for, but I have a feeling that it's going to be ripped and more stitches added to the front and back.  Still better than finding out when I got all the way up to the armpits!

Linking up with Lee for WIP Wednesday!

Monday, December 9, 2013

Sew Mama Sew Giveaway Day!

It's Sew Mama Sew's Giveaway Day!  I'm really excited to join in for my first time.

I found a couple little goodies from my QuiltCon Swag bag and decided that they'd be the perfect thing for a giveaway.  The fabric is a little roll from a layer cake.  I've no idea what designer it is, but I'm going to have to do some research into that yellow print.  I think I need more of it.

And I have a little pack of Kona pre-cut Hexies too.  Warning, these are totally addictive.

Leave a comment to enter.  You could tell me what fabric you hope will find it's way into your Christmas stocking.  Followers of my blog get another entry, just let me know how you follow me in your second comment.  International entries welcome!  I'll pick a random winner on Friday, December 13th, after 8 p.m. EST.

Make sure you head over to Sew Mama Sew and check out the other giveaways too!

  Sew Mama Sew Giveaway Day!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

WIP Wednesday!

After all the rush leading up to Thanksgiving, I've tried to lay low this week.  So my projects are actually fun and for me!  (Not that I don't have fun, but sometimes you stare at something so long you want to just chuck it out a window.  That's how UFOs are made)

Anyway, yesterday I decided to just buy the Staple Dress pattern and whip up a dress for the upcoming holiday parties.  I had that big chunk of rayon from Joann's and figured that it would be the perfect flowy fabric for the high/low hem.  I just have to adjust the fit on the top (it's a bit too big); sew in the facings, hem, and elastic waist; and I'm done!

And, as a side bonus, it was a great test run since I've never sewn with such slippery fabrics and I promised to make my mom a bunch of dresses from similar fabric for Christmas.  Turns out it's not so bad as long as you go slow.  I'm doing all French seams since I'm nervous about fray, but that's pretty easy too.

This lovely pile of yarn is a sweater I'm making for a friend's daughter.  She picked out this yarn and a pattern and said go!  I love knitting with it.  It's a merino, cashmere, microfiber blend that's braided not twisted, so it's super soft and easy to knit.  Also, it hides a Russian join like nobody's business, which I love. 

Arms are done, so I'm onto the body.  That's my favorite part, because there's a nice cable that takes just the right amount of brain power to do, but I don't have to constantly consult the chart, so I can just zone out in a comfy spot and knit. 

My super fun project is the Catvent Quilt-a-long that Elizabeth Hartmann is doing.  I love these little cats, and they're super easy to do.  I can't wait to see them all together!  I've already picked out the spot where this wall hanging will go and warned the husband that he has little choice. 

Linking up with Freshly Pieced for WIP Wednesday!

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

A Little Pipit Sweater Coat Finish

Does this little girl really need another sweater?  Not really, but the yarn was on super clearance and I couldn't resist.  And I had this pattern already saved in my Ravelry queue, so really I had no choice.


The pattern is called Pipit, from Melissa Lester.  It's a super fast knit that doesn't really involve anything very fancy, making it the perfect project for me to bring in the car on our Thanksgiving trek.  I was able to just knit away while husband drove the three hours, while minding children in a not-so-kid-proof house, and while getting caught up on all the latest family news.  I love a project that's just enough to keep your hands busy, but not muddle up your brain.

I did make a couple of changes to the pattern.  It called for 18 rows of ribbing on the neck, but I only did ten.  I also had to do a little brain work on the buttonholes.  She warns you that the pattern is wonky, and to just ignore that part.  I've never done buttonholes, but a simple K2tog YO worked perfectly.  

The only other thing I added was the picot bind off on the button placket.  I wanted it to be a little bit more special since the rest of the cardigan is pretty basic.  Also, I had a feeling that binding off that long row of ribbing would look warped if I did anything else.  This way it looks like I meant it to be a little ruffled.  

And Little Girl picked out those perfect heart buttons herself (from a couple options I brought home from the store).  They turned out to be the exact right color.  She's very proud of them!

Taking a bow!
I love how it turned out, and she refused to take it off for most of the day, so WIN!

Sew Cute Tuesday