Good day to everyone reading this week’s blog! T.K. here to talk about Yarnspiration’s Pattern Round Ups. Since Yarnspiration’s acquisition of Red Heart, they have been drawing on the latter’s pattern archive to bring out only the very best for their customers. Part of this has been their “Round Ups”, a way of categorising projects into sections to make searching easier. For instance, under kids and baby you can find:
This little monkeys blanket: https://www.yarnspirations.com/red-heart-monkey-around-baby-blanket/RHC0202-019747M.html?cgid=rh-20150420-57-knit-and-crochet-patterns-for-boys
Flower power makes a comeback: https://www.yarnspirations.com/red-heart-stripes-flowers-throw/RHC0502-019722M.html?cgid=rh-20150506-57-patterns-for-girls
A Manly sweater: https://www.yarnspirations.com/red-heart-rugby-pullover/RHC0329-021318M.html?cgid=rh-20150420-57-knit-and-crochet-patterns-for-boys
OH MY BUG, I love this dress: https://www.yarnspirations.com/red-heart-childs-chevron-dress/RHC0314-019094M.html?cgid=rh-20150506-57-patterns-for-girls
The classic newsie hat: https://www.yarnspirations.com/red-heart-surplus-hat/RHC0316-021987M.html?cgid=rh-20150420-57-knit-and-crochet-patterns-for-boys
Owls have been big for a while now: https://www.yarnspirations.com/red-heart-hootin-owl-hat/RHC0316-018373M.html?cgid=rh-20150506-57-patterns-for-girls
In home decor, we have a variety of lovely throws and decorations.
These handy baskets are great for the desk: https://www.yarnspirations.com/lily-sugarn-cream-crochet-nesting-baskets/SCC0504-001845M.html?cgid=071519-jonhas-faves-patterns
Another handy BIG basket: https://www.yarnspirations.com/bernat-bulky-crochet-basket/BRC0504-010145M.html?cgid=071519-jonhas-faves-patterns
So pretty and lacy! https://www.yarnspirations.com/bernat-bulky-crochet-basket/BRC0504-010145M.html?cgid=071519-jonhas-faves-patterns
A very easy throw in a bulky yarn https://www.yarnspirations.com/bernat-easy-vee-sy-crochet-throw/BRC0502-012613M.html?cgid=021419-texture-mix
We’ve all been there… a friend lets you know in passing that you are invited to a baby shower on Saturday, leaving you 5 days to put together that one of a kind gift. The pattern round-ups at Yarnspirations.com should be one of your first stops on your quest for that perfect gift. Whether you are a customer or a maker, round ups are a curated life preserver on the sea of the urgent.
T.k. Wilson has covered crocheting patterns in her portion of the blog today. I’ll be discussing knitting pattern round-ups.
The Yarnspirations pattern round-ups are divided into various categories then pared down into
smaller collections. Some of the collections have both knit and crochet patterns, others are specific to each craft. Since I both knit and crochet, I find this system particularly handy.
I love knitting for babies and kids as most of our readers know from past blog posts. It’s always fun to surf through patterns to find JUST the right project choice for my customers or a gift for a friend! Here are some of my favorite knit patterns for infants whether you are working for a charity or gifting these patterns are great.
Blankets are a lovely keepsake. It is always a privilege to knit a blanket for a child that will be used to decorate their first nursery or used at their christening. This blanket would be perfect as a thoughtful gift. https://www.yarnspirations.com/red-heart-rocking-waves-blanket/RHK0502-016840M.html?cgid=rh-20170419-15-crochet-and-knit-patterns-for-bouncing-babies#sz=12&start=15
Hat and sweater sets are popular gifts but babies grow quickly. This set from Red Heart yarns is sized 3 months. Always good to have room to grow. https://www.yarnspirations.com/red-heart-star-bright-baby-cardigan-and-hat/RHK0238-020387M.html?cgid=rh-20170419-15-crochet-and-knit-patterns-for-bouncing-babies#sz=12&start=13
This sweater is so cute. I love the mixture of stitches! (and it’s one piece!) https://www.yarnspirations.com/bernat-quick-stitch-cardigan/BRK0229-003943M.html?cgid=061019-quick-and-easy-patterns#sz=12&start=14
No matter what style of home decor is popular, knitting offers a plethora of projects to create a cozy look. Yarnspirations is the parent company of several major yarn brands including Bernat, Caron and Patons. They’ve been helping people create cozy for years!
This blanket is knit in squares to make it a perfect take along project.
