Tag Archives: yarn

Sharing the love…of knitting and yarn

I’m the winner of some delicious Blue Sky Alpacas Melange 100% baby alpaca yarn, and a copy of winter Interweave Knits, courtesy of Allison Haas, aka Alaskan Purl! Her design for her offset cable mittens is in this issue, and she is celebrating with a giveaway.

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The mittens are super cute, and begin at the tip with Judy’s Magic Cast On, instead of at the cuff. Clever!

The yarn photographs as brown, no matter how I set my white balance. It’s really more of a mustardy greenish yellow. It’s exquisitely soft.

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You can see in the last picture that it’s really much more complex. There are shades of green, yellow, and even red in the mix.

Allison has a winner with this pattern. Check out her blog at Alaskan Purl Designs. Thanks, Allison!

And…because I already have a copy of this issue of Interweave Knits, I’ll give away this copy to a randomly selected commenter. Leave your comment below. Contest closes at midnight on Wednesday (tomorrow).

PS: Does this mean I’m acquiring a stash? Yikes! To de-stash a little, I’ll also include this skein of ridiculously sunny Malabrigo Worsted. I used it for my relentlessly cheery bedsocks. 40 stitches around makes a quick knit!

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relentlesscheer

The first picture is truer in color than the picture of the socks. Want to knit with a smile? Comment below. Good luck!

knitting like crazy

…but I can’t really show you yet. Here’s a little peek.

tips

Look at this gorgeous yarn I got from Lorajean (Knitted Wit) last week!

gray

A perfect cloudy gray…

sparkle

with sparkles! We have a little project in the works…

Have a great Thanksgiving. I’m not cooking…but I’m in charge of gravy, comme d’habitude. I can handle that. It’s been a rough month, but I have a lot to be thankful for. I’m lucky to have my family, an interesting and rewarding job, and to be able to knit for fun, design a bit, teach knitting, and blog both here and for Lantern Moon. I’m having a little giveaway on the Lantern Moon blog; click over and enter.

Are you knitting for the holidays? I’m not! Too much pressure. There may be gifts, but I’m not obligated to knit for anyone. Gifts happen sometimes, but mostly incidentally or by inspiration. That’s how I roll…

Bubba’s Blankie

What’s this?

package

A beautiful basket from Lantern Moon.

basket

And inside is the group project for Lorajean’s baby-to-be. She’s temporarily named him Bubba, so this is Bubba’s Blankie. It’s modeled on one I saw on the Yarn Harlot’s blog. Simple garter stitch strips, sewn together.

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They’re matched at the center, and the ends stop when they stop. The gauge varies wildly, but it doesn’t really matter.

centered

We had 14 strips, because we had 14 knitters. When Lorajean and I laid out the strips last week, we realized that this blanket was bigger than life! So the plan shifted, and she’ll have two blankets, nearly identical.

front

I slip stitch crocheted the strips together. I thought this would be the back of the blanket, but I like the look of this the chain loops. The other side of the blanket just shows little blips of color; it’s equally handsome.

Edit: Apparently I single crocheted the strips together. I don’t crochet much, so I never remember what the stitches are called. Sorry for the misinformation!

back

Lorajean loves it! She dyed the yarn for this project; it’s wonderfully soft superwash bulky merino. The colors seem to glow.

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I have almost all the strips for the second blanket. One piece left! And then it’s time to get cracking, because the baby is due in two weeks…

Crochet like the wind!

Thank you to all the other knit nite knitters on this blanket: Shari, Shannon, Leigh, Marilyn, Peggy, Toni, Helen, Margaret, Cathy, Charlotte, Sarah and Paula, and special thanks to Cathy for providing the beautiful basket.

Color blast

Lorajean (Knitted Wit) is expecting her second baby in June. The knit nite group wants to knit a blankie for Bubba-to-be. Our first group project was a blanket for Little e, two years ago. I learned some valuable lessons about group projects and gauge back then!

We were stymied when it came to color, though. We asked Lorajean for input, and she said that she’d love to dye the yarn.

