Sunday, March 13, 2011


"Surprises are foolish things. The pleasure is not enhanced, and the inconvenience is often considerable." - Mr. Knightly

Sometimes Mr. Knightly can be such a fuddy-duddy, He is THE stick in the mud,  the wet blanket thrust upon Emma. I was never a lover of their relationship (not at least until I saw the new movie version of Emma wherein they totally aged him down) He always kind of creeped me out when he said he had held her as a baby... um ewww! I was always more of a fun flirty Frank Churchill fan.

Anyways contrary to Mr. Knightly I think surprises are awesome and I love to plan them (though often I get too excited and spill my guts before it actually happens) My sister-in-law just had a baby boy and I thought I would attempt to make her a football baby cocoon, I have seen a few on ravelry and think they are SO cute, I couldn't find a free pattern online so I made this one up. All the footballs I had seen were crocheted so that worried me a little, I am still learning how to crochet let alone tweak, change and make up patterns. I think it took me 10 tries before I had the bottom figured out, but it was a pleasant surprise that it all worked out in the end. A surprise for me and a surprise for her DOUBLE WHAMMY! Suck on that Mr. Knightly!

It took every ounce of restraint in me not to call my sister-in-law and ask the exact size and measurements of her baby or if the package had arrived yet in the mail. I did my best to guess, trying the outfit on a baby doll of my kids that I thought was about the size of a newborn, and it worked out fairly well. She sent me a picture and the hat looked a little big but that just means he will be able to wear it longer so yeah, I totally planned it that way.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Pikachu DS Cozy

On a whim I thought I would try to make a simple DS cozy for my Brother on his birthday, he ended up liking it more than the actual present I bought him. The pattern is basic and can be adapted with almost any design you like on the top 

any worsted weight scrap yarn (not much is needed)
additional yarn for picture detail
size 5mm (US8) circular needles
Velcro strips
red felt
plastic doll eyes (I bought mine at Michaels)
yarn needle

Cast on 18 st using the turkish cast on method

Knit 41 rows in stockinette stitch

Bind off 18 stitches

Continue knitting in stockinette stitch for 15 more rows

Bind off the rest.

Sew on velcro strips along the inside edge of the flap and the outside of the cozy by the first cast off edge

fasten on the eyes and using fabric glue stick on the cheek circles

Stitch on the design on the top

Weave in all ends.

Happy Knitting!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

novelty knitting

Completely unrelated intro but I was watching the latest version (2007) of Mansfield Park yesterday and it is soo good. Way better than the weird 1999 version with Frances O'Connor. Especially the ending when Edmund realizes he loves Fanny, sigh. It was so well acted I got carried away in the moment and ended up being late picking up my kids from school, opps!

Anyways, I've been thinking lately that knitted gifts are a tricky thing. I can spend hours and hours of time making a gorgeous knitted masterpiece but if the recipient doen't know much about knitting it can be a bit underappreciated. My friend recently made the cutest baby berry hat and when it didn't fit the baby they said "ooh it doesn't fit can you make another one?".....uuuh yeeeah ok it will only take her another 7 hours~! On the flip side I can take two hours make a quick simple kitschy gift and it will be adored and fawned over by everyone in the room. 

As a last minute idea I made a little Pikachu ninetendo DS cozy for my brother, just a pattern I threw together in two hours and he LOVED IT! Way more than the REAL gift that I had bought him. Everyone was so impressed and telling me I should make them to sell and I was like are you kidding me! THIS you are impressed with but you just shrug off the million hour fan and feather blanket I made for my mom, whatever!!

I think when making a gift for someone I'm going to have to take more factors into account. Who exactly is this gift for and will they notice and or appreciate all the time and effort put into making it. Are they worthy of a complicated intricate project or will a simple quickie little thing be loved just as much. These are the questions....

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Stress Knitting

"There is nothing like employment, active indispensable employment, for relieving sorrow." - from Mansfield Park

I'm stressed.

