Tuesday, November 17, 2009

The Thrill of Victory!

You have seen the agony of defeat; or at least the agony of stumbling blocks along the way; in the previous two posts. So it is even more exciting to finally be able to show you the thrill of victory in this one!

Knitting is such a process--a lot like life. One step forward; two steps back. And so on. Sometimes we think we ought to be a little further along and yet both life, and knitting, seem to tell us it's the journey, not the final destination, that really matters. And yet, when the final destination turns out to be wonderful too, then we feel truly that the journey was worth the trip. SOMETIMES it is!

When our knitted creations also give us the option of becoming a Jawa, well then it's even better.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Motivation Matters

I think perhaps it was just the specter of having to watch this movie , but regardless, the Heather Hoodie front has been ripped, re-knit and the pieces are blocking.

Why would the possibility of a documentary on Winged Migration be so motivating? After my last post a creative reader decided to give me just what I asked for: a boring documentary. While I do generally enjoy a certain amount of Nature cinematography, I was warned that this particular documentary was not only boring but depressing. Hmm...what to do?

I sat down with the offending piece of knitting and put on a favorite podcast. It really didn't take me long once I was over the mental block of even looking at it. I told myself that if I couldn't knit and listen to Dori and Val, then Winged Migration it would be. Much to my surprise and enjoyment, I was able to do something I enjoy AND fix the problem!

BUT if you find yourself in a similar situation, and find that pure boredom is the only kind of auditory stimulation you can stand while knitting through a troubling piece, please let me know. You too can join the Sisterhood of the Traveling Documentary. Just say the word and I'll pass it on to you.

You can then be perfectly content. Just like these two.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Heather Hoodie Progress Report

(Or "Why You Shouldn't Knit Cables with Decreases While Watching Flash Forward")

As you may or may not know, I am knitting the Heather Hoodie from the Fall Knit Scene. This is a bulky cable knit hooded cardigan vest in Lamb's Pride Bulky. It should be going along pretty quickly. The back is done and resting quietly at home waiting, impatiently, for the front halves.

With a somewhat uncharacteristic bit of determination I pledged to myself to knit nothing else until it was finished. I got one half done pretty quickly. They really are very narrow pieces and #10 needles are plenty big. This just shouldn't be taking so long. One side done! Good.

Then my youngest daughter came home from school explaining to us in minute detail about a new series on tv that her English teacher was telling them about (a wonderful teachable moment to illustrate the meaning of the vocabulary word "eerie"). She was eager to watch it. So we hooked my laptop up to the tv and watched the episodes to date on Hulu. She show was GOOD. The knitting; not so good.

Clearly I need to watch more boring television!

How did I do this? I looked only at my notes and never got out a tape measure or the other half of the sweater. My notes said I began decreasing on row 14 of the cable pattern. But with the excitement of the tv program I was in a rush to get to the good part and failed to notice that I needed one more full pattern repeat before decreasing on row 14. *sigh*

A little trip to the frog pond will be in order soon...

But for now, I'm soothing my knitting nerves with the Fake Isle Hat Pattern. Maybe with a minor success under my belt I can face the re-knitting of the right front of the Heather Hoodie!

Monday, September 7, 2009

Goodbye to Two Members, and Hello To a New One

The River Knits Nordic Knitting Club will meet on Wed. Sept. 9th from 7-9 at RK to get the new year rolling. We have lots of exciting projects going and I'm sure we will see some finished ones from the summer. Everyone is invited who is interested in patterned knitting in the Nordic tradition. This is a club, so you should have the skills for knitting with at least two colors. Any projects are welcome if the materials were purchased from RK, or we will help you pick a new project. We are great at giving advice! I was looking at the new Wool Gathering newsletter from Schoolhouse press and there is a stunning Swedish sweater on the cover. That is just one of the new ideas pouring in to the shop in the new pattern books for club members to consider. The first book from Jared even has a Norwegian pattern and 2 Fair Isle sweaters in addition to several Nordic tams and touques. It seems like Nordic is in.

