Dee: I’m having such a great fiber filled September!!! I went to both the Wisconsin Sheep and Wool Festival and a Susan B. Anderson workshop in Madison via KnitCircus, also in Madison.
Next to YarnCon, which is in the spring, the Wisconsin Sheep and Wool Festival is my favorite yarn event. It’s small, rustic and oh so interesting. Local vendors carry a wide variety of items for sale. There are basket makers, yarn dyers, soap makers, cheese makers, broom makers, angora rabbit proprietors and more! I really tried to behave myself yet I succumbed to temptation and opportunity when I happened upon Yarns By Design in Neenah WI. They were having a retirement sale. Let’s just say I did okay. My arms were full, then empty, finally with a clear head I made it to the register with only a few specialty skeins for holiday knitting.
It’s safe to say I love sheep. So when I saw the Susan B. Anderson sheep knitting workshop I jumped at the chance, grabbed Jodee and headed to Madison. This little fella is so adorable that I have considered knitting him some attire. The workshop was part of the KnitCircus weekend retreat. Friday night, the ladies of KnitCircus held an evening of wine, cheese and shopping in their shop. You could also just hang out and chat while knitting away on a project as we chose to do for a good part of the evening. I love seeing all the gradient cakes of yarn that KnitCircus offers. I finished a project that the KnitCircus crew were kind enough to dye up additional yarn for me so I could finish my Pyropa shawl. I ran out of yarn shy of enough to complete the final one and a half repeats. The colorway is called Sexy Like A Labradoodle. The pattern includes placement for optional beads which I chose to incorporate. They are clear with a silver lining. So pretty, I don’t think the picture does the finished shawl justice.
Lastly I volunteered to test knit a pattern. It’s the PokeHat by Mrs. Luedeke. My son is on Team Mystic so I agreed to test that version. I always enjoy color work. It’s so satisfying to knit.
Next up on my fall knitting schedule is traveling through Wisconsin to the fall Schoolhouse Press Workshop with Meg and Amy. I look forward to this weekend all year long. It’s literally the best time a knitter can have communing with their fellow fiber brethren. I love it!
Dee: With an abundance of windshield time ahead of me, I decided to pack up some knitting projects for my vacation trip out west. I finished up casting off on the shawl for my mother-in-law. This was paramount since it was her birthday celebration we would be attending in Montana. I think it turned out nicely… She cannot wear anything with wool in it and she loves fancy things so this yarn sprinkled with sequins was the perfect choice for her.
As soon as I finished the shawl I cast on for the New Directions Cowl that I had bought the kit for at last year’s Wisconsin Sheep and Fiber Fest. The cowl was fun to knit without a lot of directions or details to following making it a perfect project for the road and for sightseeing. I love the way that by switching yarns every nine rows that it kept the project interesting. This cowl is earmarked as a Christmas gift.
I then began with a repeat knit of the Timber Bay Hat. I had given the last one I knit away as a birthday gift and knew at the time that I wanted one for myself. This time I used some berry hued yarn from my stash and named the hat the Huckleberry Hat in honor of Montana’s State fruit. I really think you should knit one for yourself the fold over brim in a one by one twisted rib is so fantastically satisfying and beautiful.
I wanted enough knitting to last the entire trip and I brought exactly that, enough knitting to last me until I reached my driveway. The final item was my take along project that I started months ago and only work on when I have time to kill in a waiting room or during my lunch break. It’s also a favorite repeat knit of mine, the Veil Stitch Cowl that I knit last winter. Light, airy and perfect to wear indoors as part of an outfit this cowl features only one stitch that you repeat again and again even on the cast off row…the Veil Stitch. It looks impressive and knit up in Noro it’s a stunner.
My trip to Montana would not have been complete without a stop at the Dupuyer Cache where there is a room stocked with Beaverslide Dry Goods yarn. This yarn is minimally processed leaving it butter soft. The colors are phenomenal by the way and I had an especially hard time choosing which colors to bring home with me. I wanted to buy one skein in every color, however I did not do that. That would have been a lot of yarn…even for me. I took pictures of the shop to share…enjoy! Happy knitting y’all!
Dee: When my brothers cleared out my folks home to move them into assisted living and subsequently sell their home…a few of my mother’s things were discarded…namely all of the items that I have knit her over the years. Sadness. She’s cold so I’ve knit her a new shawl out of yarn that is washable. The shawl is based on the Madeline Shawl by Kate Jackson (not the Charlie’s Angels actress Kate Jackson, at least I am thinking not.) I knit the shawl with Plymouth Encore from my stash for something that is easy care for her new living arrangement.
