FO Friday – Dragon Fade!

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My Dragon Fade shawl is finished and it’s gigantic!  I love it!  It’s been off the needles since Sunday.  I promptly wore to the park…ends dangling and all.  I don’t care.  I like it anyhow.

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I have managed to get about half the ends woven.  Yes, I’ve continued to wear it.  Fringe is in right now.  I’m going with it!  Of course, I really should get around to washing it and blocking it.  I’d draped it across a lot of Mother Nature’s offerings this week.

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Here’s a few details:  The pattern is Match & Move by Martina Behm.  I used 17 different yarns…no wonder there are so many ends to weave – those details (minus 1 mystery yarn) are all here on my notebook page.  My only modification, aside from gauge changes and the fade, was to increase the size.  I added about 10 extra rows…it’s giant.  It drags on the ground, if I don’t wrap it a couple times.  It’s definitely for cold & windy days.

That is not today.  Today appears to be a sunny day, which is good news for Hardly Strictly Bluegrass!  I’m heading to back to Golden Gate Park again so I’ll leave you with this shameless self promotion.  Just did a big fall shop update!   Check it out at www.FogKnits.Etsy.com!

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Happy Friday and Have a great weekend!


 

FO Friday – Newborn Vertebrae

My little nephew has been on the outside now for two months!  Of course, that is a milestone marked with a new sweater!

I thought I was making a cute and tiny sweater.  I was nervous that he’d outgrow it before I got it sent off.  I’m pleased to report, he received it and he’s got some room to grow!  Yay!  Not as tiny as I thought!

Sorry, no pics to share since he’s not my kid to plaster all over the internet but, my sister did send me a pretty funny picture of him crying while wearing the sweater.  I’m definitely keeping it, so I can remind him, in the future, how much he loved the sweaters his auntie made him.

The sweater is a free pattern, Newborn Vertebrae by Kelly van Niekirk.  It’s a pattern where one size is free, the smallest in this case.  The remainder of the sizes, you pay for.  Despite making the smallest size, I was able to get a sweater closer to the six month size!  For once, having a loose gauge paid off!   The yarn is KnitPicks, Felici in color Hawaiian Shirt.  So cute!

It was a simple knit.  Aside from gauge, I didn’t change a thing.  It’s the perfect little baby sweater…frontless, so it doesn’t get spit up on.  Also, facilitates skin-to-skin contact.  That might be my favorite part.  This isn’t just some cute thing that I wanted to do…it’s got an important developmental function!  It’s necessary, even!  Yay Knitting!

Up next, something tweedy for the little man.  Perfect for fall…

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I’m definitely about to binge start 6 projects! It’s gonna be so good!


 

Yay Friday!!

Happy Friday!  It’s time to put this week to bed!  I’m ready — I feel like I’ve been focused and productive.  I got a good start on my interview prep and my pile of handmade nephew goodies has really grown!  It’s the perfect time for a weekend!

Because nothing makes one feel accomplished, quite like listing those accomplishments, here’s what all my procrasticrafting got me this week…

 

I finished up the leg warmers – two pair, one small, one large, one that matches, one that doesn’t.  The large size might become a pair of matching arm warmers for Mom.

I really liked working with this yarn, KnitPicks Felici.  It’s soft but still has a bit of structure to it.  I’m still thinking about the worsted weight version and a sweater with stripey sleeves.   Maybe my recently cast-on Newborn Vertebrae will cure me of that.  It’s grown since yesterday, I’m up to the sleeve divide already!  Baby sweaters are the best!

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What can I say, I’m a sucker for a good stripe.  I’m also a sucker for a cute animal toy, these days.  My Tubby Wubby stitch & stuff felt toy subscription has come to an end.  Mr. Giraffe is the last to join the menagerie.   I stitched him up, in about an hour, last night.  He’s extra goofy.  I couldn’t resist.

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3 Months was the perfect subscription length for these cute little kits.  They were well put together and the results are super cute but I’m ready to knit critters now.  Knitting is really my thing.  I can see myself stitching more of these Tubby Wubby kits, in the future, but for now, it’s back to Rebecca Danger cuteness.

