"To label any human being as inferior based on their health, their appearance, their size, their choices in food or physical activity or any other arbitrary measure that is nobody's business but their own is bigotry." ~ Fat Heffalump

7/29/15

Teal Baby Hat

I have finished the Teal baby hat.



Pattern: Magic Coffee Baby Hat by Tracey Kay

Size: 3-6 months
Made for: Knitwits

Yarn: Caron One Pound
Content: 100% Acrylic, Worsted Weight
Color: Ocean

Yarn: Red Heart Classic
Content: 100% Acrylic, Worsted Weight
Color: Maize
Yarn: Red Heart Baby Love Solids
Content: 100% Acrylic, Worsted Weight
Color: White

Needles: Size 7

Cast on: July 26, 2015
Completed: July 27, 2015

I'm working on the booties now. One is knit and seamed. Just need to weave in the ends.




The jacket is done except for buttons. I will get around to that eventually.

Other knitting I've almost finished is a cabled cardigan sweater someone donated unfinished to Knitwits. All the pieces were done, and the fronts were sewn to the back. All that needed to be done was sewing on the sleeves and knitting the neck and button bands. It's all done except buttons-which I need to look for. I will take pics after I get them on.

I've also finished a sewing project. I've been wanting to make this little bag for quite some time.



I love the fabric! It's a fat quarter set I got at our local quilting shop. It's just a small little bag for socks, mittens or other small projects. I made it smaller than the pattern is for. I used gold cord for the opening. It sparkles! The pattern, or rather, the tutorial is on this blog: Pink Penquin

Sweet hubby came home Monday night. It's nice to have him back home.

I am looking forward to Friday. My nephew is coming over to clean the weeds out of my flower beds (yes, I'm paying him, generously). I haven't been able to weed them at all this year because of my knees. It's been rather frustrating. He's going to clean them out, and them I'm going to put down some kind of covering, then beauty bark, to prevent weeds from growing. I'm thinking newspaper. It would be the easiest when it comes to taking plants out and putting plants in. It works like mulch and has to be replaced every couple years or so, but I can do that. I've been collecting papers, which hasn't  been easy cuz I don't get the paper. Tomorrow I plan to purchase several bags of beauty bark.

The weather has been wonderful. In the upper 70's to mid 80's. Haven't had the air conditioner on at all this week. We did get rain over the weekend, which was wonderful! I had all the doors and windows open and aired out the house while it rained. The air smelled so good by evening time.

Live long and prosper. \\//

7/25/15

Teal Works

Sharing the second fleece blanket. Same fabric, but with dark teal for the edging.



I like it more than the yellow. That's the end of that fabric. The next ones will be different.

Here's the matching sweater. It's still a WIP. I need to put the second button band on and do the finishing.




I'm LOVIN' IT! I emailed pics of the first set to our group leader and she is thrilled with it. Told me to make a whole bunch more. I shall make as many as I can before I get tired of it. Fortunately, there are lots of different edgings and baby sweater patterns out there. Heh heh...

Sweet hubby and daughter finished their ride today. They dipped their wheels in the Mississippi river.



The weather is nice and cool today with a breeze. Perfect deck knitting weather. I think I'll go put that second button band on now.

Live long and prosper. \\//

7/20/15

KW Layette #1 is Finished

I got the blanket for my first layette set done. I am quite pleased with it.



For those who want to know how I made the edging: For the base row I used a steel size 6 crochet hook to make the foundation row. I punched through the fabric with the hook and single crocheted, followed by 2 chains, then the next single crochet 1/2 inch over from the first one. I continued in this manner all the way around: 1 single crochet followed by 2 chain stitches. I slipped stitch into the beginning single crochet to end the round. For the second row I used a size G hook. Chain 3, 1 dbl crochet in chain 2 space, chain 1, 2 dbl crochets in same chain space. Single crochet in next chain 2 space. *2 dbl crochets, 1 chain, 2 dbl crochets in next chain space, single crochet in next space. Repeat from the * all the way around ending with a slip stitch in the first chain 3. Weave in the ends and gently steam block.

