Tuesday, November 30, 2010

{More Decorating}

I really liked my fall table top display.  The sideboard in the dining room is the only flat surface in the house that isn't totally functional, so I feel like I can go a little crazy with the decorating there.

Here's how I've changed it up for winter:

It's a little different from last year's when we exclusively used the miniatures.  The books that were part of my fall mantle have been wrapped up in the red plaid fabric, and of course you get to see my wreath transformation too!  I really like how it looks all lit up. :)

I'll probably fuss with it a bit in the coming weeks.  Lower the wreath I think, and I want something with more pizazz over on the right instead of those little candles and the extra lantern, but they'll do for now.

Here's a few more closeups:

How is your holiday decorating coming along? :)

Sunday, November 28, 2010

{New House Socks)

I finished some big comfy house socks!!

The pattern I really only used the charts as a inspiration.  It's the log cabin socks from the book Handknit Holidays.  The pattern is the written for top down with a beautiful complicated heel flap.  I however decided to do them my normal toe up way and just put a short row heel in for simplicity.  They're very functional!

The yarn is Kampes, which is a Swedish yarn that my friend Jenny from Jenny's Blog on Knitting gave me as part of a birthday package.  It wasn't the most pleasant to knit with because it's pretty scratchy, but let me tell you... it makes some WARM socks!  You see here that I didn't make them overly tall and I'm wearing socks underneath so the yarn isn't against the skin.

So YAY!  Now... what to cast on next? I think it's going to be in the softest yarn I own. hehe

Friday, November 26, 2010

{The First Christmas Decorations}

I went to the dollar store today and bought a few things to do the first of the Christmas decorating.  My fall wreath was pretty, but it was time to move in to the new festive season!

I spent $4 this morning to change out my wreath!  Here's what it looks like:

The supplies you'll need to do something like this are...

- A Grape vine wreath
- some $1 stems of holly and $1 stems of white flowers (I only needed 3 stems total for my little wreath, but you may need more).
- a $1 roll of red velvet ribbon
- glue
- wire cutters
(ignore the tape, I didn't end up needing it!)

Step 1:
  (Don't forget to attach your preferred method to hang before you get started!)
Don't forget to attach your preferred method to hang before you get started!I started by wrapping my grape vine wreath in the red ribbon in a kind of candy cane pattern, leaving some spaces blank. 

I finished this off by gluing the ends of the ribbon together behind the wreath.

Step 2:
Cut all your holly off the stems using the wire cutters and leave two inches or so of the stem.

Step 3:
 Push all of the individual pieces of holly through the back of the wreath at the bare spots between the ribbon and bend the stem behind. I don't like to use glue for this because I want to be able to disassemble it and use the wreath again.

 For the three white flowers I just bent the stems and hooked them over the back of the wreath, layering on top of the holly.  So really they're just kinda hanging there.  Shh! You won't tell anyone, will ya?

Step 4:
 Hang it up.  I used a bit of twine for this, but you could of course use more ribbon or a hook.  Take a step back and admire your work!

This weekend will be more decorating around the house so I'll show you how it fits in to the overall scheme of the dining room as soon as the rest of it is done. :)

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

{The Silliest Thing I Have Ever Knit}

By Far.  Mr. Pie got very excited when he saw this pattern as I was flipping through Ravelry patterns.  He requested that I drop all of my other knitting and start making him one.  I was excited because he rarely gets so excited about my knitting, so of course I obliged.

It must have been fate because I even had all the necessary yarn in his colours of preference on hand.  And now, two days later, we have this:

Do not rub your eyes, it's true. This toque has a beard attached! And a silly mustache!  Want to knit your own? Check out the BEARDED TOQUE pattern on Ravelry!  Maybe there's a Man in your life who will get as excited as mine is right now.... but that man will be difficult to find!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Monday, November 22, 2010

{Another Knitting Attack}

Maybe I could make When Knitting Attacks a weekly segment, just like on the Knitmore Girls podcast? lol

This one is kinda serious though.  I decided I wanted another pair of socks out of my pink yarn I got for my birthday.  This time in cables instead of lace!   I knit one whole sock from the toe up, turned the heel and knit the heel flap and then put the sock on some holders.  I cast on the other sock from the outside of the ball and knit along thinking that at the end I would knit a row on each until I had used the whole ball! Two equal socks! Brilliant, right?


I ran out of yarn during the gusset of the second sock.  These will probably wait until I can order a second skein of the yarn from gaiascolours.com.  *sigh*

Now I have to figure out what to cast on next!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

{FO As Promised}

Hellooo!  I've had one crazy week, let me tell you.  Crazy ups and downs!  I'm glad to be off of classes for the week of thanksgiving, and not so glad that I have a whole bunch of homework to do during that time.  But that's okay! Only two weeks left once I get back!

Since knitting kept me from crying too much, or killing a person, I did a lot of it last week.  I'm not quite sure of the results.   Normally this is where I would warn the recipient of this gift to click away, but since the recipient is only a year old and can't read yet, I have nothing to worry about! :P

I present to you: Alora's Sweater.

This is the one I did out of Vanna's Choice, so it's SUPER thick.  Mr. Pie jokingly referred to it as "Baby Body Armor" and I can't say that I totally disagree with him!  The shoulders have come out kind of funny but I won't really know how funny until she tries it on. So I hope that works out well! :D

AND this marks the official end to my Christmas Knitting List 2010!  Everyone is getting something knitted this year (pretty much everyone) and this week I will be wrapping and packing so that the packages can all make their way out by December 1st to beat the shipping craze! YAY!!

