Posts Tagged ‘Knitting’

A Headwarmer for Smaller Heads

November 29, 2015

Some of us have smaller heads because we are economical and pack a lot of brain power into smaller packages. 

Some of us are freaks. 

Whatever your pleasure, here’s the same Headwarmer in a slightly smaller size. Follow the same directions as yesterday, just cast on 92 stitches instead of 100. 


I used Lion Brand’s “Amazing” yarn in color way 825-217 Olive Medley. It is probably discontinued which is why it was on sale at Michael’s. If you try to find it on the Internet, and end up at my Etsy shop “Catcatcher Corner”, don’t attempt to buy it. It has been appropriated in a parallel universe by a me who did not update the shop listing. 

Using a size 5 circular 16″ needles, cast on 92. 

Join, being careful not to twist. 

K2P2 9 rows, using a twisted knit stitch on the knit stitches for extra stretch. 

P 7 rows, K 7 rows twice. Purl 7 rows. 

K2P2 9 rows, using twisted knit stitch for the knit stitches to build in extra stretch. 

Cast off. Perfect for a ponytail.

It’s hard to get a proper selfie of the back of your head. You there, in the back, STOP LAUGHING. 




Aha! A neckwarmer! The ribbing tucks neatly inside.

I took these photos in front of Sugar’s holly bushes. He said not to show the next photo because it was scary. 

So here it is. I wore it like this one cold morning, and the corrugated design carried my warm breath all the way around to my ears.  I know!  I’m impressed, too. 


If you knitted more units of P7rows/K7rows, you’d have more length to tidily cover your neck. 

I *know*! I thought so, too!

A Headwarmer, or: Because the Blog is My Scrapbook

November 28, 2015

Sometimes I just need to knit.

I’ve come up with this design that I knitted in some of my hand-dyed yarn. You remember the yarn that I dyed with food-coloring because the internet said I could? Yeah, that.

I’ve been soaking them for two weeks, changing to fresh water every day. When I knitted each one, my hands turned hot pink. Note to self: the Internet is a liar.

But I do have a happy new design out of it.

It’s like a wooly headband that’s big enough to cover your ears. Some of us need bigger headbands than others, for obvious reasons.

You can pull your ponytail out the top.


New ear/head/neck warmer. Size 5 circular 16″ needles. Cast on 100. Join. K2P2 9 rows, using a twisted knit stitch. (P 7 rows, K 7 rows) twice. Purl 7 rows. K2P2 9 rows, using a twisted knit stitch. Cast off in pattern. Perfect for a ponytail.

The Fan & Feather

September 27, 2015

It’s a knitting design that you might see from years ago. It looks tricky as all get-out, but there’s only one pattern row in 4 rows of knitting.

Overall, there’s a scalloped edge that’s created by the pattern. It’s a natural feature and can’t be changed. Which now makes me wonder if there’s a short-row method where you start with a straight edge and work in the scallops. I think it will take someone smarter than me with fewer irons in the fire to figure it out.

Anyway, the pattern is worked in sets of 30. Let’s start with one pattern repeat for practice. Cast on 30 on straight needles.  Knit the first row. Turn your work and purl the second row. The third row is the pattern row made by purling two stitches together five times (thereby reducing 10 stitches to 5), then knitting one and throwing a yarn over ten times (thereby turning 10 into 20), and purling two together on the remaining 10 stitches (reducing 10 stitches to 5). For the fourth row, you will purl across.

That’s it. A lovely design created with 4 rows.

You will need to steam block this, so remove the cats from the bed and spread out your finished afghan.

Maybe that last part is just me.

After blockage, I cut pieces of yarn that were approximately 7″ long. I cut them from another skein that was variegated with white, pink, and baby blue. I threaded each length through an end stitch and tied an overhand knot so little hands can’t pull it out and eat it.

The afghan is baby blue but the iPhone changes the color sometimes and won’t allow editing to the correct color. (Insert your imagination here.)

I folded it in thirds lengthwise and put on a hanger and hung it in a wax myrtle for photos.


I think I used a size 9 circular and acrylic worsted. I believe I casted on 180 stitches. You can use any size that makes your heart happy. Happy knitting!


An Unexpected Present

October 11, 2013

Oh, y’all, I just received the best present.

I went to a new Thai restaurant.  Somehow they knew I was a knitter.

They brought me a pair of knitting needles.  Squeeeeee!



Dyeing Yarns at Catcatcher Corner, Part 5

March 16, 2013






And now all the colors in the neon set of food coloring have been used!  On to the next colors, organic ones from the health food store.  And tea!  Let’s try tea bags!

Dyeing Yarns At Catcatcher Corner, Part 4; Or Plum Delicious

February 21, 2013

It appears that I’m going to need to dye each skein twice to make sure that the color saturates the yarn.

The latest color choice was neon purple.  When the dye was spotted onto the wet yarn in the processing bath, it made an odd hot pinkish spot.  After the first bath, the spots remained, and some of the yarn on the underside was light blue.

First dye bath, front of skein.

First dye bath, front of skein.

First dye bath, back of skein.

First dye bath, back of skein.

Let’s try another soak in another batch of dye.

Second dye bath.

Second dye bath.







That picnic table is really coming in handy.

Well, (t)Hat’s That, Then

February 14, 2013

Sugar needed a new, warm, knitted cap.

So I showed him a design I made using Elizabeth Zimmerman’s decrease system for the crown, and he didn’t like it.  The swirly-looking top was too girly for him.

I made up another decrease system, and the cap looked like a medieval helmet.  Yes, that’s right, because gray is the color he chose, and the top of the cap was slightly pointed-ish.

So I found this design on the Yarn Harlot’s website, and I knitted it in variegated greens, because he likes greens.  That served him well, but then he wanted another one.  Oh, yes, in gray.

