Archive for the ‘Pattern Review’ Category


For a while now, my dad has been really wanting a traditional Norwegian sweater, but as some of you may know, they cost roughly $400-$500 (hand knit, of course).

Well, clearly, this is out of my budget (even though my heart wants to pay it), so I decided I would make one for him instead!  I’ll use a traditional Scandinavian pattern, order the yarn direct from the source, and get crackin’.  It’s LIKE he bought it from the ol’ motherland, it’s just my little hands that are doing the work!

Upon doing research, I stumbled upon this beauty!  A KIT!  PERFECT!  It’s Icelandic, but it was the most accessible for what I thought would work for my dad (and me), so I ordered it!!!  No only do you get all the yarn you need to make the sweater, you get a complete book of about 20 scandinavian patterns!

I ordered everything right before Christmas so I didn’t want to get started!  I wrapped up the yarn and the book for my dad and put it under the Christmas tree!  He was so happy to receive a box of yarn!!  🙂

My parents came to visit at the end of May, so I made sure I had it done by then.  The pattern was easy to follow and moved quickly.  It was PERFECT!  My dad was born to wear that sweater!   I was in such a zone, I took ZERO pictures of my progress!!!  And off my parents went with my very best work ever!!!  And no proof I made it!!!

And fast forward to today, Father’s Day!!!  My parents live outside of Boulder, CO, and I received this little gem of a photo from my mom and her cell phone:

My parents drove up to the mountains (Idaho Springs, I believe) this morning to do a little “photo shoot” of my dad in his sweater!  My mom says she has 30 photos total!!!  I can’t wait to share them with you!!!

Happy Father’s Day to all you handsome dads out there!!!




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Hello, lovelies!  We’ve got a pattern review from Doggy Knits, by Anna Tillman. 

I tried the pattern called “Pretty in Pink” toward the end because, honestly, how could you not do that for a lovely little lady like Ginger Snap?!

This is the final piece:

As you can see, I did knit the sleeves as the pattern said, but after Ginger Snap tried it on, the sleeves really didn’t work out for her.  They were too close together and even though I did make them shorter than the pattern suggested, they still were just too weird for her shape, so I removed them, and now she can move freely!

Also, the buttons they suggested were just not classy enough for Ginger Snap.  I bought her one silver bone button with a little dazzle in the middle, then 4 glass bobble beads for the others.  And now she is a princess!

Here is our photo shoot!

So let’s review!

1. Ginger Snap is precious.

2. This book is definitely not for beginners!  There is minimal instruction.  Plus the patterns are written in British English, which doesn’t seem like that big of a deal until you realize you don’t know what some things mean…there is a translation chart at the beginning of the book, which you should most definitely look at. 

3. The pattern does a “tuck” at the bottom to keep the sweater from scrunching up on its own.  I really like this method, and it really does keep the sweater on Ginger Snap’s little belly.  You can see the tucks in the first two pictures.

4. I also used a machine washable yarn because the yarn suggested for this sweater was a cashmere blend…and no offense, but I’m going to need to wash that sweater after Ginger Snap wears it a few times.  She may be classy, but she is a doggy.

5. If I had to do it again, I’d make the space between the armholes a little bit bigger for her doxie chest, not as many decreases like they said.  I do not have any complaints about the sizing of the pattern because dogs are all sorts of weird shapes and the size I used for Ginger Snap (the smallest they had) was fairly accurate other than the sleeves and the space between them.

So, what do you think?  Have you ever handmade anything for your classy K-9?  My next project is for JT, so he’ll be posin’ for you soon!!



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Happy New Year!

We’ve been super busy over at Midwest Needles!  Guess what we’re doing…

We’re working on beefing up our shop!

Soon you’ll be able to order handmade items from our shop!  Made by us!  Kerith and Kate!

In the meantime, we’ve been taking custom orders, and we wanted to share a few with you!

And do a pattern review!  Two-in-One!

This is from One Skein Wonders by Judith Durant: the quick and classy clutch, which is indeed quick and classy!

This book is hit or miss for me.  There are a lot of patterns I’m not really interested in, but there are a few that I like, including this clutch.

These pictures are still from my camera phone…so, they are blurry. 

