Thursday, March 31, 2011

Where Are They Now

That's the topic today, where have all the knits gone. I'm not super inspired to talk about this. I'm always afraid that my knits aren't that great and don't get a lot of use. But I'm sure that's just an insecurity. I think I'm also a process knitter. I don't always care about the end product. I like the experience of the yarn and patterns and all the stories around the project. When I've woven in the ends I'm done. Maybe that'll change with maturity. Oh maturity!
Hmmmm, what else can we talk about? I'm kind of running on empty, we watched the neighbors little guy today. Three little boys under 3! It was all incredibly smooth, but still pretty tiring. I'm so glad the boys get along so well. I'm looking forward to the weather continually improving and more time outside!

So, do you have a hard time parting with knits? Is there anything you've made that you couldn't give away and did something else for them? I promise a much better blog tomorrow! An announcement is coming your way!


Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The Stash

So today's episode is supposed to be about the stash and how it is kept. As a dyer, it's sort of hard to remain objective about what is 'my' stash and what is inventory. But I'll show you pictures of what's in the garage.
We got this pie case at a garage sale last year. E painted the inside door and the outside too. The little design is his little sign for princess, my nickname! Pretty lucky lady.

e modeling his safety glasses
Each shelf is a different weight. I have a couple of cones of sport weight that I got on sale when a shop was closing here in town. They sort of take up a lot of room! I should find a big project and put the yarn to work. For some reason I think it would be great for a crochet blankie.
Then there's all the yarn that had to be relocated after the critter lived in our garage for a bit. The two on the right have big on going projects. The bin on the left has all the WIP and FO's that need ends sewn in. I think. Yeah, too much stash I think.
Then there's the spinning stash. The bottom two buckets. I think that's all the spinning fiber. I might have a little at the studio. The top bucket is yarn that I know I'll never use and gets put out at the garage sale.

Every once in a while I go through the stash and pull out yarn that I know I'll never get to. But I would have to agree with Michele. I'm only buying/dyeing yarn as I need it now. My taste changes with time and experience. As I learn more techniques and how yarn can effect a project I'm realizing that I don't know if I'll use the yarn I have. But if the worst happens, I'll have plenty of wool to knit something to keep us warm.

Do you have a way of organizing your stash? Are you always adding? What's your favorite furniture to store your yarn/fiber in?

And it must be said, please excuse the mess in the garage! Yikes! But I wanted to share some pictures.


Tuesday, March 29, 2011

The things I've learned

I'm not great about getting pictures to share! But I have learned a lot this last year in knit-land. It might have been about a year ago that I was at knit night and everybody was working on something. I had a token project but it was what I work on between real ones. I'd sort of lost my knitting mojo. Sally was knitting just to knit and she needed me to do a stitch for some reason. I was inspired! Knitting because it was fun.

I think I started a few things that week! I also ripped out a few projects that I knew I would never get to. I have followed this guideline for a year and it's very freeing. I've ripped out more and I've remained excited about what I'm knitting.

I've also been slowed down by what yarn to knit with. I feel like if I have time to knit I should with yarn I've dyed. Samples for the booth are always a good thing right? But it stops me from knitting. So I'm getting over it and enjoying knitting with what ever strikes my fancy. And I'm still getting some samples done!

Now for actual knitting knowledge. I've learned the basic construction of a shawl and I'm not nearly so scared of knitting them! I think not being pregnant and o getting older has helped my knitting skills. I started knitting Octavia (sorry I didn't wait for you) and I'm a lot more comfortable with the directions and construction. I sort of want to go back and rip out a few that I started and I didn't know what I was doing. We'll see. Maybe I can redeem them. Speaking of shawl, I'm off to knit!


Monday, March 28, 2011

A Tale of Two Yarns

I know, not the most creative title. But here's the two yarns I'm talking about: Malabrigo Rasta and my own hand spun. e indulged the photoshoot, such a little cute boy! I had him wear a few of the latest pieces.
The cowl he has on is the malabrigo. I saw the color way and HAD to have it/knit with it. Like all the other malabrigo yarn it is ridiculously soft. What's strange about it is how big it is. I felt like I was knitting with rope. The softest round rope in the whole world. Maybe dense is the better word. You know yarn is usually squishy and you can squeeze flatish? Can't do that with Rasta. I don't know why, but I find this intriguing. I have one more skein of the same color. I'm not sure what I'm doing with it yet, but I'm thinking some crazy cute little baby something would be good. I'm waiting to hear what flavor the sister in-law is having. Too bad she's waiting to find out!
The other knits e is wearing are my hand spun. Funny, I didn't dye either of them. I don't usually spin what I dye up. I just dyed up a bunch of fibers for an order and a lot of them were v-e-r-y tempting. The bag e's holding is merino/silk from BMFA in bleeding heart. I spun it up a while go and plied it. The bag holds something very special to me and I had the hand spun lying around. A perfect fit.
I love this picture! I know I'm his mom, biased and all, but he's striking such a great little pose. The shawl I knit up from some batts, unfortunately the store is no longer in business. Major bummer.
So what is it about my hand spun? I think it's all the change. Thick/thin, change in color, change in over spun, to barely holding together. I don't usually spin for a specific project, I usually fall in love with the fiber or color and want to spend some time with it. I really like spinning for the problem solving that happens when I'm doing such basic mindless motions. I think I take that same state of mind and bring it to the knitting project.
I've started another shawl, same pattern using my hand spun. I think it's a great pattern for single ply. Maybe I'll have a stash of them to hand out!

