Autumn · Crafts · Crochet · Fingerless Mitts · Granny Hottie Cover · Granny Square Hottie Cover · NZ Yarn · Outlaw Yarn · Seasons

Maker’s Journal : The Crochet Edition

Granny Square Hottie Cover :

Finishing projects has been a struggle for me lately . I had misplaced two works in progress somewhere.That put a damper on my spirits and I kind of lost my making mojo.

The Granny Square Hottie cover came about as a result a scrappy make along. I had a big tangled mess of yarn which I had frogged from an abandoned project . When I found a hottie bottle without a cover , covering it up with granny squares seemed like a great plan. And it indeed was !

So quick and easy, with the granny squares getting done in just three rows each , I kept reaching out to them until it was all done. The Hot pink colour and the cream ( Kan Ten and Curiosity) made it a very bright and cheerful project.

I think the vintage buttons that came along as a free gift with Molly Makes magazine, tied the cover so well together. It is one of my favourite features of this project, on top of how this hottie cover came along.

Moreover ,an added bonus was the immense satisfaction, of pretty much using up all the yarn ,that was a frustrating pile of tangled mess mocking me.

I roughly followed Alexandra Mackenzie’s Granny Square Hottie Cover pattern.

Pattern Details :

Pattern : Granny Square Hottie Cover by Alexandra Mackenzie

Yarn : Outlaw Yarn Bandit DK in Kan Ten and Curiosity

Hook : 4 mm

Project Notes :

A few things I did differently from the pattern first and foremost , were the granny squares themselves . As a result I had to adjust the number of squares I made for the cover. I also joined the squares using single crochet rather than whip stitching them around. I was really happy to have a guideline in the pattern to follow and then make modifications to suit my needs.

Easy Victorian Shell Mitts :

While I do love a quick and easy granny square, nothing makes my soul sing like a feminine lacy pattern . I have made these mitts before in a cotton mix yarn called Main Line from Knit picks, now discontinued , when we were in Kuwait. For the Winters in Kuwait , that was good. After coming to Christchurch, a 70% cotton and 25% merino did not cut it for the Winter chill here. My hands were froze constantly and I have been meaning to make another pair in Merino.

When I first joined the Outlaw yarn team , Deb gifted me a Bohemia Worsted Yarn in the colour Royal and immediately I decided that I was going to use it for these mitts . Only, I never got around to making them. Even though they are a very quick and easy pattern that hardly takes more than an afternoon to finish the pair.

When I finished my granny square hottie cover, I was pumped up to crochet a little more and decided to just get these mitts done too. I had to go up a hook size than the pattern called for as I could not get the gauge right.That took a bit of time , as I started with a size smaller like I had done the first time, then the size called for in the pattern and finally going up a hook size . Yet, it did not take more than an evening to finish the Mitts.

The Polwarth, Possum and alpaca mix in the yarn makes these mitts so cozy , soft and extremely warm to wear. I love how the yarn and the colour bring out the beauty of this pattern. Needless to say , I’m so pleased with how they turned out and have this long overdue project ticked off my list of to do things.

Pattern Details :

Pattern : Easy Victorian Shell Mitts by Bron Green

Yarn : Outlaw Yarn Bohemia Worsted in Royal

Hook : 5 mm

Being able to create these two projects with yarn I had in my stash, after not finishing anything at all for a while ,has truly been a magical making moment for me.

Have a lovely weekend everyone.

Until Next Time

Happy Crafting

Crafts · Knit · Knitting · Outlaw Yarn · Shawl · Yarny Love

Favourite FO of 2019

Two months have gone by in 2020 already and 2019 seems like a distant past.

Still the fact that I had not not share my favourited Finished Object of 2019 here on the blog was not lost on me.

So to amend the glaring omission, I just wanted to share pictures of my 2nd Avenue Shawl here .

Working at Outlaw HQ, has given me the privilege of being surrounded by very talented makers, gorgeous yarn and so much inspiration.

Initially ,seeing the colours, the different yarns , textures, patterns , makers , enjoying the community and admiring their beautiful creations, I was like a child in a sweet shop, I wanted to make all the things .In the end, I really couldn’t decide what I wanted to make !

When Outlaw October rolled around, it was also around the time , a new limited edition of polwarth/ silk yarn line called NYX Prohibition was released. The colours and the silky sheen of the yarn were too hard to pass up .

So off to Ravelry I went to search for a project that would use as many colours as possible ; which then ended up in me zeroing on the Second Avenue Shawl. I have had this pattern on my queue for a while now but never got around to casting it on.

The Outlaw October Knit along and the irresistible beauty of the NYX Prohibition yarn ,ended up being the creative fuel I needed to cast on this shawl .