These clutches are simple to knit.  You knit a rectangle and then sew them around the handle and sew up the sides.  I used Brown Sheep Bulky yarn instead of the suggested yarn, and I also used a size 10.5 needle instead of 11.  This made the clutch a little smaller.  I like using the Brown Sheep yarn because of its price, quality, and the color selection.  I added a clasp to the inside to keep the purse shut. 

The rouching is the most fun of the project!  Bunching up ribbon and sewing it on is awesome!  You could really do a lot of different things here!  Patterned ribbon! Perhaps just a little rouching on one side?  Anything!  Fun!

The only problem I have knitting these clutches is the handle.  Most handles around don’t work for the clutch.  The pattern suggests making them out of dowels.  I did that.  But that is NOT quick.  I’m no widler, so sawing wood, shaping it, and glueing caps was time consuming, although I did manage to make them look professional and keep with the look of the clutch.

This is a great, simple, and sophisticated pattern for practicing cables before you go for somethin’ crazy!  And it’s classy!

What do you think?  Have you made this?  Did you do any variations on it?  We’d love to listen to your  brain!

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Hello! This post is a long time coming…my apologies.  The week just got away from me!  I wanted to share this tunic I just finished since I’m really happy with how it turned out.  The pattern is from the fall issue of Interweave knits– easily my favorite knitting magazine right now.  The patterns are so sophisticated!  Here are some images from the magazine:

MacDonaldTunic3-233 MacDonaldTunic-233


The tunic is knit in the round with subtle shaping along the sides.  The cowl neck and armhole edging is made by picking up stitches along the edge…I’ll admit, I had never done that before!  I’m pretty happy with how my own sweater turned out.  The pattern calls for Tahki Big Mountain, which I used, just in a different color.  If I would change anything about my own garment I’d make the cowl neck just a bit more floppy.

There is ONE stitch on the back of my garment that I didn’t pull the yarn back around the front while doing a purl stitch.  It will haunt me forever!!  But two women who own the local yarn store Loop saw me wearing it one day and told me it was super professional…that more than makes up for one missed stitch!

On to my own pictures…I really apologize for my lack of picture taking skills.  Please bear with me while I learn….

Photo 32Photo 33

Photo 3

And a couple more so you can see the stitches better:



p.s. I call everything an “Apple Picking Sweater.”



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Remember these hats?

These are the little ladies I made them for! 


Hangin' out at the apple orchard!


So Virginia (left) is 2 and Nina (right) is 1!  And I made Virginia a “child’s” size and I made Nina a “toddler” size.  Looks like they both needed somethin’ a little  bit bigger!  It doesn’t matter!  They still look cute! 

Thanks, Liz, for sending over some pics!

nina&virginia2nina&virginia3nina&virginia5See ya!




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Alright!  It’s Friday!  Last day of Hat Week!

We’ve got a reader pattern for you!

This one is from Sam!  She’s a very talented crafter! 

Sam's Hat!

She got this pattern off the internet somewhere, and we don’t have the source, so if you’re interested in it, please email me, and I can forward it to you. 

It’s a great pattern!  Those cables aren’t real cables…  It’s just an illusion!  So if you’re not yet ready to take the plunge into cabling yet, but want the same effect, try this hat out!

She used Manos del Uruguay yarn for this hat; one skien should do it.

Back of hat!

Sam’s personal tips:

“I’ve found that adding a couple rows of stockinette stitches after the rib helps keep the rib from stretching out too much (I’ve made this hat a few other times for friends and it keeps its shape nicer).

“If you think the size/volume of the hat isn’t to your desired taste, get the hat damp (not soaking) and stretch it over a large mixing bowl or plate and let it dry over night.  This has helped on several hats that I’ve made.



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This pattern is from Last Minute Knitted Gifts by Joelle Hoverson.


Joelle Hoverson's Last Minute Knitted Gifts

Joelle Hoverson's Last Minute Knitted Gifts

I made these hats in both the toddler and child size.  The pattern called for Mission Falls 1824 Cotton yarn, but I used Blue Sky Dyed Cotton instead, mainly for color availability.

I was able to keep the same guage and stick to the pattern.  The pattern isn’t terribly tricky, except being comfortable with some yarn overs and the i-cord, so if you’re looking for something quick and cute to whip up for a little lass you might know, we definitely recommend this pattern.

lassy hats

These hats were gifts (I hope they got them this week…), so I don’t have any pictures of girls wearing them!  Hopefully I’ll have some pics soon of the girls wearing them!

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