Your greatness is not what you have, it's what you give.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Welcome Back Snowbird!

Liz is back! She was missed by all and it feels good to have all my Chicks back in the flock. While she was away a friend gave her an unfinished baby sweater with the promise she could keep it if she finished it. Well, like me, Liz hates to pick up stitches so Kathleen, bless her! offered to finish it for our donations.
 It did not come with instructions but it should be pretty straight forward...just pick up and knit a button band and neck band. I love the lacy pattern down the front.
 While she was away Liz knitted a few things for our inventory. This cute little sac set is from Lion Brand Thick and Quick. I believe it's a wool and acrylic blend yarn. It's very soft to the touch.
 She also made a perfect little car seat blanket in what looks like a complicated basket weave pattern.
 To add to her list are two of the sweetest baby hats! I love the leafy top!
Barbara had just enough yarn to finish off the pink hat from last week. It was touch and go there for the last few rows but she managed to eek out the very end of the hat.
 The buttons Kathleen found for her little jacket are the perfect compliment to the striped jacket.
 And Cinzia actually finished this little hat before we adjourned the afternoon group.
 Tonight Carole showed us her next project, this lacy little number.
This sweater is knitted from the bottom up in one piece. We were discussing the fact that her gauge by row was spot on but stitch gauge was off. Don't get me started on that again! Carole decided to just make the sweater longer to make up for the wider width. That works for me!
Do you remember the pink pullover Carole finished last week? I liked it so much I decided to start one in a more masculine color. It's really a heathered tan not the grey as it shows up here.
I made a little more progress on the Ten Stitch Blanket too.
Maureen is working furiously on her baby blanket and...
Dorah actually finished the sleeves on her little cardigan after I took this photo.
Beth's little cardigan is looking cuter and cuter each week. Can't wait to see it finished with it's buttons.
I'm still working on two other blankets as well. I guess it's obvious I had a case of startitis. But really some patterns are just not for knitting and talking so I had to find some garter stitch patterns so I could be sociable when the Chicks are here. Really! 

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

We have some FO's

I blocked two things today. I used Periwinkle Sheep Yarn in the colorway Cayenne for this scarf. The lace was a straight scarf originally but I wanted to make it into a triangular scarf so I could wear it like a cowl. 
 I was going to write the pattern down but my mind just got too confused. It was much easier knitting it than trying to put it on paper.
 I also blocked the toddler hoodie I finished last week. Now I just need a cute button for the neckline.
 I started a baby blanket last week using a purchased pattern from Staci Perry has designed a lovely pattern and I'm enjoying each stitch of it.
 I needed a project that I could work on while talking and the above blanket wasn't it, so I started a Ten Stitch Blanket. I'm using all the leftover scraps of Cascade 220 worsted weight and just knitting around and around and around until I think it's big enough or I get bored, whichever comes first.
 Kathleen finished the buttons on her Cabin Fever jacket and...
 finished a Baby Sophisticate jacket just for good measure! So cute!
Barbara picked a good pattern for stash busting. Her baby hat uses DK weight Cascade 220.
 Carole's pullover is finished and looking sweet. She used Plymouth Encore so it's machine washable.
 Maureen is back!!! She has a baby shower coming up and has to hurry up and knit a gift. This will be a cute blanket when completed.
 Dorah is almost finished with the body of her baby cardigan. I see sleeves in the near future.
 And Beth is using a self patterning sock yarn for her little cardigan. It's going to be so sweet!
I think I'll hunt through my stash for some sock yarn and make one too. Can you say "Startitis"?

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Cute little baby clothes!

Last week I showed you the beginnings of Barbara's baby mittens. Well here they are! They are so cute! And they're about a minute big!
 Barb's new project is this cute baby hat using a Cascade 220 DK weight yarn.
 Kathleen brought in another Cabin Fever Cardigan with a matching hat. I think by now she has made so many of these little jackets that she has the pattern memorized!
 She has already started another one in a beautiful coral color.
And has even found some cute buttons in the "communal button box" for it.
 We have a new Chick in the flock! That's Cinzia on the right knitting the same hat as Barbara is knitting. We are so happy she has decided to join our afternoon group. Welcome Cinzia!
Beth finished her Brickless shawl and we'll be putting it in storage until we finish our baby project. This scarf or shawl is an interesting pattern. There are three different wedges of stitching giving it a lacy and ridged appearance.
 Carol modeled the different ways it can be worn.
 This way was our favorite, all cuddled up around the neck on a cold winter's day.
Beth finished another Martina Boehm scarf/shawl called Miss Winkle. She used Periwinkle Sheep yarn for it. Isn't that a lovely springy green?!
And look at that curly cue edging! So clever and unique.
It's another one of those scarves that cuddle up around the neck.
Now she is moving on to a baby cardigan using Opal sock yarn.  The pattern is called Wynkyn and it's one of those great top down sweaters so there is no sewing required! My favorite kind of knitting!
And remember I told you last week that Carole would probably have the body of her sweater finished? Tonight she knitted 2" of the sleeve already.
The hoodie I worked on last week is done now too. It needs a thorough blocking though. The bottom hem keeps curling up and driving me crazy!
That's all we have to show you this week. I'd say it was quite a lot though. I am so lucky to have such dedicated ladies who are willing to devote so much time to helping out. God bless you Chicks!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Well, there's eight hours of my life I'll never get back!

