knitting & things

February 6, 2011 at 6:52 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

It’s been a while, friends!

I sincerely apologize for my lack of posting…and I assure you all that I have been clicking away in my absence, but some other things have come up in my life that have taken first string to maintaining my knitting blog. Before I get into that, I want to mention that in the beginning (somewhere in 2005), knitting and maintaining this blog was always something that put a smile on my face….it was something that I always looked forward to to release my stress and allow my outpouring of creative energy to actually be channeled into something constructive. It has seen many many iterations and may knitting projects and many knitting eras, everything from the Karalund craze and the Swallowtail Shawl obsession….strait through to the explosion of Brooklyn Tweed and and the unveiling of Shelter…From Eunny taking over Interweave….and then the introduction of Quince and it’s unbelievably amazing yarn line.

Then in 2010, I turned to pattern designing…and at first it was wonderful. I loved shopping for my materials and sketching out designs and swatching. But…I quickly burned myself out…tangling myself in all sorts of math that just didn’t make any sense to me as well as copyright issues and having a hard time actually parting with my work when it was all done. Additionally, what many new designers may not realize is that pattern support is absolutely crucial. I lost count of how many emails I’ve received regarding questions to my patterns that sometimes I can answer, and unfortunately, some that I can’t.

Anyway, getting to the point is that about 8 months ago when I wanted to really make my patterns pop with incredible photos, I bought myself a camera. In addition to arranging all my yarn and projects to photography them,  I began taking pictures of anything that would sit still a minute…and I’d be lying if I said I’ve put that thing down since I bought it. It changed my life.

I have since established a little business for myself, and if all goes well this year I will be working along-side 3 amazing wedding photographers to build a portfolio. I have dreams of going professional eventually…but I need to keep reminding myself that it’s all baby steps until then : ) Visit eemithphotography to see more of my work, or check out project 365 for the photo-a-day project I began in January.

Knitting is an enormous part of my life, and really, it was what first inspired me to expand upon my photography and for that I am eternally grateful. Currently, I have 4 projects on the needles, and they will most definitely find their place in my 365, so keep checking in. I may not post to this blog nearly as often any more, if at all, but I’ll be around so don’t be a stranger. You can also still find me on Ravelry as EmilyElizabeth.

I extend a huge thank you to all the knitters, readers and commenters out there that have stopped on by over the past 6 years. It’s been awesome, but it’s time for something new : )

xoxo Emily

Douglas: Published!

November 17, 2010 at 7:25 pm | Posted in 2010, Finished, Knitting, Original Designs, stranding | 6 Comments

I really thought that once the wedding planning and festivities were over that I would have all the free time in the world to knit, blog and/or publish everything that has been piling up these last several months. I’m finding it to be the complete opposite, and now I have even less time than ever…and I’m sure it will only be compounded by the holiday season soon enough, so I’m going to get myself in gear and tie up these loose ends once and for all.

I had intended to post the twin’s in their sweaters first, but thanks to my brand new, sparkly clean, and eerily fast new iMac, (squee!) I was able to finish this pattern last night and couldn’t wait to share.

Douglas is finally written, photographed, charted and uploaded to Ravelry : ).

Douglas is a Norwegian style stranded mitten pattern with a little New England flair. These mittens are knit super quick in Cascade 220, or any other worsted weight yarn, and are lined with Misti Alpaca Lace. Douglas were originally submitted to Knitty…but due to an overwhelming submission count…were graciously sent back to me, with the self publishing rights intact (yay!).

Like the Candy Corn Mittens, these can be knit on DPNs, a pair of circulars, or the magic loop as I prefer. They are worked completely in the round from the picot-turned cuff to the pointy-tip. They work up to be super warm with the alpaca lining, however, if you’d prefer to forego the lining, drop down a needle size to tighten the gauge and the mitts will fit as snug as a bug!

Douglas is Raveled here and is available for $5 USD by clicking the button below.

<img src=”http://www.ravelry.com/images/shopping/buy-now.gif” border=”0″/>

I can’t wait to see your take on it : )

Back to work!

November 10, 2010 at 6:31 pm | Posted in 2010, Finished, Original Designs | 3 Comments

So it’s official.  I am a Mrs., or, Ms., as I much prefer : ) And for as lovely as it all was, I am quite content to shake off the crumbs and pack away the shoes and wait for the pictures…but all the while get myself back into the normal routine of life. I was a bit harried in those last few months, but now I feel light and new and can’t wait to celebrate our first holiday as newlyweds. So, now with the hub-bub behind me and our all too short honeymoon over (and lets not forget the 3 full work days already under my belt!)…I am ready to re-assume my blog reading and writing responsibilities once again. As it is, my RSS feed was at nearly 200 for knitting posts alone, so I’m making my rounds slowly as I catch up.

