Monday 17 December 2012

Tweet tweet!

Be free and fly away!

My mom used to have a really ugly keychain attached to her car keys (or at least I thought so). Now that problem is solved! Since she's very fond of birds, I made her this tiny, stuffed yellow bird keychain as a birthday gift. It's sweet (if I may say so myself), light as a feather and, since it's soft, it won't make any noice while driving. Perfect for teh purpose!

Wednesday 12 December 2012

For someone in love

These socks were made for my best friend and her fiancé after they got engaged last summer. On top of all they nowadays also live in a very old house where the floors are quite cold during the winter. So at the same time, this was kind of a house warming gift. Or foot warming gift :)

Pattern: Neulotut miehen palmikkosukat by Novita (also in the magazine Novita syksy 2010)
Yarn: Gjestal Janne and Novita 7 Veljestä
Needles: 3 mm

Actually only the green socks are made following the pattern, but I used the same cabled pattern for the violet socks too, just to make them a real sock-couple. I've also always thought that violet and green look great together. Almost like made for each other. And people who's in love definitely also need socks that are in love! <3

Friday 26 October 2012

Hand dyed baby socks

This autumn I met a really cute and sweet baby boy who happened to turn 6 months old in September. Since I didn't want him to freeze during the winter, I decided to give him a small half-year-present:

Pattern: Vauvan ryppyvartiset villasukat
Needles: 2 mm
Yarn: Novita Wool, hand dyed with birch and onion

So, the first skein of hand dyed yarn used! The 50 g of Novita Wool was almost perfect for a pair of baby socks. There wasn't much of the yarn left when I finished these. I guess I have to hope there'll be more babies soon! :)

A 6-months-old little fellow is also very, very curious. Everything around him is interesting, especially if the things are colourful. Therefor I thought the boy also should have something to look at, and I sewed on these small teddybears :) Really think they brought that something little extra to the socks.

Happy yellow  and teddies for a happy baby boy

Tuesday 23 October 2012

One more geek kept warm!

A good friend of my graduated from Helsinki University of Technology (or Aalto university) and now that he was an official nerd (i.e. engineer), I thought he needed something geeky to keep him warm during the winter. I looked for different patterns for a while, but this was in the end the geekiest pattern I could find:

Pattern: Geek mittens
Yarn: Novita 7 Veljestä
Needles: 3 mm

I skipped the penguin and made them a little bit smaller but for the rest I pretty much followed the colourwork-pattern. And they should be quite warm too, thanks to that colourwork and doubble yarn on the inside.

It would by the way be interesting to know if the numbers actually mean something! Anyone out there who speaks 10110001-language? :)

Thursday 18 October 2012

Colour it with nature!

Yeah, that's what I did this summer at work! We dyed yarn using natural colours, mostly different plants. I already gave you a sneak peak in my previous post, but here comes some more pictures!

First we started with aluna salt to make the wool ready for the colours. Then, here's also a picture of our first "soup", i.e. onion.

During the summer we tried a lot of different plants etc. This was the first time I tried to dye wool, and I have to say I'm really amazed by the wonderful, beautiful colours I got. I mean, look at them!! Wow!

From the left to the right:
- cochineal, second round (kokenilli, jälkiliemi), on white Novita Wool
- cochineal + madder (kokenilli + krappi), on white Novita Wool
- madder (krappi), on beige DROPS Nepal
- onion (keltasipuli), on white DROPS Karisma
- onion, second round (keltasipuli, jälkiliemi), on white DROPS Karisma
- tansy (pietaryrtti), on white Novita Wool
- birch, second round + onion, third round (koivu, jälkiliemi + sipuli, kolmas liemi), on white DROPS Karisma
- birch (koivu), on white DROPS Karisma
- onion, second round (keltasipuli, jälkiliemi), on grey DROPS Alaska
- first birch + onion, third round (koivu + keltasipuli, kolmas liemi). Then later dipped in woad (morsinko), on white L.O.O.Y. Ekologsk ull
- red onion, second round (punasipuli, jälkiliemi), on white DROPS Karisma
- red onion, (punasipuli), on white DROPS Karisma
- first birch (koivu), then later in cochineal (kokenilli), and then a third round in woad (morsinko), on white L.O.O.Y. Ekologisk ull
- woad, very late dip (morsinko, hyvin myöhäinen kasto), on grey DROPS Alaska
- woad (morsinko), on grey DROPS Alaska

And here's a close up of what you can get by using mostly onions (easy to do at home): onion: first round, onion: second round, onion: on grey yarn, onion + birch: third round, red onion: first round, red onion: second round

I found it really interesting that the yellow from onion turned green when the yarn was grey. Then I also liked the woad very much, since it gave a blue colour, which you normally only get from indigo. It also was the magic key for my favourite dyed yarn from this summer: the bright green. First it had a rather dull yellow colour from the birch leaves, but then - voilà - dip it in blue and you have an almost sparkling, delicious green colour!

