UFOs Finished!

Like any “good” knitter, I tend to put off finishing projects that I don’t really want to do “right now”. I have a complete sweater sitting in time out waiting for me to seam it. A full sweater. One that I would like to wear but I really don’t love finishing sweaters. This one will take maybe 2 hours to finish … after many more hours than that of knitting it. Regardless, while the sweater sits in time out, I have begun and finished several projects.

Pussy Cat Hats in Pink and Gray … my pattern

Two Pussy Cat hats or Kit Kat hats. One is bright pink for those days when I feel like taking a stand and the other is grey for those days when I want to stand firm but not bring attention to myself. I like they way these worked out. I used Plymouth Yarns Encore Chunky yarn for both hats. Normally, I’d rather knit with natural fibers but these hats are soft and chunky and they knit up super quickly. I also can wash and dry them in my machine. I sent my original hat that I knit in Malabrigo Rios worsted yarn to my future son-in-law. He wanted a hat and I was happy to send mine and knit another for myself.

The pattern is mine.

Queen Bee Knits Pussy Hat

 

With bulky yarn and US 10 16″ circular needle, cast on 72 stitches. K2, P2 ribbing for 12 rounds. Knit around until hat is 9″ from cast on edge. Use a 3-needle bind off to cast off all stitches. Weave in ends. 

 

Feel free to use the pattern for personal use. If you want to give away hats, that’s fine. Please don’t sell these hats. Thank you.

A cowl for a customer. I have a customer who loves my knitted accessories. I’ve knitted her three or four tams in different weights and now a cabled cowl. The latest is a Bandana Cowl from Purl Soho which is a free pattern on Revelry or the Purl Soho website. She didn’t understand that the picture of the cabled cowl wasn’t really how a cowl worked. She was wanting a “dickey” that will sit down on her chest and around her neck rather than a cowl that solely goes around the neck. I’ve finished this one is Cascade 128 Superwash in a lovely teal colorway. It will match the hat that I just made her. She still wants another pair of hats. One in a yellow Cascade 128 and another in a Noro yarn.

I also finished the first block of my Cascade Knitterati Afghan MKAL. I love doing things that are a little bit different. I am not knitting with the same colors that the KAL is recommending (why would I do that?) but have picked one colorway so far that is a dark Granny Smith apple green. I’ve loved the color from afar for a long time and it’s high time to use it somewhere. Squares two and three have been released. I’ll likely knit square three before two because it’s a single color square and I have a single color yarn.

I have been knitting dish cloths for the daughters. It all started with sending three to my children at Christmas time. Daughter #1 asked for more so that they aren’t using paper towels any longer. They’ve been sent. In the meantime, I’ve knitted a few more for Daughter #2. And then I’ve knitted three tiny ones for the little California nieces. I’ve got to mail them away soon. The pattern is Grandma’s Favorite Dish Cloth and it’s a free Rarely pattern. These are all Lily Sugar and Cream yarns one is a pink camouflage colorway and the other simply made me think “Valentines Day”!

Fornicating Deer Hat

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Speaking of Valentine’s Day, I made my handsome and bald hubby a hat for Valentine’s Day this year. I used a navy and a gray worsted wool by Lamb’s Pride. A long time ago, I saw a chart on Pinterest and I saved it. It made me laugh and it is totally my husband’s sense of humor. It’s called the Fornicating Deer chart by Ann Rutten. It’s on Ravelry. Needless to say, I didn’t have a pattern to go with the chart but I looked at my expected gauge and decided to knit three repeats of the chart. I also decided that once the deer were finished that I would do my decreases and not finish the entire chart. He likes caps that fit tightly but cover his ears. When he came home after work the first day he wore it, he said, “hey hon, now I really have sex on the brain!” Yup. I think he loves his hat.

Oh, I need a better camera. The color is way off!

I do love to finish projects! Today I hope to finish a pair of bright orange work socks (the picture doesn’t come close to the bright “hunting orange” color) for my husband. He loves to wear the thick, warm Raggi yarn socks to work. He works outside in Maine in the winter. Enough said?

Gone knitting!

Hot off the Needles

Well, I’ve gone and done it! I’ve actually got some finished projects!

First, I started and finished an adorable layette for a customer. At the suggestion of a co-worker, I chose a sweet garter stitch cardigan and bonnet and then found an adorable pair of baby booties that match perfectly! I hope that our customer loves the outfit as much as I do. I used Universal Yarns “Adore” DK weight yarn (two skeins with a lot of left-overs!) I love the peachy-pink color which is not quite a baby pink and not quite a peach. I think the lacy leaves pattern is wonderful around the neckline and it’s also on the back of the little bonnet. I found the perfect buttons for the cardigan before I knew I would need any for the shoes. Lucky for me, I’d already bought the package which contained 5 buttons. The perfect number with none left over!

