Once Upon a Sock: October Edition

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Hi All and Happy October!

I absolutely love this time of year. The leaves are just starting to change on some of our trees, although it will take a tad bit longer for the rest of them to catch up. The nights are definitely cooler and the days are too, which is a relief after an unprecedented, super hot summer. Pumpkin everything has come out…although not all of it good. Have you tried Halo Top’s Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream? I’m not a fan because of the pieces of pie crust (think soggy pie crust…not crisp and flaky) in it. Plus, I think there are some things you just shouldn’t mess with from the original flavor. Pumpkin Oreos anyone?

One of the other things I love about this time of year is getting to wear socks again! Yep…it’s all about the socks. And due to being sick last week, I was able to finish another pair, just in time for this cooler weather! I’ve talked about them many times on the blog. I actually started the first sock back in September of 2015. Socks were not really a priority at that time, even though I was blogging about them every Thursday. I finished the first sock in March of 2016 and cast on for the second. Then I put them away for a really, really long time.

Last month, while trying to determine which sock pattern I wanted to work next, I finally decided to pull out that second sock and get it done. I was tired of them taking up a pair of needles and a project bag. Plus I wanted that extra yarn for my sock yarn blanket 🙂 I also made a solemn vow to myself to finish everything in my UFO and WIP projects before starting anything new. This pair of socks is the reason why I always knit them TAAT* now as I never want to get SSS** again. I’ve even blocked them and taken pictures. Go me!!!

Ravelled Here: Hermione’s Everyday Socks by Erica Lueder

Started / Finished: 9/26/2015 – 10/3/2017

Needles: US 1 (2.25 mm) 24 inch circulars

Yarn: Madeline Tosh Sock in the colorway Spectrum (used 96 grams)

Techniques Learned: With the first sock, I learned how to do my first Heel Flap, Heel Turn and Gusset. I’ve used all of these techniques multiple times since then; however this was my first! I also learned that there are some mistakes you can live with and some you can’t. If you look very closely at the sock on the right foot, you’ll see that I got off pattern on the foot section. I decided I can live with it since I’m the only one that will ever see it.

I had to throw that last picture in there because my dog photo bombed me 🙂 Hey! Did you know that my friends and I blog about our sock knitting the first Thursday of every month? If you would like to join us, please let one of us know in the comments and we will be happy to link up with you! In the meantime, check out my very creative knitting buddies to see what they are up to this month! I will link straight to their posts as soon as they blog about them.

Katherine at fiber and sustenance

Kat at felinity knits

Stefanie at Wooly Cakes and Wooden Spoons

Until next time, Happy Knitting!

*TAAT = Two at a Time

**SSS = Single Sock Syndrome

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Once Upon A Sock: August Edition

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Hi All!

Did you enjoy my posts about Baby Rainy’s homemade gifts? If you haven’t checked them out, please do! You can find the links in the menu bar to the right. I would love your feedback. This year is flying by and this past month has been no exception. I didn’t meet my goal of finishing my socks by the 1 year anniversary of starting them; however I did finish them in the same month 🙂 I absolutely adore the pattern, fit and yarn…I guess I just love everything about them!

Ravelled Here: Smooth Operators by Susan B Anderson

Needles: US 1 (2.25 mm) magic loop

Yarn: String Theory Colorworks Inertia Self Striping in the color Putnisite

Started / Finished: July 10, 2016 – July 23, 2016 (Whew!)

New Techniques Learned: Afterthought Heels…this was new to me and scary as heck when I first started taking out the waste yarn, but now I love the method and will use it for future sock patterns. Especially for self-striping sock yarn!

I knit these TAAT and they took forever; however I’m so happy to be finished with them! They are super soft, especially after blocking and I know I’ll get a ton of use out of them.

Now, I just need to decide what I want to knit next. I’m leaning very heavily towards the Rose City Rollers or actually knitting the pattern from this months Yarnbox Sock Club, Call Me Ishmael. My yarn for the sock club just went in the mail yesterday, so I don’t know what color I will receive as of yet. Maybe I’ll wait until I get it and then decide. Regardless, I will have another pair on the needles again soon!

