A skein of a different color

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Ha ha ha, ho ho ho and a couple of la di da's, that's how you knit the day away in the merry old land of OZ Chez Tenten!!

You hear it all the time when it comes to knitting projects, "Make sure you buy more than enough yarn!" and most of the time I am So good at that task. Just ask my husband. Yarn is everywhere. But this time around I thought with all the color blocking going on I would only need 2 skeins max of each color.

Well after I was finished with the front and one sleeve I realized I would need a 3rd skein of the neutral color. I was pretty calm, cool and collected. I figured I would just go back and snag up another skein via the site that I bought it from. Like no one else buys that yarn… Well DUH, they did not have it in stock. (que sad Price's Right music here.)

A quick email to the owner and I found out that they were getting more in stock that very day. But in the meantime because I cannot wait for the life of me, I did a quick search on the internets and found a skein at another site and promptly ordered it. 

My impatience was distracted with a fun weekend away, but when I got home I ripped open the package only to see right away that it was not a match. The dyelot was much more grey toned than the pinkish toned skeins I had. I then decided to re-order from the original vendor in the hope I would have better dyelot luck.

Skein2

Well, this skein (the top), while not as off as the first (below), is still not perfect but it have to do. As you maybe know, I am accustomed to making it work with skeins that are not matching and will try to work some magic. Am I kinda sad/po'd that I didn't order enough at first? Yes. Is it a "I wouldn't have noticed it until you pointed it out" kind of situation? I don't think so. But thankfully I just have a few more rows on the back to finish and then neckband. Maybe I can claim it was a "design feature".

Anyway, I won't let my dyelot woes interfere with my pure excitement of finishing this sweater! I can't wait to show it off. And yes, I've decided to write it up – including needing an extra skein! No one shall suffer my mistake! You're very welcome.

So what's on deck? I have more sweaters that are half done than I'd care to admit which means the next thing is going to be finishing one of those. After that maybe a cowl… 

All I know is that my needles are going to be busy right on through the new year. Click, click, click, Toto!

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Design Along With Me

Book Giveaway Winner!

Sorry for delaying this from last week! I didn't forget 🙂

Winner of the Great Little Gifts to Knit is

RANDOM.ORG - True Random Number Service

Congratulations, Anne Marie! I hope you make lots of SOCKS! 

Hope everyone else has casted on or are we all in this together on Dec. 24th? 

xx

Book Review & Giveaway: Great Little Gifts to Knit

One of the greatest pleasures of being a knitter is the ability to create gifts for the ones we love. Whether it's a hat or a shawl or even a small bootie, using our hands to create things always adds that extra special touch.

Jean Moss of Sweet Shawlettes does it again with her newest pattern book, Great Little Gifts to Knit. She has designed 30 wonderful patterns that are sure to please everyone on your gift list.

As we get into October I am reminded that there are only 85 days left to knit Christmas gifts and even less for those Hanukkah gifts! It's the perfect time to whip a book like this out and cast on.

The book is split into 4 sections: Baby, Hers, His and Home. OF course with a little guy now in my life I was really interested in the Baby section. My favorite of the patterns is the Whoopla bean bags! James loves to play with all things soft and what's better than these?

Whoopla

It's the perfect project for trying out intarsia for the first time as the small squares are truly forgiving!

In the Hers section, you know I love me some leg warmers! And with two balls of Rowan Big Wool these are your Dec. 24th, 11:30pm, almost forgot to make my sis something (or sis in law for me) kind of project!

Jive Legwarmers
In the His section I was all about the gutiar strap! I love that it doubles as a belt just incase you want to switch it up. It's a great piece for your favorite rocker. Which reminds me, I told my husband that we SO have to get James some guitar lessons once his fingers are up for it. Seven months, too soon? 

Hendrix_guitar_strap (1)
Lastly, in the Home section I was all about the placemats! I often think about how nice it would be to have some knitted placemats and how truly easy they are to make! I'm glad she included them here. It really is the perfect thing for stash busting and everyone could use them.

Flavor_placemat_napkin_ring

All the patterns are clearly written and easy to follow and with an appendix handy for those 'what does that SSK' mean again moments.