In the past month, a whole mess of knitterly things occurred at eeknits. Some things new, some things in the making, and some things revisited. So, let’s start off slow and let me introduce to you something that I’ve been holding out on : )

A few days before the wedding, I got a confirmation email that I had been waiting on with bated breath for weeks and weeks: These lovelies had finally been published!

These are my beloved Candy Corn Lined Mittens, published and available by instant PDF through The Yarn and Fiber Company. Maybe you remember my blubbering on about not wanting to give these away… : )

By the time they were published, it was a smidgeon too late to knit a pair for Halloween 2010, but there is ample time to knit a pair (or 6) for next year! They were very well received by both the staff at Y&F as well as the Ravelry community and I want to thank everyone for their kind words and support.

There mittens feature a geometric, yet whimsical pattern of candy corns in a traditional Halloween color palate using Ivy Brambles 2-ply Shetland wool…however I would LOVE love LOVE to see them worked up on a teal background. They are knit in the round on either DPNs, a pair of circulars, or magic loop as I like to use, however I would recommend DPNs to turn the cuff as it can get a bit fiddly with two circulars (instructions for the cuff turn are included in the directions). I designed these mittens with a gore thumb for a more natural fit but chose not to carry the color-work across….gives it an extra punch, don’t you think?… and then I finished them with a smooth tapered top. And for all of Shetland’s amazing color options, sturdiness, and crisp definition, it isn’t known for it’s luxurious softness so I lined ‘em with some Misti Alpaca Lace for good measure : ) (The Y&F version substitutes it with it’s Ivy Brambles 2-Ply Cashmere…yum!)

So, I’ve said it before but I am determined to find the time in the upcoming year to knit a second pair of these because I simply cannot imagine another Halloween season without my own set…but I’m a little mittened out at the moment.

Next up: Twin Budgies (in person!)

I tried!

October 17, 2010 at 4:13 pm | Posted in Knitting, Original Designs, Uncategorized | 6 Comments

Ugh. Three weeks ago I think I mentioned something about wanting to have a set (or 2) of mittens finished to go in, uh….2 weeks. I will learn not to make any more promises, at least not until after October 31st (the big day for any one who’s counting!)

I’m quickly approaching the point of just saying that I won’t even enter a 10-foot radius of anything yarn related over the next 2 weeks…but a knitter knows not to make that promise, either : ).

However, truth be told, I think this will be the last post you see from me for 3 to 4 weeks, until the craziness dies down. That probably means I will have to wait until November to get the two mitten patterns moved, but that still leaves plenty of time to knit a pair or 2 before the big chill sets in.  In the mean time, head over to Elli’s blog and check out her Sprig Mitts for another dose of leafy fall goodness. The foliage muses are working over-time this season….and aren’t her colors luscious?!

Before I sign off for a stretch, I want to mention a few exciting things in the knitting sphere that have really gotten my creative juices flowing:

     

  1. I received my copy of Mandy’s Red Collection last week! I am so completely inspired by Mandy’s ambition and upstart attitude (not to mention her crisp and classy design sense) and I absolutely can’t wait to cast on for a Ziggity Hat. What’s even more exciting is that I snagged this copy gratis for being lucky buyer #100. Go me! Even more so, go Mandy for being so successful!
  2. While I’m missing out on the fun of Rhinebeck and Stitches East this fall, the inaugural Fiber Festival of New England in West Springfield is coming up on the first weekend of November….and I wonder if the new hubby will agree to a romp out west during our tour-de-New England honeymoon.
  3. Last but most definitely not least is Jared’s new yarn line, Shelter. I’m really at a loss for words here. Lately it feels like I’m stuck in a continuous loop of no sooner being over the yarn crush of his latest design publication when he throws another curveball into the mix. But just look at how soft and down-right gorgeous this yarn is. It blows my mind, but then again, would anyone expect anything different from him? Of course, I already have two pairs of mittens and a hat pattern in mind for this yarn, but, I HAVE to finish what’s on my plate first. Sigh

Oh, almost forgot! Who’s the lucky duck who’s going to Harrisville for the Discover the Possibilities retreat in November? Oh yeah. I’ll refrain from gushing with excitement : )

See you all in a little bit…wish me luck!

Scatterbrained

October 1, 2010 at 6:36 am | Posted in Knitting, Original Designs, Uncategorized | 6 Comments

Do you remember a little peek of these mittens from way back in June?? Well, I do…and they’ve been burning a hole in the back of my brain.