When I am stressed I bake, I am a stress-baker. I won't get into the philosphy of why, but I'm guessing it's probably something about being in a situation where I am in control. I know in 40 min I can mix this and this and that, throw it in the oven and it will work out. It's not about the eating, although that is an added bonus, it about the process, it somehow relieves my stress.

My grand master plan is to change from being a stress-baker to a stress-knitter.

Right now I knit for fun, stuff for myself, gifts for others, sometimes it causes me stress but that is usually from mistakes made due to inattention. So how does one go about changing their coping habits?I'm not sure if it can be done, but I'm going to try! Everytime I get the urge to tie on my apron I grab my needles and work on my latest scarf creation. I thought a scarf would be a good choice because they take forever to make and they are usually just repetitive knitting, hopefully giving me time to get lost in the stitches and forget all my worries. I will be in control, knowing if I knit this, slip that and pass that one over it will all work out.

I love that quote from Mansfield park, Jane Austen is so wise. I'm thinking and slightly hoping it will be equally as true to say that there is nothing like employment, active indispensable employment, for relieving stress.

I'll let you know how it goes...

Monday, February 14, 2011


I've been too busy to blog lately, busy because I was working on a knitting commission!

Isn't that so cool! HAH!

A friend of mine asked if I could make a couple of pairs of legwarmers for her daughter and I felt so flattered that she thought I was a skilled enough knitter to want to pay me to make something.

It was a lot of work but I am very happy with how they turned out and I think she is too. I made two pairs of legwarmers and I was so excited I forgot to take a picture of one pair :)

This is a picture of the fancier one, it's a spiral lace pattern, so cute! Too cute in fact, now my two daughters want me to make pairs for them too.

Next a quickie project for my brothers upcoming birthday and then it's all about ME!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

a Devastating Blow

I will not say that your mulberry-trees are dead, but I am afraid they are not alive.

- Jane Austen's Letters (1811-05-31)

The same is to be said for my shawl/scarf. My long beautiful shawl scarf that took hours and hours to make. I've mentioned it before, the shawl that had the unfortunate incident of losing it's colour when I soaked it before wet-blocking . Well last night I attempted to dye it, hoping to save it by putting a little colour back into it's heart. Not so.

It's too fresh, I don't think I can talk about it yet.

I will not say that it is dead, but I am afraid it is not, nor ever will be alive.

excuse me while I go cry now.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Doggie Legwarmers

These are so adorable and really easy to make. In the picture Roger's legwarmers are all made the same size, but he didn't like the back legwarmers, I think they went up too high. I changed the pattern here to reflect that.

Are you ready for the easiest pattern ever?

Using Red Heart Kids Multi yarn in blue/green and
Size 5mm Needles (US 8)

Cast on 16

knit 38 rows in stockingnette stitch

(28 rows for back legs)

tie in loose ends

sew on velcro dots at the top, middle and bottom of the legwarmers

BOOM! Your done! So simple, quick and great to keep little doggies legs warm in winter.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Doggie Knits

"The next time Pug has a litter you shall have a puppy," she tells her niece Fanny. Lady Bertram can think of no higher mark of her regard. - Mansfield Park

As can I for those who receive an offer of knitted gifts for their puppies from me. I made a few things for my sister-in-laws pup for Christmas and they were a great labour of love. Seriously. The hoodie I made was from the most ridiculous pattern ever, it made hardly any sense and I often had to resort to making it up as I go.

Nonetheless I somehow managed to get it into a hoodie shape, only to be slightly disappointed that by that time (2 1/2 months later) Roger had grown just enough to make it fit quite snug in the chest.

Whatever! In my mind it fits him perfectly and he wears it everyday.

I also made him little legwarmers with matching gloves for my sister-in-law, those were both fun to make, particularly after the horror of the hoodie. All things considered, knitting for dogs is a delightful diversion from the regular and I LIKE IT!

I'll post up the pattern for the legwarmers after this and in the very near future I may attempt to create my own doggie hoodie pattern, one that actually makes sense.