a chunky happy dance

At the start of March, I picked up my 6mm circular needles and started knitting this project.  A James C Brett pattern to make a casual jacket using James C Brett Marble chunky yarn.  I treated myself to these supplies for my birthday, in 2019, so this counts as stash busting.  I am pleased to share photos of a finish with you today.

I love how it turned out!!!!  I love the colourway I chose, which is very “me” and looks fab with my jeans.  I love the way the body parts are knitted sideways, so the colours gives a vertical stripe, which is very flattering.  And I love how it’s the kind of jacket/cardie, I can just fling on (no buttons to do up) for extra warmth, and how snuggly & soft the yarn is.

chunky knitting progress

Just over a week ago, I showed you the start of a chunky knitting project:  a James C. Brett pattern and chunky yarn to knit up this rather lovely, loose fitting cardie/jacket.  Sleeves knitted up quite quickly, and I’ve only recently finished knitting the back.

The particularity of this pattern is that back & both fronts are to be knit side-ways, which means the gorgeous colour-changing “Marble” yarn creates stripes vertically on the body part, but horizontally on the sleeves.  Here’s a photo to remind you what the sleeves look like.

Now time to cast on the first front . . . but I seem to have become distracted with crochet again, so might be longer than a week before I have another knitting update.

can’t stop knitting!

Well I simply can’t stop knitting!  After the bright, sunny cardigan for Toddler Viking, I had a look in my yarn stash, all eager to start a new project . . . and decided on something chunky, for myself.

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This James C. Brett pattern, and J.C. Brett “Marble” chunky yarn being something I treated myself to for my birthday in 2019, which means it’s been taking up space in the cupboard for over a year.  This particular pattern caught my eye because it looks like a very simple knit.  It’s in double moss stitch, but with very little shaping.  There are no button bands, button holes or neckbands to deal with.  As for the main body of the cardigan/jacket: pieces are knit sideways, which means colour-changing yarn will stripe vertically on the body, but horizontally on the sleeves.

Pattern requires 4 x 200g for the size I’m knitting, and while tempted to buy the same colour as the pattern photo, I went for more autumn shades.  And knitting with chunky yarn has begun.  I did take time to knit my gauge swatch, which was also the opportunity to familiarise myself with double moss stitch.  My only query with this . . . how to know which is the right side and which is wrong side? since both sides look the same lol.

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Anyway . . . 3 days into knitting, and I had my first sleeve.  Amazing how quickly knitting grows when working with chunky yarn on a 6mm needle.

And another 3 days later . . .  the second sleeve.

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You’ll notice I haven’t attempted to match my stripes.  I’m just enjoying knitting and letting yarn stripe and change colours as they come.   Next part to tackle will be the back and I’ll need to use my circular needles so that’s going to be a new learning curve!

knitting for Toddler Viking (finished)

cardie finished 01

Yay!  I am so pleased to be able to share photos of the finished cardigan I’d been knitting for our grand daughter, aka Toddler Viking.  Pattern is Sirdar 1219 and I chose to knit sleeves & lower body in a fun variagated yarn, but a plain yellow for the bodice part.

cardie 01

Pattern called for a Sirdar Bamboo DK, I substituted for a Gründl acrylic/polyamide mix, also DK weight.

In all, cardigan, in size 2-3 years, required approx 120g of the variagated and 30g of the plain yellow.

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Once I overcame my fears of having to follow a stitch pattern, for the bodice part, I really enjoyed knitting this project.

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I was less at ease with the picking up of stitches (evenly) for the neckband and two front bands . . . and had a slight ooops with spacing my button holes . . . but all in all, I am rather proud of how it turned out.   So pleased with the progress I’ve made in following a knitting pattern, in fact, that I’m all set to cast on and start a new project!  Stay tuned!

knitting for toddler Viking (progress)

Last week, I showed you a new knitting project I’m working on:  with pattern Sirdar 1219, to make a colourful cardigan for our grand daughter, aka Toddler Viking.  Am pleased to say, I’ve made progress – yay!

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Yoo hoo!  I have completed the back!  Very pleased with how that turned out, and quite enjoyed following the chart I drew up to help me follow the purls & knits for the bodice part.

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I blocked.  Not really convinced blocking was necessary, but since I’m following the pattern, I may as well really follow the pattern!  And here are my bits placed, awaiting the job I don’t like: the sewing together and picking up of stitches for button bands & neck bands.

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I’ll be using the plain yellow for button bands & neck band which, I feel, will finish the whole thing off rather nicely. 

And last photo (after sewing together at shoulders) . . . just to see how it was for size on my doll, Daisy.

cardie back

Daisy measures 90cm in height, so she’s roughly the size of a 2-3 year old, which is the pattern size I followed.  It looks to be a nice fit across the shoulders.  The garter stitch band is at her waist.  And cardie will be long enough to just cover her bottom . . . so all in all, I’m rather satisfied with things so far!

knitting for toddler Viking

After some fairly recent knitting for dolls, I fancied working on something a little bigger . . . so what better excuse than to start work on a cardigan for Toddler Viking? 

The husband gifted me some lovely colourful balls of yarn at Christmas, so I had a search on-line for a pattern, deciding on one by Sirdar (1219).  I bought the pattern as an instant download on Wool Warehouse.  And immediately set to work on my swatch (since I am using Gründl yarn and wasn’t sure whether it would knit up to same gauge as the recommended Sirdar DK).  My swatch was good . . . so I cast on and knitted two sleeves.  My plan being to knit the cardie in 2 different yarns:  the colour changing yarn for the lower part & sleeves, but a plain yellow for the bodice part which has a stitch pattern.  Toddler Viking is 18 months old already, so I’m knitting a size 2-3 years, with full length sleeves – hoping it’ll be a good fit this Spring/Summer. 

cardie 01

cardie 02

While I managed to get my colours matching, more or less, on both sleeves for the stripes, the actual pattern created by yarn didn’t work out matching.  Not to worry lol.

