Thursday, December 18, 2008

Does Riley Like the Snow?

This is a question I get alot. I'll let you decide for yourself. I think this picture says it all!
But he does look darling in his Will Ferrell inspired Elf sweater, don't you think?!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

I am loving this snow! It's great knitting weather. And things have been really hopping at The Naked Sheep. It's been great these last couple days to have so many people come to the shop to just knit and hang out. We've been so busy, though, that I'm way behind on my gift knitting!

We just received new colors in Tapestry from Universal Yarns. This is such soft and easy to care for yarn. We also received Impressions, which is brand new for us. Perfect for those last minute hats!

I'm at the shop every day until Christmas. Stop by and knit with me!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

I just purchased my very own Denise Needle Kit

I was never very interested in trying them before. I think that they’re a fabulous idea for new knitters, just starting to grow their needle stash. But I have so many individual needles, it just didn’t seem necessary to purchase a kit.

Well, I decided to try them; and I am really enjoying them! Let me tell you why…

I like the flexibility the kit offers. I just returned from a lovely and relaxing long weekend in Manzanita. For me, going on holiday means a lot of knitting. And probably starting a new project, maybe even two! Having the kit allowed me to do all my swatching at the beach, without fretting over not having the right size or the right length of needles. The kit is small and compact and didn’t take up too much space in my knitting bag. More room for yarn!

I like the feel of these tips, they are silky smooth! They also have a nice point; not too pointy, not too dull…just right.

I like the way the tips click on and off easily; and they stay put!

I like the cords. They are smooth and straighten out quickly. And they’re pink!

The joins are great. Nothing gets snagged where the needle connects to the cord.

I’m hooked! Stop by the shop and check them out for yourself. We have the blue kits, as well as the pink kits. When you purchase the pink kit, $5 of your purchase goes toward breast cancer research.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Finishing is Fun!

Here are 3 of my students-Carolyn, Tricia and Dena-from Beginner Socks at The Naked Sheep Knit Shop. Well, here are there footsies, beautifully adorned with their first almost completed sock! After this photo was taken, they hurried back to the classroom, and finished off the toe! Yeah! Finishing is so much fun!

I'm in the midst of beginning some holiday projects, hoping to finish them in less than 2 months! All other projects will be set aside, as I lovingly, and frantically, knit up some gifts for family and friends.

What are you knitting (better yet, finishing) these days?

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Big to Little Striped Scarf

Here’s the pattern for the scarf that I knit for Jefferson High School. Scroll down to the October 16 post for a photo of the scarf. I used 2 skeins of Eco Wool (1 skein each of colors 8457 and 8449) and size 9 16” circular needles.

Cast on 56 stitches using color A. Place marker and join into the round, being careful not to twist your stitches. Knit 19 rounds.

Change to color B and knit 2 rounds.
Change to color A and knit 18 rounds.
Change to color B and knit 3 rounds.
Change to color A and knit 17 rounds.
Change to color B and knit 4 rounds.
Change to color A and knit 16 rounds.
Change to color B and knit 5 rounds.
Change to color A and knit 15 rounds.
Change to color B and knit 6 rounds.
Change to color A and knit 14 rounds.
Change to color B and knit 7 rounds.
Change to color A and knit 13 rounds.
Change to color B and knit 8 rounds.
Change to color A and knit 12 rounds.
Change to color B and knit 9 rounds.
Change to color A and knit 11 rounds.
Change to color B and knit 10 rounds.
Change to color A and knit 10 rounds.
Change to color B and knit 11 rounds.
Change to color A and knit 9 rounds.
Change to color B and knit 12 rounds.
Change to color A and knit 8 rounds.
Change to color B and knit 13 rounds.
Change to color A and knit 7 rounds.
Change to color B and knit 14 rounds.
Change to color A and knit 6 rounds.
Change to color B and knit 15 rounds.
Change to color A and knit 5 rounds.
Change to color B and knit 16 rounds.
Change to color A and knit 4 rounds.
Change to color B and knit 17 rounds.
Change to color A and knit 3 rounds.
Change to color B and knit 18 rounds.
Change to color A and knit 2 rounds.
Change to color B and knit 19 rounds.

