After family tragedies, two frozen shoulders (separate occasions) and 3 moves (yes, I'm a sucker for punishment) and a forefinger surgery that left it deformed (try knitting with that), I'm back! I've picked up my Nine Months of Knitting: Great Expectations project. The Heirloom shawl construction you've read in previous posts has now been completed.
The Heirloom Shawl was inspired by a shawl knit by my Aunty Avril for my baptism in Scottish Shetland lace wool; a delicate shawl that has become an heirloom in our family. This is a different design, but my version of a baptism shawl for baby or a work of art to wear on your shoulders on chilly days and evenings. Done up in the delicious Handmaiden Maidenhair, baby and adult will find it soft, soft, soft My knitter Joan Kass suggested we encourage a find your fade shade for this project. I’d love to see your photos on Ravelry where you can purchase the pattern for $8!
The kind folks at YarnCanada.ca are putting on a contest to warm feet. Below is their press release for those who want to change lives (and theirs) with knitting socks!
Win Socks for Life! Well the yarn, you’re on your own after that.
(Vancouver, BC) “To be fair, it’s actually only a 25 year supply, so we can only hope the winner dies early to keep me an honest woman.” - Nikki Smith, VP YarnCanada.ca
After extensive research YarnCanada.ca discovered two key issues which continue to plague the world which we’d like to help bring to an end.
Don’t want to use all the yarn to make socks? That’s okay, no hard feelings.
Yes, some marriages may end as the winner ignores her husband in a multi-year knitting frenzy. But that’s simply a risk we must take. On the other hand, maybe getting non-terrible socks for Christmas could bring families closer together.
The prize will go to whomever can show how their life will most be changed by winning and what you will do with the prize.
Anything could happen:
“I’ll use the yarn to start a knitting business on Etsy!” - Beth C, Winnipeg
“My friends always get together to watch The Bachelor, but goodness it’s boring, now I’ll have something to do to keep me distracted.” - Janet G, Toronto
“Honestly I have no self control. With all that yarn I’ll knit non-stop, stay up for days and miss work. I’ll get fired, not be able to pay rent and get kicked out of my apartment. But… I’d have so many socks!” - Samantha T, Vancouver
“I’ll knit them all up as fast as I can and give them to charity.” – Nicole
Whatever the reason, let us know why knitting is important to you and how a lifetime supply of sock yarn would change your life.
Enter to Win a Lifetime Supply of Socks
A few weeks ago, I was contacted by YarnCanada.ca to review Red Heart's Heart & Sole (catchy name) sock yarn. I've been busy studying for an English degree, finished a 2nd novel, trying to get first novel polished and published AND trying to get my heirloom shawl pattern finished and up on Ravelry. So you'd think I'd decline the invite to review, right?
Ask any knitter or designer if they'd turn down the opportunity to test drive a yarn and they'd likely say yes too. plus, I figure I could squeeze in knitting a sock.
When a cute little box arrived with 4 balls of yarn, I went to the library and found "Sock Knitting Master Class" by the amazing Ann Budd. In it, was the lovely Pussy Willow Stocking by Cat Bordhi:
I began knitting with Heart & Sole and was surprised by its softness (73% wool/27% nylon). I don't usually like to knit with super fine yarn, and I probably should have picked an easier sock to knit. I began by knitting a moccasin toe with two circular needles. Master Class indeed!
Small beginnings. Well, I got busy again; papers due, editing workshop, my birthday, and all this with an underlying pinched sciatic nerve problem (from Labour Day weekend!). So my sock knitting is slow, very interesting, but S-L-O-W!
But I have to say, the yarn is beautiful and I can so see it looking fab in Cat's Pussy Willow pattern. Like anyone who wears or knits wool socks, I love the warmth, but also they have to be comfortable. I'm not finished yet, but now the cold weather is coming, I feel inspired to knit. So I'll post the finished sock in time. Please be patient with me. Thank you to Cat for the challenging pattern and thank you Tiffany for the invitation to try this great sock yarn! I love the colour "Skyscraper" and, Sock Knitters, if you want to buy the yarn, check out YarnCanada.ca where you can buy a ball for $6.55 and orders over $35 are with free shipping!
Had a blast at OWC, with zero sleep the night before, but manage to stay awake and focused with the sheer excitement of being there. The most useful and fascinating workshop was Anne Maclachlan's Social Media session. The camaraderie and networking was priceless. Wayson Choy was a wonder to listen to and he was so welcoming to me the first night. I met agents and writers and the wonderful organizers of the conference. I came away stoked to write, write, write. And I am.
On another (knitting) note,my Heirloom Shawl is done and Joan the test knitter is almost finished hers. Can't wait to post it to Ravelry!
...is published today on CommuterLit! Thrilled to bits! My husband wondered why I picked that photo...Geez!
Hope you all like it!
At these prices, I'm hoping they go quick - I need to make some room here! If you're interested, head on over to Etsy and have a browse.
UPDATE: No longer available. Thanks to all.
As some of you know, I'm crazy about writing stories (as yes, designing knitwear too!). While some of my short stories are out there in the world waiting to be published, I participated in PitMad, an author pitch party last Friday, kindly hosted by Brenda Drake.
We could post 3 tweets to pitch my book, "Love and Terror" from 8AM to 8PM.
I carefully composed 3 tweets of 140 characters or less, complete with hashtags. I participated, hoping any agent would heart my tweet (that's the way it works), so I could query them directly, but what I was really hoping for, is that a particular agent that I think would perfectly represent my writing found me.
Somewhere, with maybe a half hour to go, she posted to tweet her directly win the next 30 min to make sure she saw your adult or women's fiction, so I did. A few minutes later, she hearted my tweet, "Art dealer Kate falls for Afghani artist Salim. CSIS investigation casts doubt. Someone is the terrorist – who? #PitMad #A #S." and my own heart grew three sizes that day!
Off went my query and 10 pages to her inbox and my fingers are crossed, my toes braided and my heart is doing a jig, - yes jig; they still do those in the world…I'm certain.
Now, begins the waiting game. Not any waiting game. The kind of waiting game that would have writers second-guessing themselves. But we mustn't do THAT!
Instead, I’ll write Chapter 11 of my next novel, "Off the Grid" and knit the edging of the Heirloom Shawl (nearing the end!) as say a little prayer with each stitch, "I hope she loves it! I hope she loves it. I hope..."
I don’t say her name because that’s too much pressure, but if my knitting prayers work, I’ll spill; I promise!
Happy knitting (and writing)!
Thanks to Isobel and Alina - test knitters for these two new patterns of mine available on Mary Maxim. The yarn is lovely and cozy and both patterns will test a knitter's skills, but won't make you crazy. Hopefully an enjoyable knit for all.
Trying to hunt down the pattern for this edging as my B. Walker's are packed. We don't move in until mid October, and then the unpacking nightmare begins. Can anyone help and send me the 4 rows of this lovely edging?
Joanne loves to...