Tea with Jam and Bread

Back on August 17th, I cast on a new sweater. Because I really wanted to. Not because I needed to. Definitely not because I didn’t have anything else to knit. The startitis was super bad, so I succumbed to it.

So, I cast on Tea with Jam and Bread by Heidi Kirrmaier! (Can we take a moment for the awesome name?)

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Its been an insanely fast knit, which I love and adore. Makes me feel better about casting on a sweater/pullover/jumper/thing despite the fact that I have so many other projects to finish. But thats okay, because its going quickly ^_^

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I was able to finish the body last night, while watching the first three episodes of North and South (Mr. Thornton, yo. Mr. Thornton.) and got to try it on for the first time. Which was amazing.

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Its super slouchy and comfy. Definitely a snuggling up type pullover.

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I also love the fact that it has pockets! And really nice, non-complicated pockets. Some of the pockets I’ve done in the past, they ended up being the most complicated thing of the sweater (which was completely my own fault and inexperience – not the patterns I was using!) but this one, it was super simple and logical.

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I’m having a wee bit of trouble with the ribbing on the bottom flipping up… But I think with a little bit of spray blocking, it might go away.

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The sleeves still need to be knit and the pocket linings need to be sewn down… but I don’t think either one of those things should take too long! I’m planning on making the sleeves a little bit longer, so I can pull them over my hands. Maybe might add a thumb hole in there, haven’t decided yet, haha! Who knows!

I’m using Knit Picks Wool of the Andes Tweed, which is perfect for the college student’s budget, haha. The grey is Dove Heather, the brown is Reindeer Heather, and the black is Wellies Heather (which I may have based the whole pullover around the black, because I love the name of it too much. #knitterknerd #lovethewellies)

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Love the tweedy-ness of it. Its my favorite. I’m looking forward to finishing it and also the colder months when I’ll need to wear it. That’ll be super exciting ^_^

Expanding those fiber crafting abilities!

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I learned something new! And I’m kind of really excited about it…

Tunisian Crochet. You may ask “How… in the world is that different than regular crochet??” Or others might ask “Um.. how is crocheting different than knitting?”… but thats a totally different subject ;-) The Wikipedia article about Tunisian crochet is quite good, if you want a precise description of how crochet and Tunisian crochet are different.

Now, you’re probably asking… “Why… did you want to learn this? You don’t like to crochet. Why this? How is it different again?” Or, you might still be asking “Wait, so knitting is with two sticks, while crocheting is just one? Which one has the hook?”

To which, I would reply with that it was a very spontaneous decision and despite the fact that it is crocheting, I’m really enjoying it! Or, if it was the second question, I’d probably laugh and use my purse knitting as a visual aid d^_^b

Though this has opened up many possibilities of scarves and stuff like that with the simple stitch and with handspun, or crazy variegated yarn!

But my main inspiration was a sample that we had (and still have!) in Yarntopia, my LYS. Its a Tunisian Crochet Entrelac baby blanket. Absolutely gorgeous (and as I write this, I realize that I don’t have a picture of it, haha. You’ll see mine soon!)

While doing my work, piddling around the store for a couple of days… I decided I wanted to make it, but with chunkier yarn and make it bigger so it’d more of an adult blanket!

Sheryl, my amazing boss and owner of Yarntopia, showed me the basics of Tunisian, got me going on a little square, I mastered that, and then had to wait for my yarn to come in. I decided to stick with the same yarn the baby blanket was made with, but went with the chunky version… tada, Marble Chunky! Its quite a beautiful yarn… also machine washable! Even better!

It finally arrived, and Kathleen, a extremely sweet and delightful co-worker and friend, got me started on the actual blanket… and it reminded me of learning how to do certain knitting techniques. Using double pointed needles and reading patterns in particular, haha. The pattern, the jargon, the terms… they went right over my head, haha. I couldn’t read the pattern, let alone see the term and know how to actually do it. Thats where Kathleen came in, and she steered me in the right direction!

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I’ve been working on it a little bit every day, making lots of progress! The movement of doing the stitches is becoming more natural to me, its not taking as long to do one square! I now have around four and a half rows of the entrelac squares. I highly doubt I’ll have it done before school starts, but I think it’ll be my “Time to veg.. but not knitting…” project.

I can’t wait to be able to snuggle under it!

Spirited Away became a Brickless

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I started something with my Spirited Away skein from Gynx Yarns, I got a couple weeks ago d^_^b

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I picked Brickless by Martina Behm . Its perfect (as are all her patterns!) for variegated yarn.

Ever since Brickless came out, I really wanted to make one. Didn’t know what yarn I wanted to use, and didn’t really have the time to devote to finding the perfect skein, haha! But after a little thought about what to make with my Gynx skein, it became obvious what it needed to be.

So, either this past Thursday or Friday, I cast it on. Took the plunge and jumped on the knitterly band-wagon. I can’t say no to that knitterly band-wagon. Its just gotta happen.

This was the knitting that I brought with me on the RUF (Reformed University Fellowship!) Fall Conference that happened over the weekend. Best mindless knitting ever! The colors were (and still are!) making it continually interesting, then the different textures in the pattern. It was not boring, but simple enough to work on during the four messages that were given while we were there.

Going to Fall Conference was kind of a last minute decision, but holy cow, I’m so glad I went! It was so amazing! Lots of friends, chatting, hanging around, listening to really amazing and encouraging messages, worship with several RUF groups from other Texas colleges, knitting (obviously d^_^b) and just wonderfulness. Oh, and an epic dance party combined with the A&M vs Ole’Miss game, which led to a (rather stressful, haha!) win for us Aggies, which then led celebrating in all the traditional Aggie ways.