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I whipped up this little Hippo from ’50 Yards of Fun’ for an instant gratification fix.  I love her designs.  Rather than knit pieces and sew them together, you pick up stitches on the body and knit the limbs out from there.  It can be fiddly but definitely worth it.  I’m always pleased with my critters.  I didn’t even have to fuss too much to give this guy a cute face!

And so, he join the growing pile for my next care package…

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I’ll send this stuff off when I finish his sweater.  Maybe a few more stuffies too…my goal is definitely to re-create that scene from E.T. with knitted toys!  :)

And, now, I’ve committed to doing some real work this afternoon.  Nothing boosts the confidence like putting the time in.  Back to interview prep for a few hours and then, it’s the weeeeekend!!!  Wooooo!

Enjoy your weekend, everyone!


 

FO Friday – Quickie Blanket

 

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We’ve all been there.  Will you knit me a…?

No.

The answer is always NO.

Furthermore, ‘No.’ is a complete sentence.

 

If you protest, you’re off the list.  I used to drop people to the bottom of the list.  These days, I’m ruthless.  I do what I want.  There is no list.  There’s no possibility I’m going to knit for you.  The answer is just no.  I’ve gotten quite good at it.  There’s no need for me to explain how long it takes or how expensive yarn is.  I just say NO.  After all,

No.

is a complete sentence.

So…don’t ask me how this happened.  It might’ve been an out of body experience.  A fugue state perhaps?  All I know is I, for sure, 100% said no to a request of a blanket…ANOTHER blanket, even.

And yet, here it is.

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Against all odds, I knit a blanket for someone who asked.  Turns out, if you’re knitworthy, you’re knitworthy.

And, at the risk of encouraging copy cat requests, this was super simple.  Everything came together in just the right way.   Leftover yarn, big needles, no purling, fun stripes.  Poof!  Instant blanket.

While it is lovely to look at, it’s real beauty comes from it’s simplicity.  It’s four mitered squares, each worked from the corner in and then grafted together.  I weighed my yarn and divided in it into 4 equal lots, one for each square.

To work each square:  CO 2 sts.  Set up Row: KFB, place marker, KFB.  Row 1: Knit to 1 stitch before marker, KFB, slip marker, knit to last stitch, slip purlwise with yarn in front.  Repeat Row 1 until you run out of yarn.

Rather than bind off and then sew a seam, I kept my stitches live until all 4 squares were finished and grafted them together.

Easy Peasy…unless you hate grafting.  That’s a topic for another day though.  That’s not a Friday conversation!

Happy Weekend!  Hope you get some good knitting time in!


 

FO Friday -Nephew Care Package

 

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My little nephew Marcus is 4 weeks old today!  Wooo!  He’s such a sweet little thing.  It’ll be a while before I get to meet him so I’m sending him a long distance hug, in the form of yarn, naturally.

I’m so excited about everything in this pile.  A dinosaur birth announcement.  An ‘only in San Francisco’ onesie.  I didn’t make it but I love the tripping hippie vibe.  It’s the kind of thing you can only get from your crazy California aunt!

Then there’s the cat toy mushroom rattles, such fun!  The pattern is from Purl Soho’s blog.  A great little stash buster project with super results.  (disclaimer:  my yarn and gauge is completely different, so these are actually a heavily modified version of their pattern, if ya know what I mean.)

Then, there’s the hats.  Even though it’s still August, I’m sending five hats.  Might as well teach him young, this is what I do.  I hope you like wearing hats, kid!  I’m making them regardless.

These came from the knitting Olympics back in February.  It’s such a fun collection.  I’ll never stop making goofy hats but now is really my time.  He won’t be wearing goofy hats forever!

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And finally, Baby’s Second Blanket.  He got the first one before he was born, a cotton blanket for summer.  This is one is the wool blanket for cooler days.  It’s the true pièce de résistance…

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A Honeycomb blanket, complete with fringe.

I knit it as a tube, to avoid purling and then cut it open.  Using the cut edges to create fringe, I avoided the dreaded end weaving.  After that, I added an applied i-cord to the top and bottom edges.  and POOF!  An Heirloom was born!

I hope Marcus likes it.  Obviously I made something I like but I thought about him a lot too.  I picked colors with high contrast and textural interest so it can help his little eyes develop.  The fringe is for a tactile experience, something for his little fingers to figure out.

