9.28.2011

Gee's Cabin: Free Pattern

Last spring I participated in a group log cabin baby blanket... it was my first time knitting a log cabin square, and I liked log cabin knitting more than I had anticipated!  After I sent my square in I knew I was going to have to design an accessory to get the log cabin love outta my system.... and so Gee's Cabin was born.  
Gee's Cabin
It's name is derived from both Log Cabin knitting and the Quilts of Gee's Bend (to see more images of these quilts click on "view more photos") which I have always been drawn to!  If there is ever an exhibit of them near you drop everything and go take a gander. 
Gee's Cabin
Worked from the center out, the difference between this and traditional log cabin is that you do not bind off stitches until the whole scarf is complete... instead you work in the round with increases on each long side to create the rectangular shape of the scarf.  This project is PERFECT if you have interchangeable needles as you can just switch out for a longer cord whenever your stitches become cramped on the needle.
Gee's Cabin
This version uses three colors of Alisha Goes Around Pulchritude of Peacocks, in Thrace, Naval Campaign and Eggplanty.  This yarn is divine to work with and Alisha's colors are absolutely YUMMY!
Gee's Cabin
This second version uses two colors of Rowan Kidsilk Haze in Jelly and Cocoa.  I absolutely LOVE the lighter than air hand and transparency of color in this version.  Keep in mind, though, because of the mohair Kidsilk is a bit tricksy to work with.

So, since I am the boss, I made an executive decision that this should be a free pattern through the end of the year... and so enjoy!  I am completely blown away by the support, love and friendship I have found while following this dream of mine and it's time to say THANKYOU!

9.26.2011

Some Skywalker Love!

It's a month later and my Craftsy class, Knit This! Mastering Lace Shawls is going strong.   Knitters are learning to become lace knitting jedi's with me, and we've been having tons of fun!   A few of my favorite bloggers have been taking time out of their busy lives to review the class and have a few things to say that made me "blush"... thanks ladies!


I wanted to share a few FO's and WIP's of Skywalker so you can see what my students have been making.  There are many more Skywalker's posted over on Ravelry and Craftsy as well, in fact Skywalker has been on the Ravelry New and Most Popular List all month... (which makes me all kinds of silly/happy : )! )

Skywalker by RoseOfKnit in Misti Alpaca Lace Solids
Skywalker by SPope in Knit Picks Stroll Hand-Painted
Skywalker by Seachanges in Knit Picks Comfy Fingering Weight
A hint?  Do you want to take the Craftsy class with me too?  If you click here (or on the image for the class on the upper right hand corner of my blog), it will give you 50% off the class... feel free to share it with your friends!

9.23.2011

Happy Fall Y'all!

It's my favorite season... and it's time to celebrate with you!  I decided that the Butin Collar Kits needed some new colors to welcome in the cooler weather... colors that are RICH and WARM and WEARABLE!  Want to see?
From left to right:  Mary Walker Phillips (with the prettiest Raspberry colored beads), Rosa Parks (love the reds in this!), and Indira Gandhi

How are we celebrating?  Ready for a sale?  From now until September 26th at midnight ALL of the kits in my Etsy shop and patterns in my Ravelry store will be 15% off... this is true for both the new colors and one that have been around for months. Just use coupon code FALL4KNITTING at checkout!

A few tidbits:
*Sarah, from The Sexy Knitter, held a fabulous interview with me that also includes a giveaway... go check it out!

*I am teaching next weekend in Oklahoma City, at the Gourmet Yarn Co, and I think there are still a few spots open in some of the classes : )!  Hope to see some of you there (or at other workshops this Fall)!

Happy Knitting!!!!! 

9.22.2011

Video Tutorial: Lace (or Knitted On) Cast On

This cast on is used in many of my patterns, it creates a flexible edge that is easily stretched and blocked into place, perfect for lace! Enjoy!

Patterns of mine that specifically use this cast on are: Ennoble, Aventina, Clarus, October's Adorn Pattern (coming soon!), and Aile.

