Monday, November 24, 2014

Merry & Cheers Christmas Pillows Knitting Pattern

I'm happy to announce a new Christmas knitting pattern just in time for 2014 gift giving.  You will find the "Merry & Cheers Christmas Pillows" knitting pattern on Ravelry and in my Etsy shop.

"Merry" Christmas Pillow Knitting Pattern
The "Merry & Cheers Christmas Pillows" pattern includes full size felt applique patterns for both the "merry" and "cheers" designs.  I picked a fun, casual font style and modified the letters to suit the 12" x 16" pillow size.  

In the pattern you will find that the letter patterns are full size....all you have to do is print the page and cut out the paper letter patterns.  No resizing of the patterns needed!

This knitted pillow is a quick and easy project.  It is knit flat and seamed on the sides and bottom. 

This pattern uses super bulky weight yarn.  This pattern knits up so quickly you have plenty of time to knit more than one to wrap up before December 25th!

"Cheers" Christmas Pillow Knitting Pattern
I used Loops & Threads Cozy Wool super bulky weight yarn from Michael's Craft Store in the U.S.  This bright, traditional Christmas red is called 'Claret'.  I really like this yarn because it is very reasonably priced and the yarn is very soft.  You can also use many other super bulky weight yarns for this project.

Other supplies needed include an inexpensive pillow form (12" x 16"), nice quality felt, DMC embroidery floss and basic sewing and crafting supplies.  I recommend a good quality pair of scissors for cutting out the felt letters.

I suggest using the best quality felt you can find.  My favorite source for good quality, wool blend felt is Sweet Emma Jean's Etsy Shop where you will find an incredible selection of felt colors.  

This pattern includes detailed, step-by-step instructions for finishing.  As with any knitting project, careful finishing makes all the difference in the outcome of the finished project.  I make every effort to outline each individual step in the pattern and provide close up photos to illustrate the steps.

To find out more about this pattern visit my Etsy shop or see my pattern listing on Ravelry.

Happy Holidays! 

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Main Line Pillows - Color Block Inspired Knitting Pattern

The "Main Line Pillows" knitting pattern includes two (2) color block inspired designs.  This pattern is available on Ravelry, Craftsy and Etsy.

This design is simple with clean lines and a modern style.  Both pillow designs would look great knit in any number of color combinations to go with any decor.

This version of the Main Line Pillow uses three colors with one "main line" slightly off center (see the white stripe in the photo below).

Main Line Pillows knitting pattern - Two designs included.
The other version (shown below) uses five wide stripes with three yarn colors.  With the colors that I used, the dark navy in the center becomes the "main line".  However, with different color choices other lines could become more dominant and change the appearance.  It would be fun to experiment with colors....and even try knitting each of the five stripe color blocks in a different color.

Main Line Pillow - Five "Main Lines" Design
This pillow is knit with super bulky yarn so it knits up very quickly.  The pillow cover is knit flat in one piece, sideways, and then seamed on the bottom and sides.  There are detailed finishing instructions (with photos) in the knitting pattern.

Knit with super bulky yarn and large knitting needles.  
I used Loops & Threads Cozy Wool which is sold at Michael's Craft Store in the United States.  I'm pretty much addicted to this yarn!  It is available in a nice variety of colors.  This is a nice, soft yarn at an economical price.

This pattern will also work well with many other super bulky yarns including Lion Brand Wool-Ease Thick & Quick or Lion Brand Hometown USA.

This is also a great pattern for using up stash super bulky yarn!

This pattern is designed for a 12" x 16" pillow form.  I used an inexpensive, basic pillow form from the craft store.  For this modern style I prefer a firm pillow form.

This pillow makes a great gift for anyone!  It won't take you long to knit the pillow and you won't spend much on the materials.

These two pillow designs (the Main Line Pillows knitting pattern includes two design charts to do both designs shown in the photos above) would look great in other colors.  For a modern neutral style, either pattern would look fantastic in black, gray and white.  For Valentine's Day it would look so cute in red, pink and white.  For a sports fan, choose favorite sports team colors.  (The design with five lines reminds me of a classic rugby shirt!)  I included more color combination ideas in the pattern.

