Posts Tagged ‘Purl Bee’

06
Jan

What Should I Learn Next?

Written by Sarah. Posted in brioche, crochet, granny square, knits, poll, technique

While you might be under the impression that I am a Master Knitter (TM) that knows everything there is to know about everything, that is not the case. In actuality, I don’t know that much about anything but I can give you really good directions to the pedestrian crossing of the Williamsburg bridge (stay on South 6th for three blocks and turn left at Bedford) and I have a fairly extensive knowledge of Mad Men story arcs. I know  a thing or two about knitting as well. But there is still more to learn!

grannysquarebrioche

New year, new skill, right? I’m torn between two things that I really want to learn but I’m having trouble deciding which to tackle first. I’ve sworn I’d learn to crochet for the past two years. Maybe 2015 is actually going to be the time that I make my first granny square. I’ve also been dreaming of making a brioche scarf for a long time but I’ve been way to scared to try it.

So I need your help! Voting ends Friday 11:59pm EST! Help me pick!

granny square image via Meet Me at Mikes / two color brioche cowl via Purl Bee

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13
Mar

FO: Fluted Cowl

Written by Sarah. Posted in DIY, FO, gift, knits

I don’t often knit for other people. That probably sounds selfish but every sweater pattern I like, I want to wear. I’ve also found it tough to make sure things fit for someone who isn’t standing in front of me. Mostly, I like to wear the things that I put time into. I should really break that habit since I’m a process knitter. I could really be working on anything for anybody and be happy. But I mainly knit for myself.

Well I made this cowl and it wasn’t for me.

fluted cowl

A few weeks ago, Jon’s grandmother saw a hat that I made (pattern coming soon!) and she just loved it. She was asking me a bunch of questions about it. She also asked me to give her a recipe for cookies that I’d baked and I was just so flattered that Jon’s grandmother who makes that delicious Israeli coffee meringue cake was asking me for a recipe, I just about died. After she left, Jon turned to me and said, “You should really knit something for my grandma. She’d really like it. Her birthday’s coming up. I can buy the yarn.”

To which I replied, OKAY. (I mean, he’s such a good boychick, am I right?!)

fluted cowl 2

I had a few ideas in mind but I needed something that was simple and quick since I had about a week to make the whole thing. I decided on the Purl Bee Fluted Cowl which is freaking gorgeous. (I love the drama of the sample on their site!) And I used Purl Soho’s new Supersoft Merino which is the squooshiest, softest, most delicious yarn ever. (You can probably tell that since the photos where I’m modeling it it just looks like a big blob of yarn porn. It’s fantastic.) This is the second thing I’ve knit with the peacock colorway. It’s fantastic.

fluted cowl 3

It took me a long time to get used to the stitch pattern but it’s simple. It’s hard to tell where you left off just by looking at it. I think most of my trouble came knitting on size 17 needles. (And then I went back to knitting my colorwork sweater on size 3s and, boy, were my hands confused! It’s like after you ride a bike for a really long time and then try walking but your legs still want to pedal.) I decided to cast on 128 stitches for a shorter cowl since I didn’t have time to make the longer version. Shorter seemed more practical, too. I was terrified I’d twist the stitches when I joined in the round. But I didn’t! I really love how both sides are different but work together. I really want to make one for myself. It’s so soft and warm!

Happy birthday to Jon’s grandmother! I hope she wears the cowl in good health (as my grandpa would say).

Do you like to knit for other people or yourself? Have you tried out the Super Soft Merino?

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24
Oct

FO: Wedding Tie

Written by Sarah. Posted in knits, life, style, tie

My favorite part of Katie’s wedding (besides the romance and wine!) was seeing all of my friends together, all grown up. We are a big group and we are unbelievably close. We are all successful and adult-like and therefore we have all moved around the east coast to follow our dreams. Of course, when we get together, it’s like we never spent months apart which is fantastic.

As everyone was getting ready for the ceremony after a morning of splashing around in the hotel pool and causing a ruckus in the biggest Target I’ve ever seen (all par for the course for us), I started to get all misty seeing everyone in their grown-up suits and dresses, getting ready for our first friend wedding. Here we all were, we had changed in age but we hadn’t really changed over the years.

The moment really came to a head for me when Jon was putting on his tie. It had become a group effort because I knit the tie, mostly in the car on the ride down. But, of course, I had run out of yarn and my efforts to block it an hour before the wedding using the hotel iron had been for naught. So we enlisted my friend slash haberdasher Lam to help us squeeze every inch out of the tie so that Jon could wear it. The other boys scrambled around offering their own spare ties and sunglasses and style tips. And my ladies love him, too! Staying uncomfortably close to my favorite girlfriends, making fun of Jodie for her steady diet of Lunchables and string cheese, and gossiping with the bridesmaids about high school drama.

Seeing my long-time bros help my man get ready really made me verklempt! So much love!

The pattern for the tie is from the Purl Bee. It’s super simple if not unbearably repetatitve. The yarn I ran out of is Lion Brand’s LB Collection Baby Alpaca. After wearing it to the wedding, I picked up and knit straight black for another 4-5″ to make a more complete tie so he could wear it to another wedding! Love is in the air, am I right? It looked a bit more comfortable.

Jon looking dapper, me looking like it’s time to take off these heels!

The knit tie is totally awesome. I think knitting should be part of every aspect of my life so knitted accessories are a MUST

Tie 2.0 at Jess and Matt’s wedding. Note the pinwheel.

