Obsession Thursday: #rhinebeckpiechart

I haven’t been at Rhinebeck since 2008. Eight years! Until recently, I was in the UK most Octobers, so it just didn’t work out.

rhinebeckpieThis year, my friends got themselves super-organized and rented a house nearby. Which means staying for reasonably cheap with people I love. How could I not go?

So I’m driving 7+ hours to Rhinebeck tomorrow while the housesitter watches the Squeezle again (bless her). I have planned a stop at Sonic for some diet limeade to fuel my drive (i may buy two so I have enough for the whole trip). Have you never had Sonic’s diet limeade? It’s very good.

Twitter user @oharethey started a thing I rather like: the #rhinebeckpiechart. Here’s mine —>

It’s probably more complex than this, but it feels like friends first and everything else is a bonus. That’s worth driving 7+ hours for, right? Hell, yes.

If you’re going to be there, our first-ever Rhinebeck Knitty meetup is on the hill at 2pm on Saturday. I’ll have knittybuttons to give away until I run out. Come give me a hug!

WWW: Rhinebeck Week!

Remember, if you’re near Toronto, enter to win a double-pass to see YARN THE MOVIE!

This week it’s THE WEEK. It’s the week of Rhinebeck, properly known as the New York State Sheep and Wool Festival, held in Rhinebeck, NY.

If you’re wondering what the deal is:

On the newly relaunched Mason Dixon Knitting website, a primer on How To Rhinebeck.

And yes, part of the fun is in knitting yourself a sweater to wear there. Because of a change in my schedule, I was able to plan a last-minute day trip via NYC. With less than two weeks to go, I decided that a bulky lopapeysa was going to be about all I could manage. I’ve been chronicling my progress on my instagram, and I was very happy to finish it up on Monday night. (Well, it still needs buttons but my excuse is that I’ll be shopping for them at the event.)

Amy, Jillian and I will all be there, and we hope to see you!

People Knitting: A Century of Photographs‘. There’s a magnificent preview here. Note: one of the images is ever so slightly NSFW, in the most amusing way possible.

From Fiona Goble, the designer behind Knit Your Own Royal Wedding, comes Knit Your Own Election: patterns to knit yourself woolly replicas of the two candidates in the US Federal Election.

More Fun – A Rhinebeck Knitty Meet Up, A Yarnitecture Giveaway


Knitty meet up!

Knitty meet up!


There is a Rhinebeck Knitty Meet Up, the first one ever! On Saturday at 2pm, on the hill between the sheep dog demos and the petting zoo. Here’s a Rhinebeck map. Amy promises to have new Knitty buttons to share.



Maya Cardigan photo by Ryann Ford

Maya Cardigan designed by Kirsten Kapur, photo by Ryann Ford



Kirsten Kapur who designed the glorious Maya Cardigan in my book is doing a giveaway for a copy Yarnitecture. Hop on over there and enter!




Get a signed copy of Yarnitecture at Rhinebeck!

Get a signed copy of Yarnitecture at Rhinebeck!


I won’t be at the Knitty meet up, but I will be nearby I’ll be signing copies of my book, Yarnitecture, from 1-5 on Saturday and from 10-2 on Sunday in barn B. On Sunday at 1:30 I’ll be doing a a little talk on how much I love to sample called Sampling Is Not A Dirty Word!, it’s part of the Tales of Yarn series in the author signing area. Come see me!

Now I need to decide what I want to shop for this year, because sadly all the things is not an option!




YARN the Movie comes to Toronto; Giveaway!

mv5bnjyyywiwm2ytmjg3oc00zdy1ltkwzjutzdi3yte5zjg3zwqxxkeyxkfqcgdeqxvymju1mdm3ndm-_v1_sy1000_cr006931000_al_I’ve written about YARN the Movie before, and I was very pleased to hear that it’s coming to Toronto. It’s playing at the Carlton Cinema October 21st-27th. AND we have two double-passes to give away!

The movie aims to introduce to the broader world the artists who are redefining the tradition of knit and crochet.

Reinventing our relationship with this colorful tradition, YARN weaves together wool graffiti artists, circus performers, and structural designers into a visually-striking look at the women who are making a creative stance while building one of modern art’s hottest trends.

Featuring interviews with fiber artists artists Olek, Tinna Thorudottir Thorvalder, Toshiko Horiuchi Macadam, Tilde Björfors of Cirkus Cikör and Barbara Kingsolver, the film is a visual delight, and an excellent look at our woolly world.

Watch the trailer here.

If you’re not in Toronto, it’s playing all over, in North America and Europe. Consult your local listings.

To enter, leave a comment below by midnight Sunday eastern time. We’ll announce the winner next week. The usual rules apply: if you’ve won something from us in the past year, please give others a chance. You’ll be asked to answer a skill-testing question. And remember, this is for Toronto screenings only, so you need to be able to get yourself to Yonge and College.


Obsession Thursday: The smell of woodsmoke.

Long beach on Vancouver Island. Photo directly out of my phone, really. No filters or adjustments of any kind. I can't make this stuff up.

Long beach on Vancouver Island. Photo directly out of my phone, really. No filters or adjustments of any kind. I can’t make this stuff up.

I am in Tofino. I got here by getting on a train in Toronto and riding in my little sleeper bunk all the way to Vancouver, then grabbing a rental car and taking the ferry over to Vancouver Island.