I only used superwash yarns, like DROPS Karisma and Novita Wool, so that of course also helped to make the colours really bright. But still, everyone told me I succeded very well with this for a first-timer. Maybe it was beginners luck? :)

However, I have one skein that didn't turn out that well. Or at least not as it was supposed to, but I guess it's quite funny like this too :) First it also had a dull yellow colour, then I tried to save it by adding cochineal to it, but something went wrong and the colour I got was an ugly violet-brownish shade of grey. With really dark violet spots. Then I tried to save it once more by dipping it into the blue woad, and this is the result:

I really hope I may continue experimenting with natural dyes next summer again at work, because this was really a lot of fun! The only problem is that now I have like 15 different coloured skeins, all of them only 50-100 g. But I'm sure I'll come up with something to do with all of them! :) One skein was actually already used for baby socks, but more about that later... ;)

Wednesday 17 October 2012

Truly, deeply black

Last spring I had time for a few courses from the handicraft teaching program. One of the compulsory ones was a basic course in knitting and crotcheting :) Sounds like fun, doesn't it? We just sat in a class knitting and/or crotcheting during the lessons. Talk about a fun way to get some credits for studying!

Anyway, I have a lot of smaller projects I finished during that course, but I decided to begin with the biggest one: a black sweater.

Pattern: partly my own, partly Tubey by Cassie Rovitti 
Yarn: Novita Kelo
Needles: 8 mm
In Ravelry 

I think I will have to do the Tubey-sweater again sometime, with different yarn. I'm not at all satisfied with the way this yarn looks in this sweater. The main reason for why I chose it, was that a) I already had some of it in my stash, and b) I didn't have enough time to knit a whole sweater with thinner yarn. 

I like the Tubey design, though. With the graphical, a little bit Snow-Whitey neckline. But next time I think I'll try to do a similar neckline without dividing the sweater in two peaces. Although that, too, makes the design a bit special.

Anyway, it doesn't fit that well and the thick yarn and big loops in the stitches makes it rather compulsory to wear a black t-shirt underneath. But at least it's quite warm, yet not too warm. The idea was to make a sweater that I could use during the winter on slightly more convival occasions. Like when you need to be kind of elegant, but still a bit cosy. I still do thing the design suits that purpose very well, however the thick yarn maybe doesn't.

So, in other words, this is the first project in a while that I'm not that happy with. Haven't actually used it at all yet, eventhough I finished it already in May. ...Although, it hasn't perhaps been cold enough just yet... :) 

And YES, I, once again, used that same textured pattern! :D But now I promise it'll take a while before you see it again!

Then, s small sneak peak of what's coming up next time on this blog:

Wednesday 3 October 2012

Socks for a diving suit!

Well hello again! What have I been up to this autumn, you might think. Well, quite a lot actually. That's why it's been a bit quiet in this blog for a while. But the good thing with the fact that I've been busy is that I'll soon have a lot of nice stuff to show you! :)

First, a project where the deadline was coming up very, very fast:

My colleague at work needed a pair of almost kneehigh, tight socks to wear underneath her diving suit now that the waters are getting chilly up here in the North. I had three days time to finish them. And I did! :D

Pattern: from my head
Needles: 3,5 mm
Yarn: wool mixed with dog hair

The yarn was very interesting. My colleague asked me to use some of her own yarn. Most of it was wool from one of her own sheep and the rest of it was hair from her own dog. Together the white and the yellow turned into a lovely, pale beige colour. And since it contained some dog hair, it was really, really warm. I've tried one of her stoles knitted with this same yarn, and if you compare it with a regular stole made of 100% wool, the difference is huge! Too bad they don't sell yarns like this in shops... I'd use it for all my winter clothing!

