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embroidery and knitting — Page 2

embroidery and knitting

Crested Boot

February 3, 2015

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Someone turned 40 last week. I am not saying who, but it was my husband :).

We decided to celebrate by heading deep into the mountains to ski Crested Butte. It is a bit of a risk, since Joel still has to take large doses of blood thinners, but he promised to stay out of the trees and not fall. Not sure if he held up his promise on the falling, but he had a smile on his face for four full days, so that helped. Our boys have been skiing since they were still in diapers, and this time was so important to them. They have been very careful with their dad, not rough housing or jumping on him, not pushing him to do anything. I think that it was good for them to see that he is not going to break, and that he is the same person he has always been; a big, fun loving goof ball.

As has been the case since we started having children, I always find myself at the bottom of the slopes, nursing a babe, chasing a toddler, and secretly wishing that I was up there with them. It will happen again soon, as I will be the one to take Emma Jeanne up to learn, but for now I have to make do with lots of knitting, warm fires, and a continuous flow of Irish Coffee (whoever combined coffee and alcohol together very well may be my hero).

CB6CB5CB4CB2CB1CB3CB18Crested-Boot-Cuffs

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Lately I have been having a ball designing knitting patterns and pieces for my sweet girl. While I will delve into that a bit later, I do have a fun and super easy boot cuff pattern that I created while we were traveling. I have recently been told that I need to update my wardrobe, so long sweaters and leggings have come into play in a big way. I must say that while I enjoy the look, it is a bit colder than my sweatpants and mommy shirts I had been loving on for years. These boot cuffs were a way to prevent much air from getting into my boots, and are surprisingly helpful in keeping the bottom half of my leg warm. I, oh so horribly, named them the Crested Boot Cuff pattern in honor of our stay, and I hope that you enjoy making them as much as I have.

Crested Boot Cuff Pattern

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Stitch Sampler Washcloths Stitch Sampler Washcloths Stitch Sampler Washcloths Stitch Sampler Washcloths Stitch Sampler Washcloths Stitch Sampler Washcloths Stitch Sampler Washcloths Stitch Sampler Washcloths Stitch Sampler Dishcloths

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Spring is knocking on the door. Our days vacillate between snow and cold, sunshine and warmth. Today will see the high 60’s, but tomorrow will bring the snow once again. I took Emma Jeanne for a walk yesterday, and I noticed the blades of grass were a serious mix between green and brown. I think that this is the earliest I have ever seen that. I love this time of year, as I know that we will be living out of doors so very soon. The seeds are on their way, the garden is planned, the camping is starting in just a few short weeks, and a special adventure awaits us this year. I know that this will be such a special time, as my ever curious daughter will be in love with all the beauty of the outdoors. That little girl sits still for nothing. She is always on the go, always trying to get into everything and anything. Pulling my hair if I am not giving 100% of my attention, clapping at the near constant attention her brothers give her, and showing us a very curious, perhaps adventurous spirit. We have a lot packed into the coming warm weather, and we realize now that she will be more than up for  what lies ahead.

I still have not updated my Ravelry page from all of the knitting of the past year. Let me give a word of advice here, update as you go, because trying to remember things a year from when they were done is a bit of a nightmare. Of course, part of my problem is that I would rather be knitting than typing out notes about my knitting. Not helpful.

I am working on some knitting designs right now, which is both fun and totally an exercise in repeated failure. I don’t necessarily mind failing at things, it means I am trying, but I would also love some success here soon. I am working on a few sweaters/cardigans for the kids, as I have had so many patterns that were too big for my children that I wanted to take a stab at modifying or creating my own. It is hard, let me tell you! I have a new found respect for people who do this for a living. I do so love how knitting is this perfect hybrid between math and art. Perhaps in the end the mathematics of it is where I need to focus my energy, and add the art part in once I understand how the clothes can and should come together.

I have been working with stitch patterns for the past few months, seeing how they come together, what I like as a combo, how something feels to knit. It is a fun play with yarn and texture, and I have quite a few blocks laying around the house. Some have worked, some not as much. I decided a few days back to make use of this exercise by switching to cotton yarn and making a few washcloths for the babe. Soft pink cotton, my favorite right now. I would like to knit her a summer cardigan in that color, as it seems perfect for the pale colors that are just beginning to show themselves.

The picture above is the combination that turned out to be my favorite, and I thought that I would share it here. I like the way that  the different stitch patterns came together, and the fact that they look neat and tidy on both sides of the fabric. I am thinking that this would make a fun baby blanket, if I just simply kept it on repeat. The texture makes it interesting, without being too loud or overly complicated, and it makes for a fabric that will hold it’s shape well. I have a few more planned, and I will share them if they turn out. For now, here is a simple stitch sampler washcloth for these coming spring days.

Stitch Sampler Washcloth

Materials

4 oz of worsted weight cotton yarn (I used Blue Sky Alpaca)
Size 7 needles
Tapestry needle for weaving in ends

Directions

Cast on 36 stitches. Knit 4 rows in garter stitch

Switch to moss stitch for 12 rows
Row 1 (RS) *K2, p2; rep from * to end.
Row 2 and 3 *P2, k2; rep from * to ende.
Row 4 *K2, p2; rep from * to end.
Repeat rows 1-4 twice more.

Switch to garter ridge rib for 12 rows
Row 1 and 3 (rs) K1, *p1, k2; rep from *, end p1,k1.
Row 2 K2, *p2, k1; rep from *, end k2.
Row 4 Knit
Repeat rows 1-4 twice more.

Switch to linen ridge stitch for 8 rows
Row 1 (RS) Purl
Row 2 (WS) K1, *wyif sl 1, k1; rep frpm * to last st, end k1.
Row 3 Purl
Row 4 K1, *k1, wyif sl1; rep from * end k1.
Repeat rows 1-4 once more.

Switch to woven pattern for 16 rows
PT (purl twist) P2 tog, leving sts on LH nedle, insert RH needle from back btwn sts just worked and p the first st again, sl both from needle together.
Rows 1 and 3 (ws) purl
Row 2 *k2, PT; rep frpm * to end.
Row 4 *PT, K2; rep frpm * to end.
Repeat rows 1-4 three time more.

Knit in garter stitch for 4 rows, and cast off. Weave in ends, and enjoy!

Experiment with making your own stitch sampler washcloth by playing around with different stitch patterns. As long as the stitches are multiples of the same #, you can create about as many combos as you can imagine. 

There are a ton of stitch collections available. For this project, I used Vogue’s Stitchionary 1. The other book in the photo is Knitwear Design Workshop, by Shirley Paden.

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