b r o o k l y n t w e e d
  Christmas Fiddle-Faddle
I've done a bit of Christmas knitting here and there between the Pi and waiting on more yarn for my Garter Stitch Blanket (that thing is a ravenous yarnivore). The first is an annual tradition - sweater ornaments.


I knit one each year - it's a slow but steady way of sprucing up a knitter's tree without them becoming a nuisance on your knitting list. My mom visited for a few days after Thanksgiving and knit one too, so this year we had a bonus alpaca ornament for tree-trimming (not pictured above).

These are knit top-down on double-pointed needles. I usually use a DK or worsted weight on US 3 or 4's. I cast on 12 stitches, work two ridges of garter stitch and start increasing at four raglan points until it looks about big enough. Knit down on body and sleeves (I decreased a bit on the sleeve) and work the cuffs when it feels right. They're very improvisational which is what makes them fun. They take under three hours to work and are perfect for all those little bits we compulsively save (knowing they'll probably never be touched again). They're great for a little hit of colorwork, lace, cables, stripes, handspun, or any other poison you might be craving at the moment but can't justify in any other way.

I also finished the third installment of Koolhaas this week. I think this version wins the stitch-definition contest.

Kool III

The pattern is mine, available in the Holiday Gifts issue from Interweave if you'd like to knit it. For this one I used Malabrigo Pure Worsted Merino in "Continental Blue" on US 6 and US 7 needles.

The Malabrigo is, as always, uncannily soft and light. One thing I'll note here is that it seems to be a bit less generous in the row gauge department, so if you're trying to decide how many repeats to work for your head length, go with more rather than less if using this yarn. Number Three is a tad short but still fits the recipient. I might extend the ribbing a bit if it persists being bothersome.

Finally, since it's Friday, I'll leave you with a little handspun hit. This is a 2-ply merino heather from Copperpot Woolies, aptly named "Hot Rocks." This was spun from a batt of deep reds, oranges and bright yellows. See the unspun fiber here.

Hot Rocks 2-Ply Merino

Unfortunately I won't be doing much spinning over the next two weeks. The final stretch of the semester isn't shaping up to be too kind to my knitting and spinning (The Minstrel is sitting in the corner, yarnless and pouting already). Good thing for you I've got two finished sweaters to write about (already photographed!) for which I'm very excited. We're not going to let school choas ruin holiday-blog-fun-time. Not on my watch.

See you soon with a sweater or two.

Oh I absolutely looove the stitch definition of that Koolhaas! It makes me want to knit a two-tone one. I already made a two-tone Shedir (I'm knittingheidi on Ravelry, it's in my projects), but I guess the two-tone concept never gets old. :)

Oh, top down sweater ornaments! Love 'em. I might try those. Next year.

I really enjoy your blog. The photography and projects are stunningly beautiful. I've made three of the Noro scarves, with your blog as inspiration!

"keredding" on Ravelry.

would you consider sharing your notes on the trapper hat rip off. I would love to whip one up for my daughter for Christmas. I love your blog. You create beautiful things.

That third hat is BEAUTIFUL!!!!!!!!!

Wow, that koolhaas just really has me itching to get one started! But I must survive the end of my own semester first...

Oh! My favorite Koolhaus so far! I adore Malabrigo, so am glad to see that it works up brilliantly in that pattern, and good to know about the row gauge.

I was just going to ask you what kind of wheel you have, (I'm a new spinner, haven't yet bought a wheel -- just drop spindling, for now, and am always curious as to what wheels people have) - I'm glad you shared pictures. It's beautiful.

I've been dying to knit a Koolhaas, but the magazine is sold out, and I can't find one. Can you see if the Interweave folks would consider selling just your pattern, for an extra charge? They seem to do that for a few other popular patterns on sold out issues.

I like those ornaments! I've been itching to knit some ornaments for myself..but of course, I'm stuck knitting for other people. It'll just have to wait I guess. The third hat is very nice. I love blue and it's actually one of the few colors I look good in..(but I have to admit..my favorite color is a nice pretty soft yellow.)

I know what you mean about having to wait for any knitting/spinning related activity, if college is anything like motherhood, you end up being a wiz at multi tasking. Oh and here I am gabbing...have a happy holidays!

That tiny little sweater for your tree is so cute!