I have four or five new knitting pattern designs in the works right now.  Now that it is so cold outside I'm knitting every day!  Thank you so much for stopping by to check out my knitting patterns.  Happy knitting!

Mary Lee
Fifty Four Ten Studio

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Line Up Pillow Knitting Pattern - Lots of Stripes!

The Line Up Pillow knitting pattern is all about stripes.  I love stripes.  Stripes are classic and timeless.   There's something about the symmetry and balance of stripes.

The Line Up Pillow knitting pattern includes two (2) stripe pattern charts to knit pillow covers to fit 12" x 16" basic pillow forms.

The pattern also includes blank charts for you to design your own stripe patterns.

The first stripe pattern I designed was centered around my favorite color combination of navy and white.  This pattern has seven thin white stripes with wider navy stripes.  In these colors the pillow has a nautical, summery look.

Line Up Pillow Knitting Pattern - Quick & easy project!
I used Loops & Threads 'Cozy Wool' in the colors 'Sapphire' and 'Fleece'.  I use this yarn all the time because it is so soft and has a nice appearance at very economical price.

This pattern would look great in many color combinations.  For a modern look you could try black (or dark gray) and white.  For neutral decor it would look nice in soft light tan or light gray with white or ivory thin stripes.  How about red and white for Christmas?  Or...for a sports fan use favorite sports team colors.

The second strip design included in the pattern was inspired by all of the leftover bits of super bulky yarn in my stash.  I wanted to knit a pillow using all of these colors but I wanted it to look organized.  I came up with a design chart for 13 stripes in equal widths.  I placed all of my yarn options on the floor and tried out different arrangements for the colors  Then I arranged the colors in the order I wanted to use them in my striped pillow.

Line Up Pillow knitting pattern includes two stripe design charts.
I ended up using one or two neutral colors twice in this sample.  Most of the yarn in this sample is either Loops & Threads 'Cozy Wool' or Lion Brand Wool-Ease 'Thick & Quick".  I still have a lot more odds and ends so I can make another version with the stripes in a different order!  (You may have noticed that I'm addicted to designing and knitting pillows!  I'm sure I can find a spot for one more pillow in the house!)

This is a very easy pattern!  Great for beginning knitters or experienced knitters who want a quick project.  

The pattern is knit flat in one piece with two needles and seamed.  If you prefer, this pattern can be knit in the round.  Cast on the same number of stitches indicated in the pattern.  Join and knit all rounds following the stripe chart of your choice. Be sure to mark the beginning of the round to make sure you start and stop stripes at same point each time.  (This pattern is geared towards beginners, as well as all levels of knitters.  More advanced knitters may prefer knitting in the round and more advance finishing techniques.)

You will need to know how to cast on stitches, knit and purl confidently, bind off stitches, weave in ends and sew up simple seams.  If you have not sewn up seams before, there are detailed photo illustrated instructions in the pattern.  My patterns include lots of detailed directions to walk you through every step of the finishing process.

Detailed finishing instructions included in the pattern.
If you are wondering how much yarn you need for these pillows....plan on about 220 - 235 yards total.  

For the two color stripe pattern (navy & white version above) you will need about 170 yards of the main color and 60 yards for the thin stripe color.  

For the multi color pattern (where each of the 13 stripes is a different color) you will need about 17 yards for each stripe....with the first and last stripe needing about 24 yards to allow for casting on and sewing up seams.

Grab your stash yarn and start knitting!  (I promise not to tell if you buy new yarn to knit these striped pillows!)

The Line Up Pillow knitting pattern is available in my Etsy shop and on Ravelry.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Joy & Believe Pillows - New Knitting Pattern with Felt Appliqué

One of my favorite things to do is design and make Christmas ornaments.  Last year, I designed and published two Christmas ornament patterns.  This year I've been designing and knitting a lot of pillows so it's not surprising that my newest pattern is....a Christmas themed pillow.

I designed and made the "Joy" Pillow for my mom because she has been saying for months that I should design a "Joy" themed pillow.  I can't tell you how many times I would tell her about my latest knitting pattern and she would be interested and supportive as always....but add "are you working on the Joy pillow design?"  Well, I was working on just took a while for it to really come together in my mind.  Like a lot of my patterns, I think about the design for quite a while before I start knitting.  I am so thrilled with how the "Joy" pillow turned out that I could not wait to give it to my mom.  She stopped by the other day to visit and I gave her an early Christmas gift....she loved it, of course!

Joy & Believe Pillows Knitting Pattern - with Felt Applique
I couldn't stop with just the "JOY" design....I also made another pillow with "Believe" felt applique letters.

The "Joy & Believe Pillows" knitting pattern is available on Ravelry and in my Etsy shop.

Pattern includes patterns for both JOY and Believe letter designs.

My new "Joy & Believe Pillows" knitting pattern includes full size patterns for the felt applique designs to make both the "JOY" and the "Believe" designs.  I love this letter style!  I searched around and looked at a lot of different font styles before settling on this letter design.  In the pattern, you'll find that the letter patterns are already full size....all you have to do is print the page and cut out the paper letter patterns and you are ready to go.  No resizing of the patterns needed!  (It drives me crazy when I have to enlarge pattern pieces on the copy machine to get the right size!)

This is a quick and easy knitting project.  It is knit flat and seamed.  With super bulky yarn and big needles it is easy to finish this pillow project in a weekend or just a couple evenings.  (If you need a last minute DIY gift...this could be the one!)

I used Loops & Threads Cozy Wool super bulky yarn in the color 'Claret'.  This is a bright, traditional Christmas red.  I really like this yarn for pillows because it is very soft to the touch.  This yarn is inexpensive but has a very nice appearance.  You can find Loops & Threads Cozy Wool at Michael's Craft Store in the U.S.  This pattern will work will with just about any super bulky weight yarn.  

This pillow would look great in many color combinations.  It would be fun to knit the pillow in white and use red felt for the letters with white stitching.  Or, for a year round look (happy words like "joy" and "believe" never go out of season!) it would look nice in a neutral light tan and white combination.  Or, Loops & Threads Cozy Wool comes in a beautiful dark gray called 'Granite' (reminds me of an old chalkboard).  I'd love to try that color with white letters and use either charcoal gray or red embroidery floss for the applique stitches.   

Other supplies needed include a 12" x 16" pillow form (an inexpensive, basic pillow form is perfect), some nice quality felt, DMC embroidery floss, and basic sewing and crafting supplies.  A good quality pair of scissors (such as sewing shears) is helpful for cutting out the felt letters.

Speaking of felt....I recommend wool blend or good quality polyester felt.  Try to stay away from the inexpensive "craft felt" in the kids crafting section of the craft store.  Most fabric stores carry a nicer quality felt by the yard.  Small quilt shops often carry wool blend felt.  I also like Sweet Emma Jean's Etsy Shop.  They have an incredible selection of felt in many beautiful colors.  You can pick your own colors and get a custom set of 9" x 12" wool blend felt sheets.

Detailed finishing instructions included in the pattern.
This pattern includes detailed, step-by-step finishing instructions.  The finishing is not hard.  But, I put a lot of thought into providing you all the details of how to finish the pillow so that you can obtain the best results possible.  That's why I include every step (such as placing a piece of thin cardboard inside the knitting so it makes it easier to stitch the felt letters in place) and provide lots of close up photos like the one above.

I used some of my ribbon collection and old light bulbs for props.

I had so much fun taking the photos for this new pattern.  I have a box filled with pieces of previously used ribbon...lots of holiday plaids and red and white polka dots.  I also have a set of beautiful ribbons and baker's twine that my mom gave me several years ago.  They are so pretty I've never used an inch of any of the ribbons and twines!  The original set of seven spools are always displayed on a bookshelf at our house.  Look for these in future knitting pattern listing photos.  It was fun to use the spool shapes and texture of the ribbons to add to the holiday theme.  

"Joy & Believe Pillows" Knitting Pattern - available on Etsy
If you have looked at my other knitting pattern listing photos, you have probably noticed a wood cabinet in the background of several photos.  I love being able to use the shelf in the center of the cabinet to change the scene.  The white pedestal candy dish in the photo above was my grandmother's.  The Santa hiding in the shadows is metal and extremely heavy!  Most of my Christmas decorations are hidden away in boxes right now but that heavy Santa was sitting in the "Christmas" closet where I could reach him so he got to be in the photo.