It’s been a while since I finished these, but I can remember sitting there, knitting away at a summer cook-out, burger in one hand, mittens in the other, all the while dodging the disapproving glances from a particular friend of mine who continues to have a hard time wrapping her head around the concept of “welcoming fall”, even despite being a (newbie) knitter herself. She has much to learn : ) (e.g., bring mittens to a barbeque, not an aghan!).

Me, I would be content to dwell in the fall year round, in some magical place somewhere where crisp mornings melt into warm afternoons by the autumn sun, and cool nights dew the fallen leaves that sweetly perfume the day’s air. Where twigs crackle beneath your feet and there is always the scent of something warm and spicy in the oven, and something soft and woolen on the needles.

Ah : )

But, now to the real world where there are only about 3 more weeks to go until the trees are bare, daylight is but a mere memory and I will have to pile on the hand knits in horrendous combinations to stay warm. Heh! So, I’m going to savor these moments of autumn and enjoy my fall knitting before it turns to winter. On that note…now that I’ve finally had a chance to revisit this pattern, I’ve realized I forgot to chart the thumbs as I went along. So, I’m going to work-up another pair to refresh my memory. While I was knitting the first pair, I kept thinking to myself how lovely they’d look in berry colors, so I’m using a juicy and vibrant palette for this second pair, which offers a nice contrast to the neutral shades in the first pair. Don’t you just love knits that look equally well in all sorts of color combinations!

Of course since I first began version 2.0, I’ve been interrupted 2 dozen times (and I still have Douglas, which I promised to deliver shortly), but my hope is to have these finished and available within the next 2 weeks.  Hmm. Though,  lately my ability to perform by deadline has been laughable, but we’ll see.

Until then!

On the Bright Side

September 23, 2010 at 8:39 pm | Posted in 2010, Holiday, Knitting, Original Designs | 4 Comments

Back in July, I mentioned having had sent in a submission to Knitty for the deep fall issue, going live October 2010. That was a whole 3 months ago….eek. Sure, I haven’t mentioned it at all, but I was secretly sweating this one big time.

Unfortunately, the good people over at Knitty did not choose my pattern this go-around. So sad : (. But, Amy Singer did respond with a very nice email complimenting my style and explaining that there were just too many submissions sent in, and they couldn’t publish them all. It’s a bummer, but I understand. After all, it is the fall issue, which I can imagine, is one of the most popular for submissions. Perhaps I’ll have better luck next time.

On the bright side of things, this means I get to publish the pattern myself, under my name, and not have to wait! I am however going to rework the written part of it before it’s release, but it shouldn’t take long so check back soon. In the mean time, here are some of the other shot’s from the photo-shoot.

Year One

September 14, 2010 at 7:23 pm | Posted in 2010, Knitting, stranding, Uncategorized, Yarn | 4 Comments

In the hub-bub of last minute gift knitting, planning a 50th surprise party, typing up the loose ends of a long over-due knit pattern and organizing the last leg of a wedding (did I mention I was getting married?) the one year blogoversary of my second go at it came and went without as much as a tip of the hat!

So, here’s to one year full of knitting, designing, and dreaming. I look forward to many more : )

And now that several of the major projects in my life have been tackled, I get to share a little of what’s been going on behind the scenes. Here is a little sneak peek of a pattern of mine that was just [reluctantly] dropped off at my LYS.

Lately, I’ve developed this horrible separation anxiety with the products of my knitting, which I can foresee being a hindrance in the designing process. Like a momma bird anxiously sending her babies out into the world I sit…chewing my nails down knowing that my precious knitted item is floating around somewhere being folded by whomever. Yeah, I’m a bit melodramatic, but I really liked those mittens : (. I’ll just keep reminding myself that I can always knit another pair.

I’ll post about it officially when they are all set and published, so stay tuned!

Oooh…and look at what I found in the mail box the other day. It’s quite enough to make one just squeal with delight…and you know I did : ).

And now I’ve got all those glorious colors  dancing around in my head…and I see many many mittens in my future, and maybe the future of some of my relatives, haha. I’m still swatching away with the Osprey that I bought a bit ago, and haven’t committed to anything quite yet. It’s so soft and squishy that I’m tempted to just knit a basic infinity cowl in stockinette. Sometimes a yarn is just beautiful in it’s own right and doesn’t need to be fussy. We’ll see. For now, go over and check out Mandy at the Zig Zag Stitch. I am in love with her self-published set of patterns in The Red Collection. I share her obsession with gratuitous bobbles and really want this hat. Don’t those bobbles look juicy enough to eat?!

So what stitches tickle your fancy?