Tofino is a tiny little surfing town that sticks out of the west coast of Vancouver Island all by itself. It’s a 3-hour drive from reasonably urban Nanaimo (home of the bars), going up and down and through wiggly bits, over mountainy terrain, through rainforesty bits that occasionally open up to give you vistas I only wish I had photos of. Diamond-clear lakes that tend more to green than blue, and mountains covered with so very many trees (thankfully, still covered, not clearcut), and fog and little boats and omg I am so much in love with this part of the world. If you want to see what my trip has been like so far, you can find my photos here.

I’ve been lucky enough, thanks to being able to teach knitting, to have travelled to a lot of places. I get this ache often, this I HAVE TO LIVE HERE ache. Sometimes it passes as soon as I get to the next place; sometimes it stays with me long after I’ve returned home. Places that stuck really hard with me are Portland (the Oregon one), Hawaii, Brighton AND Yorkshire, in England, and now here. Tofino. This is the first place I’ve gone to purely as vacation. No work, except blogging. It’s been relaxing, refreshing, enlightening, and so enjoyable. I’ve made myself not be miserly and have booked the Whale Watch, instead of just wishing I had once I got home. I get on the boat in a few hours.

I’m reasonably freshly single after being married a long damned time. I could move anywhere I want, thankfully, as long as there’s a decent internet connection and a good rabbit vet. Every time I walk out of my little inn and smell the woodsmoke, and feel the dampness from the ocean against my skin, I realize that this kind of environment is the one that touches me most deeply. Woods and ocean. So maybe I could move somewhere like this.

Maybe I will. Or maybe I’ll book another trip here or somewhere like here. A longer one.

WWW: When yarn and science collide; our very own “Knitting Humourist”

Love love love these: knitterly illustrations from this week’s New Yorker.

Image (c) Pat Ashforth.

Even if you are not mathematically inclined, these projects are absolutely beautiful. And if you ARE, they are also jaw-droppingly clever. Mathematicians Pat Ashforth and Steve Plummer create yarny designs to illustrate mathematical concepts.

The blanket pattern on the left is derived from an image of a grid of superimposed sudokus puzzles, where each of the digits represents a different colour Sudoku grid…

Serves him right: a burglar broke into the home of a woman and managed to get away with only a briefcase full of knitting patterns. Although, if it was out-of-print and hard to find issues of the Rowan magazine, it wouldn’t be quite so funny…

Image (c) Allison Meier for Hyperallergic.

I had no idea: how the Pantone color system evolved from a way of categorizing bird colors.

A lovely profile of “Knitting Humourist” and friend-of-the-show Stephanie Pearl-McPhee, the Yarn Harlot, and her appearance at last weekend’s KnityCity event in Vancouver.

A Pre-Rhinebeck Trunk Show and Spinning Class in North Adams, Massachusetts

Come spin with me!

Come spin with me!

If you are anywhere near North Adams Massachusetts on October 13th or 14th come and join me at Maker’s Mill!

On Thursday night from 5-7 I’ll be talking about Yarnitecture for Knitters: A Yarn Petting Zoo and Trunk Show. Knitters can learn all about how yarn is made and how things like fiber choice and ply affect their knitting. I’ll bring a lot of samples and all of the projects from my book Yarnitecture: A Knitters Guide to Spinning:Building Exactly the Yarn You Want. This event is free.

On Friday afternoon from noon to 3pm, I’ll be teaching my popular spinning class Cheaper By the Dozen: 12 Ways to Spin Variegated Top. Cost is $55. You can signup here.

I hope to see you there or at Rhinebeck!


Deep Fall WIPs and FOs

We’ve been project-peeping on Ravelry again!

Sellakka‘s Wings for Nightbird shawl is simply beautiful.


EternalKnitter’s Uberib slippers are fab! And such a quick knit, clearly!


KnitbritchesViatori vest is looking great… an excellent color choice.

Dublin16’s Rain Rain Go Away hat, made for a baby in rainy Seattle, is just perfect.

Artohline‘s Crystalline scarf looks very promising indeed.

And we love it when Knitty designers knit other patterns from the issue… Julia Farwell Clay, the designer of Viatori, is making her own http://www.knitty.com/ISSUEdf16/PATTlaurel/PATTlaurel.php.

And although not strictly worked to the pattern, we love Loopysue‘s version of my In Gord We Trust scarf.

WWW: Terrible knitting pun of the week; on knitting with dog hair; illustrators attempt to depict knitting

Thinking ahead: our own Kate (yes, that’s me!) is teaching next October 20-22nd (yes, 2017) at beautiful St. Andrew by the Sea, New Brunswick, Canada.  Knit East features a great list of instructors and classes, in a fabulous setting.

Famous Illustrators’ Depictions of Knitting, Ranked in Order of Competence.

Comedian and writer John Hodgman, in his ‘Judge John Hodgman’ Advice column for the New York Times weighs in on a debate about knitting with dog hair.

I was recently reminded of this lovely work: the award-winning short film The Last Knit, directed by animator Laura Neuvonen. Take a few minutes and enjoy it.

How Knitting Has Taken Over the Highlands – a piece about the upcoming Loch Ness Knitting Festival, and the value of handscraft to the economy in the Scottish Highlands.

And related to the same event, this week’s nominee for best-worst knitting pun: a Car-digan. (Geddit?)

Yarnitecture Book Signing and Trunk Show at Rhinebeck

Get a signed copy of Yarnitecture at Rhinebeck!

Get a signed copy of Yarnitecture at Rhinebeck!

Is one of the things on your Rhinebeck shopping list a signed copy of Yarnitecture?

I will be signing copies of Yarnitecture at the Merritt Bookstore booth in Building B

Saturday 12-5 and Sunday 10-2

I will have all of the projects and some of the swatches to touch and feel at the booth.

Come by, get a book signed, say hi and show me what fibery goodies you’ve found at the show!