Our last meeting in July was really fun, although a little bittersweet as we wished two of our regular members good luck in their new lives. Laura is married now and moved to Bloomington where she is probably knitting everyday, and getting settled into her new house. We hope she comes to one of our meetings to show us how her fairisle sweater turned out. The last time we saw it, she had cut the steeks and picked up the neck and front. In the picture below, she is showing off her new wash and face clothes, given to her at our last meeting.

Kerry moved to Alaska and by now is in Juneau, in her new log home. Her husband got a job with the University of Alaska and we can't wait to hear how that is going. She says she will keep us updated on face book. She also got wash clothes from her friends in Lafayette.

We greeted a new member - Julia - who is now a couple of months old and was introduced to the group by Mignon, her mother. She has been the recipient of some cute knitted items. She was an inspiration and was in a good mood while we had a going away party/shower for Laura and Kerry. Everyone brought some goodie to eat including Nordic design gingerbread gloves! We all had a great time, and hardly remembered they were leaving. Good luck to both.

As a final note, anyone who is interested in a design contest for Dale of Norway should let me or Elizabeth know so that we can give you the rules and entry form. The contest has 3 categories including baby, adult and accessories. There are 13 prizes of $1,500 down to $250 in yarn. The deadline for entries is November 30th. I will have the information at the meeting. Looking forward to seeing everyone on Wednesday!

Monday, August 24, 2009

One Great Design; Two Great Awards!

Everyone who see's Amanda's lovely Claire's Shawl on display at River Knits admires its intricacy and beauty.

They are even more impressed when I tell them it was designed by one of our teachers for a River Knits class. (And if they are Diana Gabaldon fans, from whence comes the inspiration for the name of this design, we talk a bit about how we are not sure we'll make it even 28 more days until the new Outlander book comes out. But I digress...)

Now I can also tell them that this design won not only one but TWO prizes in two separate fairs this season!

Sheryl Krohne entered two pieces in the Tippecanoe County fair and won prizes for both. Her Claire's Shawl won a Blue Ribbon in its own category and also got the Sweepstakes Award, in the entire hand knitting group, which means it got the award for "best of the best" in hand knitting. Way to go, Sheryl!

Peggy Favorite also entered 4 items in the State Fair in Indianapolis. All four pieces won ribbons!

Her Claire's Shawl received an "Honorable Mention in Lace, Knitting" and I believe was displayed in a special case for fair goers' admiration. Congratulations, Peggy!

And big congratulations to Amanda for creating this lovely design that has been so well received in many venues!

We can all be so proud of everyone who is so nicely spreading the joy of knitting by sharing their talent in this way.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Visitation from Beyond?

Yesterday I happened to look through the caller i.d. list on my home phone. Imagine my surprise when I saw that I had just missed a call from

E. Zimmerman

Oh my goodness! Was Elizabeth Zimmermann making a truly long distance call from beyond? Perhaps she had heard my recent plea to be adopted and wanted to tell me that I had been accepted?!

Perhaps she just wanted to say "It's about time!" in response to the fact that I finally made a Baby Surprise Jacket.

Or maybe she wanted to tell me that if I'd read the "thinking knitter's" instructions on the Ganomey hat I wouldn't have had to rip half of it out.

Imagine how you would feel to be getting not only a call from a greatly admired person but also from another dimension!

Alas, the call was really from a realtor named "Elaine" Zimmerman. So my temporary joy at being contacted from the other world was replaced with more mundane concerns about home ownership and making sound financial decisions. But it was fun to think, just for a moment, that maybe it was a brush with something really, really big!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Oldies but Goodies

When the new shipment of Asland Trends Kettle Dyed Collection came in, I was shuffling lots of yarn around at River Knits! While I was rearranging & making room for the Los Andes (super bulky merino) I came across a shop model that I made the first year River Knits was in the old house. I was tempted to just throw it in a heap int he back room because it was looking kind of forlorn and shop worn. But I took it home and gave it a long soak in some Lavender wool mix, set it out on my deck to dry in the sunshine,

and now it is back at River Knits good as new!