Nothing like a couple of throw pillows to brighten up a room. This pillow is made with bulky weight yarn so it’s quick to knit up. https://www.yarnspirations.com/bernat-down-the-line-knit-pillow/BRK0520-011914M.html?cgid=061019-quick-and-easy-patterns#start=11
I like placemats (well I like glassware and it follows that I’d like placemats) Anything that makes a table look inviting and keeps the cleanup to a minimum is alright by me! These placemats are knit with bulky weight Bernat “Maker” yarn. https://www.yarnspirations.com/bernat-easy-life-knit-placemats/BRK0537-002216M.html?cgid=061019-quick-and-easy-patterns#prefn1=patternSkillTypeString&prefv1=Knit&start=2
Now for a little random miscellaneous. I’m usually in need of small gifts for my husband’s workmates, stocking stuffers at Christmas, or the gift of thanks for kindness shown. I thought I’d share some small, quick, knit gifts.
This mason jar cover is beautiful! I think it would add an attractive touch to any room https://www.yarnspirations.com/red-heart-snowdrop-mason-jar-cover/RHK0518-024493M.html?cgid=rh-20160811-15-quick-projects-to-crochet-and-knit#prefn1=patternSkillTypeString&prefv1=Knit&start=5
Cup cozies are fast, easy gifts that are fun to knit up in team colors or birthstone shades. They also keep your cup clean and your fingers from getting burned! https://www.yarnspirations.com/red-heart-lacy-knit-cup-cozy/RHK0511-024534M.html?cgid=rh-20160811-15-quick-projects-to-crochet-and-knit#prefn1=patternSkillTypeString&prefv1=Knit&start=3
This is a cute gift with a serious meaning. This is the mustache mug hug… a gift to give during “Movember” (my husband participates). Movember brings attention to men’s health. This little gift may truly be a lifesaver in every sense of the word. https://www.yarnspirations.com/red-heart-mustache-mug-hug/RHC0111-020198M.html?cgid=rh-20150206-quick-projects-for-a-quick-month#start=2
Yarnspirations has created a real boon for makers with their round ups. As Mom mentioned, this should be a first stop for anyone with that last minute gift that they need as well as anyone who wants to make something new for themselves, the home, the kids, whatever! I am very pleased with the selection of very different items, so many, we had a tough time choosing what to do. I hope this has given you a little look into this new resource and I hope to see more like it in the future.
Saffron spice is harvested from the threadlike growths of crocus flowers known as stigmas. It blooms for one week of the year and must be harvested by hand. This means that saffron is quite rare and hard to find, even in this day and age when you can find almost anything. Saffron was much too valuable to be used for dying garments, so it’s unlikely that my ancestors used actual saffron, and more likely they used safflower, as it is more common.
When garment makers, corporations, sports teams and even forensic scientists need some color advice they go to the source of color intelligence, Pantone! Every year the Pantone Color Institute chooses a color for the year. It’s sort of the guide to all things fashionable. As such color is SERIOUS business. The Color Institute works very hard to choose just the right color. Today my daughter @T.k. Wilson and I will be sharing the blog… about blue :)
This year’s color is 19-4052 Classic Blue. https://www.pantone.com/color-intelligence/color-of-the-year/color-of-the-year-2020 In 2019 the color of the year was Living Coral and in 2018 the color of the year was Ultra Violet. Both fabulous colors. To be honest Classic Blue didn’t “Wow” me. It wasn’t a color that my inner self yelled; “YES! This color is “Pantone-mine”” if-you-will. However, since the announcement I’ve “warmed” to the color and have started to incorporate it into my plans for my business and for my clothing choices (yes that means new clothes LOL) From favorite jeans to hats and scarves, Classic Blue is where it’s at.
I have a few favorite patterns in knit and crochet that feature gorgeous blue yarns:
T.K. here! I must admit, I shared my Mom’s less than enthusiastic reception of “Classic Blue”, since I naturally am drawn to brighter colors like pink and red. But also like her, I’ve warmed up the idea. In addition to being a fabulous color, classic blue is also associated with several of my favorite charities and awareness causes. The blue awareness ribbon is for anti-bullying, child abuse awareness, Free Speech, Foster Care Awareness (and is in particular associated with my favorite nationwide foster care charity Together We Rise) Crime Victim’s rights, because blue is associated with police, and Dysautonomia, all causes near and dear to my heart.
Because of the high instance of bullying in the news, I want to especially focus on that, and especially on lesser-known causes of bullying. For instance, according to a 2018 NPR article, 32 percent of children with food allergies have been bullied using their allergen at least once. A further third of the pool of respondents reported repeated bullying.
