Hats, Knitting

Headbands!

I love warm headbands.

I love hats too, but headbands are uniquely suited for Fall! I mean, they…

  1. Keep your ears nice and toasty,…
  2. Prevent over-heating by allowing excess body heat to vent,…
  3. Don’t interfere with “up” hair styles,…
  4. And they’re just plain fun! (Not to mention stylish!)

If you follow me on social media, you’ve probably seen this photo of a hat pattern I’m working on called “Desert Star.”

I’ve been toying with idea of creating a Desert Star Collection, and could not get the thought of a Desert Star headband out of my brain!

So I made two versions, and I need your help to decide which one to write and publish!

Headband Number 1: Narrow(er) Headband

So sorry about the rolling edges in these two photos, I hadn’t yet blocked this one!

This style is simple and traditional, no shaping, just a colorwork headband with ribbing on both edges. It provides both plenty of ear coverage and top ventilation!

Headband Number 2: Wide(r) Headband

This style is a hybrid hat/headband cross, also known as the “Mom-Bun-Beanie.” It has minimal crown shaping, and is a little wider, providing a bit more ear/head coverage and a bit less top ventilation while not interfering with your up-do!

Having made and worn both, I have to admit that each is very likable – for knitting and wearing!

But… I think that I personally prefer the wider headband because I find that I like a bit more head coverage.

Which headband would you rather knit/wear? Don’t worry, there’s no judgement here! I’m just curious to know what you all think! 😊

Family, Knitting, Sweaters

A Sweater for Claire!

I’m working on a Fall sweater for my niece, Claire!

The pattern is Stripey Duffle Coat, by Kate Oates of Tot Toppers.

I’m knitting the size 2T and desperately trying to finish ASAP because I want her to be able to wear it this Fall before she outgrows it! πŸ˜‚

The yarn is Berroco Vintage Chunky in colors #6101 (white) and #6145 (black); and I LOVE it! SO soft and squishy and warm! πŸ˜„

I discovered this pattern whilst browsing Ravelry late one night this past Spring when visiting my sister and her family in Maryland.

The moment I saw it, I just knew I had to knit it for Claire!

We visited their local yarn shop, Cloverhill Yarn Shop in Catonsville, MD, first thing the very next morning; and purchased the yarn on the spot! πŸ˜„ What a lovely shop it was, and such sweet, nice people working there! Visiting was truly a pleasure!

Yes, I realize that I’ve had ALL Spring AND all Summer to knit this sweater… and yes, I realize that it makes no sense whatsoever to wait until now and then be in a desperate hurry to finish… but what can I say?! πŸ€·πŸΌβ€β™€οΈ I’m a terrible procrastinator and I almost always plan too much to do and not enough time! πŸ˜‚

Now I just have the weaving in of yarn ends, sewing on of buttons, and the blocking left to do! I’ll be sure to post a pic or two when I’m done so you can see the finished item! 😊

What’s on your needles this Fall?? Are you a procrastinator too? If not, what’s your secret?! πŸ˜‰ We’d love to hear all about it!

~Happy Knitting!

Health, Knitting

Grateful

Today I’m enduring another migraine, but I’m grateful for the peace & quiet of my home,…

…for Sunny, always my faithful companion and loving friend,…

…and for my knitting with all of its therapeutic and meditative qualities that help to take my mind off of pain. πŸ’—

What are you especially grateful for today?

~Happy Knitting!

Family, travel, vacation

Beach Knitting

I’m working the second little bootie in the Fox Cub Set I’m knitting for Hubby’s cousin’s soon-to-be-arriving baby boy. I think these booties make great beach knitting because they’re small and uncomplicated while also not boring! πŸ˜‰ You can check out my project page on Ravelry here, and see a previous post where I began the Fox Cub Sweater Set here!

One of the things I enjoy most about beach knitting is that one does not lack for entertainment!

No need to turn on a podcast, or Netflix, or Hulu, or an audio book. There’s more than enough going on in real life at the beach to keep one thinking, laughing, and entertained during even the longest of stockinette or garter stitch stretches! πŸ˜‚πŸ˜„

Today I really enjoyed watching Joel and Vera building a sand track with tunnel for her matchbox cars…

Of course not quite all of the cars actually made it back home again… 😬🀭😜

But it was good fun! πŸ˜„

And then of course Vera begged me to make her a “sand blanket.” So…

This is “Vera Dragon” taking a little nap underneath her “sand blanket…”

And this is “Vera Dragon” smiling her sly little dragon smile! πŸ˜‚

Vera and I agree that braids are definitely a girl’s best friends at the beach! Not only do they look super cute, but they keep [most] of the hair from being blown constantly into one’s eyes by the wind, and they allow for the minimum amount of washing and combing possible (definitely a strong perk in Vera’s opinion!)! πŸ˜ŠπŸ˜‚πŸ’—

Adriana is such a peaceful, laid back baby! I watched over her for awhile this morning, and it was SO easy! We got in some quality snuggles, and then all I did was change one diaper, watch her sleep, and occasionally put her binkie back in her mouth for her!

