Thursday, November 20, 2014

Gifts for Knitters: Pom Pom Quarterly

 If you are a knitter you probably have a list of things you'd love to try: yarn, needles, patterns, notions, techniques, and the list goes on (and on and on). Of course, I have a list too and I thought I'd share it with you this Holiday season. Some of the items will be practical, some will be beautiful, some will be inspirational but it just so happens that Pom Pom Quarterly hits all of those marks with style.
Last year I asked Mr. B for a subscription to Pom Pom Quarterly and I'm so glad I did. Pom Pom is a British publication that comes out four times per year and includes patterns, articles, recipes, and an interesting array of information both educational and entertaining. The photography is beautiful and the articles and patterns are both well curated and interesting and might include crochet mittens, huge wraps or shawls, recipes for whiskey tiramisu (putting that on the to-make list this Holiday season), and articles about natural dyeing, just to list a few. Subscriptions are 30£ or about $47 for four issues and they now include a code for a digital download. I loved receiving my issues in the mail so much that I asked for a subscription renewal this year for Christmas, I highly recommend it!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

FO: Ella Funt

 Aren't tiny sweaters wonderful? And tiny sweaters with tiny elephants are maybe the best kind of tiny sweater. After a lengthy period of time where no one in my world was having a baby now there seems to be a spate of them, isn't that the way?

 All of the expected babies are boys so I had to do a little digging into Ravelry and my knitting library to find something appropriately adorable yet masculine for the little guys.
I think this is perfect.

Pattern: Ella Funt by Pamela Wynne
Yarn: Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino in various colors
Needles: US #4 (3.5 mm) Hiya Hiya Sharp Interchangeable
Mods: I knit the ribbing and button bands in a contrasting color rather than the main color of the sweater. I had an odd amount of the gray yarn in my stash which I knew would not be enough to knit the pattern as written (turns out it wasn't enough for my mod either. I had to run out and buy another skein, oops!). I also didn't think that the gray/beige color of the yarn would be great up close to a baby's face so I wanted to use a brighter color for the ribbing. It turns out that I really like this modification and will use it on the next one (coming soon). One thing about baby cashmerino is that it does show every little inconsistency so there are some bits of knitting that aren't quite smooth even after blocking. I'll sacrifice perfectly consistent fabric on the altar of machine washability, though. 

Do you have a favorite pattern for baby boys? Patterns for baby girls are everywhere but I've found it difficult to find cute things for little guys.


Saturday, November 15, 2014

FO: Trillian

 Sometimes I feel way ahead of the curve. For instance, last month I decided to cast on a Christmas gift to knit during my commute time.
 I'm not a huge fan of knitting garter stitch but it's so easy to knit that I decided it would be the perfect project for my early morning and afternoon bus times. Several weeks later I have a finished object for my gift box that I barely noticed I was knitting. Normally, I would complain about the endless garter stitch but at 5:30am I didn't really have the energy to contribute to bemoaning garter stitch, I just picked it up and knit.
Pattern: Trillian by Martina Behm
Yarn: Tosh Merino Light in Robin Red Breast
Needles: US #2 1/2 (3.0 mm) Addi Turbo
Mods: None. I just knit knit knit and have about 6 yards of yarn left. I'm going to use it to tie up the package before I send it off to the recipient. 

Do you knit gifts for the holidays? Do you have a plan or do you just dive in?

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

WIP Wednesday: Rolling Thunder Gloves

 I started with something of a problem. Variegated yarn. Some people love it and some people hate it and I tend to be somewhat ambivalent about the stuff. It's difficult to find the right pattern for whatever it is your variegated yarn is doing. I think I found the perfect pattern for this particular yarn, which is Leading Men Fiber Arts Show Stealer in the Anne's Story color. I ordered the yarn from Little Skein in the Big Wool as a companion to my Anne of Green Gables kit (more on that soon). As you can see, it has beads.
 I've already finished the first glove...
and my project has a home in my new Chubby Cloud project bag that I purchased at KnitFit! this last weekend. 

The pattern is Rolling Thunder Gloves by Sivia Harding and it's available as a free Ravelry download. Sivia based the pattern on her Rolling Thunder Socks (found at knitty.com) and you'll need the chart and instructions for the beaded bits from the socks to knit the gloves. I'm using clear copper-lined beads that I had on hand and the effect is a little like rain drops on Fall foliage. The combination of purls, knits, beads, and garter rib is perfect for this autumnal yarn.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Music Monday

"Sweet Child O' Mine" (Guns N' Roses cover) by Post Modern Jukebox. I'm going to see these guys on Sunday with Mr. B. Can't wait!

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Happy Things for a Tuesday

Photo courtesy of Misi Photo

I'm having a case of the Mondays... on Tuesday. I'm firmly convinced that Tuesday is the worst day of the week; no re-entry from the weekend, not a hump day, not even close to Friday - it's just there, being a Tuesday. Blech.

I thought I'd counteract the ickiness by sharing some happy things, like this pattern. It's the Graceful Pullover by Maria Yarley and it's a ballet-inspired fingering weight sweater guaranteed to make the little girl in your life pirouette. It's a $6.99 download via Ravelry and 100% of the proceeds go to a friend of the designer who recently lost her husband and has four children to raise.You get an adorable pattern and get to help someone in need, how great is that?


I've also started thinking about Christmas knitting (you realize it's next month, right?) and I'm happy that I started last month and have two projects done and another on the needles. Of course, that's not to say that I won't be furiously knitting up until the last minute trying to eke out every last minute and yard. 
Here's a sneak peak since I'll have an entire FO post about this project later in the week. I'm tempted to keep it for myself!

Finally, Colette just released a stunner of a pattern called the Dahlia dress. It looks like a wardrobe staple and I'm contemplating joining the sewalong but not before I bust out a top with this fabric:
I purchased this fabric from Spoonflower for Miss Crayola Creepy's Cat Lady Sewing Challenge. I'm planning on a Sorbetto top from Colette which I should be able to sew in an afternoon. Should. I have until the 9th to get it together and we'll just not think about the fact that Knit Fit! is this weekend and I'll be away from my sewing machine. 

Well, that pick me up worked for me and I hope it worked for you, too!