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The shoes may be my favorite part! They were a simple knit and they’re so stinking cute!

IMG_7867I have also finished a cowl that I wanted to try. This was a free pattern at our shop that used a Galway worsted wool and a Gina, both by Plymouth Yarns. I had a charcoal gray Cascade 220 Worsted in my stash and a skein of Gina left over from my favorite mittens ever. I hadn’t ever “really” knitted anything in Brioche stitch so this was a learning experience which was more enjoyable than I thought it would be. If you know how to knit and purl, try Brioche! Another of my co-workers knitted the same pattern for a store sample and hers came out similar but stretched a LOT more than mine did when blocked. She used a different main color yarn that had some silk in it – and hers is significantly less scratchy than my wool one. But I learned something. By the way, I didn’t make mine like the pattern directed. I used less than one skein of Cascade 220 and one skein only of the Gina … I am not sure I’m going to love it and wear it.

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I also finished another commission for a returning customer. She wanted a bulky/chunky lacy slouch hat/tam exactly like I have made for her before and a cowl to match. The hat pattern is a free pattern from Revelry called Quick Lacy Slouch Hat. The cowl pattern that she found is in a little Leisure Arts book and it’s called Berry Twist Cowl. Each used one skein of Cascade 128 Superwash yarn. Knitting with large needles and with chunky yarn, these were a relatively quick knit and I got them done in a weekend. I hope our customer is happy with these as she was with the other things that I’ve knitted for her. IMG_7883

I will be looking for “sparkly” buttons for the cowl at work tomorrow and then the set will be ready to go to their new owner!

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With all the finished objects, that leaves a few projects still on the needles …

I still haven’t seamed my Aran Cardigan. (It’s easy to keep putting it off!)

I haven’t finished my wool Vail Island Vest because it’s boring!

I am working on a store sample for Yardgoods Center in a bee-utiful Manos Silky Blend.

I still have that linen top in the project bag – when I frog it, it will truly be “dead” to me.

I started a new felted bag yesterday. I’m using all of the stashed Paton’s wool … well, I’ll use some of it, anyway.

I have one sock of a pair done. Second sock will get cast on this week – I like to take my socks in my purse just in case I find some knitting time.

My KAL shawl is in process … middle of clue 3, if memory serves!

So, there you have it. I think. Three projects finished and seven on the needles. I wish I didn’t need to sleep! You can find more information on any of these projects by visiting “lindar” on Ravelry.

Gone knitting!

WIPS Wrestling – Ravellenics 2016

imageRavelry has a wonderful knitting challenge during the Olympics and I’ve chosen to be on the “WIPS Wrestling” team and challenge myself to finish several projects during the Olympic Games. I’m proud to say that I have challenged myself to finish, and have finished  four projects so far.

Rustling Leaves Beret

Rustling Leaves Beret

I had a commission to make a lace hat for a customer. Her hat was begun just before the Olympics started. I knit Rustling Leaves Beret by Alana Dakos. It’s a fun knit and pret quick to knit up as well. My customer bought Cascade Yarns Heritage Sock yarn in a navy color. Now, all knitters worth their salt know that dark colors (particularly black but any dark color) are difficult to see your stitches. The biggest challenge for me with this hat was counting, or more specifically, dividing stitches. You begin the hat casting in stitches and I used DPNs. Needless to say, I divided wrong the first time and came up with 30 stitches short. It was going to be a very small hat! The hat is delivered and my customer has requested another hat just like it but in a little brighter blue! I blocked the hat, as directed, on a dinner plate and it was just gorgeous!

Drachenfels - times two

Drachenfels – times two

I also finished my Drachenfels Shawl. I really enjoyed knitting this shawl. I had chosen yarn based on a sample that I saw knitted up at the Maine Fiber Frolic in June. Green is not usually a color I knit with but I loved the three colors together. Drachenfels is by Melanie Berg and is a slightly “off kilter” triangular shawl knit in garter stitch with an Icord bind off. I knit mine with a dark gray, a medium blue and a deep apple green. I loved knitting it and I love e finished result. The sport-weight yarn makes it a quick knit and the shawl is a good size! Two other women in my Froday class are/have knitted this shawl and it’s really fun to see the results in different colors.

