2014: The Year of Sweaters

I know I’ve said it for the past two years, but this is the year! I only have to finish up the never ending sweater I’m working on right now (a Harry Potter “Weasley Sweater” that I only have 8″ left to finish but it seems like I never get anywhere on), an elephant, an infinity scarf, a monkey, and a child’s wrap sweater (that is already partially finished) … and then all of my current orders are finished and I can start on personal knitting. Here is my list of some sweaters (in no particular order) that I hope to accomplish this year:

Project1

I really want a cozy, fuzzy, warm open cardigan. This one is for me!

Project2

This one is for my daughter. She is five and a half, and I let her pick out both the pattern and the yarn. If you couldn’t tell, she’s very girly.

Project4

My dad asked me a few months back about knitting him a cardigan a la Mr. Rodger’s style. (I’m kicking it up a notch.)

Project7

This one is on my Christmas gift list for my mom. She picked the pattern and the yarn, I just have to put it together.

Project5

Another one for me! I just can’t resist this lacy pattern and I love the berry color.

Project6

Another for my daughter. Now that she’s to an age where she’s not growing out of each new size within just a few months, I’d really like to make her a couple of sweaters.

I’m sure this list will grow as the year progresses –hopefully I’ll find at least one sweater to knit for my 3 year old son as well– but this is it so far. Not that it isn’t already substantial. I’m excited to take a break from knitting solely for profit though and make some things for myself and my loved ones. Now I just need to start saving up for all that yarn …

All sweater pictures were found on Ravelry.com. Yarn sample pictures are from Lion Brand and Knit Picks Websites.

Entrelac! At last!

Entrelac is something that has been on my list to try for years. I just love textured stitches, so the basketweave quality has always really appealed to me. My list of things I want to try is, unfortunately, about a mile long though … so it usually takes me until someone (a family member, friend, or customer) requests something using a new technique before I get to try it. Luckily my friend Liz requested this entrelac hat, so I finally got to try it out!

  

The pattern is called “Entrelac Winter Hat” by Amanda Lilley, and it’s available for $3.99 on the KnitPicks website. I used KnitPicks Swish Worsted (100% Superwash Merino Wool) yarn in “Bare” (undyed). I also made sure to block my hat when I was finished knitting so that the “basketweave” laid a little flatter and wasn’t as gathered-looking at the crown.

As intimidating as entrelac seems before you attempt it, or even after the first row or so as you’re attempting it, once you get the hang of it it’s really pretty simple! If you’ve been waiting to try it out, I really suggest you just take the plunge and try! If you get stuck and need help you can use this video I found on YouTube called “How to Knit Entrelac: Beginner Video on Entrelac Knitting from Knitting Daily TV”, or you can search around YouTube and find a video you like better –there are tons! And now I’m going to go search for more enterlac patterns on Ravelry, because I think I’m in love.

An Update of Sorts

I have been busy lately; my daughter started Kindergarten this fall and I went back to school myself as well. Bachelors degree, here I come! (Finally!) But that has meant much, much, much less time for knitting and crocheting. I have been slowly working on projects for friends of mine, but no holiday knitting is taking place and no knitting for pure enjoyment at all. I’m not complaining too much though; all in the name of education! I’ve wanted to go back to school ever since my daughter surprised me as two pink lines on a plastic stick, and I am so glad I am finally able to.

Today I finally was able to go through some pending comments and reply to them, so if you have been patiently waiting for a reply to a question or comment you had, there should be one now. I’m so sorry it took me so long!

Right now in my limited spare time I have been working on a pattern for a Minion hat, and I hope to have one up within the next couple of weeks. After that I do have a couple other ideas; a crochet Aviator/Bomber hat, a crochet Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles hat perhaps, and maybe some more knitted ear warmer styles. Hopefully I can get the time to get some of those patterns written out!

