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?

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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.

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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.

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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…….

3.15.2018

Fast Knitted Wrap

This pattern is the Melanie Shawl (free pattern link), This is a repeat knit for me. I made the first one a little longer and can actually double it and wrap it as a scarf.

This shawl I used 3 skeins of Lion Brand Homespun, I didn’t know what to do with it. I had started another wrap with it that was crochet and forgot how I dislike working with the Homespun yarn. It is so splitty! Terrible to crochet with (for me anyway)!  Knitting with this is OK and it is soft and fluffy, easy to care for, machine wash and dry on cool air.

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This was super fast and fun way to get rid of this yarn and ended up looking very nice. Good to toss over your shoulders or I keep it on the back of a chair for anyone who gets chilled in the house.

Need more options for a rectangle wrap? Check out these free knit patterns:

From Tonia Berry, a classic wrap (link), Look at her other free pattern on Yarn and Soul (link)

Marji LaFreniere offers this pattern that has some textured interest to it (link)

From Lion Brand a shawl that looks cozy and good for snuggling (link)

3.13.2018

Arlequin shawl with hand dyed

It was the middle of summer, that time when the humidity is high and the temps are triple digits. Sultry outside and yet walking indoors your are greeted by the icy blast of chilly air that initially feels great, but quickly chills you. I started looking for a simple, fast wrap, but I wanted something a little edgy with some interest. But not too hard.
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I like the long  triangle shape of this wrap, easy to secure around my shoulders and keep my hands free while looking stylish. Added texture adds interest without being too difficult of a knit, and makes this wrap fast to complete. Pattern is Arqulein Shawl by Peggy Maxheim (free pattern link)

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I like how variable this pattern is, if you browse through the completed ones on Ravelry, it is amazing how different this pattern can look. Vary the yarn and color and size of this, and it can result in a small neck wrap or a larger body covering shawl.
I had some various colors of my own hand dyed from peach solid to a darker papaya with some green mixed in. I mixed this together starting with the solid peach (lightest) on the small end (tip) to the darker colors at the other end. I’m happy with how this wrap turned out enough to have started another one in a lighter weight yarn.
I would highly recommend this pattern for everyone from beginners to stash busting your hand spun mini skeins!
Enjoy!