Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Little Birdies

So, I've finally figured out that if I wait until I have a finished object to show, we're going to go a long time between posts. Here's what's on my needles right now.

Doesn't look like much, does it? It's actually a pretty faithful reproduction of Wee Chickadee by Ysolda Teague. I want to use this design as a blueprint to make little sweaters with different stranded motifs on the yoke and in different weights of wool. For me, the quickest way to that end, is to really understand the construction, and the easiest way for me to do that is to knit Ysolda Teague's sweater as she intended. It's like going to school to learn the basics. After you graduate, you have the background to spread your wings.

This version is knit in fingering weight yarn. The heathered green is Louet Gems Fingering Weight in a colourway called Baby Willow. The other yarns are all superwash sock yarns chosen so the finished sweater will be easily laundered. 3.25 mm needles. I'm making the size to fit 6 - 9 months.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

How could we forget our cat quilt?

It did get finished. It really did. And, it's already been put to use. This morning, I finally remembered to drag it out onto the back lawn in the full, bright sun to take its picture.

This is the quilt that was done quilt-as-you-go. Scrappy to the extreme. Colour is such a tonic for me. Here's the back, which is much more controlled than the front. The joining strips on the front are pieced from the scraps cut from the blocks when I trimmed them to size for assembly. The strips on the back are the same fabric as the binding. I think I'll be using this quilt with either side up. I like them both.

And here's a closer look at it hanging over the rail. See the dog? That's the portrait I did YEARS ago in memory of our old dog, Daisy. I thought she'd like to be among all those cats.

And guess which block interests Inspector Cassie?

Thursday, August 14, 2014

One more pompom

I've always liked this little cap design which I saw first in the book, Knitting for Peace. Now, the pattern is a freebie on Ravelry. You can find it here: http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/swirled-ski-cap  

It's an interesting approach to knitting what is essentially a toque. This one's in 100% wool, worsted weight. It knits up quickly.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

We've got our pompoms on!

Pompoms! Up until today, I've been total rubbish at making pompoms. They're a complete mystery. My mother used to make them with a piece of cardboard. They turned out fine. Apparently, I didn't inherit the pompom-making gene. :(  I offer the floppy old pompom on the large hat below as proof.

When I was a child (maybe around 1960) I received a pompom-making thing-a-ma-jig for Christmas. Hard plastic. Lime green. Different sizes, maybe? You wound the yarn and made pompoms and then you made things from the pompoms. I've been wishing I still had that toy, quite apart from the fact that it's probably very valuable as an antique by now. But, this morning, in the mail, I got a Clover Pom-pom maker. The large size kit, with 2 plastic makers for pompoms makes 2-1/2 inch and 3-3/8 inch pompoms. And, boy does it ever work!!

I found that you can vary the size of the pompom by filling it less (or more). My first one's a little big. That's the orange/red one in the middle. For the second one, I just wound fewer wraps of wool. There was very little trimming required to get a nice round pom. I'm sold on this gadget. Cassie gives it 2 paws up, too!

These 3 hats are going to the kids way up north via the Warm Hands Network. BTW See the elephants? I guess next time I ought to put in polar bears.

Friday, August 1, 2014


We've been on a bit of a mitten jag lately. These were fun. One of the standard Scandinavian mitten styles involves a pointed tip. That pointy part just seemed perfect to us for folding over to make an owl. Two close shades of yarn make a pretty boring fair isle, but perfect for allowing the over-all 'owl-ness' of the eye details to shine through.

And then, of course, we wondered what they'd look like in miniature. Owl egg cosies. Also fun.

We didn't keep very good notes on these. We did them during our hiatus.....March, maybe? We did note that we cast on 38 stitches for both sizes. Curious, right? Worsted weight for the mittens and fingering for the egg cosies.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

There's no place like home

Remember that line? from The Wizard of Oz? Well, it's true. Grandma Coco's been on The Grand World Tour for a few months now, but she's thrilled to be back home in the Kingdom where life is good again. (And they know how to make a decent cup of tea.)

So, let's get started with a bang, shall we? We've been busy working on mittens. Stranded mittens. Fair Isle mittens. And especially, EMBROIDERED mittens. We've been working up to something. We had that feeling you get sometimes when you let yourself just follow your nose and you're sure something good's going to come of it but you don't know exactly what.....just that it's going to be GOOD.

Well, we finally got to the good part. (Pardon our modesty, or lack thereof.....you all know Grandma Coco's not above tooting her own horn.)


We LOVE, love, LOVE these mittens with their green-eyed cat. We love, LOVE, love the sculptural face. We've put these mittens up for sale on Gift-it with all the proceeds going to the Gananoque and District Humane Society. Here's the link, if you're in need of a pair of mittens, or you just want to help out. The Gananoque and District Humane Society is a no-kill shelter run entirely by volunteers.

The mittens and the embroidery motif are original designs, handmade by us. Sized to fit a child. 5 1/4 in. from wrist to tip plus 3 inches of snug ribbing to keep the snow out. 7 in. around the palm.

Let's do some good in the world.