Upside-down Immie

I wanted to make Z a little shirt as soon as I saw some examples of it on Instagram. It’s called Immie Tee and it’s adorable. I had just the perfect purple: Pigeonroof Studios Super Sock in Orchid. immieThis color is amazing and it’s my first time working with this yarn. I’m loving it so far.

The top is supposed to be knit from the bottom up. Basically I’m using the lace, the numbers as a rough guide, and I’m working it from the top down instead. I want to make this as long as possible for Z and I wanted to make sure I wouldn’t run out of yarn. The lace is upside down, but it’s gorgeous both ways, so I don’t mind. This will likely be a little big in the chest, but bigger is better when it comes to speedily growing kiddos!

I might even have to make myself the adult version…

Gentle curve

I’m making some progress on my Togue Pond for the TTTKALtogueThere were a couple of snags along the way, and I do mean snags. When I was lovingly unraveling and washing and winding the yarn from a previous project I left them in the huge skeins formed from before. I had connected my ends with Russian joins so I had large hanks to work with. The larger one tangled when I was trying to wind it and I had to painstakingly wind it by hand, untangling it as I went. My knitting time has many baby interruptions and this took me about three days to complete, so that slowed knitting progress. That’s why there is a giant ball in the picture above rather than a lovely ball-wound cake of yarn. I wasn’t about to rewind it. I just wanted to knit.

It felt so good to just have the needles in my hands again and whip through the stockinette. I’m making the size 48″ with a smaller gauge to get me to about 36.5″ in the bust. My gauge is 5 sts per inch. I have to add an extra decrease to get to the right bust size. I think I could have gone down one more size in the pattern to get what I want, but I didn’t math correctly the first time. Yes, mathing is a verb for me sometimes.

Also, there is a slight color variation in the skeins that were used and the newer unused skein which I didn’t notice until I joined the older skein. It shows slightly in the picture above but you have to look for it. I’m thinking the yarn must have bled some during the washes and it will all even out when I block this. I hardly wore the previous garment so it couldn’t be from sun bleaching or excessive washing. I’m just going to go with it since no one would notice but me.

I think I need to cast on something new as well! I asked Z if she would wear this tee and first she said no, but I asked if she would wear it if it was purple and she said yes. I shall start a purple Immie Tee soon!

From the fella’s knitting queue

A couple of weeks ago when I said I didn’t know what to knit Matt immediately had some suggestions for me. Socks, sweater, or the navy arm warmers he’s been wanting. Of course he would have a list. The man has an insatiable appetite for hand knits. arm warmersThe yarn is something unpronounceable to me that I won in a holiday swap a few years back. While not really navy, it’s the closest I had in my stash. I don’t know if I’ve stated this publicly, but I might try to knit the whole summer from my stash. This would be a pretty big feat for me. I might have to allow an exception for a birthday yarn purchase mid-July, but this is my goal. I won’t go into the politics of maternity leave in the United States, but for most people it’s completely unpaid (I’m in this category) and it is requiring some definite budget discipline for us. Luckily I’ve spent years stashing like yarn was going out of style and I have a nice under-the-bed stashed yarn cave to choose from. arm warmers-4I am thinking of writing up this pattern when I get the time. I just did some hand charts on graph paper and went with it. I had to rip it a couple of times because I didn’t like the size first, then the way the chevron looked, but I’m satisfied with the finished result and it barely about 190 yards of fingering weight yarn. arm warmers-2Now to think of a name…It’s so hard to name things.

TTTKAL progress coming soon!

Yarn, reclaimed

Guess what begins today? I’m very excited to participate in the Tops, Tees, and Tanks Knitalong (TTTKAL) put on by Shannon. I almost forgot it was happening since I’ve been behind on blog reading, but I saw stirrings about it on Instagram and started planning. This year I want to make a Togue Pond. It’s a simple tank with a bit of a hi-lo style. I don’t have Aran weight linen like the pattern calls for, but I did happen to have a top I’ve been dying to rip out to reclaim the yarn. I made a Curve Hem Top when I was pregnant with Zooey and I never liked it post-maternity. The yarn is Brown Sheep Cotton Fleece (80% cotton, 20% merino) in a worsted weight. It was knit at 5 sts per inch for that top and I’m just going to make a size 48″ in Togue Pond to get the 36″ at my gauge. I had a leftover ball so I could start today, but I needed to rip out the top and freshen the used yarn a bit. reclaim-5
First I wound it around my swift as I ripped it out. Then I tied up the hanks. reclaim-2I put them in some water with wool wash for a nice soak. reclaim-3And after an hour or so I pulled them out, rolled them up in a towel like I would with a finished knit, and I whacked the hanks against the bathtub to straighten them out a bit. They’re drying now. In the meantime, I cast on with the unused ball I had in my stash. reclaim-4I also have finished arm warmers to show soon. They’re blocked and just awaiting a photograph to do them justice. Getting some of my knitting mojo back!

