Sunday, January 04, 2009

Happy 2009 Everyone!

Happy New Year! I hope everyone had a festive holiday season, with lots of yarny goodness and yummy food! (Nice to see i have my priorities in order, eh?)

Since I've posted almost no knitting for several months now, I thought I'd start with the usual 2008 round-up of knitted things, to prove that I really am still knitting! (If you're not a knitter, scroll down a little, or you might get a little bored!)

First, a non-Christmas gift - a little sweater for the new daughter of a knitting friend.

Pattern: February Baby Sweater from Elizabeth Zimmerman's Knitter's Almanac
Materials: Rowan Wool Cotton, in Moonstone, Gypsy, and Grand, which I had in my stash. Knit on 4mm circular needles.
Comments: I knit the yoke as written, but used plain stocking stitch for the body instead of adding the usual lacy pattern. I wasn't sure how far each colour would take me, and I didn't want to have to change colours mid-lace section. I quite like how this turned out though. The buttons are just basic black ones from Fenwicks.
Ravelled here.

Next are the pre-Christmas knits - Stockings!
Pattern: The basic stocking pattern is Cascade Christmas Stocking by Marji LaFreniere. I wasn't inspired by all of the charts offered in the pattern, so I got creative and looked elsewhere for the charts I used. Full details are on the Ravelry project pages, but most of them were from the Garn Studio website.
Materials: Patons Classic Merino in White and Bright Red, Patons Decor in Rich Sage Green, and Lion Brand Vanna's Choice Solid in Colonial Blue. These are stockings, so I went for colour, rather than material when choosing yarns. That said, I did find the shininess of the acrylic yarns a little disturbing! :) I knit these on a 4.5mm, 16" circular needle.
Comments: Very nice pattern! Super quick, totally customizable, and just the right size to fit all the necessary Christmas stocking stuffers - a nice big Naval orange in the toe, chocolate coins, a few little gifties, and maybe even a magazine. Perfect! :)
Ravelled here and here.

And now, the gifts - although there weren't all that many this year!

Pattern: Foliage from Vogue Knitting (aka VK) Fall 2008.
Materials: The black is Garn Studio Karisma Superwash that was in my stash (in strangely large quantities) from another project. The other colours are a mix of King Cole DK Merino Blend, Sirdar Click DK, and a random skein of light blue (long since discontinued) Pingouin France+ that's leftover from my very first (frogged) project. The pattern called for Aran weight yarn, but I got gauge with DK... funny thing that - normally I get gauge as written... Knit on a short 4mm circular, and DPNs.
Comments: I didn't like the sizing on this pattern so I changed it a lot. First, I didn't like the over-the elbow length of these gloves, so I only knit 40 (60 to 100) of the 100 cuff rows so that I ended up with 6" long cuffs. Second, since the circumference of the cuff is only 8" at the top, the wearer of these gloves would need to have elbows that are 8" around, and wrists that are even skinnier. I figure I have pretty thin arms, but my elbows are too wide for these gloves. My mom, the recipient, has wider ams than me, so a re-sizing was in order. I added stitches to the arms to make them wider, and improvised the pattern to carry those bigger dimensions through the whole glove. Also, I only knit the glove flat (and therefore as written) up to the end of the thumb, at which point I switched to DPNs and knit the rest of the hand and fingers in the round - details are in the ravelry entry if you're interested. But overall, this is a good pattern - just be prepared to do a little re-sizing work unless you are one of those lucky people who fit comfortably into a US size 2!
Ravelled here.

My last project (which I think was actually knit first), was a pair of gloves for Munchkin (aka my nephew Owen)!

Pattern: Piggy Mittens by SpillyJane. Now re-named as Gus and Poose, so says Munchkin.
Materials: Knit Picks Merino Style in Maple leaf, Frost, Avocado, Harvest, Butternut, Cornflower, Dusk (thumb) and Pine (idiot string). All were leftovers from when I made the Wild Stripes Blanket several years ago - which is why several of the colours are no longer available (are you noticing my focus on stash-busting these last few months?!). Knit on 3.75mm DPNs.
Comments: aren't these just the cutest mittens? So few people on ravelry are knitting them in coloured stripes, but to me, that was half their appeal. Owen is 3.5 and these fit his hands perfectly - they seemed a little big when I was knitting them, but I guess hands are bigger than you think. I guessed at the length of the i-cord idiot string - if its too long, you can always tie a knot in it to make it shorter. And trust me, kids need that idiot string if you actually expect to have them come home with 2 mittens every day! Heck, some days I'm tempted to make one of these for my own gloves!
Ravelled here.

Here's a shot of the mittens in action!

(ok non-knitters, you can come back now...)

Once all the knitting was over, we headed off to Vancouver to spend Christmas with my parents. I thought we'd be getting away from the snow, but the weather gods thought otherwise... while we were in Vancouver, my father measured 30 inches of snowfall in their front yard! (for my non-Canadian readers, Vancouver is much like England - if they get one inch of snow, the city closes down for the day. 30 inches nearly cripples them!). We got lucky with our travelling though - despite the crazy multi-day delays that many other travellers were dealing with, Mike and were delayed less than 2 hours flying out to Vancouver, and about 2.5 hours on the way home. (thank you travel and weather gods!)

Once out in Vancouver, it was a week of holidays, family, friends, and a little bit of sightseeing.

With all the snow, Vancouver was getting pretty wild... while skiing on Cypress Mountain, we even saw a bear!

Too bad Frobisher wasn't around, he could've made himself a new friend!

But now that the holidays are over, its full steam ahead for me. 2008 was busy for me, and 2009 is about to get even busier... so here's to good health and happy times for everyone!

1 comment:

The Knit Nurse said...

Happy new year!

Now we know who's reponsible for all the bad Vancouver weather. ;)