Monday, July 27, 2015

A long, boring, personal post

Sorry I have been absent for the last few weeks.  I've wanted to write a post and there has been so much going on in my personal life, that I just didn't know what to say and I felt like I had a bit of writers block.  Just before we left for our beach vacation, the company that Andy had been working at for the past ten years was abruptly sold.  We were very grateful that Andy would keep his job, but things were still in a state of flux.  After much thought and discussion, he decided to accept an offer from a new company that is coming to our area.  We are both really excited about his new position and I'm very relieved that some of the stress that has been in our lives will hopefully be lessened.

Around the same time of the job upheaval, we found out that a family member has skin cancer.  Since this person didn't want other family members to know, I'm not going to say who they are.  It's been a battle to get them to agree to see the doctor, and then to let the doctor do a full examination. Fortunately, the first biopsy revealed that the area is not melanoma and is a more successfully treatable form of sarcoma.  Please, get your skin checked every year by a dermatologist. Your skin is the largest organ on your body and if anything is found early, it is much more treatable.

I haven't been doing as much designing as I normally do this summer.  I have knitted several pairs of stockinette socks, which are one of my favorite things to knit. These are from a Gales Art stenciled sock black that I picked up at MDSW this year.  The color is "The Big O".  I love how they turned out and they colors are nice and cheerful.


My current stockinette sock project is with yarn from Neely's Knits. The colorway is "Thing 1 and Thing 2". I had to make a bag just for these socks!  I love the Cat in the Hat and the Things.


I also cast on for the Solitude Jacket that is in the Knitscene Fall 2015 issue.  I'm using Malabrigo Worsted in the Apple Green colorway.  It's quite a bit brighter than the picture is showing and looks just like a Granny Smith apple.  I haven't knitted a sweater in over a year, and I'm really enjoying the process.


What do you have on your needles this summer?

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Shark Bite


Use coupon code: Amity for $2.00 off until July 5th. Don’t get caught with your socks in the water and have a Happy 4th of July!
Introducing Shark Bite! I cannot describe how much fun these socks were to design and knit!  JAWS is one of my all time favorite movies.  Just hearing the first note from the theme makes the hair raise up on the back of my neck.  I've been fascinated with sharks, particularly Great Whites, since I was kid.  When Shark Week starts, you are most likely to find me glued to the tv with my knitting.   
The Shark Bite socks were inspired by one of my all time favorite movies, JAWS. It’s a tradition for my husband and I to have a JAWS movie marathon over the 4th of July weekend every year. We hunker down in our den and watch the movies from beginning to end. 2015 is the 40th Anniversary of the original JAWS movie and I thought it was an appropriate time to design a pattern in homage to the movie.
Shark Bite is written from the cuff down. The cuff and leg portion of the socks are worked in the flat, and the joined at the ankle. The heel, foot and toe are worked in the round.
If you aren’t familiar with knitting colorwork, links to tutorials are provided in the pattern. While the colorwork details might look difficult to knit, they are really only over a small portion of the sock and some of them, like the swimmer and sharks teeth can be done in duplicate stitch once you are finished knitting.
The sample was was worked using KnitPicks Stroll unless otherwise noted. This is a perfect project to use mini skeins and left over yarn for the smaller details.
Color A: White 15 yards 
Color B: Blue Yonder 150 yards 
Color C: Black 50 yards 
Color D: Unplanned Peacock Peacock Sock, in Sun 5 yards 
Color E: Cork 10 yards, 
Color F: Thunderhead 345 yards
A very special thank you goes to Margi, whose help with test knitting and finding the links to the tutorials is so much appreciated!




Friday, June 19, 2015

Miss Babs Knitting Tour



















SPOILER ALERT!!! IF YOU ARE IN THE MISS BABS KNITTING TOUR AND HAVEN'T RECEIVED YOUR JUNE PACKAGE YET AND WANT TO BE SURPRISED WHEN YOU RECEIVE IT, DO NOT READ ANY FURTHER!










I was so honored when Miss Babs asked me to design a shawl pattern for the Miss Babs Knitting Tour last fall.  Babs gave me some ideas of what she wanted and a jumping off point including the them of the pattern which is Atlantis.  I'm a huge fan of mythology and really enjoy reading about it and like to be able to create a design that is related to something that I have either read about or have seen in a movie.  The fact that the destination for this stop on the Tour was Atlantis, was a huge bonus for me as it was right up my alley!

Helen who is one of the fabulous ladies who works for Miss Babs was a huge help with coordinating everything from contact with Sarah who is the test knitter for the Tour, to creating the written directions with Carmen who also works for Miss Babs.  I have to say that this has been one of the most fun projects and working with the wonderful ladies at Miss Babs has been more than a pleasure.
Miss Babs sent me one of the kit's that went out to the Tour Travelers and I was so impressed! It came with a skein of Yowza in the Atlantis colorway, a beautiful glass stitch marker, a booklet that includes the pattern along with a couple of recipes and information about Atlantis, and a little packet of Swedish Fish.  They even included one of the Tour bags, which I think Helen must have had a hand in since she knows that I am a knitting bag lover!




