Hey! Look What I Made!

I have had a love hate relationship with sewing machines since I was a teen.  I look at the things people make and think, I could totally make that.  As it turns out that is rarely the case.  Getting the right tension alway seems  to be a problem for me as well as properly threading a  machine.  Put the two together and  you have some problems.    Add in three sets of little hands that love to turn dials and play with buttons and the problems multiply.

So last fall, in an attempt to have a handmade  Christmas for all the kids we normally buy for,  I asked a friend of mine if she would show me how to use  my machine.  My machine is a garage sale find that I paid $20.00 for and might I add it was worth every penny.  She agreed and after a bit of time I was able to  manage a very few basics on my own.  The handmade Christmas however, did not happen.

So after a few months of avoiding  sewing projects I decided to bite the bullet and start an easy project.  After looking around at some fantastic  blogs I decided to try an easy rag quilt.    I have to admit the title of this one sucked me in right away.  http://greenappleorchard.blogspot.com/2009/05/easiest-quilt-ever-rag-quilt-tutorial.html . I mean after all if it is truly the “easiest quilt ever”  I might actually have a shot at making it, and more importantly finishing it.    I have also seen these quilts  at a few craft shows but can’t quite bring myself to pay the $70.00 they all seem to be priced at.  After a trip to the fabric store I  understand why they are all priced that high.

Glory with the finished project

I won’t post a tutorial  because Green Apple Orchard  did such a beautiful job  of  theirs that it would be kind of like reinventing the wheel.  So  definitely check out the link above if this is a project you would like to try.  As a beginner I highly recommend this as a starter project.

There were a few things that I was not prepared for when I started.  The first was how long it takes to cut out  148 8″x8″ squares.  I’m not gonna lie.  It takes a long stinking time and even longer when three little girls are “helping”.  Also the  snipping of the edges took a couple of hours to complete.  In the tutorial  she suggests that you  sit down in front of the television  with some good  scissors and your quilt.  I was glad that there was a Criminal Minds marathon on because this took a VERY long time.    I was a bit sloppy doing this step and  in a few places actually snipped through  my stitches.  I honestly thought that  it wouldn’t really matter too much (clearly I have a very small knowledge base when it comes to sewing).  Here’s what happened when I washed it to get the frayed effect:

After a painfully long process of  going back over all the  seams I had accidentally snipped, and flattening  the frayed bits so I could resew it I had myself quite a sweet little blanket  that Glory loves and sleeps with each night.   So I guess  now that I have an impressive looking  project  and no real excuse for avoiding my  sewing machine.   Considering that it is only March now I think I will give the idea of a handmade  Christmas this year another try.  I have  some  great ideas  for Ispy bags that I know will be a hit with the little ones.  I am sure  you will see them on here  very soon.

Hooray!

Boy Stuff

So being the proud mama of three little ladies means that most of the crafting I do around here is undoubtedly girly. Pink. Pink and green, pink and brown, or my favourite, pink and pink. So every once in a while I need to get some boy crafting out of my system which is great because I am the proud Auntie of one adorable baby boy.  Max will be celebrating his first birthday at the end of this month which works out perfectly.  After looking around for a sweater pattern that I liked for him and not finding one that I liked I decided to try my hand at creating a pattern. Here’s how it turned out:

Glory apparently had a very quick bout of camera shyness but overcame it rather quickly.

I don’t often make things with skulls on them, mainly because I have girls, but I have figured out a way to adjust the pattern and add a pink bow to each skull in the pattern. I will post the pattern when  I figure out how to show the repeating skull.   I will also post the pink bow version too. Max’s parents are pretty great and I think they will like the skulls. I think that there will be a hat as well but Max’s sister’s birthday is on the same day and I need to get going on her sweater. So wish me luck. Baby is due in 5 days so I’ better get knitting!

 
Tip Junkie handmade projects

Skull Sweater Pattern

So here’s the pattern for the skull cardigan. I have never actually written a knitting pattern before but I wrote each step out as I did it and I believe it’s quite accurate. If you try it and have any questions leave a comment and I will get back to you. If you do try this pattern I would love to see the results.  Please do not reproduce this pattern or sweater for profit. Personal use only please!

