Knits & Purls

Flying Off the Needles

Little Miss I'm-Not-Knitting-for-Christmas just wants to say . . . 


those Woodland Loafers just fly off the needles!  (That's a stitches-away-from-being-finished pair in all their unblocked glory there in the photo.)  (And another pair, waiting in the wings.)  (Which is really only a wound ball of yarn at this point, but I know you know what I mean.)

Seriously.  These things are fun to knit, easy (especially once you cut your teeth on the first one), and kind of magical.  If you're looking for a rather quick gift-knit, I recommend these cute little slippers.  It took me about 3.5 hours to knit the first one, but only 2.5 hours for the second.  (There is definitely a learning curve.)  (Plus movie-watching on the first one.)  I'm hoping to make good progress on the 2nd pair today -- I'm heading to Chicago and not driving.  That's hours and hours of knitting time!

If you're doing gift-knitting this year, how's it coming along?


Be sure to head over to Kat's today for more Unraveled posts.

New Box of Crayons

When I was a little girl, my favorite thing in the world . . . was a new box of crayons.  (I was giddy the first time I got a Crayola box of 64 crayons -- with built-in sharpener!)  (Remember those?)


It shouldn't surprise any knitters reading this . . . that I jumped feet first right into this brand new "box of crayons" . . . 


Although the colors are quite off in this photo (because it's so dang dark anymore), you can see that I'm having a really good time with this.

I may even be slightly obsessed.  

Just like I used to be with a new box of Crayons!



Let It Flow

(For a soundtrack to today's post, click here.)

I know.  I know.  It's not a cardigan, and it's not gray.  But I did finish a thing . . . and it might be one of my favorite things ever.  And just in time, too.  Because winter showed up this week, and I can use all the wool I can get.


(On Monday we had a snow storm.  Yesterday, it was clear.  Sunshine and blue skies even.  But then the lake effect snow machine turned on at pretty much the same time Tom and I had our one opportunity to do a knitting-photo-shoot while there was still light.  So here I am . . . in the pouring snow!)

It only took me a couple of rows to "get" why Andrea Mowry's "shifty" designs are so popular!  Oh, my -- what fun this was to knit!  All those colors.  All that texture.  And a great, satisfying end result.

I had a "yarn palette" of 7 lovely Briar Rose colors to play with -- and then . . . I just let it flow!


Let it grow, let it grow. . . 
Let it blossom, let it flow.
In the sun, the rain, the snow. . . 
Love is lovely, let it grow.


(Ravelry details here.)

So.  Gray cardigan next?
(Not a chance. . . )


Be sure to visit Kat today for other Unraveled posts.  And head over to Bonny's to get in on the Just Mercy discussion.  (I'm not sure that she has any pastries left, but the discussion is very good!)


The Things We Do for Love

(Click here for the soundtrack to today's post.)
(As if you're not already humming the song. . . )

Tom is a curler.  
And curlers tend to wear kind of . . . odd . . . things when they're out on the curling ice.  

Like. . . I've watched a team who wears hand-knitted skunk hats as part of their team uniform.  And Tom told me about a unicorn team he played against once (bike helmets with affixed unicorn horns).  And, of course, there are the pants.  (Yep.  That's a link to the video of the Norwegian curling team putting on their curling pants . . . without using their hands.)  (Well worth a watch.)  (Just sayin.)

So when I saw a pattern for a knit curling hat on Ravelry, I (correctly) figured Tom would want one.  And that he would wear it while curling.


The things we do for love . . . 


Ravelry details here.


PS . . . Tom's team curls in plain old black pants.  And I know they put them on without any fancy dance moves.  They don't wear special team-themed hats or helmets either.  But they will be dressing as the "Brews Brothers" in an upcoming tournament -- the "Beer Spiel".  (Maybe I'll get a photo for you. . . )

In Lieu of Fall Color

(For a soundtrack for today's post, click here.*)


So . . . I've finished another sweater.

I can't really believe I've knit so many sweaters so quickly lately.  Because this is not how I usually operate.  (It helps that they've all been cropped and/or sleeveless and/or knit at a bigger-than-usual gauge.)  (Just sayin.)  

I had planned to do the backyard-photo-shoot for this sweater with a backdrop of fall color.  But that just isn't happening here yet (still very green).  So I decided to use a pumpkin as a prop . . . in lieu of fall color.


But then I couldn't really figure out what to do with it.

So Tom said . . . Why don't you put it on your head?

And I did.




There you have it!

A pumpkin on my head . . . in lieu of fall color.

(Ravelry details here.)


* I linked to Eva Cassidy's version of Field of Gold.  This is one of my all-time favorite songs, and while I love Sting's original version, I find Eva Cassidy's cover to be just lovely.  And so beautifully haunting.  Enjoy.


Checked Your Calendars Lately?

Today . . . is September 25.  Which means in exactly 3 (very fast) months, it will be Christmas day.  And a few days less than that even for the start of Hannukah.  So.  If you're planning any holiday gift knitting, you better "get your wiggle on" (one of my mom's favorite sayings).  

