Knits for Forest Elves

Category: Featured Patterns

Actually I bought two yarn duos, but the nature tones on the left spoke to me first.

During our recent sale I scooped up a pair of pretty skeins that sparked my imagination with images of woodland elves. On their own, these two didn’t call out to me, but paired together with a pom pom on top, they were magic. I’m always picking up pairs of yarns that look like they belong together. I feel like a professional matchmaker for yarns. Just let me know if you ever need my services in that department.

This weekend and early this week, I knit furiously as usual. I went on a hat-making spree, also as usual. Finished that striped hat I started last week. Finished a surprise hat for my sister, Mollie. Finished a new Mock Rib Watch Cap in Galway Worsted for the shop. Finished a few crocheted flower pins to decorate my hats.

Ok, we all know how awkward selfies are, but I know I prefer to see hats on actual heads.

But best of all, I finished my very own forest elf hat that I’ve been wearing for three straight days now. And a pair of matching boot cuffs to use up the leftover yarn. I can’t be the only one who wears freshly knit items for days on end, right? I am so tickled by the little leaves on the ends, and the confluence of the colors and the style, and the realistic faux fur pom pom on top, and the fact that the moss stitch looks like actual moss when knit in a mossy green.

I don’t have a pattern for my hat or matching boot cuffs. Should I write one? Anyway, in case you also want to feel like a forest elf (not a Christmas elf),  I just went perusing on Ravelry for lovely little things that fit the bill. I even found an elven leaf pussy hat. It’s all about the nature tones, the variable nubbly textures, and the leaf and vine motifs. Here are a few of my favorites. Tiny Owl Knits in particular is a gem for knit designs that will make you feel like an elf or a fairy or an otherwise sweet, magical creature from a fantasy universe.

Click the links in the captions to see these patterns on Ravelry.

On Needle Holders

Category: Featured Patterns

I’m sure I’m not the only person who has  needles and hooks that enjoy a good ( inconvenient) run about the house. I put them in a case, but alas they get all jumbled up if I don’t keep them separated with rubber bands, and even then sometimes they still do!

So while browsing the giant abyss of beautiful photos that is Pinterest, I came across something marvelous! And felted! You know I love felt, so I just had to share this with you, lovelies:

Fairy Castles © Tiny Owl Knits

Adorable, felted fairy castles! Now, how does this relate to storing needles you ask? Well, if one just removes the roof…

Fairy Castles © Tiny Owl Knits

Tada! The body of the castle unrolls into the perfect place to store all those pesky wandering needles and hooks! The best part? It’s a pattern you can get on Ravelry!!

Thank you, Tiny Owl Knits, you’ve absolutely made my day!

Shawl Club Knits

Category: Featured Patterns

We’re down to one more Shawl Club Knit-Along coming up in March, in which we’ll knit the Waiting for Rain shawl by Sylvia McFadden, another that all of us at the shop have been ogling for ages. But in the meantime, Mim has been in charge of knitting along with you guys on all six of the shawls we selected. When we set out, she thought it would be a piece of cake to complete one shawl each month for six months. But, you know, life happens. The Winter Berries shawl is done, but the Pebble Beach shawl and the Creedence shawl are still works in progress. I don’t know about you, but I can’t wait to see the Pebble Beach shawl that Mim is knitting in Happy Feet Splash Dye, the one-and-only speckle dyed yarn currently on our shelves. I’m so on board with the speckle dye trend right now.

Above: Mim’s Winter Berries Shawl knit in Herriot (100% alpaca!!!)

So I’ve taken up the mantle and committed to knitting the Leftie shawl and the Ramble shawl, our January and February Shawl Club picks.

I’ve been working on Leftie off and on for a week or so now, and it’s coming along nicely. Despite being an asymmetric design, I’m finding the overall shape is pleasingly symmetric. I know we all have our preferences, but I tend to prefer symmetric clothing and accessories, perhaps with the exception of hats. I’m all about the one-sided hat styles. The Leftie shawl is a simple garter stitch shawl that starts narrow and gets progressively wider until it’s time to bind off, except for the periodic interruption of narrow stripes with itty bitty delicate short-row leaves along one edge. As such, it’s a really easy pattern to follow with only a moment where you need to pay attention every now and then. But the leafy little interruptions make it a fun knit in which you constantly get to look forward to the next goal/stopping point.

There’s really only one single downside to this pattern, and that is all the pesky ends to be woven in. If you knit the pattern as written, there are quite a few of them – two per leaf, to be precise. So that amounts to 50 or so. But if you don’t mind it, the result is stunning and pristine. Else, you could consider this: Since there is an increase in every single row on the edge which would have all the ends hanging off of it, I’ve been knitting the last stitch with both yarns together and treating the two strands as two separate stitches on the following row. This is easy to do, but if you look closely, it’s not the neatest looking technique. The yarns wrap around each other inconsistently. It’s also a bit tight. If I knit this shawl again, I’ll probably just go ahead and weave in the ends, or I might consider other options like a 2-stitch edge in the contrast color.

Of course, I can’t help myself from daydreaming about the next thing in my knitting queue. I think I’m going to change things up with bright, cheery colors for the Ramble shawl. I am hopelessly drawn to this bright pink in Malabrigo sock with this aqua/pink/yellow speckle in Happy Feet Splash Dye. The pattern calls for a DK-weight yarn and these are fingering-weights, but clearly one could just carry on for more rows in order to achieve the same size. It remains to be seen where the mood will take me on this one. I’ll tell you how it goes once I make some progress!

Tell me, have you knit any of the shawls we’ve selected for Shawl Club Knit-Alongs? I’d love to hear your thoughts! Comments and tags are welcomed and encouraged on all our social media avenues. As always, you can find links to our Facebook, Instagram, etc. at the very bottom of our website!

Some links that might interest you: