Newborn Knits

It has been a number of months since my last post. One of my blog followers actually contacted me to see why I hadn’t posted in a while. What can I say?? Life just got so busy and gradually the weeks slipped away. From working three days a week, I have also gone back to full time work until later this year so my time is even more limited when it comes to my personal pursuits. I’ve also been on holidays as well as downsizing my spinning wheels, sheep collection and yarn stash.

Yes, it was getting to the point where my sheep and wheels were literally meeting me at the door! I realise I had to take control and start managing my collection so I’ve managed to move quite a few of my sheep and wheels to new owners and now my home looks much roomier and neater. Do not despair; I still have five spinning wheels and plenty of sheep to keep me company 🙂 I have kept all the sheep that were gifted to me 🙂

Despite all this, I have still managed to do lots of knitting, some crocheting and some spinning so I’ll show you a few of the items I’ve made over the last couple of months.

One of my friends will become a first time grandma in winter this year so I’ve made some garments for the new baby. As we don’t know the gender of the new bub, I’ve used red, white and green as neutral colours that should suit either a boy or a girl.

Red and White

The In Threes baby cardigan is an absolute favourite pattern of mine and it’s available on Ravelry. There are over 7,000 projects attached to this pattern!! I’ve made quite a few of these cardis as I love the pattern so much J

Watermelon Cardi Red White

These little Baby Hug Boots are so easy to make. I’ve adapted the pattern to use dpns so I can knit them in the round. I just seam the sole. For the red and white hat I used the pattern Greenleaf Baby Hat which is also on Ravelry.

Red White Booties
For the red hat I used the pattern Three Textured Baby Hats that features this pattern: King Charles Brocade. For the green hat I used the same pattern: English Diamond Block. The little white hat is made using the pattern Lomond Baby Hat.

Red White Hats

I’ve also just finished crocheting this lovely corner to corner baby blanket. I have so much baby yarn so this was the perfect project to use up some of that yarn. I must admit I do love the C2C blankets. They’re easy to make when you’re at a group as there’s not much concentration required. This is the third baby C2C that I’ve made. As soon as I finished this blanket I immediately went upstairs and sorted through my baby yarn, selected some new colours and started crocheting another blanket J

C2C 01C2C 02C2C 03C2C 04C2C 07

Still on the baby track, my neighbour’s daughter is having a little girl in a couple of months’ time  so I made this cute little Watermelon Baby Cardigan. Again, the pattern is on Ravelry. I’ve made quite a few of these cardis as they’re so adorable and quick to knit up.

Pink PurpleWatermelon Cardi Pink Purple

I made two pairs of Baby Hug Boots in different sizes and just reversed the two colours.

Pink Purple Booties

The pink hat is made using the pattern Button Baby Beanie. The mauve hat is made using the Lomond Baby Hat pattern.

Pink Purple Hats

So as you can see, even though you haven’t heard from me for a while, my fibre and yarn pursuits continue. I try to make sure I knit or crochet every day of the year.

I’ve also made quite a few pair of socks so I may feature them in my next post.

Until next time…

Melanie
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Deborah Norville Everyday Soft Worsted Solids Yarn from American Yarns in Melbourne, Australia

American yarns like Premier, Caron, Red Heart, Bernat and Lily sugar ‘n cream are sought after in Australia. Did you know there is a now a local supplier?

When Pauline from American Yarns, an online yarn shop based in Melbourne, contacted me to see whether I’d like to try some of their yarn, of course my answer was a resounding YES!

I had a look at the website as I was looking for suitable yarn to make a baby cardigan and boots. Pauline suggested Deborah Norville Everyday Soft Worsted Solids which is a 10 ply yarn.

I was sent three balls of this yarn in the colourway Spa and a contrasting colourway Grass.

Deborah Norville Premier Everyday 01
This yarn is beautifully soft and squishy and perfect for a baby’s delicate skin. It’s a 100% acrylic anti-pilling fibre. Each 113g ball contains 186m/203 yds. As it’s a worsted yarn I used 5mm needles but you could quite easily use 5.5mm needles too. The ball band provides tension square details for both needle sizes.

