Baby Evelyn Mae’s Hat

Evelyn Mae Hickey

I got to be at another birth and it was an awfully special one, especially close to my heart. This little nugget joined our family almost a week ago and I was present for her first breath of Montana air. She was born right in her Mama and Papa’s peaceful bedroom, and she’s my niece Evelyn Mae. I am working on a blanket similar to the one I made for Baby Bill Jeff but with a different color scheme. I knit a bit during the labor, but I wasn’t working on the hat, that was complete and I had gifted it to Sarah that night, at our house, right after her water broke at our kitchen counter. We were having a bit of a surprise party for her because her birthday was only a few days later and we figured the weekend would be the best time. We were about an hour into the party when ~ “blammo” drenched drawers. We surprised her baby out! Or maybe Evelyn thought the party was for her.

We headed to her house, and I went along for the ride, as I’d planned to be her birth doula. Her midwife visited just to check heart rate, blood pressure and dilation. All looked well. Contractions hadn’t started just yet, so I headed back home for an hour, when Bryan texted me things were getting more serious. That didn’t take long.

Sarah and Sandhano

Sarah labored through the night with mighty gusto. Bryan was by her side the entire time and things went perfectly. Mama might still beg to differ, but I’m sure not for long. Sandhano (her midwife (and mine 4.5 years ago)) came back around 5:30 AM and Sarah was ready to push. 1.5 hours later she pushed her sweet baby out right before the light of the morn on October 22nd.

Start of Hat

Not sure how many stitches I cast on but I know that I just looked back at another ribbed hat for a babe I’d made before. I suppose I probably did somewhere near 60, of course some multiple of 4 as that is a requirement to make this pattern work. k2, p2 all the way around using size 6 circular needles. The variegated yarn I used was wool from Skyline Yarns purchased a couple of years ago, her Etsy shop has been empty for a while now, but I save it (hoard it) for special occasions…such as this one. I am promised the yarn shop will be back someday. The yarn pictured is sock yarn (fingering yarn) but just because it is “sock yarn” doesn’t mean it has to be used for socks only. In fact I’ve never completed a pair of socks…but I’m always on the lookout for pretty sock yarn.

Baby Hat  Baby Hat Again

This little hat is so tiny that I was asked if it was made for a hamster. Uncool. Hamsters don’t even wear hats.

I promise to share more photos and love just as soon as I complete the blanket. I’m 1/2 way there. Here is a snip of what it looks like (a bit before the 1/2 way mark) and Thanksgiving felt project my sister (Sloane’s Mama) and I are working on.

Ev's Blanket

Welcome to the world sweet Evelyn. We all adore you!

 

Hi Knitting Blog

I’ve been away from you, but definitely not away from my knitting. I’ve got a handful of projects for new babes coming into the world and for sweet babes already in the world. I have my sweater in a good place, just awaiting the assistance of the Knitting Jedi to finish up the hood. She is this woman that is probably in her 60s and she’s been knitting since she was 3 years old. I’m pretty sure she might know every single thing there is to know about knitting. My sweater has sleeves now though…I could conceivably wear it without the hood…but I kind of had my heart set on a hood.

Sleeve

Soon soon – the air is chilling – it is harder and harder to get out of my nice warm bed every morning. Pretty soon I’ll be all snuggled up in a nice warm sweater of my own creation.

I had a fun and very full summer. Each of the places I visit, in addition to checking out the local toy store, I’ve now found I need to find the local yarn shop. I made it back to the midwest for a visit and my sister and I had a couple of days sans our kiddos while Grandma and Grandpa spent some quality time with them. We found a couple of magical yarn shops that I hadn’t ever been to.

My Sister

Blankie Yarns

The first was Crafty Planet in Minneapolis. We decided since we had time we’d find the yarn I would use to make her baby a blanket and hat. Both will be featured in future posts. The blanket yarns are upon her shrinking lap (courtesy of Spud & Chloe). They had several yarns to choose from so it was pretty fun to look without distractions, they also had some pretty great fabric so we spent a LOT of time at Crafty Planet.

Then we got hungry and there was a tiny little restaurant that happened to be right around the corner. We actually did a GPS search for restaurants (pulled over on the side of the street) and we decided on our destination and we were about 20 feet from the parking lot. Probably didn’t really need the GPS to help us get there, actually, who am I kidding?, we did. This was my delicious lunch at Chimborazo.

