October 2018: Sequence Knitting

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Our program this month was Sequence Knitting with Reah Janice Kauffman, a local designer and knitwear teacher.

Reah brought many samples of types of sequence knitting so we could visualize examples of the Row method, the Serpentine method and the Spiral method. She clarified the symbols and terms associated with sequence knitting. There is no “right side” or “wrong side” of fabric, instead, there is a “frontside” and “backside”. As for the symbols, an open square on odd numbered rows are knit, and in an even row, a purl. A filled square on odd numbered rows are purls and a knit on an even side row. Odd number rows are read right to left. Even number rows are read left to right.

During the class we were able to try two different swatches using the row technique and one swatch with the serpentine technique. Everyone seemed to enjoy the class with sequence knitting’s simplicity, yet somewhat a brain challenge. Once you get the sequence and pattern down, you can enjoy some simple social knitting.

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Here are some photos from our Show and Share:

Kathryn’s Apple Blanket

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Anita’s Shawl and Pumpkin Hats

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Jessica’s Norwegian Fair Isle MittensJessica

Kathryn’s ScarfKatherine1

Margery’s seamless cardi

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Brunch 2018

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These are patterns shared at the CKG Brunch August, 2018

Margretta D.

  1. Multnomah Shawl by Kate Ray – Ravelry
  2. Manic Panic Cowl by Sara Core – Ravelry
  3. Mini Mania Scarf by Sara Core – Ravelry

 

Mila V.

  1. Saroyan, sideways shawl by Liz Abinante – Ravelry

 

Joan F.

  1. Baby Girl Chevron Blanket – Red Heart –  Red Heart website

 

Lois G.

  1. EZ 100th Anniversary Camping Half Circle shawl by Mwah Knit – Ravelry
  2. ZickZack Scarf by Christy Kamm – Ravelry
  3. Foreign Correspondeny’s Scarf by Lexy Lu – Ravelry
  4. Noro Striped Scarf by Jared Flood – Ravelry

 

Janet L.

  1. Evolution Shawl – Skacel Collection – google “Evolution Skacel”

 

Anita K.

  1. Feather and Fan – Lion Brand Website search for L50254

 

Dana N.

  1. Slipstitch Cowl by Valerie Zumwalt – Ravelry and Knit Noro

 

Martha O.

  1. Soft Lace Shawl by Chery Beckerich – Ravelry and Cascade Yarn website

Linda P.

  1. Ashling Shawl by Veera Valimaki – Ravelry and Rain Knitwear Designs

 

Pam P.

  1. Bluebird of Happiness by Linda Dawkins – Ravelry and Natural Suburbia Blogspot
  2. Manaan Cowl by Pam Allen – Ravelry will provide link for purchase $6

 

Anita S.

  1. Milk Run Shawl by Cat Wong – Ravelry and Nutwood Design Studio
  2. Summer Flies Shawl by Donna Griffin – Ravelry (previously free, now $6)

 

Anne S.

  1. Alpacas Lace Purple Gradient Shawl – Cascade Yarn FW248 – Cascade Yarn website

 

Sara W.

  1.  Honest Sheep Project by Marja de Haan-Trollenwol

Jessie W.

  1. “F729” Gina and Galway Worsted Brioche Cable Cowl (2 color Brioche) – Plymouth Yarn Website
  2. Virus Shawl (Crochet) by Julia Marquardt – Ravelry will link you to the pattern
  3. Hermione’s Everyday Socks by Erica Lueder – Ravelry and Dreams i Fiber Website
  4. Maine Morning Mitts by Clara Parkes – Ravelry and The Knitter’s Book of Yarn

And some photos from the restaurant and Woolwinders yarn shop.

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Janet

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shawl

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Knitted Sculpture in the Berkshires

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Colorful Stitches in Lenox, Ma. has a window display to knock your handknitted socks off!  Owner Bonnie Burton has created this feast of knitted food.

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hamburger and chicken

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watermelon

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sandwiches

spaghetti

shrimp

sausage and eggs

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pie

lobster

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ice cream

The designs for knitted food come from a variety of sources.  To quote Bonnie,

” I was initially inspired by Knitted Fast Food by Susie Johns, which I thought was just hysterical. I had no idea how many knitters and artists had already knit down this road before me, but there are many accomplished food knitters and designers and lots of online free patterns as well as books. For example,

Also, there are lots of free patterns at Knitting Central and I was inspired by mushroom and strawberry patterns found there. However, most everything else was my own invention. It is possible to get into the swing of this subject and just knit what’s around you at lunch, or what’s on the menu for dinner. Once you know your flat circle formula, the pizza crusts just materialize. At the store we stock the Knitted Fast Food” and “Knitted Cakes by Susie Johns and Susan Penny, to help get you started.”

Bonnie was recently featured in the Berskshire Eagle newspaper, on the store’s 25th Anniversary.

Bonnie

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Here’s Bonnie on Ravelry

September 2018: The Fiberists

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Our guest speakers, Reginald and Spencer, are yarn dyers who produce a variety of fibers and yarns in the most interesting combinations and colors. The Fiberists talked to us about fiber and fiber combinations in yarn and how they are best used.  They brought a range of yarns for knitters and fibers for spinners.  Here is their current  Products List

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Photos of our projects:

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Karen’s Little Cotton Rabbit

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JoEllen’s Anemone 

Webs Yarn Store Northampton, Ma.

