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Entries in Stripes (24)

Thursday
Aug162012

Laura's Loop: Striped Stockinette Snake

After years of knitting for my nieces, I am thrilled to now be knitting for my very first nephew. As it turns out, a dear friend of mine, Natalie, also recently welcomed her first nephew, and like me, she wants to shower him with handsome hand-made treasures. It's been quite some time since Nat picked up her needles, and so she turned to me for some tech support and basic hand holding. Together we each knit up a Striped Stockinette Snake. For Natalie, it proved a very helpful reintroduction, and for both of us, it became the perfect present for our baby nephews!

Along the way, we conquered the I-cord, learned how to increase and decrease both to the left and the right, and explored the characteristics of stockinette stitch. As seasoned knitters know, fabrics made out of stockinette stitch curl along the edges. Often stockinette is paired with another stitch pattern to keep the piece laying flat, but for our purposes here, the naturally curled edges are just what we needed! We were able to knit flat (rather than in the round) and still create a tubular, snake-like object. Pretty nifty!

To add to some more snakiness I incorporated single-row striping, using two beautiful self-ombreing yarns, Cascade's alpaca-merino Eco Duo. With rows and rows of easy stripes, boredom never strikes as the two yarns fade in and out from darks to lights. It's nearly hypnotizing.

Whether it gets lovingly dragged around or slyly stacked on a shelf, this super simple Striped Stockinette Snake will slither its way into your dear little boy's (or girl's!) heart! -Zia (Aunt) Laura

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Sunday
Jul292012

Laura's Loop: White Caps Cowl

My mom lives an urban life in a landlocked city, but I've always felt she belongs in a small town by the water. It's so easy to picture her hopping on a boat or walking along the shore, her salt and pepper hair mussed by the sea air, her sneakers tattered, her jeans old and worn, but her sweater a chic slip of linen or cashmere. 
Have you ever known someone who so throughly embodies a duality that you can hardly describe her? That's how I feel about my mom, but one thing I can say for sure is that my mother's elegance depends on her rustic nature. You'd never see her in make-up, but that is precisely what makes her beautiful. Whether I knew it or not, when I started this cowl, I was knitting with her in mind. It, like she, pairs unlikely opposites that together create a one-of-a-kind amalgam, radiant with depth and beauty!
I knit this cowl primarily with Habu's thick-and-thin Cotton Nerimake Slub. It creates a decadent, cloud-like fabric that is both hearty and ethereal. And set against the cotton are thin stripes of Alchemy's Silken Straw, a meticulous, flat silk ribbon with a crisp finish and pearly shine. Together, these yarns form a graceful and surprising union, each complementing the other!
We named this the White Caps Cowl because the cotton captures the feeling of frothy caps on ocean waves while the silk subtly shimmers amidst the cowl's folds and drapes, like light dancing across the surface of the sea. To add some duality to your life, you can get the full pattern for the White Caps Cowl here! -Laura

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Sunday
Jul082012

Whit's Knits: Sporty Striped Peds

Ped socks are just the thing for the short attention span of summertime lolly gagging! Peds take the wonders of sock knitting and concentrate them down into one quick little project. Right away you're into the heel flap, and before you know it, the heel and gusset follow.

These are based on my Pom Pom Peds, which, over the past four (gasp!) years, have become a go-to Purl Bee pattern. But instead of bouncy little pom poms at the ankle, these Sporty Striped Peds get their visual zing from six delicate ringlets of pretty color.

I used one of my all time favorite yarns, Koigu Premium Merino. It knits up into a wonderfully soft and machine washable pair of socks. And no need to buy entire skeins of the stripe colors, thanks to Koigu's KPM Needlepoint Yarn, mini nuggets of just eleven yards each!

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Thursday
Jun142012

Molly's Sketchbook: Quilted Throw Pillows

Kind of like a good hair cut, throw pillows can really transform a look. They add a unique and fresh something-new without a lot of fuss. Personally, I’ve had the same tired pillows on my bed for at least four years, and I was ready for a change!

These Quilted Throw Pillows, with their crisp, graphic simplicity, are really giving my bedroom the new life it needed.  Normally I don’t much like machine quilting, but for this project I decided to explore the more creative side to this usually tedious (for me at least!) process. With a creamy soft muslin as my canvas, I let the quilting itself be the point, creating grids of snappy red for a clean, breath-of-fresh-air look!

I discovered that I actually like machine quilting on a small scale. It makes the steps that I usually struggle with, like laying out the quilt sandwich and basting, no sweat! It’s also a real joy to start with such basic materials (muslin, cotton batting, thread) and to end with something so pretty. In fact the whole process turned out to be about transformations: of the materials, of my attitude about machine quilting, and of my bedroom! --Molly

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Thursday
May172012

Laura's Loop: Knit Golf Club Covers

Bogey, birdie, eagle, dogleg, Cinderella story, shank, slice, duck hook, snap hook, snapper, quacker, bunker, cabbage, fried egg, tin cup, deuce, flop shot, kick, bite, long iron, mulligan, up and down, Oscar Brown, pitch and run, punch shot, sandbagger, wormburner, and so many more... This ridiculous lingo used to tumble out of my father's mouth every Saturday and Sunday evening as he, with kid-like enthusiasm, regaled us with the triumphs and tribulations of his day on the golf course.

While I never took to playing, I do love the game. It's rich with history, tradition and etiquette yet accompanied by some seriously silly outfits and laughably playful jargon. My dad  remains modest in dress, but his clubs sure make up for it!

Knit with Koigu's Kersti yarn, the single stranded ribbing is flexible enough to stretch over the large headed woods, while the double stranded tops of the covers are thick and lofty enough to protect them. This 100% merino is durable, resilient and even machine washable, perfect for the most adventurous of golfers... and knitters! Go wild with stripes of Koigu's intensely saturated colors, then top your covers off with a pom-pom, tassel or I-cord loop. Cute! (Happy Father's day, Old Man!) -Laura

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