Pain is just a reminder that we all die eventually.

This weekend turned into quite a hibernation. Friday we accidentally slept twice as long as we had intended and ended up waking up around 10 pm. So going out to dinner or socializing at all was off the table. Saturday I woke up in so much pain I considered going to the ER. I couldn’t move my neck without pain shooting down my spine and arm. After I spent some time laying on the floor crying K dug out the ice packs from when he had back problems last year. Cold seemed to make things a little worse and the three blankets I was swaddled in weren’t helping so I switched to heat packs. Thankfully those helped enough that I got some movement back. (The three whiskey’s I had sure loosened things up…) We ended up just ordering take-out and spent another night on the couch. I’m feeling much better today, just some stiffness leftover.

img_2656I started working on a shawl today. I’ll probably end up gifting it to my mom since it’s pinkish and I’m not a huge shawl wearer anyways. It’s In the Pines by Kristina Kephart who’s I believe is a new designer. It’s got a lovely texture created by slipped stitches and the pattern is easy enough to memorize that I don’t need to look at the pattern until I get to the decreases. After spending a few hours on it I’m already noticing my wrists hurting again, but I need something to keep my hands busy before I go crazy.

I’m also currently looking for test knitters for my Marka Mittens (featured at the top of the post) if anyone is inclined. Feel free to comment here for more details or drop by my group to join in.

 

#FridayFavorites

We had about a day of random 60 degree weather the other day and wow, what a shock to the system. We were considering sitting out in lawn chairs with beers but it started raining. Running to the store in just a sweatshirt in the middle of January felt very weird and kind of naughty. But the reprise is over and it’s back to freezing in time to do anything.

My mittens are off to my tech editor, and I found a title I’m happy with in case anyone was worried.. and now I just have to be awake long enough in the daylight to take pictures. Too bad all the snow melted away and everything is muddy.

Anyways, it’s Fridayyyyy so you know what that means! Here are some shiny new patterns I found on Ravelry if you’re looking to fill up your queue for the year.

Scratch & Peck Shawl by: Ann Meyer

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If you haven’t figured it out yet, I’m a sucker for colorwork. This one is mosaic knit so you’re only working with one yarn at a time. I’m personally not a big shawl wearer but I always want to make them. This one has a pretty modern and graphic pattern but all wrapped up would actually be pretty subtle. It’s also currently on sale so get at it!

 

 

Big Stitch Beanie by: Nailya Plaskey

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I’ve been seeing this one a whole bunch on the internet. It’s such a simple idea – it’s knitting that looks like bigger knitting! I’m kind of mad I didn’t think of it first, but IT’S SO CUTE! I’d totally wear one of these, I’d make them for everyone, I’d put ’em on a baby, I’d put one on a dog. I’m a big fan of giant pom-poms lately and that multi colored one is working hard.

 

19 Fishes on a Mitten by: Magdalena Svanberg

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This is a free pattern. There’s something charming and silly about it that I just like. This is the designer’s premier pattern though the pattern is only in Swedish at this point. It’s fully charted so if you’re at all familiar with how mittens work I’m sure you could figure this guy out. I’ve been trying to figure out what to knit for K since I’m a scrub and haven’t knit him anything (sweater curse, duh) but this pattern might have to be adjusted for him. There’s a bit of an inside joke about fish with his friend group. Playing with marled yarn might be really nice for these.

Non-Traditional Kihnu Style Mittens by: Mary Germain

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I knew the second I saw these that were were gauge sisters. I don’t know too many people who like to knit at 10 stitches per inch or use US 1 needles but there are some special people out there who do it. I’m not crazy about the cuffs on these but I also have never heard of kihnu style mittens so I be checking those out shortly.

Hearth and Snow by: Ninja Chickens

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This is just a good solid hat, and hey one without colorwork! It looks warm and practical but also stylish and unisex. I never love the hats that I make but I also don’t have a cabled hat so that very well could be the problem. I also have a large head and a shit-ton of hair so that could be the real problem.

