Category Archives: Magazine Review

WIP’s, FROG’s, and Magazine Reviews

Life’s been pretty crazy and hectic around my house as of late. Since Trinity’s been born, my life seems to revolve around eating, sleeping, changing diapers, and a few stolen moments of knitting. Speaking of… A few weeks ago, KnitPicks offered a free skein of Brava Worsted (not sure if it’s still available). I definitely took them up on the offer since I’m always looking for new yarns to work with. Since I only have one skein, I searched Ravelry high and low for a pattern that would use the skein and not have much left over or a need to purchase an additional skein. I found a smaller purse that was created for a Harry Potter challenge: Nagini’s Playground (NOTE: you have to have a Ravelry account in order to view the pattern). I absolutely love the cabling in this purse! It’s turning out great so far. The yarn is incredibly soft and a fantastic color. I can’t wait until it’s finished. Here’s my Peapod Nagini‘s progress so far (it’s about 75% finished):

Image

 My next WIP is the Purple Heritage Lace Scarf. I started this last year at the beach. I purchased a beautiful purple colored skein of sock yarn. I originally started this project for myself but have since decided that I’m going to give it as a Christmas gift this year. I know (well hope) the recipient will love it! It’s actually a pretty quick knit. I ended up having to rip out a good 3 inches due to a dropped stitch that I couldn’t fix. Lesson learned: whenever doing ANY project with lace, place a life-line somewhere! Here’s what it look like so far:

Unblocked detail

The other project I was working on was Shari’s Kindle Cozy. Well, I’ve since frogged it. I realized while knitting mine that my project didn’t look like the picture. Somehow, the chart work wasn’t matching up quite right. The only thing I can think of is that the chart is read differently than a normal chart. I followed, checked, and triple checked myself to make sure I was doing it right. IDK… Anyway, I noticed that the same thing was happening when knitting hers. It still looks pretty which is why I didn’t rip mine out. I ended up frogging hers though because A. her daughter lost her Kindle and B. I didn’t really like the way the pattern was turning out with the yarn. If she deices to get another Kindle, I’ll use a different pattern to knit her one.

In my last post, I was incredibly excited about working on Trinity’s baby layette sweater. I had gotten the back and left front completed. This is another project I’ll be frogging, unfortunately. Trinity is growing like a weed and is already in 6-9 month clothing and the pattern only goes to 6 months. I guess my only other option is to figure out how to make it bigger? If anyone has any ideas, let me know please because I really, really love this pattern!

Since my last update, I’ve received a couple of my magazine subscriptions including Interweave Knits Summer and Creative Knitting Summer. Honestly, I wasn’t uuber crazy about this issue of Interweave Knits. There are definitely a couple of patterns that I added to my Ravelry cue, like the Tiered Bangles , Summer Blooms Shawl, Pianissimo Mitts (although I would add half-fingers to these), Coquette Vest (I don’t really like it as a top but think it would be pretty as a stockinette cardigan with this detail on the hem and cuffs or as a shawl), and the Sand Dune Cardigan.

I just recently started subscribing to Creative Knitting and half to say I’m LOVING this magazine! The articles are great and the patterns are ones I actually want to knit. The July issue left nothing to be desired! My favorites are: Haute Hexagons, Zephyr Beret, Double-Checkboard Pillow (definitely a different color scheme), Dreams of Lace, Ravishing in Red (although I really like this tank, I would do something different with the shoulder straps), Hint of Cables Top (very classy!), Sunny Day Dress (for Trin and/or Kris), and Easy Lace Raglan Jacket & Hat (for Trin). My only criticism of this issue is the layout. I don’t like that the pattern instructions are continued in the back of the catalog instead of being together with the pattern itself. I find it annoying to flip back and forth between the picture and instructions, especially for more complicated patterns. But that’s just my personal preference.

Well that’s what I’ve got for tonight. It’s knittin’ time!

♥Courtney♥

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Creative Knitting Magazine, March 2012

About 2 years ago I got a trial issue of Creative Knitting and there wasn’t a single pattern in the entire issue that I liked! I was really disappointed and decided not to subscribe. I received a flyer in the mail a few weeks ago to receive another trial issue. I was a little hesitant but thought, “What the heck?” I’m so incredibly glad I did! After doing my initial leaf through, I was in love!! So onto the review…

First highlight: With your paid subscription, you now get 2 years of back digital issues–awesome! I also enjoyed the article about circular needles. I really liked seeing the pictures of the different types of interchangeable sets. I’ve been researching different ones to replace my Denise set and found the pictures very helpful.

