Happy first day of Spring, friends! New Pattern Alert!!! (click the link, but read on for a discount and some exciting news!!!

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While I’ve really enjoyed getting outside this winter and enjoying the snow, I’m always ready when the thaw from the western winds sweeps across our state. It’s something you can tangibly feel- the first morning that the air has changed–while you’re still lying in bed. There’s a lightness, a refreshing warmth in the atmosphere that carries over into the day.

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When I was wandering through Knitwit in Portland a few weeks ago, (and in the mood for some Quince), I came across a little skein of Chickadee in the Angelica colorway… it’s so fresh and springy! It’s like a fresh minty aqua with a hint of gray to tone it down–the perfect addition to a neutral-toned capsule wardrobe. It would go equally well with this spring’s pinks and yellows, too!

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Chickadee is one of my favorite lighter weight yarns because it is so substantial for a sportweight. It has a generous amount of spring, loft, and twist to it, so it makes every stitch pattern special. Along with that, Quince has over 50 colorways on this base. (No, I’m not getting paid to plug Quince, I just love their product, and it’s affordable!). To make these mitts and this headband, it will run you $3.00 for the pattern (if you use the code: springair) and $9.00 for the skein (unless you win one!).

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As you all know, I love to discount my patterns upon release, but I have a special discount for you today because it comes with a surprise! For each of you that purchase my pattern, you will be ENTERED to win a skein of Chickadee in Angelica! I also have one skein of Chickadee in Root that I will be giving away. The two winners will be selected at random from the list of purchasers. They will be notified on Sunday via Ravelry Messaging and/or Instagram (using their Ravelry name, so keep watch!)

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Ok, ok, now for my big announcement… One of the things I’ve really thought a lot about this year is how to make a difference in the world. I’ll admit that I allowed myself into being pigeonholed and thinking that smaller contributions didn’t always make a difference. But I was so wrong! For each month (or pattern release, depending) I will be donating a portion of my sales to a charity I think does some good in the world!

The charity that 60 Degree Mitts (and bonus headband!) will be contributing to is the K-T support group for Klippel-Trenaunay Syndrome research. Klippel-Trenaunay Syndrome is a vascular birthmark condition in which the soft tissues and Capillaries are affected. A beautiful, strong member of my best friend’s family has this condition. She is lively, vibrant, beautiful, and full of joy. My heart swells for love with her, and educating others about this condition (along with donating to research) is a great way to support her! There are a variety of symptoms associated with it. In the case of my dear little friend, she had a capillary on her leg that would open up and bleed at random. Surgery and many trips to a specialist has fixed this! I will share on Instagram how much money we raise <3

Come find me on Instagram as Aliciaplums!

So what’s on your spring bucket list?

~Alicia

 

 

Today I’m so excited to share a new pattern with you– the Midautumn Shawl! I had SO much fun knitting this one up.

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It’s constructed as a top down triangle and goes very quickly once you get used to the stitch pattern. I was really lucky to have my gorgeous friend Lauren model it for me.

I love how the purl ridges play off each other and create a clean line before the rib. It’s one of those designs that just felt right. We shot in an apple orchard that is about 7 minutes down the road from us. There are rolling mountains in the distance every way you look, and it sits on a hill so all the foliage is splayed out below you.

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This shoot maybe took 20 minutes…I’m really blessed, because Lauren is not only incredibly gorgeous but she’s kind, intelligent, and sweet too. She’s the kind of person you like hanging around with but you also respect, because she’s transparent and honest and open. I think this shawl was a perfect match for her.

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I hope that you enjoy knitting this one as much as I have. It’s going to be one of my most worn shawls, I already know it! I knit it from a small batch farm in Turner Maine called Nezinscot farm–I used a single ply wool and angora blend.

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Because it can be hard to get ahold of,I’ve suggested two different yarns, although any worsted base works beautifully. The suggested yarn for the pattern is Little Fox Vulpine DK. It’s really, really beautiful and my friend Samantha worked up a beautiful shawl in it. I will come back to this post and add her pictures, too, once I get permission.

 

I hope you all are doing well and finding beauty and hope in the small things this week. I also pray that we all show each other love and kindness at every step. I’ve just started working on some colorwork patterns. What is your favorite? Would you ever consider testing a colorwork item? Le me know!

xoox

When I first started knitting, I focused mainly on my girls.I loved it–and one designer that caught my eye was Kate Oates of Tottoppers. Her designs are vibrant, creative, and adorable!

I have to share this with you before we go any further because I have not knit it yet but I am obsessed with it. HOW CUTE is this, seriously? It’s the Sugar Bear Hooded Cardi…I know, I know. It makes you want to have a little one just to put in it!

