Monthly Archives: September 2013

Wagonful Of Pumpkins …



Chester, New Jersey

- by Joan -

One Down and One to Go

Back from a successful weekend! The weather was great. A little overcast and cool on Saturday and cool then blue skies and sunny on Sunday. What more could you ask for?

Next?  One more glaze firing and Fall Fiber Festival.  Luckily my back is feeling pretty darn good...and I have another massage at 11 today. :)

Findley FO–Helen’s Kiwassa Shawl

Happy Fall everyone!!

This is without a doubt my favorite time of year.  It’s still sunny and beautiful, but the temps have dropped just enough that it’s an absolute joy to be outside.  The nights are cool and perfect for sleeping.  If it was like this for 10 month out of the year, I would be a happy woman.  As it is, I try to get out and enjoy it as much as I can because sadly, it doesn’t last long for us here in New England.

Our cooler weather makes it a perfect time to start pulling out the knitwear, and for me, it’s a perfect time to bring you what you’ve all been waiting for…..a FINISHED Kiwassa Shawl!

flat shawl

close up shadowy shawl


Can you tell I’m a little happy with the finished product?

close up Helen

It’s been great fun sharing my progress on this project with you!  I hope you’ve enjoyed it as much as I have.  Now it’s time to cast on my next project!

Happy knitting!


Consider this an I.O.U….

I absolutely owe y’all a long, newsy blog post. And I have plenty of material for one– loads of pictures and stories to share with you. But this past week has left me completely exhausted and I just don’t have what it takes to get it done tonight.

I promise to hook you up tomorrow without fail (although it may be later because I’ve got an early morning date with the post office). In the meantime, please head over to Amy’s blog and read about our crazy week.

Scenes From the Craziest Week EVER

This week we played host to “Yarn Share” prep with Susan and Lauria to get out the latest yarn shares and The Shepherd and The Shearer shares.

This involved dyeing some yarn, packaging some yarn, and just a smidge of tagging yarn.  And by “smidge” I mean something like 7,500.

Yup.  We took turns stringing twine through product tags and tying them onto hanks of yarn to be packaged and shipped out.

Fortunately Maddie had a ready supply of friends willing to help out while Lauria got the dyeing and labeling of packages accomplished.  It took nearly two weeks.  But friends, let me tell you.  Our hands felt divine after handling all that wool with its soothing lanolin still intact!


I even got to try my hand at dyeing yarn for the first time!

I didn’t dye any of the share yarn – I was waaaay too nervous I’d mess that up!  But I had some farm yarn (Cormo/Mohair) kicking around that I threw in the pot.


Isn’t it gorgeous?  It’s exactly what I was hoping for.

My friend Tanya threw two of my skeins into a batch of the cranberry dye as well, and it is AMAZING.  But I don’t have any pictures of it at the moment.  Sorry!


Luscious wool.


Our house was overrun with it!


There were times where every one of us was tempted to lose hope that it would ever get done and sent out, but thankfully we had some of the most hardworking and fun people on the job.

Now we are done and our Tibetan mountain range of wool has become a mere Catskills.

Time to relax, recoup, and get back to routine.

Tagged: Farm, Knitting, Pets

Review: The Art of Seamless Knitting

Post image for Review: The Art of Seamless Knitting


First, the facts:

Title: The Art of Seamless Knitting

Author: Simona Merchant-Dest and Faina Goberstein

Published by: Interweave Press, 2013

Pages: 183

Type: Patterns and How-to


1. All About Seamless Knitting
2. Make it Fit!
3. Lace Patterns
4. Cable Patterns
5. Textured Stitch Patterns

KS: Art of Seamless Knitting

The In-Depth Look:

So many knitters hate sewing seams. There are lots of reasons for that. They might not enjoy it, they might only be interested in doing the actual knitting part, they might not have the time to sit and carefully piece together pieces of their garments. They might simply not be very good at it. So, for them, seamless knitting is ideal–but it’s not just for knitters who dislike sewing. Knitting a sweater in one piece can give you the chance to try it on as you go, checking fit and length while you still have time to fix things.

This isn’t the first book, of course, focused on seamless knits, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a good one. It comes with lots of useful information about adapting patterns into seamless knits, tips and tricks to make it all work–not just a page or two, but dozens of them–and in between are the patterns for (mostly) sweaters knit with nary a seam in sight. Lace, cables, textures … they’re all in here.

