A Thrilling Thursday

Just can’t contain myself right now.

I got the mail and WOW!

Look what was in it:

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Number 2 has arrived.

Hmm

Maybe that was an unfortunate little sentence.

But any-who, yes number 2 arrived…Mason-Dixon Knitting Field Guide Number 2!

Kay Gardiner and Ann Shayne pretty much just made my day.  Big time.

I loved the first one but I really, really love this second one.

I am drooling over the Ann Budd sock pattern “Apres-Anything.  The Asterisk/Dot Hat and Cowl, more drool.  Then a hush falls over the crowd for the fabulous Hadley Pullover.  Shiver shiver. Gonna do the socks first.  Then it will be a toss of the dice for what’s next.  We really have the best of all worlds with this little handy field guide.  There are terrific patterns, glorious color work charts, and the famous Mason-Dixon humor.  Dang!

Happy Thursday!

Here’s a link to Mason-Dixon knitting so you can get your field guides if you haven’t.

https://www.masondixonknitting.com/

Look around there for a little while.  You will be so entertained!  Get on their mailing list and you can preorder the next field guide like I have done for the first two. They also send you funny emails, especially on Saturdays.  Yep, so funny.

So happy to check the mail-y yours,

-Here’s my Pot O’Gold-this moment-

Shana

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Book Review: Within

I just bought the book “Within” by Jane Richmond and Shannon Cook after hearing about it on the Grocery Girls Podcast :

(you must watch them!  They are so awesome!)  The Girls even have a KAL set up on ravelry called the BFF KAL in honor of the authors.  You can pick a pattern by either and complete it by March 31st.  That is plenty of time and motivation.

http://www.ravelry.com/discuss/grocery-girls-podcast/3554158/1-25

This book is so good for just the photography.  I mean, really, you don’t even have to knit a THING.  Just look at the pictures.  But that, of course, is so silly.  I’m going to knit the sweater called Fireside which uses Cascade Eco Wool.  I’m still deciding on the color now but I’ve got a few squirreled away to pick from.  Imagine having yarn squirreled away.  Nuts, I say!

The book has 6 patterns inside and states that they will warm the soul.  Nothing sounds better to me then that.  You can pick from sweaters to cozy accessories.  The Hudson Shawl is making me drool.  The Entwine Scarf is a super bulky scarf that probably will be my best friend.  Quick knits always rule in my book.  A nice little feature included is there is a page with pattern stitch counts or schematics that is printed on a black page with white ink.  I am amazed at how easy it is to read on that background.  Well done!

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I had a fun time looking up each author on ravelry to see what other lovelies they have created.  I invite you to do the same!

-Here’s my Pot O’ Gold-this moment-

Knitting to warm my soul-y yours,

Shana

Jump on the Knitting Brioche Wagon!

Brioche knitting seems to be the topic of the day lately.  Last week I was able to go to Stitches Midwest 2016 in Chicago and I heard a lot of buzz about it from knitters walking around in the market.  Brioche also makes me think of delicious bread.  Whatcha gonna do?

Happily I stumbled upon KnitCircus Yarns’ booth:

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and saw this beautiful cowl that was the squishiest and loveliest rainbow creation called the Chromatic Cowl!   Here’s a link by the way…you are welcome!:

http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/chromatic-cowl

My friend and I squished it for quite a while.  At first it looks like a ribbed stitch but if you start picking around at it, which we did, you can see something strange was going on with that ribbing.

A couple of months ago I had picked up Nancy Marchant’s book “Knitting Brioche:  The Essential Guide to the Brioche Stitch” but hadn’t yet had a chance to check it out.

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Well, hot dog!  Things worked out.  The book has some great tips for everything Brioche.  It did give me a little twinge in my neck however as I really just wanted to dig in and make something simple right away.  The Chromatic Cowl is the perfect add-on for this book.  Amy Detjen, who wrote the pattern, mentions on the pattern page that it’s a pretty easy pattern if you know how to do Brioche knitting but definitely refer to Nancy’s book for help as she’s the expert.  Perfect!

I had no problem figuring out what to do in the pattern after I read some helpful hints in the book.  Make sure you don’t cast on too tight.  I used the German Twisted Cast On method.  This does take a bit more yarn to cast on so be generous in this area.  I picked out a beautiful yarn from KnitCircus Yarns along with a natural color for the two-color Brioche:

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Try not to start your project while you are watching an exciting women’s rugby match on the Olympics, okay?  You might have trouble.  I know…

Here’s my start:

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You can see I’ve progressed pretty well here:

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This is just SO soft.

Now don’t laugh too hard while reading the knitting abbreviations as you will see a BRP in there.  Psssst…it’s not a real Burp…but you sure won’t forget it now.

If you have any troubles, just look up Nancy Marchant’s videos and you’ll be fine.

Get on that wagon…the Brioche Knitting Wagon!

Brioche-ly yours,

-Here’s my Pot O’Gold-this moment-

Shana

Book Review: Ann Budd’s Top-Down Sweaters

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Did you hear that?

Maybe you didn’t hear me hollering like a crazy fool.

It’s with good cause that I would holler.  I just took advantage of Knit Pick’s big ol’ sale and got myself a copy of Ann Budd’s new book “The Knitter’s Handy Book of Top-Down Sweaters.

First things first.  You know what I love the very most about any Ann Budd book?  The Spiral-ness of it.  Right?  How many times are you using a book and the thing closes on you?  I do not need any distractions at all because if I look away too long from something I may fall asleep.  Like a dog with squirrels only they don’t fall asleep.

This book features making sweaters from the TOP down which means a couple of things:  less finishing work, you can try it on and get a better fit, and less finishing work.  (Haha, finishing work can be such a pain.)  I love to make a sweater that just keeps going without a lot of parts sitting around.  I can just keep knitting.

There are four sweater styles featured in the book (I think Raglan is my favorite today).  Ann has figured out for us what we need to do to make a sweater for pretty much anybody using whichever yarn you have.  There are charts for measurements of all body types and then you refer to what gauge you are getting with your choice of yarn.  You also pick your sweater type.  Maybe you want a cardigan.  No, wait…a pullover.  (This kind of reminds me of those fun books that were around when I was a kid that allowed you to change the people and what they were wearing by flipping the top, middle, or bottom sections of the page to create new people.  It’s a stretch, people, but stay with me.)

Another bonus are the helpful tips for doing techniques like which cast-on method would be best for which situation, which type of button band or button hole is ideal, what is the best cast-off method in each situation, and how in the world does one do some of those leaning decreases?  The diagrams are very clear to help you figure out these things.

There are also specific patterns in the book for sweaters so you can just start there if you’d rather not pick and choose at first.  The photography in the book is so clear that you can count the stitches on the models.  (If you’re into that)

I know I said Raglan was my favorite style, however, my favorite specific pattern in the book is the Brioche Basic.  When you get your own book (snort), turn to page 155 and take in the goodness.  I’m very excited about Brioche.  The word sounds like ice cream to me.  It’s not, though.

All in all, another terrific gift to us all from Ann Budd.  Have you seen her other books by chance?  If not, why are you still sitting there?  (Check out “The Knitter’s Handy Book of Patterns” (has mittens, gloves, hats, and more), “The Knitter’s Handy Book of Sweater Patterns” (not Top-Down), and maybe “Sock Knitting Master Class”.  She’s a good egg.

I would love to hear about your projects that you’ve made using Ann Budd’s pattern!  Drop me a note sometime.

Spiral-ly yours,

-Here’s my Pot ‘O Gold-this moment

Shana