BUDGIES: The First of Fall knitting : )

August 17, 2010 at 6:40 pm | Posted in 2010, baby knits, Finished, Knitting, Sweaters | 3 Comments

Budgie Striped Baby Sweater by Grumperina

Yarn | Cascade 220 Superwash in Blue (810) & Orange (5323)
Yarn |
Cascade 220 Superwash in Green (2424) & Orange (7619)
Needles
| US 3 24″

As I scrambled to finish these in a timely manner, I misread the labeling on the zipper packages and realized too little too late that the PERFECTLY color-coordinated zippers I purchased were designed for pull-overs…and didn’t separate.

Crum.

Just goes to show that I should always side with my gut…and in this case it was telling me to use buttons and not zippers. And if having to exchange them for separating zippers that are not even remotely close to the color of the sweater wasn’t proof enough of my gut’s amazing ability to predict epic knitting disasters, my sewing skills (i.e., patience for sewing) sealed the deal. The lack of hem detail shots above is not a coincidence ; ).

But non-the-less, how adorable are these! I couldn’t be any more happy with the pattern construction or the color palate. And my favorite is the completely fortuitous i-cord edging that does an amazing job to hide the un-matching zipper fabric, almost as if it wasn’t there at all! I only hope that my sister loves them as much as I do and that the Boys get a good use out of them. I plan to see them in October, so perhaps a set of modeled photos will pop up around then!

I’m still plugging away on my Redhook, slowly but surely, and have left off at the back short-row shaping. On the needles now is a stranded mitten pattern for my LYS that I’ve been miserably delayed in completing.  I knit up the first prototype over 3 months ago but wasn’t quite in love with it…and then 3 months turned into 4 and I was left sitting on this pile of Shetland, not knowing what to do with it. However, after one day of “almost” fall weather, my inspiration peaked it’s sneaky little head and now these mittens are all I can think about. So, time willing, they should be done very soon. But, sorry, no pics till they’re published.

And speaking of fall, I’m crazy over the moon that it’s just around the corner. I’ve been preoccupied with striped scarves and see many in my future. What fall knit-accessory can you not live without?

Happy knitting : )

Cast-on Love

August 2, 2010 at 7:05 pm | Posted in 2010, Knitting, Sweaters, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Enter: my love affair with the 2-color long-tail cast-on.

Nothing is more exciting that discovering fun new techniques to incorporate into my knitting, and this one just about takes the cake. It’s remarkable simplicity also means that I’m kicking myself for not figuring it out sooner! This 2-color method leaves behind a perfectly roped cast-on edge that gives the hem an exciting punch of color. I am so tickled by this tiny detail that you can be sure to find this technique popping up in some of my own designs soon enough : ) In addition, I’m knitting these bitty sweaters with the no-muss/no-fuss Cascade Superwash and am in love with how deliciously Crayola the palette is. Perfect for a pair of adventurous 1-year olds, wouldn’t you say!

(Try it! To execute the cast-on, knot together the tails of two different color yarns using a slip stitch, then slide only the loop of the main color onto your needles, pull taut. Wrap the MC around your index finger and the CC around your thumb. Continue casting-on in regular long tail fashion—easy as pie!)

These Budgies have practically knit themselves, and with all the long-term projects I have in the mix, it’s been a treat to have something just fly off the needles. Woosh! I’d definitely file this one under “I’m hanging out and eating Chinese and need something simple that won’t require counting.”

Being fond of stripes, babies in wool, and now incredibly fun cast-ons, I’m sure I’ll be knitting another before long. In the meanwhile, these two are in the queue for a set of zipper panels, sleeve seams, and a good soak block before being wrapped and sent out west. I haven’t yet purchased the zippers…and on that note….I’ve been hemming and hawing about whether I want to follow the pattern as written and sew in the zippers, or rather, knit a button panel like this one.

What do you think?

Quince!

July 24, 2010 at 9:42 am | Posted in 2010, Knitting, Yarn | 2 Comments

Because of mail restrictions at my apartment, I have packages sent to my parent’s home address so I don’t run the risk of sticky fingers wandering away with my yarn. Really, I’m not too sure that the general public (at least in my building, anyhow) would give a hoot about a bag of plump, downright swoonable yarn, but you never know. With these things, I don’t take chances : )

So, I had to wait 5 whole days before picking up my little package. 4 days to build the anticipation to just overflowing, and then an extra day to completely forget so that when my mom tossed the bag at me, I nearly jumped out of my seat with excitement. Actually, I think I did ; ).

The presentation alone  gave me the urge to just lovingly tuck this away on to a shelf and put it on display, but then I squeezed it. For 100% untreated wool, Osprey is remarkably soft. I’ve read in review that some liken it to Cascade 200. I would beg to differ and feel that it’s more along the lines of the softness you’d achieve with an alapaca or cashmere blend.

So, now the ideas are flying. And even thought I swore I wouldn’t knit another, I’m pretty sure I just heard it begging to be knit into a  gorgeous, drapey cowl : )

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