Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Aaahhh...this is the life!

Spring is finally here...

Malabrigo March: FO #8 & #9

After I finished the shawl I was going through Malabrigo March withdrawals.  I needed a Mal March project on the needles.  With three more days left I had to knit something!

I had been planning to knit another Phoebe Hat and had yarn for it but I just wasn't sure about the colorway.  In my moment of need I caved...wound the yarn and started knitting.  This is The Phoebe Hat by Terri Kruse using Malabrigo Worsted in the Noviembre colorway.  Here's a picture as knitted.  This hat is shallow so I think I'm going to frog down to below the first garter section and add one more four row bee stitch pattern repeat to each section.

My next project came out of sheer desperation to have Mal March project on the needles.  I decided to browse my Ravelry favorites and found Sweaters for Purse Sized Tissue Packets by kmkat.  This is a really quick project and uses up all those sock yarn remnants.  I knitted mine from leftover Malabrigo Sock yarn that I had from my War of the Roses Shawl.  And...I think I may have enough to knit a second one!

My Shalom is done and I think it's big.  ::sigh::  I do still need to find buttons for it.  I think I'm just gonna sew on buttons and suck it up.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Malabrigo March: FO #7

Malabrigo March coming to an end.  I'm winding down on my projects for this event.
This is my next to last FO for Mal March (hopefully).   War of the Roses shawl by Debbie O'Neill was knit with Malabrigo Sock in the Archangel colorway (one of my favorite!).  This dye lot had very little variegation which I was a little disappointed with but worked out well for the shawl.  This shawl is so light and airy...perfect for spring and summer - if it ever gets here.  But I think my favorite thing about this shawl is the flower design!  It's truly amazing how designers can come up with these kind of things. 

I'm still plugging away at my Shalom.  The Terron colorway pooled really bad so I decided to rip out the sleeves and make the sweater short sleeved.  I would have liked to have knit a pair of socks for Mal March but I guess that will have to wait.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

I give up!

Here's what our backyard looked like one week ago.  This is what the backyard looked like this morning.

I started shoveling the driveway and after about twenty minutes I gave up.  The snow was just too wet and heavy.  I decided to move on to the compulsory shoveling and just do the sidewalk.  This is the first time this winter I wished we had a snow blower.  Have I mentioned that I can't wait for the real Spring to get here?

Friday, March 19, 2010

Malabrigo March: FO #6

Yay!  Another Mal March project off the needles!  I am so in love with this one!  Maybe because it just snowed a couple of inches between last night and today.  Though the snow will probably all be gone before Sunday, it will still be cold enough for me to get some good wear out of this shawl(ette).  This is another test knit for a fellow Malabrigo Junkie, Belmondo (no link since it's still in test mode), by Tori Gurbisz.  This is her first (soon-to-be) published pattern.  My Belmondo was knit with Malabrigo Twist (my new favorite Mal) in Zinc.  How can something so simple be so feminine?  I think that's what I love about this shawl.

Remember this?

Remember this from exactly one week ago?  This morning's view is this...

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Monday, March 15, 2010

Malabrigo March: FO #5

One more Malabrigo March project finished!  I love these little mitts.  These are Susie's Reading Mitts by Janelle Masters, knit using Malabrigo Silky Merino in the Atardecer colorway.  The great thing about these mitts is that it takes just over 100 yards for the small size.  These are also nice because though these are colors I would not typically wear...they suit me just fine for an accessory item.
Seamus was kind enough to model the mitts for me, even without coercion.  :-)

Believe it or not, I have another Shalom Cardigan on the needles!  This one will be for me.  I'm modifying this one for worsted weight yarn.  I'll post FOs when it's all done.  And...I have some exciting news but I'll have to write about that later.  Maybe when those are done, too.  ;-)

Friday, March 12, 2010

Malabrigo March: FO #3 & #4

The needles are still on fire for Malabrigo March and I still can't get enough of it.  These are the latest finished knits.
Shalom Cardigan by Meghan McFarLane: This will be a sample at my LYS, Mew Mew's Yarn Shop.  I was in the store one day and the owner, Sue, mentioned the Malabrigo Chunky was not selling well.  I told her she needs to have a sample knit out of one of the variegated yarns.  The variegated colorways are so intimidating when they are in their skeins but less so when they are viewed caked or knitted up. So, she asked if I would knit something and we decided on a quick, free pattern.  This is Malabrigo Worsted in Col China colorway.