What are two yarns for you that tell a story? I need to go see what the topic is for tomorrow!

Saturday, March 26, 2011


I think I've been avoiding blogging and knitting because I knew I needed to rip out a project. I'm making a sock and it's too big. What's crazy? It's a sample. But I'm just not happy with how big it's coming out and the stitches look sloppy because they're loose. So any minute now I'll get the courage to pull out the needles and rip it out.
I should really just get over it. I wasn't that far along!

A few other items on the agenda: I've ordered some more fingering weight yarn to dye up Sakura. I also found the perfect shawl pattern! Well, I think it's perfect. As soon as I get more dyed up I'm casting on. Ooooh, what about a knit-a-long?! Any yarn looks great with the pattern so lets find a skein and cast on. More deets once I have the yarn dyed up. In other Sakura news, there's still some in the shop! Right now $85 has been set aside to donate to Mercy Corp to help Japan. Can't wait to crack $100!
Next on the agenda: There's some new designs up on the blog! If you read through a feed come on over to the live blog and see what I'm talking about. It's also on the back of the Twitter page and the Store! What do you think? I'm slowly making some changes around here with the help of Caffeinated Mama. There's lots going on behind the scenes, so keep an eye out!

Have you heard of this? I think I'm going to play along. See you Monday to talk about two yarns!
small disclaimer: I just realized I've been drinking caffeine all day. I'm a little bzzzt from all the soda!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Sakura is Live!

Wanted to pop in and let you know you can now purchase Sakura in different weight/fibers/yarns in the shop! Some spinning fiber is already sold out, I'll try to dye up some more soon. If you're on twitter, follow me! You'd know about the Sakura already!! Knitted Wit is also on facebook. Knitted Wit also has a group on Ravelry. SO many ways to know all the happenings of Knitted Wit.
So, if you can, pop in the shop and purchase some Sakura. $10 from every skein, and $5 from every fiber braid will be donated to Mercy Corp to assist Japan in recovering from the earthquake and tsunami. Thank you for helping.

Thanks to Michele for making the pictures shine!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

A Little Help for Our Friends

I've been rolling some ideas around in my head of how to help our friends in Japan. Such devastation from the earth quake and tsunami. I think it's been a little hard for me to want to process it being a parent to young children. When disaster strikes, it hits so close to home. I can't even fathom what families are going through. And if I'm completely honest, I don't want to. I want to bury my head in the sand. Growing up in Sitka Alaska we had tsunami drills and once had to put the plan in to action. Terrifying. Being in the second grade marching up to the high school, through a spooky grave yard no less, always wondering if a wave was going to sneak up. Thankfully I had siblings in the high school that found me and offered some reassurance. Yeah, head in sand please. (just watched the evening news while taking a nursing break. wow. The nuclear issues on top of natural disasters.)

But I'm inspired by some many people on the internets doing so many good things for our friends in Japan. I thought I would share a few links that I've come across from blog surfing or on twitter.
PDX Knitterati is donating full dollar amount of her pattern.
Oh, Fransson! is raffling of her Tokyo quilt for donations made.
Janel Laidmen has a new pattern out, sales being donate.
OlgaJazzy is donating 85% of her pattern sales. She's actually in Japan
Here's a post of a much larger list.
Feel free to add any you know of in the comments, I'm happy to add them here and go shopping at them.

I am compelled to offer something I can make, you can buy, and I can send that money to assist Japan. I read that pink represents happiness and then I read about cherry blossoms and how important the cherry blossom festival is culturally in Japan. (what did we do before wiki?) I'm hitting the studio on Friday to create Sakura (cherry blossom). I'm not sure what yarn base I'm dyeing on yet, but it'll have shades of pink with a little red dropped in. For some reason, I feel connected by reading about a tradition and symbolism and then making my interpretation with my hands. A therapeutic way for me to process such a loss. If you have any requests on what yarn or fiber you want to see this on let me know. I'll post pictures as soon as they come out of the steam pot.

Thanks for letting me process here. And thank you to Michele for helping me process last night, brought me to pink.