Me, and my fellow sock knitters, link up the first Thursday of every month to talk about our socks. If you would like to join us, let one of us know and we’ll be happy to add you to the group! I know that Stefanie from Wooly Cakes and Wooden Spoons is taking a social media / blog break for the months of August and September. Katherine from fiber and sustenance is currently on a cross country road trip with her hubby and I’m not sure if she’ll have time to post about socks this month; however check out her journey! She’s got some awesome pictures and lots of knitting!!! Finally, Kat from felinity knits has her sock post up for the month and it is an absolute stunning show stopper! Check her out!

Until next time, Happy Knitting!

 

FO ~ Baby Footwear

Hi All!

In my last blog post, I talked to you about the cute little headbands I made for Baby Rainy. This time, we’ll talk about footwear. Now, you know that I already blogged about her tiny little Baby Mitten Socks a couple of months ago. What you didn’t know is that I also made her a pair of booties and a pair of flip flops! Let’s start with the booties first.

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Easiest Baby Booties Ever…free pattern on Ravelry

How freaking adorable are these? I decided to use the Sparkle White yarn I used for Rainy’s headbands, which was leftover from her Rainbow Honeycomb Blanket. These are quite the cool little construction. They look like a capital T before you fold the edges over and sew them together, then you turn them inside out to get the affect shown above.

I could have sworn I took a picture before I sewed them up so I could show progress pictures; however I can’t find them for the life of me. This is a free knit pattern on Ravelry titled Easiest Baby Booties Ever! by Gina Michele. They really are quite simple; however I highly recommend watching the YouTube video where she goes over construction and sewing together.

These can easily be made into larger sizes and seem like they will be a perfect fit without falling off of Baby Rainy. I did make the newborn size, so I may have to work on another pair for when she’s a little older.

 

I was able to find the in progress pictures for these adorable little flip flops. Again, I used the Sparkle White yarn that was left over from the blanket and some leftover yarn from the Tulip Stitch Headband. I thought they would look super cute together. This was another free pattern ($2.00 on Rav but free instructions on her blog) on Ravelry called the Baby Strap Flip-Flops by Bethany Dearden and is crochet. I’m so glad that I can crochet and knit 🙂 It makes it so much more fun when I see patterns and don’t have to worry about whether it’s one or the other.

These took quite a bit more time than the knit booties due to all of the sewing together; however they were still super simple. One thing that I would change is to wait to weave in the ends until the end. I wove them in at each step and I could have hidden some of the ends better if I had waited. She also has a YouTube video that helps out with instructions that might need demonstration. That’s how I found the pattern in the first place! Again, I made the newborn size since she will be born in August.

I cannot wait to see these on Rainy’s little footsies! To keep those footsies clean, I also included The Almost Lost Washcloth by Julie Tarsha. I’ve made this before; however this was my first time making a project using the Portuguese Knitting style. I really enjoyed the technique and hope to use it in future projects that are all garter stitch. I find the Purl stitch to be relaxing when using this method. The yarn was Lily Sugar’n Cream Twists in the color Squishy Twists.

I’ve now blogged about all the gifts that I made for Baby Rainy. Sweet Mama has promised lots of pictures of Rainy wearing / using everything once she is born and I’ll update my Ravelry project pages at that time. It was so much fun making stuff for a baby girl again after the rush of boys lately; however I’m super happy to be back to knitting for myself. I have more finished objects to blog about soon!

Until next time, Happy Knitting and Crocheting!

 

FO ~ Shell Stitch Baby Headbands

Hi All,

How many times can I start the beginning sentence for this blog? Apparently 20 times. Okay…enough of that. Let’s get on with it.

Baby Rainy is going to be one styling little chickadee when she is born. In addition to her Rainbow Honeycomb Blanket, she’s got some awesome new headbands to wear. The first headband I made for her was the Tulip Stitch Headband, which I blogged about last month. I wanted to create a couple more that had flowers attached and came upon this YouTube video for a Shell Stitch Baby Headband with Flower.

You know I immediately had to pull out my scrap yarn and crochet hooks to try this. There is no written pattern; however it’s easily pulled together just by watching the video. This makes it perfect for those that don’t know how to read a crochet pattern. I wish I could write it out for you; however the designer has it written out for sale in her Etsy store.

The first one I made, I measured until I had approximately 13.5 inches (leaving 1/2 inch for stretch factor) to fit a newborns 14 inch head. I decided to make it in all white, allowing it to go with multiple outfits. It used about 12 grams of the Caron Simply Soft Snow Sparkle yarn that I used to make Rainy’s blanket, along with a 3.75 mm (F) crochet hook.

The second one, I kept the white headband and made the flower red. I increased the size to 15 inches and decided to leave the ends hanging so Mama can tie them together and it will last longer. It used approximately 7 grams of Caron Simply Soft Snow Sparkle yarn for the headband part and 5 grams of Caron Simply Soft Harvest Red yarn for the flower.

They turned out super cute and Mama (and me) are excited to see them modeled on sweet Rainy’s head! Only 23 more days until her due date! (You can click on the images below to make them larger.)

Until next time, Happy Knitting (and Crochet)!

FO – Rainbow Baby Blanket

Hi All,

Mama (aka Megan) and the family have received their package, so it’s time to start blogging about everything I made for Baby Rainbow (aka Rainy). In case you missed it, here are the Baby Mitten Socks and Tulip Stitch Headband I made for her and blogged about in the past.

Let’s start with the Rainbow Blanket. I knew that Megan might like a rainbow blanket. The first thing I did was start a Baby Rainbow board on Pinterest and send it to her to get an idea of the colors she was drawn to. She really liked the natural colors of the rainbow versus the pastel palette that I liked so I’m really happy that I sent the board to her first. I did not let her pick the blanket itself because I wanted it to be a surprise.

Next, I had to decide if I wanted to knit or crochet. Knitting takes longer; however crochet uses more yarn. After thinking about it, I knew I was starting so far in advance of her due date that I could do either. After that it was a simple agonizing choice of which blanket. Guys…there are literally hundreds of thousands of baby blankets out there! I was very attracted to the Honeycomb Throw by Red Heart just because of the way it looked. While browsing pictures of others FO’s in Ravelry, I saw a rainbow one and was immediately hooked.

I knew that I was going to have to buy yarn, even though I’m on a yarn diet, because I didn’t have all the colors of the rainbow. A lesson learned here…I had Red Heart Super Saver Solids in Lemon and Pumpkin. When I went to the store, I bought Caron Simply Soft in the other colors I needed, plus the sparkly white for the cloud appearance of the border / honeycomb pattern. Don’t do this! I repeat…do not do this! Although everything worked out in the end, the Red Heart was a thicker ply than the Simply Soft, even though it was listed as the same ply and weight. It had me really worried the entire time I was making the blanket.

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One set of rainbow complete!

I swatched and didn’t like the fabric on the recommended needle size of US 10 (6.0 mm) so I went down to a size US 8 (5.0 mm). I also knew that I didn’t want it as big as the throw size from the pattern, so I had to do a little math to determine the proper size. I wound up casting on with 142 stitches. I needed 10 stitches total for both ends (the border is knit at the same time as the honeycomb pattern) and the honeycomb pattern itself was in multiples of 8 stitches + 4. My math was correct (yay me!) and the final blanket wound up being a perfect size of 32″ x 40″. She’ll be able to use this her whole life if she wants.

Also, this…for those who do not like finishing…this would be your worst nightmare. Look away if you must. Believe me, I was not going to wait until the end to weave in all those ends. I think if I would have waited, I would have never finished it.

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Ends Galore!!!

I washed the blanket in Newborn Dreft and then steam blocked it since it’s acrylic yarn. It turned out super soft and snuggly and smells so good. Normally, I would list out all the information, however I’m going to send you to my Ravelry link this time for the project because there is just too much yarn to list and too many notes 🙂 All in all, I really loved the pattern and would definitely make this again. The honeycomb pattern itself was easy to memorize and a lot simpler than it looks.

Without further ado…the FO!

Until next time, Happy Knitting!

30 Day Knitting Challenge – Day 10

Do you have a favorite pattern or designer?

I absolutely love Rebecca Danger and her book The Big Book of Knitted Monsters. I’ve made two of the patterns so far and they are really easy to follow. They make excellent gifts for my great nieces / nephews and are easily customizable. For the first monster, I followed instructions and used white felt for the mouth. For the second monster, I crocheted “teeth” and sewed them on. You can mix and match parts and once you’ve made one, you want to make more.

