Monthly Archives: February 2009

Fun With Color

I am just running out the door to my knitting group, but wanted to share the new Etsy Color Search tool. Is this not the coolest way to search??

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Welted Rib Socks and It is Still Winter

On Monday night, before my newest skein of hand-dyed yarn was fully dry, I was winding it into a ball and casting on for a new pair of socks. It’s been a while since I’ve knit a pair for me. And here in New England, with the last two days of swirling snow flakes, whipping winds and temps in the 30s, I am  reminded just why a girl needs MANY pairs of nice warm socks.

The pattern is my own creation – a simple welted rib design. If the sizing works out right, I will share. Stay tuned. And stay warm.

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Slater Mill Yarn Dyeing Workshop

If you a knitter, weaver, spinner, fiber-addict, and you haven’t visited the new Slater Mill Community Guild Studio, what are you waiting for?? Tucked away in lovely little Pawtucket, Rhode Island on the banks of the Blackstone River is a fantasy land of yarn and fiber related goodness.

Yesterday I had the pleasure of spending the day at the second ever Slater Mill Yarn Dyeing Workshop. We were a small class, only four us and Jan Doyle, our teacher, which meant we had plenty of elbow room. Each of us started the day with three buckets of dye at our stations. Red. Yellow. Blue. From that simple beginning we created a dizzying collection of vibrant and subtle colors.

The top row are my yarns, starting with some brightly colored silk/wool sock yarn.  Can you tell I’m sick of winter? From that, I created some lighter toned wool/nylon blend sock yarns, sort of my tribute to Noro, and finally, with only the remains of my original pots of blue and red, and a few drops of yellow from a neighbor, are my two worsted weight wools in shades of lavender, light blue and green.

The first two in the second row are Angela’s. She began with a vibrant mix of blue and orange and by the end of the day had a pile of glimmering autumn colored skeins. Absolutely gorgeuous! I only have one shot of Cheryl’s collection, ranging from bright pinks and purples to more toned down blues and greens.  All were fantastic. The bottom row is Ruth’s beautiful and calm seafoam green, and her lovely petunia pink.  She was a bit worried about the pinks, thinking it looked like a pile of sausages, but she is very wrong. The pinks are graduated throughout from very pale, to much darker. I can’t wait to see the finished sweater. I wish I had more photos. Every yarn was spectacular.

Thank you to everyone involved. First, to my husband Jeff for understanding when I told him I was spending Valentine’s Day with my other love. Meaning yarn of course.

Second thanks to Ruth Sunn, Director of Slater Mill Community Guild Studio for organizing such a fabulous day of fun, laughter and most of all creativity.

Last, and certainly not least, a very big thank you to Jan Doyle, fiber artist and ever-patient teacher, who revealed the mystery of color theory, explained the difference between shade and hue, tint and value, shared her experiences on choosing the best types of dyes, and most kindly rinsed all of our steaming creations straight from the microwave with her amazing asbestos hands!


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Her Husband is So Sweet

In  my next life, I’d like to come back as Ina Garten, aka the Barefoot Contessa. Her home in East Hampton, NY  looks so calm and peaceful, with all its  wide oak floors, sun-filled windows, granite countertops, and gleaming appliances. The sunny garden out her back door is an oasis, full of fresh herbs, meandering paths, weathered wooden benches and authentic stone walls.

She cooks decadent and delicious meals for her adoring husband Jeffrey (what is it about husbands named Jeffrey??). And she throws the best parties. Though from what I can see on the footage of her Food Network program, there seems to be a surprising lack of women at her parties. I guess, you know, maybe that’s an East Hampton thing?

Ina seems to live a Martha Stewart life, without being too Martha Stewart-like. To put it simply, she seems very happy.

For lunch yesterday, I prepared her Tomato and Goat Cheese Tarts. Very Yummy.

My husband, also a  Jeffrey, liked them too.

P.S. – Seems I am not the only one out there who loves Ina.

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