This is a QUICK pattern but not boring with the chunky cable running right up the scarf. The prototype is done in one skein of Brown Sheep Co.'s Burlyspun. If you've never done cables but want to try, this might be a great way to start. Or if you just need a quick gift, this is a great project to keep in mind. River Knits has many superbulky yarns that you might choose, including the original Burlyspun as well as the new Los Andes from Aslan Trends, as well as several other choices. The pattern is a freebie on the River Knits website.

I also had the fun of experiening another "oldie but goodie" for the first time. I just finished my very first Baby Surprise Jacket. I'm not sure how this much time has elapsed before adding this unique creation to my life list. But I'm glad I finally tried it so I could see what all the fuss was about. It is hard to have faith in a strangely shaped piece of knitting that looks for all the world like a misshapen dishcloth. But if you press on it really does become a jaunty little jacket.

This really could start a trend if I'm not careful; I already have a growing list of yarns in mind. This particular one was knit in Mirasol Chirapa and some leftover 220 Superwash that I had in my stash.

I also started Elizabeth Zimmermann's "Ganomey Hat" from the current issue of Vogue Knitting, but I am clearly not "perspicacious" enough to be adopted by the Swansen/Zimmermann family as I was my recent longing. I'm not sure why but my numbers ended up all wonky and my sections were not equal. I will have to rip back to the section right above the garter stitch edging and become a thinking knitter indeed.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Is Summer Really Just for Washcloths?

I hope not! :-) But darn if I don't seem to knit one every summer. It's like I can't help it. Laura got married last weekend and it seemed like a nice thing to tuck one in with her present so that's what started it. Then I had more yarn leftover and it was so easy to just cast on for another one

because as much as I love stash I really don't want a dishcloth cotton stash. So it begins...I hope it doesn't lead to anything serious.

Knit Night Monday
Don't forget that Monday, July 13 is Knit Night. Hardly seems possible that it is only the 2nd monday when the month will be nearly half done but so it is. Hope to see you there!

Beautiful Gaia Shoulder Hug on Display
Margie knit the beautiful Gaia Shoulder Hug in 3 1/2 balls of Mini Mochi. It is on display at River Knits and I know you'll adore it! Margie added a border using the one found on p. 134 of Victorian Lace Today. The effect is beautiful and I know that if you are a lace lover or a shawl fan, you'll probably want to try one of these. I hope you can stop by and see it soon! Crystal Palace also has a similar shawl pattern on their website using only 2 balls; it is the Mini Mochi Shawlette.

Lanaloft, new from Brown Sheep Co.
We are trying out a new yarn from Brown Sheep Company called Lanaloft. There are 5 new colors of it here for you to try out and tell me what you think. It is a single ply worsted a lot like Lamb's Pride but it is 100% wool, with no mohair. From just touching it in the ball I think it feels like a great wooly yarn. If you try some please let me know how you like it!

Namaste's Newest Offering
I would love to place a Namaste order because they have a really awesome new bag called Hermosa. I saw it at the TNNA trade show and it is very attractive, like all the Namaste bags. I decided I would ask you before ordering though to make sure that we get the colors that everyone wants! So, if you would like to preorder a Hermosa bag (or any other Namaste product) please contact me and let me know which color and style you would like. The Hermosa bags will sell for $75.00, email me for prices on other styles. I can invoice you via PayPal for a 50% down payment or for the total price of the bag as you wish. (Or of course we take cash, check or charge in person at River Knits.) As always, special orders are not returnable, but I know you'll love these bags, so I doubt if you'll be interested in returning one!

Addi Click - New components available to pre-order

Individual tips and cords/extension packs will be available soon. Here's the full listing of what will be available.

