Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Like Magic

When I first started knitting, I got a few how-to books and looked over the basics, and when I came across the suggestion that my knits should be blocked I had no idea what on earth they were talking about. So I looked into it a little bit further and when I found out I had to immerse my newly hand knit object into water, I was like "What???? You mean I have to put this into water? This thing that I just spent hours and hours knitting by hand." I called my grandmother, who is a veteran knitter, and asked her. Her reply was "Yes. Definitely." So I did it. And it worked. Of course. I was amazed at how lovely my stitches looked after blocking and I have been a firm believer and blocker ever since.

Remember that lumpy, bumpy aran sweater I've been working on? Well, I finally finished the back and this is what it looked like:

And then I blocked it and now it looks like this:

I am still amazed everytime. Its like magic. Now, I'm excited to finish this!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Obsessed Much?

Last week we flew out to Chicago and I needed a small project for the flight and the trip. I decided on the Green Autumn/Druid Mittens from the Fall issue of Vogue Knitting.

I cannot put these down. This pattern is so detailed - it is definitely not mindless, knit-in-front-of-the-TV knitting. I have less than an inch to knit on the back of the aran sweater and I cannot seem to tear myself away from these mittens long enough to finish it. I was hoping to have that sweater finished by Thanksgiving but it looks like there has been a change in plans.

Sunday, November 9, 2008


Last year, I totally dropped the ball when it came to my husband's birthday. He was so disappointed that I didn't knit anything for him, which took me by complete surprise because he never expressed any interest in me knitting anything for him before that. He wanted a scarf so this year that is what he got.

Pattern: A Scarf Askew by emilyelizabethknits
Yarn: Laines Du Nord, Korall in Charcoal Gray
Needles: size US 10 1/2

It is a challenge to knit for my husband, first of all, because he is very picky, and secondly, we live in the same house and if I want it to be a surprise that cuts out a lot of knitting time when he is home. I did manage to get it finished by his birthday, unblocked of course because there was just nowhere for me to block a 6 ft. long scarf in our apartment without him seeing it.

I love the yarn - I picked it up in a yarn store in Florence when we were in Italy last year. It is 100% merino wool and it is so soft, which is key for a scarf.

I am so happy he loved it! I blocked it and pinned it down only to find him pulling the pins out of it himself when it dried so that he could wear it. And he comes home from work every day and tells me how much he loves his scarf. Yay!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Simple Ribbed Hat

I saw a bright orange ribbed hat in a Ralph Lauren Children's ad and thought "ooooh, I love the color," and then I thought "hey, I could knit one of those right up!"

Pattern: my own - easy peasy lemon squeezy
Yarn: Jil Eaton Minnow Merino in Orangini - 2 skeins
Needles: size US 8

This was the perfect project to work on in between all those cables on the aran sweater I've got going on. It was a nice break and the color is so cheerful!

I am absolutely in love with the yarn. It is soooo soft for my little guy's head. And he loves to wear it! Especially on this chilly autumn morning at the lake.

If anyone is interested in this very simple pattern, please let me know and I will pass it along!

Tuesday, September 30, 2008


I started knitting this aran sweater and have hesitated posting about it for lack of any good pictures of what I have knit so far. It is lumpy, bumpy, and the stitches are quite uneven and I wasn't sure what the problem is - the yarn, the needles, my knitting (gasp!) - and have had thoughts of scrapping it altogether. But I have soldiered on and the longer the piece gets, the more it is starting to shape up. I think that it just might be the nature of the cable patterns and with some major blocking it might just turn out alright. I was so excited to start this Fall knit, too. I am keeping my fingers crossed.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Striped Sweater

I finally finished the striped sweater I have been knitting for Oliver. I have been working on this sweater since April - it was intended for the spring and suddenly the weather turned too hot for sweaters so I put it away to work on other projects. Looks like I finished it just in time for the cooler weather.

Pattern: Design F from Sirdar #318 Lazy Days and Holidays
Yarn: Rowan Handknit Cotton in the colors Ice Blue and Linen
Needles: size US 6 and size US 3 for the neck

It is a bit big on him - It is a size 3-4 years and he is just shy of 2. I intentionally sized up because I was tired of knitting stuff for him that juuuuust fit and then he grew out of a week later. So big is good.