 

Little feet keep growing

kiddo kicks-2Last winter Z outgrew all of her hand knit socks, so I’m working on getting a few pairs ready for next winter. The pattern is my Kiddo Kicks and I’m making the 3-5 year size for her since she turns three this summer. Yikes! Where does the time go?!kiddo kicks-3
The majority of the yarn is Shibui Sock in Sand and some long ago leftover Louet Gems Pearl Fingering weight in Brown for the top of the cuff. Zooey did not want to put these on to try yet, but she did want them in her drawer, so I’ll take that as a good sign. I think about 3 more pairs (making a total of 5) would do her well for the next cold season. For Charlotte I will probably whip up some tube socks since her feet will be growing at lightning speed.

Somehow I’ve temporarily morphed into a monogamous knitter! When I finished Breezy these socks were the only thing left on my needles and when I finished them I started some arm warmers for Matt. As soon as I said I didn’t know what to knit he supplied me with several requests including a new sweater, socks, or often requested arm warmers. I can always count on him to have a list of knits that he wants. I decided arm warmers would be the most interesting right now since I could quickly design them. After a little revision I settled on something he and I both like and I’ll have them finished to show off soon.

Sweater for a post-baby body

breezyMy second Breezy Cardigan is finished. I just did a quick steam blocking on this since I wanted to put this on while the weather is still cool enough in the early mornings and evenings to wear it. breezy-2I used Rowan Felted Tweed in Watery. This yarn is classified as DK so I did this on a size 5 needle and got a 5 st to the inch gauge. I did some algebra to figure out how many stitches should be in each section. Since this pattern provides a schematic with measurements all you have to do is take the number of inches for a section and multiply by the number of stitches in your gauge to get the number for each section. If you want a 12″ sleeve you multiply by 5 sts per inch and know that you’ll need 60 sts around your sleeve to get that measurement. Sometimes the altered gauge has numbers pretty close to another size in the pattern and I just follow the numbers for that size. breezy-3Loose fitted knits are my friend right now. Postpartum bodies are squishy weird things that take time to recover. It can be a slap in the face when 99% of your clothes don’t fit. I’m still rocking some maternity jeans since they’re the only ones that fit. It took me two years to lose all the baby weight from Zooey. I plan on working at things a little faster this time since I gained less weight with Charlotte, but in the meantime I’m trying to stay patient and positive. Healing is hard enough at this point. breezy-4Breezy is a wonderful pattern. It’s simple to execute and I LOVE wearing this design. The blanket-like fronts are excellent for cuddling small babies and toddlers as well. Zooey often asks to “get in my sweater” and I love snuggling with her in that way. breezy-5So go knit one, already!

Cover up those baby butts

Oh hai.

Oh hai.

I’m so pleased that all the knits from my last post are going to good homes. The overstuffed cedar chest in my house is breathing a sigh of relief as well. In the meantime I was knitting on some baby pants in the background. Though I’m thisclose to finishing Breezy (maybe 1.5 inches of ribbing on the collar), we had a cold night last night and are having a few more coming up. I know knitting for newborns only lasts 5 minutes, but since these just took a day and some leftover sock yarn to whip up, isn’t that worth it? baby pantsThese are inspired by Ze Tiny Pants, a free pattern on Ravelry. I changed most of it and tried to take some good notes this time because I always regret when I haven’t done that for myself. I added short rows to the butt for the curve. Hard to see, but I tried to capture it here: baby pants-5I did mirrored increases on the front around the center two stitches. baby pants-4I used some leftover Vice Carnal in Corpses Christi and some Anzula Squishy in Teal. This used 39.2 grams of fingering weight yarn, or about 160 yards of yarn. I’ve been bad about keeping up with remaining yarn weights after finishing projects so I don’t know exactly how much I used of either yarn. baby pants-3I feel happy knowing she has a snuggly wool layer to put over her sleepers for the next few nights. We are cosleeping and that means no blankets above adult waists, and no swaddling for baby. I’ve heard rumors of a colder than usual May and June, so maybe she will actually wear these for awhile.