grandma's "lehmus" shawl

I've been working on my first lace project. This is the Lehmus shawl pattern and I'm making it for my grandmother. I'm making this out of a worsted weight yarn, Lion Brand Wool-Ease "Dark Rose Heather", on size 8 needles.

My grandmother is going into the hospital for hip surgery later this month and I wanted a heavier shawl to help keep her warm while she is away from home. She's had both hips replaced before, however the newer one is over 15 years old and she has to have them both done again. She's more worried this time around as she's a little older and has difficulty getting around as it is. I'm hoping this shawl will help to ease her anxiety and encourage a quick recovery.

I was a little intimidated at the begining and it took me a few tries to get started. Most of the pattern is in another language and I didn't see where it told me to purl every even row, I had to figure that out for myself. I also had a difficult time following every stitch on the chart, however it became easy once I figured out what each stitch did and how it worked with the row below. Now I don't have to refer to the chart as much. Let's hope it continues to go well, I still have much more to knit before it's finished.



I've had these mittens in queue for awhile. I had to focus on Christmas knitting before getting back to me. I wanted a pair of mittens, but not plain mittens, something with a little kick. I found the pattern for the Chavalier mittens on Ravelry. I loved the texture and detail of the cables.

At first the pattern gave me a little trouble because I had to follow a chart closely, however once I figured out where the cables were going it became easier. I also learned that when I need to increase a stitch, I do it much better by knitting into the stitch one row below as opposed to doing a tight yarnover, as I still got a small hole.

I love wearing these, the wool is incredibly soft and the fit is spectacular. My only issue is an error I made in crossing a set of cables where I accidentally pulled the purled stitches over the knit ones and didn't notice until much later. It really isn't noticeable to the untrained eye, but irritates me none the less.

I need to talk about this yarn. I bought it while visiting family in Michigan. It's from a historic farm which incorporated fiber mill called Stonehedge Fiber Mill. The yarn is Shepherd's Wool and is spun from incredibly soft merino top. It was a dream to work with and knit up beautifully. I love it so much that I may need to make a sweater from it.


kyan's sweater

Although we don't haven't had much snow here in Illinois, it has gotten quite cold. The temperature reached down to 21F last night, not so bad for this time of the year. However, my poor little Kyan shivers every time he has to go outside (this is why I feel fortunate for indoor plumbing). I've wanted to make myself a sweater, but I thought it would be great to try out such a garment on my dog first. He gets a warm sweater to wear outdoors and I get to experiment with a few new techniques. Let's just say it's a good thing I experimented on a dog sweater first.

I found this pattern and began with a left-over ball of Patons Classic Wool Merino "Natural Mix" on size 8 circulars. I had only used 10% or so of the yarn, surely the remainder would be enough for a dog sweater, he was small after all. Well, no. I had to go out and buy another ball, luckily I found the same dyelot that I was using. Once I was able to bind off for the belly, I felt it was time to try it on before I got myself into too much trouble. The arm holes were way too big! This in turn made the overall sweater too long. I put the sweater down and walked away from it for a few days.

Now, I really didn't want to rip the whole thing back. I had worked diligently on cabling, seed stitch, and ribbing and the thought of redoing it seemed daunting. My solution, rip back slightly to make it the correct length and "patch" the arm holes with stockinette stitch. Which I did, and added ribbed sleeves.

All in all, it didn't turn out as ghetto as I expected it too. It's slightly too large in width for him, but he can wear it. I think that next time I should gauge my swatch in a ribbing pattern instead of stockinette, which may help with the fit. I chalk it up to a learning experience.


more finished things!

I think life is finally settling down after the holiday rush! I've certainly been busy with my fiber work! Below are some objects that I have completed over the past couple of weeks.

After a few months, I was eventually able to finish the "My So-Called Scarf" from the MenWhoKnit KAL. This was truly the first knit project I started and I just couldn't stick with it for more than a couple of hours at a time. I guess I'm just not monogamous in the project department. In any case, I love how it turned out and I wear it all the time. I used Manos del Uruguay, colorway "Quail" on size 11 needles.

After I had completed an oil painting of my Grandmother's garden for her, I thought I wanted to give her something knit or crocheted as I knew that she would truly appreciate it. When I saw this
Fan Bookmark, I knew it would be the perfect "little something" to give her. She loved it and the painting (unfortunately, I did not photograph said painting). It's a beautiful bookmark and I may make one for myself as well :) This was made from J & P Coats Royale "Cardinal" #10 crochet cotton with size 1.30mm hook.

I also completed my baby cousin's
Tiramisu blanket. I made this from Bernat's Softee Baby "Pink" with a size H hook. I was fortunate enough to meet new baby cousin on this trip. She's so adorable! (Again no pictures). The poor thing just returned from the hospital and is recovering from a bought with staph, and she's only two months old. Luckily, she has a new blanky to keep her warm.

Okay, I seriously love the
Koolhaas hat that I FINALLY finished! It's made from Berroco Ultra Alpaca, in colorway Leaf, with size 6 and 8 needles. I've gotten several complements on it while wearing it out and about. Although, my dad did say that it reminded him of a hat that my great-grandmother used to wear. I'm going to assume that means that great-grandma was incredibly hip.