Fall Baby Blanket

Fall-Baby-Blanket.jpg

The minute we hit mid-August, my brain immediately switches into fall knitting mode. I think this is true for most knitters--as summer begins to wind down, we start to get excited about the cooler temperatures, changing leaves, and the transition from linen and cotton fibers to all things warm and woolen. 

My goal this season is to knit entirely from my stash, so when I decided to cast on my first fall project, I went straight for the gigantic pile of Knit Picks Brava Bulky, which has been patiently nestled into a wicker basket for almost a year now. Immediately, I knew that these moody shades of gray would become big, squishy baby blanket--perfect for keeping a little one warm during fall activities. 

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With as stressful as life has seemed lately, I decided to go back to basics and knit the entire blanket in row after row of meditative garter stitch. Not only did this amplify the squish-factor of the yarn, but the repetition of this classic stitch provided me with a few hours of much-needed therapy at the end of each day. 

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Fall-Baby-Blanket-6.png

Normally, I'm not a knit-with-acrylic kind of girl, but when it comes to baby blankets, practicality is key. I tossed this right into the washing machine on a gentle cycle, then tumble dried it on low. Fresh out of the dryer, it was perfectly soft and toasty. The final knit is perfect for keeping your little one cozy and warm during afternoons filled with apple picking, pumpkin patch visits, hayrides, and nap time snuggles.

In the spirit of the season, I've gussied-up my notes into a complimentary knitting pattern for my fellow knitters. You can find it here, on Ravelry. While simple in nature, the result is a completely satisfying pile of bouncy goodness.  Meet your new, dependable go-to:

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Pattern Details

  • Pattern :: Fall Baby Blanket
  • Yarn ::  Knit Picks Brava Bulky | Main color: Cobblestone Heather (5 balls); Contrast color: Dove Heather (2 balls)
  • Needles :: Size US 11 (24" circulars)
  • Finished dimensions :: approximately 32.5" x 42.5"

Enjoy, and happy fall!

growing up.

The busy season at work is finally over, which means holiday knitting projects (and blogging) are back in full swing! Three projects are already off the needles, and this weekend, I happily cast on for project number four — the Bray Cap by Jared Flood. Part of the BT Fall 2013 collection, it's the right amount of 'cool' for my 13-year old niece. Every year, she gets a new Christmas woolen — usually, a classic stockinette cap. This year, since she's becoming a little more responsible with her belongings (meaning: less prone to losing things), I thought it was time to 'move her up' in knitwear — both in quality of wool and complexity of pattern. 

Bray Cap by Jared Flood

The yarn is Shelter, in the Soot colorway. As if you don't already know, this wool is a true joy to knit with. I'm hoping that she thinks of this hat as her first heirloom piece — the one she'll reach for time and again; the one she'll send back to me for mending one too many times. These are things I like to think about when I'm making. 

p.s. Yarn purchased online from the charming Loop Yarn in Philadelphia — thank you again for shipping the yarn so quickly!

fall decorating

fall decorations 1
fall decorations 2
bedroom flowers
candelabra
pumpkin candle

I had some time to myself in the house last week, so I took the opportunity to do a little fall-cleaning and cozy things up for the new season. It felt great to go through each room, tidying all of the corners and putting away the last of summer items. Once the furniture was polished and the floors vacuumed, it was time to add some small, autumn decorations and candles around the house. I found a new Birch candle that smells like a bonfire, but slightly more subtle. It's almost like when you're taking a walk outside on a cool night and the air has the faint scent of a fireplace burning somewhere off in the distance.

This one was quickly moved from the kitchen to my knitting room first thing Saturday morning, where I settled into my knitting perch to knit, drink coffee, and read the new fall issue of Downeast Magazine. Its pages upon pages of farmers' markets, fall events, and apple-laced treats got me super excited for the season-particularly after reading the feature on Stephen King's gloomy hometown of Durham. This time of year, it's all I can do not to get into the car and drive up to the coast to New England and surround myself with all things quintessentially autumn.  

Even though we've never been there before, the hubby and I seriously consider calling Maine home one day. I've always felt it in my heart that New Englanders are 'my people', and that I'd feel quite at home alongside all of the fiber-folk up North.

It sure is fun to dream about...  

wool and wine

alpacas of windswept farm
alpacas of windswept farm
alpacas of windswept farm
our tree...

