okay—we’re saying the F-word now!

and that gets me excited—because FALL is knitting’s season to shine.
no, to preen, to sashay and to bust out singin’. i’m sure we’ve all bought or received at least one of the fall magazines, there is a distinct chill in the late evening air, and naturally, our thoughts are turning to what we will knit for fall . . . mmm—maybe it’s time for me to go up and commune with my stash, touch everything again, organize a bit, and do some daydreaming . . .

that means it is also finally the time to talk about rhinebeck (everyone else is doing it . . .)! my favorite show of all, and one which i try to never miss. i’ve been itching to talk about it for months, but it seemed premature. everyone was a little lackadaisical after the gluttony that is MD$W.
i had to miss rhinebeck last year because i had the opportunity to host my favorite brother and five of my sweetheart nephews and nieces that weekend. there are only a very few things that make me miss rhinebeck, and they are one of them.

NOT THIS YEAR! not only will i be traveling with my buds, but i have lots of new internet friends i am looking forward to running into.

beckie, annette, and i have had this trip planned since last fall’s show ended. in february we made reservations to rent a house for a six-day, five nights weekend (i know, but we need two travelling days). we are so psyched we can hardly contain ourselves. and to top it off, looks like we might be joined by monica from Two Left Needles.

i’d be mighty, mighty interested in meeting up with any readers who will be going!

alright, now, last things first! let’s put a lid on the red skirt story with a few pics, post bike-ride-and-class-attendance. this piece was worn on several trips between home and shop, and through several class session, and then around the house a bit (see what an unwashed slob i am willing to be for the sake of knitting research? pictures are all post-wearing).

but the fabric DID still feel nice, even after all that use. as in, this would make a great traveling piece (plus, no one could miss you in a crowded airport . . .). and the slip underneath is hardly noticeable, even in black. now this skirt, like the green skirt, did not bag out or reshape itself into a pumpkin through the seat, even after hours of sitting.

it DID lengthen a bit in the back, closer to the hem, but i do want to point out again that it rode 15 miles on a bike before that was apparent. today we are washing it, which should cause it to snap back to its original length, but i’ll let you know if that doesn’t happen.
speaking of the back though, it does this really cute swishy thing when i walk that is more sexy than being naked—even the girls noticed it, which is sexy, right??

david tried really hard to photograph that action, but this was the closest he came to capturing the allure. i got so much attention for this skirt while wearing it, that the other skirt almost doesn’t want to go out with me any more (i’m working on that; more diplomacy and less favoritism between FOs—check).

and speaking of sexy and stunning, kathy sent me pictures of her most recent FO

wing-of-the-moth shawl—done!! and by someone else, NOT ME (and hopefully, she is beaming like that because her new shawl feels so damn good (i mean. it must; she knit it in record time AND it’s gorgeous—what’s not to beam about?). i know you want to see more

and then, of course a picture of the entire thing laid flat

kathy, if you had a blog, we’d all be rushing over RIGHT now to gush. but since you don’t, see comments below—i’m sure everyone will be showering kudos.
leah, is juuust about done with the scarf/doll shawl. she took the day off work to finish it is “working at home” today so we expect to be able to make the pattern available for sale by tomorrow.

YES! just in time for weekend knitting. check in friday for details. i know i’m excited!
i was thinking that i might even cast on for one. since i have yet to actually own one, i think i ought to do one, y’know, for the house.

i have that original gray-blue alpaca that is intended for this shawl, and i had started it, then realized i was using too big a needle, and had to rip it back. then i realized i needed a wedding gift for the summer, and diverted the shawl-making to the ivory yarn. thus, the blue-gray never got knit! it might even be fun to knit it along with anyone else out there who is also doing it.

okay, now for today’s other special moment. some of you might remember my friend mason, who is a knitter. well mason has gotten very interested in dyeing wool. we are getting ready to explore the process, using plants from my dye garden. over the school year, we will harvest flowers for dye and cook them, mordant wool, dye wool, plan some addtions to the dye garden, and cultivate those in the spring. along the way we will explore some of the chemistry of plant dyeing and how to create variations from a single plant.

but in the meantime, mason got anxious to experiment and tried some food dyes out on a hank of laceweight alpaca. and when he was done, he gave it to me as a gift! i was thunderstruck! seriously, it made me cry . . . but of course, i cheered right up when i saw it—it is, aftter all, yarn.

shut UP! is this not gorgeous? it’s aubergine, it’s lustrous. it’s laceweight. and so much more. when i rode home last night in the dark, i thought of things to knit with it.

he used beet and bluebery food coloring powder (along with stuff to mordant and all). it might have to shoot right to the top of my knit list. move over briar rose and fearless fibers, there’s a new kid on the block . . .

now, what could i possibly follow all that up with? none of my own knitting even comes close. i put a heel on my desk sox while i watched final files upload tuesday night.

and did a few rounds while i sat through some re-do activity wednesday. last night i did a heel on the mermaid sock, got all the way to the end of it, and was off one stictch, screwed up the mending job (those darn wraps really put a monkey wrench in my fixing skills) and had to rip out

most of that has been re-knit, but not quite all.

and that’s it! i’ll be back tomorrow with scenes of me and mason gathering dyestuff.

