Baby Knits

Pay no attention to the woman who should be doing her Olympic Knitting.  Heck, for that matter, pay no attention to the woman who’s house is a mess because she’s been knitting her fingers to the bone for the last few days!  In the heat of the competition, some things have to fall by the wayside and in my case it’s been the house. 

I don’t have any updated sweater photos for you, I’m a few inches further than I was in the last post.  I put the live stitches on a piece of waste yarn the other day and I didn’t have as much to knit as I thought I did (one of the positives to being a short woman).  I think I can make it to the bottom of the sweater tonight and start on the sleeves tomorrow.  Which pretty much means that I will not finish my Olympic sweater in time.  I’d love to try to convince you all that I really meant to make myself a sleeveless sweater… but I won’t.  It’s meant to have arms and that’s the way it will be. 

In the meantime, I’m working on a child’s hat for a birthday party we are to attend in 1/2 hour.  Yikes, must keep moving!

The sweater and hat you see above is one I finished about a month ago forKnittymuggins

The hat is Heart on a String from Susan B. Anderson. The sweater is a one skein wonder from 101 Designer One Skein Wonders.  Both were knit from Blue Sky Alpaca Organic Cotton.  Unlike most cotton yarns, this one was soft, fluffy and didn’t make my hands hurt.  The only unusual thing that I noticed was that the heart on the hat and the cardigan are made out of the same color – however, when I washed the cardigan it came out much darker than I had expected.  I’m not sure why this would be.  Both patterns are sweet and easy and I’d knit them again for another baby. 


The Final Stretch

If you’re competing in the Knitting Olympics, we are down to the final stretch.  It’s that last long race to the finish when your muscles are burning and you’re wondering if you might. just. pull. this. one. off.   All over town, people are asking me if I’m finished with my Olympic knitting yet.  


Will I pull it off?  Will I finish my Slinky Ribs sweater?  Honestly, I have no idea!  I’m down to the second half of the body, which is all stockinette stitch.  The good news is that stockinette just flies by after doing 2×2 ribbing for the first half.  The bad news is that I don’t have any car trips or uninterrupted knitting time scheduled.  I do however have a girls night out scheduled for Friday night, to celebrate a friend’s birthday.  I think I might be able to get away with knitting at that for a bit. 

To make matters even more complicated, I have a hat to knit for one of my 5 year old’s classmates.  He’s having a party and my 5 year old has decided that Momma needs to knit hats for everyone in her class.  I’ve compromised by saying I’ll only knit hats for birthday parties.  She informed me that he has a camouflage coat so his hat must be green.  I think I have the perfect yarn hiding in my stash for this one.  At least kid hats are quick!  Wish me luck in the final stretch! 

The US Olympic Hat

Some clever knitters already figured out the pattern to the US Olympic Hat.  This hat was knitted by lotzakatz on Ravelry.  I linked to the pattern in the post about the Opening Ceremonies. 

Earlier today, my 5 year old was telling me that I needed to knit a hat for her kindergarten teacher, "Because she’s AWESOME!"  It couldn’t be just any hat though, it had to be a hat with lots of colors, because this teacher would like that a lot more.  When I showed my daughter this hat, she immediately started redesigning it.  "Momma, you could do green down here and then don’t do that top part because she won’t want it pointy, just straight up and down."  Hmmm… like mother, like daughter?  She also volunteered me to make a hat for one of her friends at school.   I think I do a good enough job overcommitting myself, I don’t really need help. 

Now I’m off to bake another cake for a Mardi Gras celebration at my daughter’s school tomorrow. 

Hey Sis’

Check out these socks…. tell me what you think. 

I can’t promise them anytime soon.  I’ve got to finish my Knitting Olympics sweater, a shawl that I’m starting next week (it’s a knit-a-long that I signed up for months ago) and a super secret project.   I know I have some great handpainted yarn that would work well for these socks though. 


Opening Ceremonies

Just in case our friends thought I couldn’t get any dorkier, I managed to prove them wrong last night during the Opening Ceremonies of the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics.  Not only did I arrive late because I was at Fabric Works for the official Cast On Party, but I managed to comment on all the wonderful knitwear the Olympians were wearing. 

There was some seriously cool designs and I can’t wait to see how fast knitters will come up with their own patterns for these. 

The US Olympic reindeer hat can be found at or Ravelry link’d here. Those clever knitters figured out a chart right away and whipped one up before the Opening Ceremonies. 


Now I’m waiting for the Olympic Sweater pattern.  You can go here to Ralph Lauren and buy your own sweater for $425, but I think this is well worth knitting on your own.  I’m pretty sure with a copy of Barbara Walkers Treasury of Knitting or a Harmony Stitch Guide you could figure out the Celtic Knot design pretty easily.  The arms are just a repeat of the center stitch panels.  Made with Cascade 220 or a Garn Studio yarn, it would be nice and sturdy.  The Ralph Lauren sweater is a wool/cashmere mix… mmmm.  The perfect winter sweater.  If you decide to design this sweater, be sure to let me know.  It’s definitely going to be in my knitting future! 

Sign Up Now for the Knitting Olympics

My Knitting Olympics Project:  Slinky Ribs from Custom Knits – knit in Mirasol Nuna, 40% merino, 40% silk, 20% bamboo.

If you’re from the area and haven’t yet signed up for the Knitting Olympics, there’s still time.  I know of 2 shops in the area that are hosting events.  If you know of others, email me and I’ll post about them. 

Yarn Harbor, Duluth MN

If you want to join us for Team Yarn Harbor, you must sign up at the shop before Friday, February 12.  You cannot cast on until the Opening Ceremonies, but you can swatch (after all, training is key!)  The goal is to finish by the Closing Ceremonies. 
• We will give you a 15% discount on your Olympic project supplies at time of sign up.

