This Week’s Progress

I am finally nearing the finish line on my fingering weight re-knit and re-write of my Honeydew Lace Square pattern. It has been a long haul but it has been quicker than the first time when I was knitting the original in lace weight yarn. I have reached the third corner of the border which means I have knit 3/4 of the edging! I hope the yarn holds out and I don’t need to start a fifth skein when I am this close to the end.

I received and dyed a big order of alpaca from New Era Fiber last week. I needed to get my yarn labeled that I dyed last week (those six new colors I told you about; more on this next time) before I started work on the mill order. I got the fiber dyed the first half of this week. This was 45 lbs. of a huge lot. There will be eight colors in all and this was the first three.

So after that was out of the way I had a couple days free to get the Nostepinnes and Darning Eggs finished. This is not all of them. There are a lot more eggs that Jerry was still sanding while I did this. I do now have them all done.

I spent the afternoon with my photo equipment and new products so I can get all this stuff loaded on the website. I photographed all the new yarn plus the Nostepinnes and Darning Eggs. I have the yarn listed but the color pictures are not up yet. I need to do some editing. The tools will be listed as soon as I can.

It’s looking like my sub-contract work and our website sales may have to get us through this year so I am trying to make sure there is plenty on there. :-) I am sad so many festivals are still canceling. Sigh. I am trying to not let it discourage me too much. Things have to start improving at some point right? As my precious great grandmother Mamie was fond of saying “all things come to an end…both the good and the bad”. Well, it’s high time for the bad to move along, right? :-)

Wood Bowls Now Instock

Small sampling of the available wood bowls on the website

I spent a couple days last week getting the wood bowls added to the website. We have a lot of different sizes at the moment. They range from larger ones at the $55 price point which are big enough for holding a full ball of yarn down to some mini bowls ($20) which are perfect for holding small items like beads, stitch markers, coins, etc.

We will soon be bringing back some other wood tools we have not had in stock for quite a few years. Jerry had some big logs of walnut and cherry that he hadn’t had time to process. Well we have time now, so he started working on that this week after we returned from a little trip to the Smokies for Mother’s Day weekend. I’ll tell you more about that next post. :-)

After trimming up to turn-able size pieces

He is making some Nostepinnes at the moment and some of this will also be Darning Eggs.

So while this is keeping Jerry busy, I am planning some new yarn colors for 2020. I have decided to add six new colors to my palette. Here is a sneak preview.

I have made some more progress on the Honeydew Lace Square in Superwash Sock Yarn.

I have added the 4th skein and hope it will be enough to finish. I am almost to the halfway point on the edging.

See the stitch markers in the top right corner? That is the half way point. When did I start this thing anyway? Oh, wow. Ravelry says Jan. 06, 2020. Sigh. Perseverance is a virtue right? :-)

Okay more on our mini vacation next time. :-)

Wood Bowls are Making a Comeback

It’s about time for another blog post, don’t you think? So, what’s up at your house? Hope spring is in full force and you are well. We are fine here and ready for some changes. Are you with me?

For the time being, and maybe permanently for all we know, my husband is home and working on the business full time with me. His job in the food distribution industry, serving restaurants, schools, hotels, etc. took a double whammy when the Nashville tornado and then the quarantine caused him to be laid off for at least a year or more. So, when you have lemons you might as well make lemonade right? He is keeping busy making product.

Once upon a time, a few years ago anyway, we used to make wood bowls. They are fine for plopping your yarn in but also great for lots of other uses. We had a lot of blanks glued up already that he hadn’t gotten around to when we started making the bowls in 2017. It seemed like the time was right to put them on the lathe and make some more.

These are waiting a new outboard tool rest which will make it much easier to carve out the inside. It arrived yesterday and it is installed and ready to go so they should be finished soon.

And here it is in action. Who knows, there may even be some darning eggs and nostepinnes coming up? Would there be any interest in us bringing those back? We would love some feedback on that.

See you soon with some other knitting and pattern news!

Yarn Boxes and Other Updates

We are keeping production going in the hopes that we can get back out there soon vending at festivals. So far we have lost 7 festivals from the first half of the year. Two more that are in late May and mid June in Ohio are holding off until next month to decide on whether they may hold the events. I am trying to remain hopeful that they will be able to happen. We do have our online sales, but that is such a small percentage of our income in comparison to festivals that it is not making up our losses. Maybe the second half of the year will rebound us all?