On Saturday, we went to the 2016 Maryland Wine Festival with our best friends, which was a much-needed diversion from reality. We parked our chairs underneath an old holly tree, and shared bottles of red and white wine underneath its canopy all afternoon. 

Occasionally, we'd get up and walk around, testing samples of wine from across the local region. I ended up buying this Boordy Vineyards Petit Cab, partially because I enjoyed the taste, but also because its charming description: A cabernet sauvignon with soft tannins and aromas of cedar, tobacco, briar fruits and plum.

wool and wine

We also browsed the local artisan and vendor tents, and was super excited to see the local yarn being sold at Alpacas of Windswept Farms tent. After careful consideration, this beautiful skein of Alpaca and Mohair came home with me. It was the softest of the bunch, with a gorgeous halo and bits of vegetable matter tucked into its fibers. Now to decide what to do with this beautiful yarn! 

Isn't it nice when you get to shop local?

have a lovely weekend.

weekend #knitspiration

Who else is anxious to get this weekend started? I can't believe how quickly this week flew by...there was so much to catch up on after being out of the office all last week. The hubs and I have lots of fun packed into this weekend. On Saturday, we're heading down to Westminster, MD with our two best friends to check out the Maryland Wine Festival. In addition to wine, there's an entire cheese pavilion, which I'm super excited about. Plus, there will be lots of artisan booths and craft vendors, so I'm secretly hoping I'll be able to get my hands on some local wool. 

We'll also be heading to the local Sängerbund for its annual Oktoberfest celebration. We're looking forward to hanging out with friends and family, watching our nieces and nephew dance the Schuhplattler (shoe slapping dance), and eating brats with warm, vinegary German potato salad. Oh, and drinking beer, of course! Marrying into a German family was a pretty awesome decision. 

There will also be knitting...lots of knitting. There are a couple of babies and a wedding on the way, not to mention winter! There are so many beautiful things I want to knit...how I'll fit it all in is beyond me. It's the classic knitter's dilemma. 

Speaking of beautiful things, here's a little #knitspiration to kick off your weekend:

No. 1 :: Brooklyn Tweed's Fall 2016 collection was released this week! As someone who's drawn to classic menswear styles, I love, love, love the his & hers bespoke concept this season. The standout pattern? Veronica Avery's Vika cabled turtleneck sweater. Between the spectacular cables, the drop shoulder, and the boxy, knuckle-grazing coziness, I'm sold. Pour a hot cup of french press on Saturday morning and check out the gorgeous lookbook

No 2 :: As my hubby well knows, I'm quite particular about my drinking vessels, particularly when it comes to coffee and tea. It's been a while since I've added a new mug to my collection, and this sweet little llama is calling my name. Side note: have you ever knit with llama? I was part of the test knit team for Steven West's Earth and Sky Shawl, and selected three shades of Llama Luxury to work up the sample. It almost feels like cashmere!

No 3 :: The closer we get to the cooler months, the more I want a sturdier wool on my needles. Hinterland's Cabin yarn is a single ply, mule spun Navajo Churro Lopi wool. It might be fun to knit this up into a pair of slippers to help keep toes cozy as fall sets in. 

Enjoy your weekend!

Photos from: Brooklyn Tweed, Anthropologie, and Woolful Mercantile

 

back home

Madeline Tosh Vintage Optic
Ready for blocking
Apple season
Dutch baby recipe

It was nice to get back to normal this weekend...last week my company had its annual Leadership Meeting, where 200 of us are sequestered away offsite with each other for the majority of the week. I had to give a 30-minute presentation to the group, which I was extremely nervous about, since public speaking pretty much freaks me out. After about a dozen or so practice runs, I felt pretty good about getting up on stage--but I have to say, once I hit that last slide in my presentation, I felt such an amazing lightness knowing that I had made it through (until next year, anyway).  

I was happy to return home and settle back into my creature comforts. For me, this meant knitting and puttering around the kitchen. Before my eyes could fully open on Saturday morning, I immediately finished up the ribbed edging on the cowl pattern I'm working on. The second picture shows it fresh off the needles--a shriveled, heavy mass waiting for a good, long soak in a Eucalan bath. It's now pinned and blocked within an inch of its life in the guest room. This one was tricky to block...I think perhaps Hunter has the right idea! 