And I'm here to help you!  This month, my stash give-away includes two very gift-knitty kinds of yarn!

First up . . . 


Two skeins of Mountain Colors River Twist yarn in the Pine Creek colorway, worsted weight, 100% Merino wool.  Each skein is 240 yards, so there is plenty of yarn there to knit up some nice, gift-y accessories (or, of course, something for yourself).  The colors in the photo are pretty accurate -- muted tones in shades of (mostly) greens, blues, and plums.

And then I've got . . . 


Two skeins of Knit Picks Capra DK in the Harbor colorway, DK weight, 85% Merino wool/15% cashmere.  Each skein is 123 yards, plenty to make a great cowl or hat.  The color in the photo is quite accurate.  (I notice there's a strand of my hair that made it's way into the photo there.  I'll make sure that doesn't come with the yarn.)

Interested in one or the other?  Or both?  Let me know in the comments before Tuesday, (gasp) October 1 at 5:00 pm Eastern time.  I'll pick names out of a hat and notify the winners by email.


In knitting news, here's the current state of my Felix pullover sweater.


Oh, sure.  It looks fine NOW.  But . . . well . . . there has been some unraveling.  A word (or two) of advice, should you knit a Felix for yourself.  First:  when you're on the short row shaping AND trying to establish the eyelet raglan increases?  Don't watch TV.  Second:  when you switch out to a longer cable needle to accomodate the growing number of stitches?  Make sure you've got the right size needle.  And when you wonder to yourself why it feels a bit different?  Trust that.

But I'm on track now!  (Let's just say . . . I got really good at doing those eyelet raglan increases.)


How about YOU?  What are you knitting this week?

Ain't No Disco

(Click here for a soundtrack to accompany today's post.)

The not-a-gray-cardigan . . . is finished!

IMG_5942 2

Such a fast-and-furious knit for me!  Like . . . two weeks.  Two weeks of rather obsessive knitting.

Why so fast, you're wondering?
I think because . . . Color!  Pattern!  
For me, whenever there is color or patterning action in whatever I'm knitting, it all just seems to go faster.  I guess because I'm so eager to see what will happen next.  Y'know?  
(Also . . . it's cropped.)  
(And no sleeves.)  
(So there's that, too.)

But, mostly . . . it was just plain FUN.  So I couldn't put it down.


All I wanna do is have some fun . . . 
I gotta feeling I'm not the only one.

All I wanna do is have some fun . . . 
I gotta feeling the party has just begun.


You can see all the details on Ravelry, here.


So, you're probably wondering . . . Is it gray cardigan time now???

Why . . . no.  Apparently it's not! 

I was doing a "needle amnesty" on Monday (you know . . . rounding up all the - many - loose needles laying around in my knitting bag and in other random corners of my house, then corralling them in their proper needle places) (again) (does anyone else need to to that once in a while????) . . . and I discovered that I had cast on and knit the ribbing for a Felix Pullover late last spring.  I remembered - once I found it - that I had put it away because spring was imminent, and I wasn't in the mood to knit a wool sweater right then.  

But I am now!

Still not-a-gray-cardigan. . .


How about you?  What are you making this week?

Hello From the Other Side

(Soundtrack for today's post.)


It's me.

I was wondering if after all these years you'd like to meet.


I knit the first of these socks four years ago.  
(Maybe even five, because it's kind of a blur.)  
(And time flies when you're knitting other things.)  

I'm not exactly sure why I didn't knit the second sock right away, because it's not like me to let a project linger like that. But I think it was the pooling.  I remember struggling to get the yarn to . . . not pool so much.  (I changed needles sizes, I know.)  (And I'm pretty sure I re-started more than once at various places in the skein.) 

So it was kind of a break-up, of sorts.  I guess.

But . . . hello from the other side.


At least I can say that I've tried . . . 

Two socks.  Together!  At last.

(Even though the pooling makes my eye twitch.)
(And now you know I'll never wear them in my shoes.*)


You can find the details here - on Ravelry.


* It was so very heartening to read your comments last week and realize I'm not the only one who doesn't like to wear hand knit socks with shoes!

Not a Cardigan . . .

This year, I'm really trying to be intentional about my knitting.  
Only knitting what I will actually wear or use.  
Sticking with the yarn I already have.  
In colors I love.  
And styles that suit me.  
No KALs.  No mysteries.  
No! Shiny! Objects!

And it's been working.

Now I need a cardigan.  
A gray cardigan.  
I've been spending quite a bit of time considering patterns, and I've found a few that will match my needs.  (This one, this one, or maybe this one.)  I have the yarn.  I'm ready to go.

And yet.

And yet.

I keep seeing shiny objects flashing across my Instagram feed.  And these particular shiny objects are lighting up all the Just-Do-It centers in my brain like crazy!

I caved. . . 


Not a cardigan.

Not gray.

But a whole lot of fun to knit!  
(And I'm good with that.)

Turns out . . . this need to play with color. . .  is currently overriding my need for a
(plain old)
(not really)
gray, wool cardigan.
And I'm knitting in a near-obsessive way right now. 

How about you?  What are you knitting right now?