a tiny treasure

I was sitting at my desk yesterday afternoon and I happened to glance over to my yarn shelf, where a skein of madelintosh which I had won in a giveaway at photo.knit.dog caught my eye. I’m not sure if I can reconstruct exactly the events that followed, but a few hours later I somehow ended up with this.

And you know what? I don’t feel guilty about it at all! I love using special single skeins to make cherished little baby items. The added bonus is that this yarn is a superwash, which means that busy young parents will be able to stick it directly into the washing machine and not worry about a million specific care instructions.

Who am I making it for? I have no idea! But I figured it wouldn’t be bad to have an adorable pullover in a newborn size lying around for cases of gifting emergency. I’m that age now when friends are popping up pregnant all over the place! ;)

According to the pattern notes I should have just enough yarn. If I run out I’ll simply shorten the sleeves (I’ve used that trick before).

Also, very cool piece of trivia: mine is the 100th project for this pattern on Ravelry! :) Happy weekend! I hope you end up with a joyous unexpected knit too! :)

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sleeve!

I just wanted to show you my perfectly-fitting sleeve! I had a little bit of trouble with it at first: I tried knitting the sleeve for my size of the pullover, but it was way too broad. So I went down a size and it was definitely the right thing to do. At the moment I’m marvelling at the magic of sleeve shaping – it’s hard to believe that just adding a few stitches every ten or so rounds makes the sleeve follow the shape of one’s arm so well!

I love the fit of it, it’s snug but not too tight. It’s shown here with a thin shirt underneath, but it doesn’t feel floppy when it’s worn against bare skin either. Exactly what you want from a winter pullover!

I’m working on another, more urgent, project at the moment, but I sneak in a bit of this every once in a while. I’m not in a rush to finish because I’m really enjoying the knitting. It feels like one of those books that you can’t put down because you want to know what happens in the end, yet you are sad that it will ever end…

Oh, and one more thing – it makes me want to paint my nails yellow!

You’ve got to love a garment with that kind of power! ;)

another man scarf

Hello there, I just wanted to direct you to another lovely Man Scarf that was brought to my attention recently! I’m so happy people are finding my notes helpful in bringing smiles to the faces of men in their lives :)

And I like the colour of this one – it reminds of me of the “snow” you get on TV after the programme is finished (is it called “snow” in English too?). Thank you Where the nodding violets grow for sharing!

kirkstone

Today, I’m very happy to present to you a brand new pattern that I recently had the opportunity to test-knit! It was my first test-knit ever, and I was very nervous about knitting fast enough and providing the right kind of feedback to the designer. I also felt kind of important about the whole thing: I, I would be helping making sure other knitters had no problems or confusions when knitting the pattern… Hehe, talk about ego! :)

But enough about me. Meet Kirkstone, by the young designer Lily Kate France.

It’s a quick little hat in DK weight with a very cool cable pattern that makes me think of geometry. It’s as if the cables are bumping into each other and bouncing away, forming triangles due to the laws of physics.

While knitting, you only ever have to hold one stitch on a cable needle, which means that this is the ideal project to get the hang of needle-free cabling. As for the shape of the hat, I dare say Lily has hit perfection: the back of the hat lies wonderfully flat, without the pointiness that sometimes results from decreasing, and there is a nice amount of slouch, yet with a brim that does not slip off the head easily.

The pattern is easy to follow and constantly interesting. And with such a cute result! If you’re intrigued, hop on over to Ravelry, where it is now available. :)

 

 

 

a proper photoshoot

Once upon a time, there was a hat. The hat was knitted in four days during one chilly month of August. In those four days it managed to have quite an adventure: fly on a plane, see two different countries, take a bath. However, it never managed to get a proper photoshoot. Not in those four days, and not in the four months after it. All it got at first was this. And I can tell you, the hat was not happy with that. It cried and cried, and hid in the closet.

And then, after many many months, one lovely lady came along. The lady asked angrily: “What has been happening here? Why is this beautiful hat made to hide in the closet? I will not stand for this!”

“Hat,” she said, “would you like to come with me? I’ll give you a good, loving home. I’ll take care of you well.”

That hat didn’t hesitate a single moment. It had heard from other hats already that this lady was the nicest owner in the world, and it was thrilled that she had chosen it to take home with her! It jumped on to her head and settled there happily…

The lady was happy too. She had found a new friend. From that day onwards she took care of the hat, wore it, and loved it.

And guess what? She even gave it a proper photoshoot.

The End. :)

a walk

We haven’t gone for a walk together in a while, have we? :) Well, as I mentioned yesterday, I went on a little trip in the first week of the year, to a city which surprized me with its loveliness and coziness. So I’m taking you along for what was my first walk in Brussels, Belgium! :) The weather is quite wet and grey, so we won’t stay out for too long, but I hope you like it anyway…

Brussels is the capital of the EU, and it seems that even the sidewalks are boasting about it…

There are cute castle-like houses all over the place.

Horses are allowed in parks.

The king lives next to a big parking lot.

Modern architecture surprizes you in the most unexpected of places.

There is a proper cupcake shop (no city is complete without one!).

And biking is encouraged.

Though, honestly, what surprized me most was how easy and quick it was to get everywhere on foot.

I’ll definitely be back to Brussels, and hopefully the sun will shine a bit more the next time, so I’ll take you for another walk… I hope you liked this one! What city has surprized you lately?

a pen, a plane, and a near-tragedy

(Ok, the story might be a bit less dramatic than the title suggests if you’re not a knitter. If you are, you’ll understand me.)

This might look to you like just an ordinary a work-in-progress. It’s not. There’s a story behind it.

I was coming back from a short trip yesterday, on a plane. As usual, I took some convenient, not-too-complicated knitting with me. (When I fly, I take care to choose needles that are least likely to be confiscated by security, such as wooden ones or very light circulars. I haven’t had a problem so far. Though, to be fair, I’ve only flown within Europe with my knitting, they might be stricter on longer flights.) I was quite enjoying my knitting and looking forward to two hours of flight-time during which I could make a good deal of progress. I was thinking about how I’d tell the recipient that her item had been knit at an altitude of 7,000 meters and how she would like that little fact. And then I took my Uni-ball pen out to mark that I had finished another pattern repeat. This kind.

- click image for source -

A second later, I had ink all over my seat (luckily the seat next to me was empty), all over the plane wall, all over my brand new jeans, and all over my project.

What ensued was panic, anger, frustration, running to the toilet (several times) to try to wash some of it off (of course, it had to be in the middle of the food being served), and wanting to bang my head against something really hard. An older gentleman who sat across the isle from me, and who had been looking at my knitting interestedly earlier, offered compassion with his glances now. When I finally regained some semblance of calm, I remembered that I had had the same experience with the same type of pen a few months earlier, when I tried to use it on a plane to make notes on my course reading. So here’s a lesson I will never again forget: for some reason, Uniball pens leak (in an exploding fashion, if I may add) on planes.

All that said, there is a happy ending. I managed to refrain myself from throwing the whole project in the trash (as I felt inclined to do in my frustration), and dunked it into warm water with detergent instead (with the needles and everything). Honestly, I didn’t take before photos because I was convinced that they would be exactly the same as the after photos. And then, magically, after just a few minutes, the ink blotches had disappeared! The project is now drying, and I’m still kind of incredulous that what seemed like such a huge problem was resolved so easily, but unless my eyes deceive me… my lesson will have been a little less painful than I imagined at first.

And I will definitely have a story to tell when I hand over this item.