Hungry

Now back to the yarn. The next stop was pretty much my dream come true. The only bad part about this entire place was the temperature and that was simply because it was 100+ degrees outside in the muggy muggy midwest. Borealis was the shop we sought out in St. Paul, MN. This was outside the front door and I think it ought to be their home page photo…just sayin’.

Borealis

I’m pretty into the idea of tagging things these days. My tags will unfortunately never be this awesome.

Rad

Street Corner

Heart

Now for the yummy inside of the store. I will mention this place is HUGE, it has 3 separate yarn rooms – an entire room for just sock yarn. If sock yarn is your ‘thing’ you will probably want to put it on your list of places to visit before you run out of yarn. Which poses the question does any knitter/crocheter ever run out of yarn? I recently told Jan that I hope I live long enough to use up all of my fabric and my yarn. She told me I would just buy more, so that was probably impossible.

 Chunky Worsted Weight Yarn Yummy

There is something about cubes full of yarn that makes my heart sing. I’m so happy they didn’t care that I was taking photos.

Wool Sock Yarn Green, Yellow, Cream

Don’t you just want to stick your entire arm right in the middle of this rainbow?

Blues Pinky Purps

KNIT

Just do it!

 

 

 

 

Full House – Full Life – Still 5 mins to Knit

Amy's Scarf

We’ve had a houseful of love for the past couple of weeks and we will for nearly a month into the future. Don’t get me wrong – that is the way I like my life – full of people and making constant memories. Really everyday feels like a special day – yesterday we decorated our tree – two days before we went and chopped it down. Even a venture to the mall (a place I detest) was fun with Simon and Gus – they got to see Santa and I got a couple of gifts while we were there. Everyday brings something new and exciting and it seems to fly by. The time I get to spend knitting isn’t always guaranteed, but whenever I have idle hands I pick up my needles. I tend to have several projects going at once…so I can always just take 5 minutes and accomplish something – a row or two on a blanket I’ve been working on for my baby niece – due in a week, a row on the Birthdaymas hat for my dad, a quick scarf for a sweet friend’s birthday (I can make one of those during a movie if I really set my mind to it) and I use super chunky yarn.

Orange Scarf

Amy took these photos – so I can’t take credit for their fabulousness. But, the orange scarf, I suppose I can take credit for. She and I took a photography class near the beginning of the year and you can see she’s got some talent just from these two photos. This scarf was a ‘whip it up quick’ project. I had a skein of chunky wool ease yarn that I’d picked up at Michael’s or Joann’s at some point – benefit to this yarn is that you can wash it and you don’t need to worry. To give it a bit of flare I knitted it on my size 15 metal needles and threw in some variegated sock yarn. I have a bundle of balls of sock yarn that I’m hanging on to for when I finally finish that first sock and get sock crazed. Not sure why I ever did a blog post about it, because now I have to finish it at some point, but I’m thinking about taking another class in the new year…that will motivate me to master the art of knitting socks. Some of that variegated Deborah Norville sock yarn is beautiful though so I’ve been tempted to throw it into a hat before as well. It is 50% superwash merino wool and 25% bamboo 25% nylon. It is really soft and also machine washable. I really love it and I’m sure I’d love it on my feet, but I also love it mixed into this scarf.

I decided I’d knit two rows and purl one row which gave this scarf the ribbed look it ended up with. I don’t have a pattern, I just made one up. I cast on 14 stitches to start and then just rolled with it. When I start a scarf, randomly, I just pull it apart near the beginning if I don’t care for the pattern I’ve created. So there you have it – a scarf.

So many gifts I want to make – so little time. Every 5 minutes spent knitting counts.

Baby Hats

Baker Yarn

I loved the way this handful of things all matched. Yarn-corn nuts-knitting bag from my sweet friend-cozy couch – ahhh! I’m making yet another hat for a doula client and I’m using some more of the yarn I got from Skyline Yarns . The doula client is less of a “client” and more of a friend so I wanted to make sure to use something special. This is a worsted weight superwash 100% wool yarn. Machine washable wool is the best! It says to knit with size 7-9 needles and I am using size 8 circular needles. I cast on 68 stitches to start this sweet little baby hat. Knit 2 Purl 2 round and round we go! It is still under construction as I type. This yarn makes a pretty amazing pattern, look at that beautiful stripe.