I love these.

colors

There’s one more color, but it’s already in Cathy’s capable hands. It’s like the limeade green in the picture, but darker, and semi-solid.

We’re planning to knit garter stripes like the blanket at the end of this Yarn Harlot post. It’s quick (bulky yarn, 14 sts), easy, and gauge will not be an issue. We’ll have two stripes of each of seven colors. Yarn gets distributed at knit nite tomorrow. Perfect! And you can see that I’ve already started…

More April fun

Halfway through April, and I haven’t told you about the April Single Skein Club package from Twisted…tsk tsk. April just flew in on those blustery March winds, and I forgot!

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April’s package centers on a sweet pattern by Portland’s Lee Meredith, also known as Leethal. She is always marvelously inventive, and this month’s package confirms it. This project is customizable to the max.

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The yarn is from Imperial Stock Ranch in Shaniko, Oregon; it’s their Native Twist Bulky. This is a single ply, soft spun wool. It’s from the sheep at the ranch, truly a home-grown Oregon product!

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You may be wondering how to get from this yarn to the hats pictured in the pattern.

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This looks like it will be a fun project!

Last of the last of the last minute!

Lorajean thinks she’s last of the last minute, but I’m posting after her…

I’m teaching at a fiber fun day at Pico Accuardi Dyeworks here in Portland tomorrow. There will be classes in spinning, plying, dyeing, and knitting, as well as some shopping opportunities (Lantern Moon, Knitted Wit, Pico Accuardi, of course!).

I’m teaching entrelac in the round, specifically Athena.

athena 4

And hoping to take a drop spindle class with Deb.

Deets on the day are here.

Getting ahead of myself

Spring has truly sprung here in the Pacific Northwest. Temperatures are in the 50’s; the crocuses and daffodils are glorious. And the first cherry trees are blooming, too.

lanaloft bag

What says spring better than a bag of cheery color from the yarn shop?

lanaloft

Twisted is now carrying Brown Sheep yarns. They carry three weights (bulky, worsted, sport) of Lanaloft, a single-spun 100% wool yarn, as well as an ultra-bulky known as Burly Spun. The price is great. I brought home some worsted weight to knit a shop sample of my felted slip stitch tote.

But wait, you say, what about the Heather Hoodie? I’m still plugging away at that, because I want to wear it before it gets too warm here! The back is done, and the left front is just past the armhole. Pictures next time.

Single Skein Club 2010

My family enrolled me in the 2010 Single Skein Club over at Twisted for Christmas. (Thanks, guys!) The club has a project every other month, six during the calendar year. It’s February, which means that it’s time for the first club offering. If you don’t have yours yet, and don’t want to know, look away now!

Have you averted your eyes? It’s almost too late!

Okay; it’s time.

ssc feb

This month’s offering is a sweet cowl and cuffs pattern by Star Athena. Star is the manager over at Twisted, and she’s also a brilliant designer with a primo sense of style, and a great teacher, too. I took her Sock Design class at Sock Summit last summer. Star’s Arctic Blast Mitts were the February kick off for the club last year. I made those…twice! Remember these?

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The yarn this month is Malabrigo Twist, a worsted weight plied baby merino wool yarn, in the Indiecita coloway. I love it. Blues and greens; it’s perfect. It feels wonderful.

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Look at the color…

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And this month’s goodie? A project bag from Flower Pie Designs, also local to Portland. The bags are all different, so don’t be surprised to see someone else’s completely different Single Skein Club project bag! (Yes I know the characters are upside down. I can even read some of them. On the back of the bag, they’re right side up, because the bag is one piece of fabric, folded, not two pieced together.)

bag

I love this bag; it will be perfect for corralling my project inside my big Sock Summit tote.

There are a few spaces left in the Single Skein Club. You can pick up your club kits locally, or Twisted will ship to you if you’re far away. Contact Twisted if you want in on the fun!

And here’s a sweet opportunity for those of you who are local to PDX. Sweet Sound of Jazz, a fund-raiser for the Band programs at Grant High School. Enjoy music and a dessert buffet, Friday evening, February 12, 7 p.m.

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Cast on!

My yarn order came in at Close Knit. It’s Brown Sheep Lamb’s Pride Bulky in Bing Cherry. Isn’t it luscious? The red is so deep and rich. Just like, well, a bing cherry!

LPB

I’m knitting a Heather Hoodie Vest. It has OXO cables similar to the ones on my fingerless mitts, but they’re much wider. I’m planning to make this vest into a sweater with long sleeves, and to make the hood smaller. I’ll never wear the hood; I just need it for style points. I never wear the hood on my Central Park Hoodie, either.

cast on

Here’s where I am so far after 2 hours or so. I’m enjoying the fat yarn on my size 10 Lantern Moon ebony circulars. The needles are smooth, and the yarn is chunky and quick to knit. We’ll see how long this takes. I’d like to wear it before it gets too warm!

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And while I’m thinking of my Hugs and Kisses OXO Cable Fingerless Mitts, I should remind you that all proceeds from online sales until Valentine’s Day are going to Doctors Without Borders for Haiti Earthquake Relief. I’m up to $245; can we make it up to $300? let’s do it!

SEA-PDX Yarn Train

The annual Seattle to Portland Yarn Train arrived in town on Saturday, bringing Seattle knitters down south for a yarn crawl. I couldn’t meet the train because I was rehearsing with the Day Old Pastries, so I met up with Kathy at Knit/Purl.

Knit Purl

I met Kathy last summer at the Sock Summit Ravelry party, and we’ve been bloggy friends ever since. She was with her friend Chandria, and Denise, whom they met on the train. I offered to take the three of them across town to Twisted, my usual stomping grounds. But first, I needed to check in at the PDXKnitbloggers’ home base at the Starbucks kitty corner from Knit/Purl.

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I found Cindy, Duffy, Judy, Susan…and a table covered with yarn.

AbstractFibers BFL

Susan was just back from TNNA, and she had a samples of her entire new Blue Faced Leicester sock yarn. Judy was trying to choose two coordinating colors for a design project. It was difficult, because they were all gorgeous!

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We did make it over to Twisted. As we pulled up, my phone picked up a text message. It was a tweet from Twisted: “Love Stinks! Spend your Valentine’s day hexing your crappy ex with our Voodoo Doll kits! (Then go on a date with someone way hotter)” That made me laugh out loud. We went in asking for the voodoo dolls, and here they are, modeling in front of the wall of sock yarn.

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Kathy bought some Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran to make a Pippi hat. It will be her first color work. Fun!

Pippi

I also ran into Debbi and her friend Susan, and Sharon (but I forgot to take her picture, sorry).

Debbi

All that yarn shopping is exhausting! We had a very late lunch at Costello’s, down the street, and then headed to Yarnia. I’d never been to Yarnia before, so this was an adventure for me, too.

yarnia

Yarnia is like Build-a-Bear for knitters. You choose thin fibers/colors you want to put together, and they are wound off together onto a cone to make the yarn of your dreams. Denise was in heaven! She got exactly what she wanted for a shawl project. With sparkle in it, of course. Here’s the winding machine in action. (There’s a cone of shiny stuff on the floor, feeding into the yarn on the cone, but I didn’t realize it when I was filming.)

There wasn’t time to visit any more yarn stores, so I chauffeured the happy knitters back to the train station. And I realized then that I didn’t buy any yarn at all! I’m just not much of a stasher. It was a fun day.

Monday is Martin Luther King, Jr. Day here in the States. Are you participating in any MLK Day activities? I’ll be at a workday for the Backpack Program; they provide weekend lunches for needy children at a local elementary school. (For some children, a federally-sponsored school lunch is their main meal of the day, and there is no school lunch on the weekend.) The Day Old Pastries will lead some singing at the event. If you’re local and looking for something to do, it’s from 1 to 3 p.m. at Woodlawn United Methodist Church, 1425 NE Dekum, Portland, 97211.