Spidey

There seems to be a guest who is living behind my yarn.

I shall name him Craig, but if Craigs eats the yarn we will throw down.

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FO & Pattern Review – Seamless Baby Kimono

I have a feeling that there are other people like me who have anxiety on purchasing patterns. I know that there are those who will be quick to push that purchase button, but I’m skeptical. I mean, other than the FO, what do you really know about the pattern? You can’t see the pattern of course until you purchase and what if it’s terribly written and you just can’t stand it?

I heard about baby kimono sweaters on a podcast and decided to research it on Ravelry. My friend had just found out two days prior that she was pregnant, so it was perfect timing! I came across the Seamless Infant Kimono by Carina Spencer. I thought the pattern was perfect and would probably appeal to a non-knitter.

Yarn: Caron Simply Soft (Because Mommy is so not a knitter)

Needles: Size US 8 and 6

Finished Size: 0-6 months

Started: June 24, 2010

Finished: June 29, 2010

 

So what details can we see from the Ravelry pattern page?

Pattern price – You know, I have a hard time with this. Though I liked the pattern and the finished product, I felt that $9.00 was a considerable amount. I think that after I saw what all went into this super simple sweater, it was too much. I don’t know what a designer goes through and how much they truly should be compensated, but I have seen more complicated patterns for less.

Sizes – The sweater can be worked into 0-6 mo, 6-12 mo, 12-18 mo, and 18-24 mo sizes. The pattern also has suggestions for three different sleeve styles.

Yarn choice – Worsted weight yarn, so the sweater knits up fast.

Pattern construction – Wordy, but it has to be since it is such a simple sweater. Accompanied with big clear pictures.

Pattern Review!

The good things? The pattern is for an advanced beginner, and I agree. The pattern is a good starter project if you want to understand the technique of seamless sweater knitting. I had never tackled a sweater before and this helped instill some confidence in me. Though it is simple, you get three different sleeve styles so it can add some variety for future knits. Notes are added through the pattern as friendly suggestions.

The bad things? I can’t complain on much other than the price.  There are some added tutorials, but you have to go to Ms. Spencer’s site to access them. The pattern will only have links, but you can print the other tutorials as PDFs. I found this to be a little inconvienient. Also, you are instructed to pick up virtually every stitch for the border, but other knitters found this to produce a puckered border. 

Overall, I think the pattern is clear and concise, and the finished product is modern and cute. If the price doesn’t make you leery, then I say go for it and knit for the new little one in your life!

Some of my favorites from other knitters on Ravelry?

Marchstarz Infant Kimono

Clementine’s Infant Kimono with different ties! 

Kitscha’s Infant Kimono 

 

For more info on Carina Spencer or to see her other designs, check out her site!

Pattern Review – Girasole

So I have a feeling that there are other people like me who have anxiety on purchasing patterns. I know that there are those who will be quick to push that purchase button, but I’m skeptical. I mean, other than the FO, what do you really know about the pattern? You can’t see the pattern of course until you purchase and what if it’s terribly written and you just can’t stand it?

The Girasole pattern was my first actual pattern purchase. I don’t think it could have really gone wrong. Mr. Flood seems very dedicated to his passion, so I figured the pattern would be well written or charted. Which will make for a short review.

So what details can you see from the Ravelry pattern page?

Pattern Price – Girasole’s pattern price is a measly $6.50. Although I say designers can charge what they like, this price appealed to my poor college student yarn-addicted self.

Sizes – Girasole comes in two sizes in the pattern, a shawl and blanket. I knit the shawl but I came to a conclusion. Though I loved the shawl, I found that I had to fold it into a half-circle to wear it or drape it willy nilly across my shoulders, which obscures the details of the shawl. So the next time I knit another Girasole it will be a blanket and will definitely receive more use.


It might not obscure all details, but I feel that I don’t get the same wow factor like traditional triangular shawls. Or maybe I’m just picky?

Yarn Choice – Mr. Flood remarks on “how yarn choices can make the same lace pattern into two completely different finished pieces.” I agree. I don’t know about most people, but I am a slow knitter. Though this means I am more careful with my knitting and pay more attention, I also get burnt out really fast. And I did, this took me about a year and a half to complete. I may have not completed it, if not for the yarn I chose for this project. Girasole is worked in a heavy yarn, so you’re able to see your progress as you go along. Which was great for me because I was even more inspired to keep going and not have to wait for blocking to see the beauty.

Pattern Construction – The pattern is charted but heavily accompanied by the notes Mr. Flood provides.

Now onto the actual pattern review!

Good things? Girasole is knitted in the round, which means no purling! It is charted and accompanied by a considerable amount of notes, but the notes are well written and the charts are easily memorized. All stitches are simple there are some K4togs, and make 5s, but nothing like nupps. This is a great first lace project if you haven’t taken the plunge.

Also I have heard that with the section pictured below, you can omit or add repeats without fear of messing up stitch count.

Bad things? The border is a time suck, it’s not difficult but your brain will explode over time and those little bits of brain will then explode again. Just warnin’ ya. Also, there was some confusion on the border. It states to bind off 3 and knit 3, but when you did BO3, you could only knit two. It was easily corrected and found that the last BO was considered the first knit stitch. Other than just being inattentive, that is, in my humble opinion, the only bump in the road for this pattern.

I highly recommend Girasole! You really cannot go wrong.