Ok, actually, my favorite part of the wedding was when we did the hora to “Take Me Home” but that’s story for another post…

Ever knit a tie? Tedious or terrific?

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24
Aug

FO: Baby Kimono

Written by Sarah. Posted in baby, design, DIY, gift, sewing, style

Last week Jon’s nephew (who received this blanket when he was born) turned 1! He is practically a real person now. I thought I’d try out my new sewing skillz (with a z, yes) to make my little boyfriend a birthday present.

This was my second sewing project after the skirt and I challenged myself here but I think I’m really starting to get the hang of this sewing thing! Big pats on the back to myself.

The pattern is the Purl Bee’s newborn kimono. I made some adjustments in terms of size (obviously, he’s not a newborn anymore…more on that in another post) and I tackled a French seam for the first time (it wasn’t perfect but that’s life!). The bias tape was a bigger challenge than expected but I like how it turned out. And it took me four times but I sewed a snap on for the first time. Those little bastards are tricky.

I love the organic fabric from Cloud9. (I think I bought a 1/2 yd more than the pattern called for since I was adjusting the size and I was terrified I’d cut something wrong!) Two of Jon’s brother’s favorite things are fishing and Japan so the sail boat kimono was perfect for his son.

Not too shabby for a beginner, huh? Any tips on size adjustments? Isn’t sewing for babies fun?

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09
Jul

Lattice WIP, etc

Written by Sarah. Posted in design, knits, life, photos, style, summer, tank top, travel, yarn

I’ve been so busy over the past month yet I’ve done so much knitting! But I haven’t had any time to write about it. Really strange! I really need to do some catching up, though. So let’s start with what I’m working on right now.

As soon as I saw the pattern for the Cap Sleeve Lattice Top on the Purl Bee, I was obsessed. I couldn’t stop thinking about it. I was right in the middle of a pair of socks but I decided that I’d put them aside and run down to Purl Soho and buy some Madeline Tosh. I mean, there are only so many months that I can wear this thing and summer’s halfway over! And the pattern was written for MadTosh. How could I say no? I was leaving for a weekend trip to western Maryland so it would be easy road trip knitting. (Jon and I had never gone one a road trip before! It was very exciting and we saw a lot of cows and also a lot of signs about Jesus. Also, there are NO PARKING signs on the shoulders of I-78 in Pennsylvania. Who is parking there that they needed to go through so much trouble?)

Also, I generally hate summer knitwear. I like so few designs with short sleeves. I just think that they look awkward or I think, “Oh that would be really cute with long sleeves like a normal sweater!” Listen, I need cardigans and sweaters in the summer. It’s cold in restaurants and offices. And I don’t feel ashamed that I like having these things all year round and I don’t feel obligated to cast on tee shirts and the like just because the temperature is up. (Wow, am I a grouchy knitter or what?) This one, though, I think it’s really elegant and beautiful. Maybe I’m about to be converted!

 

Here’s what happened. I knit about five inches of the first side over the eight hours we were in the car. And I was pretty pleased with it although I would have liked something a little more challenging than stockinette. Then I got home and I started looking on Ravelry and I found diannabolical’s project page. I really like her style and I loved how her lattice top turned out. I really appreciate that it seems to fit her well. I think that some of the ones I’ve seen are sitting a little low and I’d like the lattice to start above where my bra ends. I also like shirts that are long so I don’t feel like they’re riding up all of the time. It’s one of my biggest pet peeves. But diannabolical knit hers in the round and then put half on waste yarn and worked the top one half at a time, adjusting amount of bound off stitches.

Well, why didn’t I think to knit it in the round! I remembered thinking to myself how I wished it was knit in the round when I cast on but I was rushing around about the trip and didn’t bother putting my mind into the math. So I had that dilemma that I’m so often faced with: frog eight hours of work or finish the top and deal with the unsatisfactory construction forever. I agonized over it for about five minutes and then was reminded that I’ve been known to rip things out no matter how far along they are. So I did.

I cast on again, this time with 215 stitches (size medium calls for 109 stitches per side so I figured 218 total and subtracted 2 stitches which would be lost in seaming the two sides together. I went with 3 stitches in the end to keep the ribbing pattern consistent) and began again in the round. Of course, now I’m only about maybe eight inches into the body but I’m going to have something I’m very happy with. I often cut corners and deal with imperfections so I’m giving myself a big pat on the back for going back and doing things the right way.

Like I said, it’s not terribly exciting right now since it’s about a million rows of stockinette. But I push forward.

I am using Madeline Tosh Sport in Calligraphy for the body. The top lattice will be in Espadrilles because I’m really into this neon trend that’s going on this summer. Not that I’ll ever stop wearing neon when it goes out of fashion and not that I wasn’t wearing it in high school before it was cool (Disclaimer: I’m not cool nor was I ever).

Honestly, I’m really second-guessing my color choices. I feel like the pale pink of the Calligraphy is really nice but I’m not sure how it’s going to play with the neon pink up top. I keep trusting my gut, though, because it seemed like a really good choice when I bought it and I’d thought a lot about putting the neon up top and a neutral in the body for a while. I think I just get nervous especially when I have nothing else to focus on since I’m just doing rows and rows and rows of stockinette stitch.

Basically,

I’ve got more WIPs on my needles right now and I’ll show them off soon! How do you feel about summer knitting? Or have you given it up for the sewing machine?

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