My mother often comes home from a shopping spree, excited to show me and my sisters her newly acquired treasures.  We feign excitement, saying, “Oh, wow!  Another white shirt!  How interesting!”  She laughs, glares, and retorts, “Well, fine!  Don’t come to me when you need a cute white shirt!” She opens her closet of stark contrasts (white, black, and brown), and hangs the newcomer up next to its hundred twins. It’s a sarcastic celebration when she comes home with anything with hue.

One variation she does welcome is pattern, her favorite of which is houndstooth.  She has a houndstooth scarf, houndstooth shoes, a houndstooth purse, a houndstooth headband, and a nice houndstooth pillow on her bed. 

I crafted this pillowcase three years ago for Mother’s Day.  It was the first fair isle pattern that I attempted, and was really exciting to watch come together. 

About a year ago, my lovely mother asked for two smaller pillows to place on either side of the original.  And every time I go home, I regret that I haven’t fulfilled this request.  So I am making a goal: I will follow-up on this blog the week after Mother’s Day, and  I will share pictures of the cute little companions that I will finish by that date.

To complete this project, I followed the pattern in Classic Knits At Home, by my favorite, Erika Knight.


What has no backbone, a prominent head, and the ability to squirt ink?  That’s right!  A cephalopod!  This little guy is probably the most popular cephalopod: an octopus (socks=socktopus)!     

With just a few clicks of my mouse, I discovered that cephalopods are a bit of an underground obsession these days, being featured in tattoos, jewelry, t-shirts, tote bags, buttons, and, shall we say, some less tasteful items.  Made you google it!  Perhaps I should use the sea creatures in more of my knitting.  It seems it might actually make me cool.

The item in question – Socktopus – was created for my godson’s first birthday.  I would love to try my hand at him again, giving him buttons for eyes, some different sock variety, and a new smile.  Perhaps I will work on that soon and we can have a side-by-side look at the two.

I honestly don’t remember the yarn I used, but the pattern is by Laura Edwards is on Ravelry.com.

Every Boy a Dinosaur

My nephew has the uncanny ability to suddenly and dramatically transform from a sweet, innocuous child to a ferocious predator on the hunt.  Sometimes his animal of choice is the lion (Simba or Mufasa to be exact), but most of the time it is the T-Rex.

His love for dinosaurs extends beyond the games he creates as a prehistoric beast.   He knows nearly everything there is to know about each type of dinosaur, and he will correct you if you call a Stegosaurus a Brontosaurus.  He finishes your sentences as you read him his massive dinosaur book.

The imagination that flows from this knowledge astounds me.  He comes up with elaborate plots for the dinosaur family, (he’s the daddy, of course, and you’re the mommy, the baby, or the victim) and he stays in character for hours.

But sometimes it is nice to have a prop or two to go a long with your imaginations.  I created this spiky dinosaur hat especially for him.  It is nice during playtime and on cold winter days.

I designed this pattern and used Sugar ‘n Cream cotton.

What does the little one in your life pretend?