The set is ready for donation.



Yesterday I finished edging the second blanket, though it needs to be blocked yet. I am lovin' that Slit Edge rotary blade! It took me all of 15 minutes to prepare the fabric and put the holes in along the edge. All the videos say to put the holes in an inch from the edge and fold the edge over half an inch when crocheting the foundation round. Fleece doesn't unravel, so why fold the edge over? I went ahead and did the holes a half inch in and didn't fold over. Worked just fine.

It was a roasting 93F degrees at the Parkarosa yesterday. I stayed indoors. Supposed to get up to 92F today.

I plan to get back to the baby cardigan now. It still needs sleeves. I also have the 3rd session of the sock class to teach. Doing the gusset today.

Live long and prosper. \\//

7/18/15

Layette Fever

So, this has happened.



Loving the pattern. It's a fun one. Definitely liking the top down knitting too. Especially for baby sweaters.

I've got a bit of what I'm calling Layette fever. I tested my new Slit Edge blade for my rotary cutter and IT WORKS! Finally, an awesome easy and quick way to get good holes in the fleece. Now I'm all fired up.

Then, on Thursday I popped into Joann's for some white thread and buttons and stumbled over a clearance bin full of kits for no-sew fleece blankets. It was a really good deal! (Should have gone to Rathdrum Drug for that thread. Lol!)



Each kit has 2 pieces of fleece 60 by 72 inches in coordinating prints. You're supposed to cut the edges into fringe and tie the fringes of the 2 pieces together. Instant double thick fleece blanket. But I'm going to cut them up instead and make baby blankets. I can get 8 baby blankets out of one kit. I bought 4 kits at $9.97 per, and then I had a 25% off entire purchase coupon. I end up paying less than a dollar per blanket. There were some very pretty prints that will work great in colors not usually associated with babies, which is what I'm looking for. I like to make baby things in non-traditional colors.

Now I'm all excited about making the layettes. I can get quite a few done before December rolls around. I will be getting yarn at the next Knitwits meeting for the new fabrics.

Yesterday morning, at 3 am, I drove sweet hubby to the airport. He's off to do Ragbrai, which is a bicycle ride that spends a week going around the state of Iowa. I guess it's pretty popular. They get as many as 10,000 participants in it. Our daughter Sarah is riding with him. I'm a little worried about this one because it's only been 3 months since his stroke. However, Sarah is with him and it's a supported ride so if anything happens, there's help. He left feeling pretty confident, so it's probably all going to be fine and I'm worrying needlessly.

The heat of summer is returning this weekend. We've got a week in the 90's ahead of us. So thankful for the air conditioning. So thankful to my sweet hubby for working so hard so we could afford the air conditioning. He really is an awesome guy.

Live long and prosper. \\//

7/15/15

Cat By the River

Last year my daughter Ruth talked me into purchasing a kit for a Shibori ribbon bracelet from bead artist Jody Young. Jody had a booth at a bead show we went to. I started it a few months ago and have been working on it off and on since. I got to spend the day at home today and I was in a finishing mood, so I finished it. I got to work on it out on the deck because the weather was beautiful and the air has cleared up quite a bit.

I call this Cat By the River.



It is my very first bead embroidered bracelet.



The kit consists of a piece of Shibori ribbon, a cabochon, and an assortment of beads. This particular kit had quite a few pearls. The seed beads are black, a silvery grey, and a green lined blue-all size 11's.




 I supplied the backing, clasp, and some imagination. I love this clasp. It goes perfect with the bracelet. I wish I could remember where I got it and what it's made of. I want to say Bali silver, but I'm not sure.



I gave it to Ruth when she got home from work. She loves it. I'm so glad.



I put a lot of hours into this project. It feels very good to have it done.

Our weather has cooled off considerably. Cool enough to shut off the air conditioner. The rain we got earlier this week knocked some of the smoke down, and the wind changed direction yesterday so it is blowing the smoke from the Cape Horn fire away from us. It's nice to be able to breath again. I should mention the fire is over 60% contained. They should have it out in a few more days, assuming the weather cooperates.

