November is upon us, making it officially “that time of year”. I’m not generally one to knit all (or even many) of my gifts to others. I keep it strictly for those who ask for something specific. However, it’s not unusual for me to still wind up knitting something for my loved ones for one gift occasion or other. In my family, November through mid-January means Thanksgiving, an aunt’s birthday, Christmas, my birthday, New Year’s, and another aunt’s birthday. Gift knitting for all would make me absolutely go grey.
However, if you are either more ambitious or have a smaller family than me, Ravelry is here to help! Several dozen independently-published designers have banded together to provide a massive array of patterns perfect for holiday crafting, as well as the support of your fellow Ravelers and favorite designers while knitting them. We’re talking to full range of indie designers, from newbie first-timers to quietly productive small-timers like myself to big names like Marnie MacLean and Alex Tinsley. Even better…?
All of the included patterns are 25% off, now through November 15. There are also PRIZES for those who tag their projects and participate in the GAL threads. Those prizes also come from the participating indie designers, as well as a few indie dyers and small time craft-tool makers. Are you drooling yet? If not, the pages and pages of photos of participating designs will fix that! I’m having a hard time convincing myself I don’t have time to knit the 200 or so patterns I now want after paging through that thread. I won’t lie that knowing I’d be helping the economy and a small business also helps it feel worth the dollars I really don’t have.
Interested? The Indie Gift-A-Long runs today through the end of December 31, GMT. Even if you don’t buy a participating pattern during the discount period, you’re still welcome to join in the “-along” portion of the even and try for a prize or two! We’d love to have you!
Since my last attempt at a nice, mindless project didn’t go so well, and I still have lots of hours of waiting around ahead of me in the next few weeks, I’ve decided to try again. I’m going to make a nice, simple diagonal rib scarf for Operation Gratitude, a charity that sends care packages to deployed U.S. servicemen as well as those wounded in combat. As a veteran’s wife and a knitter, it seemed like a pretty nice way to burn through some stash.
I’m going to host a little KAL/CAL in my Ravelry group if anyone’s interested in joining. All the relevant details can be found here, and donations to servicemen in other (non-US) militaries are also welcome. It’s a great way to use up some stash!
Today is my 2nd wedding anniversary, and I’m feeling mushy and generous. So, today all purchases in my Ravelry store are $2 off! What will you buy?
Or one of my other fabulous patterns?
Memorial Day is always a bit “messy” in our household because it’s not an abstract holiday for us, but there’s a bit of extra messy going on today. The shawl is coming along,
Unblocked lace is boring.
but I’ve had to order another pack of beads because there seems to be a disproportionate lack of purple beads in this particular pack. Because this part of the shawl has lace on both sides (as opposed to simply purling, or knitting, the WS rows) it’s also been really slow going. Well, that’s the excuse I’m using anyway.
Additionally, another upcoming design is now ready for test-knitting. This one’s a little adventurous compared to many of my patterns, in part because there are so many suggestions for personalizing it. These cabled knee-highs are not a first-sock pattern, but especially if you participated in my calf poll, we’d love to have you!
Sneak peek of the pattern!
Finally, my apartment is incredibly messy today because we are packing! Our offer has been accepted on a very cute rambler much closer to work, so barring any disasters during the inspection, we are going to become homeowners! I’m suddenly very aware of what an absolute disaster my fiber “corner” has become. Might be time to do a “before and after” for future Messy Mondays!
I am not participating in this year’s Knit/Crochet Blog Week, but reading all my friends’ posts has lead me to realize a few things about myself:
1. My favorite overall crafting tool is boring – it’s my spreadsheet program. It really does save me SO much time when designing though. Also, does yarn count as a tool? Because then I’m significantly less boring.
I mean seriously. Yum.
