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Thursday, July 3, 2014

Hue Shift Afghan: The Neverending WIP

In case you are wondering why I haven't been posting a whole lot of FOs lately, it's because the vast majority of my knitting time the past several months has been devoted to one massive WIP: the Hue Shift Afghan.  The afghan is of a modular construction - it is knit one square at a time - and is composed of four large panels, each with 25 squares each.  Then all four panels will be sewn together and I will pick up the edge stitches and knit a border around the whole thing.  I have finished the first panel and I am almost finished with the second panel (5.5 squares to go).

FIRST PANEL (finished)

SECOND PANEL (almost finished!)

As you can probably see, the whole thing is just garter stitch with a decrease in the center of every other row, so it is extremely simple knitting.  Very zen.  I am, however, getting a little restless with it, so I think I'm going to try to focus more on some more complicated sock projects soon and not work so obsessively on this afghan.  (Though, I want to have it finished by winter, so I need to still work on it fairly seriously).

Monday, June 23, 2014

FO: Sam the Koala II

I love showing my coworkers all the cute stuff that I make and my amigurumi are especially popular.  I showed a picture of my purple Sam the Koala to one of my coworkers and she asked me to make one for her....  not for her to keep, but for her to give to a friend's baby....  because her friend hates koala bears.  Well, I couldn't pass up on being part of such a spiteful gift opportunity, so I got to work right away!

I asked my coworker what her friend's least favorite color was, but unfortunately, she didn't know, so I decided to just make it a classic grey koala.  I think he turned out super cute...  even someone who hates koalas has to smile at this guy!

yarn details
Caron Simply Soft in Grey Heather (body)
Worsted Weight
100% Acrylic
170 g / 315 yds @ $3-ish?

Knit Picks Brava in Asphalt Heather (nose)
Worsted Weight
100% Acrylic
Dye Lot 8829
100 g / 218 yds @ $2.99 each

polyfill stuffing
white felt

project details
pattern: "Sam the Koala" by Stacey Trock, $4, available here or on Ravelry
finished size: forgot to measure...  probably about 6'' tall
hook: J (6.0 mm)
gauge: ??
yarn used: ?? (pattern calls for 90 yards of main color and 5 yards of nose color... that sounds about right)
duration: March 8-24, 2014

  • This is my first time crocheting a freshstitches pattern to gauge, which means I went up two hook sizes to a J hook.  It is much softer than my usual little crocheted friends.
  • Because this is for a baby, I did not use plastic "safety" eyes (which aren't truly safe because baby can still chew them off their posts).  Instead I used black fingering weight yarn and a D hook, I made a magic loop and did 6 sc in the loop, then fastened off.
  • For some reason in these pictures it looks like the eyes aren't lined up, but I swear they really are....
And look!  I earned a stamp in my freshstitches passport for crocheting baby-safe eyes!

Maybe Monday: Brooklyn Mitts

There is a kit for sale on Craftsy right now to make these darling fingerless gloves.  The pattern is Brooklyn Mitts by Pam Powers and the yarn in the kit is Cascade 220 Sport.  I'm loving the blue and grey colors in this kit!

Why I Might Knit Them:  I love the color and the pattern - looks complicated enough to keep me entertained while knitting it, but not so large or complicated that I'm going to feel frustrated.

Why I Might Not Knit Them:  I made two pairs of fingerless gloves last year and never wore them...  this may be the same kind of deal.

Monday, June 9, 2014

Maybe Monday: Caribbean Breeze Swimsuit Wrap

The weather is finally starting to warm up here in Boston and I've got swimming pools on the brain. (Specifically, this one).  If I'm going to be hopping around from pool to pool, I'm going to need something to cover my, uh, voluptuous rear end.  That's why today I'm thinking about making this Swimsuit Wrap!

{Caribbean Breeze Swimsuit Wrap by Deborah Devlin}

Why I Might Not Make It:  It's crochet, and as a rule, I don't crochet anything without a face... Seriously though, crocheting in the round like for amigurumis makes sense to me, but I struggle crocheting flat stuff and I'm really more of a single crochet girl - there are some fancy stitches going on in this piece.

Why I Might Make It:  I really want the finished product.  It is pretty and useful, so I might have to try my best to tackle the crochet beast!

Monday, May 19, 2014

Tunisian Crochet... it's just not for me!

I have always been curious about Tunisian crochet ever since I found an afghan hook in with my grandmother's belongings after she passed.  I had no idea what it was for at first, then I looked it up on the internet and was intrigued, but never pursued the matter.  Years later, enter Craftsy.  They have a course on Tunisian crochet and I just had to take it to see what it was like.  Well, it turns out that I don't really like it.  It's a shame because I was really psyched about it and I even bought my very own set of hooks, but I just don't think it was meant to be.  I got frustrated with it very easily and don't really love the way the finished stitches look - they are cool, but I think I'd just rather have something knitted.

 I got about eight rows into this washcloth and then finally frogged it yesterday after a few months of struggling with it:

I may go back and try it again later, but, for now, I'm just saying that Tunisian crochet is not for me.  However, the instructor is really good - she was friendly and made the directions easy to follow.  There is also a pretty cool lesson on how to choose colors that is worth watching.

Friday, May 16, 2014


I can't quite explain why I love Ro the Tiny Monster so much....  I just do.  So, here is another one:

This Ro is in sport weight yarn and he is about 2.5 inches tall.  Observe:

yarn details
Cascade 220 Sport in White and Cotton Candy
Sport Weight
100% wool
dye lots 5652 and 3765
50 g / 164 yards @ $3 (clearance)

8mm safety eyes (I believe...)
polyfill stuffing

project details
pattern: "Ro the Tiny Monster" by Stacey Trock of Fresh Stitches, $4 available on Ravelry or here.
hook: E (3.5mm)
gauge: small
yarn used: ??
finished size: about 2.5'' tall
duration: April 21-23, 2014

  • Not super happy with the placement of the eyes on this Ro.  Gotta remember to get them closer together.
  • Milestone alert: this is my 10th freshstitches project:

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

FO: Sam the Koala

It was love at first sight with me and Sam the Koala.  I bought the pattern the morning it was released and couldn't wait to get started creating one of my very own.  I had my first opportunity to make one when I signed up for the freshstitches Secret Springtime Spectacular Swap and I knew I just had to make one of these cuties in purple, my swapmate's favorite color.

My swapmate is a pharmacist, so this koala bear even has his own little labcoat!

yarn details
Berroco Comfort in Raspberry Sorbet (9728) 
Worsted Weight 
50% super fine nylon, 50% super fine acrylic 
Machine wash on gentle cycle in warm water. No bleach. Tumble dry on low heat. Do not over dry. Do not iron.
100 g /210 yd @ $7.00 per ball

Knit Picks Brava in Eggplant 
worsted weight 
100% acrylic 
machine wash/tumble dry low 
100 grams/218 yds @ $2.99 each

polyfill stuffing
12mm black plastic safety eyes
white felt

project details
pattern: "Sam the Koala" by Stacey Trock, $4, available here or on Ravelry
finished size: about 5.5'' tall
hook: H (5.0 mm)
gauge: ??
yarn used: ??  (pattern calls for 90 yards of main color and 5 yards of nose color... that sounds about right)
duration: March 8-24, 2014

In case you're interested, here is everything else that went into the swap package:

And I earned a stamp in my freshstitches passport for embellishing with felt!