Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Pittsburgh Yarn Crawl, Part 2

Time for Part 2 of the yarn crawl. These were the second set of three yarn shops I visited.


Stop 4: Sewickley Yarns
Stop 1 on day 2, stop 4 in total was Sewickley Yarns in Sewickly, PA. This is a very quaint town and I wish I had more time there to explore.

The yarn shop had a lot of hand-dyed and indie dyer yarns, including several local yarns.

Goodies:
1 skein Sweet Georgia Tough Love Sock, Bewitched colorway
1 skein Feederbrook Farm Entropy DK, Potential Energy colorway



















This was probably my favorite stop, certainly the most memorable. Tonidale is in Oakdale, PA, just west of Pittsburgh. Most of the yarn at the shop is cheaper yarn, acrylic or acrylic blends. There is nothing wrong with that. Not all customers in a region are looking for $25 or more skeins of yarn. That being said, they do have higher-end brands such as Plymouth Yarn Company, Juniper Moon Farm, and Urth.

At Tonidale, I met Richard, the husband of the owner of the shop. Richard and his wife have been in business for 30 years. Richard was filling in for his wife that day. I wandered around the shop and then went to a back room where the higher-end yarn was. Richard was there having an issue with his laptop. While I was deciding what to purchase, I helped Richard with the computer issue and helped him learn something new that day. I want to be vague about what I helped him with to respect his and his wife's privacy. He was grateful for my help and I was glad I could help. :)

The next time I'm in the Pittsburgh area, this is definitely a shop I will return to. 

Goodies:
1 skein Juniper Moon Farm Findley Dappled (fingering), Hay colorway 
1 skein Plymouth Yarn Co. Happy Feet 100 (fingering), 207 Ice Grey colorway










Stop 6: Kid Ewe Knot
I must have spent an hour to an hour and half at this shop in Bridgeville, PA. The people there were wonderful. I wore my Woodbridge scarf into the store. Sandy, an employee there, and I started talking about it. She showed me a scarf that she had designed and gave me the pattern. (I've already started making it. I'll post here and on Instagram about it when I'm finished.) She looked up my scarf on Ravelry and I saw that someone at the shop had favorited my pattern. :D

Toward the end of my time at the shop, I talked with the owner of the shop, Heather, about my scarf, which she really liked and about things to do and eat around Pittsburgh. It was a very thorough list, which I appreciated.

Another shop I will definitely return to when I visit again.

Goodies:
1 skein The Fiber Seed Sprout Sock, Rock Creek colorway 
1 skein Manos Del Uruguay Alegria, Cinnamon colorway
1 skein Manos Del Uruguay Alegria, Natural colorway
A retractable measuring tape
A potato chip bag clip
A pen


Monday, November 12, 2018

Pittsburgh Yarn Crawl, Part 1

This past weekend I was in Pittsburgh for a wedding. I decided to do a two part yarn crawl around the city a couple days before the wedding. In my travels across Pittsburgh, I visited 6 yarn shops, three each day.

I enjoyed Pittsburgh a lot and will hopefully be returning in the not too distant future. Check out these yarn shops if you are in town.

Stop 1: Yarns by Design

My first stop was Yarns by Design in Oakmont, PA. It was right off the interstate so the easiest for me to get to coming into town. I liked the selection of the yarn that Yarns by Design has. I also liked their prices. They were lower than what I expected, which I liked. Although I didn't see a lot of indie dyed yarn, I did see a lot of Malabrigo, including sock, which has been difficult for me to find in Maryland.

Goodies:
2 skeins Malabrigo Sock, Turner colorway
1 skein Malabrigo Sock, Eggplant colorway
1 skein Madeline Tosh DK, Plaid Blanket colorway
A retractable measuring tape

While I was in Pittsburgh, I also attended Yarn by Design's knit night on Thursday. It was great meeting new people and experiencing a knit night in another state. Congratulations to Katie for finishing her five-year scarf! It looked great.
In the wake of the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting, Yarns by Design is spearheading a project to make tree of life squares for blankets. You can find the knitting pattern here on Ravelry and a crocheted pattern here. The squares they have received so far are 8"x8" to 9"x9". The knitting pattern link also has their address that you can send your squares to.

I will be sending them some in the coming weeks.



Stop 2: McWalker Yarns
My second stop was McWalker Yarns in Millvale, PA. This shop is a bit smaller than Yarns by Design, but it had a larger selection of indie dyed yarn, including locally dyed yarn. One local yarn I purchased was Stitch Party, which is dyed by two women in Millvale. Other local yarn they had were Yarn Rehab from Meadowcroft Dyeworks (Pittsburgh area), Shalimar Yarns (New Market, MD), and Glenfiddich Yarn (Pennsylvania).

I was going to attend their Friday knit night, but the timing didn't work out with when a friend flew into town.