I absolutely LOVE your Koolhaas! As another person mentioned, IK Holiday Gifts is sold out - everywhere. Please convince IK to sell the pattern as a separate online download! It looks to be the perfect holiday knit.

Wow. Here I am wallowing in my overwhelming b.s and you're showing us adorable sweater ornaments, a beautiful Koolhaas, beautiful hand spun...it's amazing. I am so impressed that you thought about blogging during this busy period and planned for it.

You should-- if you don't already-- make little coat hangers out of wire for the little sweaters to hang on the tree.

I am almost done with my mittens to match my Koolhaus hat! So exciting and fun and easy! I am very glad I got a copy of the pattern!
I will post my finished set tommorow!

Do you have an idea how much Malabrigo it took? I've got a little over half a skein left and I'm wondering if I've got enough. Or maybe I'll just have to buy more (twist my rubber arm!)

The ornaments are such a great way to use up leftovers. I love them!

ooops! I keep getting Koolhaus stuck in my brain!! Koolhaas!! Koolhaas!! Koolhaas!!
There.. that ought to do it!

Man, I'm glad I got my copy on IK Holiday Issue last month, mainly for your Koolhaas, but a few other things are tempting me too. Love you photos and I'm glad that you can find time to blog-while-schooling. Love to see what you're going to come up with next.

Annual sweater ornaments are an EXCELLENT idea! Hope you don't mind if I steal it. :)

YES, dude. You've totally saved my Christmas. Those sweater ornaments are exactly what I can give my grandparents (who are old enough that they already have everything they want) for the holidays this year.

Also, I am fascinated by Koolhaas, and may pick up a copy of that IK issue just so I can see how it's done.

My favorite ornament is a sweater ornament that was given to me by a wonderful friend several years ago. Alas, both the ornament and the friend are miles from here .. I might just have to start my own sweater ornament tradition. As always, thanks for the beautiful inspiration, Jared!!

ah, i was just saying how i was going to make tiny little sweater ornaments! :) that blue malabrigo is gorgeous.

You and me both. This combination of finals/papers/Christmas knitting is pretty unfortunate.

I've never commented before, but I'm a big fan of your blog--your photographs and designs are beautiful. Good luck!

Was it the yarn that made the stitches pop? I have some malabrigo but never even thought about using it for Koolhaas. After seeing this one I'll definitely use it when I cast on for this hat.

Thank you, thank you for the Christmas sweater ornament how-to. As another commenter posted, "next year".

I only recently started reading your blog; I'm really glad that I found it!

I'm just starting to catch up with my knitblogs and the Koolhaas was the first thing I saw. (Being away on vacation for 6 weeks, and in Europe, has its disadvantages.) What a great pattern, Jared! Good luck with school too!

- MJ

You always make lovely things!
Mum's back from her trip and we're helping her catch up on all her favourite Blogs. I got to show Mum this post. She'll love the knits you churned out! Thanks for sharing :)

Just to let you know that I made your Koolhaas hat with Malabrigo, and my row gauge turned out a little too generous. My hat is a little long. Let's just say that my eyebrows are nice and warm now :) Gauge is a fickle beast!
And now I'm going to think all day about knitting those little sweater ornaments that are popping up everywhere....

Ooh I must try your hat now in that yarn!

Can't wait for the sweaters! LOL @ ruin holiday-blog-fun! :o)

And you are right! I won't be doing a darn thing with all those extra scraps of yarn!

I bought one skein of MAlabrigo in Oceania and now I know why:) Thank you for the inspuration - as always. It definitely offers a beautiful stitche definition! I have those little sweaters on my knit list too - I hope to get one or two done this year, what a sweet little knitted something to give. Your handspun is fabulous!

Inspiring! I've seen a couple of these mini sweaters in the past - they are really wonderful. Love your tradition of making them. And this post is one of those (of knitters/spinners) I love for the links that link to other links....endless fiber and knitting reading for a weekend am! keep spinning - it's so gorgeous your work! Terry in SF

The Koolhaas is possibly the most beautiful and perfect knitted hat I ever saw. I love the way the stitches wrap around the crown of the head. Well done you!

That blue Koolhaus is stunning! I just love the colors you choose for your work!

That hat is ridiculously wonderful.

Those little sweaters are adorable!

Love the little sweaters. Good idea to use Malabrigo for Koolhaas...stunning!


