Tuesday, December 9, 2008


Wow, it's been a while. Sorry, ladies and gents. Just a quick update to tell you all that I participated in my church Christmas Craft Bazaar this past Saturday and it was a complete success. I got lots of complements, earned quite a bit of money, and got to spend some time with my mom, who came to help me sit my table. I sold over half my hats, half my scarves, all my wool mittens, a hackeysack, and some of the hemp jewelry I also make. I was very excited. Now all I have to do is finih illing a few custom Christmas orders and I'll be all set! Hope you are all doing well and I'll try to update again soon.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Harry Potter, Again

So I'm on another Harry Potter kick, mostly because I finally finished my Quidditch sweater, which I am very proud of. It fits perfectly, is warm and snuggly, and I can just imagine myself out on the Quidditch pitch on a broomstick, looking for the snitch.

I've also made the HP Snitch Dishcloth to stick in a Halloween care package for a young friend of mine who loves Harry Potter as much as I do.

On top of these, I have made an entire set of Weasley sweater ornaments out of Charmed Knits, but I am embarassed to post the pictures of them because I am so bad at duplicate stitch. And I just cast on for the 3-4 year scarf, also from Charmed Knits.

Soon I'll be posting pictures of Christmas gifts, though I have to be careful because my mother finally got on Ravelry and has access to all my pictures and my blog now! (But hooray mom for joining us on Rav!)

Monday, October 20, 2008

New York Sheep and Wool Festival

Yesterday my mother and I drove up to Rhinebeck, NY for the New York Sheep and Wool festival. It was fantastic! The weather was perfect, and I've never seen so much wool in one place! I pet an alpaca, too. They're nice and soft, and I want one (or two, as they're herd animals). I met Melanie Falick, the author of Weekend Knits and Knitting New Scarves and a few others. I brought my books for Stephanie Pearl-McPhee to sign, but she had left by the time we got to the authors' building. Boo for that. But I did get The Prayer Shawl Companion and got it autographed 1.) because I've always wanted a prayer shawl book and 2.) because I opened up to a page and looking back at me was my grandmother's cousin! I had no idea she knit, let alone was good enough to have a prayer shawl featured in a book! I of course bought some yarn while I was there too. Some lovely undyed wool and a grey tweed. Of course neither of them have tags on them so they don't have names or anything. But they are both lovely yarns and I can't wait to wind them and start using them. All in all, it was a wonderful day. Oh, and I met a few people from Ravelry. I even talked to Jess and her brother for a minute. How cool!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

The Golden Compass (Lyra's Hood)

Have you seen the movie that came out last holiday season, The Golden Compass? It's based on the trilogy by Phillip Pullman, His Dark Materials. Anyway, the movie contains some gorgeous knitwear, and I decided to write a pattern to reconstruct Lyra's hood, the that she appears in most frequently. And, for you, my friends, I decided to share it!

Lyra's Hood
Yarn: Bernat Camoflauge Desert Sand 2 skeins
Needles: size 11
Notions: tapestry needle, crochet hook
Gauge: 3 sts per inch
Size: Adult

Holding 2 strands together, CO 60
Knit in St St for 10 inches.
Sew seam up the back.
Cut 12 1-yard lengths of yarn and thread 6 through each front corner. Braid each set of strands for approximately 18 inches. Tie off braid and cut ends evenly. Weave in any loose ends.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Disaster Strikes!

Disaster! Double Disaster! First, I find out that the next Harry Potter movie has been postponed from November 21 to July! I can't wear my Quidditch sweater in JULY! Now I have to come up with something else to knit that I can wear in the middle of the summer for the movie opening. What a tragedy.

Second, and more importantly, THE YARN LOFT IS CLOSING! My yarn store, the one I've worked at, the only one in the whole county, is closing! DISASTER! What will I do for yarn?

Saturday, August 2, 2008

It's fair week here in New Jersey, and I have entered a number of exhibits in the Home Ec division. The entries I am most concerned with are, of course, my knitting entries. I entered a sweater which recieved Honorable Mention .

