Archive for the ‘Family’ Category


Not really how I anticipated starting our summer…

Nikolai spent a very patient week in a full cast with a sprained knee. Thank goodness nothing was broken!

The cast came off today and we are looking forward to a positive summer.

Nikolai liked pretending he was Tiger Woods.


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It’s amazing how fast life catches up with you, isn’t it?

First and foremost I want to thank everyone who purchased my pattern – you guys rock! I hope you enjoy knitting it as much as I enjoyed designing it!

Anyway, my boys and I went away for a simple weekend, and it’s taken me nearly 3 weeks to pull myself back together. I always tell myself “I’ll blog about this project, as soon as I get good pics.” Well by the time the daylight photo-op arrives I’m already engrossed in a new project and too busy to take pictures of FOs. Does that ever happen to you?

There was the new spinning wheel… five new skirts… a February sweater… dying and spinning… all un-photographed.

Finally though I took some pictures of the latest FO: an Owl Cardigan for Gabriel

This is the most rewarding thing I’ve knit in a long time, probably because Gabriel is a perfect recipient – he loves him some woolies. And he’ll ham for the camera, that’s always nice.

This morning we walked to Jo-ann together to buy the zipper, and I could not sew it in fast enough when we got home!

Knitterly details:

Pattern: I knit this off an old Owl Cardigan knit by my grandmother close on 30 years ago. You can see the original here.

Gabriel loved the little owl sweater so much that I took the pattern from the original and made him a new one. Most likely I’ll be making another in a few years. Anyway…

Yarn is Silky Wool, 2 less than skeins each blue and brown, less than 1 white. Stripes because I’m on a major yarn diet (did I mention the new spinning wheel?) US sz. 6 needles, I didn’t check gauge.

Construction: The original was knit in pieces and seamed together. I knit this one back-and-forth seamlessly. I tried to stay as close to the original as possible: raglan shoulder shaping, folded over ribbed collar, zipper.

Verdict: I would try to make the ribbing match next time, the brown collar is ok, but I wish it could have matched. However, Gabriel loves it – I finished it at 10am and he didn’t take it off until bedtime. That’s a winner in my book.

Later dudes.

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That title is just a sneaky way of saying “I don’t have time to write a full post tonight, but I need to post something before things get out of hand.”

So without further ado:

I got a drum carder for my birthday.  This is the Louet Jr. and it is fantastic.  Love Love Love it.  I would recommend it to anyone in the market for a drum carder, the batts are huge and light and fluffy, and you can card an unreal amount of fiber at one time.  Wonderful to spin from.

Advertising— This was ordered from HelloYarn, best price on the internet. —Thank You Adrian

The girl-y sweater is proceeding nicely.  I hate the green which ended up being very neon, but it will hopefully mellow out a bit when I get all the flowers embroidered on.  It should be finished by Monday- with a complete post.

I knit a Ribwarmer (here on Ravelry) The girly sweater was driving me batty, mindless garter stitch therapy was in order. This is an end of 2 years gift for one of Nikolai’s preschool teachers – she is slightly shorter and thicker than I am, so it should fit well.

My dad and I went golfing with the boys today.  It was their first time playing on a real course, and they had a blast.  Above is Nikolai with his impeccable form – consistently driving the ball upwards of 70 yards.

Below is Gabriel, who hasn’t much technique yet – but he sure had fun!

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Bad bad blogger I have been. Sorry.

We were sick, and then we were out of town, and then we were sick again, and now I have no more excuses, just a lots of pictures- be warned!

Nikolai turned 5 – Happy Birthday!

I knit Gabriel a vest: Check it out on Ravelry

I knit a shawl: Check it out on Ravelry

A friend’s son needed a dinosaur sweater: Here on Ravelry

I was gifted 3 fleeces:

A favorite sweater underwent the knife with very satisfactory results: Here on Ravelry

And I knit a little baby vest, and have been spinning spinning spinning.

There you have the very brief version of last month, I’ll try to be a better blogger now!

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Nikolai and Gabriel teasing alpaca fleece to prepare for carding.  We start ’em young around here!

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As I mentioned with Nikolai’s Tomten, I’m going full tilt to get school uniform things knitted for next year.  The jacket is done, and now a vest too. I might round the wardrobe out with a pullover, but I’m not sure yet.


The Fishtrap Vest for Nikolai.  Started: Thurs, Feb. 28th  Finished: Mon, Mar. 3rd

Pattern: None. Measurements + growing room from his WCTPirates Sweater, and some EPS-esque logic.

Yarn: Knitpicks Telemark color Deep Navy 4.5 skeins / 225 gms.

Needles: US sz. 4 / 3.5 mm  Gauge: about 5.5 sts/in

Size: Boy’s size 5-6.  32″ chest,  17″ from shoulder to hem


Poor guy is still sick sick sick. He likes this vest a lot (yay!!) so he humored me with a photoshoot before crashing for 2 hours – very uncharacteristic for my boy who hasn’t napped since before he turned 1.

Verdict: I’d never knit a pullover vest before, or a V-neck, so the design has a few things to improve. This turned out to be a perfectly serviceable and proportional garment, but next time I’ll make the armholes and V-neck deeper.

On the EPS-esque logic: I tried to apply percentages to various aspects of a vest, aspects not normally addressed in a sweater.  I did the normal 8% underarms, but the other proportions were guesswork. Through the working of this vest I’ve come up with a set of percentages that work for me, and hopefully they’ll also work for the EPS knitting public. Vest-knitters: I’d love your input on this!


A note: None of the percentages reflect the ribbed borders which are added afterwards.  

