Knitting – Gift Idea – Slippers

I made the slippers pictured above (one of each pictured) for my two daughters last year and liked the pattern so much, I made many, many slippers in various sizes throughout the year for the children of Pine Ridge in South Dakota. This is the basic pattern:

http://www.needlebeetle.com/free/aadb.html

This pattern is very easy to adapt to other sizes using your preferred yarn/needles by changing the size of the sole of the slipper. The length of the slipper leg can also be changed.

In the past month, I’ve made 5 different sizes for children …

I even made a pair of moccasins for my American Girl-type doll which my daughter had dressed for Thanksgiving…

This is an easy pattern and easily adapted using your stitches per inch gauge and the measurement of the foot. I also made a change to make the toe less pointy and impish. In my design, when doing the decreases in the foot, I stop 4 stitches before the center marker, knit two together, knit two, move marker, knit two and SSK (slip/slip/knit). This makes a rounded toe.

Depending on your busy schedule, there may still be time to knit up a pair of slippers before Christmas.

Knitting – Gift Idea – Jolly Old Elves

This is a really cute, free pattern I used last Christmas with less than a year’s experience in knitting. I had no problems and thought they turned out well – something a little different from the usual holiday decorations.  Here is the link:  https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/jolly-old-elves

I used two difference sizes of yarn and needles to get two different sizes from the same pattern.

The larger elf (about 8 inches tall) was made with #4 worsted yarn and #5 circular needles.


The smaller elf (about 6 inches tall) was made with DK or sport weight yarn #3 and #3 circular needles.

I gave one to each of my daughters along with a gift card for a special Christmas morning gift.

Toggle Button Closure for Shawls – Tutorial Link

I have a lot of beautiful shawls which my younger daughter has made for me and I struggle a bit with shawl pins which tend to get caught in the knitting and snag.  I happened upon a YouTube tutorial which shows how to sew two buttons back-to-back and make a button toggle closure which will slip in and out of existing spaces in a shawl without any snagging.  The  shawl can also be worn open and the button is a pretty accessory.
The button that goes on the outside of the shawl can be any size you like.  I have a great assortment of vintage buttons and picked out four to demonstrate.  The button underneath needs to be small enough to pass through an opening in the edge of the shawl but big enough to hold it in place.  This can be any kind of plain small button.  The buttons are sewn together with strong thread, leaving a small amount of “give” in the center.
I asked the daughter who has made these gorgeous shawls to pose for photos to give an idea of how the buttons look, installed.  First, a dark pink shawl …
…a lovely blue one …
…a maroon version …
…and a big, comfy orange one.  (I think daughter was getting tired of posing by this time.)
This tutorial gives clear instructions of making these closures which would be nice additions to any holiday shawls and scarves being gifted this year.

 

 

Knitting for the Children at Pine Ridge

Finally!  A summer’s worth of knitting has been washed, dried, tagged and is ready to mail to the children of Pine Ridge.  Every fall, there is a special drive to gather enough items to give each of the K-12 school children a warm hat, scarf and mittens.  This year, I made 5 large teenage scarves, 9 children’s scarves …
…4 hoods with neckwarmers …
…3 large teenage hats, 1 child’s hat, 2 ear warmers, and 2 pair of mittens
Now, they’re on the way to the Pine Ridge children for the long cold winter in South Dakota.
https://www.ravelry.com/groups/for-the-children-of-pine-ridge

A Cat and a Knitting Box

A few years ago, I made a fabric box, quilted and embroidered, for my daughter who is an avid knitter, cat lover and Chicago Cubs fan.  Her old cat, Snickers, has grown more eccentric as she ages (as we all have) and now insists on positioning herself on the box.

 

The box has suffered a bit …

…but Snickers shows absolutely no shame.