On Sunday, I made a Dutch baby for breakfast (this one, if you're so inclined), which I first read about on Alicia's blog. I break this recipe out once a month, when we're feeling particularly decadent and want something cozy and warm to start our day. We had some of the season's first apples stored in the fridge, so those were peeled, diced and warmed over in a pan with some butter, dark brown sugar, and cinnamon. (Promise you'll try it with the lemon sugar before making it any other way!) Later in the day, we simmered a pot of of Sunday sauce on the stove and baked a pumpkin bundt cake for dessert. 

In between my kitchen adventures, I sat down on my perch and knit row after row of my Topiary wrap while watching scary movies on Netflix. All in all, it was a nice way to end an exhausting week. How about you--what did you do this weekend?

Hope you have a lovely week!

 

september things

It's hard to believe September is already here, isn't it? Every year, the months just seem to fly by, one quicker than the next. For me, the month of September officially marks the transition to the 'cozy' months--I'm content knowing that wool blankets, apple cider, and changing leaves are all just a few short weeks away. September also marks the beginning of our busy season at work, which we refer to as 'Peak.' It's during this time that I have to really have to consciously work to maintain a work/life/craft balance. The next twelve weeks are bound to be long and chaotically productive, so I'm really looking forward to this final, leisurely summer weekend. 

What are you up to this weekend? We're heading up to Atlantic City, NJ to spend some time relaxing poolside. I plan on casting on for my new cowl pattern on the car ride up and knitting while lounging under an umbrella.  

For those of you riding shotgun on the way to your holiday weekend adventures, here's a little #knitpiration for you to peruse:

No. 1 :: Ysolda released her lovely Inglis Mitts pattern as part of the new Wool Tribe 2016 Festival Companion book. I love the thought she puts into her designs; the way she curves the cable from cuff to thumb is a pretty flourish. Ysolda's Rose Red pattern was the very first hat I knit for myself,  way back in September of 2009. I remember being so proud of knitting lace in the round and learning how to read a knitting chart! The photo of me wearing the hat is still my Ravelry Avatar, even after all of these years... 

No 2 :: I've been doing a lot of sketching lately--my sketchbook is large and heavy and filled with swatches of wool that I've knit up over the years. It might be nice to have a few lightweight sketchbooks to throw into my knitting bag for when inspiration strikes on-the-go. I'm a long-time fan of Rifle Paper Co. products, and these Vintage Blossoms Notebooks are the perfect size for my knitting tote. [set of 2--on sale for the holiday weekend!]

No 3 :: Purl Soho's shelves are newly stocked with skeins of Sno by Woolfolk Yarn. This moody, black/green twist reminds me of the beautiful forests we drove past during our trip to Germany last September. 

Enjoy the last of the summer sun & have a safe holiday weekend!

 

swatching

Tosh Vintage swatch

This past Saturday, I had the entire house to myself, which is a very, very rare treat. Besides eating nothing but carbs  all day, I spent a considerable amount of time parked on the couch watching cheesy, made-for-TV movies and swatching my Tosh Vintage yarn. When I spotted these midnight-colored speckles on a shelf at Loop, I knew right away they wanted to come home with me.

Tosh Vintage in Optic

How perfect would they be worked into a cowl to go with my winter coat?

Madeline Tosh Vintage in Optic

This yarn is super hardy--I kept going back and forth on the stitch pattern that flanks the lace panel, and must have ripped out my knitting at least four times. The yarn held up extremely well and showed very little evidence of my woman-handling. Can we all agree that this Optic colorway is pretty amazing? I could stare at those tiny flecks of rust and aqua nestled into the fibers for hours on end. This yarn is just a delight to knit with, and, as Steven West would say, #specklesaresohotrightnow

 

the pondhopper hat

I was pretty excited to be a part of Alicia Plummer's test knit team for her latest hat pattern, Pondhopper! This was such a quick and fun knit--perfect for those last-minute holiday gifts. The combination of cables, ribbing, stockinette, and purling added just enough variety to keep things interesting for easy, evening knitting, and resulted in a rustic, woodsy-looking hat that's perfect for walks in the woods: 

The yarn is Swan's Island Organic Washable Merino DK in the (perfectly named) Eucalyptus colorway. It's crazy soft and beautifully variegated. I ordered three skeins directly from the Swan's Island website and three different dye-lots arrived in the mail. While normally this would incite panic, I decided to just roll with it. I selected the two that were the most similar in color and alternated skeins every row, carrying the strands along the back of the piece to minimize any pooling or striping in the finished knit.

