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Posts Tagged ‘Fiber’

…but all the online thingys that take up my time on my iPhone and make me wish lust for an iPad. I don’t know about most folks but I do subscribe to quite a few online newsletters the greatest percentage having to deal with knitting stuff and to a lesser degree herbs, gardening, and natural living. These newsletters usually go beyond just an advertisement for a sale of a product, most times there are announcements of new products, or free patterns, or a just released pattern.

I thought I’d share some of my favorites that show up in my inbox throughout the month. Do try to keep in mind that I also read a ton of blogs too – but that will have to be a topic for another post.

Jimmy Beans Wool I love reading this newsletter & look forward to seeing the new limited time Lorna’s Laces colors that become available (loving the March ’12 Sea Turtle Dream). They also sponsor a Stitch Red campaign to stick-it to women’s heart disease. Not only do they tell you what’s new in the shop but suggest patterns to go with the yarns. I also enjoy the staff project section at the end of the newsletter. They carry Madelinetosh onseies, be sure to check them out, but they carry fabric, buttons, notions and so much more.

elann.com This is more of a sale flier for their great bargains on yarns, pattern books, and notions. Sometimes their staff designers have re-worked an existing pattern to work with a yarn they are promoting and the results are quite wonderful. The prices have made me do a double take.

Morehouse Farm. This is a NY farm that I have fallen in love with ever since I read their book: Morehouse Farm Merino knits : more than 40 farm-fresh designs by Margrit Lohrer. Great yarns, wonderful service, beautiful and creative patterns. Every child needs a ‘critter’ scarf or set of mittens.

Knitting Daily This is the Interweave Knitting daily email. Sometimes it’s great information, a free pattern, giveaways, KAL announcements, but other times it really is just a self promotion tool for sales.

Craftsy I signed up for this one not too long ago to get more information on their new model for online classes. You set your own pace, unlimited access to the online class, notes, and online access to the instructor. Classes are available on a variety of subjects from gardening to cake decorating, plus their site hosts independent designer pattern postings for sale and some for free. Worth checking out.

Schoolhouse Press The late Great knitting Guru Elizabeth Zimmermann‘s daughter Meg Swansen now runs the company and I want to keep abreast of the latest and greatest. What more is there to say?

Quince & Co. This company has been THE hot yarn and getting hotter! The two owning knitwear designers: Pam Allen and Carrie Bostick Hoge have been attracting other popular designers like Hannah Fettig, Cecily Glowik McDonald, and Melissa LaBarre to compliment their wearable, non-fussy, classic, visions of shape and ease of design which make me and many other knitters find it hard to decide which pattern to knit first!

If you have tried yarns and love them, be sure to look up their website from it’s band. Chances are they have a newsletter or blog. Lately I have been preferring a newsletter to reading a blog post. Go figure?(the irony has not been lost)

Tahki Stacy Charles

Classic Elite

Cascade Yarns

Madelinetosh

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I find that sometimes my knitting mojo wanes. It’s not for lack of projects on the needles, or ideas for projects, or yarn to knit with, or even inspiration, perhaps just slight burn out? So I tend to turn to all things knitterly or fiberish in print or online to try to occupy my cravings for my fix.

My local library system surprised me by adding a few scholarly reference knitting titles to their shelves and I jumped at the chance to loan them. I’ve been geeking out ever since! So go and search out these titles yourself:

Knitting around the world: a multistranded history of a time-honored tradition by Lola Nargi. A wonderful retrospective of the art and history of the handicraft. I was drawn in by the detail with which she researched each of the chapters and the historical photographs. There a few patterns, the knitter in me would have liked a few more, but as a library reference book this title is quite inclusive. I was a tad disappointed to not find any mention of the country where my ancestors harken from; Poland. I have yet to see it mentioned in any ethnic knitting book, I know there are lots of elaborate folk embroidery patterns from there and the Ukraine area, but I couldn’t help being curious and hopeful for a mention. Personal let downs aside I still had to renew it after the three-week loan because it was such a fascinating read. (Voyageur Press, 264 pages, $35.00 list price)

After reading about the international history of knitting I loaned the title,  Knitting in America: A glorious heritage from warm socks to high art by Susan M. Strawn Forward by Melanie Falick. It’s not often I enjoy a forward or introduction to a nonfiction book as much as I did this one, each wet my appetite for this enjoyable and readable retrospective. The images were the first thing that grabbed me on the cover, because of course we all love to judge a book by the cover, but that is like assuming there is nothing inside a creme puff! Yet inside this volume there were delectable chapters of our eras in history complimented by savory images I had never seen before. Some of my favorites were the modern art pieces towards the end, they inspired me to knit outside the pattern so-to-speak. There are twenty historical knitting patterns and the best part is that they are indexed separately in the back of the book! I do enjoy a good index. (Voyageur Press, 208 pages, $24.99 list price)

The Fleece and Fiber Sourcebook: More Than 200 Fibers, from Animal to Spun Yarn, by Deborah Robson and Carol Ekarius. This title had me ignoring the family for many a night as I studied its pages learning about the many varieties of natural fleeces, how to use them best and where on earth to find them. Did you know that there are eleven classic colors to the Shetland rainbow? or how about the controversies surrounding upbreeding/upgrading? It’s in here! There are even entries for horse, cow, and wolf which I thought were among the more unusual. Most every entry has a photo of the fleece in various stages: raw, clean, spun, woven, and knitted when available. I enjoyed reading the histories behind many of the breeds, especially ones that were left feral for decades or possibly centuries to fend for themselves and how they adapted to the local conditions and lack of shearing. I know now more than ever that there needs to be a space in our family for a fiber animal or five soon, perhaps some angora goats and some guard llamas. (Storey Publishing, 488 pages, $35.00 list price.)

