29 February 2012

Report from Stitches West: Part 1

Stitches West was wonderful. Exhausting, but utterly wonderful. Until it was over, I didn't realize how much I was stressing about getting pins, earrings, pendants and patterns ready! Now that I'm relaxed, I've been sleeping. A lot. :)

Before we get started here, I have to warn you that this is a very very truncated and brief taste of all the fun at the show. I didn't get pics of a lot of stuff and a lot of people! Part of it was that I was super busy being in the moment, but admittedly, part of it is that I was utterly brainless and blithering.

This year, I shared a booth with A Verb for Keeping Warm, and Kristine had samples knit up of many of my shawl patterns. Here she is modeling Madroña. I love it in her hard twist heavy laceweight yarn. The color absolutely made her glow.
Several people commented that my photos of Madroña, Fiori di Sole and Lisianthus don't do the shawls justice. I agree. It has been super difficult to show them properly! You can see Fiori and Lisianthus on the dress forms in the middle of the booth. I loved the way it all looked. Kristine did an amazing job designing it! And - this is the coolest thing ever - we won best booth!
Look at that yummy yarn! I wanted one of each color. It was difficult keeping hands off.
At the bottom, you can see Kristine's mom, Michelle, and in the background in that gorgeous yellow Celaeno is :drumroll: JeanneM! My Ravelry moderator who flew out from Colorado to help me!
Here we are in a terrible iPhone photo. She is beyond awesome.
What can I possibly say about Jeanne that would do her justice? She is a kind, down to Earth, and just plain lovely person. I am so very lucky to call her friend! Those of you on my forum will have seen Jeanne's Ravatar - the one where she's sitting on the beach with a cooler on her head? She had the cooler, and I saw my opportunity. Heehee. Isn't she adorable?! I just love her to pieces.
Across from us was Little Red Bicycle. This is Didi. I didn't have enough brain power to catch a picture of Liz Abinante of Travelling Woman fame, who shared a booth with Didi. But I did get to meet her, and she's great!
Here's Jeanne getting out the cookies that Brandy sent. Brandy is a fellow moderator - am I lucky or what?! She sent two big boxes of yummy home made cookies! (That's Adrienne at the bottom of the picture there, enjoying a cookie. Ysolda had one too; everyone had one and loved them!).
Here's Cookie eating a cookie. Heehee.
And speaking of wonderful moderators.... My lovely Finnish moderator Saara came out to Stitches West this year! I had met her mother in 2008 when she came to the Bay Area to visit her friend, and she had looked me up at Saara's request. Muir had captured Saara's imagination. Here's Saara's mother posing in the original.
And here is Saara being styled (by me)
for her own shoot! I was telling the story to everyone who would listen. :)
Saara brought some Finnish yarn in my favorite color.
I love both the yarn and the logo!
Holly brought scones, but they were so good that I went back to my room, put my feet up and ate them before I took pictures. By the time I thought about recording the moment, this is all I had left! Mmmmmmmmm.
This is Mel from my forum.
Here are Dana, Terri and Judy from my forum!
And Jeanne, Caroline, Terri and Judy here.
We had a big dinner Friday night (all sorts of fabulous people only met electronically on my forum but now with real faces and personalities to go with those names!), but did I take the phone out and take pictures of everyone? No. I shudder to think how utterly brainless I was! Please forgive me everyone to whom I must have said bizarre things! (Unfortunately, I do remember a few moments). Then did I take pictures on Saturday night when Sharon (another of my wonderful moderators), her husband, Saara, Jeanne and I had dinner? No. GAH! But I do have memories that will last and last.

I met so many people, and since I was using my iPhone to process credit cards (Square is Awe. Some.), I wasn't able - or even thinking about stopping - to take pictures of everyone who came. But I did get a lot of hugs in. And I got to meet a couple of of people I had known for years and years online (hi Madge and Mary!) and see Marie again, who I have also known forever and ever online and have met before at Stitches. And best of all, I gave them hugs, and received some pretty great ones in return. I didn't even think of getting the camera out.

Lots of fabulous people came by the booth, among them Ragga, who was in town from Iceland and teaching at Stitches. I am trying to talk her into having me teach on one of her tours. :)
Here are Janel Laidman and hizknits Stephen, who I had never actually met, though we had been in close proximity before, just missing each other many times.
The lovely Hilary Smith Callis came by and said hello. We took each other's pictures taking each other's pictures, as befits a couple of geeks. :)
And what can I say about Stefanie Japel, other than I wish I had met her years and years ago? Such a lovely and warm person!
And, of course, Rick's shoes. It's a tradition for me to take a picture, and when he sees me coming he shows me the latest pair. :) These were fabulously silver!
I will leave you with a picture of the Mongolian Barbeque chef at dinner. Mr. Romi and the kids came back through on their way home from an archery tournament and we all had dinner after the show was over. Delicious!
Tomorrow? Acquisitions!


28 February 2012


I know. I promised a Stitches West report today, didn't I? I am still too exhausted to twitch, so I am begging you to be gentle with me. But I will say a couple of things. We (A Verb for Keeping Warm and I) won "Best Booth!" Woot!

