Sunday, December 30, 2007

A new dog, a finished project

While I realize that I intended to keep this a knitting blog and to blog about my knitting, I also know that I've mentioned my pets here. Namely Sam my old crabby cat that I lost in February and my old and dear Stella who left us broken hearted the first part of November. The past two months without my Stella have felt like two years. The sawed off hound Jenny is lonely and the house just isn't the same without a retriever around. In perusing the newspaper website (did you know that the online newspaper includes many photos in the classified section?) I found a puppy. The ad had a picture of the mommy dog and her little face looked so much like Stella's I was hooked. And so, day before yesterday we acquired a new puppy the kids named Sunny. She's a sweet little thing and quite the chewer. I've not had a puppy for a while so we've not had to worry about chewing. Jenny is happy, tho she needs to remember that a basset hound is like a bulldozer and she has to play nicely with the puppy or the puppy will be afraid to play with her. (Jenny's not mean, it's just that she's stocky and tackles the other dogs because she can't keep up with them).

And a finished project which would be an Estonian Sampler lace scarf by Evelyn Clark knit out of Rowan Lambswool. Knitted for me because I thought that "a little color" would be nice in my wardrobe (such that my wardrobe is). Yes, the scarf is a greeny brown and yes, I realize that that's often not someone's idea of "a splash of color", but trust me except for the occasional red t-shirt my wardrobe is pretty bland.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Webkinz Sweater Pattern

Girl child loves her Webkinz and my younger two have mentioned wanting clothes for their toys (and seem to think that I'm magic and can knit just about anything....boy have I got them fooled!) But looking at the toy sweater I thought I can do that. And I did.

Webkinz Sweater (I knit this specifically for the dalmation dog shown, but am sure that it'll fit a variety of the animals)

Yarn: I used some worsted weight stuff I had sitting around that my neighbor gave me.

Needles: Size 7

Cast on 32 stitches and join to knit in the round.

1st row (and pretty much all rows) k1, p2, k2 to end stitch k1

Knit for an inch or so (shorter if you don't want to roll the neckband like a turtleneck).

In rib pattern rib 16 stitches (put these 16 on spare needle or holder) bind off 4 rib 11 (12 stitches), next row bind off 4 rib to end (work back and forth on these 8 stitches for 4 rows)

(for the above photo I slipped the last stitch on these rows)

On row 5 rib across the 8 stitches and cast on 8 stitches (use your favorite, for this sweater I used on a knitted cast on, for another one I have on needles I used a backward loop), pm, rib across the 16 stitches on holder, pm, cast on 8.

Rib in established rib pattern for about 2 inches (depending upon how long you'd like for it to be, keeping in mind the length of the stuffed animal's body). Then either cast off all of the stitches loosely, or if you'd like the top of the back to be a tad longer with the curved edge, cast off the 24 "bottom" stitches, knit 2 rows in rib from the 16 "back" stitches, then on right side row K1, ssk, rib to last 3 stitches k2tog, k1, rib the next row, k1, ssk, rib to last 3 stitches, k2 tog k1....repeat last two rows once or twice and bind off loosely.

Please drop me a line if you use this pattern and let me know how it works for you and if you modify it. This is the first pattern I've put out here in cyber world and I'd love to know if you love/hate it. Thanks!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Yarn yarn and more yarn

For a few of years I've knitted hats for the hospital where my two youngest children were born. As word has gotten out that I've been doing this everyone "gifts" me with yarn (mind you I'm not complaining here, it really does help). The last year and a half or so I've been pretty spotty with my donations since girl child was in half day kindergarten last year and the hospital is a good half hour away, and once I'm in town I don't like to rush. If I'm going to burn the gas to go into town I like to say run a few errands, perhaps have lunch with the hubby etc etc. But I digress, hats. Hospital. Yarn. A couple of months ago my dear dear neighbor gifted me with a trash bag full of odd yarn she had and wasn't going to use. There's enough full matching skeins to knit girl child a sweater, or perhaps a shrug for me. There's also a huge matted mess of yarn and several ends of skeins. I knit a scarf for the giving tree at the elementary school and am sorting and untangling the mess and trying to figure out what to do with this yarn. Some of it has been re-gifted to the elementary school, and I'm sure as I detangle I'll gift more to the school. Some of it is going to be knit over the next year into scarves and warm hats for the soup kitchen (which, handily is just down the street from the hospital where I drop off the baby hats). What I am finding is that I really need not just more time for my personal knitting, but more time for my charity knitting (I hate calling it charity knitting, perhaps I should just call it "my knitting of stuff for people I don't know" and leave it at that.) I'd post a picture of the big ol' bag o-yarn, but eh! who's interested in seeing a big tangled mess of yarn. I'll post photo's of the stuff that I knit with it.

Monday, December 03, 2007


I've read a little bit about the brioche stitch, but until yesterday I'd not tried it. I looked at a really cool hat that a friend had knit using the brioche stitch, but what put me off was knitting up a hat and then having to put a seam in it (I can seam, but I really prefer to not to if I don't have to). I just finished up the last gift that I'm knitting this year for Christmas (as a rule I don't knit Christmas gifts unless, of course, I can have them finished by December 1. I don't like the pressure of trying to get something finished a the last minute) so I figured I'd play with knitting a brioche stitch hat. It just happens that my youngest son is planning on going to our local Y tween night and if they get enough kids to show up the guy that plans these things said that they could shave his head. I thought it would be fun for the boy to bring a hat to give to Dustin to keep his bald head warm (since I think the kids will be shaving his head even if they don't quite make the "required" number of kids):

It's a pretty quick knit and I'm pretty sure that I can (painlessly) finish it before the boy gets there Saturday evening. I think once this is done I'll try to graduate up to two colors. Girl child would like a scarf, in two colors and this is just "poofy" enough a stitch to please her.