The problem with being a creative

Isn’t helleborus lovely?

Things have been busy here at Bravewood, as usual. How could life be otherwise? The kids are all busy, Spring is just around the corner, so all of Nature is starting to bustle with activity after the lull of Winter. I have two tiny daffodils blooming in my flowerbed and the helleborus is blooming in full force! Did you know that those lovely flower petals aren’t actually flower petals at all?  They are actually leaves which protect the flower in the center, like poinsettias.  That’s what I learned today.

It’s that time of year when I should be going through the seeds, deciding which to plant where, getting the greenhouses set up and all of that.

But I digress.  A lot.  This is a knitting and crochet blog, right? Ok, back on track.

I have been knitting and pattern writing today.  Actually more writing than knitting got done. You see, I promised a friend of mine that I would write up a pattern for her for a pair of yoga socks that I have listed in my Etsy shop, but never got around to actually writing a pattern for.  I made the first pair and really didn’t think it would be very popular, so I just didn’t bother to write it down. And I wasn’t exactly wrong; you can still find that one pair of yoga socks sitting in my Etsy shop – not selling. It has been there for a long time. BUT, this friend of mine saw them a while back and being herself a knitter, wanted to make a pair for her sister. She looked through my pattern listings, didn’t find the pattern and proceeded to message me about it.

I hate to admit that she messaged me about it, umm, sometime before Christmas. I, however, was in the middle of a Christmas gift knitting marathon and had a pattern out to my test knitters (Team Woolly, you rock!), plus I had a kit collaboration in the works. Yes, I was busy, and I forgot about the yoga socks pattern.

About a month ago (or so), my friend messaged me again in regard to the yoga socks pattern. I sheepishly promised her that it would be my next project. But did I get right on it? Umm…

NO, I did not. I got another IDEA. This is the problem with being a creative; so many ideas. Life sometimes gets in the way of the ideas and sometimes ideas get in the way of keeping promises.

HOWEVER, I remembered the yoga sock pattern in the wee hours of the night last night (while I was hammering out part of an IDEA) and told myself NOT to forget about the yoga socks again!

Diamond Lattice Yoga Socks pattern by Wendelika Cline

And guess what I did? I actually wrote out the pattern. I worked out the chart and everything! So proud of myself , er, sort of. The chart was really pretty simple and I should have had it done before Christmas. Anyway, it is done. I emailed it off to my friend this afternoon and she was sweet enough to be excited about finally getting the pattern in her hands. I haven’t test knit it yet, so she gets to be my guinea pig.  Any other guinea pigs out there who want to give it a try?  Let me know and I’ll send you all the Team Woolly test knitting details.

In other blog news, I have also been busy today adding “buy now” links for all of the patterns that I have in my Ravelry store to my web site. You can now find them all on the Patterns page. [cue heavenly chorus] When I originally set up this format for the web site, I intended to get all of the links done but, you know, Squirrel!

And then I forgot that I hadn’t actually done it. So, I figure I got two gold stars today for finishing up two of the things that I should have done months ago.  There are more to tackle, but I’m happy that I crossed those two off my list.

What are your long overdue tasks to be done?  Or have you crossed any off your list recently?

Little Woolly Things Podcast Episode 5 – Knitting with Leicester and the kids

Hey, guys! I hope you’re enjoying my podcast.  It is proving to be quite an adventure, as we transition from Summer to Fall and into the school routine.  I am planning some big things for this year, not the least of which is the Sneaky Gift KAL that I am hosting.  You can get all of the details on the podcast or in the podcast group on Ravelry, which you will find right here: http://www.ravelry.com/groups/little-woolly-things-podcast

My Etsy shop is also on sale through October 17.  Everything is HALF PRICE!  Coffee, affirmations stones, amigurumis, patterns and all!  Most of my items are one of a kind, so don’t wait around.  Once an item is sold, it will be gone.

I hope to see you on the podcast!  https://youtu.be/VL_z_iPsXas

Check it out, like and subscribe!

Here are the show notes for Episode 5:

Etsy shop news: Everything in my Etsy shop www.littlewoollythings.etsy.com is on sale 50% off through October 17!

Today’s coffee: A 60/40 blend of Papua New Guinea peaberry and Bali Kintamani beans.

Podcast love: The Girls in the Yarn Cafe. Christy, who is @yarn_cafe_creations on Instagram and Trysten who is @dragon_hoard_yarn on Instagram.

WIPs: On the Spice Market Shawl by Melanie Berg. If you have any yarn suggestions for me to use instead of the handspun yarn that I am running out of, please comment and let me know!

Think of Me shawl – I am finishing up this pattern and will be looking for test knitters soon. Let me know if you are a lover of lace shawls, you can finish on a deadline and you are interested in test knitting. Photos will be required.

FOs: Hermione’s Everyday Socks by Erica Lueder in Paton’s Stretch Socks.

