The littlest Gramps

See this little man?

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He just (well not just, like 2 months ago) turned 1.

I decided I would knit for all our little people for their birthdays.  This was a decision to try and save my Christmas knitting sanity – why set myself up to frantically knit small people sweaters for Christmas when I can spread the knitting throughout the year?!  It was a brilliant plan especially since I ended up going to the other extreme with Christmas knitting and not knitting a single gift. I know. Shocking.

But I digress, back to this face.

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He turned 1 in November, and his mom may have mentioned something about him needing a new toque.  It seems he had long out grown the infant toque I knit for him and he definitely needed to maintain his status as the coolest baby in daycare.

Hunter Toque  

Of course, I couldn’t just knit him a toque. So I knit a set.  Matching trim to pompom the Gramps sweater and Hunter toque are too cute if I do say so myself.

 Gramps Sweater

The best part? Both are made with Comfort yarn which I love for littles because it’s chunky size knits up super quick and the acrylic blend makes it soft and completely laundry safe. Washing machine and dryer this baby – you will not hurt it.

 Happy Birthday Little Man!

Love the elbow patches and big collar – this little guy is a true sophisticate.

Love the Collar and the elbow patches!

 

Ginger Knits

gingerknitsbutton2
Like the new button? And the new name? I’m working on a series of them that will just take you to the list of all posts related to the topic.  Some will be just me – the Ginger.  Some will be the boy – the Giant.  Some will be both – G&G.  I can’t say when they’ll be ready – I just don’t know.  But I can tell you I’m working on it in my little brain.
So this edition of Ginger Knits – The Beast that was a beauty.
I tend to go in phases.  I knit my brains out.  Or I don’t.  I blog my brains out. Or I don’t.  With this blanket it required A LOT of knitting and since babies make their own deadlines – that meant very little blogging while I tried desperately to make progress.
But it was worth it.
The pattern may look a little complicated but it’s an illusion – it’s actually fairly simple – and it turned out beautifully if I do say so myself.  I made it with baby bamboo and it is REALLY heavy and will definitely keep the wee one warm in a nice breathable way. But man, did it eat the yarn. This bad boy took me 10 balls. Granted they were mini little 50g balls, but it still took 10 of them and when it was all said and done – I could have easily kept knitting.
Do you know what’s not fun? Knitting a heavy blanket in the summer.
Our Elegant Country friends have had a healthy baby boy.  And named him Logan – same as BFF Kristyn’s baby.  We are affectionately referring to him as Logan 2.0 (mostly me, and mostly in my head – this should not be taken to mean that the second Logan is an improved version of the first – impossible.  They are both adorable and perfection in diapers).  Logan 2.0 arrived less than 24 hours after I cast-off. I knew he was waiting for me to finish.
The reaction? Wonderful.  I wrapped it up with a book for a card, with a message to baby, mom and dad. And included in the package a 6-pack of freshly baked muffins.  When the new Dad opened the bag the first thing he saw was the muffins and he was over the moon.  The Boy and I weren’t paying attention so we both thought he was gushing over the blanket.  Nope. Muffins.  Note to self, bring all new parents something to eat.
He kept digging and was pleasantly surprised.
For the knitters out there – I blocked it to try and make it a bit less squishy – which did help. Let it dry and took it outside to really show it is in fact green not grey.
Logan 2.0 is pretty darn cute. The Boy even held him – though complained bitterly for the rest of the night that his arm had cramped up.  That’s the littlest baby he’s held yet – and he’s getting better wouldn’t you agree?
Anyway, enough jabber – here’s that sweet face and some details on a sweet blanket.
Time: Probably about an hour(ish)  per stripe = long enough.

There’s a baby coming

Calm down. Of course it is not a giant ginger baby.  Although we did recently go on our honeymoon – or did we? More on that tomorrow.

No.  There is a perfectly wonderful friend baby coming in just a few short weeks and do you know what that means? I should stop knitting socks and start making some progress on the projects I started in January!