I had a slight problem with the neckline. It is knit with a size 3 needle and when I went to try the sweater on him it wouldn't fit over his big toddler noggin! I had to rip out the cast off stitches and cast off again, extremely loose, with a size 6 needle.

I am really happy with the way this turned out and I love the stripes!

Monday, September 8, 2008

Happy 7!

Today is a very special day. It is mine and my husband's 7th wedding anniversary. I cannot believe time has flown by so fast that we have already been married for seven years! I'll take that as a good sign. My in-laws came to town to visit last week and I sat here today to download the pictures that I took of their trip and I started going through the older photos on my computer and it really hit home all of the wonderful memories that my husband and I share - all of the trips we have taken together, all of the family gatherings, the parties, people, and places, the birth of our son, our life abroad in Rome - every single good moment. I love my husband, I love my life, and I am so filled with happiness today. Happy Anniversary Andrew!

On another note - the 7th Anniversary gift is wool. What kind of knitter am I? I had no idea! I had to buy my husband a wool sweater because I just didn't have any time to knit him anything. On the other hand, my husband got me a whole fair isle sweater's worth of yarn!

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Scallop Edge Tee

So here it is, 2 days before September, and I just finished my one and only summer knit. I'm pretty sure that there are a few warm days left so that I have an opportunity to wear it.

Pattern: Scallop Edge Pullover by Lauren Lax from the Spring/Summer 2008 issue of Knit Simple Magazine
Yarn: Blue Sky Alpacas Skinny Dyed Cotton in the Mallard colorway
Needles: size US 3 circs for the body and US 2 for the placket and neckline
Mods: I added and inch to the length and made a garter stitch necline to match the placket instead of the scallop edge the pattern called for

I like it! It is a cute sweater option for the warmer weather. Even though I added an inch to the length, it still could have been longer by about 2 inches. I am wondering who they make these measurements for - I am average and I always have to add to the length and it is never enough.

I really like the broken rib detail on the front and I love the yarn. It knit up really well. It took a little getting used to at first because it is very splitty but I really like the finished product.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008


While perusing my latest issue of Martha Stewart Living, my son spied the page with the "Cookie of the Month", pointed to it and said "Good!" I was like "Ya, those totally look good!" So we just had to make them!

And they are really good! They are the No-Bake Chocolate and Peanut Butter Oatmeal Bars. They were really easy to make and they are no-bake so that means no hot oven on those hot summer days. Bonus- they have oatmeal in them so they are good for your cholesterol. Uh huh.

As for the sweater....... the front is coming right along. The sleeves are short so they shouldn't take too long to knit up. I will hopefully have this done soon.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Time Flies

Wow! I really cannot believe it is August already. Where has the summer gone? I am just now getting around to one of the many summer knits I had planned. It is going to be a cotton tee with a scallop edge. I have the back done and it is currently being blocked.

I am racing to finish this so that I can at least get some wear out of it before the cooler weather sets in. Its funny - now that fall is getting closer, my knitting is picking up speed.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Birthday Socks

My latest pet project has been a pair of socks knit for my sister for her birthday. As with most people I know who know that I knit, she has asked me "Why don't you ever knit anything for me?" So I asked her what she wanted and it turned out that she wanted socks. Great! Good choice - not a sweater that would take me a really long time. Her birthday has come around and with her choice of yarn I decided on the BFF Socks by Cookie A.

On a little note that I snuck in with the socks, I wrote her: These socks are called BFF socks and I knit them for you because not only are you my sister but you are my best friend. Now stop complaining that I never knit anything for you. :-) Love, M

The yarn is Blue Moon Fiber Arts Socks That Rock Mediumweight in the color Thraven, which looks really cool when knit up. It is mainly black with spurts of dark green throughout and it gives off the appearance of a raven's feathers. Needle size is US2.

