Monthly Archives: April 2014

boyfriend’s beanie…

I finished knitting up this beanie for Reags a few days ago. It took me a little longer than it should have, as I wasn’t working off a pattern, and had to pull it apart a few times..

The reason I wasn’t using a pattern, is because Reags wanted something rather specific. Very slouchy, with a short ribbed band, and buttons.

During the photo-shoot, I tried the beanie on, and didn't want to take it off!

During the photo-shoot, I tried the beanie on, and didn’t want to take it off!

I love the look of buttons on a beanie, but most of the styles I mulled over for inspiration just had buttons sewn onto a continuous band. I wanted the buttons to look as if they actually had a purpose on the beanie, so I made my band flat, and sewed it together to make a little flap at the side. With the buttons stitched on top of the flap, it looks like they are there to keep the band together, which I really like!

I was fooling myself, when I thought I could start the decreasing and figure out, in my head, how to do it evenly. I ended up with a right mess, it was uneven, and looked terrible. Lucky, I remembered reading about an app (thanks Dayana for blogging about it!), that figures out an even decrease/increase for you! Zero brain power required! It’s called “KnitEvenly” and is available in the app store for around $2.99. It’s a brilliant little app, and I couldn’t have finished the beanie without it.

I used my favourite wool from Bendigo Woollen Mills, 8ply Luxury in Navy Blue. It’s great because it’s super soft, and doesn’t itch. I’m planning on writing the pattern up soon, and I’ll have post it on my Ravelry account. If you’d like to give it a go, pop on over and download it. Just remember, it hasn’t been tested, so knit at your own risk!

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sock monkeys and babies…

Over Easter, Reags and I went to visit a few new additions to the family. I couldn’t go empty handed, so I made each of the new babies a sock monkey. I’ve been making these for a while now, they are super easy and don’t take long to whip up. One monkey uses a pair of knee high socks, some stuffing, and a little felt to make the eyes. I’ve found that these are great first present for babies, they are soft and squishy, easy to hold onto, and don’t have any hard bits that could fall off. Also, machine washable, which is brilliant!

Here is 12 week old Bubba D with his monkey. Apparently, stripes are his favourite thing at the moment, so monkey couldn’t be more perfect. Bubba D was squeeling and giggling when I was playing with him and the monkey, which made me squeel and giggle. He sucked on his nose and drooled all over him, which made me very happy.

The other two monkeys were for 10 day old twin girls, Bubba S and Bubba A. I’m feeding Bubba S in the picture, and you can see that the monkey is much bigger than her at the moment! I missed getting a picture of Bubba A with her monkey, the time just flew by without me noticing. However, I did snap this cute picture of Bubba S, which makes me laugh!

spreading the knitting love…

Me, and 2 of my students, Claire and Farzarna

Me, and 2 of my students, Claire and Farzarna

I’ve had a few conversations around the office about knitting (as you do!), and most of the people I talk to often say “Oh, I wish I could knit..” I always come back with “You can! Let me teach you!” So, for the past few weeks, I’ve been teaching some of the girls to knit during our lunch break! I am so very proud of my “students”, and I wanted to show off their progress.

Although Claire knew a little about knitting (from her mum), she had never actually learnt how to do it. After she got the hang of casting on, Claire has been improving out of sight. She mastered garter and stockinette, and even dabbled in a 2 x 2 rib. Over the weekend, she put aside her “practice” yarn, and started to make her first scarf. Today, she asked me if it was OK to work on more than one knitted project at a time. Of course, my answer was a resounding YES!

Farzarna had no pre-knowledge of knitting, she was a true beginner! She was so excited to get started, and the concentration on her face was almost comical. Each day, she’d turn up to work and whip out her knitting to show me. I was really impressed at how quickly her knitting sampler was growing. As you can see, she’s trying out a few stitch patterns, which I think is a great thing to do, as you can really see the difference between each stitch.

It is really interesting teaching the girls, because they both understand directions differently. Farz remembers things like “wrap the wool from right to left”, where Claire feels more comfortable with “wrap the yarn under, then over”. I do most of my knitting without thinking now, and to help the girls understand what to do, I’ve had to break each step down, which I’ve really enjoyed.

I am so happy that I’ve been able to share knitting with the girls, it really makes me feel good that I have passed this craft onto someone else. To see them improving each week just makes me warm and giddy! I can’t wait to see what they create, and where their imaginations take them!

 

my mum has knits too…

I wonder if I would have ever picked up a pair of knitting needles, if it hadn’t been for the influence of my mum. She’s been an avid knitter for as long as I can remember. Mum is about a zillion times quicker than I am (“It’s not a race, Sam” she says), and she seems to be pumping out new items every other week. Reags and I spent the weekend at my mum and dad’s place, and I took the opportunity to dig through her wardrobe, and drool over what I found…

Mum loves little tanks, that’s obvious from the amount she has! This tank is knit with Mercerised Cotton D-45 from Dairing, colour #08. From memory, it’s basically just 2 rectangles, possibly with a small amount of shaping at the sides. I easily could have pinched this…

This is “Girlfriend” from Dairing, knit in Cotton Linen DM-26, colour #10. It can be worn a few different ways, as shown on the Dairing website. Mum used the left-overs to knit a little belt, which I’ve got around my waist. I think this is really sweet!

Another one from Dairing! This cute little top is knitted in Cotton linen slub CL-2, I’m guessing colour #01. Mums probably used a pattern for this, but I wasn’t organised enough to ask! I love the little frill along the bottom hem!

Love. Love. LOVE this shawl! I pulled it out of the drawer and yelled “MUM! Have I seen this before?! When did you make this? Can I have it?”. Her answers, I don’t know, A while ago, No. This is such a beautiful knitted piece, and it was really warm too, just sitting on my shoulders.

It’s made from 100% wool, which is odd for my mum, because she is highly sensitive to the ITCH-FACTOR of wool (even the stuff I say is super soft, she finds itchy!). The pattern is “Annis” by Susanna IC, and you can find it on Ravelry.  Who knows, I might very sneekly nab this one next time I visit cast one on for myself!

My mum is, without a doubt, my biggest knitting inspiration, and she’s taught me a lot of what I know. Thanks mum xoxo