Friday, August 21, 2015

FO: Rainbow Baby Blanket

When my brother announced that he was expecting his fifth child I was so happy for him... but also a little bummed out because it meant I had to knit another baby blanket.  I sort of have a love/hate relationship with baby blankets.  On the love side, I like having something really special to give the new little bundles of joy and their parents.  On the hate side, they always take a long time to knit and tend to be either super boring or super tedious... so, you can understand why I was feeling a little anxious about the idea of knitting another one.  Then I visited my Ravelry queue and found this pattern that I had saved a long time ago.  The rainbow made me happy, not anxious - so it was the pattern for me!


Here is the blanket all spread out.  It was huge!  I could barely get it all in one shot.  And would you believe that I didn't pull out a measuring tape and measure it before I gave it away?  Oops!


The best part about this blanket is the yarn.  I totally splurged on it, but it was worth it.  I used nine different colors of Knit Picks Shine Sport.  I love how soft this yarn is and the color selection is fantastic.  Each stripe ended up using just barely over one ball of yarn.  If I were to ever knit this again, I would modify the pattern so that I can make it slightly smaller and only use one ball of each color.  This would have saved me boatloads of money.  (But then I wouldn't have lots of soft rainbow yarn left over to play with!)


yarn details
Knit Picks Shine Sport in Blush, Clementine, Crocus, Dandelion, French Blue, Green Apple, Peapod, Reef, and Serrano
worsted weight
60% Pima Cotton, 40% Modal
Machine Wash, Tumble Dry Low
110 yards / 50 grams @ $2.99 each

project details
pattern: "Rainbow Baby Blanket" by Patsy Leatherbury
needles: size 7 nickle plated circs
gauge: who swatches for a baby blanket?
yarn used: 1.059 yards -- (about 123 yards of the pink and red; the rest of the yarn was approx. 115 yards each)
finished size: didn't remember to measure :(
duration: January 13 - March 29, 2015 (I respond well to deadlines)

notes

  • Used Russian joins when joining two balls of the same color together; didn't do anything special when changing colors - just left ends and wove them in at the end (I made sure to split the yarn a lot when I was weaving them in.  Still, this yarn is so slippery, I'm sure those ends will work their way out quickly!)
  •  Like I said above, if I knit this again, I would modify this pattern to only use like 100-110 yards per color so I didn't have to buy an extra ball for those extra 10 yards needed to complete each stripe.
  • I absolutely love the drape of this yarn for this project.  Definitely recommend it!

Sunday, August 16, 2015

UFO sighting! Tropical Clutch

I was rummaging through one of my (secret) yarn storage spaces this morning looking for a particular yarn I need to finish a project and look what I found:


This is going to be a cool beaded clutch and I remember I was so excited about it when I started the project and it took me forever to find the right wooden beads and the pieces for the handle.  You'd think that after I went to all that effort, I would have knit it up quickly to enjoy the fruits of my labor.  But that was over two years ago...


I can't believe I let it hibernate for so long!  Poor little clutch!  So, anyway, today I am devoting a little time to work on it.  It's been at least a year since I've touched it and I had to relearn the beading technique a bit, but I'm on track now.  I'm officially bumping it up in WIP priority list to right below my last freshstitches kit club project and above the last panel of the hue shift afghan - two other projects that have been languishing in the WIP bin for far too long...

Sunday, August 2, 2015

FO: Stretch the Giraffe

I'm in love with this sweet giraffe designed by my favorite stuffed animal designer - Stacey Trock of freshstitches.  This is from her book Crocheted Softies which I got as a very generous "extra" in my swap package in a secret pal swap among people in Stacey's Ravelry fan group.



Usually I make amigurumi out of standard acrylic yarn (or from 100% wool if it is from a kit I get from Stacey, since she likes to use the nice stuff).  But this time I tried something different.  I used a very soft cotton/acrylic blend from Knit Picks called Comfy.  I also crocheted this guy at a much looser gauge than I usually crochet my stuffies at (used a J hook vs. an H).  All this resulted in a very soft, extra squishy, huggable, adorable giraffe!  Yay!

yarn details
Knit Picks Comfy Worsted in Creme Brulee and Doe
worsted weight
75% pima cotton, 25% acrylic
machine wash and dry
109 yards/50 grams @ $2.99 per ball

findings
12mm safety eyes
polyfill stuffing

project details
pattern: Stretch the Giraffe by Stacey Trock in the book Crocheted Softies
hook: J (6.0 mm)
gauge: looser than usual
yarn used: 1.1 balls of yellow and 0.43 balls of brown
finished size: 8'' high - not including horns
duration: May 9 - August 16, 2014

notes

  • I ran out of the yellow Comfy yarn with just a few rows left on the head, so I subbed in some Shine Worsted in the same colorway that I happened to have.  You really can't tell, thank goodness! 
  • I like how this guy is floppier than my usual stuffies, but I feel like you can kind of see the stuffing through the fabric. I think I will probably go back to using an H hook for my freshstitches amigurumi.