Bind off. Cut 28 11” lengths of yarn for fringe, in both colors. Apply the opposite color fringe to the color at each end.

Yippee! You’re done!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008


And I don't think I'm alone in this one. I do like myself a good cup of coffee. Well, to be exact, I like a 12 oz nonfat mocha, some days with a little whip and some days without a little whip. And I have ordered that drink at many a coffee shop. Large chains and small independent ones.

I have to say, my favorite spot right now for the the perfect 12 oz nonfat mocha, with or without whip, is Blend Coffee Lounge. Conveniently located about 4 blocks west of The Naked Sheep Knit Shop!

The gals at Blend are always pleasant, remember my name and my drink (even though I mix it up a bit between the whip and no whip thing; and sometimes I'll get it iced) and make a very delicious and beautiful coffee drink!

And the owner, Lara, is a sweetie! She constantly goes beyond what is expected; whether it's replacing a drink that wasn't just right or giving me an occasional extra punch on my coffee card (gotta love those coffee cards!), I really enjoy chatting with her in the mornings, or afternoons or early evening. Whenever the caffeine bug bites!

It's an inviting spot with good light and comfy places to sit and knit! Maybe I'll see you there soon!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Scarves for Jefferson

In addition to continuing to collect yarn and needles for the knitting groups at Jefferson High School and Harriet Tubman Middle School, we are also collecting hand knit or crocheted scarves for Jefferson High School. These scarves will be sold in their student store to raise money for senior activities, specifically Senior Prom and their Senior Trip. The scarves can be made any way you want, in Jefferson school colors. We have a list of suggested yarns and colors here at the shop, as well as some ideas for patterns.

If you are interested in buying yarn for this project, but don’t have the time to actually knit/crochet the scarf; just purchase the yarn from us, and I’ll make sure it goes to someone who would love to create a beautiful scarf but doesn’t have the financial resources to purchase the yarn themselves. We’ll be collecting the scarves here at The Naked Sheep Knit Shop through the end of the year.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Little Pumpkin

Here's Riley in his festive pumpkin sweater. He's enjoying the cooler weather; a great chance to wear all his stylish sweaters! I'm also enjoying the cooler weather, and the excuse to knit for my tiny little dog! But really, who needs an excuse?!

He's laying next to a felted pumpkin that one of my very talented customers, Craig, whipped up for me. So cute! We have these needle felted pumpkin kits available at The Naked Sheep!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Knitting at Di Prima

The Friday Morning Knitting Group just celebrated it’s 2 year anniversary, and we are still meeting the 2nd and 4th Friday of each month at Di Prima Dolci Italian Bakery from 9-11am. At our last meeting, we presented Pat, the owner of Di Prima, with a beautiful scarf that we all took a part in knitting. Her response was priceless, and apparently the gift was given at just the right time to lift her spirits after a tough morning.

I am so thankful for Pat’s presence in our neighborhood. Di Prima is a comfortable and welcoming spot where you can sit and relax and get a delicious breakfast, lunch or dinner; as well as just grabbing a nummy coffee drink and pastry to go!

And you will always be greeted with enthusiasm and a lovely smile by Pat!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Knit One, Save One

We are collecting preemie caps for Knit One, Save One: A Campaign to Save Millions of Babies. This effort is sponsored by Save the Children and Warm Up America!

You can read more about it here.

You can download an Action Kit here. The Action Kit contains Easy Patterns to Knit or Crochet, as well as more information on the program.

Join me and knit some sweet little preemie caps that will go to babies all over the world! These babies often have low birthweights, so the caps need to be smaller than we are used to making. A circumference of 9-11” is ideal. Use any smooth, washable yarn.

I'll be giving the caps to Kathy at the Portland Knitter's Guild at the December meeting. She'll package up all the caps she collects and send them in for us. The deadline to turn in your caps at The Naked Sheep Knit Shop is Sunday, December 7.


Friday, October 3, 2008

Therapi Baby Hat

We just got some really great new yarns from South West Trading Company. Our first order with them.

