Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Knitting Projects: Close to You Shawl and a Lesson Learned

So here I am, showing off my latest knitting project - the Close to You Shawl by Justyna Lorkowska.  This is a free pattern available on Ravelry.  And I love it.  The pattern is rather repetitious, but I love the interesting, yet casual design it creates.  I'm really happy with this project.

This shawl uses fingering weight yarn and as a Christmas present to myself, I splurged on this beautiful purple variegated yarn from Gnarled Paw on Etsy.  This yarn wasn't super expensive, I think it was $18, but more money than I might normally spend.  How much money you spend on yarn is a personal choice, but I'm glad I decided to spend more for this yarn.  The stunning color changes in this skein made it well worth it, IMHO.

I now see the value in investing more money for yarn, occasionally, to create a stand out item that you will enjoy wearing.  Lesson learned.

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Free Knitting Patterns: Knit Accessories for Sock Snowmen

I recently posted a tutorial for three different ways for making sock snowmen for Christmas and the winter season.  These guys are so cute I couldn't stop making them!  The best part was dressing them, and I enjoyed knitting some special items for each one.  So I wanted to share these knitting patterns with you here.

The sizes for these accessories will vary depending on the  size of your snowmen, but these patterns will give you an idea of how to start.  I don't have any gauges on these patterns because I just winged it with whatever scrap yarn I had on hand.

Knitted Scarf - Seen on Standing Snowman Figure and Gift Bag Sock Snowman

Used heavy worsted weight yarn and #8 needles

Cast on 5 stitches, knit every row in garter stitch to desired length, trying it on your snowman as you go.  I made mine 12 inches long for my standing figure.  Bind off and weave in your ends.  I didn't bother blocking any of these items.

Knitted Wreath - Used Magdalena Roslaniec's  Little Christmas Tree Wreath pattern (English directions are further down the page) with changes

Used sport weight yarn and #4 dpns

To make a smaller wreath, I cast on 12 sts using a #4 needle and sport weight yarn.  I knit my 3 cords for the braid as i-cords, making each one about 6 1/2 inches long (40 i-cord repeats).  The resulting wreath is just under 3 inches in diameter.  I added some ribbon as a bow and some beads for decoration.  I simply hot glued this wreath to my snowman figure.

Knitted Hat - Seen on Female Figure and Smaller Standing Snowman, along with Top Head in Snowmen's Heads in a Row

For Female Figure - Used heavy worsted yarn and #7 dpns
For Smaller Figure - Used sport weight yarn and #4 dpns
For Snowman's Head - Used heavy worsted yarn and #8 dpns
*see additional notes below pattern

Cast on 24 sts on dpns, place marker and join in the round.
Work three rounds in k2, p2 ribbing.
Rnd 4:  Knit all sts.
Rnd 5:  *Knit 4, k2tog* all around (20 sts remaining)
Rnd 6:  Knit all sts.
Rnd 7:   *Knit 3, k2tog* all around (16 sts remaining)
Rnd 8:  Knit all sts.
Rnd 9:  *Knit 2, k2tog* all around (12 sts remaining)
Rnd 10:  Knit all sts.
Rnd 11:   *Knit 1, k2tog* all around (8 sts remaining)
Rnd 12:  Knit all sts.
Rnd 13:  *K2tog* all around (4 sts remaining)

Cut yarn and pull through remaining sts.  Weave in ends.

For Female Figure - I pushed in pointed top to flatten hat and glued a pom pom on top.

For Smaller Figure - I did an extra round of knitted sts after Round 10 and Round 12 to make hat taller.  Here, I left the point and glued on a plastic snowflake for decoration.

For Snowman's Head - Again, I did an extra round of knitted sts after Round 10 and Round 12 to make hat taller. I also added a pom pom to the top point of hat.

Knitted Sweater - Seen on Smaller Standing Figure (Child), about 8 1/2 inches around waist

Used heavy worsted weight yarn and on #7 and #8 dpns

Cast on 28 sts on #7 dpns, placed marker, then joined in the round, careful not to twist stitches.

Knit 4 rounds in k2, p2 ribbing.  Then switched to #8 dpns.
Knit straight for 3 rounds or to desired length.
Next rnd, start decreases with *K2, k2tog* all around.
Then knit 1 round.
Next rnd, *K1, k2tog* all around.
Then knit 1 round.
Switch back to #7 dpns, work 3 rounds in k2,p2 ribbing.  Bind off in pattern and weave in ends.

I decorated my guy's sweater with some felt  holly leaves and berries.

I hope these patterns give you some ideas for dressing your favorite sock snowmen!