windswept

I haven't knit many shawls in my life.  Actually, maybe only a handful.  But, wow.  I can see why so many knitters love to knit them.  SO much versatility when you wear a shawl.  And it truly fits anyone.
This was a pattern that was in the March KNITCRATE.  (The monthly subscription where you receive yarn + pattern.) I saw the pattern on Ravely thinking it was the same one.  Which it is.  However, the pattern on Ravelry uses a worsted weight yarn.  And this one used a fingering weight yarn.
Knit out of Crock -O- Dye.  65% Superwash Wool, 20 Nylon and 15% silk.  Super soft.  Super airy.  Warmth without weight.  Gotta love that.

Happy Weekend friends!

such winners

Super excited to share my latest finished knit with you guys.  I truly am in love with it.
 The Gradient Poncho soaking up a little Vitamin D.  

But first... the winner of the Seed stitch K1 P1.  The random number generator chose #67.  Emjay in NE Montana.
Congrats Emjay! Please email me and I'll have the sweet peeps over at Sterling pop your new book into the mail.

Happy Thursday friends!

seed stitch. beyond k1, p1 giveaway

"Ribbing, moss, seed and garter are all balanced and combine the yin and yang of knitting" 
-Stephanie Pearl-Mcphee

Well, that is just so true.  In life, it's all about balance.  Even with/in our knitting.  
In this book Seed Stitch, Beyond knit 1, purl 1, Rosemary Drysdale uses seed stitch and incorporates it into color work, cabling, geometric patterns and more.    It's pretty amazing to think of all the combinations that can be made from using the two stitches we all know;  knit and purl.
There are over 60 swatches of show you what combining different textures and patterns can do for a project.
Drysdale has an introduction in the book that explains the beginning of our beloved passion.  I'm shocked I have never taken time to learn more about the history of my love!  I learned that until the early sixteenth century, the knit stitch was the only stitch used.  Working in the round with every round knitted produced the "stockinette stitch" pattern.  Purl stitches first appeared in the mid-sixteenth century and earned its name because their stitches represented beads, or "pearls".
Combining stitches Drysdale designed twenty-five gorgeous projects ranging from pillow and bags to cowls and sweaters.  I'm really thinking I want to add some knit pillows to our family room this winter!

The nice peeps over at Sterling would like to giveaway a copy to one of my readers.  If interested, please leave a comment here before Monday, October 2nd at 5pm EST, and I'll have the random number generator choose a number.

journey mitts

These mitts truly are journey mitts.  Journey Mitts are made from a cashmere that works perfectly with cables or any other interesting stitch combination you would want to work with.  The yarn begins it's journey in Kyrgyzstan where it is gathered from goats of small family farms goats.  It then travels to Britain where it is finely spun.  From there it lands in Maine at the Saco River Dye House.  What a wonderful Journey it has had before it even lands in the hands of those who love to work with yarn! To me, it wasn't the typical cashmere "feel".  So, I decided to check in with the fine folks over at June Cashmere so that I could understand what this yarn was all about.  I reached out through email and a phone call (a little stalking happened) and received the most wonderful reply from Amy.
Here is what she said:

I'm happy to tell you about the yarn. We have the yarn spun in England and Scotland where care is taken to mill the yarn as tightly as possible. Being a short haired fiber (like cotton), we gain strength and durability in the yarn by spinning it tightly. This, along with the plying, add firm stitch definition that pops in cabling, textured patterns, and lacework. The garments we have made from the yarn spun in this manner have not pilled. I have noticed that other, more loosely spun cashmere yarn begins to pill even before knit, so this is a choice on our part to create a yarn to make heirloom projects that will last and last.

For dyeing, we choose organic dyes at the Saco River Dyehouse in Maine. Because cashmere is a short fiber, the yarn will still have the short ends along the yarn that we may not see but can feel. What we do not choose - but have been offered - is to have the Dyehouse finish the yarn with a chemical that will in essence smooth and 'fill in' those short fibers so that the yarn feels softer. We are opting for a product that is the most 'natural' that it can be. 

To answer your question, yes--when you wash your finished garment, it should bloom and soften and you should be able to own your garment for a long time.

I wanted to share so that you, too, will know that this yarn is a cashmere that will show and hold the love and joy that went into each and every single stitch for many, many years.

Pattern:  Journey Mitts
Yarn:  1 skein  DK June Cashmere  in Slate.

woolfolk gradiant poncho

You guys!  I am in love with this yarn.  It is truly dreamy.  To me, it feels like cashmere.  Looks like cashmere.  But it's not.  It's 100% Orvis 21 Ultimate Merino Wool.
I'm making the Gradiant Poncho out of Woolfolk Far.  And I hope to be sporting it at this years Rhinebeck.  Anyone else going?
This is the first time I have ever worked with a yarn that has been wound like this. I am crazy about it.

