Sunday, December 11, 2011

Twisted Stitch Cabled Baby Hat

I had a request from my dear fiance to make a baby hat for a coworker's new baby boy.

I think it worked out pretty well. Let me know how it works out for you...I'm new to pattern writing.

Twisted Stitch Cabled Baby Hat

Needles: 6 and 7 US circular 16” and 7 US double points

Yarn: Comfort worsted

Ribbing pattern: (all knitting is through the back loop to twist the stitch) *P2, K1, P2, K1, P2, K2* Repeat until end of round

Cast on 70 sts on smaller needles. Join for working in the round being careful not to twist sts.

Work ribbing pattern for 5 rounds.

Switch to larger needles and begin main hat pattern.

Main hat pattern:

Round 1: *P2, K4, P2, K2 tbl* Repeat until end of round

Round 2: *P2, Cbl4F, P2, K2 tbl* Repeat until end of round

Rounds 3-5: Repeat round 1.

Work main hat pattern 4 times.

Work round 1 once more.

Decrease rounds:

Round 1: *P2; sl 2 sts onto cable needle, hold in front, knit 2, k2tog off the cable needle; P2, K2tbl* Repeat until end of round.

Round 2: *P2, K3, P2, K2 tbl*

Round 3: *P2, K3, P2, K2tog tbl*

Round 4: *P2, K3, P2, K1 tbl*

Round 5: *P2, sl 2 sts onto cable needle, hold in front, knit1, k2tog off the cable needle; P2, K1tbl*

Round 6: *P2, K2, P2, K1 tbl*

Round 7: *P2 tog, K2, P2tog, K1tbl*

Round 8: *P1, K2, P1, K1tbl*

Round 9: *P1, K2tog, P2tog*

Round 10: slip 1 st, *K1, P2tog*

Round 11: k2tog all the way around (7 sts remain)

Round 12: k2tog 3 times, K1

Work remaining 4 sts in an i-cord for 3.5 inches. Slip the lose end of the i-cord through the four stitches a few times, then slip through the i-cord before cutting the yarn end.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Endless Bias Binding!

So here's the new trick I learned at guide lessons on's a great way to make bias binding out of a square without much waste. AND...I was able to successfully do it on the first try! ...well, I did have to rip the first seam because I sewed wrong instead of right sides together. Rookie mistake. I got too excited.

Okay. First cut out a square of your binding fabric, slice from corner to corner, and lay out like this:
Then, fold over and pin:
Sew a 1/4 inch seam, press your seam open, and draw your lines for the binding width of your choice (mine were 2 inches).Now, the tricky part, line up your lines so that the first strip is sticking off to one side. The goal is to have a continuous strip that you can cut and cut in a big spiral all the way to the end. I match the first line on one end with the second line on the other; then, pin the rest of the lines making sure that both lines meet at the point where your 1/4 inch seam will be sewn.

Close up view:
Sew your 1/4 inch seam and begin cutting your strips (I now recommend pressing open the seam 1st, but I didn't).

Then you'll have this:

Press, and you have one long piece of bias binding with no waste!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

My first finished quilt!

I finished my first quilt. It was a baby quilt meant for a friend of my fiance, but after hand-stitching the binding, I cannot bear to part with it to someone I've met once.

I followed a quilting tutorial I found on youtube. Then, after oiling the daring foot of my brand new (used) machine...a Memory Craft 6500 which I LOOOOVE...I was able to add a fun custom border using free motion.

Not bad for a first attempt I think :)

So, in short, if your darning foot is squeaky, you CAN oil it! I was a bit unsure about that. And, the Memory Craft 6500 is a big upgrade from a Singer that's ~35 years old. I'm learning lots more every day, so more to come very soon. Including quilted placemats for Christmas!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

What I've canned this summer...

It's been a busy busy summer...Florida, Vermont, a month teaching with Bridges, wedding engagement, wedding planning, cousins cruise to the Bahamas, and finally, back home to prepare myself for another year of teaching. Of course, that means I need a distraction right? First, I made a plum jam that was so good that Mom said I could give it to her any year for Christmas or birthday and she'd be happy. Then, after checking out Glassy Mountain Chapel, I bought 1/2 bushel of peaches for $22. That turned into about 10 peaches for eating, two gallons of peaches sliced and frozen for future peach pies, and about 8-9 half-pints of peach butter.

Well, that's when Katie informed me of the $5 boxes of tomatoes at Sandy Flats Berry Patch. We drove out to find no ripe tomatoes, but a 1/2 bushel of pickling cucumbers was $6. Well, that's been turned into 9 quarts and 12 pints of pickles. Katie's recipe that started with 4 quarts of brine was responsible for all 9 quarts and 7 pints of those pickles; the other 5 were from a batch of Ball Kosher Dill mix. The key to making your brine go far...pack the cucumbers tightly. This is easier if you pack various cucumber lengths in groups.

My next adventure...tackling the 50 pounds of tomatoes I've got sitting in our utility room. They'll become sauce, whole tomatoes, and diced tomatoes. Well, back to the kitchen!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

So...I haven't written in a while...

I was posting on a friend's new blog, when I realized that my google account was still linked to this crazy empty site. After over a year's hiatus, maybe I'm ready to start writing. I've certainly done lots of both teaching and knitting in the past year and a half. But my greatest accomplishment thus far is one I finished yesterday. My very first sweater! I cannot explain how cool it is to be able to control many of the steps in the production of your own clothes. Don't like the crazy elbow patch on the back of the sweater? Don't knit it. Think the yarn the pattern calls for is to scratchy? Pick a softer tweed and change the needles if you need to make the gauge work. And you struggle to finish each piece, feeling a small sense of accomplishment, but knowing that there is a lot to be done even when the knitting is over--that's unique to a sweater. Knitting the collar and weaving the pieces together took longer than I'd care to admit. So I won't. Looking back on this when I begin to knit another sweater could scare me off. Better to live in blissful forgetfulness.

But here's the finished product:

Am I proud? You bet I am.