edison for president (please?)

Posted on 4 CommentsPosted in Bare Naked Wools, book reviews/events, designing, lace/shawls

if you receive our newsletter each week, you may already know that my edison shawl design made it into the mason-dixon march mayhem bracket, neck and shoulders category.

O.M.G.—this was totally unexpected and thrilling; thank you ann and kay!

and voting begins today, so don’t waste a minute—please skedaddle over to the MDK website to cast your votes (and please save one vote for edison, ok?).

this silvery, somewhat slinky (but not too), wedge-shaped shawl is such a great add-on piece for any season—cool and smooth in bare naked wools deco fingering yarn, it is just the thing wonder woman would pull from her belt to toss over those bare shoulders when the breeze kicks up.

it can also be wrapped much closer to the neck as a warming layer in windy weather, then unfurled to drape over evening wear, once inside. this design was the final installment in the 2017 bare naked knitspot club and was a real hit with our members—visit the edison project page to see some of their beautiful results and helpful comments.

while the lace pattern looks terribly complex with criss-crossing lines and knots, it is actually a quite straightforward ribbing arrangement with few moving parts. the secret lies in a couple of cable crosses every so often that squeeze the ribbing together, first in one column, then the next—and wah-LA!—you’ve got yourself a web of intrigue.

the knitting begins with just a few stitches and increases along one side only. then, just when you might be getting a wee bit bored with that ribbing pattern, the openwork melts into a series of large, bell-shaped ribs that form the finishing edge, ruffle-like but not ruffle-y.

using a yarn with a soft sheen and silky hand will highlight the embossed patterning throughout the shawl body. the pattern includes two sizes—petite and tall—but is easily resized to suit a particular yardage (or if you run short, unplanned). it would be lovely in BNWs hempshaugh fingering with it’s silky, airy hand or ginny sport with its flowing, cashmere-y drape. and how about fresh lace? with its linen/silk content, it’s a natural for summer loveliness. or treat yourself to the original deco fingering yarn!

to vote in the march mayhem bracket, please visit mason-dixon knitting and cast your ballots! and while you’re there, please also vote for mary o’shea’s marabou mitts, knit in confection sport yarn and included in the mini skeins bracket. we are so excited and happy for mary and for BNWs representation!

to purchase the edison pattern or read more details, please see the listing in the knitspot pattern shop or in my ravelry pattern shop. we’ll be doing an edison KAL in our rarely group too—click here to join us or to see everyone’s progress and yarn choices so far.

tidings of comfort and joy

Posted on 7 CommentsPosted in Bare Naked Wools, book reviews/events, home and family, patterns

happy holidays to all! we have much good news to share today and many, many things to be grateful for.

first, all of us at knitspot HQ are completely psyched to tell you this:

we are SO exploding this fundraiser with a bang!! (and cardigan is much happier about it than she looks—her fixator just gets in the way of her smile, haha)

we couldn’t be more excited, especially because we’re pretty sure we tipped that number over the lucky 7K since tuesday; thank you one and all.
and we still have one week to go . . . who knows, maybe we can make it to the magic 8!!

we had a lovely holiday note from foster care to success this past week and while it came to our house, it’s really for all of you. it’s true that what we give to this wonderful cause will expand and multiply beyond our imaginations; every seed dollar becomes so much more when planted in the future lives of these kids.

i also heard from our current scholarship recipient jelissa a few times this fall and she especially wanted to share her latest news during the fundraiser:

Hello Anne!
I am doing great! Sorry I wasn’t able to get back to you right away; the 1st [of december] was actually my birthday and I’m recovering from a cold.  Anyway, it’s looking as though I could possible get all As and maybe a B+ the lowest. Also, I am excited to hear  that  the fundraiser got off to a good start! I have attached a few presentations that I’ve worked on throughout this semester and included photos. Once again, thank you and the Knitspot community for everything!

This is the computer lab in the lower level of the school, I spent most of my days here doing work for my classes. One of the ways I was able to keep my grades up was to come here right after class and work on assignments in advance just to give myself a heads up for the week; by the end of the week I’m so exhausted. However, the bulk of my classes are on Mondays; I have three classes and I am here from 9am-9pm.

We experienced some snow over the weekend; it looked amazing in the park! It’s a huge change from the 60 degree weather we had experienced days before.

My best friend had a baby on October 4th and now I’m a Godmother! His name is Kaden Francis Drayton, I helped her find his first name- means fighter, and his middle name is her grandmother’s first name! This is him recently at one of his checkups, he’s now two months old.

