Working, working, working on this sweater. I finished the sleeves earlier in the week and have attached them to the body. I’ve got enough decreases worked that it’s starting to resemble and actual sweater and I JUST WANT TO BE DONE WITH IT. I thought starting from the bottom would make the process seem a bit faster since the parts are more broken up and I don’t have to do the sleeves last, but endless gray stockinette has become a chore.

What I have realized while working on this sweater is that I rarely make something only for myself anymore, and definitely not anything quite so big. I’m either making something as a gift, or making something as a design sample, or testing for someone and I really do love all of those things but I can barely remember the last time I just knit for the sake of knitting or to make something just for me that then doesn’t need to be edited or photographed or published.

I started this sweater as a pallet cleanser and maybe it’s reshaping my thinking along the way; Knitting doesn’t always have to be work.

Oh and that Ravelry/charts in the photo business has resolved itself without fiasco. The woman removed the photo’s without issue and I was able to answer a few questions she had about the pattern. So thank you everyone for the encouragement and advice! 🙂



It’s finally Friday! I got some pretty exciting ((baby!)) news from a very good friend of mine last week that is inspiring this Friday Favorites. I freaking love to knit baby things, which is a little odd because I find actual human babies to be slightly terrifying. I first started knitting baby sweaters because they’re a really great way to learn different construction methods and apply stitch patterns without a whole lot of commitment, but now instead of letting them sit in a pile, buttonless and sad, they get to be worn and loved and pooped on by tiny humans. So here’s a handful of some of my favorite baby patterns!


Gingersnap by Kristen Rettig

I just think this is such a fun little sweater. I love the colors of the sample, but really the possibilities are endless with this pattern. The construction looks very simple making it a perfect project to knit on the go or for the inevitable Netflix binge.


Baby Duck Booties by Maegan Anderson

These are one of my top favorites. They’re so charming and classic. I mean, shoes for babies is a pretty useless concept, but these are more like socks that look like shoes right? There’s a baby and a toddler version of this pattern and here’s hoping someone will figure out an adult version because I would 100% wear them.


Colorwork Baby Pullover by Susan Mills

This sweater is so striking to me. I love the contrast between the traditional fairisle pattern and the fun, modern color pallet. It does use a lot of different colors, but you’d definitely have a lot of left over yarn to play with (gifts are my favorite way to justify buying more yarn).


Seamless Baby Hooded Pullover by Maggie van Buiten

This is another one I would probably make for myself. It’s a casual classic and I can just imagine how cozy and snuggly a little one would be in this sweater. I love the seed stitch hem and cuff and the oversized buttons are so cute. There’s two sizes and the pattern is free!


Baby Sweater Buffet Supplement by Allyson Dykhuizen

This isn’t a full pattern but I just couldn’t resist a snowsuit. I’m a sucker for stripes and onesies, what can I say?


Looking for a bit of advice

I have maybe a weird question and need a bit of advice. The other day I got a Ravelry notification that someone making one of my designs had added a photo. I was super excited because it seems that a lot of the people purchasing my patterns don’t really use Ravelry to keep track of projects. I went to look at the photos, which show the lovely beginnings of a project but the knitting chart is clearly visible in two photos.

My heart immediately sank. My first thought was how to go about asking her to crop her photos or blur out the chart. But I’ve let it stew in my brain too long and now I’m not sure what to do. Knitting patterns are my primary income source, and I’d like to believe most people wouldn’t take her photos and try and use the chart, but I know some might – I probably would.

Is there a kind way to go about bringing this to her attention? It’s probably not an intentional thing, and they are lovely snapshots of her work. I would hate upset this person or lose business from people using her image in place of a purchased pattern. Or is this not a big deal at all?

Mindless Knitting

March is here like the lion that she is. I was all ready to pack up the winter woolens but I woke up to a little blizzard. I stepped outside and kind of shouted “what the fuck?” into the wind. I think I heard a neighbor snort in laughter at me as he shoveled his driveway.

I’m in a bit of a designer rut. Part of it is the changing season, part of it seems to be a slow-down of Ravelry interest causing lack of motivation. Most of the things I make are winter items so a seasonal slump seems natural. I haven’t made lace in quite some time but that seems to be the logical step for warm weather.

In the mean time I started, for the third? forth? time, a plain gray raglan sweater for myself. I’m hoping it serves as a little pallet cleanser between the constant design brain and gift making mayhem of fall and winter and spend some time making something just for myself.13584121_1165165216878127_1341519076_n_medium2

The yarn is recycled from a sweater I found cleaning out my grandpa’s closet. The original was an XXL gray crewneck with navy stripes. I’ve made this little baby cardigan with some of the yarn but there’s definitely enough left over for a me-sized sweater. I’ve restarted the sweater for myself at least three times now. I’d always get so far on it and just not liked how it fit. This time I’ve started from the bottom instead of the top and I’m almost finished with the body. It’s sort of nice to mindlessly knit in stockinette and not have follow a chart for a change.