 

 

#WIP WEDNESDAY

Things have been pretty slow around here. Trying to stay caught up on laundry, trying to cook healthier meals which means more dishes, and trying to sleep on a consistent schedule. Spent some time last week knitting away on my shawl and I started to notice my right wrist hurting. Decided to take a break on the shawl, you know, to rest my joints. Me being me, I couldn’t sit still and not knit anything for a day or two to feel better so I made a pair of mittens in about two and a half days. Now my wrists AND hands hurt. I’m shocked too…

Anyways mittens are finished and blocking, and now I just need to motivate myself to write up the pattern. The chart is pretty much done, it just needs a little tweak here and there to look nice. The writing part is what kills me, and I know that’s a shock to you all as well since I’m SO GOOD at blogging consistently these days. Once I get started it goes pretty quickly, and I know that, but for some reason it takes me forever to start writing. Somewhere in my brain I think that I need to have a pattern title and images before writing up the pattern, which is pretty illogical, those are the easiest things to add or change in a pattern. I guess I did start playing around with a few titles but they feel pretentious and also kind of lame. Finding titles I’m happy with is always such a struggle for me – it’s hard to come up with something original and memorable and on brand without being floofy or overly descriptive and boring. Are there professional title givers? I’m totally open to suggestions if you have a good one!

Hopefully I can talk K into going out sometime this week to help me take pictures, but he’s got a head cold, and I’ve got some kind of stomach thing so I won’t hold my breath. I’m hoping whatever bugs we’ve got go away quickly and I find some motivation to write out this pattern before the weekend. If I wait any longer by the time I get all the tech editing and test knitting done it won’t even be winter anymore.

A Year of Making

Knitting Blog Challenge Day 24

Have you ever made your own pattern or dyed your own yarn? How did it turn out?

About three years ago I started to get bored with making other people’s patterns. I think it came about from having mostly weird sized yarn and not very much money to buy more. I designed a few mitten patterns for holiday gifts and just kind of whipped them together. Over the next few years I started making a few socks and baby sweaters just based on gauge and measurement standards.daisy_sock_medium2 Nothing too fancy, just the basics. Then in the summer of 2016 I made these Daisy Socks and the rest, as they say, was history.

I got a lot of positive feedback on instagram and tumblr so I figured why not write up a pattern for them, how hard could it be? I already had the charts and the construction really isn’t that difficult to explain. I even found someone who wanted to test knit them (it only took her like five months to get around to finishing). I didn’t publish this pattern yet because I was hoping my test knitter would finish knitting, but in the mean time I was already working on another pattern. I ended up publishing two different patterns that October and decided to just go for it and publish the daisy socks without the test knitter in November.

It’s been about a year since I started and I now have 13 patterns available on Ravelry. I honestly can hardly believe it- people I don’t even know making things that came directly out of my jumbled brain garbage. There are definitely aspects I need to improve on this year as I take designing into a more and more professional realm, but I’m learning things with each pattern and always working to get better.

Once I make it through the holiday knitting rush I’ll have time and hopefully be bored enough of vanilla-ass socks to start designing patterns for next year. I also have every intention of maybe getting an etsy shop up and running. Lucky for you guys, you’ll probably be the first to know all the new things.

 

I wish it were cold enough to wear these all the time

Knitting Blog Challenge Day 6

What is your favorite piece that you’ve knit?

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If anyone has followed any of my other social medias you’ll know that these mittens are my absolute favorite thing I’ve ever knit, and possibly ever made. I worked at developing this pattern for like three years. I tried a bunch of different yarns and cuffs and thumb shapes. I think I made five different mittens until I landed on these. I am so so so proud of them and I love wearing them.

I finished knitting them right before Valentine’s Day last year. K took me to the Wisconsin Dells for a little getaway that weekend and IT WASN’T EVEN COLD ENOUGH TO WEAR THEM. We went on a hike around Devil’s Lake that weekend, there were people all over the ice fishing and hanging out, but it was warm enough for actual living mutant mosquitos to be swarming around. It was a great weekend, but I digress.. I wore these guys on the hike anyways so I could have him take some photos for me since it’s pretty hard to take photos using your own hands as models.

Not only is this my favorite pattern, but it seems to be everyone else’s favorite of all the patterns I’ve published. If you’re interested in make a pair for yourself (or your mother-sister-daughter-grandma-girlfriend-bestfriend because the holidays are eminent) my Russian Flower Mittens pattern is available on Ravelry and theres also a matching hat pattern!