FO: Forest Baby Flying Duck Hat and Mitties

So several weeks after asking the question “What to Knit for a Baby Boom” I am starting to get some answers.  You have seen what I came up with, the Legwarmies and Vertabrae combo and now the Duckie Sweater and today’s matching pieces, a hat and mitties.

These little projects were unplanned bonuses, after finishing up the Duckie Sweater with nearly 50g of yarn remaining I thought a hat and mitties would be perfect for the remnants. After finishing up both I still have about 15yds remaining, so I managed to get a nice gift set out of a single skein of DK weight.  And with DK being such a good option across some of my favorite hand dyers dyers, Tanis (Yellow Label), madelinetosh (tosh DK or tosh merino DK for a single) and SweetGeorgia Yarns (Superwash DK), and they all happen to be superwash which can make life so much easier for new moms and dads (or whoever gets the short straw and has to do laundry).

So I would say that I have a good answer to my question about what to knit for babies, I enjoy making little sweaters, but not from fingering weight and legwarmies and mitties are a great way to bust some stash without committing to something too large.  I will wait to hear back from new mom about what was the best part and what can be improved upon.

– Details –

Project Name: Forest Baby Flying Ducky Hat AND  Forest Baby Mitties

Pattern: Aviatrix Baby Hat by Justine Turner of Just Jussi AND Baby Mitts by Susan B. Anderson for Spud Says!

Recipient: Forest Baby

Yarn: SweetGeorgia Yarns Superwash DK in Tourmaline

Modifications:

  • Mitties – Did 1×1 rib to match the sweater and hat

New Skills:

  • Hat – Overlapping shortrows (ie. eating up some gaps while still creating more), I am not certain I did them correctly but the baby will be cute enough no one will notice.

Feedback:

  • Yarn – As seen in my effusive praise on the sweater I am a HUGE fan of the yarn and the color and am excited to use some of the other SweetGeorgia in my stash.
  • Patterns – Both were fine, although the Hat pattern seemed needlessly complex in places.  I don’t love the hat but I will be on the look out for other helmet shaped hats.  The mitties were straight forward but the pattern made it easier.

Re-Knit?:  Probably not the hat, it was more fiddly than I would like but the mitties are cute but seem super small, I will find out how much too small when the baby is born and I will modify the pattern accordingly.

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In like a lion …

I finished the brown sweater to the left and cast on all the projects on the right.

Yesterday the weather seemed to sure be following the old adage, the winds were whipping the snow/rain was sideways and it felt like winter and spring were doing battle.  In honor of that miserable I decided that I turn my weekend in to a knitting retreat and I managed to finish and block the brown baby sweater and cast on the blue one.

This image was just too cute to not share.

I also cast on my March Sock, and fought with some double points as I cast on a Comfy Chubby Chirp, my attempt to finally free myself from the last of my baby blanket cotton/acrylic.

Oh an on Friday, because I knew I was headed to a boring seminar in the after noon I cast on a pair of plain vanilla socks like my just finished Recess pair.  These are intended to be purse socks and bonus to my Year of Socks scheme, so we will see how quickly they get finished.

So not only is the weather coming in like a lion, adding all these new March cast-ons to the Brick Cowl I have been working on since the TFA KAL in January, I have a heckuva month of knitting ahead.

Stash In, Stash Out

My 2012 yarn/fiber stash, I love each and every yarn I have there.

Stash, that glorious wonderful thing, that home to a thousand dreams and the temptress to lead so many knitters astray.

I love yarn, it is warm and squishy, it is the embodiment of possibility, will it be a scarf or socks or a sweater or a baby toy? However, because of all this possiblity I think of yarn as a kitten I have adopted, I need to keep it safe or make something out of and if, unexpectedly, I fall out of love with it, it is a spurned lover haunting my thoughts and my queue.

Part of the fun of knitting is that you get to buy stuff, and you get to enjoy new yarns and tools, however if your stash is weighing on your conscience, every yarn purchase induces more guilt.  For those with a SABLE (Stash Beyond All Life Expectancy) there is a kind of shame that seems to go around with growing the stash even further, despite the fact that you have means to purchase all that yarn without any sacrifices.

This brings it all back to me, I don’t have a SABLE, I have a nice stash, but it has been giving me angst, mostly because I feel like yarn should be FIFOed.  For those of you fortunate not enough not have a parent who uses technical terms at home or haven’t worked in food service, FIFO stands for First In, First Out.  So when you get something new it doesn’t get stocked right away, you sell the oldest stuff first and then stock the new stuff.  So as I have applied this mindset to yarn, when I find something new, gorgeous and scrumptious and I order it, I end up putting it in my stash until I have knitted up some of the stash that has been marinating for longer.

But this has put me in a position where I feel stuck with yarns that I don’t love any more, that weren’t of a quality of fiber I appreciate today. But that since I brought it home I HAVE to knit it.  Heck, I have crocheted two baby blankets from yarn I didn’t love, but felt obligated to use up.

So, while it wasn’t one of my 2012 goals, I think I am going to try to be not as hard on myself about my stash.  I am going to let go of the yarns that make me feel guilt, be that through donation or destash. I started doing this last week at our Georgian Bay Fiber Guild swap, I managed to get quite a few yarns that were weighing heavily on me off to new, happy homes.

Also, I am going to work with some of the new fibers in my stash, letting myself get taken in by a beautiful skein and project without feeling like I am betraying all the yarn that has come before that perfect new skein.

Now time to get more of it moved out and to work with some of the new yarns I have coming in, including Tanis Fiber Arts 2012 Club and the Indigodragonfly Smart Ass Knitters/World Domination One Skein Club which will start up in June.  Also, that box of SweetGeorgia yarn that showed up at my door last week.