Hand Knit Rug

The blue hand knit rug is finished.

Pattern: Ten Stitch Blanket by Frankie Brown
Yarn: Briggs n Little Heritage in navy blue and sewSpun yarn with Leaves (hand spun and hand dyed)

Although, I had intended it to be a bedroom rug, I ran out of steam to make it big enough. It looked ridiculously small laying beside the queen size bed, like I had stuck a postage stamp on a 9*12 envelope.

So, it found a new home underneath the half moon table in the hallway.

Though I have yet to catch him on camera, Jake has found a way to squeeze at least half of his body onto this small rug. Poor Jake. He is still upset with us for throwing the old green carpet in the trash.

Knitting on the Beach

I take my knitting almost everywhere with me, allowing me to squeeze in a few minutes of knitting here and there. So, it only seemed right to take it on a beach trip.

Watching the kids happily wile away their time in the sand and listening to the ocean lap along the shore was beautiful. It was so relaxing to knit in such a place.

Sand has a way of getting into everything so naturally it got on the yarn as well as the rug. A quick shake got rid of the lion’s share. The rug will need to washed and blocked when I am done knitting it up and the rest of the sand should come off then.

The amazing part was how much knitting I was able to accomplish. All of the orange yarn has been knit up. All of the blue yarn that I brought with me was knit up. I might have even finished the rug if I had brought more yarn with me!

Thanks go to Michelle Haigh for the photos.

A Dog Rug

For a very small dog. Think chihuahua.

Jake’s head might fit on it, but nothing else.

Unfortunately, the rug is starting to get too big to fit in my knitting bag. It is also getting too warm to lay on my lap while knitting.

Tonight I took it to my neighbor’s house only to have Elly pull the live stitches off the needles. Then, she proceeded to stab the needles into the rug, informing me that she was knitting and helping me. It was very cute.  But, as you can guess, not a lot of knitting takes place when she is around.

Thus lately, I have only worked on it while at McDonald’s thanks to Elly being preoccupied and to the AC keeping me cool.

A Cat Rug

The bedroom rug is now large enough for a cat to sleep on it.

A small cat that is.

Of course, a cat would never survive in our home. Jake is certain that cats belong in the same category as all small furry creatures: retrievable animals. Jake is a Golden Retriever after all.

As much as Elly loves cats, she has never asked to have one as a pet. The answer would be no not only because of Jake but also because of Dan as he is allergic to cats.

Elly has her sights set a bit higher. She wants a horse and had told me matter-of-factly that she is going to have a horse as a pet.

Knitting in between the Quilting

Work on the Dresden plate quilt continues but at this stage it is not portable, so I have picked my knitting needles back up.

The pattern is called the Ten Stitch Blanket.

My plan is to use it as a rug in our bedroom. As much as I love our hardwood floors, they are cold. A rug would warm things up and provide Jake, who is getting old, another soft spot to rest on.

The yarn is Briggs & Little Heritage wool, a gift from my mother-in-law.

To brighten the dark blue up, I plan to incorporate SewSpun‘s fall yarn though I am not entirely sure how yet.

Sunday Snapshots (of Elly knitting)

You read that right.

Elly saw me knitting a rug on Thursday (more on that later). She begged me to let her help. Always thrilled to have Elly take an interest in my crafts, I showed her how to make a knit stitch. Afterwards, she asked me for a ball of yarn and needles.

Elly patiently wrapped the yarn around the needles.

She told me that she was knitting me a scarf.

Squee!

Elly’s Shawl Complete

The shawl was blocked last week.

After, the edges were folded under to make a hem and to keep the stockingnette stitch from curling. The hem caused the edges to ruffle just a little. The ruffle may come out with another blocking, but since I like the look, I’m keeping it.

I’m also keeping the shawl. Elly will not receive this for her 3rd birthday.

The lacework is too fine. I spent too many years knitting it. I envision a Barbie or a babydoll getting their hand stuck in the lacework and pulling it. The thought of that happening made it hard for me to breathe. Clearly, I would not be OK with Elly rolling the shawl into a ball and tossing it in her baby collection.

It was Dan who came up with the new home for it. He told me the shawl was beautiful and could be used a doily, since it was too small to be used as a real shawl.

