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Posts Tagged ‘last-minute knitted gifts’

Here is my cutie-pie niece wearing her new hat as she opened her presents on Christmas morning.  I love how it just happens to match her pjs; it’s a good color-combination for her age.  It reminds me of the Strawberry Shortcake Doll I had growing up, with her pink and green striped tights.  My sister is working on a garter-stitch scarf in the same exact yarn, so I thought it would be great if she had a hat to match.  Cute and sassy – just like Katie.  It was nice to send them back to school (woo hoo!)  this morning all warm and cozy:Here are the details of Katie’s hat:

  • Pattern: Kim’s Hats, by Kim Hamlin
  • Source: Last-Minute Knitted Gifts
  • Yarn: Lanaloft Worsted Wool in LL90W – Mystical Pink and Jil Eaton Minnow Merino in 4781 – Green Grass, 1 skein each
  • Needles: Size US 9 16″ circulars and set of US 9 dpns.
  • Size made: Child

Now if you’ll excuse me, I am going to take advantage of my nice, quiet house.  I think a morning of knitting in bed with a hot cup of coffee and some Netflix is in order. ~J

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With Christmas just a few days away, things are pretty busy here around Casa Sorella – but I did want to pop in to share a few more Christmas hats with you.  This one is for my adorable nephew Jackson – he is a Jets fan, so now he can show a little team spirit when he watches the game with his Dad.    Instead of the 1×1 rib the pattern calls for on the bottom, I worked a chunky 3×1 rib.  I secured the pom-pom extra well, as he has already ripped the one off of his blue winter hat.  {I love boys.}  I can’t wait to see this on the little meatball’s head!This plain and simple cap is for my son.  He came home from school the other day (he’s 9) and said: “Mom, I can’t wear this Scooby Doo hat to school anymore.  The kids are teasing me – they think Scooby Doo is for babies.”  {Boys are mean.}  So I knit him a hat that nobody could possibly make fun of!  No pom-pom for this fourth-grade boy – way too risky.For Ben’s edge, I worked a 2×1 rib – a few rows in gray and a the rest in the blue, then worked the rest of the pattern as written.  Here are the details:

  • Pattern: Kim’s Hats by Kim Hamlin
  • Source: Last-Minute Knitted Gifts
  • Yarn: Cascade 220 Wool {for Jackson: Green -9430 and White – 8505; for Ben: 8555 – Blue and 8400 – Gray, all 1 skein each}
  • Needles: Size US 9 16″ circulars and set of Size 9 dpns.
  • Size Made: Jackson – toddler/ Ben – child
  • Mods: Jackson – 3×1 rib/ Ben – 2×1 rib

Yesterday, I made Nigella’s Girdlebuster Pie {how awesome is that name?} and some Snickerdoodles for the annual cookie exchange.  Today I will be making 6 lbs. of meatballs and 8 lbs. of sausage and peppers for our Christmas Eve party.  Things can get a little stressful with all the prep-work, so I’ve implemented a  “no complaining” rule for myself – no complaining about anything, not even how tired I am.  I got through yesterday without making one complaint and my hubby said he was very proud.  Thanks Joanna, for the inspiration! ~J

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Want to take a peek at some Christmas presents?  These bright confections are for my twin nieces, who are in first grade.  The girls are fraternal, and while they may have been born at the same time, their little pesonalities could not be any more different.  I thought it might be fun for them to have hats that were quite similar, but with a few distinct differences.  Erin is a little ball of sunshine and positive energy – her favorite color is orange, which totally suits her free-spirit personality.  I used the Carrot color – a deep, autumnal orange – for the band and bottom pom-poms, and mixed it with the freshly-squeezed, juicy Orange for the i-cord ties.Meghan, on the other hand, is the girliest of girly-girls.  She is all barbies dolls and ponies.  The vibrant pink of the Lotus colored yarn suits her bubbly personality, so I used that as her focal color.  For the i-cords, I whipped the Lotus together with Carnation – a sweet, but sophisticated baby pink.  Don’t you love the fluffy little pom-poms?  The ear flaps were worked in garter stitch and I added a single crochet border, just to tidy them up a bit.  While it may not look like the stripes have any rhyme or reason, they actually do follow a pattern.  The stripes were done in rows of 4, 2, 4, 3, and the colors were worked in the following order:I topped each hat with a giant pom-pom made with all five colors of yarn:The hats are warm and soft, thanks to the superwash wool.  I bought one skein of each color and was easily able to get two hats out of them.  I almost made a third, for big sister Katie, but went in a slightly different direction for her (I’ll share hers tomorrow).  There was plenty of yarn left over, which I’ll probably turn into some mittens once the craziness of the holiday passes.  But for now, here are the details:

  • Pattern: Earflap version of Kim’s Hats, by Kim Hamlin
  • Source: Last-Minute Knitted Gifts, by Joelle Hoverson
  • Yarn: Swish Superwash Merino Wool {1 skein each in Carrot, Lotus, Carnation, Peapod, and Orange}
  • Needles: Size US 9, 16″ circulars and set of Size 9 dpns. {also, an H/8-5mm crochet hook for earflap edges}
  • Size Made: ChildThere are three more of these ready to be wrapped – I’ll share them all with you as soon as I take pictures of them.  5 days to go!  ~J

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My sweet little nephew is turning one – so I thought I’d knit him a winter hat for his big, meatball head.  This pattern is by Kim Hamlin, and it is from the book Last-Minute Knitted Gifts.  The project is listed under the 2-4 Hour Projects chapter, and from the time I started to the time I wove in my last end, it ended up taking me about 6 hours to make.