The pattern I selected is the In Threes baby cardigan which is such a popular pattern on Ravelry with over 7,500 completed projects!

In Threes Green Blue 04

In Threes Green Blue 05I’m so glad I suggested the contrast colour and thank you Pauline for selecting such a great match.

The yarn is beautiful to knit with; it has such an even and consistent thickness and comes in a great colour selection which you can see on American Yarn’s website.

Three buttons finish off the cardigan. I have a thing about using odd buttons too. I have so many different one off buttons. Why not just use them!

In Threes Green Blue 07

The yolk does look so much nicer when a contrast yarn is used on the garter stitch section don’t you think?

In Threes Green Blue 09

Using only one ball of the Spa and Glass (with some left over), I also made these rather cute Baby Hug Boots. So using less than two balls of yarn you can knit the 0-6 months size In Threes cardigan and these Baby Hug Boots.

Baby Hug Boots 03

I made the three month size boots using size 5mm needles which made the boots more for a six month old. I have used this pattern before and it’s actually knitted back and forth and then the boots are seamed. I prefer to use dpns and then I only have to seam the sole.

Baby Hug Boots 05

This is my ‘go to’ baby boots pattern and I particularly love using a contrast colour for the sole and the ribbed top.

Baby Hug Boots 01

If you’re after some great American yarn, then head on over to American Yarns and check out their website. They also have a Facebook page as well as an Instagram page.

Thank you Pauline and American Yarns for allowing me to try your lovely yarn; it’s perfect for baby garments 🙂

I hope you enjoy knitting with this beautiful yarn as much as I did!

Until next time…

Melanie

 

Holidays!

It’s that time of the year when I gather lots of knitting projects, pack my car and drive to the beautiful seaside town of Noosaville located on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast. The only downside is that most retirees from the southern states do the same thing to escape their bitterly cold winters to enjoy our balmy winter days.

It’s practically my second home and I love grabbing my chair and knitting and then stroll to my usual spot and gaze at this tranquil view for a few hours.

Noosaville Waterfront 14-7-17

I have started knitting another Pebble Beach Shawl although this one will be the small size as opposed to the large one I made a while ago.

Noosaville Waterfront 12-7-17

I’ve only given you a glimpse of the shawl; more will be revealed once I’ve finished it 🙂

I was going to bring along a spinning wheel but at the last moment changed my mind and brought along my Weave-It looms which I bought this year. I haven’t used them much so I thought this would be an ideal opportunity to practise some more.

Stretch loom 01

This particular Weave-It is a 6″ stretch loom and is perfect for weaving handspun yarn, 12ply yarn or in this case, mohair yarn.

Stretch loom 02

Not long ago I found this absolutely gorgeous baby garment pattern on Ravelry called Watermelon Baby Cardigan. It is a quick knit and looks adorable.

Watermelon Cardi Mauve Pink 01

This is what I call addictive knitting; something quick, colourful and so pretty.

Watermelon Cardi Green Orange 01Watermelon Cardi Green Navy 03

My internet connection here is soooo slow so I’m not sure how many posts I’ll be able to release as I don’t want to spend all my holiday time on the laptop!

So I’ll leave it there and get back to some knitting!

Until next time.

Melanie

Knitting and Spinning

I can’t believe it’s over three weeks since my last post. Time has just slipped away so quickly. Lots has been happening in my life: my son is in the process of buying his first home (he’s still awaiting finance approval) and sadly my family has had to place my 92 year old Dad into a nursing home as my 89 year old Mum was struggling to care for him. So, after more than 60 years of marriage, they are now living apart which is so sad but necessary to ensure the well-being of both of them.

On the crafting front, I’ve been knitting and spinning and I’ve also been destashing some of my spinning wheels and yarn to help my son pay for some of those new house costs that you tend to forget about like house insurance, solicitors, pest and building inspection and so on.

Having said that, I had been thinking of selling some of my wheels as my collection was steadily growing so I’ve sold my Ettrick Standard double drive, an Ashford Traditional, a Wee Peggy, an Ashford Scholar and I also have my Fomotor Peacock and Ashford Traditional double drive on the market. I’ve also sold off quite a bit of my yarn, in particular the Zen Yarn Garden ART WALK series skeins. It had got to the point where I realised I couldn’t possibly use it all so I bit the bullet and advertised a lot of it for sale and most of that has been snapped up quite quickly. I have kept the colours I really like.

