LYS closings, Knit for Food update

It’s official: Twisted, a local yarn shop, is closing. They were part of the Portland yarn scene for 16 years. In 2020 they went online only, just before the pandemic. Now it’s time to call it a day. Emily is moving on to her next adventure. I’m forever grateful to Emily and Shannon; they jump started my knitting career by inviting me to teach at their shop. We’ve all come a long way since then! Twisted is still open for a bit, and they’re having a sale on their remaining stock. Check it out here.

Portland is actually losing two shops this spring; Pearl Fibers Arts just closed yesterday. I’m sorry to see this shop close, too, but I’m happy that owner Cindy Abernethy is moving on to enjoy retirement.

Next, thank you to everyone who donated to Knit for Food, whether it was through my page or another. We raised $340,000, surpassing by far the totals during 2021 and 2022. That’s amazing!

I began the day knitting in church (it’s my usual practice, not just for this event), and posted this picture to Instagram and Facebook. Based on the comments, I’m not the only one who knits in church! I find that having my hands busy helps me listen; if my hands aren’t busy, my mind wanders. I like to bring a simple project, no counting. It works for me!

We had a nice group of knitters in the afternoon, and I continued knitting into the evening when I came home. I’m giving my hands a break today, and I’ll be back at it again tomorrow. I’m really glad I was a part of Knit for Food, and hope to do it again next year.

How was your weekend?

Knit for Food knit-a-thon is tomorrow!

Almost here! The Knit for Food knit-a-thon is tomorrow, Sunday March 26. Join Margaret Waddell (co-founder of Puddletown Knitters Guild) and me for an afternoon of knitting for a good cause; we’ll be knitting in the fellowship hall (downstairs) of Fremont United Methodist Church, 2620 NE Fremont Street in Portland. (Look for the balloons at the top of the ramp.) We’ll be there from noon to 5 pm (although I’ll be knitting all day). Puddletown Knitters Guild is supplying us with coffee and donuts, yum! And we’ll have raffle prizes, too. Masks optional, but highly appreciated.

Not local? You can support this charity by knitting where you are and gathering donations, or donate without knitting. Support me by donating through this link.

Knit for Food has raised over $255,000 so far this year. In 2021 we raised $265,810 and in 2022 we raised $271,761. I’d love for us to exceed those amounts. The funds will be shared with 4 food related organizations: Feeding America, World Central Kitchen, No Kid Hungry, and Meals on Wheels.

The last Zoom session of the day will be live-streamed on Laura Nelkin’s YouTube channel, 8:15 – 10 pm Eastern, that’s 5:15 – 7 pm Pacific. It will be time for fun and games, and I’m participating in one of the games at 8:45 pm Eastern/5:45 Pacific. Link here to watch. Come watch, and if you haven’t donated, please consider making a donation through my page. Donations will be accepted until 10 pm Eastern/7 pm Pacific, the end of the event.

This is what I’ll be working on, without the bubbly! After a trip to the frog pond, it’s coming along swimmingly, and I think it’s the perfect knit-a-thon project. Assigned pooling, mostly knitting, with occasional pauses to do the fancy stitch. No counting! (Because someone will ask: Yarn is Dream in Color Smooshy in Bali Wood, bag is by MadderRootMaine, and the glass was a gift so I can’t tell you where to get one! It’s several years old and most likely discontinued.)

Hope to see you tomorrow, or that you see me for fun and games on the livestream. I’m so pleased to be participating in this event. Food related charities are very important to me; we give to Oregon Food Bank and the Northeast Emergency Food Program on a yearly basis. No one should go hungry in this country.

Introducing Firefly Trails

Firefly Trails is a loop cowl, designed to be knit with one skein of worsted weight yarn that has been dyed for assigned color pooling. When I finished my Pooling is a Cinch cowl/hat, I couldn’t resist playing with one more skein of this fun yarn to design something else. Firefly Trails is the result.

I pulled more of the color pop into the gathered stitches for Firefly Trails; Pooling is a Cinch uses just the center of the color pop. This yarn is Yarn Snob’s A Wondrous Worsted in the Times Square colorway. I love that the color pop is more than just one color.

The pattern is available on Ravelry and Payhip. Use coupon code GLOW for 15% off through March 21.

Have you tried assigned pooling? I like it so much more than planned pooling, where I have to watch my gauge. In assigned pooling, you just have to use the fancy stitch when the color pop shows up. That makes the knitting much more relaxing!

Do you repeat knits?

Sometimes I knit an item more than once while I’m designing; that helps me figuring out sizing and fine tuning directions.

Sometimes I knit things more than once, just because I love them. (Love Note, Stopover)

And sometimes I re-knit things because I want to see them in another yarn. This is my Aspen Leaf scarf, which I designed in 2020. I loved this in its original yarn, which was Huckleberry Knits’ American Dream DK (above).

I re-knit it in Knit Picks Chroma Worsted, because I want to sell it through the Knit Picks IDP program. Chroma Worsted is a little bit heavier and fluffier than American Dream DK, so the dimensions are different. There are 8 leaves in this version, and 10 in the original. This new version will be available through Knit Picks next month, I think. I enjoyed working with this yarn.

While I was re-knitting it, I realized that a slimmed down version would make a great coaster, and it would be perfect as a teaching vehicle for brioche increases and decreases. That was a happy inspiration! I’m teaching the Zoom coaster class next Sunday, March 19, via For Yarn’s Sake. Come knit with me!

