Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Shawl, Mittens, Cards ... Oh My

I can't believe it has been a week since I last posted. I really need time to slow down, but it sure isn't listening to me. When I once had 24 hours in a day it now seems like I have about 18!

Mittens - This awesome mitten pattern was posted on one of the email lists I belong to. They are called buggy mitts and are the most adorable mittens I have ever seen. Soooo, everything I was working on got put aside so I could make one up using all the wool I have in my stash from Elann.com. The pattern is knit in the round using double point needles. Now, I have nothing against double points but if there is a way to not use them I will choose that way. So I went to my favorite mitten pattern which is knit flat and then the seam is sewn up and used the ideas from the buggy mitten pattern.

Shawl - I have been working on this prayer shawl for months. It is the basic prayer shawl pattern of K3, P3 across and then K the P stitches and P the K stitches on the way back. It will be donated to Seattle's Childrens Hospital when it is done. I have a friend whose daughter has been battling cancer there and she came up with the idea to make shawls for the kids (thanks Dene and Judy). I have about 5 more inches to go and then it is done ... though I may add a fringe to it, but I am still undecided. Yarn used is Red Heart Symphony in ice blue. Very soft.

Cards - A couple of weeks ago I attended an event at our church where we made cards for breast cancer baskets that are donated to a local hospital for women newly diagnosed. I had so much fun and decided that I wanted to make my own Christmas cards this year. Here is what I have come up with so far. I have made a couple of each design and am having a blast making them. I may even make some "Thank You", "Birthday", and blank cards to send out as gifts. It's nice to have a break from sewing and knitting ... but is one more thing that makes a mess in my crafting room :-)

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Hat for Preemie Boy Outfit

Here is the pattern for a hat that will go with the outfit in the previous post. It is knit flat and then the seam is sewn. If you leave the ends of the ribbon long, the nursing staff can trim when they use the hat. Enjoy!

Preemie Hat

3.5mm and 3.75mm needles
small amount of Sport Weight yarn (I used Bernat Softee Baby)
yarn needle

MC = main colour
CO = cast on
sts = stitches
K = knit
P = purl
Inc = increase by knitting in the front and back of the stitch
K2Tog = knit two sts together
ssk = slip two sts purlwise, knit the two slipped sts together
yf = yarn forward
yb = yarn back
yo = yarn over
sl2 = slip 2 sts purlwise

Double Woven Stitch
Row 1: K3, *yf, sl2, yb, k2; repeat from * to last st, k1
Row 2: purl
Row 3: K1, *yf, sl2, yb, k2; repeat from * to last 3 sts, yf, sl2, yb, k1
Row 4: purl

CO 40 sts in MC using 3.5mm needles
Row 1: k1, p1 across
Row 2-6: repeat row 1
Change to 3.75mm needles
Row 7: (k9, inc1) across
Row 8: purl
Row 9 - 12: start Double Woven Stitch
Row 13: K1, *yo, k2tog; repeat from * to last st, k1
Row 14: purl
Row 15: row 1 of Double Woven Stitch
Continue in Double Woven Stitch until hat measures 2.5", ending with row 4 of Double Woven Stitch

Row 1: k1, *k4, ssk; repeat from * to last st, k1
Row 2 and all even rows: purl
Row 3: k1, *k3, ssk; repeat from * to last st, k1
Row 5: k1, *k2, ssk; repeat from * to last st, k1
Row 7: k1, *k1, ssk; repeat from * to last st, k1
Row 9: k1, k2tog across row to last st, k1 (9 sts)
Cut yarn with a long tail. Thread yarn through sts and drop sts off needle.
Pull tight and sew seam.

Weave in ends
Weave ribbon through yo's and tie in a bow
If you need help tying a nice bow, check out this website.