I love combining the textures of knitting with felt applique. My Mini Mitten Christmas Ornament and The Little House knitting patterns both have felt applique. I'm excited to add the Joy & Believe Pillows knitting pattern to my collection.  And...I have a couple more patterns in the works which will add to the felt applique word theme.  Check back soon!

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Celebrating Fifty Four Ten Studio's One Year Anniversary!

One year ago today I opened my Fifty Four Ten Studio knitting pattern business and listed my first knitting pattern in my Etsy shop!  I'm still so appreciative of my first customer who purchased my pattern just four days after I listed my first pattern.  In the past year I've had people visit my Etsy shop from over 80 countries and have had sales from customers in 12 countries outside of the United States!

I have learned so much in the last year!  And, the best part is I love what I am doing!

A lot of thanks goes to some special people in my life: my husband for supporting and encouraging my new venture (and for tolerating a lot of yarn around our house!); my mother for teaching me to knit and buying me yarn when I was a girl and suggesting pattern ideas today; my daughter for telling me about new photo editing and graphic design programs, helping with graphic design ideas and teaching me to use Blogger; my son for answering my computer questions and being my technical assistant when needed; and all my family and friends for admiring and "liking" my finished knitting projects in person and often being the first to "like" my new pattern posts on Facebook.  I am very lucky to have all these wonderful people in my life!

Many thanks to all my customers!  Every time they "favorite" one of my patterns or purchase a pattern it makes my day and encourages me to keep designing and working.  It's also been fun to connect with some very nice fellow knitting designers.

My Mini Sweater Christmas Ornament was the first knitting pattern I published and I'm happy to say that it remains one of my most popular patterns.

"Joy" Mini Sweater Christmas Ornament - Knitting Pattern

Mini Sweater Christmas Ornament - Knitting Pattern
The pattern includes five duplicate stitch designs to create "Joy" and "Ho Ho" word designs as well as designs for a heart, tree and sailboat.

The designs are added after knitting is complete using the duplicate stitch technique.  If you have never done duplicate stitch before, there are detailed step-by-step instructions with photos in the pattern.

Detailed instructions for duplicate stitch are included in the pattern.

These mini sweater ornaments are knit in the round on double pointed needles with worsted weight yarn.  The pattern includes instructions for making a mini hanger for the sweater ornament.

Pattern includes step by step instructions to make a mini wire hanger.

I have four patterns in the works right now and I hope to publish these very soon!  Every time a customer purchases one of my patterns it inspires me to continue developing new ideas and designing new patterns.  My list of pattern ideas is very long and my goal is to continue adding new patterns to my collection.  Here's a sneak peak at some of my work in progress...

New patterns in the works!
Watch for an announcement about new patterns very soon!

Friday, October 24, 2014

New Knitting Pattern - The Love Pillow

I'm so excited to publish "The Love Pillow".  I've been planning this project for months and had a few distractions that slowed me down in getting it completed.  This is my third "word" design pillow.  You may have seen The Peace Pillow and The Home Pillow that I published earlier this year.  After I knit The Peace Pillow, I had lots of other "word" design ideas (some of them are still in the works!) and it's not surprising that "love" made it to the top of the list. of the best words in our language.  

Hopefully you have many things you love.  For me it's family and home.  

The Love Pillow knitting pattern by Fifty Four Ten Studio.
I picked blue and white for my version of The Love Pillow.  Blue is my favorite color so this was an easy choice for me.  However, it would be fun to knit this design in red and pink for Valentine's Day!

I used Loops & Threads 'Cozy Wool' in the colors 'Fleece' (white) and 'Seastorm' (for blue letters).  This yarn is available at Michael's Craft Stores in the U.S. and is available on the Michael's website.  This project will also work well with other super bulky weight yarns.

With the super bulky weight yarn, this pillow knits up very quickly.  It would make a great gift for someone you love!

This knitting pattern uses the intarsia knitting technique.  Experience with intarsia knitting is highly recommended.

All of my pillow knitting patterns include detailed step-by-step instructions for finishing.  There are lots of photos to walk you through the process.  

Here's what one of my customers said in an unsolicited review of one of my patterns:

What I appreciate the most about this pattern is the detailed finishing instructions. It really looks great sewn on the pillow and I would not have known how to get it looking this good if the instructions just said “sew together and put it on the pillow form”.

Example of finishing tutorial photos included in pattern.
You might be wondering about pillow forms.  I do not use any fancy, plush pillow forms!  I always pick the bargain pillow forms from the craft store. I prefer inexpensive, firm pillow forms especially for my "word" themed pillows.  The firm pillow form holds the word design in place.

The Love Pillow is available in my Etsy shop and on Ravelry.  

Thank you so much for taking a look at my knitting patterns.  I love what I do and it makes my day every time someone purchases one of my patterns or shares their story of how they used my pattern.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Little Gingerbread Houses Knit & Finished for Christmas Gifts

If you have read my "about me" page you already know that I love to make Christmas ornaments for my friends and family every year.  Shh....don't tell them...but this year most of them will receive a little gingerbread house ornament.  I knit these using The Little House knitting pattern which I published earlier this year.

These little houses are so fun to knit.  Over the course of a few weeks I knit all the pieces to make eleven little gingerbread houses.  I worked on the pieces in between other knitting projects.  The house is knit flat and then seamed at the corners to make a three dimensional house shape.

For the gingerbread house, I used Berroco Vintage Worsted ‘Cork’ #5156 – which I bought in December 2013. Just before publishing the final pattern, I discovered that this color may have been discontinued! You may still find ‘Cork’ online or at your local yarn store. These Berroco Vintage colors might be a good substitute: ‘Caramel’ #5196 or ‘Toast’ #51102. This pattern will work well with many other worsted weight yarns.

For the roof pieces, I used Berroco Vintage in the color 'Mochi'.  Here's all the roof pieces lined up and ready for assembly.

Once I finished all the knitting, I cut out the felt pieces for the doors, windows and little hearts to sew on the back of the gingerbread house.  I like to use wool blend felt.

Then, I used embroidery floss to decorate the front doors and add little door knobs.

Then it was time to sew the front door in place using blanket stitch and white embroidery floss.  I love using blanket stitch. Now the little gingerbread house is starting to come to life!

I stitched felt windows to each side of the little gingerbread houses.  

Then the fun part....sewing the roof to the house and stuffing the inside.  The pattern includes detailed step-by-step instructions and tutorial photos for all of the finishing steps.  There are also detailed instructions for all of the embroidery stitches used in this design.

The little gingerbread house is one of my favorite patterns I've designed because it reminds me of all the good times my kids and I have had baking and decorating gingerbread houses from scratch.  

I stitched a little heart on the back of each house. 

It's so fun to see all the little gingerbread houses lined up like a little village.  

Before I give these as gifts, I'll thread a thin red ribbon through the top of the roof to make a hanging ornament.  

If you would like to make some little gingerbread houses for your family, see more details about this pattern on my "designing the little house" blog post.  You can purchase the pattern on Ravelry or in my Etsy shop.

Friday, September 12, 2014

"The Home Pillow" - New Knitting Pattern

"Home"...such a simple, short word that means so much.

Whether you have moved a lot or stayed in the same place for years and years, hopefully home is a special place for you.  It is for me.

You may have seen my "Peace" pillow which I published a couple of months ago.  When I finished that pattern I was really excited to do other word related patterns.  I made a list of ideas and started working on a couple of designs.  However, I have to give credit for this design to one of my customers who sent me a message requesting a pillow design with the word "home".  I immediately knew it was a great idea and wondered why that simple, meaningful word wasn't on my list of ideas.

This was one of those cases where a new idea jumped to the front of the front of all the other knitting design projects in the works.

"The Home Pillow" knitting pattern by Fifty Four Ten Studio
Conveniently, I already had the yarn on hand to knit this pillow.  I used Loops & Threads “Cozy Wool” super bulky yarn in the colors ‘Mushroom’ (light tan) and ‘Fleece’ (soft white). This is a nice, economically priced yarn. 

With super bulky weight yarn this pillow knits up very quickly!  I used US size 13 knitting needles.

This pattern is knit flat and then seamed on the back, top and bottom.  

Careful finishing makes a huge difference in the outcome of almost any knitting project.  All of my pillow patterns include detailed, step-by-step finishing instructions with close-up photos.  The photo below illustrates how to do an invisible horizontal seam.  Detailed written instructions and additional photos are in the pattern.