Finishing Yarn Boxes

Anyway, so we have finished up a large batch of Yarn Boxes, as you can see above. The finish is curing for a few days before we apply the final wax and labels. We have plenty on the website ready to ship if you had been planning to pick one up at a festival that cancelled this spring. :-)

At least spring didn’t forget to arrive in Tennessee. It’s one consolation to be able to walk around our property and see evidence that life does go on even in the midst of many upheavals. I have always appreciated the wild flowers on our lawns. I don’t mind a bit that it’s not all just grass. I think it’s much more interesting. Here’s one of my favorites that are usually blooming by mid March or early April in these parts. I love violets because I am a big fan of purple.

I wish you could smell these Mountain Laurels that we planted when we bought this house 22 years ago.

In other news, I have progressed on my Honeydew Lace Square in fingering weight yarn. I have begun the knitted on edging now. I am only on the first side, so quite a ways to go.

Summer Dyeing

Since my last post I have been working through my summer to-do-list while I am home. I talked a bit about my dyeing goals and I am pleased to say it is all done. The new colors are all dyed, the others colors are all restocked, and it is all labeled and boxed in the trailer for the upcoming shows. Whew!

This is just a sampling of all that I got done. I didn’t get any pictures of the labeling and packing but I do have some finished prettier shots of the new colors.

The new colors are all available to order on the website in the yarns above and they will be making their debut at the Natural Fiber Extravaganza in a couple of weeks.

I am hoping to have my Firenze pullover finished in time for Stitches Midwest. I only have about an inch or maybe less to go on the body stockinette section and then the ribbing. After that it’s only the 3/4 length sleeves, and they won’t take too long, right?

New Pattern and More

I have a few things today. First I finally got that pattern written up and published for the little Cables and Lace Baby Blanket.  I included a couple additional sizes as suggestions to the one I knit up, with the caveat that they are estimates as to actual finished sizes and yardage requirements.  It is a charted only pattern since when I wrote up the stitch pattern itself, I made it as a hand written chart on graph paper and I didn’t want to take the time to write it out. The chart is pretty straight forward and easy to follow and since there isn’t even any shaping, I think that even a knitter new to charts should be able to use it and hopefully realize that charts are your friend. ;-) I have it listed on Ravelry and my website for $5 and the yarns can be found on my website as well. I used the Organic Cotton Sport but the Classic Merino Superwash Sport would be perfect too.

20180925_172622

The next thing is that I am very close to finishing Tendrilly. I finished the last body section row last night and since I have some free time today after getting most of my booth set up done yesterday, I hope to get the edging done today. It’s only 13 rows. I love how it is coming out and it’s possible I could get it steam blocked to bring in the booth for the weekend’s event, Southeastern Animal Fiber Fair (SAFF) .

Tendrilly-wip (2)

You may remember that I said I may modify the size, and I did decide to do that. The main reason for that was because I needed a 3rd skein of the Classic Merino DK to complete even the smaller version but I would have only used about a fourth of it. I hate to waste yarn so I thought a altered version would probably use up most of the third skein. Now I am just hoping it is plenty for the 13 rows remaining and the bind off. I think I have plenty so I am not too worried. All my modification notes are in the Ravelry link above for my project page if you are interested in that. I won’t bore you with it here for those who aren’t. :-)

Tendrilly-wip (1)

The last thing newsworthy is that, as mentioned above I am in Asheville, NC for my 13th year (!) at SAFF. This show is special to me and one of my favorites for many reasons. This was the first show I attended as a vendor back in 2006, and it changed many things about our business model. It’s also such a nice area to visit, although I don’t get much time for sight seeing. I do have some time to myself today but I will probably just use it to knit and maybe take a break about lunch time for a stroll and some food in a mall near my hotel. Cheers!

 

Honeydew Lace Square

Honeydew-Lace-Square (11)

I don’t have too much time today for blogging but I did want to announce that I have the pattern for the Honeydew Lace Square available for purchase on my website and on Ravelry.

Honeydew-Lace-Square (12)

It was quite an adventure to design, knit, and write, and I hope anyone else who decides to take the dive will have fun with it. You can purchase the Classic Merino Lace on my website if you are so inclined. :-)

I am excited to be returning to Greencastle, IN tomorrow for The Fiber Event. It has been quite a few years since the last time I was able to vend there and the weather looked like it may even be warm, so that is something to look forward to also.  I will update you on my current knitting projects in my next post. I have got some packing to do. :-)

 

Home again

I arrived back home from Connecticut safely, after another two day long drive. I saw much snow on the ground all along the way, even as far south as Wytheville, Virginia. When I was maybe 50-75 miles from Bristol, the state line into Tennessee, it began to look like spring at last. Now home in Nashville, for the last three days, I am enjoying seeing grass and trees budding. We have still got so much rain that every thing is pretty soggy, but at least it’s not cold. I did have to turn on the heat last night because the overnight temperature dipped into the 40’s, but we have had some windows open, up until then. I am afraid I will once again see wintery weather when I am in Pittsburgh next weekend for the Pittsburgh Creative Arts Festival. I am hopeful that it may be warm, as it was last year, but I will be packing sweaters, scarves, and gloves just in case. :-)