So that’s what I’ve been up to.  Knitting until my hands cramp.  And not blogging.

Nothing like a deadline.

Now, I obviously don’t want to give away the surprises but I will tell you this – every time my mom and grandmother look at what I’m knitting they say “I hope this is for you!” No it is not.  Calm down.

It is for a soon to be born, sure to be perfect little someone.  The perfect kind of baby for a newly married Ginger and Giant.


One you get to give back.

Send speed and agility to my needles.  And patience.  I’m getting bored and I’m pretty sure this baby is getting ready to make his/her appearance regardless.

Under the Tree

Somehow I managed to make mad progress on the knitted gifts this Christmas.  Not only did I make cowls, mittens, toques, socks and my very first pom-pom… I did it all with time to spare.
I give you the knitted round-up

Like the cowls? Various simple patterns found on Ravelry by searching the yarn – Estelle Drake you can find the blue and orange one modeled by Miss Erin here, the pink one I also found on Ravelry but I’ll be damned if I can find it again – basically alternate squares of knit and purl.  The one in the middle is simple moss 60 stitches in the round.  Mittens for The Boy were too small so I ended up with new mittens. But The Physicist’s mittens fit perfectly! I made Sista’s toque (which she loves BTW – just doesn’t look like it in the picture) from the same pattern as the ones I made for the little ones this fall – but added a pompom for good measure. And the FIL (Father-in-Law) loved his socks so much last year – I made him a second pair (he has requested 7 pairs).

What did you knit for Christmas?

The reason I knit

How can you not want to knit beautiful things for these beautiful new people?

Baby toques are my new thing – they are SO easy and quick and ADORABLE because they are so little!!!

That means they make great little gifts when you’ve been a tad busy doing other things while the little ones were busy baking.

Plus if you knit – you usually get to squeeze the little. (It kinda goes without saying)

And the best part? If it’s too small their parents will be thrilled that their baby is so healthy, and a stranger you haven’t even met will love your toque your friends who leave it behind at the hospital for babies smaller than theirs.

That’s just a win/win/win

A Gift from the Groom

Last week we found out that when a knitter gets married… there is yarn involved.  A lot of yarn.

I told the Boy when the yarn started taking over our house we first started planning that I thought it would be glorious if I knit something for everyone and he bought something for everyone.  My rationale? While I picked the girls and The Boy picked the boys, I really thought of everyone in our wedding party as supporting both of us. So wouldn’t it make sense that both of us got every member of our wedding party a little somethin’ somethin’?

I thought so.

I told the Boy that he agreed.

We debated about the Boys. The Boy wanted to get the boys watches. He thought it was something they could actually use, and that definitely appealed to him.  We started looking around and do you know what we found?  Watches are expensive.

So we went State side.  And by we I of course mean me, Sista and Mom. That’s right, the Boy was not involved in shopping for the boy gifts – but he assures me his heart was in it. Off we went, to the Fossil Outlet in Niagara, New York. And do you know what they have there? Mad deals.

While I may have made the purchase months ago do you think I remembered to take pictures of all of these beautiful watches.

Nope. I can only tell you that they were similar, but different. Just like the boys.

Luckily I also got The Boy a watch, so I was able to recreate my our mad presentation.

 

For the ladies, let’s be honest… the Boy had nothing to do with that either the Boy’s heart was in it.  I looked for MONTHS for funky orange purses. I looked and looked.  I found a few options on Etsy (my new favourite shopping friend) but they were pricey when I was looking at buying 5 – hey a bride needs a purse (this is a lie brides – you do not need a purse… but if you’d like one just tell everyone you need it, they’ll believe you).  It was getting down to the wire when I had a stroke of genius. Grey purses. Grey purses lined with orange.

And I found just what I was looking for at My Creative Threads

Jen was wonderful to work with! The only hiccup was I forgot to tell her that I planned on gifting the purses the week before W-day. It didn’t happen. So while I had brilliant presentation planned for the girls as well, with their mittens inside their purses.  No dice. But that’s okay, it all came in with lots of time to spare.

