Tossed Cookies

Archive for the month “December, 2009”

Lint Bunny – Now in Cowl Form!

I managed to start, finish, and wrap the Lint Bunny Cowl the day before Christmas Eve Day!  (My mother gets Christmas Day, so we opened gifts with him Christmas Eve)  It was close though; my father came home an hour earlier than I expected and I had to wrap the present in the guest room…

The pattern is the Overpass Cowl, which can be found on Ravelry too.  It’s sort of reversable (in that both sides look nice, but they’re not the same) and I slightly prefer the opposite version of the picture posted with the pattern.

According to my father, it’s *extremely* warm, and fits under his motorcycle helmet!  Go me! ^.^  And sorry for the freakishly close pictures…  Between teenager-dom and bad lighting, my brother’s hair looks really greasy and I’ll spare the internet that much.

Finally, this post makes 10 in December!  And I still have more planned by the time this month is up so, despite my week long absence in the middle, I’ve officially made my month’s goal!  Hrmmmmm, now for a New Year’s resolution…

– Cristy

A Crafty Christmas Tree

While my family’s not strictly religious (or, hell, religious whatsoever..), we like to get into the spirit and usually put up a tree!

It’s mostly handmade ornaments, many of which come from my brother’s and my kindergarten years of thumbprint reindeers and pompom snowmen.  But I promise not to subject you to that!

Instead, these are the ornaments we’ve had for years (19 years, in fact).  There are angels, bells, hats, snowflakes, etc.

They’re all hand crocheted or beaded, and I guess they’d be heirlooms, really.   (Unfortunately, I have absolutely no idea how to make the beaded snowflakes…  I guess I’ll have to ask my mother.)

I do know I plan on continuing the tradition when I have my own house and tree.  Although I think I’ll have knit sweaters and socks and crocheted snowflakes…  It will be a very fibery tree :)  Maybe even icord garland?  Good grief, it might have to be a mini tree…  Oh!  And some socks should be Hanukkah or Kwanzaa colors, most definitely.  I am such a compulsive planner…

Happy (politically correct) Holiday!

– Cristy

Lint Bunny!

For my father’s Christmas gift this year, I thought it would be most appropriate to incorporate my spinning wheel (since he gave it to me..) but I couldn’t exactly hand him a skein of yarn and expect him to learn to knit too.  I think I’ll be knitting him either a manly cowl or a hat, since he needs something warm for motorcycle riding and, well, it’s really, really hard to find things to knit for guys!

So this is the fiber I’ve been spinning that I’ve been (affectionately) calling Lint Bunny!

It’s a dark brown Montadale Black Lamb and some other fiber blend.  But mostly Mostadale, to the best of my knowlege…  It has some bits of straw and spurs in it, but I’ve been picking it out as I go, so it shouldn’t end up in the final knitted product.  But the fiber itself is so soft and lovely!

But it’s actually spinning up into a nice, chocolate-y brown!  I’ve got over 130yds, and even though I tried for a nice worsted weight, it’s definitely got some variety… ^.^  I just can’t help but spin fingering sometimes!

All ready to get knitting!

– Cristy

All I Want for Christmas is My Four Back Teeth?

Oh, Christmas is approaching like a harbinger of doom!

… so maybe that’s a little extremist, but I have so much to do in the next two days!  And I found out Sunday I was getting all four of my wisdom teeth removed Monday, so I haven’t been able to catch up on everything.  Arggg!  These next few posts (all within the following few hours, hopefully…) will be everything I’d been planning on posting and had pictures for, but never got around to sitting down with a computer.  I should warn you, I’m on penicillin and oxycodone, so I’m really woosy and out of it…  Should be fun!

<3 Cristy

Winter ’09 Header!

Look!  I finally got around to updating my header!  Okay, I’d actually intended to update it seasonly, but clearly, completely missed Fall…

I made a few different designs to pick from, but I really think this simple one worked best.  I wanted to give my (as-yet-unnamed) monster a scarf too, but it turned out a bit too Where’s Waldo…  See?

Or it’s a candy cane flower pot…  ick.

Much better!

– Cristy

Swirls Shawl: The Race to Christmas

Yep, it’s going to be fun seeing whether I can finish my mother’s present in time for Christmas!  So far, I’ve gotten 7 of 37 motifs finished, and since I started on… Tuesday?  I think I’m running behind!  Let’s see, that’s 5 days past, 18 days left, yep, very behind!  And, of course, I can’t forget that I have a brother, father, and boyfriend for whom to knit… Oh, and did I mention this is my exam week?  Yay!