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Just a few pictures from the last couple of fiber get together’s with wonderful like-minded women…..

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We sit, we knit, we chat, we drink (caffeine or otherwise) we wish we had more time to do this more often, without crazy Monkeys niggling us for things like snacks, help with bathroom issues, zipping up jackets, refereeing, finding the green crayon, etc.

So I took the plunge last month and started a local area Fiber Lovers group! Yep! I invited everybody I could think of, plastered the town/county with fliers and was pleasantly surprised when sixteen women joined me at the local coffee shop to crochet, knit, quilt, spin, and chat! There are even a few weavers in the mix, but alas looms don’t generally transport very easily. I was thrilled with the warm response and am anxiously awaiting our future gatherings!

Our next gathering is Sunday, January 8th at 6:00pm at T.F. Brown’s restaurant in Batavia, NY! Join us!! Bring lots of fiber friends!

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I just could not get all the great pictures in one post!

Been there, done that, Got the T-Shirt! Finally!

Mom said she knows a particular 'Girlfriend' that needs these if she intends to keep dating a certain Son. Look closely at the label

This vendor had so much eye candy: the pottery, the crocheted river rocks, fleece, yarn & the softest fingerless mitts in gorgeous fall colors!

Too bad alpaca are so shy, because this one seems to be begging to be hugged in this photo.

It's not often I like a photo of myself, but his one isn't too bad! Good enough to publish, credit goes to Mom: the photographer.

Now do tell... What do you think these are? Mom could not figure them out..... duh! Sheep!!!

This is me trying on an alpaca vest, I had seen a pattern for something similar on ravelry, but wasn't sure how it would look on me...

still not sure.... I had Mom take the pictures because I didn't think they had a mirror (silly me - it was just around the corner). Another fellow festival attendee commented on how much she liked the drape of the front of the vest on me....

but we all concurred that the back did NOTHING for me! Especially with the contrasting colors! I'll need to make sure I check patterns for the back of their vests.

Mom & I had a rockin' day! The weather was great, the sun came out, we caught up with a few friends and made friends with a new vendor. Janelle makes great pies and caramel corn! The Monkeys were relieved when I pulled two bags of her homemade caramel corn out as their souvenirs!

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My Mom and I ventured forth again this year and were Not disappointed by the glorious selection of vendors and wares.

A Shawn the Sheep Spotting! I was actually amazed how few people (especially children) did not know who Shawn was. Ug! Be still my fiber lovin' heart.

Part of the fun at a Fiber Fest is checking out what everyone is wearing! Most people there are wearing something they created. The couple we were sitting next to was a bit shy, but I just had to snap this picture.

Check out both sweaters in this photo! Toasty and colorful.

Fiber punching with Judy!, Kinda like rug hooking, but on a much tinier scale.

Always cute to see a Llama out for a stroll. Some times the young girl was taking her for a walk and a few paces later it was the just the opposite. A.Dor.A.Ble.

These curly beauties really wanted to come home with me, Yep! they really told me so! Usually when we get home, everyone asks 'What did you bring me?' But after a Fiber Fest... they are afraid I brought them yarn! But I really thought the goats would fit in Mom's truck and would help with Dad's shrubbery reduction plan in the back forty.

More to report in Part 2……

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Road Trip(s)

It’s nearly that time of year again – the Fiber Fest time of year again!!

For Western New York – It’s the Finger Lakes Fiber Festival, I had so much fun last year I can’t wait to go back this year that I’m putting the shout out for carpool buddies and thinking I may go for both days because there are a couple of classes that look like possibilities.

The dates this year are September 17 & 18: Saturday 10am- 5pm and Sunday 10am- 4pm. So start saving your Yarn Pennies and Gas Pennies, let the Honey know you’ll be out-of-town for the whole day and let me know when you wanna come with!

In October New Yorker’s are blessed with the Grand Goddess of Fiber Festivals… the New York State Sheep and Wool Festival of Duchess County AKA: Rhinebeck!! This year It’s scheduled for October 15 & 16. I’ve never been, but I’m looking forward to it! I’m hoping this is the year!! So if you are up to it and want to hitch a ride and come along, lemme know. I haven’t a clue where I’m staying, but I do know that I am NOT tent camping. The weather at that time of year can be very cold and wet, so after a long day I’m gonna want dry heat!

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Saturday was a busy prep day and as I was getting ready I had a brainstorm

So if you can guess where I am today

using the clues from my laundry line

Leave me a comment and I’ll randomly select a winner from the correct answers next Saturday 7/16 for this hand-dyed skein of yarn. It is 85 grams of worsted, 100% wool (I used the fisherman’s wool from Lionbrand) in a cherry & tangerine colorway. This is skein was created in this batch.

UPDATE++

IT’S No fun to have a GIVEAWAY and make it TOO hard for people to win!!! Duh! I Want A WINNER!!! I Want TO Give AWAY THIS BEAUTIFUL YARN!!

Think…  HORSE

Think..   SHOW

Now put ’em together…. yep, now you got it!!  Now go back and comment again!

UPDATED – AGAIN! BUT with a WINNER!  Hannah you guessed correctly! Yes! I was at a Horse Show with the Crafter Monkey on the saddle. Please email me so we can make arrangements for delivery.

Congrats!

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