Variegated Yarn

I’m of course doing my favorite pattern – the good old ribbed hat. I love how stretchy they are and it just seems like a little person can get a little bit extra use out of a hat like this – it will fit for longer. I wonder what Karen used to dye this yarn, she dyes her yarns with all natural dyes – maybe carrots? Whatever it was – it looks delicious!

The second hat I wanted to make mention of, I whipped up in a couple of nights. It was for my last doula client and her sweet baby – Claira Rain – she was born a month ago (with the rain on April 30th) and I actually used the same yarn I used for the other Clara’s hat. It is special Skyline Yarn again but a bit lighter weight, sock yarn, fingering yarn.

Skyline Yarn Hat

This yarn called for size 3-5 needles. I used size 6 circular needles to knit this up. Same pattern knit 2, purl 2. I think I got a little bit slack when I decreased and closed up the top, I’ll have to look back at my old patterns when I close the hat I’m currently working on. It still looks pretty sweet on baby Claira’s head.

Claira and Ilsa Baby Claira

Look at that sweet little newbie and her pretty Mama. Knitting hats for new babies is quick and easy and so fun. I remember when my midwife knit a hat for Gussy while I was in labor, and it is one of my most favorite sentimental keepsakes ever. It goes on the top of our Christmas tree every year. Here is a photo of Gus in his baby hat 3 + years ago. Maybe some of the hats I knit will end as tree toppers? Who knows, what I do know is those babies will have warm little heads.

Gus Hat

Happy Knitting!

Yarn Cubby

Yarn Cubby

So I’ve never been the girl with 25 pairs of shoes…but boy did I find a way to fill this puppy up. I’m going to do whatever I possibly can to just keep my yarn in ONE of these and not go and get myself a second one. I best get to knitting! It is a shoe rack I found at Lowe’s in an attempt to find some shelving for my store. I stared at it for a bit and realized it would be the most perfect new home for all of my tasty yarn. I love being able to look at it and not have it buried at the bottom of a basket that I must dig through for inspiration. When I placed each skein/hank in its new home yesterday I was thinking about what I might use each of them for…so I’ve got all kinds of new project ideas up my sleeve. I’m thinking some felting is right around the corner.

Rainbow Blanket

In the meantime however, I’m still plugging away, when I have idle time, on this colorful blanket. I think I’ve finally decided that indeed it will be a blanket and I don’t think it will be much longer before I’ve used up the entire ball of yarn. My pattern (or lack there of) is just to knit, knit, knit creating a simple garter stitch throughout. I like to throw in some flavor every now and then with a few rows of knit two, purl two (k2, p2) making a ribbed pattern. I don’t have much of a rhyme or reason to when I add these “special rows” but I try and fold the blanket over to see if it is time for another row or three of variation.

Hiding

I asked a special someone to cozy up in the blanket this morning for a little photo shoot and this is what I got out of the deal. I was feeling a bit worried that the blanket wasn’t going to be wide enough but it seems to be just right for a 3 year old. Gussy asked me if it was for him on Sunday, “Mama is that for me? It is so cute!”

Peek Closed Eyes

He told me the blanket matched his arm warmers this morning. “How did you do that Mama?”

Well Goo – I did it on size 11 single pointed needles with a giant ball of variegated yarn!

Cozy Sock Yarn

I’ll leave you with a pretty view of some of the skeins of sock yarn that were gifted to me by my parents this past week when they visited. My collection really skyrocketed when they came to see us. Look at how nicely they fit right in their little cubby. Thanks for my bag full of birthday yarn Dad and Jan! I’m still in the same place with my socks that I was a few weeks ago, I’m the kind of girl that likes to keep my options wide open and I like to have at least 3 knitting projects going at once – I also like to be reading a few books at once to appease whatever mood I might be in.

I hope the next time I share something I’ll be done with my blanket and started on a brand new project. I’m close…so I don’t doubt it. Happy Knitting!

Weekend of Inspiration

Great Aunt Jean

We spent our weekend in Coeur D’Alene, ID with my sweet Great Aunt and Uncle. Now here is a master knitter! She’s 86 years old so doesn’t really do much knitting anymore, it makes her fingers go numb, but she’s got a lot of experience under her belt so during our visit I asked questions and wished the entire time that she lived closer (not just for knitting assistance of course). Our visit was sweet, my little boys got to spend some time with who they called Grandpa and Grandma. “I want to go back to Grandpa and Grandma’s house.” I mean they are Grandma and Grandpa after all, just not ours…but we like to take as many as we can get our hands on.