Thank you again for everything, I will periodically set reminders to send more photos and maybe even videos for you guys to see. Since most of my classes require PowerPoint presentations; I’ve become quite good at them, maybe I can do a recap of the year/semester towards the end of December; I think that’d be fun!  I look forward to hearing from you and be on the look out for more updates!

jelissa also let me know that she’ll be spending the holidays in new jersey with a former foster family that she stays in close touch with; i was really glad to hear that she’d be surrounded with loved ones through this season. i hope she does have time now that school is out to send a few more photos and a followup note to share with you; i know it’s very heartwarming to hear news from our scholarship student from time to time.

i don’t know yet how many patterns and yarn we’ve sold during the fundraiser, but it has to be a lot—and each one was a building block that got us here. so please continue to spread the word and encourage your friends, knitting buddies, ravelry groups, knitting teachers and fellow students to participate—our goal is now unlimited!

if you are fired up and feel passionate after reading the fundraiser details, here are some small things you can do to help:

  1. purchase any of our 2017 red scarf fundraiser patterns herehere, here, here, and here, and/or add an extra donation on our website—use the pulldown menu to increase your gift and we will donate the entire pattern price PLUS that extra amount. we are happy to add the pattern to your rav library if you let us know!! (but we have to do it manually, so please tell us)
  2. purchase a pattern on ravelry hereherehere, here, here, and here—the entire retail pattern price will go into the scholarship fund.
  3. purchase a 2017 festivus kit which includes the pattern PLUS enough special edition festivus 4.0, to knit a scarf or cowl. we will add 5% of your yarn purchase price to the fund.
  4. buy one or more skeins of festivus 4.0 for any project and we will add 5% of your purchase price to the fund.
  5. please, please, PLEASE tell everyone you know about the fundraiser—they don’t need to be a knitter to throw $7 (or more!!) at this wonderful cause. please mention it with a link in your favorite ravelry groups, a link and hashtag on your Instagram, Facebook page (and link it), tweet it (with a link!), pin it (yes, with link) and finally just drag your friends over to look at the blog, haha. we’ll even give them a “knit naked sticker badge” if it helps them to help out.
  6. join us for a fun red scarf KAL in our ravelry mothership—we promise a rollicking good time, plenty of support, and of course, neat-o prizes.

 

i am so very grateful to our partner designers who joined me in creating designs to our scholarship effort this year; BIG hugs to kate atherley, mary o’shea, and kerri blumer for their contributions.

and speaking of our partner designers, here are a few other options for holiday gift knitting that are designed especially for using our festivus 4.0 yarns. you can find kits for all of these designs in the FESTIVUS section of our online shop. and while you’re there, take a moment to browse past festivus designs for more quick knit gift ideas.

kate atherley’s mayberry cap is a super quick, last-minute project to knit in festivus 4.0 worsted or any of our worsted weight yarns (it’d be extra yummy in chebris worsted, wow!). ellen knit one up in no time and it’s SO darn cute! kate has many, many clever, fun to knit designs in her pattern shop; you should take a peek.

keri blumer started the rollout of our 2017 pattern train with her andiron cowl and andiron scarf designs available for the ENTIRE fundraising period (we only asked for a month of sales, but she’s extending it!); she’s just awesome and she has lots of beautiful designs to share—be sure to check out her ravelry shop.

in november, we featured our festivus 4.0 sport weight in a delicious trio of colorwork accessories by designer mary o’shea of tullymongan designs.

mary has created many delightful items using bare naked wools yarns—check out her designer page for alternatives that will also work well with festivus 4.0 sport or worsted.

first up, if you live in a very cold climate and need to be outside frequently, these gorgeous cranberry trellis mittens might be right up your alley.

and if you like your accessories to coordinate mary’s got your back here too, with an awesome little cap and fingerless mitts.

the cranberry lattice cap is a match for the cranberry lattice mitts, but also coordinates perfectly with the cranberry trellis mittens—note the pattern in the thumb which matches the hat.

and finally, my bottoms up booties design, which one knitter described as “the coziest pair of slippers she’s ever knit”—which really warmed my heart. this pattern includes instructions for a variety of finishing options and we’ve got bootie kits to go with each of them!

the yarn has been so lovely to knit with that it inspired a new sweater design, which i’ve begun to knit in spare moments between finishing up other projects.

so far it’s just a sleeve on the way, but i promise, this will be an easy knit; i’m working in the round all the way up so as to take advantage of the subtle gradient shifts in the yarn. more on this as it progresses, but let me just share that i am totally in love with the feel of this fabric—it is soft, lush, and squishy beyond belief. it will make the ultimate sweatshirt-type pullover that mister knitspot loves to wear. my only regret is that i didn’t think of it or start it sooner so he’d be wearing it tomorrow . . .