One of the new yarns is called Therapi. It's a blend of wool, silk and Jadeite, which is a fiber created using crushed Jade. It's so soft and nice to work with. It's called Therapi, because Jade is known to have healing qualities. It would be perfect for a prayer shawl; which lots of people seem to be knitting right now.

I made this cute little baby hat with just one skein. I used size 8 16-inch circular and double pointed needles. Here's the pattern:

Cast on 84 stitches. Join in the round; being careful not to twist.

Round 1: Knit.
Round 2: (K2tog) 2 times, (yo, k1) 4 times, *(k2tog) 4 times. (yo, k1) 4 times; repeat from * to last 4 stitches, (k2tog) 2 times.
Round 3: Purl.
Round 4: Knit.

Repeat rounds 1-4 six more times.

Work decrease rounds as follows, changing to dpn's when necessary:

Round 1: *Knit 5, k2tog; repeat from * to the end of the round.
Round 2: Knit.
Round 3: *Knit 4, k2tog; repeat from * to the end of the round.
Round 4: Knit
Round 5: *Knit 3, k2tog; repeat from * to the end of the round.
Round 6: Knit.
Round 7: *Knit 2, k2tog; repeat from * to the end of the round.
Round 8: Knit.
Round 9: *Knit 1, k2tog; repeat from * to the end of the round.
Round 10: Knit.
Round 11: *K2tog: repeat from * to the end of the round.
Round 12: Repeat round 11.
Round 13: Repeat round 11.

With remaining 3 stitches, knit an I-cord that is about 1.5 to 2 inches long. Sew it down to the top of the hat to make a little loop. Weave in ends and you're done!

Monday, September 15, 2008

2008 Knit and Crochet Show

The 2008 Knit and Crochet Show was a huge success for us! I'm so glad that we decided to participate in the show this year. I heard people say over and over, "I've never heard of The Naked Sheep, I'll have to come visit your shop". And that's exactly what we were hoping for! We passed out hundreds of fliers with the shop info, and a 10% off coupon attached.

We also had fun seeing all our friends at the show! Thanks for stopping by to say "hi" and show us your support! You are greatly appreciated!

I was so happy with the way our booth came together; we had such a colorful and cheerful space. A great big THANK YOU to the vendors who were represented at The Naked Sheep's booth:
Bob and Meghan, The Spinner's Web
Sharon, Stitchjones
Kevin and Laurie, Woolpets
Karie, Silverpurl
LaVon, Bead & Purl
Bradley, Sheep Thoughts
Universal Yarn
All of these great companies are represented at The Naked Sheep Knit Shop year round! Stop by and check out what they have to offer!

Laurie's book signing of Wool Pets in our booth on Saturday afternoon went fabulously. She signed many books, and demonstrated needle felting. It drew quite a crowd. We enjoyed spending some time with Laurie and her husband, Kevin, on Friday evening.

Bob and Meghan were troopers and spent hours demonstrating at their spinning wheel. What a great team! Their display of handspun and handpainted yarns was simply stupendous! And we moved that entire lovely display to The Naked Sheep. So if you didn't get a chance to come to the show, stop by and feel and touch and even smell their lovely yarns! There is plenty for everyone to take a skein home!

And a special thanks to Bradley, with whom I couldn't live without! What a huge help and support he was, as always! And ever the entertainer! He can always make me smile. Thanks, honey!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Two fun weekends in a row!

Brad and I had a fun and relaxing time away this past weekend. We went to the Hotel Oregon in McMinnville with friends for a couple nights. It's located in the heart of downtown McMinville, which is full of fun little shops, restaurants and interesting things to look at.

We got all rested up for this coming weekend, the big Knit and Crochet Show here in Portland at the Convention Center. We are busy working out all the last minute details of getting ready; ordering a banner, printing up coupons, pricing product, etc.

We'll be at booth #415, and we would love for you to stop by and say "Hello!"

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

In the neighborhood

Last Sunday morning, Brad and I had breakfast at one of our favorite neighborhood hangouts, Di Prima Dolci Italian Bakery. What a treat! We sat outside in the garden, and it was just so beautiful and peaceful. We enjoyed delicious coffee, and we shared the Frittata with rosemary ham. Oh so nummy!

