Spud says (the blog)

Archive for June 2011

June 30, 2011

Ruminating

Hi Spud & Chloë Friends,

Ruminating means to think, muse and ponder. It can also mean, in medical terms, to chew on food that’s already been chewed. I know that last definition is a little gross but I am talking figuratively not literally and in a design sense. Both of these definitions ring true for what I am planning.

Yesterday I gathered up an armload of Spud & Chloë Outer in nine gorgeous colors. I even cast on to play around a bit. The two colors missing from the photos are on my needles right now. I have been spending some quiet time doing research in my stitch dictionaries as well.

I hope to have more time to ruminate today. When you see a big bunch of beautiful yarn like this it is so inspiring.

I’ll keep you posted on my progress.

Are you pondering over any new Spud & Chloë projects? Fill me in!

June 29, 2011

A Simple Shrug ~ Free Pattern

Hi S & C Friends,

I am excited to bring you another free pattern using our spectacular Spud & Chloë Sweater. Today I have a shrug pattern for you. In the pattern I included the written instructions for making a women’s size medium. At the end of the pattern I included a “How to make your own custom fit shrug” section. This how-to section has some simple steps you can use to make your own shrug in a different size for yourself or a child size shrug! With a few quick measurements you will be on your way.

This simple pattern is an easy one to customize, make the sleeves longer or shorter, leave out the ruching and work in straight stockinette, use a different border, change the color, change the size, make one for a little one in your life, maybe stripes or color blocks…. the sky is the limit.

Here is some information you might like to know:

 

Size: Written in full for an women’s adult size medium with “how-to” steps to create your own sizes at the end.

Yarn: Spud & Chloë Sweater (55% superwash wool, 45% organic cotton; 100 grams/160 yards), 3 hanks in Belugs #7521 to make the size medium

Note: Yarn amounts will vary with any size changes to the pattern.

Needles: US size 7 sixteen-inch circular needles or size to obtain gauge

Gauge: 5 stitches per inch in stockinette stitch

Materials:

Tape measure

Yarn needle

Scissors

 

I love this quick project. It can be dressed up or down.

It is a really just a long tube with an opening in the middle.

I have included my design sketch schematic here so you can see how the measurements are broken down for the size medium.

Have fun with your shrugs! I can’t wait to see them and to see which colors in Sweater you choose.

Click here to download the free pattern for A Simple Shrug!

Click here for the Ravelry project page!

June 25, 2011

A Simple Shrug ~ Pattern Preview

Hi Spud & Chloë Friends,

I have a new free pattern coming up quick here. A Simple Shrug is just that, an easy-peasy fun and wearable piece that can warm your shoulders on a cool summer night or a brisk fall day or a chilly winter night. You get it, it’s a year-round versatile shrug that you can whip up in no time at all.

A Simple Shrug can be dressed up or down. Throw it on over a t-shirt and jeans or over a dressy tank and skirt or a sleeveless dress. It all works in a comfortable cozy way.

I added a ruching detail to spice things up a bit.

You will need three hanks of Sweater to make your own version of A Simple Shrug. I made mine using 3 hanks of Spud & Chloë Sweater in the new Beluga #7521 shade of gray. I was dying to give this color a go on my needles as soon as I saw it and sure enough I want to knit more with Beluga. I think a cardigan would be the best in this shade of gray. That is on my list.

For the shrug I used US size 7 sixteen inch circular needles to knit the entire thing. The gauge is 5 stitches per inch.

Basically, all you are doing is making a long tube that has an opening in the center. It goes really fast.

I love ruching. It adds texture in an easy way. Also, the ruching in this project naturally makes a scalloped edging along the front and back of the shoulders.

I will provide the pattern to make a size medium and then I will tell you how to take a couple of quick measurements to make your own shrug to custom fit you! How does that sound?

I’ll be back soon with the pattern for you. Have a good weekend!

June 20, 2011

Spud on the Road

Hi Spud & Chloë Friends,

Spud has been one busy guy over the last couple of weeks. We headed to TNNA, The National Needlearts Association, in Columbus, Ohio from June 10-13th. If you don’t know TNNA is a huge convention for the fiber industry that is held twice a year. There you will find yarn companies, publishers, magazines, designers, authors, knitting product companies (bags, needles, wheels, etc.) and much more. This is basically the place shop owners go to select products for their shops but so much more goes on as well. There are dinners and meetings and mingling… and there is tons of inspiration.

This year Spud & Chloë at the Farm attended, too, and had a great seat right on the corner of our booth. It was fun to see people stop and visit the farm and see the entire set all together in one spot.

The Blue Sky Alpacas and Spud & Chloë booth is always a treat. I always feel like it is an oasis in there. It is especially fun to see all of the knit and crochet samples from the pattern collections in person. The Seeing Stars Blanket (draped on the left in the photo) is getting a lot of attention and for good reason. It is stunning.

Thanks to everyone for stopping by the booth and for placing orders for your shops. We had a wonderful time at TNNA this year. It is always good to touch base with old and new friends of Blue Sky and Spud & Chloë. Also, thanks for making the effort to attend my book signings for our Spud & Chloë at the Farm book. That was great fun to get to meet so many shop owners from all over the country. Putting a face with the shops is the best.

Just a few short days later, Spud and I were heading for a quick trip to Chicago. Our first stop was for a live TV segment on WGN’s Midday Fix. Here you can see me filming a teaser for the upcoming segment. If you look at the TV monitor, I love how Spud is peeking up in the lower right corner of the screen. That’s too good.

