Thursday, December 23, 2010

Holiday Knitting

Christmas is coming soon.  I've been knitting a lot lately!  I started a men's sweater, Zimmermann's Seamless Hybrid last Friday.  This is the last Christmas gift to knit this year.  I probably won't make it by Christmas, but I managed to finish the body and a sleeve so far...  I'm almost done with the other sleeve, a few more rounds to go.

I knitted a Baby Chalice Blanket as a gift for my daughter.  I worked on this secretly when my daughter was not around.  It turned out beautiful!  I can't wait to see her face when she opens it.

I've also finished a couple other things.  The Owls sweater by Kate Davies and a Mystery Beret by Woolly Wormhead.  You can view all of my projects here if any of you are interested!

Happy Holidays & Knitting, everyone!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Started a New Pair!

I started knitting a new pair of socks.  The pattern is called "Gentleman's Fancy Socks" by Nancy Bush which is in a book called Knitting Vintage Socks.  I always wanted to try out this pattern, love the classic design!

This yarn had no label so I don't know anything about it, but it's turning out great.  The first one is almost done.  It's really warm and it feels good, I wonder what the name of the yarn is?

I was trying on my socks I knitted in the past to see which one's better.  I've only knitted two pair of socks for myself (and a pair for my husband & daughter).  Hmm... the conclusion?  ....I like them all!  They are all unique, warm, cute and homemade looking, can't compare with machine made socks.

I totally failed on knitting a pair every month in 2010 as I declared in January, but I might try it again next year.  Knitted socks make our feet happy :-)

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Almost a Hat, Cowl

I was going to knit a hat but I changed my mind...  made a cowl instead :-)

Yarn: 1 skein of bulky weight yarn (about 100 yards).  I used Tosca by Lang Yarns.
Needles: 7 mm 16" circular needles
Gauge: 12.0 sts = 4 inches
Required Skills: Cast on, Knit, Purl, Knitting in a circle, Bind off
Size: One size

K - knit
P - purl
M1 - make one
sts - stitches

Cast on 50 sts loosely and join in round.
K1, P1 ribbing for 2 inches. 
Knit 1 round.
Repeat K5, M1 until end of round. (60 sts)
Knit until the work measures 10" from the cast on edge.
Bind off loosely.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Crocheted Circle Scarf

This cowl goes around your neck twice.
The Ravelry page for this pattern, please click here!

Yarn: 1 skein (210 yards) of Malabrigo Yarn Merino Worsted
Hook: 6.5 mm (K)
Required Skills: Chain, Join in the Round, Double crochet

Instructions (Updated Dec 10, 2010):
  1. Using 6.5 mm hook, make at least 105 chains loosely  (or more if you want your cowl to be loose around your neck.  Make sure the chain goes around your neck/head twice comfortably).  
  2. Join in the round with a slip stitch in the first chain to form a ring.  Be careful not to twist.
  3. Make three chains, start double crochet in the second stitch.  Work a double crochet in each remaining stitch of a round;  total 104 stitches of double crochet, 105 stitches with the first three chains.  (Click here for more instructions on double crochet by Annie's Attic.)
  4. At the end of the round, join the first and last stitches of the round with a slip stitch by inserting the hook into the second chain of the three chains.
  5. Continue 3 & 4 until the work measures 7" or desired length.  
  6. Weave in ends.

Please feel free to contact me if you find any errors in the instructions!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Vegetarian Enchiladas & Apple Crisp

Last night we cooked some vegetarian enchiladas. The ingredients are potato, tomato, onion, red onion, green chili pepper, avocado and parsley.  It was very tasty and filling.  We also made our simple balsamic vinegar dressing for salad.


And an apple crisp for dessert. I got a bag of local apples yesterday. I put less flour so it wasn't very crispy but healthier.  Looking at the picture makes me want to add some maple syrup and raisins. I guess I'll try that next time! 

Monday, March 8, 2010

Quick & Easy Homemade Granola Cereal

I like cooking or baking pretty much everything at home.  Here's my favourite easy and quick granola recipe.