I am so happy to have been the final stop on the EPIC Jean Moss Great Gifts to Knit blog tour! I hope you all enjoyed visiting each blog and if you haven't here they are:

Mon 2  Sep      Wendy Knits  Wendy Johnson
Wed 4 Sep       WEBS  Kathy Elkins
Fri 6 Sep          Getting Stitched on the Farm Kristin Nicholas
Mon 9 Sep       Stolen Stitches Carol Feller
Tues 10 Sep     Knittedbliss  Julie crawford
Wed 11 Sep     Black Bunny Fibers  Carol Sulcoski
Thur 12 sep      Rhythm of the Needles  Joanne Conklin
Frid 13 Sep      Tiny Owls Knits  Stephanie Dosen
Mon 16 Sep     Just Call me Ruby  Susan Crawford
Tues 17 Sep     Zeneedle Margene Smith
Wed 18 Sep      Redshirt Knitting Erika Barcott
Thur 19 Sep     A Friend to Knit With Leslie Friend
Fri 20 Sep        Craft Sanity Jennifer Ackerman Haywood
Mon 23 Sep      Connieleneknits  Connie Lene
Tues 24 Sep     Knitsofacto  Annie Cholewa
Wed 25 Sep      Ulla Bella  Anita Tormoen
Thur 26 Sep     A Really Good Yarn  Julie Schilthuis
Fri 27 Sep        Urban Yarns  Alexa Ludeman
Sat 28 Sep        Linda Marveng  Linda Marveng
Mon 30 Sep     Yarnings  Jen
Tues 1 Oct       Tentenknits  Margaux Hufnagel (WOOT! haha)

And of course what's a Grand Finale without a giveaway! Leave me a comment about what you're looking forward to knitting as a gift this holiday season and I'll pick a winner on Thursday Oct. 3rd!

Remember you can grab a copy of Great Little Gifts to Knit for you or your favorite knitter on Amazon!

Get crakin'!

xo

m

WIP Wednesday: Color Block

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Things are progressing smoothly with my color block sweater which I now refer to as Kendi. When last I left you I was waiting for my colors to arrive, now I am just about to cast on for the 2nd sleeve.

I decided to make this sweater in pieces. I know the craze these days is to make sweaters that are all-in-one piece and sometimes that is pretty glorious BUT there are good reasons to make sweaters in pieces and my girl, Amy, has pretty much summed them up beautifuly. (She's a redic designer so, like, pay attention 😉 ahem, her new book is coming out soon, too!)

KendiWIP1
And taking the mother of all knitters (EZ's) advice I started with a sleeve. Sleeves work well as a very large gauge swatch. You can double check your gauge without committing too much to the project. Good thing too because I was about a quarter of the way into the sleeve before I decided to rip back and make it a tad smaller and the increases a tad quicker.

KendiWIP2

As for the front, I really enjoy how the neutral tones down the bright colors. Before I started that section I really wondered if it was going to look too obnoxious. The top really balances it all out.

What are you working on?

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Flashback Friday: Juliet
What I've been up to (the bullet point version)

Flashback Friday: Juliet

Remember when Juliet was huge?

Hey Juliet

It was a time just before Ravelry where you would see it pop up on knit blogs and become it's own form of viral. At the time the designers went by Zephyr Gals and this to be sure was a huge hit for them.

Made in 2007
Yarn: Rowan Cocoon
Pattern: Juliet by Sarah Moore 
Ravelry Link

I remember the knitting being pretty easy but the ribbon for the buttons was a pain in the toosh! I wasn't confident on how to attach the ribbon and really just stitched it where I could. It held for this photo but wasn't all that awesome when I wore it IRL. I always had to adjust it to make sure it wasn't going to show.

This sweater is pretty classic and from the looks of it on Ravelry, this pattern is still going strong. 

Not to digress but, this shot was taken at one of my old Hoboken apartments. A real crap hole, I remember having mice and roaches… yuck! BUT it was one block away from the yarn shop and across the street from Boston Market (which is now a 7-11!) So while I was slumming it for sure, it's location couldn't be beat. Not to mention, my husband proposed to me in that apartment!

Friday Links: Photography

Camera

As I'm getting back to the swing of things it's time I brought back Friday posts, too! Remember my Flashback Fridays?? I love digging out old sweaters/projects for you guys to see. Gives them a little time in the sun again, so as I line a few of those up I thought in the mean time a Friday Links post would do!

I've been thinking a lot about my photography lately. Really on how to make my shots better but also how to make it easier to get the shot from the camera to the blog. I don't have oodles of time anymore and I need to fine the easiest way to get them uploaded and processed. I've even contemplated getting the new Nokia Lumia 1020 (14 megapixals! It's more than my SLR right now!) but I don't have AT&T. My cameraphone isn't a slouch but still it's not all that great either (see above).

