Tag Archives: mittens

Snow Day Knitting

It’s a Snow Day!

There’s three inches of snow on the ground, the roads are slushy, buses are on limited routes (my husband’s bus has been totally canceled, so he’s staying home too!) and school has been canceled!

It’s a real, honest-to-goodness snow day.img_4542Seattle really does snow the best way, It’s here for a day or two, everyone has fun, takes walks, builds snowmen, then it all melts and we go back to normal.  None of this Midwestern snow-that-sticks-around-gray-and-frozen-until-mid-March nonsense.

I know all this Seattle snow is probably one of the signs of the apocalypse, but today I’m enjoying it.  I already took the dog on a walk, I’ve got a hot cup of coffee and I’m thinking about breaking out a movie and some knitting (surprise!).  Ollie loves the snow, but doesn’t love how his fur creates little snowballs all around his feet.  I love that though, it looks like he has little pompoms in his fur.   Adorable!img_4536I’ve got some socks I’m probably going to go work on after this, but if I had planned for more snow-day-appropriate knitting projects, I might have picked one of these:

I love the little frolicking deer in this snowy forest!  It reminds me of cross-country skiing in West Virginia as a kid.

Snow Roe Deer Beanie by Sandra Jagersnow_roe_deer_beanie0_medium1This snowflake shawl is almost too pretty for words (but I bet it would take quite a few snow days to complete.

 Snow Queen Shawl by Janine Le Crasyarma_medium21And, nothing says “Scandinavian snow day” quite like red-and-white color work mittens.  I think I might need these.

Snow Ghost Mittens by Aimee Alexandercontrast_medium21How’s the weather by you?  Have you had any snow days this winter?

Pattern: Choose Your Own Adventure Mitts!

It’s new pattern day!

(Actually, it’s new patternS day!)

I’ve got two brand-spanking-new patterns in the new, ridiculously adorable collection from Knit Picks: 32752[1]It’s a collection of two dozen insanely cute whimsical knitted accessories. Want a hat with a cat chasing a ball of yarn that’s actually a pompom?  They have it.  Want cap adorned with tiny french men?  They’ve got it.  Want cute, customizable mittens?

Of course you do.  Let me tell you all about my pattern.

51956220_15_medium2[1]These little guys are my new favorite!  My “Choose Your Own Adventure Mitts!”

They are simple, striped mittens that are 100% customizable.  Want thin or thick stripes?  Want long mittens?  Want short fingerless gloves?  These guys are for you!

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And, since they’re knit in super-soft sock yarn, they’re not only comfy and soft, but also super hard-wearing!  (Which is great, since you’ll want to wear them every day.)

Want to get a copy of Charmed: Whimsical Knitted Accessories?  Grab yourself a copy of the collection here!

Or, want to win a copy?  Comment below with a description of your favorite knitted accessory!

Inspiration: Marriage Equality!

I do my best to keep this blog as politics- and opinion- free as possible (except my opinions on socks, which are varied and many).  But, sometimes, something happens in the news that is so amazing, so life-changing, so fantastic that you can’t help but celebrate it!

The Supreme Court, just this morning, ruled that same-sex marriage is a right covered by the constitution!  That means that same-sex marriage is now legal in all 50 states!  It makes me so happy that I’m literally tearing up writing this.  It’s an amazing day, and, in my opinion 100% the right decision.

Read this paragraph from their decision (it’s the last paragraph on page 28, if you’re interested):

No union is more profound than marriage, for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice, and family. In forming a marital union, two people become something greater than once they were.  As some of the petitioners in these cases demonstrate, marriage embodies a love that may endure even past death.  It would misunderstand these men and women to say they disrespect the idea of marriage. Their plea is that they do respect it, respect it so deeply that they seek to find its fulfillment for themselves.  Their hope is not to be condemned to live in loneliness, excluded from one of civilization’s oldest institutions. They ask for equal dignity in the eyes of the law.

The Constitution grants them that right. The judgment of the Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit is reversed.

It is so ordered

Oh my god.  It’s so beautiful and moving.  Let me go find a Kleenex.

I have friends and relatives in the LGBT community, and I couldn’t be happier for them.  And, frankly, even if I didn’t know anyone in that community, I would still remember this day as a great day for human rights in our country.

(And it’s Seattle Pride this weekend!  What a great week!)

I want to celebrate this historic decision by breaking out the happiest, most Pride-y projects I could find!

Rainbow Dress by Georgie Hallam

Does this come in my size?

sagesrainbow_medium2[1]Rainbow Child by Rebecca Newman

Just kidding… I think I want this hoodie instead!IMG_4996_medium2[1]Monstermitts by Julia Allen

Although, if I wanted to finish a project before this weekend… I might be able to whip up a pair of these.