Sometimes, Dan comes up with the best ideas.

To Frog or Not to Frog

It was to be an heirloom baby shawl for Elly.

Elly will turn 3 next month.

According to Ravelry, I have been working on and off this shawl for 3 1/2 years. True, 2 of those years I didn’t touch it at all, but that still leaves a lot of time invested in this shawl.

Long time readers will remember that I ran out of the kid mohair yarn eons ago. A dear friend and reader of this blog hunted down a new skein. Although it didn’t match perfectly, it was really close.

The problem is that I feel hatred toward the shawl every time I look at it. The mountains of endless stockingnette stitch is terribly boring to knit. The spot at which I switch from the old mohair skein to the new mohair skein is striking, but perhaps not in a good way.

To top it off, the main color of the shawl is red, which doesn’t complement Elly’s gorgeous red hair. As a redhead myself, I avoid wearing red close to my face. Less so now that my hair has darkened so much and is slowly turning grey, but in my youth I wouldn’t touch the color. My red hair was my best asset; I didn’t want anything I wore to steal the show. So why did I knit a red shawl for Elly? Well, I was certain she would have her father’s hair color, since red hair is a recessive gene. Happy was the day she was born with red hair like mine and like my mother before me.

So, do I persevere with knitting and finishing Elly’s baby heirloom shawl?

Do I toss it in a basket and pile more yarn overtop in the hopes that out of sight is out of mind?

Do I frog it (for non-knitters to frog means to rip it, rip it, rip it (see, it sounds like a frog, no?) all out)?

Do I stop knitting the endless stockingnette stitch and just add a lace border in red and let Elly use it to wrap her babydolls up?

I have to admit that I really want to go knit something that I will enjoy knitting. I am currently dreaming of a warm wool rug in our bedroom. Yet, adding a lace border is something that I have never done before so that would be interesting if nothing else.

2012 in Review

At first I felt as if I couldn’t write a Year in Review post. It seemed like the year had flown by and I hadn’t had a chance to do much at all, but looking back that is hardly true.

The year started off with the Pottstown Knit Out and my teaching a class about knitting charts.

Then, every spare moment in the Spring was dedicated to knitting a hexagon blanket for I was determined to finish before the dog days of summer began despite not needing it done until September. The blanket was a wedding gift to my sister-in-law and her fiancée.

Oddly enough, even though I accomplished my goal of completing the blanket before the heat rolled in, I still knit throughout the summer. Elly got a new twirly skirt.

By the end of summer, I was harvesting the best crop of tomatoes I have ever grown. I only wish I knew what I did right so I would know how to repeat it this year.

In the sewing room, I made a flower dress for Elly and a strapless dress for me.

They were hands down the hardest clothing I’ve ever made. I told everybody at the wedding that I made the dresses, even people who were just making pleasant conversation and could have cared less. Darn it, I was proud.

Right before Thanksgiving Day, Elly and I ripped the old golf green carpet up.

Girl power rules!

Of course, everything couldn’t end in smiles. The dining room wall nearly sent me to the funny farm. It should come as no surprise that the walls still aren’t finished. The wind fell out of my sails not to mention the holidays took over my life.

I have not made any resolutions for the New Year. However, I do hope to publish 2 knitting patterns, finish sewing all the curtains and slip covers that I started last year and placed on the back burner for one reason or another and continue enjoying my time with Elly for she is growing up so fast. I hope 2013 will be a fabulous year for you too!

Knit Garland

Mandy of SewSpun spun a peppermint yarn a few years ago. Despite loving it at first sight, I couldn’t justify buying it since my knitting time is so limited these days. When it went on sale in March of last year, my resolve gave way and in a week it was on my doorstep.

For months it sat around while I tried to decide what it should be knit into. I thought about knitting a purse, a bath mat, a cowl, a stocking and a scarf. In the end, I went with my first instinct, garland for our Christmas tree.

The garland is just a simple 3-stitch i-cord. It took no time at all to knit. I was able to finish it while we drove around town visiting family for Christmas.

Unlike the wood beads that I had been using as a garland, the yarn garland can be seen from a distance.

My only complaint is that the yarn garland is too short. It won’t wrap around the tree more than once. I need more Christmas colored yarn.