Here’s four out of the five…

And here’s a close up of mine

If you’ve been paying attention to this little post you might have picked up on the fact that while our gifts to our wedding party were one gift from each of us in theory, in practice… I did it.

Not that I’m looking for credit of course.

That’s not what marriage is about.

Or so I’m told.

 

When a Knitter Loves You

Okay blogosphere, I’ve done it. I’ve listed all of the topics/little stories that I want/need to share/remember with you/me. Was that clear? Let me explain – I’m no Pioneer Woman, (yet) and that means that this blog remains just as much for you as for me. And that is a polite way of saying, you’re going to be hearing about this wedding for a long time.

Like, probably about a year.

The good news is  I’m going to spare you and you’ll only have to read about it once a week.

The bad news is you might be really sick of hearing about it by the our one year anniversary.

The best news is you’ll feel like you were there.

I knew you’d be thrilled.

So with that warning in place – you can’t say I didn’t tell you. Let’s begin.

When a knitter gets married after the initial thoughts of dress, venue, bridal party, the next one in line is what am I going to knit? You saw the yarn ball tutorial early on. I’ll report that I did make them, and they were lovely but I didn’t overkill it – we had a lot of flowers and flowers are just as pretty as balls of yarn. Instead I brought yarn to our bridal party, and I may have bitten off a little more than I could chew… err knit.

Now, it didn’t seem like that much. Four attendants on each side + our emcee + the Boy 10 items. We had a 10 month engagement, that’s only 1 item per month. I was prepared to do even better than that, convincing myself I would have everything finished by my birthday (6 months) and then by the Boy’s birthday (7 months) and then… well let’s just say, they were all made with love but I did require some back up. (For any engaged knitters out there I will only advise that you keep in mind that while it doesn’t seem like a lot you will be doing this little thing called planning a wedding while you are trying to churn out 1 item a month.)

For the girls, my girls I slaved away and can happily report that their hand knit gifts were all made by my two hands. They were all unique just like them. And they were all made with love – I really tried not to knit on days where I was regretting the decision to make hand knit gifts for 10 people all while planning a wedding. Instead I saved the knitting for calmer days when I was happily knitting at home, at work, in the car, at my parents, at the Boy’s parents… you get the idea. Each girl got a pair of orange and grey mittens and a small bottle of knit soap so they wouldn’t ruin them the first time they throw them in the wash… SIL I’m looking at you. The cuffs and thumbs all matched so they go as a set, but each pattern was different.

For the boys, I called in some back up and luckily I had happlily obliging knitters to come to my rescue and knit up some socks. Four grey, one orange – but the orange were still on the needles during the photoshoot… which was about 24 hours before they were gifted.  Finished by May, not so much.

For The Boy, I of course knit his myself. In front of him. He even commented at one point – “Who gets those ones? They’re fancy and they have a cable. You must love that person the most.” I told him they were only fancy because I was getting bored. And while I didn’t see his face when he opened them I like to think he was surprised.

The Boy's Socks Orange and Gray fancies

So what did all that knitting amount to?

A lot of love for the bride. Of course The Boy had very little to do with this thank you so I we decided that he should gift the attendents something as well – so they would have love from each of us.

Curious? You’ll have to check back next week (see this is going to be fun!). For now, let’s all marvel at those beautiful knits. And nod our heads in recognition as to why the K1P1 page hasn’t been updated since Christmas.

One of these days when the sight of the orange and gray yarn doesn’t give me heart palpitations perhaps I’ll knit a few more sets of mittens, for myself, and the Boy, and… this is how it starts.

And so you don’t have to wait until next summer…. another w-day picture

Another beauty by West Photo

The knit wear photos are mine – sorry about the lack of artsyness, there may have been a time crunch involved.

The w-picture is from the wonderful David West.  Don’t take what’s not yours, but do call if you’re getting married!

Christmas Round-up

No YouTube Friday today… instead knitting.