The tips are available in US 4, US 5, US 6, US 7, US 8, US 9, US 10, US 10. 5, US 10. 75, US 11, US 13, and US 15.
The suggested retail per pack* on US 4 through US 8, is $13. 95
The suggested retail per pack* on US 9 through US 10. 75, is $15. 95
The suggested retail per pack* on US 11 through US 15, is $19. 95

The extra cord/extension packs feature three cords and one extra connector. The cord sizes are 24", 32" and 40". These are the same sizes which come with the full set. The suggested retail price per pack, is $29. 95

I will take preorders for these piece parts and might eventually stock them in the shop. They will be primarily of interest to people who want to expand their existing Click sets. (Btw, we do have some Click sets available!) I would like to place a Skacel Order by Wednesday, July 15th, so please place all preorders for Click Parts before then.

The discerning reader has already noticed that the sizes NOT included in the complete click kit are now available: US 5 size (3. 75mm) and the US 10. 5 (6. 5mm)to be precise!

Clarification: *a PACK is two tips in the same size. That is all that is included in the pack.

Ashford Hookless flyers - last call to preorder
I am also about to place an order with my Ashford spinning products supplier. If you would like one of the hookless flyers mentioned in my last post, please email me asap!

Sock Club July 25th
Michelle wants to let you know that she is unable to attend the Sock Club on July 25th due to a conflict at work. The July meeting is supposed to be covering the first part of a pattern from Cookie A's book Sock Innovation. You can see a sample at the shop. Heather will be working at the shop during the July sock club and has tackled quite a few Cookie A sock patterns, so can probably be a great resource for you during the first session. All sockies come hang out together in July and put your heads together to help each other along. Michelle will be back in August & will be available to clear up any questions you might have about this pattern.

While you are at sock club you could consider entering a submission for Berroco's Sock Star Competition. At present River Knits has some Ultra Alpaca Fine which is an acceptable yarn to use in the competition. If someone is dying for one of the other Berroco sock yarns that are qualified please let me know--I know where we can get some!

Other July Classes
There is room in the upcoming Help Session, July 18th. Please register ahead of time so we know how many to expect. Knowing what you need help with is helpful too!

We also need some adventurous students who want to join the Learn to Crochet class on July 21st. You can see the whole description on the website.

Other neat patterns
As long as we're looking at shawls, Margie shared this lovely pattern in Panda Silk dk.

And yet another great pattern using Cascade's Ecowool (I love that yarn!) is Todd's Basketweave Scarf.

And on a funny note, I can't remember if I showed you the Dead Fish Hat? Don't you think someone you know needs one?

Knit on!

Monday, June 29, 2009

How much Panda Silk Does it take...

...to make a pair of Mock Cable Footies?

Just one ball! At least if you have a sort of average size woman's foot and knit at my gauge. (And no, I really don't know what my gauge was on these socks; don't tell!) What you see is what I had left when I finished my pair.

I had just one ball of "denim tones" Panda Silk and it was calling my name. I harassed Michelle for the pattern even before she had it written up. Now that it has been officially available for about a month, I finally got mine done! I love them!

But what's new at River Knits?
Well we are keeping the UPS man busier & busier these days as new goodies from TNNA begin to arrive!

I wanted to find something with a little sparkle while at TNNA but I wasn't looking for something over the top. What I found were two lovely yarns from Kraemer , a company that still spins its own yarn in Nazareth, Pennsylvania.

The first new Kraemer yarn is Fountain Hill, a lofty acrylic/mohair blend that comes in both sparkly and matte versions. Would make a lovely wrap in many gauges.

The other new Kraemer yarn at River Knits is Sterling Silk & Silver, a very elegant fingering weight yarn that actually includes little bits of silver to give it very posh look. This beaded scarf and fingerless gloves set would look beautiful in Sterling.

Additionally we received several new pattern booklets from Berroco.
Norah Gaughn vol 5, Norah Gaughn Men, Comfort Book for Girls, and Family Comfort.

Spinners will be delighted to learn that Ashford is now producing a Sliding Hook Flyer, that eliminates the need to move your yarn from hook to hook as the bobbin fills. Update your Ashford Traditional, Traveller and Elizabeth spinning wheels.
The flyer is available in natural or lacquer and includes one bobbin.
Prices are as follows:
single drive: 62.50
double drive: 75.00
jumbo single drive: 75.50
jumbo double drive: 89.00

single drive: 78.00
double drive: 93.50
jumbo single drive: 89.00
jumbo double drive: 105.00

I will take orders for these if any spinners would like to update their flyers on their Ashford wheels. Please email me or call the shop if you would like to order a sliding hook flyer.

