Thursday, July 31, 2014

A Shawl for Gram

I've been doing a fair amount of gift knitting as of late. One of the gifts I was most excited to make is this shawl for my grandmother. This year is a big birthday for her and I, unfortunately, won't be able to see her on her birthday. She is a crocheter and does cross stitch. So I knew that she would appreciate the effort in making her a handmade garment. I also had always wanted to knit an Ulmus Shawl. (Cousins, aunts, and uncles: SHHHH!!! Don't spill the beans on this one!)

Now, one of my goals was to try and find some yarn to use in my stash. I have sooooooo many skeins of sock yarn. After starting on this shawl multiple times, I just didn't have yarn in coordinating colors that I thought would be good for Gram. I picked out one that I liked and called around to the local shops to find a particular variegated yarn I wanted. Finally, on the third call I found the yarn I needed. Woohoo!!!

You would think my troubles would have ended there. Ummm....nope..... No matter how long you have been knitting or how good of a knitter you might be, you always make mistakes. I kept reading the chart on this one wrong. Over and over and over. Stupid and silly migraines do not mix well with knitting. After clearing my head of pain, it was a piece of cake. I love how it turned out and hope Gram does too!

Pattern: Ulmus shawl by Kirsten Kapur

Yarn: Madelinetosh Tosh Sock in 1 skein of Ophelia and 1.5 skeins of Hollyhock

Needles: US 5

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Falling Candy Corn Hat on Sale!

My friends with kids are getting prepared for a return to school. This always gets me thinking about fall and the fun things that come with the season. We are still a little bit out, but it is just around the corner. So, I am holding a little discount sale on the Brownie Knits Falling Candy Corn hat pattern! Between now and midnight on 8/31, you can get the pattern in for only $2.99. Enter the coupon code CandyCorn2014 at checkout. You can also get to the Ravelry pattern via Get your pattern today so you can cast on and have the hats ready for crisp temperatures in a few months! It is the perfect pumpkin patch accessory!!!

Here is the direct buy link that will pre-load the coupon for you!

1 skein each of Berroco Vintage Chunky in Mochi 6101, Tang 6164, and Sunny 6121 (130 yards/skein) 
If substituting the yarn, Vintage Chunky on the label is 3.5 sts/inch on a 10. I have adjusted needle size for a tighter gauge. You would want to use a yarn of similar thickness. 

4 sts/inch in St st on larger needles unstretched; 3.5 sts/ inch in St st stretched

US 8 16" circular
US 8 DPNs (for smallest size)
US 9 16" circular
OR size needed to get gauge. Take time to check swatch to get 4 sts per inch. If you prefer snug hats, drop needle size to get a tighter gauge. 
For the smallest size, use DPNs for an easier connection. 

0 to 6 months; 6-12 months; Toddler; Child
Finished Circumference: 12 (14, 16, 18)

To Fit (in inches): 15 (17, 19, 21)

Friday, July 25, 2014

Anne's Necklace: A New Brownie Knits Pattern!

I'm excited to release my newest knitting pattern: Anne's Necklace. I LOVE jewelry and so did my mom. She recently passed and one of the memories that I have (and lots of others do too) is her fondness for some bling. She especially loved silver. This necklace and pattern is named after her. I think she would have especially liked the version featuring the feather. I hope you enjoy knitting your own Anne's Necklace!

Yarn requirements: 60 yards of fingering weight yarn
Yarn shown in samples: Pink sample Knit Picks Lindy Chain in Blush
Green sample Malabrigo Sock in Solis

Notions needed:
Sewing needle
Tape measure
Tapestry needle

Needle: US 2 DPNs (only need 2 needles)

 Available for purchase for $1.99 at the Brownie Knits store on Ravelry, Craftsy, and Etsy!

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Brownie Knits Trunk Show

This week I've been spending a lot of my time organizing a trunk show of my designs. (I'll release more information soon on where it is going and their special events.) It is always like someone is playing me a knitting episode of "This is your life" when I look at my trunk show. It is a literal snapshot of the patterns.

This picture captures my new patterns from the past year (plus an upcoming one). One of my favorite quotes is from Elizabeth Zimmerman. She talks about knitting through every crisis. When I was at my lowest with how I felt with the tumor, I still forced myself to sit up and put needles and hooks in my hands. I still got to be creative and it kept me going. It gave me a focus and I, indeed, knitted through the crisis.

All tagged and ready to go!

All of my patterns are available on Ravelry and Craftsy and you can get detailed info at

See that plaid there? The is the Delphia Cowl and it will be released in the coming weeks!

Friday, July 18, 2014

Thoughtful Hubby

Each year we celebrate our anniversary with a gift exchange that follows (mostly) the traditional wedding anniversary gift guide. This year was 13, which is lace. After stretching my mind, I came up with the baseball for PK. He, of course, is super creative and found these little stitch markers with lace in the middle of them. Aren't they adorable? I had a hard time getting a great picture, so they are even better in person. They have been in use on all the recent sock projects and are now helping me stay on track in some gift knitting projects.