They are open late for dinner on Friday and Saturday nights. We've been several times, and it is a real treat!

Pat, the owner, is such a sweetie! Always so cheerful and hospitable. We are lucky to have her in the neighborhood!

If you haven't been to Di Prima before, you've got to try it! Don't have anyone to go with? Ask me!

The Friday morning knitting group from The Naked Sheep Knit Shop meets at Di Prima the 2nd and 4th Friday of every month from 9-11am. Join us sometime for a morning of knitting, sipping delicious beverages and enjoying the company of some lovely knitters and crocheters!!!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Classes at The Sheep

What a fun group of ladies! This is Carolyn's Thursday afternoon Pick a Project class. Some of these ladies have been taking this class from her for the over 2 years! Don't they look like they're having a great time?!

I'll be taking over this group of lovely ladies this fall when Carolyn leaves us for Jacksonhole, Wyoming. I'm looking forward to spending time with them each week. The laughter and funny stories that come out of the classroom on Thursday afternoons is inviting.

Join us for this, or many other wonderful classes at The Naked Sheep Knit Shop!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Knit Naked, Ride Hard

Wanted to share a few more Bridge Pedal 2008 photos with you. Here I am, joining up with The Naked Sheep Cycle Team at the rest stop at the end of the St Johns bridge.

And here I am with Brad, tootling along Willamette Blvd.
You should join us next year!

Monday, August 11, 2008

Bridge Pedal 2008

Here are some photos from this year's Bridge Pedal.

The Naked Sheep Cycle Team had a fun...

and groovy time!

They chose the 8 bridge ride, which was about 24 miles! What a great view off the Fremont Bridge! (The guy in the green shirt isn't so bad, either!)

Check out the awesome t-shirts that Brad designed for the cycle team! You can buy one at The Naked Sheep Knit Shop!

I joined them at the base of the St Johns bridge, and escorted them back to the shop. Then we continued on to a celebatory breakfast at Gravy on North Mississippi. Mmmmmmmmmmmmmm, their bisquits and gravy rock!

Knit Naked and Ride Hard!

Friday, August 8, 2008

Knit and Crochet Show

We are very excited to be participating in the Knit and Crochet Show this fall at the Convention Center in Portland, September 11-14. Visit us at booth #415!

At the show we will be featuring handpainted yarns from Spinnemann, Stitch Jones and needle felting kits from Woolpets.

We'll have fiber artists, Bob and Meghan from Spinnemann, in our booth spinning yarn during the show! How fun!

And Laurie from Woolpets will be doing a book signing in our booth on Saturday from 1-3pm. We have all of her needle felting kits available in the shop right now. They are so stinkin' cute!

It will be a very fun weekend! We'll keep you posted on how things are going!

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Read about us!

The Naked Sheep was mentioned in a special section of the Oregonian featuring North and Northeast Portland businesses on Alberta, Mississippi and Killingsworth. It was in the Sunday paper on July 27. There was a great photo of people knitting on the front couches during knit nite, as well as 4 lovely little paragraphs about us. Read to the end, they saved the best for last!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Entrelac Baby Blanket

As you may remember, I really love to do entrelac. I think it's such a cool technique. Interesting to do, and really fabulous results.

Here's my latest creation, a cheerful baby blanket using 220 Superwash Handpaints. I used 1 skein each of colors 9857-9863. I think it looks like candy!

I finished the blanket, so now I'm working on writing the pattern. It should be available in a week or so. I think it would make a fun class this fall at The Naked Sheep Knit Shop!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Thanks for your support!

Our 3rd Anniversary Sale and Celebration was a HUGE success! We had so many wonderful things on sale, lots of goodies to give away, way too many friends to visit and knit with...and we ate cake! Thanks for your overwhelming support of The Naked Sheep!

I've said it before, but I can't say it enough...I love my life! The Naked Sheep Knit Shop is a dream come true! Thanks for your contribution in making it an ongoing reality.

Hope to see you soon!

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Happy Anniversary to Us, Again!

Well, it's that wonderful time of year again! The 3rd anniversary of The Naked Sheep Knit Shop! You can wish us happy birthday or happy anniversary, whatever you'd like! I'm just so happy that we have been here for 3 fabulous, fun-filled years; and that we have so many more to look forward to!