Detailed step-by-step finishing instructions & photos included in pattern.
This is a two-color knitting pattern using the intarsia technique. Experience with intarsia knitting highly recommended! Instructions for intarsia knitting are not included in the pattern but there are many resources available to help you through this process.  (If you have done two color stranded knitting or fair isle knitting you should be all set to try intarsia knitting.)

I always use inexpensive, craft store pillow forms for my pillows.  Nothing fancy required.  This pattern uses a 12” x 16” pillow form.

"The Home Pillow" knitting pattern
"The Home Pillow" knitting pattern is now available on Ravelry and in my Etsy shop.

Thanks so much for your interest in my knitting patterns.  Every time someone purchases one of my patterns it really brightens my day and inspires me to work on my next designs!

Friday, August 29, 2014

"Step in Time" Pillow Knitting Pattern - New!

The “Step in Time” Pillow knitting pattern is named after a song from one of my favorite movies….Mary Poppins.  Just ask my kids!  When they were little and wanted to watch a movie, I frequently suggested Mary Poppins.  One of my favorite scenes is Bert (played by Dick Van Dyke - one of my favorites!) and the other chimney sweeps dancing on the roof top to the song “Step in Time”.  Mary and the children watch the sweeps tap dance “over the roof tops”, on top of chimneys and on the railings.  Every time I watch the movie I’m mesmerized by the tap dancing of the chimney sweeps…though I’m completely afraid of heights and wish they didn’t hang off the edge of the roof!

This pillow knitting pattern is very simple and easy.  

I love the stitch pattern…evenly spaced steps…step in time.

"Step in Time" Pillow Knitting Pattern

I used Lion Brand Wool-Ease “Thick & Quick” super bulky weight yarn in the color ‘Glacier’.  This is a nice, economically priced yarn available at many craft stores in the U.S.  The pattern will work with many super bulky weight yarns.

I used a standard, inexpensive 16” x 16” pillow form.

The pattern includes step by step instructions for sewing up the side seams and the bottom seams.  There are a number of tutorial photos to guide you through the finishing process.

Pattern includes detailed finishing instructions with tutorial photos.

With super bulky yarn this pattern knits up very quickly.  If you want to knit a quick gift for a friend, you’ll be done with this project in no time at all!

Thanks so much for checking out the “Step in Time” Pillow knitting pattern.  

As always, you'll find this an all my other patterns on Ravelry and in my Etsy shop. 

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Bay View Pillow Knitting Pattern

This is the story of how I kidnapped yarn from my dear friend’s yarn stash and used it to design and knit her birthday present.
Back in July, I was visiting my dear friend and we were chatting about knitting and yarn.   She pulled out her “stash” of yarn while we talked.  The “stash” included two unfinished projects a friend of hers had recently passed on to her.  Apparently, the friend had lost interest in her half finished projects and wanted the yarn out of her house.  My friend told me she’d be happy to share any of the “gifted yarn” but I was having a hard time getting too excited about any of it.  One project was a partially started sweater knit with very bulky tweed yarn.  It looked like that sweater would be very, very heavy to wear.  The other unfinished project was a sweater knit with light weight, hot pink wool yarn.  You would really need to like hot pink to wear that sweater! 

However, what intrigued me the most in the assortment of yarn was an unopened 10 skein package of beautiful blue Debbie Bliss Merino Chunky yarn. 

Yarn I kidnapped from my friend's "stash".
I recognized that yarn immediately because my friend bought that yarn when we were traveling together about eight years ago and we happened upon a little yarn shop.  As I sat in my friend’s living room holding her beautiful blue yarn I realized that the color matched her living room perfectly.  She has lots of soft yellow in the natural wood paneled living room, with accents of blue here and there.  I asked her if I could take her lovely blue yarn and design a knitted pillow for her living room.   She thought it was a great idea!

Here’s the pillow I designed and knit for her birthday….which conveniently was only about two weeks after I stole her yarn!