I’m hoping third time’s the charm on this one, if not it might just end up being a pile of baby sweaters.

Tired of being cold

We’ve officially reached the point in winter that I’m sick of hibernating and desperately want to be outside. I considered buying a full body snow suit just to lay in the sun for a few hours. I no longer care how beautiful snow is – I’m ready for spring.

Here in Illinois we got over a foot of snow last weekend. I don’t think I’ve seen that much snow all at once since I was a kid – when snow meant hours of fun not hours of extra work. I just finished clearing the bottom of my driveway when the plow guy came barreling through piling on another foot of snow. I either looked pissed or pathetic because he backed up and tried to scoop as much as he could back off my driveway. It probably took him two minutes to do what would have taken me another twenty. Sometimes such a small kindness can be so big.

K got a snow day from work so we had a nice long weekend basically being trapped in the house. We were at least smart enough to go grocery shopping before all the snow started so I made a giant pot of gumbo that we ate all weekend. We basically just played video games all weekend and huddled under three blankets and a cat on the couch.

I’ve been trying to take break from knitting (hence the video games). Not knitting makes me really anxious. It’s become so integrated into my life that choosing not to knit is really, really difficult. Having finished the last of my projects helps a little, but my brain is itching to start something new. I’ve been thinking about lace or something summery and light because it will get warm again, right?


New Pattern!

Well it’s been a month in the making, but my latest pattern has finally gone up on Ravelry. My test knitters are finishing up (a blog post for a different time…) and the pattern went live yesterday morning (my computer ran out of battery before I could blog about it and I got into the celebratory vodka…).

Anyway, my Marka Mittens can be found here if anyone is interested. Lots of people worked hard for all of this to come together and I’m always humbled and amazed that literal strangers take an interest in what I make.

FO Friday

Sorry for not posting in a while. I was having trouble motivating myself to write, or do anything at all really, besides sleep all the time. Luckily knitting doesn’t take too much motivation for me and I’ve finished quite a few things since my last post. ed23d80b-4d63-4ba4-8357-c7289061b6d9Here’s the big one. It’s all bunched up, but it’s a triangular shawl with a little bit of texture created with slip stitches. It knit up really fast and the stitch pattern was easy to memorize. I’m not super in love with it, I probably wouldn’t make it again for myself, especially with self striping yarn, but hopefully it’s recipient will enjoy it.




img_2669I originally had two skeins left of the yarn I needed  for the shawl so about halfway through the project I had to take a short break until I could get to the store for the last skein. I was in an anxious and weird brain space and not knitting wasn’t really working for me. I think I mentioned before that a friend asked me to make her pet bunny a little sweater. I found some super soft yarn I’ve had leftover since I first learned to knit. It only took me a couple of hours to make and ended up really nice. This is a photo she sent me of her bunny all snuggled up. Apparently he really likes it.


I still had a little bit of this yarn left over and hadn’t made it to the store yet, which means baby hat. This yarn is way to soft to not be on a baby. I remember buying the yarn but I can’t for the life of me remember what kind it is. I’d really like to make more things with it. This is about newborn size and I barely had enough yarn to make a pom-pom. I also don’t know anyone with newborns so I’ll just add it to the pile of random knits. I guess it’s nice to have a stockpile of instant gifts, and also maybe someday soon I’ll get around to opening up an etsy shop.

Currently I’m working on a sweater for my best friend’s kid. He’s turning one in a few weeks and needs a Weasely Sweater. I also have yarn to make K some gloves, just trying to find the right pattern so I can design them.

Pain is just a reminder that we all die eventually.

This weekend turned into quite a hibernation. Friday we accidentally slept twice as long as we had intended and ended up waking up around 10 pm. So going out to dinner or socializing at all was off the table. Saturday I woke up in so much pain I considered going to the ER. I couldn’t move my neck without pain shooting down my spine and arm. After I spent some time laying on the floor crying K dug out the ice packs from when he had back problems last year. Cold seemed to make things a little worse and the three blankets I was swaddled in weren’t helping so I switched to heat packs. Thankfully those helped enough that I got some movement back. (The three whiskey’s I had sure loosened things up…) We ended up just ordering take-out and spent another night on the couch. I’m feeling much better today, just some stiffness leftover.

img_2656I started working on a shawl today. I’ll probably end up gifting it to my mom since it’s pinkish and I’m not a huge shawl wearer anyways. It’s In the Pines by Kristina Kephart who’s I believe is a new designer. It’s got a lovely texture created by slipped stitches and the pattern is easy enough to memorize that I don’t need to look at the pattern until I get to the decreases. After spending a few hours on it I’m already noticing my wrists hurting again, but I need something to keep my hands busy before I go crazy.

