Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Episode 16: Ben Franklin fieldtrip

Welcome to episode 16! We have a field trip to Ben Franklin to share with you and we also talk about several FO's and WIP's. Grab your knitting, a snack and a refreshing beverage and join us!

Episode 16 Audio

Marcy and Kim after recording
Being silly!

What's in our Lesson Plan?

  • Administrati
  • Show and Tell
  • Field trip notes from Ben Franklin Crafts and Frames in Grass Valley, Ca
  • Play ground chatter


  • Join us for our 1st KAL/CAL! We are hosting a Christmas in August/September KAL/CAL and you can read all about it here.
  • Join our Ravelry group and introduce yourself; we'd love to hear about your knitting, where you're from and if you're having issues with a Christmas stocking! 

Show and Tell

Kim is employing a new method of "WIP management" because she's in a huge finishing mood and she's also trying to find a way of dealing with the never ending afghan/blanket! Paula, of the Knitting Pipeline audio podcast, talked about dealing with WIP's in several of her recent episodes. Go and have a listen. 

Kim's main project (the motorcycle,) for the past few weeks has been her Wedding Afghan, which is a wedding gift for her niece and new husband. Her 1st "sidecar" project was the Drachenfels Shawl which she finished and really enjoyed knitting. She's very pleased with the finished object, especially because she was able to use up an entire skein of her handspun yarn (Three Waters Farm BFL.)
Kim's Drachenfels shawl

Her 2nd FO and sidecar project is the Jingle Bell socks. The main body of the socks is also her handspun BFL yarn and they are super warm and squishy. The current sidecar project is the Summer Insouciant tee and it's almost done.
Jingle Bell socks

Kim decided to make some knitting goals (it has been awhile!) that she will achieve before we record episode 17:
  1. Finish the Wedding Afghan
  2. Finish the Summer Insouciant Tee
  3. Finish spinning and plying the special fiber that is on her wheel right now
Marcy shared a gorgeous FO with us, her Reflected Yoth Lines sweater. The pattern is Relected Lines and her yarn is beautiful and very autumnal. Hopefully, we'll have some cooler weather soon and she'll be able to wear and enjoy this garment. 

Kobe's Xmas sock!
Marcy's current WIP is Kobe's Xmas Stocking which she is really hoping to finish by the end of September.  The finishing work took a long time on her last stocking (it's duplicate stitch.) We are talking about forming a Christmas stocking support group ; ).

She also has a new cast on! The Om Shawl by Andrea Mowry. Marcy is using O-Woool in the natural, travertine, celestine and cinnabar colors. She went down to a size 9 needle for this project after knitting a gauge swatch and she's very happy with the resulting fabric. The pattern calls for a unique cast on; the Twisted German Cast On. This gives you an extra stretchy edge and she said it was easy to do.

A new shop sample ready for display at the Ben
Franklin store in Grass Valley.

Field Trip Notes

Kim was able to visit the  Ben Franklin Crafts and Frames store in Grass Valley, California. Ben Franklin used to be a chain of craft stores, but now they are all independently owned and operated. This location has been privately owned since October, 1973! Kim spoke with Heather (gvheather on Ravelry,) who is the head of the yarn department at BF and it's obvious that she's very proud of the amazing yarn selection and events that the store has to offer.

Some of the yarn brands that you can find at BF are: Malabrigo, Madeline Tosh, Sweet Georgia, Anzula, Fibre Co, Juniper Moon, Knitted Wit, Baah, Cascade, and a local alpaca yarn, Juniper Creek. They also have a great selection of cotton and nylon/acrylic yarns. In addition, each month a different yarn is highlighted and discounted. Currently, Malabrigo Rios is 25% off. 

Kim was very impressed when she learned that there is always an employee available to help customers in the yarn department. All of the staff that work in that department are yarn savvy and between them they cover all of the fiber arts: knitting, crochet, brioche, spinning, lace knitting, cable knitting, weaving and felting. There's lots of knowledge there!

There are currently 3 regular and on going knitting groups at BF: 1) A KAL group that meets on Tuesdays and 2) a Friday night WIP and 3) Saturday morning WIP groups. The store also hosts several events each year. On 10/15/16 they're celebrating "I Love Yarn" day with day long giveaways, demos and special coupons. They also mark KIP (knit in public day/week) each year.

This is such a delightful and unexpected gem in our area! If you happen to live in Northern California, or you are traveling in the region, pop in for a visit. Check out our yarn shop evaluation form, here, for more information about the store. 

Play Ground Chatter

Marcy visited the beautiful Yosemite National Park with her family. 
Marcy and her Husband Mike and son Wilson in Yosemite 
at a look out showcasing El Capitan and in the far distance  
Half Domeyou see all the orange trees in the background,  
it's not fall color they are dead. Very sad to see.

What's on our Black Board?

