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Hello Friends!

Most of my American purchases lately have been yarn, and it’s easy to see why. Knitting is a wonderul way to tell stories through your work: about where you live, what you do…

So today, I have the Barnwood Series: a hat and cowl made of the most incredibly Luxe handdyed yarn by Kim out in Montana. Kim’s yarn can be found here: http://www.etsy.com/shop/westernskyknits

and it’s totally worth stalking the updates. Her colors look like home to me. Barnwood specifically reminds me so mch of Maine- the granite rocks, the exposed wood everywhere…

My lovely friend Lauren is modeling the cowl, and Jen is modeling the hat. Barnwood is a gorgeous colorway Kim has dyed up- it’s a slightly varietal grey with hints of warmth in it. It coordinates with just about everything I own, and the softness is unrivaled. The best I can associate it with is a really rich hair conditioner. Both the hat and the cowl knit up very quickly thanks to the lacework. They can be found here: http://www.ravelry.com/designers/alicia-plummerImage

without ado, a barrage of pictures! 🙂

 

Hello Friends!

Most of you probably do a spring clean to air out the house and get things in order–but fall is my favorite season, so I do a fall clean as well! (Trust me, I’mverymessy…veryverymessy) so don’t go thinking I’m on top of it all, all the time!

During my foray into cleaning, I discovered that I didn’t have a good fall hat. Luckily, this coincided with Elena (Anadiomena on Ravelry) sending me a GORGEOUS skein of yarn. Ok- before I walk you through the inspiration, I just want to say that though she’s up in Canada her stuff ships SURPRISINGLY FAST. Really. She is a designer that I have followed for a long time, and she’s taken up dyeing her own yarn. You can find those here: They are amazingly gorgeous and saturated.

Not all handdyed yarns are alike! They have an imprint of the dyer’s personality on them, believe it or not. Elena’s work is inspiring. When I look at her colors, they make me feel excited, ready to take on new challenges–according to many psychologists, color can impact our emotions. I will testify to that! Her palette is just stunning, and if you buy Cranberry Autumn to knit up this month (until December 26th) you’ll find a 15% off code for her yarns in the PDF! If you do, make sure to check out her designs or send her a quick thank-you note!

Ok, so I got a little off topic there, but not really. Dear readers, this is how I think. I am messy and disorganized and I sometimes take a while to get to the point! When Elena sent me a skein of Sweet Merino DK in Georgin and I got it in the mail, it was so much richer and vibrant in real life. While she does a great job capturing the essence of her yarns, I’m not sure the glow can even be captured on camera. Anyways, this yarn was just screaming cranberries to me! It reminded me of a Cranberry Pork crockpot recipe that Dan’s Gram Lois gave me as a wedding gift. I put off cooking it for two years because with only 3-4 ingredients, how can it be that good? Well, it can. I have put the recipe on the bottom of the pattern page of Cranberry Autumn for free! It takes a maximum of five minutes to prepare and about 4 hours to sit in the crockpot, which frees up your hands for knitting (or playing with your kids!) and it has the added bonus of making the house smell amazing. The recipe can be found here

I know bobbles are love/hate. While working up this hat, I was skeptical too as it looks…interesting…while still in progress. Once it’s blcoked out, though, it’ adorable, and it’s my go-to hat now!

 

Lastly, I want tothank the gorgeous Kaeley for modeling the hat!!!

 

Until next time!

Football Season. Deer season. Many of our male (and some female!) counterparts have fond phrases to refer to the onset of autumn.  Chilly, sunny days give way to sharp, clear nights. And one thing is certain: there’s no doubt this is the favorite time of year for knitters and crocheters alike. Here in Maine, we have another name for this beautiful time of year: Woodstove Season. A time when the logs are split in preparation for the crisp, chilly nights. Sticks are gathered. Fires are kindled. Cider is mulled. And yarn is brought out of its summer hiding places to be celebrated and enjoyed.

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Woodstove Season is homage to this wonderful time of year. I chose Brooklyn Tweed Shelter for both its rustic appeal and ability to showcase structured patterns, though any Aran weight yarn would perform equally well. (But Quince and Co has a lovely Aran weight as well that is 100% US made)

I had chosen the Embers colorway to represent the warmth that emanates from the fire, but any warm-toned hue would personify that radiance.

 

Woodstove Season is worked from the top down, raglan style. While the Raglan is an extremely common method for creating a sweater, it’s also a method that many knitters of all skill levels can easily master. Therefore, it’s the perfect palette for the complexity that the back’s Deep Chevron motif brings to the table. Superlong arms can be folded back for cozy cuffs, or pulled down over the fingers on days mittens are forgotten. Add in waist shaping, thoughtful bust darts and quickly flared hips, and you have a recipe for a sweater that creates curves on straight-bodied women as well as flatters the full figured body (which I happen to think is grossly underrepresented in the fashion industry). Small, sewn-on chevron pockets adorn the front to add cohesiveness, and 3 closure options (toggle, button, or hidden snaps) provide knitters with the indidivual tweaks they crave to make it personal.

Brooklyn Tweed is a new faImagevorite yarn of mine, and it comes in an amazing variety of colors! It’s woolen spun as well which is different from many of the typical worsted yarns we see on the market today. This makes for a warmer, yet lighter sweater. So go ahead and give it a try- buy a sweater’s quantity of it–you’re creating jobs!!!

Hello, dear readers!

I have been very busy over here buying American, from the tires on my car to the soap I use in my bathroom, but today I’m posting about a yarn that many of you know and love: Madelinetosh. I came across a skein of Tosh DK in Smokey Orchid at a local yarn shop in Concord, New Hampshire, and the colors were so incredible I had to get it. Madtosh is dyed right here in US!Image

With fall coming, one of our family’s favorite traditions is to go out underneath the oak trees in our yard and collect acorns. We then use the acorns all over the house as decorations for harvest season! (Acorns in Mason Jars, acorns as counting tools, acorns in glass hurricanes around pillar candles) and thus, our house gets “Oaked”.

Some of the smallest traditions you keep can be some of the most cherished memories you have, and I wanted to freeze these moments in time for my girls. Thus, Oaked was born. I love the motif, along with the fact it’s a surprisingly speedy knit. It’s already getting chilly here in Maine (it’s 48 degrees as of right now!) so I knew R would be needing a hat soon.

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I am so appreciative of my testers and my tech editor, Carol Young, for all the hard work they’ve done in helping me develop this pattern. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did, and bring on the leaves! (and acorns 😉

Here is the ravelry link if you want to come take a look.

Happy Knitting!