Archive for the ‘Knitting Projects’ Category
My guys like a light weight but warm hat, one they can scrunch up and stick in their pocket but when they put it on it needs to keep them warm! The folded over “cuff” should not be too deep and when it’s folder over the hat sits just over the tip of the ears but when it’s pulled down against the cold it goes right over those ears completely. I might call a hat with this kind of fit a skull cap or beanie.
This little watch cap fits the bill perfectly. Having knit and ripped quite a few times before I got it right I can now present you with a pattern for a cap that’s super warm, “stuffs” nicely into your pocket and fits just right. I will make this pattern as a download, all pretty in a pdf with my lovely template and graphics soon but for now, so I don’t forget how I did it, I will write it out here. This one’s for Dan.
I used LUX by Buffalo Gold Premium Fibers (45% American Bison Down, 20% Cashmere, 20% Silk and 15% Tencel) and it was an excellent choice. I used it doubled to make it a fingering weight yarn but you can use any fingering weight as a single strand. A sock yarn would be perfect as long as you aren’t knitting for a sensitive bald head. The lux would be perfect for such a person as this 🙂 as would many of my exotic luxury fiber hand spun yarns in fingering weight. If ordering from the handspun please let me know you are making the “Perfect Reversible Watch Cap” so I can spin it just right for this project.
I`ve chosen a few of my favorite handspun yarns for this project and put them on sale for you. Jan 2012.
Size: Adult Small (Medium, Large) Finished Measurements: 15 inches around and 8.5 (9, 9.5) inches in length
Gauge: 7.5 sts and 10.5 rows = 1 inch in stocking stitch (11 sts and 10.5 rows = 1 inch in K1, P1 rib)
You will need:approximately 200 – 250 yards of fingering weight yarn. If using the LUX, as I have done, you will need 2 of the 40 gram skeins of 330 yarns each. The finished hat in size small weighs about 45 grams so you cannot get one out of a single skein. a 2.5mm circular knitting needle and a set of 4 or 5 in size 2.5 mm
Instructions: With single strand of fingering or double strand of lace yarn (Lux) and the circular needles cast on 156 stitches. Join in a circle and work around in K1, P1 rib until piece measures 6.5 (7, 7.5) inches.
Shape Crown: Row 1: Work 11, *Double Decrease (slip next 2 stitches together knitwise, knit the third stitch, pass the 2 slipped stitches over) Work 23. Repeat from * around ending with work 12. 12 stitches decreased over 6 miters. (144 sts) This makes the nice mitre that looks good on both sides.
Row 2 and all even rows: Work even knitting the knits and purling the purls. (trust me, even when you knit 3 in a row it will resolve itself after the next decrease row) Row 3: Work 10, *Double Decrease over next 3 sts, work 21. Repeat from * around ending with work 11. (132 sts) Row 5: Work 9, *Double Decrease over next 3 sts, work 19. Repeat from * around ending with work 10. (120 sts).
Continue in this manner, decreasing 12 stitches every other round until there are only 12 sts remaining. Break yarn and thread through the remaining sts. Pull tight, secure and weave in your ends.
I had recently signed up for a class on Craftsy Spinning Dyed Fibers on how to spin these wonderful tops and so, of course, I had to buy some. I got these 2 amazing colourways and a bar of homemade goat milk soap.
I got on the iPad and watched the class and practiced. It was my first time to try Navajo plying and I can’t believe how easy it is after I’ve been avoiding it for all these years!
I only have 4 ounces of each colourway so I started with a pair of mitts. I found the pattern on Ravelry, Cruiser by Cailyn Meyer. When the mitts were finished I still had quite a bit left but not enough for a hat so I made this headband to match the mitts (just made up the pattern as I went).
This set is for Libby and I gave it to her today. I really think she likes it a lot.
I’m making my Christmas presents and wanted to work with some cashmere so I thought this would be a nice little project that would work up fast and give the recipient some wonderful warmth and luxury this winter. It was really fast and such a treat to knit. This one’s for Bethy.
I love this cowl and it was so fast and easy, a perfect “knitting as meditation” project.
BLOCKING: I blocked it with wires and pins and Wow, what a difference. I really stretched it to it’s max when I blocked and probably wouldn’t have stretched it quite as wide now that I see it dry. I think I prefered the fabric with a little more bounce and a slightly tighter fit. But that is personal taste and it’s nice to have a choice. Different blocking choices can give you such different looks.
Pattern coming soon, check here to see if it’s out yet.
For a limited time I am offering one of my original design patterns “Top Down Baby Jacket” as a free download pdf on Ravelry or Craftsy. I think you may have to be a member for the Ravelry one but you really should sign up, its the very best knitting site ever.
Link to free knitting pattern Top Down Baby Jacket on Ravelry
Link to free knitting pattern Top Down Baby Jacket on Craftsy
A little update on what for sale in my Etsy shop. These items are also available at
Yesterday while watching football I knit this little earflap cap to match the Alpaca Pullover .
