Friday, December 31, 2010

January Picture Promotion

Do you own something from SomerKnits?  Or something I knit before deciding to "brand" myself?  Have you knit up one of the patterns I have written?

If you can answer yes to any of the above, then this promotion is just for you!

During the whole month of January, if you send me a picture of yourself and the knitted item in action, I will send you a 10% off coupon good towards any future purchase.  If you send me 3 or more* pictures then you will be entered in a drawing for an awesome surprise (to be announced later).

*To count as 3 separate pictures they must all be different.  Different locations, different knitted items, different people, different in any way as long as they still feature the knitted item.

**Sending in any pictures during this promotion constitutes your express permission to post them here on my blog or on my website for promotional purposes.**

So start snapping!  I can't wait to see what you send in!

Somerknits (at) aim dot com

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Things to come

The list of things that I want to do is so long that I know it is ridiculous, but in relation to my knitting, here are my very lofty goals.

This January I want to add some things to my line of handknits with a focus on little luxuries.  I will be using fine yarns, pretty patterns, etc.  These things may take longer (and there by cost more) but in the end I think they will be so worth it.

I also want to get some children's things back in inventory.  Children's things don't seem to hang around long, so my goal is to try and have at least a handful on hand at all times.  Little hats, bows, etc.

In between all that I want to still take a moment or two to make things for myself, Ben, and friends.

I started my luxurious knitting this week with a lovely cowl for a girl I have known practically my entire life.  It was nice to knit on something super soft (90% superfine merino, 10% cashmere) while I was laying around being sick.  I am shipping her cowl off to her today and hopefully I can get some pictures posted soon.

Speaking of pictures, if you own something I have knit or have made something from one of my patterns, you should definitely take a picture of it and stay tuned for my January promotion.  Yes, the two things are connected.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Gifted Knits

Just a few of the progress pictures I couldn't post because I was trying to keep the gifts a secret.
 Warping the loom and starting Mimi's shawl

 Taylor's Felted Slippers.  The 19 row felted slipper pattern knits up super easy and looks really cute.  Next time I might try a toe embellishment though.
This grey cowl I improved.  And I had put on Rav that I would post the pattern after Christmas, but I am going to have to count and then post it.  I do know that I used Bamboo Ewe yarn, size 10.5 needles, started out in the round doing k2,p2 than after a certain amount increased around to make the pattern now k3,p3.  Then I threaded a contrasting yarn through the holes formed in the transition and used that to gather the cowl.  Its super soft and you can gather the folds pretty much any way you like.
 Two different cabled headbands.  The black one above is solid and gathered at the join.  The one below is similar to one at Anthropologie and has buttons so you can tighten it to suit your own head.

Halvsies is an alpaca blend cowl knit in the round, half in seed stitch and half in ribbing.  If there is interest, I will post the actual pattern.  Its a quick knit and like Quadrants allows you to wrap it different ways to have different textures showing.
Flower hat.  I started it at the Ida Red show and got the hat part done but made the flower later at home and then dug around until I found the perfect button.  Its so cute on Stacy, I'm glad she got this one.

Well, thats it, the pictures I have been hiding all fall so that my gifts would remain a surprise.  :-)

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Christmas gift for me!

Once the Christmas knitting was done, midday on Christmas itself, I grabbed some chunky yarn I've had hanging around for a while and the pattern I had picked out for it.  Geez, I must have decided what to use this yarn for when I bought it, back in like March or April.  The yarn is a super bulky hand dyed by Bridgette of Farm Girl Fiber.  I had 2 of the giant skeins, I can't remember at all what the yardage was supposed to be in each one.  
It took a little more than one skein to make this Acorn Head.  It's a hooded cowl!!  And I love it.  It was so simple to make.  I went with seed stitch even though the pattern is written for garter stitch.  Seed stitch has such an elegance to it and the change was easy to make.  

I have worn it every time I have left the house since I finished it.  Last night when I really wasn't feeling well I left it doubled around m neck the whole time I was at my parents' house.  It's so cozy!  And I love that when I am outside in the cold I can flip the hood up and it keeps my ears super warm too.  Look how fantastically the color pooled too!  Sometimes pooling works great and other times its frustrating as heck.  Anyway, I hope there are better pictures after I am feeling better, but I wanted to post some right away.

The Rest of Christmas

Finally, all of the rest of Christmas.

After having our own little Christmas, we headed over to my parents house for most of the traditional Christmas day hoopla.  
 It started out with my sister giving the dogs their stockings.  
 They really love getting new toys.  
 In the middle of the big Christmas day breakfast, while the house was full of people, Samson decided that he needed to sit in the chaise lounge with my sister.  He is a big boy for a lap dog.
 Rachel brought over this wonderful bread that she and her friend had made.  I don't think there is much left, it was really yummy.
 We took a traditional Christmas morning picture with the Rhea family.  My how the group has grown!!  We have such a good time having so many wonderful friends and family over for Christmas breakfast.  My mother's cinnamon rolls are famous throughout the land.  
 For my dad's side of the family I had decided to do a knitted Christmas grab bag.  I made a group of things for the guys (above) and a group of things for the girls (below).  I wrapped each item individually in tissue paper and put them into bags by gender.  Then Christmas evening when it was present time I walked around the room with the bags and let each person draw a gift from the appropriate bag. Then as they all opened them I told everyone to trade amongst themselves until they ended up with the item they really wanted.
 While the guy stuff was basic hats, the women's bag contained 2 cowls, 1 hat and 3 headbands.  The guys stuck with whatever they drew out of the bag, but the women got into the trading after a minute or so of just looking at each other.

