Posts categorized "Hats"

Knitting = Me Time

Lots of work and lots of parenting really cuts into knitting. I missed having a hour in front of the TV to relax with my knitting and make something that doesn't involve a computer.

I also realized that not taking that time for myself is not a good thing. I get grumpy when I don't have time for myself to do something that I enjoy. Turns out the Purple Purl newsletter gave me a nudge and I found a project that made me want to take the time and make something.

The Purple Purl was hosting a knit-along of the Seasons Hat.  Gripped by the longest coldest February I've experienced in Toronto, another hat seemed like a good thing to knit and I had yarn leftover from my much-loved Vinterblomster mittens which would make a nice coordinated, but not matchy-matchy set, so I was IN.

Less than a week later, I was almost done the colour work.  Every time I do a colour project I remember that one of the main reasons I knit is COLOUR.  I love pulling out the yarn and figuring out what colours to use.  This time I had the three Vinterblomster colours and added orange and a lighter grey.  

I find it hard to stop knitting when I start colour bands--I want to see how they'll turn out.  I also just enjoyed this yarn, the ease of the project and gave myself the time to get it done.

It took a mere 10 days.  It's perfect. 

 My photography is not so great.  I seem to always finish things at night!

 And this hat became part of my favourite instagram selfie ever.

I accidentally hit the button while turning to get better light.  (Let's keep that as our secret.) 


Christmas Knitting Round Up

December was sort of busy.  I got into a big fun groove of Christmas knitting.  I didn't really plan to make things for everyone but since I wasn't running I had all this TIME, so I just started making stuff.

(And I want to say a big thanks to everyone who commented about my back and my decision to take a break from running.  It's been 6 weeks and I'm still cranky about it.  Having your stories of finding new physical activities and of recovery really helped me).

 

A hat for Craig

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He picked the yarn when we were visiting Kim and Ron of Indigodragonfly this summer.  It's hard to say no when your sweetie chooses a bright yarn and asks for you to knit something.

Simple watch cap.  A lot of ribbing.  Craig asked for it to be longer and it ended up too long.  It's pretty silly, but fine with the hem folded over. Seriously, I don't let him out like that.  

Pattern: Pismo Hat

Yarn: Indigodragonfly Merino Sock in Zen and the Art of Clown Disposal

A hat for Emma

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She chose the pattern and the inner liner colour.  I didn't have anything suitable in the stash, so I picked up this stripey yarn.  Emma has a yellow pea coat, so it's a good match.

Pattern: Brimley

Yarn: Biscotte and Cie Gobelin and Tosh Dk

Mittens for Xander

He asked for mittens.  That's a quick and easy project.  I tried Elizabeth Zimmerman's mitred mittens. Very fun.  All from leftovers.

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Socks for Mom


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By request.  I've made my mother socks before and she's only really liked plain socks in a commercially spun wool/nylon yarn.  So that's what she got.

I used Kate Atherley's pattern from her new book: Beyond Knit and Purl.  I do better with a pattern than when I wing it.  This way I have some numbers written down!

Pattern: Classic Top Down Sock

Yarn: Opal Feelings

A Scarf for my Memere

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It's hard to buy a gift for your 86 year old grandmother.  A handknit cashmere scarf really does seem like the most appropriate thing.

She doesn't knit so it's extra special (and she brags about me to her friends!)

Pattern: Miss Otis Regrets (fabulous 1 skein project)

Yarn: Handmaiden Cashmere

Something for Charity

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This was a totally last minute crazy idea.  We have a charity auction at the President's holiday party to benefit a mental health initiative on campus.  This year donations were down and when the call came out, I decided to knit up a scarf.  In a weekend.

It's not so hard when you have a yummy 50/50 merino silk single in the stash.  It sold for enough money to make me feel good about the donation (I would have bought it myself if needed) and someone has something pretty.

I confess I'm not keen on the colours, but the knitting was lots of fun.

Pattern: Noro bias lace scarf 

Yarn: Schaeffer Helene


4x3TDHoP


hat in our 'hood, originally uploaded by Dr. Steph.

I wrote up a free pattern for Xander's 4x3 Top-Down, Hat of Power (aka 4x3TDHoP).

It's an easy beginner knit for someone wanting to start knitting in the round. I've indicated spots where you can modify the size, though it's pretty stretchy and should fit most older kids to adult size melons.

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You can find the pattern on Ravelry here: download now.  If you don't use Ravelry, you can grab the pattern right here:  Download 4x3TDHop.  

If you're looking for the yarn I used, it's Indigodragonfly MCN Sport (the colour pictured is Herb Tarlek Jr.). One skein for the hat. 