So I’ve got a few different projects in my bag these days, Aunt Jean is holding one of them above. She was teaching me how to increase and yo (yarn over). I don’t know how to do either of them and I wish I’d had a video camera…maybe I’ll have to take a trip back soon for another “lesson.” The project above is something – not sure what yet – I’m thinking a baby blanket. That is just a side project though, nothing too challenging just something to keep my hands busy when I want to turn my brain off.

sock start

This is the real project right now. I am attempting some socks for the first time. So here is the start on size 2 dpns (double pointed needles – look at that lingo!) or as Grandma refers to them “toothpicks”. This sock yarn is so pretty though. Thanks Jan! It is Premier Yarns, Deborah Norville Collection, Serenity Sock Weight. 50% Superwash Merino Wool, 25% Bamboo, and 25% Nylon and so soft.  The color on the label is Indigo and I’m just following the pattern inside the sock yarn label. I’ll share when I’m done. It is just a tiny taste of my birthday present that I mentioned previously (40 ish skeins of yarn coming in about 3 weeks).

I wished I’d been to the heel so I could get some assistance, but this is about all the further I made it while we were visiting.  According to Great Aunt Jean the hardest part is the heel, that reinforcement. Hopefully I actually finish this pair of socks, I know now why people buy their socks, and don’t knit them.

my first sock

Oh and I knit inside out for some reason? I don’t know what the deal is? So the reverse of this sock looks much better, but I didn’t take a photo of it for some reason? I’ll flip it when I’m ready to do the heel. I’m hoping one day I’ll have something that somewhat resembles Great Aunt Jean’s socks.

GA Jean's Socks

These are some socks she knitted herself (just one pair of about a million) using variegated yarn. She’s made argyles and all different kinds, she had a few examples to show me, along with probably 20 sweaters that she made for her grandchildren years ago (all of them amazingly beautiful)! So we had a really sweet visit and I was definitely inspired.

Oh and we stopped at several thrift shops, and at one hit the jackpot, tons of old knitting pattern books, 25 cents a piece! I am making a sweater next. Aunt Jean told me I should have probably started with a sweater…she thinks that would’ve been easier than socks.

Sock Close

Hopefully I’ll have a photo like this, of a sock I’ve knitted myself, very soon! Wish me luck!

Happy Knitting!

Another Ribbed Hat

Well the winter has brought inspiration for knitting but we’ve also been doing a lot of soaking at Hot Springs around Montana, so I haven’t been blogging a ton…here is something I just finished last week though. I was intending to make it for Mr. August (Gus – my 2.5 year old) but it ended up being a bit thinner than I’d like when stretched across his little head. So, we’re sending it to our sweet baby Clara, we thought she could use a little spring hat. You can see a sneak peek of her in the Checkerboard Scarf post.

Clara's Ribbed Hat

Here is the hat still under construction. I decided to make it ribbed again, I just really like the way they stretch. I ended up using some of my Skyline 100% Superwash Merino Wool – sport weight. It called for size 3-5 needles (which is good sock yarn (fingering yarn – I think that is correct?) but I’m not quite there yet) – I was told to attempt about 5 hats before I started on a pair of socks. I think my next project is actually going to be mittens though or maybe some leg warmers. I really heart leg warmers. I used size 6 circular needles to make this hat and finished it off with double pointed size 6 needles like usual. I cast on 80 stitches, but since I was using such tiny yarn and needles it ended up being a bit smaller than I’d anticipated. I just knit two, purled two the whole time. When I decreased I purled two together first, then I decreased two knits together and purled one in between. I finished completely by knitting two together until I could finish the top. This yarn also says to machine wash cold or hand wash, lay flat to dry – just FYI Nicole.

Ribbed Hat Stretch

I’ll be sure to post a photo of Clara adorning her hat as soon as I get one, in the meantime here is the hat stretched on Gussy’s little head.

Just a little taste of what’s to come below. We went to Elkhorn Hot Springs this past weekend so I started another hat with some yarn that I got from Loopy. I’m really liking the Ribbed pattern, I sort of created, so I’m going to make a couple more ribbed hats. We enjoyed some tasty bourbon whilst knitting in our cozy cabin, of course this was after playing in the snow all day and soaking in the hot springs. I think this hat will be for me? We’ll see.

yarn and bourbon

Happy Knitting!