Did you see the Entomology Shawl in Knitty? It uses one or two skeins of Schaefer Anne (or probably any of the other sock weight Schaefer yarns).

Don't forget that Knit Night is kind of late this month since the 2nd Monday doesn't roll around until July 13th! Hope to see you there.

Knit on!


Sunday, June 21, 2009

Summer Needle Arts Market Show

Beth and I recently journeyed to Columbus, Ohio on a business trip for River Knits. This was my inaugural Needle Arts Market put on by The National NeedleArts Association. This is THE place to see the newest yarns, gadgets, books,and supplies for the industry. First of all, I am Beth's husband, and any trip with her is fun. Second of all, I'm the "behind the scenes" guy at River Knits...recycling the large boxes that the new yarns are shipped in to the shop, taking out the trash, putting up shelves, designing and managing the oft neglected River Knits Website. I actually can knit a bit. I've done several pairs of socks, a few fingerless mitts, part of a sockcap, and a water bottle cooler. With River Knits nearing six years in business, and my job at Purdue on the ropes, I thought it might just be a really good time to better understand the knitting business, and help Beth out however I can.

After a quick drive over to Columbus, Ohio...a city almost the same size as Indianapolis, we entered the show just in time for the retailers luncheon. The keynote speaker, Jim Dion, was actually quite good and talked about how to thrive in the current economic times. They did door prize drawings and to our surprise we both won...then they chose my ticket again (some people were looking at me suspicously)! After this, we each attended a class. Mine was all about Web stuff that I won't go into here. Following the two hour class we walked to the vendor floor. I was simply not prepared for the army of yarn and needle arts companies displaying their wares. The vast sea of yarns stretched further than my eye could see...those of every color and fiber called out to be seen and touched and talked about. My role was to help Beth in thinking about the selections of winter yarns for the coming season. We did a quick run through to prepare for the Saturday onslaught, then sauntered over to the North Market where yummy cuisine and local foods and products could be tasted.

After an early morning Saturday class, we hit the vendor floor with map and strategy in hand to see the best of the best. Saturday evening we invited Nancy, the owner of Knit On! near Bellevue, KY to come to dinner with us at Schmidt Haus in the German Village. Because we had such a long wait, we walked five blocks to a unique bookstore known as The Book Loft. It has 32 rooms of books. Pretty cool place. Back at Schmidt's, the food was excellent, the beer even better, and the company was superb.

Sunday was D-day, and we headed back to the convention center for another class on marketing, and to the floor to select new yarns to bring to River Knits. Below are just two selections:
AslanTrends Hand-dyed and a sample project out of Jared's new book "Made in Brooklyn". There will be some very cool, and warm, fun yarns and surprises coming to the shop later this summer! Stay tuned for updates on the new arrivals.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

A Good Time to Knit Hats and Mittens

Nordic Knitting Club is going to meet through the summer this year, and members of the group are making some great mittens, wrist warmers and hats. These are the perfect projects for summer because they are small, the yarn is light (not too hot to knit with) and they are very portable. They are really great projects to knit in the car while on vacation trips (as long as you aren't the driver!), if you don't have to take part in thoughtful conversations or navigate. That seems to be too much for me to do, while working on complicated patterns. Pictures here include "The thumb trick" from Elizabeth Zimmerman, worked and modeled by Peggy. The thumb is closed up now, but there is waste yarn in the stitches that will opened up to add the thumb later. Stay tuned to see how this works! Ann is shown below left with the start to the mittens to match her hat shown in the blog in January. Prella is on the right, holding up the sweater she is working on and she has just joined the sleeves to the body to start the yoke. It was an exciting meeting last week! The last picture shows Shirley working on a hat, which is much further along now, I just didn't have a more recent picture of it. It is really a beautiful Norwegian pattern with blues, reds, oranges and gold.

