Three FO’s and a HO

May has been a pretty productive month!  The other day I had lunch with a crafty friend and she did ask if I have like 17 projects going on at one time.  I laughed and said yes!  She was under some sort of mistaken impression that I actually finish knitting things. LOL! But, this month I have finished a few things and am making good progress on a few date sensitive projects.

Let’s start with this little pumpkin hat.  Pattern is Little Pumpkin by Susan B. Anderson and I used mystery stash yarn.  I believe the orange might have been a Cascade of some sort and the brown is maybe a Lion Brand or equivalent from the big box store.  It’s for some friends who just had a little boy.  When they did their pregnancy announcement on Facebook it was in October and they used a pumpkin in the photo so I thought it would be cute to knit the baby his own pumpkin hat.

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Next, my friend runs a nonprofit that helps local families in our area who have children who are struggling in some way, either with or without a diagnosis.  They are having their first ever golf outing in June so I offered to knit a set of golf club covers she could use as a prize.  I’m using Purl Soho’s Golf Club Covers pattern.  I got all the yarn from the big box store (and, shhh, don’t tell her but I used the gift card she gave me for helping with their annual fundraiser 🙂 ).  I have knit them in the organization’s colors which are orange and black.  Their logo has all the colors in the stripes of the black one.  I have one more to make – the set is for the driver, the 3 wood and the 5 wood.  I love how they are coming out.  The Purl Soho pattern is great!  I love all their patterns and they are free!!!

My only issue is that when you get to the part that covers the club head you have to hold the yarn double.  This makes for some tight knitting so it’s a bit tough on my hands/wrists but I started working on them early enough that I’ve been able to take a break between covers.  I will be playing a very tight game of yarn chicken for the final one.  I’m glad I started with the biggest and worked my way down so fingers crossed!!

 

Next, I talked about my mystery yarn and the Graduate Your Stash KAL that I’m doing.  So, I did finish one bowl and kind of felted it.  I’m going to knit up the rest of the skein into bowls and head over to a friend’s house who has a washing machine with an agitator and hope they felt some more.  The pattern is Stash Busting Project Bags and Bowls by Molly Conroy and is free on Ravely.  This first one came out a little smaller than I thought so I’m using bigger needles on the next one and will see how that changes the size.  Otherwise, it’s a great pattern and has five different options depending on how much yarn you are trying to get rid of!

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And, last but not least, I finished one sock so that would be the HO.  More details and pics when I finish the second sock!

There are a bunch of fun KALs going on this summer.  I know everyone is all about Stash Dash which is such a great idea.  But, I don’t participate because it requires just a little too much thought and planning for me.  I’m finishing up the Graduate Your Stash KAL which ends June 30th.  I will also be participating in the Summer Superlatives KAL hosted by Becky of the Knit Actually Podcast and the Great Outdoors KAL which is hosted by Emily of the Knitting Butterflies Podcast.  If you are looking for fun and low key KALs I would recommend either or both of them.  You can find more info on them in their Ravelry groups or on their websites.  Side note, I think I might get to do a little knitting with both of these ladies as I will be visiting Colorado in July so we’re trying to figure out a little knitting get together while I’m there which will be super fun!!

 

A Lesson and a Review

One of the things I want to add to the blog this year is reviews – whether it be books, yarns, or tools we’re all using new products all the time and it’s nice to read reviews to help us decide what is worth our precious dollars.

I’m going to start this month with Susan B. Anderson’s new book – Kids Knitting Workshop.  I ordered this book for two reasons.  First, I love everything Susan and readily admit to having a total knitting crush on her.  I was lucky enough to meet her a couple of years ago at a book signing/knitting afternoon.  She was just as delightful as you might imagine.  It was her Itty Bitty Hats book that really inspired me to start knitting and selling hats for babies and kids.  I’ll stop gushing now lest I cross the creepy stalker line!

Second, was for a more practical reason.  One of the things I would like to develop and put into motion this year is a knitting class for kids.  When I saw Susan was publishing a book on the subject I knew it would be the best way to figure out how to teach kids to knit.  I’ve done a lot of crafts with a lot of kids but have always shied away from teaching them to knit.  This is mostly because I wasn’t even sure where to begin and this book provides a blueprint.

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As with all her books, the photography is outstanding!  There are a number of really interesting projects and you can check them out on Ravelry (which by the way is a great feature on Ravelry – if you are thinking about buying a book but have not been able to flip through it you can almost always find all the patterns in the book by looking it up on Ravelry and that can help with the buying decision!).  My favorites are the Snowman and the Stripy Tube Scarf.  But all are fun and would make for interesting first projects.

I started reading at the beginning and found it most interesting that she recommends teaching kids the continental method to knit.  I can’t even figure that out so I was surprised to see this is how she teaches kids.  I learned to throw and have never figured out continental. Over the years I’ve made some half-hearted attempts to learn continental but have always given up in frustration.  I know it’s faster and also seems to be easier on the arm and shoulder without all that throwing so it has remained on my list of things to learn.

I was talking about this two weeks ago at knit night.  L., who works at the store, told me that if I just did it for a month I would get the hang of it.  I’m working on the Derecho by Laura Aylor at knit night right now.  I’m determined to finish it whether or not it kills me.  I’ve also banned myself from taking anything else with me until this is done!  It’s another Kauni yarn project I started and always end up regretting halfway through the balls of Kauni. The Derecho is all garter stitch and will never, ever end! (I realize it’s not the pattern’s fault or the yarn’s fault they’re both lovely but it’s time for it to be over!) But, all that garter stitch also makes it the perfect project to learn continental.  On Thursday I brought my book and my Derecho and went to it.  Sadly, no one took pictures of the faces I made in the early rows, it was not pretty.

Now, I can hear some of you saying “Wait!!!  You can’t change knitting styles halfway through a project!!!!!”  I know, I know, this may throw off my gauge but this is a garter stitch shawl so a few tighter or looser rows is not really going to make that much of a difference in the long run and to be quite honest I don’t think you can tell where I started the continental technique.  By the end of the night I was kind of getting the hang of it and I think L. is right, give it a month and then figure out how to purl!

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I’ve not yet taught a child to knit but I did teach myself to knit continental which is something every other tutorial I’ve seen/watched has failed to do so I’m going to give this book five knitting needles*!

*The scale is, of course, 1-5 knitting needles with 5 needles being the highest!