Finishing some Cross Stitches

With the Summer off, I’ve been clearing out a number of partial projects.  The first to report are some cross stitches I had completed over the last several months but did not finish off.

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First is this Pin Money Pocket by Summer House Stitch Works I stitched up a couple months ago. I saw it on Facebook awhile ago on a prim stichers group and decided I needed to have it. Now that I have it, I don’t know what I will do with it!

I also had one by Little House Needleworks called IMG_3260“Giving Thanks”. It had an included bonus design as well. It kind of says it all…

It’s never to early to think about those Christmas projects.  I started this Christmas one by Plum Street Samplers back in January, but got sick of the 40 count linen I was doing it on. I finally got some reading glasses in order to finish it without killing my eyes and finished it up a couple of weeks ago.  Instead of finishing it up as three ornaments as shown on the pattern, I ended up IMG_3258doing a patchwork and finishing it that way. I’ve started finishing most of my cross stitches as little “wall-quilts” simply because it is easier than framing them, I think.

Last up are a few from Lizzie Kate, who I LOVE. Two of them are stitch themed, but the last was the most recent Mystery Sampler.  It’s a great quote from Helen Keller. And now that I have finally finished it up, she’s releasing another!  I think I’ll head over to the shop this afternoon and get my name on the list…IMG_3259

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I knitted a pair of socks!

IMG_3253Ever since I started knitting (a couple years ago), I have thought it would be really cool to knit myself a pair of socks. My mom, who has knitted for over 50 years, does not knit socks. I have never seen evidence that either of my grandmothers, who were also experienced multi-crafters, knitted socks.  But I always have felt that if one is going to knit, they should be able to make their own socks. I am, after all, preparing for the zombie apocalypse. 🙂

I decided to start with baby size, as always, to cut down on cost and time investment, just in case the worst happened. I became brave after my beginning experience with Tin Can Knits. Alexa and Emily are THE BEST pattern writers for beginners. So I made the little green pair you see below.  Very cute, but the wrong size for my size 8 feet. I used the Rye pattern from the Simple Collection.IMG_3254

Once you have done a few hats and are comfortable with knitting in the round, this pattern really isn’t tough at all. You just have to keep track of your stitches. So I was able to make a few baby-size pairs and a 1st grader size pair, and decided I was ready for MY pair. I get bored easily, so I decided to try a new pattern.

IMG_3255I bought a book that looked good, with lots of cute sock patterns and decided to get to work on a basic pair of socks.  I had two partial skeins of yarn and decided to use them. Since the Rye pattern uses a flap and gusset heel, I thought I would try as short heel as described in The Big Book of Socks. I got the leg done, but after several attempts, I just could not figure out her instructions for a short heel. Maybe if I had some experience with short heels, but there were no explanations for how to turn the heel. So I went back to my trusty Rye pattern, and made a flap and gusset heel and continued the sock in stockinette stitch. So it basically ended up a Rye sock, but without the garter stitch strip down the top.  I wore them last night while watching TV (it must have been 80 degrees out side, didn’t care), and they are AWESOME!

I still want to try my hand at a short heel and I’m thinking of taking one of the sock classes on Craftsy. Either this cuff-down one by Donna Druchunas, or Socks My Way by Lara Neel. But first I need to finish some other projects. I really won’t need any socks for several months…

My First Sweaters!

A few months ago I knitted my first sweaters.  I wasn’t too sure I would be successful, but I think I did a pretty good job!

IMG_3251Both of the patterns came from Tin Can Knits, and personally I think they are the BEST.  As a beginning knitter, I found their patterns  very clear and great to learn from.  They have a series of FREE patterns called The Simple Collection, and have great links which teach the basics.  I have not made the blanket or scarf, because I have made several flat pieces, but the sock pattern was INVALUABLE in learning how to knit a sock.  (I’ll have another post shortly on the sock adventure)

The pullover is a basic top-down sweater, and the links in the pattern clearly explain EVERYTHING.  It’s a plain sweater, so you can focus on the construction, but the garter stitch along the sleeve keeps the sweater cute.  I’m still playing with the idea of adding an applique to the front. I made this sweater following the directions for size 12 month, and I think I hit it right on. 🙂

There is also a pattern for a cardigan.  The pattern gives directions for a button hole and not. Since I made it size 3, IIMG_3249 added a cute button, instead of using a pin to fasten.  I thought the pin on a toddler would be a bad idea. 🙂

I have some other patterns I purchased from Tin Can Knits, and now feel comfortable in trying a full size pattern with some cool detail.  First I need to finish off some more WIPS.

First Newly Completed Project! Spring Blanket

So far, all the projects I have put in this blog have been completed awhile, and I just wanted to get them recorded before I gave them away.  This is actually a project from the “unfinished” pile and is now “Completed!”

IMG_3245This is the “Spring Blanket” from Mel Clark’s book Knitting Gifts for Baby. Love the pictures in the book, and the projects are really cute.  It is my first project with entrelac knitting, but I thought I would give it a try.  I had almost a full skein of Red Heart Love in “Lettuce”, but ended up having to buy 2 more. By the end I pretty much had the pattern memorized.

One problem I had. Either the pattern had an error, or I was completely confused when I got to the second row of squares. It said to slip a stitch to the right needle and “ssk”, but I ended up slipping a stitch to the left needle and “ssk” to make the count come out right.

Either way, the blanket turned out great, I think!  I’m planning to give it to a friend having a baby boy this June.  Hope she likes it!

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Wee Mouse Tin House

I blog I haven’t checked out recently (I don’t know why) is Larissa Holland at MMMCrafts. Her designs are VERY cute.

IMG_3241So I found this tin (with chocolate inside) at World Market.  Had to buy it and use for SOMETHING.  Fortunately I found just the thing!  The original pattern used an Altoids tin, but this on is exactly the same size.

IMG_3242Look who lives inside!  I love this guy!  And he even has an even tinier teddy to sleep with!  A fried was over with her little girl awhile ago and she spent quite awhile putting him to bed and waking him up. She was as cute as the mouse.IMG_3243

Zipper Pouches

IMG_3234Before I discovered this pattern, I hated zippers.  My mother, who has been sewing for much longer, still hates zippers.  This kind of pouch is EASY.  It is a free class on craftsy, and the designer, Kristin from Sew Mama Sew, posted instructions for additional sizes from coin purse/id card holder to ipad case here.

I did some mix and matching with most of these.  I con NOT through away any scrap, no matter how small, so I just keep sewing them together to make bigger pieces!  You can’t tell from the pictures, but I also added some lace trim to some of them. I might make some with embroidery sometime.IMG_3233

Itty Bitty Bunny

IMG_3229I love Wendi Gratz at Shiny Happy World!  She designs the coolest toys and gives good instruction in her patterns.  I am a member of her Dress Up Bunch Club (the doll has been sent on to my niece).  She is very generous with her free patterns as well. This is one of her free patterns, and I got it here. I’ve made a few of these little guys.  Sold a couple and given a few away. They make great gifts and are a stash-buster.