Sock it to me and more placemats!

Hello all you knitters out there. This post is long overdue since I have been back from vacation for well over a month now ūüôā

I hinted in my last post that I would attempt to knit my first-pair of socks. I am happy to report – success!

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Not only did I complete both pairs of socks while on vacation, I began and finished a ¬†set for my husband. He now wears them proudly around the house…

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So what is next for this knitter? Well, I found this awesome round knitted dishcloth pattern from VeryPink.com called ‘Quaker dishcloth’ the pattern is fairly easy to learn and adapt to any size that you want. Here is a glimpse at the beginning¬†of the project:

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I have already completed one placemat so far and will begin starting on the next one soon. I promise I will post pics of the completed set as soon a I finish all of them.

Even with all of these projects going on, I started and nearly completed a bottom-up garter stitch shawl. I began the project because I needed something very easy to do over the 4th of July weekend that did not need a lot of concentration. The shawl pattern is so very easy to do. I posted a video in an earlier post about this pattern, but in case you are interested, here it is again:

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Easiest Shawl Pattern Ever

Needle:  US 13 Р9.0mm (or size needle recommend for yarn of choice)

Yarn: 1-2 skeins color of choice Weight: Super Bulky (5-6 wpi)

*Gauge is not important.

Cast-on: 3 stitches

Row 1: YO knit all stitches, turn

Row 2: YO knit all stitches, turn

Repeat Rows 1 and 2 until the shawl reaches the desired size

Weave in ends.

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If you end up trying this pattern yourself, please be sure to send me a picture or link. I would love to see what you have done!

I definitely keep a busy lifestyle with all of these projects. I have even managed to keep up with some of my drawing (if you curious about my other art blog, please visit dnartcorner.wordpress.com). Keeping up with all of these knitting projects and little art drawings is a choice I make every day. These activities keep my mind active and my hands busy. They bring peace to my life when things around me can seem hectic and stressful. These hobbies do not add to my stress, they relieve it.

I will always seek out new ideas and inspirations. It what drives my passion for creativity and keeps me sane. So what’s on the next horizon? I’ll give you a hint:

Think Spinning…

Until next time knitters ~

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Long overdue update. Plus new first-time sock project underway!

Gosh! I just realized today that it’s been well over a¬†month since my last post! This by no way indicates that I have stopped knitting altogether. Quite the contrary! I have been knitting my nights and weekends away. Last time, I had spoken that I had¬†completed my first lace scarf. Since then, I have been wearing it a lot¬†and receiving many compliments on it. It was well worth the effort to try lace knitting again. Perhaps I will do another lace project in the future, but for now I have my plate full with knitting projects that are already in the works.

Here is brief recap on what you missed while I was away:

3 little Easter Cable Cup Cozy’s
(or Cosy if you are in the UK)

Easter Cozy

This was a fun little project that I completed as gifts for Easter. This pattern worked up super fast and was super fun! This is also a great pattern to try if you never knitted cables before. The pattern for the is a free Ravelry download. Here is the link to download the “Cable Cup Cozy”¬†by Jessica Biscoe.

Fuzzy Garter Stitch Infinity Scarf

Garter Stitch Infinity Scarf

To pass the time while taking a long trip out to the Gurnee, IL area, I wanted to work on a no-thinking type of project. I looked up some patterns online, but most of them needed an internet connection to view them so I struck out on my own to create heavily modified pattern inspired by fellow Ravelry member Andrea Sanchez’s pattern Garter Stitch Eternity Scarf. Here is my modified version:

CO 150 – join
Row 1-6: Knit 1 row , Purl 1 row
Row 7-9: Knit
Row 10-15: Knit 1 row , Purl 1 row
Row 16-18: Knit
Row 19-24: Knit 1 row , Purl 1 row
Row 25: BO 150
Finish: weave in ends

Novelty Moebius 

Novelty Mobius

This little scarf came about because I wanted something to wear on Easter. With little time and just one skein of novelty yarn, I created this little pattern and gave it a little twist at the end. Thus the Novelty Moebius was born! At the moment my hand scribbled paper is lying at the bottom of my knitting, but I promised to post this pattern soon. This was so much fun that I created a second one in blue but alas I have no picture to post.

First-ever Baby Cardigan

I will be the first to admit that I have been totally intimidated to create my first sweater. As opportunity would have it, I ran across this awesome baby cardi pattern in Spring 2014 edition of Creative Knitting magazine titled “Take it From the Top cardi”¬†by Carri Hammett. This pattern was designed to created from the top-down exclusively¬†for first-timers. There were plenty of instructions included with the pattern that made knitting this cute pint-sized sweater a breeze. This knitted up rather quickly (minus the projects I sneaked in between while making this cardi) and I was super-pleased with the results. To compliment the baby cardigan, I found this awesome baby headband pattern. Here is the link to the free pattern:¬†“Spring” Baby Headband” by¬†Amy Andersen.