Before starting the two fronts, I did a trial run with some leftover blue yarn, to make sure I could follow the bodice pattern.  I’ve only ever done rib, stocking stitch or garter before, so the idea of following a stitch pattern and getting my knits & purls in all the right places had me a little worried.

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This was my practice piece, with a few rows of shaping, to make sure I felt confident enough to start on the real thing.

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And a couple of knitting sessions later, ta da!!!  I have two cardigan fronts – yay!  Not 100% convinced my idea of plain yellow for the bodie part was such a good idea after all, but it’s too late now – I’m not frogging!

some thanks yous and some clothes making

I’m somewhat behind with my thank you letters so wanted to take the opportunity to say a big warm thank you to Sabine, Virginie and Karine. 

Sabine sent me this lovely book for Christmas – parcel arrived late because of the strikes in France.

from Sabine (1)

A lovely handmade card arrived from Virginie (also held up by strikes).

from Virginie

And, only the other day, another surprise package, this time from Karine, with a cute orange leather purse!

from Karine

I’ve been keeping myself busy so far this month with lots of crafting. Some of which I can’t share with you yet, but some of which I can!  Now, way back in November I had fun knitting in variagated yarn to make a pretty doll sweater.

nov orange stripey jumper

Only problem being, the doll I made it for didn’t have anything to wear with the sweater.  So this month I remedied that problem!

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If you’d like to see the doll in all her glory, just click on Claire’s Collections, which will take you to my doll blog.

2019 in review: crochet & knitting

Everyone is getting ready to say goodbye to 2019 and see the New Year in . . . an ideal time to look back over the year, through photo archives and remind myself of what crafting I did during the year.  In this post, I’ve grouped together some of the finished knitting or crochet projects I had fun making.  They’re not all here, since many are doll-related.  I’ll do a special doll crafting review on my other blog.  Feel free to click on the following link  Claire’s Collections if you’d like to see the numerous doll cardies and outfits I knitted this year.

Non-doll projects were . . .

(first in crochet)

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Little Ella in her monster suit – pattern by Little Aqua Girl – February 2019

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a big bad wolf – pattern by Jess Huff – May 2019

2 little unicorns – pattern by Anabu Crochet – May-June 2019

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Bride & Groom dolls – pattern by Havva Designs – May 2019

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24 crochet squares (so far) – for the Nature’s Walk – CAL.

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6 pairs of mittens (only 4 pairs here) – pattern by Loopy Mabel.

There was a little knitting, but not much for humans . . .

with my first ever cardigan, for myself.

pink cardie 01

pattern “Rue” by Martin Storey for Rowan.

cardie x2

and 2 toddler sized bolero type cardies.  Very bright versions of “Cheri” by Martin Storey for Rowan and knitted for our grand daughter, who I’ll be calling Toddler Viking from now on since she’s 17 months old.

“Nature’s Walk” CAL progress

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Above photo to show you my new colours which arrived . . . so I finally have colour scheme sorted for Nature’s Walk.  I’m using Stylecraft DK Special in:  Spring Green, Meadow, Magenta, Wisteria, Clematis, Bluebell, Sherbet & Cream.

Here are the most recent set of 6 squares crocheted up, in Wisteria

CAL buds

These are following the pattern “Buds”, and have a “popcorn” stitch.  Quite fun to make, but these squares will definitely need blocking as they tend to be a lot springier than the others.

CAL buds 01

So far, I have 6 of each of the above.

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I won’t promise to have the next 6 squares done by next week, because I’ve allowed myself to become side-tracked with knitting and sewing for dolls. 

animator dress 01

If you’d like to see these being modelled by dolls . . . you’ll have to hop over to my other blog: Claire’s Collections.

knitting & crocheting

I was a very lucky girl and won a giveaway organised by Chris, on her blog Chrisknitssews.  Chris was offering a gorgeous draw-string bag she’d made and I had left a comment saying it would be ideal for storing amigurumi body parts lol.  You know how it is, those who make amigurumi . . . there always comes a time, before assembling parts, when you’ve got arms, legs, feet etc all stuffed and you’re afraid one of the cats will make off with a body part or the dog will eat it. 
And it’s very important to have a pretty bag to keep things safe.

bag chris 01

Anyway, this is the lovely bag I won.  It’s fully lined and so very well made!

bag chris 02

For the moment, since I’ve been having something of a crochet hiatus, but have been industrious knitting dolls clothes . . .

bag chris 03

I am currently using my new bag to keep my knitted bits . . . here are 3 more doll-sized garments waiting for me to sew up seams and sew on buttons.  But . . . a new crochet project has begun!

raccoon

This pattern from Amigurumi TodayAmigurumi Today is a brilliant site/shop.  They have a huge selection of lovely amigurumi designs which you can actually consult and follow for free, if you don’t mind following a pattern on screen and on-line all the time.  They also have their shop option, where you can buy a pdf version of the pattern (which I have done for the above) . . . so it can be consulted on screen without having to be on-line or printed out (the old-fashioned way).   They seem to be having something of a sale on at the moment, as patterns are only $1.99 each, which is an absolute bargain!  Anyway . . . I’ve just begun hooking this pattern which is “Raccoon”.  Looks more like a flying squirrel to me, but whatever animal it is, I thought it was just too cute!