Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Ten on Tuesdays

Hi Knitters,

This week's Ten on Tuesdays is inspired by my Mother.  She gave me a list the other day of her words of wisdom so I thought I`d share them with you all!

  1. Always wear a sweater.  (This from the lady who had the best sweater-knitting Mom ever, so she always had awesome sweaters to wear.)
  2. Never run with scissors.  (I was always in a hurry as a child, so this one was told to me often!)
  3. Throw the torn and holey nightgown away - or you may end up going for an ambulance ride in it.  (She speaks this one from personal experience....)
  4. Always eat your breakfast.
  5. Always wear clean underwear. (I have a feeling this one ends just like the nightgown one.)
  6. Look both ways before crossing the street.
  7. It hurts to be beautiful - examples: plucking eyebrows, piercing ears, waxing armpits (the last one I`m just going to leave alone!)
  8. Don`t let your husband listen to his brother.  (Another one spoken from experience I assume.)
  9. Listen more than you talk. 
  10. Buy the best, but never pay full price.  (Spoken by the queen of amazing deal finding.)
I hope you all enjoyed this weeks edition of Ten on Tuesdays.  Have a great week everyone!!

Happy Knitting!!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Miniature Monday


Hello Knitters,

Over the last few days I've been reading back through all the posts on the Mochimochi Land blog and I've become inspired to begin my own miniature knitting challenge.  I am going to do Miniature Monday on the blog where on Mondays I will post a picture of something miniature that I have knitted, over the weekend/week before.  I will probably start off with a lot of the Mochimochi Land patterns since those are what I'm currently enjoying, but I'm not going to rule out trying to come up with a few of my own once I learn the ropes!  I thought this would help me keep up with my blogging, even during this busy time, and it would also make there be something to look forward to seeing on the blog on Mondays - like a little Monday pick-me-up :-)  I hope you all enjoy it!! 

This week's miniature is the "Plucky Mushrooms" from Knitting Mochimochi.  However, mine have a bit of an unplanned modification.  I read the instructions wrong because I was knitting while chatting with my sister, so I wasn't paying attention, and ended up with a "tall" mushroom.  I considered ripping him back and doing him over again, but by then he started growing on me.  Now I'm quite fond of him! 

Happy Knitting!!

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Bitty Cabled Cardigan


Happy Weekend Knitters,

I hope everyone is having a lovely Saturday!  I'm in the middle of baking some bread (I'm waiting for it to rise right now) and working on placing a Knit Picks order.  It seems that I am going to run out of yarn for my swap knitting so I need to get some more asap.  Not that I mind at all....it would be silly of me to order a few balls and not get the free shipping now wouldn't it? 

Anyways, the picture above is what I would call my "work desk" since it is where I do all my blogging, pattern searching/writing, Ravelry-ing, and quite a bit of my knitting.  I thought I'd show you what an average day for me at my desk looks like.  (The strange angle of the photo is because I'm taking it from sitting on the floor.  I was down there taking photos of other knitting projects and thought I'd snap it at the same time).  The desk is a bit, actually more like a lot, of creative chaos most of the time.  Sometimes I find it inspiring while other times I find it too cluttered to even think straight!  The point of this is - I was wondering where all of you do most of your knitting/creative work and how do you keep it inspiring and not messy?  I seem to be having a bit of a difficult time finding the right balance and just wondered what others do.


I also wanted to share the picture of my completed Bitty Cabled Cardigan now that I've got the picture to upload right-side up!  This pattern is by Heather Cabanas and I purchased it from Knit Picks.  It's part of their IDP (Independent Designers Program).  You can also purchase it from Ravelry hereI knit mine from Knit Picks Comfy Worsted in Ivory and did the newborn (8-9 pounds) size.  It was super quick and very easy.  The baby I originally knit it for ended up being a little too big for it by the time I was ready to mail it, so I'm going to save it for another little one.  Now I need to find something else to knit for that baby :-)  But I think the Knit Picks order can help me out with that! 

Happy Knitting!!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Buttons

 Hello Knitters,

I've been working away on my swap knitting today, so I can't show any pictures of my progress....at least not yet ;-)  I did however want to share pictures of my completed Bitty Cabled Cardigan.  But you know what they say about the best laid plans..... 


This is all I have to show you right now.  For some reason my pictures are uploading sideways and this little guy is the only one that stayed upright.  I'm so happy with the buttons that I wanted to do a close-up of them so you all could see how cute they are.  I've always been fascinated with buttons.  I have many fond memories of going to yard sales with my Mom when I was younger and buying the big containers of buttons people always seemed to have for sale.  I fully enjoyed coming home and pouring them out on the floor to see each and every one.  I also can remember playing with my Grandma's big brown button box, which I inherited.  It has so many buttons of all different kinds, and some are very old.  I always look forward to when I get to go button shopping for something I've knit.  I try to search for the ones that will go "just right" with the project.  My Mom actually picked the ones for the cardigan out when we were at Joann's last.  She has a very good eye for what will look good together.  I'm super happy how the whole thing turned out and I just wish I could share more pictures with you, but I will try to see if I can get them to work and put them in tomorrow's post!!