1 cup Rolled Spelt
1 cup Rolled Oats
1/4 Sesame Seeds
2 tbs. Maple Syrup
1 tbs. Oil
1 tsp. Vanilla
1/2 tsp. Salt

Mix together and heat up in a pan, keep stirring until dry and golden.  If you like, add some raisins after all the ingredients are cooked.


Thursday, March 4, 2010

Ravelympics 2010

I knitted few more things during the Olympics.

Pattern: Meret (Mystery Beret) by Woolly Wormhead
: US 7 / 4.5 mm
Yarn: Cascade Yarns 220 Wool, Color 2403

CO 80, followed the instruction for medium size, added an extra repeat. 

It turned out a bit too short for my head, I gave it to my daughter.  I'm still thinking of going back and adding an extra repeat to this.

And... socks for my fiance. They are very warm and comfortable!  I like the simple pattern.  Since these socks are designed for worsted weight yarn, I finished them in a couple of days.  

Pattern: Thuja by Bobby Ziegler 
Needle: US 6 / 4.0 mm
Yarn: Knit Picks Swish Worsted, Color Cobblestone Heather


I also knitted this adorable sweater for my friend's newborn baby.  Knitting this reminded me of the days I was pregnant.  It's so much fun knitting something for a baby during the pregnancy.  I miss those days!

Pattern: Mossy by Jolene Lye 
Size: 3 month
Needle: US 9 / 5.5 mm
Yarn: Lamb's Pride Superwash Worste, Color Cactus


Monday, February 15, 2010

Free Pattern: Hugs and Kisses Mittens




I wasn't able to find a cute mitten pattern for my daughter, so I designed one myself.  These fit an 8 to 10 year old. 

El Uminator has contributed to the pattern and created a chart which you can view in her blog here. I have also copied and pasted the chart in Mitten Top section in the pattern.  Thank you El Uminator!

Yarn: Cascade Heather 220, Color Baby Rose Heather 9442
Materials: A set of 3.75mm, US5 double pointed needles or  a 3.75mm Circular needle (if you are using the magic loop method), Cable needle, 2 stitch markers, waste yarn
Required Skills: Basic cabling, Knitting in a circle

Gauge: 5 sts/ Inch (St st), 7 sts/ Inch (Cable)

Size: Hand Circumference 7"

CO = cast on
sts = stitches
P = purl
K = knit
M1 = make one
LC = slip two stitches to cable needle and hold in front, knit next two stitches, knit two stitches from cable needle
RC = slip two stitches to cable needle and hold in back, knit next two stitches, knit two stitches from cable needle
PM = place marker
M1L = make one left
M1R = make one right
K2tog = knit two stitches together
P2tog = purl two stitches together
ssk = slip slip, knit these two stitches together

The Cuff:
CO 36 and divide sts evenly between needles.  Join to begin working in the round.
First Round: [P2, K2] to end.
Repeat this round until work measures 1.5 inches (longer cuff 2.5" is recommended).

Next Round: [P2, K2, P2, M1, K2, P2, K2, M1] Repeat to end. (42 sts)

Work in patten.
Row 1-3: K1, P2, K4, P2, K8, P2, K4, P2, K1, K to end of round.
Row 4: K1, P2, LC, P2, RC, LC, P2, RC, P2, K1, work thumb gusset increase for left hand, PM, M1L, K1, M1R, PM, knit to end. (For left hand, knit to one before last st, PM, M1L, K1, M1R, PM)
Row 5 & 6: Work same as row 1 & 2
Row 7: K1, P2, K4, P2, K8, P2, K4, P2, K1, Slip Marker, M1L, K until next stitch marker, M1R,  Slip Marker, K to end.
Row 8: Cable round, K1, P2, LC, P2, LC, RC, P2, RC, P2, K1, K to end.
Row 9: Same as Row 1.
Row 10: Increase round, same as Row 7.
Row 11: Same as Row 1.
Row 12:  Cable round, same as Row 8.
Row 13: Same as Row 1.
Row 14: Increase round, same as Row 7.
Row 15: Same as Row 1.
Row 16: Cable round, K1, P2, LC, P2, RC, LC, P2, RC, P2, K1, knit to end.
Row 17: Same as Row 1.
Row 18: Increase round, same as Row 7.
Row 19: Same as Row 1.
Row 20: Cable round, K1, P2, LC, P2, RC, LC, P2, RC, P2, K1, remove marker, place next 11 sts on waste yarn, remove marker, CO 2, rejoin and knit remaining sts. (43 sts)

