Off the Hook: Pineapple Doleman

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I hope you like pineapples, because this sweater is full of them!  (Pineapple stitches, that is!) The pattern is aptly named the Pineapple Stitch Doleman and came from Vogue Knitting Crochet 2013.  (You can find more on this pattern at Ravelry here and YouTube here.)

I've never actually worked with the pineapple crochet stitch before, and had so much fun using it on this project. I adore how intricate and lacy this stitch is, and it was so fun to watch it come together row by row. The pineapple pattern adds such a rich texture and dimension to the sweater.

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There are so many great details I adore on this sweater. First, the neckline is beautiful! I love the long lines and how it gracefully slopes off the shoulders. Then, there is the delicate picot detail along the edges that adds just a little something extra.  Little details like that can really add a little something special to a garment, if you know what I mean. Another fun thing about this sweater is how the pineapple motif starts off small at the top and increases in size as you go!

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But, my favorite part are the sleeves, because they make me look like... na na na na na na na na... Batgirl! Bam! A sweater that turns you into a superhero??!!  That's always a winner in my book.  Now, all I need are some super powers to go along with it!!  ;)

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I did splurge a bit on the yarn for this one.  I used Swans Island Fingering yarn in Vintage Lilac, which is 100% merino wool. It is ohhhh soooo soft!

Since I've been feeling more confident in my crochet skills lately, I've decided to experiment with higher quality yarns in my work.  I've recently set a goal for myself to create more clothing items than I purchase from the store. With that in mind, I want to create high quality items that I'll love for a long time, and one way to help me achieve that goal is to start with great supplies like a fabulous yarn!  I can't wait to learn more about different fibers as I dive deeper into the world of finer yarns.


Project Details:
Pattern: Pineapple Stitch Doleman, Vogue Knitting Crochet 2013
Yarn: Swans Island Fingering in 117 Vintage Lilac (100% Organic Merino Wool)
Time: This sweater took me about a month working at a leisurely pace in the evenings.
Difficulty: Intermediate. The pattern is intricate, but repetitive.  You'll also need to check your gauge, but the loose fit of the sweater gives you a bit of wiggle room.

I am so pleased with how this sweater turned out.  It is the perfect easy, breezy sweater to take me through the spring and summer.  I can already tell this sweater isn't going to be seeing much of my closet, because I'm going to be wearing it ALL. THE. TIME!

As for my next crochet project, I have yet another purple one in the works. (Note to self... No more purple yarn!! Hold me to it, guys! Even though purple is a pretty color, I can't be stuck wearing only purple all the time!)

And in sewing news, I'm on my way to finishing my next dress. I actually started this one last fall, but have been procrastinating on finishing it. I've finally decided that it is time to get this one off my sewing table.

Stay tuned, I can't wait to see how these projects turn out and share them with you!

So, have you guys completed any projects you love lately?  Do you have any hibernating projects you are dusting off and working to finish this spring?


Off the Hook: Big Pom Beanie

If you follow me on Instagram, you saw a sneak peak of this beanie while I was making it. I'm so pleased with how it turned out!  

I chose a plush wool yarn in a bright mustard hue. The cheery color is perfect for brightening up these last few winter days.  In fact, the day I made this hat, it was brutally cold and snowy, and this cozy and cheerful yarn really helped keep the winter blues at bay.

Love this style?  You can find the crochet pattern over at Little Things Blogged.  Tanya's patterns are adorable, easy to follow and quick to whip up. What more could a crochet gal want? I made her slouchy beanie last year and loved it as well. A girl can't have enough cute hats, right?!

And, now I'd like to introduce you to....

Muahahahahaha! (aka my evil-monster-pom-laugh. lol!) 

The saying is 'go big or go home', right? Well, I pulled out my biggest pom pom maker for this one and went for a HUGE pom on the top my beanie.   

This pom is borderline obnoxious, but I absolutely love it. The added poof is a lot of fun, and whenever it wobbles on my head, it is a sweet reminder of the handmade gem I'm wearing to keep my noggin warm.

