Modification Monday: Raro Chooks

Original Pattern: Cooped Up 

Knitter Extraordinaire: Tanya (Ravelry ID)

Mods: Changed the pullover to a cardigan! Made it a bit smaller to fit her daughter, changed twisted ribbing for the hem and cuffs, and steeked the sweater and added a button band. Great detailed information can be found on her project page, here.

What Makes This Awesome: The original sweater is an adorable pullover, but I love Tanya’s downsized cardigan version to fit her young daughter. She knit it in the round and adjusted the chicken placement so that they would be balanced once the sweater was steeked, which is so very important when converting a colourwork yoke pullover into a cardigan. Using twisted ribbing for the button band, collar, cuffs and hem provided a nice textural detail to the sweater. Such an impressive, beautiful cardigan!

Pin Ups and Link Love: My Favourite Things This Week

My Favourite Articles and Links This Week

This was fascinating- how an agoraphobic artist sees the world without leaving home.

This was not that surprising, but still very interesting- transgender men commenting on workplace sexism, having lived on both sides of the coin.

I loved this very short story from Leonard Woolf’s memoir. It reminds me of the importance of consuming less media (which makes me feel so helpless anyway) and figuring out what my irises are, and to get on with planting them.

Loved this short film from 1955 about helping knitters choose yarns from Lavenda yarns, a now-defunct knitting company. It’s short, and so fun to watch! It has all the hallmark clichés of a short film from the 1950s. (via Woolful)

My Favourite Pins This Week

I love a good stir fry – it’s fast, it’s easy, and substitutes work so well. No chicken? Use pork or tofu. No mushrooms? Use zucchini or bell peppers or spinach or kale. This garlic chicken stir fry recipe is brilliant on rice or wrapped up in a flat bread! Pinterest link is here, and the original recipe is here.

Okay, this cake is a little out there, but isn’t it adorable?! I’m so considering making it for Easter, even though Lila and James are the only ones that would be thrilled. I would also go easy on the food colouring, too. The ‘recipe’ is very easy – nothing is from scratch, so if you like something that is going to be lots of fun and pretty impressive, give it a try! Pinterest link is here, and the original recipe post is here.

This is touted as a cat bed, but what an awesome basket for knitting!! So cute, and easy to make. It calls for sewing the rope together, but I’ve never sewed with rope, can anyone attest to how easy or difficult it might be to make this? Because I want one for myself (sorry kitties). Pinterest link is here, and the original DIY post can be found here.

I’m in love with these beautiful needle felted and embroidered art pieces! Such a beautiful idea for wall art. This isn’t a tutorial, but if you were handy with embroidery and needle felting, the shapes are simple and it would be a fun project. Pinterest link is here, and the original post is here.

We could all use a little more happiness in our lives, right? Maybe today you need a reminder of what drags you down and brings you up. Pinterest link is here, and the original list is here.

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone! I don’t usually care for April Fool’s Day, but are any of you planning a bit of mischief tomorrow?


Knits in Progress: Two Very Different Sweaters

One of my unofficial knitting goals this year is to knit more garments, and I’ve begun with two completely different sweaters– one top-down pullover, the other a bottom-up cardigan –and I’m loving both of them so far. Let the sweater knitting begin!

The first is Golden Hour, knit in Spirit Trail Fiberworks Sunna in ‘Pink Sands’. This is the yarn that I used for this tank top, then frogged, and then recycled the yarn. I actually started knitting this in January and planned on knitting Manzanilla, but once I looked at the pattern I realized that it was a way more complex knit than I felt like taking on at that time (to be fair, the complexity was all at the beginning, and I’m sure once the yoke and arms were complete it would be very simple).

Considering how much pick up/put down I have to do with my knitting all the time, I very rarely get an hour or two to devote to knitting that requires close attention, so Manzanilla wasn’t in the cards. I decided on Golden Hour, which I had admired for a long time and looked like an easy to wear sweater that would be perfect for this yarn. I’ve tried it on, and so far everything is going wonderfully! The yarn is so buttery soft, I’m convinced it’s going to be a great spring sweater.