Alicia's instructions were very clear--she wanted us to "...attach the biggest pom pom you can find!" to our hats, so I whipped out my Clover pom pom maker and made this fatty:

What's great about this hat is that it's the perfect knit for beginners looking to add some new skills to their repertoire. There's a little bit of everything here, and Alicia's instructions and chart make it very easy to follow along. In case you're wondering, here's a peak at the brim, unfolded:

I'm thinking of sewing the edge of the brim to the inside of the hat so that I don't have to worry about keeping it straight, and so that you see more of the hat pattern...I'm pretty sure that's how Alicia styled it in her photoshoot. Pre-blocking, I was a little scared that the hat was too small for my head, but after a nice long lavender bath, the yarn bloomed gorgeously and fits just right. I'd really, really love to knit a cardigan out of this yarn one day...

This was a fun little project and I'm glad to finally be able to share it with you! You can grab your copy of the Pondhopper Hat pattern on Ravelry for $4. Be sure to join the Pondhopper knitalong and be on the lookout for the matching fingerless mitts pattern, too! Have a great week!

Project details on Ravelry

hello, weekend!

Weekend Knitspiration 5

Is anyone else out there ready for summer to be over? There were a few mornings this week where I felt that back-to-school, fall-tinge in the air and got really excited. So much so, that I wore two cabled sweaters to work this week, which baffled some of my co-workers. Part of it's because they keep the air conditioning on so high, and part of it's because I'm hoping to wish autumn into existence... 

What's everyone up to this weekend? Now that my Berkeley class is finally over, I plan on knocking out at least four 28-row repeats of lace on my Topiary Wrap. That will bring me up to 10 completed repeats, which means there are 8 more to go before I get to the cast-off side ribbing. This thing is going to be gigantic. I also plan on swatching some of my new Tosh Vintage--there's a new cowl design in my sketchbook and want to see how the speckles look in the stitch pattern. 

Here's a little #knitspiration to get your weekend started:

No. 1 :: I've been wanting to knit Gudrun's Fidra Hat for some time now, and I think pairing the pattern with The Fibre Co.'s Arranmore yarn in Finian might result in the perfect October hat, don't you?

No. 2 :: Hunter Ammersen just released her second collection of shawls in her new book, Curls 2. There are 14 patterns total, all in the most gorgeous stitch combinations. Check out the individual designs here

No. 3 :: This time of year puts me in an organizing mood, and these wool Twig & Horn notions pouches, with their cotton muslin lining and bison leather pulls, are a little fancier than the old chocolate tin I'm currently using. Bonus: these would make excellent back-to-school pencil holders. 

No. 4 :: Since I primarily knit with circulars now, my straight needles have all but strangely disappeared. These artisan knitting needles might convince me to start growing my collection again! Hand-carved out of reclaimed apple wood branches, these beauties would look so pretty displayed in a ceramic vase, wouldn't they?

Hope your weekend's filled with lots of coffee and wool....

Photos courtesy of: Kelbourne Woolens, Pantsville Press, Quince & Co., Never Not Knitting

 

loop yarn love

loop yarn philadelphia
loop yarn philadelphia
Loop yarn philadelphia

We spent the night in Philly on Saturday for the Barbra Streisand concert (which was amazing, by the way...), so before we got back on the road to Delaware, we made a quick stop at Loop Yarn! I've been wanting to visit this local yarn shop for quite some time now, so it was nice to finally have the opportunity to check it out. Since I follow the shop on Twitter, I knew that they had the new Brooklyn Tweed Marls in stock, as well as Jared's new book, Woolens. 

The shop was bright and modern and filled with all sorts of wooly goodness and friendly people. I think I spent a good 30 minutes just walking around petting all of the skeins, which were stacked neatly along the walls in their white cubes. There were a few samples perched around the shop--including the most gorgeous Halligarth Shawl knit in Loft (shown on mannequin above)

I was impressed both with the amount of self-control I displayed, and with how patient my dear husband was with my indecisiveness. After much debate, I ended up adopting two skeins of Tosh Vintage in the Optic colorway--a creamy white base dusted with navy- and rust-colored speckles. I'm thinking about working up a cowl or shawl to go with my navy winter peacoat this winter. 

