Sunday, August 26, 2018

Water & Mountainside

Hi, Knitters,
Well, we were struck by a flash flood in Madison and surrounding areas last week. I've never experienced anything like it before and it is not fun. What happened is that an enormous amount of rain hit our area in a short period of time and the streets and drainage systems, ponds and lakes could not handle it. Streets have been and still are closed days later. People are drying out their basements and taking furniture, flooring and belongings out to the curbs. 

We were lucky. We had some trouble in part of our basement but we didn't lose anything and we handled the water swiftly and efficiently. Our street is on a hill and my daughter and I watched from an upstairs window as it turned into a raging river in front of us. It was incredible. I really feel for those that have had difficulty, injury, damage and even loss. Water is a force to be reckoned with. 

The photo above is of one of my favorite walking and running paths. The line of bushes in the water is where the path is supposed to go, it veers to the right when it is dry. The photo below shows the exposed path on a regular day.  

You can see the difference of the exact same spot before the flooding, where the same path veers to the right. Almost all of the greenery and flowers are now under water. Things will take a while to go back to normal but I am just thankful that most are okay. 

I hope you are all doing okay and well and that you haven't had any crazy weather issues in your areas. It seems that there are a lot of natural disasters out there right now. If you are going through one of these situations I hope that you are okay.  

photo credit: Alana Dakos

On a much lighter note, I want to share with you a new hat design by the talented Alana Dakos of Never Not Knitting fame. She is a lovely designer who I have admired and mentioned many times throughout the years. 

The new hat is called Mountainside and it has a textured botanical pattern that looks like pine trees on the side of a mountain, thus the name. The hat uses Barrett Wool Co.'s Wisconsin Woolen Spun yarn in Fingering Weight. We have created beautiful little kits to go along with the Mountainside hat

photo credit: Alana Dakos

I love the fit of the hat, the elegant design and the simplicity of it all. Alana has a real knack for this type of design detail. She has just the right touch.

The Mountainside Hat Kit comes with enough yarn, wound in a ready-to-use cake, to make one hat following Alana's pattern, a downloadable Ravelry pattern code (the printed pattern is not included), a stitch marker tin filled with 20 assorted color markers, a Snap-On Pom-Pom in your color of choice, and our newest offering (see below).

We have four lovely colors still available for the Mountainside Hat Kit

I made an embroidery wall hanging of our logo to put up in our office. We loved it so much that we photographed it and got it made into a coaster. I love these coasters so much. They have a handmade touch and they are useful, unlike something like a postcard.

I hope if you get an order, that you'll enjoy using the coaster with my embroidery to rest your mug while you are knitting. I like that idea.

Anyway, I am knitting my own Mountainside hat in the Oats colorway with a faux-fox snap on pom that's included in the kit. I've already casted on and am getting ready to start the stitch pattern section now. I'd love it if you'd join me.

Have a great Sunday and week ahead and stay dry and safe! 
xo ~ susan

Sunday, August 19, 2018

Tecumseh Sweater Kits & Poms with a Snap!

Hi, Knitters,
I hope you are all doing well and that August is being good to you this year. I want to let you know that we have a new and exciting sweater kit available over on Barrett Wool Co. for the Tecumseh sweater! The design is by the fabulous Caitlin Hunter of @boylandknitworks on Instagram. She is just an amazing new designer who is taking the knitting world by storm. I am a big fan of her work and it thrills me that she is letting us create unique kits with her designs. She is fun and open for anything it seems. I love that about her.

Tecumseh is a roomy, comfortable sweater that has a simple top-down construction with bands of colorwork and lots of straight knitting with one color. It is the best of all worlds as far as knitting a sweater is concerned. 

The Tecumseh Sweater Kits come in two color options. 

I didn't quite get my Tecumseh finished for the kit launch but I am now working on the first sleeve with the body being finished. I'll keep you posted on my progress. 

The yarn has been special ordered from our local mill. It is our Wisconsin Woolen Spun in a DK weight. 

One color option for the kit has Birch (creamy natural white) as the main color. The contrast colors of Penny and Pebble are the same for both kits.

The second color option is our light gray color called Rain Shower as the main color. Miss Molly is working on the sweater in this colorway. I really love this one, too. 

Click here for the Tecumseh Sweater Kit information! I hope you'll join me in knitting one of these gorgeous, wearable sweaters for the upcoming fall season.

And I want to let you know about a great special we have going on for all of you hat knitters...

In the BWC Mercantile, we have just listed these fantastic neutral pom-poms that snap on to the top of your hat! 

We have these on a special right now. If you purchase two of the poms and enter the code POM at checkout, you get both poms for only $10! They are $6 apiece, so that is a great saving.

Click here to find out more about these fantastic Pom-Poms with a snap!

I made a quick tutorial on how to attach the poms to the top of a hat that you might find useful.

And finally...

There has been lots and lots of this going on in August. I just love to walk, run, bike in August. It is so peaceful and lush around here. I hope you are able to enjoy a little of the great outdoors in this late summer month before the bustle of the fall is upon us. 

Take care, friends. I'll be back soon with more.
xo ~ susan 

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Great Falls Park & Little Giraffe

Photo Credit: Carrie Bostick Hoge

Hi, Knitters,
I hope you are all doing well. Things are busy and hot and humid around here. I think it is 90 degrees right now and feels like the mid-to-upper 90s with the humidity. But still, despite the heat, I am knitting away on a big sweater called Tecumseh by Caitlin Hunter. I'll share more about it later. 

First, in business, I want to let you know that we have listed more Little Giraffe Kits in the shop on Barrett Wool Co. There are three really sweet colorways available that you will love.

The pattern for the Little Giraffe originally appeared in Making Magazine No. 3 / Dots. We have this magazine in the Mercantile right now and many other Making magazines as well.

Photo Credit: Carrie Bostick Hoge

The Little Giraffe is a little bigger size toy than many that I design. This toy sits at about 10-inches tall. It is such a great size for kids as you can see. The construction is clever, limbs and ears first, and then they are knit right in as you work the head and body. No piecing together of little parts, it's really fool-proof!

All you need to add is a little stuffing, the rest is provided including the eyes and yarn for the mouth.

So my husband and I took a little trip to see my brother and sister-in-law in Virginia last week. They are both going through some health issues so really we were there not only to visit but to help out a bit. It was great to see them and to spend time in their beautiful home. It's such a pretty area.

During one quiet afternoon we drove over to the Great Falls Park for a quick hike. It was truly spectacular and not a difficult hike so it all just seemed very pleasant. The trails were wide and well-kept as it is a busy park. The views were amazing. I recommend this one!

My hiking buddy is a pretty fun guy, always game for a hike or run or walk or bike ride. I love that about him.

Have a great week! I'll be back soon with more. I wish August would slow down a little. I'm not ready for college to start again for my girls...
xo ~ susan