Please join us July 3-6 for our 3rd annual Anniversary Sale and Celebration! There will be some serious partying going on; and you will benefit from great savings and fabulous giveaways!

Don't miss out on all the fun!!!

Friday, June 20, 2008

Happy Birthday Riley!

Monday, June 23rd, is Riley's 5th birthday! We are so happy to have him as a part of our lives!

To celebrate the sweet little guy, we are having a Happy Birthday Riley Sale at The Naked Sheep on Saturday, June 21st from 10:00-4:00pm. There will be treats for his human friends; and all purchases will be Buy 4, Get 1 Free (the free item being of equal or lesser value to the 4 items purchased).

Stop by, get a good deal, and say Happy Birthday to Riley! (No guarantees that he won't growl, but I know he'll be happy to see you nonetheless!)

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Pearls Market Bag Photo

Here's the photo I promised! It was a fun, and quick, bag to make! Useful for going to the farmer's market, the grocery store, or your favorite knit shop! Enjoy!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Pearls Market Bag

We just received a shipment of Pearls, from Cascade Yarns, in 10 fun and cheerful colorways. I decided to knit up a market bag, and here is the pattern. I'll take a picture tonight, and post it tomorrow!

Feel free to cut and paste this pattern for easier use!

4 skeins Pearls by Cascade Yarns
Size 11 16-inch circular needle and double pointed needles
Size 15 24-inch circular needle

Knitting the Body of the Bag
Using larger circular needle and 2 strands of yarn, cast on 60 stitches. Place marker and join into the round. Knit 3 rounds.

Round 1: YO, k2tog; repeat to end of the round.
Repeat round 1 until bag measures 15 inches, or desired length.

Knitting the Bottom of the Bag
Change to smaller circular needle, knit 3 rounds. Work decrease rounds as follows:

Knit 8, k2tog; repeat to end of the round.
Knit 7, k2tog; repeat to end of the round.
Knit 6, k2tog; repeat to end of the round.
Knit 5, k2tog; repeat to end of the round.
Knit 4, k2tog; repeat to end of the round.
Knit 3, k2tog; repeat to end of the round.
Knit 2, k2tog; repeat to end of the round.
Knit 1, k2tog; repeat to end of the round.
K2tog; repeat to end of the round.

Cut yarn and thread through tapestry needle. Run tapestry needle through remaining stitches the same direction you would if you were knitting them. Drop tapestry needle through center and pull.

Knitting the Top Edge of the Bag
Using smaller circular needle, pick up and knit 60 stitches around top edge of bag.

Next round: Purl.
Next round: Knit.
Next round: Purl.
Repeat last 2 rounds 2 more times.

Next round: Knit 8, bind-off 22, knit 8, bind-off 22.

Knitting the Strap
Using 2 double pointed needles, work in garter stitch (knitting every row) on the first set of 8 stitches for about 22 inches, or desired length for strap. Attach the 8 stitches of the handle to the other set of 8 stitches using 3-needle bind off.

Weave in ends, and then go shopping!!!

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Cascade 220 Superwash Handpaints

One of our new yarns at The Naked Sheep is Cascade 220 Superwash Handpaints. We have 7 delicious colorways! I was recently inspired by an entrelac blanket I saw on Ravelry. I love knitting entrelac; so I think I'll try it with this gorgeous new yarn!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Shop Hop Fun!

This post is a little late, but I really wanted to share these photos.

The Tigard Knitting Guild "East Side Shop Hop" visited The Naked Sheep Knit Shop on Saturday, May 3. There were 55 participants that filled up a bus and visited 6 different shops. We were the 4th stop on the route.

The knitters and crocheters spent 45 minutes at each location. The group arrived at The Naked Sheep at 1:30pm, and were gone by 2:15pm sharp! It was tons of fun, a little chaotic, and a great way to meet new fiber enthusiasts!

Thanks to all the participants, and to the coordinators of this event! We sure enjoyed having you all!