I seriously want to knit practically every pattern in this issue! The very first pattern, Sunburst Scarf, has a beautiful stitch pattern. Kristi loved it so much too that she wants one! Kristi and I both really liked the X’s & O’s & I Love You wrist cuffs. The colors are bright and fun. Now I just have to figure out how to get it small enough for Kristi’s wrist! The Colorful Kitchen Set is the next pattern I fell in love with. It’s fresh and very Spring-y. I love the daisy embroidery on the set and plan to make this for our house. Another household pattern I like is the Taste of Americana Hearth Rug. I love the geometric shaping and think this would be perfect in our living room in black, red, and tan. Next up is the Heirloom Table Mat. I love doilies. I find them beautiful but difficult to crochet because I’m not a big fan of steel crochet hooks. So when I saw a way to knit a doily, I fell in love! This will probably be one of the first patterns I try from this magazine. One of my favorite patterns from this issue is the Bombay Nights cardigan. This one is totally up my alley. Some things I really like are the texture, bands, and big buttons. The Fairy Princess Skirt is totally adorable and I can’t wait to cast this on for Trinity! It’s made with a ruffle yarn and featured with a pair of white leggings and just so stinkin’ cute! I’ll have to wait a little while though because the smallest size available is 12 months! I plan to make one in each size for her though. I was really excited to see that this issue included a pattern for a child’s cardigan up to a size 10. The Fields of Spring Cardigan features two different stitch patterns and an adorable picot edging. Kristi saw it and immediately started drooling (okay.. maybe not drooling but she definitely did the “I want! I want!”)!  I’ll probably make this for her for Christmas. Another pattern Kristi and I both really love is the Azteca vest. (Again, I’ll have to figure out how to get this down to Kristi’s size). I really like the lines and silhouette. It’s very feminine yet unique. I think this would look fantastic in either an olive green or light pink or maybe both?? Last but definitely not least is the Beguiling Eyelets cardigan. (I’m a huge fan of cardigans if you haven’t figured that out yet.) I really love the color of this cardigan and actually have a yarn in my stash that matches almost perfectly. I really like the eyelet lines and the knitted-in belt loop. This is definitely one I will knit in the near future but will probably wait to lose my baby weight.

Well, I pretty much named almost every pattern in the issue so great job Creative Knitting! This is one of the best issues of any knitting magazine I’ve subscribed to in the past 4 years. If you haven’t picked one up, I highly recommend doing so! Needless to say, I’ll definitely be subscribing to Creative Knitting! On that note, I have to go work on Trinity’s baby blanket as she’s due to be here in less than a week and I’m not quite half-way finished. Until next review, much love and many blessings!

♥Courtney♥

Disclaimer: All the patterns above are linked to their Ravelry pattern pages. You won’t be able to view the pictures unless you have a Ravelryaccount. If you don’t, it’s free to sign-up (plus, it’s a fantastic resource!). 

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WIP’s, Interweave Knits, and Knit Simple Reviews

While knitting and crafting are definitely my passions as far as hobbies are concerned, they sometimes take a back burner to life. Between taking care of the house (which doesn’t always get done either), working, and being involved with the PTA, I feel like there’s no room for my hobbies. As a resolution to myself and a “healthy mind”, I’ve decided that I’m going to make time for crafting every day, even if it’s only 10 minutes. So far, I’m doing pretty good and actually getting more than 10 minutes the past few days.

I recently started Lion Brand’s Snowflake Tote and so far, I’m totally in love! The pattern came out a couple of years ago and the minute I saw it, I fell in love. I purchased the yarn last year during A.C. Moore’s holiday sale for a discount price (like 1/2 off each skein) but never got to start it because of other knitting projects that had to be finished for Christmas. So, I decided this year that I was going to make it no matter what. It’s knitting up much quicker than I originally anticipated. I’ve got the front panel and half of the back panel finished already. I was really nervous about the color work because I’ve never actually attempted a project with more than one color in a row at a time. I was checking out other people’s projects on Ravelry and found a variety of colors and options. One woman reversed the colors and I actually like that version better. I might just make a second one with that variation! Here’s the front finished front panel:

The next project I’m working on is holiday dishcloths. They make fantastic hostess gifts or gifts in general. I love that they knit up quickly (like 2 hours) and are extremely portable. I completed an ornament dishcloth last night and started a Christmas tree one today. I used Hobby Lobby’s I Love This Cotton! for the first time. Honestly, I’m loving it! It’s extremely soft and shows stitch definition much better than other cotton’s I’ve used. I made the ornament dishcloth in red and will probably make at least one more in the bright green. Here’s a finished picture:

Now moving on to reviews… I received the winter issue of Interweave Knits a few days ago and I’m pretty excited with this issue. There’s a little of everything in this issue from retro-style sweaters to cardigans and fun accessories. (If you click on the links throughout the paragraph, it’ll take you the pictures of the projects.) One of the first patterns I came across that I fell in love with is the Pan Am Jacket. I love the bold pattern used, the single closure that allows it to drape, and how it crops. One of my favorite features about this cardigan is the mitered corners. I’ve never seen something like that on a garment and think it’s really fun. The next pattern I really liked is the Briar Rose Tunic featured on this issues cover. This top features beautiful twisting cable along the neckline that filter down the front center into a rib. The twist reminds me of the stitch pattern used on the Brigit Socks I knitted a few years ago. I also like that the tunic has an incredibly feminine and flirty modest v-neck. Next up is the Fabled Cardigan.  This would be absolutely adorable on Kristi. I really like how textured and different the bottom is and since it’s knit in chunky yarn, it wouldn’t take long to make! One of my favorites of the whole issue is the Tempest Coat. I have to be honest and say that this one looks challenging. Anything with more than one color in a row scares me but that definitely won’t stop me from trying! I thoroughly enjoy challenges and this seems like just the project to do so! One of my favorite features about this cardigan is the big collar and wide bands of ribbed edging. It creates such a classy finishing touch to the cardigan. I seriously can’t wait to cast this on! The only thing I would change about this is the accent colors. I really enjoy the pink but instead of orange, I would substitute green. Next up is the Holiday Lights Tam. This hat is fun, flirty, and has just a hint of glitz (and totally screams me!!). I purchased my first tam last year and love how it looks with my short hair. I really like the stitch pattern and the subtly of the beading. This is another project that might be more of a challenge for me because I’ve never knitted using beads. I’ve seen a few shows and lessons on how to do them and it doesn’t look too hard. So, we’ll see. (I wasn’t kidding when I said there was A LOT of patterns in this issue I like). Moving on… My second favorite pattern from this issue is the Leif Slipover vest. There are many features that I fell in love with including the crazy cables, funky front cable closure, and hood. I love to layer so this is a perfect choice for me to knit. Plus, since it’s knit in a bulky wool, it’s just about as close to an instant gratification project as I can get for the size! Another cardigan I love in this issue is the Livingstone Cardigan (seeing a pattern yet??). Again, this cardigan features lovely cables, a wide collar, and beautiful tweed yarn. I especially love the front closures. And last, but certianly not least, the final pattern that I dog-eared is Nantes Hat. I really like that this hat is very fitted and features a beautiful lace, rib, and cables pattern. It’s very feminine and beautiful constructed. With all of that said, I haven’t really had a chance to read the articles so I’ll comment on those at a later time. Next up… Knit Simple…

Okay, I have to be honest. I’m kind of a dork when it comes to getting my knitting magazines. It’s like opening a Christmas present every time I receive one. So you can imagine my excitement when I received the winter issue of Knit Simple, especially after seeing the front cover. With that said, I seriously usually rave hard-core about Knit Simple. There are very few issues I don’t like or can’t find something to knit that I like. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case with this one. After leafing through the winter issue, I only found 1 (I know…. really?!) pattern that I would actually knit and that was the Faux-Cable Hat (can’t link because the site isn’t updated yet). Not a single other pattern stood out. And because I was so disappointed with the pattern selections, I didn’t even bother reading the articles yet. I just couldn’t bring myself to open it up again.

Next WIP will be Christmas cards. I really have to get a move on with these because it took me a little over a month to complete the ones I did last year. I’m hoping since I got a new Cricut Christmas cartridge, new blades, and paper it’ll speed the process up. Now that I’ve finally got the dining room table cleared of the Christmas decorations we were putting up, I should theoretically be able to start these this week.

That’s about all I’ve got for today so I’m signing off to knit more of the Christmas Tree Dishcloth. Until next time, much love and many knitting/crafting blessings!

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