IMGP8512_medium2[1]Contagious by Deborah Frank

But, no,  I think what I really want is one of these.

contagious_1_medium2[1]Yay, SCOTUS!  You rock (especially Kennedy, Kagan, Sotomayor, Breyer, and my girl, the Notorious RBG).  Keep doing what you’re doing!

Inspiration: Wood

5 years ago this week, my husband and I threw an awesome party in a city park in Austin.  It was pretty great.  There was a swing band, a margarita machine, a taco bar and peacocks running around (because why not?).

Oh, and we got married.

26018_10100112108749980_1067908_nIt was probably one of the best days of my life.  We had friends and family come in from across the country (and overseas) and we had the best time ever.  It was a great big fun party, and the best part was that I was married to my best friend at the end of it.

(Ew, gross.  Sorry.  I figured I should say something sappy for my fifth anniversary, since that’s kind of a big deal.  But who wants to hear this stuff? No one…  Let’s talk about yarn instead.)

The traditional gift for fifth anniversaries is wood.  (Who says it’s traditional?  I don’t know.  Someone on the internet.)  But, since I’m me, and wool isn’t the traditional gift until the 7th anniversary, let’s use some creative license and look at wood-inspired knitting patterns.

I love the complicated-looking cables on this hat.  Very cool.

Wood Hollow Hat by Kirsten Kapur4160940108_f5785d7ea0_z[1]The last thing I need to make myself is another over-sized pullover, but this one is so pretty, I might have to make an exception.  The subtle tree-branch cables are gorgeous!

Wood Pullover by Carrie Bostick Hoge

DSC_0900_medium2[1]This gorgeous blanket would be fantastic over the back of a leather wing-back chair beside a fireplace in a cabin high up in the Cascades.  Or, on my Ikea couch, next to my TV.  One or the other.

Wooded Trail Throw by Michael del Vecchio

Uptown_DK_Mtn_Ridge_Knits_Wooded_Trail_Throw_Ravelry_medium2[1]Happy Anniversary, Tristan!  I love you!  Here’s to many more happy years together!  (Sorry, everyone. I’m done with the mushy stuff. Promise!)

Are you married?  How long?  What was your last “traditional” anniversary present?

Inspiration: It’s Way Too *#^@ing Cold

We are firmly in the SECOND cold snap of the winter, here in Seattle.  Seattle, where I was promised damp, cloudy, and 40s for most of the  year.  Seattle, where I moved to get away from the excessive cold of the Midwest, and the ridiculous hot of the South.  Seattle, where I expected to wear nothing but wool sweaters and flannel shirts for 90% of the year.

It is currently (at 11:30 in the morning) 27 degrees.  27!

And, there’s snow and ice all over outside.  (In November!)

It’s not right.  It’s not fair.  And I don’t like it.

All I want to do is roll myself up in a big wad of roving and go into hibernation until the temperature is back in the 40s.

Unfortunately, that’s not really approved of by society in general, so I suppose I must make do with the next closest thing.  Thrummed knitting.

Thrummed knitting involves working little tufts of roving into your knitting (traditionally mittens, but right now I would consider murder if it meant I could get my hands on a thrummed sweater).  It’s a little futzy, but not terribly so.  And, you end up with knitting that’s completely lined with glorious, fluffy wool (think of shearling, but knitted, not leather), and dotted with cute little heart-shaped stitches.  I can’t think of anything better than walking around with my hands (and feet) swaddled with woolen goodness.

Try these mittens, for some traditional thrummed action:

Yarn Harlot Thrummed Mittens by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee

Outside:

2895409293_91de82094a_z[1]Inside (I know, right?!):

2873388824_e07708cb94_z[1]Or, if you’re like me and have ice cubes instead of toes, these slippers would be fantastic:

Cadeautje by Ysolda Teague

cadeautje_medium2[1]Now, I’m off to go see if I can fit another sweater over the one I’m already wearing… Wish me luck!

Inspiration: Cheap Candy Day

It’s the day after Easter, and that can only mean one thing:

Cheap. Easter. Candy.

But, since I don’t have the metabolism of a sixteen-year-old anymore (alas), let’s celebrate Cheap Candy Day with some candy-inspired knitwear.

Munch on some (imaginary) jellybeans with these colorful beaded socks:

Mixed Jelly Beans Socks by Jackie Erickson-Schweitzer

2266121239_c1a9dbc8b1_z[1]Instead of the sticky yellow bird-shaped variety of marshmallows, try these super-cozy-looking mitts:

Marshmallow by tincanknits

GWN-marshmallow-01_medium2[1]And, if you really want to indulge, wrap yourself up in chocolate with this stole:

Chocolate Mousse Stole by Dagmara

il_fullxfull.171146902_medium2[1]OK, all this talk of candy has made me hungry.  I might just have to stop by the grocery store sale bin anyway.  So much for self-control.