Project Details:
Yarn: Cascade 128 Solid in Marigold; 100% Peruvian Highland Wool; Bulky weight
Time: This hat whips up in no time at all! (Gotta love chunky yarn!!)
Difficulty: Easy peasy. If you are a beginner looking to branch out of making simple scarves, this is a great project for you.

Well, this is the last of my winter projects, and I'm now looking forward to spriiiiiiing time!  Right now, I've got a super fine lavender yarn on my hook.  I'm making an adorable, delicate shrug with it and I can't wait to see how it turns out!

So, have you guys finished up any last winter projects lately? 

Let's Crochet: Bunting Necklace

A festive bunting is the perfect way to decorate for parties and celebrations, right?!  Well, this little crochet gem is like a party for your neck!

I'm sharing the full tutorial over at Makes and Takes today as part of Marie's crochet-a-day series. I'll see you over there guys!  Be sure to bring a crochet hook!  ;)

Granny Square Christmas Tree Skirt.

I know it's a tad late for a Christmas post, but I had to share my finished granny square tree skirt with you guys!  And, despite posting this a few days after Christmas, I did actually have it ready for the big day.  I finished it up just in the nick of time on Christmas Eve. I was so excited when I weaved in the very last yarn end and placed this cheerful skirt under our tree. I was as giddy as a kid on the night before Christmas.  ;)

Project Details:
Pattern: Granny Tree Skirt Crochet Pattern by Ann Regis for Red Heart
Yarn: A mix of random stuff from my stash. This project was a great stash buster!
Difficulty: Intermediate - It's a pretty repetitive pattern, but this project is extremely time consuming and requires a good bit of construction.
Skills: Granny squares, seams, color work, weaving in plenty of ends
Time: OMG, this project took forever!! This is definitely my biggest project to date.  It was totally worth the effort though, because I'm so pleased with how it turned out. And, you should have seen Santa's face when he saw it as he slid down our chimney!  Priceless. ;)

You might remember that I actually started this project over the summer.... let's just say that it proved to be a bit more time consuming than  I was expecting.  It was definitely a labor of love, but totally worth the long hours.  I'll enjoy this one for years to come.  Another bonus of working on a big project... it was so cozy to work on a something I could literally bury myself under!

I'm super excited for next Christmas, because I'll be able to enjoy this tree skirt for the whole holiday season rather than just a few days. Although, I'm already planning on keeping my tree up for a few more weeks this year, so I can enjoy it's colorful cheerfulness a little more. Am I the only one who keeps their tree up until the middle of January??

Next up, I've got some smaller projects on my hook for some more instant gratification! ;) Stay tuned for some cozy hats and scarves.  

P.S. More crochet projects here.

2013 Ornament Exchange & Tutorials!

This Snowy Owl by Jen of Grainline Studio is a hoot!

I had a lot of fun participating in the ornament exchange that Kelli of True Bias held this year.  It was so much fun to unwrap all the wonderfully creative and unique ornaments I received in my mailbox each day. It was like Christmas every time I went to the post office!!

I already shared with you guys the cute crochet Christmas tree ornaments I sent out. As promised, here are all the beautiful handmade ornaments I received. Follow the links for complete tutorials!  

Katy of Katy and Laney made these adorable and "distinctly mammalian" ornaments. I love her humorous story about the process of creating these. I've always wondered how difficult it would be to make creative poms like this.

Miranda of One Little Minute made the sweetest Sugar Plum Fairies in honor of her newest family member... her sweet baby girl, Plum.

Krista of Lazy Saturdays made these cozy plush houses with a free pattern included so you can make your own!

Laney of Katy and Laney made this cute thimble hot air balloon.  Up, up and away!!

Sonja of Ginger Makes made these jingle bell wreaths, and I definitely turned some heads when I walked out of the post office with this jingling package!

Kelli of True Bias made these heartstrings state ornaments.

Jennifer of Workroom Social made these fabulous fabric tree ornaments.

It was so fun checking my mailbox over the past week. I've loved receiving each and every one of these special handmade ornaments. This was my first time participating in a blogger exchange and I had a blast.

So, have you guys been doing any holiday crafting?  Feel free to link up your projects below, I'd love to see what you've been making this holiday season!