Seagrass Socks by Melissa Morgan-Oakes from the book: Toe-Up 2-at-a-Time Socks in
Classic Elite Yarns Summer Sox Variegated

Autumn Pumpkin Trio, which is a brand new pattern in my Ravelry store. http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/autumn-pumpkin-trio Worked in Knit Picks Palette

Sneaky Gift KAL update:

Prizes will be given periodically from the KAL chatter thread on Ravelry. The podcast group is here: http://www.ravelry.com/groups/little-woolly-things-podcast

You must be a member of the group to participate in the KAL and win prizes. There will be a grand prize winner chosen at the end of the KAL from the FO thread. KAL runs from September 1 2017 to January 1 2018.

If you would like to donate a prize for the kal, please message me on ravelry. Donations are more than welcome!

You can find me on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Etsy as Little Woolly Things and on Instagram as Wendelika Cline.

My patterns are available at www.knitpicks.com, in my Ravelry store at www.ravelry.com/stores/little-woolly-things and in my Etsy shop at www.littlewoollythings.etsy.com

Follow my blog at www.littlewoollythings.com

Thank you so much for watching and don’t forget to hit the like button and subscribe!

The secret to making an awesome tassel

Little Woolly Things blog post tassel tutorial

It’s finally here!  Tassels and stripes and unique shaping with colors and textures!  This is an idea that I have been playing with in the back corner of my mind for quite a few years.  I worked it up as a shawlette using novelty yarns and ribbons about 15 years ago, but it wasn’t really perfect, so I never published it.  Recently, it crept into my thoughts again and I decided to give it another go.  This time, it’s a hodgepodge of textures and colors, but without the eyelash novelty yarn that no one wants to work with, anyway.  It’s really better this way.

 

This is one of the outtakes from our photoshoot. Captain, our Border Collie just really wanted to be in the picture.

So, In honor of my Sedimentary Shawl pattern release, I thought I’d share a tiny part of the pattern with you.  This tassel tutorial comes straight out of the pattern, which you can purchase from Knit Picks right here.  The pattern and tassels both require a wide variety of yarns, from Aran weight to lace weight.  There have been skeptics who said that it couldn’t be done, but with a lot of trial on my part (so you don’t have to) with different needle sizes and stitch counts, I have hit upon the magic combination that allows these different weights to drape and flutter nicely in the breeze.  They really do play together very well, if you know how to handle them.

11-year-old daughter approved

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So, without any further ado, here is the tutorial.

Sedimentary Shawl Tassels

Yarns required:

Knit Picks Paragon yarn in Almond and Doe

Knit Picks City Tweed Aran in Tahitian Pearl

Knit Picks Stroll Fingering in Koi Pond

Knit Picks Luminance in Strength

Additional Supplies:

one yarn needle, one 4×6-inch (10×15 cm) piece of cardstock or cardboard for wrapping tassels, two ¾-inch (1.9 cm) wooden beads

Directions:

Cut a piece of Stroll Koi Pond yarn about 3 feet (1 meter) long.  Thread onto yarn needle so that yarn is doubled.

Wood beads and Knit Picks Stroll handpaint yarn in Koi Pond
Wood beads and yarn threaded and ready to begin

Bring yarn up through the hole in one bead, holding onto the yarn tails underneath.

Beginning to wrap yarn through the wood bead

Wrap yarn around the bead and through the hole until you have used up all the yarn on the needle.


Cut another piece of yarn and continue in the same manner until the entire bead is covered.  Cut the yarn, leaving a tail for sewing to the shawl.

Next, using one yarn at a time, wrap yarn around your cardstock to create a 4-inch (10cm) long tassel.  Cut each yarn at the bottom of the card and begin the next color at the bottom, where you left off.  You can use as many wraps as you like.  I used about 15 wraps of the Paragon yarns, 12 wraps of the City Tweed, about 40 wraps of Luminance and 20 wraps of Stroll.

 

 

 

 

 

When you have finished your last wrap (I used Stroll last), cut your yarn leaving about a 2-foot (60 cm) long tail.  Thread yarn end onto yarn needle.  Stitch through the top of the yarn wraps using a backstitch all the way across the top of the yarn wraps.

first row of hand stitching

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then, after you’ve stitched all the way across, do it again backwards across the yarn wraps, making your stitches offset from the first row of stitches.  These don’t have to be pretty (thank goodness) because no one will see them.

 

 

 

 

 

Then, slide the card out from the center of the yarn wraps.  Fold the stitched edge together and stitch through the backstitches to hold the tassel together.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now, take the yarn with the needle up through the yarn-wrapped bead (this will be very tight) and then back down through the bead again.

Flip the tassel upside down so that you can see the stitches in the center of the tassel and stitch securely to create a knot.  Cut your yarn.

And then, use your scissors to cut through the yarn loops and trim the bottom edge evenly.

And this completes your tassel.  If you are making them for my Sedimentary Shawl pattern, you will need to make one more, then sew them securely to the long points at either end of the shawl.

I hope you enjoyed my tassel tutorial.  You can pick up the entire pattern, along with the yarn, needles, and anything else you could possibly need to get your knitting gears in motion, at www.knitpicks.com.  And you can see more of my patterns at http://www.ravelry.com/designers/wendelika-cline