Monday, May 26, 2008

Start of a Layette

It's been a gorgeous weekend here in Baltimore and I got lots done! But was still able to relax and feel like I was having a mini vacation, or staycation since we stayed home.

We worked in the garden. I love working in the garden, but sometimes I get so impatient and want to do everything RIGHT NOW! But a garden evolves over years ... especially this year as my belly gets in the way a bit. But even though I want to tackle the hill in the front yard and so something cool like a rock garden or wildflowers, or a rock garden AND wildflowers, I just have to be patient and know that we'll get to it, eventually.

What I did do was plant flowers, and one small cherry tomato plant, in pots. And weeded. Just doing that already makes the yard look so much prettier.

G's been busy too. He put together a changing table, dresser and crib. And he's been painting banisters and painting some super secret project that I am not supposed to know about, but I know involves making a frame for one or our posters.

Plus we managed to chill on our porch each night and had a fire in our fire pit last night.

And I've been knitting. I've got the start of a layette going.



Here's a blanket I made a while back. The yellow is by Lucci. It's an eyelash yarn, but the fibers aren't as long as something like fun fur. It's more matted. And it is the softest yarn ever. I bought this three years ago at the Yarn Garden in Annapolis. Before I was even engaged. Long before baby H was even an idea. I touched the yarn and had to have it.

The blue is Berroco Plush Colors, another sort of matted nylon yarn. It isn't as plush as the Lucci, but I didn't have enough of that for a big blanket. So I thought I'd do stripes. I bought this about two years ago at Woolstock in Glydon. By that time I was engaged. So baby H was maybe a distant idea, but I think I just wanted to have enough yarn to make a baby blanket at some point for some baby. Not necessarily my own.

It's knit on the diagonal in garter stitch. Super easy. I weaved all the ends in at one of the Baltimore Knitting Meetup's Tue. night knits a few weeks ago.

The second item is a hat that I just love.


It's the reversible hat from Essential Baby by Debbie Bliss.


The yarn is Blue Sky Alpacas Skinny Dyed Cotton that I bought at Spinster Yarns & Fibers Shop. (Aside: love this shop! It opened a few months ago in Baltimore and is very close to my house. It's my most local LYS. I can't wait to go again.)

So the yarn was totally a different gauge from the Debbie Bliss yarn the pattern calls for. I adjusted the numbers to make it about the right size for a 6-9 month baby. We'll see. Hopefully it will fit him sometime in the winter b/c it is a warm hat. Even with the cotton, it's thick b/c it's basically two hats. The pattern was a bit lame as it had you knitting the hats flat, sewing them up then sewing together. So I knit the first hat flat. But then I picked up stitches for the second, inner, hat and knit it it in the round. Much happier with that. I just love the colors!

And third, is a WIP shot of the sweater I started for H. It's just a sleeve so far.


It's the Duffle Coat from Essential Baby. The yarn is Berroco Comfort DK that I bought at Lovelyarns in Hampden. (One Saturday in April, I went on a mini yarn crawl to find baby yarns. I hit up Lovelyarns and then Spinsters Yarns.)

The Comfort is a very nice acrylic. Very soft. And machine wash and dry. Very important! I like it. Not sure if I could knit an adult sweater with it though. It is still a bit "squeaky." We'll see how I feel when I finish this sweater.

And lest you think I've only been knitting baby stuff, here's the Hemlock Ring Blanket that I knit (but haven't blocked).


I started this on April 12 and cast off on May 16. But I have not yet blocked it. Maybe this week or next weekend. The wool is Cascade Eco Plus (which is the Ecological wool that's been dyed). I had about a skein left over from a sweater so I used it to start the afghan and bought one more skein from Webs. Fun pattern! I really enjoyed this. Up until I cast off and it took two or three nights just to do the cast off row. I am eager to see it blocked out. I am not sure what I am going to do with this project. While I really enjoy working w/ the Eco wool, I think it will be too scratchy for me to snuggle under. Plus, we have so many lap blankets here (my mom quilts) that we don't need another one. So I might give it away maybe for Christmas. Maybe for a friend's wedding in the fall.

I think this is the first time that I just wanted to knit the item for the fun of knitting it, not for the finished object. It was on in my queue for awhile, but when I saw that the Columbia Sip-n-Knit (a group) was doing a knit-a-long, I decided to join in. (I can't sing the praises of this group enough! Denise, the organizer of the KAL, had bound copies of the pattern, plus charts and info from the Webs "Ready Set Knit" podcast knit-along. And she gave each of us a set of stitch markers and a lifelong kit, with needle and cotton thread. Wow! Plus the group is made up of lots of lovely knitters! Since I live a 40-minute to an hour drive from Columbia, I don't attend the Wed. night meetups very often. But I've been following along online and on Ravelry.)

So now I am down to just one project (well ... I do have two pairs of socks ... but does that count?). Once I get a bit farther into the sweater I want to start a shawl for myself. I am thinking a nursing shawl for the summer in this Sea Silk would be perfect.


But what pattern? Maybe the Shetland Triangle by Evelyn A. Clark from Wrap Style? Someone on Ravelry knit it with just one skein of Sea Silk. Something rectangular might be good too. I'll have to explore some more. But if anyone has ideas, please share!


Anonymous said...

I love the little baby hat! It's very cool. You knit the Hemlock ring with only two skeins of Cascade? I was hesitant to start it because I was thinking I'd need a lot of yarn, but if your is decently sized maybe I could use some handspun. Ooh, that'd be fun. As for the shawl, I think something rectangular would be perfect. Then you've got coverage and you don't have to worry about corners. I just think, in my vast knowledge (not) that it'd be easiest to deal with. The yarn is beautiful!

Sarah said...

Um, are you having a boy???

Love the layette.

Javajem said...

I love the little hat - so cute!
Great job on the hemlock ring too - I need to make one of those!

The sea silk is a perfect choice for a summer shawl! I just made Jolene's latest shawl Cityscape out of one ball of sock yarn. The Shetland Triangle is just gorgeous too! Another idea of the Swallowtail Shawl is another pretty one that uses about 400 yards.

Good luck!!

Pheelya said...

Your projects are adorable!

The seasilk is such a pretty color! I just made the Swallowtail shawl for my Mom out of seasilk. Gorgeous, but not as big as I hoped. Seasilk doesn't really stretch when you wet-block it :( Luckily, my mother is a little narrow in the shoulders than me, so hopefully it will be fine on her.

I did some searching on Ravelry myself this weekend to see what else I could do with one skein of seasilk (since i have several in my stash!) and several people commented that they got 11 repeats of the main pattern repeat on the Shetland Triangle. I think someone did the Diamond Fantasy Shawl with 1 skein of seasilk. The Woodland shawl too, but I think that a rectangular shape. I think the Flower Basket shawl can be done in 1 skein as well. I can't wait to see what you do!!

Anonymous said...

I wish I had been at the Meet-up last Tuesday. I was away at a conference and that was the end of that! I have only been able to make a few, for some reason Tuesdays have just been bad for me lately...but only on Meet-up nights! But I would have loved to see your blanket. I have used the Plush before and liked that, so I can only imagine how soft the Lucci must be!