Wednesday, November 17, 2010

FO: Lacy Kerchief Scarf

I actually finished this scarf back in April and didn't get around to taking pictures of it until last week! It was spring and I was in the mood to knit something pretty. I am not really a shawl person and I was looking for more of a draped scarf and this fit the bill.

Pattern: Lacy Kerchief Scarf by Lisa Daehlin
Yarn: Berroco Ultra Alpaca Light in the color Admiral Mix
Needles: Size US 6

This is, by far, my most favorite thing I have knit. I love absolutely everything about it! It was so much fun to knit - it definitely kept my interest and was a great pattern. I really like how long it is so that it is a true scarf. I can wrap it around my neck in the winter to keep me warm or just drape it over my shoulders when the weather is warmer. The yarn is lovely also. The pattern called for a cotton yarn, but I wanted something that would drape a little bit better so I went with alpaca. It is hard to see from the pictures but the navy is mixed with tiny red and light blue hairs that give the color a whole other dimension.

I have worn this a lot since I finished it (months ago!). It is definitely a versatile, all-seasons scarf!

Monday, November 8, 2010

F.O.: Cassavetes

I don't know if you have seen the movie There Will Be Blood, but it is one of my husband's favorite movies. In the last scene of the movie, also known as "the milkshake scene", Daniel Day-Lewis is sporting a charcoal gray shawl collar cardigan - the classic grandpa sweater - and my husband quickly put in his order for me to knit one for him. I finally found a pattern for the perfect sweater for him.

Pattern: Cassavetes by Veronik Avery from the St-Denis Magazine Spring/Summer 2010
Yarn: Debbie Bliss Fez in Charcoal Gray
Needles: Size US 7

I really liked this pattern. It was amazingly detailed and professional from the dropped shoulder seams to the hemmed edges. There was a lot of finishing on this sweater but the end product is well worth it. I must admit that I cursed every buttonhole that I had to graft together (I hate grafting!!!!) but they do look very polished.

The yarn is gorgeous! I really loved knitting with Fez. It is very soft and very warm. I think my only complaint about it would be that it got a slight halo after I blocked it and it doesn't show off the stitches as well as before it was blocked - and I am hoping that it doesn't fuzz up anymore than it already has. I originally ordered the St-Denis Boreale, which is the yarn called for in the pattern, but the color was completely off so I needed to go in search for an alternative.

This was the first man-sweater that I knit and it actually didn't take me as long as I feared that it would. I was aiming to have this done for my husband's birthday in mid-October and I was done with the knitting by then but it was all the finishing that took me a bit longer to complete it. The only mod I made was that I added 4 inches to the length - yes, my husband is tall! I am really happy with the way this turned out and my husband really likes it.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Sunday Stroll

My son and I take a walk around town together almost every day (weather permitting) but today was such a totally beautiful sunny fall day that I thought I would take my camera along. I thought I would share some of my pictures with you. I hope you enjoy!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

New Yarn + New Project

I can't believe how quickly October is passing by. I have been diligently working away on my husbands cardigan, which is almost finished. There's just an extraordinary amount of finishing involved with it and it is taking a little extra time.

This past weekend we took a little trip into NYC and of course I had to stop by Purl. This is the first time I have been to their new store location - it is a lot bigger than their last space. I just happened to nab Brooklyn Tweed's new yarn, Shelter. I got the last 3 charcoal gray skeins. And I was informed that I got lucky - the yarn is selling out quickly. I think it is destined to become a scarf for my husband.

Some very pretty Koigu just happened to catch the corner of my eye too. I couldn't resist the pretty coral/taupe/turquoise color combination.

I have been promising my son (since last year!) that I would knit him a scarf/hat/mitten set. So on Friday we visited the LYS to pick out some yarn together. We both decided on some marled Cascade 220 with a nice orange as a contrast color. He is finally at the age where he can occupy himself, so on the train ride down to the city I was able to start his scarf as he colored or played games on the iPad or just enjoyed the fall scenery of the Hudson River. I am loving the marled yarn!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

The Shawl Collar

It is apparent from shopping the men's department in Bloomingdale's with my husband, that the shawl collar cardigan is the "it" sweater for the fall. They were chock full of them. It is a really good thing then that I already started knitting him one - hopefully to be finished for his birthday in mid-October.

I seriously can't get enough of the shawl collar! Up next, I am going to knit myself this cardigan, which I have had my eye on since it appeared in the Fall 2006 issue of Vogue Knitting.

And I am completely in love with this cowl from Never Not Knitting. Now I just need to find a cute little shawl collar sweater pattern for my son. If any of you knitters out there know of one for a 4 year old, let me know!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

FO: Draped Cardigan

Well, I have finally finished this cardigan I started in April! At least I can wear it in the cooler fall weather.