I finally tried out the Edgerydoo. I am not impressed. It punches holes so small I can hardly see them and I definitely can't get a crochet hook through them. I will keep it because it's wonderful for cutting the rounded corners on the fabric with a rotary cutter. But I won't use it for punching holes in fleece. I've been punching the holes in one at a time as I put the base row of the edging on. I'm using a size 6 steel crochet hook and just forcing it through, I was measuring every half inch before punching, but I got tired of that and decided it doesn't need to be that perfect. I went o eyeballing it today. I've got 3 edges punched. One left to go.

In the meantime I have found another device for making holes in fleece. I think this one will actually work. It's a rotary cutter slit edge blade called Kay's Crochet CroEdge . I watched a video on how to use it and I'm quite impressed. (Btw, I was unable to find any video showing the Edgerydoo. I should have done more research before buying it.) It makes holes big enough for a size G crochet hook. I've ordered one from Amazon and looking forward to trying it out. Should be here in a few days. I really need to find a quick and easy way to make edged fleece blankets if I'm going to make quite a few of them.

I have cast on for another baby sweater. Set 2 has begun. This time I'm doing a cardigan.

Live long and prosper. \\//



7/12/15

FO's Galore

I may be busy, but I'm still getting knitting time in. Here are some FO's from this past week.



First we have a baby raglan pullover.



Baby Raglan Pullover

Pattern: From the Top Mock Turtleneck by Amy Thompson
Size: 3-6 months
Made for: Knitwits

Yarn: Red Heart Classic
Content: 100% Acrylic, Worsted Weight
Color: Maize
Yarn: Unknown
Content: 100% Acrylic, Worsted Weight
Color: Dark Teal

Needles: Size 7

Cast on: June 20, 2015
Completed: July 2, 2015



Comments:  I like this pattern. It's knitted from the top down. I haven't done much top down knitting, so it was interesting to make.There is no seaming to do when you're done. I found the neck to be done in an interesting way. There's some short rowing after the neck ribbing to make the front neck lower than the back. I like it. It knit up nice and quick.



Next is a pair of matching baby booties.



Pattern: Baby Booties by Bernat Design
Size: 3-6 months
Made for: Knitwits

Yarn: Red Heart Classic
Content: 100% Acrylic, Worsted Weight
Color: Maize
Yarn: Unknown
Content: 100% Acrylic, Worsted Weight
Color: Dark Teal

Needles: Size 7

Cast on: July 6, 2015
Completed: July 8, 2015

Comment: This pattern has been around for ever, or at least many decades. I modified it by knitting 1x1 rib instead of a garter stitch cuff. The next time I make them I will modify the increases too. The pattern instructs to yarn over. This leaves holes. A Make 1 or something else that doesn't make holes would be a better increase.



The next element of the set is a hat.


Pattern: Magic Coffee Baby Hat by Tracey Kay
Size: 3-6 months
Made for: Knitwits

Yarn: Red Heart Classic
Content: 100% Acrylic, Worsted Weight
Color: Maize
Yarn: Unknown
Content: 100% Acrylic, Worsted Weight
Color: Dark Teal

Needles: Size 7

Cast on: July 8, 2015
Completed: July 11, 2015

Comment: Nice quick knit.



All I have left to do is the blanket and the set will be complete. I got the holes punched in the fabric. Just need to get out my crochet hooks.

The weather this past week was extreme heat coupled with very thick smoke from a wild fire nearby in Cape Horn on Pend Oreille Lake. Near enough that Sweet Hubby and I made an evacuation plan, just in case. The smoke is aggravating my asthma horribly, so I stay indoors as much as possible, though I did spend a couple hours on Wednesday planting some Marigolds in the deck flower boxes. I've been coughing and wheezing all week. The fire is almost under control. Today cooled off and we got rain which helps immensely. There are other fires in our area, but they are not as close. Still, they add to the smoke in the air. It's going to be a long summer. The rain today was wonderful. I enjoyed every drop.

