Category Archives: Yarn

Shur’tugal Socks

I’ve admired the sock pattern “Shur’tugal” by Alice Yu for sometime now and finally knit them this past January.  The pattern is a free download that can be obtained on Ravelry or on Alice’s website “Socktopus” in the left sidebar.  She’s a Canadian expat living in the UK and she has an online store (also called Socktopus) specializing in artisan sock yarns.

I used Dreams in Colors Smooshy sock yarn in the dark blue colorway of “Midnight Watch” using US1.5/2.5mm needles.  I have friends that are constantly raving about Smooshy, so I just had to try it for myself.  The dyeing is such that all the colors are semi-solids, with subtle color variations that will not overpower the knit pattern in socks, even the most delicate pattern.  I have to say that since Smooshy is spun with Merino wool, they are smooshy soft on the feet.

The charted pattern is medium is difficulty and knit up very quickly — I think I set myself a new speed record and knit this pair of socks in two week flat.  The diamond pattern is created by either knitting a right or left twist, but no cable needle is involved.  The twist is made by knitting two stitches together but leaving them on the needle, then going between the two stitches and knitting the second stitch, then pulling both new stitches off the needle.  Very nifty.  It does make me cranky that my old eyes don’t see tiny print the way they did in my whipper-snapper years.  You can see in the picture below that I enlarged the pattern chart up around 200%!  Well, you do what you’ve got to do.

While I was knitting these in the evening, Louis would come over and lay his furry little head on my lap.  **sigh**   It just doesn’t get much better than that . . .

Thank you Sugaroni for taking the first two pictures!


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Filed under Cardigan Welsh Corgi, dogs, knitting, socks, Yarn

A Wee Little Sweater

wee sweater

I’ve been on a mission as of late to knit more with my own handspun yarn.  This little sweater was knit for my new little neice Kaitlyn Rose using two yarns I’ve spun, a green merino super wash that I dyed and a multi-color merino dyed by Maisy Daisy Handspun.  The pattern is Pie, a free and super easy pattern published by  I modified the pattern from a kimono to and one button cardigan and added a crocheted edging of the Maisy Daisy around the body of the sweater and the green around the edges of the cuffs.  Because it was knit in garter stitch and the pieces are simple with very little shaping, it knit up amazingly fast!


Filed under crochet, dyed fiber, fiber, knitting, stash, Yarn

Yarn School Spring 2009

Whew!  Spring Yarn School has come and gone!

spring 2009 yarn school
all in a big circle I went as a helper again, along with Ana and Jen M, and we were the dish washing, fiber rinsing, towel gathering, table busing, chicken rangling, airport shuttling, laundry doing, Yarn Zombies — all in all, we made a good team.  There were two teachers, Adrian and Jen S and then, the grand Poo-Baa, Nikol, who made the whole thing roll.  This spring, there were twenty students, many of whom were attendees for a second and even third time.  Everyone was great — we all had our wheels in a giant circle and we would laugh and spin when we weren’t in the dye lab, carding or eating.  Jan absolutely kept everyone in stitches and Rachel laughed till she fell out of her chair.  There was amazing food (thank you Nikol — when are you going to put out a cookbook?!), wonderfully dyed fiber, lots of spinning and just plain fun.


adrian's demo

nikol taking pics


braided rovings

If you’ve never been to Yarn School, I would HIGHLY recommend it — you’ll leave exhausted & revived!

More pictures can be found here & here!

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Filed under dyed fiber, dyeing, spinning, Yarn, Yarn School

Lemonade Stand Award

awardWhat a nice surprise!!  Claire, from “Is This Heaven?  No, This Is Iowa!”, has passed the baton of the Lemonade Stand Award to me.  The Lemonade Stand Award represents “gratitude and/or a great attitude.”  Well, that will put a smile on your face!  Claire has a great blog about farm life in Iowa and she’s a knitter and beginning spinner to boot.  Top it off with a very good sense of humor and you’ve got some good reading!

So, here are the RULES of how the Lemonade Stand Award works:

1. Put the logo on your blog or post
2. Nominate 10 blogs that show gratitude or great attitude or both
3. Be sure to link your nominees within your post
4. Let them know they have received this award by commenting on their blog
5. Share the love and link this post to the person whom you received your award from

That said, here are my nominees:

House of Cardis — Kristine has three Cardigan Welsh Corgis, takes beautiful photographs, is an amazing dog trainer and great writer.

T H E . T H R I F T Y . K N I T T E R — Nikol is a powerhouse of energy and creativity.  She is the energy behind The Harveyville Project, Yarn School and artclub, she can crank out lovely batts like you wouldn’t believe, is a fellow Harveyville Spinster and my partner in the Color Source Books.  Plus, she has sheep AND chickens — so jealous . . .

A Whirled Yarn —  Jennifer is an amazing spinner and her yarns are just works of art.  Last year she opened she opened Settlers Farm yarn shop in Wamego, KS and this past week had the first annual Woolfest.  Again, she’s a fellow Harveyville Spinster and teacher at Yarn School, & she has sheep AND chickens too.  Hmmm, still so jealous . . .

Sarah’s Homestead Blog —  Sarah spins and dyes amazing rovings and yarns and has Maisy Daisy Handspun.  I met Sarah at Yarn School (she’s a GREAT teacher) and she has helped me fine tune my spinning and dyeing.  Yep, you guessed it, she has chickens too.   *sigh*

Hello Yarn — Adrian, spinner extraordinaire and she has a color sense like no other — her hand dyed rovings are lush and good luck if you can get into her fiber club!  Another teacher at Yarn School that is generous with her knowledge and laughter.  No chickens but a darn cute pup named Pippa.

Snowangels — Ana is a talented designer, knitter and photographer (do you really think I could have taken those pictures of my feet wearing my socks?!) & she does some fine lettering as well.  It’s great fun hearing about her kitties and Blythe dolls (she knits the best sweaters for those little dollies).

Ruffly Speaking — I’m love reading about Joanna’s Cardigans and her great knowledge of the breed.

Posie gets Cozy — Such an inspiring website!  Alicia is a fabulous crafter, great photographer AND she has a darling Cardigan named Clover.

Miss Alice Faye — Beautiful lace knitting and spinning — just inspiring.

Okay, this one is sort of a honoree because the blog has closed but it still up.  Cupcake Blog — The YUM factor here is over the top!


Filed under baking, Cardigan Welsh Corgi, dogs, dyeing, fiber, Harveyville Spinsters' Club, knitting, Other Stuff, Yarn, Yarn School

November Spinsters

This month Spinsters was at Settlers Farm Yarn Shop in Wamego, Ks, owned by fellow Spinster, Jennifer S.


Jennifer has a wonderful shop filled with fiber, yarn, spinning wheels and anything else you might need to fill your fiber needs.  The store is warm and inviting, filled with fiber, yarn, antiques that display her wares, and comfortable chairs to settle into while knitting.


Downtown Wamego was so charming with a wide main street and turn of the century stone store fronts. We all brought 4 oz of fiber for a White Elephant gift exchange and were all thrilled by our fiber surprises.


We had a long discussion on the rules of the game and the etiquette of how to “steal”, only to have each of us love what we got. Well, many of us seemed to love what Jennifer S got because she had three of her gifts stolen!  Jennifer S was so sweet, she also gave each of us a sock blank from KnitPicks.


Here’s my score – one of Nikol’s Cuckoo Batts – and yes, I stole it from Jennifer S!  I also ended up buying yarn for socks and some Jacquard dyes.  When you sit in a yarn shop for four hours, surrounded by beautiful fiber, how can you not walk out with a bit of yarn to add to the stash?!  E-gad, I have no resistance, but I do have a beautiful collection of yarn and fiber!  : )


More pictures can be found here on Flickr.

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Filed under fiber, Harveyville Spinsters' Club, spinning, Yarn

The Fall Sunflower Knitters Guild Yarn Crawl

This past Saturday was the perfect fall day for the Sunflower Knitters Guild Yarn Crawl! The trees were in full color, the sun was shining and the air was crisp without being chilly. There were 6 stores in all, from St. Joseph to Independence, from Parkville to Kansas City. I only made it to 4 of them, but that was plenty!

My first stop was Florilegium in Parkville — be still my heart — such a lovely store.

There’s everything from antique beaded purses and ribbons, to buttons, hand-dye yarns, books and more. I walked away with two skeins of sock yarn and some buttons. Next was Urban Arts & Crafts in North Kansas City.

The store was moved from the River Market area a few years ago and has retained all of its charm but with a bigger space and sweet little Annie, the store’s cat. There were beads, buttons, material, scrap booking, jewelry, yarn, books and more. Everything is displayed so wonderfully!! Lunch was at the Cafe. On to the Stitch Knitch in downtown North Kansas City that had a darling store kitty that met each of us at the door.

There was a wall of Cascade 220 that I wanted to grab and stuff in my car — the colors were so inviting. Everyone that made a purchase got a reuseable canvas tote — score!! And of course, there was MisKnits owned by wonderful Amber.

I finally bought some lace wires (and ate some yummy cookies). Amber had rearranged the store and we were all surprised and pleased with the new arrangement. The Sunflower group is so pleasant and easy to be with — it was a wonderful day!!

Here’s my stash from the day: sock yarn and buttons from Florilegium, books from Urban Arts & Crafts, and lace wires (not shown) from MisKnits.

You can find all the pictures I took here.

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Finished Spinning

I’ve just finished a bit of spinning.

This is a 8 oz. merino superwash roving that I dyed at Yarn School.

And here is the finished spun product. I got 362 yards at a worsted weight yarn.

Next is the 8 oz. roving that I bought from Grasshopper (alias Jennifer M).

I got 583 yards at a worsted weight yarn.

Now the search is on for patterns . . .


Filed under dyeing, fiber, spinning, Yarn