Happy Knitting!!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Whimsy



Happy Wednesday Knitters,

These little guys are the things I was talking about showing you on Monday. Sorry about skipping them yesterday in favour of 10 on Tuesdays, but I really wanted to start something new for the blog so I pushed these to today's post.

I wanted to use these fun beads and thought they would be great for stitch markers. After making one, I decided to make 5 for a gift and then make 3 more for myself. I thought they'd look so cute marking the beginning of a round especially if you're using a very plain, basic colour of yarn.



These ones are mine :-) I've decided to be on the lookout for more fun beads next time I'm at Joanns or Michael's. It's always good to keep a supply on hand, they make perfect gifts - especially stocking stuffers! Imagine some Christmas themed ones to use when you are making Christmas gifts? Too cute!!
Happy Knitting!!!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Ten on Tuesdays

Hello Knitters,

I thought it was time to add something new to the blog. A while back I came across this wonderful blog and seen her "Ten on Tuesday" post and thought, "what a great idea! I have to do this on my blog!" So, here I am, beginning my very first "Ten on Tuesdays"!!

This week's theme is going to be My Favourite Things About Fall. It's undeniable that the season is almost upon us and I thought instead of dreading it, I'm going to embrace it with open arms!! So here we go!

  1. The crisp autumn days that let you know Fall has arrived.
  2. Adding warm layers to my wardrobe - especially when the layers are of the knitted variety.
  3. Seeing gourds and pumpkins for sale, and of course purchasing them to decorate our home.
  4. Knitting hats, scarves and mittens to protect myself from the chilly air.
  5. The deep, intense blue of the sky.
  6. Catching up on all the new trends for the season.
  7. Watching the leaves turn an array of amazing colours!
  8. Baking warm and spicy desserts such as apple crisp and pumpkin pie as well as making more soups and stews. Nothing quite says Fall like warm harvest soup with fresh hot dinner rolls.
  9. Drinking more tea. I view it as one of the best ways to warm oneself up. Plus, it's so soothing and relaxing making it great to unwind with at the end of the day.
  10. Planning Christmas gifts....sorry, but I had to say it! It's best to start doing this now so that I end up having enough time to get everything I'd like to make done, and if things don't work out as planned, I have a buffer so I can go out and purchase something that is still very nice. When left too late I'm always scrambling and end up not enjoying the holiday season at all. This year I've decided to do things right! (Or at least I'm going to give it my best shot!)

Thank you everyone for reading my list, I hope you all enjoy this new feature on the blog as much as I do.

Happy Knitting!!

P.S. I want to wish a very happy birthday to my wonderful friend and cousin!! I hope you have a fantastic day!!

Monday, September 20, 2010

A Slight Problem

Hello Knitters,

I have to start by saying that my sister's bridal shower on Saturday turned out wonderfully! We couldn't have asked for a better day, or a better group of people. There ended up being over 50 women and a few children and they all seemed to have a good time. My sister enjoyed it as well, so the whole thing was a hit! The Lord really blessed the whole day :-) I wanted to get some pictures to share but I was so busy that I never got the chance. I know a few other ladies did though, so maybe I will be able to share some with you all yet.

On to the fiber-related news....I do have a project picture today!! It's a bit of a yay/oh-no type of project though.


It is my first crocheted shawl that I'm making for a present. It turned out lovely, however, it is not nearly as big as it should be and I'm not sure exactly why. Maybe I am a tight crocheter since I'm a tight knitter and somehow that affected the overall size? I followed the pattern exactly so I don't think that was it. I did make it out of acrylic instead of the mercerized cotton that it called for because I couldn't find any, maybe that could be the problem. I'm not really sure if you can block acrylic so my plan of stretching it while blocking is not really working. If any of you have a suggestion or advice on what I should do I'd greatly appreciate it!!

This project has been the one I've been focusing my attention on the most as of late and now that it's done (well sort of), I've moved on to some knitting for my swap partner's final package that is due at the beginning of next month. I've also made a few other little things that I'll share tomorrow. I should be getting back to my knitting though. It's so nice to just be able to relax and knit now that the shower rush is over :-) I'm going to enjoy this time while it lasts before the wedding rush begins! Have a wonderful afternoon everyone!

