Modification Monday: Llama Llama Red Pajama

Original Pattern: Alpaca with Bikini

Knitter Extraordinaire: Joanna (Ravelry ID)

Mods: Inspired by the beloved children’s book character of Llama Llama, Joanna modified the original alpaca pattern to be more visually in keeping with the children’s book character. More info can be found on her project page, here.

What Makes This Awesome: What a wonderful way to make a special toy for a special little one- to customize a pattern so that they can have a beloved book character of their very own! I love the little details that Joanna used to get this just right – check out how well the embroidered eyes match the book version! For the pajamas, Joanna used a sweater pattern from a different toy and improvised the details to mimic the red pajamas that the story book character wears. A labour of love that turns out this well- you know that some little kid was overjoyed to get this!

Pin Ups and Link Love: My Favourite Things This Week

My Favourite Articles and Links This Week

What are the hallmarks of your best self?

I’m in love with this incredible art installation.

A Cup of Jo is one of my favourite ‘lifestyle’ blogs, and they recently shared a best of the reader comments that I adored.

Being selfish isn’t always a bad thing.

Hardly a news flash, but apparently some men are realizing that they actually don’t trust women. Worth a read.

My Favourite Pins This Week

I love this round up of colourful lunch ideas, that could easily do double duty as dinner ideas. Not often I find so many recipes I would enjoy all in one place. Pinterest link is here, and the original post is here.

For those of us still holding on to summer with both hands, check out this wonderful dessert recipe for making drumstick style ice cream jars! With only 5 ingredients, they come together quickly and would be brilliant for a party. Pinterest link is here, and the original recipe post is here.

This little embroidered alpaca softie toy is such a sweet gift idea, maybe for an alpaca lover, or a little one that you care for? You don’t need any advanced embroidery skills, either. Pinterest link is here, and the original DIY post is here.

This simple pom pom craft is great for anyone who is looking to destash a lot of green yarn! Or you could buy little pom poms, too. A cute decoration for table tops or displays – I feel like it would be easy to jazz this up for specific seasonal holidays, too. Halloween themed, anyone? Pinterest link is here, full tutorial is here.

I love this graphic design and the message- it often seems that we are all guilty of looking outside of ourselves for something that will make us feel a certain way, or be a certain thing. When really, what we are looking for is really already in the room. Pinterest link is here, original post is here.

Have a beautiful weekend, everyone! I hope that you get to relax and do the things that you like best.  We will be going to Sudbury to visit my parents, and while spending about 10 hours in a car is not something I love best, that is a lot of quality knitting time. So I’m taking it as a win.

In Progress: We Are Knitters Gesture Sweater

This wonderfully cabled knit-in-progress is the Gesture Sweater kit, from We Are Knitters. I took a few skeins with me on a recent trip to England, and started chipping away at it at the beginning of August. I have been smitten with this kit ever since I first saw Alina’s stunning beige version last year, and was excited to try it out when We Are Knitters got in touch at the beginning of the summer.

For those that haven’t seen the We Are Knitters kits before, they sell yarn and knitting kits that come with almost everything you need to make the knit of your choosing. You customize the colour, and they send you everything in a bag:

Bamboo straight needles are included, as well as directions, a tapestry needle, a garment tag to sew in afterwards, and all the  yarn you need in the colour you chose. I went with Bordeaux, a rich, plummy wine colour that I thought would be perfect for fall:

That is 100% baby alpaca up there, and it is so buttery soft!

Pros of Purchasing a Knitting Kit from We Are Knitters:

  • Loved having everything in the handy package, and the heavy duty paper bag is perfect for storing the project-in-progress and the yarn while you knit.
  • A knitting kit feels like the ultimate gift for a knitter, because you don’t have to scrounge around trying to match dye lots or find the right colour you want in a sweater quantity, and you don’t have to try to substitute yarn if you can’t find what the pattern is calling for.
  • Luxurious. The yarn yarn feels wonderfully soft, there’s no knots, and the dye lots match perfectly.
  • Beautiful patterns that you can’t find anywhere else.

