February 26, 2009

February Baby Set

Okay, is that super-duper sweet or what? :D

 I'm so proud of myself for finishing the set: Elizabeth Zimmermann's February Baby Sweater, with an inspired-hat (pattern from Ravelry), plus a little crocheted flower for a little extra sugary goodness, just in time for a February baby!

Now that I'm pretty comfortable with the gull pattern from the sweater and the gradual decreasing needed with the hat, I'm probably going to make a few more sets to give away. There have been so many babies arriving in my circle of friends that I feel like a baby sweater factory, but hey, the more practice the better :)

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Pattern from Elizabeth Zimmermann's Knitter's Almanac

February 18, 2009

February Baby Sweater, Take Two

Ah, I finally figured out EZ's pattern and finished my second February Baby Sweater! The second time was definitely easier than the first. I guess I was too excited and didn't read the pattern correctly the first time and made the increases around the collar too soon. The second time around, everything started to look right. Yay! I love this pattern so much!

The only thing I did differently from EZ's instructions - I put the two sleeves on waste yarn and finished the body first, then I picked up the sleeves and continued. I added seven stitches under the arms and they felt just right to me, not too bulky like a few people mentioned on Ravelry. With more friends having babies this year, I think I'll be making a few more of these EZ sweaters!

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Pattern from Elizabeth Zimmermann's Knitter's Almanac

February 9, 2009

Rowan New Shapes

I am SO excited to be finally getting the Rowan New Shapes pattern book - I love the Anise jacket (shown here on the cover) and tried to make a Blythe-sized version (abandoned halfway through, boo!) over a year ago. I didn't think I'd be knitting anything adult-sized so I never bought the book - until I saw Jenny/Wikstenmade's beautiful cardigan on Flickr and Ravelry. That pushed me over the edge and I had to go searching for New Shapes - found it on Kaleidoscope last week and now it's on its way to my hot little hands.  I got my copy through Kaleidoscope Yarns!

I'm a bit nervous about trying the patterns, though. First of all, Rowan yarn is not exactly cheap. About eight balls of yarn are required to make a garment, and I hesitate spending $120 on yarn that I may destroy with my novice knitting. And, I am absolutely terrible at seaming. I can't hand-sew to save my life. Oh dear, what have I gotten myself into?! After some thought, I'm most likely going to purchase a few balls of practice yarn (Perhaps LionBrand Wool-Ease Thick & Quick?) and do a few practice runs. At $5 a skein, it won't break my heart too much if I mess up... right?

As scared as I am, I'm still pretty excited about trying my first Rowan patterns. I can't wait!

February 7, 2009

Branching Out

Okay, I'm not actually knitting Branching Out, but I'm really trying to branch out from knitting to crocheting! After talking about it for a few years (and accumulating quite a few books), I finally decided to take the plunge and tried my hand at crochet! Here's the very first thing I tried, a little flower. I'm surprised it actually came out looking like a flower!

There are some knitters who pooh-pooh on crocheters, and I've had crocheters come up to me and my friends at a cafe and make comments on how crocheting is better than knitting(!). One thing's for sure - craftspeople sure are passionate about their craft. I guess I am a knitter by nature, but you won't see me put crocheters down - I think crocheting is amazing! There are so many things you can do with crocheting that just isn't the same with knitting, and I want to try it all, especially amigurumi! I'm an equal-opportunity crafter :)