FO: Something for Spring

It’s Friday! I have no real plans for the weekend and that makes me super happy. Today I thought I’d share a finished object to usher in the weekend. When I finished my Little Women cardigan I had 3 and a half skeins leftover and I didn’t know what to make with the leftovers. I loved this yarn a lot and had an epiphany that if I used larger needles I would have enough to make a top for myself and I was right! Here’s my Spring Tee and Jellybean, my constant shadow and my one grey hair that is determined to be featured in any photograph. Sigh…those greys are strong!
Summer Top
I pulled out my copy of The Knitter’s Handy Book of Top-Down Sweaters, did some math and some guessing (totally didn’t swatch on the larger needles) and just improvised a top. I even decided to do a cable cast-on at the neckline to give it more of a scoop/u neckline instead of a v neck. Who am I?! But I’ve made enough basic top-down sweaters to know what works, what doesn’t and what I like to knit. I probably could’ve made the sleeves a little bigger since I kept them short but they’re fine. This was just a total make it up as I go along after I cast-on 40 stitches with size 10.5 needles. I’m proud of myself for winging it.
Summer Top
The other thing I always second guess is length. I’ve got hips and a butt so I hate clingy tops but I like layering and didn’t want to make it too short and have a tank top hanging really low. Add in how much I wasn’t sure it would grow when I blocked it and I think in the end I got a good length for me and it is a perfect length to layer tops underneath. I’m sure I’ll pick up a long sleeve from Target in the fall to layer underneath this so it becomes a year round top. Side note, I really need to buy myself some blocking boards (perhaps that will be my birthday gift to myself?) because my hemline is slightly wonky since it got squished a little when I put it out to dry. Oops!
Summer Top
I really do love this yarn and hope that it wears well over time. But I’m pretty sure I’ll be wearing this top repeatedly all year long. Next up on my list? Finishing up my third hat, starting on same baby knits and finally working on that saddle shoulder sweater with stripes I want to make for summer. We might be taking family pics soon and I think the top I’ve envisioned in my head would be cute for photos. We shall see. What are you working on this weekend?

FO: Little Women Cardigan

Little Women Lillian cardigan
One of my  favorite books of all time is Little Women. I have sisters and I’m the youngest and it just always stuck with me when I was a kid. Plus I love all the movie versions. I haven’t read it in years but for Christmas my BFF Jess gave me this lovely illustrated version as one of my gifts and I just adore the cover. I think the colors seeped into my subconscious and made me order the Crystal Palace Panda Pearl yarn in Tropical Parrot because it was similar in color (minus the teal).
Crystal Palace Panda Pearl
I ordered this yarn without any real project in mind or without knowing how it would feel. It was on sale on Little Knits for 60% off. The skeins are typically $18.90 a piece and instead were marked down to $7.56 so I decided to give it a try – the description won me over. I’m so glad I did because it is the PERFECT spring/summer/fall yarn. It’s 53% Bamboo, 42% Merino Wool and 5% Silk and it feels so soft and light in your hands, it’s like a little cloud. The drape is also beautiful and the way the color worked up turned into a wonderful surprise with a slight sheen to it. I was sort of expecting stripes but instead I got this abstract camouflage print that I love. So when I got the wonderfully squishy hanks in the mail, I immediately decided the baby dress I was working on but realized I had twisted the join and didn’t care to cast on 188 stitches again could wait. I needed to make something with this squishy yarny goodness, but what?
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Ever since I made my cousin Safia the Lillian cardigan in this lovely green back in 2015 I’ve wanted one for myself. When she was visiting last month we talked about how much she loves that cardigan and wears it all the time. And I said to myself, I need to make myself a Lillian at some point and then I decided that I’d make it with this yarn but in a lighter, short sleeved version for spring and into summer. The end result is what I’m calling my Little Women Cardigan.
Little Women Lillian cardigan
It turned out exactly how I wanted it to in my mind. I made two small modifications: short, elbow length sleeves and since the yarn was much lighter and had lots of drape I opted out of a ribbed neckband and went with garter stitch instead. I think it was the right choice because ribbing would’ve just been too flimsy on this one.
Little Women Lillian cardigan
The cardigan has a deep green, pink, a peachy/muted orange and teal in it. It matches so many things in my wardrobe. And I can’t say enough how much I love how the color pools and creates this abstract pattern. To highlight the little bit of sheen in the yarn when I wore it to work this week I paired it with a pale pink tee with rose gold dots and a dark green pencil skirt. It wore well through the day and I had just a little bit of fuzz on the inside of the sweater from wear but the outside held up beautifully. I’m absolutely obsessed with this yarn and ordered a bit more in a gorgeous red and a natural cream color for another light pullover I want to make for fall.
Little Women Lillian cardigan
I still have 3 full skeins and about one 1/2 skein left and don’t know what I’ll do with it but I know I definitely want to make something else with this dreamy yarn. I totally plan on wearing this baby all the time because even though it’s only April my office is already freezing!

Has anyone else ever given this yarn a try? Or what other kinds of dreamy yarns are out there that I don’t know about?

FO: Baby Boy Gifts & Gift Tags

Well, I am officially sick. I have no clue where this head cold came from but it has knocked me off my feet. I felt a sore throat Wednesday, was working from home Thursday and stayed on the couch all day and ended up leaving work early on Friday because I sounded horrible. I’ve spent the entire weekend resting, knitting and binge watching the Great British Baking Show (better known as the Great British Bake Off) from the couch…and I’m still home today. Here’s hoping I’m back in action soon. Now on to the knitting…
A sweater for Cait's baby boy
I work at Howard University as a adjunct professor for my second job (as if I’m not already busy enough) and I teach Social Media Marketing. I love my students, they are a highlight of my day but I try to give my students a well rounded perspective of the industry and I bring in 4-6 speakers a semester. I’ve got a few repeat presenters who I love and as a thank you I knit them something for coming to my class repeatedly. When I asked my former student Cait (from when I worked in higher ed at American University) what she would want me to knit her since she was coming in last week she told me that instead of something for herself she’d love it if I made her something for her baby on the way! She’s having a boy in June and asked for something navy so I whipped up my favorite pattern, the Baby Sophisticate cardigan.
A sweater for Cait's baby boy
My lighting was slightly off in these pics but I promise you this is the Caron Simply Soft yarn in a lovely deep navy blue. And I was excited because in my button stash were the cutest blue goldfish buttons! I’ve had these for years but hadn’t found the right project for them and I thought this was the one. All baby cardigans need fun buttons, right?! Since her son will be born in June I made the 3-6 month size with hopes that this will be a perfect fit for him by the time fall rolls around. I might even need to whip up a hat to match after he gets here.
A sweater for Cait's baby boy
And I am asked often about my gift tags and I made them with my Silhouette Mint Stamp Maker. I love that thing (also they’re always going on sale because I got mine for about $25) but I knew I needed a stamp with instructions and a logo that let you know I made your gift. I have a bunch of blank gift tags and just stamp and check the boxes once I’m finished. Easy peasy.

That’s all I’ve got today. Back to resting until I have to drag myself out of bed to teach my class (no sick days for professors).