Music To Knit To
To quote the O'Jays, "I love music, any kind of music." This is true of me - I love any kind of music - except Country. And I pretty much have music playing all of the time. When dinner time rolls around , I pop my iPod into the speakers, start the music, and Oliver and I dance around the kitchen while we make dinner. Whenever we take a road trip, I can always be found on my computer the night before we leave, downloading new songs and whipping up mixes for the car. Since I was a child of the 70's and 80's, I have a soft spot for that era of music, more on the rock side, not so much pop. My favorite type of music by far is alternative rock. I really like to find those gems that are left-of-center and out of the mainstream. It is only fitting that I put a mix together to listen to while knitting "Socks that Rock". So these are the songs that have been in my ears while knitting up these socks, taking my mind off of the time and making my fingers fly a little faster:
- Cape Cod Kwassa Kwassa - VAMPIRE WEEKEND
- The Curse of Curves - CUTE IS WHAT WE AIM FOR
- The Pedestrian - FOXBORO HOTTUBS
- Shut Up and Let Me Go - THE TING TINGS
- My Moon My Man - FEIST
- Good to Sea - PINBACK
- Do You Wanna - THE KOOKS
- Believe - THE BRAVERY
- Keep the Car Running - ARCADE FIRE
- Running Up That Hill - PLACEBO
- A Bad Dream - KEANE

So... take a listen! Hope you enjoy!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Faux Rib Socks

I have been a really bad blogger lately, but these days I would rather be knitting than blogging. I am knitting up a birthday present for someone who shall remain nameless and I have very little knitting time these days - I only have two free hours during the day when Oliver is down for his nap. So blogging is taking a back seat.

My latest FO is the pair of socks I was working on.

These are my Faux Rib Socks. I found this stitch pattern in Debbie Bliss's book "Baby Knits for Beginners" for the Ribbed Pillow. The first row is K3 P1 and then knit all stitches on the second row. The finished fabric lies a little flatter than a true rib. I thought this would be perfect applied to a pair of socks. The yarn is Blue Moon Fiber Arts Socks That Rock Mediumweight in Blue Moonstone. I loved knitting with this yarn, although it was a lot heavier than I expected it to be. Come winter I am going to have one warm pair of feet. Needle size is US 2.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Summer Vacation

We've been away for a little while - ok, a long while - almost three weeks. Oliver and I headed off to Dallas, TX in the middle of June to visit the grandparents and Andy joined us when he got a break from work. We were also joined by my sister and her two girls. It was fun, exhausting, and very, very hot.

My dad took us to the Fort Worth Zoo. The kids had such a great time and I had fun watching Oliver get excited about all of the animals. What was his favorite thing to see at the zoo? All of the rocks! - of course - he is such a guy!

One evening, my Mother-In-Law took us to the Nasher Sculpture Gallery in downtown Dallas.

We also paid a visit to the Dallas World Aquarium with my In-Laws.

And then we took Oliver to his very first Major League Baseball game to see the Texas Rangers play. (So sad his first game wasn't to see the Red Sox, but that's the way it goes.) He had a fun time and his favorite part of the game was the fireworks when the Rangers hit a home run.

Then it was on to Connecticut for a week to stay with my sister until the 4th of July where we celebrated with a picnic at the beach.

After all of this time away from home, it felt really good to get back and sleep in my own bed again! I did manage to get some knitting done while I was away and I even finished a project! I will have to save the knitting for another post...........

Monday, June 9, 2008

Summa, Summa, SummaTime

Time to sit back and unwind - ummmm, not with my 20 month old toddler! Now that summer is here and the days are sunny and hot, Oliver and I have seriously been on the go! What have we been up to? Let's see, playing on the big slides at the playground, walking to the library to get some books, strolling around the park, taking walks around town, buying a bike seat, installing the bike seat (thanks Dada), and taking rides on the bike (you should see how cute Ollie looks in his helmet) and taking a few trips here and there (we had a blast at the Central Park Zoo and FAO Schwarz in NYC). Phew! All of this activity has left me exhausted at the end of every day. Most of the time I have been just glancing over at my knitting, way too tired to pick it up. I have slowly been working along on a few projects:

I started this striped sweater for Oliver back in April when the days were much cooler, and now just have the sleeves left to do. I am hoping to finish this up soon even though he won't be wearing it in the sweltering heat we have been hit with lately. Good thing I sized way up on this!

I was getting a teensy bit bored with all the stockinette on the sweater so I thought I would change things up and I started a pair of socks.

I am hoping to finish both of these soon - I am knitting way too slow for all of the summer projects I have planned!