This shawl is a really nice, simple pattern with just enough elements ,to keep me interested -with slight pattern changes and colour changes -in the pattern until cast off . So I enjoyed knitting on it and was really pleased with the end product.

Project Details :

Pattern : 2nd Avenue pattern by Amy Miller

Yarn : Outlaw NYX Prohibition

Needles: 4.0 mm ChiaoGoo Needles

Project Notes :

  • I cast on 156 stitches
  • I used 5 colours , Corpse Reviver, Apple Jack,Highball ,Hanky Panky and Whisky Sour
  • I used one ball and a little more of the second ball of yarn of all the colours.
Handknit · Home Decor · Knit · Knitting · Outlaw Yarn

Chunky Cable Blanket

It has been a long dream of mine to make a throw blanket. If you go through my past blog post, you can see how many I have started. The reason there is no finished blanket on here is because I never got around to finishing them.

Honestly, when I started this Chunky blanket, given my previous history of making blankets, I wasn’t sure if I would finish it. The Outlaw Chunky Queen Bee yarn , and the easy and fun Chunky Blanket Pattern , made this blanket dream of mine come true. To my own surprise , it turned out to be a quick knit.

With the little leftover yarn, I decided to make tassels because I just wanted to use them up and also add a fun element to it. I was tossing between pompoms and tassels but then I decided to go with tassels. I am happy with how it turned out.

Project Details :

Pattern : Chunky Cable Blanket

Yarn : Queen Bee Yarn in Smudge, Yara, Titania and Zelda ( 9 skeins in total)

Needles : 12 m.m Knit pro symfonie

Life · New Zealand · Outlaw Yarn · small things · Summer · Yarn Festival

Chat over Chai # 2

Hi Everyone,

Happy New Year 2020

I hope you all are back to work after enjoying lovely Christmas and New Year holidays.

I have been long gone from the blog ,but I have been busy posting on other social media, which is You Tube and Instagram in bits and pieces. If you would like , you can catch up on my 12 days of Vlogmas on my You Tube channel Planetpearl.

The year 2019 seemed to whiz past , mostly because it was a year of huge personal growth for me.

I started working at Outlaw Yarn HQ . People who know me really well, know its a dream come true for me.

Once I read about a research that found ,that people who worked in Flower shops were one of the happiest . I can understand that , because how is it possible not to smile when you are surrounded by flowers, right?

As a fiber craft enthusiast, I feel the same way working in a yarn store( or Wool Shop as some people like to call it here ). It is hard not be happy surrounded by all the colourful yarn and meeting some really cool people , seeing the amazing projects they make. Needless to say, I’ve been enjoying it immensely.

It also opened up the opportunity for me to meet Steven Be . THE Steven Be . Which was one the year’s highlights for me.

He helped me cast on my Pearl Sweater. Which I thought was so cool. Really who would have thought I would meet him right ? And that he would be so down to earth and humble ,to patiently take the time to teach an absolutely beginner sweater knitter , how to do a cast on, explain the garment structure and make sure I got it right. Surely if that is not being generous with one’s time, I do not know what is !

Ever since I met him, I have been fan girling gushing talking about what a wonderful person he is to know! So much inspiration, wealth of knowledge , so positive and funny.

One of the things I checked off my Bucket list in 2019, was attending Christchurch Woolfeast as a stall Vendor ,selling my Hold and Cherish project bags . Two of my close friends and my son gave me so much support and made it a wonderful success.

Another wonderful experience was flying over to Wellington to attend Craft Camp. It was such a well organised camp which helped me meet some amazingly talented women.

I learnt to dye yarn along with Steve, my younger son, which was a great exposure to art of yarn dyeing for both of us.

I also tried weaving which I really loved too.

I’m really proud of myself for getting out of my comfort zone and I’m really pleased with how the year 2019 went for me craft wise.

For the year 2020

Regardless of how my personal life is going, I always get excited about a New Year. It’s always a time to reflect on the past lessons and look forward with hope, to another year of inspiration and learning .

The plans for this year include ,moving towards a more intentional ,slow living and uncluttered lifestyle.

I have already cleared out my closet of clothes that I do not wear, to be donated to Salvation Army. Which does make me feel better about putting my thoughts into action.

I also hope I will be able to keep up with my blog more regularly, sharing more of my creating journey ,towards a joyful life.

With that said,Thank you so much for being part of my creative journey , for your encouragement and support by way of likes and comments. Appreciate you all so much.

Have a very blessed 2020 dear friends.

Accessories · cowl · Crafts · Finished Objects · Handknit · Handmade · Indie Dyed yarn · Knit · Knitting · Nunnaba Artisan Yarn · Yarny Love

Bobble Cowl

The thought of knitting with two colours of yarn was somehow intimidating to me , that I never attempted to even try it. Then I saw one of the ladies in church wearing a similar looking cowl in lovely earthen colours that I was tempted to give it a try.

