My WIP (work in progress) for this week was just started this morning and is a free pattern on Ravelry through August 31, 2018. I’m having more luck with a top-down type beginning than I usually do and although the pattern calls for cotton yarn, I’m making this little basket with an assortment of small amounts of #4 thin yarn (mostly Lion Brand Pound of Love). The pattern calls for double-pointed needles, but I knit everything with circular Magic Loop needles and I’m using a #7 for this project. The finished basket is supposed to be 5-3/4 inches with a handle to make it 8 inches in height. Check out this link and see if this is something you might like to make – free through August 31, 2018.
https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/striped-basket with a coupon code of BASKETCASE.
These were my finishes last week: A larger child’s scarf with a bit of open work on each end. We’re asked to keep lace or open work to a minimum because the winters are so cold there. I also made a pair of mittens in Bubble Gum Pink and a sparkly white yarn to match a scarf that was finished last week. Two hats were finished this week, one with a double layer of stitches in the brim for extra warmth, and another with ear flaps.
My WIP (work in progress) this week was actually just completed – a pair of mittens for the Pine Ridge children. There is a special drive in the fall to supply each child in the K-12 school with a scarf, hat and pair of mittens. At all times, I have a scarf on one set of needles to work on while watching TV and a mitten on another set of needles to work on during the day when there are no distractions. So far, I have two boxes packed to the brim with warm winter wear. These mittens are from a basic pattern that I developed over the past couple of years and this time I added a Fair Isle design.
I finished my WIP from last week, a child’s scarf in Bubble Gum and sparkly white yarn, using the Ridge stitch.
My WIP (work in progress) this week is a neck warmer/cowl that seems to fit the criteria I’ve been looking for in one of these patterns: no lace, warm and comfortable around neck, extends onto chest about 5 inches. I’m doing this piece in bulky #5 Premier Deborah Norville Collection yarn (Golden) and #9 circular needles. This is a free Ravelry pattern: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/shaded-collar
Finished last week: The Santa Claus mittens which turned out very well.
I added a little round nose. Pattern for nose:
Nose: With pink, CO 3 sts.
Row 1 kfb across: 6 sts
Row 2 purl
Row 3 knit
Row 4 purl
Row 5 k2tog across to make 3 sts
Break off, thread tail through remaining sts, pull up, and tie off. Use CO tail to weave through edge sts all the way around nose piece. Pull up to round out nose. Tie off. Sew to center of face, on top of beard, just below hat brim.
My WIP this week is a pair of Santa mittens for the Pine Ridge children. I saw a picture online of cute, easy mittens with a Santa face – no pattern – but it will be easy to adapt my favorite mitten pattern. I’ve completed the hat portion and part of the face, doing two-at-a-time. I’m using #4 worsted yarn and #7 circular needles. My “go-to” pattern for easy mittens is here: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/handy-mittens—with-fingerless-option
I completed the lace portion of the cowl that I started last week and, as I feared, the lace work was not up to par. I unraveled it and finished off the piece as a short neck warmer.
I’m still looking for a good pattern for a neck warmer that extends down onto the chest (without lace).
Two years ago, I tried knitting once again after numerous unsuccessful attempts through the past 85+ years. This time, I got it – due mainly to YouTube tutorials, free Ravelry patterns and circular knitting needles. I especially like the Magic Loop which is a circular needle with a long cable. One of the features that intrigued me from the beginning was the possibility of knitting mittens (or other small items) two-at-a-time. I’m not a consistent knitter and like the idea of having two items match. Also, I hate to finish an item and then make an exact duplicate of the same thing – boring.
I’ve been doing well knitting two-at-a-time on flat items but had problems when casting on for something in the round – like mittens. There are many YouTube tutorials but the procedure looks and is awkward to do and, in my case, didn‘t produce a neatly ribbed cuff. In searching for a solution, I found a tutorial which worked for me but which I can’t find again to link. It’s basically casting on one cuff, pushing the cuff down and pulling the loop of cable out so there are an equal number of stitches on each side. Knit 5 rows and removing the cuff to two double-pointed needles, keeping the stitches and yarn exactly the same as they were originally,
Then, cast on the second cuff and repeat as for first cuff, pushing the cuff down and pulling the loop of cable out so there are an equal number of stitches on each side. The stitches on the double-pointed needles are carefully returned to the circular needle and everything is set to go to knit two-at-a-time. I attach a marker to the right hand front edge of the piece nearest the points of the needles to identify it.
This pair of teenage-sized mittens have a nice, neatly ribbed cuffs.
I use a simple mitten pattern that I’ve used many times so I’m not struggling with a pattern. The main problem I’ve had is to forget to drop the working yarn when completing one mitten and picking up the yarn that belongs to the second mitten. This only happens when transferring in the center of the two mittens.
Also, I find it easier to put the stitches for the thumb on holders, complete the bodies of the mittens, and then go back and do the thumbs individually.
I knit a lot of mittens for the Lakota Children of Pine Ridge and it’s nice to be able to do them with this technique.
This summer, my younger daughter and I discovered a charity which accepts all kinds of cold weather items for their children on a Lakota Indian reservation in South Dakota. They have very severe winters and say they are under-served at this location, grateful for anything hand-knit or crocheted that will help keep the children warm. Unlike most of the charities we support, they accept not only acrylic but also wool and wool blend items and are currently trying to get enough scarves and mittens to supply each of their children in grades K-12. In August, we mailed some items I had made…four hats, four pr. mittens and two scarves.
In addition, my daughter contributed 11 hats, 12 pr mittens and 10 scarves.
As of this date, they have collected enough hats but still need lots of scarves and mittens. Today, I’ll be mailing 5 beautiful pairs of mittens from my daughter …
I contributed 3 scarves …
…one scarf/mitten set ….
…two neck warmers ….
…and one neck warmer/hat/mitten set.
We’ll continue to work on items for this project until they reach their goal, hopefully by November 1.
This is the link through Ravelry:
I’m a little late reporting on the knitting I completed in March (since it’s almost time for April’s projects), but here are my completions.
I spent a lot of time struggling with a personal project – knitting two pair of socks from the toe up and knitting both socks at once on circular needles. I bought a wonderful video tutorial from Knit Freedom (www.knitfreedom.com) but had a difficult time, mostly because I didn’t switch yarn at the right time and had to unravel many, many times. I thought it would be better if I tried a pair of slipper sox in heavier yarn with bigger needles and as I made mistakes and corrected them, would continue on to a pair in light fingering sox yarn and would do a much better job on them. That didn’t necessarily happen, but I did get both pairs of socks completed. They’re far from perfect but wearable and comfortable.
As a future family member gift, I made a scarf of soft sport weight yarn in a pretty shade of pink. This started out as a washcloth and since it was going well and was the right width, I just kept going, adding a section of plain knitting in the center. I like this scarf very much.
For Easter, I made each of my daughters a tiny basket that would hold one Cadbury egg.
For charity knitting, I tried an easy mitten pattern link (Basic cuff-up mittens on Ravelry.com) and made one pair for Scarf It Up, a group that supplies scarves, hats and mittens to the homeless in northern Kentucky, and the silver/tangerine pair for the Arkansas Special Olympics.
I finished another pair of booties (http://bevscountrycottage.com/bevs-baby-set1.html) for a hospital near Columbus, Ohio (http://www.touchinglittlelives.org/ )
And, of course, more nests for the Wildlife Rescue group (https://www.facebook.com/wildliferescuenests/). I always have one of these going on a spare set of needles.
I’m still enjoying my newfound hobby, although I get discouraged at times with my lack of progress. An old dog can learn new tricks but it’s a much slower process than it would be for a young dog.