An 85th Birthday Shawl and Shawl Pin

Over the past weekend, I celebrated my 85th birthday.  One of my gifts was a shawl from my younger daughter.  She used a pattern for a Feather and Fan Comfort Shawl by Sarah Bradberry, found on ravelry.com

Her yarn was a Caron Big Cake in the Toffee Brickle color.  As a special treat, she bought a key ring from the Red Cloud Indian School Heritage Center, made by one of the students, and converted it into a shawl pin.

The pin is particularly dear to me because my daughter and I regularly knit for the children of Pine Ridge in South Dakota.

https://www.ravelry.com/groups/for-the-children-of-pine-ridge

I’m very happy to have this beautiful addition to the collection of shawls my daughter has made for me.  It’s so nice and warm!

Boom! – A Long Diagonal Scarf – Free Knitting Pattern

My daughter passed on to me a link to a free pattern to make a “simple asymmetrical scarf … intended to display gradients in handspun yarn”.  I didn’t have any handspun yarn, but I did have a “Sweet Roll” cake of yarn from JoAnn’s and decided to give this a try since it was all in easy garter stitch.  It starts out with 5 stitches cast on and ends when you run out of yarn.  This is how my scarf turned out.

 

My daughter used a Caron cake with about twice as much yarn and made a gloriously long and swervy scarf.

It’s a nice pattern to really show off the colors in these cakes.  The sections of each color are large so you need a big project to display them to best advantage.

Here’s the free pattern:

http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/boom

Knitting – Magic Raglan Sweater

MAGIC RAGLAN SWEATER

“A simple fill-in-the-blanks method for making a raglan sweater that is knit from the neck down, in one piece, to fit anybody.”

http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/the-magic-custom-fit-raglan-sweater

I like patterns that are really formulas with blanks to fill in measurements plus yarn and needle information to make an item of any size. This is an interesting pattern that can be adapted for any size from infant to a full sized man’s sweater. I chose to make two sweaters for a child 2-3 years old and one baby cardigan.

I like the concept very much but would like to develop a better neckline. It still makes sturdy sweaters for the little Lakota children of Pine Ridge, SD.

http://www.ravelry.com/groups/for-the-children-of-pine-ridge

 

 

Knitting Bargains

Last week, I found some bargains which will help me out with my knitting.  First, a book from a library used book sale for only $4.00.  I figure if I can find one pattern or technique that I like in a book, it’s worth buying.  I’ve already found one very good pattern and there are 43 more to audition.  I particularly liked a pattern for a hooded scarf.

The other bargain was at a Goodwill thrift store where I bought a huge container of acrylic yarn for $10.00.  There was one skein each of a large assortment of colors.  This is good for me because I knit a lot of small items like hats, scarves and mittens for charity.  The hooded scarf pattern called for #4 worsted yarn and #8 needles for a child’s size scarf.  I used #10 needles with the yarn and added a few rows to make it suitable for an adult.  I had a nice variety of acrylic yarn to choose from.

Using the same pattern and needles with worsted yarn, I made a version with a short scarf that buttons in front.


I’m currently working on another long-scarf version, using some more of the bargain yarn.

I still have a lot of yarn and a lot of patterns to use.

The real bargain in the large container of yarn was hidden until I got it home and started sorting it out.  There were 8 two-oz. unopened skeins of this yarn in a beautiful dusky blue-violet color.

I checked on the company web site and this wool yarn sells for $16 a skein!  I gathered it up and gave it to my younger daughter, an experienced and excellent knitter who will make good use of such a great bargain.

Purple Hats for Babies–Charity Knitting

My blogger friend, Kelli, alerted me to a drive by Oklahoma hospitals to increase awareness of deaths of shaken babies by providing newborns with a purple hat (any shade of purple).  Other states are also participating – information is here:  http://clickforbabies.org/partners/oklahoma.php

The deadline is September 30, 2017.

I made the 5 hats pictured above in purple and lavender and my daughter made the 7 hats below, in purple and yellow (hats have to be at least 50% some shade of purple).

These were quick and easy to make and I hope will serve as a reminder to all of the new parents.  We had a tragic incident of this type a couple of weeks ago in our area and it is always heartbreaking.