Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Master Hand Knitting Classes, Level I

During this summer I have taken a day off at the shop. I really miss it. I hate breaking routine and I loved the routine of working on Wednesdays. But most of all I really miss all the fun knitting conversations on Wednesdays. The last Wednesday in August is my first Wednesday back at the shop and I am looking forward to it.

But, while I have the extra day, I am working on the Master Hand Knitting Class, Level I. I thought it would be easy. Huh, I was wrong. I have spend many Wednesday afternoons knitting and ripping, knitting and ripping.

I have no idea it I'm going to make it through, but I am bound and determined to try.

Since it is "supposed" to be fun I take all my "class materials" down to the sun room in a big basket, make a pot of tea and go at it.

So far I have six more swatches to do. After that comes the questions, the research paper, and
"The Project." But, thank goodness, the project for this level is only a hat!

Scenes of Summer

Summer has arrived. Even though we have had a welcomed break from the oppressive heat lately, summer is here. The black raspberries are ripening along the back walking path. Every morning when I walk Bobby there are a few tempting morsels to pick and eat.

Most of the berries, however, are in a big patch of poison ivy. I have to reach over very carefully to pluck the wild berries.

My mom posted some lovely scenes of her garden a while back. While mine are mainly "potted gardens" I thought I would show you all that I have rested my needles long enough to plant a few flowers.

My herb garden right outside my kitchen door. The basil has already spiced many of our dinners lately. There is nothing like fresh basil. I never plant enough.

The hanging pots in my sun room are doing quite well. They add a touch of luxury to that room.

I have planted a few vegetables in pots along the side of the house. Tomatoes, green peppers, and yellow summer squash.

My pots along the veranda are doing well. Although half of the geraniums seem to be short ones.

Monday, June 23, 2008

And the Winner is....

Well, here's the scoop. I wrotethe name of everyone on little slips of paper and tossed them around. Then I asked JK to pick a slip of paper.

"What's it for?" he asked. "My bloggie give away. I need you to pick a slip of paper so we can figure out who is the winner." He eyed me cautiously as if I was asking him to put his hand into a barrel of snakes.

He picked up a slip and read it, "It says, 'Lin.'" "Well, then, Lin is the winner." I said with a smile. "Thanks for your help."

So, Lin, you are the winner of the sock yarn!

I'll have to do another one soon! It was fun to see what everyone likes to knit. I think I'll have to try my hand at some soakers. I haven't ever seen one, so I'm kind of interested in seeing what they are all about!

Thanks to everyone who participated!

Happy Knitting!

Monday, June 16, 2008

Bloggie Give Away

I am giving away two skeins of "Tropical Holiday" sock yarn that I just dyed.

I named the skeins, "Tropical Holiday," because of the brown (the beach), the teal (the sea) and the yellow (pineapple daiquiris) that weaves their way through the skeins.

Just tell me what is your favorite knitting pattern. In other words, what do you like to knit the most? What pattern do you use to knit that favorite item?

I will draw the lucky winner next Monday evening, (June 23).

Have fun!

Knit In Public Day

As most of you know, Saturday, June 14 was Knit In Public Day. I am sure it sounds odd to those of you who are not knitting enthusiasts. But it is a great day to get out, enjoy summer and introduce others to the wonders of the fiber arts.

My knit in public day started early. After my sister and I went to the Zionsville Farmers Market we stopped at the Eagle Creek Coffee Co. for a cup of coffee and of course, a good knit.

After my dye class I headed over to Hadley Park in downtown Westfield and met up with a bunch of other knitters. It was wonderful! We had to split up into various groups to make the most of the shade but once we were in the shade it was quite lovely.

One of the things I love about knitting with other knitters is learning about the things they are knitting! It is so much fun! Nancy was making helmet liners for marines in Afghanistan. Apparently the marines would like 1100 of them -- ha! Everybody get knitting!

We were even joined by two lambs soaking up the sun!

Dye Class

This past Saturday I taught a dye class at Stitches & Scones. It was a ton of fun as evidenced by some of our finished product (above).

Irene, a budding spinner, painted roving and even experimented with a silk/merino blend.

Jill injected color into her wool batts she had purchased at Franklin Fiber Fair. They were to die for (No pun intended).

Nancy experimented with swirling socks! She also tied her sock yarn at different lengths so that the color spaces would be different!

