Archive for April, 2011


Green Stripey Socks with an Afterthought Heel

April 27, 2011

When I got this great yarn at Rae’s, I wanted to get going on some socks.  This is just a plain, stockinette sock using the technique I learned at Rae’s to knit socks without a pattern, toe-up.  I decided to knit the leg in plain stockinette because I just wanted the self striping yarn to show without any texture.

Barbara, who teaches that sock class at Rae’s, really prefers an afterthought heel, placing waste yarn as you knit, which is easily picked out later for the heel.  Having done socks with both a gusset/heel flap and the afterthought technique, I’ve come to prefer the afterthought heel, too.  It’s by far the simplest method, requiring no pattern or keeping track of short rows and Barbara feels it’s the most comfortable to wear.

Another bonus with an afterthought heel  – you basically knit a whole tube for the sock, from toe to cuff, and so it doesn’t interrupt your self striping yarn or any other pattern that you’re doing.

I also did a Russian bind-off for the cuff, which I really liked using this method (love this lady’s accent). I had tried the Russian bind-off in Wendy Johnson’s book, Socks from the Toe Up, and did not like that version at all.

Pattern:  None!
Yarn: Pagewood Farm, Forest Camo
Yarn for Toes/Heels:  Yarn Hollow Bitty/Jade
US #0, circular, using magic loop
Ravelry Page


Easter Bunny Cosy

April 19, 2011

One of my favorite knitting blogs is Little Cotton Rabbits, written by Julie, a wonderful lady who blogs from the U.K.  She knits the cutest animals and this is one of her patterns for a little bunny cosy.  I thought it would be a nice gift for a friend of mine who has invited us to her house for Easter.

There a lot of M1s and decreases, of course, in this pattern.  When I switched from bamboo needles over to my Addi Lace needles, it got a lot easier to do those.  This is knitted flat.  If I make another one, I might at least do the body in the round – I so hate purling.

Aren’t these the cutest little ears?

My friend loves purple, so a purple sweater it is for the bunny.

Pattern:  Bunny Egg Cosy
Yarn:  Dale of Norway, Baby Ull
Needle:  US # 2, Addi Lace circular
Ravelry Page



April 18, 2011

Rae had a “Sock Hop” at her store and I couldn’t resist all the sock yarn.  I got some lovely hand dyed yarns from Pagewood Farms and Yarn Hollow.   There was a green colorway I loved and so I just had to start some socks.  I needed some mindless knitting anyway, because I finished the men’s hat.  There is no pattern, because I’m knitting them using the patternless method taught by Barbara in her Sock Class at Rae’s.  It’s really empowering, knowing you can knit something without a pattern. I used Judy’s Magic Cast-On, cast on 16 stitches, increased to 60 on size 0 needles and am working straight stockinette for the foot.  I’m going to put in an afterthought heel and then not sure how I want to knit the leg.

I’ve been working diligently on the Snowflake Socks for my SIL, but this project takes complete focus because it’s two stranded knitting and you have pay strict attention to the chart.

Look at what it’s doing here today:

A good day to get a little knitting in.  I’m starting a tiny project for Easter that I’ll let you in on later in the week:


Brooklyn Tweed’s Men’s Striped Hat

April 14, 2011

It’s a little busy around here today. I’ve got workmen in my house, going in and out constantly, because we’re remodeling a couple of bathrooms.  I’m also setting up for a cooking lesson I’m giving tonight, where I’m going to teach how to make fresh pasta with a roasted pepper sauce.

But I have to get in a little knitting, somewhere, right?  I’m continuing work on this little project, which I’ll write about later:

But I do have an FO to show you. Continuing on with my Christmas knitting, I’ve just finished this men’s hat from Brooklyn Tweed – a Jared Flood design. It’s a very simple hat and a quick knit.  You use two yarns, a solid and a self striping yarn and alternate them.  The hat can look so different, depending on the striping yarn you use.

I think the four decreases at the top are interesting.

I knit this using the Magic Loop method.  The Shibui striping yarn was pooling as I was knitting it and I didn’t want every stripe to look the same.  So every couple of rows, I would cut it and the next stripe I would begin striping it from the other end of the yarn ball.

