Tuesday, November 27, 2012

The First Giveaway!

Happy Thanksgiving! Normally I feel compelled to start these out with how crazy it's been, but I just had 5 days off work (counting the weekend) so I really had no excuse to not post. I did get a lot of knitting done, though. I finished my fingerless mitts, finished a pair of ribbed socks, and started in on a Christmas gift for my husband (he reads the blog so I can't post pictures until after Christmas!)

This summer, I told myself that I would get an early start on my Christmas gifts. Of course that didn't happen, and now I have only one project completed and at least six more to go. It'll be a very busy month trying to get all of that done. I spend most of yesterday knitting, so much that I had a dent in my thumb from pressing on the needle. It was fine by morning, but very sore last night!

Instead of talking about a project in this post, I want to do something special for the upcoming holidays. I read a lot of knitting blogs, and I love it when the writers are able to give away books or patterns, as it gives readers a chance to try something out they may not have known about prior, and it gives the writer a chance to hear from the readers (which is always exciting!).

So for the next few weeks, I'm going to do a different giveaway each week - a pattern, a knitting book, a finished project, and some yarn.  This week, I'm going to start with the pattern.

One lucky winner will receive a free copy of my Lacy Cowl pattern from Ravelry (pictured below).   This is using a repeat lace pattern, which makes it a great beginner project for someone new to lace knitting, or a quick knit for an expert. You can make it a cowl as directed (shown below double wrapped) or don't join the ends and make it a scarf.

This was such a fun project to write and to knit, and I can't wait to share it with one of my readers.  To win, all you have to do leave a comment on this blog post by 12pm EST on Saturday, December 1st.  I will then draw a comment at random and contact the winner.  The next giveaway will post the following week.

Hope everyone had a great holiday weekend, and I'll see you all again in a few days!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Malabrigo Yarn, Fingerless Mitts

I got way too busy again!  It's almost been another two weeks since my last post and much knitting has been done.

Pictured here is the right hand of a pair of fingerless mitts I'm working on.  The pattern is 'White Caps Fingerless Gloves' by Simone Van Iderstine, available on Ravelry.  I'm using Malabrigo Sock Yarn, in 'Stonechat'.

I have a bit of 'history' regarding Malabrigo.  I briefly went to a knitting meetup a few years ago and a few of us decided to do a sort of knit along, working on the same project at the same time - a cabled bag.  This is before I had ever taken a cable class, or really knew very much about yarn at all.  The person running the group was using Malabrigo yarn, and kept saying how much she loves it and how she knits pretty much everything with it.  I had no idea what Malabrigo was at the time, so I didn't know what she was talking about or what the big deal was.

It wasn't until this year when I started working at my local yarn shop that I realized what Malabrigo was, how popular it is, how great the colors are...and how absolutely horrible it is to wind.  If you have ever tried to wind a skein of Malabrigo into a center pull ball, you know what I mean!  You pretty much have a 50/50 shot of getting a skein that won't completely tangle while winding, resulting in 30 minutes of trying to recover. Many people complain about winding Malabrigo (rightfully so!) but all of them also mention how worth it it is once wound and you're actually knitting with it.  They have some of the best colors available, and it's great to knit with.

Anyway, I bought some of this Malabrigo sock yarn a few months ago and I'm finally putting it to use.  This pattern achieved both using some yarn in my stash (instead of buying more) and to use what I learned in my cabling class I took this summer.

I'm finishing up a pair of ribbed socks, and then plan to finish some more of my half-done projects that are sitting around so I can move on to new projects.  I've started browsing Ravelry more and I have close to 100 projects in my queue now.  Time to kick it up a notch and get more knitting done!

Monday, November 5, 2012

Another Free Pattern

Here is the next size crochet ball I wrote a pattern for.  This is also available for free on Ravelry in my store, Cubicled Knitter/Megh Kizer. 

While the medium size I posted before is great for kids to throw around and play with, this smaller size can work as a toy as well as a stress ball for adults.  I had this tested out by people I work with, and they said the smaller size fits much better in the palm of their hand and is great to use while working. 

These balls are one of the few things I still crochet since knitting is still my main 'craft of choice', so I'm eager to share. More to come later, but I wanted to get this posted right away.  The larger size is soon to come, and then I'll be back to posting more knitted patterns.