And these fun things are slippers, Bigfoot / Ogre Slippers by Cheryl Andrews knit in Malabrigo Worsted, Marron oscurro colorway.  Take note...your toes do not go inside of the knitted toes.  :-)  And the best thing about them...they're for me!

That's it for now.  I do have my fifth Malabrigo March project on the needles and I picked up some yarn, just today at Mew Mew's, for another Phoebe Hat.

Are you there, Spring? It's me, Amy.

This has been one of the coldest and longest winters that I can remember.  Today was such a nice reprieve with temperatures in the 50s (Fahrenheit). And the snow has finally melted off the flagstone patio out back.  To celebrate this reprieve, the boys (and girls) and I took a nice long walk on the path behind our house.
 Soon we will be able to enjoy this area every morning.

The girls posing after a nice dip in the creek.

The boys making discoveries as we plod along on our adventure.
And finally, a picnic in the back yard.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Malabrigo March: FO #1 & #2

Though it's Malabrigo March, I always want to call it March Madness.  Can you tell I live with an avid NCAA basketball fan?  One year I made all my picks by the length of the team's name.  I had San Antonio going to the Final Four.  They didn't even make it to the Sweet 16, so needless to say, I didn't get far in the pool...but I digress.  :-)

This is my first year participating in Malabrigo March.  It's intimidating.  In fact, the whole Malabrigo Junkies group, on Ravelry, can be intimidating.  They're very organized and have hard and fast rules regarding their threads and KALs.  I think I've got the hang of it all now.  :-)  And  I'm actually co-leading one of the KALs this year, the Saroyan.  I finished my first two Malabrigo March projects in three days!  The needles have been on fire!  They're small projects but done, none the less.

This is Saroyan by Liz Abinante knit in Malabrigo Alpaca Merino, Velvet Grapes.  Heavenly soft is the best way to describe this knit.  The yarn felt so nice on the hands while I was knitting and the variegation worked out just lovely.  I'm not a fan of knitting scarves at all.  But it didn't even dawn on me, until I was blocking it, that I actually just knit a scarf.  This scarf will be loved and get much use.

The second finished project is the Phoebe Hat.  This is a test knit for a fellow Junkie so I don't have a link for it as  of yet.  This is a shallow beret/slouchy hat knit in Malabrigo Worsted, Brisa.  This hat will be gifted to friend's aunt with cancer.  I hope it fits and she likes the colors.
Edited to add pattern and author links: The Phoebe Hat by Terri Kruse


One of my favorite blogs to read is JCasa*handmade.  I first stumbled on her blog when I saw pictures of her twin girls in the Twins group on Flickr.  I find her stuff (not just knitting) so inspiring.  My latest hand knit is one of Jennifer Casa's patterns, Neighborly with a Twist.  I started this little number the Saturday before the Olympic closing ceremonies and was hoping I could finish it up in order to include it in my Ravelympics FOs...but alas...I fretted about a contrasting color.  The color I ended up with was the one I wanted to use from the very beginning but was afraid it would bleed on to the undyed yarn.  With some testing and a dash of vinegar...all ended well.  I can't believe I actually finished a present before the actual birthday party!  This is for my friend's daughter (who also knits and appreciates all hand knits received).  The button is perfect!  It came from my late grandmother's vintage button stash.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Ravelympics - Winter 2010

As with the official Olympic events, the closing ceremonies marks the end of Ravelympics.  I started the Winter 2010 Ravelympics with low expectations.  I just wanted to finish two WIPs that were languishing on the needles for a year.  I didn't want the stress of trying to finish multiple projects or even one complicated pattern.  But of course, as one project comes off the needles, another one is itching to get on.  I did challenge myself with each of the projects finished and entered in this year's Ravelympics.

The picture below is just a quick collage of the projects that were finished...
Clockwise from the top left: Sedum by Jane Richmond, Nola's Mitts (Pitts' Mitts) by Brittany Tyler, Olympic Storm (Storm Cloud Shawlette) by Hanna Breetz , Orchids and Fairy Lights by tiny owl knits

Sedum - Challenge:  finish it!
Nola's Mitts - Challenge:  fair isle or stranded knitting
Olympic Storm - Challenge: knitting a project with that yarn (!)
Orchids and Fairy Lights - Challenge: bobbles and cables

And look how cute the medals are that they give out!

Now the fun begins!  Malabrigo March is here and I've already got FOUR projects slated for the month.