First ever pair of Socks using the Magic Loop Method

Magic Loop Socks

As I eluded in the title of this post, I will be embarking on another first for me. I am taking a vacation to South Dakota where I plan to tackle my first pair of knitted socks! I found this great¬†tutorial on YouTube that explained step-by-step the process of knitting socks using the Magic loop method. There are 7 videos in all. I loved what I saw so much, I purchased the pattern through Ravelry from Staci Perry of ‚ÄúVeryPink‚ÄĚ.¬†Staci’s teaching style and patterns are great for beginners. I am so excited to try out magic loop sock pattern! Here is the first video and link to the pattern:

Learn to Knit Magic Loop Socks by Staci Perry

To view more videos in this series, click here.

Thanks for taking the time to read this long post. Stay tuned as I hope to post more pictures of my sock project.

Until next time…

Success! My first lace scarf is complete!

Whoo hoo! In just two short weeks I started and finished my first lace scarf!

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This is the very same pattern I attempted over the summer, but failed miserably. I learned that hard way that if you use a “life-line” when working with lace patterns, it will save you from having to frog (undo) all of your hard work back to the beginning.

As a refresher, a “life-line” is a scrap piece of yarn threaded through one row in your project. It acts as a safety net if you make a mistake. If you do make a mistake, you just insert you needle along the life-line and undo all the stitches up to that row. You will still lose some of your work, but at least you don’t have to start back at the beginning. Plus, if you put in a life-line every couple of rows you won’t lose that much.

But of course, I didn’t use any life-lines last¬†June. I was more than halfway finished with the pattern and made one mistake and had to start over. At that time I was so dis-heartened that I never attempted this pattern again until now.

imageSo it is with pride that I show off my beautiful new spring scarf, just in time for upcoming birthday parties and Easter events! This scarf is made with the gorgeous lace yarn I picked out in the beginning of March along with a new set of Knitter’s Pride Dreamz knitting needles (size 11). The yarn is a washable sport-weight merino wool from Lorna‚Äôs Laces called ‚ÄúPassion‚ÄĚ and ¬†was awesome to work with. This was the first time I worked with expensive yarn and absolutely love the results! The yarn was well worth the moo-la$$ I dished out for it and recommend it to anyone.

In case you are curious about ¬†the pattern I used, it is titled¬†“One Row Lace Scarf” by Truvid which can be found on Ravelry. For your convenience here is link to the pattern¬†in case you want to try this one out for yourself:

One Row Lace Scarf Pattern by Truvid

The pattern worked up fairly fast (at least for me – most¬†knitters¬†are much faster) and ¬†I only made one mistake along the way. This was a record for me! Lucky for me, I was pretty adamant in putting life-lines every couple of rows ūüôā

Anyway, I wanted to make this scarf extra long, so I knitted the pattern until the scarf measure 80 inches unblocked.image To add some nice detailing to the edges, I took the extra time to cut 48 strands of yarn (one for each stitch on both sides) and added coordinating glass beads to the ends of the strands. I then folded each strand in half and tied through each stitch on both ends.

Since this was my first time using premium yarn, I took extra care to properly block my finished garment. Blocking was something I avoided in the past and never really had to do since I primarily worked with acrylic yarn. To insure I did this right, I scoured the net and found many resources that explained the blocking process.

With towels, t-pins and no-rinse wool wash, I was ready to block my lovely scarf. I followed the instructions on the no-rinse wool wash and soaked my scarf for 15 minutes. I was careful not to handle the scarf too much¬†so I wouldn’t damage the fibers.

After draining the water, I gently squeezed excess water from the garment and laid it on a towel rolled it up and stepped on it (no kidding). I then carefully stretched the scarf on the long towels I had laid out on the floor in my living room ¬†and began measuring and pinning it along the sides. I measured along the way to make sure I didn’t over-stretch the scarf. The measured width of my scarf ended up being 6 inches x 108 inches long blocked (without the tails). I let my scarf dry overnight and into the next day to insure it was completely dry.

