Friday, December 22, 2006
So I have been blessed with a ton of really talented knitting pupils who learn quickly and easily - any teacher's dream set. I will try to show you all of them and their gorgeous creations. Today, I want to show off a couple of serious self starters who followed their first sweater patterns with little guidance. First, we have Amy who learned to cable and learned a lot about sweater construction from this Minnow Knits pattern. The recipient of this lovely sweater is one lucky little girl. And she actually lives somewhere that wool is a necessity so it will be well loved and layered. I love the bobbles! I showed a knitter who formed me as a beginner and she was quite impressed by the bobble making as she can never get them to pop on the right side. I am tickled by the whole shebang. And the designer is in the details - Amy selected purple seed beads to cluster in the center of each button for just the right amount of sparkle.
Next, I show you a brand spanking new pattern reader - Anita. Not only is this her first sweater pattern that she is deciphering, but it is her very first pattern that she is reading! There are four or five different pattern stitches, shaping, and picking up stitches - all which she is mastering beautifully. She is whipping out a matched set of sweaters for a lucky set of twin girls. Upon discussing our mutual preference for greens and blues, I am sure that Anita is fairly ready to move on to the mint green one.
I am so privileged to be in the presence of fearless knitters - these two lovelies saw what they wanted to roll off their needles and have conquered that vision, leaving scarves in their dust. Victory for the budding advanced knitters!
Thursday, December 21, 2006
I have been knitting like a mad woman to get all my holiday yarn plans to fruition. I am most of the way along. The first thing that I want to show off are these stockings that I made on commission. They are actually the first socks that I completed past turning the heel (love those short rows - maybe someday I will actually understand what I am doing rather than trusting the directions with blind faith). I no longer fear the heel gusset. The pattern belongs to Ms. Knewbill and is really great to follow. So, next fall, she will hopefully teach the stocking class again. Keep your eyes peeled...not like you want to be thinking of next year's holidays before we make it to the other side of this year's fun. The part of this project that I am actually most delighted by is the velvet ribbon that I used to line the tops and to attach the hanging loops. It is either the secret luxury of where it is placed or simply my delight in velvet ribbon and the chance to use it any and everywhere.
I took them to Target to audition them on the really cute stocking hangers there. The one I really want is the papa reindeer, mama reindeer, and baby reindeer. Awwwww. Next year. I was daydreraming about starting the set for Mr. K, Xander, and me. I think we will pick the colors together though. Something bright and Suessian (that way Mr. K's choice of purple will make sense...XOXO). I thought that one would be appropriate for my patron as well since she ordered these as a gift for her husband to celebrate their growing family. More Awww. When I got to the store, I didn't see the lovely deer on the first set of shelves holding the hangers. After rummaging through what remained I found another cute, rather than elegant, consolation option. "Frosty the Snowman had a lovely wife and son....hmmhmmmm...then one foggy Christmas Eve Santa came to say....hmmmmhmm" or something like that. "Falalala."
For the grand finale, I put the names on the stockings. Luckily, she didn't like the look of the block letters that duplicate stitch would have created, because duplicate stitch is not one of my many talents. However, though I had a brief love affair with the idea of a needlepoint and cross stitch samplers when I was about ten, I have stayed away from most incarnations of embroidery as well. I tried stem stitch with little success - the knitted fabric wasn't firm enough to hold my stitching at my low skill level. So, I reverted to a solid classic - back stitch. Very happy with the results. (Hold on, gotta finish patting myself on the back.....Ok, done.) I sadly didn't get to see her reaction in person because I had to jet off to pick my son up from school and begin the month of purgatory... I mean, winter break (can you believe a month for elementary school students?) So, hopefully, Leyla or Tiffany will accurately reenact her joy or distaste. ;) Don't you love the baby's name "Arden"? So pretty. Must remember to ask how they chose it. Mr.K and I have discussed future baby names...(it freaks his best man out when we talk of kids...evil laughter following)...Isabella for my dream girl and Dante for the next boy...I am deciding to add Luca (thank you to Beautiful Pregnant Lady Buying Scarf Yarn at the Holiday Open House for sharing that one) as another boy option (since Mr. K wants two boys and no girls) - all choices pair nicely with Mr. K's strong Italian last name. No middle name options yet, though. Maybe Isabella Michele...
Stay tuned because I want to brag about my sweater students tomorrow and show off some finished presents.