Jared, I love a good many blogs because of their writing or their sense of humor or the artistry that goes into them...but just this minute I read your blog and I said to myself, this is my favorite blog right now. Really. I have been so stressed out with deadlines for the holidays and for a design submission, your post added some much needed calm to my day. You have a gift for conveying a certain mood with your pictures. I love the earthy warmth of the ormaments...and then the hat...absolutely beautiful..and of course the handspun.
Then, your writing is "just right". Not overdone in a Look At ME and MY blog sort of way. It's all very comforting. Not pushy, just there, but it draws you in and makes you want to come back for more. I don't know how you pull it off, with everything you have going on right now! Good luck for the end of the semester.

I agree about your blog and how it meets my "blog fix" criteria: great knitting, inspiration, pictures, and no droning on about personal issues, pets, etc.

I wish you a wonderful holiday season!


ps I'm on a hat kick lately, and the Koolhaas is next!

You rock!
Beautifully handsome blog and art.

another reader here longing for the koolhaas pattern. if anyone has any ideas on how to get it, please post them!

such cute little sweaters - what a great way to use up scraps and try out different colorwork patterns!

LOL... at your reference to the 'ravenous yarnivore'! Hysterical! I've got some D.B. cashmerino lined up for the koolhaas hat ... love that pattern.

I love the idea of doing a single sweater ornament each year. Of course, I sold ornaments at this years holiday bazaar, so I am all ornaments all the time (I'm planning on doing one or two between projects during the year, so I don't have to do so many in December).

if anyone still wants the koolhaas pattern, i called the magazine and they're sending me a copy for 4 bucks.

Here, here! By all means, no fun-spoiling on your watch! Oh, that felt so good to read. So easy to get overwhelmed and miss/skip the fun.

I made a batch of tiny sweater ornaments last year -- each one a different *construction*. Some EZ, some Barbara Walker, some Debbie New. All the shapes I hoped I'd "someday one day" try. Kept 2 and gave away the others. Such fun! Didn't try colorwork or texture, since I was in a bit of a hurry, but I like the idea.

Thanks for sharing more "warming", wonderful photos with us.

Jared, Found BT a few weeks ago and have been enjoying all the beautiful knits, photos and writing. I must state the obvious: you are a very talented man and an inspiration to many. Thanks and keep it coming!

To all the pattern hunters: Support (and visit!!) your local library.

I haven't figured how to leave my blog address in the identity area. . . .

This entry has a photo of some of my little sweaters from 2006. http://beautifulknitting.wordpress.com/2007/11/18/44/

I was unable to locate the wire I used to make matching-scale hangers, but I got it at a large chain hobby store in the beading section.

Cheers, jared!

Thanks so much for the Koohaas pattern. I made one that and Red Light for my son for Christmas. I'm sure that they will be well worn!

I just worked the Koolhaas in malabrigo and the row gauge worked out perfectly. The pattern is wonderful! Thanks for publishing it and I love your photos.

I just love the tiny sweaters! I keep thinking about knitting some for my tree but never get around to it. Maybe next christmas...

Every post is a gift.

love the newest installment of koolhaas... i bet it is incredibly lush in malabrigo. how can you knit cables while you are in school? if it's not garter or stockinette in the round i am lost :) but i just finished an EZ raglan (thank you, finals) so the library is good for something...

If you ever (which I hope you do!) a book or product, these miniature sweaters you have done shd. be the cover - it says bt all the way, the yarn, the knitting, you know! Of course done in your signature yarn you love. Terry

your sweater ornament is so beautiful!! I am addicted to knitting them. I have already gifted two to my friends. so lovely like all of your knitting,

i have a small tree that is devoted just to knitted ornaments. my sweaters are not nearly as lovely as yours. love the aesthetic of your blog. so sublime with the elegant photography.

love the third koolhaas... the yarn varigation is beautiful... i also must say that pattern is a pain to get your hands on... took me from october till a few days ago to obtain a copy of the mag its in... a friend happended to find a few copies laying on the shelves of a bookstore... she snatched them up and gave them out as early christmas gifts to fellow knitters... i've already started one... keep up the good work...

Jared, your handspun is seriously delicious. Wonderful wonderful.

I like this koolhaas pattern very much! I will try to interpret it my own way. The deep red one is my absolut favorite.
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