Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Grumpy Bear

I have finished another project.  Okay - almost finished.  I still need to embroider on the face to this cute little guy. But all the knitting is complete. 

All of my patterns have come from the same designer, Susan B. Anderson and her collection of Itty Bitty books.  This time it was from Itty Bitty Nursery.  Since this pattern only called for garter stitch, it was simple to create.  The hardest part was actually finding the time to knit it!!  Between work, taking care of my son, and doing other things around the house, it seems like I seldomly sit down to just work on knitting.  Last night we decided to just watch a bit of tv instead of doing other things, which helped me complete the bear.  This will be a Christmas gift for my mom since she collects bears.  I will post a picture of him once I get the face sewn on. 

Other new things - I finally got my needle set from KnitPicks.com.  I purchased the interchangeable options set.  So now I have the most commonly used needles sizes and a few different sized cables to go along with them.  It's taking me a little bit of time getting used to knitting on circular needles, the hold feels a little different to me, and the needles are different since I've used bamboo and aluminum needles in the past.  So these wood needles require a break-in period.  But I have to say I really like them so far.  The needles are smooth and the thread glides easily along, but they are no slippery so as a beginning knitter, I'm not worried about stitches slipping off.  And the colors of the needles are fun. :) The things I'd like to get now are a few project bags as well as a knitting needle organizer.  I have the one the set came with, but it won't fit all my needles, and it just doesn't suit my tastes.  Both of these things I may make over Christmas break instead of buying them since I will have more time to use my mom's sewing machine.  There's no way I'd get it done before then.  I don't think I have any fabric anyway. 

I've also started my next project - which may be more than I realized.  It is the Sisters pattern in Itty Bitty Toys.  It is a reversible toy - both sides are sisters, but they each look different.  I am altering the pattern a little bit to make it suit my sister and I more closely as it will be part of her Christmas present as well.  One sister will be in a pink dress, with blonde, curly (hopefully) hair.  The other sister will be in blue with straight blonde hair.  The pattern calls for braided hair - which I may end up doing, I just haven't decided yet.  It'd be fun to have curly hair since my sister's hair is permed and beautifully curled, but I'm not sure if my skills are that advanced yet.  :)

This is my first time knitting anything w/out seams.  Or knitting in the round.  I had tried a few things previously by starting on dpns, but it was so confusing, I got frustrated and gave up for the time being.  Now that I have a project in mind that requires knitting in the round, I'm determined to learn how.  I have read up on and am trying a new method called magic looping.  It uses a circular needle with a long cable.  It's hard to explain, but I think once I get the hang of it, it'll work really well.  After working a couple rounds last night, I think I may have to frog the work and start fresh.  My stitches aren't twisted, but somehow my stockinette stitch is ending up on the inside of the work instead of the outside.  I'm getting the purled edge facing me.  Essentially, like fabric, I have the wrong side facing out instead of the right side.  Does that make sense?  And I really want to make sure I do this right and that it looks good, so I've got to figure it out before I go much further.  Luckily, I've only got about 4 rounds on my needles. 

And while I work on Sisters, I may also cast-on this Column of Leaves scarf.  This is the other part of my mom's Christmas present.  I'd like to make one for myself and my sister as well, but they may wait until after Christmas.  I'm also going to be making my brother and husband a hat.  It is a new free pattern designed for the Spud and Chloe yarn line, Modern Ribbed Hat.  

So I have an ambitious list - especially as a new knitter.  But I think with a little determination, I can at least get the necessities finished: Sisters, scarf, 2 hats.   My husband knows he's getting the hat, so that's not a surprise, but I want him to have it before everyone else gets their things.  I think I can do it!!


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