Making No. 9 Simple – Simple Bird and Nest

I love this magazine! Every one that I have purchased has at least a few patterns that I’d like to try to make. Note, I said, “try”.

This time, in issue 9 Simple, it’s the Simple Bird and Nest by Susan B. Anderson. Susan has made a beautiful little business for herself designing the most exquisite “toys”. Ostensibly for children, the toys are so clever that they’re tempting to make for yourself (even if you’re a senior citizen!) This time, the birds just got me.

I dove deep into my stash and found a couple of colors of DK or Sport weight yarn. I know the first color is a Knit Picks City Tweed DK that I was given for mothers’ day a long, long time ago. It’s a soft, 2-ply yarn that knits up beautifully. Just so happens that I am planning two bird and i had two colors of this yarn in my stash. One is more purple and the other more a dusty rose. The pattern calls for several colors … I found a creamy white, a brown, and a grey. Since they’re for toys that probably won’t be washed, I’m not going to worry about fiber content. Suffice it to say, they’re all wool or wool blends and some may be superwash.

The pattern is so simply written that it makes it a cinch to knit. The bird is quick to knit with a couple of rounds of beginner colorwork. Not too scary when you can do it on something small. The nest has a Latvian braid at the top which is, again, described so as to make it easy for anybody to try. I finished the bird and nests in a couple of sittings but I do knit quickly – and have a lot of experience. The eggs, too, are quick and simple. I’ve got one knitted for each bird so far. Again, stashed “rainbow” yarn will make the eggs completely fictional but colorful. My intent is to write a little story to go along with the gifts … we will see if I get that part done.

Gone knitting!

Stephen West MKAL 2016

Yarn Choices 1-4

Yarn Choices 1-4

I have been wanting to knit one of Stephen West’s designs but have been putting it off because 1) I have so many other knits to complete and an order from a customer and 2) because there are so many good ones and I’ve had trouble deciding which one to make first! SO when a MKAL came along, I dumped out my stashed fingering weight yarns and chose several to start with.

My knitting students helped me narrow my choices to the four required in the pattern and I got started on the first clue. I love the i-cord cast on and the subsequent i-cord increases. Picking up and knitting stitches from the i-cord is simple enough and the pattern is easy to follow. I am not loving the blue in my design – oh boy, should I have chosen the bright pink? I’ll knit on a ways and see what I think as I go.

Nearly at the end of knitting clue 1 and I realized as I was switching to needles with a longer cord that I was knitting with a US3 not the requested US4. Now, one assumes that the difference between a 3 and 4 is a small one. One is right but the difference is JUST enough to make a big difference in the way the fabric feels. The US3 fabric is tight and much less flexible and flow-y than the US4 fabric.

The question now is … to frog or not to frog. The shawl has two points already against it and I’m not even finished with clue 1. I’m frogging and starting over. I’ll knit the hat for my customer and then cast on again.

Happy knitting!

Extra Large Box (of yarn)

IMG_4512You may know that we are moving from Florida to Maine later this week.

So, this weekend is focused on finishing our packing. We’ve packed our master bedroom closet except for the clothes that we’ll take with us. I will have one suitcase full of my hand knits, of course!

Next on my packing agenda was my atelier. When the yarn is in its bins, it doesn’t look like a bunch. But what I forget is that the bins lie! I filled one “extra large” moving box full of my worsted and bulky yarns. I have another big plastic bin of fingering weight and several bags and boxes of the rest. It’s going to be like Christmas again when I get to sort the big mess back into their bins!

I dare not think about what I have invested in all the yarn! I’m going to try to stick to my strict yarn diet and knit from my stash for awhile more. I’ve pulled out several sweaters worth of yarn for knitting this summer and some socks and various other patterns and yarn. I just know that my Maine knitting friends are going to have projects that they’re working on that I want to knit … and all my stash will be in storage.

I’m eager to get started with the move to Maine and the building of our house so I can set up my new atelier!

Gone knitting.

Future Planning

I’ve taken the day off today, a personal day, to plan our move to Maine … well, actually, I’m planning what yarn and patterns that I will be taking with me for the summer. I’m really trying to be a “good girl” and to knit from my stash. I’ve done pretty well … with a couple of hiccups!

One Hiccup!

One Hiccup!

Cotton Blend

Cotton Blend

So far, I’ve found a couple of cardigan/vest patterns to knit from some fingering weight cotton and a cotton blend. I’ve matched a sock weight merino to knit up for a hat for my guy and have pulled out a few sock yarns to knit up for me into socks for my sock drawer project. I have a pair of worsted weight socks to knit for my guy, too.

Baby Sweater Cotton

Baby Sweater Cotton

A long time ago, I bought cotton yarn to knit up for my first niece. I never did … so I can use it now for the second niece (if I can find the pattern!) It was so pretty! I have this stinking feeling that the pattern is in one of the binders that have already been packed and are out in the boxes stacked in the garage.

I’ll definitely be bringing the pretty blue tweed yarn that I bought to knit a dress in the Elsabeth Lavold designer’s choice pattern book. It’s been waiting for me! 😉

Noro

Noro

I have a bulky weight Noro yarn that wants to be a scarf or shawl for wearing next winter. I fell in love with the colorway which is gray … and some other colors, too. You know how Noro has the most wonderful colorways!

And I’m still working away. Of course, I have the patterns that have been put into time out and those that are in process so hopefully I won’t run out before our house is built.

Gone knitting!