It is a talent to get the right shot. So much goes into a photograph. Where should I stand? Where should I put the subject in my frame? How much light do I need? How can I get a blurred background? What equipment should I buy? Well below are a few places that haven given me some insight into all that… and honestly the big take away: Just experiement! 

Depth of Field Calculator

Shoot It! Caro's Photography Class via Craftsy

15 Great tips on Photography

Pioneer Woman Photography

Of course a Pinterest search of Photography will give you all sorts of good ideas and tips!

Get out and shoot! xo

m

PS. If you recoginze the above sweater then you'll be happy to know it's revision is almost done!

James and his blanket

Jamesblanket3

My dear friends in Hoboken suprised me with this beautiful blanket when I brought Baby James on his first trip to NJ. Knitted with Acadia from the Fibre Co. it's not only stunning but luxurious. Nothing less for my little man.

Jamesblanket2

It is in heavy rotation with his other blankets. Kid is so hooked up! I'm kinda jealous of him. But knowing me, I'll probably steal a little snuggle with it every once in a while.

I love the texture of each stitch pattern and I think he likes how soft it is on his skin.  

Jamesblanket
Thank you my wonderful knitting friends! To Patricia of Patricia's Yarns for organizing and for those fab gals at Kelbourne Woolens for distributing such beautiful yarns. I am so grateful for you all.

As for life with James, it has been amazing so far. I'm trying not to blink.

Design Along With Me

I love to blog, knit and design but a lot of the time things I design/knit cannot be discussed openly on the blog. Which makes for a very quiet blog and not too fun for anyone involved. Since I'm coming off of a baby hiatus I'd give anything to talk about knitting! (really I'd talk about anything but ya'll not here to hear me rant about Miley Cyrus are you?)

I've been designing and knitting all "behind the scenes" and while that is *FUN* I wanted to have a project that could be all On Scene! A little inside my head process minus all the bizzaro thoughts I have on a day to day basis. (self driving cars, anyone?)

Anywhoo…

I've been thinking a lot about designing a comfy pullover sweater that's pretty easy in terms of construction and stitch pattern. Right now I'm in love with the idea of a simple drop shoulder sweater. Two big square pieces sew 'em up, add some sleeves, whola a sweater! For this semi-exhausted new mom it seems like the perfect recipe. Not too much thinking involved.

My inspiration is this picture from the blog Kendi Everyday. And I'll use the word inspiration here loosely as I really would like to pretty much make that sweater – a color block, textured, drop shoulder sweater.

A flip through my go-to stitch pattern book landed me on a pattern called Granite Stitch. Using some Malabrigo Worsted I had in the stash, I made a small gauge swatch on US 8s.

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So purdy! Now, what colors to chose!?

Enter Design Seeds – a fountain of color inspiration! It didn't take long for me to fall in love with this color combo. I think I saw it on the 2nd page I looked at. (I waste no time!)

ElderberryHues

I've decided to use the top green, the dark blue, the rosey pink and the darker neutral as my guide. With the order in, all there's left to do is wait! 

Are you working on a new sweater for the fall? 

What I’m loving right now: Rainbow Loom

While hanging out a few days in LBI this past July, I got to hang out with a pretty cool girl named Jane.

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Jane makes these pretty awesome bracelets. In my day (yes I think of my pre-teens as "my day"), I was a fiend for friendship bracelets. So when Jane whipped out her Rainbow Loom and asked if I wanted her to make me one you can imagine how thrilled I was. 

First, I was to pick a color combo from her stash of rubber bands.

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Then she assembled the bands on her loom and with a crochet hook began to wrap each band around another. 

IMG_20130728_144159 

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When she was done wrapping she pulled the bracelet off the loom and WHOLA! The bracelet was done! It maybe took no more than 5 minutes. She could even go back and make it bigger or smaller depending on how it fit. 

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Jane ended up making all of us (even my husband!) a bracelet that afternoon. We still proudly wear them and get compliments when we do!

While it's obvious that I am late to the Rainbow Loom party, I can see why it's become so popular! It's pure genius! Quick to make bracelets that both boys and girls enjoy.  If you haven't read the story of how it all started – do so now. It will warm your heart. (thanks for the link, Cara!) 

Part of me wonders if it is appropirate to purchase one for myself. I got kid-cred, even though he can't quite stand or talk or knit yet. Right? Right.

Thanks Jane for sharing the obsession!! 

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Crochet craze: Rainbow Loom bracelets a hit with kids