Goodies:
2 skeins Stitch Party Palooza (their fingering weight yarn), Market Square colorway
1 skein Shalimar Yarns Breathless (also fingering weight), Enchanted colorway











Stop 3: Dyed in the Wool
Stop number 3, and the last stop for day 1, was Dyed in the Wool. This was the smallest shop I went to, including on day 2. There was a knitting group going on when I arrived, so I didn't interact much with the staff, unlike the other shops I went to. All the yarn I purchased was local. Shalimar again and Pichinku. The story behind Pichinku, I was told, was that a woman from Pittsburgh had gone to Peru and set up a fair-trade yarn company that employs local women and uses natural dyes.

Goodies:
1 skein Pichinku Tawa (sport-fingering), Nube colorway
2 skeins Shalimar Yarns Aerie, Chamois colorway



 Stay tuned for Part 2!

Saturday, October 6, 2018

Knit Picks Hawthorne Fingering Kettle Dye Yarn

Hi everyone!

I purchased some Knit Picks Hawthorne Kettle Dye yarn in mid-August. I made an unboxing/review video at the time, but then life got busy and I wasn't able to upload the video until now. However, by then I had completed what I made with the yarn. Watch the video below to see the yarn and what I made. 😃


Cheers!

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Two Pink Scarves

This Saturday, there will be a 5K walk/race by the Hurwitz Breast Cancer Fund in my town. As part of the event, the organizers requested pink scarves to be knitted, crocheted, or woven for walkers/racers who are breast cancer survivors. These are the two I made for them.

I started the pink and white one thinking I would do the interesting knot from the All Wrapped Up Infinity Scarf. The pink section is the pattern from the Pound of Love Hooded Baby Blanket. The white section is a granny square pattern from Heather's Crochet Blog. Unfortunately, I made the two sections too wide so the knot didn't work well. I just seamed the two together to make a HUGE infinity scarf. You have to wrap it around three times, but it still works well as a scarf.

The dark pink one is a fan or shell pattern that I haven't written up yet.

This brings my lifetime donation total to 689 items.

Cheers!





Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Donors Choose

School has about started in most towns across the country, now. 

Several of my friends and people I went to high school with (or their spouses) are teachers now. I live by the words "those who have the ability to help, have the responsibility to help." I may not be a teacher, but I can help those who are, especially those in underprivileged communities. That's why I'm a regular donor on DonorsChoose.org.

Projects I've supported on Donors Choose over the years have included many projects to build classroom libraries, air conditioning units for classrooms in schools that lack AC, basic school supplies such as paper and pencils, and a trip to a bookstore 70-80 miles away from a Native American reservation in South Dakota so that the elementary schoolers could experience what it is like to go to a bookstore and pick out a book of their own.

While you are shopping for school supplies this year or reveling in the fact that you no longer have to, consider supporting a classroom in one of the 50 states and DC.

Friday, August 10, 2018

We need to talk

I posted my Woodbridge scarf on Ravelry last night. I had a promotion going where the pattern would be free for some time of my choosing. I shortened the timeframe from a few days to ending today at noon.

Since the promotion ended, I have received a good number of hateful messages on Ravelry about ending the promotion early.

This behavior from fellow Ravelers is not acceptable. It is not okay to shame or guilt a designer for what they decide to do with their pattern.

I have every right to do what I wish with a promotion I put on my own pattern. I updated every place where I had placed the promotion end date (including on the pattern's page itself). I am not responsible for forum posts that may have had the old end date and were never updated.

One more thing. This is from the Lovin' the Freebies group on Ravelry on their discussion board about temporarily free patterns. Note the highlighted part.


I'm sorry if some people who wanted my pattern missed the promotion. My pattern is still available. It just costs $4 now.

Thursday, August 9, 2018

Woodbridge Scarf

My first fingering weight crocheted scarf is now available! Everyone, meet my Woodbridge Scarf.



I see so many knitted fingering weight, elongated triangle scarves that I wondered why there aren't more crocheted ones. Well, I'm trying to fill that void. This is the first of many fingering weight crocheted scarves for me. I love this one so much. I love how it turned out and how the colors go so well together.

Here are the details about the scarf:

Yarn: Fingering weight

MC (brown) - A little more than 420 yds (I ran out of my first skein [of 420 yds] halfway through the final color block)
CCA (silver) - 400 yds (minimum, depending on your gauge)
CCB (green) - 400 yds (minimum, depending on your gauge)

I specifically used Shalimar Aerie yarn in colorways Waterchestnut (brown), Chandelier (silver), and Lean on Me (green).

Hook: E (3.5 mm)

If you would like to make a Woodbridge Scarf for yourself or a special someone, here is the link to the pattern on Ravelry: 

Ravelry Woodbridge Scarf Pattern

Craftsy Woodbridge Scarf Pattern







Cheers!