Anyways, I come bearing images.  Seven whole hexagons!  Which, clearly, haven’t been blocked yet…  Oh, and if you’re not familiar with the pattern, it’s made of three rows hexagon motifs (you can see the diagram of the shawl version in the background, with has five rows).  I’ve tied a scrap of yarn to what will be the far end of the scarf since I think I like that edge best for blocking.  The pattern also says to knit each row lengthwise, but since I’m not sure how far my yarn will get me, I’m working back and forth across the short rows.  (I’m not using the same brand as the pattern, and don’t have access to more skeins of this dye lot.)

Maybe you can pick out the hexagon motif here?  It will be easier to see the pattern once it’s blocked, I promise!

And for those of you who love macro!

Yeah, the completely different colors in the above photos bother me…  The actual color is somewhere between the second and third photos, but with a lot less orange than either the first or second…  I will definitely have better when I get some actual sunlight!

– Cristy

Chani – Finished!

Wow, that was a surprisingly fast knit…  I actually originally intended that this be a project to work on between Christmas gifts, but look, she’s already done!  She fits wonderfully too, so I definitely need to remember to get back to the yarn store and thank the wonderful woman who told me to frog the first hat and cast on with about 30 less stitches. ^.^

I did end up essentially copying the Tanjalee hat from Ravelry.  The only difference being that I cast on 100 stitches and, after the ribbing and stockinette, my first decrease round had only 4 (evenly spaced) decreases to get me to a multiple of 12.  I also had to work the last few rows loosely on size 6 double points, since I don’t have size 8 double points yet.  And if you’re wondering why I needed a multiple of 12…  (although multiples of 6 would work just as well)

See?  I’m a happy knitter!  And job satisfaction really is the most important thing.

Thanks!

– Cristy

PS – Just because I can, here’s a gratuitous faux artsy shot.  (I realize my recent posts have been very image heavy and I truly apologize to anyonewith dial-up.  I also recommend Road Runner…)

Knitting my Handspun!

Remember my first real handspun, the fushia-and-blue Chani?  I plyed her with some black acrylic, and got a lovely boucle.

Mmmmm, curly…

Well, I’ve finally gotten around to knitting with her!  I’m mostly making the pattern up as I go along, but it’s loosely based on the Tanjalee Hat (link’s from Ravelry), which I think is simple enough to show off the colors without getting too jumbled.

I’m even useing circular needles!  Honestly, I don’t really care for them, but it didn’t sound very appealing trying to keep all of those stitches on double points.  Of course, I’m not sure what I’ll do when I get towards the end and realize I don’t have size 8 US double points for closing it up. ^.^  I do love that I can try on my hat as I go, and then take ridiculous pictures in the mirror…  I look rather dubious, I think.  (You might also notice my hair has grown out quite a bit since last summer.  I think I might try bangs, but long ones.)

Do you see how the stockinette stitches seem very slanted?  I’m not sure what’s causing it, although I suspect it may be the twist in the yarn.  It freaked me out at first, but I think it’s growing on me.  It makes the fabric stretchier too, it seems.  See?  Happy, accomplished face!

Hopefully I’ll be done in another week or so, and I’ll have a finished hat to show off!

– Cristy

Ribbed Gloves

Oh, how I love anniversaries and birthdays… Those magical times of the year are the perfect excuse to try out something new!  (I very much would like to digress and talk about the Sweater Curse and appropriate gifts at appropriate times, but that’s another post for another day.)  For our one year anniversary, I finally gave in and made the boyfriend a pair of hobo gloves.  He’d been begging for a pair for months and I really, really wanted to try individual fingers, especially since the Fetching gloves had gone so swimmingly!  (You’l have to excuse the pictures this time, the boy is no friend of cameras…)

Really, you’d think I beat him.

I think the Men’s Fingerless Gloves (on Ravelry) are my favorite “manly” knitted gloves I’ve found so far, and the pattern is definitely versatile enough to be adapted to a variety of hand shapes, yarn types, needle sizes, etc.  (Also, free pattern!)  I used Cascade 220 Heathers in Dk Green (2445) with size 4 US needles.  Total cost wasn’t bad either, about $11, including the lovely stainless steel double pointed needles.

