Saturday, 25 April 2015

Knitting Trolley

I have had my eye on this knitting trolley from Spotlight pretty much since I bought my first pair of needles.

I am quite a girly girl and I love cute little bags an accessories, so I fell in love with this, but until recently I knew I didn't need something this big to store all my yarn and knitting accessories, so I held off buying it for so long.

It used to sell for $90, but they reduced the price to $45, and then on a 30% sale I decided I couldn't resist any more.

I haven't yet stocked it up with loads of yarn, just for the projects I am working on, but there is loads of room in there.

Of course one of the best things about this trolley is the pattern on the outside, adorable yarn balls, needles and socks!

I love that all my needles and accessories are in one place and I love rolling my little trolley round to the couch ready for an evening of knitting. Where do you keep all your knitting and yarn?

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

It's a bit quiet around here...

So I have been a little bit quiet on both the knitting and blogging front because I've had a lot going on (new job and moving house amongst other things) and now my laptop is out of action so I am unable to upload any of my photos for my new blog post. I'll be back soon though :-)

Sunday, 5 April 2015

Coat Extender for Baby Carrier

A friend of mine asked me to make her this Hooded Coat Extension pattern, but it had been made by adjusting a different pattern for a hooded scarf, so I did a little searching to see if there were any other existing patterns, but the only one I found looked too different, so I decided to make my own.

To clarify what this is, when you wear you baby carrier on your front during the winter, if you can't button up your coat around your baby, this extender attaches to the existing buttons to keep baby warm.

I started by knitting up a small patch to work out my gauge, then measured out the width I wanted the extender to be and the space between the buttons. I also wanted the top to be more narrow then the bottom so it fitted comfortably around the shape of baby.

I found these buttons on Etsy which closely matched the coat buttons, and used the coat to work out the best positioning for them.

I wasn't sure how to do the hood, so I incorporated the method used in this Hooded Baby Poncho pattern, which worked really well, although if I made another one I would probably make the hood a little bigger (baby is about 3 months old so will fit now, but by the end of winter it will probably be a little snug).

The whole thing was really quick to knit up and took me two evenings to finish. I am very pleased with how it turned out, and super proud of myself for writing my own pattern.

So here is the pattern I came up with:

You'll need: Moda Vera Monkey super Bulky Acrylic in Pink and 10mm needles

Gauge: 10 stitches (stockinette) = 4.25inches


(Starting at base of extender)

Cast on 42 stitches

1. Knit rows 1-4 (garter stitch)

2. Knit 42

3. K5, P32, K5

4. Repeat 2 & 3 until piece measures 8 inches

5. K2, YO, K2tog, K38 (adding first button hole)

6. K5, P32, K5

7. K5, K2TOG, K28, SSK, K5

8. K5, P30, K5

9. K40

10. Repeat 8 & 9 until piece measures 12.5 inches

11. K2, YO, K2tog, K36

12. K5, P30, K5

13. K5, K2tog, K26, SSK, K5

14. K5, P28, K5

15. K5, K2tog, K24, SSK, K5

16. K5, P26, K5

17. K5, K2tog, K22, SSK, K5

18. K5, P24, K5

19. K5, K2tog, K20, SSK, K5

20. K5, P22, K5

21. K32

22. Repeat 20 & 21 until piece measures 17 inches

23. K2, YO, K2tog, K28

24. K5, P22, K5

25. K5, (K2tog x 5), K2, (SSK x 5), K5

26. K5, P12, K5

27. K5, (M1, K2 x 6), K5

28. K4, P20, K4

29. K28

30. K3, P22, K3

31. K28

32. K2, P24, K2

33. K28

34. Repeat 32 & 33 until hood section measures 8 inches [for 0-3 months, longer to make bigger hood]

35. 3 needle bind off; Move 14 stitches onto each needle, use a third needle to Knit 1 stitch from each needle together. Make sure that the seam side is inside the hood.

For the pocket:

Cast on 13

Knit rib for 3 rows

Knit stockinette for 8 inches

Knit rib for 3 rows

Bind off

Sew the pocket onto the extender, you may need to pin it into place when wearing over your baby carrier (not with a baby in!) so you can make sure it is a comfortable position to put your hands in.

Please feel free to share/use this pattern, but please link back to this page.

Oh and in case you were wondering, my 'baby' is Oswald the Owl!

