Monday, June 29, 2009

What's Mine is Yours

Hi Knitters,
First off I have a quick story about my second son who is 15 years old. He has always been a firm believer of what's mine is yours. He also believes what's yours is mine. Mi casa es su casa y su casa es mi casa. Meaning, he will give you the shirt off his back with no thought at all but if your shirt is lying around he'll help himself to that as well. He just assumes that he can wear, eat, loan out, give, share, take, enjoy anything he sees just because he sees it. He is generous to the core which is great but he thinks everyone is the same way.

He will wear things that he finds around our house and he doesn't care at all if it is his or if it is on the feminine side of things. He couldn't find his flip flops so he started wearing my daughter's flip flops that looked, well, girly. Of course they broke, he has huge man feet. He also took over a pair of my daughter's Ugg boots, which his cousins then call MUggs (Uggs for men=MUggs)). He found a pink Adidas sack, like those back packs with the drawstring, and wore that for a couple of years. He found this pink bag on a path near our house and I kept thinking the owner was going to see him using her back pack. 

He has come home from school with a couple of sweatshirts and winter hats, usually found on a sidewalk outside of the school. He takes and shares all of his brother's clothes. They don't really differentiate their wardrobe at all. It is funny and strange at the same time. Every clothing item is swapped between the two of them. Share, share. His brother did get a little mad when he took over a new North Face fleece that was a gift. A few arguments ensued over this one ending with me making him take off his brother's new fleece and finding another. This usually happened when they were running late for school in the morning.

He has found various towels at the pool lost and found and then all of a sudden I am washing other people's towels in my laundry, which is all I need. I try to return all of these towels to the pool when I notice they don't belong to us. Honestly, I have trouble keeping track. Sorry to any neighbors reading this, I am trying. He is so good-natured about this, it is not done with any bad intention. He is just fun and goofy. He still wears a little hoodie towel that my mom sewed him with his name appliqued on when he was maybe preschool age at best. He doesn't think for one minute that he may be too old to wear a baby towel around. 

Added later: I forgot to add that the other things he always helps himself to are other family members' bikes. He will take any bike he can get his hands on in the garage and ride off. Then when that person goes to get on their bike it is gone. He has a bike that was a hand me down and he doesn't like it much so he prefers to ride everyone else's bikes. It is always a battle to make sure he doesn't take his brother's or sister's bikes in the morning for swim team. He took my bike this morning then called me to tell me it had a flat tire on the way home. Too much. 

He loves having friends over in big and small groups. He opens up the kitchen like it's a restaurant, which I love. It is fun having all of those big kids eating their hearts out like it's their own home. They help themselves digging in the cupboards and fridge. It makes me feel good that he is such a giver but I get concerned that he assumes everyone is like that. They aren't. He may help himself to something someday and it may not go over well. 

I hope he can continue to think that the world is his oyster and your oyster, too. That's a good way to live.
Now on to some other sharing. Kristin Nicholas was sharing her brand new sock yarn at TNNA a couple of weeks ago. I had no idea she was creating a new sock yarn line so what a fun surprise. It was all very hush-hush. The yarn is called, Best Foot Forward and you can read all about it here. The colors are fantastic and similar to her other yarn line, Julia. The label has Kristin's painting on it and her signature. I especially like how the label shows the different colorways knit up. That is always helpful. I can't wait to knit up this new sock yarn fresh off the presses. I'll share once I get going on a project. I really love this colorway with the purple, blue, black and green. Can't wait to dig in.

Kristin has also just announced a new opportunity for knitters to come to her farm to learn and knit right beside her while enjoying her home. Her home looks beyond dreamy in the photos. What a treat and if I lived any closer I'd be signing up right away. What a treat Kristin is offering in holding workshops and opening her home to interested knitters. She has a designated site about the classes here. Even if you can't attend the retreat you should hop over to see the photos of her farm and home. Spectacular.

Another new thing I want to share is a fabulous new website called Petite Purls. It is a new site featuring adorable free patterns for babies and kids. The first online issue just came out and the patterns are top-notch. They are taking submissions for the fall issue and here are the guidelines if you are interested in submitting. It's all cute and well-done so be sure to take the time to check out this new offering. 
Thanks for the star washcloth love. This juicy treat of a washcloth is up next. I just have to find time to write up the pattern over the next few days. Watermelon is always a favorite of mine. The colors are simply fresh and perfect. Stay tuned.

