New Knitters

I love new knitters. Their level of interest and enthusiasm is contagious. And honestly, I feel like a new mother with each new student, coaxing them along, encouraging them step by step, beginning again and again when nessesary. I can almost hear it when that “ah ha” moment hits πŸ™‚

Jennifer’s “Begin To Knit Scarf”

After covering the basics of knitting including the knit and purl stitch, my beginning knitters all make a scarf using the Begin To Knit Scarf pattern and a skein of Cascade Pure Alpaca yarn. The luxury of the alpaca yarn helps the new knitters stay interested in their new skill, which is essential because new knitters must practice every day! 

  
As with most things in the life of someone with a chronic illness, there are many many times I really don’t want to deal with people. But, my newbies always bring a smile to my face, making me glad I showed up for another day πŸ™‚

Deep in the needles…

Maria

Summer Morning, Coffee & Knitting

Does it get any better than this?!

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This is my Wild Cherry Shawl. I am knitting it in To Dye For Glow (I think). It is about 95% llama and 5% stellina (the stuff that does the glowing).

I bought this yarn a couple of years ago from Alpaca DirectΒ just for me. Β And since then, I’ve been looking and waiting for just the right pattern to use it on. Wild Cherry is thee perfect one!

Someone tried to convince me to give it to them instead of keeping it for myself…I can’t seem to remember who that was. Hmmm. Β Too bad πŸ˜‰

Happy Knitting πŸ™‚

Maria

Picot Edge Slouch Hat

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Hello fellow yarn lovers. Today I’m sharing with you my latest favorite :), Plymouth Yarn’s Royal Llama Silk Hat by Jan Wise. The pattern is a free download at http://blog.plymouthyarn.com/2010/01/29/royal-llama-silk-hat/
It can also be found on Ravelry.

I knit mine with one skein of Malabrigo Rios, approx. 200 yds, on size 6 & 8 16″ circulars, and size 8 dbl points at the end.

I made a couple of adjustments in the pattern. First off, Round 5 she calls it the turning round. What she means is this is the round you will fold up to create that lovely picot edge. The pattern calls for you to keep a very long tail to use later to stitch the hem up to create this picot edge. I find it easier to follow the pattern to Round 9. At Round 9, fold the beginning edge, picking up one edge stitch along with the stitch on your needle, knitting these two stitches together, repeating around the hat. No need for that long tail and more finish work at the end of your project!

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See how the edge, when first knitted, has no picot edge…

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Fold the cast in edge up to meet the your stitches of the 9th round, pick up one stitch of cast on edge and knit tog with one stitch on the left needle from round 9. Repeat around hat. Voila! Now you have a beautiful picot edge πŸ™‚

Secondly, the sizes are listed as 19.55 / 20 inches. This just creates all kinds of questions in my head. Suffice to say I have a 23″ head. The 20″ size is plenty big enough for my head. Not in the least bit tight.

I hope you will give this hat a try. It is simple, very pretty, and adapted well to my Malabrigo Rios yarn πŸ™‚

The Whoosh

There is a funny little saying( which my pain addled brain can’t recall verbatim right now ) that refers to deadlines and the WHOOSH sound they make as they pass you by…it’s been quite that way around my house lately! I’m not even entirely sure that anyone even reads any of this anymore since I have been silent for so long! Well, enough of that. I’ m here now, right πŸ™‚

I want to share my finished Herringbone Cowl with you. I first talked about it here. This is a case where looks can be deceiving. They ARE deceiving!

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This gorgeous cowl is soft and squishy and oh so warm! The herringbone design gives it structure, preventing it from falling in on itself. The effect is a bit stiff looking but once you put it on-ohhhhhh heaven!

I used a sample of Malabrigo Rasta that Kelley is considering carrying in Alpaca Direct. I am wondering if any of you have ever used it or would like to try it too?

Ova’s Got A Brand New Bag

One of the things I always do when I visit Ova is take her shopping. So what could be more natural than to crochet her a pretty reusable shopping bag?! I found the free pattern on Ravelry.com. It’s called Spiral Motif String Bag by LisaJedi Gwinner

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The bag works up quickly and is really pretty. I used Tsc Classic Elite Light cotton in Deep Lavendar. It actually is a beautiful blue to my eyes! Anyway, the description above is linked to Alpaca Direct, my favorite online yarn source, and the prices are awesome. You will need 2skeins. Give it a go!

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Knitting with Rasta

DoesΒ anyone ever really use these huge needles?

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I’ve considered that question more than once myself. Being partial to slick metal knitting needles with fine tips that slip like buttered whispers around my yarn, these huge broom handle sticks have not garnered much respect from me. That is until now. Now I am yearning to use them more and more please. Β Why? you ask. All because of a yarn which I have been trying to get my eager mitts on for 5 years now…Malabrigo Rasta. My friend Kelley handed me a sample skein of it 2 weeks ago and instructed me to make something with it. Oh the joy of creating with that super chunky yarn! My middle son was in the hospital the first week of my possession and working with my ball of Rasta kept me focused on something other than worry as I worked on knitting this soft, cushy collar cowl pattern

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The next week found me traveling to the beach to see my Ova Mae and help her lay in groceries and dry goods for the winter. In the evening while Ova regaled me with stories from her girlhood, I relaxed and knit away on this velvety soft cowl.

I finished and bound off however I am not happy with my bind off and need to re-do it. This week I will find just the right buttons and get it all wrapped up. (best laid plans and all that). We’ll see what Omar has to say πŸ™‚ I will post a picture of the finished cowl when it is ready.

Happy Knitting!!!

Maria

Sheep in my hair

Here is my completed “I love my sheep hat” hat.

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It’s a little small. Next time I will add 10-20 stitches to my cast on. Each pattern repeat is 10 sts. And that might make all the difference…we’ll see.
This one is going to my favorite little lady, Ova Mae. She’s 93 and from Montana. The sheep will be right at home on her head πŸ˜‰
Off to bed now.
Maria

Just Post Already!

I’ve been fussing and stewing over this post…telling self “You really need to get this posted” about every hour. Being new to blogging and wanting desperately to be perfect in every way causes my thoughts to jumble and my confidence to crumble. Really, the entire point of beginning this blog is to encourage my writing. To get the white space dirty. To risk looking like a fool and living through it. Again. So. Whew. Now that I’ve got THAT out of my system, let me share what I’m working on this week.

It’s called “I Love My Sheep Hat” by Hjerte GO’H design.

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You can purchase it on Ravelry here

I am knitting it using Berroco Ultra Alpaca in a heathered red and off white. I’m also using ChiaoGoo Knit Red Lace circulars. I love love LOVE these circs! They are smooth, sharp, and the cable has no memory. A dream to knit with for about $8 each at Alpaca Direct
This is my hat so far:

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I haven’t done color work for awhile. I forgot just how very much I enjoy it. Knitting with a different color in each hand, a little red here..a touch of white there..and soon a picture begins to emerge. It’s magical! Besides, what could be more fun than fat fluffy sheep dancing ’round your head πŸ™‚

Enjoy!
Maria