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WIP it good May 29, 2008

Posted by jeninmaine in bebeh, knitting.
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I know, I know, that entry title is old and overused, but in this case it’s appropriate so there.

Finally got around to taking photos of my latest WIPs, hopefully I’ll actually (gasp) finish something soon! I’ll post them in order of “most finished” to “least finished”.

Andohalambro Hat

I sized this down for a baby by using smaller needles and lighter weight yarn.  I’m not very impressed with the way this yarn looks with this pattern, it seems really muddy to me. I so totally missed the ribbing at the brim, I’m not sure if I’ll leave it as is or try to tack it on later. Drat.

Pattern: Andohalambo Hat from Smariek Knits
Yarn: Jaeger Baby Merino DK in Hula Hoop, color 194

Wool Longies

So far, so good – doesn’t look like much (actually it sort of looks like a hat) but I’m almost to the gusset so I’ll be starting the legs soon. Whew! Joy’s handspun is striping so nicely, I’m really enamored with it!

Pattern: Itchy Fingers Longies by Jessica Jensen
Yarn: Fabulosity Yarn’s Cherlindrea, hand-dyed and handspun, OOAK

Sampler Baby Blanket

Sampler Baby Blanket

I love this blanket pattern, mostly because it’s easy to carry around with me since it’s all little blocks. I may change my mind once I get to the part where I have to join them all together :)

Currently complete: 14/35 blocks

Pattern: Sampler Blanket by Margarita Mejia from Vogue Knitting on the Go: Baby Blankets Two
Yarn: Dale of Norway Baby Ull, Color 010

Norwegian Sweet Baby Cap / Djevellue

I’m trying out a bunch of baby hats in Tess’ Super Socks and Baby. So far I love this yarn, the only downside is the dye is coming off on my hands and staining my birch Brittany dpns. I’m wondering how I can colorfast this after knitting without muddying the colors – I’m thinking I might spray some Dharma Dye Fixative (awesome stuff, a million times better than Retayne) on it in patches and let dry, then wash in Synthrapol.

Pattern: Norwegian Sweet Baby Cap / Djevellue
Yarn: Tess’ Designer Yarns Super Socks and Baby


A Tale of Two Hats January 24, 2008

Posted by jeninmaine in bebeh-to-be, knitting.
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I wanted to knit a hat to go with the booties I made for my coworker’s baby, but I needed something that would fit a 3-6 month old as I’m a terrible slacker and didn’t have these done before the baby was actually born, so…

I spent a lot of time looking for patterns, both online and in the myriad of books I own. I just wanted something simple but in an attractive design with a shape and good decreases. I finally found my pattern – the Cupcake Baby Hat at Slumberland.org. There’s a link to the PDF in the second paragraph.

I really liked the idea of the tall sides and then a round dome on top, thinking it would look good in the same yarn I used for the booties I made out of the Saartje’s Bootees pattern. The pattern calls for worsted weight yarn and size 8 dpns so I first tried doubling the fingering yarn to see how it would work:

Cupcake Hat #1 (by jeninmaine)

It actually worked out okay, the resulting hat worked up very quickly and looks cute. I’m not totally thrilled with the pooling but it doesn’t matter all that much. The only thing I didn’t like was that it was really thick, especially compared to the booties which were knitted on size 3 dpns.

So I decided to try another version of the same pattern, only with size 4 dpns and one strand of fingering weight yarn. To approximate the “Baby” sizing I used the “Child” pattern to fudge the gauge as best I could:

Cupcake Hat #2 (by jeninmaine)

I like the second one a lot better, there was some pooling but overall I think it looks more finished, the drape is a lot better, and colorwise it matches the booties a lot better. It came out slightly smaller than the first hat, but the first hat is kind of huge so I don’t think it’ll be a problem. I’m going to save the thicker hat for bebeh-to-be as I think it’ll fit her well next Autumn unless she has a big huge melon head, in which case I’ll hold onto it to give as a shower gift to Jenn.

The pattern is very easy once you understand the whole “top down” concept (which I actually like better as you don’t have to worry about casting on too tightly on the band, casting off loosely is a lot easier) and I did the heavyweight in an evening, the fingering weight in an evening plus an hour or two in assorted spare time.

Here’s the set of booties and hat I’ll be sending to my coworker. I hope she likes them!

Cupcake Hat & Saartje's Bootees (by jeninmaine)

Yarn: Hand-dyed sock yarn from now-defunct Etsy seller :(
Cupcake Hat
Saartje’s Bootees

Random acts of knitting December 11, 2007

Posted by jeninmaine in Etsy, knitting, sewing, spinning.
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I was trying to think of other gifts I can give the kids that either don’t cost much or are something I can make, and I came up with beanbags. Beanbags are to me one of those staples of childhood and I think kidlet will have a lot of fun with them as will Baby Katy. I don’t know if Kaitlynn will like them (she already has a TON of toys, it’s ridiculous) but at the very least between those and the Tinkertoys I’ll really confuse the heck out of my brother and SIL. “What, no plastic?” No cartoon characters?

I thought about the whole beanbag concept and the more I thought about it the more I liked it so I decided to work up a proof of concept. I have a bunch of coordinated fat quarters prewashed and stashed away for a rainy day that I ironed, cut into 5″ squares, and made some beanbags. OMG they are so cute! I didn’t have small enough beans so these ones are filled with basmati rice, which makes them smell good. They were a bit of work getting them cut and all that but very satisfying. I think I might try to see how much scrap fabric I can use up and perhaps offer them in my Etsy shop, too, sets of four or six with a coordinating drawstring bag.

Then of course I discovered that there are things out there called quilting “charms”, basically coordinated sets of pre-cut squares for quilting. And they make them 5″ x 5″. Being able to avoid the ironing/cutting step would be awesome. I especially love anything in a repro 30s print. Hmmmmmm.

The only other exciting news is that I made a hat. Not the most inspired hat, but it’s exciting as I actually made it for myself (well, the bebeh-to-be) rather than for someone else! Imagine that! It worked up really quickly using some clearance Crystal Palace Bamboozle yarn (55% Bamboo, 24% Cotton, 21% Elastic Nylon) I found a month or so back at the LYS and a free pattern from their website. It’s very cute. Bebeh-to-be won’t be able to wear it until next Autumn as it’s 6-9 month sized, but it’s wicked cute and I love the resulting knitted fabric.

I think the color distribution came out pretty cute:
Bamboozle Baby Hat (by jeninmaine)

I didn’t like the double decreases at the top at first, but now that I can see the end result I like this construction a lot better:
Bamboozle Baby Hat (by jeninmaine)

I stuffed a skein of yarn into the hat to give it a little more definition:
Bamboozle Baby Hat (by jeninmaine)

The hat worked up very quick and I’ve already started on the back of the sweater. Here’s the set in the Circus colorway, which is also very cute:

Let’s see, what else. The dyed roving I got from handpaintedyarn.com is finally fluffy enough for me to attempt spinning…truth be told I hung it up and forgot about it for a long time, but considering it was literally compacted into a plastic bag and then wrapped in packing tape until it was a capsule the size of two of my fists it’s really come a long way. Thankfully the roving is very soft with a decent staple and the colors, while not exactly like the photos on the website, are very nice.

Roving from handpaintedyarn.com (by jeninmaine)

I finished the last of the Old Lady Hair the other night so maybe it’s time to crack into these.

Or I could knit.

Or I could sew.

Of I could keep picking away at my craft room.