We hope to see anyone interested in Nordic Knitting at our next meeting - July 1 from 7-9 pm at River Knits. Other knitters in the group are also working on sweaters, both large and small. If you aren't sure what to work on, come to the meeting and we will help you get started. Happy Summer and Vacation Knitting!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Just Right

Brent's Sweater
Originally uploaded by RiverKnits
I feel a little like Goldilocks. You remember the story of the Three Bears?

First I knit Brent a sweater that was TOO SMALL. (It's on the wall at River Knits - it's is lovely in every way with the perfect color of colonial blue and oatmeal with detailed stranded colorwork - except that it doesn't fit my husband.)

Then I knit Brent a sweater that was TOO BIG. It has cables that cross and meander all over the seed stitch textured background. It took at least 3 years of my life. I am not sure what happened. The gauge was ok, but when I blocked the pieces and put it all together, you could've put two Brent's in that sweater. All I could do was fall to the floor and try to stop laughing.

Last year I combined forces with Margie to make a sweater for charity. It turned out nicely and Brent said, "Could I have one like that?" He must be the eternal optimist. Or maybe he just picked the perfect sweater.

Finally, I have knit Brent a sweater that is JUST RIGHT.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Tally and the Teaching Sock

I've been thinking for a year or so that I needed to knit a "Teaching Sock"...a sock where each separate piece of the construction was a clearly distinct color. I wanted to be able to help beginning sock knitters to visualize what piece of the sock each section of the pattern instructions would create. I don't know why it took me so long, but it's finally done. I'm sort of sorry I made it in a size too small to wear...wouldn't this be a wild pair of socks to wear among the muggles?

And if you look closely at the picture, you might see some white cat hair...because Tally loves to cuddle up with wet wool.

Have you been thinking you'd like to join the ranks of Sock Knitters? Have you been wishing you could join Sock Club, but haven't met the "completed one pair of socks" requirement? Join us for our Beginning Sock Knitting class! The class starts April 8 and is a four session class. Call or stop in at River Knits for more information!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Headed to Akkol...

14 boxes from River Knits!

But what is Akkol? It is a place in Kazakhstan. And there happen to be about 240 kids in the orphanage there. Several of us have been knitting for them for a while now through the group Mittens for Akkol. Usually the founder of that group, an adoptive mom and fellow YSO from Kentucky, hand carries the knitted items there herself. That method is costly and allows us only to focus on the most needed of items: wool socks and mittens, sweaters and vests. It gets bitterly cold in Kaz and the wool clothing really helps provide needed warmth to the kids in the orphanage. Even more so, the handknits send a deeper message of care to some kids who could really use a boost. The group also supports kids in the orphanage in the nearby town of Urupinka.

But we are always wishing we could do more...

About a month ago Nanci, the founder of Mittens for Akkol, announced that we could send boxes on a shipping container being sent from Indiana to Kazakhstan.

Now we had the chance to send the things that would be greatly appreciated but usually too costly to ship: toys (the kids just don't have access to toys because they aren't available), pants and shoes, art supplies like crayons, paints and colored pencils, personal care items like toothpaste and shampoo. All I had to do was put out the word...

The amazing folks at River Knits did the rest! Bags and boxes started filling up the classroom and eventually I couldn't walk through the back storage room. Today some of the charity knitters took a break from knitting to box and organize the donations.

In addition to knitted hats, mittens, sweaters & vests, there were jeans and sweatpants, shirts and jackets, LOTS of underwear and socks, as well as the art supplies, toys and personal care items mentioned above.

In all River Knits is sending 14 boxes FULL of wonderful things. Margie's car is loaded down with about 287 pounds of donations, including 191 toys!
Tomorrow these donations will join the ones that are coming in from around the country to Muncie, Indiana, where they will begin their journey to the kids in Kazakhstan.

