The forecast is Sweater Weather

Rain is forecast for the entire week--perfect sweater weather! On this rainy play day in grammy's garden, Carter is wearing his newest Flax (I cannot stop making these!) and his new hat, Sif's Christmas Hat. Both are knit with Rowan's Softyak DK, a yarn I am deeply in love with. It has a great hand, is soft and easy care, plus it is perfectly warm but not overly warm for an active child. I looked it up on Ravelry and I've used Softyak for over 20 projects! Big thumbs up for both patterns and yarn. 

I made no modifications to the hat, but a few with Flax. I made the size 4 for my two year old grandson because I feel this pattern runs a little small and he is a little big for his age anyway. I LOVE Flax. It’s just about the best free pattern out there with endless possibilities for customization. 

Warning: the neck opening is too large in Flax! At least it is for children. I made the neck smaller by casting on for a size two sizes down. The cast on is stretchy and it goes easily over his head and fits so nicely.  (Edited to add:) After you cast on your fewer stitches and finish the neck ribbing, you will start your raglan increases and increase until you have the correct amount for your size. Also, I think you should not worry about what the stitch count is on the pattern, but instead keep increasing until you are at the chest size measurement that you need. I wanted a 26" circumference so just kept increasing until I achieved that measurement.
The stripes were made by purling the color change row. I love the effect.
The yoke is made of 
charcoal, Plateau 
purple, Meadow 
gold, Savannah 
blue, Terrain
The light gray in the body and sleeves are Cream and the dark gray is Plain. 
The links:
Flax by Tin Can Knits (free pattern, sized newborn to adult 4XL)  
Sif's Christmas Hat by Nissehue (sized doll to adult L)
Oh, and I have to ask---did you survive the weekend? Our Thanksgiving was wonderful, but on Friday I DID manage to stay in my sweats all day and decorate for Christmas. Yay me! I'll try to get some nice pictures to share as it really looks pretty around here. On Saturday we stayed home too as we had Carter for a sleepover. He had a runny nose and was feeling low, poor dear. We mostly stayed huddled on the sofa with a book or Mickey Mouse Jr. on the tv. Lots of sleeping and cuddling. He decided he really wanted to go outside and jump in the puddles, but when the rain stopped and we went outside he thought he'd rather dig in the mud. These pictures show a busy boy, but he was not in the mood to give a smile to the camera.  Oh well, I get that. He came inside where a warm bath was waiting for him and soon his parents came to pick him up. Just another sleepover with grammy and papa.

I still have plenty left!

We have cleaned out the vegetable garden and even though we have oodles of repairs to make in the watering system and raised beds, we won't give it much of a thought until spring.

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Thanksgiving Eve

Just thought I'd pop in on this Thanksgiving Eve to wish my American readers a Happy Thanksgiving. I hope if you are hosting tomorrow that you are not feeling too stressed out! 

The pictures above are of my table set for eight for tomorrow's feast, and the three pictures below are of a small dinner party I had last night to reconnect with some friends visiting from out of town. The only time our schedules would cooperate was the Tuesday night before Thanksgiving!

How are you spending the day AFTER Thanksgiving? I really loathe calling that precious day, Black Friday. Ugh. 😒 The shopping hype on all forms of media has become unbearable to me. I am entirely ignorant of the shopping crowds first hand because I have always stayed home on the day after Thanksgiving. I sleep in and it's a good bet I'll be in my PJs ALL DAY. I have turkey stock bubbling on the stove and Christmas carols playing in the background. The fire is lit and I spend the laziest day of my year slowly decorating the house for Christmas. Bliss.

Thanksgiving gives us a day to remind ourselves of what we have to be thankful for throughout the year. In that spirit of thankfulness, I want to thank all of you for being so kind for allowing me into your home every week. From my house to your house I'm wishing you all the best during this holiday season.

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My beautiful yarn souvenirs

We went on a Baltic cruise in October, and while we loved every single thing about the amazing cities we visited, as a knitter, I was truly in wooly heaven. At most ports our itineraries were fairly busy and we didn't have time to seek out knit shops, but at three stops we did have time to visit a knit store, sometimes two. Yarn souvenirs are about the only souvenirs I take home these days and is why my stash never seems under control!

In Helsinki we had an extra hour, thank heavens, because I really wanted to do some wool shopping there. I found two knitting shops downtown, both within walking distance of each other. Snurre was my favorite with a lovely selection of yarn; even my hubbie was impressed with this large and airy shop. In Helsinki I was looking for one specific yarn: Tukuwool. I don't think a knitter can visit Finland without coming home with Tukuwool, Finland's most famous yarn brand. I purchased a sweater's worth of an earthy fingering weight wool; a blend of Finnish bred Finnsheep and Finnsheep/Texel crossbreed. The yarn is also spun and dyed in Finland making it a truly 100% Finnish souvenir.  I can't wait to get my needles on it! 

Airy as an art gallery!

A bed of Hedgehog!

If you have time to visit a second shop in Helsinki, I would visit FiinaNeule. It was only a 5-10 minute walk from Snurre. It's a tinier shop, but very charming and the salesgirl was a sweetie. I purchased some Norwegian fingering weight machine washable wool for a Christmas sweater for Carter. It's a Rowan flagship store and I thought their prices were comparable to what we expect to pay in the states.

We spent three days in Copenhagen so shopping for yarn was no problem. We visited two yarn shops and both were within walking distance from our hotel, and about a ten minute walk from each other.  They both were charming and lovely for different reasons and am so glad I had time to visit both! The first was Uld Stedet, tiny and busy, with lots of interesting choices. I happily settled on a sweater's worth of sport weight wool from a Danish company. Hjelholts Merinogarn is merino sourced from the Falkland Islands and feels lovely. 

The next little shop in Copenhagen was throughly charming; Sommerfuglen had a lovely selection of yarn, including a lot of Isager, and while I love Isager, I can purchase that here. Instead I like to look for yarn I cannot find at home. I bought a little package of nine tiny 25 gr. skeins of soft pastels of organic cotton--enough for a sweater for Carter.  Sommerfuglen had some great knitted sweater samples to admire including two beautiful examples of Pengueno by Stephen West. I could have spent hours here but I'm traveling with my patient husband and so I was quick, but thorough. BTW, my husband loved the Penguenos and wants me to make one.


In Tallin, Estonia, I was certain I'd find many examples of lace and that I would ramble into at least a few knitting shops, but I really did not. Many shops carry wool, but much of it was unlabeled. Estonia is also known for their felted wool. It's very thick and sturdy and comes in natural colors only. With it they make the most gorgeous slippers, hats, mittens and even Christmas ornaments. I purchased a roll of gorgeous, thick, off-white felt to make trivets to replace my own very tattered trivets. I think I will just cut it up into squares and maybe do a little buttonhole embroidery on the edges.  I feel so lucky to have this yummy roll as a souvenir from such a pretty little city.

We're leaving soon for a trip to New Orleans. I read that they have a knit store there 😉.

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