On the whole it was a ton of fun! Thanks for dying with me, y'all!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Lunch on the Porch & Summer Lace

Tuesday I had the pleasure of hosting my mom, my older sister and her four munchkins for lunch on the porch.
It is always so much fun to spoil this kids.

While the grownups had portabella mushroom frittata with toast wedges, the kids had big bowls of mac & cheese with fistfuls of cold strawberries, followed by big cookies. Isn't summer fun?

When the house quieted down after their departure, I made myself a pot of tea and retired to my studio to work out the calculations for, "The TNNA Sweater" or as I have now named it, "Summer Lace."

The second test sweater is now being knitted to ensure there are no mistakes. I think the pattern should be at the printers by early next week. So, it will soon be available for your knitting pleasure!

Happy Knitting!

Monday, June 9, 2008

The German Village

JK whisked me away in the late afternoon. We had to get back to Indy and back to real life. But before we hit the road, JK showed me what he had been doing all morning and afternoon.

Of course he sniffed out a good book shop -- 32 rooms of books + a lovely garden to sit in and read.
Adorable houses with front gardens to remind us of Europe.

And two coffee shops -- a Starbucks only doors away from the community church & a independent coffee shop aptly names, "Cup O Joe."

It was there that JK sat me down to rest me tired feet and bought me a cup of coffee. What a delightful end to an amazing day!

Happy Knitting Everyone!

Ordering for the Shop

After lunch, as we walked around with Molli and watched her ordering yarn for the shop, it struck me how much time and thought Molli puts into what you or I would like to knit with.
Here at the Koigu booth she was very careful to pick out a range of new colors.

And there was a lot to choose from.

Holly and Lin mesmerized by the colors of Koigu.

Molli also knows that knitters are eager to try new and exciting yarns. So, she sat down with a new exhibitor, "Scarlet Fleece" and ordered some beautiful handpainted yarns & rovings. Yes! Isn't it exciting? I think we have some sock yarn & roving coming from the Scarlet Fleece! We have a lot to look forward to!

After walking around all afternoon with Molli I have a new appreciation for all the thought and care that goes into the yarn that Molli has available for us in her shop. Thank you, Molli!

Lunch at the TNNA

Across the street from the Convention Center is an amazing farmer's market. It has everything a gourmet could desire. I think I walked around three times before I could figure out what I wanted to eat for lunch, despite the fact that I was so hungry I was light headed.

Beautiful flowers

Beautiful confections

Beautiful friends at lunch

While we lunched we talked and talked about the amazing things we saw and all the goodies Molli is bring back for the shop!

Guess what was for dessert? Lovely scones! Molli, Lin, Holly & Kim had a wonderful time munching on these scones after lunch while JK enjoyed the carrot cake.

Yes, my dear husband JK came along as my driver and moral supporter. He is such a dear to put up and encourage my knitting endeavors. Here he is at lunch porting my free books and class materials back to the car so that I don't have to carry them around all afternoon.

So what did we do in the afternoon? Stay tuned....

The TNNA - Part II

Kim admiring a shrug
There are so many beautiful sights & colors & garments & yarns to look at when you walk through the booths. Sometimes it feels like you are in a kaleidoscope. Or like you have died and gone to heaven.

Beautiful coats just dying to be knitted.

Have you ever wanted to see a Koigu coat in person? Well, at the Koigu booth they had a lovely sampling of some of the Koigu coat patterns. What I loved about them was they were significantly light weight, had lovely drape without the bulk but were warm.

Yarns to drool over.

The TNNA - Part I

When I came out of my early morning class with Lily Chin, I found Lin, Kim & Holly in the lobby of the Columbus Convention Center. They had just arrived and were waiting for the doors to the market to open.
It was a great time to do some celeb sighting -- the knitting greats were all around us. Do you recognize who this is? It's the great Lucy Neatby herself! (The lady in the blue dress)

After we briefly met up with Molly and found her picking out shawl pins for the store we headed off to the Unicorn booth. This is the long line for the first book give away.

At the end of the line we met the authoress of "Inspired to Knit" by Michele Rose Orne. I was definitely impressed with this book. If you don't already have it, this book would be a great one to add to your collection.

When we came across the Louet booth, Holly and I went nuts. The fiber was delicious and quite exciting! Molli had us sit down and order some yarn for the shop -- so guess what spinning buddies? We have some great fiber coming! Hooray!