Number 2 Pencil Socks

Number 2 Pencil Socks

The wonderful and fun Number 2 Pencil socks are also finished. This was yarn that I waited for for what seemed like forever because the first shipment was lost or stolen in transit. When I finally did get it, it went immediately into my stash to be used as encouragement for me – encouraging me to finish some other projects. It was a very fun project and I can’t wait until it’s cooler and I can actually wear them! The yarn is hand-dyed by Yarn Enabler (she has an Etsy shop). I had seen in on Susan B. anderson’s blog or Facebook page  and it was a total impulse buy but totally worth it  I bought the pattern from Yarn Enabler, too though truth be told, I only partially followed it  I used a heal flap heel rather than a FLK – but I’ll attempt the Fish Lips Kiss heel another time for fun!

4 Needle Snowflake Mittens

4 Needle Snowflake Mittens

Last but not least, is the second pair of Snowflake Mittens. This pattern is a very old pattern gifted to me by my friend and colleague Bette. I made myself a pair and this pair is for my friend. I’ll make a third pair for my sister-in-law in Massachusetts. I typically have a rule to never knit two of the same thing. This pattern is an exception and I fully plan to knit it repeatedly! I used Brown Sheep Company’s Lambs Pride Worsted in White Frost and Navy Sailor. I love the contrast in the colors and I love these mittens. I avoided color work for years but this pattern made me begin to think about conquering my fear of color work. I think I have succeeded. My favorite part of these mittens is the pattern on the inside of the thumb. Isn’t that silly?

The only other thing I’d really like to compete is the Aran Sweater that is sitting in a bag in my studio. It’s been swealtering hot the last few days and I could not sit under it. It was too darned hot! Tomorrow I head to the beach in Virginia with my college girls for a few days. Friends for 40 years, we always have a wonderful time together and Virginia Beach is gorgeous for a little R&R. I may choose to drag it with me and try to seam it in air conditioning. I really haven’t decided.

Next another hat will go on the needles.

Gone knitting!

Two Fewer UFOs

This weekend I have finished two projects!

Graffiti Socks

Graffiti Socks

My Susan B. Anthony socks in Gale’s Art Wonder Sock in the Graffiti colorway are finished! I had to frog back the toes of the first one because the knitting gremlins talked me into making the foot seven (rather than seven and a half) inches. My feet are not nine inches long. They are nine and a half inches long. So, for a half inch, I frogged back and re-knit the toes. They’re much better and I am a happy camper. This yarn was amazingly wonderful to work with and I love the way that the colors change. I probably have enough yarn to make one more sock. I may do that … or not. Regardless, I have one more pair of hand knit socks to add to my sock drawer!

Frontenac (front)

Frontenac (front)

I have also finished my Frontenac tunic vest. (This photo is not the finished one, it’s a reasonable facsimile.) It must be a vest since it has no sleeves and I sure do hope I’m going to love it as much as I think I am. I loved this pattern and the yarn is very soft and cozy. That said, the yarn also sheds like crazy. I’m hoping that a good wash and block will change that a bit. Time will tell. This was a very simple knit and only two seams (on the sides) and tiny pockets to attach. The edge of the sleeves were very well designed and I think this will be a garment that I knit again … after I get all the other knitting that I want to do done.

I’m nearing the end of several other projects as well and that means that I can cast on some new ones. I think I will cast on another sweater – this time in the yarn that I bought at the Maine Fiber Frolic two years ago. It has been the pieces of a sweater once before but the pattern was so poor that the sleeves didn’t fit into the arm holes. So, rather than make a sweater that I knew I wouldn’t love, I frogged the whole thing and put the yarn aside. I have found a couple of patterns that I could use (I think) and one of them will be starting soon. I am also casting on a pair of pads/tennis socks for a special girl’s birthday in June. I imagine they’ll knit up super quickly and the self-patterning yarn is amazingly perfect! I also have a bunch of aran weight yarn that my sister-in-love was gifted and she’s not a knitter and gave it to me. I think it will also want to be a garment. Color blocks of ivory and deep purple. I’m seeing it as a longer cardigan, perhaps without buttons.

I brought all the yarn that I bought several years ago to make the Great American Aran Afghan … it’s another huge yarn commitment that I made a long time ago and never finished. Maybe I’ll pull that out and get working on that!

Gone knitting!

Wonderful Wallaby … Healthy Lungs are Happy Lungs

undertheweather

If you follow me on Facebook, you’ll know that I’ve been a little bit under the weather for the last three weeks (this week is week four!) Pneumonia and Bronchitis have kicked my butt … and I hope it’s now on the upswing.