Monday, April 21, 2008

Book Group

We've started a book group at The Naked Sheep Knit Shop. Our first meeting was last month, and we read Water for Elephants. I really enjoyed the book a lot.

This month's book is A Thousand Splendid Suns. It is an incredibly emotional book to read. Very powerful.

We meet the 4th Friday of each month from 7-9pm at the shop. Carolyn, who works and teaches at the shop, is leading the group.

Join us as we discuss, eat munchies and knit, of course!

Friday, April 4, 2008

Cobblestone Pullovers

Can you believe how cute these two are?! I finished Brad's Cobblestone Pullover, and he said it's one of the best fitting sweaters I've made him. I think it just looks great on him! The pattern was so well written, and such fun to make. And I love working with Cascade 220; this is one of their tweeds.

I finished Riley's sweater in just one evening; and, as usual, Riley is always a joy to knit for. I'm pretty sure he's happy with his sweater, also! He's never complained about a sweater yet!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Baby Riley

I've been doing some spring cleaning at home, and I came across a couple of Riley's first sweaters. This blue one was the first sweater that I ever made him, the day we brought him home. He was only 1 1/4 tiny and sweet!
And this is one of our first photos of little Riley. So cute! He was all ears!

I love my little dog!

Friday, March 28, 2008

It's March!

It's March 28, and it is snowing! How fun and exciting! I woke up this morning and felt like a child I was so excited! Not too much snow, but enough to make me really happy and giddy! At least it was easy to scrape the snow off my cute little beetle.

Apparently the last time it snowed this late in the year was in 1936. We got about 5 inches in Portland on April 1st!

I'm not so sure that Riley was all that excited about the snow. But he sure is cute, huh?

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Hugs and Kisses

I'm making a new shop model for my Hugs and Kisses Scarf Pattern. I designed the original scarf using a yarn that we no longer carry at the shop, so I decided it was time to make a new one.

I'm using Baby Alpaca Chunky from Cascade Yarns in color 555. This yarn is absolutely delicious, so soft and cozy. And it knits up nicely in this cable pattern.

I'm also working on a hat pattern that will be free with yarn purchase at The Naked Sheep. I'll post it on this blog in early April.

I'm really having fun posting my current projects (slowly but surely) on my Ravelry site. It's a fun way to get your knitting thoughts organized.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Entrelac, again

I'm re-knitting my entrelac scarf for the class. I'm making it a little narrower, and I don't think I'll felt it this time. I reallly do love working with this yarn. It feels nice, and the colorways are interesting. I also really do love doing entrelac. I think I'll do my next entrelac project in the round. Any suggestions?

Thursday, March 20, 2008


When I felted my messenger bag the other day, I also decided to felt the entrelac scarf. Oops. I regret it now. The problem is, I let the scarf agitate a little too long; and the fabric became too dense and thick. And unfortunately with felting, there is no undoing or unfelting.

Here's a reminder of the before.

And here's the after.
I now wish that I hadn't felted it; but, oh well, what can you do? I'll just be able to pass valuable info onto my students, and they will see what the scarf will look like felted.

What lesson did I re-learn? The importance of swatching. I just dove into knitting the scarf; which would have been fine if I had left it unfelted. But if I had knit a test swatch, I could have then test felted the swatch and seen that it would be a very dense fabric.

Live and learn; and possibly have to re-learn!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Felted Messenger Bag

I just finished felting this Messenger Bag. It's one of my own patterns. I really like the way the 4 shades of gray to black blend together. I used Cascade 220, one of my favorites for felting. You can trust it to do the job! I'll be teaching this bag as a class at The Naked Sheep this spring. You can also buy the pattern online from our website.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Ravelry is cool

I finally feel like I'm finding my way around Ravelry. It's actually quite addictive. I'm in the process of getting my projects added to my notebook, it's fun!

If you're on Ravelry, add me as a friend :). I'm cheriknits. If you're not on Ravelry, check it out!

Monday, March 17, 2008

To Block, or Not to Block?! Is there any question?