Happy Knitting

Friday, September 17, 2010

Swap Package #2

Hello Knitters,

Sorry it's been so long since I last posted, I've been super busy baking and helping my Mom get things ready for my sister's bridal shower that's tomorrow. I did want to write a quick post to say that I am still working on finishing up some of my WIP's (and thank you everyone for your great support and encouragement!!) and I'm also working on a special something that I hope to share next week. However, the most exciting thing I want to post is pictures of my package I received this week from my amazing swap partner!!




What a great package she sent me! It was just what I needed that day to brighten up my spirits :-) She sent me the most adorable porcelain tea set, four packages of sweet little buttons - blue bunnies, white teddy bears, pink iridescent round ones and wooden ones with flowers on them, a tweety bird wash cloth that grows when you put it in water (how cool is that?!), a pink lemonade lip gloss (I so need that now that the weather has turned cool), and last, but certainly not least a skein of Noro Sekku in colour #4. This was all packaged up in a cute little box that you can see in the picture. Thank you, thank you, thank you dear swap partner!! It is such a fantastic package and I feel so blessed to have received it!!



Here's a close-up of the tea set, isn't it gorgeous? And I have to mention, that it was so cool she sent me some Noro because I have been wanting to get some but there isn't any available to me here so I was waiting until we went away in a few weeks, and now I have some right now!! I was so excited when I opened the box to see it tucked in there! I want to start knitting with it right away but I can't until I finish up a few other things that are due very soon, but in the meantime, I'm going to do some pattern dreaming :-)

Well, I should get back to my baking. I was taking a quick lunch break and thought I'd write a post at the same time. I hope you all have a lovely weekend since I probably won't be able to post again until Monday, but I'll try to take some pictures of the bridal shower to share!

Happy Knitting!!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Projects, Projects, Projects....

Hello dear knitters,

Ok, I have a confession to make: I have WAY too many on the go projects, and half-completed projects and projects that are waiting to be started....and I'm embarrassed to admit that instead of having a case of finish-itis, I'm having a case of start-itis. This could not have come at a more inopportune time! All of this unfinished-ness has been going on for a while now, but I've been turning a blind eye to it until this evening when while catching up on the IBK board, Mel asked the question of how many projects we had that were current, long-term and hibernating. I couldn't honestly say! I really don't know, and I'm not sure I want to.... But then I got to thinking about how much all of this "need-to-finish" knitting has been weighing on me even though I've been trying to ignore it, it's still been there. For example: I will go to get something out of a box, and oh look, there's that pair of socks I started three weeks ago, or I drop something by my yarn basket and go to pick it up and spy the hat I have almost finished. Then I start thinking about the baby sweater that just needs buttons, the one the just needs the ends woven in and buttons sewn on, the pair of rainbow socks that I started for my Mom so long ago that I can't even remember, or how about the pair I started for her last night? Oh dear, I think this is all getting to be just a little bit too much! So, here is my conclusion: I am going to spend tomorrow as a day off from other things and spend my day finishing off some of these projects and working on the ones that aren't at the finishing stage to get them at least closer to being done. What do you think? Think I can do it?? Think I can turn this case of start-itis into finish-itis? I sure hope so!! I think getting some of these things done will help reduce at least some of the stress I've been feeling lately. I'm at least going to give it my best shot!!

Now I will go check out my Ravelry project page to see what I've got listed there that needs to be done, then I'm going to make my list and get to work!

Happy Knitting Everyone!!

Back to School Time

Hello Knitters,

Well it's that time of year again.....I don't know how it snuck up on me, but I've already been seeing the big yellow school bus drive by the house. Even though no one in my immediate family is in school, I still get excited for what this time of year brings - new beginnings!! I've always felt that way. Not really sure why, maybe it was getting new school text books, and a new backpack or brand-spankin' new school supplies!! (I've had a love affair with paper products since I was a wee child) or maybe it was all the new information and techniques I would be learning that year. Whatever it is, I still feel it every fall. Of course this is also the time when my knitting seems to get into high gear, but more on that another day. Today I want to focus on kids and back-to-school things. More specifically the newest edition of Petite Purls - Fall 2010. This is seriously one of the best issues yet! It's completely back-to-school themed :-) So I thought I would share my top 5 favourite patterns and why.

1. Audrey's First Day by Elizabeth Smith - I've always liked the different styles of the 50's, 60's and 70's and this 60's style preppy cardigan is adorable! Elizabeth has taken the original sweater design and given it a more modern flair for the "now" little girl. This was the first pattern that jumped right out at me as a "have-to-make."

2. Little Letterman by Danielle Reiner - Keeping with the whole preppy theme, this little coat for the boy in your life is so cute. The idea of the letter being your little one's initial is so fun. I'm also really fond of the colours she chose.