Cons: 

  • The patterns are written in a very different style than you might be used to, if you only really use patterns that you buy online and have 7 plus pages in them. These are the sparse style of directions you would find in Vogue Knitting, for example.
  • The kit could really use a cable needle. That amazing central cable involves putting 9 stitches on a cable needle, and while I’m pretty good at cabling without a cable needle, I’m not 18-stitches-per-cable good.
  • No charts for the cables. But – I found that it is surprisingly easy to memorize the cable repeats, so it’s been a much easier knit than I anticipated. I’m making good progress on my Gesture Sweater, too- I’ve already completed the front, and I’m almost finished the back:

 

You likely will notice that it is knit in pieces and seamed, which is an especially good idea for a big, cabled sweater – seams give structure to a garment, and the last thing I would want is to spend a lot of time knitting something beautiful only to have it get stretched out and baggy around the middle because the knit is too heavy. I don’t mind seaming, and one of the best part of knitting something in pieces is that it makes the project a lot more portable.

If you are interested in getting this kit (or any of them, there are so many to choose from), I’ve got a special code for you for 15% off!!

WAK_KNITBLISS15

(there is an underscore between WAK and Knitbliss, so I recommend copying and pasting!)

I’m so excited to start the sleeves soon! I think I’ll have this one finished just in time for the cooler weather, which will be perfect timing- I can already tell I’m going to absolutely love this sweater.

 

 

* This is part one of a short series of sponsored posts for We Are Knitters. I chose the pattern kit and the colour, and all thoughts and opinions expressed are entirely my own.

Modification Monday: Oracle Dress

Original Pattern: Oracle

Knitter Extraordinaire: Tanya (Ravelry ID)

Mods: Transformed the circular shawl pattern into a lace dress. Excellent detailed information and photos can be found on her project page, which can be found here.

What Makes This Awesome: Turning a shawl into a dress is no small feat, but it is a brilliant way to make a dress that is truly one of a kind.  Tanya has knit a few dresses by converting shawls, so she has her technique down and I highly recommend you read her notes on how she achieves it if you are interested in doing the same. I love the way Tanya incorporates some of the lace from the skirt into the shoulders and waist of the dress provides a great repeating element – no doubt one of the most fun aspects of knitting a dress from a shawl is deciding which elements to carry up the top of the dress. Her results are spectacular!

 

Pin Ups and Link Love: My Favourite Things This Week

My Favourite Articles and Links This Week

I love these photoshopped images of renaissance painting subjects into modern surroundings.

“I dressed like my skinny best friend for a week to prove that style has no size.”

Why the dishwasher in the restaurant is the most important job in the whole place. 

“Why I love my paper dictionary”. I so feel the same way.

I love rosé wine, so I have some conflicting feelings on this essay: Rosé is exhausting.

My Favourite Pins This Week

If you have never tried baking fresh fruit into a cookie before, you are in for a treat (ha! so literal!). These raspberry chocolate chip cookies are easy to make, and taste so fresh and amazing. Definitely worth trying. Pinterest link is here, and the original recipe post is here.

These sheet pan cauliflower fajitas are so easy, and make pulling together a full meal that much faster- you have the veggies roasting in the oven while you make the rice or wrangle kids/read a magazine. Plus, it feels so good to have a hearty veggie dinner, doesn’t it? Pinterest link is here, and the original recipe post is here.

if you were looking for a great end of summer cocktail, it doesn’t get any easier than this. It’s basically a few extra grocery store finds chucked into a glass of rose – serve it and then talk about the interesting article you read about Rose (link in the top section), and your summer get together will be a brilliant hit. Pinterest link is here, and the original recipe is here.

I love this Sally Webb painting, the texture of the thick paint just completely makes this. Pinterest link is here, and the original link can be found here.

And just in case no one has told you today:

Pinterest link is here, and the original link is here.

Have a lovely weekend, everyone!