I knit it in a couple of evenings.  I know it's spring, but there are still some hat wearing days left, or you could get a jump on holiday knitting.


A few more FO's

I seem to be on a roll...

First Beaumont in Dream in Color Starry.  

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This was really fun to knit and I confess I am really tickled by the bits of silver in the starry yarn. Usually sparkly=scary Christmas Red Heart but the mix of Dream in Color prettiness and the shiny stuff is perfect.  

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I want to make some coordinating mittens but can't find a pattern that suits me.  I'm considering designing my own.

And my favourite finished thing for 2010 (sure I know it's early, but of the 3 this month, I love this the best). The desiccated brains yarn is plied and washed and gorgeous.

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 It came out to about 13wpi so about dk which is much bigger than I had planned for.  I have 914m which should make some sort of garment.  I might add a coordinating collar, cuffs and hem or something. 

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 The roving is 80 merino/20 sea silk and is really nice and soft.  It doesn't have the ropiness of some of my earlier handspun and I'm glad to see there's some improvement.

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Kim dyed the roving for me (so I wouldn't go insane spinning undyed roving).  Go see her handdyed stuff, it's gorgeous.


What's Steph Knitting?

Really, even though the blog is pretty silent (work is mostly to blame), I'm still doing a bit of knitting.

I finished a beret last week.

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Chevron Lace Beret (Ravelry link) using Manos Silk Blend.  I really like it, but the colour looks horrible on me. It's going into the Christmas gift pile.  I've started a cowl to go with it.  Probably won't keep that either.  Sigh.  The yarn was very nice to work with and I would like some more in the future.  Silk really does make everything better.

And I'm working on the ugliest socks ever.  I'm pretty sure the yarn is a STR Rare Gem (can't find the label) and it was my mom's choice for her curling socks (she has a hot pink vest to match), but the pooling is making for some serious ugliness from my vantage point.  Perhaps the sight of her ankles whizzing by will distract the other team.  

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She'll like them because she's my Mom (and very appreciative of my knitting) and they're fine to knit (just plain old socks) but man, they're ugly.  Too much yellow I think.

The Bohus continues.  Kim practically dared me to have this done in the next three weeks, and I'm up for the challenge.  Hopefully my life will make way for my need to get this sweater done.  I'm itching to cast on a new sweater (something aran weight on big needles) and I told myself I have to have Grey Mist done first.


Blame it on the Bohus

I really love the Grey Mist Bohus I'm knitting, but I find I need time away from it.  It's not one of those projects I knit obsessively on until it's done .  I suppose that's obvious since I started in March 2007.

This past week it's been spinning and knitting hand spun that's been pulling me away.

First, at his request, I knit up my June Grafton batt into a hat for Xander.

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I chose a simple 2X2 rib which is masculine and doesn't interfere with the stripeyness of the wool.  He's been sleeping in it which makes me very happy.

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I spent Sunday surrounded by Halloween candy and my lovely "Desiccated Brains" merino sea silk pencil roving (roving dyed by the fabulous Kim).  I spun up the first half and filled what are very large Majacraft bobbins.  I love how it's turning out.  The goal is a sport weight 2 ply and it looks like I'm getting it right.

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The second bobbin is currently reading more blue--it's a beautiful green, brown, turquoise mix.  Love it.


Time for a knitting update post

Sorry I've been gone for a while.  Things have been unsettled at home and work has been busy and, and... you get the picture.

We survived Emma's first slumber party. It was made easier by Xander going to Cub Camp for the weekend (he had a blast at his first away-from home, not with family, nights away) and by the fact that the two girlfriends of Emma's are charming, polite kids.  They watched 4 of 6 Star Wars movies (starting with the originals--also showing their good taste), ate pizza and cookies and popcorn, giggled (but not too much) and didn't sleep much. 

I, on the other hand, sat with Craig in our bed, read, knit, played Scrabble and struggled to keep my eyes open long enough to go downstairs to tell them it was light's out time.  Then I crashed and didn't hear a thing. 

I also have had some time to knit (whilst watching Colin Firth brood in Pride and Prejudice).  I finished a warmer tam for myself.  I know Emma has it on--I had really bad morning hair and had her volunteer.  She's not getting it though.  She has enough of my handknit accessories.

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It's Three Tams and it was a nice, quick knit.  I find that the tam isn't floppy enough for me, so I didn't over  shape it and it's a usable hat.  The yarns are Paton's Classic Merino and Noro Kureyon (124?); I'm really pleased with the colours.

