Amy and Jaala are ready for snow and winter television/knitting! Also knitting up some peace.
Mentioned this podcast:
Happy Pi Day, knitters! Hope you’re enjoying your Pi and/or pie…we celebrated a little early with a homemade pumpkin pie.Li’l Buddy was trying to memorize Pi to 45 places for a math contest today….
Thanks to everyone who entered with so much wonderful information about your local yarn stores and indie dyers! We learned so much from your responses and you gave us a lot of places to add to our must-visit list…
The Winners Are:
Amber gets the Mrs. Crosby Likes to Play
Rachelle takes home the Sakkie courtesy of Intertwined Yarn Shop
Joyce will enjoy two skeins of alpaca yarn from Bleating Heart Haven
If you’re anywhere nearby, please check out the Rites of Spring Fiber Frolic on April 16th!
MYSTIC HAVEN KAL
We don’t know exactly what she’s got up her sleeve, but we know it will be fantastic.
The KAL starts on March 30th and we’re offering participants a special 10% discount! If you’re interested, you can choose from any of the 100g Gradients we have ready to ship, or order a custom-dyed Greatest of Ease 100g Gradient and we’ll do our best to expedite it so you can start on time (to order: choose your color, then choose Greatest of Ease as the yarn base and 100g as the size of the cake). Please check out the fun and find out the discount code in the Knit and Knag Ravelry Group.
Have a great Monday and happy knitting,
Jaala and Amy
It’s getting cold here, tea-drinkin’, stew-makin’, bundle-up cold. I’ve got a hot mug of Chai Spice tea on my desk as I write. As you know, this is the time when handknits come in handy…
Aran Lace Video
I’ve been a little obsessed with cables and lace lately (for about the last two years). An expert at combining these two techniques is designer, teacher and tech editor and my friend, Stephannie Tallent. Stephannie has a new video out from Interweave Knits unfolding all kinds of useful tips for combining these two knitterly techniques: Aran Lace Knitting.
In a step-by-step format, Stephannie explains and demonstrates techniques like using a cable and/or lace chart, picking the right yarns for showing off your lacy cables, using a cable needle, cabling without a cable needle, swatching, blocking, and all kinds of other techniques to keep you on top of beautiful charted patterns like the one below.
The video also includes a pattern for a gorgeous cables-and-lace cowl. Stephannie really knows her stuff, and this video is definitely a winner!
Aran Lace Giveaway
One lucky reader can receive this video for their very own. Just leave a comment telling us which of Stephannie’s beautiful patterns you would knit first! Giveaway runs through Monday evening.
Gradient Eye Candy
Wow, how exciting! Jess/Frecklegirl on Ravelry put together a Gradient-themed Community Eye Candy page and our yarn is featured!!!!!!! See the adorable pink baby dress? Talented knitter Greenfiber made her Mia’s Dress out of our Wild Rose Corriedale Sock yarn.
What an honor. Everything on the page looked gorgeous! Thanks so much, Jess!!!!!!
New Gradient Stripe Socks Colors
Speaking of thanks, a million to the wonderful Susan B Anderson for hosting a Gradient Stripes giveaway on her blog! She sent a lot of new customers our way and we’re very grateful. Check it out, because right now, you have a chance to win some Manos yarns on her blog! Susie was the very first to knit with the Tropical Sunset colorway (above) and it’s officially released now!
The next new yarn is Blue Skies Ahead, an optimistic mix of cloudless white and saturated blue.
We’re excited to present the next in the House Colors series: Cunning Folk, representing Slytherin with pure silver-gray to aristocratic emerald green.
Last, but certainly not least, Brew Crew! The sunny yellow and cheerful blue works for many school colors, but for a Wisconsin baseball fan, they have to represent the Milwaukee Brewers.
If you’ve ordered Gradient Stripes yarn, we’re making many of them every day, so you should get it soon! If you’ve already got your stripes in hand, please do join us in the Knitcircus Ravelry Group for a Gradient Stripes KAL! (Don’t worry, you can use the original Matching Socks sets too).
I had gotten half of a sock done, then I was leafing through a magazine and saw some lustworthy striped armwarmers. My DH, looking over my shoulder, remarked,”You could make some of those.”
He was right! I could make some just as stripy with the new Gradient Stripes yarn! So I have frogged the sock and re-started a pair of Gothy Gauntlets. I can’t wait to see how they turn out, and I’ll post progress pics in the KAL group.
I’ve got so much that’s new and exciting to share with you! it’s hard to know where to start.
First, and very big news to us: we have our own Knitcircus Yarns web store now! You can purchase 100g Gradients, 150g Gradients, Matching Socks Sets and Gradient Stripes Socks right from our site now. Whooo! Big props to Webmistress Cindy for her hard work getting it all prepared for you.
The new Gradient Stripes socks are flying off of our virtual shelves, and I’m dyeing them up as quickly as I can so that you can start playing with them! We sent many, many packages out the door in the last two days, so if you live nearby, you may have your sock sets in hand soon! More are heading out today because we really want you to be able to knit with them.
We can’t wait to see what you’re knitting, so we’ve started a KAL in the Knitcircus Group to bring everyone together to share and enjoy progress on their Gradient Stripes socks. We’ll have weekly prizes and surprises, and Webmistress Cindy is putting together a list of good sock patterns to use. Just post progress pics in the progress thread to be eligible to win! Note: if you would like to work the KAL with original Matching Socks Sets gradients, of course you can!
