May 312011
 

It’s almost too hot to sit outside in the afternoons this week.  Gone are the days of wanting to knit mittens and woolen hats.  What to do?  My answer this week: stuffed animals and dolls.

This one I started last July.  It’s based on an Edward Gorey drawing that I love. 

I put this away last fall because I just couldn’t get the dress right.  This week I had an epiphany as to how to do it so back onto the needles it went.  I’m happy with it now and am currently working on the hair.

The other current one is based on a drawing that my husband did.

I’ve been wanting to translate his drawing to yarn for a long time now and finally settled on this one.  I love how simple the shape is but it’s still expressive and has details that really make it.

It looks a little more fetal alien than monster right now but once he gets his face finished it’ll look better, I swear.

I had to special order the oval shaped safety eyes but I think it’ll be worth it.  I hope to write the pattern for this one so I’ll try a version with embroidered eyes next and see it that’ll work.

Ahh, knitting items with no trying on of warm garments.  Now to figure out what to knit for the next three months….

May 212011
 

I love insects.  I never really acknowledged that until adulthood, but I really have been in awe of bugs since I was a kid.  When I was little I could spend forever catching grasshoppers and moths, looking them over, and watching them move about. This fascination arose again once I had children.  The house that our family bought in 2009 has a huge Box Elder tree on the side which, of course, is filled with Box Elder bugs.  My son Atticus, three at the time, was so excited by these bugs that he’d shriek with joy every time we saw one.  What fun to be so excited by something so little and seemingly ordinary.

This week I caught Beetle Queen Conquers Tokyo on TV.  This short but sweet documentary explores Japan’s obsession with insects.  I loved this and went to bed thinking about bugs.  I dreamt about bugs.  I woke up thinking about bugs and instantly knew that I needed to work these little insects into my next knitting project.

I had already started this little cotton sundress for the baby.  The pattern is Shades of Summer.  This designer has so many cute patterns for little girls.  Her sample in the pattern has little button embellishments along the bodice.  I loved the look but I knew I wanted something different.  I started embroidering little bugs on it today and I really like the way it looks so far (I especially like the caterpillar!).  There will be bigger insects along the bottom hem.  I think.  We’ll see what it looks like when I get there.

Next up is another insect inspired knit.  I dyed these skeins yesterday and am now trying to decide which and how many to use for the toy that I have brewing in my head.

I’m getting over a particularly nasty case of broncitous, so I took this as a good excuse to not do much today aside from sitting on the porch, knitting, and watching the bugs fly/crawl/scuttle around.  Lots of good inspiration outside today.  So many things to knit, so little time.  I’ll always make time for the bugs, though.

 May 21, 2011  dyeing, knitting, WIP Tagged with: , , , , , ,  1 Response »
May 182011
 

Oh, linen stitch, how I love you.  I remember first coming across this woven-looking stitch in a knitting-pattern-a-day calender years ago.  I was infatuated with this stitch like nothing before.  Aside from a few dishcloths, though, I don’t think I ever made anything with it.

Until now.  Summer is obviously barreling down on us here.  Last week’s rains brought leaves to every tree and new growth everywhere imaginable.  I even have sprouts in the vegetable garden!  Instead of bracing for those 90 degree days of June and July, I’m daydreaming about cool breezy evenings.  To me, nothing beats mid-summer walks at dusk, enjoying the break in the heat and the sun.

With these cool periods in mind I made this shawlette.  The stitch is actually half linen stitch, meaning every other row is plain stockinette.  This combined with the larger needles in relation to the yarn weight creates a nice open fabric perfect for allowing maximum breathability while being just warm enough to shake off a light chill.

Instructions are given for the smallest size (shown in the photo).  Feel free to keep on adding length if you like something a little larger or more drapey.

The Details:

Yarn: fingering weight wool or blend of your choice
Yardage: at least 260yds, plus at least 60yds contrasting color for the edging
: 22sts/4 inches in half linen stitch
Suggested needle size: US size 8 for the shawl, US size 6 for the edging
Finished measurements:  approximately 46″ across the top edge
Price: $4

Find this pattern on Ravelry