I also entered a poncho (not pictured- sorry) wich recieved Second Place, and two hats, which received First and Second. (Cables and Earflaps, 1st, Norwegian Star 2nd.) I'm very pleased.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Harry Potter Mania

I've been holding off on my designing in order to participate last minute in a knitalong that ends July 31. I'm doing the Harry Potter Craft-along on Ravelry, and I'm trying to get in one project related to each of the books. Here are my favorites:

We've got a Golden Snitch knit out of Cascade 220 Wool, Hedwig made with Lion Brand Tiffany, Caron Simply Soft, and scraps, a House Hat out of Plymouth Encore Worsted, and a Weasley Sweater ornament, also out of Plymouth Encore Worsted and scraps. Also on the needles is a Quidditch sweater which I hope to have finished in time to wear to the new HP movie, which comes out November 21.

Sunday, July 13, 2008


So I went camping with some Ravelry folk this weekend. We had a lot of fun. Knitting around the campfire, dying yarn with Kool-Aid, and just generally chatting and knitting and having a good time. It was so good to meet all these people and put faces to names! I had a blast.

I spent my weekend working on the Quidditch Sweater out of Charmed Knits. The new movie comes out November 21 and I am determined to have my sweater done so I can wear it to the movie. I also dyed my yarn red and yellow to make self striping Gryffindor wristwarmers from my wristwarmer pattern.

I put my Cooler Hammock pattern on hold because I lost a needle. It turns out that this is fine because you are not allowed to have coolers out of the car where we camped anyway. Now I don't see the point in finishing it because I don't see another camping trip in the forseeable future, much as I would love it. But I will finish it eventually, because it is a mighty cool project.

A note for anyone using How to Knit in the Woods: Shannon Okey (the author) contacted me and informed me that the campfire chair is not made using sisal at all, but nylon twine, so if anyone else was as confused as I was, there you go.

Not much else to report. However, I will post a few pictures of my camping trip next time!

Sunday, June 29, 2008

JK Rowling Saw My Stuff!

As the title says... JK ROWLING SAW MY STUFF! For anyone who is living under a rock and doesn't know who JK Rowling is, she authored the Harry Potter series. And she saw the stuff I made!

Explanation, dear friends: Last year I sent a care package to a friend at Halloween. As she and I both share an obsessive love for all things Harry Potter, the package contained a cauldron, pumpkin bread, pumpkin beer (yes, folks, I sent her beer), and, of course, a wand carved by me and my trusty Swiss Army knife and a hand knitted Gryffindor scarf with the school crest on it. THIS year she went to graduate school at Harvard (yes, really, she did) where the commencement speaker for the year was none other than JK Rowling. As the graduating class was small, my friend was sitting right up front, wearing the scarf and carrying the wand with her cap and gown. And JK Rowling smiled at her and her regalia. And she told me and I was excited.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Book Review

My mother gave me the book "How to Knit in the Woods." I was terribly excited for the book to come out and even more excited to get an early birthday gift. At first glance there were some really great practical things like a camp chair knitted with sisal, some stuff that I wasn't sure I'd want to knit for the woods (really, who spends hours knitting a sweater and then wears it camping?), and some really silly stuff, like a Nalgene water bottle cozy. But, being the outdoorsy knitter that I am, I dove right in and began to knit with gusto. I made the Ell Pond Nalgene cozy, and who knew, it really works! Who would have thought that wool would keep something cold?! But it's great, I love it, I've since made two, have had a friend ask for one, and am enjoying embellishing them.

I have also started on the Cooler Hammock, which is knit from butcher's twine (kitchen cotton) and meant to suspend your Igloo cooler from a tree branch to keep out of reach of marauding beasties. I'm not sure about how well it would stand up to the black bears we have around here, but it will at least keep the ants out of my cooler when I'm car camping.

Then there's the camp stool which I've tried to knit three times and can't get to work. First of all, sisal is nasty to knit with. It's stiff and grainy and little pieces shred off it. It's meant for baling hay and the like. Second of all, the book says you can get what they used at the local hardware or home improvement store. I hit four and can't find what they are talking about. Mine's not white and it doesn't knit to guage. It's huge. So forget that for the time being. Maybe I'll make it out of nylon or polypropalene or something.