 My cousin Alison ended up with the Halvsies cowl, which I think totally fits her style.  The cowl is called Halvsies because it is 2 different textures.  It is half seed stitch and half ribbing so depending on how you wrap it you can get a slightly different look.  
 Stacy got the flower hat, which I hope she loves as much as I do.  It really looks great on her.
Here is my Mimi with the shawl I wove just for her.  :-)  Also, you can see that my Aunt Annette got the grey ribbed cowl in the exchange.  Oh, and that pic on the right is just a gratuitous cuteness pic.  Addy is a ton of fun and adorable.  Anyhow, I had a lot of fun doing this particular set of gifting.  I wanted to make more options for each bag than the number of people, but I totally ran out of time.  Oh well.  I would love to be able to do the same thing on the other side of the family, but we draw names, so it really isn't possible.  It was nice not to have to stress about what each person might want most, but to just pick out a number of patterns and do them up with nice yarn and then watch to see what each person went after.

Fast forward to yesterday morning and we recreated Christmas morning (cinnamon rolls and all) because my brother had made it home.  We exchanged family gifts and had a wonderful time.  All the gifts were lovely and generous.  I have a wonderful family all around.  Soon I will get around to posting pics of the slippers I made for my sister and the apple I quickly knit up for my brother's wife.  Oh and the cowl with hood I whipped up for myself on christmas day and the day after.  It was such a fast knit.

Last night rounded out the christmas festivities with a peirogi (sp?) dinner at my parents.  We only get them once a year because made from scratch they are really a pain in the butt and a mess, but they are yummy.

I hope everyone had a Christmas as lovely as mine.  I am sick now (but I will be fine soon.  I hope.) but I am looking forward to new years.

Monday, December 27, 2010

More Christmas!

Christmas Eve is always spent at Grandma's house.  Our family is growing and that makes it even more fun/chaotic.  
 Aunt Karen
 Dad's new fishing hat
 Grandma - she hadn't even opened the present yet, but she looks pretty happy about the bow, doesn't she?  
 The babies all got piles and piles of presents and there was much oohing and awing and picture taking.  I received 4 new knitting books (!!!!) and had a fantastic time with my big crazy family.  It was loud and it was chaotic but it was fun and I am glad we are all still able to get together on Christmas Eve.  As time goes on and our family grows even more, I know that it will get harder because everyone has a million obligations and people they want to see.  But for now its still great!

The next morning we would normally be at my parents place bright and early but circumstances were that we got to sleep in a bit and have our own christmas at home first.  I don't like that it was because my brother hadn't made it to town yet, but I did like getting to spend a quiet morning just the two of us on our first married Christmas.  
 All my boys on Christmas morning.
 Ornament he got me!  I almost cried.  Its to pretty and I love that every year I will hang it on the tree and remember our wedding and our first Christmas.
 Riley LOVED his new toys from his stocking.
 Ripley tried to climb up Ben's back
 Riley and Artemis had a great time pawing through all the new toys.  It kept them fairly distracted while we opened presents. 
Ben's stocking was stuffed so full I had to stack stuff next to it.  He liked it all though.  :-)

I got the most beautiful needle case from Ben!  I need to take a picture of it, but its bright blue with a paisley print and I just LOVE it.  He also got me a set of curry spices so if you are planning on coming over for dinner any time soon you may be subjected to my curry experimentation.  

Eventually I'll get to the rest of Christmas Day, but thats going to take time and I need to go get dressed for another round of Christmas.  Yes, thats right, more Christmas today!  And a yarn sale later.  YARN SALE!  Woo!  Ok, off I go.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

So much Christmas

There is so much about Christmas I want to share, it may end up a number of lengthy posts.

First there was all that prep leading up to it that I didn't get a chance to share.
 First was prepping and wrapping angel gifts. I wanted them to be perfect and special.
 I used the same paper but made the decorations on each box different.
 I really hope she liked them all,
Next was making and packaging the potato soup mix I gave to family and friends.  Yum.
 Then I spent much time finishing some large hand made projects.  I wove this shawl for my Mimi on the loom I got for Christmas last year.  It's so soft.  I used many different colors of the same yarn for the weft because my Mimi is a very bright tending person so I thought the color would appeal to her.  Its nice and long so she can wrap it around her shoulders and still drape it across her lap.  
 Then I finished a scarf that I started for Ben last September.  See, he spotted the pattern in a knitting magazine while I was eying the Heather Hoodie I wanted to make for myself (haven't done that yet, btw).  Anyhow, he mentioned how cool it was and how he wouldn't mind having one and I ran out and bought the yarn.  I had wanted to give it to him last year but I didn't get it finished.  Then I wanted to give it to him for Valentine's day but once again didn't finish.  Then there was the wedding planning and wedding and it got set aside for a long time.  I finally picked it back up and when he wasn't home I worked furiously on it.  I barely finished it on the 23rd and got it wrapped before he got home.
 It's in that box right there.
And this is another one of his presents.
 On Christmas Eve our tree looked so pretty that I decided to take a bunch of pictures of it.  I had finally finished wrapping everything (it took most of the day) and decided to admire and share my handiwork.  
 I actually got down under the tree to take pictures of the wonders hidden below.
 So many presents.
 So much fun making each one different.
Many wonders under the tree indeed.

That's probably enough for a single post.  Eventually I will get to posting Christmas with both sides of the family and all the silliness that entails. 

I hope that everyone had a wonderful and joyous Christmas.  I love this time of year and being able to give people things that make them smile.  I know that this year was the most stressful Christmas I have ever had and hopefully I learned from that, but the smiles and the thank yous make every minute of gift making time worth it.  I have a wonderful family and the best husband in the world and I am thankful for that.  I hope they all know how wonderful and special they are.  

Happy Boxing Day!

Friday, December 24, 2010

Ghost of Christmas Past

Some past pretties to gaze upon.

2003
2004
2004

2005


2006

2007