snow beaters

Posted on Posted in Bare Naked Wools, designing, food and garden


oh yeah, it’s snowy here. AND it’s cold too—wind chill below zero and everything. look what a nice job mister knitspot does on that walk. you can tell we are city people at heart, haha.


but look at my garden!!


i totally thought that the really REALLY cold weather would kill it off, but no, it seemed fine. and then we got a dump of snow on tuesday (after this photo) and i thought, surely THAT was it. but no—turns out those beehives of snow that now cover the chard are little warming cocoons, sheltering them from the wind. they are like easter eggs; when you crack open the frosty dome, theres a bright green and recenter, haha. and i don’t think we can kill the kale at all; it’s just fine.


ditto for the collards. now, give things another week and they could be in trouble. but for now it’s safe to plan on greens for dinner. which is a good thing because colds are starting to go around. i am a firm believer that lots of vegetables keeps us from getting those.


not to mention how perfectly festive it is to see those greens upon greens, mixed with a little red, when i look into my dinner plate.


it really has gotten very cold, which is quite unusual for december; most years it holds off until january. nevertheless, here we are. already sort of housebound, at least for now (the forecast is pretty much cold and then colder through christmas at least).


so it’s  good time to cozy up indoors with some knitting at every opportunity, am i right? after finishing up the short and stripey snow flies cowl in time for the fundraiser kickoff and festivus yarn release, i cast on right away for a larger cowl all in delicious red. this project is so fun—i hope you’ll visit our rav group to knit along with us on yours.


i got through my ribbing on saturday morning and started the patterned portion during my class, then completed the first repeat that night.


i took a night off on sunday to work on something else, but on monday i completed one more repeat. it’s so funny about this colorway—in the skein, it looks like it has a lot of pink, but when you knit it up ina texture like this one, the richness and depth of the colorway really develops.


i think the lustre fibers in the kent DK yarn base also play part. the color almost behaves like an enamel; when you look close, you can “see into it”. more than half done now and still i had some yarn left in the cake from my first skein. i’m saving my leftovers for a stranded color work project i have in mind—turns out i didn’t completely get that out of my system while knitting our recent club projects . . .


i spread the rest of the knitting out over tuesday and wednesday and bound the whole thing off this morning. i soaked in in cold water with wool soap and a little vinegar and there was no color runoff at all.


now it’s stretched out to dry on my workroom floor, where it can catch the drifts of warm air from the heat vent. it will dry very quickly this way, so i need to remember to turn and reshape it often.

i should be able to take photos tomorrow and finalize the pattern soon. barb also finished up her scarf (second size) last night at the shop; she’s blocking it today and will bring it back next wednesday. we should have pattern with final photos and yardages well before christmas!

doug is going to let me know tomorrow where our scholarship totals stand, so i will get back to you with those in a few days. the yarn is selling well, but we could use your help in getting more patterns sold—please spread the word about this great cause.


on tuesday, as that storm was cooking and coming to a boil, i watched from the window while knitting on my latest obsession.


a big cozy cardigan in stone soup DK. i have been living in my longer, oversized cardigans this fall and winter and i got to thinking that another caïssa-style sweater in stone soup DK would be lusciously warm—just what i need.


and wouldn’t you know, i don’t have anything in my own wardrobe that’s knit in the marble shade! so i threw a pattern together just before we left for thanksgiving and worked on a sleeve swatch during my trip.


i love the texture SO much; it looks like birch trees to me so that’s what i’m naming it—birches.


even better, the fabric reverses to an equally cool pattern; i’m thinking i may be able to wear it both ways (with the seaming on one side being a visible feature; i’ve always liked that look).

so i finished my first sleeve last week and figured out what i want to do with the fronts.


same body pattern but with a wide lapel that sports a cable feature. the cable will likely extend only partway up and then give way to plain ribbing through the neck drop and collar area; i’m keeping my options open on that. i started the first front (above) and after a few hours realized that there was a 2-stitch column near the center that i didn’t like the look of.


so i ripped back, laid out the surface pattern just a bit differently and restarted. thank goodness for a larger diameter yarn—it didn’t take long to regain what i’d had to get rid of.


now it’s exactly the way i want it and i’ve even knit another repeat onto what i have here. big cozy sweater will soon be mine, YES.

while i love my caïssa as designed, i sometimes miss having buttons. so for this one i will add some kind of closure—maybe just a toggle or two with a hidden button inside the wide lapel, i don’t know for sure yet. i do have to decide soon tho, haha, as this knit is speedy.


i want to bring in bunches and bunches of our hardy rosemary and put it all around the house . . . can’t you just smell it?

8 thoughts on “snow beaters

  1. Rosemary wont usually survive a MN winter. In the past I have potted it up and put it in a sunny indoor window and happily enjoyed it all winter. The latest resident cat treats all herbs like catnip, leading to disaster. Now I cut it off at the base and put it in a wicker basket in the garage to dry…still better than nothing, but I miss the scent.

    I am on a severe yarn diet right now, even for a good cause, so I won’t be buying the beautiful red yarn, but am planning to send a donation in lieu of the purchase, look for it in the next week.

  2. Okay, now I want to frog my Current Caissa and use the Rosewood colored Holda for this Birches pattern. i love my greenCaissa but a little variety is always welcome. I’ll focus on the Red Scarf projects for a bit to see hw soon this pattern will be ready!

    We might get some snow tomorrow, but nothing like yours. The Sierras are ready for it though….

  3. I love how this sweater is looking so far! I love my caïssa, and if this is going to be similar in structure I can’t wait to see the finished look.

    I’m done with my snow flies cowl (drying out as I type this) and awaiting my snow miser so I can work on the scarf version. Thanks for having both options in the pattern!

    We’re headed to Atlanta, my old stomping grounds, for our annual trip to visit with Santa. Each time I go back I miss the city so much, but I’m always happy to return to our home.

    Keep those needles hummin’! I so anxious to see the new sweater 🙂

  4. Just stop it! I have to get my house clean and make soup for a Christmas gathering tomorrow. But, reading your post made me want to drop everything and just knit haha!

  5. I love the color of thay cowl! It’s 4* here today so I’m wanting to knit something warm and cozy. An oversized cardigan would really do the trick I think. Thanks for the idea!

  6. I love that cable feature. I’m especially intrigued because birches are my favorite trees. I’m looking forward to seeing the final product.

  7. Love the beginnings of the birches sweater! Rosemary is one of my favorite herbs! Made some Rosemary shortbread last week that is so good I’ve had to hide it from myself!

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