Smock Coat

The Smock Coat Photoshoot

Here are a few...well several pictures of Ava wearing her new Smock Coat by Debbie Bliss.

I found out that it can be quite challenging to get a toddler to cooperate with picture taking. Do you notice that she won't look at the camera? She was too distracted...probably by her coat's gorgeousness... :)

This is the Smock Coat pattern out of the book Simply Baby. I made the 18-24 month size which fits Ava perfectly! It used 10 skeins of Debbie Bliss Cotton Cashmere in red. Is it just me or does that seem like a lot of yarn for a baby sweater? It must be because I used sizes 3 and 4 needles knitting needles. It is knit so tightly!

I just am in love with this baby coat. It is so elegant looking to me. Would I ever make it again? NO!!! Knitting cotton at that small of a gauge did a number on my hands and just was not enjoyable! I am however so happy that I stuck with it. I love the finished project!
This is the fourth sweater I have knit from the book Simply Baby. It's full of super cute baby patterns. Here are pictures of the other sweaters I knit in 2007. (Before the blog...)

Baby Shrug

Striped Sweater

Hooded Jacket

To sum up...Debbie Bliss rocks. I'm thinking about making the beret next to go with the coat.

Who am I kidding? I have so much knitting to do..

Its Finally Finished!!!

The Debbie Bliss Smock Coat is now completed!!! I just couldn't be happier about it. It is so cute and it fits Ava perfectly!! This picture does not do it justice but it was the best I could do without natural lighting. Tomorrow I hope to get a proper photo shoot with Ava modeling her new coat. I was so excited I just couldn't wait to share it with you.

Here are some pictures of the coat earlier before it was completely seamed.

I dont want to see any seed stitch or red fabric for awhile...

Smock Coat progress and a half naked stand mixer

I've been working on my Debbie Bliss Smock Coat exclusively since my last post and I've made some progress but oh boy is it slow going! I am determined to finish it before my self inflicted knitting deadline of February 1st! I'm going to be so extremely excited to finish this thing up!

I've now finished the two sleeves, two fronts, and a good portion of the back.
It stopped pouring long enough for me to take a quick photo of the work in progress.
Unfortunately due to all of this fantastic Smock Coat progress I've really neglected this stand mixer cover that I am making for a customer. I was doing so well knitting 2 rounds a day slowly but surely getting it done, but then I went on a Smock Coat rampage and the poor stand mixer cover has got no attention whatsoever.

Im about halfway there though...

(I am copying a knitted tea cozy that she has already.)

In other knitting news I made a hat a few weeks ago and forgot to say anything about it. I made it for a ski trip and it was so nice and warm.

The pattern name is Cosima from the book Hip Knit Hats. It was made from Tahki Bunny. I used 2 skeins and size 9 needles. It knit up really fast! I completed it in 1 day!

I think that Ava should be my hat model from now on, because I think that hats don't look very flattering on me!

Oh yes.... and I started another new project a few weeks back!

I know, I know, but this is different ok! It is a basic sock (using the formula off of this blog) that I don't have to look at to knit. I'm keeping it in the car to knit (when Im a passenger of course), and at the movie theatre. I've done pretty good on it so far, only 2 minor yarn splitting mistakes! Pretty good for knitting in the dark!

I'm knitting it out of Twisted Sisters sock yarn. I cant remember the name exactly, I cant find the label. I believe its called Zazu in fingering weight. I am using size 0 needles.

Miles and Miles of Seed Stitch

Now that the submission is out of the way, I've been able to spend some quality time with Ava's Smock Coat. (The name "Smock Coat" isn't very inspiring now is it, Debbie Bliss?) Here's a picture or two of the progress made.
Two sleeves and most of the left front...

Miles and miles and miles of Seed Stitch...

Now this may not look like alot of knitting, but I assure you it is. Its done all in seed stitch on size 4 needles. But of course you switch to size three's later on in the pattern! I've found it very time consuming as well as a bit boring. But now that I can kind of see the thing take shape I've found renewed interest. I really really want to get it done fast. Im tired of seed stitch! Also I desperately want to see little Ava in her cute red coat. I'm thinking about giving myself a bit of a deadline. I know it is strange how I torture myself with knitting but I do well with deadlines. For instance, I knit all the samples, took and edited the pictures and wrote the pattern for in a little over a week. When I set my mind to something, I can get it done.

So, for Smock Coat, I'm saying February 1st. It's not so crazy that I will have to stay up all night every night until that time, but it is a little push to keep me on track.

Also, I still have the worst project ever on the needles right now. It's a stand mixer cover I'm knitting for a customer. Its 222 stitches per round made out of *gasp* Red Heart Acrylic. oops, I think I just threw up a little. It is by no stretch of the imagination fun to work on. I'm making myself knit 2 rounds per day to get it finished. That's what happens when knitting is your job. It's not always fun!