THEN there's the fact that the book does not stand up to weathering well. One would think that a book made for knitting in the woods would be able to take a slight beating. Well, my Camelback leaked in my backpack and the book is now ruined. I'm not sure if I am going to get another copy or not. We shall see, my friends, we shall see.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Fortissima Colori Socks

Well, fellow knitters, I do believe I have perfected my sock pattern. This is for your basic 2x2 ribbed crew sock (shown here with cuff turned down), nothing fancy. But I do love handknit socks.
Needles: Size 2 dpns
Yarn: Fortissima Colori
Notions: tapestry needle
CO 64 sts and distrubute over four needles. Knit in 2x2 rib for 5"
Redistrubute stitches so that there are 32 on one needle and 32 on the other. Set remaining to needles aside.
Heel flap: Choose one needle to be the heel (it doesn't matter which) and work 31 rows in st st. Other needle will just be holding live stitches.
Turn heel: Purl to middle of row (16 st) p2, p2tog, p1, turn. S1, k back to middle of row, k2, ssk, K1, turn. You have just set up two decrease points so that each row you do, you should be decreasing across the gaps. Continue in this manner until you reach the edge of the heel. There should be 18 sts on the needle.
Pick up and knit 16 sts on side of heel. Work instep (32 sts) in 2x2 ribbing. Pick up and knit 16 sts on other side of heel. Knit fourth needle. Now begin decreasing away your extra stitches until you are back to your original 64:
Round 1: K to last two sts on first needle, k2tog. Work in 2x2 ribbing on next needle. On third needle, ssk, k to end. Needle four, knit.
Round 2: Knit around, keeping needle 2 (instep needle) in 2x2 rib.
Once there are 64 sts left, (7 on needle 1, 32 on needle 2, 7 on needle 3, 18 on needle four) redistrubute sts again. Slip nine from needle 4 onto needle 1 and nine from needle 4 onto needle 3.
Work in the round, keeping instep in 2x2 ribbing until foot is 2" less than the length you want it, or reaches approximately the base of your big toe when tried on.
Now decrease for the toe:
Round 1: K to last three sts on needle, k2tog, k1. Next needle k1, ssk, k to last three sts on needle, k2tog, k1. Needle three, k1, ssk, k to end of needle.
Round 2: K
Continue in this manner until 16 sts remain Graft toe together. Weave in ends.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Begging Your Pardon

I beg forgiveness for not posting recently. I have been hard at work on some projects. first of all, I finished my rainbow striped scarf, made by manually striping two colors (four skeins) of self striping Plymouth Boku.

I also learned how to felt, and made my mother a basket to put the rest of her birthday present in.

I have also been working on a stocking cap, a hemp hat (my hemp yarn finally came in the mail!), and have been designing a pair of socks. When those are finished I'll post the pattern. Until then, fellow knitters!

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Wool-Ease Mittens

I present to you a simple, quick to knit pattern for your basic mittens. They are warm, hard wearing, and machine washable. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do.
Women's Medium (Large)

Yarn: 1 Skein Lion Brand Wool-Ease Thick and Quick
Needles: 1 set #10 DPN
Notions: tapestry needle, stitch holder or scrap yarn

Make 2:
Cast on 22 (24)
Work in 1x1 Rib 12 rnds
K in St st 2 rnds
K1, M1, K1, M1, knit around
K1 round
K1, M1, K3, M1, knit around
K1 round
K1, M1, K5, M1, knit around
K1 round
K1, M1, K7, M1, knit around
K1 round
K1, M1, K9, M1, knit around
K1 round
K2, place next 8 st on holder, K around
K in St st 20 (22) rnds
K3, K2tog around
K2, K2tog around
K1, K2tog around
K2 tog around
Cut yarn, lace through remaining stitches, pull tight, tie off.
Pick up 8 st on holder
Pick up 1 (2) st on either end of previous 8 st
K in St st 12 (14) rnds
K2tog around
Cut yarn, lace tail through remaining loops, pull tight, tie off

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Lesson Learned

Today I was a vendor at a flea market. I set up a table to sell some of my knitted items, and also some beaded earrings and macrame necklaces and bracelets. Very little sold. I didn't even earn $100. Boo. If complements paid my bills, I'd be set for life, but I very quickly learned that people don't troll flea markets looking for handmade items. They want cheap, cheap, cheap. And what I make is not. So, as disappointing as it is to have sold so little, I do have more than I went in with, and I learned my lesson. I'll look for craft fairs.

