Monday, November 26, 2007

Unst Cap

This close fitting skullcap is not intended to function as your average winter wooly hat (as in not meant for the ski-slopes). Instead it can be worn as an indoor cap (for those who have chillier, older homes) or it can be worn outdoors for those who live in less northerly climes (maybe it’s not even winter where you live), or perhaps you’re just the type who prefers a less scratchy, more modest type of head covering in the winter (like my shaven-headed husband).

The origins of the lace pattern however come from a very northerly location, that of the island of Unst in Shetland (where ironically you’d probably want to wear a less ‘holey’ kind of hat)! I was attracted to this lace not only because it satisfies my need to include some aspect of my Shetland heritage when designing but also because of it's resemblance to crochet.

This classic looking cap can be made for any age, sex or hair length!

To fit head size 18(20, 22, 24) inches; 1 year old(2-4 year old, 5-adult small, adult large) Pick a size roughly 2 inches smaller than your head circumference as the cap is meant to be snuggish.

16(18, 20, 22) inches in circumference

MATERIALS[MC] Frog Tree Pima Silk [85% Pima Cotton/ 15% silk; 155 yds/m per 50g skein]; color: t830; 1 [1, 1, 1] skeins
16-inch US #4/3.5mm circular needle
16-inch US #5/3.75mm circular needle
1 stitch marker

GAUGE 24 sts/30 rows = 4" in stockinette stitch on larger circular needle
Change needle size as necessary to obtain gauge.


Tuesday, November 20, 2007

xmas knitting

Yes indeed that time of year again...I always leave it a bit late and then have to do marathon knitting to get everything done! I also overload myself as it's become necessary for me to knit all my gifts...for everyone......!! However it's very satisfying to be able to give the ones I love a handknit and fun to choose what to knit for each individual! One of the books I have loved for ideas is the above by Melanie Falick (along with her Weekend Knitting book). Infact I decided to share a couple of projects from the above book that I made last year.....when I wasn't a blogger or Ravleryer (and therfore couldn't show off my completed knits)!
I totally fell in love with the Counterpane bag when I saw it and I had the good fortune to visit Santa Fe and the gorgeous La Lana Wools store...I didn't get the actual yarn called for in the book (very expensive and my dad was paying for it.....couldn't really justify the expense) but I did pick a hand-dyed yarn in a similar colour. I really like how it turned out...however seeing as I hardly ever use it I wondering if it should have a new home.....mmmmm?!
I ended up with quite a bit of left over yarn from the bag and paired it with another hand-dyed yarn (can't remember the brand now-wish I could as I really liked it- think it was made in peru-very natural colours-anyone have any ideas?) and made these stockings (also from Handknit Holidays) for my kids.

I have picked (notice it's picked not knit) my projects for this year's round of gifts but I guess I'll have to blog about them later as my family are frequent vistors here! I'm just like my son who had made a gift for me for xmas but couldn't bear to wait that long and so gave it to me early..he said he knows now to leave it to much closer to xmas! Guilty on both counts..impatient and leave things to the last minute!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Boho Baby Knits

I just got this book in the mail today and had to share how fantastic it is! I do "know" (in a blogging sense) several of the designers in this book so I knew it was going to be good no matter what. However I really am more than impressed. The book is filled from cover to cover with fun, colorful and definitely groovy patterns son was looking through with me and has already picked out his wardrobe! I honestly don't often come across a knitting book where I like all the patterns..but in this case I did.....I'm not being paid to really must check this book out if you have any wee people to knit for. Congratulations Kat, Edna, Marnie, Mary-Heather, Julia and Beth

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Free Love!

(A wee baby hat I whipped up for my cousin's new baby- thought I'd share the pattern)


Here’s a special little baby hat made in a bamboo/silk yarn called “Love” from Vickie Howell. Bamboo has antibacterial properties and offers some protection from UV rays and it’s a renewable resource….what a perfect covering for a new wee head.

Finished Size:
13 inch circumference can stretch to fit 16 inch head circumference
Newborn-12 months

2 balls Vickie Howell’s Love (70% Bamboo/ 30% Silk, 99yd/50g)
Shown in “Jack and Sally” (MC) and “Buttercup and Wesley” (CC)
Note: If making hat in a solid color only 1 ball is needed.

US#6 16 inch circular
Stitch Marker

22 sts and 24 rows = 4 inches on US#6 in stockinette stitch

After the rib band, stripes are worked in 2 rnd repeats. Carry colors up back of work making sure to overlap strands when changing color and being careful not to pull to tightly when beginning with the next color.

Using MC and the long tail method, cast on 84 sts on US#6 circular needle.
Place marker for beginning of the round and work k2, p2 rib for 4 rnds.
Start stripe sequence and knit every round until piece measures approx 3 inches from the beginning.
Next rnd: *sl 1 kw, k1, psso, k17, k2tog; rep from * around- 8sts decreased
Knit 1 rnd
Repeat the last two rounds knitting 2 sts less between the decreases and maintaining stripe sequence until 12 sts remain. Change to DPN when necessary.
Continue on these 12 sts and still in stripe sequence until “tail” measures approx 6 inches.
K2 together around-6 sts remain
Cut yarn leaving a tail and thread through remaining sts drawing them together.

Weave in ends
Tie tail at top of hat into a knot.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Fiber Felting Fun!!

At the request of my brother I designed this bag for his wife...the only instruction I had was not to use purple (Helen doesn't like this colour)...other than that it was up to me. I decided on the colour combo then came up with a wee sketch.

(I do plan to put up a free pattern for this-or at least the basics of it's make-up on this here blog..very soon)

My initial intention had been to work it in intarsia but after plotting it on graph paper and a test run on a swatch which involved a lot of cursing at all the loose ends I had to take a different approach! (Me and intarsia not so compatible)!

After flicking through the wonderful Felted Knits by Beverley Galsakas I was reminded of needle felting..aha...the answer! I'd never actually done any before so again I had a wee practice first and was utterly convinced it was the way to go! It's like drawing on a felted brilliant...and I love how it adds texture and layers to the finished piece. So I limited the intarsia to just the orange center circle (although I'm not thrilled with how that bit came out-a tad too stair-steppy around the circumference)....and then needle felted to my heart's content....oh so much fun......stabbing away (into a piece of foam).....if you've never done this I highly recommend it!

Did you notice the design is diferent on each side?

Sadly I have to say goodbye to it (it leaves for New Zealand tomorrow) but I know it goes to a good home.....and because my sister-in-law is a friend of the small furry creatures (rabbits in particular) I threw in this little guy (great pattern here and more variations on Ravelry).

(BTW Helen has been explicitly told not to visit my blog until she receives a package from mean, I know)!