Today I was supposed to have an invasive surgical procedure called a Bronchoscopy. They would be scraping some cells from my lungs and extracting some “gunk” from my lungs as they are having a look around. But I wasn’t feeling great about the whole process and didn’t love the doctor’s office and the “issues” that I have had since my first appointment with them, while they were picky, they were there. So, after a very sleepless night on Saturday night, I decided to cancel the procedure and get a second opinion. I would start with my doctor who I like and trust. After reviewing my x-rays and my CT scan, and listening to my lungs, he said that he’d wait a few days and see if I keep feeling better. I should call him on Friday and we’ll do another x-ray to make sure the pneumonia has cleared up and I can (carefully) resume living my life.

I’m so glad I trusted my gut!

Meanwhile, I’ve been working on my knitting – since I have been told to stay home and rest – and have made some good progress on my Wonderful Wallaby. Until I realized yesterday that I was coughing a lot while working on it … and have decided to put it aside. Could I be allergic to the wool? The yarn that I am using is a bit “fuzzy” and “shed-y” and since I’m having some lung problems, I decided it’s probably wisest to just put it aside for now. Healthy lungs are happy lungs!

Sleeves are coming along ...

Sleeves are coming along …

I’ve made two Christmas gifts for my nephews. I think it’s safe to write about it here because I seriously doubt that they read my blog! 🙂 One left for the third nephew and that’s a good feeling to have something done for them. They’re all big skiers and snow boarders and they’ll like the charcoal gray wool, I think.

I am still working on the color-work fingerless mitts. I know that it’s something relatively new to me but I’m not sure I love this process. I hope I feel differently after it’s done.

Also on the needles is a lap blanket for my daughter’s wedding reception. She’s being married in the early fall in Massachusetts and wants to have hand-knit afghans on the rocking chairs on the porch for her guests. Once the sun goes down it’s very possible that it’ll be cool and they’ll be a welcome addition … nothing like sitting on the porch of the yacht club with a cozy afghan.

I’m also making a ring bearer’s pillow for her. My grand-dog (yes, you read it right) Mabel is the ring bearer. The pillow is burlap and lace with a jute twine bow to tie on the wedding rings. I’ll post pictures when I get it done. Since my sewing skills are beginner-level at best, it’s always an adventure and a learning experience for me. It’s so simple, though, I know I can do it!

I’ve got some projects pulled out for our summer trip to Maine … planning to finish one tote project started last summer and knit a sweater for my niece and a little stuffed animal to match from one of the Noro magazines. Have my new dress in the stack and a shawl. I know there will be others going up but I haven’t decided which ones yet. I think there may be one more sweater for my niece. I just have to find out what size she’s wearing now. I love knitting for her … and I can’t wait to knit for the new baby, too! I just bought some yarn to knit a simple striped cardigan for the baby … if it’s a cute as I think it’s going to be, I may have to knit a twin one for the baby’s big sister.

This afternoon I’m starting my lace shawl project. I’m excited to try some lace knitting again … this time with real lace-weight yarn from Maine. I’ll write more as I make some progress!

For now, though, that’s all I’ve got to say.

Gone knitting!

Finishing Projects

Today I can proudly say that I survived my first week as a Clinic Assistant. It wasn’t without bumps and bruises but I escaped mostly unscathed.

This weekend is a little bit bittersweet since I say goodbye to my guy on Monday for a week – he’s spending a week with the guys in North Carolina – and I have decided that I need to concentrate on finishing those projects that I’ve been carrying around for ages … well, at least one has been carried around for ages.

DROPPS Tunic ... ready to travel

DROPPS Tunic … ready to travel

My DROPS Design tunic is the first on my list. I’ve taken it to my knitting guild meeting and to my knitting group this week. I have an inch or so of 1×1 ribbing (on size 1 needles) to go before I reach the straps … and then I “just have to seam it”! Since it’s been so blasted hot here in Florida this August, I’ll be excited to have it finished and be able to wear it!

Hair Elastics holding my stitches on the DPNs

Hair Elastics holding my stitches on the DPNs

The beaded scarf is ready to be grafted together. The construction is unique to me in that it is knitted from the bottom up in two pieces (with the beading being on the bottom or at the beginning of each piece.) Now, both pieces are a bit longer than the 27 inches that is suggested in the pattern so that (I hope) it can be wrapped double around my neck and the beaded edges pulled through the loop. We’ll see when it’s grafted. I haven’t ever grafted a 2×2 rib before so this will be a new adventure for me. I found a YouTube video that was a very *very* brief explanation of how to do this and I’ll be writing about my experience after I’m successful!