Then, we got home and he had put this together. He took a lot of the tickets from the last 16 years and arranged them and then had it framed. Such a thoughtful and romantic gift that was fun to look over and remember all the times together.

IU games...


Loads of movies...

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Socks Galore!

Prior to vacation I decided to give Magic Loop another go. I had purchased a few skeins of sock yarn at the Hoosier Hills Fiber Fair and wanted to actually make socks out of them. Had I made socks before? Yes. Did I know how to make them? Yes. Did I find them difficult? Nope. Did I enjoy wearing them? Yes. Did I enjoying make them? Absolutely not! I had always did them with DPNs or on two circs. I just felt dragged down on my knitting speed and it just felt tiresome and then you had to repeat it all again if you wanted the matching sock. I knew what Magic Loop was and how to do it, but I just hadn't committed to a project done this way. Time to change that up. And, I now enjoy knitting socks! Woohoo!!!

Patrick's Tardis Socks
Pattern: I did my own thing, but it is basically a simple sock.
Yarn: Safari Sock by AdventuresNYarnCraft and the color is Tardis
Needle: US 2

Gina's Funny Valentine Socks
Pattern: I did my own thing, but it is basically a simple sock.
Yarn: Safari Sock by AdventuresNYarnCraft and the color is Funny Valentine
Needle: US 2

Gina's Ice Cream Socks
Pattern: I did my own thing, but it is basically a simple sock.
Yarn: TurtlePurl and I'm not sure of the color. This is the yarn from the Simply Socks anniversary kit.
Needle: US 2

I loved this yarn SO much (more than MadTosh sock!) that I ordered the Trenchcoat colorway via Etsy. (Thanks to Meg, Pete, and the kiddos for the gift card that bought me this one!)

My new favorite pair of socks. I can see these getting miles of use this fall and winter!

Saturday, July 12, 2014

This Commercial Break Brought to You By...

So I took a little break from blogging while I:

A. Went on vacation to Florida.
B. Took a side trip to Pennsylvania to see family.
C. Got a fat lip that lasted for days.
D. Knitted loads of socks.
E. Caught a summer cold.
F. All of the above - ding, ding, ding!!!

With everything that has gone on over the last 9 months, I was in need of (and still am, truth be told) some relaxation. We ventured off to Florida to visit my aunt and uncle, celebrate 13 years of marriage at our favorite spot, and catch a Rays game.

Clearwater Beach on our 13-year anniversary...we sat in the beautiful sun, read our beach books, and listened to the waves hit the beach.

Enjoying a drink at the local crab shack...

 One day we went to the beautiful Anna Maria Island with my Aunt Dory and Uncle Robert...

It was a beautiful spot with very few other peaceful!

After a day at the beach, we were off to the Rays game...which equals a happy PK!

We always have such a good time with these two.

What do you get a guy for the "lace" anniversary? I stretched it a bit and went with "laces" on a baseball and had a game ball delivered to mister man at the game. All the fans around us were very interested in what was going on! It came with a note listing the game and play it was from and a stamp of credentials that you can scan and view online.

The next morning we were set to fly from FL to PA. I woke up with this fat lip!!! Ugh. It was miserable and was from too much sun. Flying while holding ice on your face wasn't much fun and it also hurt. Then it split and hurt more. Ugh again. It did indeed ruin some of my vacation time as I had to call some early nights to take meds and rest.

But I rallied and we were off to the National Aquarium with my dad, brother, sister-in-law, and nephew. R had to get some pictures with the Coast Guard ship!

I managed to find sheep in the aquarium!

I got a little inspiration from this dude that will show up in a design later this year. It really is amazing where you can find inspiration for knitting, art, design, etc. I find that doing activities outside of your daily norm offer the most clearing of the mind and opening of new ideas.

Do you "sea" the horse?

Lion fish...

R found Nemo!


Polka dots are really everywhere...

Another inspiring turtle dude...

You probably see the red bird, but do you see the sloth?

I also loved the colors in the corals. Just might have to do some Kool-Aid yarn dye with this in mind...

Then, little man was all ready for his first baseball game. 

While the boys plus my SIL were off to the game, I spent the evening with my Gram. She got us crabs and we had a ball eating until we couldn't eat any more. To be fair, I was a bit sidelined by the lip. The swelling was down, but the cuts were not a good companion to the Old Bay spice!

Gram's first selfie! She told me that she had just figured out what a selfie was when watching TV.

After we ate our crab, we washed up and had a sit and knit/crochet. I worked on some socks while Gram crocheted an afghan. It makes me so happy to have this in common with her.

Tune in later for pictures and info on all the socks I made. Yes, me. The non-sock knitter has caught the sock bug! That chill you feel under your feet might be hell freezing over!