Easiest babysitting ever! πŸ˜„

On a completely random note, meet The Amazing Acrobatic Squirrel who entertained us on the deck this afternoon!

All of us girls!

Evening really is a good time to walk on the beach! It’s so much cooler, less crowded, and the light is really pretty…! This evening a small rain cloud was just starting to sprinkle a few rain drops on us as we took this photo. Vera was wondering out loud how it would be walking back home in the rain… Good thing we brought some umbrellas! πŸ˜„

Love these colors, and the peaceful sense of just existing and accepting oneself and others for who we are that seems to roll effortlessly off the ocean waves…

What do you most enjoy about the beach?

~Happy Knitting!

Family, travel, vacation

To the Beach!

I’m at the Beach, Folks! πŸ˜„

It’s not exactly where I was expecting to be this week, but I’m happy to be here!

This is my sister-in-law Annelies, nieces Adriana and Vera, and brother Joel

My brother and his family very kindly invited me to join them for a week at Fenwick Island, DE. I wasn’t sure at first whether I’d be able or even if I wanted to go (given that Hubby could not join due to work, nor Sunny either because the accommodations are “no pets allowed”).

But a very dear family member offered to have Sunny join her and her dogs on her farm for the week! I am SO relieved knowing Sunny is in such good, and loving hands and enjoying her own little vacay with her best buds!

And then Hubby was adamant that I must go even though he couldn’t. So I did.

And I’m glad to be here. It’s so lovely to spend time with my brother and his sweet little family. We went for a little walk on the beach this evening…

Vera, Adriana, and Annelies

And the sea is gorgeous. So is the sky. And the sand.

And some very creative person built an amazing sand castle that looks like a lizard! It’s so cool, I had to show you:

Tomorrow, I plan to fit in some knitting time on the beach!

Did you or are you vacationing this year? Where do you like to go?

As always,

~Happy Knitting!

baby, Knitting, Yarn

Happy Mail Day!

Look what arrived (in the middle of a torrential downpour no less!) today!

My yarn order from The Loopy Ewe!

Yarn always makes my day better, but a delivery from The Loopy Ewe makes me especially happy!

(They are super excellent and super quick, by the way; which is always good, particularly where yarn is involved! For example: I placed this order on Tuesday, and it arrived on Friday of the same week! πŸ˜„)

Usually when I order yarn, I do so with a particular project in mind, as is the case this time. (Unless it’s an occasional splurge on a gorgeous hand dyed skein that I can’t pass up! πŸ˜‰)

This yarn order happens to consist entirely of Cascade 220 Superwash; the pink is in their worsted weight, and the others are sport weight. I love this yarn for many reasons, but particularly for baby knits because of its softness and easy care (machine wash-and-dry-able).

So now that my yarn has arrived, I am totally thrilled to be able to get started this weekend on some knits for a new little niece and a new little second cousin who will both be arriving later this Summer! πŸ˜„πŸ’—

Cascade Yarns 220 Superwash in β€œRose Petal.”

The pink yarn is for my new little niece,…

…who needs a Gullfoss blanket!

This is her big sister, Vera, three-and-a-half years ago, enjoying her orange Gullfoss!

The sport weight yarns…

Cascade Yarns 220 Superwash Sport in White, Black, Picante, Silver Grey, and Extra Cream Cafe.

…are for a Fox Cub Sweater Set for my new little second cousin!

What are your favorite go-to knits and yarns for the babies in your life?

In other news, today was a happy mail day for Sunny too! While I was happily photographing my new yarns…

…Sunny was happily going to town on the tissue paper they came wrapped up in! πŸ˜‚

Although I wasn’t quite fast enough to get a photo of her in the act, I did manage to document her handy work (above), and her “I don’t know what you’re talking about because I’ve been laying all the way over here sleeping the whole time” face (below)! πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

I didn’t mind her tearing up the tissue paper at all (if I’d had plans for it, I would have kept it out of her reach). It was just too cute and funny not to share with you! I promise that she’s a really good puppy who usually chews only on the appropriate items! Here’s a photo to prove it:

Wishing you all a wonderful weekend and very happy knitting!

Knitting, shawls, Weather

Perfect Morning!

Sunny & I enjoyed a perfect morning today!

For me, that meant coffee & knitting out on the back deck (with Sunny nearby, of course πŸ˜‰)!

For Sunny, that meant a new beef chew & lying in soft, shady grass!

It’s such a relief to have some sunshine at last! And today was perfect – brilliant blue sky, warm sunshine but not too hot, a lovely breeze… listening to the music of the stream and the birds, watching all of the little creatures out and busily about! The one word that keeps coming to my mind for today is: JOY! πŸ˜„β˜€οΈπŸŒΈπŸŒΌπŸŒΉ

Progress on my Daisy Shawl sample continues on apace!

What are you up to today?! πŸ˜„

Knitting, outdoors

Beautiful Cozy

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What a lovely, cozy, December day it has been! I feel so blessed to be surrounded by such beauty – indoors and out.