3. First Grade by Marina Hayes - Could there be any cuter socks?? I remember my sister and I having ruffle socks that we would wear to church with our "good shoes"....these are so sweet and I just have to make them sometime soon!

4. Birdie Backpack by Alison Stewart-Guinee - Ever since they days of Mr. Dressup (he was my childhood hero - craft time was THE BEST!!) I have had a thing for owls :-) This birdie backpack reminds me so much of being a kid. And come on, those bird wing pockets are way too cool!

5. Ewan by Sarah Grieve - Ok, this cardigan is seriously cute. I think the idea of a little boy in a grown-up style cardigan is adorable. This one is made to resemble a boyfriend cardi (which I just think was the best thing we girls stole from the boys ever!) and what I like so much is that you can easily make this to suit a little girl as well, or just have her look like the older girls wearing her boyfriend's sweater :-) The styling of it is great since it has cables and texture to keep the knitter interested while still being a quicker knit since it's done on a smaller scale than an adult size. Sarah has also included a range of sizing from 6-12 months all the way up to 5 years which is great. I could see myself knitting this one for sure.

Wow, that was hard to choose only 5!! There are so many great patterns: pencil cases, a head scarf that reminds me of the 70's, an adorable vest, more socks and sweaters, a rocket toy, and even a pair of overalls! If you haven't already, head on over and check it out!!

Allegra and Brandy also have some fun and great features, including some new categories that you should check out as well. My favourite is "Crafting at Home" since being a home-schooled child, that's where I learned all my crafting skills. Allegra's story about her and her daughter reminds me so much of my Mom and I. By the way, "Origami Pack for Children" by Mari Ono and Roshin Ono looks like a book I might like even for myself!! You're never too old or too young to learn something new in my opinion :-)

I hope you all enjoyed my review. I had such fun looking through this new edition and would like to get the chance to start on something from it soon! I hope it has inspired you as well, there's no better time than fall to start some new projects.

Happy Knitting All!!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

What I've Been Working on in 10 Words or Less

Fall Project:




Cabled Hat:



Surprises:


Picking colours (with help):


Progress!!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Wedding Accessories


Hello Knitters,

Today I worked on making earrings for my sister's wedding attendants. They are part of their gifts for being in the wedding party. Since it's so late, I thought I'd just show you a few pictures of how they turned out.



These are the bridesmaids earrings. My sister's colours are navy blue and ivory, so I used grey/blue pearls to coordinate.



These are the ones for the flower girl and the junior bridesmaid. Since they are both younger, I tried to make theirs more small and dainty.

I hope everyone, including the bride like them!!

Good night knitters!!
Happy Knitting :-)

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Where Has the Time Gone??

Hello Knitters,

Sorry it's been so long since I last posted! It's been a combination of being sick and being busy that's kept me away from the blog. I still have been working on fiber-related projects when I can sneak in the time, but I don't have a whole lot to show you right now. Most of my knitting/crocheting is what I'd like to call "undercover fiber works". This means anything from swap knitting, to gift knitting to pattern developing. Over the last week I've been doing pretty much all of those things, with the exception of a hat for myself, but I will share pictures and details on that in a few days.

On Wednesday and Thursday my Mom and I went to Petoskey and Traverse City for wedding related dress-trying-on and shopping. I did get some yarn, but not any fancy stuff. Just your regular acrylic for a baby blanket I'm going to be working on in the coming weeks. The pattern is actually called September, which I thought was fitting since that's what month it is right now. (how did it happen to get so far on in the year already?? I MUST have had my eyes closed!) I didn't even pick it because of that reason, it was just my favourite pattern in the book. It's a combination of a bunch of coloured squares put together (180 to be exact-think I might be slightly crazy?) that I guess represent all the colours of harvest fruits and veggies, although more in the baby colour range. I'm pretty excited to start working on it but first I have to get some other things off my plate.

Another thing I'd like to mention is that my crochet baby blanket has now been upgraded to an afghan for my Grandma's Christmas present. I used two huge balls of yarn and got it to the baby blanket stage, but then I thought, why not continue on and make an afghan - now I just need to get two more balls of yarn and a couple of balls of brown for the boarder.

In knitting, I've finished the knitting part of the Bitty Cabled Cardigan I'm making for my sister's friend who is due any day now. I purchased some buttons at Joanns and now I just need to sew them on and weave in the ends. Then I will have some pictures to share. I'd like to make a baby blanket to go with it, but I haven't found just the right yarn yet. Hopefully I'll stumble upon some this coming week so I get get it all done and mailed off.

So as you can see, I have high hopes of having lots of pictures of completed projects to share next time I post! Here's to hoping and perseverance!!

Have a wonderful long weekend everyone :-)

Happy Knitting!!