Also? I released two patterns while at Stitches: Calliope's Odyssey
Both are part of my 7 Small Shawls Y2 (Muses) and available as single patterns or as part of the Y2 eBook subscription. Both use slip stitch patterns. And both are pretty fun to knit, if I do say so myself. ;)

I'm going to go blither a little. And maybe do some knitting! And relax. :)

See you all tomorrow!


27 February 2012

Monday's Musing

"Blessed are those who can give without remembering and take without forgetting." - Elizabeth Bibesco

I had a terrific time at Stitches West! So excited to have seen old faces and new ones! More tomorrow. :)


21 February 2012


The a-musing race to Stitches West!

Sample finished.
Test knit finished.
Pattern finished.
Kits made up with a limited edition Muse shawl pin.
We're ready. We're set. Booths 1134 & 1136; see you there!

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20 February 2012

Monday's Musing

"My only imperfection is that I am not perfect." - my elder son

I just had to share that. :)
And this.
I love tulips!
Have a great week everyone and if you are going to Stitches West, please come by and see me and A Verb for Keeping Warm in booths 1134 and 1136!


14 February 2012

Impromptu V-Day Treat!

Through noon PST on Wednesday the 15th, all of my patterns are 15% off with coupon code hearts2012 !
Happy Valentine's Day!


13 February 2012

Monday's Musing

“Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without." - Buddha

Seeking a little peace and calm through meditation this week. May you find some as well! :)


11 February 2012


It's being made.
Off to the swim meet!

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08 February 2012

Moving along....

Just look at these yummy yarn cakes!
Things are moving right along in the Great Muse Race for Stitches. Had a little bit of a setback last night, but I'm back on track!
Loving the texture. A Verb for Keeping Warm yarn. Stop by our booth at Stitches West (1134 and 1136)!

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07 February 2012

Race to Stitches!

As some of you may already know, this year at Stitches West I am sharing a double booth - 1134 and 1136 - with the amazing Kristine of A Verb for Keeping Warm. We are going absolutely crazy getting cool and fun things together to show you, and I, of course, had to increase the insanity. (What is it that makes me love insanity so much? I'll never know!)

Kristine is releasing some yummy new yarns and I'm bringing pins, yarn ball earrings and pendants, some orifice hooks, and some new pin designs. And there's some more fun cooking too. The first 100 people who spend $50 will get an adorable project bag. Here's the artwork.
Too cute, right? :)

But about the race. That's what you want to hear, right? Heh. I am going to release a muse that weekend - remember the two color one that I recently finished? A friend of mine is busy knitting up a sample in Annapurna, an old favorite Verb yarn being re-released that weekend. And the pattern will be out too! Both online and in the booth. You can come by and pet all the muses and Pleiades sisters. :) I am digressing again. The race the race!

I decided one muse wasn't enough. I really had my heart set on releasing two muses. So I am knitting up another. I am using two of Kristine's gorgeous sock yarns in My Hand and Yours and Genmaicha colorways. I am in love.
Aren't they gorgeous together? Wait until you see them in person! The green is super difficult to photograph - it has a great acidic quality to it and tons of color depth. The blue just glows. And you are going to watch my progress here as I get the pattern ready. I have my super speedy test knitters standing by, and for awhile, I was thinking that I am utterly barking mad. Especially since I am working on at least 5 secret projects at the moment. I know. But you know what? I am flying! This design is almost knitting itself and I am sooooo enjoying it! This is going to happen.


06 February 2012

Monday's Musing

"We find a way through tough times and if we can't find a way then we'll make one." - Clint Eastwood, Halftime in America commercial (Chrysler)

Admission: I cried when I watched the Halftime in America commercial during the Superbowl (at halftime!) It is full of awesome, and the whole thing can be viewed here on youtube. Yes, I know it's a commercial, and really? As one commenter said, I would buy fruit roll-ups if that was what was being hawked during this commercial.

It was a pretty amazing game, too, even though the 49ers weren't there. :)


04 February 2012


She's here. :)
And we also have a winner! There were 87 comments, so I went on over to random.org and plugged in my numbers. Random.org said 8, which made The Bear happy, since that's his favorite number. But I digress. The winner is...JaneSezKnit! I guess I ought scoot on over to Ravelry and tell her, eh? :)

I had a lot of fun taking some pictures the other day when the sun peeked out from amongst the clouds.
This one has a similar construction to Maia, from the first year eBook, but there are definite differences. First of all, there are cables. There's a fine and plump lovers' cable twining down the center of the back.
And across the shoulders are mini cables.
Second, the panels are not equal in size. One side of the miniature cable increases at a greater rate than the other. This gives greater width across the back and less in front, and makes the shawl curve nicely around your shoulders. There is subtle shoulder shaping by decreasing the number of increases along the mini cables. (Doesn't that make a strange sentence?) The mini cables merge into the border.
And the large cable morphs into an edging cable. (Can you tell the above picture was taken indoors and the below was outdoors? Look at the difference in color even after correction!)
I am particularly smitten by that little detail.
There is a twisted edging.
And the bottom edge is a little bit ruffled. If you want to expand the size of the shawl, you can keep working that edging chart. It will get a bit more ruffled each time the chart is worked.
All in all, I am quite pleased with Erato.
I hope you like her!

Erato is for sale on Ravelry for $6.50 or as part of an eBook subscription of 7 small shawls and 3 extra patterns for $20. Happy knitting!