Friday, November 30, 2012

Patterns that Sing to Me

Blanket for Oliver
Andrew and Kathy are having a baby boy. Andrew is my nephew, so what better opportunity to make a baby blanket?! Oliver is due around Christmas and he will be wrapped in this blue and white afghan, lovingly made by his Great Aunt (and I will be a great Great Aunt!)

This is one of my favorite afghans to make, so a couple of weeks ago, I pulled out my needles, grabbed the baby blue, white, and dark blue yarn to make another Quilt-Like Afghan. Maybe it's the combination of both knitting and crocheting, but I love this pattern.

Blanket for Zane
Have you ever had a pattern that just speaks to you? Conversely, have you ever had a pattern that your fingers just can't tolerate? Well, this is one that speaks to me. There is something about making these cute little octagons that I response to. Several times, I have started an afghan pattern only to frog it to cast on 8 stitches and start increasing. Since it's an afghan, I don't pay attention to gauge, and in fact, I don't even pay attention to the needle size and yarn size. I just pick out a few colors that I want to put together, look for matching double-pointed and circular needles, and start in.

My afghan -- or rather Neko's
This is the third afghan I have made from this pattern, and I am sure it is not the last. I made the first one for me, which Neko prompted adopted as his own. For this one, I even used the yarn and needles recommended by the pattern. The second one I made for my friend Amber and her son, Zane. My son Lorne has ordered one as well in a variety of colors, as long as one of them is not white. I have another friend who is having a baby by the end of the year, so I will start on that as soon as I finish some scarves for Christmas presents.

This is the free pattern from Lion Brand, so here is the link. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do:

Monday, November 26, 2012

Pre-felted Cat

This was meant to be a bed for me, right?
I can't knit a project without adding a little bit of cat hair to it. It's not by choice. It's just life when you knit around a cat, especially a cat like Neko. He is involved in everything.

However, he does seem to have a problem with the projects that I am about to felt. This is a pile of bags and wine bottle cozies destined for the washing machine to be felted, but Neko says nothing doing.

Guess I'll wait until he moves onto another pile of knitting.

Back to the needles.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

He Does Have His Moments

Uh-oh. He grabbed my hand. Will there be blood?

I always make fun of the fact that Neko has attitude.  He is not a nice kitty. But I am insanely in love with him. He is not a touchy-feely type of cat. He is more of an ouchy-bleedy cat.

We have a plaque on our front door that says WARNING: This house is protected by an attack cat. This may cause you to snicker a bit, but the truth is that it is true. A normal cat would run and hide when the doorbell rings. Neko runs to the front door, front teeth showing and a howl in his throat, claws itching to dig into some ankle flesh.

I have been told that to get him to behave, I need to keep a spray bottle of water handy. We tried that. It only made Neko mad.

He thinking about it. The teeth are close to skin.
Now I suppose you wonder why we keep around a cat with attitude. The truth is that he has more character than any cat I have ever had. He is playful and funny. He loves to chase yarn and feathers throughout the house. Ken has invented games to play with Neko including a catapult that shoots little sponge pads across the room. And like all cats, nothing makes him happier than a laser pointer dancing across the carpet.

I swear Neko understands what we are saying and doesn't hesitate to talk back. We have had entire conversations with Neko saying nothing more than his throaty "Meow." 

Aw. Every now and then, my evil kitty surprises me
by giving me more loving
Yeah, I'm hooked


Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Baby Hat and Mitts

A friend of mine wanted some baby hats for Christmas, one in the Denver Broncos colors (orange and blue). So I designed this little hat and mittens for a newborn for her. I am really pleased with how it turned out.

Now I have to start knitting on the other hats. It seems the only things really selling at my holiday stand at the mall are my Colorado hats. No, I am not in a panic yet. Thanksgiving is tomorrow and then the full-blown holiday season starts.

Meanwhile, I am knitting away at Christmas gifts. I started making gifts last August, so why do I have so much more to do??

Anyway, back to the needles.

Lion Brand 387244 Fishermens Wool Yarn -Oatmeal (Google Affiliate Ad)Lion Brand 387244 Fishermens Wool Yarn -Oatmeal (Google Affiliate Ad)

Saturday, November 17, 2012

My Colorado Hat

In Colorado, we love skiing. I think I saw that about one-third of the people in our state are skiers. I mainly ski cross-country now. Several years ago, I blew my knee out skiing so going downhill is a little difficult.  So skiing apparel is hot -- so to speak -- on our mountaintops.

My hat rack is at American Dreamers in Southwest Plaza in Littleton, Colorado for the holidays. I didn't make too many new hats this year, but I did design and make a hat with the logo from the Colorado map. I made two, one for adults and one for kids. They both sold the first two days.

So now, I am furiously knitting more Colorado hats. They are fun to knit, so I don't mind. Yes, I am going to write it up into a pattern and no, it will not be free. I will offer it for sale on my Craftsy pattern site, but you should be checking out that site anyway. There are hundreds of wonderful patterns to download for free or a small fee.

Check out some of my patterns: or

Friday, November 16, 2012

The Holidays are Coming

I thought long and hard about whether to put up my hat stand at the mall this holiday season. I have made money every time I did, covering the cost of the rental plus a little extra, but never enough to really justify the work. Actually, I will knit anyway, so I always say that this is a hobby that barely covers the cost of the yarn, although my time is never covered.

But with the election over and my freelance job is temporarily suspended, I decided to go ahead and set up my hat stand. I have enough inventory that I don't have to knit my fingers to the bone to make new stuff. So up went my hat stand. The store is really cute this year and if the economy continue to improve, I have a chance to make a little money.  I sold two hats in the first two days, so keep your fingers crossed.

Back to the needles.