Saturday, April 23, 2016

How to steam block acrylic knits.

I have to say it.

I'm a sucker for exciting acrylic yarns.

You know the ones you see at Walmart or Micheals, that either have a unique texture, or fabulous colours. And you can still buy a whole project's worth for less than $20.

But sometimes, the finished knit needs a little extra help. And you can't just wet block it the way you could with a wool knit.

Red Heart has a newish line of 'Boutique' yarns, and although I was able to resist grabbing a couple balls of the Unforgettable the first 4 or 5 times I saw them. I eventually caved and came home with enough to knit the Lafayette Shawl (designed by Julie Farmer) featured on the ball bands.

And I went with the Dragonfly colour way, cause I just couldn't say no to those blues and purples. (See all of the Red Heart Boutique Unforgettable colours here).

It took about 1 and a half balls to knit, but the finished shawl looked great. Problem was, it definitely needed to be blocked, all that stockinette just doesn't want to lie flat.

So I got out my handy dandy clothing steamer, and went to town.

Check out how I did it!

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Crochet from Molly Makes: Colour Block Slippers by One Sheepish Girl

Here's a project that I finished up last week. Well and started too, because it was a fun and quick project.

Aren't they adorable and super girly!

They were designed by Meredith Crawford, of One Sheepish Girl.

Do you read her blog?

You absolutely should.

Because everything on it is just beautiful, and she does a lot of really fun knitting and crochet projects!

This pattern can be found in Issue 59 of Mollie Makes (came out just before Christmas).

And I featured these slippers in my week 20 #Knitting4Twins pregnancy vlog.

I love a good stash buster crochet project... probably the reason why I have so very much worsted weight acrylic in my stash!

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

How to overdye your hand knits using food coloring.

So as you might know by now, I'm expecting identical twin boys in June. So of course I'm thrilled to be knitting and crocheting as much as I can for them during my pregnancy. In fact, I'm doing a weekly vlog about it over on my youtube channel.

One project that I recently finished is the In a Pear Tree baby Cardigan. The pattern is available as a free Ravelry download, and was designed by the Barbarian Horde.

I knit it using some yarn that I had recycled and dyed... thinking that since the yarn had both blue and pink in it, it might somehow be gender neutral. (I knit this up before I knew if I was expecting boys or girls).

But yeah... it totally looks like a girl's sweater.

So I thought, why not see if I can overdye it blue?

So I got out my handy dandy dye pot, and dug out all of my blue food colouring and got to work.

Oh I filmed it too!

And I have to say, I think I like the result.

It came out maybe a little darker than I wanted, but that's ok, I still like it. Now I'm off to go knit a second one, and overdye it differently (because twins shouldn't match perfectly, right?)

Let me know if you've had any successful overdyeing experiments in the comments below!

Monday, February 8, 2016

Knitting 4 Twins Pregnancy Vlog!

That's right... Pregnant.... with Twins! And I'm vlogging about it over on my youtube channel.

I'll be posting weekly vlogs, every Monday, as I knit and crochet my way towards my June due date.

Here are week 17-18, and week 19.

Week 17/18 show notes:

I'm starting a new weekly vlog! I'll be posting a video every Sunday for the next 5 or so months. What's the topic?
I'm knitting and crocheting for 3 now!

That's right, I'm expecting twins this June, and couldn't be more excited to wrap them up in lovely yarnny goodness!

Patterns in the video:
In a Pear Tree Cardigan:

Week 19 show notes:

Sharing my pregnancy progress as I knit and crochet my way towards welcoming my identical twins in June 2016!

This week I reveal the babies's genders, show off 3 finished projects and one new cast on.

For more fun, don't forget to subscribe, and you can follow me on instagram and twitter as @yarnlabcanada and find me on Ravelry as turnerclassic

Mentioned in today's video:

In a pear tree cardigan:

Wet Coast Wools:
Rain City Knits:
The Loop Kensington:
Knit Picks Bare Roving:
One Sheepish Girl:

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Finished Project: Shianne Hoodie

This is a project that I finished back in July, in time for my littlest cousin's 2nd birthday at the beginning of August. And I have to thank her mom, for taking the beautiful photos.

So here she is, Penelope, at 2 years of age, in her Shianne Hoodie.

The hoodie, which was designed by April Garwood, can be found in Crochet! Magazine, Autumn 2015. And comes in size 2, 4, 6 and 8. Now As this was a gift for Penelope's 2nd birthday, I went with the size 2. But I had some gauge issues, since I was using a different yarn than suggested.

The pattern calls for Berroco Maya, a Worsted/10ply yarn. But I picked up Diamon Luxuary 100% Merino, also a worsted/10ply yarn. However, as we yarnies all know, no two worsted weight yarns are created the same, and based on the yards/grams on the ball band, my yarn was a bit bulkier than called for. So I dropped a hook size, did some crocheting, some measurements and then some ripping out, and crocheting again.

You can watch my struggles in this video here.

But it was all worth it, because the finished sweater was super cute.

And Penelope likes it very much.

This sweater came with some new techniques for me.

Firstly, actually taking the time to pin my sleeves in place before joining them.

And second, sewing in a zipper to a knitted or crocheted garment. I watched a couple of youtube videos on the topic, and then kind of just went with it. but I Think it turned out fine. The key for me was in pinning it in place, zipped, trying it on a model, which in this case was a teddy bear (I had no toddlers handy) and then making sure everything looked lined up fine. Leaving the pins in and sewing it into place with some grey yarn and a very sharp needle.

Over all, I think this was a great pattern, not too difficult, just be sure to check your gauge. A couple times preferably!

Friday, October 30, 2015

Easy DIY Cross-Stitch Halloween Pumpkin

Guys! Halloween is tomorrow! are you ready yet?

If you're still in need of a bit of Halloween decor, here's an easy little project that you can bang out in an afternoon.

For this project you need

-1 pumpkin real or fake (fake pumpkins need to be hollow)
-Graph paper and a Pen
-Knife to get inside that pumpkin
-A strong, large, thick, sharp Needle
and a butt tone of patience.

 And No yarn skills required.

Watch the video how-to here, and don't forget to click Subscribe while you're at it!

I love the way my pumpkin turned out, and I'm so glad I did this project on a craft pumpkin, so I will be able to use it year after year!

Monday, August 31, 2015

A cow for a cow.

Here's a little project I'd been meaning to share for a while.

First, the backstory. You see my boyfriend Kevin graduated from Medical School this past June, as a member of the Class of 2015, or the Cows. You see the University of Calgary has a long tradition of giving their Med School classes animal names, and for the past three years, he and his peers cheerfully Moo'd their way through school.

So for graduation, I thought I'd give him a hand made cow.

So I searched the Ravelry pattern database using the following criteria: crochet, free, has photo, all toys and hobbies, keyword:cow; and a total of 30 patterns came up.

After some debate, I decided to go with the Spotless Cow, by Sabine Ingrao.

And he turned out great! He only took two evenings to make, and I was able to use all stash yarn, Red Heart Super Saver for the white and brown, and Red Heart Soft Touch for the rest.

I threw on some buttons for eyes, and added a stethoscope to make him into a 'Dr. Cow'.

I loved the way the pattern turned out, with the great big nose, and floppy limbs (which are incorporated into the body as you go along) this plus toy has a great feel. Plus the double thickness ears stand up tall and hold their character.

I threw a UCalgary brand on him as an added touch.

Oh, and if you are curious, I made the pillow in the background as well. You can watch the youtube tutorial here.