Webmistress Cindy has already knitted most of her first sock! She knits fast. She’s using a prototype for the Sand Castle colorway that has a little less contrast in the blue section than the for-sale colorway will.
Gradient Stripes Giveaway!
Speaking of Susan B Anderson, she’s doing a fun giveaway on her blog right now, in fact, two giveaways for the new Gradient Stripes Socks! She talks about the yarns and shows her finished sock on her video podcast, and has a really creative idea for the giveaways. It’s so fun that she’s doing videocasts now, because Susie’s personality just shines and she’s one of the dearest people I know. I’m so lucky to live near her, but now knitters in far-flung places get to be charmed by her, too!
Bye, Bye, Baseball
In kid news, Lil Buddy’s fall baseball season wrapped up; unfortunately, he hurt his hand right before the last day of play, but still had a blast with his fall tournament team. What a talented and fun bunch of kids.The World Series starts next week, so that will be the last hurrah. I can’t wait to make the traditional homemade caramel corn….
It warms the cockles of my heart that he still wears my handknits in public; above he’s sporting two-years-ago’s Gryffindor hat. 🙂 Belle has a new hat, a variation on the Valentina I made for her last year, but I haven’t gotten to snap a pic yet.
Happy Friday Pet Pics
Of course, I couldn’t have a blog post without including some cute pet pics! Sasha and Squeak are good friends and enjoy napping together when they’ve worn themselves out chasing and play-fighting.
Buppa purchased an early holiday present for Lil Buddy; new ski boots! And Squeak got the box.
Wow, what a day, I have not one, but two new yarns to introduce!
But first, some fall apple-picking fun:
We grabbed my mom, my brother’s family the kids and even Sasha for an afternoon in the orchard last weekend. Can you believe the twins are in kindergarten now?! A good time was had by all, and caramel apples were had by the youngsters. We’ll be making sauce, crisp and maybe some pie this weekend. Does anyone have a favorite apple recipe?
Now for the yarn! The first new one is unbelievable; a new 100% cashmere handspun. Fair-trade, spun by a women’s collective in Afghanistan, and probably the softest yarn I’ve ever felt.
At TNNA this summer, I saw a booth with fair-trade cashmere from Afghanistan. They had samples. Just one touch and I was hooked; I knew we had to get some for our wonderful Knitcircus knitters! We arranged with the wonderful women who run this business to get a special, limited-run of worsted-weight 100% cashmere Trapeze yarn, and now we have it just for you!
The yarn itself is so special I had to develop the deepest, richest, most saturated colors. Every single skein is dyed on its own in a batch of one, with several different dyebaths layered over each other to achieve a color with boundless depth. We named them after precious stones that mirrored the colors’ depth: London Blue Topaz and Pink Tourmaline.
To highlight the yarn’s specialness, I developed the London Blue Topaz pattern specifically to make the most of the yarn’s yardage and of course, to arrange around your neck and shoulders so you can feel Trapeze’s fantastic softness and drape.
The shawl uses what I think is one of the most elegant stitch patterns, Dayflower Lace, with a diamond-shaped construction.
Here’s the Pink Tourmaline colorway, a deep, rich red perfect for holiday knitting. (This is the color I kept for myself!)
Calliope: Merino-Cashmere-Nylon DK
Speaking of cashmere, we’re thrilled to introduce another new yarn, but this one will be available all year round! Calliope is 80% Superwash Merino, 10% Nylon , 10% cashmere, in a touchable, delightfully soft and springy yarn. It’s shown here in our new cozy fall color, Mr. Tumnus, and you can custom order it in any of our repeatable coorways. It’s 230 yards in a 100g cake, or 345 yards in a 150g cake.
As part of the Calliope excitement, we’re also now offering all of our sport, dk and worsted-weight yarns in 150-g options, which was only available for fingering weights before.
Silk Moon KAL
We started off the autumn in style with a Ravelry KAL for the Silk Moon Crescent Shawl, now with a new fingering-weight version included in the pattern! I know a couple of people in the KAL are going to work it in fingering and keep on going to make larger shawls, and I can’t wait to see how they turn out!
The KAL just started, and we have our first weekly winner; Taine on Ravelry got her choice of patterns from my Ravelry Store.
This shawl knits up quickly in either fingering, dk or fingering weight yarn. I made this rainbow one below as my new Silk Moon for the re-release of the pattern and finished it in under a week!
The lovely model in the photos here is Cindy, who joins us in the Lair to help with Ravelry groups, website and finances. She works at beloved LYS the Sow’s Ear and has lots of knitting expertise as well as the talent for creating and maintaining order, which I dearly love and appreciate. Cindy will be participating in the KAL and checking in with everyone every day!
My Silk Moon is in Knitcircus Lap of Luxury silk blend in the colorway Over the Rainbow, which you guys know I can’t stop knitting with.
There’s still plenty of time to join us in the Ravelry group, and the prizes will be getting bigger each week. 😉
WASHCLOTHS for a GOOD CAUSE
Stephanie from Space Cadet Yarns just shared this project by a motivated knitter to send handknitted washcloths to be distributed as part of hygiene packs in Haiti. Good cause, and the time commitment is actually charity knitting I can do!
I’ll be knitting up a washcloth this weekend and hope some of you will join in the good, clean, fun. 😉 If you post a pic of your washcloth in the Ravelry group, or a link to your project, i’ll give away a pattern of your choice as a reward for your good efforts!