It started with 2 pairs of socks, and a knitting fair.  I decided I would knit a pair of socks for a couple of friends for Christmas, an easy budget friendly, thoughtful gift.  4 individual socks… 3 balls of yarn.  No problem.

And then it grew… and grew and grew.

And by the end of my Christmas 2010 season I had completed and gifted 7 pairs of socks, 2 toques and a sweater.

How did this happen?  It started innocently enough I finished the original 2 pair.  So I bought yarn for another pair. 3 pair… not bad. Definitely not biting off more than I could handle.  Then I was knitting at the Boy’s parents house and they asked what I was working on.  I said, “I’m knitting socks for Christmas, everyone’s getting socks”   The Boy’s mom said “Oh! That’s great! I’ll look forward to it.”  I didn’t mean EVERYONE everyone, but since that was still October I decided no problem… I could take on a couple more.

I forgot to take a complete picture of all 7... here's 4

Then about 2 weeks before Christmas my lovely sista had a question. “Do you think you could knit a toque for Christmas?”  The sista doesn’t knit… she makes requests. This request was for her man-friend.  Since I still hadn’t thought of a gift for him, I took on the challenge, with the understanding he might get it still on the needles.  I went over how many projects I still had on the go, and pointed out that My Boy, would be getting balls of yarn since he told me not to worry about knitting for him.

Sista gave me shit.  Apparently it sounded terrible to say my Fiance (BTW the Boy hates that word) only made the B-list.  I should really knit him something if I’m doing it for everyone else.

So I headed back to the yarn store.  Serenity Knits in Newmarket is a little closer than my usual Mary’s Yarns in Unionville and since I was on a deadline – I had no time to spend on a longer trip than necessary.  So I picked two toque patterns.  “Ribbed for his Pleasure” and “Knotty But Nice“.  And I knit.  And I knit. And I knit.

And I finished The Boy’s Toque – described as a perfect thank you for the man in your life who doesn’t mention that your stash is constantly multiplying and that you’ve brought your knitting to bed while wearing scrubby pajamas.  Sounded perfect – and if he didn’t love it I did.

Look how cute!

Sista’s man got a toque still on the needles… but it was finished, torn out (too long) and re-knit by December 26 so that’s not bad.  It was a 2×2 rib, and described as nothing fancy.  Just a plain hat for a plain toque lover… with a dirty name.

The Boy modelling another man's toque

And the sweater… oh the sweater.  It was supposed to be a plain stocking stitch sweater… nothing too complicated about it.  I thought it’d take me 2 weeks at a leisurely pace. I was madly trying to finish it December 24th, all the while fairly certain it wasn’t going to fit.  I finished it.  And I was right.  It didn’t fit.  Unless of course my sista didn’t want to put her arms down. So it’s back in my knitting bag and I have to attach it to the wool winder this weekend and rip it out… completely.  Argh.

Other than that, look at all of these happy faces.

3 More Days – 3 More Projects

How did this happen?  It started with 3 projects.  3 small projects.

And then the list grew… and grew… and grew.

I started off strong.  I only had 1/2 a project left (not one of the original 3 BTW).  So I started on the B list – the projects I thought about starting ONLY if I got through the already expanded A list. I only had 1/2 the project to go… so I started the B list.

Now it’s 3 days until Christmas and I have 3 projects still on needles, including that 1/2 a project left from the A-list.  As I started to feel a little over-extended I started thinking that some of these presents might be just a ball of yarn and an I.O.U.

But then. Then. I started.

And now I’m feeling the pressure. Now I’ve got three days and I’ve started 3 more projects. Did I mention I’m working this week? And also that I haven’t finished Christmas shopping yet?

Yikes!

The good news? I got a camera cord, AND the camera

You know your a knitter when…

You carry a sock in your purse and bust it out while waiting at the doctor’s office.

 

knit knit knit knit knit knit knit knit

Hey 5 rows is 5 rows and I’ve only got 10 days ’til Christmas.

Photo from me – its old… the cord might be officially lost forever.

How’s your shopping list coming?