A couple of last goings on, The Collector had a birthday bash last night with friends to celebrate her 10th birthday. I think we had about 15 kids in all. All day she and her sister filled water balloons for the party. They had buckets and buckets filled to the brim with water balloons. My kids have always loved water balloons. They like different shapes like the long skinny balloons or the squiggly balloons or the huge balloons that fill up your whole lap when filled with water. They pretend the big balloons are babies and carry them around in their arms until they burst and they are soaked. It's funny. We had pizza and watermelon and huge cupcakes with ice cream. Then came water balloon time and lastly we headed up to the pool for a night swim. It was fun. Ten years has gone fast.

I have been gathering up and collecting lots of knitterly stuff lately. Stuff I want to share with you. I need to clear out a bit. I think I'll be having a few giveaways in the near future with loads of cool stuff. Keep your eye out for this.

Sharing is always good on both ends. 

Monday is here.
best, susie
p.s. Did you see the sneak peek for my next free pattern on the S & C blog? 

Friday, June 26, 2009

Star Washcloth Pattern

Hi Knitters,
Well, here it is! I am excited to bring you this summer washcloth pattern today. Here is some information you may like to now about the Star Washcloth pattern:

Yarn: Crystal Palace Cotton Chenille 1 skein each in Lacquer Red #9784, Bleach #1058 and Carib Blue #406
*note* Any worsted weight cotton will work great for this pattern!

Needles: US size 6, set of 4 double-pointed needles and 16-inch circular needles or size to obtain gauge

stitch markers (5)
yarn needle
size H crochet hook (optional)
Gauge: 4 stitches per inch in stockinette stitch

Finished measurement: 9 inches from point to point
I want you to see the yarn I have used for these washcloths. I have completed the two stars and I have a lot of yarn leftover. I think I could get two stars out of each color and still have enough for the contrasting crochet edging. 

It was fun to figure out how to construct a star shape. I began with the center and knew that I had to have five edges for the star points to grow out of. Of course that means I needed to figure out how to make a pentagon. When I cast on I needed a number that would be divisible by 5. I thought of the center of the star as the top of a hat that would have 5 lines of decreases going toward the center. It took me 2 tries to get it right because the first center I made was too small. Washcloth should be bigger than your hand for comfortable use. Anyway, I thought you may be interested in how I worked out the pattern. The points are picked up on each of the five sides and worked in garter stitch.

I think the Stars would make a fantastic gifts for moms and dads, babies, children, grandparents, friends, hostess gifts for 4th of July parties, etc. The Star Washcloth would be cute in pastel colors or bright colors, not just red, white and blue. The star is a great shape for boys and girls.
I put my hand on to give you a size reference. Here are the skills you need to complete the Star Washcloth:
cast on
knit stitch
knitting in the round 
picking up stitches
optional crochet: single crochet, slip stitch

The Star Washcloth Pattern is now available in my Pattern Shop for $3.50. The Pattern Shop is always at the top of my sidebar on the blog.

best, susie

Thursday, June 25, 2009


Hi Knitters,
This morning I knit up this fun and fast Star Washcloth. It measures about 9 inches from point to point.
I am planning on whipping this pattern into shape today and having it up by the weekend so you can get some Stars made before the 4th of July. They would also be cute in pastels and brights of any sort, not just a patriotic twist. I want to make a couple more using the white and blue as the star color and the others for trim. Out of 3 balls of Cotton Chenille you could get at least 3 and probably a few more Star Washcloths.

I have another summer design poised to go after the Star. That will be next up and very soon.
Chris in Grand Rapids sent me this lovely shot of her Butterfly Washcloth made in Tahki Cotton Classic. She loves it because it is so soft and elegant in this yarn. It is a gift for her butterfly-loving sister.

I thought that you might enjoy this summery treat from Chris.

I'll be back quick with the fun Star pattern.
best, susie

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Sew, Sew and Sew

Hi Knitters,
First things first, Rachel, of Twist Your Stitches, is having a fantastic giveaway that involves luscious Blue Sky Alpacas Yarn, a Blue Sky pattern for a hat and mitten set, a Blue Sky Pretty Cheap bag (sweet muslin drawstring bags printed with a bird), handmade soap, and a children's book that involves sheep. This giveaway is only going on one more day! Quick, all you have to do is leave a comment and you have a good shot at winning these fantastic prizes. Enter here!

