Sunday, July 08, 2018

Hammock Time + Molly Socks


Hi, Knitters,
I hope you are all doing well and that your knitting has been satisfying this summer so far. Yesterday I spent some time in the backyard hammock. I grabbed my favorite book from childhood, Mandy by Julie Edwards who is actually the great actress/singer Julie Andrews. As a child this book Mandy drew me in and gave me comfort somehow. It is the sweetest story of an orphan who discovers a tiny run-down cottage next to the orphanage. She steals away to the cottage every spare moment and creates a home for herself through her hard work, determination and ingenuity. There are some harrowing moments along the way and the ending could not be better. 

I have my original copy of Mandy from 1971. It is tattered, taped together and the pages are yellowed but the words are as good as they were 47 years ago. You might like to have a copy to read and share.

Click here to see the book Mandy on Amazon! (I don't have any affiliation here.)  

photo from Devin Ventre

Yesterday we released a new kit for the Molly Socks over on Barrett Wool Co. Aren't they so cute? The pattern is by Devin Ventre (click here for Devin's website).  Devin is the designer of the Gigi Cardigan and the Cabled Gigi Sweater. She is new and upcoming and I love working with her. 

Devin has a way of making a simple project special with little details that entertain along the way. This is more difficult than it may seem. She has done it again with the Molly Socks. I love the way they look and knit up. 



photo from Devin Ventre

We have pulled together the sweetest kit for you to make your own Molly Socks in six different color choices that I paired with a contrasting mini-skein for the heels and toes if you like. I cast on my own pair and I have to say the super simple lace panel is one of the easiest lace stitch patterns I have done. This would be the perfect first lace project. 


Devin used the Strawflower colorway of our Home Fingering Weight and it is a pretty perfect match. 


I cast on my own pair in the Field colorway and I am going to do a contrast heel in the Strawflower colorway. I am really enjoying this pattern so much and I think you will, too. This is one of the Molly Socks Kit combinations that is available.

The Home Fingering Weight is a slightly heavier fingering weight wool that has crisp stitch definition and a lot of squish and bounce. For my size I only cast on 56 stitches so it is going really fast.


I am also excited to introduce The Sock Ruler to Barrett Wool Co. I love this tool for my sock knitting. I did a quick demonstration video on The Sock Ruler for the BWC newsletter.

This handy tool can be included in your Molly Socks Kit or it is available for individual purchase as well.




Here is the kit in the Strawflower and Field colorway. The kit includes a Ravelry download code for the pattern. 



And just to let you know there are only FIVE Sleepy Kitten Kits left in the shop this morning. You can purchase it with or without the Making Magazine. If you get the magazine we are throwing in a Ravelry download code for the pattern as well. Or you can just add the pattern to your kit. 

We probably won't have this kit available again for quite awhile so if interested be sure to check it out. 


Have a beautiful Sunday, friends. I'll be back soon with more.
xo ~ susan

Sunday, July 01, 2018

Sleepy Summer + a giveaway!



Hi, Knitters,
How are you? It's been a little while. I hope you are having an excellent summer so far. June flew by as expected and it was a month full of family and a bustling house around here. Today happens to be my 29th wedding anniversary which seems impossible but time flies when you are having fun, right?

Today I have a couple of things to share with you. Over on Barrett Wool Co. we have brought one of our most popular kits back to the shop. It's the Sleepy Kitten Set Kit! These kittens are endlessly sweet and will bring loads of adoration from any recipient. And it is a fun knit to boot!


The pattern originally appeared in Making Magazine No. 4 / Lines.


The pattern is now also available on Ravelry for individual download. Click here for the pattern!



The pattern in both the magazine and the individual download includes the instructions for the super simple sewn sleeping bags.

The Sleepy Kitten Set includes all of the yarn to complete both kittens and the nightie, and some thread for the face embroidery and whiskers. 


The kittens are worked almost seamlessly (the only seam is stitching the head to the body) and there is a clever construction. All of the appendages, legs, arms, ears, and tail, are knit first and set aside with live stitches. Then as you work the body and head the appendages are knit in as you go. I really like this construction because it eliminates any guesswork for placement and it is good to get those smaller pieces done right away, too.