Whale Watch for Landlubbers and more

I’m teaching an immersive two day brioche workshop at the Sitka Center for Art and Ecology on the Oregon Coast, July 15-16. Fees are just for the workshop; you’ll need to find lodgings nearby if you’re not local.

Whale Watch hat and cowl

We’ll start with beginning one color brioche, move into 2 color brioche in the round, and then introduce increases and decreases to make the whale tail and seagull motifs on the Whale Watch cap or cowl. You’ll be a brioche pro by the end of the weekend! Register here.

Whale Watch hat and cowl

This is the same hat and cowl that I’m using on the Nautical Knitting Cruise on the schooner Zodiac at the end of July. (The cruise is full, but you can sign up for the wait list if you’re interested.) Either way, you’ll have fabulous brioche skills at the end of your time with me.

I may be teaching Whale Watch brioche on the Vogue Knitting Cruise in September, too. We’ll see if we have repeat cruisers; if there are a lot then I’ll choose a different pattern. I’m looking forward to all of these coastal adventures!

Classes and meetings, online and in person

I have my knitting life scheduled for the next few months. I hope you can join me for some of it, either online or in person.

First off, I have 3 online classes scheduled via For Yarn’s Sake. Come knit with me, virtually!

March 19: Aspen Leaf Coasters. This small project is a perfect introduction to brioche increases and decreases. If you have knit a little brioche rib, this class is a perfect next step for you. I need a few more students to make this class a go, so please register now if you’re interested.

April 2: Assigned Pooling, using my new Fanfare cowl/hat pattern. Assigned pooling is the new hot thing, with lots of yarns being dyed for this fun technique.

May 7: Embellishment Cowl. This cowl features 3 fun techniques: A lacy fancy stitch, slip stitch quilted lattice, and beads! You’ll get a great start on all three during this class.

Brioche Entree

I’m speaking tonight (Thursday March 9) for the Puddletown Knitters Guild; you can join us in person or online. I’m talking about my brioche love affair, and starting this intro to brioche project with you. It’s free, check out the details here.

And I’m participating in Knit for Food with an in-person knitting meet up at Fremont United Methodist Church on Sunday March 26, from noon to 5 pm. Details here.

Come knit with me, virtually or in person!

Introducing Fanfare

Let’s have an introductory fanfare for Fanfare!

Fanfare is a convertible cowl/hat knit with worsted weight yarn, designed for my assigned pooling class at For Yarn’s Sake next month. It can be worn as a cowl

or as a hat. It’s knit with yarn that is dyed especially for assigned color pooling, with a color pop of 10 to 16 inches. This yarn is Dream in Color Classy with Cashmere, in the Violet Fields colorway. It feels so plush!

The yarn comes in 12 pooling colorways. I knit a second version to confirm my instructions (and avoid yarn chicken this time), using Dream in Color Classy with Cashmere in the Storm Berry colorway.

The color pop was longer in this skein of yarn, so I adapted my fan stitch to accommodate the difference. Instructions for the fan stitch are given in a video tutorial and in written instructions, too. There are also instructions on adapting the size of the fan stitch to suit your yarn.

The pattern is available through Ravelry and Payhip. It’s 15% off through March 14 with coupon code FAFF. If you’re signing up for my online class through For Yarn’s Sake, the pattern is already included in your class fee. Don’t buy it twice! The class is on April 2.

I have one or two more pooling patterns in the works. It’s kind of addictive!

Puddletown Knitters Guild

I’m giving a talk about my love affair with brioche knitting, including a little introductory brioche project, this Thursday evening for Puddletown Knitters Guild. The meeting is both in-person and online. Here’s a link for more information if you’d like to join us! Masks and vaccinations required for in-person. Hope to see you there!

February: That’s a wrap!

Rose City Yarn Crawl was my third event of the month. That’s packing in the fun!

On Thursday, the day of my postponed trunk show, I put on my snow boots + YakTrax cleats and walked up to Close Knit. I wore these ancient Selbu mittens; I don’t remember when I knit them. They were too big when I knit them, so I fulled them in the sink way back when, and they are toasty warm! Way better than gloves.

I bought this tote by Kirikomade (IG) that I’ve been eyeing since last year. It’s lightweight denim, with a sweet print. One pocket inside. So pretty!

I did make it to For Yarn’s Sake on Friday for my delayed trunk show! It was great to visit with intrepid knitters. I signed books and chatted about my upcoming classes (Assigned Pooling, Aspen Leaf Brioche Coasters, Embellishment Cowl).

I bought another skein of Dream In Color Classy Cashmere to knit another Fanfare Cowl/Hat (is that it’s name? Probably! Pattern coming next week) because the green/purple one goes to For Yarn’s Sake.

Bisquee says it passes the sniff test.

I didn’t make it to more shops; I had other things on my agenda. I did personalize my bag with pins from JaMPDX and ShannyPeasCorner. Love that yarn chicken! Then we hit the road.

We ended February with Bruce Springsteen, Saturday in Portland and Monday in Seattle. It was DH’s 50th Springsteen show. A big deal, but remember…Bruce has held my sock knitting.


Now it’s onward to March!

Trunk show today

I’m venturing out today, Friday February 24, noon to 4:30 pm at For Yarn’s Sake for Rose City Yarn Crawl.

Wish me luck, and hope to see you there!