Okay, when you are piecing squares together (photo above), like for quilting I guess, what do you do with the seams on the back? Do you press them open? Do you trim and lay them flat in the same direction? I have no idea what the correct way is. Please let me know if you get a chance:)

Thank you for the bobbin help! With all of your help I actually figured it out and it was exciting. I jumped up and down and clapped and my kids thought I was so silly. Wow, I not only got comments, I got emails and emails and I even had an offer from a former sewing instructor in town to pop on over to help. I couldn't believe the willingness to offer help. Thank you. Touching. 
Lexie Barnes' Sew What! Bags is my new favorite book. Lexie does a fantastic job with this straightforward instructional book. What I love about it is that basically it is a template for a wide variety of bag patterns. It is done incredibly well, like all Storey book are. Even a complete beginner, like me, can pick this up and make beautiful bags. Lexie includes drawstring bags, reversible totes, messenger bags, wristlets, tissue and eyeglass holders, a backpack, an artist's roll, and a child's tiny tote and more. There is a great array of choices and the lay out is crystal clear. There is a helpful newbie, instructional section at the beginning which I have read through at least several times. I have learned so much from Lexie's book. I highly recommend it.

Here's the other point about this book. If you are interested in knitting your bags, you could totally use this book as, again, a template for your knitting. The pieces for each bag are clearly illustrated with the measurements. All you would have to do is knit your pieces to the measurements and stitch up and you could have all of these great bag patterns in knitted form. I think this is a perfect translation.
Here is my first reversible tote. I have a couple of stacks of Anna Maria Horner's Chocolate Lollipop and Drawing Room fat quarters. I am piecing together some tote bags for my girls and me using up these fabric pieces and scraps.
I did a bunch of applique work, which is so fun. I just kind of scribbled around with the straight stitch, which I am calling the "scribble stitch" because I think it looks like a little kid just scribbled around the pieces. I love the messy stitching.
Every side is different because I am using scraps and small pieces. My girls love the fact that every way you turn the bag you see something new.

Now, I added rounded gussets to the bottom corners, which are not in the original pattern. I like my bags to stand up on their own. I learned this gusset from my first bag, the Birdie Sling by Amy Butler. I had a lot of people email to ask where to get the Birdie Sling pattern so there is the link. I bought all of my Amy Butler fabric and patterns here. Those are some really nice and helpful sewing ladies in this shop. They have been incredibly helpful. But see with those gussets? I am already transferring my limited bag of tricks around.
My seams are a little uneven but I don't mind a bit and I doubt that I ever will. It is just a pure fun creative release for me and there is no need for perfection in my book. These bags are completely reversible with nice pockets included. Plus they are the perfect size.
I've already carried this bag around a bit and have received many compliments and then I always proudly think in my head, "I made it." I can't really believe it myself.
This one is the Collector's bag. She selected all of the fabric pieces and cut out all of her applique pieces on her own. Her name is on one side, she cut out the letters, and she cut out some hearts for the other side.
She absolutely loves it. She requested shorter handles. No problem.
This is my other daughter's bag. Again, it is reversible.
This time I cut out strips and stitched them together to form the fabric. They are all different widths and many are a little uneven and I didn't even really measure. This is more my kind of sewing.
Anna Maria's fabric is beautiful and fun. Her color sense is spot on. This bag turned out a bit smaller.
Happy little sewer! That's me. I feel pretty good about being able to sew a few simple things. I don't know how much time I will really have to sew in the upcoming months. I have a lot of things on my plate but boy, is it fun. I want to keep it up for sure. At this point I am not that interested in sewing garments. I like bags and funny little objects. Maybe some fabric toys are in line. I love it that you can just cut and you have your fabric instantly. With knitting you are creating your fabric stitch by stitch. However, much of the construction is the same. 

Knitting and sewing are alike and different at the same time, right?

Anyway, go and enter that giveaway today! 

Thanks for indulging me on my new sewing adventures, they will be few and far between. I actually finished writing a pattern yesterday that has been haunting me for awhile. 

Did you see that I posted the tiny crochet flower pattern on the other blog? Remember I stitched them to my chartreuse cardi? Look here if you want this simple pattern.

