a lovely time was had by all

Posted on Posted in designing, lace/shawls, projects

there’s really nothing like a warm, inviting yarn shop, is there?
this past weekend i had the pleasure of visiting and teaching in such a one—the yarn lounge of carytown, in richmond, VA.

owned by stewart allen, the shop is nestled into a vintage retail space, among many peer businesses in the neighborhood—carytown is one of those unique shopping districts that spring up in formerly rundown areas, revitalizing old neighborhoods with a fresh infusion of locally owned and operated shops and eateries.

this is a great shop to visit on a day out—plenty to look at and explore inside, with more attractions in the neighborhood once the yarn fumes have become too much. if you live anywhere nearby, you should go.

the yarn lounge is a deep space, lined with cubbies of yarn and racks of great accessories. the choice of fiber goodies is wide-ranging, with many local and artisan producers represented along with other favorite top-quality brands.

the shop is filled with interesting, re-purposed furniture and display vehicles, overflowing with yarn and books. light from the enormous, street-facing front windows filters right through to the back of the place.

several large work and lounging areas are available to friends who come to sit and knit with company or take a class. the room was full of laughing chatter as our friday morning yarn voyage class gathered around several long tables in the middle of the store

we had a wonderful three hours together, discussing yarn characteristics and how to pair which yarns with which stitch patterns or garment types. and we swatched—each person worked a little sampler from a buffet of yarn leftovers, to better understand how yarn characteristics affect the fabric texture.

after class, we settled in for a box lunch and informal visit. it was a really great way for us all to kick off the weekend—thank you ever so much stewart, for having me teach at your shop.

and thank you again for the shirts; we both love them!

i had a break for a few hours in the afternoon, during which i caught up on some email and knitting—having time to chill in the middle of a teaching day was actually really nice; i’ll have to experiment with that some more.

i brought a few projects with me on this trip, several of them secret, which i worked on during the flights to and from richmond. in my room on friday, i worked on these mitts i started back in august for my niece.

based on the bougainvillea sock pattern, i wanted to create a longer, more embellished design for one of the two pair she requested (the curling mitts will be the other).

as with many small projects laying about my study unfinished, i have no idea why it is taking so long to get this one done. maybe because it’s not entirely mindless and i need to keep the chart out while working on it? anyway, i have one mitt done now and the other is on the needles; hopefully, i’ll finish them up by the time the weather gets chilly in austin.

in the evening, it was time to head out to teach a blocking class at the hanover knitting guild. here was a group ready and waiting to get their hands wet, alright, haha. a number of participants brought pieces to block, and with plenty of space to spread out, we were able to set up several steaming and pinning stations.

i still hadn’t gotten around to blocking the les abeilles i knit during my rhinebeck trip, so i tossed it into my traveling tote to use as a demo piece.

we also did some henley sweater pieces, courtesy of michelle, a scarf brought by katherine, and some sprössling pieces brought by katj, who was in the house.

i have to applaud the full house of participants who thought that spending a friday evening blocking stuff was their idea of a good time—those are my kind of people, alright. and we did have loads of fun.

the next morning we gathered back again for an all-day sweater fitness class. i was moving around the room all day and completely forgot about using my camera, but suffice it to say that it was another good class.

so good, that i think i’ll be going back to richmond in may for more . . . the hanover guild is a wonderful group of knitters, welcoming and fun to be with. if you live in the area and have been craving good knitting company, consider joining them—you won’t regret it.

soon i was winging my way home again; it was the quickest of trips, but we made every minute count—it was all very excellent.

and for some reason, ever since i got home i’ve been moving like a turtle, heh. i just can’t get my energy up this week (or so it feels; maybe i’m not doing too badly).

on sunday, once i got my email boxes cleared of messages and the bookkeeping done for the week, i headed out to the garden for one last haul of tomatoes. i spent the rest of the afternoon in the kitchen, cooking up a nice hot curry for dinner and to eat as leftovers during the week.

once that was cleaned up, i worked for a while on one of my secret projects, then decided i should treat myself to a change of pace for getting so far on them during my weekend flights.

so i started a scarf i’ve been thinking about for some time—since the early summer i think. i don’t think this yarn was right for summer knitting though (due to the fuzz), but now that the cold is moving in (fast and furiously, as a matter of fact), i’m suddenly more attracted to this project

doesn’t that look yummy? i’m making this as a companion piece for the delicato mitts. i always enjoyed working that pattern and thought it might make a nice scarf.

i hadn’t really come across the right yarn until susan from slackford studio sent me some of her hand-dyed nimbus cloud fingering yarn.

this astoundingly soft blend of alpaca/silk/cashmere is especially appealing for this project in the color she sent—lilac frost. for me, the color, sheen, and haze of the yarn make the perfect statement for a christmas lace scarf. so weightless, yet so warm, mmm. i could bathe in it.

let’s take it over near the window so you can appreciate the soft variations of the colorway . . .

it positively glooows, doesn’t it?
see, instant treat, just when you need one. sigh.
ETA: susan just whispered in my ear that the nimbus cloud yarn will be on sale in her online shop from saturday 11/6 through friday 11/12 . . .

yesterday in knitting class i finished up the hellebores beret i’ve been knitting in fiber isle magique cashmere and bison, the leftover yarn from one of my pine and ivy shawlettes.

i love, love the curlique shapes that the lace makes in this circular piece. the texture coordinates really well with the body stitch in pine and ivy, too; it’ll make a great set.

