Tuesday, February 24, 2009

PDF for the American Girl Doll Shrug

I decided to make a downloadable PDF for the shrug pattern, since I know I like it a lot better when I can simply download a one-page file vs. copying and pasting or...heaven forbid...printing out a whole website page! :)


Monday, February 23, 2009

American Girl Doll Shrug

I've finished the mini-shrug (without embellishments) and am going to post the pattern with pictures so far. I plan on adding some fuzzy embellishments along the cuffs and such. Once I do that, I'll post pictures with the fancy-ness added. But in the meantime, enjoy!

Vanna's Choice Acrylic Yarn (I believe the color I used is mustard)
Size 9 dpns

Gauge: 5 sts and 7 rows = 1"



CO 24 sts
Work SS for 18 rows (2 1/2")
Row 19: (right side) CO 4 sts; K rem sts (20 sts)
Row 20: (wrong side) CO 4 sts; P rem sts (16 sts)
Row 21: Repeat row 19 (12 sts)
Row 22: Repeat row 20 (8 sts)
Row 23: CO rem sts


CO 14 sts the pick up 10 sts along side of back piece; distribute evenly among 3 needles and join (24 sts)
Rnds 1-27: Knit around
Rnd 28: *K2, K2tog* repeat between * 6 times (18 sts)
Rnds 29-35: Work in K1, P1 ribbing; cast off loosely.

Repeat for 2nd sleeve; Weave in ends.
              Back view                                       Front view

Friday, February 20, 2009

Trial Mini-Shrug Almost Done!

I was able to spend time last night and tonight working on the American Girl doll-sized shrug and am happy to report that it's almost done. I have a few more rounds of ribbing to do on one of the sleeves before it's technically finished. I'm thinking about jazzing it up a little with some of the surplus of fun fur I've got. I still haven't taken pictures, but plan to tomorrow!

The mini-shrug is exceedingly simple in design and pattern. As soon as I've got it all done and photos taken, I'll post the pattern along with the pictures.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

No Time to Knit

Or, maybe, a more accurate statement would be "no desire to knit" -- as blasphemous as that is!

I've thought a lot about picking up my needles and knitting in the evenings after the kids are in bed and hubby and I are sitting on the sofa, getting ready to watch DVR'd shows. But the past couple of days, I just haven't felt like it.

Hubby has also hurt his back, so he's been home the past few days, having to lie prone on his back in bed. He has an appointment with a specialist on Monday, but until then...he's kind of underfoot and putting a crimp in my stay-at-home style! Although I have to admit, I tend to get a lot more housework done knowing he's home "watching" me. I get to feeling guilty about taking time out to surf the web or play a silly game. For once, though, the laundry is almost completely done. One more load to do tomorrow before it starts all over again. :)

Maybe tonight will be a turning point... For now, though, I have to finish cleaning up from dinner and then get the kids ready for bed on my own since hubby can't help....

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Yay! I fixed it

Thank goodness...I fixed my blog and the whole Digg It and De.li.cious (or whatever it's called) is gone. Now I can rest easy and get back to knitting!

Probably won't do much this weekend. It's a busy one with softball games, Girl Scout events, soccer practice, etc. Plus with Valentine's Day, the hubby and I will be spending some alone time together.

Anyway, have a good weekend!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

I Should Stick to Knitting!

I got it in my head today to play around with my Blog...as you can see it looks a little different. I had this really cool (I thought) template that I'd downloaded from the 'net and installed it...but it wouldn't let me add more gadgets or rearrange my stuff. So I tried to go back to the templates Blogger supplies...now I've got all this weird "Digg It" and "Del.i.cious" stuff on older posts. I should have just stuck to knitting!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Start Small

I decided to start small on the shrug project by making a miniature shrug for K's American Girl doll. I figured it's a good way to try out my ideas on a small scale and see if they work before committing the time and yarn to a full-size garment. 

And it seems it was a good plan! I've already discovered that one of the ideas I had concerning the sleeves isn't a great one. At least not in the sense of making a garment with little or no seaming, anyway. This is how I was going to make the sleeves, originally:      

But to achieve the look that I want (i.e., the back piece having vertical rows instead of horizontal, if that makes sense to you. :) See the completed work here for clarity), I realized that this sleeve shaping wouldn't work well for a shrug. A sweater...sure! Though making the sleeves first is probably a bass-ackwards way of doing it. :)

Who knows? Maybe the mini-shrug will turn out cute enough for me to share the pattern for other American Girl dolls! :)

Monday, February 9, 2009

The Wheels are Turning

I knitted up a test swatch last night to see what needle size I'm going to use and which yarn. My choices on yarn are limited to what I've got on hand...I really can't justify going to buy a nicer yarn right now. Not with how many skeins and skeins of yarn I've already got!

I'm planning on making K's shrug with Caron acrylic worsted weight...From a One Pound skein. Apparently I'd started another project using the same skein of yarn, which I realize was going to be an afghan for Little T, but I decided I'll make Little T's afghan another time and frogged it. 

The color will be Off-White and I plan on using size 10 needles, because I'd like it to be a "softer" fabric, vs. a tight-weave. I think I'm also going to knit it in stockinette. I considered garter, but I just really like the clean look of SS better, plus you can see the stitches.

I also think I'm going to knit it in three pieces: the front and back as all one piece, then the sleeves. I hate seaming, so my plan is just pick up stitches and knit the sleeves on in the round.

I have it in my head that I'd like to trim the wrists with  something fun. My original thought was to use this feathery marabou stuff that I'd bought for an older project (but ended up not using it), but realize that this will make washing the shrug a little difficult, if not impossible. Unless I make the cuffs detachable...

Plus, I have this box full of eyelash yarn...which would add little splashes of color to the shrug. And, if I go with the detachable cuff idea, she could mix and match her cuffs to go with whatever outfit she chose to pair the shrug with!

Anyway, I need to take some more measurements of K and then figure out my plan of attack on the front/back piece. The sleeves will be cake... But the front/back... that'll be a little different....

Sunday, February 8, 2009

I'm a...designer?!

We've been having a cold front in Southern California...lots of needed rain (thank goodness) and quite chilly for this part of the country.

This morning, my family dressed to go to church and my 10 year old daughter emerged from her room wearing....a sun dress. Perplexed, I asked her if she wasn't going to be cold and she replied "Well, I don't have any little sweaters that fit me anymore."

Which got me to thinking "Shrug!" A little white or off-white shrug would have been perfect with her outfit.

After church, I spent some time browsing through several shrug patterns (I'm cheap...I go for the freebie patterns), but none of them are exactly what I'm envisioning in my head for her.

So, now I've got it in my head to make a custom shrug for her! I've started by taking several measurements of her arms, her back, her wrists, etc. And tonight, when things have settled down (i.e., normal housework and chores) and I have time to relax, I'm going to knit up a swatch using some yarn from my stash (I seriously need to use up a LOT of the yarn I've been collecting over the years...sadly, none of it is "good" yarn...such as wool, or the 'expensive' stuff...it's all pretty much acrylic and acrylic blends) to determine my gauge and then set to work!

This'll be my first foray into designing...or at least making up my own pattern. :) Stay tuned!