Preemie Boys Knit Outfit

I have been working on another version of the knit preemie boys outfit. This one fits about a 1 to 1 1/2lb preemie. I made the bottom of it textured using the double woven stitch. It is really easy, just slip two stitches with the yarn in front, move the yarn to the back and knit two stitches. I also added a white tie to the outfit. Here's the pattern:

Preemie Boys One Piece Outfit

2 oz Sport weight yarn (I used Bernat Softee Baby) and a small amount of contrast colour
3.5mm and 3.75mm needles
stitch holders
yarn needle for sewing seams and weaving in ends

MC = Main Colour
CC = Contrast Colour
CO = Cast On
sts = Stitches
K = Knit
P = Purl
Inc = Increase by knitting in the front and back of the stitch
K2Tog = Knit 2 stitches together
YO = Yarn Over
SSK = Slip one st knitwise, slip another st knitwise, knit the two slipped stitches together
YF = Yarn Forward
YB = Yarn Back
Sl2 = slip 2 stitches purlwise
PM = place marker

Double Woven Stitch
Row 1: K3, *yf, sl2, yb, k2; repeat from * to last st, K1
Row 2: Purl
Row 3: K1, *yf, sl2, yb, k2; repeat from * to last 3 sts, yf, sl2, yb, k1
Row 4: Purl

With MC cast on 18 sts using 3.5mm needles
Row 1: K1, P1 across
Repeat this row 3 more times. 4 rows worked.
Change to 3.75mm needles
Row 5: Inc 1, K across to last stitch, Inc 1
Row 6: Purl
Row 7: Knit
Row 8 - 16: continue in stockinette stitch (knit right side and purl wrong side)
Place these 20 stitches on a stitch holder

Repeat for the second sleeve.

With MC cast on 18 sts using 3.5 mm needles
Row 1: K1, P1 across
Repeat this row 5 more times (6 rows worked)
Row 7: inc 1 st in each knit st across the row (36 sts total)
Row 8: Inc 1, P8, Inc 1, P8, Inc 1, P8, Inc 1, P8 (40 sts total)
Row 9: Change to 3.75mm needles and start Double Woven Stitch pattern
Continue in Double Woven Stitch pattern until the leg measures 3.5" from beginning. Last row knit should be row 4 of the Double Woven Stitch pattern.
Place these 40 stitches on a stitch holder.

Repeat for second leg.

Place both legs on 3.75mm needle with right side facing. Join MC yarn.
Row 1: K2, work row 1 of Double Woven Stitch pattern to last 2 sts, K2
Row 2: K2, purl, K2
Row 3: K2, work row 3 of Double Woven Stitch pattern to last 2 sts, K2
Row 4: K2, purl, K2
Continue working these 4 rows until 6.5" have been worked from the bottom of the leg. Ending with a wrong side row (ready to knit the right side)
Decreases: K2, *K1, K2Tog; Repeat from * to last 3 sts, K3 (55 sts)
Next Row: K2, Purl, K2
Ribbon Band: K2Tog, YO across all sts

Row 1: K2, purl, K2
Row 2: Knit across
Row 3: K2, purl, K2
Row 4: K27, K1 in CC, K27
Row 5: K2, P24, P3 in CC, P24, K2
Row 6: K26, K3 in CC, K26
Row 7: K2, P23, P5 in CC, P23, K2
Row 8: K25, K5 in CC, K25
Continue working rows 7 and 8 until outfit measures 8" from beginning (bottom of leg) ending ready to knit the right side.

Attaching Sleeves
Keeping the CC worked on the same 5 sts, do the following to attach the sleeves.
Row 1: K12, transfer sleeve sts with right side facing to left needle, knit across 20 sleeve sts, PM, K31, PM, transfer other sleeve sts with right side facing to left needle, knit across 20 sleeve sts, K12.
Row 2: K2, purl across, K2 (do this for every wrong side row)
Row 3: K to marker, K2Tog, K to 2 stitches before marker, SSK, K to end
Repeat row 2 and 3 - 4 more times
Do row 3 again.

Break MC and attach CC.
K2, Purl, K2
K2Tog, YO across
BO all sts.

