Palette cleanser

The big, green sweater continues to be big and green. Pretty boring to photograph, and honestly pretty boring to knit right now. What I needed was a palette cleanser.

I found and awesome garter stitch hat featuring a cool block of CC yarn. The problem was, I found it on a baby’s head at daycare. But I snapped a quick photo of the hat and posed my quest on Instagram. I needed to find the pattern.

Lucky for me knitters have good memory for this sort of thing and someone figured out it was the bicolor hat before I had a chance to search Ravelry myself. I bought that pattern and learned the whole thing is actually knit flat! Very cool construction.

The infant hat needed 45 and 16 yards of yarn. So I pulled some good choices from stash, and with a little help

I got the whole thing knit up over the weekend. It really was a perfect palette cleanser.

Now I’m back on the big green sweater, and making great progress.

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Dryer balls

If you’re like me you’ve got a lot of little yarn balls around. They’re too big to just throw away. Maybe you’ll use them in a colorwork project someday? But let’s be honest, they’re different weights, brands, textures, fibers…

They’d make a nice Snippet scarf, but eventually you get bored of knitting rectangles. (I have three gallon bags of these scraps)

If you’re like me again, you hate dryer sheets. But just can’t bare to spend $10-20 on felted wool balls.

So here’s my solution, wrap those wool scraps up into pretty balls. Make sure they’re loosely wound, and about the size of a large navel orange.

Carefully (so they don’t come unwound) stuff them into a cotton sock or some pantyhose or something.

And toss them into the washer and dryer with your clothes. Depending on how vigorous your laundry routine is you might need to put them through a couple of times. Eventually they felt and shrink down a bit.

Although you can see I wasn’t paying attention and got some superwash blends mixed in there. Still, they’re felted enough they won’t come apart!

Like your laundry scented? Add some essential oils. It’s noticeable and refreshing but not too strong.

If you’re like me, you’ll get carried away. And end up running out of dirty laundry for all those felting loads before you run out of yarn scraps.

This week, on the needles

What am I knitting this week, you ask? More olive roots sweater. It’s big, it’s dusty green, and it’s still in progress. These days I’m on a sleeve!

But, it’s only the first sleeve.

The other thing in this photo is a swatch. And actual swatch for a garment in a gorgeous marled yarn that’s not quite available yet.

You know what that means? It’s a potential new design! Yippee!

WIP

It feels like this sweater has been a WIP forever. Which is kind of ironic since I started it in 2018 and I totally have at least one sweater that’s been “in progress” for a decade.

 

But I’m finally finished with the body and have started on the sleeve! It’s just a tiny cuff right now, but at 48sts around it goes so much faster than the body did. Once I knit both sleeves they get joined to the body and I will just have the yoke and the collar.

Slow progress, but I’m getting there.

Simplest Necklace

Does this technically even count as a project? I’m going to say it does, since it involved about 100% more crochet hook than my usual crafts. Crochet hooks are tricky little things! And of COURSE I insist on using the tiny one and the fingering weight yarn. But since this is just a crochet chain, it still didn’t take long.

This necklace may be simple, but it fills a very important role. It gives Willow something to grab while she nurses. Otherwise she’s distracted, looking around, and grabbing everything else she can reach.

The beads are silicone, I rescued them from a very ugly commercial nursing necklace that was too long to be functional. The yarn is handspun, it has sparkle in it which seemed appropriate for a necklace. It also has alpaca in it, and the halo may be a bit itchy. Time will tell if I can tolerate it or not. If I can’t, I can always rescue the beads again.

Space!

We made a space themed room for my future astronaut.

Windsor needed a twin sized bed. So I offered to help her put together a themed room, and she chose outer space! She currently wants to be an astronaut when she grows up, a dream I am (of COURSE) supporting and encouraging.

The majority of this design was done with some washi tape, a couple of posters, and some new books.

Overall it was a fairly inexpensive transformation, except for the mattress. Although I went with the online Tuft & Needle brand so even that could have been worse. (no reviews here – my 4yo doesn’t like to go to sleep. With her new mattress? Still doesn’t like to go to sleep. Is that the mattress’s fault? Probably not.)

New hobby

I’m picking up a new hobby. I don’t think it’ll cut into my knitting time too much. And they’re so cute

Meet my new little succulents in their teacup garden. I picked up Willow first:

(Windsor decided to name her after the baby, not me.)

I used to have quite a few houseplants. But I suffered a nasty fight with post-partum depression this summer and they were all casualties. Except for this guy:

We named him Spike and repotted him after I picked up Willow. (the plant, not the baby. Do not attempt to repot cacti while holding babies.) Poor Spike came to me years ago after surviving a hail storm on someone’s deck. So he looks a little worse for the wear. But hopefully he likes his new friends! The tiny cactus in the first photo is an offshoot from Spike. I’m waiting to see if it survives separation before giving it a cup of its own (and a name, apparently.)

Gwen joined the party this weekend. They sell these adorable things for $3 at my local garden center – teacup not included. But that’s ok, because I’ve got space for at least 5 more:

It’s coming

Did you notice the calendar? It’s MARCH! Also known as – still winter in Vermont. Every year I joke that the groundhog is wrong – from February 2nd “six more weeks of winter” is an early spring.

But every year in March I start to get excited about GARDENING again. I tend to bite off more than I can chew, and that’s ok by me. If things go to weeds at least I tried. Right now my garden still looks like this:

But I’m already buying seeds from High Mowing

matts wild cherry tomato

And trying to figure out how much soaker hose I need. Note: it’s hard to measure my garden when I can’t open the fence door because of the snow.

But that doesn’t slow me down. I’m planning to plant flowers in the garden bed that went to weeds last year. Flowers are lower maintenance. I think. Or at least will probably bloom even if I ignore them. Sunflowers will be happening too. Assuming I can figure out how to protect the seedlings from those pesky squirrels. And I’m dreaming of Bean Tents. That way the girls will have some place to play when they get bored of digging in the dirt with me.

(c) gardentherapy

Yup. I’m ready. Bring on spring.

Quickie

This was my official project of the ravellenics, and I completed on time!

It’s another Quinnifer hat, this time knit out of some unlabeled yarn from the deep stash. It’s cozy, quick, and pretty.

Me being me, I didn’t swatch with my substitute yarn. And so a hat meant for Windsor fits me nicely. But she likes it too.

So what if it has room to grow?

Good news, bad news, good news

To start, here’s the very important good news: I’m having a pattern sale! This is a good one: buy one, get one free! Just put “upgradetime” in the coupon code box of your Ravelry cart.

sale time

 

 

So what’s the bad news? The rights have reverted from the publisher back to me on my book. This means Cast Iron, Cast On is currently out of print. And to make matters worse, my computer died.

Wait, why are these two things related? Because I can’t release the ebook back onto Ravelry, or make single PDFs available, until I get a new computer. So, that’s what the sale is all about. I need to fund this new computer. So buy patterns! Spread the word!

The final good news is that I have FIVE new designs that have been knit and photographed. Once I have my new computer I can get rolling on the layout and you should be seeing some brand new patterns from me this year! And I do plan on releasing all those book patterns in single PDF format as well. So 2018 should be a fun one, designwise. If I can just get past this broken-computer-hump.

Sale details:
The sale applies to any of the patterns in my store – including the ebooks. (It will always be the less expensive pattern that is free.) You can use the code more than once – but you’ll need to check out more than once. If you put four patterns in your cart at the same time the system will only give you one free. The sale runs from today through March 8th.

Thanks for sticking around!