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Monday
Nov302009

Lovely Design's Lovely Little Forest Quilt

We are big fans of the wonderfully creative products made by the super talented Sharilyn Wright of Lovely Design (you can find tons of great gifts on her site).  In fact, we've used her beautiful rolodexes in our shops for years. Recently, Joelle came across an incredibly sweet yet modern Christmas Tree Quilt on Sharilyn's Flickr page (while you're there, you may want to look around at her photostream a bit, it is filled with amazing, inspring ideas!).  We loved it so much and knew that you would, too! We asked Sharilyn if she would be willing to share her pattern with our Purl Bee readers and she generously agreed.  We think you'll agree that her quilt is charming, graphic, modern, and very, very lovely.

Since not everyone has a lot of time to make a quilt before the holidays (including us), we made a small version that went very quickly.  The beauty of Sharilyn's pattern is that you can make it as small or large as time allows! Joelle and I made this quilt together while sitting in front of a cozy fire.  We hope you'll find the time to enjoy making one of your own.   Thanks Sharilyn!!  --Page and Joelle

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Wednesday
Nov252009

Molly's Sketchbook: Embroidered Dreidel Game Pouches

Hanukkah starts this year on December 11th so I wanted to get a jump on the festivities by sending something fun and personal to my niece Miriam and nephew Daniel for their celebrations. I decided to make these monogramed pouches and fill them with everything they will need to play the dreidel game: a dreidel, some chocolate coins (aka gelt), and even a little printout with a copy of the rules.

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Sunday
Nov222009

Molly's Sketchbook: Simple Embroidered Stockings

These stockings are designed to be a quick project. You can make one for each member of your family and still have time to be together and enjoy the holiday!  They are made with the rich, gloriously colored solids from Kaufman, Essex and Kona Cotton as the base, and the simply beautiful natural Essex as the lining. There is something so sweet about seeing everyone's stocking hung on the mantle in anticipation of the goodies that will soon fill them!

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Thursday
Nov192009

Colorful Crafting with Jen: SnoBuddy Family from Knitting at KNoon

These snowmen may be the cutest project I've ever completed. The pattern is from the creative minds at Knitting at KNoon, and is called The SnoBuddy Family

The snowmen were super quick and easy to make, and it was so fun to make their little tiny accessories. The tiny scarves for the mom and dad were done in no time and made my Snobuddy family come to life! 

I think my favorite accessory to make was the little boy snowman's gloves.  I'm not sure what made this particular part was so gratifying, but it may have something to do with the finished product, could it be any cuter?

To make my entire SnoBuddy family I used just one skein of Blue Sky Alpaca's Suri Merino, a super soft, slightly fuzzy yarn that reminded me of a freshly fallen snow (but any soft white worsted or aran weight yarn will work for the pattern). For needles I used Crystal Palace double pointed US size 6 bamboo needles. For their accessories, I went into my stash and found some scraps in the same gauge as the Suri Merino to ensure that the hats, scarfs and gloves would fit.

You can find the SnoBuddy Family pattern from KNitting at Knoon right here!

I hope you'll enjoy making these snowmen as much as I did! --Jen

Sunday
Nov152009

Whit's Knits: Men's Rustic Scarf from Last-Minute Knitted Gifts 

It's been five years since Purl's owner, Joelle Hoverson, published her first book, Last-Minute Knitted Gifts. Since then it has become a modern classic in today's knitting world, joining with other books to bring the craft of knitting from the dark ages of garments that seemed to come from a parallel fashion universe to the present day of beautiful, elegant hand knits.

Every day customers come into Purl, dog-eared copy of Last-Minute Knitted Gifts under arm, wanting to replicate their favorite projects. Over the past five years, however, some of Joelle's original yarn recommendations are no longer available.  At Purl we always have to be ready to suggest new, equally exciting alternatives.

One common request is for the yarn to make the Men's Rustic Scarf, a ruggedly masculine scarf perfect for all the men in our lives. Rowan no longer makes the Yorkshire Tweed Chunky that first gave the scarf its distinctive flair, so we decided to update the pattern here with a new, beautiful Blue Sky Alpacas version.

For two of the colors we used Blue Sky's Worsted and for the third we used Blue Sky's Sportweight Alpaca doubled. Both yarns are incredibly soft, which in our experience is the number one concern when it comes to knitting for men (it's true!). The textural shift between the different yarns adds a subtle layer of interest to the scarf, and the drape of alpaca gives this version a gorgeous heft.

I don't necessarily want to say that this scarf is better than the original, but it's definitely a close call! --Whitney

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