Now to some knitting. I finished this In Threes baby cardigan while I was on my recent cruise to New Zealand. I love this pattern and so do many other knitters as over 6,700 of these cardis have been made!

in-threes-multi-large-01The wool I used is Shepherd Colour 4 Me Prints which is an 8ply 100% plied wool. I made the 3T size which I am assuming is for a three year old toddler.

in-threes-multi-large-05I bought the buttons in New Zealand. It’s just by chance they match the colours in the cardi 🙂

in-threes-multi-large-04If you love knitting in the round without seams, I can highly recommend this pattern. It’s so quick and easy. In fact, I knit it when I feel like a quick satisfying knit. I have a few of these cardis stashed away.

in-threes-multi-large-06I’ve been trying to slow down my yarn and fibre purchases and start using my stash and I’ve been quite successful but when I saw this Optim fibre on sale on FB I knew I had to have it. I’ve heard a lot about spinning Optim but have never tried it so this was my chance. It was a potluck 5 x 100g balls.Optim is a treatment which stretches the wool fibres to make the product longer and a lot finer in the range of 12-14 Microns.

optim-5-x-100g_resizeThese were some of the examples of colours that were available. I must say I’m quite enjoying spinning Optim; it’s rather like spinning silk and it has a lovely sheen to it.

optim-03_resizeI picked up this metallic thread for $10 and $5 respectively. This will be invaluable for plying and maybe even weaving.

weaving-or-plying-threadI’m spending this Wednesday and Thursday crafting with good friends which I am really looking forward to. I always find these gatherings to be so therapeutic as it’s where we all share our love for our common crafts, solve all (or most) of our problems and generally de-stress. I’d be lost without these friends 🙂

As 2016 rolls to a close, I hope you all have a wonderful 2017 filled with health, happiness, prosperity and of course lots of yarn and fibre!

funny-sheep-with-happy-new-year-free-picture-download

Until 2017…

Melanie

Lincraft European Collection Elevate – Stormrider Jacket

In February this year I was approached by Lincraft to see whether I’d like to feature in a knitting themed (what else 🙂 ) guest blog. Lincraft very kindly supplied some yarn and patterns for me to use which I happily accepted.

This beautiful baby garment – Stormrider Jacket – caught my eye so this is the project I made from the pattern book.

Lincraft Elevate pattern bookI chose to make my Jacket in the gorgeous colour “Fuchsia”. Unfortunately, I don’t have a baby to model my jacket so the jacket on a coathanger will have to suffice 🙂 But I did provide a lovely background including sheep and a couple of spinning wheels 🙂

Stormrider Jacket 01Lincraft European Collection Elevate is a lovely squishy 12ply / bulky 100% premium acrylic yarn which makes it perfect for a child’s garment as it will wear and wash very well. It comes in generous 100g balls.

Lincraft Elevate Fuchsia 01 Lincraft Elevate Fuchsia 02The pattern calls for 6.5mm needles so as you can imagine this was a relatively quick knit. It’s knit in five main pieces (back, two fronts and two sleeves) plus two small pockets and the hood is knitted by picking up stitches held on stitch holders along the tops of the back and two fronts.

The hood is a clever addition as it will keep your baby toasty warm during those cold months.

Stormrider Jacket 02 Stormrider Jacket 04There are four sizes that you can make: newborn, 3, 6 and 12 months. I chose to make the 12 months size and this cute little garment will become part of the knitted goodies that I’m collecting in the hope that one day my son will give me a grandchild 🙂

For those of you who are more experienced at knitting, you could even knit this jacket in the round which will alleviate the side seams and sleeve seams.

The pattern is unisex so could easily be made for a little baby boy using Lincraft European Collection Elevate “Ink”..

Elevate blue

Other colours include Lincraft European Collection Elevate “Charcoal”

Elevate charcoaland Lincraft European Collection Elevate “Wood”

Elevate woodI used four pink buttons to complement the fuchsia yarn but you could even use four different coloured buttons if you so wished.