if you are interested in a sweater quantity of this beautiful limited-run yarn, we can help you put a set together—choose a more varied gradient or a subtle one; we can pick them and send photos for approval before you purchase! email operationsATknitspotDOTcom for more info.

and from the bottom of our hearts, thank you for all that you do to make this happen each year!

ps: i’m offering a parade of christmas lights on our instagram account throughout the season—follow @knitspot to see the amazing displays that cardigan and i have discovered on our evening walks (use #twelvenightsofchristmaslights to add your own); trust me, the best is yet to come!

playing festivus footsie

Posted on 4 CommentsPosted in Bare Naked Wools, book reviews/events, designing, patterns

now for something warm and cozy for those cold feet . . . bottoms up booties!

like i said the other day, nothing fits me better than a quick, cute, giftable project to knit in december and these scrumptious slipper socks are just the thing to round out our red scarf scholarship fund pattern collection this year.

with three sizes to choose from, bottoms up booties will fit men, women, or teens and knit up quickly in worsted weight yarn.

knit them taller, shorter, or slouched, with a flat top cuff or a turned—there’s even a buttoned cuff option (i’m finishing my sample up today so i’ll add a photo of that later). you can also adjust the sizing a bit on your own by experimenting with different needle sizes and yarn weights.

i knew as soon as we started talking about festivus yarn back in february that i wanted to make slipper socks as my red scarf fundraiser project this year. and because we had invited several other designer friends to do scarves, mittens, and hats, that slot was open, yay.

I had it on my mind all summer long, and waited anxiously for the yarns to arrive. we were keeping the red scarf patterns secret so i couldn’t share my progress with you but it was interesting for sure! i had several false starts using cables that were too large, for instance. and then a couple more to get the shaping just right.

finally got it right over thanksgiving weekend and once i did, i was addicted—once you understand the construction, this project is a lot of fun; i couldn’t put them down (as my cluttered dining table can attest to).

trust me, i’ve had NO extra time these last couple of weeks, but in between other tasks, i’ve managed to knit a sizable stack of samples. i just couldn’t stop, once i began experimenting!

remember, 100% of the purchase price of this pattern will go into our scholarship fund!! you can even add a few bucks to that amount if you like; more on that in a bit.

you can make the smallest size from just one skein of our festivus 4.0 worsted weight yarn (or any of our worsted weight options). knit in the round, the fabric is very stretchy and highly textured to make the most of a delicious fiber choice.

i just love the kent worsted for instance, paired with the festivus 4.0 worsted in cranberry crush—everything about these is smooshalicious, mmm.

like kate’s mayberry cap, the bottoms up booties are a great candidate for that “insurance” pile; a make-ahead project that could fit the person who lands on your list at the last minute or a surprise holiday houseguest.

shown here in size medium, with kent worsted in beachglass and festivus worsted 4.0 in cranberry crush.

i also love, love, love, the combination my friend hilary chose—confection worsted in dark chocolate with a barber-pole skein of festivus 4.0; these are going to be suh-weet!

grab a pattern or kit and join the festivus KAL in our ravelry group to knit along on this or any of our 2017 scholarship fundraiser projects (see below)!

everyone’s knits look so festive in festivus 4.0 worsted! cranberry crush just screams HOLIDAY, but then works far beyond that to cheer us up through the coldest days of winter; it’s one of those reds that goes with everything. and the yarn—this springy, cushy, soft worsted weight is just what you want for a knitted cap or mittens—so responsive in this kind of fabric, you won’t want to put it down. it’s a delight to knit with and even better to wear.

 

now, you’re probably wondering how to get hold of the pattern, right?? there are so many options!

just click here to purchase in our online shop; with this option you can also add a few buck to the pattern price to add to the fundraiser AND we’ll be happy to send you a copy for your ravelry library if you leave a note at checkout.

OR, click here to purchase a bottoms up booties kit, complete with yarn and pattern (again, we’ll be happy to put the pattern in your rav library). the kit makes a great gift for another knitter as well, even a beginner!