He’s becoming quite the manly expert in choosing yarns.  He knows that only non-superwash wools will felt, after multiple times helping me chose yarn for a felting project, and I would reject his choice, saying, “It’s not wool.  It’s acrylic.  Won’t felt.”

Imagine my amusement one day at the yarn display when he picked up a skein, looked at the label, and said, “That’s acrylic.  That’s no good.” and tossed it back into the bin.  He not only listened, he remembered, and he repeated at the appropriate time.

Sugar likes the color gray.  He also likes blue and green, but he would like a yarn that is green, blue, and gray, which is nigh unto impossible to find.  Someday, someday, I might have the skills to make his wish come true, but for now, let’s remember that I’m dyeing yarn in a pasta pan.

So he chose a fisherman wool in gray and white.  I knitted along with no problem and produced a new cap.  There was a bit of yarn left over, not an enormous amount, but several yards, which I hate.  I hate leftover yarn.  I want to use it all up.

He washed the cap.  The next time I saw him, he clapped the cap on his head, and he looked a little bit like an acorn looks.  The acorn cap fits but it looks a little too small, too short.

What if I had used all the yarn up?  Maybe the cap wouldn’t have been a tad bit too short, because, let’s face it, caps are going to be washed.

I decided to knit another cap, this time starting from the top and knitting until I ran out of yarn.  I reversed Elizabeth Zimmerman’s 7-section decrease, and I cast on 7 stitches, joined these 7 stitches in a circle, proceeded to knit, and completely boogered up the increasing part.

I unknit, I reknit, I unknit at least 10 times.  I knew that the trouble was with the operator, not the equipment, and I gnashed my teeth and tore at my hair a bit every stinkin’ time I ripped it apart to simple yarn.  Cursed a bit, too, I did.

Finally, I got it so, so right that even I was satisfied, and I produced a hat over the course of a few days.  I used almost every bit of yarn.  I even did higher math to figure out how much yarn I needed to knit 20 stitches, and multiplied that number by 6, because there’s 120 stitches on the needes, and measured that amount of yardage back from the end of the yarn, added a yard as an insurance policy, and marked the place, so that I knew when I absolutely had to start binding off.  Confused?  Welcome to my world.





I *LIKE* it!

A Brilliant New Design, Or So Says YoursTruly

January 11, 2013

I want to keep my hands warm when I’m outside, but I want to be able to use my fingers and hands when I want to.

Gloves and mittens weren’t the answer.  I tend to drop things, and my gloves and mittens would need to be tied to me somehow.

If only I had some sort of handwarmer.







I took a #5 circular needle, a short one about 16 inches long, and I took some yummy Manos del Uruguay “Maxima” kettle-dyed yarn, and I cast on 56 stitches, joined to make a circle, and I knitted a simple ribbed tube, knitting 4 stitches, then purling 4 stitches.  Round and round endlessly until it was about 18 inches long, or about as long as it is from my fingertip to my elbow.

When I’m wearing a coat, I can tuck each hand into an opposite end, sort of like that rabbit muff that my godmother gave me when I was little.  Only this one is not on a string, and I can pull it off and stuff it in my pocket.

I’m actually pretty proud of myself.

I Shall Never Speak Of This Again, Part 2

January 10, 2013

A reader kindly pointed out how odd it was that the felted slipper didn’t shrink in length *AT ALL*.

That’s because I left out part of the recipe.

Here’s the “before” slipper.

I'd call this about 6ish inches high.

I’d call this about 6ish inches high.

It's about 14 inches long, so it actually shrank about 2 inches.

It’s about 14 inches long, so it actually shrank about 2 inches.

I was dog-sitting for a client.  She has a nice tile floor.

I was dog-sitting for a client. She has a nice tile floor.

Stupid recipe.  I bet Martha Stewart doesn’t have these issues.

I Shall Never Speak Of This Again. At Least, Not Today.

January 10, 2013

Sometimes things work out great.

Sometimes, they do not.

It’s like that recipe that works the first time you try it.

Then there’s that recipe.  You know the one, the one that doesn’t work *AT ALL*, and yet you keep trying it, maybe tweaking it a little here, or changing the proportions there, or attempting it only in the dark of the moon, complete with cursing and muttering and slinging of utensils.

Maybe that last one is just me.


I’m continually amazed that knitted projects turn out at all.  Everyone has those UFOs, those UnFinishedObjects that seem to be doomed from the start.  We can’t throw them away.  We can’t bear to part with them, in spite of the fact that keeping them around is a reminder of our ineptitude.  We have TIME invested in them, and a bit of materials, and perhaps a memory or two.

Sometimes the fear of UFOs cause us not to start a new project.  It’s just going to fail anyway.  You’d think that we’d learn from the last UFO.

Maybe that last one is just me.


LilSis has cold feet.  At least that’s what she says, so she needs some slippers.  I found an awesome slipper pattern online.  It was put online by a woman whose mother knitted countless pairs for decades.

I had all the ingredients and the right utensils.  I knitted blithely along until I realized that LilSis needed to have BigFoot-sized feet to wear these gunboats.

It takes a while for me to catch on, and that’s just not regarding knitting.  I rally onwards to the finish line, only to realize that the finish line is actually somewhere else.

IMG_2729 (2)

Not to be deterred, I decided since this was such a whopper – it’s about 12″ long – that I’d knit the next one in wool and felt it.  Seemed like such a grand plan.  Sigh.


Why, yes, that IS twelve inches long. That sucker didn’t shorten. Instead of a slipper, we have a torpedo cozy.


What a waste of wool yarn.


I have a bad feeling that when the children come to clean out my things when I go to the home, they’ll find this torpedo cozy, and they’ll wonder what it was supposed to be.


Now you see why I’m not publishing a cookbook.