Kristin Omdahl Book Tour

We're excited to announce that Knitcircus will be joining the blog tour for Kristin Omdahl's new book, A Knitting Wrapsody!  Look for Contributing Editor Miss T's interview with Kristin March 14th, and a review of the book in the forthcoming Summer 2011 Knitcircus.


The Blog Tour lineup includes enticing variety, including a live webchat with Kirstin!  Please check out these tour stops as they roll along:

 3/1 Jimmy Beans Wool         

 3/2  Tuned In to Knitting Daily TV      

 3/3 Planet Purl Party Line Live Webchat with Kristin

 3/4 Smoking Hot Needles    

 3/7 Stitch Play Studio             

 3/8 Stitch It Podcast                

 3/9 – Knittin

 3/10 Faina's Knitting Mode    

 3/11  Craftnicity           

3/14 Knitcircus

3/15 Crazy Aunt Purl 
3/16 Stefanie Japel Knits        

3/17 Yarn Thing Podcast          

 3/18 lindamade       


Make Your Own Toys Guest Book Review

Hope everyone's staying one step ahead of the snow and ice!


Today it brings me great pleasure to give you our second Guest Book Review, by knittermom Jennifer Rice.



Make Your Own Toys: Sew Soft Bears, Bunnies, Monkeys, Puppies and More!
by Sue Havens
2010 Potter Craft, 96 pgs.

This book is great for using up old or scrap fabric, or repurposing clothing you no longer wear.  With extensive instruction on what types of fabric to use, notions needed, and techniques, this book makes creating whimsical toys a breeze.  Patterns are located at the back of the book with instructions on enlarging by copier.  These hand- and machine-sewn toys can be created and assembled by an advanced beginner, following the techniques laid out in the beginning of the book.

With 22 different patterns full of personality, from a fox or a panda to a silly monkey, an adorable fish, cats, and dogs, a crafter is sure to find a toy to please any taste.  Any of them would make wonderful, loving gifts, and Sue Havens explains how to make them inexpensively and simply.  She also explains how to give them personality and character.  Her website,, shows a gallery preview of the projects contained in the book, as well as a video tutorial on making the Little Flat Bear.  There is a link to her blog as well, which gives a pattern piece accidentally left out of the book, and news about other toys she has created.

I am eager to sew a lazy cat, lounging on her side just like my real cats do.  My four-year old requested the penguin, and my seven- and nine-year olds each found several toys to request as well.  I can see some worn-out sweaters and vintage fabrics inherited from my mother becoming cute little characters for me and the kids to love.

 –You can find Jennifer Rice on Ravelry as Yarnhoardinmama; check out her blog of the same name.

Guest Post: Knitted Lace Book Review

While i'm on vacation, some guest book bloggers have graciously agreed to lend their skills to a special series of book reviews!  Tech Editor and talented deisgner Stephannie, shares her thoughts in the first instalment:

Knitted lace cover

Knitted Lace of Estonia:  Techniques, Patterns, and Traditions

By Nancy Bush

2008 Interweave Press, 159 pp.

Includes Instructional DVD, 2010, Interweave Press.

 If you’ve enjoyed Nancy Bush’s previous books, such Folk Socks or Folk Knitting In Estonia,  you’re sure to love Knitted Lace of Estonia.  Meticulously and lovingly researched, this book includes a historical overview, a summary of the techniques and construction of the various Haapsulu shawls, a selection of patterns designed for the book, and a stitch dictionary. 

The techniques section includes a summary of the various stitches typically used in the creation of Haapsulu shawls, foremost being the nupp (‘rhymes with soup’, Bush tells us).  Basic shawl structure and construction are discussed, including the different edging techniques.  There’s also a page on creating and using a blocking frame.

Fourteen different patterns are included, ranging from relatively simple (the Raha scarf) to more difficult (the Leaf and Nupp Shawl).  As Bush points out in the history chapter, these patterns are lace knitting, not knitted lace; you get a plain row, generally purl, on the WS.

The stitch dictionary, p122-156, includes both center panels motifs and edge patterns.  All stitch patterns are charted only, both in the stitch dictionary and within the pattern collection.

 The DVD covers the construction and techniques section, taking the watcher step by step through three shawl samples, varying based on the type of edging (garter stitch, sewn-on or picked-up).

 The information in the DVD is contained within the book, sometimes word for word, but should be a great aid to those who learning better by watching and hearing rather than simply reading.  

 Tip:  After removing the DVD, make sure you close the plastic flap; if you don’t, the stickiness of the flap causes it to adhere to the facing page and it cannot be removed without ripping the page.  Don’t ask.


Stitch Dictionary App

Hey, at the last Madison Knitter's Guild meeting, we learned about a new project by Madison knitter Susan M.; a mobile Stitch Dictionary! It's a similar idea to the Walker Treasury Project, but not limited to stitches found in that venerable resource and destined for your iphone. 

Any knitter can be part of the collaborative effort and get credited for her contribution. Here's some info from Susan herself:

Would you like to participate in the creation of an electronic Knitting Stitch Dictionary for the iPhone?


I’m looking for samples of knitting stitches.

  • Photos of something you’ve already knit
  • 4×4” swatches of various knitting stitchs
  • You pick or I pick the stitch
  • Prefer: stitches with <= 14st repeats
  • Best are clearly knit stitches in “eye candy” colors
  • Knitter will be given name credit

I’ve love to have you be a part of this fun project. For more details, email (ETA: please note email addy is now correct!)

In non-knitting news, we've recently gone from this:


To this:


Hope your weekend has been just as exciting,




Valentine Fun

There are  more chances to win Spring Knitcircus Pattern Collections if you haven't yet! Try these fun sites:

Knitcircus Scarf Contest and Spring Knitting Retreat Sponsor Krafti-Kit's blog.

Brave New Knits author Julie Turjoman's blog.


My mom, who reinvents certain areas of her house beautifully for every occasion, has begun her Valentine's Day decorating; let's take a peek!

Valentine 2011 candy

Valentine 2011 vintage valentines

Valentine 2011 tree