Sunday, July 23, 2017

Meet Gigi!

Photo provided by designer Devin Ventre

Hi, Knitters,
I hope you are having a wonderful weekend. We went to the Madison Farmers' Market yesterday morning and it was fantastic as always. For dinner last night we used the produce we purchased to make tofu spring rolls. We have done this a couple of times now and although it's a lot of work we kind of have it down now where everyone has a certain job to make it go faster. I also made a rhubarb crisp for dessert and I just love that tart taste. Anyway, it was all so delicious that I'm still thinking about it as you can tell.

Yesterday we released a new cardigan kit over on Barrett Wool Co called the Gigi Cardigan Kit. You can read all about the background of this cardigan and kit on the BWC Journal by clicking right here. We are so excited about this charming short-sleeved cardigan which is knit up in our Wisconsin Woolen Spun Worsted yarn. The pattern and design are by new designer Devin Ventre. Devin has been so much fun to work with on this collaboration.

We have five colorways from which to choose and custom artisan Black Walnut buttons to add if you like. These buttons are really special and are made by my favorite button maker, Jeff Wilson of Wooly Moss Roots

Read all about the buttons right here! It has been quite a process to get these buttons and they are exquisite. 

photo provided by Devin Ventre

Devin knit her Gigi in the Rain Shower colorway. I love the little details like the reverse stockinette on the shoulder and sleeve. 

Photo provided by Devin Ventre

The pocket is reverse stockinette stitch, too. 

Devin knit her Gigi in size 34 and my Gigi (below) is knit in size 38. Positive ease is written into the pattern so make sure you check out the finished measurements when determining your size.

Here is my Gigi worked up in the Sherwood colorway! I love it so much. I am already wearing it this summer. It is the perfect layering garment for all seasons. I am planning on wearing my Gigi with jeans and t-shirts both long and short sleeve, skirts, and over dresses. It can be dressed up and casual. This is one versatile garment. 

I made quite a few fun modifications and I am going to be blogging about those all week, including tutorials, over on the Barrett Wool Co. Journal if you'd like to follow along. 

I love sewing on buttons. It means things are almost finished. The buttons for the kit are simply amazing. They are handmade in Mapleton, Oregon, and honestly, they are the perfect finishing touch. 

This is the Sherwood colorway and it is an interesting color. It is teal but it is dyed over a darker wool so there is a heathered look to it that is hard to capture in photos. The Wisconsin Woolen Spun yarn is incredible to knit with on so many levels. The finished sweater is as light as air. 

Gigi is the perfect sweater for beginning sweater knitters or experienced knitters wanting to relax. The pattern is clear and concise. I worked my sweater on a US size 8 for the body and a US size 7 for the edgings. It goes really fast!

The Black Walnut buttons might be my favorite part of the kit. 

I have been wearing my Gigi everyday since it's been finished. Devin Ventre did such a wonderful job with this design and pattern. Congratulations, Devin!

Photo provided by Devin Ventre

I think this is my favorite photo from Devin. She knit a Gigi for her mother and it looks so cute. She used the Penny colorway and the cardigan is worked up in a size 42. It's a wonderful color for her.

Anyway, enjoy the Gigi Cardigan Kit if you get one. I'll have lots of tips and tricks for you along the way while you're knitting. As always, let me know if you have any questions or if we can be of any help over on Barrett Wool Co.

Much love to you all and happy Sunday!

xo ~ susan

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Clover Hat ~New Free Pattern!

Hi, Knitters,
I have a new free pattern that was released yesterday! It is called Clover which is the perfect name for the hat. It was named by Kate Peyton Lynch or @redrover189 on Instagram! I had a little naming suggestion thread going over on my Instagram feed. Thank you for the help, Kate! That was a fun thread to read and thank you to everyone for all of the suggestions. I think there were well over 100!

Anyway, back to the Clover hat. The hat pattern includes two sizes, baby-size and adult-size. The hat is worked in Barrett Wool Co. Home Worsted Weight yarn on US size 7 needles or size 4.5mm. 

One skein of Home Worsted is enough to make one adult and one baby hat, so two hats out of one skein! It's pretty perfect. It is also a great project to try out Home Worsted if you haven't tried it yet. 

The color in the photo is Bluff, which is one of our most popular colorways. 

