Warm Up to Winter Knit Along - My Projects & Accessories

 pattern: elizabeth by jane richmond  yarn: berroco vintage chunky in colorway 6165
after a lot of thought and deliberation between my computer and my yarn stash i decided to whip myself up an "elizabeth" by my lovely friend jane richmond.  shocker!  you all know how i LOVE her patterns.  i have never made this one before and it suited my stash and the amount i had left to use just perfectly.  it's a super fast knit and didn't take more than one skein of my berroco vintage chunky yarn.  now i have enough left to do some fingerless mitts!  yippee! i love this color green and will definitely be getting my hands on some more.  it's super pretty and the hat fits awesome!  i was even wearing it inside last night when i finished it to keep warm (finished pics to come).

i made elizabeth using the magic loop method.  for all of you just learning who are part of our kal here is a link to a great video from jane on how to knit using the magic loop method.  i would be lost without it.  i honestly never got my full mojo on using double pointed needles so the magic loop has become my best friend :)  also for those of you who are venturing out into the world of knitting in the round here is another video from one of my fave places to go for help - "knitting help" for how to knit in the round.  check em' out...you just may learn a new technique.  it's not as scary as it looks, i promise!

we're having a major snowfall here this week so it's perfect timing for us all to curl up inside and chat knitting!  i thought it would be fun to show you some shots of my fave accessories for knitting from knit picks.  their prices are way more than affordable and i am a very happy user of their interchangeable needles. i yak about my lovely little notions and handy accessories all the time and just like sewing, knitting also has lots of fun little notions and goodies you can collect and carry around with you in your knitting bag.  here are my current faves...

1) Cable Needles - these are new! i've been using a different style of cable needle for eons and finally spotted jane knitting with hers and decided i needed new ones..lol.  a great cable needle will speed you up and make the process that much more enjoyable.  i heart cable knitting!

knit picks cable needles - $1.49 each
2) Best tape measure and scissors evah!!!!  seriously...this tape measure is like a buck something and is the perfect size to fit anywhere and is retractable even though it is a soft tape measure inside.  we all love ours at knit night and i think it is up there with my favorite things.  even the kids love it.  and the scissors...oh man...don't get me started on the scissors...awesome!  they fold up and fit in my handy little tin case i carry around with me.  how cool is that?

knit picks tape measure $1.99 & foldable scissors $4.49
3. Stitch Markers.  i go through stitch markers like crazy!  i have some very special ones that a good friend made me but i also need a giant back up artillery.  i use them for everything from marking the beginning of a round and for lace and cable knitting.  i run out like crazy and honestly have tried using all sorts of things from around the house but nothing seems to work as good as a proper stitch marker.  the ones below are my newest additions and the price was just right for me!

various knit pick stitch markers
4) Needle Protectors and Extra Cables.  i've got a weird sense of humour and call my needle protectors my rubbers...lol.  i know...sick...but they are made out of this plasticy rubber material and sometimes you may even hear me calling them my needle condoms...sorry...the snow has got to my brain...muahahaha.  anyhoo..they are awesome! and make me feel much better if my knitting is laying around that the kids can't get hurt as easily on the needles and my stitches don't fall off when they are in my bag.  i've also figured out which cable sizes are the most used from my knit picks interchangeables and have now stocked up on the 24" and 32"'s that i seem to use like crazy!  lots of magic looping going on in this house..lol.

knit pick needle protectors $1.19 and options interchangeables circular knitting needle cables
5) Ball Winder.  santa brought me a knit picks ball winder this year.  i was super excited to not have to depend on my lys to wind all my skeins for me or for me to make sad attempts to wind center pull balls by hand at home anymore.  yippee!!! this handy contraption will wind your lovely skeins into yummy jumbo cake style center pull balls.

knit picks knitting yarn ball winder $19.99
  6) Yarn Swift.   the ball winders best friend.  my hubby hates having to hold the skeins open for me while i wind the yarn.  it is definitely a two person job unless you've mastered the art of using a chair which i have definitely not.  santa also got me a yarn swift and it just came yesterday!  i am super excited to wind up the rest of my quince and co. yarn and test this bad boy out!  i think i may have to sew up a pretty bag to keep her in :)

knitpicks knitting yarn swift $50.00
i also use a handy little metal tin to store all my bits and bobs in for my interchangeable needles.  jane showed us that using some double sided magnets inside works great for keeping your needles and other metal littlies all organized and sorted.  i keep extra stitch markers, a stitch counter, thread, needle, darning needle and more inside.  it's handy to have it all in one place so i don't have to cart around a ton of stuff with me or have to keep getting up or digging in my purse every time i need something.  definitely a great way to stay organized. now if only i could get my mitten pattern chosen...that would help.  i keep changing my mind......

but on the upside you guys have been doing amazing so far! i cannot believe how many of you have finished hats and mitts already. go ladies go!  the conversation has been lots of fun and it does my heart good to see you all chatting happily away in there!  for those of you wanting to join in on the "warm up to winter knit along" it's not too late!

wanna join in?  here's the deets....click the link below to enter the knit along:

start date: january 11, 2012 (but you can join in anytime before the deadline)
finish date: february 8th, 2012
* please note you must sign up to be entered into any giveaways.

all posts can be found here and the thread for the knit along can be found in the luvinthemommyhood ravelry group here! 

when you are done your hats and/or mitts please post your finished pics in either our ravelry group thread or our flickr group so we can drool over your fab work!

happy knitting ladies!  which pattern did you choose?  what's your favorite method for knitting in the round?  are you a dpn's or a magic loop kinda gal?  what are your favorite knitting accessories, tools and notions?  it's snowing and the coffees on...come on over for a chat!