I un-pinned my scarf last night and took pictures just as the sun was setting. Ah! How wonderful! This was a very rewarding project and I can’t wait to wear it this upcoming weekend! Thanks for taking the time to read this post and feel free to leave comments or ask questions. Until next project…

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Springtime Placemats Complete, plus a sneak peak into my next project…

Happy Monday everyone! Today I am feeling good about the progress I made over the weekend. I spring cleaned around the house. Washed blankets, sheets, fluffed pillows, cleaned closets; you name it, we probably did it.

Along with all that spring cleaning, I finally put the finishing touches on my Springtime placemats. Yeah!

In case I didn’t say so before, these mats were inspired by these two cute little owls you see pictured above. Owls are all the rage these days and am definitely in love with these two. Aren’t they adorable?

Anyway, I technically finished these on Friday, but I didn’t get around to washing and blocking these until Saturday. Sunday¬†they were freshly laid out on the table in all their glory!

Now that my Springtime placemats are done now I can finally (without guilt) start on my lace scarf I had waiting in the wings. Here is a sneak peek at what I have accomplished last night…

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Gorgeous, isn’t it? Well, I will post more details about this scarf when complete so I will just have to keep you in suspense about the awesome yarn this is made with and the pattern I chose.

In the meantime, happy knitting!

Until next time…

Success! Green Shawl is done!

imageHey everybody! Exciting news (at least for me). After nearly one year and some very slow knitting, I have finally finished my lovely green shawl! Several posts ago, I mentioned that I pulled this project out of deep hibernation and finally put myself to the task of finishing this little green monster.

I think I also eluded previously that this shawl pattern normally zooms right by, but I think this type of yarn was making it more difficult for me to add a lace border.

Despite all the frogging and re-knitting I did on this shawl, I absolutely love the results! It light enough for spring-like weather, but warm enough to ward off the seemingly never-ending winter chill. Here is some photos of me wearing my shawl in honor of St. Patrick’s Day yesterday:

In case you want to try this shawl for yourself, here is a video of the basic pattern without the border:

Thank you for everyone that encouraged me to finish this. Now it’s time to finish up those springtime placemats!

Stay tuned…

Finished another custom order

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This is just a quick update folks. Just wanted to share that I completed my fifth custom order this past week. This time the order consisted of two more basic cowls in black. This is ironic twist of fate since I just completed a single custom order that was also a basic black cowl for the same customer. It seems lately that no sooner when I finish one custom order, another one is surprisingly waiting in the wings. By no means am I complaining. Getting some compensatioin to feed my knitting hobby is always a nice bonus. Plus, I am very flattered that my fellow coworkers and friends think my work is good enough to give away as gifts or to wear themselves.

On another quick update, I keep working on my green shawl that I started last March before I put it in cold storage.
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Working on the shawl lace border has been both relaxing and frustrating experience at the same time. Unlike my very first knitted shawl that I also completed with a lace border, this one is giving me some problems. Either my first shawl was a complete fluke where I never had to frog any sections, or the yarn I chose for the second shawl project could be culprit. Either way I keep hacking at it; one little section at a time.

On the bright side, I learned my lesson with my attempted lace scarf over the summer. All lace work needs life lines installed in several intervals. Now that I know this, frogging sections have become less of a heartache since I only have to frog back so far.

Well, time to get back to knitting…

Introducing a “New” Corner

Craft Corner

As promised, I am introducing a brand-new corner! Introducing my new “Craft Corner”!

I decided during my recent absence from blogging that I should not just limit my blog to posting traditional art only. Creativity comes in many forms and can fill up the space of my days equal to creating any art.

During my absence, I created home-made party decorations and have been knitting like crazy! These activities take the same amount of creative energy as I would going about creating a drawing or Zentangle tile. Knitting is considered to be a fiber art form and crafting falls into a less traditional art. So I decided to take one area of my blog to dedicate space to these styles of art.

In this corner you will find all non-traditional art from fiber art included knitted projects to creative projects like home-made decorations, creative crafting projects and more!

I look forward to filling up this new area with future projects, but in the meantime go ahead and check out my gallery of past projects.

Til’ next post….

Blogging to be resumed

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Today I realized it’s an anniversary of sorts. What anniversary could I possibly be referring to? The anniversary of my last post.

Yep, that’s right! Today I am celebrating my absolute laziness and inability to post anything for two months! Yeah!

Even though I haven’t posted anything in quite awhile, it doesn’t mean I haven’t done anything creative in all that time. It’s quite the opposite! I have designed and created party decorations , I have been knitting like crazy and through it all still incorporating my favorite way to relax-Zentangle!

So as of today I decided it was finally time to get back to blogging. Because of my recent creative bursts, new and exciting things are in store for my blog.

An updated theme has been added that gives my blog a more visual look to each entry so you can find your favorite posts more easily.

