A number of years ago I came across a pattern for a simple baby kimono. There were a lot of things I liked about it, but there were also a lot of things I didn’t. I’d been brooding over how a kimono I designed would differ for quite some time before I finally put pencil to paper and needles to yarn. The beautiful Cumbria by The Fibre Co helped spur things along. As soon as I had sample in hand, my head started whirring with the possibilities. Finally, after many stops and starts. Knits, tinks, knits, tinks, pencil scratches, recalculations, tear outs it has all come together and my newest pattern is now available in my shop.
I’ve always been a texture girl, and Cumbria excels in its stitch definition. I really wanted to create an interesting visual and I’m a sucker for a YO. After much fiddling, I devised an all over eyelet pattern I was happy with. The other thing that I really wanted to achieve with this piece was beautifully finished edges that did as they were told. No rolling or buckling or bad attitudes. I-cords came to my rescue at every start, stop, and turn. From the cast-on, certain bind offs, and all along the neckline I-cords were my design friend. It took a bit of re-work of the traditional I-cord edge to accommodate the quick decreases along the neckline, but tiny little short rows did the trick. I really couldn’t be happier with how the whole thing came out and am already working designs for companion pieces and variations for different skill sets.
I’ve also stocked my shop with three beautiful shades of Cumbria to get you started knitting right away!
This project has been calling to me for some time. These pillows are a precursor to the alpaca rug I want to hook next, but these are definitely a creative pursuit I could both sink my teeth and toes into. The alpaca is milled just for me by a couple local family farms. The all around goodness of them is swoon worthy. If you want one of these for your own snuggling purposes, they are available for purchase at The Barn at Todd Farm in Rowley, MA or you can purchase online.
It is that time of year when we are busy preserving our and our local farm’s abundance. There are pestos and sauces and most especially this year apples. And apples and apples and apples. Then there are more apples. We are making chutneys, and crisps, and pies, and applesauce, and drying them in droves. Never one to let me down, Dave has risen to the occasion and has engineered an ingenious apple corer. Click below to see it in action!
As you know, I’m prone to a vintage bent. And it extends beyond “things” to the world and family Dave and I create. Case in point: this week we are celebrating a very happy Gotcha Day anniversary of our sweet Zoey. Three years ago our home was enriched by the arrival of Zoey and her sister Maggie. They came to us with the help of a Tennessee rescue I volunteer with and at the time they were 11 (Maggie) and 13 (Zoey). They were elderly with numerous health issues. We thought they would be our summer dogs. While our Maggie died at 14+ just this Easter and our 16+ Zoey is fading, we never would have thought we’d be blessed with the joy and wonder these dogs brought to our lives for so long. It’s been THREE YEARS! Honestly, it is a toss up who loves me more—Dave or Zoey. They are in open competition and are fierce rivals with each other–though they utterly adore each other, too. I’m flattered to be the subject of their affections. And I’m honored to have have known both Maggie and Zoey and to have ensured that their final years were ones that were comfortable and well loved. If you’ve ever considered taking in an elderly pet of any ilk to your home, all I can say is that the rewards will leave you speechless.
Sounds like a good excuse for a get together to me, and I am thrilled to continue this ole’ time tradition in new places. Starting this June I will be hosting a monthly Bee on the Farm– a gathering of knitters, quilters, hookers, and other hand-workers of all sorts and skill levels–in the bucolic setting of Dandelion Spring and Straw Farm in Newcastle, Maine. If you are in the area, please join me for an afternoon of companionship, laughter, and progress on all your UFO’s surrounded by the fields, animals, busy farmers, and an abundant farm stand. While this is not a class, I’m happy to answer questions to the best of my ability—dabbler as I am in many things… And truly the best thing about a bee is the community and shared creativity. It is a time to be inspired by and to both learn from and teach each other.
To you folks in MA and NH who have been joining me for the Bee in the Barn in Rowley, fear not! We will continue to meet monthly admidst all the beautiful antiques, art, and fine craft that The Barn at Todd Farm has to offer. This group has been so much fun to stitch and secretly hope with that Scout(milliner/baker)shows up with her banana bread!
Far too much enthusiasm for Saturday morning at 6:am. I’d rather be snuggled in bed with my cute boy and ancient dog, but my internal clock decided to “up and at ’em” at 5:23 am. I guess I’m just an overachiever. Lol.
My newest project, which is sucking much of my brain power, is a complete remake of my website. The goals are to improve the shopping experience with the help of Woocommerce and to become a visual wonderland for all things fiber, vintage, primitive, handmade, and probably cookies. Yes. Cookies. I actually rarely eat sweets (I’m still very likable!) but Dave needs his afternoon snacks. I consider it my duty to provide sustenance for his creative energies.
I’ve been itching to make myself a super cute smock. There is something romantic about the idea. Somehow I believe that I will put it on and be magically transported to wide open farm vistas padding around barefoot with either my basket of veggies or basket of knitting. Big deep pockets will hold my phone, my scissors, my rug hook, etc., etc. My dog frolicking in the tall grass. Yeah.
Finally, it is a reality! I was able to source some truly lovely heavy weight Belgian linen and sat down to sort out a design. I’m thrilled with how it came out. It is both timeless and able to pull its weight in the studio or kitchen and even just part of my daily wardrobe. This style is now available in my shop for you, too. And I have a bevy of other style ideas I need to draft out. So much more to come!
The other day I was perusing a yarn store looking for a suitable candidate to mend a sweater for a client. While staying on task, my eye did not fail to notice a sample scarf knit up on the first display. Despite the fact that it was knit in the yummiest of cashmere yarns, what really got my attention was the stitch pattern. But I was short on time with things to do. I filed it away for further consideration later. That didn’t work. I’ve been thinking about it ever since and kicking myself for not spending more time examining the delicate lace. It’s at times like these that you head to Barbara Walker’s Treasuries. What would we do without them??
I’ve messed around a bit. Tried a few things. While finding all sorts of wonderful new stitches, the one I seek continues to elude. I guess I’ll just have to keep knitting.