Here I am live on the air during the four minute segment. If you missed the show you can now watch it online.

Click here to watch Spud & Chloë at the Farm and me on WGN!

To finish off the last couple of busy weeks we headed to Nina: a well-knit shop for a meet and greet book signing event.

Click here to visit Nina’s website!

I love this shop and wish it was in my neighborhood. Nina, the owner, is on the right and her fantastic staff is to the left in the photo. It’s my second tour visit to Nina’s and I had a terrific time. The staff and Nina are so much fun. The shop is gorgeous and sleek and modern. It is organized so beautifully. I love the  way everything is accessible and clean. It is a shop that is well-curated to bring you the best of the best available in a wonderfully simple and clear way. I love that about Nina’s. You never feel overwhelmed. It is kind of calming in the shop.

The signing event was very well attended. A fantastic group of knitters showed up and supported the shop. I signed a ton of books. I signed some extra books that are now at the shop so if you’d like a signed book give them a call: 773.486.8996. They will happily send a copy right out to you.

Nina stocks all of the Spud & Chloë yarn and patterns and the Blue Sky Alpacas yarn and patterns as well. We are lucky enough to be her best-selling yarn company. I’m sorry not to have more photos of the actual event but it was busy and when I finally looked at my watch the time was almost up! That’s a good thing.

Now I am home for awhile and I need to settle in and get back to my knitting and pattern writing! I’ll be back soon with much more…

June 14, 2011

Chicago and a Fat Robin

Hi Spud & Chloë Friends,

I  have a couple of news items to start out the day. TNNA, last weekend, was fabulous. Thank you to everyone who stopped by our booth and came to my book signings for Spud & Chloë at the Farm. It was a great success. Hopefully I will get a photo of our beautiful booth to share with you in the near future.

Next up, I will be on the WGN Midday show on Friday, June 17th featuring Spud & Chloë at the Farm. WGN is based in Chicago but it is a nationally televised news show. Some markets get it and some don’t so check and see if the show if available in your area. It should be fun. If my WGN segment is available for viewing online afterward I will be sure to let you know.

While I am in Chicago I am making a visit to Nina: a well-knit shop. I will be there with my trunk show and for a casual meet and greet and book signing. I will be at Nina’s from 5-7pm on June 17th! It is an open house, drop in anytime.

Click here for Nina’s website!

I hope you can make it. I have some fun raffle prizes from Blue Sky Alpacas/Spud & Chloë for attendees and Nina always knows how to make an event special. It is a gorgeous shop. Give Nina’s a call or send an email if you get a chance to let them know you are coming or just simply stop by! No prior notice is necessary.  It’s going to be loads of fun.

Here’s some information for you:

Nina: a well-knit shop

nina: a well-knit shop
1655 west division street
chicago, illinois 60622
view a map

773.486.8996

email nina

Hope to see you there!

Now for one last announcement, yesterday Blue Sky Alpacas and Spud & Chloë (see the photos) were on the Martha Stewart Crafts Dept. blog. That’s a good thing. Click here to see the post! Go BSA and S&C!

Now about that Fat Robin…. I have a new pattern in the summer edition of Petite Purls. This little and chubby robin sits in the palm of your hand. The entire project is knit in Spud & Chloë Sweater in Ice Cream, Firecracker, Rootbeer, Chipmunk and Splash. The colors could not be any better!

I have already been asked about a kit for the set. If you are a shop owner and make up a kit for the Fat Robin, nest and eggs, please let me know so I can direct people to you.

I have had a long obsession with a robin’s eggs. They are tiny and it is probably the sweetest color blue I have seen in nature. The Spud & Chloë Sweater colors lend themselves so well to this project.

Here is the twist! The tiny blue knit eggs can be tucked neatly under the Fat Robin’s wings for safe keeping and storage. This also makes the robin sit and fit so nicely in her nest.

I love the interactive toy and this one fits the bill! How fun is that? Kids and adults alike enjoy finding the eggs and tucking them under the robin’s wings. One of the best things about knit toys is that there is no size or age limit, everyone enjoys them. Knit toys are for every bird under the sun.

The Fat Robin is knit in one piece from the bottom of the body to the top of the head. The wings and tail is knit all in one piece knit from the top down. With a few whipstitches to attach the wing/tail piece to the body  you are done. Add a beak and you have a Fat Robin for yourself.

Click here to see the pattern for Fat Robin and to visit Petite Purls!

Click here for the Ravelry project page for Fat Robin!

Click here to see another cute Spud & Chloë project in this edition of Petite Purls!

Click here for a cute owl in Spud & Chloë Sweater in this edition of Petite Purls!

Oh, and crocheters click here for a third Spud & Chloë project in this edition of Petite Purls!

Enjoy knitting Fat Robin and all of these other wonderful toys worked up in Spud & Chloë Sweater! Four projects in Spud & Chloë yarn all in one issue is fantastic.

Petite Purls is a wonderful online knitting magazine that features free patterns for babies and kids. If you haven’t checked Petite Purls out before it is worth your while to do so. Petite Purls is also a terrific supporter of Blue Sky Alpacas and Spud & Chloë and you will find many, many patterns worked up in our kid-friendly yarns. Both Blue Sky and Spud & Chloë yarns are wonderful for knitting for babies and children and this is illustrated so well on Petite Purls.

See you in Chicago? I hope so!

I’ll be back soon with more….