Mitten Top:
Row 1-3: K1, P2, K4, P2, K8, P2, K4, P2, K1, K to end of round.
Row 4:  K1, P2, LC, P2, LC, RC, P2, RC, P2, K1, K to end.
Row 5-8: Repeat Row 1-4
Row 9-11:  Same as Row 1-3
Row 12:  K1, P2, LC, P2, RC, LC, P2, RC, P2, K1, knit to end.
Row 13-16: Repeat Row 9-12
Row 17-20: Repeat Row 1-4
Row 21: Start decreasing for the tip; ssk, P1, K4, P2tog, K8, P2tog, K4, P1, K2tog, K2, ssk, knit until 4 sts left, K2tog, K2.
Row 22: K1, P1, K4, P1, K8, P1, K4, P1, K1, knit to end.
Row 23: ssk, P2tog, K2, P1, K8, P1, K2, P2tog, K2tog, K2, ssk, knit until 4 sts left, K2tog, K2.
Row 24: K1, P1, P2tog, P1, LC, RC, P1, P2tog, P1, K1, knit to end.
Row 25: ssk, P2, K2tog, K2tog, K2tog, K2tog, P2, K2tog, K2, ssk, knit until 4sts left, K2tog, K2.
Row 26: K1, P2tog, K4, P2tog, K1, knit to end.
Row 27: K1, P1, K2, P1, K2tog, K2, ssk, knit until 4 sts left, K2tog, K2.
Row 28: K1, P1, K2, P1, K1, knit to end.
Row 29: ssk, P1, P1, K2tog, K2, ssk, K1, K2tog, K2.
Break yarn, draw through remaining 11 sts and pull tight.

Chart created by El Uminator
o : knit
+ : purl
__-- : C2B/RC
--__ : C2F/LC

16: o++__--++--____--++--__++o
15: o++oooo++oooooooo++oooo++o
14: o++oooo++oooooooo++oooo++o
13: o++oooo++oooooooo++oooo++o
12: o++__--++__----__++--__++o
11: o++oooo++oooooooo++oooo++o
10: o++oooo++oooooooo++oooo++o
09: o++oooo++oooooooo++oooo++o
08: o++__--++__----__++--__++o
07: o++oooo++oooooooo++oooo++o
06: o++oooo++oooooooo++oooo++o
05: o++oooo++oooooooo++oooo++o
04: o++__--++--____--++--__++o
03: o++oooo++oooooooo++oooo++o
02: o++oooo++oooooooo++oooo++o
01: o++oooo++oooooooo++oooo++o

Place 11 sts onto needles, pick up and knit 3 sts over gap, and join. (14 sts)

Knit around until the tip of the thumb (1.5 " from pick-up round), K2tog for 2 rounds, break yarn, draw through rem sts and pull tight.


(if you want to shape the tip of the thumb better...)
Knit 10 rounds.
Next Round: K2tog, K3, K2tog, K3, K2tog, K2
Next Round: K all sts
Next Round: K2tog 5 times, K1
Next Round: K2tog 3 times.
Break yarn, draw through remaining 3 sts and pull tight.

Left Hand:
Make same as right hand except for the thumb.

*This pattern is free for personal use, however the photo is not for sharing.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Shawls, Shawls!


Pattern:  Boneyard Shawl by Stephen West
: US 10 / 6.0 mm
Yarn: 2 skeins of Manos del Uruguay Wool Clasica, Color 708

I made this beautiful shawl for my fiance.  I couldn't resist wearing it, I borrowed it when I went out for shopping yesterday. It's a very easy pattern, I made the same thing last year using Noro sock yarn.


