My tiny baby Nate isn’t so tiny anymore, and he’s outgrowing clothes left and right. I tend to get sticker shock when I shop for baby clothes, and there’s no worse offender than the commercially made knit sweater – I just can’t stomach paying so much for a piece of clothing that will only last him a month or three.
Baby knits are satisfying to me for a number of reasons. First, I get to stash bust like a crazy person. The finished garment is small, small enough to only require 3-5 skeins of whatever I have lying around. If I see an accidental grouping of eye-catching colors in the bottom of a yarn bin, they may end up in a teeny sweater.
Second, the actual knitting is fast. As long as I keep focused, I can churn out a sweater in just a couple of days and get it right onto a (little) body. Success!
Finally, and somewhat shamefully, the fit doesn’t have to be as accurate as for me. Babies don’t necessarily need set-in sleeves or short row shaping, and oversized knits are pretty charming too. I secretly love making a sweater for a few months in the future and then unceremoniously stuffing Nate into it. So cozy! So warm!
Oh, buttery-soft Billow, I’ve been waiting for you for ages.
I’ve had the prototype skein of Billow on my desk for months, and it’s easily the most-petted yarn sample in my office. It’s soft yet sturdy, knits up quickly, and makes you look like The Fanciest Knitter in the World when all you’re actually doing is miles of stockinette.
This line is a completely new concept for Knit Picks – the 8-ply thick-and-thin structure gives you a yarn that knits up into a slightly slubby, richly textured fabric. We wanted to show off that texture to best effect, and consequently Billow was a challenge regarding color selection. We wanted to come up with softly saturated colors that came together unexpectedly in a fresh palette, and we also were trying to include a good range of neutrals (both browns and greys) in order to make the line more versatile. It’s a great mix of colors, and they work together in surprising ways but can also stand on their own in solid-color projects.
I have all sorts of knitting projects hanging out in the shadows these days. I’ve gotten into the habit of picking up my Hue Shift Afghan
and knitting a few rows, then setting it down to work an inch or so on a
pair of socks and then I get some tea and pick up my second Foreign Corresponden’ts Scarf and fiddle around with that until I get bored. Wash, rinse, repeat. There’s
really no end in sight for any of these projects, and that’s ok, but I
was definitely craving a short project that I could start and finish in
one day. I found this Flamingo pattern by Susan B Anderson and decided to give it a whirl.
Spring is finally starting to hint at its arrival here in the
northwest. There are buds on all of the trees, and it’s actually almost
light out when I’m driving to work! This means that cold-weather
knitting is winding down, and it’s time to satisfy the need for
something a bit lighter. Since I was also eager to try out the amazing
new yarn Billow, I figured that a nice open-front cardigan would be just the thing for Spring!
Ever since we got the first samples of Billow, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on it.
I found out a week ago that a wonderful, dear-to-me-friend would be
visiting Seattle this weekend and my first thought was that I definitely
wanted to knit her a little present. However, a week isn’t much time to
whip a present up and I wanted to make sure it was something she would
want to wear in the mild climes of Arizona. So I began trawling through
my magical Ravelry queue and found Lexy Lu’s Foreign Correspondent’s Scarf.
I loved the lace pattern, the simple repeate and the fact that I could
easily turn it into a cowl if I didn’t have time to knit a full scarf.
I just can’t get over HOW SOFT THIS YARN IS! I’ve been looking forward
to our very first shipment of our brand new yarn, Billow, since the day
we decided to add it to our lineup for 2013. I love the soft, luscious
color palette, the wonderfully tactile thick-and-thin strand and… did I
mention the color palette?!
As with everyone else in the office, I ooo’d & aww’d over Billow. The colors were beautiful and it’s so so soft! But when it came time for me to choose a project – I was stumped. My coworkers were hard at work on blankets and sweaters but I wanted something smaller that I could keep next to my skin at all times – so cowls seemed to be the most obvious choice!
I opted to finally do the famous GAP-tastic Cowl – it’s been something in my queue for a very long time. I chose my favorite color of Billow - Spearmint – and got to work.
When our latest yarn Billow first arrived to the office, I was in the same boat as all of my crafty coworkers: completely head-over-heals, need to have it in my life, in love with this yarn. Unfortunately, this caused me great anxiety as I am very much a one-at-a-time project kind of gal – but Billow was just so tempting! Considering I was going to break my “one project” rule for Billow (I have an in progress cowl on the needles), I methodically rummaged through my books and patterns looking for the perfect project.
my ultimate billow blanket, nestled nicely on top of my couch
the season for hearty soups and fresh-from-the-oven cookies which means
that my potholders have been doing double time the past few weeks. My
favorite hot pads are a handmade set in a bright green and cream cotton
yarn, double thick, square and the perfect size for grabbing as well as
acting as trivets. Unfortunately, they’ve been looking a little battered
and scarred with burns and melted chocolate that just won’t wash out
anymore. It was time for a new set! I grabbed a ball of Dishie Multi in Fig and a size G hook and started perusing Ravelry for a pattern.
Remember this guy?
Well, our little spokesbunny, Linus is doing well and getting into all
sorts of mischief, even in the colder weather we’ve been having. He
loves to race around outside when the sun is out and lounge around the
house when it’s blustery out.
Every four months or so Linus gets a
pretty major haircut because of the way his fur grows. He goes from
looking pretty impressive and regal one moment to rather sheepish (but
happy to be free of all that extra weight) the next! He just had his first shave of the new year this past weekend and he’s been frisking about the house
every since but it’s been SO COLD outside the last few days that he’s
been cooped up inside because I was worried he’d be too chilly without
his fur coat. He’s definitely been missing his weekend jaunts in the
garden and has started racing around the house and being generally
pretty pesky. Thus began the search for the perfect pet sweater pattern.