Here is my finished Hemlock Ring Blanket. I washed and blocked it 2 nights ago. I use the term "blocked" lightly. I am not a huge fan of blocking. Oh, I recognize the value; especially with lace. And I appreciate how it makes your stitches "snap to attention" and behave a little better. I like the way it flattens out the edges, making seaming things together much easier. I heartily suggest blocking to my customers and students. It's just that, quite honestly, it's not my favorite thing to do. I don't even own an official blocking board or t-pins (I can hear the moans and screams now).

So when I say that I blocked my lovely Hemlock Ring Blanket, I mean that after washing it I layed it out on the kitchen counter/bar, smoothed it out with my hands, and stretched it all around (with the help of my wonderful assistant, Brad), and then let it dry. That little bit of effort changed the original wavy, bumpy lump of wool into a very nice thing.

I confess this to you, not so that you think that I'm a horrible knitter; but so that you won't be afraid of blocking. It doesn't necessarily have to be a huge, intimidating production. It has value, it's often the "right" thing to do. But just remember...YOU are the boss of your knitting. Don't let any stitch, technique, fellow knitter, etc, scare you. You are in charge and you are a good knitter; even if you choose not to block.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Hemlock Ring Blanket

This is the Hemlock Ring Blanket that is all the rage right now on the internet and on Ravelry. I am approaching the finish line as I bind-off about 400 stitches. Not your typical bind-off, mind you. This is K1, k2tog, yo, k2tog, turn, p1, (k1, p1) twice in the same st, then k in the same st once more, p1, sl1, turn, bind off 7 sts. Repeat ALL THE WAY AROUND!!!

As you can see, I'm about halfway around. I hope to finish binding-off today, so I can block it tonight.

I'm teaching this as a class at the shop. So this blanket will be a shop model, and then be given to my grandma for Christmas. I used Eco Wool in color 0508 (Boysenberry). When I was growing up, my grandparents lived in St Johns and had raspberries and boysenberries in their yard. So working with this color for her brings back a lot of happy memories of spending time in the garden and picking berries with grandma and grandpa.

Stop by and check it out in person!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Beach Birthday Blast

Last Saturday was my birthday, and we spent the weekend at a cute little beach cabin in Manzanita. Just Brad, Riley and I. It was a relaxing time of reading, knitting, watching movies, walking and just enjoying being alone. A perfect birthday getaway! Happy times.
Brad and I met at a beach retreat in Manzanita over 25 years ago, so it was fun to remember and celebrate that, also! As we drove into town on Saturday, we both spotted the building that housed our meetings and mealtimes during that retreat. We saw the rocky spot on the beach where Brad had to hold my hand to help me climb the rocks. Happy memories.
Happy birthday to me!

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Entrelac, a super cool technique

This is The Wonderful Woven Scarf, a pattern that I created for a class I'll be teaching at The Naked Sheep Knit Shop. The class will teach the entrelac method, which creates this very cool fabric that looks woven. I'm using Poems, from Universal Yarn. This variegated wool makes entrelac easy, because it does the color changes for you!

My plan is to felt the scarf when it's done, so I'm using size 10 needles, instead of size 8; and I'm making it extra wide and long. I had a customer make a felted entrelac bag using Poems, and it came out so beautifully.

I like the scarf unfelted, also. But I think that felting it will make the back look smoother. Then the scarf will be more reversible.

Either way, it's tons of fun to knit entrelac!

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Chunky Hat Pattern

Hello... Can you say Chunky? Can you hear me now? That's Classic Chunky! Yes! You heard me right. FREE Hat pattern. My Mom designed it!

We just got in some really great new yarn, Classic Chunky LP from Universal Yarns. It's a very chunky, stripey yarn. We received 7 wonderful colorways, with more on the way. I'm knitting up a hat for a shop model. It will fit an average adult head.
Here's the pattern...

Using size 10 16-inch circular needles (or whatever will give you 3.5 stitches to the inch in circular stockinette), cast on 76 stitches. Place marker and join into the round.

Round 1: Knit 2, purl 2; repeat to the end of the round.
Round 2: Knit 2, purl 2; repeat to the end of the round.
Round 3: T1R (knit into the second stitch but do not remove that stitch from the needle, knit into the first stitch, then remove both stitches from the needle), purl; repeat to the end of the round.
Round 4: Knit 2, purl 2; repeat to the end of the round.