The dark grey cardigan in progress is Pomme de Pin, a sweater I’ve admired forever. I had the yarn all picked out for it- Briggs & Little sport in Charcoal. If you clicked over to their site then you know they are super old school, but when it comes to wool, that’s exactly what I wanted- a rustic pure wool, north american from sheep to skein. If you like real wool (meaning, that rustic sort of wool that feels sheepy and might have bits of hay in it sometimes), I really recommend the very budget friendly Briggs & Little. I’m biased, it’s the oldest wool mill in Canada and so my national pride is all up on that. I’ve knit with it before and it holds up beautifully.

They just started a spring knit along for any knits in one of their light weight yarns, so it was the perfect reason to get started on this cardigan. I don’t often do knitalongs, but when it feels like a knit might otherwise take forever (or never get finished) it can be particularly motivating to have a target date you are working towards, and have the encouragement of others knitting along with you. I’m secretly hoping to use the deadline (May 15th, so lots of time) to finish both Golden Hour and Pomme de Pin!

Modification Monday: Brothers Socks

Original Pattern: YinYang Kitty Ankle Socks

Knitter Extraordinaire: Dani (Ravelry ID, blog/podcast)

Mods: Added deeper ribbing at the ankle, changed the colouring and added instarsia face details to mimic a Siamese cat’s face. Project page can be found here, but more information can be found on her wonderful podcast, here.

What Makes This Awesome: Knitting AND a Kitten?! I know, your Monday just improved by leaps and bounds. That sweet kitty in the photo there is Teddy, Dani’s cat, and her mom has Teddy’s brother, Merlin. In honour of those feline brothers, Dani knit up the ankle sock pattern while modifying the cat colouring and adding intarsia face details to change the somewhat generic grey and black cat faces into a personalized project that looks so sweet, and even cuter than the original pattern! Wouldn’t it be great to knit a pair of these socks with custom colours to reflect your kitty? I have two cats, so I could do one sock with with a variegated black/brown to reflect my tabby, and the other a soft gingery orange to reflect my gigantic ginger fluffball. Even if you don’t have cats yourself, these would a perfect knitted gift idea for the cat lover in your life.

Pin Ups and Link Love: My Favourite Things This Week

My Favourite Articles and Links This Week

Why everyone should want more walkable streets. Heck yes!

This is the kind of easy dinner party I could actually pull off.

Here are 10 excellent self care ideas. If you are feeling stressed or anxious, this list is for you.

We all know knitting with two strands held together helps eat up an overly large stash, but these blankets are gorgeous and look like they could completely decimate the stash– which I desperately need! Now, to plan for a blanket….

My Favourite Pins This Week

Creme Brulee is one of my all-time favourite desserts, so I was very intrigued by these creme brulee cookie bars. They do have a lot in common with the classic dessert, and are surprisingly easy to make – only 8 ingredients. As a reference, I discarded another cookie recipe I was considering because the cookies had 10 ingredients and then the icing had 6 ingredients. I might have time for that when my kids are older. But I’m not going to worry about it, not when tasty desserts like these creme brulee bars are in existence. Pinterest link is here, and the original recipe post is here.

Steak and veggies that are all made on one pan? Sign me up. This is great recipe that makes putting together a steak dinner really easy, even though I personally never think of steak when I need to think of a quick meal. And steak on a weeknight is such a treat! Pinterest link is here, and the original recipe post is here.

The perfect stashbusting sock- doesn’t matter how much or how little of leftover yarn you have squirreled away, these choose-your-own-adventure socks are sure to help eat up all those little odds and ends – you can combine colour sin little fair isle stripes until your heart’s content! Pinterest link is here, and the Ravelry pattern page is here.

I’m so in love with the wool embroidery on this gauzy top, and I pinned this because I dream of doing a DIY just like this – it looks so fresh and perfect for summer. Pinterest link is here, but I couldn’t find the original source. Anyone else with better google-fu able to find the original source?

I love bright and playful interiors, especially when it looks like someone actually lives here. This home tour was so inspiring – Now I want a bright couch and a graphic rug! And all those prints….. Pinterest link is here and the original post is here.

Am I the only one who felt like Friday sort of snuck up on them? I have no idea where this week went, but I’ve had a cold so I guess I was sniffling through most of it. I hope you are all managing to avoid a spring cold, and that you have a lovely weekend!