Pattern: Draped Cardigan from the Spring/Summer 2010 Debbie Bliss Magazine
Yarn: Debbie Bliss Rialto 4 ply in Lilac
Needles: size US 3

I really like the way this turned out but I am a little disappointed that it isn't slightly more fitted. I know that it is supposed to be a little oversized but the armholes are very big and the sleeves are a little too long. Other than those minor points, this is a great stylish sweater I can throw on to run errands and still be cozy.

This sweater has an interesting construction, which intrigued me to knit it. It is knit side to side (instead of bottom up) and for this reason I did not make any mods to the pattern - I really didn't need to - the length turned out to be fine, which is usually my number one concern. The sleeves however could have used an adjustment.

I am a huge crybaby when I mess up my knitting and I shed a lot of tears over this sweater. This is part of the reason It took me so long to finish this. I messed up on the number of stitches I needed to cast on for the collar and because this is knit side to side, I ended up ripping out about 3 days worth of knitting on tiny size 3 needles. I cried - a lot. I also had to rip out an entire sleeve and re-knit it because my gauge was completely off - I have no idea how- and the sleeve was ginormous. Again with the crying. But in the end it turned out right so the do-overs were worth it. I just wish I hadn't messed up in the first place!

I am happy this is finally done. I like it - and the yarn is very nice as well. Even though it is fingering weight, it is 100% wool so it is still nice and warm. Perfect for the cooler days to come.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Nautical Stitches

When my son turned 2, it was time for him to graduate out of his crib to a big boy bed. Now that he is almost 4, I still have baby decorations in his room that went with his nursery. I am finding it difficult to find stuff for his age to decorate with. I can find things for babies and things for teens but not a lot of stuff in between. So I thought I would try my hand at making things. When I got the Spring/Summer issue of the Debbie Bliss Magazine, I found a chart for an anchor for an intarsia knitted pillow and thought that I could use it for a cross stitch pattern. I check out the blog Feeling Stitchy sometimes and I am a big fan of all of the creative embroidery I see on there and I got a little bit inspired. Although I have never cross stitched before, I found it easy, quick, and fun.

So I decided on a Nautical theme, which I think is totally cute for a little boy. I had to modify the pattern a little bit so that it would translate better into cross stitch. The anchor needed to be shortened and widened a bit.

I also added "Ahoy Matey" under the anchor. Let me tell you - there are a lot of cross stitch alphabets out there. I had to look at a lot before I found the right one for this project.

I found those cute little buoys at The Shell Shop in Provincetown when we went to the Cape earlier in the summer. His room is still a work in progress - I have a few more crafty ideas so there will be more to come!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

FO: Gray Lace Scarf

Ever since my sister saw my Lace Ribbon Scarf that I knit for myself last year, she has been asking me to knit a gray scarf for her also. I didn't really want to knit her the same scarf that I had so I was looking for something unique to make for her birthday this year. This past spring I purchased the new St-Denis Magazine and I really liked the Bright Stripes Lace Scarf and decided to make it in a simple gray.

Pattern: Bright Stripes Lace Scarf by Kat Coyle from St-Denis Spring/Summer 2010
Yarn: St-Denis Nordique in Silver
Needles: Size US 7

I must confess, I was a little bit frustrated with this when I first started. I felt like mine didn't look anything like the picture of it in the magazine - I am a tight knitter but seriously, the one in the magazine looks like it was knit on size 1 needles. I was also making mistakes and because I was giving this as a gift, I wanted it to be close to perfect. Needless to say, it looks so much better after a good blocking, of course.

I really liked the yarn. This was the first time I used Nordique and it reminded me of an old fashioned wool, kind of like something my grandmother would use. I was surprised that it wasn't particularly soft when I first felt it, but when I was knitting with it it was very lofty and it blocked out beautifully and softened up a bit. And I absolutely love the color. I really like the way this scarf turned out - and my sister was so happy that I finally knit her a gray scarf!!

An impromptu hug from my son.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

A Quiz

I have been tagged by Rainy Daisy to answer a few questions here. At the moment, this is saving my little blog from total boredom. Between the miles of stockinette I am knitting on size 3 needles for my cardigan and a project I cannot blog about because it is a Birthday present for my sister, I have nothing to show and tell about at present. Scratch that - I did finish the lacy scarf I was working on a looong time ago but I really don't feel like posing for pictures with it wrapped around my neck in 100 degree weather. It will just have to wait a little while longer.

So without further ado:

What is your staple meal? (i.e. what meal do you cook most often when you can't be bothered to be adventurous?)
I love to cook. I cook almost every day. But there are those days when I really don't want to spend 2 hours in the kitchen making dinner. My go to meal is pasta because it is so simple but still so good. I try to make my own sauces (quick ones like Alfredo sauce or Vodka sauce) but in a pinch I used Rao's marinara - it is soo good and the ingredient list is all natural. It is a little on the pricy side but so worth it. My son and I also love pancakes for dinner. In the fall we add apples into the batter. My husband does not like breakfast for dinner (weird, right?) so we make this when he has to work late and won't be home to eat with us.