I think it turned out pretty nice too if I do say so myself. I am loving this construction for her. It should sit nicely over her shoulders without falling off. I am knitting another for my mother-in-law who is turning eighty this month. Hers will be in all garter stitch and knit with some sequined yarn. Yes, she’s a fancy girl. At the rate I am knitting I’m going to be late for the actual birthday though.
I’m still knitting hats. I love knitting hats. I have two to share with you. One of them is going to be a gift the other I am planning to donate for a worthy cause….stay tuned. This first hat is Timber Bay. I loved knitting this pattern. The turned brim is spectacular. I am planning to knit more of these hats in the near future. For this one I used some Cascade 220 heather yarn which I just loved so much. Heathers and tweeds really make the nicest hand knit items, they really do. There is a depth to them that really adds to a finished piece. I was really nervous that I would run out of yarn as I was closing in. I made the comment to my husband that I was afraid that I was going to run out of yarn and he replied that I will never run out of yarn. Hmmm.
The second hat to share with you is the Five Pillars Hat. I knit the hat with larger yarn and needles since the finished measurements for the pattern were really small and would make a very tight hat. I used some Cascade 128. I think I would have preferred a smaller gauge yarn however I so love a big hat. I think they look better on my head.
So there you have it I have been busy knitting and not busy blogging. Shame on me. Until next time…
Happy knitting everyone!
Dee: Well, not exactly a cherry however I did consider making a classic red pompom to top my hat for the month of March, the Big Herringbone Hat. Instead I used a faux fur pompom from the stash of faux fur pompoms that I have apparently accumulated…you may realize that I’m a girl who rarely passes up a good deal on knitting related paraphernalia. Knit out of Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Worsted, this two color hat was a very fun knit. I had originally planned to use Green Bay Packers colors of Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Worsted in Sunshine Yellow and Pine to knit this one up however I recently bought a houndstooth skirt in classic black and white so I was inspired to knit likewise. Perhaps I’ll still knit a Packers version…perhaps not.
So you may have heard that I’ve put a kibosh on buying yarn for the remainder of the 2016 calendar. However, it’s only March and I am now beginning to feel the pull, the allure of the stash enhancement. If I make it until YarnCon in April that would really be something!
What’s next on my needles? I’m still thinking about that. A shawl for my mom? Another hat? Definitely! Or perhaps something with one of my KnitCircus gradients? Stay tuned…until then, happy knitting!
Dee: I love requests, especially when they come from either of my sons. So when son #2 asked for a business casual hat I got right to work. Knowing that this guy craves comfort I knew I’d be using some of that fabulously soft and warm Sweater by Spud & Chloe, that I happen to have on hand in both black and grey to knit up this very casual yet business like beanie for him. It’s a slightly modified version of the Pittsburgh Steelers Hat by Lorna Miser. You can read my notes here for the slight changes that I made.
For those keeping count this is hat number two for the month of February. I’m almost done with my March hat, so you can expect a post about that one soon. Happy knitting y’all!
Dee: Once in a while I like to follow a month’s theme for my “hat of the month” as I have chosen to do here with my February hat the Flower Love Fair Isle Tam. I saw a store sample of this pattern when I was on vacation in California at the Alamitos Bay Yarn Company. They had used a skein of Classic Elite Yarns Liberty Wool as the contrast color paired with a natural off white as the main color. I wasn’t sold on their pick of yarn for the main color, the texture was wrong, so I went with my own choice Malabrigo Yarn Rios, which just happens to be one of my friend Kathryn’s favorite yarns. As for the pattern, I wasn’t enamored with the way Chart B was presented however once I wrapped my mind around it I sailed through and finished quickly.
I love tams and I love blocking tams. I have a certain plate that just seems to be the perfect size for blocking a tam to fit my head.
I’m already on to a second hat for this month for my son which I will hopefully complete this weekend. Then I will pick another hat project for March. Hats are just so fun to knit!
Dee: I cannot believe I forgot to mention my hat for January 2016 in my last post. I designed this hat for Emily, a Rams fan, God bless her. I was able to get the colors right thanks to Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Worsted yarn. however, I ran into many problems with designing her hat. First the two-color braid I wanted looked horrible, then the rolled bottom wasn’t quite right, and finally the stitch count was wrong for the size of her noggin and my chart. Thankfully I’m no quitter, a calculator helped with that, so I was able to adjust my chart to suit the stitch count that would eventually fit my dear sweet Emily.
Next up…my February hat inspired by a sample at Alamitos Bay Yarn Company. Stay tuned and happy knitting!