The kit can be purchased with or without the magazine or pattern, in case you already own the pattern.

These kits are selling quickly and we have a limited number so if you are interested jump on over to check it out. The yarn is our coveted Wisconsin Woolen Spun. It is a special kit to say the least.



Another sleepy and snuggly Giveaway is going on right now! If you are a subscriber to my Barrett Wool Co. weekly newsletter you are automatically included in a giveaway for the fantastic Wrap-Me-Up Toys Kit! These are some of the cutest toys I have ever designed. I love them so much, especially when they are wrapped up in their blankies. 

Click here to check out the Wrap-Me-Up Toys Kit! It is also available for purchase right now.

It is a prize worth over $50 and any worldwide location is eligible to win. All you have to do is be a subscriber to enter to win. I am announcing the randomly selected winner in next Friday's newsletter.

You can subscribe to the newsletter at the bottom of any page on the Barrett Wool Co. website by simply entering your email address in the box.


Good luck if you are entered to win this adorable kit.


One last thing here to share is that Patricia, @pkyk61 on Ravelry (that's her photo above) was a student of mine in Edmonton last fall for my Sock Yarn Bunny Workshop. Patricia posted her fantastic finished bunny and I just had to share. It's so cute!

I put the pattern for the Sock Yarn Bunny on discount this week. It is priced at only $3.50 for a few more days. No code is needed. Then the price will go back to the original $5.00. I thought I'd let you know in case you have some lingering sock yarn that might like to become a bunny.


Thanks for stopping in today. Have a great week ahead and I'll be back soon with more.
xo ~ susan



Sunday, June 10, 2018

Little Dino Pattern + Kits!


Hi, Knitters,
Last week I returned from nearly a week in Vermont and New Hampshire. I was teaching at the Wing and a Prayer Retreat, also known as the New England Fiber Arts Summit. It was a beautiful setting for the retreat actually taking place right on the farm. The food was delicious and locally sourced, there were classes by Cal Patch, Katrina Rodabaugh, Bristol Ivy, Thea Colman, and me. I loved it because I got to attend the classes which is really rare when you are a teacher at an event. Taproot Magazine was a sponsor and I stayed in a house on the property with Amanda Soule of Taproot and the Soule Mama blog. Anyway, it was a great experience and I would do it again in a heartbeat. If you ever get a chance to attend you should do it!

Now for some business, I have a new pattern release this weekend! Little Dino is a brand new toy design and it is such a fun little knit. The toy is knit in Barrett Wool Co. Home Worsted Weight.

The pattern is on a release discount for $3.50, no code needed. In a week the price will be set at $5.00. Click here for the Little Dino pattern and discount on Ravelry!

We also have super cute kits available on Barrett Wool Co. in 3 different colorways, a pink theme, a blue theme and the green theme that you see in the photos.



I love the sweet expression and the nostrils formed by decreases. 


The back view is as cute as the front view!


The kit includes everything you need to make ONE of the dinosaurs, either the striped or solid. There is a yarn only option, too, if you want to knit more than one. It's a super affordable kit so hop on over if interested. 


Have a wonderful Sunday. I've woken up to rainfall and it's quite cool in temperature. I'm kind of enjoying this quiet Sunday morning while working on an old project, my Alabama Chanin reverse applique skirt. Do you think I'll ever finish this one? I hope so.
xo ~ susan

Monday, May 28, 2018

Episode 31 ~ Cabled Gigi & Yarn Giveaway!



Hi, Knitters,
I hope you are having a great long weekend here in America. We had a family cookout last night which was really fun. I love having all of my kids and their significant others around. There is always a lot of laughter and storytelling. And there is always a lot of good food! The hot weather continues with a projected high of 93 degrees today. It is tough to do much at the height of that heat. I'll get outside on the early side today.

I recorded a new podcast episode. If interested, please be sure to enter to win the yarn over on YouTube by simply leaving a comment that includes your Ravelry username.

Click here for Episode 31 and to leave a comment over on YouTube!

Click here for Episode 31 Shownotes and Links over on the BWC Journal!



In the podcast, I'm wearing a new pattern release called Cabled Gigi Pullover. It is a new favorite of mine. The pattern is by Devin Ventre. Click here for Devin's website, Knitty McPurly.

The Cabled Gigi Cardigan and ALL of the Barrett Wool Co. patterns are 50% off right now using the code SUMMER at checkout.

Click here for the Cabled Gigi Pullover!

Click here for all of the Barrett Wool Co. Patterns!

We have kits right now for the Cabled Gigi Pullover on Barrett Wool Co. The kit includes the pattern and yarn and also a custom made Diamond Willow button that is truly beautiful.

Click here for the Cabled Gigi Pullover Kits in 7 gorgeous color options!

Have a wonderful week ahead. I'm traveling to Vermont to teach at the Wing and a Prayer Farm this weekend. I can't wait for this small intimate retreat in a scenic setting. I have never been to Vermont so I am really looking forward to it!
xo ~ susan

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Going West Socks, Gigi Cardigan + more!


Hi, Knitters,
Well, I've been knitting up a storm lately. I've finished a couple of sweaters and a couple pairs of socks. It feels good to get some things done. I've also been sewing up a storm. I whipped up a dozen quilted placemats and a few quilted coasters. Most of these were for gifts but I held onto a couple of placemats to add to my collection. We use these placemats so much that some of ours are getting a bit worn. I hope your creative energy has been going strong this spring.

I have a few new things to share today. I've added a new pattern to my Ravelry Pattern Shop. The pattern for my Craftsy class of the same name is now mine. The pattern is My First Toe-Up Socks and I have it available for a discounted price right now. 

The pattern price is set at $3.50 for another week or so, no code needed. Then the price will be set at $5.00. Please note, if you own the Craftsy class you already have the pattern. 


The pattern includes worsted weight and fingering weight instructions for three sizes (S, M, L) and for double-points and magic loop! 


Speaking of socks, we have two new Going West Socks Minis Kits available over on Barrett Wool Co. I've selected new color combinations in our Home Fingering Weight to make these fun striping socks. The socks use my Smooth Operator Socks pattern along with the free striping instructions on the Barrett Wool Co. Journal.






Colors from left to right: Scout, Tattersall, Blush, Ellie Grey, Strawflower and Field



Colors from left to right: Peppercorn, March Wind, James, Marmalade, Acorn and Morning Sky 



Photo credit: Lucinda Scala Quinn

And lastly, we've listed new colors for the Gigi Cardigan Kits on Barrett Wool Co. I love this cardigan so much. The photo above is the wonderful Lucinda Scala Quinn (author of the Mad Hungry cookbooks) wearing her Gigi she knitted from our kit in the Birch colorway. This is Lucinda's first sweater and she looks fabulous! I love how proud she looks.

The yarn is our Wisconsin Woolen Spun Worsted and we still have a limited number of the custom buttons available as well. The pattern is by the talented Devin Ventre. We have a new sweater from Devin that's releasing very soon.


Okay, friends, have a wonderful Sunday. It is rainy and colder here today so it should be a good crafting day. I'll be back soon with more.
xo ~ susan

Saturday, May 05, 2018

Branches & Buds Sweater Kits + Galiano Island Retreat


Hi, Knitters,
I hope you are all doing well. I have been traveling and teaching again, spring has finally hit big-time in Madison and we have restocked sweater kits over on Barrett Wool Co.! There's a lot going on.

First, our very popular Branches & Buds Sweater Kits were just restocked last night and they are selling quickly. However, we have a large number of kits so don't worry if you'd like to get one for yourself. There are plenty! The sweater is designed by Carrie Bostick Hoge and it is an iconic sweater in my opinion, both gorgeous and instantly recognizable. 



The Branches & Buds Sweater Kit includes our Barrett Wool Co. Wisconsin Woolen Spun Sport Weight yarn. This yarn is local, light and airy and frankly, one of the most beautiful yarns I have ever used. I simply love everything about this sweater kit.

The pattern is well-written and simple enough for first-time colorwork but also perfect for experienced knitters. There is a wide size range and the sweater looks great on all sizes. I've seen it knit and worn in the smallest to the largest size and it is flattering and comfortable.



I want to share some quick photos from my latest traveling adventure. I went to the Galiano Island Retreat which is hosted by Knit Social. Galiano Island is one of the Gulf Islands off of Vancouver. This is one of the most beautiful locations I've ever seen. And I had a complete ball with the knitters and hosts. This was sincerely one of the best retreats I've ever attended.



The photo above from left to right: Jodi of Grocery Girls Podcast, Amanda of Knit Social, Fiona of Knit Social, me, and Tracie of the Grocery Girls Podcast. 

Click here for the Grocery Girls Podcast! One of my faves. I'm so glad I got to spend time with my buddies Jodi and Tracie.


We stayed at the Galiano Inn, where the food was so delicious and the rooms were beautiful. All of the rooms had an ocean view. The retreat took over the entire Inn but it is small. I think there were 26 attendees. 



I went on hikes and runs every day. The views were scenic and peaceful. Just out the door was a cute bakery and coffee shop and bookstore. There were restaurants and shops just minutes away by foot. It was charming and it made you never want to leave.


There was a small and gorgeous marketplace on Saturday. I'm here with Shannon Cook of Very Shannon. Click here for Shannon's fantastic website.

Jane Richmond was with her for their table. They have written many books together and I own them all! Click here for Jane's lovely website. 

These two are some of my favorite knitters, honestly. I have met them several times before but this was the first time I got to spend quality time with them. They are simply wonderful and fun and talented. True gems of the knitting world.

I am holding my baby sweater yarn from Gauge Dyeworks! I will be knitting a couple baby sweaters in the future with this genius yarn. Click here for Gauge Dyeworks! Much more to come on this!



I cast on a new sock for the plane rides home. I am still glowing with the memory of this fantastic knitting adventure. I taught two Smooth Operator Sock workshops and the students were so fun and game to learn. The other instructor was the smart and endearing Andrea Rangel of AlterKnit fame. 

Click here for Andrea Rangel's website! Andrea is so much fun and she's interesting, friendly, and she has a great sense of humor. I enjoyed her so much.

Anyway, I'll have more to share soon. Have a beautiful weekend.
xo ~ susan

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Sweet Bee and Flower + Making No. 5 / Colors


photo credit: carrie bostick hoge

Hi, Knitters,
I hope you are having a wonderful weekend. Spring has finally sprung here in Wisconsin. It is supposed to be 60 degrees today. It seems hard to believe and it will be hard to not feel like grabbing my winter coat when I'm heading out the door. I am looking forward to some warmer temperatures as I'm sure many of you are, too. 
I have a new pattern out this weekend. It is called Sweet Bee and Flower and I'm really excited about it. It is in the new issue of Making Magazine No. 5 / Colors which is an incredible magazine filled with projects and inspiration. We have some fun things going on to celebrate the little bees and flowers over on Barrett Wool Co. 
The Sweet Bee and Flower kit is our first pre-order kit!  The kits will be sent out in about 4-6 weeks as we are waiting for our new shipment of yarn. If you order the Making Magazine No. 5 / Colors along with your kit, we will ship you the magazine right away and the kits will be shipped separately and for free as soon as they are ready.
We will keep you updated on the kit pre-order status as we anxiously await our new batch of yarn! Thank you for your patience and we know it will be worth the wait.

Click here to find the Sweet Bee and Flower on Ravelry!

Also, you can order Making No. 5 / Colors by itself and we have Making Magazine Numbers 1-4 available in the Mercantile! These magazines are collector's items that you won't want to miss.

Click here for the Mercantile for the Making Magazines!

photo credit: carrie bostick hoge

Here you can see the full Sweet Bee and Flower project. There is a flower cozy to hold a little sweet bee. These are knit in Home Fingering Weight yarn on US size 2 and 3 needles. There is no seaming as everything is picked up and knit on which makes it a slick and fun project. 


I had to share the beautiful cover of the Making Magazine No. 5 / Colors. It's so spring-y and fresh!


One last thing, there is a discount going on for all of the scissors over on Barrett Wool Co. If you enter SCISSORS at checkout you get $1.00 of every pair of scissors purchased. The style in the photo is our newest pair called Vintage. I think these are my new favorites. 


Have a great week ahead, Knitters! Next week I am off to teach at Galiano Island for a knitting retreat. I can't wait for this one. It is run through Knit Social and they always do an excellent job.

I'll be back soon with more...
xo ~ susan