If you didn't sign up for the Tour this year, be sure to join the group on Ravelry so you will know when sign ups for 2016 begin.  There is a lot of value in the kit and the group is a lot of fun!



The Atlantis pattern will be available for individual purchase in December.  It uses one full skein of Yowza and works up really well in the variegated colors that Miss Babs is known for.  The Atlantis colorway is a Babette which means that each skein is unique and this is something that I absolutely love! It's so nice to be able to knit up a pattern like Atlantis, and have what you make be totally unique.  Not just because you made it, but because the yarn you used was created one skein at a time and is a work of art.




Friday, June 12, 2015

Untangling - a Knitting Adventure


Untangling is a kit collaboration between myself,  Michelle of Berry Colorful Yarnings, Vicki of That Clever Clementine and Lisa of Indie Untangled 
I absolutely love kit’s and I think you will really enjoy this one.  It has three fabulous elements: a skein of Michelle’s incredible self-striping sock yarn in one of three available colorways, an infinity scarf pattern that was designed specifically for Michelle’s awesome self striping yarn and a loop-handled Lulu bag handcrafted by Vicki.  

The Untangling infinity scarf is worked in a manner so that there are only the cast on and bind off ends to weave in while still having a fantastic striping effect.  How awesome is that?!

A limited number of dyed- and sewn-to-order kits will go on sale at Indie Untangled on June 15. 

Thursday, June 4, 2015

A New Sock Pattern and Spoiler Alert



One of the things I love about working with variegated yarns is finding a stitch pattern that really shows off the colors in the yarn.  It can be a bit of a challenge sometimes, but it's something that I greatly enjoy.  Miss Babs is continually coming up with amazing hand painted colorways that catch my eye.  One of them was a one of a kind Babette in Yummy 2 Ply that I knew would be perfect for a pair of cabled socks.  I wanted something with a bit more interest then a plain cable and added a bit of lace to it.  It's one of those stitch patterns that is easy to knit and easy to remember.  I normally don't work on cables or lace while riding in the car because I tend to get motion sick if I have to read anything, but because these were so easy to knit these socks were the exception. I'm really excited to bring you Lartha and here is a little bit of background on the pattern and the name:

Several years ago Martha Stewart tweeted about how often her horses needed new shoes and I jokingly tweeted back to her that I didn’t see that as a problem because who doesn’t love new shoes, right? Well, she replied to my tweet and since then I joke that she and I are besties and our celebrity couple name is Lartha.
Maybe someday I will get to meet Martha in person and can give her a pair of Lartha Socks that I knitted just for her.
Lartha is a cuff down sock with an easy to knit lace and cable repeat that is given in both written and charted instructions. A modified modified short row heel adds a bit of interest while being simple to knit. These socks look great in both variegated and solid yarns.
The sample in the photos was knitted using Miss Babs Yummy 2 Ply in a one of a kind Babette. If you would like to use a similar colorwayPerfectly Wreckless or Soul Food would be great choices. Seriously though, any of the colorways that Miss Babs dyes would be fantastic with this pattern!

Lartha is introductory priced on Ravelry at $4.50 until June 15



Spoiler Alert!


Photo is © Miss Babs


If you are in the Miss Babs Knitting Tour and don't want a spoiler, please don't click on the link below.

I'm so, so excited that the Miss Babs Knitting Tour pattern has been added to Ravelry.   This was one of the most fun patterns that I have worked on and the yarn is fantastic!  I'm really trying not to give anything away so I'm not saying much right now.  If you would like to check it out and see what it is along with pictures click on this link:  Miss Babs Knitting Tour

If you weren't in the tour the pattern will be available for purchase sometime in December.  

Friday, May 22, 2015

Mail

I think everybody loves getting a little something in the mail every once in a while.  When I was a little girl I lived in Maine and my grandparents lived in NY.  My grandmother would send me cards and letters and an occasional package which started my fascination with sending and receiving mail!  A couple of weeks ago my friend Yvonne sent me a tracking number and said to be on the lookout for a package.  I couldn't imagine what she had sent me and then the day came when the package arrived.  I was so surprised and very honored that she knitted me a shawl!  She used my Tyrion's Gift pattern and added beads to it.  The yarn is Madelinetosh lace and the colorway is Lapis or Tardi's Blue as I call it.  Every time I've worn it, I've gotten a million compliments!  I'm still overwhelmed by her generosity!


Here is a close up that shows the beading:


Speaking of mail, I'm really excited to be able to reveal that Wentletrap was the May 2015 Poststitch Sockstitch club pattern! If you haven't checked out Poststitch, they have a subscription program and you can subscribe month by month which I love.  Be sure to check out their blog too, they have some great knitting tips on there.