Saturday, March 12, 2011


I wanted to share a sneak peak of one of the yarns included in the Community Supported Yarn/Fiber. This is just a sample skein I dyed up, not a full 100 grams. This wool is from
Rambouillet sheep in Wyoming. The mill I purchase it from tracks all the fiber back to the farm it came from. How perfect is that for a CSY/F?! This is a fingering weight single ply yarn. It's a little rustic, but is soft and I think would be beautiful knit up in a shawl.
Because none of the mill's wools are super wash the colors will be a little muted compared to what I normally dye. A nice gentle skein.

I'm planning on adding one other yarn from their line, a sport weight 2 ply yarn that I am smitten with! I dyed it up in the same color as the sample above and I'm working on a little swatch. I'm having a great time trying out different stitches and even some cables. This yarn is for a special line that I'll tell you all about next time! A little suspense!! I'm over the moon about this project and can't wait to get the yarn in my hot little hands to dye up.

As a little FYI Black Trillium is fundraising for Cystic Fibrosis. I had a roommate down the hall in college who has this disease. Not fun, in a million years. This is close to Melanie's family, a school friend of her son's has this disease. Can't imagine being a little person and fighting. For every $5 you donate you are entered in a drawing. She has some FABulous prizes, including a skein of Ladies That Lunch! Go check it out and donate what you can.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011


Well we discovered a nasty little critter has been shacking up in our garage. Not good. I've suspected for quite a while but finally did a thorough investigation today. G-R-O-S-S times a million. We still need to get rid of it, but for now most of the mess is cleaned up. I lost a bag of fiber from OFFF 2009, two small vintage cloth suitcases, and a few skeins of yarn. Considering the possibilities of what's in the garage? I got off pretty light.

While going through everything, I think I've discovered all my works in progress. Yikes! There might be one or two more hiding in the garage but I doubt it. I have a bin, a b-i-n full of WIPs. I have a few things that just need to be sewn up, one with just ends to weave in and a few baby sweaters that need arms. And those are just a few of them! I found a bunch of needles, all of my sewing up needles and lots of stitch markers. I've also found more stash by this reorganization. Not crazy about that part, but reality is good.

I don't even know how to set a plan for myself. It's a little daunting how much I need to do. Maybe I'll do a WIP Wednesday as a little motivation. Well, sitting here writing about it isn't going to get anything knit! Maybe in the day light I'll take some pictures of the monster pile. Let's end on a brighter note.
I also want to thank all those that have joined the CSY/F so far! I can't wait to start sending out the new yarns!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Fat Tuesday

I'm looking forward to the Lent season this year. I've been trying all winter to be very present to the time of year and what the winter season brings. I can feel myself getting distracted with the slightly longer days and slightly warmer weather. For Lent I've decided to stay focused and not cast on any new projects.
These are the projects that are floating around the current WIP bag. The super bulky one will be done in a flash, which makes me want to cast on for something really fast! But there is a sock, a sweater, a baby sweater and a shawl to work on. I do have the 50G March project to get started on, but other than that I don't think I need to cast on for anything. I don't think I'm going to have anything specific about spinning. It's not something I get to do everyday like knitting.

I think I'm setting these limits because I want it to reflect in other areas of my life right now. I want to stay focused on some projects at home and at the dyeworks. I want to see them to completion and not get distracted by the new shiny novelty! Are you doing anything for Lent? Do you always finish up a project before starting a new one? Or do you set a limit on how many can be in the bag?

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

CSY/F Follow Up

I wanted to go a little deeper in the details of the CSY/F. I've been getting some inquires so I want to cover the general questions, but if you think of more let me know!

What are the yarns? This is the most exciting part (to me)! There are going to be three fingering weight yarns and two worsted. The three fingering weights are all very different. A singl
e ply, great for a lace project. A sock yarn, and Bling, great for a little shawlette. There are two worsted weight yarns, one is a silk/wool blend, Silky and Single. A beautiful drape, single ply. The other worsted yarn is thick/thin single ply.

I love all these yarns, each unique. I'll be posting more information about each one as it's shipped out. Two of the yarns I already carry, but want to invest more in. Bling and Silky and Single are both gorgeous and need to be knitted! They both take color magically.

Speaking of color: I'm going to stick with mostly semi solid, or color on color. I think the only variegated yarn is going to be the sock yarn, a blend of wool and bamboo.

When does the CSY/F close? Well, I want to ship out the first batch May 15th. I think April 30th will be the last day to purchase a share. I'm flexible about payment though. If you need to take from now until then to purchase the full share let me know. We can work some magic.

I want to thank everybody that has tweeted or blogged about the CSY/F! This is my special project and I can't tell you how much it means to me that you want to share it! Incase this is your first time you're hearing about this check out the blog post or here for all the details!

e is helping me wind yarn for a recent order. He might need to talk to his union rep though, he didn't even get to stop work for his lunch! He's a big help turning the winder on and off. (please ignore the GIANT pile of clothes that need to get folded. It's constant around here.)