Stormrider Jacket 03To show you what the jacket looks like on a 12 month old toddler, I have captured the photo from the pattern booklet. She certainly looks very snug and warm 🙂

Stormrider Jacket pattern pic-tileAs you can see, this is a delightful pattern, quick to knit and would be a welcome addition to any little baby’s wardrobe this winter 🙂

If you’re looking for a baby jacket pattern, I would highly recommend this one as it’s quick and easy which is something we all like when it comes to knitting 🙂

Until next time…

Melanie

Newborn Hats

Don’t ask me why but I’ve made some newborn hats lately. It’s not like I know anyone who’s having a baby soon. Maybe it was just the need for a quick knit because they sure are fast to complete. One of them was a pattern test knit for a gorgeous little Pumpkin Hat.

Pumpkin Hat 07There are so many of these pumpkin designs on Ravelry so there’s lots of patterns to select if you wish to make one. I love the top of this hat.

Pumpkin Hat 04I used Cascade 220 Superwash wool to make my hat. It’s such a lovely wool to knit with.

My second hat is really a premmie size (because of the yarn I used) and it’s called Little Knight Newborn Purple Hat although I made mine in pink.

Little Knight Pink 01Little Knight Pink 02The yarn I used is Bella Baby Angora Blend (that is actually my yarn in the Ravelry page picture) and it is so soft. I used a round polystyrene ball to give some shape to the hat. I really need to invest in a baby doll to be my model!

Little Knight Pink 03And the third hat is this cute little Sheep Hat which I instantly fell in love with.

Sheep Hat 03Even the back of the hat is cute 🙂

Sheep Hat 04I used a combination of Cascade 220 Superwash and Lana Gatto Super Soft. Both incredibly beautiful wools to knit with.

Sheep Hat 01Sheep Hat 02My friend Helen recently visited New Zealand and she brought me back some lovely little sheepy presents. Here’s some of them in this picture indicated by the arrows.

Helen Gift 01aAnd this lovely little cutie.

Helen Gift 02Yesterday it was so hot and humid in Brisbane and today’s it’s about seven degrees cooler so I am going to try and attach a new tabletop that I bought yesterday to the table that I am using for my wool combing which is so old the bottom part is flaking off and leaving a mess. I’ve charged the drill and now just need to hope that the carving board I bought can be adapted to a table top. Will keep you informed!

That’s my news for this week. Until next time…

Melanie

Two In-Threes Baby Cardigans

Don’t ask me why I’ve just knitted two baby cardigans. I have absolutely no prospect of grandchildren in the foreseeable future and we’re just coming into summer here in Australia. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that I was looking for a quick knit, or because one of my friends has been making these cardigans for her granddaughters and I’m envious 🙂 Or maybe it’s because I had some single balls of wool that I wanted to use up.

Whatever the reason, I really love this pattern as I’ve made these cardigans previously (and probably for the same reasons above 🙂 ).

If you look on Ravelry, the In Threes Baby Cardigan has been made over 5,600 times which means it must have something going for it and I think it’s because it’s knitted in one piece from the neck down. That’s my kind of knitting – no seams!!

Here’s my first little cardi…

In Threes Pink 01I used about 1.75 balls of Moda Vera Playful in this lovely variegated pink and about half a ball of Lincraft Angora Plus in the solid pale pink colour. I was experimenting with using different yarns and I quite like the effect.

MV_Playful_pink_mediumLincraft_Angora_Plus_Pink_mediumI think this little cardi would fit a 3-6 month baby girl.

In Threes Pink 02This is the second little In Threes Cardigan…

In Threes Green 01I only had one ball each of the variegated and solid green Moda Vera Playful wool so I varied the bottom of the cardi a bit.

Moda Vera Playful Green VariegatedModa Vera Playful GreenSo if you’re busily knitting garments for a baby girl or even a little toddler, I can highly recommend this pattern. It’s quick and easy too. I think my green cardi will fit a 0-3 months old baby girl.

In Threes Green 02Happy knitting!! Until next time…

Melanie