Also, I opened an Etsy store today. Be sure to check it out! There are only a couple items right now, but if there seems to be interest, I'll be listing more things as time goes on. My vendor name is StevieLynn.

In non-knitting news, I just returned from a three day, 25 mile backpacking trip on the Appalachian trail. I met some interesting people, including a few through hikers who were quite amused to see me sitting in the shelter at night with my knitting, working by headlamp. (Ok, so it's not quite non-knitting related.) Was a good trip, but it did take away from my knitting time. Oh well. It was fun, any way you slice it, and my knitting did make an appearance.

Tune in next time for another original pattern.....

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Insomnia Strikes

It's 4:42 am. Bah. I can't sleep tonight, so I figured turning to some knitting isn't a bad idea.

Everyone needs one of those projects that yields finished results almost immediately. You know, something you can start and finish in the same day, something that doesn't really take a time commitment like sweaters and shawls and afghans do. Well, for me lately, that project has been cat toys. Now, if your cats are anything like my cats, they love the knitted things they are not supposed to have. They want to sleep on them, knead their claws in them, bat around balls of yarn, you name it. So I like to make them knitted things they can have. The mouse is a Catnip Friend from Oddball Knitting by Barbara Albright. The ball is actually a Knitted Kick Sack from the same source. But the fish, the fish is my design, and you all may have it.

Note: this pattern is worked from tail to head.

Needles: US size 6 dpns
Yarn: Knit Picks Wool of the Andes in carrot
Scrap of black yarn or embroidery floss
Notions: tapestry needle

CO 21 st
Join to knit in round, being careful not to twist.
Arrange sts so that there are 7 on each of three needles.
Knit 5 rounds.
Begin first set of decreases:
Round 1: *K5, K2tog*
Round 2: K
Round 3: *K4, K2tog*
Round 4: K
Continue in this fashion until there are 3 sts on each needle.
Begin increase:
Kf&b into the first st of each needle until there are 8 sts on each needle.
Knit 7 rounds.
Begin second set of decreases:
Round 1: *K6, K2tog*
Round 2 *K5, K2tog*
Continue in this fashion until only one st remains on each needle.
Cut yarn, lace through live sts, pull tight, tie off, pull yarn through to inside.
Stuff with polyfil, catnip, and/or a plastic shopping bag (they make a great crinkling noise my cats love), close tail with a whipstitch and embed any lose ends inside the toy. Embroider two eyes in the appropriate places with scrap yarn or embroidery floss.

Monday, April 14, 2008

It came!

It's here! It finally came! My yarn from Knit Picks! Now, normally, Knit Picks is great with shipping. They say five to ten business days, but I've never even waited five days for my yarn to be shipped all the way across the country. This time, however, I depended on my computer screen to be accurate. I found the perfect shade of green to make a shawl to match a sleeveless dress I own. When it arrived, it turned out to be this horrible shade, absolutely garish. That's what I get for thinking the coloring of my screen is dead on accurate. Right, like that ever happens. So I sent it back, exchaning it for a purple shade called Aubergine. So instead of getting my yarn to start this shawl two weeks ago, I had to wait for it to ship back, the return to process, and the new shipment to come. Far too long to wait for yarn. But it came today! I have already started knitting up the Dragon Scales Shawl by Carissa Browning, which can be found on the blog Carissa Knits. When I have some progress made, I'll post a pic or two.

In other news, I learned to double knit last week, and I'm working on this scarf. If you aren't familiar with double knitting, the other side is exactly the opposite, a blue star on a yellow background.

I am also waiting on two Ebay shipments; one of 100% hemp yarn and one on 100% bamboo yarn. I can't wait to work with fibers that are totally renewable and earth friendly. If only I could find them that were made in this country.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

As Promised...

As promised, here is the pattern for my Norwegian Star hat. I think I have all the kinks worked out, so here we go.

US size 7 16" circ
Cascade 220 MC
Cascade 220 CC
Knit Picks Wool of the Andes also works well for this pattern.