In our next episode we'll be in the classroom and share all of our FO's, WIP's and any new cast ons. Hopefully, at least one of us will have finished a Christmas Stocking!

Thank you for joining us! We've been howler free these past few weeks and we hope that your knitting is howler free as well. 

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Episode 15: We are melting!

Welcome to episode 15! In this "in the classroom" episode we will share our FO's, WIP's and new CO's. Grab a cool beverage and your knitting and enjoy the show.

Marcy and Kim after recording
(they are melting from the heat!)

What's in our Lesson Plan?

  • Administrati
  • Show and Tell
  • Playground chatter
  • What's on our Black Bloard?


  • Join us for our 1st KAL/CAL! It's a Christmas in August/September KAL/CAL and you can read all about it here.
  • Head on over to our Ravelry group and introduce yourself, we'd love to get to know you and hear about what you're knitting and where you're from.
  • Marcy shared a great website with us (we've also linked to it on the sidebar of our blog,) called "Knitting Podcast." This blog lists all audio and video podcasts, both active and inactive for your viewing and listening pleasure!

Show and Tell

Dawning in the Sunshine, Marcy's
standing in her front yard near her
meadow grass that she talked about.
Marcy shared a beautiful finished object with us, her "Dawning in the Sunshine" pullover (the pattern is Dawning,) by the Berroco design team. She knit it out of Berroco Karma yarn in the Allamanda color on size 11 US needles. She entered her sweater into the Yarniac's  Colors of Fall KAL. The color of her yarn matches perfectly with Pantone's Spicy Mustard color. She 1st saw this sweater knit up as a sample in our LYS, Got Your Goat. Marcy made a few modifications: she added length to the sweater and she reinforced the neck opening with a crochet edging. 

Marcy shared her gorgeous "Reflected Yoth Lines" cardigan by Suvi Simola. She's using Yoth Yarns Big sister in the Kale, Honeydew Melon and Mandarin colors. So far, her only mod is knitting a straight hemline instead of the asymmetrical one called for in the pattern, Reflected Lines. She's loving working with the yarn and can't wait to wear this beautiful cardi.

Kim shared her finished "Stardust Socks," that she knit on magic loop, 2 at a time, top down and with a true after thought heel. She knit the body of the socks with Lolo Did It yarn in the Pretty Young Thing color on the everyday sock base and used Greenwood Fiber Works yarn in the natural color way on their stardust base for the cuffs, heels and toes. 

The time sucking blanket ; )
Kim is continuing to work on her "Wedding Afghan," which is a wedding gift for her niece. The pattern is the Moderne Log Cabin Blanket by Kay Gardiner and Ann Shayne from their book Mason Dixon Knitting. She is using Cascade Cherub Aran yarn in white, gray, black and teal. She is now thinking that the word "blanket" in the pattern name may be a clue that this will be bigger than she anticipated or really wanted. Her intention was to knit an, there might be some modifications coming soon!

The "Summer Insouciant," is still on Kim's needles. Julie Hoover designed the Insouciant pullover/tunic and it's a great summer garment. She's using Juniper Moon Farm Zooey DK yarn in the Ketch and White colors.

Kim is continuing to work on her "Jingle Bell Socks,"  She bought some heathered Christmas colored  fiber at Stitches West this year from Greenwood Fiberworks and spun it up and is knitting these socks with contrasting cuffs, heels and toes.

Post swim knitting with Smitten
After approximately 17,000 hours of perusing Ravelry and her stash, Kim finally decided to cast on the Drachenfels shawl by Melanie Berg. She's had her eye on this beauty for several years and thought it would be a great way to showcase some of her hand spun yarn. She is also using Becoming Art yarn on the Cielo fingering base (color way unknown,) and Handwerks yarn on their Silky Sock base in the Embers color.  Kim's hand spun is from Three Water's Farm fiber in the Emerald Sea color way.

Playground Chatter

Start of project, remove 6" of soil.
Marcy and her husband have been working very hard on landscaping their backyard and they are currently prepping to put in new turf. Because we live in drought stricken California, they are installing a water saving irrigation system called Eco-Mat from Hunter irrigation. 

2nd to last part of project, cover the
Eco-Mat with 6" of dirt. Last but not
least lay Sod/Turf, but we won't
do this until Oct.
Middle of project, lay down the Eco-Mat.

Marcy's little boy, Wilson, turned 2! 
Happy Birthday Wilson.
Big Boy Wilson!

What's on our Black Board?

It's a surprise! 

Lambtown is coming up on  Oct. 1-2, 2016, in Dixon, California.  We are planning on attending on Saturday, 10/1. If you would like to meet up with us at the event PM us on Ravelry or drop us an email,  we would love to meet you and say Hi!

Thank you for joining us, we hope you have a fantastic few weeks knitting, spinning, crocheting, Etc...! We'll see you next time.