Wednesday, June 29, 2011

WIP Wednesday #23 - Here Come the Owls!

Happy Wednesday!

Yes, I'm back on the wagon with my Ode to Hedwig (Owls) sweater.

If you recall, the sweater initially knit up really quickly. I found great joy in knitting the bulky yarn on big needles.

Then there was a dark day of panic when it seemed I had knit an entire sleeve incorrectly. Fortunately, I was looking at an old version of the pattern and everything was ok, phew!

Somehow though, that little scare threw me off my game. I got to the point of joining all the pieces in the round for the yoke and... stalled. The weather got warm so I used that as one of my entirely plausible excuses. Of course, I also had important gift and summer projects that needed knitting (see I'm full of great excuses : ). So there the sweater sat. In a sad and ugly reusable grocery bag because it is now wayyyy to big for any of my project bags. Ignored in the corner of the room. For about a month.

Until last Wednesday when I took it all to my Craft Night! With a little moral support from my friends, I read the pattern instructions and joined it all together (twice, because the first time I used a circ that was too big ; ). And you know what? It was so stupidly easy. It is now knitting up a treat and I feel back in control of this project. I can knit a yoked sweater. I CAN do it.


So, my only problem now is that two people have asked if I am knitting it for my little boy. He's three! Does it really look that small? Yikes!

Don't forget to check out all the progress being made on a plethora of posts linked through Tami's blog. But, be sure to come back here on Friday for an FO with a side order of cuteness overdose. Don't say you haven't been warned!

Cheers, Nikki

Friday, June 24, 2011

FO Friday #15 - A Turtle for a Tot

Happy Friday everyone! I'm excited about today because it is the start of the weekend and because I don't have to feel bad about ordering pizza for dinner tonight. Why is it that I always feel like I'm lazy and a bad mother when I order pizza on regular weeknights but think it is totally acceptable on a Friday? Anyone else feel that way? No? Huh, this is another one of those strange "family values" my parents impressed upon me isn't it.

Any hoo...

I'm very excited to present this week's Finished Object because I'm a little kind of really proud of the way it turned out. Two of my best friends had babies last year, all within a few weeks of Doodlebug. The first baby turned one last week. I can't believe it! When has the year gone?

His mum is a knitter and I suspected she would appreciate a handmade gift. (She most definitely did not let me down).

I had never knitted a toy before but could not resist the FREE pattern for Sheldon the most adorable turtle.

There were lots of interesting parts to his construction. The slipped stitch shell is probably one of the coolest things I have ever made. I loved the icord bind  to join his shell and ... undershell? I used magic loop for his body and limbs.

Each step of the pattern was very clear with lots of tips. It is pretty neat that his shell comes off for washing.

Check out some of the little costumes and clothes that the designer and others have come up with for him. I really like the idea of making him as a gift with this baby blanket. Super cute, right?
And it's all free!

I made him out of superwash for ease of cleaning but I think I made a mistake in using wool. Even though I went down 2 needle sizes, it still stretches and you can see the stuffing a little is some places if you look carefully. I think cotton yarn would probably be a better choice for knitted toys.

A Turtle for Tommy
Pattern: Sheldon by Ruth Homrighaus
Ivy Brambles Superwash Worsted (colour wild blueberries) 
Tools used:
US 5/3.5mm needles
crochet hook
synthetic stuffing
9mm safety eyes
darning needle

Here is the birthday boy enjoying his pressie:

Then, of course, Doodlebug had to get in on the action.
Until finally (after a minute and a half) they were ready to move onto more exciting things... 
"Ooh look, it's a table"

Poor Sheldon : (

Don't miss out on the chance to get your weekend of to the right start by checking out more FO's through Tami's Amis!

Cheers, Nikki

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

WIP Wednesday #22 - Summer Sizzle

Happy Wednesday everyone!

My kidlets and I got home last Friday and I'm finally feel back to normal. The suitcases are put away, the laundry is done and best of all Summer has finally arrived!

After my short funk, I have really been enjoying knitting again. I'm not getting as much done as in the winter, of course, but I am excited about my projects.

I don't have too much to show you today... because I have thing lined up for the next several Fridays! Yippee!!

I am almost done with "Dear Doodlebug", a sun hat for my almost one year old. I am using the free pattern Dear Liza. It is working out to be a very cute and clever pattern.

The brim is done as a folded picot edge with a three-needle join (just like a three-needle bind off... only don't bind off!). The result is a lovely looking edge to the hat and a brim that is a little firmer than the rest of the hat and sits nicely.

View of brim on the inside of the hat

Right side view

The colour and eyelet pattern are giving the hat very a cute strawberry appearance.

I am looking forward to finishing it at Craft Night this evening. I think it might be a little big. And before you ask... no, I didn't do a swatch (bad, bad Nikki). Although having said that, many people report the pattern running big, which was why I knit the 6-12 month size.