Pattern: Seedling Mitts

I’m legit!  I’m a real live pattern designer now!  Of course, I’ve been writing patterns for quite a while now, but so far, they’ve all been self-published.  Yesterday my first pattern published with a legit publisher went live!  It’s very exciting.  I feel all grown up!

The pattern is for my new Seedling Mitts, and is available on Knit Picks through their Independent Designer Program.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThey’re little fingerless gloves that would be perfect for puttering around the garden on a cool spring day (like today).  They are knit up in Knit Picks Palette, which is a really nice hard-wearing wool that comes in a million colors, but if you don’t want to buy the yarn online, you could use any fingering-weight yarn.

My favorite part of the pattern is the little slip-stitch patter around the edges of the mitts.  It’s surprisingly easy to do, but it looks super complicated and cool when it’s done.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASo, drop by Knit Picks and pick up a copy of my Seedling Mitts pattern!

A Super Exciting Post About Yardage and Budgets

Yarn does not grow on trees (if only… that would be amazing.  Scientists: get on that).    And there are only so many hours in the day.  It’s still relatively early in December, but you are probably starting to feel the pinch.  Obviously, knitting big projects takes more time than knitting little projects (because… duh), so banging out a sweater in two weeks (while that would be amazing) is probably not going to happen.

When I want to make someone a knitted gift, my usual go-tos are knitted accessories: hats, mittens/gloves, and scarves.  Accessories are always useful, appreciated, don’t usually need to be washed (and potentially ruined), and are small enough that you can finish a project in the time it takes to watch a Sunday marathon of Law & Order.

I’ve undertaken a semi-scientific* study of some of the knitted accessories I have sitting in a box in my closet.  I wanted to see about how much yarn I used in each project, but I didn’t want to unravel everything and measure it out (because I’m not a masochist).  Instead, I broke out the kitchen scale and weighed each item, which will let me estimate of how much yarn each type of project requires.

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After much data collection and number crunching**, here’s what I found out:

A hat uses approximately the same amount of yarn as a pair of mittens. ***

A scarf uses about 2 to 3 times as much yarn as a hat or a pair of mittens.

So, if you’re trying to save money, time, and yarn, try making a gift hat.  If you’re feeling generous, how about a nice long scarf?

*Not at all scientific.

**I measured three of each item all knit with worsted-ish yarn (three pairs of mittens, three scarves, three hats) and averaged the weights.

***Note: my mittens were knit at a slightly finer gauge than my hats and scarves.  So while they may weighed the same, the mittens used more yardage, and probably took more time to knit up.

Inspiration: Halloween

I absolutely love Halloween.  It’s one of my favorite holidays.  I love just about everything about it.  Making my own costume is always my favorite part (and always has been.  Once, when I was a kid, I was a fly.  Because why not?).   On this most spooky of holidays, let’s get some spooky knitting going!

How about some adorable (yet terrifying) little monsters?

Adopt a Blob Monster/Ghost by Jenna Kruparblob15_medium2[1]Or what about some evil little witches?  They’re clearly up to no good!

Tiny Halloween Witch by Mrs Lettice Weasel

DSCF0706_medium2[1]Halloween night can get a little bit chilly, so bundle up in this awesome spider sweater.  (I wish that the pattern went up to adult sizes, because I totally would wear this sweater.  Not even kidding.)

Halloween Sweaters – Spiderwebbed, Ghostly and Pumpkinhead by Jessica Henshaw

2877023912_68d0280c57_z[1]And, of course.  What would Halloween be without that most excellent source of high fructose corn syrup?  I love me some candy corn.

Candy Corn Stranded Mittens by emilyelizabeth

candycorn_mittens_002_medium2[1]

Christmas Knitting: Ladies

Holy crap, Christmas is coming soon!  (Even if you don’t do the whole Christmas thing, there’s always an excuse to do some gift knitting.) So, what to make?   This week, I’m trolling Ravelry for ideas for gift knitting projects.  Follow along if you’re looking for something, too.

Let’s start with knitting for the ladies in your life.  Mothers, friends, sisters, aunts, daughters, mothers-in-law, coworkers, the lady down the street that waters your plants when you go out of town.  I bet they’d all appreciate any one of these quick (and girly) projects:

Baktus Scarf, by Strikkelise

baktus

Toast, by leslie friend

 toast

Meret, by Wooly Wormhead

Blog_Charlie_Meret_3