Sunday, 22 March 2015

Alan the Lion

This week I crocheted Alan from Super-Cute Crochet (from this old post) but I used different yarn then the pattern suggested; a cool multicoloured acrylic for the body and a strange shaggy acrylic (find this yarn on my Ravelry page) for the mane.

Because of his little body and crazy big hairy head, he is really hard to photograph, so hopefully you get a good idea of what he looks like. If you have a look at the picture in the Super-Cute Crochet book, you can see his face looks pretty different to how mine turned out. Because I was making Alan for a one year old, I thought it would be a potential choking hazard to put on plastic eyes, so I just used scrap yarn to embroider his face. 

He is very cute and was very quick to crochet together, so I would recommend projects from this book for a quick easy gift, or just if you want a new stuffed toy friend!

I would also like to share this amazing card my hubby gave me for my birthday this week:

He even incorporated my fave knitting brand, what a cutie!

Sunday, 15 March 2015

Patchwork Baby Boy Blanket

So as I mentioned in my post back in February, I have made a patchwork baby blanket, and this weekend was the baby shower where I gifted it, so I can now share it with you:

I started with a centre panel where I wanted to knit in some wording, and then I used the pattern from my cable knit throw.  Around the outside of this panel I created a patchwork made up from squares.

I came up with the idea of making a patchwork because I wanted to use up the scrap yarn I already had, but because I hadn't calculated how much yarn I would use, I did need to buy some extra yarn to finish off the blanket. Rather than make a poor colour match with the yarn I already had, I chose too buy a new shade of blue altogether; 'Pale Ocean'.

Baby Blue   turquoise   Ocean Blue  Pale Ocean  Navy Blue  Pale Blue  Charcoal  
     Baby Blue            Turquoise            Ocean Blue              Pale Ocean            Navy Blue             Pale Blue               Charcoal

I knitted the squares in garter stitch using 4mm needles, cast on 19 and did roughly 36 rows (all knit), this gave me the 4"x4"square. Initially I was going to make all of the squares using the plain garter, but on the outside border I decided I could mix it up a little bit; I used the stitch library in my Knitters Bible, to find some cool patterns, and also just experimented with some simple stripes and shapes with some other squares

I thought the blanket knit up really nicely, the squares all kept their size perfectly and I only had to block the cable squares and the knitted writing.

I started by attaching the squares randomly as I knit them, but the closer I got to the end, I had to start plotting where each square would go so that I didn't have two of the same colour touching. I found this easiest to do on the computer so I could keep changing them around.

I am really happy with the finished blanket, although I couldn't picture exactly how it would look like when I first started, I had a certain 'look' in mind, which I think I have acheived!

Sunday, 8 March 2015

I'm Back!

Sorry that I have been absent for a couple of weeks, I have had some things going on that have been consuming my attention and distracting me from updating the blog. I also haven't been able to put loads of concentration into my knitting, but I have been slowly but surely finishing off my one WIP... which I will be able to reveal next week!

So for now I wanted to share two books I recently borrowed from the library; Super-Cute Crochet by Nicky Trench and Super-Super Cute Crochet by Brigette Read:

I am currently trying to only start projects which I already have the yarn to make, I also have a few children's birthdays/baby showers etc coming up, so I thought these were perfect for some project ideas.

Both of these books are published by Cico Books, they are the same size, very similar titles and the books are laid out in a very similar style; but when it comes to the actual content, I have to say I prefer Super-Cute Crochet by Nicky Trench. Each of the toys have been given cute names and a funny little character back stories, and generally look more cartoony and fun, which personally the style I am more drawn to.

Here are some of my favourite 'characters' that I hope to make; Camilla the Pretty Pony, The Fish Brothers (I don't particularly like fish, but know someone who would love these!), Alan the Lion, Dimitri the Donkey and Pickles the Puppy!

Camilla the Pretty Pony The Fish Brothers
Pickles The Puppy

Super-Super Cute Crochet by Brigette Read had a lot of cute toys, but the book just didn't have the same finishing touch making me fall in love with the little characters. Having said that, there were a couple of toys I would be interested in making, in particular the gorgeous little puppy and the cute crocodile.


Although I am sure I have got suitable yarn to make most of these, I did have to go and buy more toy stuffing, and I may have to invest in some toy eyes… but I still think this makes for thrifty crafting!