I’ve also had a few people ask me over the past few months why I offer my patterns for free and don’t try to sell them, so I thought I’d address that here too while I have a chance. The answer is quite simple really; because I don’t want to. Knitting and crocheting is a craft that most people do for relaxation and a sense of achievement — it feels good to finish something and have it be a useful product. It makes you feel pride and a sense of accomplishment to finish a project and have even just one person say “wow, you made that?!”. Why would I charge someone to obtain that feeling? I’m not that kind of a person. If you want to be able to make something special for your friends, families, or anyone else who may want it, why should you have to pay to do so? You already have to pay for the yarn, needles/hooks, and all the other notions required for your craft; I’m not going to make you pay anything else to do something intended to make you and others feel good. That’s just not the type of person I am. (I guess that’s why I’m going to school for Psychology and not Business, huh?) So if you have any special requests for patterns you’d like to see here please feel free to say so with a comment and I will try my best to come up with something for you — just don’t fault me if it takes me a while, and remember that I am not a professional pattern writer by any means, I’m just doing the best I can.

 

Happy crafting! :-)

Lacy Cardigans

I mentioned some time ago how much I love the look of a hand-knit sweater, and how I was planning to make a ton of them in my “free knitting” time. Well … I have been! I’m working on one long project right now for a friend who is visiting the Wizarding World of Harry Potter this fall (one guess what I’m making!) so to make sure I don’t get bored and put it in “knitting time out”, I’ve been making some little side projects at the same time. Namely these little cardigans:

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The pattern I’m using is a Sirdar pattern from the “1913 Cardigans” pamphlet. It’s knit in pieces and then sewn together at the end … but after the first sweater I converted the pattern to one big piece, and left stitches active and on stitch holders at the top of each panel to create the yoke instead of picking them back up at the end.

I’ve actually been buying up quite a number of Sirdar patterns on Patternfish lately. They have the cutest little infant and children sweaters! The patterns are well written and easy to follow (provided you are an experience pattern-reader) and they always turn out adorable. And I love changing out the buttons and embellishments (like a little flower pin) to give each sweater its own unique feel. I even found a pattern I want to make for myself — which will be the first thing I’ll ever make for myself!

Next up is a little dress for a friend’s infant, and a ballet sweater for another friend’s little girl. I might also be knitting a dress and matching doll dress for my daughter for her birthday in about a month if I can manage to acquire the yarn in time. And I’ll try not to take so long to post about my new projects this time. ;-)

If you’re interested in buying these sweaters, they’re
listed in my Etsy shop! (Except for the fuchsia one.)

A Simple Headband/Ear-Warmer (Flat Knitting Version)

I’ve had several people ask for it … so here’s the flat knitting version of my Simple Headband/Ear-Warmer pattern. I haven’t personally tested this version, so please please please let me know if I made any mistakes while writing the pattern!

Find the circular version here.

Download the PDF Version here!

(Shown here with the garter rows left out.)

Materials:

• Worsted Weight Yarn (Hobby Lobby’s “I Love This Yarn” in Red)
• Size 8US Knitting Needles
• Stitch Marker

Abbreviations:

• K: knit
• P: purl
• Sts: stitches

Gauge:

4 sts = 1 inch in Stockinette Stitch

Sizes:

Child or Adult

Notes:

The flower shown is crocheted. Any knit/crocheted flower, or practically any other embellishment, would look good too. And if you’re not into embellishments it looks great just on its own as well!

For a Child:

Cast on 84 sts.

Row 1-5: *K2, P2* repeat to end

Row 6: Knit across
Row 7: Purl across
Row 8: Knit across
Row 9: Purl across

Row 10-14: Knit across

Row 15: Purl across
Row 16: Knit across
Row 17: Purl across
Row 18: Knit across

Row 19-23: *K2, P2* repeat to end

Bind off loosely. (If you bind off tightly there will not be enough stretch.)
Using a tapestry needle, join the ends of the headband to form a circle.
Weave in ends.

For an Adult:

Cast on 92 sts.

Row 1-6: *K2, P2* repeat to end

Row 7: Purl across
Row 8: Knit across
Row 9: Purl across
Row 10: Knit across
Row 11: Purl across

Row 12-17: Knit across

Row 18: Purl across
Row 19: Knit across
Row 20: Purl across
Row 21: Knit across
Row 22: Purl across

Row 23-28: *K2, P2* repeat to end

Bind off loosely. (If you bind off tightly there will not be enough stretch.)
Using a tapestry needle, join the ends of the headband to form a circle.
Weave in ends.

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