I'll be back.

Hello old and new friends. My blog has been inactive but I am still around. I loom-knit (and weave now, too!) but I seem to take more photos of my toddler than my crafts these days. She has that cute factor going for her. Because of this, I have started a tumblr called Tiny Taughts of our home lessons, crafts and projects. Please visit me there and I promise to come back here soon!


Friday, January 30, 2009

Rip-it, Rip-it

When it comes to the knitting world, "frog" is one of my new favorite words. Frogging is when you rip out the knitting because it didn't go as planned, you made a mistake or you find a Goodwill sweater made of yarn that you must have. Rip it, rip it ... ribbit, ribbit ... get it?

Bad washcloth

This was the fate of my first washcloth. The yarn was wonderful but the pattern and resulting width just did not work out. It was an experiment from the beginning because when you work with a knitting loom, it's difficult to determine the finished size. Well, unless you make a gauge swatch and I just don't have the patience for those (which resulted in mitten disaster '09 but that's another story).

Washcloth

Back to the washcloth. I used 36 pegs on the yellow Knifty Knitter long loom. With double-knitting, I did 10 rows of ribbing, knit in stockinette for awhile and then switched back to ribbing. The ribbing was barely noticeable and the washcloth was just too skinny.

I let it go for awhile and went back to it recently. Check out my resulting pattern!

Rib-it washcloth
Tools: Knifty Knitter green long loom (54 pegs, large gauge), 1 skein bulky cotton yarn (or 2 strands of worsted; Araucania Patagonia Nature Cotton was used in the sample), loom tool and crochet hook
You need to know how to ... cast on/bind off on knitting boards, double-knitting and ribbed stitch

Free pattern PDF download

Ribbit washcloth

Happy long-looming!

Yarn Spin: Frog Tree Alpaca Chunky

Frog Tree Alpaca Chunky is by far the yummiest yarn I have worked with in some time. I used to be a Plymouth Alpaca lover but I think I might stray now.

Frog Tree alpaca Frog Tree alpaca

It started as a casual affair on a store shelf at Loops and Links in De Pere, Wis. I would go back to touch it, look at the price tag, sigh and walk away. It was squishy soft and the subtle green variegation was such a tease.

I was yearning for a warm soft alpaca scarf that was as detailed as my husband's UPC scarf but not as heavy as my ribbed Baby Alpaca one (and I am quite disenchanted with the colors in that one now — too many pastels!)

So a couple weeks ago, I gave in and bought two skeins of Frog Tree. And I haven't looked back.

The yarn really puffs up as it leaves the tightly wound skein; it lives up to its chunky name. It feels almost silky as it moves from my hands to the knitting loom. I am making a double moss stitch scarf because it just seemed fitting for such a lovely green. The color changes aren't really noticeable stitch-by-stitch. But they add a wonderful dimension to the finished piece. There are also some uneven puffies every once in awhile that I've trimmed back.

Double Moss scarf

Hopefully this affair will go quickly so I can still enjoy this cozy scarf this winter.

Frog Tree Alpaca Chunky yarn info on Ravelry (members only)

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Pattern: Wacky wristwarmers

Yummy Noro Kureyon yarn and a modest cable. I recently loom-knit my first pair of fingerless mittens for a friend. I studied the fingerless mittens pattern in Isela Phelp's book, Loom Knitting Primer, and then changed it up a bunch.

Crazy/cool cable fingerless mitts!!

Pattern PDF download: $4


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Mock cable fingerless mittens
Tools: 1 skein bulky yarn (Noro Kureyon was used in sample), blue knifty knitter loom (24 pegs, large gauge), loom tool, crochet hook and stitch markers
You need to know how to ... e-wrap, knit, flat-knit, purl, increasing and mock cable twist

Knit them up, put them on and keep your hands cozy for the winter!

Crazy/cool fingerless mitt

Noro wristwarmers

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Wipe your feet!

Welcome to my blog! I will share all things knitty and gritty here.

In December 2008, I took a huge leap and quit my mostly secure job at the local newspaper. I was a design editor. But I was tired ... and bored. I needed a push to try something new. So I took away the security blanket.

For now, I'm "working" from home. I'm really not making money ... yet. But I'm learning new things in the world of graphic design and crafts. And I'm looking for a real job, too -- something not at a newspaper.

I'm ready for something new. I want to be surprised. And I want to learn. So if you feel like following me on this path, keep reading.