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A few days ago we visited Northampton, Ma. to check out some bookstores.  On the way into town I noticed a sign for WEBS.  Realizing that it was the Webs store, I decided to pay a visit.  We started out in the center of town in Thornes Marketplace where we would return for lunch at Paul & Elizabeth’s restaurant.  My friend took the car and I walked, since Google said it was less than a mile.  Anyway, Google got me lost but a mailman set me on the right path.    The store is located in a business park, at the end of  a long service road.

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The store has two sections – a large front room and an equally large back room that looks like a warehouse.   The sale yarns are mostly in the warehouse, well labeled for price, but not organized otherwise.  I was looking for a sale on variegated superwash yarn, which required me to check all the isles in the warehouse room.  I ended up not buying anything because the choices were mostly ugly color combinations.  If you are planning a trip to Webs, it’s best to time it for the beginning of a seasonal sale.webs2

 

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Book of the Month:

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Knitting in America – book 2

Through war and peace, bad times and good, Americans have knit and purled as though it were an inalienable right alongside life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
Here now is the history of knitting in America, from pilgrims to pioneers, slaves to First Ladies, the Amish and Shakers to the Native Americans. Here as well you will find the rise and fall of mohair, the ongoing passion for ethnic knitting, the never-ending quest for warm socks, and the brave new world of art knitting.
Knitter and scholar Susan M. Strawn unravels knitting history with more than 300 rare color and black-and-white images of knitters and knitwear from collections around the country.
Also included are 20 historical knitting patterns—a Jamestown-era cap, Victorian silk gloves and miser’s purse, a Civil War soldier’s stockings, Zoar mittens, Red Cross socks and wristlets, and more vintage lace, shawl, scarf, and sweater patterns you can recreate today.
Contributors include Linda Ligon, Deborah Robson, Katharine Cobey, Karen Searle, Karin Timour, Sumi Wu, Kathryn Alexander, Amy Clarke Moore, Lindsay Obermeyer, Paula Becker, and more.

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June 2018 Meeting: Yarn Swap, Sale and Auction

This was our last monthly meeting of the season.  By tradition, we  purge our stash with yarn, notions and knitting books to give away or sell.  We added a Silent Auction, which earned $100.

Looking forward to the 2018-19 season starting in September, our members brainstormed ideas for educational programs.  Here’s the list:

Workshop ideas 2018-19

Here are some highlights from our Show and Share:

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IMG_2144Barbara’s shawl

IMG_2149Janet’s raffle yarn

We finished our Library Display project, with an array of knitted Woodland and Sea Creatures.

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Knitting Book of the Month

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“Cast On, Bind Off,” by Leslie Ann Bestor (Storey Publishing, $16.95) is a little gem of a book — just 5 1/2 inches by 7 inches — that begs to be be tucked in a knitting bag and carried with you always. And for good reason. It walks you through cast-ons for every need. They’re grouped by All-Purpose, Ribbing (moderate stretch), Ribbing (a lot of stretch), End-of-Row, Super Stretchy (socks, hats, mittens, lace), Decorative, Temporary & Hems, Toe-Up Socks and Circular. Bind offs are split into All-Purpose, Lace, Decorative, Stretchy Ribbed (toe-up  socks, top-down garments, neck openings) and Specific Use. As many as nine different techniques are in each category. (And one of the cast-ons is the legendary Judy’s Magic Cast On. That alone is worth the price of the book for any toe-up sock knitter.)

Each  technique has clear, close-up color photos, excellent step-by-step directions and notes on the technique’s characteristics, alternative names and what it’s good for, plus possible pitfalls and how to avoid them. The book’s got a partially concealed wire binding, which means you can keep it flat while working from it, and the print’s big and clear. It’s a rare thing to see so much valuable information packed into such a small space and such a useful format.

Truly, every part of this book was designed with ease of use in mind. The inside front cover groups the cast ons by type, and the back cover does the same for the bind offs. The index breaks it down still further. If you look under, say, “Hats,” you’ll see first a list of suitable bind offs, then the cast ons. Beautiful. The photos show the end result from both the front and the back. It’s a great feature that I’d never seen before in a knitting book, and seeing it made it clear that this book was put together by someone who knows exactly how much of a pain it is to pick out a bind off once you’ve realized you’ve done the wrong one.

I’ve seen a number of these techniques elsewhere, but never all of them together, and absolutely never in such a clear, easy-to-use format. This is a must for any knitter’s library. You’ll go back to it time and again, and you’ll never again have a glorious project wrecked by the wrong technique. (Anyone who’s ended up with a too-tight bind off on a sweater neck knows what I’m talking about.) Buy the book. Your knitting will thank you, and you’ll thank Leslie Ann Bestor for writing “Cast On, Bind Off.”

April 2018 Alpaca Farm

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Our guest speaker for April was Heather Lysantri of Breezy Hill Alpaca Farm in Woodbine, Md.

Heather talked about the fun and challenges of raising Alpaca (animals native to high elevations in Peru) in Maryland.  She has visited alpaca farms in Peru, to better understand how to raise the animals and how to process their fiber into beautiful yarn.  Here are some photos from the presentation.

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And a few of our projects:

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Ashling Shawl

Knitting Book of the Month

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April 2018

The Yarn Lover’s Guide to Hand Dyeing:  Beautiful Color and Simple Knits  by Linda La Belle
This book is a wonderful introduction and course in different dyeing techniques with lots of color, plenty of patterns to work up, and suggestions for using the various dyes with different fibers. Great attention to the details of what each dyeing process is, what tools are needed, safety precautions, and then great examples of knitted or crocheted garments using each specific process with different fibers. It will give any dyer inspiring ideas, but especially encouraging to the beginning dyer.

Here’s a project using self-striping dyed yarn:dyeing sock yarn And the table of contents:

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