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tosh vintage in optic

And of course, I couldn't leave the shop without at least few skeins of the Shelter Marls in Newsprint. While my gut tells me these should be whipped into a brioche scarf, I may want to work up a swatch or two to see how the black and white twist renders in different stitch patterns. 

brooklyn tweed marls newsprint
brooklyn tweed marls newsprint
brooklyn tweed tosh vintage

If you haven't yet visited Loop, be sure to stop by their shop next time you're in town. You can also check their goods online--be sure to sign up for their Rewards program! Also, follow them on the 'Gram or Twitter for some #knitspiration. 

Have a great week, everyone!

 

have a great weekend

Alicia Plummer Hat

Summer weekends are slowly coming to a close. The boy went back to school yesterday and it's hard to believe that my little guy is now a 10th grader. In just three short years, he'll be off to school and we'll be empty nesters...it's kind of bizarre to think about. He's starting driver's ed this year, which I'm completely unprepared for--I have a hard time picturing him behind the wheel of a car, especially since I still have to remind him to close the cereal box before putting it back into the pantry. Teenagers. 

What's everyone up to this weekend? I'm so excited because the hubby and I are going to see Barbra Streisand in concert this Saturday! My parents gave me the tickets for my 40th birthday--my Dad and I are huge fans (I know, I have pretty old musical tastes), so the four of us are going to have a fun night on the town in Philadelphia. 

Other than that, I'll be finishing up my test knit for Alicia Plummer's new hat design (it's super cute!) and getting back to work on my Topiary Wrap. Also, I'd like to finally write up the pattern for a pair of socks I designed a while back and put it in my Ravelry shop. I'll be putting out a call for test knitters soon! 

Here's your weekend #knitspiration:

  • Jared Flood's book, Woolens finally came out and it looks spectacular. I want to knit everything, starting with this Fair Hills Scarf. Check out the book preview here.  
  • The Fringe and Friends Knitalong kicked off this week, and it's fun to watch everyone's progress on Instagram: #fringeandfriendskal2016. If you're interested in learning about top-down sweater construction, Karen has a ton of great tutorials on her blog, including how to incorporate a stitch pattern
  • The Fibre Co. launched their new Arranmore line of yarn inspired by Ireland's Northern Headlands. Comprised of cashmere, silk, and fine merino, this gorgeous line of tweed yarn comes in 18 colorways. Check out the collection of patterns here. (Carrowkeel by Kate Gagnon Osborn is my favorite of the bunch.) 

Have fun!

 

 

halloween cross-stitch

cross-stitch
embroidery thread
Weeks Dye Works Thread
gravestone cross-stitch

While I was waiting for my test knitting yarn to arrive, I decided to do a little work on this spooky little cross-stitch kit my sister bought for me during a trip to Eugene, OR. The hubby and I have a love for eerie, witch-y things. One of our favorite places to visit in October is Salem, MA, and this miniature gravestone reminds me of the cemeteries we've visited in the area. 

Alicia over at Posie Gets Cozy got me hooked on cross-stitch a few years ago with her Winterwoods Sampler. Like knitting, this craft is extremely meditative in its repetitive motions.  While alphabet samplers are my favorite things to stitch (I'll share my finished pieces in another post), this piece has been a fun little project. 

The fabric is Zweigart's 28 count Cashel linen, which has a really soft hand and is very reasonably priced. I prefer to use Weeks Dye Works Hand Overdyed 6-strand embroidery floss. Made of Egyptian cotton, they have the most beautiful variegated colorways, which lend a painterly effect to the finished pieces. I can't wait to hang this one up when we decorate for Halloween!

Tell me: outside of knitting, what's your favorite craft?

test knitting

swans island washable organic merino

I'm pretty excited to be a part of the test knit team for Alicia Plummer's new hat design! The pattern called for a DK weight yarn, so I knew right away that I wanted to try Swans Island Washable Wool Collection. Hand-dyed in small batches in Maine, this 100% organic merino wool is completely machine washable. Unlike traditional superwash yarns, which are stripped through a chemical process and coated with a plastic polymer that prevents felting in the washing machine, Swans Island coats their fibers in a certified organic compound using the Eco-Wash process. You get the ease of machine-washable wool without the guilty feeling. 

test swatch

Before my Sunday morning coffee was finished, I knocked out a small swatch in the larger needles, just to make sure I met the pattern gauge, which is 20 stitches x 24 rows = 4" in stockinette. I cast on 24 stitches, and knit the first two rows and the first/last two stitches of each row. This way, I had 20 stitches in between the garter border. Once I knit 24 rows, I finished off the swatch in a couple of garter rows. This gave me a nice, crisp measurement markers, both row and stitch-wise. Pre-blocking, my stitch gauge was spot on, however, my row gauge was a little short. Into the bath it went!

drying wool

Post soak, I lightly blocked the square to measurements:

Pattern gauge was met! The whole process took about half an hour from start to finish, which is pretty awesome considering how much time goes into knitting a piece. It makes me feel confident that the finished garment will fit just right. 

