My Free Patterns

Sunday, April 12, 2015

2015, finding balance

Hello! I has been months and months since last I wrote on the blog. I'd like to feel bad about it, and maybe a small part of me does, but man oh man, we've been busy. 

We bought a house!!
I guess because of my history with international moves, I should state that we are still in MI--for good. This will be the last move for a long time, if we have our way!

The first week of April we moved in to our new house on 11.6 acres. I am so very excited/tired that I almost stopped knitting for a few weeks. It felt so good to pick up my needles the other night! My parents have been here to help, and we still have a few boxes to unpack, and life swirls on as normal. I did finish a few things before we started packing (and bought a wee bit of yarn), like this Aran jumper:

But more on that later.


We have big plans for the new house and land of ours. We started on it yesterday, with the purchase of 15 chicks. They are darling, and I'm pleased the girls get to watch them grow (the last time we had chickens, in Scotland, we bought them almost full grown).


So while I get unpacked, and help Dave build/finish the chicken coop, keep on knitting. I may not be posting, but I most certainly am reading. I'll be back one of these days, unless the sun stays out and then I'll be playing in the garden.  I've got this patch of ground to fill with veggies:


And Sally, if you are reading this, this dog, she loves the country.


Friday, January 2, 2015

Girl's Knits

This will be one fast post. We are off down the road to try find a commuter car for Dave. We've been a one car family for as long as we can, and now we really need that second car. Dance class, soccer, you know how it goes.

I finished Rori's Alchemist. She seems to like it, and both her and Isla have been taking turns wearing it. I should have knit the armholes one needle down, but I didn't, and that's ok. The yarn is Plymouth Encore.


Lastly, here is a long-overdue picture of Isla in her Tiny Tea Leaves. We forgot for ages to take a picture, and then the day we chose was freezing cold. We ran onto the porch, grabbed a couple of pictures, and then ran inside again. Brrrrrr, winter is here.


We definitely got the most from this pattern. Two pullover sweaters and two cardigan. Brilliant.


That's all from me for now. Happy New Year everyone, I hope that 2015 treats you right!

Monday, December 22, 2014

and the winner is......red

Hello everyone. I have been a bit negligent in my blogging, that is true, but I have not slowed down in my knitting. In fact, I've been rather productive, and have a few FO's to share.

First, just a wee bit of a back story. I work in Michigan, and my department divides the state up into three regions. My region (1) is comprised of 17 individuals that work out of their homes, and one supervisor that lives in Traverse City. Every three months we meet up in the north for a staff meeting. Every Christmas there is a themed contest, and this year it was red. The person with the most items of red worn, and the best dressed red. I decided I wanted to WIN. I threw myself into it wholeheartedly.

I did win, and would have taken both categories if that was allowed. This picture doesn't even show half of my other red.......including a few things I knit.




 
The hat (pardon the bad pictures, I blame the winter) is a free pattern, flower bud beanie. I cannot say enough good things about the pattern. Fast, pretty, fun. 

The fingerless gloves are also wonderful, and a free pattern, 75-yard-malabrigo-fingerless-mitts.
The yarn I used for both is Lion Brand Heartland. I had a 50% off coupon at Joann's, and one skein was enough for both projects. Bargain!

I've got one project I'm almost done with (I hope), and three more on the go. Ok, maybe four. I can't wait for the extra time I'll have over the Christmas holiday. Take care, I'll see you in 2015!

Friday, November 14, 2014

If you are happy, I am happy

Hello Friday!! I love the weekend, even though I've had a pretty great week. I have two FO's to share today. 

The first, a headband, I made over a month ago and forgot about. It was one of those, "I really need a quick project so I can feel like I'm accomplishing something" deals. Also excellent stash-busting. I ended up gifting it to my co-worker, because I'm just not a headband kind of girl. I guess. I keep trying.

The pattern is Winter Morning, and it is free. The yarn is from my stash, absolutely lovely soft stuff, Wendy Viva.

