Knitted Baby Gifts, Part 1

Apparently everyone is pregnant and due this summer.  There must be something in the water, and just in case there is,   I think I’ll stick with beer!  The great thing about this, aside from excited new parents welcoming a baby into the world,  is that this gives me the chance to knit sweet little baby gifts for my friends which is a ton of fun.  Baby-sized sweaters have basically the same construction as adult-sized items but use less yarn and knit up much faster, so it’s pretty close to instant satisfaction.  There’s also something about a handmade gift that’s really special for folks who appreciate the work that goes into them.  This is the first round of gifts which have already been given to the recipient, so I figure I’m okay to blog about them and won’t spoil any surprises.

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Pattern: Tilting Blocks Baby Blanket
Designer: Ranee Mueller
Needles: US  4  (3.5 mm)
Yarn: Lion Brand Cotton Ease in, “Maize”
–Ravelry Project Link–
It’s a really simple stitch pattern and works up so quickly.  The original pattern had a square of stockinette in the center, but I opted to just do the whole blanket in pattern.  I used just about three whole skeins of yarn which is a basic cotton/acrylic blend which makes it great for use for baby knits.  Durable, washes well, still pretty soft.  It stretched out MUCH larger than anticipated since it’s lace, but it really looks great and will make a wonderful summer blanket for a summer baby.  Plus, the parents have opted not to know the gender of their child, so yellow is a nice, neutral color.

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Pattern: Sunnyside
Designer: Tanis Lavallee
Needles: US 4  (5 mm)
Yarn: Kangaroo Dyer Franklin Hand Dyed in, “Fried Green Tomatoes”
–Ravelry Project Link–
Knit in under a week!  Super fast knit and I didn’t even use a whole skein of sock yarn.  I made a small modification and flipped the cables on one side of the cardigan so they’d mirror the otherside (right twist instead of left twist).  The size I knit was 6-12 month, but it came out at more like a newborn-6 month size.  Next time, I’ll have to go up a size.  Still, a really cute and easy cardigan to knit!  I definitely prefer knitting baby items in fingering weight yarn instead of worsted or DK – babies are so small that a bulky sweater just doesn’t work out, and for a summer baby, a lighter cardigan is defintiely best.

Night Owl Mittens

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Actual knitting content on the blog!  Fear not, even though there have been a lack of posts about knitting and spinning, I’ve still been doing both.  It’s just a lack of time to photograph the finished objects!  But I have one here, and there will hopefully be more to post in the next few weeks.  They knit up in three days (about 5 hours in the evenings after dinner and before bed), and used about 225 yards between the two colors (125 of the blue and 100 of the yellow).  The yarn is a nice, densely spun wool completely sourced and produced in the USA from Rambouillet sheep, using natural dyes that surprisingly didn’t bleed when I gave these a wash and block.  The yarn has incredible stitch definition and feels really sturdy which is perfect for mittens.  I only made one big modification to the pattern – I switched the thumb to a “sore thumb” instead of the charted traditional Selbu Thumb since I find a sore thumb fits better.  A pretty easy modification to make, just shifting the thumb gusset  placement over a few stitches.  Speaking of the thumb, I love that cute little owl worked into the thumb chart.  Really happy with how these came out between the colors and the fit!  Finished them just in time for the slow creep of Fall’s chill.

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Pattern:  Night Owl Mittens
Designer: Jorid Linvik
Needles: US 1.5 (2.5 mm) for the cuff, US 2 (2.75mm) for the mitten body
Yarn:  HiKoo by Skacel American B.R.A.N.D. in Yellowstone (Yellow-108) and Hawaii Volcanoes (Blue-102)
Ravelry Project Link

 

End of May Mittens


I’m REALLY pleased with how these mittens came out!  The yarn was purchased at Purls of Wisdom in Kimberton, PA with the intent to make mittens at some point.  Finally, I grabbed the yarn, found a pattern, and went to work.  I managed to churn these out in five days (worsted weight mittens go pretty quickly even in colorwork), and have been wearing them since mid-January when they were finished.  As usual, I’m super late posting these to the blog, but you know that’s nothing new.  🙂Yarn: Ella Rae Classic Superwash in colorway 15 (orange-rust color) and 19 (cream color).  Lining is Alpaca from a friend’s farm.
Needles: US 3 (3.25mm)
Pattern:  End of May Mittens by Mandy Powers
Ravelry Project Link
Notes/Modifications:  The pattern originally called for the lining to only extend up about an inch or two from the cuff.  I went ahead and used the same directions for the outer mitten minus the colorwork for the lining.  It came out a little bit wide (there is some wrinkled-up fabric inside the mitten), but not enough that it’s unbearable.  They blocked out to the perfect size for my hands!  The alpaca actually came from a co-worker of the husband’s who owns an alpaca farm.  It’s really luscious stuff and makes the mittens extra warm – perfect for the cold winter we’ve had!

Ingress Mittens

Hands in mittens holding a cellphone with the Ingress scanner displayedWhen I received my invitation code on January 16, 2013, I had no idea what was waiting for me – this virtual, alternate reality game was something bigger than I ever expected.  When I first picked up my scanner, it was cold, but not so bad, and hey, Spring was not too far off in the Philadelphia area, and I still had a lot to learn about the game.  The mittens were an idea from the beginning since I’d been knitting for a number of years and thought it might be fun to combine my new obsession with an old one.  I made Level 8, and summer came and went with the idea still percolating.  Finally, Fall arrived and while the days were getting cooler, I was charting out the design for these mittens.  The final design incorporates the Resistance Key on the top of the hand and the Ingress logo on the palm side of the mittens using blobs of XM to balance out the pattern and fill in spaces, preventing longer floats.  The resulting pattern fits an average sized Resistance woman’s hand, and expects an intermediate skill level as well as prior experience with stranded knitting on DPNS in the round.  I’m offering this pattern for free as per the guidelines set forth by Ingress that allow for fan-created artwork.  Sorry folks, no Enlightened pattern is in the works, VIVA LA RESISTANCE!

 

 

[EDIT, 5 Nov 2013: Enlightened chart available, due to popular demand!  Follow same directions for Resistance mittens, substituting Enlightened chart – LINK (pdf)]

Alternative chart with dark lines – LINK (pdf)

The portal in the image to the left is that of the statue of David Reeves in Reeves Park, Phoenixville, PA, USA.  The park was, and still is, Phoenixville’s public square.  Gifted to the community in 1871 by Phoenix Iron Company founder David Reeves in his will, the park is an active Ingress battleground, having been a Flash Farm for both factions a number of times.  Founder David Reeves was so loved by his employees that they decided, unanimously, to place a statue in his memory at the center of the park shortly after his death.  [Portal Link]

Many thanks to agent Sensalia for acting as a hand model, to Abbie for proofreading, and to PAIR for being the best Resistance team ever.  Keep Warm and Hack On!

Ravelry Pattern Link (Removed March 2021 due to Ravelry’s lack of attention to accessibility)
Ravelry Project Link (Removed March 2021 due to Ravelry’s lack of attention to accessibility)
Pattern Download (pdf)

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