Repeat rounds 1-4 2 more times, or until ribbing is desired length. Change to stockinette stitch (knitting every round) and work until hat measures about 6 inches from the beginning, or 2 inches less than desired length of hat.

Work 1 round, decreasing 4 stitches evenly around. (72 stitches)

Work decrease rounds as follows, changing to double pointed needles when necessary:

Round 1: Knit 6, knit 2 together (k2tog); repeat to the end of the round.
Round 2: Knit.
Round 3: Knit 5, k2tog; repeat to the end of the round.
Round 4: Knit.
Round 5: Knit 4, k2tog; repeat to the end of the round.
Round 6: Knit.
Round 7: Knit 3, k2tog; repeat to the end of the round.
Round 8: Knit 2, k2tog; repeat to the end of the round.
Round 9: Knit 1, k2tog; repeat to the end of the round.
Round 10: K2tog; repeat to the end of the round.
Round 11: K2tog; repeat to the end of the round.

Cut yarn leaving about an 8-inch tail and thread through tapestry needle. Run tapestry needle through stitches the same direction you would if you were knitting them. Drop tapestry needle through center and pull. Weave in ends.


Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Here's Riley, getting all geared up for Super Bowl Sunday in his football sweater! It's a little hard to see the detail, but you can check it out on Riley's very own page on The Naked Sheep Knit Shop's website.

Can you tell that I love my little doggie?!?

Sunday, January 13, 2008

We Call Them Pirates

Another Christmas Eve Photo of me with my youngest nephew, Tanner. I made the We Call Them Pirates beanie for him, and it was a hit. It fit, AND he liked it. It's fun to knit for people who actually wear or use what you make them!

This was a very fun hat to knit. I made it using Bollicine Dolly from Cascade Yarns. My sweet hubby has asked me to make one for him. I'm toying with the idea of changing the colors a bit, but I need to run that by the recipient. Stop by the shop to check on my progress!

Friday, January 11, 2008

Happy 2008!

Here's the Clark Clan on Christmas Eve. We had a nice celebration at my parent's house with food, family and lot's of fun. The boys are wearing the sweaters that I made them for Christmas.

Cory, on the left, is wearing the Striped Sweater from Kristin Spurkland's newest book, The Knitting Man(ual). I changed it a bit, and used 3 colors instead of 2 for the stripes. It's knit with Silky Flamme from Elsebeth Lavold, a very delicious blend of alpaca, wool and silk.

Nick's sweater is the High-Top Hoodie from Son of Stitch 'n Bitch. It's knit, minus the hood, using Cascade 220 in 3 shades of gray. I had forgotten how nicely the 220 knits as a garment, I've used it so much for felting lately!

I really enjoyed knitting up both of these sweaters, and they both fit perfectly!

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Tip - What's my Sweater Size?

People are often confused when it comes to knowing which size to make in a particular pattern. Often people will look at the small (medium, large) sizing options and just assume that since they usually wear a medium, that’s the size they should make. This is definitely not the way to choose your size. It’s very important to look at the Finished Measurements listed for the garments.

Patterns will always give a Finished Measurement, and often a suggested “To Fit” Measurement. The one you really want to pay close attention to is the Finished Measurement.

First of all, you should measure your chest/bust. Next, decide how you want your sweater to fit. This will determine how much “ease” you need to build into the sizing.

If you want a very-close fitting garment, you would take your chest/bust measurement and add zero inches, or possibly subtract a couple of inches. This would give you “negative ease”, and result in a body hugging garment.

If you want a close fitting garment, you would add 0-2 inches to your chest/bust measurement.

If you want a standard fitting garment, you would add 2-4 inches to your chest/bust measurement.

If you want a loose fitting garment, you would add 4-6 inches to your chest/bust measurement.

Choose the Finished Measurement offered that is closest to the measurement you come up with.

Another way to approach choosing a size is to measure the chest/bust of a garment that you already own and love the fit of, and just go with that number.

Questions??? Please stop by The Naked Sheep Knit Shop and ask! We're here for you!

For more information on sizing/standard body measurements and other helpful things, check out this cool website: