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Fingerless Mitts. Finished.

Paddle retains its place in my heart as an all time favorite pattern, with this second pair.  The perfect quick gift for you, or for someone you love.  My pair needs a quick steam block to work out a few wrinkles, but I’m so delighted with them!  You can easily modify the pattern for different weights of yarn and they knit up quickly and easily, but the stripes keep it fun.

This pair was knit in Elliebelly Coventry Cashmere.  I’m contemplating doing another pair in a different yarn later this month — strictly a defensive move, as the child who was nice enough to help me photograph them seems to have designs on keeping them.

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The Cashmere is Mine

I’ve had to fend off attacks from various cats to maintain a claim to my blue cashmere mitts.

kitty with knitting

But, they are mine.  All mine.  I love them, and I love knitting with this fine Mongolian Cashmere.  It’s über soft, even for cashmere.  Although I am bad to get a case of second sock (or in this case, second mitt) syndrome, I cast on for the second one as soon as I finished – minus the thumb – the first one.

Second mitt in progress

I’m hoping to finish them up today.  They’re just right for some late winter hiking over the weekend if the weather cooperates, and the cats keep their distance.

another kitty with the blue mitts

[Mitts knit with one skein of Elliebelly Coventry Cashmere in “Lady Mary.”  Available here.]

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Luxury Knitting: Cashmere Fingerless Mitts

I’ve been meaning to get started on this project for some time now, and finally picked up the yarn to cast on over the weekend.

This is Tin Can Knits Paddle Fingerless Mitts.  The yarn is Elliebelly Coventry Cashmere.  After going back and forth over what color to stripe it with, I decided to use some Melted Crayon, also in Coventry, but a lighter weight, that came out much more muted than this colorway typically does (it’s a cashmere thing).  This is the second time I’ve knit Paddle, and it’s a well-written, straightforward knit, perfect for the whiny knitter who is in bed with the flu.  It’s just right for knitting and napping.  So I did.

The ribbing looks a little bit wonky – I’m not sure what caused that, but I’m hopeful a nice, gentle steam block will do the trick.  Here’s a closer look at the pretty stripe.  I’ve been a fan of mixing my Paint Brush and other variegated colorways with solids ever since knitting this quirky little hat for one of my kids, almost a decade ago.  Admittedly, the look is a lot more elegant here, because, cashmere. As pretty as the solids are alone (and the multicolored yarns alone as well), there’s something lovely and fun about mixing them up.  I think the hat I knit last earlier this month inspired me to variegated stripe again with these mitts.  Hope you’ve got something in your stash to inspire you to try it!

P.S.: I’ve added a bit of this yarn on Etsy in case you’d like to knit your own pair.  I’ll even add in some yarn for stripes if you would like!

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More Than Halfway There

The only good thing about the flu is all of the knitting time once you get to the point where you can hold your head up and watch bad tv for a couple of hours in between naps.

The whole deal on this sweater is knitting miles of stockinette. The front and back on each side grow out from the side seam.  Each piece needs to measure 12.5″ from the side seam to the end, so a total of 25″ for each piece, before I can start the necklines.  After a day of on and off sick person knitting, I’m at 14″ & 16″ and I figure I’ve knit about 8″ today, so I’m hoping the whole sick but able to knit thing holds up and I can make progress on this sweater over the next few days.

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It’s All About The Sleeves

 

I’ve been devoting most of my knitting time to Two Track, a sweater with an unusual construction.  Although it looks like one piece up above, I’m actually knitting two separate pieces.  You start at the cuff edge of the sleeves and knit in.  And, you’re knitting both the front and back at the same time (there was a bit of excitement in the cast on).  I’ve got miles of stockinette to go, and then there is a bit of magic to put in a neckline before using a three needle bind off to connect the two fronts down the middle and then do the same for the backside.

I’m knitting with The Plucky Knitter’s Lodge Worsted: 60% Merino, 20% Cotton, 10% Silk, 10% Linen / Flax.  It’s a very lovely yarn, and the dye uptake with this particular fiber mix makes for soft, heathered colors.  Although this is my coffee shop knitting at the moment, because I can knit stockinette and talk, I am really looking forward to wearing the finished sweater.  It gets ribbing on the bottom and a nice full cowl on the top, so it will definitely be a while, but it’s so lovely!  I really love both the yarn and the pattern.

 

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Something New: How To Shop For Elliebelly Yarn

Despite the best laid plans, we are still working on site design.  In an effort to making it easy for you to buy a little Elliebelly Yarn in the meantime, my wonderful designer, Nicole, has added a direct link at the top of the page that lets you “shop.”  For now, it takes you to Elliebelly on Etsy, but I expect to have the shop relocated here in the next week or two.  Please come and visit me on Etsy in the meantime.  I’ve added a few items there, but if there is anything in particular you would like to see, let me know in the comments below or feel free to let me know using the contact form.

Elliebelly on Etsy

This is a sample of a few of the yarns that are available.  You may recognize Lyric in Catherine, Are You Weeping, on the top left from my Rob Roy Hat.

Rob Roy Hat Knit in Elliebelly Lyric

Sorbonne, one of my newest colorways, is the main color used in the hat I’ve just finished; available in Etsy and used in the hat on aran weight Blue Faced Leicester (BFL) yarn.

Hat knit with Elliebelly Yarn

I’ve tried to put a few things in the Etsy Store, without taking time away from the work we are doing on the site (some pesky, pesky bugs and an unexpected glitch with a plug in), so if there is anything you’ve seen on the blog that you JUST HAVE TO HAVE NOW, let me know, and I’ll be happy to add it in for you over the weekend.

Thanks for your patience.  I love you all for the support you’ve been sending and am looking forward to getting this baby across the finish line!

 

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Knitting A Hat Without A Pattern

This week, I knit a hat without a pattern.  This isn’t something I’ve done before – I’m not crafty like that.  But, I’m in love with my newest Elliebelly colorway, Sorbonne (see this post), and, in the course of playing with it, I ended up with a hat.

Hat knit with Elliebelly Yarn

I started out with a tubular cast on, and since I knit with this yarn, Elliebelly’s Aran Blue Faced Leicester, a good bit, I knew enough about my gauge to feel comfortable going ahead without swatching.  Tubular cast ons always feel tight, and I was second guessing the stitch count I chose for the first few inches.  It looked small!  But sure enough, it looked better the further I knit, and now, with the hat finished, the size is perfect.  I love the tubular cast on – it has a professional looking rolled edge with no apparent beginning and it’s very stretchy.

Tubular Cast on

The tubular cast on starts with waste yarn.  I just happened to have a scrap of some farm yarn I had dyed in the “Little Girl in the Big City” colorway lying around that was long enough for a provisional cast on, so I used that. And, as I knitted the 2×2 ribbing for the band, I kept stopping to admire how nicely Sorbonne, the main colorway, set off the bit of Little Girl on the edge.  My original plan was to knit some arched cables all the way around the hat, and after sketching it out and knitting the hat about halfway, I realized I was still focused on how the two different colorways looked together.  There was nothing for it.  I wanted stripes.  So, I frogged back to the end of the ribbing and started back in stockinette, this time, with the addition of the stripes as I got about the halfway point.  No pattern, so I knit until I had just the pop of color I wanted from each of the stripes.

I did some decreasing at the top.   I started with 96 stitches, and used three decease rows, separated with 5 rows in between them, to get down to 50 stitches, with I threaded closed. With the addition of an oversized pom pom, my hat is complete.

Pom Pom