Thursday, October 27, 2011

Handwarmers: One of My Favorite Things to Knit

I have created a pattern for fingerless handwarmers to match the beehive hat. They are so cute out of the matching yarn and used up most of the second skein I had to buy to finish the hat. This will make a really good gift for someone, or I may have to keep it for my own, have not decided yet.

I wore them today and received lots of comments on them. They are so warm and handy to have along. I think these may be mine.

One another note: I have knit another set for a gift and the hat became a more versatile item - a cowl, and the handwarmers to match. I think the recipient will really appreciate them and they are in her favorite color with a little glitter mixed in.

I hope everyone has a favorite pursuit~!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

First Snow Day! What's On Your Needles?

The first snow day is the most exciting, at least it is for me. It reminds me that I live in snow country and had better be assessing what needs to be done before it gets colder. Today's snow is cold and very wet. The ground is too warm still for it to stick for very long, so I had to get these pictures early.

On my needles is a pair of handwarmers, another cowl, and the first pair of felted clogs - destined for a family Christmas gift. That should keep me busy for the day. Needless to say, I am doing other things besides knitting, however the knitting is the most fun.

I hope everyone does something fun on their first snow day~!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Once Upon A Time - Yarn and a New Show

So, the writers of LOST are back and they have concocted a new, far-out view of the world. Once Upon A Time debuted on ABC last night. I thought it was very fun and has potential to be a good show. Have to admit, it is not LOST, but it is different than any other network shows out this season. That alone is a good reason for me to give it a chance.

And I found a new yarn, Red Heart Boutique - Treasures - which I have knit into a beehive looking hat. Love the yarn and the pattern, have to do/get more. The hat pattern was designed for Noro Kureyon, which I am not a huge fan of, and it took over a skein of the Treasures yarn. I have enough leftover for a pair of fingerless handwarmers. I am going to try to knit them with a matching cuff.

The hat is super warm and cute. I have enough yarn to knit another one with handwarmers as a gift. Not sure who will be the lucky recipient yet, but I will find someone~!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

My Foray into Designing

I have been reviewing stitch dictionaries, looking for a group of techniques that will translate well into a cowl.

Cowls are my favorite way to stay warm without scarf tails. I have knit a bunch of very simple ones for gifts, charity drives and my own use. Currently I keep two in the car in different weights and two at the door with my jackets. Most of the use very little yarn and can be knit in weights from bulky, like a  Malabrigo Rasta one, to laceweight, like Pretty Thing by the Yarn Harlot.

My current pattern, in test mode, is a ribbed eyelet one that I just finished and will be making it available on Ravelry once the test knitting is complete.

Friday, October 14, 2011

UFO Update: The Knit One Below Reversible Vest

Remember this project? It was started last spring and has now sat in the UFO pile while I worked on a pile of other things. Now it is time to finish it.

I picked it up this weekend and reviewed where I am and where I am going on the pattern. It looks like I am really close to splitting it out to finish the back and fronts. That should not take too long. I will be working on this while I take breaks to knit felted clogs for Christmas gifts.

I hope everyone is whittling away at their UFO pile~!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

High Country Autumn:
Green, Gold, Brown, Down.

Early autumn

Aspen gold

Came and fell.

Old-timers say

Early winter coming

We scurry to prepare

Fuel, food, insulate

before October’s exit.

Scrub oak lingers

Rust, gold and orange

reminder of 70's shag carpet

Warm days, cold nights


Bundled up for morning frost

Stripped down for BBQ warm afternoons

Be prepared and flexible for change,

Our autumn motto.

Copyright: DonnaW 2011

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Cowl and Handwarmer Set

I have been working on a cowl and handwarmer set for my dad. It is that time of year when he really starts to notice that it is not as warm as he would like it. I have knit this set out of a color that my mother can easily find in the house if they get mislaid.

I used the Cowl'd and Frosty cowl pattern by Kelly Herdich. It is written for chunky weight yarn and I retrofit it for worsted weight. I cast on 83 stitches on a size 8US on 16-inch circular. I knit the pattern as called for, two reps of rows 1-15 and one more rep of rows 1-4,  and ended up with a finished size of 20 by 6 inches. It fits beautifully and works well for men or women. I can make a case for doing three reps of rows 1-15 for a longer finished width. May do that on one for me soon. Also, if you want to do a looser drape on the worsted, try a size 9US needle and see what you get.

To finish up the set, I knit a pair of handwarmers using the Charmed Knits mitten pattern as a guide. For dad, I knit the small size and bound off the thumb gusset stitches instead of adding more rows to come up the thumb. I think they look great and give you lots of flexibility while keeping your hands warm.

All in all, a great knit and a fast gift item. Everyone can use them~!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Indian Summer

Now that we have had our first reminder that we live in and very near Snow Country, the Indian Summer weather is in place for this week. The mornings will be cold and the days pleasant. This is my favorite time of year. This is the view my dumpster has, can't beat this.

And, while the weather is this good, I am knitting away on the items that will be needed by the end of the month, warm things to go around the neck and hands.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

UFO Update: The Twined Cowl

The twined cowl that I started last year at this time as a sample to knit along with the class has been frogged and the yarn repurposed for another upcoming class.

I was not really expecting to wear this particular item so decided that it was better to use the yarn somewhere else.

These are some of the decisions that have to be made when you are going through your UFOs. My theory is if you are not actively working on it, then maybe your interest in the final product has waned.

I hope everyone is having a glorious start to their Fall~!

Saturday, October 8, 2011

A Great Day for Knitwear

The first official snowfall of the season happened this morning. It was just a wet mix of rain and snowflakes here in town, however the Peak and the drive to Woodland Park was full of white, winterland pictures. It was beautiful even if the fog level was almost too thick to get any pictures.

I got to wear my favorite cowl all morning, indoors and out, and it worked great. Now I am at home in sweats, working on a test knit and watching Halloween related movies. It's a great way to spend a Saturday. I hope everyone is warm, dry and thoroughly entertained~!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

October Brings the Re-Organization of Knitting Projects

It is that time of year. The leaves are changing, the air is cooling and every talking head is remarking on the Christmans countdown. Today's count, just so you know, is 82 days.

For me, that creates a fast reorganization of the projects on my needles because I knit a lot of gifts, and this year is no different. So, from now until about December 20th, most everything will  be unbloggable until they are received.

Since that means a lot of use of the word "secret" and no pictures to share, I have decided this year to be working on at least one "public" project that I share as I go through the next two months. It seems only fair.

Currently, these "public" projects will include a couple UFOs that I am determined to complete so I can use them this fall. The first in this category is the KnitOneBelow Reversible Vest that I started for myself this spring. It is almost to the armhole. I am going to use it to demonstrate the technique to my senior class this month because they want to start the scarf pattern.

Another UFO that I plan to complete is the Twined Cowl. I think I am at the halfway point and given another weekend afternoon of just knitting I bet I can finish it to wear on the first, really cold day that arrives toward the end of the month.

What I try to have at all times is one project to work on in the car and one to work on at home. This keeps it fresh and I rarely get bored with the project I am working on. I hope everyone is having a great start into Fall~!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Beautiful Patches


It was a beautiful day to try leaf-peeping. The color is changing quickly and the results are glorious. Here are just a couple pics to celebrate Fall's arrival.

I spent the afternoon teaching some enthusiastic folks how to make intentional holes in their knitting. The finished shawl will be a welcome addition to their wardrobes in the very near future.