Tag Archives: madelinetosh

Hexipuff Update (or all the spectacular uses for hexi-puffs)

My hexipuffs

My hexipuffs

39 hexipuffs

39 hexipuffs

I’m 10% of the way through my beekeeper’s quilt, and 100% addicted to these satisfying little puffs.  This week, I finished my 39th puff, which I see as something as of a milestone (384 puffs make a full size quilt).  So far, my goal is to complete a double bed size quilt in a random selection of colours. These hexipuffs were made out of eight different balls of scrap sock yarn (Studioloo Bootsie, Dream in Color Smooshy and Starry, ONline Supersocke, madelinetosh merino light, and Cascade 220 Superwash Sport). I’m hesitant to start attaching anything, since I’d like the colours and colourways to be evenly distributed in the quilt.  It is interesting to note that there are way more in progress quilts on ravelry: 3833 in progress compared to 741 finished quilts. I suspect that we’ll all be at this for a while!

A hexipuff headboard, originally spotted on Pinterest

A hexipuff headboard, originally spotted on Pinterest

Rosalias' HexiChristmas (taken from ravelry)

Rosalias’ HexiChristmas (taken from ravelry)

Along the way, I also discovered some of the other spectacular and creative uses for hexipuffs, like this much-shared wall hanging/head board which, I believe is suspended using hooks from anthropologie.  I’m considering it as a temporary home for some of my finished puffs. One commenter on knit the hell out suggested using them as cushions for dinner chairs (a great idea, but I’m not sure I could watch my toddler eat pasta that close to hours and hours of knitting). Another brilliant blogger made an entire Christmas tree out of hexipuffs.

My ravelry and pinterest searches revealed hexipuffs used as Christmas ornaments, key chains, upholstery, baby toys and blankets, and my absolute favourite: a cozy cat bed!

A hexipuff pet carrier by catlips (taken from ravelry)

A hexipuff pet carrier by catlips (taken from ravelry)

Advertisements

I think I found the best use EVER for leftover sock yarn!

My hexipuffs (or 1.3% of a quilt)

My hexipuffs (or 1.3% of a quilt)

I’ve struggled with what to do with all my leftover sock yarn.  Each pair of socks results in smallish balls of lovely scrap, and it didn’t take long for me to develop a pretty major stash.  I’ve made newborn hats and contemplated wild striped socks, but I’ve never found a really satisfying use for these leftovers.  To add to the urgency, we’re looking for a house, and the upcoming move has motivated me to deal with every bit of clutter that I will otherwise have to eventually pack up and move.

Tiny Owl's beekeeper's quilt (photo copied from the pattern website)

Tiny Owl’s beekeeper’s quilt (photo copied from the pattern website)

So imagine my delight when I came upon this gorgeous Tiny Owl Knits pattern, The Beekeeper’s Quilt.  It’s a pretty popular pattern with over 5000 projects on ravelry, and at least 5 how-to videos on youtube.

The pattern reccommends 384 of these tiny little “hexipuffs” for a full size quilt, so I may be working on this one for the forseeable future. However, each little puff knits up in less than an hour, so they’re perfect in between projects.  So far I have 5 puffs (or 1.3% of a full size blanket!), but I’ll keep you posted as I work my way through my stash. I’ve made

A hexipuff in madelinetosh merino

A hexipuff in madelinetosh merino

hexipuffs with ONline suppersocke (from my Wedge socks), white Dream in Colour Starry, and pink and black madelinetosh merino (from my Hederas, and the Monas I made for my husband at Christmas), and they all look lovely. I’m so happy to be converting clutter into something beautiful for our new home, what a great pattern!


Happy Valentine’s Day to … Me!

My pink Hedera socks in madelinetosh merino

My pink Hedera socks in madelinetosh merino

This year, I’m stuck working late on Valentine’s Day (which is also my birthday!), so I decided to treat myself to a little gift: these holiday coloured-pink socks (Hederas free on Knitty and in Knit. Sock. Love).  Like many knitters, I often get caught up in working through a long list of Christmas and shower gifts and toddler sized sweaters are so fast and satisfying, I haven’t knit a sweater for myself in almost two years. When the last socks I knit for myself wore through earlier this month, I realized it was time to make something just for me.

So when I noticed the Knit. Sock. Love. knit-along on ravelry, I decided it was a perfect oppurtunity indulge.  I love how soft and cozy the madelinetosh merino is, even in this pretty, simple lace. I’m happy that they’ll be keeping me warm at work tonight.  And don’t worry, I have a little something for my long-suffering husband too,  I just didn’t knit it this year.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Sock blocking and other “Monkey” business

My completed Monkey socks in madelinetosh

I have successfully finished my first cuff down socks! It felt a little like driving on the other side of the road, but I kind of liked it.  It turns out I have been avoiding cuff down socks for no reason. Although the socks required two of my most dreaded knitting skills: picking up stitches (along the side of the heel) and kitchener stitch (to join the opposite sides of the toe together), those were relatively easy hurdles to jump (with the help of some youtube tutorials and the very clear instructions at the back of knit. sock. love.)   I chose Monkey socks by Cookie A to start me off in this new direction for a number of reasons:

1. Of all the socks in knit. sock. love., they seemed the most approachable, and I’ve been anticipating actually using this book for months.

2. They are wildly popular (with over 16000 projects on Ravelry), and I presumed that that many people can’t be wrong.

3. They’re lacey enough to be pretty, but solid enough to be warm.

While I’m pretty happy with the results, I’m a little underwhelmed; their enormous popularity and the overall beauty of knit. sock. love.  set my expectations very, very high. They’re cute, but they’re not spectacular. To be fair, that may also have to do with the disappointing way that the colour was distributed in stripes in this yarn.

The Monkey socks, before and after blocking

They were also socks wildly in need of blocking, which launched me on a new adventure. I’m usually pretty lazy when it comes to details, so I tend to do as little blocking as possible.  It isn’t essential for everything. Many objects come off your needles looking great, but in general the more complicated the texture, the more you need to block (this is especially true for lace).  Blocking can give your knit objects shape, and can even rescue the odd stretched out or otherwise misshappen sweater (even if you picked it up at the mall).  Basically, you wet the knit garment and carefully stretch it into shape, leaving it that way to dry.

My homemade sock blockers (made from a dollar store Christmas placemat)

Previously, I have just dampened my socks and pinned them down, but these socks clearly demanded more discipline.  I looked online for sock blockers, but found this set of DIY instruction instead.  The suggestion to use a placemat was ingenious.  After a quick trip to the dollar store, I had these.  I traced the wooden sock holders at my local yarn store, and added a hook at the top, so that my socks could hang from the shower curtain rod as they dry.  Success!