Pattern: Springtime Bandit by Kate Gagnon Osborn 
Needle: US 8 / 5.0 mm, US 10 / 6.0 mm
Yarn: 2 skeins of Malabrigo Yarn Merino Worsted, Color Alpine Pearl 201

I finally got to try out this pattern.  The pattern is well written, and the chart is easy to follow.  I was surprised how fast I knitted this shawl.  It took me only three days, that's how much I took to finish the Boneyard Shawl.  

I did an extra repeat of the body chart. It made the shawl bigger than the pattern, but I ended up running out of yarn when I got to the last few rows of the edge chart.  I went back and started binding off after row 28 of the edge chart.  It still looks beautiful, isn't it?

Friday, February 5, 2010

My Family Knit Circle

Sometime last week, I suggested my family to knit each other something for Valentine's Day.  I was half joking when I said that, but my fiance and daughter liked the idea, they started knitting.

My daughter just made a simple cowl last week. From the day she continues to knit.  She finished a dress for her stuffed animal Neko-chan, she's now working on a sweater for a teddy bear, and a crane for her grandmother who's ill. She's pretending like she's a dress maker, taking orders from all of her stuffed animal.  This should keep her very busy! 

I'm surprised how fast my daughter learns, knitting is so natural to her, she's just good at it.  I remember when I started knitting, I had trouble holding the sticks in my hands,they felt very uncomfortable in my small hands, and I was also impatient.

My fiance knew how to knit and purl, but the most advanced skill he ever learned was mistake rib stitch.  After his first attempt of making a scarf which he never finished, he quit knitting for a while.  This time he picked a beautiful shawl pattern for me to wear, it's not an easy pattern for beginner to follow, but he's doing much better and more interested in knitting than ever before.  I guess the repetitiveness of the rib stitch of a scarf was quite boring for him.
The pattern he picked is called Springtime Bandit, it's a beautiful triangular shawl. I've been wanting to make it for a while now.  I really can't wait for him to finish!  Here is the work he has done so far.  He's finished the set up pattern.

The yarn used is Wool Clasica by Manos del Uruguay.  Ohhhh, I like Manos!  Speaking of Manos, we have red Manos and blue Manos in our stash, two skeins each (Yes, "we,"  my fiance buys yarn just because they are cool, even though he hasn't created anything out of them. I guess I'm the lucky one.).  Him creating the shawl made me quite anxious, it's not because he's a beginner, but I haven't tried the pattern for myself and I really want to try it out.  Of course I'm going through the pattern with him while he knits, but I want to try it out with my own hands.

While I was knitting the sleeve of a sweater, all I thought was making the same thing with the blue yarn.  It was very hard for me to tame the temptation, I almost wanted to stop knitting the sleeve and start on the shawl.  Luckily I didn't have any extra cables for the circular needles (since my family started to knit, more needles are in use), I had to give up.  Anyways he's not the type of guy who wears a lace shawl.  After finishing the sleeve, I decided to knit him a simple triangular shawl.  The color of the yarn reminds me of the old school bandannas.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Trying Three Times Again!

Everything was going smoothly until I got to the sleeve of the cardigan.  Somehow I miscalculated, I had to start all over again.  Next thing I found out was my gauge was off.  The sleeve doesn't look too bad but I want it to be perfect just like I planned, so I'm ripping it back again.

I wasn't in a mood of re-knitting the sleeve for the third time, then I started a pair of socks.  I've been trying to find a nice pattern for the Lorna's sock multi, I only have one skein.  The color of the yarn is called Baltic Sea, I first imagined it would look leafy and woody in a good way (or the Baltic Sea), but it looks more like a military camouflage in stockinette stitch.  So I decided to find a lace pattern for the yarn.

After trying two lace socks patterns, I frogged them again because the patterns were too simple, it still made me think of the military camouflage....  So here is the third try, the toe up Hedera socks by Cookie A! 

I used the Turkish cast on and I'm knitting toe up. I know this yarn wants to be the Hedera pattern, and it's my third try, it should work!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Sophisticate Cardigan and Knit Along

I started knitting for Valentine's Day.  I'm knitting a cardigan for my dude.  The pattern is called baby sophisticate, it's a baby boy's sweater with the shawl collar.  He's not having a baby but I'm using DRIH's mods to make a men's sweater.

