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WWW: creativity, quilts, and collaboration

It turns out creativity is difficult to define. That’s the finding of why it’s a challenge to describe what what an artificial intelligence is doing. If you didn’t see it earlier this year, neural networks have already been used to create knitting designs, skyknit. If you’re confused by AI, this chart and article from the MIT Technology Review may help. The New York Times released a short documentary, While I Yet Live about the quilters ...

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WWW: ancient yarn; brand-new Kaffe-y teapots; prettier left-leaning decreases

And you think your stash is old? Wanna see a 3000-year-old ball of yarn? Preserved in a bog in the UK, it’s quite delicate. But we want to know: what’s it made of? Wool? Linen? Got the gimmes today? Maybe you want a Kaffe Fassett Teapot. Kaffe is releasing a whole line of gorgeous modern teapots* with built-in infusers, just in time for holiday gifting. (Clever chap.) My favorite is this one in the paperweight pattern. In case anyone needs a gift idea. (*Affiliate link.) Look at this bit of cleverness: left-leaning decreases as pretty as their right-leaning counterparts! Oh, the difference this could make ...

Gifts for Spinners: Knitting and Other Craft Books

I know a lot of you are shopping for gifts for spinning friends, making gift lists for others to shop for you, or maybe you’re like me – I buy myself a little something to help soothe the stress of all of the holiday crazy. I want to mention a few books that are handspun friendly that aren’t spinning books. These books have patterns that work well with handspun, they enhance your handspun, or they get that other yarns exists beyond big mill produced yarns. Here are some of my favorites from this year.   Mason Dixon Knitting Field Guides These tiny books have patterns that are perfect for ...

WWW: free yarn for a good cause; This Thing of Paper; Izzy dolls are better than packing peanuts

Online shop YarnCanada is giving back…12 batches of yarn to individuals or groups who knit for good causes to a total of $2000! Want to apply? Check it out here. And in extra coolness, the gifting extends to Canadians AND Americans. That’s awesome. Friend of Knitty, Karie Westermann, will be releasing her Kickstarter-funded knitting book, This Thing of Paper at the end of this month. Containing 11 knitting patterns inspired by books,  “This Thing of Paper is a contemplative meditation on the tension between handmade and machine-made.” That’s a pretty enticing description. To get your ...

Gifts for Spinners: Spinning Books & a Kate Atherley Pattern Giveaway!

Not a lot of spinning books come out every year, but when they do we want them all!  We had four come out this year and the focus was on color. I am not going to play favorites, but I will tell you the type of spinner that each book will appeal to most. Dyeing to Spin and Knit by Felicia Lo. Interested in dyeing your own fiber? Buy this book, and you will dye beautiful fiber. Spinning Hand Dyed Fibre by Katie Weston. This is the book for you if you want a spinner who makes her living dyeing fiber to show you how to spin all those colors into beautiful yarn. A New Spin on Color by Alanna Wilcox. Interested in spinning ...

A Few Knitty Knits for Handspun

If you are in the US and like me, starting to get antsy thinking about what to knit over the Thanksgiving weekend, I’ve got some suggestions. These are patterns not designed for handspun, but would look amazing in handspun, even some of your first handspun. They are all very straight forward to knit and can be worked on while chatting, watching tv, after a cocktail, or in a turkey coma.   First up is Calorimetry , it uses less than 100 yards of chunky yarn and would look fantastic in a bright variegated yarn. Look at all of the handspun versions on Ravelry!      Next is Wolkig, a cozy ,cozy cowl. ...

WWW: Squam lives!; tube textile designers tell tales; KneuroKnits for teens with ASD

Like many of you, we were very sad to hear that Squam would not be continuing. But just this week, we heard that a new leader had taken up the reins, and Squam will go on! Hallelujah! Finally something good is happening in 2017. If you’re lucky enough to be in London this Thursday, you can hear Harriet Wallace-Jones and Emma Sewell of the Wallace Sewell Studio (that’s them above) talk about their approach to textile design through woven fabric. Who are these women? Well, among other things, they’ve designed fabric for the Tube and Trains that run around London. Click the photo to hear a short clip ...

Alternate Fiber Craft Uses for Tom Bihn Accessories

It’s no secret that I am a big fan of Tom Bihn products. I have several different bags and backpacks, I use one or another Bihn bag daily. One of my favorite things is to figure out different uses for Tom Bihn accessories I have. Here’s what I’m using now:     Snake Charmer This bag is for taming electrical cords, but I’ve used it for many other things. My husband uses one for his travel espresso rig. I use one in my Hansen bag for my the power cord, battery, and foot pedal for my miniSpinner. I use another one to carry my Purl and Loop little looms, one side for looms and tools and ...

WWW: poppies for remembering; poppy patterns; NICU babies in costume; a play inspired by knitting

In countries like Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the UK, poppies signify remembrance of those who fought in wars and died. In tribute, we wear a poppy on our lapel. In Godalming, Surrey, they went a step further this year. Volunteers covered the town center with 6000 poppies…–> It’s beautiful. Want to make some poppies of your own? Here’s a crochet version with 5 options and a knitted one by our friend, Laura Chau. I can’t stand it. Tara Fankhauser is the coolest NICU nurse ever. Look at the costumes she created for the little patients she’s caring for. In related news, when ...

Five Tips for Getting Gift Spinning (and Knitting) Done

Tomorrow is November 1. All around the fiber world people will start thinking about making December holiday gifts. Some very organized folks have already started, some even wiser folks just don’t do it. But most of us will make at least a few gifts to give. If you are like me the closer the holidays get, the bigger my list gets. I want to shower all of the people I love with handspun and handknitted gifts. I try to be sane about it, I try not to feel bad about it when it all doesn’t get done, but I do love the rush of planning and making to a happy deadline. Here are five tried and true tips for getting ...

WWW: Cotton and flax back on UK looms; WWI sock club turns to books; all cashmere is not equal (you don’t say)…

A company that has been around for 156 years, and has been making bedsheets for the Queen for at least some of that time, is bringing cotton weaving back to the UK. It’s been done in Italy until recently. I’m so glad to see the historical fiber arts working their way back to the UK, one by one. And lo and behold, flax is making a comeback too! Meet Flax Mill Textiles. In heritage coolness, it seems this centenarian book club started out in WWI as a group who knit socks for soldiers. Started because they thought they should be multitasking beyond chatting when knitting, the group buys books for their ...