OR, purchase the pattern on ravelry by clicking here; you won’t be able to make an additional contribution with the option, but we still appreciate each and every purchase. Patterns also make great gifts for knitters!

i am so very grateful to our partner designers who joined me in creating designs to our scholarship effort this year; BIG hugs to kate atherley, mary o’shea, and kerri blumer for their contributions. keep an eye out on monday or tuesday for the release of my own design; it’s coming!

speaking of our partner designers, here are a few other options for holiday gift knitting that are designed especially for using our festivus 4.0 yarn. you can find kits for all of these designs in the FESTIVUS section of our online shop. and while you’re there, take a moment to browse past festivus designs for more quick knit gift ideas.

keri blumer started the rollout of our 2017 pattern train with her andiron cowl and andiron scarf designs available for the ENTIRE fundraising period (we only asked for a month of sales, but she’s extending it!); she’s just awesome and she has lots of beautiful designs to share—be sure to check out her ravelry shop.

in november, we featured our festivus 4.0 sport weight in a delicious trio of colorwork accessories by designer mary o’shea of tullymongan designs.

mary has created many delightful items using bare naked wools yarns—check out her designer page for alternatives that will also work well with festivus 4.0 sport or worsted.

first up, if you live in a very cold climate and need to be outside frequently, these gorgeous cranberry trellis mittens might be right up your alley.

and if you like your accessories to coordinate mary’s got your back here too, with an awesome little cap and fingerless mitts.

the cranberry lattice cap is a match for the cranberry lattice mitts, but also coordinates perfectly with the cranberry trellis mittens—note the pattern in the thumb which matches the hat.

now, let’s talk about goals . . . with one month to go, doug tells me that the total is $3779.85—we are getting there! our goal this year is to reach or exceed $6,000.00—after all, college costs are constantly rising. please help us get there; your $7 purchase is one more (important) brick in the foundation!

if you are fired up and feel passionate after reading the fundraiser details, here are some small things you can do to help:

  1. purchase any of our 2017 red scarf fundraiser patterns herehere, here, here, and here, and/or add an extra donation on our website—use the pulldown menu to increase your gift and we will donate the entire pattern price PLUS that extra amount. we are happy to add the pattern to your rav library if you let us know!! (but we have to do it manually, so please tell us)
  2. purchase a pattern on ravelry hereherehere, here, here, and here—the entire retail pattern price will go into the scholarship fund.
  3. purchase a 2017 festivus kit which includes the pattern PLUS enough special edition festivus 4.0, to knit a scarf or cowl. we will add 5% of your yarn purchase price to the fund.
  4. buy one or more skeins of festivus 4.0 for any project and we will add 5% of your purchase price to the fund.
  5. please, please, PLEASE tell everyone you know about the fundraiser—they don’t need to be a knitter to throw $7 (or more!!) at this wonderful cause. please mention it with a link in your favorite ravelry groups, a link and hashtag on your Instagram, Facebook page (and link it), tweet it (with a link!), pin it (yes, with link) and finally just drag your friends over to look at the blog, haha. we’ll even give them a “knit naked sticker badge” if it helps them to help out.
  6. join us for a fun red scarf KAL in our ravelry mothership—we promise a rollicking good time, plenty of support, and of course, neat-o prizes.

and from the bottom of our hearts, thank you for all that you do to make this happen each year!

mayberry cap

Posted on 4 CommentsPosted in Bare Naked Wools, book reviews/events, patterns

suddenly it’s december 1st and guess who hasn’t started her christmas knitting??

not that this is any different than any other year—i am perennially late getting into the mood. i think i might be addicted to racing to the finish, in fact. which is why i love quick knits for gifts. and if said quick knit is also universally cute for guys, kids, and women . . . AND raises money for a great cause like our red scarf scholarship fund, well, sign me up.

kate atherley‘s mayberry cap, designed especially for our 2017 fundraiser ticks every one of those boxes and more, plus it’s fun to knit—how can we not love it? kristy glass just gave us a nice shoutout on her youTube channel with a fundraiser plug featuring this cap—you should take a look (i’ll wait).

and for those who found us through kristy or jillian this month and are new to our community, please click here to read all the details about our annual fundraiser and a little bit about jelissa, our current recipient, soon-to-be a graduate of FIT NYC. the beauty of this fundraiser is that we build it as a whole community, one small purchase at a time and together, we make a huge impact for an aspiring student.

remember, 100% of the purchase price of this pattern will go into our scholarship fund!! you can even add a few bucks to that amount if you like; more on that in a bit.

anyway, back to the hat—this cap works up in no time from just one skein of our festivus 4.0 worsted weight yarn. knit in the round, the fabric is super stretchy in two by two rib that is pleasantly interrupted up by a fun-to-work cable detail. the pattern includes three sizes—this design is a great candidate for that “insurance” pile; the place where you squirrel away a few extra unisex gifts for last minute giving.