I am spending my week at home enjoying my family, and catching up on dozens of business related tasks. At the top of my list, with hopes to have it ready for next weekend, is the pattern for the new lace square shawl. I have begun work on it and have got the pattern basically written as far as the overview and procedural steps. I just need to finish up the charts and insert them and it will be ready to publish. I still have as a working title for it, Honeydew Lace Square, which I know is kind of boring, but I am putting all my energy into writing and will hopefully come up with something better later. I did get a few good suggestions which I will take into consideration at that point.

I was very pleasantly surprised that there were so many people who liked and wanted to make it. Quite a few actually went as far as to buy the 7 skeins of Classic Merino Lace required to make it, even with the pattern not written yet. But no pressure right? LOL! Many knitters have also emailed asking for it, so yeah, I feel obligated to make it a priority now. :-) Thank you to all who have encouraged me to finish it.

StitcheUnited-2018 (3).jpg

 

In addition to all the family and business stuff, I have managed to make some progress on my two knitting projects I have going. Here’s the progress on Carolan. It is looking pretty good, I think.

Carolan-wip (3)

And here is Tiriltunge, which I work on when I don’t want to be bothered with referring to a chart.

onesie-wip (2).jpg

 

Final Preparations

Mimi-lightbox (1)

I don’t know who coined the phrase about curiosity killing the cat, but Mimi has got to be the most curious cat I have ever seen. If any thing is going on, at all, she is right in the middle of it, as the above shows so elegantly.  Nothing gets past her, LOL!

yarnbox2018 (1)

She graciously helped me on my photo shoot for the website a couple days ago. I now have the new stock of Mahogany and Walnut Yarn Boxes available on the website. I will have some of these and some Maple ones as well, in my booths at MKG Knit-In this coming weekend and at Stitches United the following weekend. I am madly doing last minute tasks and packing today, since I am headed out to Wisconsin in the morning.

I had hoped to get my shawl blocked in time but I am not sure that’s gonna happen today. If it does I will be sure and take a shot of it and post it in my next post. I do however have new interim project on the needles before I cast on for another sample. It is Tiriltunge and is going pretty fast so far.

onesie

It will be for one of the new granddaughters, I suppose. Mostly it looked like a fun change of pace and a cute, quick knit. I may end up making two. My oldest daughter had her second baby this past week and my third daughter is due with her second in early May, both girl babies.  Here’s a picture of the latest new little one, Veda. :-)

VedaMarch2018

This is her very proud big brother, Gabriel. He is so far the lone grandson. :-)

Veda-Gerby

Okay, I will see you from the frozen north soon.

 

Almost There

YarnBox-production2018 (1)

We put in a couple more long days in the wood shop and have a batch of 70 Mahogany and Walnut Yarn Boxes completed. I will be adding them to the website within a few days, as soon as they have the finish dry so I can photograph them. We have 114 more ready to be assembled and completed as soon as we can get to them, but hopefully these will carry us until that time. They will most likely be postponed a bit while we make a batch of Yarn Swifts first.

This is how they looked yesterday before we put on the finish.

YarnBox-production2018 (2)

YarnBox-production2018 (4)

They are currently waiting for the finish to cure, then I will label them and pack some in the trailer for our opening round of fiber festivals next week and the following week; Madison Knitting Guild Knit-In and Stitches United.

I am very excited to announce that my Honeydew Shawl (working title but not sure if it will stick) is off the needles! It’s not blocked yet and I have some ends to weave in, but here’s the preview shot.

honeydewshawl (1)

I am not sure if I can manage getting the pattern written up before I leave for Knit-In on Thursday. I need to have someone proof my charts and stuff. I will let you know when it’s up on Ravelry and the website. What do you think of the name? I admittedly haven’t put too much effort into the name thus far. I was seriously wondering if it would ever be finished, LOL! The name comes from the color of the yarn I used. I could go for something that reflects the stitch patterns I guess. Is there a recognizable theme there? Not sure.

So, I have absolutely nothing on the needles right now. There are a few samples I could start. More on that when I decide. I’ll probably just take the night off, LOL!

Before I close, Jerry and I celebrated with a well earned night out last night. We randomly picked the Bavarian Bierhaus and had a fantastic time. Great food, excellent beer, and a live band! I highly recommend it.

BavarianBierhaus (1)

BavarianBierhaus (3)

BavarianBierhaus (2)