September 9, 2010

New(ish) Design: Arboreal Beret!

Hello there!

This is a bit tardy, but since the cooler weather is finally setting in and all good knitters' minds are turning to to thoughts of wool, I thought it would be as good a time as any to tell you that I have a pattern in the most recent Twist Collective! But you're clever so you probably already knew that.

arborealberet_a_500_sm.jpg arborealberet_b_500_sm.jpg kind of outdoorsy and rustic, yes? makes you want to stand by barns.*

The original Arboreal Beret was knitted as a Christmas gift for my sister, Rae. Christmas 2008, to be exact. But then I never blogged about it, because apparently I was going through a slacker phase.

The hat itself is a pretty standard-issue beret, sized to be nice and slouchy, the tree pattern is comprised of a mixture of cables and twisted stitches with some bobbles thrown in to take the texture up another notch. Is the knitting world still divided when it comes to bobbles? I fall so firmly in the pro-bobble camp that I have completely lost track. They're like little nuggets of knitterly yumminess...mmm...

or contemplate your woodpile.*

The pattern takes about 5oz/140g of aran-weight other words, just about what you have left over from knitting that sweater. See? You already have the yarn. If you have some size 8 dpns cluttering up the joint you're already 2 for 3.

buy the pattern!

ravel it!

arborealberet_d_500_sm.jpg arborealberet_c_500_sm.jpg she's happy because she's thinking about bobbles.*

*photos copyright Jane Heller, and courtesy of Twist Collective.

July 31, 2009

New Design: Bird on a Wire Hat

It's that time of year's hot as blazes out, but the preview for Vogue Knitting 2009 is up! I've got a pattern in this issue. It's a bit of a departure for me: a) you don't wear it on your hands, and b) it's double knit (and therefore reversible)!

the outards. also, what is up with the model's arm?*

The design
I had a lot of fun with the colorwork on this one...the little buildings and the "wire" ring the entire hat and are punctuated with a little bird at the front. If you're a guy, or if birds are just a little cutesy for you, I think it would also look great birdless and knit in slightly more urban colors. Here's a little thumbnail showing just the buildings:


Double knit eh?
I know that double knit isn't one of those techniques that everyone has used, but it's fantastic for colorwork! I taught myself how to double knit way back when I was a new knitter and I couldn't figure out either intarsia or stranded knitting. I also wanted to knit a scarf with an octopus on it...not exactly a beginner colorwork project...but double-knit saved the day!

Double knit is amazing for intricate designs in the middle of blank floats! No ten-million bobbins! Plus, extra-snuggly-double-layer warmth! Have I made it sound appealing yet?

the innards*

I should also point out that only the colorwork section is double knit. Once you get past the bird, you knit the lining separately from the outside of the hat. Easy, peasy!

Go forth and start your Fall knitting!

ETA: Ravelink!

*all photos courtesy of SoHo Publishing

April 22, 2009

Finished: Kricket's Selbu Modern

Time to get a few FOs off my chest, I think! Last time I was up in Michigan, I finally remembered to grab some photos of the Christmas gifts. Yes. I am that behind. Shuddup.

Here's the hat I made my baby sister, Krickie:

The back of Krick

Vital Stats

Pattern Selbu Modern, by Kate Gagnon.
Yarn KnitPicks Palette (cream, salsa heather, and calypso heather)
For Kricket

The front of Krick

It's been a while since the actual knitting of this one. About all I can tell you is that this pattern rocks! If you haven't knitted it yet, you should.

October 25, 2008

Happy Saturday Rundown

Things that make me happy today:

1) Finding another antique bone crochet hook at the thrift store yesterday

2) Surprise gifts in the mail from across the Atlantic

3) Another surprise gift! This one reminding me to read my Tintin.

4) Knitting with my own homespun

5) My new Amy Ruppel

6) Glass birds. Not just for Christmas!

And to make it an even 10...
7) Realizing that there is lasagna in the fridge that we can heat up for dinner
8) Watching Saturday afternoon home shows on PBS
9) Weather that is just the right temperature to not run the AC or the heating (if I wear wool socks)
10) Knowing that this blog turned three yesterday. Wow!

Hope your Saturday is as lovely as mine!

April 3, 2008

Very finished: the Twiggy Bobble Hat

The Twiggy Bobble Hat was born last September and, being a wily hat, it has heretofore eluded capture for tagging as a FO. In spite of its elusive qualities, it was recently caught on camera (in the exotic locale known as Beneath the Stairs) before scampering back under a shrubbery.

Exhibit A
the hat is startled by the photographer

The Specs:

-Pattern: Twiggy Bobble Hat by Andrea Tung, Pattern here.
-Yarn: Rowan Felted Tweed.
-Skeins: Less than one skein of Cocoa (143).
-Needles: Size 7 circs and dpns.
-Start to finish: Knitted sometime in September 2007.
-For: me!

The Pattern:
I could pretend that I vividly remember knitting this hat, but that would be silly. I only have the vaguest of recollections. I may as well have been abducted by aliens, brainwashed into thinking that I knit this hat, and returned to Earth.

Here's what I can dredge up from the bottom of my brain: There was some errata (ravelry link).

Exhibit B
it perches quietly on the head of the common knitter, with whom it shares a habitat

I love this hat. I love that it's a bit oversized (for those of you who have never seen me around other people for scale, I am tall. I have a big head. Not freakishly large, just too big for many hats). I love the reverse stockinette. I reeeeeeeally love the bobbles, though occasionally they'll invert themselves and you have an inny instead of an outie. I consider this endearing.

Final Verdict: A fantastic hat. High thee hence and knit one for yourself.