Dee: I have a wonderful husband. I just thought I would throw that out there. Due to his many years on the road my husband is also my excellent travel agent. I did benefit from his skills during my recent trip home to California where I visited family and got together with my childhood friends for fun times. And of course…those fun times included some fiber fun.
On my second night there Kathryn, Cyndee and I made the trek to the Monrovia Street Fair where we encountered the Yarnover Truck. This was my third time visiting said truck and now it has become a destination point for me whenever I visit. There I bought six skeins of red discounted Spud and Chloe Sweater. I see some red hats forthcoming.
Meet Little Debbie!
I spent my Sunday watching the Seahawks get trounced by the Panthers with my dear gal pal Susan. The game’s outcome was not what Susan was hoping for however, misery loves company since I was still smarting slightly because my Packers lost the day before after a very exciting Wildcard game against the Cardinals, so I was in good company. It was Susan’s birthday so I finally made good on my promise to make her one of my leather and bead wrap bracelets. Susan joked that I waited until we saw one another on her birthday to finally get said bracelet. She’s right of course….she knows me all too well.
On my way back to “The Valley” I stopped by Yarn del Sol in Mission Viejo. It always tickles me that there is an ATM just a few steps from the entrance. I bought some Rhichard Devrieze Peppino yarn to knit the shawlette pictured below. Local ladies can snag from of this great stippled yarn at Wool & Co.
During my the final yarn quest in California I was accompanied by Cyndee and Kathryn (my frequent partners in yarn acquisitions) as we made our way to Alamitos Bay Yarn Company. This is probably one of my favorite yarn shop stops of all time. I love the staff, the location, the inspiration, and the selection. I am totally knitting that blue ribbed cowl with some stash yarn. I bought a discount skein of Liberty Wool in one of their gradient colors and a skein of Malabrigo Rios in natural to knit the Flower Love Fair Isle Tam. Yeah, I am apparently not over my hat obsession so I’ll continue to knit a hat a month in 2016.
While on vacation I finished the baby blanket for Mya.
I see many fiber adventures ahead for me in 2016 most notably a knit a long with Jodee and “Amy Detjen” as we follow her Craftsy class for Sipsey’s Folly. I’ll continue on with my hat a month challenge, make my annual pilgrimage to Meg Swansen’s fall knitting workshop, a YarnCon visit, a Stitches Midwest trip, and probably another NaKniSweMo project. Stay tuned and happy knitting y’all.
Dee: The end of 2015 signals an end to my yearlong knit-a-hat a month challenge. I surpassed my goal early on since hats are my absolute favorite thing to knit. I knit a total of seventeen hats as well as many other items in 2015. Many of the chapeaux (that’s French for hats) provided for handy gift giving opportunities when the holidays came around which I really appreciated. I may focus on another small project each month so I will end the year with another supply of gifts ready for gifting…or perhaps I’ll just keep knitting hats.
My final hat of the year was a repeat of the Violet Waffles pattern which was such a fun knit and great hat. I chose to use my favorite hat yarn Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Worsted once again however using one of their multi-colored yarns. I began the hat with the two by two ribbing only to discover an unfortunate pooling that I knew I’d never be happy with so I frogged and began again with a coordinating solid switching to the multi-colored after the ribbing. The resulting hat is gorgeous!
Two-Color Violet Waffles
I bought myself a couple of after Christmas gifts this year. Since I loved knitting my NaKniSweMo sweater so much, I bought two sweater kits. And since my Sipsey’s Folly kit arrived first…I’ll be knitting that along with Jodee who, like me, purchased the kit and the Amy Detjen Custom Yoke Sweater class on Craftsy. We can wear our finished sweaters when we show up at camp in the fall. Stay tuned and happy knitting!
Monica: I’ve been lucky to live near some nice people who are friendly and generous. It’s always nice to know that if I have an emergency I can count on them for help. This summer when I mentioned that I was going to the Wisconsin Sheep and Wool festival my neighbor joked that she wanted me to bring her a sheep back. So I did. Except it took me a while to get her over to them since I had to make her.
Pattern: Sue the Ewe by Rita O’Connell
Yarn: Blackberry Ridge Woolen Mill kit
I really enjoyed knitting her. She was easier than Sam the Ram. I did a lot of 3-needle bind off when I could but there was some kitchener grafting with the 4 legs.
The pattern came with a shawl which was a surprisingly intricate lace pattern. It actually took me a while to knit the small shawl.
That last picture is for Lynette. I found an article in my Elle magazine called “Sweater Weather” — a topic of great interest to Sue.