I will also be adding a new area to my blog called “Craft Corner” where I will begin to post all the “other” creative projects I work on.

Last, but not least, I will resume my self-imposed “One Zentangle a Day” challenge!

On a final note, thank you for sticking with me during my absence and I look forward to updating you on my future endeavors.

Until my next post…

Continental Knitting Method Rocks!

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Okay gang,

I am back with a second post since picking up the needles again after more than a year and sorry to report that I am more than slightly frustrated with my attempts at knitting with needles. Suffice to say it has not be going well. I should have started a new project right away when I was highly motivated after my first baby blanket made with needles, but I let loom knitting distract me- my bad.

So it occurred that maybe my old learning-to-knit with needles books just wasn’t going to cut it anymore that I really need to learn from someone. Well, it’s cold out there and I wasn’t about to gallivant around town trying to find a knitting group or teacher willing to teach me for free. My budget is a little tight after all the holiday spending that occurred…

Anyway, so here it in the beginning of February and I am in need to learn some knitting techniques. Well, welcome to the land of digital technology! I don’t know why it didn’t dawn on me before, but there is a whole lot of people out there that like to make home-video tutorials and most of them can be found on YouTube. Whoo-hoo! I don’t have to leave the house- yeah for me!

Now I found a new way to be addicted to the computer LOL. While I was searching through all the different knitting tutorials trying to dissect what I have been doing wrong, I stumbled across a demonstration of continental style knitting. What an eye-opener! It mimicked the movements of crochet and seemed so much easier to learn. This style of knitting made so much sense to me! Now I had an easy ‘almost’ hands-on way to learn knitting. Missed a step? Simply back-up the video and re-watch what was missed. Don’t like the teacher? Find a new one! They won’t even know you left them. ūüôā

YouTube proved to be the savior of my knitting journey. True, I now have to start all-over to learn how to handle the needles and stitches I am familiar with using continental style knitting but this seems so worth it! So before I finish this post, I thought I would leave you with one my favorite continental knitting tutorials I found on YouTube:

Thanks for visiting!

Editors Note:¬†This entry was transferred¬†from a dead blog site¬†to this new WordPress site -no one ever visited the old one ūüė¶ ¬†¬†So here is to new beginnings…

My first knitted blanket

greenbaby2Well, it’s official. I’m a knit-wit. I never considered myself a knitter by any means. I would always try to teach myself to learn, but would find the diagrams in my learning-to-knit books confusing or I would get really aggravated when I dropped a stitch. I would eventually retreat to my safe world of crochet out of shame and frustration. Sure I could have joined some knitting group and tried to learn, but I was to shy or too proud to admit that I didn’t know what the hell I was doing and ask for help.

So I put my knitting needles away for a number of years until one day my best friend announced she was pregnant. I was so ecstatic at the news that I knew I wanted to make her something special. Now my friend was already an excellent fellow crocheter and was already working on making things for her little bun in the oven. I didn’t want to give her something that she could easily make herself so I took up my knitting needle once again and attempted my first blanket ever. Up until now, I never completed any of knitting projects I tried to make when I was a young.

181086_small_best_fitTo start, I dug through all of my old vintage books and found a really old ‘Baby’s First Blanket’ pattern from Boye’s¬†“I Taught Myself Knitting” (1988)¬†booklet. This was ¬†a very simple project to start out with that I was fairly confident that I could do it in enough time. Being that I have been an avid crocheter since 1987, suffice to say I have built a rather significant yarn stash. It wasn’t hard for me to find the perfect yarn color based on the colors my friend was building the baby’s room around- lime green. The yarn was actually a vintage yarn from the 70’s that I had laying around for long time.

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I began the project at the beginning of mid-July and as you can see, thirty days later, I have completed my very first project ever! To complete my gift to my friend for her baby shower, I picked up this cute baby giraffe to go with the blanket- isn’t he the cutest? The day of the baby shower and the unveiling of this blanket was met with many compliments and most importantly made my friend was very grateful for the handmade gift.

This project was definitely  a confidence builder to the point that I wanted to start this blog. Even though I have crocheted most of my life, I have become very bored with crochet and always preferred the look of knitting but never had the confidence to stick with it. So the purpose of this blog is to chronicle my knitting journey as I pick up new projects and skills and share what I have learn with any readers that are interested in my journey.

Hopefully I will stay motivated- wish me luck!

Editors Note: This entry was transferred from a dead blog site¬†to this new WordPress site -no one ever visited the old one ūüė¶ ¬†¬†So here is to new beginnings…