October 22, 2007

Sammamish blog-down

I've been back from Washington for almost a week now, but it's never too late to share a few pics. All told I got to see my two lovely sisters, the wee nephewling, my parents, and my cousins Jessica and Liz. So there was much fun and maybe a little less knitting than expected. The knitterly upside is that the cool, drizzly weather meant that we could break out the handknits. See if you can spot them all!

child_prodigy.jpg couslings.JPG
Krick learns a thing or two from Elliot, child prodigy; couslings!

corn.JPG E_pumpkin.jpg
Pop and E. brave the corn maze; drooly baby punkin goodness.

Mum, a crisp chardonnay, Baby E., yours truly, and Sam the dog.

E_street.JPG jessi_knits.jpg
Elliot street; Monster Jessi Knits!

mushroom.JPG rainy_seesters.jpg
An excellent mushroom; a familial handknit extravaganza.

Knits featured in this post: knucks (still waiting on a FO report), the as yet unblogged twiggy bobble hat (hmmm...Spun Mag seems to have let their domain expire. I'll leave the link though, in case it comes back. Who can fathom the mysteries of the internets?), the garter stripe scarf, the mossy baby sweater, and Kricket's Luna Park Socks. Oh fine, you can't see the socks in any of the pictures...but I swear Krick was wearing them. And while we're at it, I got to break in my plain old socks as well.

For those curious among you, the couslings and I did squeeze in a trip to Cultured Purls (right after the trip to the salmon hatchery) in Issaqua. Souvenir yarn and needles were dutifully purchased.

October 17, 2007

Finished: Muppety Sand Hat

Looky, it's a hat! A hat that's been finished since August (oh, the shame). Time to get caught up on the FOs...

Hello. I will stun you with my fuzzy rays.

The Specs:

-Pattern: Marloes Sand Hat, from Rowan 40.
-Yarn: 1.5 skeins of Lang Breeze.
-Needles: Size 13, and size 10.5 dpns (those were the largest ones I had).
-Start to finish: Two evenings way back in August, 2007.
-For: Me!

This is the best modeled shot I've got. Yes, I know it looks like I belong in the primate house.

The yarn was a gift from my MIL last February. My first reaction was, of course, "YARN! Woo-hoo!" My second was "'s a bit on the, um, fuzzy side...and the colors aren't exactly what I would choose for myself." So into the stash it went to await its destiny.

Fast forward to a Sunday evening in August. I reallyreallyreally needed a fast project and I had my eye on the Sand Hat. Bulky yarn is severely underrepresented in my stash so when I dove in all I came up with was the Lang Breeze. A bit doubtful of the appropriateness of cables knit in novelty yarn, I decided to cast on and figured I could aways give the hat to Kricket* for Christmas if it came out looking completely dorky.

I knit the hat. I tried it on. I fell in love. It's soft and snuggly warm and best of all, it looks good on me. I have no idea why, but it works. So there you have it. I love my hat. The only question I have now is: does it need a bigger pom?

If I stand in a prickly tree can you imagine it's winter?

Final Verdict: Utter bewilderment and inexplicable fondness.

*my designated recipient of odd and/or experimental knits. Sorry, Krick.

August 1, 2007

Finished: Curry in a Hurry Hat

A couple of weeks back I was waiting for that Rowanspun Aran to show up and I got a little antsy. So I decided to knit up a quick hat to take the edge off.


-Pattern: Cap Karma Hat, from Smariek Knits.
-Yarn: Handspun Bulky from
-Skeins: Less than one skein of "Sunset."
-Needles: Size 7 for ribbing; size 8 for the rest.
-Start to finish: July 18 – July 19, 2007.
-For: Me!

This is a nice little hat pattern. I was drawn to it because the cables make the hat pucker in a zig-zaggy way and, as we know, all it takes is a nice zig-zag and I'm putty in your hands. Plus, cables! I had to make this one.


You may recognize the Handpainted Bulky from Thunky's Hidden Agenda Sweater. I kind of hated the yarn back when I knitted the sweater, because half of the skeins seemed to have been spun by someone whose instructions read "spin thick and thin singles" and the other half by someone whose instructions said "spin singles of a consistent thickness." Since I just needed one skein for this hat I figured I was in the clear.

Not so much, it turns out. The yarn itself was fine, but the dyejob was fabulously craptastic. After an hour or two of knitting I looked like I had severe jaundice of the fingers. Most of the dye washed off my hands with a good scrubbing, but it stained the edges of my fingernails (and nothing says sexy like nasty yellowy nails. Yuck).

On the plus side, the dye stopped bleeding after three good washes and the lovely sunsetty color doesn't seem to have faded. You have no idea how gross the wash water was though. It looked like radioactive lemonade.


I made the whole thing shorter, so that it wouldn't swallow my head. I like my hats to just cover the tops of my ears.

Final Verdict: Yummy! A great pattern, but use different yarn.

December 30, 2005

Finished: Ross' London Beanie

One last Christmas FO to report! This one was done v. last minute (read: started and finished on the same day that I wrapped it up and gave it away). I had to employ my best trick for last minute knitting: casually knitting in front of the person it is intended for.

Ross Beanie.jpg

The Specs:
-Pattern: London Beanie, by Mark Thrailkill, modified a bit.
-Yarn: Rowan Magpie Aran, about 50g for entire hat.
-Needles: Size 7 circs.
-Started and finished on December 23.
-For: Ross for Christmas.

Notes: I forgot my size 7 dpns, so I had to knit the last crown decreases on an assortment of Boye interchangeable tips. This worked surprisingly well. Also, this would have been a great stashbusting gift if I didn't have enough of the two colors remaining to make 3 more hats.

Mods to the pattern: I changed the stripes. I changed the decreases for the crown. I wonder if this means that the hat has dual citizenship?


Woss in all his splendidness. Sorry ladies, he's taken.