For the last week, I’ve been participating in a black and white photo challenge on social media, which has been a lot of fun! I’ve found it’s really opened my eyes to see beauty in unexpected places, and given me a profound sense of gratitude for the smallest of everyday blessings. Here’s a link to the album if you’d like to see: Black & White Photo Challenge.

This afternoon I’ve been cozied up with a warm cup of good coffee and some deliciously textured knitting! I’m nearly finished with the center section of a baby blanket I’m designing for a friend. I’m loving a new challenge, the textured stitches, and this soft, gorgeous yarn! (It’s Cascade 220 Superwash Merino in color # 31 “Baby Blue.”)

What’s making you happy today? What are you working on? I’d love to hear all about it! πŸ™‚

Happy Knitting!

 

Family, fiber festivals, Knitting

Shenandoah Valley Fiber Festival 2017

Yesterday was as close to a perfect day as I am likely to get! πŸ˜ŠπŸπŸ‚

The weather was beautiful and it was Shenandoah Valley Fiber Festival day in Berryville, Virginia;Β and I got to go with my sister-in-law, Annelies and my two-year-old niece, Vera!

We met up in Harrisonburg to carpool to the festival; and truly, the brilliant smiles with which they greeted me totally made my whole week! πŸ™‚

Well stocked with fabulous company and good coffee, the 1.5 hour drive flashed right on by and before we knew it, we had arrived at the festival just in time to get a prime parking spot! (An unusual occurrence for me! πŸ˜‚)

I showed Vera how to politely examine the soft and luxurious yarns on display in the vendor booths. Not only was this fun, but it helped re-direct the two-year-old urge to pull all brightly colored skeins off of the shelves and hooks! πŸ˜‚πŸ’—

But of course, the biggest hit of the day, by far, was the animals: Alpacas, sheep, and angora goats!

These adorable alpacas were so friendly and calm!

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The white one is named “Fenway”, and the brown is “Carpe Diem.”

 

They were just chillin’ and people-watching, and socializing with whomever came by to say hi!

Vera took a couple of minutes to warm up to the alpacas since this was her first time seeing them up close! Watching another child petting them certainly helped. πŸ™‚

 

Once she had a chance to get to know them a bit, she absolutely loved them!

 

I swear she was having lots of fun – right up until we asked her to smile for a photo!

 

Fenway was very cooperative and photogenic! πŸ™‚

Later on, the sheep really wanted to share a popcorn snack!

 

And across the isle, a super nice girl brought her goat right up close so Vera could pet it!

 

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In addition to enjoying the wonderful animals, I was also excited to snag a great book…

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…some gorgeous yarn…

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100% alpaca and SO soft! πŸ˜„

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…and a blending board!

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My plan for the blending board is to use it to blend my Angora Rabbit’s wool with Alpaca wool so that I’ll have enough to knit something special once it’s all spun up!

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Annelies was on a mission to find the perfect yarn to crochet a hat for Vera to match her new Winter coat! Here’s the yarn!

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And here’s the hat!

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By mid-afternoon, Someone was completely worn out from so much fun, and took a very good nap all the way home!

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A hand-knit shawl does make an excellent car-seat blanket, don’t you think?! πŸ˜‰

Do you go to fiber festivals? Do you have a favorite? Got plans to visit any this season? We’d love to hear all about it!

I’m excited to be heading to the Fall Fiber Festival @ Montpelier this coming weekend! Stay tuned for updates! 😊

Family, Hats, Knitting

Most Loved Project

The topic for Day 3 of the Yarn Love Challenge this month was “Most Loved Project.” This threw me off for a few days as I have difficulty determining which of my projects I love most! πŸ˜‰

But then it occurred to me that looking at this question from a Handknit Recipient’s perspective might be interesting. So now I’ve got a slightly sarcastic but humorous take on “Most Loved Project” to share with you! πŸ˜„

…Not long after we were married, I wanted to knit something practical for Hubby that he would enjoy wearing. Naturally, a hat came to mind!

When asked what kind of hat I should make for him that he would actually wear, Hubby said: “Black, and plain. No cables, no patterns, no colors; just black and plain.”

Of course, I thought: ” BORING!!” But I wanted to knit him something he would like, so I tried my best to knit him the black, plain, BORING hat! But…

I couldn’t resist adding a red angora lining! “Angora is so soft, and no one will see it on the inside,” I thought…

Hubby was dubious, but he did bravely wear the hat – all of one time, to a family gathering (my family of course)! Unfortunately, a bit of red fuzz from the angora lining emerged and remained mingled with his facial hair. It wasn’t glaring, so I didn’t notice it, and probably no one else did either. But Hubby was SO mortified when he noticed it in the mirror that night, that he refused to ever wear the hat again!

So the infamous black, plain, not-so-boring hat became mine and has been well loved and much worn despite the fact that it is too big for me! πŸ˜‰πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

Do you have a fun “Most Loved Project” or Handmade Gifting story to share? We’d love to hear it!

Happy Knitting!