The sun is coming up and my kids will be up in a few minutes for that early, early swim team call. Have a great Wednesday, Knitters.
best, susie

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Last Sunday

Hi Knitters,

Sunday was a day of memories from start to finish. The Collector turned ten years old. My husband celebrated seventeen years of being a father. No words can express my gratitude for being a part of their lives....

best, susie

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Sew, Sew

Hi Knitters,
I've caught a sewing bug and The Collector has joined me. She had some fleece she had picked out quite awhile ago. We made up a pattern from scratch on paper and pinned it on the fleece and cut it out. We did the same for the handles.
Next, she hand stitched the entire thing together with a needle and thread. She did a great job with this project. She has so many projects going at all times. The stripey gourd snake is lingering on my front stoop. I have asked her about it several times but she isn't interested in finishing the stripes right now. Hopefully it will come back to her soon.
Next up, The Collector is holding my first finished sewing project since home economics class in 7th grade, where I made a laundry bag. I made Amy Butler's Birdie Sling using Amy's fabrics as well. My sister came over and taught me how to use my sewing machine. I am doing pretty well with it and I have made a few more things since this bag. I finished the Birdie Sling in one day. I became obsessed with finishing it. I have done some hems and tailored the bodice of a dress to fit me, that was an experience. I made up my own way as I went along. I am sure it is completely wrong but now the dress fits and it looks fine. What's wrong in that?
The bag on the left is mine and the bag on the right is my sister's version. We flip-flopped fabrics and I actually bought her fabrics for the bag as a birthday gift for her. The only problem is that her daughter has taken over her bag completely and I don't think she has used it once. She doesn't mind a bit.
Well, now here is my problem and I know there is an easy solution. I can put a bobbin in my machine when it is empty and then I can load on the matching yarn and it all works fine. I can thread my machine, too, which is a great accomplishment for me. What I can't do is put in a bobbin with thread already on it and then get the thread to come up and work. I can't get it to catch. I called my sister yesterday and she told me over the phone how to do it. I still can't get it to work. Maybe tomorrow I'll figure it out. She may have to come over and show me. I really have no idea what I am doing, it is all pure chance when something goes right.
The lining is the best, it is called Happy Dots. The Birdie Sling has fantastic pockets inside. Great pattern, clear instructions, it even includes pleats on the outside. I learned a ton by making this bag as first round try. Fun, fun!
Okay, you will never guess what this outfit is. Check out the metallic detail on the fabric. There is so much going on here.
My sister dug this one out of storage for me to look at. (See that half finished stripey snake on the table?) Let me tell you about this. When my slightly older sister was in middle school she took a sewing class. This was in the mid-1970's. There was a Singer store at the mall where she took her class. Being the over-achiever that she still is today, she selected this full ensemble as her summer project, full-on high waisted pants, groovy hat and slick jacket with a zipper. I bet my mom just about died at her choice. I am sure the other kids didn't pick anything as complicated. 

I remember her (and my talented seamstress mom) working on this project very hard that summer. In the end it was a work of perfection from head to toe. I mean, wow, just look at that. (If you haven't noticed, my sister was and is a tiny little thing being that the Collector is quite a bit younger than my sister when she wore the outfit). 

At the end of the summer there was a style show in the middle of the mall, complete with a stage, an emcee and music. My mom and I went to watch my sister strut her stuff. She wore some platform sandals to top it all off. The hat was worn slightly tipped to the side. I was really proud of my sister, bursting really. If only I could be that beautiful and cool as her, that's never happened. They actually had judges who selected the winner of the sewing class, isn't that weird to make a sewing class a competition? My sister won first place! She got a little box of jewelry as the prize. I thought she was the coolest thing ever. 

The rest of my family, dad and brothers, were meeting my grandparents at the Wisconsin Dells for a few days and they were already there. We went late to join them because of the fashion show. I remember all of this vividly and it was about 30 years ago. That's so funny because sometimes I feel like I can't remember yesterday.

Anyway, this sewing tale had a happy ending to say the least. My first project had a happy ending, too. Sewing is pretty fun and fast, it's a good change of pace. I am getting a kick out of it for sure.

Tomorrow I'll be back to the knitting as usual, pattern writing to be specific. I am getting a back-log of patterns that need to be written up and it doesn't feel very good. Uneasy.

