Electric Etta

Etta_blockedThis is Etta, a great free hat pattern by Black Sheep Knitting Guild‘s own Kim Whelan. Kim has generously made her hat pattern available on Ravelry and nearly 900 Ravelers have knit it and posted photos of their creations. That must mean that Kim’s Etta is warming heads all over the world.

This hat is so popular that 4664 Ravelers have favorited it. And, even more exciting, it’s one of the featured designs in the new collection by Judith Durant “Lace One-Skein Wonders, 101 Projects Celebrating the Possibilities of Lace.”

My Etta is knit in Paton’s Classic Wool Worsted, a workhorse wool that I knit with often. I see it as a somewhat less rustic Cascade 220 competitor. And, unlike Cascade 220, it’s easier to find sale bin orphan skeins of Paton’s Classic Wool. This colorway, Lemongrass, was at the bottom of a Mary Maxim bin marked $2.99. For 210 yards, quite the deal!

I blocked my Etta, but it also looks great unblocked as a slouchy beanie.



Knitted Earbuds

earbudsgreen_head2I’m hoping that headbands of various sort will be a hit this holiday season for the younger members of my clan. This is Earbuds, designed by Linda at Knitwise Design. Her pattern is available on Ravelry and you can get a closer look at a few more “sets” (cords not included) here on the Knitwise Design website. My Earbuds are knit of Brown Sheep Lamb’s Pride Bulky on US size 10 needles. You’ll need a ridiculously small amount of yarn to knit these and about an hour of your time. Really. Quickest knit ever!

Flush with my success with my first Earbuds, I decided to knit a pair in a super bulky yarn. The pattern gives you the length needed for each size. I liked the idea of wider earpads, so I used the same number of stitches and rows and just adjusted the band at the top of the head.


My pink super-bulky set is knit in Cascade Yarn Lana Grande left over from my Umaro. I moved up to a US size 11 needle. It took even less time to knit the super-bulky version than the bulky version. If you need a quick holiday present, this pattern should work well. Here is my super-sized pair worn on a rumpled head that’s even older than my glass head.


WATERshed Harrowsmith

harrowsmith3This is Harrowsmith, a pattern by Ash Kearns of Ash Kearns Handknitting. The cape’s name harkens back to a group of Canadians who fled urban life back in the 1960’s and ended up trying to live off the land, near the town of Harrowsmith in the Ottawa Valley. Harrowsmith Country Life, the magazine that championed back-to-the-land environmentalism, was eventually sold to Telemedia, a media giant. And rural Harrowsmith is now home to a Walmart and Tim Hortons.

Well, Harrowsmith is still a great little cape, even if the times they are a changin’.

I knitted Harrowsmith in Harrisville Design’s new worsted weight: WATERshed. I’ve been working with it quite a bit, so you’ll soon see more of WATERshed on this blog. This is their barn door shade. I have their full sample card. The deep rich heathers, evocative of the watershed around Harrisville, New Hampshire, are all wonderful.

This was a fun, quick knit. My only modifications were to add a few rows to the bottom ribbing, and to use a two-stitch, four-row buttonhole rather than the one-stitch, two row sheep’s eye buttonhole the pattern called for. I also gave up trying to graft the ribbing at the top of the very extravagant hood and just grafted the first rib and then did a three-needle join and bind off. The instructions are excellent on how to graft the ribbing by sorting the knits and purls onto separate needles and then separately grafting the sets of stitches. But my tensioning was off by a country mile, so I felt a strategic retreat was required.

Here’s another view of the front and then a look at the hood.




Stora Dimun Shawl


This is a Faroese-style shawl, designed by Cheryl Oberle. She calls it Stora Dimun. It’s included in her wonderful book, Folk Shawls. I used the recommended yarn, Blackberry Ridge Woolen Mills Silk Blend. This one is the red poppy colorway. Very yummy 75% wool, 25% silk sportweight. Silk and I don’t typically play well together. But this stuff has totally won me over.

In fact, this is Stora Dimun #3. So I guess the pattern has also won me over. Here’s Stora Dimun in the same yarn in chesnut, and this one is natural cream.

I know, I should try another folk shawl. And I will. Maybe someday soon. It’s just that this one comes out so nice, stays on the shoulders, and is large enough to tuck an infant under while Sawyer’s mom is holding him close. This Stora Dimun was gifted and is being much appreciated by a knitworthy young mom.



More Calorimetries

colerimetry I know. I just can’t enough of these Calorimetries. These are my three new ones, shown on my glass head at the start of this thumbnail gallery. Plymouth Yarn Boku is my favorite choice for Calorimetry. One skein knits one Caloriimetry, with just enough yards left that you don’t start worrying you’ll run out.  I really should knit one more. That would make an even dozen.

I’m not the only one who’s so keen on knitting these. Ravelers have knit 16,193 Calorimetries and posted them on Rav. Figuring that many people knit them and eschew posting about it, I’m thinking there must be zillions of these keeping ears warm all over the world. Kathryn Schoendorf designed a real classic when she designed this headband.

Calorimetry is a free pattern on Knitty, also accessible via Ravelry. These fly out of my holiday gift basket really quick. Since I still don’t have one, maybe that 12th one I knit will be for me. Click on any you’re interested in to get a closer look at my almost-dozen.