I have my bag with the lace end panels, too, to finish. They’ve really taken a back seat in my knitting bag. Mostly because I have to start working on the lace in relative seclusion. So, next week, when I’m alone at night after work, I will be working on the lace panels. I’ve already knitted and frogged the first panel several times. Maybe the fifth or sixth time will be the charm.

Felted Scuffs ready to be Felted Today!

Felted Scuffs ready to be Felted Today!

Last, but not least, I have to felt the scuffs that I knitted in Maine this summer for N. Just a bit of hot water in the washer and I’ll be good to get that done this afternoon. Maybe after his daughter, R, washes her couch slip cover … I hear it needs it! 🙂

Gone knitting!

Finished Objects

I’ve been wrapping up a few UFOs again and thought you might like to see some photos of them and hear what I thought about the yarn and patterns, etc.

Prima Dogma by Queen Bee Knits first order is ready to go out. I’ve finished two sweaters for Jan’s fur family (they live out in the San Francisco area). Jan has two Japanese Chins and these sweaters are for her little girl.

First, my original design, “Señorita Lolita”

"Senorita Lolita" - custom knit for Jan

I originally bought some wool fingering weight yarn in a peachy pink. Jan had asked for a pink color for this sweater but left the shade to my discretion. I started knitting and decided I really didn’t like the yarn and ordered some Koigu KPPM in their solids color way. I love the way this sweater turned out. It’s pretty and feminine and the ruffle is just right. I also knitted the flower in various “scraps” of fingering yarn in KPPM and wools that I have in my stash. The first flower I knitted was way too dull but this one – I especially like the way the green leaf turned out – I think is just perfect!

"Boyfriend" a PrimaDogma by Queen Bee Knits design

Lola was kind enough to model twice – she is not the dog who loves to wear clothing – and this is the “Boyfriend” sweater knit for Jan’s Japanese Chin. I love the colors of this sweater. I knit it with Cascade Yarns Baby Alpaca Chunky and it was a pleasure to knit. The yarn is so soft and will be so warm on those Northern California wintery days! This pattern is a seriously altered version of the sweater in “Dress Your Dog” by Sys Fredens. It’s designed to be bulky and loose like a boyfriend’s sweater would be. I think it looks adorable on Lola and can’t wait to see Jan’s photos.

Fingerless Mittens - I'll be knitting until the cows come home!

Three pairs of fingerless mittens that I’ve knit for my SIL, Annie, who will be gifting them to some lucky ladies! The grey pair on the left is knit with pure alpaca DK weight yarn from Maine. I bought it at an alpaca farm in Washington, Maine. It’s so soft and will be warm … but alpaca is well-known to also be very light weight. This one pair took approximately 8 hours to complete but I love the way they turned out. Needless to say, however, I had to find another pattern that didn’t take quite so long if I am going to get the rest of the 15 pairs finished and delivered before Christmas (or sometime next year!) The two pairs on the right are simpler construction and knitted in a DK weight wool from Maine, too. This is a hand-dyed wool from French Hill Farm in Solon, ME that I bought at a farmer’s market. I loved the rich ocean colors that go from purple to turquoise to limey green and then to yellow. I also love this pattern – it’s simple and lets the yarn be the focus.

And last but not least, the most recent threesome. More fingerless mittens. (I haven’t even woven in the ends of the left-most pair yet).

On the left, grey wool fingerless mittens that are about as simple as they come but I really like this pattern and will be making more of these. They knit up quickly in worsted weight wool and I will be embroidering a snowflake on the back of the hand to give it a little bit of character. The two green pairs are knitted in a more “Aran” cabled pattern – and I love, love, love cables. It must be my Irish heritage that comes out through my fingertips when I get sticks and string together. The yarn is a 50-50 alpaca/wool blend and it’s lovely yarn. Also worsted weight, this pattern knitted up in about 3 hours per glove … not too bad. I seem unable to knit up a glove in much less than that and 6 hours each pair isn’t an awful lot of time to spend. Wish I knitted a bit faster but I don’t.

I’ve discovered a great knitting in the round tip, though for knitters. If you criss-cross the first and last stitches (pass the last stitch to the left needle to knit first and pass the first stitch to the right needle to knit last – here’s a youtube video that shows you how to do this a bit better than my explanation. Love it! And she’s absolutely right, the little divot at the beginning (I always just started knitting) is gone! Woo! Hoo!

Gone knitting!