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Archive for February 2009

Made with <3

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I am utterly disgusted with the project that I was working on for a friend’s twin girls that are due this Friday. I was going to make two pairs of the baby ballerina socks from Drops as seen below.


Who can resist such an adorable project, right? I actually knitted TWO of these in different yarns before I threw in the towel. This is the second attempt with some alterations to the pattern. Looks ok from the front, right?

The problem becomes more obvious from the side view.

It took a freaking long time to make them and I think they are really ugly and ill-fitting. I think that the way the sole is shaped is either off, or not translated correctly. If I had time and patience, I could probably work out the issue, but I hated the damn socks by the time I was done with the second one.

I’m going to toss them and make a couple of pumpkin hats for her girls to wear in the fall. She’ll probably appreciate a handknit more then anyways. Everyone always gives new parents a ton of baby clothes, and they always give them the small sizes. If your babies grow fast or are tall like mine, they end up wearing the clothes maybe once before they outgrow them. Seriously. My 7 month old is almost too tall for 12 month clothes already.

I’m starting the hats tonight since I was doing some essential knitting lately. I took the kids to the indoor playground today and a grand time was had by all.  Thank god for these little parks during the Minnesota winters.The place was packed to the rafters full with kids trying to burn off some steam of being stuck inside for so long.

I even got a little time to knit in between treks to the log tunnel and fishing pond. My oldest has lost at least 3 pairs of gloves already this year. I should have known better and just knitted him mittens in the fall. He still loves handknits, which is soooo heartwarming as both a knitter and a mom. I’m comfortable enough with knitting now that the projects I choose are to challenge myself, but sometimes its the basic ability to provide warmth and function in my handknits that makes me so happy that I learned how to knit.

Aidan’s Mittens
Pattern: My own
Yarn: Cascade 220 Wool
Needles: US 5 circular

Notes: These are super simple mittens, but if anyone is interested here is the pattern. They are meant to fit an 8-10 year old.
1. Cast on 32 stitches.
2. Work in 1×1 rib for 2 inches.
3. Work in st stitch for 1 inch.
4. Work thumb gusset until there are 11 stitches between markers. Place thumb stitches on scrap yarn.
5. Work body of mitten for 2 inches.
6. Work decreases until 6 stitches remain. Pull yarn through remaining stitches and weave in end.
7. Pick up stitches on thumb, adding an extra stitch at each side of thumb gap, and twisting the stitches before after knitting.
8. Work for 1.5 inches, then decrease until 6 stitches remain. Pull yarn through remaining stitches and weave in end.
9. Weave in tail from cast on.
10. Make a crochet chain to attach mittens together to string through coat.


Written by Milwaukee Knit Chick

February 23, 2009 at 12:46 am

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Knit-Out 2009

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On Valentine’s Day we headed out to the Mall of America to bring our oldest, Aidan, to Nickelodeon Universe as a reward for all the hard work he’s put into his schoolwork and therapy. Much to my surprise, we arrived to one of the largest crowds that I have ever seen at the Mall! We couldn’t figure out why it was so crowded until we got to the main rotunda and found this.

So while my husband and Aidan went on the rides, Jameson and I cruised the fiber booths and took lots of pictures.

The crowds were pretty thick all day, and they had some really cool giveaways such as a ginormous yarn bag from Lion Brand Yarn and a free 10th anniversary edition of Knit N’ Style magazine.

And all the major national yarn brands had booths showing their newest products. Red Heart was giving away some free patterns and kind of felt a little out of place. The displays and patterns felt very granny-esque in comparison to the rest of the show. Didn’t they get the memo that a younger crowd of whippersnappers are knitting these days? I mean really, mannequin heads with beanies? What’s next, a Barbie doll toilet paper cozy?

Red Heart Booth

The Lion Brand Yarn booth was more relevant to today’s knitter. I have a love/hate relationship with Lion Brand yarn. I think that much of their synthetic yarn is overpriced and of poor quality. And let’s face it, they’re probably the main enabler of novelty yarn knitting in the U.S. But on the other hand, they really seem to be branching out with new natural and luxury blends. I guess I don’t see a lot of incentive to buy it other than the fact that at least you can buy Lion Yarn at JoAnns with their discount coupons.

I have to admit that it was really cool to see the full spectrum of colors for the newer blends and luxury yarns. If it hadn’t been so crowded, I would have been brave enough to take closeup pictures. Maybe I’ll try out one of their new lines since they were giving out these.

The Caron booth had a contest  going on and free patterns. I really liked the feel of some of their new line of Eco-Yarns. All the brands had new eco-friendly yarns made from recycled material, but Caron’s felt the softest.

There were a lot of free workshops available at the two smaller rotundas in the mall, but I hadn’t brought any knitting with me.

And while there wasn’t any fiber for sale, a few of the local yarn stores had booths such as my favorite, The Yarnery.

And the Yarn Garage had some cool displays.

I keep meaning to check out the Yarn Garage, but its kind of a hike since its in Rosemount, a southern suburb of the Twin Cities. I’ll have to stop in before we move this summer.

All in all, it was a fun event to slowly wander around with Jameson in his stroller. I’ll have to make an effort to go to the next yarn expo in my area that actually sells fiber.

Written by Milwaukee Knit Chick

February 21, 2009 at 12:52 pm


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As you may remember, I recently made a blanket for my niece, Hattie, who was born a few weeks ago.  I washed it twice today with a little boost of bleach hoping to get the blue tint out of the white sections. It didn’t really do much good, and the yarn started to disintegrate!!!! It literally fell apart in my hands as I was examining it, so into the trash it went.

I guess I should be glad that it didn’t happen after I gave the blanket to them. Has anyone ever had an old acrylic yarn fall apart on them? It just gives me more incentive to use natural fibers.

We went to my niece Hattie’s christening today, and the other gift I made to replace the blanket went over very well.

Hattie’s Shrug
Yarn: Cascade 220 Wool
Needles: US 5 circular

Notes: What an easy and fun knit! It was really interesting to see how this came together, row by row. I’ve heard horror stories of Bliss’ patterns running large, but I didn’t run into that problem. The shrug was exactly the size it should have been.

I did have a bit of difficulty seaming the sides because of the way the stitches morph along the seam. I’ll probably make another of these in the future, but in a cotton next time. My sister-in-law loves the color orange, not a color I would usually choose for an infant, but I like how it turned out. Gotta love how vivid Cascade yarns look in natural light. Delish!

Written by Milwaukee Knit Chick

February 9, 2009 at 1:04 am