The baby size hat is sized to fit about a 0-6 month old. The colorway in the sample is Grassland and it is so perfectly paired with a Priscilla (the prettiest pink) or Bluff (the beautiful blue) pom-pom. 

The adult-size hat will fit about a 19-22 inch circumference head measurement. This means an older child, teen and adult could easily fit this hat. That's the beautiful Miss Molly modeling for these photos.

The handmade faux-fur pom-pom is available in the BWC Mercantile! There are a couple of colors left right now and we have tons on order and some new colors to boot.
Click here to check out the poms!

Anyway, it's a fun knit and you can read all about it on Ravelry or on the BWC Journal! 

Have fun if you knit one and be sure to post on Instagram or Ravelry and let me know so I can see your Clover creations.

Also, we released a really fun Limited Edition Kit yesterday. 

We introduced a Limited Edition Gradient Twist Mitten Kit yesterday over on Barrett Wool Co. It uses my original Waiting for Winter Mitten pattern which many of you might already own. You can purchase the kit with or without the pattern in case you don't need it.

The Gradient Twist Mitten Kit includes a cake of our Wisconsin Woolen Spun Worsted dyed in a marled gradient and a cake of Birch for striping. There are four different gradient color choices that you can see below in the photo. 

I provided How-To instructions for striping your mittens like mine. 

You can see the four color choices above. Reds, purples, greens and blues are the options!

These are the coziest, sweetest and most fun mittens to knit. I want to make a lot more pairs but I'll restrain myself because once this gradient yarn is gone it is truly gone. I don't know what it is about mitten knitting that I love so much exactly but it is one of the most satisfying projects around. It's quick and easy and the end results are useful and cute. That kind of sums it up.

Have a super Sunday, friends. I hope you are all enjoying your summer knitting and hopefully, you are starting to gear up for the fall knitting season already. I know I am! Fall is really high season for knitting and it is right around the corner.

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

Monday, July 10, 2017

Minnesota 52 Giveaway!

photo by Gale Zucker

ETA: The winner has been randomly selected. The winner of the ebook is Teachermom on Rav! She has already been gifted the ebook from Megan and Cori! Thanks for the fun everyone and I'll host another giveaway soon. 

Hi, Knitters,
I'm popping in quickly today to let you know about an Instagram giveaway I am hosting. The prize is an ebook copy of the new book Minnesota 52 written by Megan Williams and Cori Eichelberger. Megan is half of the Stockinette Zombies podcast that I'm sure many of you know already. Cori is Megan's good friend and a top-notch knitter to boot. 

The book has socks, a shawl, hats, colorwork projects, multiple sweaters, cowls, mittens and more. There are fun little stories and a delicious recipe for granola bars. I know how good these are because I already made a batch. 

The photography was done by the wonderfully talented Gale Zucker. 

To enter to win a copy of the book, hop over to my Instagram account and leave a comment over there! Click here to leave a comment to enter.

Please do not enter here if possible. If you don't have access to Instagram please leave a comment here and I'll include you in the pot for the random drawing. 

Here are a few of my favorite projects in the book:

photo by Gale Zucker

photo by Gale Zucker

photo by Gale Zucker

There is something for everyone in Minnesota 52 and the book has a happy fun outlook on knitting which I love.

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

Saturday, July 08, 2017

Mitten Kit Giveaway & a few works in progress

Hi, Knitters,
Happy Saturday to you all. I want to let you know about a giveaway I'm hosting over on the Barrett Wool Co. Journal. We are giving away one of our Three Color Mitten Kits to a lucky winner. You need to enter over on the Journal, not here. 

It's super easy to enter. The kit is worth $44.00 and it's a perfect time of year to knit mittens. Knit your mittens in July and you'll be all set for the fall season!

Good luck if you enter. I'll select a winner in a few days.

I'm finishing up a couple of hats. This one will be a free pattern and I'm pretty excited about it. The yarn is one skein of Home Worsted Weight in the Bluff colorway. The hat in the photo is an adult size and I'm blocking a baby size version right now. It's pretty cute.

I am working away on a really sweet top-down short-sleeved cardigan and I decided to try out a knotted steek for the body of the sweater. I am going to be posting a full tutorial on this technique soon so watch for that if you are interested. It is a super easy technique that takes away most all of the bulk associated with the other steeking techniques I have tried.

More on this soon! 

And I finished the first sock in the Bergere de France Goomy 50 sock yarn. I can't remember where I purchased this yarn but I'm sure if you google the name it will pop up for you. 

