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new sweater in the works

URSA Sweater is available on Ravelry

I need a warm and really sturdy sweater for this winter. The yarn I’m using is Cacao that I made into a 3 ply so that it is more of a bulky weight. I tried, believe me I tried to get the half brioche stitch correct in the raglan areas. I finally gave up and did a PKP rib there. Because this is going to be a outside sweater and barn sweater, I’ll probably make it longer than the pattern suggests. We’ll see how it goes.

What are you knitting this winter? Reply here or on Facebook and Instagram to let me know.

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fun and easy knit for the new year

shawl for alpaca wool blend yarn
Camau Shawl

This is a really fun and easy knit shawl. It is a flat triangle shawl that can be worn in a variety of ways. It is primarily a garter stitch shawl with intermittent short rows of eyelet (k2tog, yo). The yarn is a 3 ply farm yarn that is a sport weight. There are 2 plies of wool and one of alpaca. So you have a slightly heathery look to the yarn. The yarn will keep its shape because of the wool but add some lovely softness from the alpaca.

Each kit is one of a kind and they are on sale to!!! So be sure to grab one here while they are still in stock.

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curated shawl trios for your new shawl

So many people feel overwhelmed when trying to make color choices for the next new shawl or sweater. Helping shoppers pick out colors is one of my favorite things, so I thought I would put together skeins that will make your next new thing.

All of these threesomes are fingering weight, but some are Corrie Sock, some are Really Fine and some are Sparkly.

I searched Ravelry’s patterns and there are more than 4300 choices of shawls that use 1200 yards of yarn. The choices are immense. Lots of A-list designers have shawls that use this kind of yarn in this amount: Stephen West, Melanie Berg, Casapinka and Andrea Mowry just to name a few.

Which will you choose for your next project? Click here to find the triad that knocks your socks off.

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when yarn and pattern come together

A couple of years ago, a knitter came into our festival booth with a gorgeous scarf that was full of flame shapes. Of course I asked about it and came to find out that the yarn needs to be specially dyed for it. I put the scarf into my Ravelry queue. It is called Optical Delusion: Conflagration. See it here.

Then I forgot about it, as one does, right? So I finally tackled dyeing up some Sparkly yarn to make the scarf. Here is an in process photo, because I have yet to finish it. This pattern is full of short rows and I must count every row, so it’s only something I can work on when I’m alone and totally alert.

So I’ve dyed up 2 colorways for this project for you. You can buy a kit that includes a skein of yarn and the pattern here. Your order will be individually hand dyed once you order.

If you want to see it in person, come out to the Holiday Fiber Art Studio Tour this coming weekend.

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quick and functional mitts to keep you warm

This is my cutest cup and it’s full of Mexican hot cocoa. Yes I’m inside today and it is still so nippy outside. I let the fire go out in the stove and until I restart that fire, I’ll be keeping these beauties on. This is from my Fingerless Mitt Kitts. You can grab one here.

The pattern is one of the featured free patterns that will be given away during our Fiber Art Studio Tour on December 7 and 8. You can find out all about this tour and how to get a set of free patterns from each of the studio stops here.

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holiday knitting? Too Late?

Is it too late to start knitting for Christmas? Maybe, but maybe not. How can you figure that out? Well let’s do some math…it’s simple math.  

  • How long can you knit each day? For me, it’s realistic to say that I could knit 1 hour a day for at least 6 days a week. That’s 6hours a week.  
  • How long until the holidays or when I have to mail presents?There are 6 weeks until christmas and hannukah week. So that is 36 hours of knitting.  
  • And so how long would a project typically take? Well that depends, right. So we have to think strategically. Use a bigger yarn and bigger needles or a smaller project like hat, cowl, mitts.  I know that I can knit a fingerless mitt in about 2 hours. And so that is 4 hours for a pair.  I could probably do a hat in that time as well. And I’ve timed myself on my Lacy Cowl made with luxurious Zephyrette and I know that takes me about 3 hours of knitting. So let’s go with 4 hours.  I could make 9 projects in the time left.  9?!?!?!

But is that reasonable? I’ve already told you all that I am the world’s slowest knitter. But still I could conceivably get some presents knit for some very special people.

Need some ideas? Well a Zephyrette cowl makes a very luxurious gift with very little knitting time. The Lacy cowl below took me 2-3 hours of TV knitting to complete. The other cowls will take slightly longer. The yarn is so soft and warm and beautiful that it is a pleasure to knit and it will be a treasured gift for that knitworthy friend or relative. Pick a skein of Zephyrette and let me know what pattern you are interested in and we’ll get you started on this gift.

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what does that colorway look like?

I’m asked at every show what a particular colorway will look like when it is knit or crochet. There isn’t a simple answer. Even if I did a swatch for every base and every colorway I have made, when you use that yarn, it will look different than the sample.

It all depends on the number of stitches. A yarn that will stripe in a sock of 62 stitches will might have sections of pooling and striping in a shawl where the stitches are constantly changing row by row.

Here is a good example. Both mitts were knit from the same skein. The smaller mitt on the right has bigger areas where the deeper blues and greens will pool and stripe. The larger mitt is less dramatic as the areas of deeper blue and green are more spread out and therefore have a more subtle look. There is only a difference of 12 stitches between the two mitts.

These two mitts are the samples for my new mitt kitts. The yarn is my 2 ply mohair yarn from our animals. It is lofty and has a nice halo that you can actually brush to make it even more pronounced. The kitt includes the yarn and pattern for a mere $15. It is a fast gift for the holidays. These will be available during the Holiday Fiber Art Studio Tour on December 7th and 8th. Find out the details here. And I will be adding these to my online store in Monday’s update. Check back here to find them.

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Store reopened after a lovely family weekend

This last weekend was full of family. A family wedding, lovely visits with two 93 year old aunties and their caretaker daughters, a scavenger hunt of Allentown and a concert that got cancelled. But instead we had a great time talking with Bill’s brother and sister in law and sharing our live’s stories and good, good wine.

So coming back I opened the store up with 2 major shop updates. First I added hand dyed natural colored yarns…what??? So I have a great yarn base that is made with 2 different shades of grey and 2 different weights, so it’s a thick and thin kind of yarn.

I overdyed this yarn with a brick red, a bright violet and a navy blue. The results are rich colors. These yarns are farm yarns. They are made with wool from farms of other shepherds. The yarn is highly durable and wearable. Is it soft? It is not too scratchy but it is not cashmere. It would make lovely hats, mitts, socks and even one of those great colorwork sweaters.

You can find this yarn here. What other colors would you like to see? Reply to this blog to let me know!!