On to the spinning.

Getting all that lovely alpaca fleece has lit the proverbial fire under my a** and I’ve been spinning spinning spinning to clear out some bobbins to make room for the new stuff.


Another skein of natural dark brown Corriedale for the Cycling Aran (see the unspun fiber here) Woolen spun, Navajo 3 ply. 70 gms / 225 yds.


And some lovely Wensleydale from Peggy (see the unspun fiber here) Worsted Spun, Navajo 3 ply.  70 gms / 220 yds. I think this will be a very special baby thing for someone I know…

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When it was decided that Nikolai would be attending a private school next year I immediately ordered a large quantity of Navy Blue wool and set to work. First off the needles is his school jacket:


The Modular Tomten Jacket by Elizabeth Zimmermann. Here on Ravelry.
Started: February 21, 2008 Finished: February 27, 2008

Yarn: Knitpicks Wool of the Andes Bulky, color Navy Blue, 6 skeins / 600 gms.

Needles and Gauge: US sz. 10 / 6 mm yielding 3.5 sts per inch.

Finished size: 32″ chest, 18″ from bottom to shoulder, to fit a 5-7 year old child.


Features: I-cord edgings on every edge possible -the knit-on-as-you-go-stuff, not applied I-cord. So I-cord up the front edges, and also on the back and fronts armhole edges. I have never seen I-cord edgings used here, but I really like the result. It’s a nice detail without using color for the shoulder straps. I wove the edgings at the shoulders when the fronts and back were reassembled for the collar. Applied I-cord on the bottom edge.

Continuing with the small stockinette details I did a reversible phony seam at the sides (EZ talks about this technique with the Bog Jacket in Knitting Around), and a phony slipped stitch seam at the top of the sleeves.

For extra growing room, I finished off the sleeves with 3 inches of K1P1 ribbing, right now it’s folded up, but the sleeves will lengthen with his arms for a year or so (I hope!). I also used K1P1 ribbing for the collar as I find it much cozier and more fitting for a collar.


I finished off with afterthought pockets, also edged in K1P1 ribbing, and a zipper up the front.

Verdict: I love it! I think it’s a very handsome jacket. I think Nikolai loves it too, as he rarely shows enthusiasm for wooly things. The WOTA bulky is quite soft for being a cheap wool, and I think this will last several years of hard boy wear.

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Spring Thoughts

Thanks for all the interest about the Moody Socks. I forgot I’d already mostly written the pattern out a few months ago.  So instead of a very boiled down version, I’m offering the probably-more-words-than-you-wanted version.  But I think the instructions are quite clear, and multiple sizes!

So, pattern below, or queue it up here on Ravelry.

Now, the real reason I’m posting again after doing all the pattern stuff – it was indicated by several people that they have had enough winter.


My boys had their first picnic of the year yesterday.  We’re sending everyone warm thoughts!!

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Firstly, thank you all for all the wonderful comments you left about the “Amazing Tri-Cable Sweater.” Thank you for the new name Peggy.

Several of you commented on the fit, so if you’re curious- I blocked the chest to 34 inches. My bust measurement over undergarments and a thin t-shirt is 31 inches. So 3 inches of positive ease. I’ve noticed with the Knitting Daily Sweater Galleries how many people like seeing the ways sweaters look of different sized folks and using it for a reference point, so I think I’ll start doing that here too.

Second, On the topic of the Shawl Collar Sweater. Jeanne wondered whether I would publish the design? Well, I hdan’t really thought about it, is there much interest? I have been thinking of putting up a shaping/steeking/shawl collar overview with lots of progress and process pictures. Essentially I would be giving you the recipe EZ style so you can design something made for you. Is anyone interested in something like that? Please let me know what you’d find most helpful.

Third, I’ve started the Gathered Pullover from the Winter 2007 IK.


Yarn is Berroco Ultra Alpaca Light. That’s a pretty accurate color. When I first started knitting this I thought I wanted it to be loose, like wearing a cloud, so I’m knitting on 8s and getting 4.25 sts/in. Later I went on Ravelry and noticed that the versions with negative ease looked the best (IMHO). So that’s why it’s off the needles in this picture.

I measured it and it came out only 30 inches around the cable pattern so this might work out. For now it’s back on the needles awaiting judgement. Perhaps size can be corrected with some aggressive washing, but I kinda want to just start over now. Opinions?

What number are we on? Spinning.


This is more fiber from Peggy. I noted on the back of the label “First bobbin sucked. Second one much better. Still a bit ropey, overspun.”

It’s a start. I’m still learning.


Currently on the wheel is more fiber from Peggy, this time some Wensleydale. When I first started spinning this stuff I was drafting a really fine strand, so I used the smaller whorl on the flyer. But as I went along I started making it thicker and the smaller whorl was too much. On the far left you can see the softer strand produced when I went up to the larger whorl with thicker drafting. Hopefully I can correct the overspinning problem.

Just random stuff today. If you’re only here for cute pictures of my boys here’s one of Gabriel and me sharing his ‘lovey.’

Have a great week everyone!

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Hope you all had a wonderful turkey day,  I’m stuffed.

I have so many things to be thankful for, it’s overwhelming to stop and think about all the amazing parts of my life that are completely beyond my influence.  All I can do is be grateful… and offer the occasional handknit or apple pie.


I’m thankful for my children.


And I’m thankful for my parents and the roof over our heads.  And I hope that my frosty-fingered mother is thankful to have a knitter in the house.


I’m finishing up the second mitt right now, and I’ll give you more info about them soon. But if you can’t wait, here is the Ravelry page, or the pattern is here, scroll down for English.

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