I will be posting the girl version in the next week or two.

Skull
Yoke Cardigan

Size: This will fit a 2-3 year old.

You will need:

Three colors of
worsted weight yarn.

2 balls Main color
(MC)  Charcoal Grey

1 ball each of
Black (A),  Light Grey  (B),

Circular Needles,
size 4.5 , 29 inches

2 –  Circular needles size 4.5, 16 inches

4 – Stitch markers

2 stitch holders

Directions:

With MC cast on 72 stitches.  Work 7 rows of K1 P1.Work one row purl.
Switch to A and work two rows of stockinette. Increase 13 stitches as follows
K6 *M1 K5, repeat from * until 7 stitches remain then M1 K6. Purl one row.
Increase 20 stitches across row as follows K4 *M1 K4, repeat from *18 times, M1
K5.  You should have 105 stitches. Work
one row in stockinette. Next row increase 28 stitches across the row as follows
K12 *M1 K3, repeat from * 26 times M1 K6 M1 K6 for a total of 134.

Knit 2, join color B and begin
the skull pattern.  You will repeat the
skull 10 times and have 2 stitches at the beginning and the end of the row to
allow for picking up stitches for the ribbing and button sections.  Work row
one first and remember this sweater is knit from the top down.  After row 16 of the skull pattern  work one row in color A.  In the next row increase 28 stitches evenly
across the row as follows, K13  *M1 K9
repeat from *  26 times.  M1 K12 for a total of 161 stitches.   Work 3 rows of stockinette (in color
A).  In next row  increase 19 stitches as follows: K4 *M1
K9  repeat from  17 times. M1 K4 for a total of 168
stitches.

 

1  
2
3 B B B B B
4 B B B B B B B
5 B B B B B B B
6 B B B
7 B B B
8 B B B B
9 B B B
10 B B B B B
11 B B B B B B
12 B B B B B B
13 B B B
14 B B B B B B
15 B B B B B B
16 B B

Skull
Pattern

      B=Light Grey

 

In the next row (Wrong Side),
join  B and  begin working the zig zag chart.  After the fourth row work one row in
stockinette in the main color.

Zig
Zag Chart

1 A A B A
2 A B B B
3 B B MC B
4 B MC MC MC

 

 

 

 

 

Body:

In the next knit row knit to the
first marker and place the stitches between the 1st and second
markers on a  stitch holder.  These will be the stitches for the sleeve.
Knit to the third marker.  Take the
stitches between the 3rd and
4th markers and place them on another stitch holder.  Knit to the end of the row.  Continue knitting the stitches to the end of
the row.  Continue the body in
stockinette until it measures 13 ½ inches.
Work 10 rows of K1 P1 and then bind off.

Sleeves:

Place the stitches for one sleeve
back on needles.  If you prefer not to
use DPN’s then you can use  2 sets of
circular needles instead to get the same results.  Join main color and work in the round.  *Work 8 rows and then at the beginning of the
next row knit 2 together.  Repeat  from the * until the sleeve measures 13
inches. Work 10 rows of K1 P1  and then
bind off.  Repeat for the other sleeve.

Button
Hole Bands: 

Pick up 3 stitches for every four
rows along the left front cardigan edge for the button band.  Work 8 rows of K1 P1 and bind off.  Pick up the same number of stitches on the
right front side of the cardigan.  Work 3
rows of K1 P1 ribbing.  In next row  work eyelet
buttonholes in the places you would like them (Make eyelet buttonholes
by working  up to the place you would
like the buttonhole, then YO, K2Tog and continue to the next spot you  would like a button hole). Work four more
rows of K1 P1 ribbing and then bind off.

To finish the sweater weave in
all the loose ends and  attach your
buttons.

I Made it Girly!

