Dog Star Filigree, Finished

I finished the Dog Star Filigree shawl I was test knitting the other night.  I think it turned out absolutely beautifully.  The yarn and the pattern were perfect compliments, neither overshadowing the other, both looking better for the pairing.

My only problem with this scarf/shawl is that it is far too warm in Texas to need to wear it 95% of the year.  And really, that’s not a terrible problem.

If you would like to knit your own Dog Star Filigree, you can get the pattern here when it is released in a week or two. To use the same yarn I did, you can pick a color from Twisted Fiber Arts and choose “Muse, Double Evolution” as your purchasing option.  My color, primrose, was a limited colorway, but she has plenty of other lovely ones.

The finished measurements of my Dog Star were 17.5″ by 66″, so if you’d like it bigger, use more than 700 yards of yarn.

This now marks the end of all the projects I had in progress.  I’m going to have to decide what to work on next and get started!

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Baby Legs, take 2

Oh I love, love, LOVE these! As I mentioned in my last post, I was working on a pair of rainbow baby legwarmers. They have since found a home with my friend’s daughter for her first birthday. I really, really wanted to keep them, but I had made them long and skinny on purpose, far too long and skinny for Wesley’s chubby legs, but look how cute they are!

Sorry about the blurry photo, someone was wiggling around quite a bit.

These took a lot more time than Violet’s legwarmers for a couple of reasons. I used much skinnier yarn, smaller needles, and thus needed more stitches. Still, they are just as easy and straightforward as the first pair.

I used Knit Picks Felici Fingering Weight Yarn in their Rainbow colorway. I am seriously tempted to buy more of this color and to buy it in bulk. It’s so bright, cheerful, and happy. Life really doesn’t get a whole lot better than something in rainbow-colored yarny goodness. Unless maybe you add in a horse, Pegasus, or unicorn. And maybe a Lisa Frank notebook.

(It could be that I’m just a bit of a girly girl. Or that I’ve regressed to 5th grade.)

If you’d like to make your own version, the pattern is super simple.

Using a fingering weight yarn and size US1 needles, cast on 56 stitches and work in a 2×2 rib for 15 rows. Work stockinette stitch until they are “long enough.” Work the 2×2 rib for another 15 rows and bind off with Elizabeth Zimmerman’s Sewn Bind Off.

Easy as pie.

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Baby Legs

My friend Lauren had a baby girl about a month ago, and while I was planning to knit her a baby blanket, the fact that it took me two months to complete the last one had me rethinking that idea.  Besides, I don’t have a clue what color would match her nursery.  That’s one of the bad things about moving 14 states away from your friends, you don’t know these things.  A bigger one is that you don’t get to see them or their new babies.

Anyway, I got it into my head that a pair of baby legwarmers would be just the thing, and I churned them out like it was my job.  I designed a simple pattern, picked out the yarn, cast on, and two nights of knitting later had these:

Aren’t those perfect for a little girl?  Especially a little girl named Violet?  It’s one of my absolute favorite names, and one Rob and I had on the list if Wesley had turned out to be a girl.

These were so easy to make.  I used Knit Picks Felici Sport in the retired color Sorcery.  It has been sitting in my stash for about three years.  I absolutely love it, but hate knitting socks, so it had just been waiting for the right project to come along.  It did! Hopefully Lauren and Violet will enjoy them.

Wesley seemed to enjoy modeling them for me.  I liked knitting them enough that I am now working on another pair.  Rainbow anyone?

If you’d like to make a pair of your own, they are incredibly easy to do.  Pick out a sport weight yarn and a pair of circular size 3 needles.  Cast on 44 stitches and join in the round using the magic loop method.  Work in a 2×2 rib for 15 rows, then switch to stockinette stitch.  Work stockinette stitch for 66 rows (or however long you want them to be) then revert to the 2×2 rib.  Cast off using Elizabeth Zimmerman’s Sewn Bind Off. Repeat with legwarmer #2.

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Dog Star Filigree

I’ve been working on a test knit recently.  That means I’m knitting a pattern before it is released by the designer and essentially proofreading (proofknitting?) it in case you aren’t a knitter.  So far it is quite fun, well written, and not overly complicated.  It’s also beautiful. The name of the pattern is Dog Star Filigree by Madison Stuart.

I’d link it for you, but as of yet there’s no link to see, so that will have to be a later post.  This one is for a picture.  🙂

As you can see from that rather blah picture, I’m using a gradient yarn (Muse from Twisted Fiber Arts in Primrose, a club colorway) down the length of the bias-knit shawl.  I rather like the idea that instead of gradually striping straight across the piece, it will blend diagonally down the length.  I can’t wait to see it grow, so I better get knitting!

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Wesley’s Baby Blanket

When I was posting about the twin’s blankets the other day, I realized that I had never posted a final post about Wesley’s blanket.  I’m really not certain how I could have overlooked that.  I’ll have to blame it on being incredibly pregnant, miserable, and ready for him to be born.

Of course, since then my time has been a little tight and I haven’t noticed too much of anything that doesn’t have to do with a screaming baby, diapers, laundry, and the dogs.  I didn’t so much fall asleep at the end of each day as pass out from sheer exhaustion.  In the last month I have found, much to my enjoyment, just a little more energy to go around and I’ve been putting it to what I hope is good use.  I have once again started knitting, cooking, and now blogging.

The last post I wrote about Wesley’s blanket is Baby Blanket, half done.  Well, not long after that post I finished it.  It took me eight more days and five more skeins of yarn, but two weeks before Wesley made his appearance, his blanket was finished.

And here he is with it at only two weeks old:

I really do love this blanket.  I think it turned out beautifully, that it is well knit, I don’t think I made any errors or at least not any that I remember or can find, it’s soft, washable, and both pretty and appropriate for a little boy.  However, there are a few things I didn’t know before I had a baby that would change my choice of knitting now.

The first is that little lace holes are perfect finger traps.  This hasn’t really been a problem for us, but he has managed to get his hand tangled a time or two.  Thankfully he has been so happy playing with the blanket it wasn’t a problem.

The second thing is that really useful baby items shouldn’t require an hour to pin out and take most of overnight to dry.  While this can technically go in the washing machine and the dryer, it looks a lot better when I take the time to block it.  Time I don’t tend to have with a little boy.

Oh well, lessons learned.  It’s a great blanket anyway.

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Twin Blankets

I’ve been knitting steadily for a few months whenever I found the time, but I had to keep it rather quiet as they were a surprise.  Now that they have been given to my brother and Mollie for their twins, however, I am free to write about the blankets I made.

These were notably my first attempt at designing anything without a pattern.  I started by knitting a basic square, picked up the stitches all around the edges, and increased 2 stitches in each corner to keep the blankets square.  Really, they are very basic.  The fun part that I hope makes them unique and special is this:


Both boys had their name “written” on their blanket in lace.  I’m actually incredibly proud of myself for figuring out how to write in knitting.  I designed the letters myself, although I did use the lettering from my past Baby Blanket for Wesley, (which I just realized I never posted a final of) as a jumping off point.

They were both knit out of 1.5 skeins of Miss Babs Yowza!  Kieran’s is in the special colorway Crop Circles, and Luca’s is done in Nell.

I’m working away on a few more things now, and plan to design my own shawl before the end of the year.  It’s a lot of fun to make something I’ve thought up all on my own!

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Crockpot Taco Chicken

Wow.  It has been a really long time since I last posted.  I’ve been so busy with Wesley (who is now five months old), that I simply haven’t had time for blogging.  Or reading blogs.  Or reading, writing, cooking or knitting.  Or much of anything, really.  Most of my day is spent sitting on the floor, holding him in a sitting position while he plays.  Or singing to him.  Or making faces at him.  It’s wonderful, don’t get me wrong, it just doesn’t leave a lot of time for anything else.

Thankfully I was given this recipe by Phoebe, my Stroller Strides instructor.  She originally found it on another blog and while I would like to give them credit… I don’t remember who it was.  It was a crockpot blog.

Anyway, for as simple as these are to make, they are absolutely delicious.  The chicken was perfect in a taco shell alone, but would also be great any number of other ways.

And it is all done in one pot.

Crockpot Taco Chicken

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, trimmed of all fat
1 cup salsa (I used mild, any would be fine)
1 can Cream of Mushroom soup, condensed
1 packet of taco seasoning
1/2 cup sour cream

1.  Put the chicken breasts in your crockpot.  Sprinkle the taco seasoning on top.  Dump the salsa and mushroom soup on.  There’s no need to mix it up.

2.  Set to low for 6-8 hours.  I let it run for 7 hours.

3.  Turn off and shred chicken with two forks.

4.  Mix in the sour cream.

5.  Serve and enjoy.

This really couldn’t be any simpler!

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