Since I had to finish these socks very quickly, I didn't have time to do anything else than basic socks, without any fuss like cables or something similar. But once I reached the tip of the toe, I couldn't help myself. They just looked so dull and boring. I simpy had to add this small stripe made using the same textured stitch than in my grey scarf. And at least my colleague thought they looked cute. And she also said she'd never had socks that fit her feet so perfectly before. So I guess she was pretty pleased with my superfast work :)

Thursday 30 August 2012

Lace, lace and lace

Remember the small doily I made not so long ago? That I decided was too small for my coffee table and became a lace doily for my lamp in stead. Well, now I'm proud to present the biggest lace doily I have ever made:

Yarn: Marks & Kattens Anemone
Hook: 3

It did take a while to finish crotcheting this one. I have to admit I almost felt like quiting when I came to the last few rows that were so long it felt they would never end. And at that point it also seemed like I somehow had managed to add too many stiches on the go, since it didn't turn flat agains the table, no matter how I tried. I also used much thicker yarn and a bigger hook than suggested, so I was afraid that was a problem too. But fortunately it turned out ok once I blocked it!

But in the end I'm very happy I managed to motivate myself to continue and finish this. Even though it gives me more of those granny points, it looks great on my coffee table. And just the right size! Not too big nor too small. And it's just the right colour. Good thing I already "happened" to have exactly the right kind of yarn, this way I once again used up a tiny bit of that huge stash of mine... ;) Perhaps I will some day be able to allow myself to buy some more yarn again...

Saturday 25 August 2012

Before the summer is over...'s a few pictures to help you remember how it's been :)

Tuesday 21 August 2012

Package from the US

Sometime during last spring I joined a group in Ravelry called International Yarn and Candy Swap. In June I participated in the first swap. My swapmate was from the US, more exactly from Oregon, and here's what she sent me:

The package had soooo much candy in it! Wow! Don't know when I'll manage to eat all of it! But so far, as for the candy I've already tasted, they taste really, really good! Yummy!

Although the candy was great, the best part is still the one skein of yarn I got. Madelinetosh! Hand dyed yarn, colour Iris. Really beautiful! The colour shifts from dark blue to dark violet. I bet it'll look great when knitted! This is actually my first yarn by Madelinetosh so I really look forward to trying it. Perhaps I'll never want to knit anything else after this ;) (although I hope not, since I really don't think I could afford it in the long run...)

Then I also got this wonderful card that she had made out of fabric used in a Shakespeare play. Nice, isn't it? :)

It by the way feels like this summer has passed so, so quickly... I had a lot of half-finished projects lying around and I had planned to finish all of them already in the beginning of the summer. That way I thought I'd have a lot of time left to start new, wonderful projects. But here I am, in the middle of August, still with a tiny mountain of small projects yet to be finished. The biggest problem is perhaps that there keeps coming new, small but high-priority projects all the time! Almost feel stressed! ...but only almost... Fortunately knitting itself is so relaxing... :)

Monday 16 July 2012

Lace under a lamp

I've finally overcome my fear of crotcheting! And now I have a lace doily in my home! That gives me some granny-points, doesn't it? ;)

Yarn: Marks & Kattens Anemone
Hook: 3 mm
In Ravelry

I followed the pattern for the first nine rounds, but as it was still pretty small after that, I just made up a few more rounds as I went on. I originally intended to make this big enough for my coffee table, but as I'm still not that good at crotcheting, I decided to let this one be small and chose another (bigger) pattern for the coffee table doily in stead (more about that later).

This turned out quite perfect for a small, round table that I have next to my sofa! Now the white lamp has something to stand on. It also brings some more colour to the table. So I guess this was a success after all! :)

Thursday 28 June 2012

Phone covers

I, too, suddenly jumped into the smart-age this spring, after I had changed my old phone for a brand new pink Nokia Lumia 800. Really great phone, by the way! I love it! And especially love the girly colour :)

Anyway, I didn't want it to get scratched, so I knitted this cover for it:

Pattern: my own
Needles: 2 mm
Yarn: Novita Tennessee

Then, a friend of mine who also bought the same phone (but in blue), wanted to have some covers too. So here's what I made for him: 

Two different ones so that he can change it once in a while (and maybe wash it). These are also knitted with 2 mm needles using cotton yarn.