Episode 2 of "a friend to knit with podcast" is up over on YouTube.  I am a work in progress. 😊

oils

Just wanted to share a couple of things I have been putting on my skin.  
This exfoliating coconut scrub is so nice.  Exfoliating, moisturizing and refreshing.  It can be made with or without the lemon oil.  No essential oils?  Fresh lemon juice would be totally great, too.  And if you don't have lemons in the house... leave them out.  That would be great, too!
Coconut Scrub:
1/2 cup Coconut Oil
1 1/4 cup Sugar
10-15 drop Lemon Oil  (Lavender would be nice, too.)
I'm coming up on two years of using Young Living Essential Oils.  I still have SO much to learn.  But Ashley over on Story Oils is always there to help.  (She sells the oils, too!)
And speaking of Ashley, she posted a pic on Instagram of a cream she made.   I made it immediately.  I seriously put down my phone, grabbed my essential oils, the coconut oil, baking soda and started mixing.  It's amazing.  It really is the most gentlest exfoliator I have ever put on my face.  My skin is super sensitive and this did not make my skin react at all.  

For my body.             For my face.  

september knitcrate

So, I did a little Facebook live for Knitcrate.  Oy.  Nerve-racking to say the least.  And can you believe my phone tipped over twice while doing it?!   All I could think of the entire time was that it was going to fall again.  I don't think I got the point across that there was a giveaway for two of the September Knitcrates.  If you are interested in winning a September Knitcrate, head on over to Knitcrates Facebook page.  Look for the Live version of meπŸ™ˆ (September 14) and leave a comment tagging a friend to enter.  :)  Both you and your friend will win!  Thats a win-win situation!  πŸ˜  You have until the 22nd to enter.  
September's Artisan crate was beautiful just like the others.  I just really love how these colors move me right into autumn.
The yarn ::  2 skeins Lorna's Laces Haymarket- 100% Bluefaced Leicester Wool  215yds.

The pattern :: Christine Marie Chen Westgate cowl (beginner) and Rocky Canyon Cowl (intermediate/advanced).

The extra :: An adorable Photo Holder by Think Pray Gift.  

As always, if you are interested in ordering, use the promo code FKW20  to receive 20% off your first crate.  And remember to head over to Knitcrates Facebook (look for my live video) and tag a friend to enter to win a September Knitcrate.  Make sure to enter by the 22nd.

Happy Saturday, Friends!

fading right along

First off, thank you SO much for the kind words you shared regarding my first podcast.  They honestly mean SO much and are SO appreciated.  :)  
I had the hardest time choosing a fade for the What the Fade KAL.  I was so happy when I stumbled onto Knit Picks site to find that they had a couple of fade kits put together.  Although my eye was caught by the brighter fade they offer (Sunstorm), I decided to go with the darker fade (Dark Mood) considering those are the colors I like to wear in the winter.
Although it took me three tries to cast on and get going (hello brioche!),  I did finish Clue #1 on time.  Still haven't cast on for Clue number 2 but plan on that happening this weekend.

Prayers go out to all of those in the path of Irma. I sure hope her strength weakens.

Happy weekend, friends.

i was nervous

Nothing like jumping right in.  I have a lot to learn.  Glad to know my favorite word is "so"!  Oh, I like "um", too.  And, "and".


Some things I discussed:
Sandy from by the lakeside.  She has a wonderful podcast and a beautiful Etsy shop!  Sandy also has yarn in the works, so you won't want to miss that.
Socks ::  2 at a time magic loop (yes!) using Mrs. Crosby Train Case
Shawl ::  Windswept shawl by Christina Danaee
Sweater :: Byron Bay by We Are Knitters
Cowl :: Texto using Sugarbush Chill
Mitts ::  Journey Mitts by June Cashmere
Dpn Holder by the Steady Hand.   Truly I had no idea how much I would love it.
My newest project:  Woolfolk Gradient Poncho
The 100 x Simple Cowl
What the fade KAL.  Who's in?!
What goes in my kids lunch every. single. day.
Traditional back to school brownies.

wearing knits

I was desperate to get a pick of my socks.
You should have seen me trying to get off the ground.  πŸ˜œ

Socks: 56 stitch, 3x1 rib,
           Yarn:  Mrs. Crosby Train Case, Enchanted Garden
           Needles:  Size US 2, 40".  Magic Loop 2 at a time.  (A game changer for me!)

