Tag Archives: knitting cardigan

knitting a fall wardrobe – alpenglühen cardigan

Feels good to be back here! I’ve been working on my Alpenglühen cardigan for so long, I began to doubt I would ever finish it.
But, 7 months after the first stitch, here it is:
Knitting a fall wardrobe - Alpengluhen Cardigan | little home by hand blogKnitting a fall wardrobe - Alpengluhen Cardigan | little home by hand blog
The yarn is Cascade 220 in the colorway Bright Red. I wanted a cheery but warm red (cool colors make my skin look even paler) and I remember agonizing over just the right shade of red for days, scouring Ravelry and pictures of different yarns and reds. In the end I ordered the Cascade yarn from France as it wasn’t available in this specific colorway in Germany.
Knitting a fall wardrobe - Alpengluhen Cardigan | little home by hand blog
Cables are actually fun to knit and they look much more complicated on a finished garment than they are to make!
Why did this cardigan take me so long?
For one thing, I am finding out more and more that I don’t enjoy working bottom up on cardigans. Top-down knitting is so much more motivating because the garment takes shape more quickly and you can try it on in between. Once I did get to the shoulder part I hated the many many wrap and turns the pattern called for and if you looked closely you could see I didn’t manage them very well. It was just not a fun project to work on and I would not knit this particular pattern again. Not because it’s a bad pattern (it’s wonderful, really) but because it just wasn’t for me.
Knitting a fall wardrobe - Alpengluhen Cardigan | little home by hand blog
The finished cardigan however? Simply gorgeous! Love the fit, love the cables, love the color to bits! I will be wanting to wear this every day once the weather gets cooler!

For those of you wondering where I’ve been in the past few weeks: I went to Scotland in July (to be blogged soon!) and had to take a spontaneous break in all things internet and social media due to some personal changes afterwards. All good though and one thing I can share is that we’ve just bought a house!
We’re super happy since demand for houses in our area is huge and prices are skyrocketing. We’ve been very lucky to find an affordable house we liked AND get it too (thanks to our super quick financial advisor who managed to secure a written statement from the bank that they would finance us within two hours!). We’ll get the keys to our snug and small terraced house in December and will be in before Christmas after some renovation and redecorating.
The last few weeks have been stressful since everything happened so fast and there were many many appointments we needed to fit in around our daily work schedules and many many things we needed to wrap our heads around when it came to financing it all. I’d never taken out a loan or been in debt before in my entire life and here I went getting myself a mortgage I’ll be paying off until I reach pension age! Scary, admittedly!
Now I’m looking forward to the more fun aspect of house buying – planning the rooms and the changes we’ll make. I’ll even have a small garden to plan for next year 🙂

On another note: I don’t usually comment on political stuff on here but Germany seems to get a lot of international attention these days for how we handle the refugee crisis. The amount of help people are offering and organising really is astonishing and heartwarming! I even have trouble finding a place to drop off donations these days since all storage spaces are full. Yes, some people are negative and scared here too but the overwhelming public feeling is one of empathy and welcoming. A proud time to be German and we Germans sure don’t say that lightly!

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knitting a wardrobe – the marsa alam cardigan

I finished my second knit cardigan, whoohoo! The more I knit, the more I love it. Yes, it takes longer than sewing but so far I am loving my knitted wardrobe better than my sewn clothing.

The pattern is the marsa alam cardigan by Isabell Kraemer and you can find my project page for this cardigan here on Ravelry. marsa alam cardigan. little home by hand blogThe yarn is Holst Coast in the crab apple colorway, bought directly from Holst in Denmark. This yarn is wonderful and the color such a nice, fresh green! Contrary to the pattern I knit it all in one color instead of doing stripes. Vintage mother of pearl buttons from my grandma’s stash give it a classic, elegant look.

marsa alam cardigan. little home by hand blogmarsa alam cardigan. little home by hand blogThe pattern itself is lovely, easy to follow and straightforward. Lots of hours of plain stockinette which I didn’t really mind. I love to watch youtube documentaries while knitting.

I made one mistake where I started a sleeve, twisting the stitches the wrong way as I picked them up from the stitches on hold. It shows in the right sleeve. Oh well.

Unfortunately, all while knitting I had an inkling it would turn out too small. I pushed the thought aside, thinking a good wash and block would take care of that. Ahem.

Washing did improve the sizing slightly but contrary to my first cardigan the yarn didn’t stretch as much as I had hoped.

I can absolutely still wear it. As long as I don’t try to close the buttons across the bust. marsa alam cardigan. little home by hand blogmarsa alam cardigan. little home by hand blogI might try washing and blocking again more vigorously to see if I can stretch it a bit more.

Still, I can’t help loving it, the color is so nice to wear and the fit is otherwise really lovely. It’s too warm to wear at the moment but I’m looking forward to having an in-between season cardigan come fall.

I think knitting cardigans is “it” for me right now, I am itching to start the next one, to expand my knitting skills and try cables and colorwork and much more. I love to watch the project take shape row after row, all the while looking forward to wearing it. It’s easy enough to enjoy while watching a movie or series and still gives you something useful to do with your hands while sitting on the couch.

Yes, knitting is definitely it.

 

3 great ways to relax at home

How do you relax at home? Do you cook, watch a film, do something crafty?
cat on the couchI’m feeling a bit worn out lately, ready for a few days away to clear my mind and replenish those energy stores running low. Until my next vacation however I have to rely on my tried and true best ways to relax at home.

I’m an introvert in the sense that I need to spend at least a couple of hours a day quietly by myself. I have a job where I am around a lot of people all day which I absolutely love but it is also draining and by the time I get home I usually crave some alone time.

I want to share my top three favorite ways to relax at home with you.
knitting a cardigan
Make something
Sitting down comfortably (that involves at least two woolen blankets for me) and creating is a great way to let go of all those thoughts swirling around and making you dizzy and antsy. I have tried meditation without success but when I knit or sew I am in the moment and just concentrate on being present and enjoying the rhythm. I often find myself taking the first really deep breath of the day then, slowing down and letting go of pressures and responsibilities.
knitting a cardiganI have just started knitting my second cardigan (this one) and feel a real physical urge to sit down and knit all the time. I figure it’s a healthier addiction than coffee or cigarettes 😉

Read a book
Escaping to a different world from the safety of my couch (can you tell how much I love my couch and those woolen blankets?) is something I look forward to every day. I couldn’t not read. Sometimes it’s blogs, sometimes it’s a simple tale for a few days (love the ‘Daisy Dalrymple‘ series) and sometimes it’s sagas that stay with me for months (hello Game of Thrones). I need my stories.
urban vintage bookI just got the prettiest german book in the mail last week from Midsommarflicka. I won a giveaway on her blog and loved receiving this gorgeous ‘Urban Vintage‘ design guide. It’s like Pinterest in book form!
urban vintage book
Give the cats a cuddle

Granted this works best when you actually have a cat on hand but it also works with dogs, hamsters and any furry, warm creature in your home.
cat on the couch There is nothing to make you forget the outside world like a sleepy cat, snuggled up close to you and warming your legs, purring and snoring without a care in the world. Animals live in the moment completely. I know some people can’t relate to that but my home would not feel the same without these softfooted graceful beings.

So, how do you relax at home?