Given it is a cotton yarn would it make sense to wash and dry it a bit to shrink it up? I haven't knit much with cotton so I would love some advice.

Hope you are able to come back on Friday when I will reveal my secret project from last week. A very cute birthday gift for my favourite one year old boy : )

Don't forget there are plenty more WIP's to check out through Tami's blog. Happy clicking!

Cheers, Nikki

extraneous photo of my cuties last week on Vancouver Island : )

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

WIP Wednesday #21 ...sort of

Happy Wednesday everybody!!

I am writing you a short note while I am visiting my parents in Vancouver. I am happy to report that I feel like I am getting my knitting mojo back. WOO HOO!!
I have no pictures to show because I have been working on a secret project that I will be able to blog about very soon.

But wait! Instead, I bring you a another this year's last hockey hijacked post. This town is going wild as we all hold our breath and wait for for the puck to drop tonight in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final. It has been 17 years since the Canucks have had a shot at the cup (also the year I graduated from high school - yikes!).

It has been a fun time to be in town.

I even got to go to the pub for some father-daughter bonding time to watch game 5 (thanks Mum!).

My family is ready to cheer tonight with all we've got. It has been a crazy ride to this point. The Canucks need all the support they can get ARE going to get it done tonight. 

"Go Coconuts Go" yells my Monkey

 Even Doodlebug is getting into it


Cheers, Nikki

(I promise to bring you more appropriate (and interesting) knitting content very soon - thanks for humouring me ) 

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

WIP Wednesday #20 - In a Funk

Happy Wednesday everyone.

I feel like I don't have a lot to show you this week. I haven't been getting much knitting done lately. Life has been been busier than usual is actual feeling a little out of control. I think that coupled with some warmer weather has caused me to lose some of my knitting mojo.

Fortunately, I did get some time to knit to and from Edmonton for the (amazingly awesome) U2 concert last week. It was a 3 hour trip each way (although I slept half of the way there - what a waste!).

I have finished the second sleeve on my Ode to Hedwig. It is all ready to be attached for the yoked top & OWLS! But, I seem to have stalled on it now. It's at a point where it's kind of huge to haul around, I need time when I can concentrate on the next step, it's a bulky wool sweater and it's June... hmmm, what other excuses can I justify myself with?

I have also made further strides with Twisted (my hat using the pattern Tinker). The cabling was driving me nuts but I have figured out how to do the cables without a cable needle (not sure if I am doing it in a "official" manner but I have made up a way that seems to be working fine) and now it is moving along quite nicely. I'm a little worried it's going to be on the small side but I have hope for blocking.

I have all these lovely projects with lovely wool lined up to go and I'm not really feeling motivated to do any of them. Instead, I've decided to make Doodlebug a cotton sun hat. I'm going to give Dear Liza a go.

Tomorrow the kids and I are off to Vancouver to see my parents for a week. The only bright side to the Canuck's horrifying loss on Monday is that I will be in town for Game 5 (of course my parents have already given their tickets to my brother, but we're not talking about that). I'm just excited to go down to our local pub and soak up some of the atmosphere!
super cute pic of my parents at Game 1

Don't forget to click on over to Tami's blog to see plenty of projects that are making more progress than mine.

Cheers, Nikki

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

WIP wednesday #19 - Fly By

Holy Cow. What a week! I feel like I am literally flying by the seat of my pants.

My hubby and I are off to Edmonton tonight to see U2. Woo Hoo!
Edmonton is about a 3 hour drive away and for the first time EVER we will be going without either of our kids. Yikes! I mean, Woo Hoo! OK, I've loving the idea of a night away but I'm mildly anxious to leave my baby (whose never had a bottle in her life) and my 3 year old with 2 sets of our poor unsuspecting and incredibly busy friends. Can I just say that I don't think I could make through the days without my two besties. We live very far from family and in some ways I feel that my two girlfriends have become the sisters I never had. I'm so, so grateful...

Any hoo... What am I supposed to be going on about? Oh, right, knitting!

I confess that not much has happened in that department, over the past week. On top of planning this night away and a trip to see my parents by myself (with the kids) next week, the sun has finally returned to our little corner of the world and we have been soaking up every second of it. Zoo, parks, picnics, you name it... oh wait, I'm still not talking about knitting.

I have started a new little project. I am making a set of hats for my husband's best friend's three kidlets.
Yarn for two boys and one girl

I just couldn't resist giving Wooly Wormhead's pattern Tinker a go.

I love how it is looking but I'll be honest all the cabling is a kind of a PITA.

I had trouble get the cables to really show in a photo. Trust me they are there.

It's going to be worth it though. (Remind me of that when I'm on hat #3)

Go on now and check out some post with some real knitting content through Tami's blog.

Game 1 tonight. Go Canucks!!

Cheers, Nikki