Gift ideas for Father’s Day

Father’s Day is just around the corner, so we’ve gathered up a few fun projects you can make just for dad! Some of them take a bit longer than others, so keep them in mind for next year if you’re in a time crunch.

Nautical vestThe Nautical Vest from our Summer 2014 Issue of Love of Knitting would be a dapper addition to dad’s wardrobe. The simple stripes and handsome buttons will make it an instant favorite he can wear for work or play.

LOK-LOC-8723_200pxNext year, make your dad the Hudson River Trail Hat, featured in our upcoming Knit Accessories Issue. The chunky yarn and easy cables will have you finished in a flash, so you’ll have extra time to spend with him on Father’s Day.

Bering SEaCrocheters, the Bering Sea Hat and Scarf set from our Winter 2013 Issue makes a perfect gift for dad! He’ll love the texture, and you’ll love how quickly these pieces will be off your hook.

Game DayYou could also crochet him the Game Day Scarf from our Holiday 2012 Issue for a sporty accessory that will help him show his love for his favorite team. He’ll wear this fun piece year after year!

Are you making your dad a handmade gift for Father’s Day this year? We’d love to hear what you’re up to, so leave us a comment and let us know!

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Travel projects

I just returned from a quick weekend getaway, and I was thrilled to see so many fellow crafters knitting or crocheting on the plane with me! Crafting is a great way to strike up a conversation with a stranger because even if someone doesn’t knit or crochet themselves, they often enjoy sharing stories about loved ones who do.

yarn on mapOn the flight, I was crocheting a few stars for our upcoming Fourth of July yarn bomb. I met another passenger who was knitting a hat, and yet another who was making holiday ornaments (she’s on the ball!). We chatted as much as our seating arrangements would allow, and it was a lot of fun to connect with people I may not have gotten to know if it weren’t for our projects.

I like small travel projects with a lot of repetition because they are easy to carry and put down mid-row if necessary. The Honeydew Scarf from our Summer Issue of Love of Crochet would make a great travel project! I might do the beading on the first row at home, but then the rest of the design would be great for staying busy during a flight or long drive (if you’re the passenger, of course!). Traveling knitters should check out the Papaya Pompom Socks from the Summer Issue of Love of Knitting. These ankle socks will fit in any project bag, and they are a great design for warmer weather.

What are your favorite travel projects? Are you a dedicated sock knitter, or do you like making motifs on the road?

A-ha moments in crafting

Earlier this week, we asked our friends on the Love of Knitting Facebook page about their favorite a-ha moments in crafting. We all love times like these, because these are the moments when something about our craft suddenly clicks in our minds. We heard some fabulous responses from our knitting friends, and hearing your responses inspired us to share our own crafting epiphanies.

A-ha

Jen – My biggest a-ha moment was when I figured out how the stitches connect together. After that I was able to pick up missing yarn overs, fix dropped stitches, correct cables by dropping down the stitches, and even correct some lace patterns. You just have to “read” the pattern / stitches and you can see how everything connects and comes together.

Kathy – My a-ha moment was when I learned how to increase when I was making my first hat—I was stunned! Increases and decreases made perfect sense at that very moment!

Jamie – Being a crocheter first, I used my old locking stitch markers when I started knitting. It was a long time before I realized that I didn’t have to clip them onto the actual stitches as I knit and move them after each row or round – I can just put them directly on the needle! This isn’t a huge a-ha moment, but it makes life a little easier!

Did you share your favorite a-ha moments with us yet? We’d love to hear them, so share them with us here, on Facebook, or on Twitter. When did the lightbulb suddenly come on for you?

Fiber at the Farmer’s Market

20140531_090416smI had a wonderful opportunity to visit a little farmer’s market this weekend in a little town east of Denver called Bennett. Little did I know there are quite a few alpaca ranches out there, and a few of them were at the farmer’s market sharing their wares and some really adorable little baby alpacas, otherwise known as crias.

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One alpaca ranch booth I visited was Eastern Sky Alpacas.  I bought some super soft alpaca worsted weight yarn in a yummy nutmeg color. I can’t stop touching it! Eastern Sky Alpacas’ owner, Patti, had used the same yarn and made a really pretty broomstick lace scarf. (For a great broomstick lace pattern, try Peace, Love and Tie-dye from our Summer 2012 issue of Love of Knitting.)

20140531_110901smI’m still trying to figure out what I want to make with this yarn. It has been extremely warm here lately, so trying to think about an accessory for winter is a little tough right now.

I will keep you posted on what I decide to make with my awesome yarn!

In the meantime, our Morning Dew Scarf from our Love of Crochet Winter 2013 issue would be a great accessory to make if you are still in the mood to make a warm accessory—maybe you are doing a geological survey of Antarctica and want to look fashionable? If you absolutely don’t want to think about winter again for a while, but want the same scarf as a beautiful summer accessory, then watch the Secrets of Yarn Substitution Webinar (June 9th) and learn how to trade out the yarn with a nice cotton blend! Or linen? Cotton and silk?

Also, don’t forget to join me in my next Crochet Along, June 13th, as I try and tackle the Olive Twist shawlette from our Love of Crochet Summer 2014 issue! You can buy the kit here and follow along!