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Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Blog Moved to Nikkis-Studio.com

Dear Blog Readers,

Thank you for visiting my blog!

You are welcome to browse through it but be aware that I have moved to my own domain and you can find me now at:


Hope to see you there soon!

Cheers, Daniela

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Pattern: Snowflake Hot Water Bottle Cozy

Who would have thought that I would use my just recently released Snowflake Hot Water Bottle Cozy myself in such a short time?!

But with single digit and teen temperatures over night and with my hubby out of town, I have nowhere to warm my icicle feet! And cold feet sure keep the sleep from coming and that is not a good thing if you have your mind going at a hundred miles an hour anyway...

I've found that a cup of hot chamomile tea with a teaspoon of raw, unfiltered honey nicely warms up my body from the inside, the chamomile aroma calms down my soul and the warm snowflake clad bottle by the feet chases away my cold feet... ah, bliss and I am off dreaming...

What are you doing to fall asleep when your mind is still busy?

BTW, the snowflake cozy fits a standard 8" x 10" hot water bottle and sports the snowflake on both sides. It has a cute picot bind-off and you can either use a 20" long ribbon or crochet a foundation chain for the tie.

I've used Lion Brand's Cotton Ease #113 Cherry for this cozy and it is really soft against your skin. I was pleasantly surprised and you can machine wash it too.

The pattern has written out instructions to knit it flat or in the round as well as instructions to work it off a chart flat or in the round. It knits up really quickly and uses less than one skein of yarn! Love it. :)

Well, it is getting late and my cup of chamomile tea is calling my name. Have a wonderful night of sleep with nice warm feet.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Miracle Frost Flower Wrap

I've just completed a wonderful Frost Flower Wrap as a Christmas gift for my mom!

Frost Flower Wrap: 24" x 66", blocked, in timiQuipa 100% baby alpaca, color: rust
I am so excited about it not only because it turned out beautifully but also that I found the time to do some "leisure" knitting. Big pat on my shoulder! :)

For the last couple of weeks I have been so busy with my job, kids, attending middle school open houses with my oldest son, lots of knitting submission deadlines, tech editing, swatching, pattern & article writing plus all the holiday busyness that this shawl truly represents a little miracle.

I must have more than 24 hours in my day looking at that long list, haha! Seriously, there was no way I should have had the time to knit this generously sized, 24" x 66", warp. But here it is...

I hit on a little secret for this success and it is actually pretty simple:
Knit every day a little bit and you will be surprised by how much can be accomplished - and how quickly too!
That's exactly how this warp came to be. I made a point of knitting a couple of rows or more every day. Which also meant that this project traveled with me to wherever I went because you never know when an opportunity for a couple of minutes of knitting will present itself. You will be surprised by how much time we spend waiting for something every day. And now I filled it with some enjoyable knitting! :)

I knit during my kids' soccer practices, while waiting in the car for them to get out of school, during car trips for running errands where I was the passenger, during visits with friends, during an oil change, during short work breaks and before going to bed instead of reading a book. The minutes and rows will add up quickly, I am telling you.

I did make one time concession though: It's not my own pattern but one that I happened to have bumped into a while back on Ravelry when I was doing some research for some other design ideas.

I did make it a bit wider than the original pattern called for and adjusted the length of the Frost Flower lace edging accordingly so that the proportions looked right. For a few more details visit my Ravelry project page.

The yarn I chose for this project was purchased online at DBNY (Discontinued Brand Name Yarns). It is a super soft, 100% baby alpaca, sport weight yarn by timiQuipa. And the color "Rust" is so deep and rich - perfect for the grayer time of the year.

Purchased online at DBNY

Big "Thank You" to the folks at DBNY to take the extra time and effort to match dye lots when I decided to make a wrap instead of a scarf and ordered more of this yarn a couple of weeks after my initial first order. And I have still 2 skeins left over for perhaps some fingerless mittens?

Post office, here I come! Ready to stand in line... now, where is that other knitting project I still need to finish...?

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

1st Annual Mile High Knitting Guild Xmas Potluck

Meets every 3rd Wed of the month,
9:30-11:30 am and 6:30-8:30 pm
in the seating area of the King Soopers
at 120th Ave & Sheridan Blvd, Broomfield, CO

When I got up this Sunday morning I was so happy to be greeted by sunshine instead of the forecast possible snow because today we were going to have our 1st Annual Mile High Knitting Guild Xmas potluck at one of our member's home. And not only that but it was also the first time that the morning and evening members of the guild would mix and mingle!

For me it was a 13 mile drive along country roads that wouldn't have been much fun to drive with snow on the road but with sunshine and a big, clear, blue sky it was a nice little trip. Plus, I had a vegetable chilli steaming in my crock pot on my front seat that was calling my name...

People in the neighborhood must have been thinking, what the heck was suddenly happening, with cars arriving from all directions at the same time, parking, carrying bulging bags, pots and spinning wheels into that one corner house, haha!

Andrea's house smelled of Christmas goodies and was all decorated in Holiday colors. What a wonderful welcome! Thank you Andrea for opening your doors to us! 

After a plentiful and tasty potluck lunch (note to self: gotta get some of the recipes) with lots of chit chat and getting to know each other we couldn't hold back any longer and were ready to settle in with our knitting, crocheting and spinning.


The sofa in the living room was the perfect sitting area with the light coming from behind over our shoulders to shine right onto our stitches.

It was a lot of fun to see all the different kinds of projects on everyone's needles from baby clothes to shawls and socks. Hm, looking at the types of projects everyone was busy with, can you tell that our Christmas knitting was in full swing?

The other thing I really enjoyed seeing was the variety of techniques used, from knitting on double-pointed needles, on circulars and the magic loop.

new Navajo plying fan
But then, the highlight of our get-together must have been the hands-on session for Navajo Plying by Chrystal. Thank you Chrystal, you did a wonderful job!

It's one thing to watch YouTube videos to learn a technique but quite something else to have a live person right next to you to show and correct you as you have a go at it.

Our spinners caught on pretty quickly under the expert guidance of Chrystal who also had a wealth of tips and tricks to pass along to deal with diverse issues that were cropping up. And after an initial excited chatter things started to calm down until you could only hear the rhythmic purring of the spinning wheels and the clicking of the knitting needles. Ah, fiber bliss at its best. :)

We all had a wonderful time knitting and spinning and splurging on some incredible desserts. Good thing that this will be a once a year occurrence because else I will have to climb a couple of mountains to work off those calories...

Thank you all for a wonderful first year of the Mile High Knitting Guild and I am looking forward to another year of expanding our knitting horizons and new friendships.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Sea Life in the Sky

Now look at what I saw forming in the sky while picking up my kids from school yesterday! Isn't that fantastic?
A softshell turtle with its pointy snout
A cuttlefish hunting the other animals in the sky
Can you hear the movie theme song of "Jaws" playing?
Together with a weather system on its way and super gusty Chinook winds a fun nature display was unfolding in a very speedy manner right above our heads.

In a period of about 15 minutes we watched about a dozen animals form and disappear. It even turned into a little competition of "who spotted what first" followed by tons of discussions about if that really was it. But then the shapes changed so fast that you couldn't really dwell on it and just had to move on.

That was totally exhilarating, creative brainstorming at its best!

Unfortunately, I was able to take pictures of only three of the animals as I had to pay attention to the traffic and couldn't pull over quickly enough to get snapshots...