Monday, December 22, 2014

This is a time of year to be out of the house and away from the computer, so pardon the silence. I hope that you are all out in the world as well - spending time with family and friends and that you are enjoying your holidays -  if, like me, you are already on night 7!   If not, I hope you are having a great time preparing for a fun week ahead.

As for a yearly recap -- in 2014, I managed to reach a few of my goals - mixing in new construction methods - such as continguous, EZ, bottom up, and seamed -- teaching classes, doing the amazing Lantern Moon retreat, and working more accessories in the mix. 

In 2015, I have a few more things in mind - including a bit of European travel and more new techniques.  The teaching will still be very limited as my kiddos have many things to do and I want to be here while they do them - however.... Squam!!! and Slater Mill!!! (still room in that one class....), plus a class at WEBS this March, and a little trip to the Pacific Northwest are on the books.  Time with my knitting friends, exploring new yarns, and a sweater for a little boy are also in my head.  

Already, a few things are almost set to go once January arrives:

Like Shirley Temple...  


and Ommegang...

And Zacapa, my first men's sweater design - which will be photographed properly in Quebec next week!  

There's a Tiki-themed accessory collection getting knit up, and some gorgeous colorwork with Jill Draper's Rockwell, a project with Julie Asselin, and of course, more Plucky in my stash that must get knit.  Plus, my first magazine submission will be published soon.  So stay tuned!  

Again, Thank You so much for all the beautiful knitting you did in 2014.  I do try to see and comment when I catch your Ravelry projects and I appreciate every single one of them!! You guys make me look good and let me continue doing this thing that I just love. 

Thanks for choosing to spend your time and yarn on my designs.  :)

I hope to be seeing more of all you and your needles in 2015.....  Happy Everything!!

Sunday, December 07, 2014

A new collection!  Four friends and four hats - all with pompoms....

Bristol Ivy, Alicia Plummer, Melissa Schaschwary, and myself.  Like many designers online, we each work alone, but we are lucky enough be a part of the amazing social circle called Ravelry. Thanks to that connection, we used to ping each other occasionally about things, and those pings became snippets of conversation - which over time have grown into a constant 4-way thread of text.   It's become our virtual coffee shop, where we touch base and talk shop (or not...) and have a bit of company each day.

And in one of those conversations, we started talking about the perfect pom pom hat.  A few texts  later, this little collaboration was in the works.  

The idea of the pom hat is translated a little differently by each of of us,but each one is warm and fun and appropriately pommed.  Different yarns, different stitch patterns, different shapes - but each one a cozy and wintry hat that we would be wearing if we could tramp through the snow to visit the other three at a real, live coffee shop with a fireplace and steamy mugs to drink from...

Hot Toddy is my contribution, featuring classic cables and simple detail.  This gorgeous tweed is called Donegal Soft and it traveled all the way from Ireland, so when I look at it I'm reminded of the history and tradition from whence it came. The creamy shade and rustic hand is just gorgeous in simple cables, and I've added some fun detail at top and bottom.  Hot Toddy is quick to knit and easy to wear, plus it has a pompom!!

It's perfect for a stray skein of tweed or heavy that worsted you may have lying around.  And all the details are on the Ravelry page.  You can purchase the PDF there or in the hat section of this blog for $4.00.  

Want to knit all 4? Buy any of our pom hats and you'll find a code on your PDF good for 25% off the others! And those are.... Bristol Ivy's London Fog, Alicia Plummer's Caramel Brulee and Melissa Schaschwary's Stollen - valid until January 8th!

Thursday, December 04, 2014

So, you guys cleaned poor Victoria over at Eden Cottage out of her Langdale Aran in no time!

But she's decided to take a limited number of backorders on the yarn until 12/7 so that you can still order now and take advantage of the free shipping offer on your PDF!  Knowing you guys, her supply won't last that long, so pop on over if you thought you missed out and was hoping get your cowl knit up in Driftwood, shown below.   And if not, she'll still be restocking the shop again on Feb 1.