Ill be writting it up as a pattern soon. let me know if you want to try the untested version and Ill email it to you if you ask before the retail version is ready. Pattern for the Sweater is here
Fun and Fast to knit
Just wanted to let you know I’ve finished the big Cashmere Cowl. I really like it and it’s just the right length and width to go around 3 times but looks great at twice around also.The Pattern Materials: Cashmere 12 ply Bulky / Chunky weight. buy it at Handknitting.com or (email nancy@nancyelizabethdesigns for more info or to custom order the hand painted yarn) OR I can custom handspin some of this luscious yarn for you. Same email. 5-6 skeins of 50 grams each (approx. 300 grams) based on desired width (and budget 🙂 6.5mm circular needle. Gauge: 10 sts and 28 rows = 4″ or 10 cm over Garter Stitch Pattern Finished Dimensions: It will be 60-70 inches long approx. 8 inches wide.
The idea is to have it long enough to wrap around the neck x 3 with a little extra for styling. Very luscious and exotic in thick cashmere.Directions:
I’ve decided on a couple of designs for Cowls. I’m going to do a simple one, just once around the neck with a little drape and simple elegant lace design. I have a couple of traditional all-over lace patterns in mind. I handspun some of my Mongolian cashmere fiber for this one in a fingering weight. I was really happy with the way it knit up. it’s so soft and the drape is perfect for what I want. I’m thinking I will write out the pattern for this one and another one with the “old Shale” pattern on it. I think the same yarn would be perfect. Put them both in the same pattern and just have choice of stitch patterns with everything else being the same.
The Big Cozy Cowl will be very different. I am using the China Cashmere from my old business Handknitting.com. I have dyed it myself simply by sprinkling the dye powder randomly and baking it in the oven at 350 for 1 hour in a glass covered dish. The dye bath did exhaust itself and the colours look fantastic. this one is the bulky weight with 6.5mm needle. It will be 60 inches long and about 14 inches wide. The idea is to have it long enough to wrap around the neck x 3 with a little extra for styling. Very luscious and exotic in thick cashmere. Cast on 180 sts and join. work in garter st for 14 inches or desired width.
This is all I have so far because Ive tried so many patterns and different size needles etc. and had to rip it out about 5 times. I have settled on the pattern written above. Just the right melding of cozy, thickness, drape and attractive but simple allover pattern.
All thought of building a web site and products for sale are slipping into the background as I contemplate what I’m going to knit for my family for Christmas.
The socks are always a big hit and I will certainly be doing them this year but what else. Everyone has a couple of scarves, mitts or gloves and the kids all have hats scarves and mitts but I’m sure anyone could use more. I will perhaps do the big cowl for the ladies. I saw a couple on Ravelry. This is the free Burberry Inspired Cowl that I thought would be nice in Cashmere or in Merino and Silk bulky.
I also thought about bags. Felted bags but I don’t think I have time to make them now. Why do I always wait until October to do this?
I did spin some Merino and Nylon from Knit Picks last week. I put it into a glass dish and sprinkled 2 colours of gaywool dye on to the soaked skeins. I covered with a glass lid and baked at 325 – 350 for about 1 hour. the water was pretty clear and I didn’t get much bleeding into the rinse at all. the effect was pretty and I will definitely try this again and refine. I knit them into a pair of men’s socks but it took 150 grams instead of the usual 100 that I need of the commercially spun yarns. I think my yarns must be more compact.
Still working on the patterns. I`ve got a bit knit on the Adult Hoodie and it`s going to be amazing.
The thing I`ve been really working hard at this week is getting a chart made for the handspun yarns. I`m going to try something different. I want to spin the yarn to order Custom Made Handspun Yarn. I need to know, first, what all of the specs are for each yarn weight like yards per oz or pound as well as WPI or wraps per inch and suggested gauge and needle size according the the Craft Yarn Council and Ravelry which I consider the 2 greatest authorities on Yarn and knitting worldwide. I have come up with this chart as the standard for my yarns.
I have also developed formulas for the handspinning so that I can come up with the correct weights and measures for the requested yarn. However, I do plan to be in close contact with my customers so that I can truely make this a custom experience and spin the yarn for each individuals needs. This is very exciting. Here is my philosophy for why I am offering the yarns that I choose to spin.Back to Basics – Simple and Elegant
I love clean and simple lines in a design and a classic traditional look. I believe it adds an elegance that cannot be acheived otherwise. Although I adore colour and use it often I can also see great value in using the colours of our natural fibers as they appear in nature. I find this to be expecially true with handspun yarn. If the design is right the handspun yarn will really “sing” in your project as it will be the focus itself with it’s lovely subtle variations and textures.The eye will not be distracted and confused by the multitude of colours often found in handspun yarns.
I’ve been trying to decide what to offer in handspun yarn. I notice an abundance of stunning multicolored handspun yarns that honestly look good enough to eat and I want them all. However, there are time when I also want something other than colour from a yarn. I decided to offer some natual colour, and hand dyed solid coloured yarns. Even though a photo of an individual skein may not be as eye catching as one of a delighful multicolored yarn, there are certainly times when they are preferable in my knitting projects. I use my natural or hand dyed solids when I want my design to show. When I want to showcase the style, the line, the drape of the design as well as the lovely organic texture of the handspun yarn. If the stitch pattern or shaping of your beautiful knitting is the focus of the piece then you may not want all of the confusion of colour to interfere.