All in all, this is an attractive and useful book with some really nice patterns and even better how-to kind of instructions. Well worth checking out.

This book can be found at

Want to see bigger pictures? Click here.

This review copy was kindly donated by Interweave Press. Thank you!

My Gush: Useful and attractive.

Saturday Coffee Outing …



- by Joan -

Hitch! Behind the scenes: the beginning

2_03Where does the story begin?


When I’d only been designing a year or two, I decided I wanted to do a few small collections, of maybe 5 patterns each, each designed around a theme that intrigued or interested me.  (Yes, ‘small’ went out the window.)

The first was what grew into California Revival Knits.

The second is the set of patterns I’m currently working on.

And the third was Hitch.

I realized, after getting CRK published, that I wanted Hitch out sooner than when it would be if I just did it myself, especially since it was going to be after the second collection.

I’d watched Heather Ordover a bit, with her Defarge series. I’d helped out with tech editing and giving feedback to Jaala on submissions at Knitcircus.

I thought…why not do Hitch as a multi-designer collection? As editor, I would get to choose the designs that fit my idea of the aesthetic for the book. I could limit the palette to creams, greys, black and red. I could still do a few designs myself, but I wasn’t saddling myself with doing 18 or 20, and the time required to do that many patterns. And Hitch would be published in a timely manner.

And so it was. I’m thrilled by the designs in the book — I think the designers did an incredible job. I hope you are too!

Leave a comment on this thread, with what you’d like to knit up first from Hitch, by midnight PST October 2nd, for a chance to win your very own PDF copy of Hitch.

Make sure to visit the other blog stops, and check back — there may be more added!

9/28/2013: Sunset Cat Designs (you’re here!)
10/5/2013: Knitting Kninja
New! 10/05/13: Knit One, Heart Too Podcast
10/7/2013: Herrlichkeiten
10/8/2013: Knit and Travel
10/9/2013: Knit & Knag Designs
10/10/2013: Wooly Wonka Fibers
10/11/2013: Verdant Gryphon
10/15/2013: Impeccable Knits: Shifting Stitches
10/16/2013: Rewolluzza
10/21/2013: Knitwear Designs by Carolyn Noyes
10/22/2013: Peacefully Knitting
10/23/2013: Dark Matter Knits
10/24/2013: Turnknit: Dani Berg Designs
10/25/2013: SweetGeorgia Yarns
10/28/2013: doviejay knits
10/29/2013: Triona Designs
10/30/2013: Tactile Fiber Arts
11/4/2013: A Knitter’s Life
11/5/2013: Catchloops
11/6/2013: Yarn On The House
11/07/2013: Ramblings
11/12/2013: Hazel Knits
11/13/2013: Knitcircus
11/19/2013: indigodragonfly
11/9/2013: Fyberspates
11/22/2013: A B-ewe-tiful Design
11/25/2013: knittingkirigami



Vineyard Sunset …

Sengekontacket Pond


Hitch! Blog Tour

hitch_coverHitch is officially released!

And of course there’s a blog tour, full of insight into the design process, reviews and of course giveaways!

Tomorrow I’ll be talking about the inspiration behind the book & how it came about. I’ll also be hosting a PDF giveaway, so be sure to check in tomorrow!



9/28/2013: Sunset Cat Designs (you’re here! check back tomorrow for my post!)
10/5/2013: Knitting Kninja
10/7/2013: Herrlichkeiten
10/8/2013: Knit and Travel
10/9/2013: Knit & Knag Designs
10/10/2013: Wooly Wonka Fibers
10/11/2013: Verdant Gryphon
10/15/2013: Impeccable Knits: Shifting Stitches
10/16/2013: Rewolluzza
10/21/2013: Knitwear Designs by Carolyn Noyes
10/22/2013: Peacefully Knitting
10/23/2013: Dark Matter Knits
10/24/2013: Turnknit: Dani Berg Designs
10/25/2013: SweetGeorgia Yarns
10/28/2013: doviejay knits
10/29/2013: Triona Designs
10/30/2013: Tactile Fiber Arts
11/4/2013: A Knitter’s Life
11/5/2013: Catchloops
11/6/2013: Yarn On The House
11/07/2013: Ramblings
11/12/2013: Hazel Knits
11/13/2013: Knitcircus
11/19/2013: indigodragonfly
11/9/2013: Fyberspates
11/25/2013: knittingkirigami
11/22013: A B-ewe-tiful Design