Friday, April 30, 2010

Lorna and Vera - Two Fearless Knitters

A while back, I got to visit with two very talented knitting friends who were traveling through our neck of the woods.  I call them "Fearless Knitters" because not only can they knit just about anything, no matter how complicated, but they managed to make it up to Lake Tahoe and across the notorious Donner Pass in a raging blizzard when many had turned back.  That's my friend Vera (the one on the left) and nothing stops her from getting where she wants to go.  Go Vera!  The lady next to her is her daughter, Lorna Miser, the founder of Lorna's Laces, the popular hand dyed yarns. 

Lorna published a book called, Faith, Hope, Love, Knitting in which she shares memorable stories, each inspiring a beautiful knitting project.  Many are made with Lorna's Laces yarn, and even though she no longer owns the company, she still works with those beautiful yarns.

Lorna was taking time on this trip to work on her new book, The Knitter's Guide To Hand-Dyed and Variegated Yarn: Techniques and Projects for Handpainted and Multicolored Yarn which will be coming out in the Fall. To find out more about her book, go to Amazon where you can preorder it.

For anyone wondering what happened to my stash knitting, here is a picture of the Briar Rose socks I have been working on for my husband.  The pattern is Roger by the talented Anne Hanson.


Wednesday, April 21, 2010

My Over - The - Top Shawl

Back in November, Kristin Nicholas and WEBS were running a contest to promote Kristin's new book, Color by Kristin.  I was lucky enough to win, and was thrilled to think I had won an autographed copy of her book.  When I called Kathy at WEBS she told me I also won the yarn and materials to do a project of my choice from the book - wow!  I'm a big fan of Kristin Nicholas' designs and her use of color.  Over the years, I have done a number of her Classic Elite cabled sweaters and they are classics that stand the test of time.  I decided to do the Over-the-Top Shawl because I can see myself using this on chilly nights when I go out to dinner or to an outdoor concert here in the Lake Tahoe area where it can be rather cool on a summer night.  WEBS was very generous and sent a basket full of goodies.

 I finished my Christmas knitting and started on this project the end of January and with the exception of a few short detours, I have been working on this steadily.  Here are some pictures of my progress.  This is knit in the round with a simple steek that eliminates the need for machine stitching and uses the ends for fringe.  Very neat idea!  Will show how this is done in my next post on this project.


Hope to have this done in the next few weeks.  Will post some pictures when I'm done!

No, But I Could Have

"Did you make your sweater?"  No, is my reply, but I could have!                                                                       When I shop for sweaters for myself, I am invariably drawn to beautiful sweaters that look handknit or have actually been handknit by others in some far off country.  I think of the work that went into making these sweaters and how little the knitters get paid for the time they put into these projects.  I bought this sweater in a shop called, Boulder World, in Boulder, Colorado.  It is run by a family from Nepal and they sell real handknit sweaters, hats, mittens   and other craft items from their country.  Boy, was it hard to make a decision - I could have bought all of them!  If you are a knitter and find yourself in Boulder one of these days, plan to make a stop at this shop to admire the work of the knitters from Nepal. I doubt you will leave without buying some of their handiwork.

Saw this version of the Nina Shawl from Mason Dixon Knitting at The Lamb Shoppe in Denver and I am making it as a birthday present for my daughter.  This version uses Cotton Fleece and is a great project to carry along as it involves a lot of mindless knitting, good for when you are watching TV or are just feeling slightly brain dead.

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Tuesday, April 20, 2010

More Knitting in Denver

Showers of Flowers, located in Lakewood, Colorado has to be one of the biggest shops I have come across in my travels. It's 11,000 square feet of floor space filled with yarn and other knitting and crochet supplies, and these pictures don't begin to do it justice.  Check out their web site to see a complete view of what is in store for their visitors.  Sharon, the owner, is very welcoming and will give you a complete tour, including her wearhouse, if you are interested.  She still has a big place in her heart for novelty yarns, which are scattered all over the store, including the obligatory scarves that go with them, and if you are in the market for this kind of yarn, this is the place to shop.Sharon told me she has a very active on line business with special sales, so I will definitely be checking this out.

Here is a view of the needles she has in stock.  If you can't find it here, it probably doesn't exist!

My daughter is interested in quilting and we visited a shop on Broadway in Denver called Fancy Tiger.
Fancy Tiger is located in another one of those great Denver neighborhoods that has established it's own style.  The demographic is young and hip with interesting little clothing and jewelry shops and Fancy Tiger fits right in.  This is a craft shop featuring sewing, quilting and knitting supplies and classes, and the minute we walked in, we knew it would be hard to leave.  The staff is young and welcoming and they have put together a really fun shop.  Lots of great fabrics for quilting, and I was surprised at the extent of their yarn selection for a store that isn't too large.  They feature knitting patterns that are really new - the kind you find on Knitty and Ravelry.  Near the entrance they had a display with Spud and Chloe yarns and one of their sweaters. The class list was quite extensive and included knitting, crochet, spinning and lace knitting.  Never did find out why it was called Fancy Tiger - I was too busy shopping.  Definitely will be making a point to stop there on my next trip to Denver!


Friday, April 16, 2010

Knitting In Denver

I just came back from a trip to Denver where I spent a few weeks with my daughter and her family preparing for the arrival of our newest grandchild. I love visiting Denver; the layout of the city is visitor friendly and there are alot of interesting neighborhoods to visit with great yarn shops in many of them.  Our first stop is always at The Lamb Shoppe in Congress Park, one of the most popular shops in Denver.  Mary Carol Jehn and Anita Meyer are the owners, and they have done a great job of setting up a beautiful shop with a very extensive selection of yarns and patterns.  They also have a coffee bar and make great lattes and cappuccinos!

While we were there, we ran into Mai Wyn Schantz, the designer of the bobbled capelet I made for my daughter, who just happened to be wearing it!  What a blog picture moment!  This capelet was a fun project and knit up very quickly using Cascade Soft Spun, a bulky yarn that was doubled using size 11 needles.

Here's another picture of Mai Wyn's Cabled Capelet.

More about my Denver yarn crawl later, but here is a picture of Forest Edwin  in his Mock Cable baby hat!

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Thursday, April 1, 2010

Knitting On A Snowy Day

For anyone not familiar with the Lake Tahoe area, it is truly a Winter Wonderland. Set at a high altitude with lots of sun and snow, the lake is surrounded by ski resorts - the 1960 Olympics were held at Squaw Valley and, hopefully, again in 2018.

It snowed quite a bit this winter and continues on in March which has given me a lot of opportunities to sit inside, enjoy the view and knit.
Here is a picture of our house taken after a snow storm and one of the view from our back deck. A great motivator to pull out some stash yarn and make mittens, scarves and ski hats!

I knit Cirilia Rose's Sub Rosa earflap hat for my daughter Jamie who is a snowboarder.  The yarn is Berrocco's Peruvia Quick.


These mittens were made with one skein of Malabrigo in Periwinkle. The pattern is Chevalier Mittens by Mari Muinonen and is free on Ravelry.