I actually plan to write down a pattern for this, as I've already promised to knit yet another one of these for a third Lumia phone. The cover-thingy isn't actually at all difficult to make, but perhaps there's someone out there who would still want to have it written down. So maybe you'll hear more about that later this summer!

Sunday 17 June 2012

Easter ornaments

I am very sorry for how quiet this blog has been all spring. What can I say? Something came up :) But even though I haven't felt like updating here, it doesn't mean I haven't done anything. Quite the countrary! I actually have so much to show you that I don't know where to start. But perhaps it's best to start at the beginning, i.e. with my oldest stuff. So therefor: an Easter post in June!

For Easter one of my colleagues at work had found yet another ornament pattern by Arne and Carlos, you know those knitting guys from Norway. This time it was a pattern for Easter eggs and balls. And since our museum is a very handicraft-orientated museum, I was asked to knit a few ornaments to decorate our porch. So I did.

Pattern: Påskeegg by Arne & Carlos (found in Finnish in Suuri Käsityölehti 3/2012)
Yarn: random cotton yarn from my stash
Needles: 2 mm

I actually knit five of these, but only four of them is shown in the picture. The last one was a blue round ball with a red Easter flower on it.

Then, last but not least, a photo a little bit more appropriate for this time of the year:

And this time, I'll be back soon! Promise!

Monday 30 April 2012

Spring is here!

Sorry, this blog has been very quiet for a while. But now I'm back! First with some spring-photos I took the other day.

Monday 19 March 2012

Looking for grey elves

This is a shawl I had intended to finish already in November because back then, we were looking for elves at work. Yup, every morning for two weeks I had a group of children tiptoeing behind me from building to building looking for those mysterious elves or brownies living in the old houses. And man, those children were so excited. They heard small steps and jingling sounds everywhere! Their excitement almost made us adults believe in elves too :) 

But in November it can already be pretty chilly in the mornings, so I would have needed something warm to wrap around me. Too bad I didn't finish this in time for that. In stead, I finished it in January and now finally got around to upload some photos to my computer.

Yarn: Novita Isoveli, almost 4 skeins
Needles: 5 mm

Doing this kind of textured pattern was something new to me, but I liked it. I might use it somewhere else too. And this really is warm, although the yarn isn't 100% wool. But I guess it's thick enough anyway. I had also totally miscalculated the amount of yarn I needed, so not only once, but twice I had to go and buy some more of it. Made me a bit frustrated and might have been a reason for why it took me a while to finish it...

And here's a better picture of the texture:

Saturday 3 March 2012

For small and fancy projects

Look, look! Isn't it sweet??

It's perfect for small sewing projects when you only need a few pins at a time. Plus, it really makes you feel fancy! I swear! When I put on this ring I feel kind of special. Like a princess in the land of fabrics.

And the best part is that it was really easy to make! It didn't even take me half an hour to finish. So if you want one of these too, don't hesitate! I'm sure most of you have all the things you need already at home. And if not, use you imagination! ;) You find the easy, illustrated instructions here.

Then I also made a normal pincushion for myself, because believe it or not, I didn't have one before. For this I followed the same theme as for the baby cardigan I knitten not that long ago. The sheep-button was left over from that project. Now I have my own lamb on a field :) Baa baa!

Sunday 12 February 2012

More spookiness

Well, ok. I didn't get back as soon as I intended. What do we learn from this? Never promise anything you might not be able to keep! :)

But now I'm here and ready to show you another spooky project that I actually finished already before the spooky socks. The idea came to me when we for some reason discussed the Pacman-game at work and one of my colleagues said she had started to knit a hat decorated with the ghosts from that same game. I got so inspired that I wanted to do something with those ghosts as well. And here's the result:

Pattern: my own
Yarn: some cotton yarn from my stash
Needles: 2 mm

Have to admit it was pretty boring to knit a tie. The rows just never seemed to end. But once it was finished, it turned out rather funny. And I was surprised it actually looks like a real tie since I didn't plan it at all. I just started knitting, doing increases and decreases whitout thinking too much. But since the tie is knitted in stockinett stitch, it also started to curl up a bit. But I fixed that by sewing on some black fabric on the back side of it. And that turned out to be a really great idea since it now looks even more like a real tie!

I'm not sure though, if this is the kind of tie you could use with a suit... Perhaps this is better for some not that serious occasions... :) Like a fun and slighty nerdy detail.