Thanks to everyone in the River Knits community for your abundant generosity. It's wonderful to be a part of such a great group of people!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

A New Favorite Thing (Should be titled "True Confessions")

A friend of mine once told me about a relative who grew up on a farm where they raised beef cows. You would think that he would have had steaks and roasts every day. But no, they sold the beef and only had pork themselves. At my house this has come to be an inside joke when we need a reminder that we need to enjoy life a bit and let ourselves have something nice.

Being a beef farmer that only eats pork would be like being a yarn shop owner who only knits with Red Heart; well or maybe Wool Ease. (Pork isn't THAT bad!) Not wanting to be that farmer, I decided to treat myself to one of these:

It's a Denise Interchangeable Needle Case.

I know, you might be thinking, "They already come in a case; what's the big deal anyway?"

That's where the true confessions part comes in...

The plastic case that the set comes in is perfectly adequate; IF you only have one set.

I did have one set. In 1994. I ordered it from a yarn shop in Maine when I lived here and didn't know where else to find good knitting supplies. I fell in love with my trusty Denise set and loved having nearly everything I would ever need in one box.

But then I opened River Knits and they started making Denise needles again. That's when it really all started. Eventually my one little set in the trusty powder blue case grew to look like this:

I told myself I needed a set to use at the shop at first; I didn't really even need an excuse when the third set joined my life. But I found out that it was a lot harder to keep track of the needle tips and especially the end buttons on three sets. I had discovered the joys of multiple projects and all the commonly used parts were always somewhere else. And when I did finish a project I invariably had the wrong little plastic case at hand and there wans't an opening in the right spot to store the recently liberated parts.

Imagine my joy when everything you see in the 3 cases above, plus an extra 40" cord, my extra 7mm needle tips (as yet unused), and my secret cache of end buttons, was transformed into this:

I feel like it's Christmas and my birthday all rolled into one! I love it! No more beef farmer eating pork! I am happy to have this one just for me!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

So Much Fun...We're Going to Do It Again! (NOTE NEW DATES FOR THIS FUN CLASS!)

Once upon a time, a group of knitters got together to play with wool. We called it a Felted Clog Knitalong, and this was our goal:

(Didn't Maribeth do a good job?)

While it was a lot of fun to sit in the classroom at River Knits and knit together, Maribeth thought it would be even more fun to sit in her basement and felt together. So we did.

There was a washing machine....

There was food and storytelling...

And it was a good thing.
So...we're going to do it again. (This time, sadly, without Maribeth.) Beginning Wednesday, February 18, we will spend two nights knitting together (2/18 and 2/25). The third night we will go to Heather's house (if you haven't heard, it's a freakin' sweet house...) to felt together.
And when we are done, we will have one of these: My Little Companion. Want to join us? Check out the River Knits class schedule for more information!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Hats, Hands, and Two Sweaters

Ann started this beautiful hat at the November meeting of the Nordic Knitting Club (see the picture where she is trying to count her cast on while we talk!). It is from a Dale of Norway pattern and knit with Baby Uhl. The stranding on the inside is perfect. Shirley and several others are also working on hats that we hope to show next month.

Gloves, mittens and wrist warmers are also proving to be very popular choices this winter for club members. Be sure and look at some of the beautiful finished pairs from our last meeting in the previous post.

Sweaters are being made by the most intrepid of the group. Laura is making an incredible Fair-Isle design using different ends of a long color repeat yarn from Denmark. It is sock-weight yarn, and so is taking awhile to finish, but is beautiful, as you can see from the picture. A beautiful child's Fana sweater is in the works from Kristin, and I hope to have a picture next month of that one.
Dawn is making a small Norwegian design for an 18" doll (see below). For Dawn and Laura - it will be their first garments made with steeking and cutting. The next installment should show the successful outcome of their adventure with scissors and wool!

Nordic Knitting Club meets the last Monday of the month, at River Knits from 7-9, and all knitters who would like to do any type of Nordic knitting are welcome. I will also try to publish updates, at least monthly, on the blog so that you can follow our progress virtually. Nordically yours, Sheryl
(PS - Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!!)