CO 112 st
Knit in 1x1 ribbing for 3 1/2 inches.
Knit 5 rows.
Work chart.
Knit 10 rows.
Begin dec:
Round 1: *K6, K2tog*
Round 2: K
Round 3: *K5, K2tog*
Round 4: K
Continue in this manner until 14 st remain. Cut yarn, lace tail through live sts, pull tight, tie off on wrong side and weave in ends.

(Jan 19, 2010)ETA: Many Ravelers are finding that this pattern yields a very large hat. It is made to fit my 22" melon. If your head is smaller than mine (as it very likely is), I suggest you take other Ravelers' suggestions and CO 96 sts and work from there.

Wristwarmers for All!!!

Today's project: your basic ribbed wristwarmers. My mother swears these things are useless, but as a teacher/naturalist, I constantly have to start campfires, page through field guides, and the like, none of which I can do with a gloved hand. Even if you're not a granola girl like me, you still need your fingers to fumble for keys or dial a cell phone. I think whoever invented fingerless gloves and mittens deserves a medal. My hands and wrists stay warm and my fingers stay useful. Everyone wins.

So, without further ado, I give you the Basic Ribbed Wristwarmer :
Yarn: 1 skein Knit Picks Wool of the Andes (110y/50g) color Pidgeon Twist
Needles: 1 set of 5 size 6 dpns
Notions: tapestry needle

CO 40 st
Distribute evenly on four needles and join for working in the round.
Work in 2x2 ribbing (K2, P2) for 5 inches.
Begin Thumbhole:
Round 1: work all four needles in rib pattern. When you reach the end of the round do not join.
Round 2: turn work and work rib pattern back in the direction you came. (essentially you will be knitting flat)
Repeat rounds 1&2 five more times for a total of twelve rows.
Next round: join work across thumbhole. Work 10 rounds of rib pattern.
BO in rib. Weave in ends.
Make second wristwarmer

Friday, April 11, 2008


Lately I've been on a hat kick. Plain hats, hats with stripes, hats with cables, hats with pigtails. But last weekend I learned how to do Fair Isle, so my most recent hats have had colorwork on them. I've progressed from a simple checkerboard:

To an easy vine and stripe:

To a traditional Norwegian star pattern:
This last hat is an original design, the star pattern a combination of one I found in a book and one I found on the net, and the knitting pattern itself just sort of evolved as I knit. When I have it perfected, (and when I figure out how to post charts) I shall post it here.

Currently I am working on my second Norwegian star hat in an effort to perfect it. Other Works In Progress include Lacy Skirt with Bows from the book Greetings From Knit Cafe by Susan Mischer, a feather and fan afghan, and a double knit scarf with a star pattern. I will be posting pictures of them in completed form in due time. Stay tuned for Finished Objects and original patterns!

Thursday, April 10, 2008


So, I've decided to start a knitting blog. Here you will find my ramblings on patterns, projects, needles, and more. In celebration of my first post, I have decided to provide you with a pattern, one of my first designs. So welcome, and enjoy.

Cables and Earflaps

Yarn: For this pattern I used a locally grown alpaca yarn from Rainbow's End Farm. It's a light worsted weight, so substitute at will.

Needles: Size 8 16" circulars, Size 8 dpns
Notions: crochet hook, tapestry needle, markers

CO 88 st. PM and join, being careful not to twist.
Work in garter stitch (knit one row, purl one row) for ten rounds, increasing 12 stitches evenly in the last round (100 st).
Begin body of hat:
Round 1, 2, 4, 5, & 6: *K2, P2, K4, P2*
Round 3: *K2, P2, C4B, P2*

Work in this pattern until hat measures 7" from cast on edge.

Round 1: K2tog at each K2
Round 2: P2tog at each P2
Round 3: K2tog in the middle of each K4

Cut yarn, leaving a 6" tail. Thread yarn through remaining stitches and pull top of hat closed. Thread through to wrong side of work and secure, weaving in ends.

Mark center back of hat with removable marker. Count forward 8 st from marker. Pick up 18 st with dpn. Knit ten rows.
Row 11: K to last 3 st, K2tog, K1
Repeat Row 11 14 more times (3 st)
Repeat procedure on opposite side of hat.

Cut 6 one yard lengths of yarn. Thread through bottom of earflap with crochet hook. Braid. Tie off with an overhand knot. Repeat procedure on opposite side.