Monday, November 17, 2014

Dino Cap

I didn't completely ignore my holiday projects - here's yet another holiday gift for a small person complete and added to the gift pile. The gift pile that still needs quite a few items for the side of the family we see for Thanksgiving this year. That is one quickly-approaching holiday. Back to the needles!
Pattern: Dino Cap (mine)
Yarn: Caron Simply Soft in Dark Sage and Ocean
Needles: US6/4.0mm and US7/4.5mm
Timeframe: November 1 - 15, 2014
Mods: Fewer spikes, and I knit them in the round instead of flat.

I really don't have much to say about this hat. It seems like it'll be warm due to the double layer for the ears, and the spikes are a nice touch. We'll see if the recipient thinks so later this month!

Saturday, November 15, 2014


That looming deadline this weekend was moved back at the last minute. Of course I continued working on deadline knitting for holidays and gifting visits this year.

When you've finished laughing, take a look at what I started instead!

It's a doily (Large Pineapple Doily, Ravelry), using some stash yarn that had no other purpose. Why? Is it the last thing that will finish the decor in some room of my house? Is it a present for someone who'd really, really appreciate it? Does it even have a purpose? No. I just wanted to crochet something intricate and hopefully use up a large-ish chunk of stash. It's moving pretty quickly so far - that or I've watched more episodes of Gilmore Girls than is reasonable since I started it. Because of course, frantic knitting up to the deadline is a holiday tradition, who am I to ruin it by finishing things early?

Monday, November 10, 2014

Path of Destruction

I seem to be carrying an aura of destruction with me today. A bottle of Carmenere jumped off the wine rack when I was walking down the stairs and apparently the vibrations were just too much for the bottle. Then I snapped the end off my knitting needle cord:

Of course it would happen when I have stitches on the needles, no extra cords, and a rapidly looming deadline. And superglue does not seem to be holding. Amazon Prime to the rescue!

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Multi-Colored Clogs

This year, I need to knit a new pair of clogs for my husband and myself along with two pairs for friends and a requested pair for a family member. Luckily, clogs don't take much time and I already have all the yarn I need.

For the first pair, I'm trying out a variegated yarn, something I haven't done before. These are worked with two strands, but only need one skein of the main color. Instead of using the outer strand and the center strand together and mixing up the colors for full-on clown barf, I weighed the skein (97.2 grams, slightly under the 100 grams listed on the band), made a center-pull ball from the center of the skein to just about 48.6 grams (half of the skein), then matched up the end of the new ball to the same point in the color sequence on the skein. Luckily, the Patons is a very regular variegated yarn, and the two strands are lining up amazingly well as I knit.

Let's see how fast I can finish the first few pairs - we'll be seeing the clog recipients next weekend and I'd love to gift them then!

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Redefining Stich Definition

These motivation-inducing socks were exactly what I needed. Zooming along, I'm halfway done with the first and let me tell you, this yarn is redefining my thoughts on stitch definition. Seriously, Three Irish Girls Springvale Sock is truly an amazing yarn, so plump and beautiful:

Now the trick will be to not immediately buy some in every color - at least not until I see how the final sock holds up in use!

Friday, November 7, 2014

Little Person Clothing

It is getting to look a lot like Thanksgiving. This means my holiday knitting should be close to finished. Ha.

Here's a couple of things I have finished so far:

Yarn: Loops & Threads Snuggly Wuggly Baby Sport in Dove Grey
Needles: US7/4.5mm
Timeframe: September 28 - October 28, 2014
Mods: Messed up the order of the raglan decreases, so that's a mod. Also knit into the front of the five stitches beyond the placket break while leaving them on the needles instead of casting on stitches and then sewing them down later.
Problems: None! Love this pattern!

I then had enough leftover yarn to make a matching hat. I made it top-down to use up 100% of my yarn, and wound up with 2.5" after weaving in the end. It is also long enough to roll up the brim and roll it back down for extended use. Perfect!

Pattern: My own (mine)
Yarn: Loops & Threads Snuggly Wuggly Baby Sport in Dove Grey
Needles: US6/4.0mm
Timeframe: October 30 - November 1, 2014
Mods: None, as it's my own design. Check the link for my pattern notes.
Problems: None

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Cat Toys

I have a fairly large collection of wine corks. I've been collecting them for 2.5 years, planning to make a cork board (over 50% done!) with all the real cork ones and using the rest for cork-based holiday decorations. Given the quality of wine you get on a grad student's budget, I have a lot of plastic corks! In addition to the holiday ornaments (that I haven't made), I decided to make a cork-filled cat toy to actually do something with the collection.

Also it is a good idea to photograph the cat toys before you give them to the cats and they bat them under all the furniture with the dust buffaloes and lose them. Someday there may be a picture of the mouse here. Someday.

Pattern: Korkmauser (Ravelry mine)
Yarn: Red Heart With Love in Tan and Lettuce
Needles: US4/3.5mm
Timeframe: October 26, 2014
Mods: No whiskers, 2 colors because that's the yarn I had, 4-stitch I-cord tail.
Problems: I only have four US4 DPNs. 5 would work a lot better. Cats stole the toy and hid it before I could get a picture. Oops!
I also have a growing collection of prescription pill bottles. They fit paperclips (as stitch markers and cable needles) and tapestry needles really well, so I have some of them in bags with extra knitting supplies. They also hold beads that come in non-lasting packaging. However, I've still got a lot more than I need for such purposes. I decided to make a second cat toy, this time filling it with a prescription pill bottle filled with rice. It makes a nice rattling sound as the cats bat it across the floor. They seem to enjoy it!

Pattern: Korkmauser (Ravelry mine)
Yarn: Red Heart With Love in Tan
Needles: US4/3.5mm
Timeframe: October 26 - November 1, 2014
Mods: No whiskers, larger to cover the bottle, 4-stitch I-cord tail. More like a rat than a mouse.
Problems: I only have four US4 DPNs. 5 would work a lot better. No photography problems this time, I learned my lesson!