Good night. I'll be back soon.
best, susie 

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Ribbons to Send

Hi Knitters,
Yesterday I quickly whipped up a Ribbons hat from Itty-Bitty Hats for the Itty-Bitty Knits group Ribbons Hat Swap. What a fun little knit. It's a dreary day weather-wise around here so the pictures are fittingly dreary, too. It looks like the sun is trying to peek out now though.
I dug through my ribbon stash and pulled out some luscious dusty pink crinkly ribbon, some raw baby pink silk, and one sheer chocolate brown ribbon and one silk chocolate brown ribbon. Brown and pink, one of my favorite color combos of all-time.
I used the squishy, washable Spud & Chloë Sweater yarn in Ice Cream. It is a worsted weight and worked up slick as can be on a size 7 needle at 5 stitches per inch. It is as creamy and smooth as any vanilla should be.
I'm going to include a Spud & Chloe pattern box and a skein of S & C Sweater yarn in Moonlight for my swap partner to enjoy. She lives in Canada. I hope to get to the post office this afternoon but we'll see how the day unfolds. I think my Ribbons hat looks like a sweet cupcake done up in style. I love it!!

Next, I am in participating on the June Knitalong for the Upside Down Daisy Hat from Itty-Bitty Hats. The group is doing a casual knitalong to go through all of the hats in the book. I need a hat for a gift so I am jumping in for this one. Come and join us, you can pop in and out as your schedule allows!

I noticed on ravelry that one of my toy designs ended up in this magazine supplement. I am going to try to get a copy of this magazine today. That is always a weird surprise to see one of your patterns turn up somewhere. I will post more about this when I get a copy in front of me.

I had a kind reader, Chris, let me know that I was on here. I am so appreciative that people let me know about these things. Otherwise I would miss it completely. Thank you so much, Chris.

One last mention, did you see this project? Looooove it. Must make it. Really, what a great site. It never fails.

Take care on this Wednesday and hopefully you'll get to knit a little.
best, susie

Monday, June 15, 2009

Home Again, Home Again

Hi Knitters,
I'm home. There is nothing better than coming home. Even a couple of quick days away is enough when I am alone on the road. Even though my kids are getting older I still miss them just as much as when they were little although I was never gone much when they were little. 

I had a fantastic time at TNNA. It was a whirlwind of fun and yarn and chit chat. What a worthwhile trip. I feel very lucky that I got to attend at all. It was all kind of cooked up at the last minute so my thanks to Blue Sky and Artisan Books for their continued support.
To give a quick recap of events, it all started on Saturday morning with taping an interview for the lovely Candi Jensen, the producer of the Emmy nominated PBS show, Knit and Crochet Today.

This was interesting and fun and different. I have done live t.v. shows for my books and that can be nerve wracking because you only have that few minutes and you don't know where the host is going to go exactly. My strategy is always to, in a nice way, lead the interview where I wanted it to go. I would try to move the discussion along to get my intended points in. I would come in with a plan in mind. Sometimes it would work great and a few times not. This time I had no idea what to expect but these points that were given ahead of time were helpful:
1. Wear a bright color, not all black or all white. I wore my cardigan with the tiny crochet flowers and a bright melon-colored tank underneath, very springy.

2. The interviewer (Candi) is off screen and will ask you questions. These questions are edited out so it appears that you are just talking when the show airs. This means you need to restate the question in your answer so people can understand what you are talking about. I think I did okay at this.

3. Arrive camera ready in your wardrobe and makeup. Everyday makeup was suggested. However, when the camera man looked at me onscreen apparently I didn't have quite enough makeup on. My everyday makeup is nothing or next to nothing so the camera man wrapped me up in a big piece of plastic, like a big sandwich, and gently smeared some powder on my forehead, nose and chin. He told me it was extra-important to blend due to HD. Yikes. That was funny to me. I can't imagine that it looked good but whatever. My kids got a kick out of that.

4. They would film about 15 minutes of you talking and then edit and splice in your book or projects or whatever you were talking about later. The final version will be about 6 minutes long or so.
It was fun, I talked a lot and I hope I sounded okay. I can't think of anything that went too wrong so I am pretty sure it will be fine. What a memorable experience. I am such a PBS fan. Growing up in my era there weren't all of the kids programs like there are now and I watched a ton of PBS as a kid and now I still check in all of the time to see what is showing even with all of the other channels we get nowadays. It is always good solid t.v. My dad was a huge PBS watcher and he would contribute every time they had a fundraising event on the channel. I found that admirable.