It always takes some time for me to work up the courage to try new things. Once I start,I always realise that it was not as hard as I thought of it in my head! (Over thinker alert right here ). Sometimes , simply just doing it is best.

When I went searching for an easy -ish free pattern on Ravelry , this pattern came up in the search. I decided to make this pattern only because it came with the tip to look up ‘Blister Stitch ‘on You tube ,which proved to be super helpful.

I decided to use the scrumptious Nunnaba gradient and Naturally Tweed I had in my stash . Once I got an understanding the stitch pattern down, it was a pleasure to work on and proved to be a quick finish.

I made a few additional rows than the pattern called for as I wanted the gradient yarn to come through.

I couldn’t however, figure out how to do the jobless join in this cowl . Its ok I think ,as when I’m wearing it, it may not be that visible .

This cowl is so so soft. I love it.

Surprisingly for this project ,I did not use up all the yarn in the gradient yarn like I wanted to.I also have a little more of the brown tweed left over as well.

Pattern Details :

Pattern : Bobble Cowl by Ina Aleksandrova

Needles : US 7 – 4.5 mm Chiagoo Needles

Yarn :Nunnaba Artisan Yarn White Gum Wool 8ply in the Shabby Rose Colourway

Accessories · Christchurch · Crafts · Handknit · Handmade · Indie Dyed yarn · Knit · Knitting · New Zealand · Rosewood Wool · Shawl · Yarny Love

Boneyard Shawl

This shawl started as a knit along with my friend. We both decided to use Rosewood Wool , mine is 12 ply while hers is 8 ply I think.

Soon after , she started working at a school and I left for India, our knit along kind of took the back seat.

Coming back from India dealing with all the change in weather and home sickness, I started knitting on it  with  Amber sitting on my feet for company acting as a little smooshy cushion  , listening to podcasts , munching on Nagercoil banana chips….

(  I mention Nagercoil chips in particular because ,there is a huge difference between Lakshmi Vilas Nagercoil Banana chips and Banana chips available in other parts of the country. Nothing comes close to it and it is one of the those comforting taste of home food)

Also because knitting on this shawl was more like eating chips, cannot stop with one.`And before I knew it I had finished  two  of the three skeins I had, along with my stash of chips I brought back with me from India..

Then I had a chance to go to an afternoon to Handy Dandy craft group at the library and in the almost two and a half hours I was there, I had reached the end of the third ball and only the border was left to be done.

Back home, little more knitting and   just like that this shawl was done. Much like the  packet of banana chips that finished before realisation came about! (So regretted not getting more of this taste of home , and now that I write about it, I’m craving for some ) 

Project Details:

Pattern : Boneyard Shawl by Stephen West

Needles : 4.5 mm Chiagoo Fixed Circulars

Yarn : Rosewood wool Romney Aran in Shepherd’s Delight Colourway.

Baby Gifts · Finished Objects · Knit · Knitting · Quilt Making · Sewing · Yarny Love

Baby gifts

Baby showers are a great excuse to make baby gifts. I love making gifts for babies not only because of how adorable they look but it also makes me marvel at the miracle of life itself, in the words of the Psalmist, “I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made”.Those verses in Psalm 139 : 14-16, they get me every single time.

I have been plotting and planning to make gifts for a special friend in church, who is having a baby very soonbaby quilt

This was not the original quilt I had planned for her. Like I have done several times before,I changed my mind after I finished making  quilt top with the fabrics I had got before and decided to make her another one

For this simple baby quilt,I used  the dreamy , whimsical woodland themed Hushabye hollow (by Lydia Nelson for Moda) charm pack that I had in my stash plus some extra yardage to make this quilt so that the baby can use it upto toddler stage. I backed it with the softest minky in a soothing  fawn colour. I also added my Hold&Cherish label to it.

Then I also made her a stroller knit blanket with 100% New Zealand Organic Merino.This yarn is no longer available so I’m really happy I had enough to make this blanket. I misplaced the care labels I had printed earlier somewhere and so couldn’t attach it to the blanket. knit baby blankie

The pattern for this blanket was part of a test pattern I did back in June here. You can read how I got to be test knitter in the first place here. Makes me smile every time!

I used my 4.5 mm ChiaoGoo fixed knitting needles for it and they are a dream to knit with.I’ve used a few circular knitting needles now to know that ChiaoGoo fixed circulars are my favourite . I plan to get them in a few sizes and lengths.

My friend is on FB and Instagram .I didn’t want to ruin the surprise  for her so I did not post it anywhere else online, except here because the maker in me couldn’t contain the excitement of having the gifts ready to give  to the precious baby. Fingers crossed these gifts will be received well  by my friend and be used till they fall apart.