Alicia Plummer Hat

Off we go!

hello, friday!

tarot and coffee
tarot, knitting and coffee
Knit picks cotton yarn and tarot cards

I decided to ease into this morning with a little knitting, coffee, and a quick tarot reading. I pulled The Star, which (according to the book) means I need to focus my conscious intention so that my creative dreams can be realized...this is particularly interesting considering the week I've had! 

What's everyone up to this weekend? When I get home from work today, I'm going to stalk the mailbox for the Swan’s Island Organic Washable Wool that I ordered for a new, super-secret project! I'll also spend some time finishing up the final paper for my Berkeley class. Thankfully, this is the last class for the year! We're heading into our busy season at work, so I like to take the Fall semester off to focus on the business; I'll resume school in January once things are calmer. The good news is that I get a few extra hours back during the week to focus on my knitting...

Here are some fun things from around the web to help you kick off your weekend:

Have a great weekend!

purl soho's classic cuffed hat

My love for the Purl Soho's Classic Cuffed Hat pattern runs deep. I've probably knit about a dozen of these over the years for friends and family members and they're always a big hit. This pattern has it all: classic styling, is quick to knit, and works well with whatever stash yarn you have available. Each Christmas, I knit up a stack of these for my nieces and nephews. Sometimes pom poms are requested, and sadly, sometimes they're not, as was the case this past holiday: 

Purl Bee's Classic Cuffed Hat

I've started using less-expensive, superwash yarn when knitting these hats for little ones and tweens. Many of the hats have been left on school busses, felted in the laundry, or just plain-old lost in the black holes that are their bedrooms. I'm looking forward to the day when I can transition them to the Shelter yarns of this world! 

The great thing about this pattern is that depending on which yarn you use, you get a completely different hat. If you knit with a traditional merino wool, you end up with a sturdy hat that is excellent for blocking out the cold winter air. When you use a softer, superwash wool, the hat becomes a little slouchier and relaxed. This time around, I selected Plymouth's Worsted Merino Superwash Wool in the Slate Blue colorway (lefthand side):

Plymouth Yarn Worsted Merino Superwash

This hat is a gift for my Aunt, who is going through chemo; I wanted something that's not only super-soft against the skin, but is also easy to take care of. The fine merino worked up into the slouchiest of all the classic cuffed hats I've knit, so I might go down a needle size for both the cuff and the body next time. (Again-must. start watching.) The Plymouth Superwash is a round, bouncy yarn with a beautiful luminosity and drape. The entire time it was on my needles, I kept thinking about how perfect it would be for a baby blanket or a shawl. 

Cast on and ribbed edge

The pattern suggests using a long-tail tubular cast on, which provides a nice, stretchy edge, but the tried-and-true long-tail cast on works just fine. I've done both with equally nice results!

Purl Bee's Classic Cuffed Hat Pattern-free pattern

While I truly believe all hats are better with pom poms, I left the pom off of this one so that my Aunt can start wearing it now and not worry about feeling too "wintery". I can always send her one to fasten on once the cooler weather hits! Speaking of cooler weather, Christmas will be here before we know it—it's almost time to start requesting color selections for this year's crop of hats! 

Have a great week...

Visit Ravelry for full project details

have a great weekend.

weekend #knitspiration

What's everyone up to this weekend? We're going to drive to NJ to pick up our cuckoo clock from the repair shop and maybe catch a movie. I'm hoping to spend some quality time in my knitting room and working through a few more lace repeats on my wrap. If my math is correct, there's a mere 352 rows to go! 

To help get this weekend started, here's a little #knitspiration from around the community:

No. 1 :: I love to refresh my kitchen linens each season, and these Fringe Supply Co.'s Flour Sack Towels will look equally pretty folded neatly on the front of the kitchen stove or tossed over my shoulder while I'm washing dishes. | $16 each

No. 2 :: How pretty is this deep berry, wine-colored wool? O-Wool's O-Wash Fingering in the Juneberry colorway would make a lovely pair of socks or fingerless mitts. The best part? O-Wash uses a GOTS certified organic compound so that their yarns are machine washable. Guilt-free superwash! | $15.99 for 428 yards.