Anyway, I'm a bit off track so back to the show, the best part was the "green room." I first came in behind Louisa Harding. She's so elegant. In the room was Robyn Chachula, who is about the cutest thing you will ever see, and she is a regular expert on the show. Robyn is friendly, helpful and fun. I am glad I got to meet her. Sitting in the green room was Marlaina Bird, the fantastic host of the Yarn Thing podcast. I never miss an episode, be sure to check out her line up of interviews, it's awesome. She is an up and coming designer landing projects in all of the major knit and crochet magazines. She's in just about every issue. Marly is a good egg and a positive force in the yarn world. There is a lot in store for her in the future. It was good to meet her, too.

Sally Melville was in the room when I got there along with an ex-Workman publicist, Kim Small. It was great to see Kim again. Brett Bara, so sharp and nice to meet, is the host of the show and the editor of Crochet Today, and Vogue Knitting leaders Carla Scott and Trisha Malcolm were in the green room, too. It was fun to see and meet all of these great women.
I spent a little time in the Spud & Chloë booth and that was a treat. It was so busy in there, absolutely non-stop filled with people, which is a great sign. The booth was gorgeous just as you would expect it would be. The Blue Sky area was elegant and beautiful and the Spud & Chloë was camping. That sort of sums it up. I loved it all, just soaked it up and tried to burn it into my memory.

I had a great book signing with R & M book distributors. It is always fun and good to meet people and I got to hear a lot of terrific Itty-Bitty knitting stories. Thanks to everyone for coming. I got to meet Maureen, who works at Workman, she kindly checked in on me to make sure everything was going okay. I also had the chance to catch up with Amy Greeman, who is a fantastic and talented director of publicity for Storey publishing, which is a Workman company along with Artisan. I got to meet the illustrious Gwen Steege from Storey, which was a thrill for me. I have always seen her name on books throughout the years. You will recognize her books, look here. Now I look her up and see she has a couple of chocolate chip cookie books to boot. I knew I liked her. Gwen is truly lovely.

I got to chat with Kristin Nicholas for awhile which is always fun. I will post more about this later. She has some cool new stuff brewing I want to tell you about. I loved seeing her again.

On Saturday night I went to dinner with the Blue Sky Alpacas/Spud & Chloë people and the Purl/Purlbee people, Joelle, Jen and Page. It was fun to meet them. I was especially glad to get to meet the Blue Sky staff in person. They are a lovely, friendly and fun group plus they were all so welcoming to the new girl in town (me). Plus they are all loaded with tons and tons of talent no less. It is a fortunate group to be associated with. I had a great time with them all.

Okay, that little hat and sweater is one of the new Spud & Chloë patterns I designed and knitted for the launch. I called it Mon Petite Poire (in French) translated, My Little Pear. They changed the name to Baby Bartlett Set, which is cute, too. It is an easy, peasy knit made in Fine (sock weight yarn) on US size 3 needles. The sweater is a boatneck style with stretchy ribbing at the neckline and a generous opening for easy on and off. Starting off in the round and separating at the armholes makes for a simple body. The sleeves are knit in the round so there is minimal seaming. The applique is optional, it would be cute plain, too. The hat alone is a great sock yarn stash buster. It is the perfect sock yarn baby hat you can whip up in a jiffy. The pattern will be available in your local yarn shops and online very soon.

Look here to get all of the information about the Baby Bartlett Set!

I reformatted the free Cupcake Pincushion pattern with a better template with the help from my son last night. It got thrown up on the blog before I had double checked the pattern lay out. We are learning as we go along. It is much better now. Here is the new version if you are interested. Click on the link at the bottom of the post to get the downloadable pdf.

Enough already! The laundry is buzzing, the house is a mess, kids are swimming and in and out, groceries are needed, knitting work is know how all that goes, right?

Happy Monday, Knitters!
best, susie

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Monkey Business

Hi Knitters,
I am leaving you for the weekend with a photo (by Liz Banfield) from my new book that I could simply stare at all day. Could there ever be a better expression on a face than that? His face is telling me a story. 

Liz Banfield=genius. No question.

Please check out this write up from Ysolda. It is fantastic and beautiful.

I am packing and a-packing. I'll see you on the flip side, Knitters.
best, susie
p.s. My first free pattern is up and available for pdf download here. A sweet for my sweeties!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009


Cover for Itty-Bitty Toys (Note the similar expressions of the giraffe and the little boy, so sweet.)
Hi Knitters,
I hope you are all having a good first half of the week. It is flying by fast over here. I want to update you on my TNNA plans in hopes that some of you will be in Columbus and that I will get to see you there. My time there is going to be fast and furious, lots packed into a short amount of time.

