nutkin mitts and another pinwheel.

Question: What do you get when you combine a cross country airplane trek with a yarn pirate knitting project?

Answer: Nutkin mitt #2, and just in time. While it was close to 80 degrees yesterday, today’s high is around 50 and the forecast is for rain. Perfect nutkin mitt wearing weather, if I do say so myself.

Also, I started pinwheel number 2, using Cascade 220 Heathers. This one is also not quite perfect, and I am blaming it on awkward plane conversation. I should have started this before I left, as the beginning is a bit fiddly. There is one spot where I think I missed a yarn over, but the first blanket blocked so nicely that I don’t think it will be visible at all. This is what it looks like, almost one ball into the project:

Alright. Boh is tugging on the leash, which means he has some business to do — and I have to get to work!

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legwarmers in real life.

First, an Easter photo. My landlords’ children knocked on my door yesterday morning to present me with this:

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So sweet to think that the Easter Bunny remembered me this year. I absolutely adore my landlord-family (I live in the house in their backyard), and I will miss them terribly when it comes time to leave here for the colder climes of New Home/grad school.

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So it seems there are a lot of folks out there in internet-land who have questions about wearing legwarmers. I’ve noticed that several folks have used legwarmer and wearing legwarmer-related search terms to find my blog. I happen to have a few pictures of the legwarmers in action this week, as the weather is just changeable enough to warrant them. Mind you, I am no fashion plate, and tend to subscribe to the “If You Like It, You Should Wear It” school of clothing oneself. (Also known as the “Get Dressed in Five Minutes and Try Not to Wear Exactly What You Wore Yesterday” approach to dressing.) If it is legwarmer wearing confidence you need, a few ideas:

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(Way above, and above): long underwear, twirly skirt and legwarmers. If you’re feeling particularly bold, you could wear a shorter skirt so that it looks like the second picture.

Option 2:

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Legwarmers are also appropriate for Saturday morning, and perfect for pairing with cropped loungewear when the dog needs to go out.

Option 3 (not pictured): Most of the time, I wear legwarmers because I love flip-flops but my ankles get cold. I like to keep them tucked under my heels, and people rarely notice them when I wear them with jeans. I wear them for me! If you want to incorporate a tad more 80s flair (as I typed that, iTunes in shuffle mode selected “Runaway” by Bon Jovi. Go figure) cuff your jeans so that said legwarmers are more visible.

Alright — glad we’ve addressed that. I’d hate to think that there are people out there who’ve gone through all the trouble to either acquire or knit legwarmers, but are unsure about how to enjoy them!

Onward to my Nutkin conversion:

You may recall that I ran into a bit of a problem just before turning the heel on sock #1 of this pair: The cuff, which is knit and folded over to create something super cool, does not have the stretch of the rest of the sock, and I could not get it over the heel of my foot. I’m glad I thought to try this BEFORE turning the heel. I love the pattern — easy to remember and fun to knit — and the thought of ripping out 7 pattern repeats was a bit too much for me to bear.

So: I began an 8th pattern repeat, but in the middle of the first repeat in the first row, I bound off the middle 8 st to create a thumb hole, and then continued on in pattern, replacing those 8 st in the next row. After the full 10 row pattern repeat, I did one more repeat, for a total of 9. I then knit 5 rows of k2, p2 for stretchiness at the top of the mitt, and voila:

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I think I finally understand why folks who don’t like knitting socks buy and use sock yarn. These are going to be perfect for spring: snug, subtly colorful, and thinner than the other worsted weight pairs I’ve been wearing all winter. I’ve cast on for my second mitt, and I’ve learned my lesson about gauge/sock cuffs…maybe.

baking…

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Happy Birthday! I presented this cupcake to someone who is a VERY good sport about all the knitting his wife and I both talk about and do when we are together.

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(I also did some “real” baking — there is a loaf of banana bread on the counter, ready to take to Easter brunch.) I loved making this cupcake (pattern from One Skein by Leigh Radford). I wasn’t sure how it would turn out, given that I do not own any novelty yarn for frosting the cupcake, but I used Cascade 220 for the chocolate base and then 2 strands of Cascade 220 Heathers and 1 strand of Madil Kid Seta (all leftover from the LMKG legwarmers) and then used some leftover cotton to make a cherry on top.

More knitting to share:

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These (Baby Bibs O’ Love, from Mason-Dixon knitting, made from Peaches and Creme dishcloth cotton) have been languishing for at least a month, mostly because I couldn’t find a needle that would fit through the buttonholes…needed to dig out my misplaced travel sewing kit. Let’s hope I can get these in the mail faster than I was able to sew on the buttons! (Still thinking about adding a little bit of embroidery to the red one. We’ll see.)

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Beaufort, completed! (Brown Sheep Lamb’s Pride Worsted, Size 8 needles.) I am a tad nervous that this will be too small for its recipient. It fit me snugly, right off the needles, and I have a small head. I dunked it in the sink with some wool wash and gave it a good tug, and it is almost dry. I think the yos in the pattern will open up with time, just like my Foliage did. I hope she likes it.

I had a Nutkin realization yesterday. You know, after I did 5 more repeats on the leg portion.

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That lovely doubled cuff I was celebrating a few posts ago? (Don’t get me wrong — it is very pretty.) Mine doesn’t quite fit over my heel. Good thing I checked before starting the heel. The thing is, I am in LOVE with how this yarn (Yarn Pirate Kalamata — my first Booty Club installment) is knitting up. I’m thinking I can add a thumb hole and do another pattern repeat or two and I will have the first of a gorgeous pair of fingerless mitts. (Does that also mean I get to decide on another sock to begin?) I will certainly keep you posted on my sock to mitt progress. Seems fitting that I was listening to the last few chapters of Frankenstein yesterday on CraftLit when I made this discovery.

Time to settle down with another cup of coffee, Boh, and some knitting. I love weekend mornings — I am always up with the sun, and on these days, I get to watch the morning become mid-day: sun rises in the sky, roosters crow, air warms up and I can fling open the doors and windows…

Enjoy your day.

U R GR8.

I helped frost some Valentine’s Day confections last night — conversation cupcakes, if you will. My friend Sheri has the photo-documentation. If I can get them from her this week, I’ll share some of our creativity.

Onward to this morning’s valentine:

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While listening to an episode of This American Life, I worked a few more pattern repeats of Nutkin. I love how the colors are combining in this pattern.

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Also, if you haven’t taken a look at this pattern, the cuff is very cool: you knit a band, do a purl row, knit some more, and then fold over at the purl row and  by picking up stitches from the cast on edge and knitting together with  the live stitches, you create a reinforced stockinette cuff.

Have a lovely day.

squirrels love _____.

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The answer is Nutkin.

It is also the reason I did not post this morning. I have at least seven other projects on the needles, included a sock that I am making progress on, so I can’t really explain why I felt the need to cast on — except that I was procrastinating on Ravelry, and saw a gorgeous photo of the January Yarn Pirate Booty Club yarn, Kalamata, en route to becoming Nutkin. In this case, I’m a joiner.

Home for lunch — must get back to work!