Posts filed under Pattern Review

Afghan Hound & Sea Beanie

I have had Sea Beanie in my queue for as long as I can remember having a queue, and I was pleased to finally create this hat for the Afghan Hound KAL that is going on in Fiber Hound’s Ravelry Group.

Sea Beanie, by Elena Nodel, is a hat featuring a stunning cable design on the front, with thick ribbing in the back. The pattern is a part of a set of nine garments inspired by the sea and can be made with DK or worsted weight yarns. Adding onto that versatility, the pattern comes in 4 sizes, Toddler, Child, Adult, and Large Adult. I made mine out of Cerberus in the Adult size as I knew that color would show off the cables wonderfully.

The hat begins working in a 1:1 ribbing, then goes right into the cabled pattern. The pattern has graciously included a charted version and a written version of the pattern and even has a photographic how-to instruction for one of the more complicated increases. After the cable pattern is completed, a standard decrease pattern finishes off the hat.

The versatility and enjoyment I’ve received from this hat encourages me to make many more of these for the future. Plus, out of the Afghan Hound, you can easily make more than one in the smaller sizes, which is a great option for gifts!


Fiber Hound has started a newsletter so you can stay up to date with what’s going on! You can subscribe by clicking here.

Posted on November 20, 2013 and filed under Pattern Review.

The Puppy Button Saga

A year and a half ago while I was still working at the local yarn shop, we got in an order of buttons that included the most adorable puppy-shaped buttons I had ever seen.  I was determined to do something with them, so I found the pattern called Gig Gloves, by Grace Akhrem, which had 7 buttons on each mitt.  The pattern was perfect - not too complicated, and it was clearly meant to show off anyone’s favorite buttons.  While the appropriate amount of buttons had been ordered for my pattern in queue, the shop I worked at closed before they were able to come in and be in my possession.  This is where I thought the story of the puppy buttons ended.

That is, until over a year later, I found my own yarns being sold at a local store where I happened to be at an event in which I had a fair amount of time to stand around and enjoy everything around me.  And then I saw them: the puppy buttons!  I immediately ordered 14 of them in the two different colors they had, and dyed up some Afghan Hound  in Throw Me A Bone to match.  

When the buttons were finally in my possession, I decided to save the little mitts as a project to work on during my wedding day and on my honeymoon.  (And yes, I knit during my own wedding.)  

The pattern is delightfully simple and quick, yet attractive.  The basic form is a square knit in stockinette, with the edges being garter stitch.  The only difference between the two hands is which side the buttons holes are made, and the thumb holes are made by easy m1s in whichever method you prefer.   The strap at the bottom is purely decorative (because then you get to have an extra button!), and adds a nice little aesthetic touch.  It’s knit separately and then attached after blocking.

I kept the buttons safe at the bottom of my project bag throughout my travels in Vancouver, and when I was finally ready to attach them, I realized the tapestry needle I had didn’t fit through their holes.  I planned to resolve this issue by visiting a yarn store in the Downtown area, and while I purchased an appropriately-sized crochet hook to take care of the job, I never got around to attaching them for the rest of the trip.

While packing, I took a mental inventory of everything we brought, and one thing appeared to be missing: the puppy buttons.  We searched EVERYWHERE, but they were nowhere to be found.  The Tuesday after we returned to South Bend, I dreadfully called up the store to see how many (if any) buttons they had left.  To my luck, they  had enough for me to properly button up one mitt, and have ordered more for the second!  After having the buttons in my possession for the second time, I attached them as quickly as possible to avoid any other extensions to this story.

I absolutely adore these gloves, and I look forward to getting the rest of the buttons so I can wear them out in the now chilly weather.  The Afghan Hound is absolutely perfect for the warmth of the Merino and the softness of the silk, especially because I have sensitive skin.

Posted on November 13, 2013 and filed under Pattern Review.

Afghan Hound & Thendara

In the midst of completing the Yarnbox project, I decided it would be important to demonstrate how the two yarns can be used together in one project using a more popular pattern.  In thinking of what would fill these requirements, my mind immediately went to any pattern of Stephen West's, as he loves to use stripes throughout many of his patterns.  I chose Thendara because of the pleasant geometrical shape, and because it fit the yardage and yarn thickness requirements.  I was able to complete the shawl with only two skeins of Afghan Hound with the main color Hushpuppy, and the secondary color Sirius, with a few fewer rows made in the end.  If you have more skeins to use, the pattern gives an option for a larger version.

