If you read last week’s blog post, you know I’m in Germany this week, visiting Claudia (the Wollmeise). Last fall, Claudia and her friend Maria came to visit me, and we had a great time knitting, shopping, and hanging out. Usually, Claudia comes for the Spring Fling each year and we are so busy that we don’t get enough time to just sit and knit and chat. So it was fun to have her here during a non-Spring Fling time. (And it’s fun being with her here in Germany this week!) One thing that happened last fall when Claudia and Maria were here? I was bitten by the Nuvem bug. They both got off the plane wearing these beautiful scarf/wrap creations and I was immediately interested. Even MORE so when I tried it on. The Nuvem is knit with about 1700 yards of lace, making it really lightweight, but at the same time, really warm. I wanted to start one immediately.
So, I jumped right in using a skein of Spice Market. (It had been caked up to be a sweater, but you know my history with sweaters, up to this point.) The Nuvem pattern requires a lot (a LOT) of knitting around and around. But I really don’t mind that kind of knitting. You don’t have to think about it. One row is knit around. The second row is knit around, plus making about 12 increases along the way. That’s it! See how the ends flare out a little? That’s where you do the increases. (The true color is shown in the second photo.) And I liked working on it so much, that I started a second one while the first one was soaking in the wash, getting ready for a blocking. I thought it would be great knitting on the plane and in Germany. I did make some changes when I knit it. I made it longer (I cast on 230 stitches to begin with), I made it a little narrower (I think about 22 inches across), and I did 9 rows on the ruffle instead of 6.
So here’s the thing. I had caked up two skeins of Spice Market Lace when I thought I was making a sweater out of them (knitting it holding two strands together.) Since I changed my mind, I used one cake for my Nuvem and I have another Spice Market all caked up, ready to give to someone else. Would you like it? Leave a comment below telling me about your adventures in knitting lace (Have you knit a lace scarf or wrap before? Would you do it again? Have you made a Nuvem? Or would this be your first time on a lace project?). I’ll draw a number next week and will let you know who wins the big, beautiful cake of Spice Market Lace.
We had a request from Twist Collective for some of our Loopy Ewe Solid Series yarn awhile back, so we shipped it off, anxious to see what they were going to make with it. The pattern came out in their special 5th Anniversary Issue, and we couldn’t be more please! The Perfect Storm mittens, designed by Kimberly Voisin, look like they would be perfectly fun to make! It takes just one skein each of Lake, Ivory and Cherry, and the mittens can be knit on double points or circulars. And it seems like a great way to bring a little bit of summer beach into your cold and snowy winter months. Pop over to Twist Collective if you’d like to purchase the pattern, and then pop over to The Loopy Ewe for the yarn! (Photos by Carrie Bostick Hoge and Kate Gilbert, used with permission.)
Need some other fun suggestions for color work patterns? I came across these this week and promptly purchased the Sheep Mittens. Looks like the yarn she used is a fingering weight, so The Loopy Ewe Solid Series would also work well for them. Or Cascade Superwash Sport for sport weight mittens. And doesn’t she have lots of cute designs? Tempting.
It’s Monday, and you know what that means? More pretty things up on the website for you. This week we have re-stocks of some popular lines, new colors from others, and a new Shawl Kit to share with you. Just up:
Colinette Jitterbug - I know, I know – it has been a long time since we had a good re-stock of this popular yarn. We bought lots, so you have many gorgeous colors to choose from! Jitterbug is a fingering weight yarn with a great, squishy twist, making it perfect for socks, shawls and scarves. I made this Multnomah Shawl with 2 skeins and really enjoyed working with it. (Shown here in Gaugin.)
Manos del Uruguay Alegria - Oh, this is a pretty fingering weight. 75% Superwash Merino, 25% Polyamid (nylon), with 445 yards in the skein. Great for socks, shawls and scarves. Even though fingering weight yarn takes a little longer to knit up (than, say, worsted or bulky weight), the fine texture and drape that you get makes it so worth it. (Shown here in Butla.)
Fleece Artist Trail Socks - A full re-stock on their fingering weight yarn on the 80% Superwash Merino, 20% Nylon base. One of the things I love the most about Fleece Artist is their wonderful sense of color. You’ll find some old favorites and some new inspirations as well.
The Fibre Company Road to China Light - This sport weight yarn is 65% baby alpaca, 15% silk, 10% camel and 10% cashmere. Can you even imagine? It’s luscious. If you’re in the holiday gift-knitting mode, this is one of the yarns that people will unwrap and say, “Ohhhhh. Wow.” And isn’t that what you always want them to say when you have spent the time and money to knit them a gift? Try it for scarves, cowls, hats, mittens and shawls. (Shown here in Ruby.)
The Alpaca Yarn Company Passi Shawl Kits - A fun gradient shawl pattern that comes with 6 (90 yd) skeins of gradient-dyed colors to knit it up. You’ll find six different color of kits to choose from. The yarn is Paca Peds (65% Superwash Wool, 20% Alpaca, and 15% Nylon.) What fun!
Enjoy the new things, and the Elves will get your orders all packed up and shipped off as soon as possible!
Thanks for all of your emails and messages, checking in on us. Who knew this rainstorm would end up lasting for four days and causing flash floods?? Usually we get a short burst of rain and then the sun comes back out. (I love that. The sun is never hidden for too long here in Fort Collins. Except for this week.) So far, all of the Elves houses are fine and Loopy is fine. The flooding really only started here in town yesterday and today. Plenty of roads impassable as the rivers have gotten to the point of overflowing. Boulder and Estes Park are much worse. I’m hoping the rain stops soon. I’m glad we’re not in a flood plain here at Loopy. (Remember this post where the St. Louis Loopy shop almost got flooded? Look – it was this exact same time of year.) I guess the good side of this is that the extra moisture we’ve had this summer and fall will be good in terms of forest fires next spring. The ground has been fully saturated. (Aerial photo of Longmont courtesy of @paytonpeterson, via Twitter).
I have another special pattern offer for you today. Louise (who designed the Song of the Sea Cowl that we all loved, and the Another Way pattern that I just finished), has come up with a pattern called Knit Night, specifically for pretty-but-no-brainer knitting, such as you need for Knit Night. It can be made in any weight yarn, and is great for multi-colors or solids. You can add beads to the picot edges, or knit it without the beads. Her other new one is Stay Awhile – also great for knitting without too much thinking. If you’d like 20% off of one of these patterns, Louise has set up a special code you can use until September 21st: Loopy4TSB . I like the code she came up with. And remember – do vote for Loopy for The Super Bowl! She assured me that they’re all voting for Loopy for the Super Bowl in the UK, too. (Photos used with permission.) Since these can be made in any weight, you could also make them for the Fourth Quarter Challenge, if you haven’t picked out anything else yet.
I’m heading off to Germany for a week* (visiting Claudia-the-Wollmeise), so I won’t be able to answer emails for a bit. Feel free to contact Lynn (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you have questions or need anything. Of course we’ll still have the Monday Updates and blog posts, including one next week showing you my completed Nuvem and giving you the chance to win a skein of Wollmeise Lace in Spice Market to make one like it, if you are so inclined. Watch for that. The Elves will be busy keeping the shop running and getting out orders, and WH is staying home this time, so the cats will remain well fed. You won’t even know I’m gone. Unless you email and wonder why I’m not answering!