I love quick projects like this!  The beauty of this hat is definitely how customizable it is…I started by adding some variegated stripes to the body, to break up what would have been a sea of navy blue.  Then, I knit the ear-flaps as written, but using the gray yarn, did a single crochet around the perimeter of each flap for contrast:

Then, I worked the gray yarn into the i-cord ties…

Finally, I attached a couple of small pom-poms to the bottom of the ties, and one large pom-pom to the top…

Here is the hat, being modeled by my beautiful niece:

I know what you’re thinking – this looks way to big for a one-year old.  Well, that one-year old has a head circumference of 20″.  The pattern sizing puts him in the ‘child‘ size bracket, which is listed as 20 1/2″.  This is why we call him meatball.  It may be a little large for him, but he will most certainly grow into it over the winter.

Here are the details:

I will be hand-delivering the hat to him tomorrow, and I can’t wait to see him in it!  I promise to take a picture for you all…have a great weekend! ~J

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Knitting goodies have been arriving at a steady pace this week…

{Last-Minute Knitted Gifts}

{Last-Minute Knitted Gifts}

For Mother’s Day, my darling sissy gave me Last-Minute Knitted Gifts by Joelle Hoverson, who is the owner of the famed Purl boutique in downtown Manhattan.  Last Friday morning, I finally got to curl up on the couch with a cup of coffee and read through the book from cover to cover.

Joelle starts the book with a section on Exploring Color – she goes over everything from the color wheel to color relativity, complementary and related colors, and understanding chroma and color values.  It’s a good place to start if you are ready to break out of a ‘neutral’ rut!

{so many color choices!}

{so many color choices!}

She includes a Basics chapter, which covers the different types of fibers, how to care for them, and how to substitute yarn, followed by chapters on tools, how to knit from a pattern and finishing.

The projects are broken down into chapters as well, all according to how long each takes to make.  They include:

  • less-than-two-hour gifts
  • two-to-four hour gifts
  • four-to-six hour gifts
  • six-to-eight hour gifts
  • more-than-eight-hour gifts

Some queue-worthy projects worth noting:

{Hats for the family} by Kim Hamlin

{Hats for the family} by Kim Hamlin

{Lovable Toys} by Marion Edmonds

{Lovable Toys} by Marion Edmonds

{Silk Camisole} by Joelle Hoverson

{Silk Camisole} by Joelle Hoverson

She ends the book with a section on wrapping hand-knit gifts, as well as listing a few special knitting techniques for projects in the book.  Overall, this is a lovely book filled with useful basics (blankets and scarves) and a few novelties (such as gusseted floor cushions). I think I’ll start a ‘less-than-two-hour’ project and see if I can complete it in the allotted time!

Also arriving this week was some delicious new yarn:

{the picture does not do the colors justice!}

{hand-spun wool & mohair yarn}

These gorgeous skeins came courtesy of my former English professor, Judy, who resides in upstate New York.  We share a love of strong women characters in classic literature as well as all things fiber.  She spun some beautiful Ashland Bay  roving, manipulating the colors using a technique called drafting (which I am definitely going to have to research)…  The color is called ‘grenada’ and it’s a heathery composition of shades including navy, grapey-violet, olive green, mallard blue, and a few warm flecks of umber.  I am thinking of turning these beauties into a cable knit hat and scarf for the fall.

{rich fall hues}

{cushy suede yarn in rich fall hues}

My fantastic mother-in-law* Nancy sent over five skeins of Lion Suede Yarn in the color Canyon.  It is a burnt-orange/reddish color that instantly reminds me of  autumn, when the leaves on the trees are lushly colored.  This will make a nice, cozy wrap for those chilly fall evenings out on the deck.

*(now, I know the words ‘fantastic’ and ‘mother-in-law’ aren’t usually used together, but she really is fantastic – seriously, Jaime and I both hit the mother-in-law JACKPOT).

Also tucked in with the yarn were two vintage knitting patterns from the Lion Brand Yarn Company.  They belonged to her mother, and I am proud to add them to my collection.

{chic retro knitting patterns}

{cool retro knitting patterns}

The first was for a child’s sweater, knit with Sportelle yarn, which was apparently “washable and moth-proof”:

{for the 'shetland' look!}

{vintage cutie}

The second sheet has two patterns on it:

The ‘Casual Blouse with Buttoned Yokes’…

{look how tiny her waist is!}

{look how tiny her waist is!}

and ‘The Spencer Jacket and Skirt’…

{so sophisticated!}

{so sophisticated!}

I could imagine my grandmother looking so chic in both of these back in the day…Sizing for both the blouse, jacket and skirt start at size 12- apparently, 12 is the old 4!

Happy knitting… ~Jenny

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