Stitching Status: Spring Spirit

It has been freezing here in Maryland/DC even after our big snow and it’s definitely not feeling spring like at all. But I know it’s coming and I’m knitting!

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Jellybean would like to switch to her lighter layers soon.

I’ve still got my Tamsyn neutral sweater on my needles but I haven’t made much progress since I finished my Mom’s sweater. I’m working on the body of a Carbeth for my cousin but on my snow day I couldn’t resist starting something else new for myself that was swirling around in my brain. I have a swing coat I love that I bought from Anthropologie almost 2 years ago now but I’ve always known I could make something better. Plus every time I wear it everyone asks if I made it and I knew I could I just needed more confidence in making my own stuff.
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So I pulled out this Miss Babs Yowza in Dahlia (the peachy coral shade) and Hedgehog Fibres Merino DK in Bollywood and have been making up my own version of a swing coat with wide sleeves for spring. I’m doing the sleeves, trim and pockets in the variegated Bollywood shade and the body in the bright coral. I already had to frog back a few rows because the box pleat I wanted to do just didn’t work out the way I wanted but I’ve already got other ideas on how to give it the shape I want. I’m super proud of myself for even being able to frog back and just work the two rows over. Before I would’ve panicked and probably started it all over but with time comes more confidence and knowledge. I’m excited about the possibility of what I can create and I’m hoping that if I knit myself a cute spring jacket it will help usher on spring.

So what are you working on?

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FO: Cait’s Cowl

I’m always asked why I don’t sell what I knit and I have a lot of responses (you wouldn’t want to pay me what it’s worth, people would expect perfection and I’m not perfect, I don’t want to…). But in all honesty, I like to make what I want when the mood strikes me. And more often than not I’m making something for someone else as a way to say thank you. Here’s a fine example. The other weekend I had brunch with friends and my girlfriend Cait was going to come and speak to my students that week. So when I saw her on Sunday wearing a super cute chunky green knit hat with a big pink pom pom on top I decided she needed a cowl to match.
Cait’s Cowl
Cait lives in DC and walks everywhere, so she’s a prime candidate for hand knits because she’d wear them and appreciate them on a cold day. Plus she’s a pretty awesome person who does cool stuff for work and gives great presentations to my students (I’m very lucky to have awesome friends). Last year I made her baby boy on the way a super cute cardigan but this time I wanted to make something for her. I knew I had a pretty close Kelly green yarn in my stash that would go with her hat (Knit Picks Mighty Stitch Bulky) that would be super soft and I still had some bright pink Ella Rae Chunky from this sweater I made ages ago that is super warm. That makes a perfect combo for a cowl – softness and warmth. So I pulled out the Beginner’s Brioche Cowl pattern I’d already knit a few weeks before and started to work on a lovely two color cowl for my friend.
Cait’s Cowl
By Monday night I was finished and blocking it so it had a full day to dry before I saw Cait on Wednesday for class. And with the beauty of brioche she can wear it on whatever side she wants to!
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My brioche addiction is still strong…next I think will be a shawl with brioche in it but that will have to wait until I finish my two sweaters I’ve got on my needles. And speaking of, that Carbeth Cardigan is working up quickly!! If I get a little time to myself I might get close to finishing it this weekend. What are your weekend plans?

FO: Fiona’s Finest

One of my coworkers had her third child last week after having two boys, a baby girl she named Fiona. And if you knew how girly and feminine she was you’d know how exciting it was for her to have a little girl. A few coworkers wanted to send a gift and I decided why not knit up a baby hat that was pink and sparkly? And then I got the even brighter idea to try to add Fiona’s name to her hat! It’s all about practicing my skills, folks.
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So on Friday I opened up my laptop and make a basic chart in Excel to spell out her name.
fiona chart
And with any basic hat, I pretty much use this chart I’ve had bookmarked forever to get the sizes right if I don’t have a pattern in mind and just build my own. I figure out the yarn I want to use, then my gauge and I get to knitting. For this I cast on 66 stitches and did about an inch of ribbing in the Tempting Ewe, Ewe So Sparkly DK I had leftover from this cardigan and paired it with the Lemonade Shop’s Sparkle DK in Girls Gone Wild (it’s pink with flecks of grey/black) that I had in my stash. I knit a few rows in pink and then started to spell out the name. I repeated it four times around the hat. Thinking about it now I could’ve done a heart in between her name twice but hey, I was just winging it.
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I finished it off the following morning and blocked it and decided to add a button on the inside so I could put a huge pink pompom on the top because why not?! It just looked like it needed a little something extra to add to the sparkly yarn.
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And there you have it, a personalized little hat for a newborn baby girl. I hope it fits her during this little cold spell and is just as cute as she is.