So I am not going to use the  arrival of Camryn as an excuse for why I was still working on this sweater on the day it was to be given as a gift.  Ok, yes I am.  With all the excitement surrounding  her birth  the sweater fell off my radar.  I would  work on bits and pieces  as I sat  beside Camryn’s cot in the NICU.  But  only getting bits and pieces done left a fair amount to do by the time this weekend rolled around.  The good news  is  that I learned how to knit with a baby in my arms.  A skill I will need if I am  going to get any knitting projects done  for the next little while.

So here’s the pattern for the girl version of the sweater:

Girly Skull Yoke Cardigan

Size: This will fit a 2-3 year old.

You will need:

Four colors of worsted weight yarn.

2 balls Main color (MC)  light grey

1 ball each of charcoal grey (A), pink (B)  white(C),

Circular Needles, size 4.5 , 29 inches

2 –  Circular needles size 4.5, 16 inches

4 – Stitch markers

2 stitch holders

Directions:

With MC cast on 72 stitches.  Work 7 rows of K1 P1.Work one row purl. Switch to A and work two rows of stockinette. Increase 13 stitches as follows K6 *M1 K5, repeat from * until 7 stitches remain then M1 K6. Purl one row. Increase 20 stitches across row as follows K4 *M1 K4, repeat from *18 times, M1 K5.  You should have 105 stitches. Work one row in stockinette. Next row increase 28 stitches across the row as follows K12 *M1 K3, repeat from * 26 times M1 K6 M1 K6 for a total of 134.

Knit 2, join color B and begin the skull pattern.  You will repeat the skull 10 times and have 2 stitches at the beginning and the end of the row to allow for picking up stitches for the ribbing and button sections.  Work row  one first and remember this sweater is knit from the top down.  After row 16 of the skull pattern  work one row in color A.  In the next row increase 28 stitches evenly across the row as follows, K13  *M1 K9 repeat from *  26 times.  M1 K12 for a total of 161 stitches.   Work 3 rows of stockinette (in color A).  In next row  increase 19 stitches as follows: K4 *M1 K9  repeat from  17 times. M1 K4 for a total of 168 stitches.

1 C
2 C C
3 C B B B B B
4 C C B B B B B B B
5 C B B B B B B B
6 B B B
7 B B B
8 B B B B
9 B B B
10 B B B B B
11 B B B B B B
12 B B B B B B
13 B B B
14 B B B B B B
15 B B B B B B
16 B B

Skull Pattern with Bow

                                  C=  Pink    B= White

In the next row (Wrong Side), join C and  begin working the zig zag chart.  After the fourth row work one row in stockinette in the main color.

Zig Zag Chart

1 A A C A
2 A C C C
3 C C MC C
4 C MC MC MC

                  A=Charcoal            C= Pink         MC= Main Color

Body:

In the next knit row knit to the first marker and place the stitches between the 1st and second markers on a  stitch holder.  These will be the stitches for the sleeve. Knit to the third marker.  Take the stitches between the 3rd and  4th markers and place them on another stitch holder.  Knit to the end of the row.  Continue knitting the stitches to the end of the row.  Continue the body in stockinette until it measures 13 ½ inches.  Work 10 rows of K1 P1 and then bind off.

Sleeves:

Place the stitches for one sleeve back on needles.  If you prefer not to use DPN’s then you can use  2 sets of circular needles instead to get the same results.  Join main color and work in the round.  *Work 8 rows and then at the beginning of the next row knit 2 together.  Repeat  from the * until the sleeve measures 13 inches. Work 10 rows of K1 P1  and then bind off.  Repeat for the other sleeve.

Button Hole Bands: 

Pick up 3 stitches for every four rows along the left front cardigan edge for the button band.  Work 8 rows of K1 P1 and bind off.  Pick up the same number of stitches on the right front side of the cardigan.  Work 3 rows of K1 P1 ribbing.  In next row  work eyelet  buttonholes in the places you would like them (Make eyelet buttonholes by working  up to the place you would like the buttonhole, then YO, K2Tog and continue to the next spot you  would like a button hole). Work four more rows of K1 P1 ribbing and then bind off.

To finish the sweater weave in all the loose ends and  attach your buttons.

<a href=”http://www.skiptomylou.org/” ><img src=”http://www.skiptomylou.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/button2.jpg” /></a><br />