9.21.2011

9.15.2011

A Ketchup Obsession

For the last year I have been obsessed with making homemade ketchup, and when the CSA's bumper crop of plum tomatoes was ready, it was time.  I will tell you: I was met with skepticism from the family. I mean, really, ketchup is not special and it's cheap, why spend all day on it?  Ya know, why?  Because homemade Ketchup is FREAKING AWESOME... so much better than the stuff in the squeezable bottle, there is no comparison.  And so, without further ado, I share my ketchup recipe with you:
ketchup

Homemade Ketchup
(adapted from USA Cookbook by Sheila Lukins)

In a piece of cheesecloth tie up:
    4 whole cloves
     8 black peppercorns
     3 whole allspice
     1 cinnamon stick
     1/4 tsp mustard seeds
     1 inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled
(optional, we add ginger to everything)

Place the sachet into a non-corrosive pot, along with:
     5 lbs ripe plum tomatoes, cored and coarsely chopped
     1 large onion, coarsely chopped
     1 large clove garlic, peeled and crushed


Bring the tomato mixture to a boil, and then reduce the heat to medium, stirring occasionally.  Simmer, uncovered for 1.5 hours.

Remove the sachet, and strain the mixture through a sieve, I used the back of a wooden spoon and a bunch of elbow "grease".  This was the messiest, most time involved step!  You want to extract everything you can BUT the skins.

Return the strained mixture AND the spice sachet back to the pot, add:
     1/4 cup cider vinegar
     1 tbsp molasses
(recipe called for dark brown sugar, but I like molasses more!)

Cook, on low heat, uncovered for another 2 -3 hours. Watch as your ketchup magically starts to thicken.  Don't forget to stop by the stove and stir it every so often.

Allow the ketchup to cool a bit, remove the spice sachet and discard, and then process quickly in a food processer until completely smooth.  If you want add 1 tbsp of lemon juice to brighten and season with salt.  

Store in the refrigerator... supposedly it will last up to three weeks, but I can't attest to that as we ATE ours : )!

9.13.2011

My Busy Bee: A family joke!

I've decided to let you all in on a little family joke we have going around here... cause it just cracks me up too much to not share.  
Earlier this summer we watched Best In Show with the girl... we all especially loved this scene with Parker Posey.  (I was really hoping to embed it, but YouTube won't let me!)

Ever since then, when I get that crazed look in my eye and start rustling around for my knitting either my honey or the girl will ask:
"Can't find your busy bee?  
Do you need your busy bee?  
Where's your busy bee?"  

Now we just call my knitting My Busy Bee... is it yours too?  You are welcome to jump on the Busy Bee band wagon, there is plenty of room!

Oh, and parenting tip:  If you are watching something with your child that might be just a wee bit "advanced" for them (ahem) DO NOT keep looking over to see if they are "getting" it..... any child with half a brain will quickly figure out that they should be doubling their efforts to comprehend the scene.  Let's just say, LESSON LEARNED!

9.06.2011

Beignet: September's Adorn Pattern!

Introducing Beignet, September's Adorn Pattern!
Beignet- September's Adorn Pattern
With a donut as a focal point, this beaded i-cord necklace explores the elegant simplicity of knitted jewelry.  Worked from the bottom up, the cast on is wrapped around the donut integrating it seamlessly into the design.  
Beignet- September's Adorn Pattern
I've shot a video for the cast on as it is quite unique and not the easiest to explain with words. I devised the cast on by futzing and ripping and trying again with the donut and my yarn and needles until it looked perfect and then recreated that for you!  The pattern includes a link to a private YouTube video that will make it all clear in a jiffy!
Beignet- September's Adorn Pattern
The donut I used is from Jul Designs, it's called Cinnamon Ring, and is from their shawl pin collection.  I spent a fair amount of time at TNNA drooling in their booth and it is one of the goodies I came away with!  I also have a turquoise donut I am dying to use that we got when we were in Albuquerque last spring... I'm just waiting for the perfect yarn for it!
Beignet- September's Adorn Pattern
Wondering if I am the only one craving a real donut after reading this.  It's my girl's last official day of summer as school starts tomorrow.  I'm thinking maybe a "donut" date is in order!

9.05.2011

Clarus and Skywalker Winners!

Ready for the winner's from last week's giveaway?

Congrats to:
(Skywalker and Cash/Silk)
AND

(Clarus and Breathless)

 
Tomorrow I'll be releasing September's Adorn pattern.... are you ready?