The "Bay View Pillow" knitting pattern by Fifty Four Ten Studio
I’ve now learned that the Debbie Bliss Merino Chunky yarn has been discontinued…a number of years ago.  However, this pattern will work great with any number of chunky weight yarns.  Berroco has a line called Vintage Chunky that comes in lots of colors and would work nicely.   Also, this pattern would look nice knit with Malabrigo Chunky.  When you are looking for yarn, look for chunky weight yarn in the “bulky” category of yarn in the United States.  I used size 10 needles and the gauge in stockinette stitch is 14 sts x 17 rows = 4 inches.

This pattern is very easy to knit!  Just knit and purl stitches. 

The pillow cover is knit as one rectangular piece which is then folded in half and seamed on the sides.  After inserting a 16” x 16” purchased pillow form the bottom seam is sewn up.  The pattern includes detailed finishing instructions with lots of tutorial photos.

Detailed finishing instructions included in pattern along with photos.
I wrapped the pillow up for my friend for her birthday.  She loved it!  I have to say that the pillow looks fantastic in her living room.  I also gave her back the three skeins of yarn that were leftover.  I think my friend was OK with me stealing her yarn and giving her a finished pillow in return.  :)

I named this pattern the “Bay View Pillow” because my friend has a lovely view of the lake from her living room.  And, her beautiful blue yarn reminds me of the color of the lake on a sunny summer day.

The “Bay View Pillow” knitting pattern is available on Ravelry and in my Etsy shop. 

The "Bay View Pillow" knitting pattern.

Monday, June 30, 2014

The Peace Pillow Knitting Pattern

I designed and knit "The Peace Pillow" for dear family friends who we have known for years.  The word "peace" has a special significance in their family.  I'm going to deliver the finished pillow to them today!

The Peace Pillow by Fifty Four Ten Studio
 The yarn colors I used fit their family home perfectly.  They love all shades of soft browns and light sand colors.  I picked the light tan colored yarn to go with the soft ivory yarn I've used many times.  Specifically, I used Loops & Threads "Cozy Wool" in the colors 'Mushroom' and 'Fleece'.  I bought this yarn at Michael's Craft Store in the U.S. and I really like knitting with it.  I used about 170 yards of the main color and approximately 30 yards for the letters.

Knit on big needles with super bulky yarn using intarsia technique.
This pattern uses the intarsia knitting technique for the letter pattern.  I highly recommend that you have experience with intarsia knitting before using this pattern.  I changed back and forth from one color to the other about 60 times!  I like to weave in the yarn ends after I finish knitting the design as it is a good way to tighten up any loose stitches.  Also, I wove in the ends before binding I would get a good measurement on how the knitting fits the pillow form.

Knit too many rows!  Knitting was too long for pillow form.
However, when I was knitting the plain, back side of the pillow I got a little carried away with the easy stockinette stitch.  When I wrapped the knitting around my pillow form I realized I had knit a few too many rows.  If the knitting overlaps before binding off it will be loose and baggy on the pillow form.  This pillow is designed to have the knitting fit close and tight to the pillow form.  So, I ripped out about 3 or 4 rows and measured again....

Before binding off wrap, knitting around pillow form.  This is desired length.
This is how you want the knitting to fit around the pillow form before you bind off.  See how the cast on end and the edge still on the needle just barely meet up when I stretch the knitting around the pillow form....this is the desired length.  I bound off on the next row and then sewed up the back seam.

Detailed finishing instructions included in pattern with lots of tutorial photos such as this.
There are detailed instructions in the pattern reminding you how to measure your knitting around your pillow form and explaining how to sew up the seams of the pillow. Lots of close-up photos are included in the pattern!

The Peace Pillow Knitting Pattern is available in my Etsy shop.
This pillow would look great knit in any number of color combinations.  I think it would be fun to knit it in red and white for the holidays!

This pattern is available in my Etsy shop and in my Fifty Four Ten Studio Ravelry shop.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Making Strawberry Jam

One of my favorite things to do in the summer is make jam with fresh picked fruit.  The other day we were lucky to pick some beautiful, delicious strawberries.  I picked enough to make two batches of strawberry jam (it takes about 2 1/2 quarts to make a batch of jam using Sure Jell).

Fresh picked strawberries.

Hot, cooked jam in the jars.

Old lids.  Ready to process.

I've collected an assortment of jar designs over the years.
I'm working on two new pillow knitting patterns that I hope to have finished and ready to share soon.

Thanks for stopping by!