The latest project I've finished is a hat for fellow blogger Anke's friend. She had a shout out a few weeks ago asking for hats for her friend who is facing some health issues. The idea grabbed hold of me at once, and I cast on that day. I wobbled for a while, thinking the yarn didn't match the pattern. And maybe it doesn't, but let me tell you, I think it is lovely in person. The yarn is super soft and I think it will feel lovely against her skin.   



Pattern: Foliage Hat
Yarn: King Cole Inspire 

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Mindless knits are essential

Well, I cannot deny the truth of it--I have castonitis. In a BIG way. First (weeks ago now), I cast on some fingerless gloves. Then I got to the finger portion and


they were abandoned. I cast on a cabled sweater with the yarn I have left over from this


that was abandoned because I cast on a vest with this gorgeous yarn. It is Wool of the Andes Tweed. 



 
then that was abandoned and I cast on a vest for my daughter


Ok, that isn't all true, not everything has been abandoned. I am knitting the Mielie vest while the kids and I watch TV at night, since it is mainly stockinette. 


had to cast on the vest for Isla because all this beautiful yarn arrived in the mail. I also discovered something wonderful--yarn really does cheer me up! We've been having just a wee bit of family worry/drama, and the pumpkin yarn in particular make me feel ever so much better, just by looking at it. So I've left it and a red skein out on my desk, in case I need a quick pick me up. Another nice thing is that the kids saw all the pink (which they had picked) and decided in the future maybe they should pick some other colors. Wouldn't that be wonderful, if they threw in some greens and blues! Rori at least picked that lovely purple on the right, and Isla picked the red. 



So all that should keep me out of trouble for a little while. But I'm not going to lie, for some reason the cold weather is making me want to knit socks. We will see where the season takes me!



Monday, November 10, 2014

Sewing with the kids

Hello! Lately, my kids have been very crafty. First, they asked me to teach them how to knit. Oh, yes, with pleasure I will teach them to knit. They are (slowly) working on some garter stitch squares.


Then, somehow (none of us can remember how it came up) they decided they wanted to learn to sew. A pillow, to be precise. So I taught them, because sewing a square and stuffing it with fluff is just about the easiest thing to learn. They were super excited, because it was fast. And don't we all like instant gratification?



So they made themselves some pillows. And then, they each made me one. And their Dad. And then they made their grandparents each one for Christmas.   



We used stash fabric, except for two pillows (the grandparents pillows), and we did buy fluff. But otherwise, quite an affordable and enjoyable project. Plus, now I have a perfect pillow to use when we are travelling in the car! Next up, they are making themselves fleece ponchos!

Monday, November 3, 2014

Sewing Project

Ahhhh, autumn, I do love you. I love the crisp, sunny days, and the cold nights. I do not love snow on Halloween and how cold and windy it was. But I guess you take the good with the bad, and it all evens out.
These girls, they were not cold. I was though. They raised nearly $50 for UNICEF as well as a bucket-load of candy. I'm proud of them.

I'm knitting lots right now, and loving it. I've even placed a rather large yarn order, with enough to keep me busy right through the winter. I finished Isla's cardigan, but right now I'm going to talk about sewing. I'm not very good at it, but I do give it my best attempt. I've been teaching the girls, but more on that in another post.

First, let me just say we all used to be young. And in my younger days, I was slimmer. The before days. Before kids, before marriage, before I was tired and didn't want to exercise. Just, before. I don't want to go back to those days, but I wouldn't mind going back to slimmer days. I have a Carhart jacket that I love, because it is warm and has lasted over 10 years. Partly because my hips got too full to wear it much. Until I decided to take the scissors to it.



I was scared to cut into this jacket, but if I couldn't wear it, what was the point in having it? So cut it I did. Then I ironed on a heavy duty patch to each cut side and sewed it on as well. 


It isn't pretty, but it does work, and that is what matters. This isn't a fashion coat, it is a work horse coat, and now, I can get even more wear out of it. I'm super pleased.

Next post, all the pillows my girls are making for Christmas!
 
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