The information on the backorder is here, and she'll be dyeing and shipping before Christmas, so you won't even have to wait long for your package to arrive:

In other yarn-related news,  I  know that many of you have my Chartreuse pattern in hand, but no Scholar in stash and have been waiting for the next update over on the Plucky Knitter blog.   I hear she's planning a big one for this Friday - and Scholar is on the menu.  They have already begun posting colors and information, so if you are interested in that, the information will keep appearing  here:

To end, I have a bit of bad news -- I've been playing with the cocktail for Cardamom Rose all week, and to be honest, I just don't like it.  I've worked all kinds of combinations according to the recipe I have, and although I love the name of the drink for the cowl and the pale pink color is spot on, I cannot, in good conscience tell you to drink this stuff.  I like you too much to make you do that!  I think it's the rose water that kills it - as the cardamom-gin-lemon combo is pretty good.   

Anyways,  this is the link (below) to the recipe if you want to give it a go, but I highly recommend knitting the cowl while having an Anchor Steam Holiday beer instead!  Those are great, and only in the shops for a little while - much like Scholar and Langdale Aran, apparently!

Monday, December 01, 2014

I'm teaching at two really special events this year, and am so very happy to be able to finally share all the information about both of them!

In order of their actual happening, there's Slater Mill's Knitting Weekend this January 16-18 in Pawtucket RI - and then Squam Art Workshops June 3-7 in Squam NH.  Both are amazing events that I've "been" to or taught at the past, and I am just so honored and excited to be involved in both of them this year.

I've already mentioned a bit about Slater Mill a while back, but there are still a few spots left in my  classes and the weekend is shaping up to be a great one, so take a look and see what they have planned.  Other teachers include Bristol Ivy, Gudrun Johnston, and Ellen Mason!

The weekend begins with a Friday night cocktail reception featuring a triple trunk show of Gudrun Johnston's, Amy Christoffer's and my designs, an exhibit of Ellen Mason's amazing Stitcher's Wardrobe, and a presentation by Adrienne Martini, author of Sweater Quest: My Year of Knitting Dangerously.  Classes are given both Saturday and Sunday mornings, and as if that's not all enough, the folks at Slater have added a tavern lunch with the designers midday on Saturday.   Plus, it all happens in these gorgeous, renovated mill buildings.

On both Saturday and Sunday, the marketplace will be open with some amazing fiber vendors including Julie Asselin, Fox Hill Farm (they make the gorgeous cormo from my Beekman Tavern design),  Ball and Skein, Dirty Water Dyeworks, and Barbara Perry's Foxfire Fibers.

In addition to all that, we are working on a Weekend Knitting E-book, with designs from Ellen, Amy, Bristol, Alicia Plummer, and myself, featuring designs inspired by the mill and using yarns available in the Knitting Weekend marketplace.

And, the other great thing about Slater Mill is that you can purchase tickets for the entire weekend, or you can just show up for the things you want to do - details are here:


The second great weekend is a secret I've been dying to share!  After showing up at Squam last year as a "squannabee" - I've been asked to come back as a teacher this year!!  

The Workshops are up at the lake, in Holderness NH on the first weekend in June this year.  Elizabeth has curated a set of artists and teachers with skills in fiber arts, textiles, woodworking, mixed media, poetry, and more for a retreat that promises to inspire every kind of maker in so many ways.  The rustic setting, the gorgeous lake, the time to recharge and learn and create - and let's not forget the Saturday night marketplace - will all make for an amazing experience, and I'm just so incredibly excited to be a part of it! 

I'll be teaching an in-depth design workshop and a detailed 2-part class on working with cables and what we can do with them, titled "Cable Magic".  I'm excited to dig deep into these as the classes offered at Squam are nice and long and allow for us to get really involved in our topics.

I don't have enough amazing photos to share for this one YET since I'll have to take them in June but there are tons of pics and stories plus ALL the other important Squam details right here: