Sunday, August 23, 2009


Hi friends, just checking in before I take off on vacation for a week! Woo! I'll be heading to Colorado to sniff that brand new baby head smell and give a new cardi! Made a couple little tweaks to this version, I like it better.Not sure why it flipped...
Then we're off to Seattle, home away from home, for a few days just to hang out.
Aside from that, I've had some out of town family visiting, running around doing touristy things you rarely do in your home town. It's fun every now and then.
Also got some more cukes and berries for preserving. I'll take pictures when I get back.
It's late and I still need to pack some stuff. Have a lovely week (or so) everyone!

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Viking Hat - Free Pattern!

Created as a unique birthday present, and a quick last-minute one at that. It knits up very fast and the yarn is fairly inexpensive. I figured that even if it was just a novelty, I'm not out much time or money, although he assures me that it will get plenty of use this winter!
I hope I don't earn a reputation for this, but there's a little short row shaping on DPNs and I know a lot of people found that to be trying in the Socktopus pattern. But I thought it was necessary to get the horns the right shape and I don't think it's quite as annoying in this pattern.
As ever, please don't hesitate to say something if you find something off in the pattern or you have any questions. I finally got around to putting my e-mail on my profile page, so now you can contact me directly. Have fun with this one!

What you'll need:

Brown Sheep Lamb's Pride Bulky
Color A: Bronze Patina - one skein
Color B: Sandy Heather (or a cream color) - 20 yards is a generous estimate, should be plenty
Set of size 10.5 (6.5mm) DPNs and/or a 16" circular of the same size
-I knit tightly, if you are a loose knitter, size 10 (6mm) would probably be just peachy
Stitch marker
Yarn needle
A bit of stuffing or scrap yarn to stuff the horns

Special Stitches:

Bobble - Knit into front and back of sitch twice (this requires a little tugging) so there are a total of 4 sts from the single one. Turn work and purl these 4 sts. Turn work again, slip first stitch to right needle, knit the next two sts together, pass the slipped stitch over, knit the next stitch and pass the (k2tog) stitch over, so you have a single stitch again.
(I really hope that was explained well enough, again feel free to contact me!)

W&T (on a knit st) - With working yarn in back, slip stitch to right needle, bring working yarn to front of work between needles, slip stich back to left needle and turn your work.

W&T (on a purl st) - With working yarn in front, slip stitch to right needle, bring working yarn to back of work between needles, slip stitch back to left needle and turn your work.


Using color A, CO 60 sts, place marker and join for working in the round.

Rounds 1&2: Purl all sts
Rounds 3&4: Knit all sts
Round 5: *K5, make 1 bobble, repeat from * around
Rounds 6&7: Knit
Rounds 8&9: Purl
Work st st (knit all sts) for another 3.75 inches
Begin decreasing:
Dec. Round 1: *K4, K2tog, K4, repeat from * around [54 sts]
Round 2 and all even rouns: K all sts
Round 3: *K7, K2tog, repeat from * around [48 sts]
Round 5: *K3, K2tog, K3, repeat from * around [42 sts]
Round 7: *K5, K2tog, repeat from * around [36 sts]
Round 9: *K2, K2tog, K2, repeat from * around [30 sts]
Round 11: *K3, K2tog, repeat from * around [24 sts]
Round 13: *K1, K2tog, K1, repeat from * around [18 sts]
Round 15: *K1, K2tog, repeat from * around [12 sts]

Cut yarn, leaving an 8 inch tail. Use yarn needle to thread tail through remaining 12 sts twice, pull tight and tie off.

Horn (Make 2):

Using color B, CO 12 sts, place marker and join for working in the round.

Knit 12 rounds
Work short row section two times as follows:

K9, W&T
P6, W&T
Knit to end of round, picking up wrapped st
Knit 2 rounds, picking up wrapped st on 1st round

Next round: *K1, K2tog, K1, repeat from * around [9 sts]
Knit two rounds
Next round: *K1, K2tog, repeat from * around [6 sts]
Knit two rounds
Next round: K2tog around [3 sts]
Knit one round, cut yarn leaving a 6 inch tail.
Use yarn needle to thread tail through remaining three sts, pull tight and tie off.


Stuff a little fiberfil, roving or scrap yarn into the horns to make them stand up.
Use yarn needle and an approximately 12 inch piece of yarn to sew horns to hat.
Weave in all loose yarn ends.

Lots of Things! And Stuff!

Hello, friends! I've been having way too much fun these past couple weeks, and I do feel a little guilty about not sharing any of it with you until now. But I'll try to make up for it.
I know I blather about my gardening adventure a lot, but I'll save that for a couple sentences to let you know that when I'm done blathering about my garden, I'll end this post and do another post which will be a new free pattern! Woohoo!
So, last night there was a birthday party for the fiance of [Friend Who Bakes] and it was a blast. He's in a black metal band, very much about the Norse roots, but not in a racist kind of way (I guess there's a lot of that out there). So I knit him a Viking helmet.
It was very last minute and I wrote down everything as I was making it so I could share it with my readership since I haven't posted a free pattern in a while and I've been promising the baby cardigan pattern for a while. Sorry it's not the baby cardigan! But it's a fun and super fast project!
And he loved it and wore it most of the night even though it's the middle of summer and the hat is made of wool. I made the kiddo model it for me, too, like I usually do with my finished projects. Bat-Viking!
So, that's my knitting news, for those of you who aren't as interested in the garden, you may be dismissed.
But we had a good week in gardening! A few tomatoes, some cucumbers, non-garden wild berries, and a little preserving.
I'm not sure what the deal is with larger tomatoes, and I'm certainly open to tips, they just seem to be so bland! The little cherry tomatoes were impossibly delicious, and I only started liking tomatoes a few years ago, but the bigger ones, and they're not even that big, were just kind of bleh. I don't remember what variety they are, I wish I did. We have some Romas growing in the cabin greenhouse and I hope they taste good enough to warrant using again next year. The cherry tomatoes are so very good, but they're not exactly ideal for making anything with. Any suggestions on flavorful tomatoes?
I was also excited to see some pickling size cucumbers in the greenhouse! I like pickles. A lot. Especially tiny ones. I got a few ranging between an inch and a half to about four inches long, enough for a half-pint of pickles, and I was determined to have my half-pint of pickles. But there was something else. This is the first time I've ever grown cucumbers, so I have no idea what to expect. Being from Alaska, I know very little about warm-weather plants, and my gardening policy in general is to just see how it goes. Perhaps someone else can tell me. As I was looking around for cukes big enough to justify pickling, I came across TWO of these monsters:
Where did they come from?! I think I was actually laughing to myself in the middle of nowhere over giant cucumbers. So I picked them, took them home, crinkle cut and pickled them along with my half-pint of tiny cukes. Two huge cukes = three pints of crinkle cut pickles. Crazy!
In addition to that, the kiddo and I wandered the property picking wild berries that ended up being enough to make a half-pint of jam with a little left over. I had some on my toast yesterday and it was pretty tasty! It's a little early for most of the berries here, so I had to mix three different types. Tart, sweet and unexpectedly flavorful. Later in the season I should be able to have enough to make batches of single berry jam. I think I just lost my punk rock lisence to being excited about preserving.
My last preserving adventure this week was zucchini relish. The sad part is, I had to buy zucchini. Our garden got a late start and I'm sure we'll have a bunch soon enough, but not yet. I bought local zucchini and carrots from the market though, so they're going to taste really good. Another thing I'll see if any of you know: Does the relish have to sit for weeks like pickles? None of the recipes I found said anything about it. Anyone know?
So, here's a jar of each, in all their glory. Hooray for preserving!
Now I have to go read some books to the kiddo and then I'll bang out the pattern for the Viking Hat!