Have I ever told you how much I hate knitting gauge swatches? I know they are essential, even mandatory if you want a garment to fit you properly but I never get it right the first time. I decided to knit this for myself even though I said I don't like knitting sweaters for me. But I saw it on a friend and fell in love with it. I even broke down and bought the pattern! I'm frugal when it comes to purchasing patterns that I might never knit. I would rather put the free ones in my Ravelry library and never knit them than actually pay cold hard cash and have it sit in my binder and mock me every time I walk past it. But this cardi was so precious and I saw this beautiful red alpaca, silk, merino blend yarn the perfect weight, according to the pattern. Who could resist? I ignored the tiny voice inside which screamed at me, "The last time you knit yourself a sweater you wound up giving it away!" Granted, I gave it to my daughter because it looked beautiful on her. On me, not so much! I also ignored the fact that the neckline of the sweater I gave to her was exactly the same as the pattern I just bought. Another red flag. So this past weekend I decided it was time to bite the bullet and make that swatch so I could have a pretty red cardi waiting for me next fall. I took out my size 7 needles and cast on a whole bunch of stitches, more than what I needed for a swatch. And then I spent 4 hours on Saturday and 4 more on Sunday knitting stockinette swatches. When the size 7 needles did not produce the correct amount of stitches in 4 inches I tried all others hoping that eventually I would get gauge. Not even close. How on earth can I knit with size 6's to 10's and not get gauge?!!! I was always too far over the 4" requirement! I've said it before and I'll say it again. I need to listen to my knitting goddesses when they whisper to me. This time they screamed at me, "FORGET THAT STUPID SWEATER!!!" 
Okay, I'm over my rant now. Thank you for listening!
Anywaaaaayyyy.... We chicks are into the baby knitting! It's so much fun to make baby clothes! Kathleen finished one already, no surprise here. This sweet leafy cardi is a washable synthetic mohair. Moms will appreciate that.
 Barbara is stashbusting with baby mittens.
 Her first pair will be this soft lavender color.
 I love this little hoodie for which I did not get gauge (who is surprised here? not me!) but it's ok because I don't really know who will be wearing it so I don't have to make it an exact size. That's the great thing about charity's going to fit SOMEBODY.
 I chose this colorful yarn which is a merino and mohair blend.
 Dorah started this baby cardigan last week and already it has grown. By the time we went home last night she was all ready to put the sleeve stitches on holders.
 And Carole's baby pullover is down to the bottom ribbing. Sleeves next week probably.
We haven't chosen a recipient yet for these baby clothes but we still have time. For now we will just enjoy the journey and worry about the destination later.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

An Even 100!

This Mistake Stitch Scarf is Kathleen's creation using Noro Kureyon Yarn. The pattern is very simple ribbing offset by one stitch to make the warm, almost thermal stitch fabric. You must cast on a multiple of 4 stitches plus 1. Then every row is knitted the same, K2, P2, ending the row with a K1. I like to slip the first stitch purlwise with the yarn in front to give a neat, smooth edge. This is a favorite pattern of ours when we need a quick and easy scarf. It makes a nice cozy fabric too.
 Last week's vest is finished already. It turned out great Kathleen! It has lots of positive ease too so it will fit a variety of sizes due to the stretchiness of the fabric.
 And look who is back from her winter retreat! Barbara came back just in time to help us label the items going out soon.
 And here they are. All 100 pieces!
 We knitted 14 scarves, 19 hats, 16 pairs of mittens and fingerless mitts, 3 vests...
 7 pairs of slippers, 5 shawls/scarves, 7 headband/earwarmers, 1 cardigan, and 28 cowls! Thank you Chicks for all the wonderful knitting!
Tonight we learned from Beth how her Brickless Shawl is constructed. The pattern alternates lace sections with ribbed and garter stitch sections to make a very nice pattern.
Now it's time for me to pack everything into bags to deliver. I'll keep you posted as to our delivery date. Have a great week and keep those needles clicking!