I used my Smooth Operator Socks pattern and I love the look it gives the sock. I'll be casting on the second sock today. 

Have a great weekend, friends. I hope you are doing well and that your knitting is coming along swimmingly.
xo ~ susan

Tuesday, July 04, 2017

Happy 4th & Free Shipping on BWC!

Hi, Knitters,
Happy 4th of July to those celebrating! Looks like a beautiful day out there in the neighborhood. I hope you all get outside in the fresh air and don't forget to bring your knitting. We have a cookout and some fireworks planned so I'm looking forward to that!

And I wanted to let you know that over on Barrett Wool Co. we are offering FREE (US only) shipping starting today, July 4th and ending at the end of the day CST on July 5th, 2017! Simply use the code FOURTH at checkout for the discount. 

Enjoy and definitely take advantage if interested. We have some kits available and loads of beautiful wool and the mercantile has scissors, cards, magazines, gift cards, etc. 

Click here to see the Wisconsin Woolen Spun! The colors of the worsted weight in the photo are Jam, Birch, and Harbor. 

I want to thank you for the fantastic response to the Entwined Hat Kits! It has been so much fun packing up these kits because it's always interesting to see what color combination of the pom-pom and yarn people have selected. There are still lots of poms left and of course lots of yarn choices. Have fun mixing and matching your own kit.

Have a super day and rest of the week. I'll be back soon with more.
xo ~ susan

Saturday, July 01, 2017

Entwined Hat & a new cardigan!

Hi, Knitters,
I can't believe it's already Saturday. And I can't believe that today is my 28th wedding anniversary. It seems impossible and yet when I look back at all that has happened in the last 28 years it is entirely possible. Does that make sense? We have a fun dinner reservation for tonight and I love our gift to each other this year. It is a state park pass. Simple as that. We are embarking on a challenge together. We are set to take 60 specific hikes in our area and many involve state parks thus the pass is needed. I'm going to tell you more about this adventure later as it is really fun. We have done three hikes so far and we have a long way to go. 

Anway, I hope you are all doing well! Yesterday I released a new hat pattern. It is called Entwined. See how the cable meanders back and forth? It overlaps in the center and it looks WAY more complicated than it really is, which is always the best thing in knitting. The hat is sized to fit an average adult head, 20-23-inches in circumference. It would also fit a teen. The finished circumference is 19-inches but the hat has incredible stretch so it is kind of a perfect fit.

We have beautiful kits for Entwined on Barrett Wool Co. that include the fantastic handmade faux-fur pom-pom.  We have five cool color choices for the poms and loads of color choices for the Wisconsin Woolen Spun Worsted yarn. You get to mix-and-match your own kit!

Click here to see more about the Entwined Kits! All of the hat details, yarn, size, needles, etc. are here, too. The kit includes a Ravelry download code for the pattern.

The Entwined hat individual pattern is available on Ravelry, too. The pattern is set at an introductory discount through Monday, July 3, 2017, for $3.50. No code is needed. On July 4, 2017, the price will be set at $5.00. Enjoy the discount if interested. 

If you haven't tried the Wisconsin Woolen Spun yarns yet you are really missing out. It is an experience like none other. I can't say enough about this beautiful, squishy and light as air yarn. It is out of this world. 

Here are a few more photos of Entwined: 

I love the fit of this hat so much. We have those Bulky Mitten Kits available in the shop, too! 

The kit includes a full skein of the Wisconsin Woolen Spun Worsted and handmade faux-fur pom, both in your colors of choice, a tin of stitch markers, a hand-stamped cotton project bag, and the Ravelry download code for the pattern. That way the pattern will be stored right in your Ravelry pattern library.

The faux-fur pom-poms are my favorite part of the kits! They are really fantastic.

Now onto another quick subject.

I am working away on a new cardigan. It is short-sleeved and kind of open in the front. It is knit in Wisconsin Woolen Spun Worsted and I am loving it. It is super simple and we are going to have cardigan kits coming up soon. The pattern is by a guest designer which is super fun. I think you are going to really like this one.

The book is really good, too. I am about halfway through. It is called The Garden of Small Beginnings by Abbi Waxman. I recommend it. 

The kits are flying out of the shop as I am writing this so if you are interested hop on over! Have a super day and I'll be back here soon with more. 
xo ~ susan