Used needle size is 5mm and the yarn by Lang Yarns Tosca Jaspé.

I finished the yoke, so far so good!  I'm in the middle of endless stockinette stitch for the body right now...  A skein a day is my goal.

Today I was browsing Groups on Ravelry and found out there is a group called Sock a Month!  Isn't this a perfect group for me to be in.  (This year I declared to knit a pair of socks every month for new years resolution.)  It got me curious, I did more research on KAL (knit along) groups, ended up joining 10 Shawls in 2010 where you're oblige to knit 10 shawls during 2010 and  IntSweMoDo2010 which is short for International Sweater-a-Month Dodecathon, who's goal is to knit an adult size sweater each month....

Here's the finished purple cowl my daughter made. She says she's going to make a matched pair of mittens next!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Dreamy Mittens

I feel like knitting another pair of Noro mittens, something colorful before I start knitting sweaters with gray and black. Sadly I'm allergic to Silk Garden and Chirimen, I keep sneezing! But I'm okay with Kureyon...  Does that mean I'm allergic to their silk!? 

Aren't they pretty? Very dreamy... Color number is 150.

I started knitting yesterday using Carola Haglund's Kolenya pattern.  The color turned out so beautiful!  I had to search for the same color ways from another skein to match the both mittens, I'm glad I did.

I pretty much followed Kolenya's pattern using 3.25mm needles, but I didn't like the shape of the thumb and it was too small only having 15 stitches.  So I only decreased between the thumb and index finger (where you picked up the stitches) once by knitting 2 together after picking up and knitting all the stitches for the thumb.  I decreased once more between the thumb and index finger (the same spot) a couple rows before the knit 2 together decrease for the tip.  This way the decrease is not so obvious that the shape won't turn out like an eggplant or a squash!



Noro works best with a simple pattern, I really like how they tuned out.  It's just not so dreamy anymore like I named the title since I omitted most of the purple this time.  More like a lagoon?  I better start naming things after finishing a project.  I'll keep that in mind...

I have some left over yarn, maybe fingerless gloves?

Sunday, January 24, 2010

The Leyburn Socks

I finished the layburn socks!

I knitted 8 rounds of twisted rib for the cuff.  I like the result, they fit well, but I wish I used some different yarn.

I'm planning to knit something for Valentine's Day.  I might start a sweater... :)

Friday, January 22, 2010

Top-Down Raglan II

Finished blocking the cardigan. It turned out nice and soft.  It looks very pretty and springy!!




I'm happy with the result :)

Short Rows

I tried the short row heel with no wraps.  I found this video very helpful.  It's much easier than "wrap and turn".

I first learned the Japanese short row.  Here is the video.

I'm curious which looks better. 

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Top-Down Raglan

I was going to finish this project before Christmas.  I was procrastinating a bit...  knitted a pair of gloves (which was also due on Christmas), a mitten I didn't get to finish, and a clapotis...  but I finally finished the endless "k, k, k, k...." of the cardigan sleeves and now it's blocking!

This is my daughter's cardigan, I made one size smaller than the smallest size of the actual pattern using 3 skeins of Cascade Yarns 220 Heather.  Here is the link for the pattern Easy Top-Down Raglan by Laura Chau.  It's free!

I also added some cables and etc on the front to be pretty enough for a girl.

I don't have good lighting in the house, so the photo turned out a bit dark.

I'll take better photos after blocking ;)

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Happy Knitting 2010!

I decided to start my own blog this year. So here it goes!

One of my new year's resolution is to knit a pair of socks each month for myself and family.  I'm excited to learn new techniques along the way.  I like knitting socks because I can take it wherever I go!  And yes, it's quite addicting, too!

The Leyburn Socks are my January sock project.  The pattern is very pretty yet simple. It's a free pattern so you can download the file from the link.  I've started the first one on Saturday, and it's almost done.  Here is a photo of the sock before the heel.  It fits perfectly.

The yarn I'm using is the Universal Yarn Pace, a cheap generic yarn. I see people commenting on Ravelry it's splitty and itchy but I don't mind working with this yarn. Here is a photo of the sock about an inch to the cuff.

I can't wait to finish them up!