19 Responses to “okay—we’re saying the F-word now!”

  1. DebbieKnitter says:

    Iits mine I made it for Ann.
    I am Mason. I am going to dye mor yarn with Ann. My mom turn on the stove nobs. I had fun and it is dark. I am going to make lots of yarn colors and give them to every one so they can have cool yarn. Bye Mason.

  2. Janet says:

    That is the cutest darn skirt! In 15 pounds I’m there! Maybe I should start knitting and have a race to see which gets done first. Plus the incentive of being able to swish around in that skirt may actually get me moving.ha ha

  3. Lene says:

    The skirt – again – great! And the shawl breathtaking! The yarn – such a deep and beautiful color! The socks looking good!
    And making plans for Rhinebeck… (I read about it last year and wished I could be there and here it is again.) Your fall is having a perfect start.

  4. julia fc says:

    The yarn is hovering, waiting for the moth pattern . . . I can’t wait. Juno and I have been buzzing in anticipation.

  5. Mel says:

    Mason, your yarn is very pretty! I was with Anne when she saw it. She was so excited! She let me feel the soft yarn. You did a fine job and the color is spectacular! I can’t wait to see what Anne will knit with your special yarn!

    Kathy, I adored the pictures of you with the shawl! It is a gorgeous piece! I hope that I am able to tackle lace someday. The color is so nice and it looks so soft! I’d love to reach out and touch it!

    Anne, again, I loved that skirt! The color and the swish is what makes that skirt! Oh, and of course the lovely pattern *wink*!

  6. gray la gran says:

    oooh! love the skirt! i eagerly await the pattern to be written :)
    i am going to rhinebeck! yippy! i hope to be recovered from ms&w by then. i’m going to take the train up from n.c. and stay with friends in hudson.

  7. Beth S. says:

    I hardly know where to begin–so much goodness in one post! Let’s start with the moth shawl–oh my oh my–your friend Kathy did an *amazing* job! I even like the color she chose–it suits her very well.

    And the red skirt has changed my mind about knitted skirts. I used to be skeptical, but you have proven (twice!) that they can work. I think the shaping must be a part of it. Yours has a subtle A line, right? (or is that just a camera trick?) Anyway, you are HOT in that skirt. It’s too bad that it will probably be too cold at Rhinebeck for such a flirty summery thing (unless you wear it over long johns. ;-)

    Mason is a natural at the dyepot, I think. That yarn will have to become something very special! :-)

  8. Monica says:

    LOVE that skirt! Oh, it’s so cute and flirty and how many skeins does it take and why did I buy black???

    Kathy’s shawl is just stunning. I love the second picture of her wearing it, it’s like she’s on honeymoon or at least a date. The color is great on her.

    I am SO excited about Rhinebeck! I’m bouncing!!!

  9. Wanda says:

    Your skirt is so tempting! Could someone who’s never worked lace and has only elementary skills tackle it? A pattern is definetly wanted, and I still want to make the adornable little girl’s dress.

    Mason, You dyed a very snazzy yarn!

  10. HabitatJudith says:

    When you first started talking about knitted skirts and riding way aback when I was ever so skeptical (alright, I’ll come out and admit it, I thought you were nuts), but both skirts are downright beautiful. You have made a convert out of me. I have been looking for something new and interesting to knit and, big sigh, it’s going to have to be a skirt. They are too beautiful to pass up. I’m with Janet though, it might have to wait for another fifteen pounds though. Although, I’m a very slow knitter…..

  11. Daphne says:

    Oh! I’m so glad Julia linked to your blog. Now I begin counting down until the publication of the bike-riding knitted skirt pattern. I’d though I wasn’t a knitted skirt person — I’m a hip person, see, and knitted fabric that drapes and pulls and emphasizes the shape, I don’t need. But I need this skirt!

    Thanks for the inspiration. Your knitting is wonderful and I’m so curious about your spindle, too.

  12. Erika says:

    I have fallen desperately, madly in love with your skirt!

  13. beth says:

    Like I said before that skirt is awesome! Will you be selling the pattern? I’m interested! I also love your friends shawl! And your other friends dyeing! Wow! I will be at Rhinebeck! It’s my first time.

  14. I love the note from Mason! And what GORGEOUS yarn!

    The shawl is unbelievable. Really beautiful.

  15. My 7yo son knits and spins and would love to chat with Mason. Would you mind passing on my email to his mother? Thanks!

  16. Dave says:

    That’s a great skirt. I like this one even better than the green one :-) Gorgeous aubergine!!

  17. Teresa C says:

    Hi! My first time visit to your blog. The shawl is beautiful, but I am totally in love with the skirt! I skimmed down a bunch of posts trying to find out more about it, I would definitely wear it with the seam increases, who would notice with distraction of the sexiness of the skirt? I hope you make the pattern available. BTW-I looked but didn’t find: What yarn did you knit it with?

  18. Karyn says:

    Anne,

    I love your Cat’s Paw skirt and the other skirt you finished, earlier this summer. Do you know if and when you’ll have the patterns available for purchase?

    Karyn

    P.S. I love your blog & read it daily! Your work is amazing.

  19. Kellee says:

    I’m afraid I’m going to have to add my voice to the clamor for the skirt pattern. How could anyone resist such cuteness? It’s enough to even bring out a long-time lurker. Ahem.