In Love With Everyday Worsted

August 26, 2015



So many knitters feel they need to choose between synthetic fibers and natural fibers - the wool versus acrylic debate has divided many a knit group, even if that does sound a bit more dramatic than it needs to be.

As for me, I live somewhere decidedly in the middle - I love all fiber, for the most part. As a charity knitter, I understand the place of acrylic in the knitting pecking order, and use it regularly and happily for many donations. So many folks do not have the luxury of buying yarn that's $10 or $20 a skein, and so many charities do not accept donations of wool for a variety of reasons.

Thankfully, the acrylic yarns being sent into the world lately are amazing - soft, supple, no pilling, and so many gorgeous colors. My one acrylic lament is the lack of self-striping and self-patterning yarns available. I'll happily buy two or three colors and make my own stripes and patterns, but I love it when a yarn company understands my laziness, and does the work for me.

It's with great pleasure that I've been using Deborah Norville's Everyday Worsted yarns lately, and for this very reason. Her solid colors are divine, but I find myself grabbing the self-patterning yarns on repeat. I can make a simple Tyson Hat and have it turn out gorgeous an unique every time, with little to no effort on my part, which is super amazing when I'm busy and only have time to knit five or ten stitches before moving on to the next item on the list.

I've used this yarn in the past for baby hats, and am happy to share that it looks gorgeous when worked at any size - people of all ages will love the hats made from this yarn! I've got half a dozen more skeins in my stash, and I can't wait to use them all up!

(Note: This is not a sponsored post - I'm just this in love with the yarn!)

The hats featured take me to 977 on my way towards 10,000 hats for 10,000 people. I should hit the first 1,000 in the next few weeks, and am excited for the celebrations that will commence. If you're interested in sharing about the virtual party or giving something away, please e-mail me!!

Fringe Hat-Along - Let's Knit Laurus Together!

August 20, 2015
(photo used with permission from Fringe Association)

I'm super excited for this installment of the Fringe Association Hat Along series! For this, the fourth go-around, Karen has partnered with her friend Diana Walla, of Paper Tiger Crafts, for a color work hat called Laurus!

Perfect for color work novices, Laurus has just a small amount of color work on the body of the hat, with the decreases happening in just the main color. I'm super excited to dive into my stash and find just the perfect colors to make this hat - I'm actually impatiently waiting for Zach to wake up so I can head into our closet and get busy choosing colors!

I've loved every one of Karen's Fringe Hat Alongs that have happened this year, although I haven't always participated. This go-round, however, Karen did me a huge honor, messaging me to see if I could suggest a charity people may want to donate to when finished with their hats! I shared my passion for the Ravelry group Hats And More For War-Torn Syria, and I'm super excited to share that Karen loved the suggestion and has featured it for the Hat Along!

As with all my charity hat making, I love to encourage folks to donate their finished hats wherever they feel compelled. If you've already got a charity you love and donate to regularly, please donate your finished hat there! For me, I've been filling up a package for this group already, and my finished hat might be the one that finishes the bag off, which makes me so happy!

I'll be sharing pictures of my hat as I make it over on Instagram, so follow me there if you aren't already. Who's going to join me for this Hat Along?! You can download the pattern for free over at Fringe Association and on Ravelry, so if you can stash dive for yarn you can make this hat for free!!

For The Love Of Babies

August 17, 2015
This fall there are a large number of babies being added to families I love. Some have been long awaited, and some were complete surprises, but all are about to be showered with knitterly love!

First up to be showered with love is a little lady whose mama and daddy have been waiting for for years. Four years, to be exact. To celebrate her impending arrival, I'm casting on a blanket - hoping to channel a bit of knitting karma, convincing her to arrive just as I weave in the last of the ends.

I love a feather and fan blanket, and the Transatlantic Blanket pattern is perfect for the bulky grey yarn I've had in my stash for longer than I'd care to admit. Four years, perhaps? Maybe I bought it knowing somehow that this little one would be coming someday, and that she would need a blanket? That's what I'll whisper in her ear, at any rate!

Vacation Baby Hats

August 11, 2015
Vacation knitting is one of my favorite types of knitting, if I'm totally honest. I love to dream big and pack enough yarn that I've got more skeins than days of vacation - you never know just how much (or little) knitting time you'll end up with, and I'm pretty sure running out of yarn is my worst nightmare.

So for our family week-long vacation, which included several longer car trips, a two-day conference, and plenty of down-time, I packed six skeins of yarn.

SIX.
SKEINS.
OF.
YARN.

What you see above is the sum total of baby hats I made while on vacation, from those six skeins. Four hats. Four BABY hats, not even all that in depth or difficult, as the yarn was self-striping and patterning, so I was simply working a few rows of ribbing and then a few more of stockinette.

Needless to say, I brought home almost as many unused skeins of yarn as I originally packed. And you would think that might make me feel silly, but it definitely didn't. I was able to pull yarn out of my bag at a moment's notice, knit a few stitches (or a few rows) and never have to worry if I'd run out of yarn. I was prepared in case anyone needed something to do with themselves, which proved a perfect conversation starter on several occasions.

And above all, four new little babies will soon be kept warm by these hats - I've added them to the donation pile, and the whole bunch of baby hats I've made recently will soon make their way to a local hospital.

All in all, a good way to spend my vacation, if I do say so myself!

(these are hats 962-965 on my quest to make and give away 10,000 hats in my lifetime)

While Knitting | July 2015

July 30, 2015
Knitting doesn't happen in a vacuum here in SMH-land. Instead, I'm always reading something (thanks to my Kindle) or watching something (thanks to Netflix). Here's a short list of what I've been reading and watching lately.

It's been a few months since I've shared one of these round-ups, hasn't it?!

READING

For the Love: Fighting for Grace in a World of Impossible Standards, by Jen Hatmaker. Hilarious. I love this woman. She fights for the poor with her everyday life, living what she and her husband preach in ways many do not. I love how reverent she can be, and then turn a page and she's writing an ode to mom jeans. Fave.

Outlander, by Diana Gabaldon. We don't get whatever channel the series is airing on, so I decided to pick up the first book in the series to give it a read. Holy mother, I'm in love!! It boggles me this is a series that's been written over the past 15 years - how did I not pick it up before now? How the heck does this woman have this much creativity and story in her brain? How do I find more time to read so I can get through these books faster?!?! Love.

Hey Natalie Jean: Advice, Musings, and Inspiration on Marriage, Motherhood, and Style, by Natalie Holbrook. Full disclosure up front, I love me some Natalie every day, all day, so I knew going into it I was going to love this book. Some people expected something different from it, but how can you expect something ... ANYTHING ... from a book before you've read it? Whatever. I loved it, and have grabbed it off the shelf several times to re-read it in the past few months. It feels like having Natalie over for Diet Coke and a long chat when reading it, which I love.

WATCHING

Orange Is The New Black: Season 3. I cannot even talk about it. Just ... watch. Much darker in many episodes, but just the right amount of girl on girl to keep you coming back for more. (Yeah, I went there.) I loved watching several characters spiral down, loved rooting for a few to get back up off their butts, and couldn't wait for the season ending shocker!!

Mad Men: Season 1. I know I've watched part of this series in the past, but I can't remember where I left off, or many of the details of the show, so I'm starting over. So far, everything I've seen I remember, but I'm just a few episodes in, so we'll see how far I get before I start seeing things I didn't remember happening. Every episode, my feminist flags raise up full force, but I know that's sort of the point, right?!

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