All the hard work put in by the Mudlets to produce pinecones and salt dough ornaments paid off this afternoon, when they had an extremely successful stall at the village Christmas market. Paper chains were added to the mix, with the last few of my knitted toys, as well as the last few glittery cones from last year which I found, carefully packed away in a shoe box, hidden amongst the tinsel and streamers in our Christmas decorations boxes. Continue reading
The Mudlets love to do crafting, whether it be making and painting Warhammer miniatures or Airfix models with Mud, learning to knit (Little Mudlet is doing a pretty good job making a blanket for her teddy), or drawing. They particularly enjoy crafting associated with Christmas and this year is no different. Middle Mudlet has collected around 80 pinecones which she will be painting and glittering and both girls have a pack of paper chain links bought in the January sales and a couple of packs of sparkly cards with envelopes, in red and green, which they intend to make into Christmas cards. Continue reading
Back in 2015, I made Middle Mudlet a two tone blue snowflake sweater, using “James C Brett Top Value double knit”. The original post can be found here and reading between the lines you will realise that when I started that particular project, I hadn’t had much experience working with two yarns at any given time and so it was with some trepidation that I agreed to Middle Mudlets’ choice of pattern and started work on it.
Having experienced the challenge of Middle Mudlets’ pretty but complicated lace sweater, I opted for a project which uses a mostly plain stocking stitch for my next make. I found many ‘okay’ patterns whilst I was looking for a project for myself but nothing really sang out at me until, that is, I found a King Cole leaflet with a beautiful pair of patterns on it. One was a sweater dress with short sleeves and the other a tunic length dress with three quarter sleeves. I really liked both patterns but chose to make the tunic rather than the dress this time, although I do intend to make both eventually. Continue reading
I have to say that as much as I have struggled with this particular project, I am absolutely delighted with the way that it has turned out and, more to the point, so is Middle Mudlet. Sewing up proved surprisingly easy with the most challenging and unusual aspect being the creation of the neck band. Continue reading
Delighted though I was when Middle Mudlet not only chose a very feminine and lacy top as my next project for her but also a very pink yarn to knit it with, there have been times over the last three months or so when I have come very close to relegating it to the back of the darkest cupboard in Mudville and starting something else. For some reason it took forever and a day before the pattern was finally engraved on my mind. I pulled back countless rows in order to correct some error or other, on numerous occasions which, taking into account the loops and cast offs that are dotted throughout to create the gorgeous laciness, was an absolute nightmare. Whilst I don’t count myself as a professional knitter, I did believe that I was pretty competent in most areas but my confidence was seriously knocked by this pattern. Continue reading
I’ve made this little jacket for a colleague of Muds, who is expecting her first baby in June and for whom I have a lot of admiration and respect, even though I have never met her. Her story is inspirational and one from which many of our young people could learn a lot. She is a young polish woman who far from coming over to our country to live off tax payer funded handouts, came over and took a job as a NHS cleaner to pay her way through university, with the sole aim of improving her circumstances through hard work and determination. This paid off when, a few years ago, she secured a good job in the same company and department as Mud. She continued to work hard and now has a good position within the department and there are many British Nationals, both young and old, who seem to believe that the world owes them a living, who would do well to follow her example.
Climbing down from my soapbox, I’ll now tell you about this charming little jacket.
The yarn is a firm favourite of mine for baby boys and I’ve used this colourway for several little garments now. It’s the J. C. Brett baby marble double-knit, 100g (268m), shade number 5 and is 100% acrylic. The yarn is lovely and soft, handles beautifully while being worked and, I’m told, washes well. I love the blue and brown colour way of this shade and it always looks really effective once knitted up.
I found the pattern on the freepatterns.com website. A blanket and hat are also on the pattern but I chose to complete the jacket in this case. Please be aware though that there are a couple of revisions at the very bottom of the pattern, to correct mistakes in the instructions which you need to read before you start or, like me, you’ll find yourself frogging the work back a couple of rows in to start again – which was annoying as I knew it wasn’t right but continued anyway, so have only myself to blame and will remember to follow my instinct next time.
So with the stitches cast on for a second time, I steadily worked my way through the pattern which was in a new format for me, in so much as the front borders, front sections and back are knitted as one piece until the required length from bottom edge to armpit is reached, at which point, some stitches from each end are placed onto stitch holders, leaving just the centre stitches to be worked on until the neckline is reached. The centre section is actually the back of the jacket and once this has been worked to the neck, the remaining stitches are placed onto another holder whilst the yarn is reattached to each set of end stitches in turn and then these are worked up to create the two front sections, complete with border.
As with the remaining back stitches, the two sets of front shoulder stitches weren’t cast off at this point but were kept on separate spare needles, the reason for which became clear when it came to making up the garment and was because:
- with right sides facing each other, the needle holding the appropriate front shoulder stitches was placed parallel to the needle holding the matching back stitches (left front to left back etc);
- then with a third needle, the back and front stitches, were knitted together, one pair at a time; and
- when the second pair was done, the first was passed over the second to cast them off.
And so on and so forth until the 9 stitches for one shoulder were all cast off, 19 stitches for the back of the neck were knitted across and then the second set of front and back shoulder stitches were cast off in the same way. The end result was a tidy and perfect shoulder seam join on both sides.
The rest of the neckband and sowing up was quickly accomplished, two rather cute little Peter Rabbit buttons were sewn on and after a quick press, the garment was carefully wrapped in white tissue paper, tied with a shiny silver ribbon, ready for delivery today.
All in all I think this jacket has become my favourite baby knit to date, as I really love the shell and column detail, and would be suitable for both girl or boy.
I firmly believe that in every knitter or crocheters life there is at least one (and probably more) project that has been abandoned, cast aside, shut away in a dark corner, never again to see the light of day because for some reason, whether it be down to the pattern itself or the yarn used, the crafter hasn’t been able to get on with it, hasn’t enjoyed working on it and so has relegated it to their projects drawer, box, shelf, probably with the intention of revisiting it after a short rest but ultimately not being able to get beyond the feelings the project originally generated, thus resulting in said project continuing to languish unfinished for forever more. If it was the pattern that caused the issues, then there is a chance that the piece may be frogged back and the yarn used again but if the yarn is the problem ……… Continue reading
I finished Little Mudlets’ dress about 10 days ago and I am happy with how it turned out. She’s 9.5ish and so I decided to make the dress up as a size 10-year-old and it is probably a little too big for her at the moment because she is a slight mite but due to the shaping of the body section, and the overall design, it doesn’t look odd and is long enough to be worn either with jeans/leggings as a jumper dress or as a regular dress over tights. She has worn it both ways and the colour and shape of the garment really suit her. Continue reading
I’ve finished the back section of Little Mudlets’ jumper dress and I really do like the way it looks, especially with the shaping which has been carried out subtly throughout the knitting process. If you look at the reverse stitch sections between the ‘diamondesque’ sections of the cable pattern, you can see that as the pattern moves up the piece, these sections narrow untill the pattern finally evolves into a much narrower diamond and then into twists without diamonds. This narrowing is initially achieved by decreasing one stitch at the centre of each reverse stitch section, as well as in the sections before the first cable column and after the last, on every 12th row before reducing to every 8 and then 6 rows. Continue reading