Pattern: Turn a Square from Brooklyn Tweed
Yarn: Shibui  Merino Worsted in Sand #51304 and
Cascade 220 Superwash in Walnut
Needle: US #6 and #7, Circular
Ravelry Page


Andalus Mittens

April 11, 2011

Spring has sprung but I am busy at work on my Big Project – knitting something for everyone in my family by next Christmas (that’s about 15 people).  I love two stranded colorwork and when I saw these Andalus Mittens, I knew I would be knitting them.   I am knitting these for my mother-in-law because she really likes mittens.

These are knitted up in Berroco Ultra Alpaca Fine, one of my favorite yarns.  I selected the colors that I know my MIL likes to wear – copper and black.  The copper color is called “Tiger’s Eye” and it has some interesting flecks in it.

I wanted to add some green to the mittens, but instead of knitting in little stitches, I used Duplicate Stitch to add the green after the mittens were knitted.  I blogged about that technique here.


I knitted the lining for these mittens in Rowan Kidsilk Haze, color “Fern”.  You can see how the lining is knit by picking up the stitches along the inside of the cuff :

Pattern: Andalus Mittens
Needle: US #2
Yarn: Berroco Ultra Alpaca Fine (Black, Tiger’s Eye, Pea Soup)
Lining: Rowan Kidsilk Haze (Fern)
Ravelry Page

I’ve seen so many beautiful new fun knits on the web lately and I wanted to share a couple with  you. Have you seen Jared Flood’s new shawl, Rock Island?  Knitters are all talking about it because it is so exquisite.  He teamed up with Lorna’s Laces and they made a new colorway, Grand Street Ink,  according to his specifications for this shawl. Check out the KAL over at Ravelry that’s been started for it.  I wish I could do it, but I’ve got all these Christmas gifts I want to knock out.

Look at these beautiful mittens for spring, designed by Kirsten of “Through the Loops”.  I fell in love with them the minute I saw them and immediately put them in my favorites on Ravelry.


Two Socks on One Circ

April 8, 2011

I hate having UFOs lying around.  I really am pretty good at not starting too many new projects before other things are finished.  I like having one mindless knitting project and one more focused, chart intensive kind of thing going at the same time so I can pick which to work on.  So I don’t like having a third thing lying around, which is what these socks were. These socks were from a class I took a few months ago where we learned to do two socks on one circular needle, a technique I wanted to learn and immediately knew I disliked.  As much as I love Magic Loop, I don’t like doing two items at one time – too much fiddling with the cables.

But the class did force me to learn to make socks, which I had never done, mostly because I just don’t wear socks.  I go from sandals in the summer to my UGG boots in the winter, with no socks.  But knitting my own socks may change my mind!  Plus I wanted to start making socks for gifts – I do know that other people enjoy socks.

The instructor taught us how to make socks without using a pattern, which was a great lesson.  These are toe-up socks, with an afterthought heel.  We got to pick which kind of heel we wanted to do (I did a wedge) and which kind of bind off we wanted to do (I did a double crochet bind off).

picking up stitches for the afterthought heel


The afterthought heel was easy for me, because I’ve done so many afterthought thumbs with my mitten knitting.

picking out the waste yarn

grafting the heel with kitchener stitch

double crochet bind off

I like these socks a lot, although I made them a little too large for my feet.  When you aren’t working from a pattern, you just have to go by feel. I forget to take into consideration that the socks would grow a little when I blocked them.


Pattern: None!
Yarn: Abundant Yarn & Dyeworks 100% Merino Wool
Needles: US#1 Circulars
Ravelry Page



New Yarn and Blazing Needles

April 7, 2011

I just got back from a skiing trip out in Park City with my family but because my poor old knees don’t let me ski, I did a lot of knitting when I was out there.  I also drove to Salt Lake City to drop in at Blazing Needles, recommended to me by Susan Lawrence via Ravelry.  What a cute shop.  It’s in a residential district and I just loved the feel of the place.


Check out all the Koigu Yarn that they carry!  I had to hold myself back. Such a great selection:

And they had a lot of Malabrigo. Love.

Do you need buttons?  This is just a part of their incredible button selection:

I bought some Cascade 220 Superwash  along with a stripey Shibui Merino Worsted in order to make this hat by Jared Flood.

And I also bought this incredible silk yarn with glass beads by Tilli Tomas.  I just couldn’t help myself.  And guess what? It’s called Rock Star! How great is that?  I can’t wait to use it.  I bought a little cowl pattern at the store that I may use for it. Look how gorgeous this stuff is:

And here is a sneak peek at a project I’m working on that I just love:

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