Knitting:  Windswept Shawl 

Wearing:  Pop Life Cardigan 

I had the pin removed from my foot today.  What a wonderful feeling that is.

coming soon

Posting this here to keep myself accountable.
My hands are already sweating.  πŸ˜¬

august knitcrate

August's Artisan Knitcrate arrived and it was just what I needed.  Something chunky and quick.  
The Yarn :: 3 balls  Chill by Sugarbush.  100% Extra fine merino in Bison.  I am SO pleased with the color.  

The Pattern ::  Corrine Ouillon,  Texto and Avantage.  I dig cowls, so I will definitely be making Texto.  

The Extra's ::  The cutest darn post cards by Red Fox Designs.  I can't wait to send a few out. 

Remember to use code FKW20 to receive 20% off your first Knitcrate!  
I set up camp today outside on the front porch.  It's so nice to be outside!
I'm finishing up March's Knitcrate, the Windswept shawl.  Super excited to get this off the needles.

I have had the What The Fade, Mystery Fade Along on my brain and now my eyes seem to fade everything.  The KAL starts on August 31, so you still have time to order yarn, stash dive or buy yarn if you want to join.  Remember that the concept of the fade is that you start with one skein and then every skein you add should have a color from the previous skein.  (A total of 6 skeins.)

happy eclipse day

My search for eclipse glasses came a little too late, and there were no glasses to be found.  I ended up trying the homemade box thing.  Well, I can honestly say I was a bit disappointed at that little shape in my box.  The crescents formed from the leaves though were quite impressive.  (The leaves act like pinholes and cast the shadow on the earth.) I teared all up that this phenomena was even happening.  Being alive in this universe to witness the greatest show above earth?!  Wow.  I then headed inside to watch the rest on TV.  :)
Me.  Professional Eclipse Viewer.  

I just can't believe that two of my children have headed back to their schools.  Where did the summer go?!  I snapped some photos the night before they left at our back to school dinner.  I wish I had done that before every school year.  
Charlie, Senior at The Ohio State University
Libby, Sophomore at the University of Colorado, Boulder.
Andrew, Senior in High School.


flower crowns

Well, I had every intention to take photos of me wearing the Byron Bay Cardigan.  However, I had surgery on my foot on Wednesday and can't put weight on it for at least a week.  Knitting is taking place.  Lots and lots of knitting.  Just no modeling.
Instead I'm going to share our summer of '17 favorite craft.  πŸ˜Š
I've always been the mom that loves to craft.  Summer vacations usually entailed something for the kids to make. Whether it was glueing shells on small votives, or painting rocks, or tying sticks or anything involving leather strands, or making bracelets or... you name it.  I wanted to make it.
This year, Libby had a friend in Tahoe. (My boys couldn't go... Charlie working an internship.  Andrew playing a lot of golf.)
Two nineteen year old girls?  Right up my alley.  Flower crowns it is!
I headed to the local florist.  Told her what I wanted to make and she helped me choose small, delicate flowers for the wreath.  A little florist tape to attach the flowers.
And, Voila!  We had ourselves our favorite snapchat filter!

definitely not meatballs

So, I was in the kitchen over the weekend, and I wanted to make something resembling the Joy balls from the Conscious Cleanse book.  No baking.  Just mixing.   Unfortunately, I didn't have all of the ingredients in the kitchen.  I decided to get a little creative and start adding things to my food processor. They were such a success, I decided to make them again and jot down the ingredients
Not meatballs are the perfect heathy snack to go along with my knitting.
I finished the Byron Bay Cardigan and love it!  Photos soon.

woodstock tank

This little Tina Tape, Wool and the Gang, Woodstock Tank, is one of the quickest little knits.
Since my children have been growing, it has become more and more difficult to find patterns they want to wear.  (Especially the boys.)  Those with teenage children may know what I mean. 
However, this little tank was one that Libby said "YES!" to immediately.  Amen.
The Tina Tape yarn was something surprisingly different to work with.  It's a little like a thin ribbon and feels great in your hands. So smooth and summery.   
 Garter stitch.  Minimal finishing.  Thank you, Summer!
Makes for a happy knitter.
And, an even happier girl.