 

and if you prefer a lighter cap with a bit of drape, i bet you could knit one in festivus 4.0 sport as well, using smaller needles and working one size up from your usual. i might try that option next; if i do, i’ll report on it later.

ellen started a festivus KAL in our ravelry group—please join us to knit along on kate’s hat or any of our 2017 scholarship fundraiser projects (see below)!

everyone’s knits look so festive in festivus 4.0 worsted! cranberry crush just screams HOLIDAY, but then works far beyond that to cheer us up through the coldest days of winter; it’s one of those reds that goes with everything. and the yarn—this springy, cushy, soft worsted weight is just what you want for a knitted cap or mittens—so responsive in this kind of fabric, you won’t want to put it down. it’s a delight to knit with and even better to wear.

we have a couple of kate’s caps started around the shop—ellen is knitting hers in festivus 4.0 worsted (above) and i’m knitting mine in kent worsted, a great option. the only problem with mine is that it’s SO squishy i’m stopping too often to get a hug from it.

and one of my ambitious knitting students, hilary, is working on a field and shore blanket in it—to die for. she even talked her sister into a KAL.

now, you’re probably wondering how to get hold of the pattern, right?? there are so many options!

just click here to purchase in our online shop; with this option you can also add a few buck to the pattern price to add to the fundraiser AND we’ll be happy to send you a copy for your ravelry library if you leave a note at checkout.

OR, click here to purchase a mayberry cap kit, complete with yarn and pattern (again, we’ll be happy to put the pattern in your rav library). the kit makes a great gift for another knitter as well, even a beginner!

OR, purchase the pattern on ravelry by clicking here; you won’t be able to make an additional contribution with the option, but we still appreciate each and every purchase. Patterns also make great gifts for knitters!

i am so very grateful to our partner designers who joined me in creating designs to our scholarship effort this year; BIG hugs to kate atherley, mary o’shea, and kerri blumer for their contributions. keep an eye out on monday or tuesday for the release of my own design; it’s coming!

speaking of our partner designers, here are a few other options for holiday gift knitting that are designed especially for using our festivus 4.0 yarn. you can find kits for all of these designs in the FESTIVUS section of our online shop. and while you’re there, take a moment to browse past festivus designs for more quick knit gift ideas.

keri blumer started the rollout of our 2017 pattern train with her andiron cowl and andiron scarf designs available for the ENTIRE fundraising period (we only asked for a month of sales, but she’s extending it!); she’s just awesome and she has lots of beautiful designs to share—be sure to check out her ravelry shop.

in november, we featured our festivus 4.0 sport weight in a delicious trio of colorwork accessories by designer mary o’shea of tullymongan designs.

mary has created many delightful items using bare naked wools yarns—check out her designer page for alternatives that will also work well with festivus 4.0 sport or worsted.

first up, if you live in a very cold climate and need to be outside frequently, these gorgeous cranberry trellis mittens might be right up your alley.

and if you like your accessories to coordinate mary’s got your back here too, with an awesome little cap and fingerless mitts.

the cranberry lattice cap is a match for the cranberry lattice mitts, but also coordinates perfectly with the cranberry trellis mittens—note the pattern in the thumb which matches the hat.

 

now, let’s talk about goals . . . with one month to go, doug tells me that the total is $3779.85—we are getting there! our goal this year is to reach or exceed $6,000.00—after all, college costs are constantly rising. please help us get there; your $7 purchase is one more (important) brick in the foundation!

if you are fired up and feel passionate after reading the fundraiser details, here are some small things you can do to help:

  1. purchase any of our 2017 red scarf fundraiser patterns here, here, here, and here, and/or add an extra donation on our website—use the pulldown menu to increase your gift and we will donate the entire pattern price PLUS that extra amount. we are happy to add the pattern to your rav library if you let us know!! (but we have to do it manually, so please tell us)
  2. purchase a pattern on ravelry herehere, here, here, and here—the entire retail pattern price will go into the scholarship fund.
  3. purchase a 2017 festivus kit which includes the pattern PLUS enough special edition festivus 4.0, to knit a scarf or cowl. we will add 5% of your yarn purchase price to the fund.
  4. buy one or more skeins of festivus 4.0 for any project and we will add 5% of your purchase price to the fund.
  5. please, please, PLEASE tell everyone you know about the fundraiser—they don’t need to be a knitter to throw $7 (or more!!) at this wonderful cause. please mention it with a link in your favorite ravelry groups, a link and hashtag on your Instagram, Facebook page (and link it), tweet it (with a link!), pin it (yes, with link) and finally just drag your friends over to look at the blog, haha. we’ll even give them a “knit naked sticker badge” if it helps them to help out.
  6. join us for a fun red scarf KAL in our ravelry mothership—we promise a rollicking good time, plenty of support, and of course, neat-o prizes.

and from the bottom of our hearts, thank you for all that you do to make this happen each year!