In Store Events:
Opening Ceremonies Cast On:
Friday, February 12, 5-9 p.m.
Second Wind at the Pajama Party:
Friday, February 19, 5-10 p.m.
Home Stretch: Sunday, February 28,
12-5 p.m.


Fabric Works, Superior, WI

Join us for a special event at Fabric Works.

A. We will have 3 possible events to choose from:
1. Pick a knitting project that you can start and finish in the 17 days of the Winter Olympics. Pick one that will be a bit of a challenge for you. You may swatch ahead of time but cannot cast on until the lighting of the torch.
2. Finish unfinished projects that you have started. Completely finished all ends woven in and blocked! As many as you can complete!
3. Join “Team Jessica” to compete in the baby hat competition. The hats will be donated at the end.

B. We will have an opening event on Friday, Feb. 12th from 5:30 pm until 7:30 pm. At that time you will receive a small gift bag for your participation.

C. Open knitting hours during the Olympics are as follows:
Saturday, Feb. 13, 1 – 4 pm
Tuesday, Feb. 16, 5 – 7 pm
Wednesday, Feb.17, 11 am – 3 pm
Thursday, Feb. 18, 5 – 8 pm
Saturday, Feb 20, 1 – 4 pm
Tuesday, Feb. 23, 5 – 7 pm
Wednesday, Feb. 24, 11 am – 3 pm
Thursday, Feb. 25, 5 – 8 pm
Saturday, Feb. 27, 1 – 4 pm

D. Closing Ceremonies – Sunday, Feb. 28th, 2 – 4 pm. – Bring your finished “events” and receive your prize! Join us in an international potluck just for fun!

Entry Fee: 1 beautiful skein of yarn from your stash and one international dish for the potluck. We will have signup sheets at the shop for the potluck so there can be some variety. If you don’t have a stash of yarn, you may purchase a beautiful skein of yarn at 20% off the regular price to donate for prizes.

Please try to sign up ahead of time so we know how many gift bags we need.


Knitting for Babies

There’s a lot of baby knitting going on at my house right now.  No, I’m not pregnant, I just happen to know a lot of women who have recently given birth.  Around here, babies tend to come in groups of three. 

The hat above is the Sweet Norwegian Baby Cap, this is my third time knitting this cap.  It’s made out of sock yarn and goes incredibly fast.  Plus, the little points over the ears and forehead help to keep baby warm.  The booties are from Knitting for Baby and are also a favorite of mine.  I’ve knit so many of these booties that I pretty much can knit them without reading the pattern.  I believe they’re called the Stay On Baby Booties, and they really do stay on.  They look a little like Moon Boots at first because the sides are so high, but when you think about how round a newborn’s foot is, it makes a lot of sense. 

Yarn:  Aslan Trends, Santa Fe – colorway 1324.  Machine wash in cold (but if your name is Darla, tell your hubby to hand wash in cold because we’ve been through this before).  One skein makes both the booties and the hat. 

Modifications:  The only modification was to the strings on the cap.  I find I-cord insanely boring, so I cast on stitches and then bind off in the next row.  It works just fine for me and is less boring. 

This little hat is to use up some leftover yarn that I had in my stash.  It’s headed to SMDC’s Birthcenter to warm the head of some little newborn. 

Pattern:  Thorpe.  I’ve been dying to try this pattern since Halloween when a group of trick-or-treaters came to my door decked out in Thorpe’s.  I recognized the hats as being most likely handknit and then searched out the pattern.  It’s easily done in a variety of sizes. This is worsted weight yarn on size 6 needles. 

Yarn:  Blue Sky Alpaca Organic Cotton.  I bought this at Yarn Harbor probably 2 years ago with baby knits in mind.  The only bummer to this gorgeous yarn is that it’s hand wash only.  I think this is due to the way the yarn is plyed.  Cotton has very short fibers so it generally is spun very tightly and then either cable plied or you’ll see lots of plies together.  This is a two ply yarn and frankly, I’m a bit worried as to how it will wear.  For newborn items, since they won’t be worn for long, I’m not going to worry too much. 

Modifications:  The only modification I made was leaving out the ties.  Mostly because it’s being donated to the hospital and I know people get a little worried about strings and babies.  Heck, I get worried about strings and babies.  My husband likes this hat so much that he requested one in his size. 


Stay Warm

There’s something interesting that I’ve noticed about the Duluth/Superior area lately.  Instead of saying "good-bye" or "have a good day," people are saying, "stay warm" in that overly optimistic way that really means, "I hope you don’t have to go out in the cold too much today."  I know, as Northlanders, we’re overly fixated on the weather.  We tend to use it as an icebreaker and most of my conversations with people outside of the immediate area start with a description of the weather.  Whether it is the agrarian roots or just a survival mechanism, we’ll take whatever mechanism we can get to get through these winters!

When it’s cold like this, I like to curl up with lots of wool and some pointy sticks.  That’s exactly what I did last weekend, I was invited to a scrapbooking retreat in Southern Minnesota.  My laptop (I’ve switched to digital scrapbooks) was acting up, so I didn’t get a lot of scrapbooking done.  While I was waiting for my computer to move, delete and defrag, I got a ton of knitting done.  I finished a baby sweater and hat for a very special friend.  This friend is going to have a baby very soon, much sooner than she had expected.  If you could, I know she would appreciate it if you could send lots of positive thoughts and prayers her way.  She’s going to be a wonderful Momma.  I promise I’ll put photos of the outfit up once it’s made it’s way to it’s destination.