I’m also currently looking for test knitters for my Marka Mittens (featured at the top of the post) if anyone is inclined. Feel free to comment here for more details or drop by my group to join in.



We had about a day of random 60 degree weather the other day and wow, what a shock to the system. We were considering sitting out in lawn chairs with beers but it started raining. Running to the store in just a sweatshirt in the middle of January felt very weird and kind of naughty. But the reprise is over and it’s back to freezing in time to do anything.

My mittens are off to my tech editor, and I found a title I’m happy with in case anyone was worried.. and now I just have to be awake long enough in the daylight to take pictures. Too bad all the snow melted away and everything is muddy.

Anyways, it’s Fridayyyyy so you know what that means! Here are some shiny new patterns I found on Ravelry if you’re looking to fill up your queue for the year.

Scratch & Peck Shawl by: Ann Meyer


If you haven’t figured it out yet, I’m a sucker for colorwork. This one is mosaic knit so you’re only working with one yarn at a time. I’m personally not a big shawl wearer but I always want to make them. This one has a pretty modern and graphic pattern but all wrapped up would actually be pretty subtle. It’s also currently on sale so get at it!



Big Stitch Beanie by: Nailya Plaskey


I’ve been seeing this one a whole bunch on the internet. It’s such a simple idea – it’s knitting that looks like bigger knitting! I’m kind of mad I didn’t think of it first, but IT’S SO CUTE! I’d totally wear one of these, I’d make them for everyone, I’d put ’em on a baby, I’d put one on a dog. I’m a big fan of giant pom-poms lately and that multi colored one is working hard.


19 Fishes on a Mitten by: Magdalena Svanberg


This is a free pattern. There’s something charming and silly about it that I just like. This is the designer’s premier pattern though the pattern is only in Swedish at this point. It’s fully charted so if you’re at all familiar with how mittens work I’m sure you could figure this guy out. I’ve been trying to figure out what to knit for K since I’m a scrub and haven’t knit him anything (sweater curse, duh) but this pattern might have to be adjusted for him. There’s a bit of an inside joke about fish with his friend group. Playing with marled yarn might be really nice for these.

Non-Traditional Kihnu Style Mittens by: Mary Germain


I knew the second I saw these that were were gauge sisters. I don’t know too many people who like to knit at 10 stitches per inch or use US 1 needles but there are some special people out there who do it. I’m not crazy about the cuffs on these but I also have never heard of kihnu style mittens so I be checking those out shortly.

Hearth and Snow by: Ninja Chickens


This is just a good solid hat, and hey one without colorwork! It looks warm and practical but also stylish and unisex. I never love the hats that I make but I also don’t have a cabled hat so that very well could be the problem. I also have a large head and a shit-ton of hair so that could be the real problem.




Things have been pretty slow around here. Trying to stay caught up on laundry, trying to cook healthier meals which means more dishes, and trying to sleep on a consistent schedule. Spent some time last week knitting away on my shawl and I started to notice my right wrist hurting. Decided to take a break on the shawl, you know, to rest my joints. Me being me, I couldn’t sit still and not knit anything for a day or two to feel better so I made a pair of mittens in about two and a half days. Now my wrists AND hands hurt. I’m shocked too…

Anyways mittens are finished and blocking, and now I just need to motivate myself to write up the pattern. The chart is pretty much done, it just needs a little tweak here and there to look nice. The writing part is what kills me, and I know that’s a shock to you all as well since I’m SO GOOD at blogging consistently these days. Once I get started it goes pretty quickly, and I know that, but for some reason it takes me forever to start writing. Somewhere in my brain I think that I need to have a pattern title and images before writing up the pattern, which is pretty illogical, those are the easiest things to add or change in a pattern. I guess I did start playing around with a few titles but they feel pretentious and also kind of lame. Finding titles I’m happy with is always such a struggle for me – it’s hard to come up with something original and memorable and on brand without being floofy or overly descriptive and boring. Are there professional title givers? I’m totally open to suggestions if you have a good one!

Hopefully I can talk K into going out sometime this week to help me take pictures, but he’s got a head cold, and I’ve got some kind of stomach thing so I won’t hold my breath. I’m hoping whatever bugs we’ve got go away quickly and I find some motivation to write out this pattern before the weekend. If I wait any longer by the time I get all the tech editing and test knitting done it won’t even be winter anymore.

Cat and Sparrow

Home of exquisite hand-dyed fibres and yarns


We Blog Here!!

The Craftermath

The intersection of crafting, knitting, cooking, and more!

Tin Can Knits

modern seamless knits for the whole family