now that usps has done their part

 stack of presents

One of the best things about knitting for another knitter is that you know they will appreciate the gifts – one of the worst is you can’t talk about it/work on it anywhere they might be (like Ravelry).  Today I learned that all the packages I sent out last week arrived and so I give you an outline of my secret crafting from last year.

December 2007 I decided to make crayon rolls for two girls I know; I went out and bought the supplies but never made them before Christmas.  Later that year I discovered Craft Apple’s tutorial for a Little Artist Drawing Case (since then she has removed the tutorial and has included it with a pattern you can purchase) and decided to make these cases for the girls instead.  And that sat and sat until one little girl came to visit me (I started the project the weekend before her arrival and finished it while she was at my house). One drawing case done (November 2008) and one to go.
Tomten FinishedLate December 2007  I also started knitting my first tomten from Elizabeth Zimmerman.  The pattern didn’t really appeal to me until I started seeing great examples on Zimmermania.  Since I wasn’t sure who was going to get this sweater I did actually blog about some of the progress.  I finished the knitting sometime in the spring but it sat and sat waiting for the zipper to be sewn in, so finally in October (?) I told my friend A that I would send it to her – I put the zipper in and then it sat some more waiting for ends to be woven in and washed again to be certain it wouldn’t fall apart.

Peapod Baby Sweater

May 2007 (oh noes I better start knitting before the baby arrives in June) I start knitting the peapod baby sweater.  I was one of the lucky ones who grabbed it from Knitting Daily before it was removed from their files (the pattern is currently unavailable to the dismay of many Ravelers).  The knitting went fairly quickly and I was so happy that I was going to get this gift to Tattva1 in a timely manner.  Then the sleeve+gauge fiasco hit and the sweater sat for a long time.  Finally this fall it occurred to me that Pigeon was going to be 6 months old in December and my theory of a size 6 months should fit somewhere between October and April was going out the window.  But I had to finish her sister’s turtle.  Oh yes, and the drawing case…

Pretty Pink Princess TurtleJune 2007 I started knitting what I dubbed the Pretty Pink Princess Turtle.  I’m glad that I learned that Ladybug was interested in a red room in her new house because she almost got an Eeyeore themed turtle (I had bought dusty purple and dusty blue yarn for it but found out about the love of red in time for an exchange at the LYS).  This too started out as a quick knit.  But somewhere along the way it got shuffled to the bottom of the pile and I procrastinated putting it together.  It lived in my yarn bag for a long time, but every time I took it out I would realized I was missing something (generally the stuffing).  Finally I grabbed all the supplies I needed when I was invited to go for a day trip to Seattle.  And so 6 months later I finished the turtle. Which brings us back to January 2008.

February 2008 Just last week I finally put together the second drawing case (to be packaged up with two of the hand knits shown above).

Drawing CaseDrawing Case - open

February 18, 2009. Tags: , , , . Knitting, Sewing. 3 comments.

Sheldon is done

I just realized that this is my first finished object of the year.  Wow.  I'm totally slacking.  Well, my first knit finished object, I've sewn a few things.

So check out TurtleButt!

He has a body and clothes and legs and everything.  I sewed the last two legs on at my knit night last night.  Leave it to wanting oohs and ahhs over a cute knitted toy to get my project finished.  Tonight I plan on dragging TheHusband to the bookstore to buy some board books for my nephew then we can pack up and send the birthday present.

I knit Sheldon with the recommended yarn, Knitpicks Shine Sport, but with slight color tweaks using green apple (his body) and butter (his shell) instead of grass and green apple.  Additionally you can see that I decided to make his bottom shell the same color as his top shell and use the turtle body color for the contrast color.  I knit this on US 3 needles because I didn't own any size 4 dpns at the time.  Despite the 5 or 6 page printed pattern it wasn't difficult, you just need to be comfortable with dpns, increases and decreases (or be ready to learn increases and decreases), and it didn't take too much knitting time.  I started knitting around February 2 and had all the pieces done by February 17 my problem is that is didn't work on it consistently but took multi-day long breaks.

What I will do differently next time:

  • stuff his body in intervals as it was no fun to stuff his boy through the tiny neck opening
  • stuff his shell even less
  • leave longer tails after the cast-off of the legs to use for sewing
  • leave a slightly bigger neck opening
  • follow the pattern's advice regarding the i-cord
  • I'd also like to learn a better way to seam the beginning of the i-cord to the end of the i-cord

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February 28, 2008. Tags: , , , , . Thoughts. 1 comment.

progress, finished, started

Sheldon the turtle butt now has a neck, head, eyes, legs and shell.  I'm currently in the middle of doing the attached i-cord to put the shell together, then I will stuff and sew on his legs.  I missed my own personal deadline, but luckily my nephew probably won't notice (or remember if my SIL cooperates) that his first birthday present didn't arrive on his birthday.

Saturday evening I finally hand-stitched the binding onto the oven mitts and finished my first project almost completely done on my sewing machine.  I was really happy that I decided to stitch the quilting lines about 2 inches apart on the oven mitts because all that quilting, even on a machine, got old fast.  And I had to pull out the old machine to sew the binding on since the diameter of the babylock's free-arm was just a bit too big for the oven mitts' opening.  But the project is done and ready to be packed up and shipped off to my mom.  I hope the insul-bright batting works effectively.  The potholder pattern is from Amy Butler's In Stitches book and I traced my favorite oven mitt for the oven mitt pattern.  Originally I was hoping for two matching oven mitts but didn't have enough fabric.  I bought 1/2 yard of each fabric seen and that was basically just enough, I have 2 bias binding strips leftover, 2 triangles from either side of cutting the bias binding and a few pieces of quilted scraps from the oven mitts.

Potholder frontspotholder backsOven mitt

Last night I did my second gauge swatch for my first shrug.  I'm doing the Retro Redux Shrug from Lace Style in Karabella Aurora 8 merino.  I'm having a few issues with size (and maybe gauge) so I've started on the math and diagraming to figure out what to do about it.  Hopefully by the end of the night I will have cast-on for this project.

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February 21, 2008. Tags: , , , , , . Thoughts. 3 comments.

Turtle Butt

As I knit Sheldon from Knitty the phrase what's up turtle butt? keeps going through my head.  Was that a grade school joke or is my inner 5 year old simply amused at the word butt?

Anyways.  I am finally knitting Sheldon, just one of the many things on my "to knit" list.  I put the Tomten on hold, because I want to send Sheldon to my nephew for his 1st birthday on February 14.  I just finished round 45 on the body and have done about 15 rounds a day.  I haven't done the time-line but I hope I can make my deadline. I'm being sort of boring with my first Sheldon and knitting him in the called for yarn in the colors green apple and butter.  His body as you can see is green apple and his shell will be butter with green apple contrast.

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February 5, 2008. Tags: , , , , . Thoughts. 2 comments.