What do you want to be when you grow up?
Hmmmm, I would have to say a writer. I have so many thoughts for stories but I am not disciplined enough to sit for a long time and write them down and work them out on paper (or the computer screen). Need to work on that.

What book are you reading at the moment?
The Girl with the Dragon Tatoo by Stieg Larsson

How do you relax?
Cooking - it is very relaxing for me. That is why I love to do it every day. I love the chopping, stirring, adding ingredients, tasting, getting things just right - it is heaven.

What color are the interior walls of your home?
Boring off-white. I know, I know - but it goes with everything.

What is your guiltiest pleasure?
TV shows like Gossip Girl and The Vampire Diaries. Make fun all you want but they are really good.

What time is bedtime and getting-up-time?
Bedtime is at 11pm. I just can't fall asleep any earlier than that. I wake up when my son gets up - between 6:45 and 7:00. If I try to get up earlier than he does he hears my alarm and gets up too so I figure I might as well just sleep.

How long do you spend reading blogs?
Every day when I get a chance but lately I have been not spending as much time online. I'm trying to get those 2 knitting projects done! So once in a while I will check in.

So there you have it! Hopefully I will have some knitting to post here soon. Happy Summer knitting!

Friday, June 18, 2010

Back From Vacation

We just made it back from our first official old skool family vacation! We packed up the car and road tripped down to the Outer Banks in North Carolina stopping for sites on the way there and back. It was so much fun! The Outer Banks were beautiful and relaxing and the weather was great all week long.

Things we did:
- Went to 2 aquariums.
- Visited Roanoke Island - site of the first colony in America.
- Drove on the beach! What an awesome experience!

- Saw wild horses on the beach!

- Climbed to the top of a very tall light house!
- Visited the spot of the first flight of the Wright Brothers.
- Went to the Chicamacomico Life Saving Station in Rodanthe.

- Went to the beach - again!
- Built sandcastles, tackled waves, collected shells.
- Flew a kite.

Things I did not do:
- Knit. I brought my knitting with me but did not even knit a stitch! I was kinda busy with other stuff. See list above.
- Read. I brought a book with me (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo) but I didn't get around to reading it.
- Get online. Our internet service was very limited.
It was a true vacation! And it was great to spend so much family time together. So glad summer is here.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Happy Holiday Weekend!

Our little family is off to Cape Cod for the long Memorial Day weekend and I am so excited! I am looking forward to some R & R at the beach. I can't wait to build a sandcastle with my little guy. I'm also hoping to get a good amount of knitting done on my cardigan (our cottage doesn't have a t.v.)! I hope you all have great plans for the weekend too!

Friday, May 21, 2010

The Never Ending Sweater

I have a major case of the sads over one of the sweaters I knit recently. Remember this one:

I wanted this sweater for so long. The first time I wore it, I loved it. I wore it again and the yarn grew. I wore it again and it grew even more. And more. Pretty soon this sweater was so wide on me it looked ridiculous. I thought I could solve the problem by washing it again. I even threw it in the dryer. It didn't shrink one bit - superwash yarn. This sweater was so big on me I couldn't wear it any more. Luckily, it got a good home. I hope I am not embarrassing my mother by saying that she took it (gladly) and it fits her perfectly. She gave me money to buy more yarn to knit it again. I just really dislike knitting things twice, especially a sweater, but I really, really want it. So I went on the hunt for yarn. I wanted something chunkier than the original yarn I used. I found some Valley Yarn at Webs that I thought would fit the bill. When I got my order I was disappointed. The yarn was not at all what I wanted for this sweater. I swatched it anyway just to see if I would like it when it was knit up. I didn't like it any better and my gauge was off. The yarn is too chunky - and too scratchy.

Then I remembered that I had some chunky yarn stashed away somewhere. Why didn't I think of this in the first place? I was saving some Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Chunky for something I saw a couple of years back and never knit it. I went ahead and swatched that - and it is perfect! I got gauge, the yarn is soft, it is the right color, and I know from experience using Debbie Bliss yarn that it doesn't grow.

I just don't have enough for the sweater. I decided to order some more just to be on the safe side. Well, it is discontinued. Luckily, I found some at a yarn store online, oh about six pages into Google after finding out everyone else is sold out. They had 7 balls left and I took all of them. Phew! I am crossing my fingers that will be enough.

On a much happier note, I just got the new St. Denis Magazine for Spring/Summer 2010.

Love. Love. Love. There are some really beautiful pieces in here that I cannot wait to knit up!

Thursday, May 6, 2010


My newest project (a cardigan). Knitting up in such a lovely spring color. This was the color my husband and I chose for our wedding which was by the seashore. I have very fond memories of this color.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Savoring the Scarf

I have been slowly knitting away on this very pretty scarf. It is such a pleasure to knit that I have been taking my time with it and have actually been savoring my knitting time. It is kind of like a very good book that you are enjoying reading so much that you don't want to get to the end too quickly because then the story will be over.