It’s pretty amazing to see how much he’s changed already.  I can’t wait for the all the developmental challenges to come.  I totally appreciate being a casual observer to the miracle of life.  Human bodies…wow!

..AND, I have plenty of yarn left for all those amazing occasions.  5 Skeins of Miss Babs Yowza is gonna get me a lot of coordinating accessories.  The blanket put a dent in it, but just barely.  It’s time for sweaters and an army of stuffies!!

Welcome to the world, little Marcus.  You have a crazy knitting aunt (and that is the best kind!!)

When it rains…

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It’s raining FO’s here at the FogKnits headquarters.  After many finish free weeks, I’m suddenly finishing everything I touch.

If you recall, back in May, I started this hat but ripped it out because the ‘apple green’ mohair I was carrying as my second strand was reading yellow and I don’t like yellow.

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Ugh.  Yellow?  I really wanted green so I ripped it out and changed my mohair strand.  Instead I used a lovely purple that became this hat.  These are happy dance colors!

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Purple is soooooo much better.  And, now that I’m looking at this photo again, I can say with a high degree of certainty, I’ve had this color palate on my mind for a while.  LOL.

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Completely unintentional and yet, certainly, not?

Anyhow.  Back to yellow.  Yuck.  Nothing good comes of yellow but I had yarn left over so, begrudgingly, why not knit the second hat. Some people don’t find yellow to be offensive.  Some people even like yellow?  Weirdos, to be sure but they are out there.

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So, as I was running out the door to a music festival, I needed some easy knitting.  This hat fit the bill perfectly for a small project, with easy stitches, no fuss, just do it.  It was the no-brainer I needed and it turned out to be right choice (in spite of all that yellowness).

I cast on early in the day while I watched the Black Sheep Brass Band.  And they had super cute stickers.

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Meant to be, clearly.  And by the end of the evening, I had a finished hat.

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Giving this hat an interesting distinction, it was knit almost entirely standing up.  I’ve knit hats entirely on buses, while riding in cars and even on airplanes.  Always seated.  This is the first FO that was mostly standing.  I did sit for a bit to finish the last six rows, so maybe that was 5-10%.  Still, close enough for me!

And, there’s still an FO (or two) left for tomorrow!  Woo!  When it rains, it pours!  :)


 

Pebble Beach Shawl Finished

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After 48 hours of avoidance, I finally sat down for a game of yarn chicken.  I was certain, I was on the losing end and I didn’t want to deal with a suitable alternative.   Imagine my surprise when I got to the end with yarn to spare!

Wooo!  Disaster averted!

I carried that enthusiasm into immediate blocking.  It’s the only way.  Just do it before the momentum is lost.

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Picot bind off means all the pins come out to play.  UGH!  I was super happy with my new Knit Blockers though!  They saved me a lot of time with the straight edge.

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Blocking is always worth the effort though.  The lacy bits opened up beautifully.

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And so, despite the whining while it’s in progress, this is why we must block our knits.  (I need to remind myself frequently!)

Now a few details.

The Pattern:  Pebble Beach Shawl by Helen Stewart

Yarn:  Kona Sport, hand dyed by my Mom.  One 770 yard skein.  Yay for only weaving 2 ends!!

Mods:  I used sport instead of prescribed fingering weight.  I knit the medium size but decided that I had enough yarn to knit a few extra rows in the body.  I added maybe 8-10 additional rows.  I didn’t really count, just winged it, as always.  Despite the yarn chicken scare, I’m glad I went for the expansion.

The finished size does not disappoint, it’s quite large.  Aggressive blocking helped too.  The tips of this shawl stretch well beyond the edge of the fence panel…just how I like it!

It’s a generously sized, gorgeous, lightweight, drapey bit of fabric.  It was fun to knit and I could take pictures of it all day.  Sadly, I don’t see it becoming my new favorite thing.  The color is wrong for me.  I just can’t do it.

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It did inspire a little weekend cross stitch though :)   And a couple of cast ons, that are more in line with my own personal color palate!  Stay tuned for WIP Wednesday to see those and another a couple more finishes later this week too!