Sew sleeve and leg seams
Weave in ends
Thread ribbon through YO at waist and neck

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Scrappy Stars Quilt

I have been making "quilt kits" for the quilting group I organize. Anyone who attends the quilt group can take a kit which contains donated fabric cut up and a pattern, make the quilt and donate it to charity. My only problem is that I want to make up all the quilt tops!

The most recent kits I have made have been from the Road to Oklahoma block. The directions are below. You are free to use this pattern to make your own quilt and use up some of your scraps!

Scrappy Stars Quilt
Quilt Size: 54" x 66"
Block Size: 12 1/2" x 12 1/2"

Fabric Requirements:
Dark Colours 120 - 3 1/2" squares (approx. 1 1/4 yards)
40 - 4" squares (approx. 1/2 yd)
Light Colours 120 - 3 1/2" squares (approx 1 1/4 yards)
40 - 4" squares (approx. 1/2 yd)
Border 3/4 yard. Cut into 6 - 3 1/2" strips
Backing 4 yards
Binding 1/2 yard

1. Make 80 half square triangle blocks using the 4" light and dark squares. Once sewn, trim the half square triangle blocks to 3 1/2".

2. Sew the light and dark squares together for rows 1 to 4 (see below).

Row 1

Row 2

Row 3

Row 4

3. Sew the rows into a 12 1/2" block.

4. Sew 4 blocks together then sew the rows of blocks together to make the quilt top. Using the picture of the quilt above for guidance.

5. Add the border.

6. Layer, quilt and bind your quilt.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Remembering Pregnancy and Infant Loss


Sunday, October 15th is a day to remember all the babies that have died before they should have. Everyone is asked to light a candle at 7pm to remember the little ones who have passed on and to support their grieving families.

I am one of the mom's who has lost an infant before her time. Our first daughter Brianna Elizabeth passed away when she was 5 1/2 months old. It is so unnatural for parents to outlive their children, but there are many, many families in this situation. I believe that knitting, sewing, and quilting items for families in need is my way of healing my broken heart. Please consider using your talents to help a grieving family by making any item for a charity. Heavenly Angels In Need and Newborns In Need are two charities that donate burial items to hospitals.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Vest Complete

I don't know about you, but time seems to be speeding up around our house! I can't believe it has been a week since I last posted and I have only finished the vest for Afghans for Afghans. I started it last week and have been working on it exclusively so I can mail it before the deadline of November 3rd. I really liked the vest pattern that I used from Warm Woolies. It worked up fast and the directions were very clear.

Now I really need to make a baby bunting out of fleece and send it off with directions to Kathy. She had asked for a sample and that seems to be what is holding me up. So off to create one and mail it off. Kathy, thanks for being so patient!

On the quilting front I am working on quilting a top that was given to me for charity. The lady who made it doesn't like to quilt so she gives me her tops. I figure since it is for charity I will quilt them ... it is not my most favorite part of making a quilt as my DH can attest to. He always gives me a bad time about all the quilt tops I have around unfinished! Oh to be perfect and only start and finish one item at a time!

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

So Happy

I am soooo happy that I have my sewing machine back and in working order! I had cut out fabric for two more onsies and a burial dress a couple of months ago and have finally sewed them together. I think I am getting quite a few things to fill a box to send to HAIN. Keep an eye out Janina.

It only took a few days ... In my last post I vowed I wouldn't start anything new. Well, I did. I kept getting emails (probably two which shows how easy I am) from Afghans for Afghans pleading with us to make more sweaters and vests to send to school children in Afghanistan. I just couldn't help myself and started a vest. I found the Warm Woolies website with some wonderful vest, hat and mitten patterns using two strands of worsted weight yarn held together. The items work up very fast and I am almost finished with the body of the vest in size 8 (though it looks like it will be larger than that). They have vest-of-the-month patterns with some really neat ideas to jazz up a simple vest.

I think most of my sewing projects that I had started are complete, except for the pile of quilt tops I have sitting here staring at me. I am going to start on those next! I really am ...