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I would like to do another FI beret that is more like my Gretel (in shape), or knit one of Gudrun's beautiful new designs.  I also might do a striped one using leftovers from my earth-stripe wrap, but don't think that's windproof enough for our current weather.

Things are progressing with the Drops Cardi.  I finished a front piece and started on the back.  This has been my easy knitting.  And it is good.

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And my TIFF socks are back in the works again.  Since the Film Festival was in September I should call these something else.  Emma has claimed these ones and is hounding me to finish.

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Bohus is back in the basket.  I hope to get back into it this week, but so far haven't had the brain-power to consider where I'm at with the pattern and where I'm going.  I am not following the pattern as written (doing it in the round instead of flat, added waist shaping and will fit it to my body as I go) so it's not just a sit and knit thing.


Frivol...ous


originally uploaded by Dr. Steph.
Success!  I have a new hat (and an ugly couch--please ignore it).
It's Frivol and it's purty and a fun knit.  I worked an 11 pattern repeat for a looser fit and went for the pom pom, just because. 
The malabrigo was fab to knit with and is so soft.  I want more. 
Looks good with the coat eh?


TTC Knit Sightings

I was coming out of Chester subway station, as I always do at around 5pm, and I spotted a real live version of my Skull Scarf coming toward me.  In an unusually bold gesture for me, I stopped the kid (he was a skinny teenager, with some seriously "edgy" clothing on, and lots of socially progressive buttons on his lapels) and remarked that I very much liked his scarf.

He was with his mother and indicated that she knit it.  I then told her I designed it and told her it was very neat to see one of my designs in action and that she did a fantastic job on it (she did, it was done in a larger weight yarn and was really cool).  We chatted knitting a bit, the son remarked that he was the envy of his friends and then she actually took our picture!  I have already forgotten her name (silly woman that I am) so I'll just say thanks for knitting my pattern and giving me a nice pick me up at the end of the day.

Of course, that little ego boost made me stupid brazen.  I picked up Urchin and finished it.  I grafted it perfectly (boucle yarn makes that difficult to execute, but with nice results) and I completed another fetching hat for Emma.  Shit. 

My gauge was off, because the thing looked like a chef's hat--very poofy on the top.  Not small and neat like the picture.  I swatched so this shouldn't happen. 

Oh well, the yarn was free and the time was minimal and I learned a few things.  I then started my Frivol, and completed one row before I decided to graph the pattern because I like charts much more than written instructions.  Finding a free charting pattern took some time (I used this one, and fudged the cable sts that it didn't have) but by then it was bed time.  Tonight, it's me and beer and malabrigo.

I was feeling a bit better even though it was chilly today (with a wind chill even) and I was wishing I had a hat.  Then I got knocked back on my ass again.  On the subway, there was a teen-girl looking very smart in handknit fingerless gloves and a perfect urchin.  Perfect, tiny, cute.  Now, this does not mean that it would look as good on me, but it was correctly done.  Shit.

No, I didn't tell her she had a nice hat.  One bold talking to strangers thing every 24 hours only. 


Hat-Obsessed

Now that I have the coat situation all figured out, it's time for accessories.  I have leather gloves, and Earth Stripe is coming along (though slowly) so my neck will be warm.  So it's time for a hat.

Hat's are tough when you have short hair.  The cloche or beanie style (like my favourite Silk Garden Beanie) don't look so good on me at least.  I find a hat that has something going on--a pompom, texture, a brim, an interesting top, a design feature that doesn't suck the hat to my head works the best.

But which design feature is best? 

I started with a single ball of Manos and this pattern (Last minute purled beret by Knit and Tonic).  It made a very nice hat.  But not on me.  Emma tried it on and after a bit of modification (I picked up the brim stitches and worked some decreases and then did a rolled edge) she had a fabulous kicky beret.

I know kids are supposed to be cute, but why do they have to look so cute in my handknits?

Since my first attempt didn't work, I'm trying another one.  A less floppy beret--Urchin from the Fall Knitty.  I'm a bit concerned that the stash yarn I'm using (Artful Yarns Circus colour 7, palm reader) is too... too wrong.  Laura said it looked a bit like LB Homespun--ack!  It's a wool boucle and I like the colour, but I see disaster looming.  Since I'm using 8mm needles, it's not like I'm investing time in this project...Emma may have a drawer full of hats this winter.

With attempt two being questionable (so much so I forgot to take pictures) I decided new yarn was in order.  This beautiful ball of Malabrigo followed me home last night.  My plan is to make this (hooray for Ravelry).  I'm going for both the bobbles and the pompom.

It's my first Malabrigo and I can't wait to go home and play with it.