A vacation, from good taste?

While visiting my sister and knitting coach in South Dakota last week I started leafing through her library of knitting books and stumbled upon Boutique Knits.  I’d packed some Cascade Yarns baby alpaca that I’d gotten on sale and found a pattern that I thought would suit it perfectly.  I may have thought wrong.  

The sideways grand cloche looked perfectly elegant knit in grey. It’s a very unique pattern with a ribbed body, flat top and faux side cable.  In my ambition to finish a vacation knit, I cast on with reckless abandon.  It wasn’t until the next day that I finished up, tried it on, and realized…the look was less boutique and more, beehive.  Maybe it’s the pattern, and maybe it’s the color, but I have to admit I’m having a touch of knitter’s remorse.

So the real question is, to frog or not to frog? 

Frog (verb):  to rip out a knitted project. 

Sure, this sunny yellow yarn was a bargain, but does it really want to stay a hat, or be frogged into something new.  I’m on the fence, so I’m asking for your help. 

Thumbs up or thumbs down?  Be honest, be brutal.  I can take it.

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The Beach Bum Bag

A new pattern from the show – a recycled cotton purse with bamboo handles that belongs at the beach.  Perfect for a summer vacation project, it knits up quickly and the cotton blend makes it strong and easy to care for. 

This bag is made with Red Heart’s eco cotton yarn.  The cotton is reclaimed from the t-shirt manufacturing process and recycled into this soft, tweedy yarn. Paired with bamboo handles, this purse is pure eco-chic.

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Here’s the pattern link – The Beach Bum Bag.  Pick a color, pick up your sticks, and get knitting.  And be prepared to make multiples, your friends are bound to want one too.  Happy summer knitting!

Welcome Baby Stella!

This beautiful girl was born to one of my dearest friends just a few weeks ago.  Stella’s arrival is a very big deal, so I picked a special yarn and set to work making her a baby blanket. 

This is another great pattern from pickles, called the Bring it On Baby Blanket.  A very simple wavy lace pattern is perfectly suited to beginners. It’s an easy repetitive knit you can pick up and set down easily. This project lived on my coffee table so I could work on it any time I had a few minutes free. 

Stella’s blanket was made with my new favorite yarn – Debbie Bliss Eco Aran.  It’s 100% organic cotton and it’s fair trade, meaning no eco-guilt (though I’m probably the only one who experiences that). 

This yarn is soft and squishy and feels great to knit with.  Plus, it comes in a huge variety of colors.  Call it sympathy cravings, but the soft pastel colors in this baby blanket made me crave ice cream the whole time I was knitting it.

I should have just enough of the green and white left to make a striped baby hat, but plan to use this yarn for more baby projects in the future.  This is not a paid endorsement, but if Debbie wants to send me some complimentary skeins, she should feel free to do so. 

Welcome to the world baby Stella, and remember: you’re never to old to enjoy a good blankie.

The Edith Hat

A new pattern for my lovely cousins who are just as much fun as this hat.    I knit it in two yarns to get the sizing and gauge right and frankly, I love them both.  The hat on the left is in Berocco Comfort and the right is Bernat tots in cotton.  And, the best part, there’s no seaming!  Knit on circulars and DPNs this knits up fast and is really fun to wear. 

Just to be clear,  my scooter was parked – no children were harmed in the photographing of this hat.  I just love a spunky girl in a pixie earflap hat.  Here’s the link to the ravelry pattern…..  The Edith Hat

Enjoy!

Happy Birthday America

Independence Day comes once a year, so you’d better dress for it.  This year America turned 234 and this sweater, hand knit by my grandmother, turned 50. (though it doesn’t look a day over 39)  During my last visit we found not only the sweater, but the original pattern from the April 1959 issue of Women’s Day magazine.  This was it’s description:

Crisp-looking sweaters designed in Europe and exclusive to America for Woman’s Day readers.  V-Necked Cardigan with a soft, feminine look is knitted with Fleisher’s De Luxe Sock and Sport Yarn.  Sleeves are three-quarter length. 

Pictures don’t do justice to the fine knitting in this sweater.  I’ve been inspired to put ‘knit an heirloom sweater’ on my list of things to do.   It’s nice to know that knitting is not a lost art, and sharing that art with my grandmother has been one of my favorite things about learning to knit.  So Happy Birthday America.  Thank you for freedom and for 99 cent red lipstick.