book review: “Easter Knits” by Arne & Carlos

arne & carlos easter knits book review

This book has been on my shelf for a while, and the eggs aren’t newly made, either.  There’s a post about them from over a year ago, but I wanted to revisit this book in the spirit of Easter!

Inside, there are patterns for a variety of eggs, balls, and bunny plushies, all of which are adorable, and none of them look TOO difficult to make.  The patterns are clear and include easy-to-follow charts.  Once you get the basic structure of the eggs and balls down, you could even invent your own colorwork patterns if you’re feeling adventurous!

Working on DPNs can be a pain and some people avoid them at all costs, but these were easier than other things I’ve used DPNs for, somehow.  The eggs worked up relatively quickly, considering the ungainly nature of DPNs.  I suppose you could use the magic loop method if you wanted to use circulars instead.

Easter Knits by Arne & Carlos book review

I used DK weight acrylic yarn, but I’m sure you could adapt the patterns to make bigger or smaller eggs if you so desire.  An easter egg/ball cushion would be really cool!

Do a Google search for “Arne & Carlos” and you’ll come up with a few places to purchase this book (as well as their other books, which are also great!), so the price may be different depending on what country you’re in, but it’s not gonna break the bank.  I recommend it!

Thanks for stopping by!  I have some crochet stuff coming up, I promise!  The yarn for a couple of projects is in the mail headed to me right now!

back to the yarn: Easter eggs

I tried the pattern for the Easter eggs in this book:

easterknitsbookAnd I’ve got a lot to share about it!  Firstly, I made 2 of them with more leftover Stylecraft Special DK and some 6in. 3.25mm DPNs that I had lying around (they’re not KnitPicks, but they were OK).  So I wanted to start out with an egg that consists of only 2 colors, not being too confident in my abilities.  Here’s the picture in the book of it:

heneggIt’s got hens going around it!  How cute!  Not being too comfortable with DPNs, I was nervous with this ungainly looking beginning:

henegg1Even at this point, I was thinking the whole thing might just be a recipe for disaster:

henegg2It started to look pretty good, though, and even the back looked pretty decent:

henegg3And here’s the finished egg:

henegg5I think it turned out great!  A little bigger than I expected, but super-cute.  I had a problem, though, with the increases at the beginning.  Here’s how the book says to do increases:

easterincreasesHave you ever seen that before?  It turned out to be really difficult for me, and very frustrating, so I started using a crochet hook to get into that stitch and pull a loop through.  For my second egg, therefore, I decided to use M1L and M1R increases instead, and it looked almost exactly the same.  Here’s the book’s example of the second egg I made:

fabergeeggAnd here’s how that one went:

fabergeegg2I like it a lot, although perhaps I should have picked more contrasting colors than the pink and blue/green.  Here are the two eggs together:

eggsThe second one is a little smaller, and I’m not sure if it’s because I’m getting tighter with my DPN skills or if I pulled the yarns too tight when changing colors.  In any case, I love both of them!

I also apologize for the darker pictures — I took the pictures of the eggs at 3AM, right when I finished them, so it was very dark in the house.

That’s all for today, except I want to say thanks to everyone who responded to my last post about rape culture.  It sparked some conversations on and off the Internet, and that’s really what I wanted, so thanks!  And thanks for stopping by again — I’ll be posting again soon!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Easter and gifts

My dad just got back from a trip to England and Scotland, and he brought me back a couple of things I want to share with you.  First, this t-shirt:

elephanthouseThat’s the logo on the front for a cafe in Edinburgh called The Elephant House.  The back says “The Elephant House: Birthplace of Harry Potter.”  JKR started writing the first books in that cafe.  I ate there last time I was in Edinburgh (and it was delicious) but neglected to purchase a souvenir t-shirt, so my dad got me one.  I love it!  He also got me a knitting book:

easterknitsbookI’ve never been one for Easter decorations but I couldn’t help loving these patterns.  They could actually be considered decorations for any season, depending on the colors used.  I just love all the pretty balls and eggs:

easterknitseggtreeSuper cute!  Here’s a closeup of the tulip egg:

easterknitseggI want to make one so badly, but I’m afraid my knitting skills might not be quite up to it yet — tiny double point needles and changing colors combined sounds like a recipe for disaster.  I thought about adapting the charts to make some crochet eggs instead, but if you’ve ever tried crochet intarsia (changing the colors to make a pattern or picture) in the round you’ll know that everything slants a bit to the right.  A crocheted egg made to look like the tulip one above would just look like wind was bowling the tulips over.  Looks like I’ll have to beast out some knitting and at least try it.  I just need some tiny needles and yarn…  KnitPicks, here I come!

Wasn’t that sweet of my dad though, to think of me on his trip?  And he’s not the only one who’s been sweet.  I never mentioned a certain gift I received for Christmas from my friend Lauren.  She and her husband actually got me quite a few really awesome things, but I wanted to share this bowl with you:

laurensbowlLauren made it herself!  She’s been doing pottery for a few months now, I believe, and this handmade bowl she gave me is perfect for holding my crochet/knitting notions!  It’s nice because I don’t have to rummage through my pencil case looking for the needles at the bottom anymore (I wasn’t comfortable with leaving them out on the table or sofa arm, because my dog ate a sewing needle a couple of years ago and getting it out of her tummy was a horrendous and expensive experience).  The bowl is gorgeous and I’m really happy.

Big thank yous to Lauren and my Dad!  And thank YOU for stopping by my blog today!

[EDIT]: If you’re not enraged about the Steubenville rape, sentence, and media coverage, or if you haven’t heard about it at all, read this and this, please.  If these words, pictures, and videos upset you, please speak out in some way.

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