5.23.2018

7 Day Sweater Challenge (free pattern link)

It is getting hot and muggy outside. I’ve been working in the yard a lot and enjoying spring. Now it is heating up and I’m doing more knitting inside. Going through some of my stash I found some  hand dyed yarn (my own, I’ll link here the blog post about it). I’ve been trying to knit my stash down so the search for a pattern started. After spending quite a bit of time on Ravelry and Pinterest looking at.options, and finding lots of patterns I would like to make. I started a sweater then frogged it and finally settled on this simple over sized pattern. https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/mammas-hjemmestrikkede-genser-skappelgenseren
7daysweater cast on free pattern Mammas hjemmestrikkede genser! "Skappelgenseren" by Dorthe Skappel
Written by Dorthe Skappel it is the Mammas hjemmestrikkede genser. It is a super easy garter stitch oversized sweater. Taking a look at all of the knitters that had completed it (almost 900 when I looked at it) I saw that it flattered a wide selection of body shapes and ages. From toddlers and up. I feel in love and cast on.
Mammas hjemmestrikkede genser! "Skappelgenseren" by Dorthe Skappel (free pattern)

It went so well I decided to try and knit this in 7 days! I had done a Berroco LopiKAL and finished that in 6 weeks. Just found another KAL the beekeeper, which is a 4 day sweater challenge that I’m going to participate in. So hey 7 days sounded like a long time.
If you want to join me I’m going to be posting pics #7Daysweater on Instagram. let me know ! @knittingdragonflies
May your needles fly as fast as dragonflies……

5.21.2018

Slinky Silky Scarf/Shawl

Asymmetric shawl/scarfs/wraps! Wow, all of the sudden they are everywhere. I have knit a couple and now understand the attraction.
Arlequin Shawl, Free knitting shawl/scarf pattern link
I love the added interest of the shape. A little quirky and different. Love the way the yarn, if it is self striping, patterned or hand painted, looks. The horizontal stripes will lay in a diagonal manner when you put it on. I think it is also easier to wear, the smaller end can be tucked in and make your scarf secure.
Arlequin Shawl, Free knitting shawl/scarf pattern link

This pattern is a free one from Peggy Maxheim, it is the Arlequin shawl (Pattern link). I made my first one (link here) extra large. I liked the way I could wrap up in it, all cozy. The small end helped everything stay where I wanted it to be. This one I wanted to be smaller, more scarf rather than blanket/wrap . (This pattern is very easy and suitable for a beginning knitter).
A rather mindless knit, good for Netflix or movie watching. Or even ball games, sporting events and car knitting. I like that it has a little interest with the rows of knit and purl that make the texture, but once you do a couple repeats your on auto piolet!
Yarn and needles:
I knitted this with US size 13 needles and two skeins of Red Hearts Unforgettable yarn, colorway is Petunia (yarn link)  It is a 100% acrylic yarn, but I really liked the color repeats and it has a silky and slightly shiny look (in a good way) to it. The colors are very vibrant, the color changes are a nice length.  in addition to being super soft. It is a one strand roving like yarn with a very slight twist. I didn’t have to frog any, but bet this could be a headache if you had to.  I did knit this with aluminum needles and it was very slippery on them, but it didn’t bother me enough to switch to bamboo needles.  I used a total of approximately 560 yards of yarn and it is listed as worsted weight.but I think it is closer to what I think of as DK or even sport weight. This is the 2nd time that I’ve used this yarn. I also made another shawl and have worn it quite a bit. (link, colorway is sunrise) It has not pilled or other wise worn in a bad way. It is 100% acrylic, so if this is worn on your neck it can be a little sweaty  Nice for a shawl but I wouldn’t recommend knitting something that would lay against your skin. I believe I paid about 5 to 6 US dollars per skein of this, it does have 280 yards on each skein. I have three more skeins in the colorway sugarcane & I can’t decide if I’m going to use them. I do love the vibrant color of this yarn & the color spacing of the changes, I guess the 100% acrylic is the downfall for me. But if that does not bother you, it feels nice and soft.

4.23.2018

Warm Snuggly Cocoon Shrug

This is one of my long term projects that I just wanted to get off my needles. When these types of patterns started showing up I was interested in making one. It looked simple and fast and cozy. What more do you want?
Warm Snuggly Cocoon Shrug (free knitting pattern, easy)Warm Snuggly Cocoon Shrug (free knitting pattern, easy)

Described as a wrap, shrug, bolero, and even sweater, it is just a large rectangle, either crochet or in this case knitted. When the rectangle is large enough. Just fold it in two, sewing the sides together. .

Easy concept. I picked out a free pattern, The Lion Brand, Speckled Shrug (free pattern here) I always like to look at the finished projects on Ravelry and read the comments everyone has made that knitted the item.  Seems like knitters were split into two camps. The make it smaller and more fitted and Bolero jacket like. The other group was to make it bigger. I noticed that the problem with this shape of this pattern is a baggy bottom after sitting. (like once). I had already made another pattern that was a bolo jacket so opted to make mine fairly large and oversized to make it snuggly for the cold.
It turned out good. I did try to add sleeves, and they really didn’t look good. I wanted a ribbed sleeve. I tried picking up stitches all around and doing a k2p2 pattern, but it looked bad. I also tried to crochet some looser sleeves and didn’t care for those either.
I used 3 skeins of Lion Brand Fisherman’s yarn (which I love), the pattern was all in stockinette stitch, which was good for TV, movie knitting, but went on for quite a while. I would recommend using a simple pattern to keep it interesting. I just use a shawl pin to keep the front together.
IMG_6597IMG_6596
41 inches across                                                            about 19.5 inches wide
Photo above is already folded in half, leave approx. 7 inches at fold open for arm holes.
IMG_6598 (2)When the pattern is folded and sewn together the seam is right in the middle front of the shrug.
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I’m happy with how this turned out, but would not knit it again. In fact I’m entertaining the idea of frogging it and reknitting the yarn into something else.  OK update  I would reknit this, I started wearing it and can throw it over anything due to the large arms and general size, I’ve put it over sweatshirts and tees. The thing I didn’t think I would like (no arms) is actually a big plus. We keep our house cool and it is nice to be able to work around the house and not have sleeves getting wet or dragging through stuff.
I would say it is as much knitting as a real sweater, and not near as flattering . My husband calls it my “bottom warmer”, haha, If you are a pear shape, as I am, it can emphasize this. But with this amount of knitting, if you are using this as a “bridge” between scarves and simple knitting to sweaters,  I would recommend an easy sweater/cardigan pattern instead. You could do it!!
A couple of simple sweaters I would recommend are: (free patterns) that are suitable for beginners as well as experienced knitters.
Caora Sweater -- https://www.craftsy.com/knitting/patterns/caora-sweater/167905
The sweater is worked in the round from the top down with raglan sleeves. Instructions are given for a wide range of sizes. The top down style is easy and lets you try on as you go. Making it quick to see if you have a gauge pattern before too much is knitted. (Also rewarding to actually try on what you are knitting), In the round eliminates pieces to sew together. I try to make all of my sweater in the round.
caorasweater_aiid777246
Dockside sweater - https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/dockside-sweater (free pattern) by Alexandra Tavel
This free pattern is a bottom up, in the round sweater. This is  the first type sweater that I successfully finished. Holding two strand together makes this a super fast knit. Or you could use a bulky yarn.

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May your knitting needles fly as fast as Dragonflies…….