The shawl begins at the inner center, and after an edge is created in the main color, it begins to stripe and expand. The ridges of color expanding from the center are created from slipped stitches of the main color.  For the first part of the pattern, the shawl is only four sections, but after a measured completion of a delightfully memorizable four rows, the pattern recreates two more of the center cast on splits.  This creates three "square" sections, with four middle or end sections interspersed around them.  The pattern finishes with garter stitch to make an edge that doesn't curl.


The pattern is very well written and left me having no questions about how to proceed while being a lot of fun to complete.  My favorite thing about the design is how it uses both garter stitch rows and stockinette rows to create different types of textured stripes.  I was able to enjoy wearing this shawl to experience how well it functioned on my honeymoon in Vancouver, where most days were cool enough that it required some sort of sweater or scarf.  I tend to wear shawls just over my shoulders and rarely tied, and having the silk and wool blend over my shoulders kept me surprisingly warm as we wandered through the city.

Posted on November 6, 2013 and filed under Pattern Review.

Dachshund & Pretty Chilly Hat

In searching for patterns to make samples out of my yarns, I tend to obsessively look through Ravelry, searching for something perfect.  On one such evening, I was looking for a hat pattern to make out of Dachshund, I came across a lovely hat that had a ribbed lace and cable pattern called  Pretty Chilly Hat and I decided that it would be perfect.  In looking over the free pattern, I realized that the designer, Erynn Ziegler, was the same Erynn Ziegler whom I knew from when I worked at the local yarn store and was Facebook friends with.  I quickly logged on to Facebook to message with her my delightful discovery.  I recall sitting with her as she was initially working on the first version of this hat, which was in sport weight rather than fingering.

After excitingly dyeing up a skein of Dachshund in the bright Dog Days of Summer, I cast on the hat.  Like many hats, it starts off with ribbing, and this hat has a delicate 1:1 ribbing.  The body of the hat is a basic diagonal lace alternating sections with a four stitch cable.  The 6 row sections are easy to memorize, which made it an easy project to carry with me as I traveled.  She recommends repeating the sections ten times (or as desired), and a for a hat made for myself it would work alright as I have a lot of hair on my head to cover.  For my head model, nine repeats would have been sufficient.  (On a related note, someone who also made this hat wrote in their Pattern Notes on Ravelry that their hat goes to 11.  It's the last place I expected a Spinal Tap reference.)  It finishes with a standard decrease pattern.

This hat was a tremendous amount of fun to make, and it's particularly special because I am friends with the designer.  The hat fits most heads due to the ribbing of the pattern, which makes it very stretchy.   It takes less than 1 skein of Dachshund, so it also makes a great stash-buster project. And, if made in Dog Days of Summer, you will never lose it!

Posted on August 28, 2013 and filed under Pattern Review.

Afghan Hound & Woodstacking Cowl

I’m always searching for great 1 skein projects, especially for skeins of yarn that are around 200 yards.   I was able to find a beautifully textured cowl that takes between 145 and 185 yards of DK weight yarn, called Woodstacking.  It was designed by Ann Hanson, a prolific designer from Canton, Ohio who has been featured in a number of pattern books.  This cowl of hers features a cable-and-moss texture that looks incredible in any shade or color.  It’s particularly extravagant when made from Afghan Hound, Fiber Hound’s 50% Silk & 50% Superwash Merino DK yarn; I chose the Mush! colorway.

The cowl comes with the option of 3 sizes of width; the only time that the difference in stitch counts comes into play is when casting on and knitting the border ribbing.  The inner section is easily customizable for how tall it can be by repeating the sections.  

The cowl begins by casting on normally, and creating a 2:2 ribbing for a set number of rows.  It quickly goes into the body section, which has the option of being read from a chart or written out.  The instructions have two of the three sections written out, with the first section being repeated after the second.  The layout is very basic; part of the section is an easy cable, the other part a moss stitch surrounded by purl stitches, creating a box.  The first and second sections are almost identical, with the changes being in the position and the direction of the cable.  

After completing the delightfully simple and easy to memorize pattern, the pattern is finished by repeating the ribbing section that started the pattern, and binding off.

I cannot say enough great things about this pattern; it’s well written, easy, and kept my interest the whole time knitting it.  It makes a great gift as it only took me 3 days to create, and it shines being made from Afghan Hound because of how soft and squishy it feels..


Posted on August 7, 2013 and filed under Pattern Review.