Pattern review criticism is greatly appreciated!

Jared Flood’s website

Also, The Fiber Beat podcast on Itunes has an episode (Ep.9) interviewing Jared Flood.

We’re here!

We have been in New Jersey for about two months now. Frankly, I think I became a yankee as soon we crossed the Delaware/New Jersey state line. It’s beautiful here! They definitely don’t call it the garden state for nothing!

We are right smack dab in the middle of everything, it’s a bit of a drive but I don’t mind. To the west we have Philly, to the east we have the beach and Atlantic City, to the south we have Maryland and D.C, and to the north we have the good ol’ NYC.

My only issues with NJ is like two things.

1. EVERYONE and their mother smokes. I don’t mind smoking so much, but it’s everywhere! I will be parked at a red light and everyone around me has got a cig in one hand and their window cracked. My mother so brilliantly stated, “Damn, I should’ve been a pulmonologist or an oncologist.”

2. The most irritating thing? You take the speed limit and add ten to that number and that is the true speed limit. Don’t go any lower or you’re gonna have your ass ridden or flipped off. And oh yeah, left turns don’t exist, and if they do then be careful. People will go around on your right, so if there are two of you poor souls trying to turn left, cross your fingers and hope that you don’t get T-boned. I don’t have a clue how that can be possibly legal.

Other than that, everything is dandy! I got a kennel job about two weeks after arriving so it’s just been work, work, work. I entered my Girasole into a knitting competition! I got first prize for it. The categories were womens articles, mens articles, children articles, and anything other than clothing.  So the shawl was in the “anything other” category, and I won first place for that! No pink ribbon though for winning knitting overall.

I was very surprised and pleased! I mean I stood there taking my ONE first time entry with it’s first place ribbon, watching these other women pull seven items with no ribbons. And these were ladies who, I felt, had way more experience than I. I will definitely say this. If you have been thinking about the Girasole, do it. The price is very reasonable and produces a beautiful FO and is so easy to knit. You can knit it either as a shawl or blanket. The latter portion of the shawl and the border will kind of drive you insane, but it is so worth it!

What’s next for me? Well I am trying to finish up Bridgewater by Jared Flood, it’s being knitted in Classic Elite Yarns Silky Alpaca Lace. I have finished the garter square and now working the beginning of the border. I am also working the basic pullover from Knits Men Want by Bruce Weinstein. It’s being knit in Vanna’s Choice. I know, I know. I could do better, but it’s my first sweater and I don’t want to make it pricey till I am really comfy with sweaters. The sweater is going to be for me so I really don’t care. My only problem is that the sweater is done in pieces so all the purling is killing my hands.

Change

My family and I recently moved from the Houston area. This was a change that was greatly welcomed after my father’s transfer was approved. We have been stuck in Texas for twelve years and it has been one arduous journey the whole time.

We actually transferred from Hawai’i to Texas, and as soon as we landed we wanted to turn right back around. Houston, Texas may be great for some but not for us. The only positive quality was the accessibility of Houston and all it has to offer, but even then Houston was lacking.

Our next destination is New Jersey, but for now we are in Tennessee with my grandmother and what a pleasure it is. I mean it is a beautiful change of scenery. For us in Houston, everything was so flat and there was little to look at and little wildlife to see. Here in Tennessee there are trees, and hills, and, my goodness, lightning bugs! It’s nice to be jogging along and see the neighborhood sparkle and see little rabbits run from me. I mean even the bugs are more attractive. Though the ticks are not.

I’m ready for New Jersey and to go to a university. I’m ready for wonderful new experiences and maybe to finally get out on my own. I say hip hip hooray for change.

Mug Cozy & Pattern

I made this cozy for a swap so very long ago and intended to write up a pattern. But, of course, life got on it’s way and I promptly forgot about the pattern because of school. But better late than never!

The actual product of the pattern has some differences, a bit different from this picture but basically the same look, just easier to crochet. The cozy actually rests a little bit lower because I found that I had a bit of a drinking problem (lol) and would dribble a tad and stain the fabric.

Hope you enjoy the pattern!

Coffee Cozy

Size:
One size, but could be easily altered!

Materials:
Sugar & Cream Cotton yarn – One ball
H crochet hook

Gauge:
4 sc and 4 rows per inch

Pattern for a mug with a 3 and 1/2 inch diameter

Pattern:
Round 1: Ch4, sl st to form ring.

Round 2: Ch3. Ch counts as st throughout pattern. Dc 11 more times in ring and sl st to top of ch3. 12 total dc.

Round 3: Ch3, dc in join. Dc twice in each dc till end. Sl st in top of ch3. 24 dc total

Round 4: Ch4, TC in join. *TC in next dc, 2TC in next dc. *Repeat till end. Join to top of ch4. 36 TC

Round 5: Ch2, sc in next 30 tc. turn work.

Round 6-16: Ch2, sc in second sc. Sc to end. Turn work.

Round 17: Cut yarn and bind off. Start a chain of 15 stitchs and join to either corner and sc across the main body. At the end of the row ch17 and turn work.

Round 18: Sc in third ch from hook. Sc across ch17, the body and the ch15.

You’re done! Just sc a border to give clean lines and weave in ends!
The pattern is super simple and I hope you enjoy my first little pattern. PLEASE let me know if you crochet this! I’d love to see your version.

Only for personal use. Please let me know if you have any problems with the pattern or have any questions.