11.30.2016

stripe happy

Happy last day of November! We had a lovely Thanksgiving filled with family, friends and yummy food. I had to work for part of the day but came home to a delicious dinner prepared by my sisters-in-law. One of the many blessings in my life is having family who live close by. Especially ones who know how to cook and throw a good party :)

I can't believe how fast this year has gone by! Only 3 & 1/2 weeks until Christmas! I know that a few of you have been knitting gifts year round. Wish I had the forethought to do that. There are a few gifts in the knitting basket which are underway. Just small things this year: a bunny which is currently on hold until the baby is born in January. The parents are waiting to find out the gender. As soon as that happens, I can outfit the bunny accordingly. Also some fingerless mitts and a cowl which I am still waiting on the yarn for.



And of course, there has been lots of fun Christmas sock knitting going on. Speaking of socks, I've got a backlog of finished ones to show you all. Presenting my Stripy Socks for All Seasons:

Spring

Summer

Fall

Winter

Spring is a plain sock with heel flaps. Fall & Winter are vanilla socks using my new favorite afterthought heel technique without waste yarn. And Summer is a scrappy monster sock with a Strong Heel.

11.03.2016

building blocks (westknits mystery shawl kal 2016)




There was quite a bit of controversy in the mkal forum with this shawl. Some knitters did not care for the construction, a few were in an uproar when two color brioche was included in one of the clues, others didn't like the final shape. Guess I'm easy to please because I enjoyed the entire process of knitting my building blocks shawl. I loved seeing how the different colors interacted with each other depending on their placement and the stitch patterns involved. We were essentially blending the colors like paints on a palette. It was also really cool learning how to increase and decrease in two color brioche. Stephen had these funny but very clear and informative videos on the special techniques used in each clue. I especially loved the brioche knitting one and can't wait to knit one of his brioche designs. The final shawl shape is pretty versatile (I made the small size). I like to wear mine either draped over the shoulders with the long ends hanging in front or wrapped cowl-like around the neck. The bat wing shape is admittedly not to everyone's taste (I personally prefer a more curved & rounded shawl). But it's good fun to step outside of my comfort zone every once in awhile.

10.26.2016

sweater weather

Yay! It's finally cold enough to comfortably wear a woolly sweater and flannel shirt! To celebrate sweater weather, I wrapped up the finishing touches on my fringe and friends improvised top-down kal sweater. So pleased and truthfully, surprised at how well this turned out, considering that it has been quite awhile since I made anything with sleeves. Here's a visual rundown of the process:

dreaming and planning


(mis)calculating


suspenseful knitting


randomly adding another design element


the part that gave me a migraine


sleeve island


plotting woolly tattoos (hmmm flowers, unicorns, donuts...finally settled for trees)


happy sweater dance!

10.07.2016

5 things on friday

Why hello there! Can't believe that it's already October, my favorite month of the year. I've been having a little case of writer's block for the past few weeks so I'm hoping to jumpstart the words by writing a list of things that are making me feel all of the good fall time vibes:


Halloween Pixel Rise socks. So gruesomely fun to knit, especially when using the frankensocks Halloween edition kit by Havirland. She's a talented indie yarn dyer based here in Maryland.


Midori Traveler's Notebook. This is the planner/ journal/ scrapbook of my dreams! Even though I love the culture & style of the hobonichi planners, it was a total fail. Mainly because all of the pages are dated (of course they are! It's a daily planner duh!) which meant that I felt pressured to write something down every day. And of course I fell behind and ended up with a lot of blank pages. Which caused more guilt and avoidance etc etc. But the neat thing about the MTN is that it has different paper inserts which you can choose to customize it to your journaling/planning style. The inserts are easily removable and you can combine several different ones in the notebook. (Mine are all non-dated). All of which is held together by a beautiful leather cover which seems to get wonderfully aged with use. It feels good to be excited about journaling again.


Rhinebeck socks. No I'm not going. But a girl can dream. And wear cute stripey fall socks while she's at it.


A new weeknight mealtime game plan. One of my favorite food bloggers has just come out with her first ebook. It is filled with easy weeknight dinner recipes paired with the perfect side dishes for each. Also includes lots of yummy desserts. I think that my two guys are even more excited about this book than I am since they gobble up everything that I've ever cooked from Mel's website.


My favorite hangout spot (trader joe's) + my favorite month = everything pumpkin.

Hope that you are finding lots of reasons to celebrate this beautiful season!

9.09.2016

playing catch up

So happy to report that the transition to middle school has been pretty smooth and the little guy loves his new school and teachers. Such a big sigh of relief. I've been hesitant in the past to go into detail about my son's special needs but school & learning has many times been a struggle despite all of our efforts to make it fun and as pressure-free as possible. Transitions are especially stressful but so far so good. Now that we are getting used to the new school routine and schedule, there's a little breathing room to start playing catch up in other areas. Well, what I should really be doing is cleaning/de-cluttering my mess of a house in preparation for a visit from my MIL but where's the fun in that, right? What I want to do is show you my finished Vanilla is the New Black / Skyp socks:




This Strong Heel is such a cool feature of these socks and I absolutely loved knitting it. Very easy & intuitive. But most importantly, they fit great and the socks are so comfortable to wear. Probably the best fitting pair of socks I've made so far. The sunny summery yarn is wsk aspen sock in the flirty owl colorway. It's funny that there is just a little bit of pooling in each sock in the exact same spot, so it was meant to be a design feature ;)


In other sock news, I am currently participating in a monster sock KAL on Instagram. The hashtag is #mskal16 if you want to check out all of the scary monster goodness. I was kind of worried that I wouldn't have enough variety/contrast in my sock yarn scraps to make a decent pair since I've only been knitting socks for less than a year. So after a little bit of brainstorming, I decided to go with alternating stripes of solid/tonals and speckles/variegated yarns. These socks are so addictive and I find myself knitting on them way past my bedtime. However, I am making a conscious effort to stop and weave in the ends as I go along otherwise the final finishing would be truly monstrous :)

I hope that the entry into September has gone smoothly for you as well. Have a great week!