Friday, November 18, 2016

Finished knits, in pairs

In spite of relative silence on the blog, I've been knitting away furiously. Quite a few of my recent knits happen to have been in pairs of some sort.

The first pattern is Blackrock by Yvonne McSwiney of Dublin Dye 
These two vests are for my nephews; the elder nephew likes the idea of matching his little brother, and the little brother is too young to be bothered! The vests are knit in Malabrigo Sock yarn in Ravelry Red. I found the pattern quite wide-fitting, especially for tall, slim nephews, but was easily able to modify instructions to suit the boys' actual measurements. Using their chest sizes to select 'pattern size', I was able to then add extra length to the body and arm sections of the vests to suit.
I really enjoyed knitting these vests; the pattern is clearly written. I find Yvonne's designs use cables in such an elegant & thoughtful way; in this pattern the transition from cable panel to ribbing around the neck is so pleasing. 
My second project is a pair of fingerless mitts, in small-kid size. For in-between weather, I've found that The Small Human's existing full-cover mittens were excessive, and difficult for her to fit over coat cuffs or take off herself. A pair of fingerless mitts would keep her hands warm, without getting in the way. Using scraps of Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino and Drops Baby Merino, I knit up a pair of striped garter stitch mitts, with short-row thumbs and applied edging. The Small Human is delighted to have her own pair of fingerless 'stripy colourwork' mitts (I think mostly because I wear fingerless stranded colour work Endpaper Mitts), but it is already time to think of full-cover mitts for her little hands. The walk to school has been especially cold this week. 

Next up, a pair of Kilbride Hats designed by Woolly Wormhead, & knit in Malabrigo Sock in Lotus colourway. I made the 19" and 14" sizes, and love to see the difference in colour distribution between the two sizes. The larger size is for The Small Human (smaller one is for the Baby Box); I think she picked this pattern because of the wonderful model Woolly found for the Painted Woolly Toppers for Kids collection. As usual with Woolly patterns, the instructions are clear; the lace pattern repeat is easily memorised; little details like spiral patterns in the crown shaping are very pleasing to knit. As an added bonus, the garter stitch fabric will stretch to accommodate growing heads. I will be knitting more from this collection, but just have to find *the perfect* yarn first!

Lastly, a pair of Wee Owligan cardigans from Kate Davies Designs, knit in Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino.  I've knit this pattern before, as a gift for my niece, and my own Small Human rather liked it when modelling for photos. I knit the 4 year size (for Small Human) and 6 month size (for the Baby Box), with pre-threaded beads for the owl eyes, and wider sleeve cuffs than written ( I assume that cuffs will be turned up at some point with kids' cardigans)
As with the previous project, I added a little extra length to the larger cardigan (Small Human is growing taller rather than wider). There are plans afoot for matching-cousin-outfit photos in the not-too-distant future, mostly because we can, and the two girls are still quite happy to go along with such things.
The pattern is well-written and very straightforward, and the finished neutral-coloured project will go well with any number of colourful preschooler outfits. Even if the Small Human does pick out all the patterned things in different colours on certain days...

I'm currently working away on some gift knits for December (let's not say the C word yet); they are all small projects & well under control at this point. Let's just hope I don't get carried away & add to my own to-do list at the last minute... (we all know this happens).

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