this was another piece that sat half-finished for a while, but required only about an hour of knitting to complete. and good thing i did; the weather has turned suddenly very cold, with frosty nights and windy days (albeit sunny and beautiful, yay). the house feels constantly chilly, so i’m glad to have this cap to wear indoors, while i acclimate to the new season.

late last night, i worked on the elm row wristlets for a bit while i watched TV with david. i got this far on the second one before i had to retire, but i’m sure i can finish that ribbing up in no time tonight. and then i can cross another UFO off the list.

i’ve got three secret projects on the needles at the moment, that i’m looking to finish ion the next few days. i may not have much to show you in the next post, but i’ll have other news to share.

and now, the moment you have been reading for—who won the vogue knitting mittens & gloves book??

i’m happy to report that the winner is eleanor w. because she is familiar to me form the daily comments; i love hearing from her so often.
congratulations eleanor!

well, i better skedaddle

22 thoughts on “a lovely time was had by all

  1. Anne – that looks like a lovely trip. Will you be working up those long bougainvillea gloves as a pattern for your shop? They’re extremely beautiful – I love the way they fit, and the detail on the wrist-side makes it really special.

  2. Looks wonderful. I’m still stuck on the idea of curry (it’s cold and rainy today).

    Lucky me, I managed (with at least two friends) to get into your Advanced Lace Class at DFWFiberfest next spring. At 9AM in the morning with an hour’s drive added on, you will have to pour coffee down me, or on me, if not set up an intravenous drip of it. Soooo not a morning person. The brain takes hours to be sharp enough for lace. Guess you could always poke me with a sharp needle.

  3. Anne I hate to tell you this but it a whopping 55 in Dallas today. The evenings are starting to cool off too in to the 40s and 30s. I am sure your niece will love seeing her mitts when they get here! I know I need to get moving and make some myself!

  4. Pssst, Anne, the Nimbus Cloud from Slackford Studio is going to be on 15% off sale next week, Saturday, Nov 6 to Friday, Nov 12th.

    Slackford Studio (dotcom)

  5. Hey Anne, welcome back home! I love the long purple mitts for your niece! She will so love them. And the wristlets are so cute too!! And of course . . the les abeilles. . . mine’s ready for blocking too!

  6. Oh Anne – what a nice visit you had in Richmond. It looks like the weather cooperated, the people were fun and pleased to share your time and knowledge, and you finished projects to boot! I love seeing what you make – the fibers are so beautiful, and then you seem to always put the perfect fiber with the perfect design. My latest plan is to make the Pea Vine Shawl from Great Northern Fingering Mink. YUMMMMM!
    Hooray for Eleanor for winning the book! It looks like a wonderful addition to any knitting library!

  7. Boy, I was so surprised to get your email Anne. I had just come home from a long weekend conference and was really tired, checked my email and found a wonderful surprise. Thank you so much. I have been following your blog for literally years now and have never entered a contest. I am going to make that muff and take photos and send them in. Really – I appreciate your generosity with your excellent designs, your artistry and your gifting. Thanks, Anne, from your neighbour north of the border.

  8. Carytown is such a neat area of Richmond – hope you got a chance to see more of the area – there are some stunning neighborhoods and old homes in parts of Richmond.

  9. Those classes sound like such fun! I especially love the sampler class – that would be a wonderful way to learn more about how to match yarn and project. I wish it would cool down here enough to wear caps and wristlets; last week it looked like we were headed for winter, but today it’s going to be in the 90s. I’m so confused…

  10. Oh! I wish I’d known you would be in Richmond, I would have driven down for the day. Maybe someday you’ll make it to DC. 😉

  11. I’m so glad you enjoyed your weekend in my hometown. Carytown is my favorite shopping area. I even lived in an apartment there for a year before I bought my house. The Yarn Lounge is a great LYS – glad you thought so too.

    Hope to see you the next time you are in town.

  12. How fun to visit so many lovely yarn shops and meet their knitters.

    I love the name lilac frost for a yarn color!

    It’s definitely getting chilly here – 27 this morning! I scraped my car windshield for the first time and the nasturtiums are history…

  13. Anne, I was so happy to have been able to attend your Fri night and Sat classes . I really enjoyed it. Great food too! Hope to see you again next year. Next year I’m taking time off work to attend all the classes!

  14. You’ll love this, Anne–tonight I was reading at my computer, catching up on blogs with the window open to Knitspot, when my boyfriend came up to talk about something or other. Then all of a sudden, apropos of nothing, he looked at the screen and said “that’s Anne Hanson!” (And this is a man who’d never even MET a knitter before he met me.)

    Apparently the constant Knitspot talk is getting somewhere . . .

  15. Anne, I so enjoy the way that you toss one teensy little sentence into your blog that contains the word “secret”….it just sets my “woohoo new project antennae” all a quiver. Oh, to be a flight attendant on your trips to catch a sneak peek at those secret projects!

  16. Anne,
    Thanks again for a great weekend full of classes. You are a fun and inspirational teacher.
    I’m glad you liked the Yarn Lounge, it is my favorite knitting place with beautiful yarns and good people.
    Looking forward to May when you return to our area.
    Love the new knits!
    Janice aka Tejedora

  17. Anne, can you tell us if your “delicato” scarf will use one skein of the nimbus? I might have to try to snag one… 🙂

    I’m defending my MS thesis in two weeks; I need an instant treat!!

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