Inspiration, KnitPicks, Knitting, Wool, Yarn, Yarn Reviews

Quick Start on a new pair of Socks

Hey Everyone!

This evening I ripped off the sock I had been working on for the past week, because I didn’t like how the sock was knitting up on the needles. That yarn didn’t have much give and was creating holes where there shouldn’t be. I have had this happen with a different yarn of a similar weight and texture. I can honestly say I not a fan of thinner sock yarn.

With that being said, at around 8:30 this evening I started a new pair of socks with a different yarn. I have had good luck knitting socks with KnitPicks yarn up until this point. Granted I have only knit up socks using the Palette yarn so far. The new pair I cast on, I am knitting up from the Hawthorne Fingering yarn (that yarn I ripped off was of a different brand).

I am amazed at how quickly this yarn is knitting up. In the matter of a couple hours, I am already a quarter of the way done with the cuff of this sock. The colorway I am using of the Hawthorne Fingering is Laurelhurst.

When I was looking at the Hawthorne Fingering Yarn online, I quickly realized that all the color names are of the different neighborhoods here in Portland (the city I grew up in). Not only is that cool, but Hawthorne is the name of one of the major Boulevards here in Southeast Portland, as well as the business district / neighborhood that Hawthorne Blvd runs through, as well as the bridge that carries Hawthorne Blvd across the river to the west side of the city. Here on the east side Hawthorne and Madison are two different streets (and for a ways they are one way streets with Hawthorne carrying the west bound traffic and Madison the east bound. On the West side of the river Madison is the street that the feeds onto the Hawthorne Bridge.

While KnitPicks is an international brand with a corporate headquarters across the other river in Vancouver, Washington. I love the fact that they have yarn named after places I know.

So far (I am only 10 rows in) the only down side I am finding with the Hawthorne Fingering yarn is that is seems to be rather stiff. I am hoping the stiffness/ scratchiness issues are due to the waxes and stuff used in the spinning process and to help it to knit up easier. I am hoping that this issue will be taken care of once the final project is washed the first time.

Knitting, Knitting Projects, Sweaters, World Vision Knit for Kids

2015 Knit For Kids Sweaters

Hi Everybody!

I am finally getting around to writing this post!

2015 was a busy year for me, outside of knitting. I only completed 4 sweaters in 2015. 2015 was also the first full year of work I have had since I graduated from university in 2010. That in itself was a big deal for me. That being said knitting and sweaters had to take a back burner last year. 

That being said I have also been working on other projects and I could only do so much. 

I know 4 is better than 0, and I know I can only do so much when working a full time just that isn’t knitting related. I am not one who gives up on something they love, and knitting sweaters for kids in need is something I love. 

These are the sweaters I completed last year.    
    
 

Knitting, Knitting for Kids in Need, Knitting Projects, World Vision Knit for Kids, Wraps/shawls

Finishing projects!

Hey Everyone!

A couple days ago i cast off my second sweater of the year. I made a size 6 sweater using red heart super tweed yarn in Pinkberry. 

For this sweater I used a braided cable design for the front. I like to use knit patterns when I use a solid or single variegated yarn to differentiate the front from the back. 

I have only completed two sweaters this year due to having other projects and working full time, I do what I can while I have the time to do so. 

This year I also got my excel spreadsheet set up so that it is ready to go through the year 2020, so it will be one less thing for me to have to do annually. I also keep a hard copy of my list of sweaters with the year they were knit, the size and colors used. In my spread sheet I have a tab for sizes by year, and a page of colors used by size, as well as a page that I have set up that I input the number of each size knit by year and it calculates feet, yards, Miles, ounces, and pounds used. It is really interesting to see the numbers broken out for how much each sweater uses. While I am not much of a math person, but when it comes to knitting that becomes irrelevant and with tools such as a calculator and using, in my case, an open office spreadsheet (which is similar to Microsoft Excel) helps me stay organized and keep track of what I have done.   

Knitting, Knitting for Kids in Need, Knitting Projects, Skills, Social Media, World Vision Knit for Kids, Yarn

Charity Knitting Advocate

Hey Everyone!

It has taken me years, and having several jobs in unrelated fields (and one is a semi similar but different field) to finally put a name to what I am passionate about doing. For the past several years, I have had this ever growing passion for charity knitting, and sharing my experiences with others through this blog, other blogs I have kept in the past, my facebook page for this blog, and through ravelry. I have finally put a label to what I was working toward. That job title is Charity Knitting Advocate.  I love sharing the projects I have completed, especially the ones for children in need. Over the years, I had thought something along the lines of “why can’t I knit sweaters for kids in need for a living?” then that has become more of “why can’t I help lay a path for people who want to help children need, but don’t know how, or where to start, or where to go once they start, for a living”. The career is not based the final total of sweaters that I knit, but rather the process about what goes into it, the kids that are benefiting from it, and why people like myself choose to get involved. It is also a resource for those who want to get involved so they have aren’t struggling with how to go about it, or where to send their final projects. I want to help bring the resources that are out there, to knitters and crocheter’s who want to get involved but wouldn’t otherwise know how to go about it.