It was epic. I’m so glad I went – I can’t wait for Summer Conference and next year’s Fall Conference ;-P

Hat-A-Long Hat #3: Hertenvos

Hat #3! Thus comes to an end of my hat-run. But, more hats are going on the needles. Its only October 11th! Think of all the hats that can be made between now and the 31st! More hats are coming.

This hat… ever since it was published, I’ve been wanting to make it. Like, really really really. But didn’t know exactly where I’d wear it or how… or whatever.

My brother and I went home last weekend, and my mom asked me what I wanted to do… and I had a random need to go to Joann’s and get the yarn for this hat. So we did! (We also got buttons, because… knitters always need more buttons ;-P)

We got home, I cast on immediately. Worked on it all afternoon/evening. It was the project of the day.

The novelty of this hat is quite epic. Just the idea, and then the construction. Making it was a blast!

So, behold! The hat of awesomeness!

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Yes, that is a deer hat. Or a fox hat. It could be either one! Whatever you want it to be!

This is Hertenvos by Stephen West out of his Dear Amsterdam collection. On Stephen West’s project page, he said that the word “Hertenvos” in Dutch means “deerfox”. Which I think is super cool and very suiting ;-P

I used Lion Brand’s Wool-Ease Thick and Quick. Super soft, bulkiest yarn ever, haha. Makes things go extremely fast d^_^b

I did use different needles, the US11 and US13 were making the hat too big. So, I used a US11 and US10.5. The ears are heavy enough that they don’t stand up, but I love it when they hang down. Plus, when it gets colder (yes, because its cold now! Yayyy!!) they’ll be amazing ear warmers; thanks to the super cool construction!

And its got a floppy pompom. I love those big, thick, puffy kind.. but the floppy ones are so cool too.

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So yes. If you need some kind of really not-your-ordinary hat, this goes lickity-split!

Hat-A-Long Hat #2: Bad Wolf

Heres my next hat! I cast this on on October 1st, took it with me to school, then finished it on October 2nd. So, technically, this was my first hat ;-P

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This is the Sugar Maple Hat by Katie Mack, which is a free pattern (wooo!). Its such a great pattern – its just a basic hat, with all the math done for you, haha! It also has so much room for modifying it and making it your own. Maybe a cable, a couple rows of lace or colorwork. You can use crazy colorful yarn and let it do all the work! Or you can use handspun (which is what I did) and bask in the glory of knitting with your own handspun.

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This fiber I spun right before school started back up, and I spun it in about day, haha. The colorway name is Rose Tyler from Woolen Mills St. Yarns. Heres the blog post I wrote about it! . So, because of the colorway name, this is my Bad Wolf hat.

This was kind of a spontaneous project, haha! I was headed to my girl’s small group with the A&M RUF group, and didn’t have anything small that I really wanted to knit on. So, I grabbed this skein, caked it up in about 5 minutes (hallelujah for swifts!), grabbed the needles read the pattern, and left!

Its super simple, but that way the random striping can shine.

Another really amazing “cast on, knit a couple hours, bam! You’re done!” hat… Perfect for Christmas knitting!

Hat-A-Long Hat #1: Snowdrift

Its October! What?! That means that Christmas knitting is well underway… or it *should* be, haha!

I haven’t started.

Which is kind of setting myself to frantically race against the clock (like always. I always seem to do that, haha!) to get something done before midnight of December 24th. That not working out, so I stay up till the wee hours of the morning of December 25th finishing and wrapping items. Then often times giving gifts still on the needles.

But its the thought that counts, right? Right!

What I’m hoping will help me is the Hat-A-Long KAL that Diane of the Knitabulls Podcast is doing (I know I’ve said this before, but her podcast is one of the bestest out there! Go watch it!!)

As of today, I’ve knit four hats. One of them is secret knitting, so I can’t show you guys just yet. But this is something to make knocking out Christmas knitting a little easier ;-P

Here’s hat #1! (these aren’t in any particular order, haha!)

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This is Snowdrift by Alex Tinsley ! I’ve had this pattern for about 2 years, but never got around to knitting it. Why, I don’t know… its one of the best patterns ever! And I’m about to tell you why…

1) It uses up stash yarn super easily. Bam, there goes that languishing 100yds you had lying around. Bye bye!

2) its knit on size 10.5 needles. And on a 16″ cable, it goes even more quickly.

3) the yarn is pretty adaptable… but using the bulky like it recommends. it’s just the best.

4) if you put reasons 2 and 3 together, you get some pretty speedy knitting! I knit this hat in about 3.5 hours. Yep, that’s it. Cast it on during a class, left it… worked on it the whole car ride back to Houston (which is about an hour and 45 minutes ish) then did the last two decrease rows later that night. BAM!

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If you’re looking for super quick knit… you need to knit this.

I used a little bit of my left over cake from my Long Sands cardigan. Its Cascade Eco Wool in the Gun Metal color.

More of my finished hats coming d^_^b

Spirited Away!

Yarn acquisition! An amazing acquisition, no doubt about that.

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I ordered this from Gynx Yarns! Its on her Strong Sock base in the Spirited Away colorway. And holy cow! Its absolutely amazing! The picture in the shop looks epic, but in person? Its the best combination of every color!

Gynx Yarns is super awesome, I love to knit with it! Laura is super nice, and has a video podcast called the Dyer’s Notebook! Its definitely one of my favorites!

Definitely go check her yarns out, all her colors are absolutely gorgeous and the quality is epic!

I’m not quite sure what I’m going to be making with this… I could get two small things… or who knows! I can’t wait to cast something on with it though – the colors are so amazing!