I did quite a bit of sewing this week too. Daughter Ruth's birthday is coming up in the not so distant future so I have sewn something for a birthday gift. I will share it here after I give it to her in August. (Let me just say I've discovered Charm Packs.) I made a few doll skirts too, which I need to knit some tops to go with to sell in my Etsy store.

Last Monday was the first session of a sock knitting class I'm teaching. It went very well. I have 4 enthusiastic students. I'm looking forward to tomorrows session. I hope they all did their homework.

As you can see, I'm not bored.

Live long and prosper. \\//

6/30/15

Adding A Button Hole After The Fact

I love it when I learn something new in my knitting. Last week I did and I'm passing that knowledge on to you.

Every once in awhile the fearless leader of our KnitWits group will bring me an unfinished project someone donated for me to take care of. I can either finish them, or unravel them so the yarn can be used for something else. Most of the time I unravel because either there's no pattern to tell me how to finish the thing, there isn't enough yarn (if any), or there's just not enough of the project done to make it worth it finishing it. But once in awhile one comes along that I do finish.

The last project she gave me was a baby sweater. It was done except it needed buttons sewn on (which were donated with the sweater) and button holes. The knitter had forgotten to put the button holes in as she knitted the sweater. (I suspect that's why it was donated.) I did a bit of research and discovered it IS possible to add them in after the fact. I started out with the instructions I'd found on the web (my Google Fu is strong), but as I was working the first button hole, I came up with an even better way to do it. That is what this post is about.

I started working on this project at Rathdrum Knitalong on Tuesday. I did 4 of the 5 holes, then decided to take pics of the last hole so I could do this tutorial. You'll notice a change in background. That's cuz half way through the meeting ended and I went home and finished it. I used my phone to take the pics. I have not given the camera in my phone enough respect. It did much better than expected. Anyway, on to the tutorial.

1. The first thing you want to do is determine where you want the button holes to be. On this particular project, I wanted button holes along the front band so I put safety pins at each knitted row where I wanted the holes.

2. After determining the row for button hole placement, take a sharp pair of scissors and clip the yarn in the middle of that row. This band was 6 stitches wide, so I clipped the 3rd stitch.



You will have a hole like this with two little yarn ends.



3. Carefully and gently unravel the stitches in the row you just clipped until you have the number you need for the size buttons you're using. I had really big buttons, so I unraveled 5. I used a tapestry needle to coax the yarn strands out of the stitches. There will be stitch loops above and below.



4. Now you need 2 circular needles the same size that would probably give you the approximate gauge the garment was knit at for the next step. Double pointed ones would work just as good if you have them (I don't). I used two size 3's. Gently put the open stitches on the knitting needles. Put the ones above the hole on one needle, and the ones below the hole on another.



5. Push the two strands of yarn that are now on each side of the hole to the back. You can see mine here through the rather large hole.



6. Starting with the stitches on the needle at the bottom of the hole, you will bind the stitches off as follows:

Step 1-  Slip the first 2 stitches to the right needle.



Step 2-  Then, with the left needle, pick up the first of the two slipped stitches,



lift it up and over the second stitch and off the needle. The arrow in this photo is pointing at the stitch that is now off the needle and wrapped around the base of the second stitch.



Step 3-  Slip the next stitch from the left to the right needle and repeat step 2.



Repeat steps 2 and 3 until you have one stitch left on the right hand needle, then turn your work around so the needle with the stitches at the top of the hole is now in front and on the bottom of the hole. Continue to bind off across until you have one stitch left.

7. Now we finish it off so it won't unravel. Pull the closest yarn strand on the back to your open stitch through to the front. I got lucky. It was the longest of the two.



Using a tapestry needle, thread the yarn end onto the needle




and draw it through the open stitch.



Pull the strand back through the button hole to the wrong side and weave in the two ends. Here is the finished button hole.



And another one, which I did a much better finishing job on.



And here's the finished front of the sweater with buttons sewed on. (I really need to steam this thing.)



I hope you have enjoyed this tutorial.

Live long and prosper. \\//