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Hugo the Couch Potato Monster and Petunia the Patio Monster

I’ve test knit a lot for Linda Browning and I love how each of her patterns can be built upon to make them larger or smaller, based on your preferences. She tends to write smaller shawlette patterns that fit her very petite ballerina daughter; however I’ve always sized up for someone that is a “regular” size. Last year, during the month of December, she offered one free pattern a day. So, if you look in my Ravelry library, you’ll see that I have most of them. Here are a few pics of the ones I’ve test knit for her. I have another one that is super gorgeous and was my first project with beads; however it’s still in stealth mode because the pattern hasn’t come out yet. (The pattern names are added to the pics, dependent on which method you use to view the content.)

Another designer I love is Joji Locatelli. I’ve purchased two of her patterns so far and really enjoy the ease of her patterns. You’ve already seen the picture of the 3 Color Cashmere Cowl that I blogged about on Day 6 and Day 7 & 8 of the challenge. I also purchased the 3 Color Cashmere Shawl. For now, I’m waiting until I have a few more projects completed before I purchase her ebook titled “The Authentic Collection“. I want to knit every single pattern in the collection, so I feel it is a fantastic deal.

And last, but not least (because I seriously could go on and on…like yesterday’s post on yarn), Tin Can Knits. Because how could you have a post about favorite designers and not include them? I’ve knit two of their patterns so far (the Barley hat twice) and I adore their sense of color and style. Their pictures make me drool and wish that I lived in their neck of the woods; if only so I could wear everything they design.

The 30 Day Knitting Challenge is the creation of Meggiewes who blogs at Knitting in Wonderland.

Until next time, Happy Knitting!

30 Day Knitting Challenge – Days 7 & 8

I actually made it 48 hours without being on the computer. Let me tell you…it really helped a lot! I went and got a pedicure on Tuesday and relaxed the rest of the day; catching up on some shows on my DVR. Yesterday my husband and I went on an afternoon date to see Star Trek Beyond and grab a bite to eat. It was his last day of vacation and we wanted to do something outside of the house. The movie was great but the company was even better.

Day 7’s question piggy-backed off of day 6 and asks:

Your least favorite? (as in your least favorite project you’ve knit)

Melinda Cloth by Norma Wampler

I think if I were to knit this again, it might be enjoyable. I was only a couple of months into knitting and wanted something that was quick and easy…instant knitting gratification. The only reason why I did not enjoy knitting this was because of the yarn. It was my first time knitting with 100% cotton and I decided at that point that I would never knit with it again. It hurt my hands. Or so I thought. Now I know that I probably had too tight of a gauge and that was what was causing my hands to cramp up. I am happy to report that I am knitting with cotton again and may even attempt this pattern again at some point.

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Peaches & Creme Solids in the color Orchid

Day 8: What’s your most challenging project?

Stepping Stones Kit by Iris Schreier

If you click on that link, you will see copious notes on my Ravelry page for this project. I don’t know why I thought I was ready for short rows and lace just a few months into my knitting journey…I was being brave and adventurous, I guess. I frogged so many times that I think I could have made three of these shawls in that amount of time now. Just reading back through them makes me shudder. I still have the shawl and have only worn it a couple of times. Maybe it needs to go in my gift pile? Or maybe I should keep it for the memories? I do remember it was the first time I was ever featured as a photo on a project page and that made it really special to me and worth all the hard work.

I blogged about the project here and here.

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I had a request by Bekki from The Dartmoor Yarn Company to show my 3 Color Cashmere Cowl worn properly instead of pulled up as a tube over my head (as shown in Day 6 of the blogging challenge, so here’s your pic Bekki!

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The 30 Day Knitting Challenge is the creation of Meggiewes who blogs at Knitting in Wonderland.

And since Thursdays are usually about the socks, here’s my list of fellow sock knitters. I desperately hope to be rejoining them soon!

Check out Maggie at Project(s) in Progress and Katherine at fiber and sustenance and see what they are up to this week!

Also on our Thursday Sock Buddy list, however away on break are:

Alex – alexandknits

Hannah – unsophisticated+jejune

Jennifer – a creative yarn

Until next time, Happy Knitting!