Friday, November 19, 2010

{Knit PIcks Contest!}

In case anyone in my family is interested in Christmas shopping from my Knit Picks Wish List  , here's the link!

Oh, and I COULD win my list if I get lucky too! WAHOO!

(don't worry, there'll be a better post this weekend. I've been knittin'!) :)

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Holden Shawlette DONE!

 My Holden Shawllette is done!!

 I finished it earlier this week. I pretty much love everything about it!  I love the colour the BEST!  This might be my favorite yarn colour ever - Malabrigo Sock yarn in Botecelli Red.  The variation in the yarn is my absolute favorite kind of colour too - sorta solidish. hehe  The pattern was super easy and would be a great intro to lace/ shawl knitting for anyone looking for an entry project!  The size is bigger than I thought and it's knit on 6's, which is kinda large for a lace shawl.  It's one that's easy to wear too because I don't feel like it's way fancy or anything.

As soon as it was blocking I started pulling out the yarn from that Pea Coat that made me so mad and starting knitting on my LAST Christmas gift!!  The sweater for my niece is to be the Cable Rib Pullover by Kristen TenDyke.  Here was my progress as of thursday: 

Don't those cables just look impressive?  It requires two cable needles, which is something I've never done before.  I love how fast this knit is going (maybe because the back was only on 60 stitches? hehe)  The back was done yesterday and I cast on for the sleeves to do two at a time on a long circular.  I'm not sure why I didn't do this pattern in the round instead of knitting the front and back separate.  I usually don't mind the seaming part too much and as I've already pointed out, it's a pretty little sweater, sized for a 2 year old.  Since Alora will only be 18 months comes Christmas, hopefully it'll fit her for at least through the winter.  

The yarn is Vanna's from Lion Brand and chosen because it has a great loft to it. It's showing the cables FABulously, but I'm not really enjoying knitting with it.  It's tough on the hands after knitting with it a ton and I'm looking forward to gettin' this one done!  I don't think she'll have any problems wearing it though and hopefully it'll soften up more after a washing. :)

Sunday, November 7, 2010

{Some School Maddness, then Knitting. and sewing.}

I'm seriously seeing a pattern in the frequency of my blogging lately - mainly that I have been blogging once a week on a weekend day.  I'm not surprised because I know how stressed out I've been at school this week month. And really, it's been my knitting that I've sort of retreated in to.  Healthy or not so much?  I really don't know, but I'm glad I have it.   It's only two weeks until Thanksgiving break and then I get that whole week off of classes (but will have tons to do at home) and then I go back for a week and a half, and then it's FINALS!   It's so so weird how fast it's coming up.   I have so much to do next week and in to the weeks after, but at the same time it feels like this semester just started a few weeks ago.

Last week I kind of had a melt down, actually.  My classes are just getting so hard and I'm having a hard time spreading the hard ones out over the last three semesters I have until I graduate because of when the department offers the classes I need.  We're a small math department on a mostly residential campus and I'm an adult commuter student.   My advisor was trying to pressure me in to taking not only the 8 credits of math I don't have a choice about (if I want to graduate in 2012), but also another 2 credit elective course.  Ummm... No.  I think I mostly have that situation worked out after a LOT of meetings with deans and department heads.  I may have to go to another college to take an elective in order to graduate on time, but I'll be a much saner person for it. :)

I realize this blog is called "The Student Knitter" but I rarely talk about the student part.   I've been a strong student all my life and have always enjoyed school, so I guess no one thought to tell me that school was going to get really hard, even for me, and that I would begin questioning my ability to finish it altogether.   I also still have no idea what I think I want to do with my BA in Mathematics and another BA in Communication and Technology (business, basically).  Everyone I tell that to goes "huh. What a weird combination."  lol   If anyone has a job themselves, or knows someone who has a job that has these kinds of qualifications, I would love love love if you would leave me a comment or send me an email!

Skip to Here if you want to read about Knitting! hehe                                                                       
So, are you ready to see some knitting updates? hehe  As you can see by my side bar status thingy, I did decide to frog the pea coat I was working on.  I was just really mad at it. lol   I haven't decided what I'm going to do to replace it yet and since it's my last gift to finish before I need to send everything to Canada on December 1st I decided to start something for me!

I cast on the Holden Shawlette, which was published for free in September 2010 and already has 124 projects!  Mine doesn't look like much yet, just the stockinette body.  I'm doing it in this yarn: my Malabrigo Sock in my absolute favorite colour EVER.

(remember this mess? Never again Thanks to my friend Hope!! She sent me a swift as soon as she saw this pic!! Thank you so much!)

So yeah.  I'm chugging away on that and pondering Niece #3's Christmas gifts!  This year is going to be very lean so I'm sure I'll have to knit something, but what? Or maybe I'll quilt for her? Dunno yet, but it needs to be done in the next three weeks ! lol

I also did a bit of sewing last night.  It was kind of an whirlwind of little threads and machine whorls:

It's a pillow! Kind of lumpy and poorly photographed, but made out of the fabrics leftovers from my quilt and a recycled sweater.  The lumps will work themself out with wear, right?  This was my first time working with a knit fabric (what a pain!) and also my first applique project, and the first pillow I've ever made. LOL  I like it, I think.  It looks amateurish, but I learned a lot (like buy pillow forms, not just stuffing!)    I also tried to do a bit of a cording around the outside and you can see how that worked out for me too. hehehe It disappears in to the corners instead of going around them.    I'm not sure if it'll stay at my house or go off with the Quilt as an xmas gift.  We'll see. hehe :)

Was the pillow worth reading through all the blather at the top?  How are you guys going on your Christmas gifting lists? :)