2. I am probably going to break down and by a spinning wheel soon. Thanks a lot, All She Wants to Do is Knit.
3. My stash listing on Rav is seriously out of date.
4. I knit a whole lot of different colors, but almost all of the garments I knit are either blue or green.
5. My projects list is shockingly lacking in colorwork.
Last summer I got a new camera, and posted about how much better it is than my old camera. I’ve slowly been using it to take improved, updated photos of some of my patterns, while I also update the format of my old patterns to be more consistent. It has been very slow going because I’m only doing it in my very limited spare time between current designs and the day job. I channeled by typical springtime craving for all things green, and have completed my update of Flourishing Fields!
Flourishing Fields, by Christina Loman
If you are a previous buyer, you’ve received an updated copy already, free of charge, via Ravelry or an email sent by Ravelry. Whether you are a previous buyer or not, know that the content of this pattern has not changed. These are still fairly simple cuff-down socks with the exact same cables as before. All that has changed is the format, plus a few new photos. Enjoy!
I know it’s only been a couple weeks since I released Misty Morning, but I am too excited by the return of Spring to hold off on this one! So, I am very happy to introduce Leonardtown!
Leonardtown, by Christina Loman
The rectangular lace shawl is absolutely perfect for this time of year, when it can be so sunny and gorgeous out you can’t even think of staying inside, but there’s still just enough chill in the air that bare shoulders just won’t work.
A bit of cozy merino is just what the doctor (Mother Nature?) called for. The size of the repeat on the Vine Lace may look intimidating at first, but it’s actually quite memorizable and surprisingly intuitive. It becomes almost meditative after a while. I’m sure it’ll impress the idle viewer though!
The simple garter edging and picot cast-on and bind-off also add interest and stability to the shawl. No monotony here! So be sure to check out Leonardtown, and join in the fun! I’ve chosen to knit the sample in green because, well, Spring. In my mind, there is no greater color than green this time of year. What color will you choose?
So I’ve been slacking. Not on the knitting front, or designing, or spinning. I’ve done a lot of each of those lately. Can’t share most of it with you (see: designing), but there’s been a lot of it. No, I’ve been slacking because one of the wonderful women I share my classroom with is pregnant. Like, due in April pregnant. Like, I’ve had a lot of time to plan for this pregnant. And what have I knit for her? Not a stitch.
I have this:
She’s expecting a girl.
but no idea what to do with it. It’s Berroco Comfort DK, and while it looks awfully thin for DK to me, Ravelers don’t seem to have had any trouble getting gauge. I have 356 yards (326 meters) of it and no inspiration. Every time I go to browse Rav I get annoyed and frustrated by the number of non-babies that come up when I search “newborn”, and then I conveniently find something better to do. Help?
Happy Sunday and thanks to all the people who joined my new Rav group this week! As promised, I have used the Random Number Generator to pick winners for the contest announced in this post. Without further ado, congrats to:
Our 3rd prize winners cats, may-g, and Craftylady1956, who will be receiving the pattern of their choice from my store,
Our 2nd prize winner, t28girl, who has a shiny new copy of my e-book Private Reserve in her library,
And of course our grand prize winner, littlebirdy, who will be receiving this mysterious box o’ Feel Good as soon as she PMs me her address.
Yay! I love spreading the love like this! Even if you didn’t win, I hope you’ll still drop by and join in the fun some time. We’re good people, I promise!
Yay, this is post #100! Not bad for 9 months of writing! I’ve decided to do a couple of fun things to celebrate. First, I finally put together a group on Ravelry. It’s called Feel Good Knitting, the same as this blog, and you should most definitely check it out! We’d love to have you.
Second, I’m having a giveaway! To be entered, join my new group by January 12. I will use the Random Number Generator to select 5 winners on January 13. Winners will be contacted via PM and also ear-burned in the Promotions thread. Prizes include:
1st prize: a “Feel Good” care package containing both yarn and non-yarn goodies
2nd prize: A free copy of the e-book Private Reserve
3rd-5th prize: A free copy of the Feel Good pattern of your choice.