Too many projects! Too little time!

This week has been pretty good. I do finishing work for customers, and this week I got two things seamed up. I've also made some progress on my knitting projects but it is a little hard to tell because I have five going at once and I've been working on them equally. So they are growing slowly. I have decided that I am not liking this "five projects at once" thing. It is starting to feel overwhelming. I think I ended up starting so many because they are all sweaters, and none have a real deadline because they are all for me or for Ava. As we all know with sweaters, they can take a while and they get boring, so I just couldn't help but start more and more.

Here is what I have going right now:

Project #1 The Klaralund Sweater from Cornelia Tuttle Hamilton Book 2: made with Noro Silk Garden

I like this sweater because there is hardly any shaping so it is really easy to knit. I hate this sweater because it has hardly any shaping so it will probably be entirely unflattering. Obviously I didn't think that one through. To add insult to injury I am stupidly making a size too small. I've thought about frogging the whole thing but I just can't bear to see all that work gone to waste. I'm going to finish it, stretch and block the heck out of it, and hope for the best.

Project #2: Leaves Sweater from Crochet Me: made with Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino

I've changed the pattern a bit for this sweater. The pattern calls for leaves hanging down on the bottom. I chose to go leaf less because in this color I thought it would make me look like Peter Pan. I think the bottom border looks just as good without. When I saw the book I just had to start this project right away. Before seeing it, I could never remember seeing a crocheted adult sweater that I actually would wear! It was also so much fun to do a little crochet. I started on crochet years back and haven't done much since I began knitting. This sweater has made me remember what I like about crochet. It is so easy to fix mistakes! No such thing as a dropped stitch! This pattern is also nice because it is always changing and it hasn't gotten boring. Oh Leaves Sweater how I love you!

Project #3: Seedling Sweater from the book Minnies: made out of Filatura Di Crosa Zara Plus

I started this project out of necessity sort of. You see, The Scarlet Skein had a huge 75% off sale and I just had to buy 60+ balls of Zara Plus. So I ended up with only 4 of this color and that is just enough to make the 12 month size that will fit my daughter for not much longer. So that's how this one got on the needles. It's going pretty quickly. The strange this is that the pattern called for a size 8 needle and I had to go up to a size 10.5 to get gauge. And I'm using the same weight of yarn the pattern calls for. Go figure!

Project #4: Smock Coat from Simply Baby: made with Debbie Bliss Cotton Cashmere

I also have a love/hate relationship with this project. I love the pattern. I cannot wait to see little Ava running around in a cute little red coat. I love the yarn. I have used this one in the past and I love the drape of the fabric. I HATE knitting it. It is miles and miles of seed stitch on size 4 needles. It is really boring me to tears. The problem is that I have to finish it this season so Ava can wear it while it fits her. So I'm going to have to set up knitting incentives for myself to finish this one up.

Project #5: Tilted Duster out of Interweave Knits: made out of Filatura Di Crosa Zara Plus

More uses for my Zara Plus! I really really really love this pattern. It's just the kind of sweater I would wear all winter long. The Zara is 100% merino so it will be so warm. Zara is also machine wash and dry. I did up a swatch and through it in the washer and dryer and the fabric softened and held up great! So I think I am going to be more than happy with the finished result!

I think what I am going to have to do to make some serious headway here, is pick just two projects for awhile to rotate. Hopefully that will make me actually finish something. I think one of those projects is going to have to be the Smock Coat and the second will either be Leaves Sweater or Tilted Duster because I enjoy those so much.

On top of all that knitting is the knitting I do for the shop. So I just purchased the Felt Clog pattern by Fiber Trends and the Children's Felt Clogs too. Over the past few days I knit up a pair of the children's clogs in Ava's size. Im going to do a pair for me next. My plan is to get that done quickly so I can put them on display at The Scarlet Skein. In January I'd like to offer a class on the pattern and also a fun extra class on embellishing the clogs with needle felting. I'm going to bring all my roving and just let those who sign up come and play with the colors and design.

And as if I needed any more yarn or any more projects, I also bought this:

This is Lorna's Laces Lion and Lamb in the Gold Rush colorway. I have big plans to make the Clapotis Shawl. I think that too would make an awesome class for January. It is such a popular pattern right now!

I have no clue how I'm going to get all this done. The good news is that tomorrow my husband and I are leaving for an overnight stay in the Santa Barbara area. That means some extra knitting time for me. I'm planning on bringing the Smock Coat and the materials for the Felted Clogs. I really really want to start the Clapotis but I am trying to be responsible and hold off.
It should be a fun trip, and my very sweet husband recommended that tomorrow will be reserved for yarn stores. I can't wait.