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I digress… Over the years Kate and I have grown a friendship- (ha, get it? GROWN? Because I’m reviewing her book, Grown??? hahaha) and when I saw she was releasing this collection I felt so honored to be able to share it with you! We talked frequently during the book’s production and I can confidently say this is a labor of love.

I’m going to share my favorites with you from the collection, and then at the end there will be a giveaway of the ENTIRE e-book to one lucky person! <3

First up is the Brecken Sweater. I’ve just discovered that I can, in fact, knit fairisle so I’m kind of in love with everything colorwork at the moment! This one is fun because it looks incredibly comfy but also interesting to knit.

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Keeping with my neutral obsession, I think that the Downtown Pullover is my next favorite. I love anything menswear (mostly because that’s all that FITS my long arms)- the 3/4 zip and clever patching on this keep it clean yet modern. If my husband let me knit him sweaters I would probably knit this.

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Third, and this one could be my all time favorite out of this book is the Artisan Pullover. Not only is it unisex, but it features a fantastically preppy shawl collar, colorwork, and some lovely neutrals. Go check out the rest for yourself! It’s a gorgeous, gorgeous collection!

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Can we also commend Kate for her gorgeous, NATURAL looking models? Yes, this.

To enter to win, leave me a comment as to which one is your favorite! You can find the book HERE!

Kate, I’ve been keeping a secret from you. I’m a USC fan. Go Gamecocks!

 

 

 

 

kidding, kidding. I like the Gators. Settle down.

xoxo

 

Happy fall, friends! I hope your autumn is as beautiful as it is here in Maine. While we are in a drought right now, it hasn’t stopped the leaves from turning. The days have been warm, breezy and mild and the nights have been only slightly crisp. It’s definitely warmer than normal for up north! My designs have reflected this- I’m not ready to pull out the thick wool yet!

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This is Ginger Maple. It’s a quick little mitt pattern worked in slip-stitch. If you remember the Earthen hat, you’ll know these mitts coordinate with it. They’re easy to adjust (just add multiples of 2 as per your gauge to upsize or downsize) and very simple. The yarn is Nice & Knit Worsted…I just love this gold! We have beautiful, papery white birches whose leaves turn this deep, dirty golden color. It reminds me of the spicy taste of ginger, the leaves in the sky, that rich glow at the base of a fire in the woodstove.

 

IMG_6272 The small twig I’m holding is actually Sweet Fern. We have a ton of it up here, and it’s an amazing plant. It smells rich and woodsy (and of course, sweet!). If you rub it on your hands, it’s slightly sticky and imparts that amazing fragrance. I grew up playing in the woods, and this scent is one I’ll never forget. One great thing that you can do with it, though, is treat poison Ivy. Pick some of it, boil it in water, soak that rag and then apply over affected areas. (we learn something new every day!) God puts things where we most need them, and you’ll often find this small shrub growing near Poison Ivy- they book take to the same type of soil.

 

IMG_6278 Did I mention these mitts are reversible? This is the wrong side, and a closer shot of the Sweet Fern. The finger cuff edge can also be flipped long for extra cold days that don’t quite require mittens just yet!

These mitts are on promotion through Ravelry- get them for half off, along with the Earthen hat using the code: fallishere.

 

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I hope you’re having an amazing fall! I made some Apple Pie last night (find it on my Instagram, username Aliciaplums) and am warming up some pumpkin-chicken pasta as I type.

 

I have more wonderful things in the works!

xo

Summer is coming soon!

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We recently took our first family trip to Florida. It was an amazing journey with some crazy snags on the way- a trip I will remember fondly (and most likely, with laughter so hard it creates tears).

Some of my favorite moments during the trip were almost the simplest, and they reminded me of life here in Maine during the middle of summer.

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Laying in the sand, the sun warming my skin, I drop my head and close my eyes briefly. Sand is sprayed across my back as my children go sprinting by, squealing with laughter. The waves sing their hushed rythym and seagulls cry out overhead. My husband then comes running by, the source of their squeals. I know this moment won’t last, the sun will eventually set or I will be invited to join in the play. But that split second is so restful. My children are happy, and safe.The day is beautiful, and I am calm.

 

Sandshore originated from that feeling. The nutty smell of sunblock, the smooth grain of sand, the refreshing cool of water as you dip your toes in.

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I realized that my children’s summers just *might* not be complete without little Sandshores of their own. Click here to find it on Ravelry: right now, for 24 hours, this pattern is half off with purchase of the adult Sandshore with the code “sunnydays”. 🙂