I love this feel of this luxurious cashmere fiber. I am combing the cloud in order to get rid of some of the veg matter that I don’t want to spin. You can get some for yourself in my online store.
Really? It’s summertime! It’s going to be in the 90’s today. If you are going to wear socks, then put on wool socks. Why? Because they wick moisture away from your skin. They absorb lots of water and they still remain cool on your feet. I have lots of cool colorways in sock weight yarn. Grab some in my online store to make a pair of your own!
This week I’ve been busy making new colorways for the fall shows. I’ve also been filling in some of your old favorites. These will be available at the fall shows: Shenandoah Valley Fiber Festival, Fall Fiber Festival of Virginia and at Rhinebeck. You’re not local to those shows? Send me a message and we can sneak one or two out to you.
In the meantime, visit our web store to see what is on our shelves.
Do you struggle to pick yarns and colors that will make that shawl really shine? I put together shawl triads just for you. I combined fingering weight yarn skeins in colors that work together for a really great shawl. There are some with only sparkly yarn, some with a little bit of sparkle and some without sparkle at all. You can find the triads here.
Have you started your Rhinebeck sweater yet? If not, think about using this wonderful yarn for your next sweater. It is our Alto. The yarn is DK weight and is a blend of superwash BFL wool and silk. It is very shiny and it has a wonderful drape. You can find it in our webstore.
This sweater was knit with Alto in the Lightning colorway. It was designed by Corrine Walcher of Gingyknits. It is great to wear. It is so soft and has a great drape-y hand. There is a cabled lace on the side seams and down the sleeves. The pattern is available here on Ravelry. It is called The Land of Silver Birch.
I consider myself the slowest knitter in the world. When I say this, others say I can’t possibly be the slowest because they are.
I do “throw” my yarn in the English way and that is slower than “picking” your yarn in the Continental way.
But I also have a pair of socks that’s been on the needles for over 2 years and another that I cast on maybe 6-8 months ago and I have about 2 inches of the cuff knit so far. I have a tank top that I started a year ago. That tank is nearly complete. I am at the neck on the front. I have so little left. But I haven’t picked it up for several weeks.
My knitting mentor, Ellen, is perhaps the fastest and most prolific fiber artist I know. Several years ago, when I was marveling at her production, she gave me this advice: Knit (substitute spin, crochet, draw, paint, etc) 10 minutes every day. You can find 10 minutes and each day that work of art will come into being. 10 minutes a day. I can do that.
Her second piece of advice was that you can knit anywhere. You can knit in line at the DMV. You can knit while you are in the bleachers of your child’s sports game or practice. You can knit on vacation. You can knit in the car….but not while driving! You can knit in the dental or medical office while waiting for the doctor to see you. Do you think that would work for you? I do. That will be my goal for the week. I hope you’ll let me know how it works for you.
Have you knit yourself a sweater? I have made a couple and I’ve had a few made for the shop in the last few months. It seems like the knitting community is making a turn towards sweater knitting. Oh there are still plenty of shawls to make.
Sweaters seem especially daunting because they are supposed to fit. And that adds a level of difficulty. How do we make sure that sweater is not too big nor too small, to make sure it’s just right.
First of all you need to take your measurements. And so gather your bestie and take each other’s measurements. Secondly, you need to get gauge. You MUST make a swatch. You have to. I know what you are saying. It wastes time and yarn and therefore wastes money. But if your gauge is off, then your sweater will not be the same size as the designer’s sweater and it will not fit. If you do these 2 things, you will have success!
Just one more thing about sweater knitting and really knitting in general, it’s OK to ask for help. I’ve had a sweater mentor and I also had a sock mentor. Someone who can walk with you step by step through the hard parts. Having mentors (thank you Ellen and Terry!) gave me added confidence to step into something new and to be successful. Go out and find a sweater pattern to make. Check out Corrine Walcher’s designs on Ravelry. She designs great cardigans!!
Are you going to buy some gifts today? Did you go out Thanksgiving night or Black Friday? I know it’s a thing in many families. They work together to figure out their routes. They time their shopping to get to Costco for the free food tastings. It is a full contact sport. I am not a shopper. Oh when I was a kid, we did have big shopping sprees. What we did was go on the day after Christmas to return gifts and get new items that we marked down really deeply. And it was a fun time with my mom and sister.
Since I was a kid, it was always a thing to make presents. I know if you have been reading my posts for a while you may have already heard about my handmade gifts. As a family, we would make candy and cookies for friends and family. We always made English Toffee for my grandpa, it was his favorite. As a pre-teen, I made potholders out of leftover fabric and I stuffed them with a piece or two of old towels. I made these for many years. It was my thing.
When I started to do more cooking, I wrote my own “cookbook”. It was a collection of salads, including all our family favorites, even Jello salads. I typed these up with carbon paper to make multiple copies at once. Oh the error fixing!! It was a horror. Things are so much easier today with spell checking computers and printers. The adults who received these cookbooks, were so kind and encouraging.
Over the years, I’ve made jewelry and scarves. I’ve made calendars that included all the family’s important dates. I’ve woven and beaded and dyed and printed. I’ve shared the things that are important to me with those that I loved. I hoped that they would appreciate and feel all the wonderful holiday feelings that went into making their presents.
So as we look to the next Christmas or Chanukah or even birthday, how about making or buying things that promote cozy, loving feelings. Buying something that makes a home cozy. Buying something that will enhance creativity, yours or for the person who will be getting the gift. Buy something that is made by a local artist or is from a local farm. This way your gift will be meaningful to you, your recipient and the makers.
In the next couple of weeks there are many opportunities to shop with small businesses. You can find some hand made gifts, even if it is too late for you to make them yourself. We are open this Sunday from 1:30-4:30. Or email for an appointment!