See?  He has smile muscles! >.>

(If you don’t plan on making this pattern, ignore the next two paragraphs.  They won’t make much sense anyways!  They’re mostly just notes for me to come back to…)

I started following the pattern as written, but when I got the the palm, it was huge!  (An issue also mentioned in the comments on Ravelry.)  So I frogged it, and started with 48 stitches, rather than 52.  The boyfriend still thought the palm was a little loose, so my next pair will probably begin with 40 or 44 stitches and not increase at the wrist.  The thumb gusset seemed fine, and fairly easy to figure out following the pattern.  However, when it asks for 3 rows of stockinette for the length of the palm, I ended up needing 10, probablybecause I was using a smaller needle than in the pattern.  Oh, also, I used 15 rows of ribbing for the wrist, more than suggested by the pattern…

Of course, because I changed the cast on stitches, that affected the number of stitches I had for the four fingers.  Aside from the cast on stitches, I gave the fore and middle fingers 7 stitches from the front and back (total: 14) and the ring and pinkie fingers 6 stitches from the front and back (total: 12).  Like in the palm, I also increased the number of rows for finger length.  The rows for thumb, fore, middle, ring, and pinkie were, respectively, 6, 10, 13, 11, and 9.

I particularly liked the ribbing at the wrists and finger ends.  It kept the edges from rolling and made the widths more adjustable and elastic.  And, since they’re very warm, the boy should get lots of use out of them!  (He lives in the mountains… brrr…)

You’ll probably be seeing a similar pair soon, since my brother has ask for gloves as well.  He initially said yellow, to match a yellow hat he wears every winter, but bright yellow gloves sound terrifying.  He says he’d be okay with black or charcoal grey, but a nice maroon or navy would look so nice with his complexion!  Arggg….  It’s my favorite kind of conundrum.

Happy Sunday!

– Cristy

‘Tis the Season!

Wow…. Did I really just miss almost all of November?  Ouch…  Well, I hope everyone had a pleasant Thanksgiving and is excited (or, at least, prepared) to start gearing up for Christmas (or Hanukah or Kwanzaa or the Month of Gifts, like at my house).  Also, in the spirit of this being the first of the month, I’m setting a goal or 15-20 posts in December.  And, with Christmas gifts to make, it should definitely be a fairly reachable goal!

But first, let’s catch up on my past month, in twenty words or less:  1 year anniversary with the boyfriend, new fall allergies, first new winter wardrobe in over 3 years, 3 exams, and missing you guys.  (And if you don’t count the numbers, it’s exactly 20!)

Oh, and I got the sweetest compliment the other day (from  guy, no less)!  He saw my Fetching Gloves and said I should really make more and sell them!  Well, I didn’t tell him the pattern’s not mine, but maybe I’ll get my own pattern and fill out the Etsy a little more. ^.^  I really enjoy making gloves, and since I realized I love working with Cascade 220 (more on that later), this could be a really fun project.

Until then, here’s my Christmas gift roundup.  Let’s just hope I can finish everything in time…

For my lovely mother – She’s asked for a warm scarf in “her style”, which is really very different from mine.   For example, she can look through a catalogue from Anthropologie for hours, but I prefer Express or PoppyPia (just discovered them last weekend).  So I emailed my brother with a few pictures from Ravelry and the Anthropologie site and made him pick one!  What?!  He has surprisingly good fashion sense!  We chose the Swirls Shawl from Jojoland Yarn, except I’m using a local brand of yarn, Three Waters Farm.  If you’re in the Chapel Hill area, their products are also sold at Yarns, Etc and the Carrboro Farmers’ Market.  (Wow, this is turning link heavy…)  Mine is a gorgeous 100% Merino dyed Red Maple.  If my most unrealistic dreams were to come true and I could own a sheep, it would be a merino, preferably a horned merino, because I love them so…  Anyways, I’m hoping I’ll have enough for a scarf.  I love how subtly this yarn is variegated!

For my brother – Not sure yet… He’s requested a pair of black “hobo” gloves but black is such a boring color.  Maybe a fuzzy charcoal grey?

For my father – Well, since he bought me a spinning wheel, I’m definitely more than a little obligated to use it for this gift.  Except, I can’t just hand him a shein of handspun and expect him to learn to knit…  But I’ve also noticed that he has very few fiber-y items.  I think that, since he moved to North Carolina from Massachusetts, he doesn’t consider our winters to be cold enough to bother with scarves, sweaters, and warm hats.  However, he does have a few fiber items he either treasures or wears frequently.  Now, I don’t want to even attempt to beat the blankets his great grandmother crocheted for him when he was seven…  But he also has a small collection of machine knitted cowls, (useful for late winter night motorcyles riding!), so I think I’ll add to that collection.  Patterns I’m considering on Ravelry: Cowl’d and Frosty Morning and Man (or Anyone) Cowl.

As for the boyfriend, less immediate family members, and a few friends, I’m still completely undecided. (Gah!)  The clock is ticking…

Happy December!

– Cristy

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