Anstruther Hat by Erica

This is the Anstruther Hat by Erica Smith on Ravelry. I loved knitting it and love how many different combinations are available with fair isle. I also purchased the mitten pattern as part of the “E Book” and I have been wanting to knit them. Hopefully soon. I definitely recommend this pattern.

Love this pattern, so much fun to knit!

 

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Quince & Co. Linen Sweater

I knit this sweater earlier this summer; it’s the Togue Pond Tank by Pam Allen that was part of the 2015 Kestrel Collection by Quince & Co. I purchased the whole pattern collection online for only $15 (It’s much more to buy individual patterns).

I love this kestrel yarn! As you can see in the first photo it has a “tape yarn” like quality- it’s flat and wide. It also has a nice sheen to it which linen doesn’t always have. The only downside to knitting with this yarn is that its a little more expensive but I ended up using one less skein than anticipated. I wasn’t able to exchange the extra skein so I’ll have to figure out a use for it.

The first part of this sweater was fast to knit. I modified my sweater to have a tubular cast on which takes a little more effort but it’s so worth it! The hem has short rows to make the back longer. It’s knit in the round and I knit the second size. The only challenge was that I was concerned about fit and it was difficult to gauge the size in the round but it ended up fitting well. I also added the ribbing to both armholes only to discover that they were too small :(. I was bummed but set it aside for a week and then re-worked the armholes with 6 extra rib stitches. Much better! I loved this sweater project and hope to knit another one someday soon maybe for myself next time.

 

 

Love this color! 

 

Completed sweater: Modern details but very classic

The Cutest Hand-knit Baby Bloomers

I came across these hand-knit baby bloomers on Instagram recently and had to knit them because they are too sweet! They are from a wonderful, easy-to-follow pattern purchased at studio Misha & Puff. I knit two sizes so far and they required about the same amount of yarn as an adult hat. The pattern calls for Madelinetosh Vintage (super wash) yarn or something similar. I’m looking forward to knitting their “popcorn bonnet” next.

Size 6-12 months in Madelinetosh Vintage “Modern Fair Isle” color way -a favorite!


 

Re-using yarn (how to)

I recently found several skeins of nice yarn at a local thrift store- it was enough for a sweater. Some of the yarn seemed un-used and some had obviously been knitted and then re-round into a ball. I wanted to get the kinks out so I made skeins on my swift (if you don’t have one you could use a chair).

As you can see in the photos I used fabric scraps to secure the skeins in two places. I then submerged each skein into cold water with a gentle detergent- I used “The Laundress” wool wash. I let the yarn sit submerged for an hour or so and then used plastic clothing hangers to hang each skein from the shower to dry. I like to weigh the skeins down a little with a hanger at the bottom. After these were dry I put them back on the swift which was made possible by the two fabric ties (very important, otherwise tangles!). They were easily wound and are now ready for their second project.

 

Yarn on the right in original form and on the left 3 skeins knitted and de-knit again.

After unwinding via the swift (such a good investment if you knit a lot)


After hanging from the shower- the yarn is without kinks now!


After! I will feel a lot more confident knitting with this kink-free. What to make!

Fiber Tourists

A friend and I went to the Blackberry Ridge Woolen Mill in Mt. Horeb, WI this week. I had been wanting to tour the mill ever since the owner, Anne, gave a talk at one of the Madison Knitting Guild meetings last fall. It’s a short drive from Madison in a beautiful, hilly area.

They were doing their once-a-year cleaning of the equipment when we visited but we still got a good glimpse of what goes on behind the scenes. Each batch of yarn that the mill produces is custom. They have a storefront too and we purchased some super soft and affordable wool from the mill. I can’t wait to knit with mine! Project photos to follow.

This wool has been washed in one of their two washing machines (agitators have been removed) and is now drying.

Their equipment is old! Some is from 1905, others from the 1930s and the spinning frame is from the 1950s. Some of their equipment is from Lowell, MA.

“Skeiner” this machine can make 10 skeins at a time and transfers spun yarn from cones into skeins.

Love this natural color!

“Sam the Ram”