Late on Saturday morning I am taping an interview for the PBS show Knit and Crochet Today. You should check out this site for tons of information and free patterns, it's a good one. The show that I am on won't be on the air until next fall. That will be cool and fun. 

The next thing I have on my plate for Saturday is a book signing at the R & M book distributors booth. The booth is #120 and my signing is from 1:00-2:00. I will be signing Itty-Bitty Hats and Itty-Bitty Nursery. I have blads to hand out for Itty-Bitty Toys which will be released this upcoming fall. Blads are like brochures with some sample photos and pages of new releases. Publishers use blads for publicity before the actual book is printed. Anyhoo, I have a big stack of Itty-Bitty Toys blads to pass out to people. They are really cute. So if you already have the other books you may be interested in seeing the preview of my new toy book!

R & M, booth #120, has a fun book signing line-up for the weekend. I'd like to get every book on that list (and I almost have). Be sure to stop by if you get a chance:
Saturday, June 13

11 A.M. Edie Eckman: How to Knit Socks
12 P.M. Rose Langlitz: Tasty Crochet
1 P.M. Susan B. Anderson: Itty Bitty Hats
2 P.M. Nicky Epstein: Knitting in Tuscany
3 P.M. Hansi Singh: Amigurumi Knits
4 P.M. Melanie Falick: Weekend Knitting
Sunday, June 14
11 A.M. Kristen Rengren: Vintage Baby Knits
1 P.M. Barb Beteggnies: Just for Baby
2 P.M. Debbie Bliss: Design It, Knit It
Monday, June 15
11 A.M. Iris Schreier: Reversible Knits
After my signing I hope to head over to the Blue Sky Alpacas and the Spud & Chloë booths. This group is in booths #323-327, 422-426. I have to check out the scene over there, it is going to be so exciting. Also, I want to walk around the floor for a bit and take in everything. See the sights so to speak. 

Then I am off for a fun dinner with some excellent fiber-y people, which will be fun and interesting. The next day I'm out the door heading for home. It is going to go so fast, I'm dizzy just thinking about it.
(Spud & Chloë Outer)
Okay, now on to a little more news. The Spud & Chloë site went live today. Check it out. Please check out the blog, too, and subscribe if you are so inclined. Tomorrow the first free pattern is going up on the blog, set for tomorrow morning to be more specific. It is a cute one so you may want to nab it. Originally there were going to be 3 free patterns up but now they are going to be released one at a time. I like that better anyway.

(Spud & Chloë Fine)
So you may want to check out all of the Spud & Chloë patterns and the yarns, too.  

(Spud & Chloë Sweater)
Can you guess which patterns I designed? I have 1 pattern for the Fine yarn, 2 patterns for the Sweater yarn and 1 pattern for the Outer yarn. I'd love to see if you can pick them out of the bunch.

Since I will be gone for a few days I won't be sending out pattern orders over the weekend. You can still place orders and I will get them out as soon as I get back! I will hurry, I promise.

Tomorrow is packing time. It has to happen. 
Wish me luck, Knitters. I'll try to get some good scoop for you to share next week:)
best, susie

Monday, June 08, 2009


Hi Knitters,
I finished stitching, with a needle and thread, nine tiny crocheted flowers to the front neckline of my chartreuse cardigan. C'est fini! J'adore.
On to a small crafter's delight, The Collector is painting her gourd from the farmer's market into a colorful striped snake. She is using acrylic paints. I will seal it so we can put it out in the yard when she's done. I love how the stem looks like a hissing tongue. She is in heaven. Her friends think it looks like a potato in its natural state. I agree.

Oh, you have to try this. Go here. Answer a few multiple choice questions, quick clicks. Get results. I am a Shropshire, which means I've inherited grace, elegance and manners. Ooooh, I hope so and here is my button. I remember when Potter Craft had you find out what kind of yarn you were. I think I was mohair and I have no idea what that means. I'm hairy and I shed, maybe?

Clara's new book is a must have and I am dying to snag a signed copy at TNNA if she's signing. I'll stand in that line. The cover alone is a treat to look at. Fingers are crossed. 

Monday it is! Take off and run with it.
best, susie