Pattern:  Woodstock Tank by Wool And The Gang

closing july

 We just returned from a fun vacation in Lake Tahoe.
Pier sits.  Lake jumps.  Jeep rides.  Wanderlust.  Live music.  Delicious food + wine. Wild flower picking.  Flower crown making.  Chambers punches.  Boat rides.
Hollow Dress (Available until 8/5)
The last boat ride resulted in this.  I stepped into the boat and rolled onto my foot breaking both my foot and my ankle.  Oy.  I know my knitting peeps will rejoice with me in all the extra knitting time I will have.  There definitely are perks that come along with an injury.  A gift in every experience.

july knitcrate

I don't know what it is about this blue box, but it makes me so happy when I see it arrive. It's like a Tiffany box for knitters!
July's Knitcrate box did not disappoint, and it's perfect for the season.  Intense colors for the heat of summer!
The yarn ::  2 skeins of Artisans Yarn in BooBerry.  60% SuperWash Merino Wool, 20% Alpaca, 20% Nylon.  It feels wonderful.
The pattern ::  A shawl.  One pattern for beginners and one for Intermediate/Advanced.  I prefer daisy, the pattern for beginners.
The Extras :: A pair of safe knitting shears.  Perfect for traveling!

I need to get my fingers moving so the daisy shawl and move up my queue quickly! I love that I always have a project waiting.  (My mantra ::  One project at a time.  One project at a time.  One project at a time.)

Remember to use code FKW20 to receive 20% off your first Knitcrate.

Happy Weekend Friends!

one at a time

What kind of knitter are you?  One at a time?  Two at a time?  As many as you like at a time?
For years I have been a one project at a time kind of girl.  I start a project.  Work completely on that project until it is finished.  Then, start another project.
The most I veer off that path is when I have one big project, and maybe a pair of TOAST on the needles, for the road.
This?  This photo?  Not how I typically work.
And, it's pretty much making me a little crazy.
Honestly, I have been feeling a little scattered lately and I am now concluding that it is my knitting! :)
But seriously.  I really think it is.
So, I have vowed to work on only one project at a time.
The woodstock tank.  (Almost finished.)
The Byron Bay Cardigan.
The 100x simple cowl.
The windswept shawl.
Two at a time 3x1 rib socks.

Ahhhh.  I'm already feeling more focused and organized.

we are knitters winner

{Random weekend photo.}

After I wrote that title, my heart sort of got a little bigger.  I feel as if you are a knitter, you are a winner.  Such a gift to be able to love this craft.  WE ARE KNITTERS!  Hellya!
However, I do have a winner for the We Are Knitters giveaway.  The random number generator chose number 101, Jane Piotraschke.  Jane, please email me and I will share your information with the sweet peeps at We Are Knitters.

we are knitters giveaway

You know how much I love these kits and their yarn.  E V E R Y T H I N G included in one package.  It truly makes for an easy, enjoyable project.

I started the Byron Bay Cardigan a few Sundays ago.  I am not one who needs to only work with lighter yarns in the summer, (wool is always welcome) however, this cotton is dreamy.  Feels like a cloud on my legs.  And I'm loving the simplicity of the pattern.

Well, the sweet peeps over at We Are Knitters are giving away a kit to one of my readers.  (Up to $90.00 value.)  To enter, leave a comment here with your choice of kit (you can always change your mind if you win) and leave your email as a contest participant here.  That's it!  I'll choose a winner on Tuesday the 4th of JULY!

Happy weekend friends.

this and that

I ordered 8 quarts of freshly picked strawberries from my CSA to make strawberry freezer jam.  I thought it would be a great thing to do while Libby was recovering from her wisdom teeth surgery.  (It was! Mixed in with some knitting, of course.) And now, we have jam to last all year.  Which is great, because that is how long the jam will last in your freezer.   I remember the last time I made it.  By month 9, the kids were begging for me to buy blackberry every time I went to the store.  They were pretty tired of only having strawberry.  But the best thing was, that when they tasted it again, all three were excited that I made it.  They remembered they loved it.  And forgot they became tired of it!
It really is quite simple.  And extremely delicious.  I used the recipe right out of the sure-jell box.  That was the same recipe I used years ago because that was was the recipe Erin used.
I'll be looking for ways to use the jam.  That just happens to be butterscotch pudding with homemade whipped cream and strawberry jam for the girl with the sore mouth.  She loved it.
Okay.  Let me tell you,  I love bunnies.  They really are so, stinkin adorable. Especially those babies.  However, we have an entire family (grandparents, parents, babies, uncles, aunts, cousins) eating our zinnias.  They ate every. last. one.  Right down to the stem.  We literally have a "stem" garden.
I am a hopeful though, and just today bought a couple more flats and planted them this evening.  I bought a bunny repellent to help.  Either that or I just gave the bunnies some new treats.  πŸ˜Š

I'll be back tomorrow with a really great giveaway.