No. 3 :: Stylish and functional, Tolt's Leather Wrist Rulers are perfect for measuring projects on the go. So now when the pattern says, knit 1x1 rib for 3", simply whip off your bracelet to check your progress! | $20, Made in Portland, OR

Have a good one!

Photos courtesy of Fringe Supply Company, O-Wool, and Tolt Yarn & Wool

creamy whites

Marian Cowl by Jane Richmond
Michelle Wang Topiary Shawl
Lace cabled wrap detail

It seems as if I've been gravitating towards knitting in pale, creamy neutrals lately...there's something about this soft, vanilla ice-cream hue that has an amazingly calming effect after the long, frenetic days at work. Depending on my mood, I shift from the undemanding ease of the seed stitch on the Marian Cowl (top picture) to the more intricate cabled lace stitches on the Topiary Wrap (bottom). I reach for the first when my hands need to be occupied, the latter when I want to refocus my brain on non-work things. 

Whichever project I choose, the minute the needles start to click, I feel completely calm and untroubled—as if all is right in the world. I bet this is true for most knitters.

Aside from the meditative powers of repeating rows and rows of stitches, it makes me happy to think about the recipient of each knitted piece. I'm sure one of my teenage nieces will claim the cowl, as they so often do with the knits they find around my house. The shawl is going to be a surprise gift for my mother-in-law. Sadly, she has a wool allergy, so this cotton-blend should feel nice and soft against her skin. 

Tell me—what types of projects do you drift towards at the end of a long day? 

 

 

Emerson Farms

cowgirl creamery
cowgirl's creamery
butter pecan ice-cream
farm goat
corn field sunset
goat on a table

We live just below the canal here in Delaware, and aside from a movie theater and some restaurants, there's really not much to do around these parts on a Friday night. For date night, the hubby and I decided to stop at the local dairy farm for an ice-cream cone. Emerson Farms is just down the road from our house and they they sell the freshest, most delicious ice cream out of a little trailer right on their property, which they call Cowgirl's Creamery. The hubby got a cake batter cone, I got butter pecan, and we sat and watched the goats hang out while watching the sun set over the cornfields. We thought it was so funny that one of the goats was just relaxing on a wooden table. He was probably happy, as we were, that the hot summer sun was finally gone for the day. It was the perfect way to end a long work week. 

What's your favorite thing to do on a Friday night? Hope you have a great Monday!

weekend #knitspiration

What's everyone up to this weekend? My sister and I are taking a road trip up to Long Island for our cousin's bridal shower! We're excited to spend the night with our youngest sister, her husband, and our two little nephews. We're going to drink wine, eat pizza, and do a little swimming with the boys!

I can't decide what I want to knit on the car ride up...the Topiary shawl is way too complicated for car conversations, so I'm thinking about getting a head start on my Christmas knitting and casting on a new hat or cowl. Any pattern suggestions?

Whatever you're doing this weekend, I hope it involves some knitting! Here's a little #knitspiration curated from our little fiber community this week:

No. 1 :: In case you guys haven't heard (wink, wink), Brooklyn Tweed released three marled color ways into his worsted weight Shelter line this week. Shelter Marls comes in three gorgeous colorways: Narwhal (shown), Newsprint, and Caribou. For a limited time, Jared's offering a free copy of his new Mawson Hat pattern when you purchase 1 or 2 skeins of the new yarn!

No. 2 :: Pam Allen has done it again with her new Andromeda Sweater pattern. Part of Quince's new collection, Tern 2016, this lightweight, open cardigan is the perfect piece for layering over summer dresses as we head into the cooler weather. 

No. 3 :: Now that I've learned my swatch lesson, I think Twig & Horn's Square Gauge Ruler is in order. The clever square design will ensure I'm hitting both stitch and row gauge. Check out the #twigswatching hashtag on Instagramthe ruler makes swatches look like framed pieces of art!

No. 4 :: I'm about to start a new counted cross-stitch sampler, and Never Not Knitting's Ornate Sewing Scissors might be the perfect way to snip away all of those tiny threads.

Have a lovely weekend! 

Photos courtesy of Brooklyn Tweed, Quince & Co., Twig & Horn, Never Not Knitting