I love spending time on sites such as ravelry, finding new to me charity groups that have a program set up to collect hand knit items such as baby blankets, baby hats, sweaters, etc for children and babies in need, and many of them benefit babies and children right here in my own country, which is something else that is important to me.

If you have been following me for any length of time, you will know that I like trying different types and brands of 4 ply, 100% acrylic, worsted weight yarns for the sweaters that I make, as well as different types of 3 and 4 ply 100% acrylic yarn for hats and baby blankets for babies and children in need. I thoroughly enjoy sharing my experiences and what I liked or didn’t like about different yarns with you, my readers.

I got the question of why do I use and push 100% acrylic yarn for these projects. Cost of the yarn is just one of the several factors. The durability of the yarn, the ease of care, variety of colors, where the items are being sent, and so on and so forth.

Not only is 100% acrylic yarn cost effective (where I live I can purchase enough yarn to make a size 10 sweater for $10 or less). The 100% acrylic is machine washable and dryable like any other regular garment. The ease of care is important when sending items to third world, and developing countries as well ad the high poverty density areas of the industrialized world. The blankets and baby hats are to be machine washable and dryable especially if they will be going to a hospital for babies, especially babies who are sick, as the hospital will have to wash them before given to the baby so that and outside germs and pathogens are eliminated. You don’t really have to worry about bugs getting to the garment and damaging it if it isn’t “stored properly”. There are a ton of color options.

While I love working with Wool and other natural fibers that take a bit extra care for my own personal use, I push and advocate 100% acrylic for charity projects for children for all the reasons I listed above and more.

I am currently working on more projects for kids in need, and interspersing personal projects in, so that I can have fresh new content for you all in my blog posts, and help get myself out there, and see where it will go.

Knitting, World Vision Knit for Kids, Yarn

Found My Creative Outlet

Taken from a post I wrote on my other blog “Adventure is my Middle Name“:

The most rewarding work wears you out by the end of the day, gives you the best nights sleep and wakes you up in the morning with the energy, motivation, and strength to do it all over again.

The year I spent a week in New York I had made several sweaters, but my love and passion for knitting really began after I had come back from New York, and flourished in 2012. That was really when I had the time, energy, passion and the realization that I could make a difference in a child’s life thr0ugh a simple sweater or a hat. I have learned through experience that while I love working around kids, and doing things to help give them every opportunity, that my personality is not one for being a teacher or working in a daycare or preschool.

Hiking, Outdoors, Travel (a missions trip is definitely on the list of things to do), History (especially when combined with the first three), Knitting (yarn, and knitting for kids in need), and Writing are how I keep pushing forward, and they are what I love. While I am still figuring out/looking for the way that I will get paid to do some combination of it, I will continue looking for work that will at least pay the bills, but not stop doing what I love.

 

Knitting

Keep Doing what You do best.

Hey Everyone! 

Over the course of the last five and a half months I have learned how to use a knitting machine and a linking machine. While they are great for production, I am not a fan. I prefer using knitting needles and my own two hands to using a knitting machine. I also prefer the repetitiveness and simplicity of using knitting needles. Life has gotten so fast, and having to have everything right then and there. Hand knitting to me, is a means to take a step back, slow down and think about more meaningful things. 

How much of the time I know that I don’t think about the fact that learning how to knit and becoming proficient took me years, and I am learning new things all the time. I also love that I can just sit down and make something beautiful, and the ideas half the time just seem to come out of nowhere or just happen. I know that I come up with them, but it is so natural and a second nature to me. I also know what it is like to be learning something from the beginning, and having someone there walking me through it, being patient with me, and helps me when I screw up but lets me try it myself, has really helped me.

Life is more than just being so wrapped up in our own little world that we forget to think about someone else, even for a little bit. That is part of why I keep doing what I am good at. What I am good at helps kids in need, and anymore I can do it without much thought and a little bit of effort. 

If anyone is reading this, who is just learning how to knit, and possibly thinking “she makes it sound so easy, and it is frustrating me to no end, why should I stick with it?” my response to that is that, yes, it is hard in the beginning. I have been knitting for almost 16 years, and took me time to excel at. Sticking with it, and keep working it, and it will come. I have put in the time and the effort, and it has paid off. 

Hats, Knitting, Knitting for Kids in Need, Knitting Projects, Project of the Week, World Vision Knit for Kids, Yarn

Working on my 16th Sweater

Hey Everyone!

This week’s Project of the Week is a size 2 sweater using Red Heart Super Saver yarn in Bon Bon Print, while also using two rows of Red Heart Super Saver yarn in Shocking Pink.

I started this project on Friday, after I completed the Size 6 sweater (blog post is here). As of writing this post I have finished the sleeves on the front, and will be starting the sleeves on the back here shortly.

I know that I used Shocking Pink and Bon Bon Print in the most recent size 10 sweater I knit up back in July. I am using some of what I had left (3 full skeins of bon bon print and a partial skein of shocking pink) for this sweater, and the rest I am planning on using for hats.

This sweater will easily be done by the end of the week, which will be nice, and then I can move on to other projects I have going, and would like to get done before the end of the year.

Stay tuned for the Completed Project Post which will be coming to you in a few days 🙂