Furthermore, serious food allergies are qualified as a disability in the eyes of US law. Add to that, many food allergic children also have comorbid mental health or learning issues, such as ADHD and Autism.
In order to fold all forms of bullying into one awareness project I would like to emphasise #HatnotHate, a cooperative project instigated by Lion Brand Yarns to distribute handmade blue hats to schools across the country to spread the message of anti-bullying in what is known as “craftivism”. You can find out more here: https://hatnothate.org/
2020, wow, as a kid in the year 19… something (like just after the earth’s crust cooled) you never really think that you’ll see the year 2020. Now, here I am making plans for what I will learn to do this year! Amazing! To that end, I do have a beautiful loom that I would really love to learn to use with more efficiency. It’s a double loom by Kblooms. I want to use this to make hats, scarves, maybe even strips of loom knit fabric for blankets.
As a family we have a subscription to BluPrint. This I plan to use to help me improve skills like learning better techniques for finishing projects. Perhaps making accessories for adults like shawls. As part of a more concerted effort to offer more choices in the way of accessories for those wishing to participate Christian worship. More about that at another time
Of course we can’t forget the two charities that function out of this house. Northern Adirondack Hats of Hope and Bangwe Babies Mission are vital to both our own community and the community of Bangwe in Blantyre District Malawi.
For myself, I’m looking forward to expanding my skills as a sewist. Using BluPrint classes, I want to learn how to create clothes for humans, not just my established dolls. Seeing what’s trending on markets such as DressLily, I can see things that I could make if I had the required skills. I’ve started small, some skirts for myself, but hey, progress is progress.
Another skill I want to learn is making custom dolls. With the variety of lovely things on the market and the number of customisers out there, I’ve gotten so much inspiration for things I’d like to try. It may only extend to making custom outfits, but that’s enough for me.
The third thing I want to try is making costumes and experimenting with makeup. I’ve always loved costumes and stage makeup and the art of making them, so it’s something I’ve been dying to try. I’ve always been a bit “chicken” about it, to be honest, but I have it in the blood, Mom is quite a hand with makeup and clothes. She gave me the push I needed to explore my interest in that area.
Here’s to a great new year!
We’re almost to the end of another year again. This is the time when people typically become nostalgic; looking at the past and all the things that have changed, not only in their lifetime but in the lifetimes of their forebears. We take comfort in the fact that some things really will never change. While clothing styles and tastes in decor may change with the generation or even the year, some things will always be a constant. Knitting will always be knitting; crocheting will always be crocheting; wood carving will always be wood carving.
Well, it’s time once again for the annual Winter Wonderland Craft Fair at Davis Elementary. The Winter Wonderland Craft Fair is a benefit event for the Emmaus soup kitchen, which helps underprivileged people throughout the Malone area. It’s a good charity, and we’re happy to support it.
This year, I’ll be bringing my famous wood crafts. I’ll, of course, be bringing my pyrographed boxes, which are an ever-popular item, my hand-carved walking sticks, figurines, wood signage, pyrographed spoons, and a few new items which I’m sure you’ll be interested in seeing soon.
For the Winter Wonderland Craft Fair, my sister, TK, decided to set my sights a little lower. She usually brings a load of her famous repaired toys, but she finds that that much stuff overwhelms people with all the other tables around, so she changed my tactics. She focused instead on her bags, which are popular for stocking stuffers, and some new bedding items. She has a selection of handmade blankets and character pillows in bright colors for the little ones. She believes in making things for kids that are visually stimulating to look at, lots of bright colors and patterns. But don’t take my word for it, come out and see for yourself!
It’s sure to be a good time for everyone, and I’d love to see you there. If you can’t make it, don’t despair; any items left from the sale will be posted on Bonanza! But we’d still really like to see you all there.
T.K. here with some very exciting news: Our new Bonanza store is now open! That's right, we now have a digital storefront on the newest shopping platform for makers and artisans.
Bonanza is such a wonderful platform. It is very simple to use and has a very similar layout to Ebay. All you need to do is search for what you're looking for, select your price and other parameters, and find what you need. You can find all kinds of wonderful goodies for all ages and all kinds of people in your life. I even located some Bigfoot memorabilia that I was sorely tempted to purchase for my brother.
Right now, Tabitha's Mountain Rhapsody has several beautiful My Little Pony collectibles I restored for sale in the shop, with more coming soon. While they are not rare figures, they are all complete and have all the pieces to the playsets, we were very fortunate to have them all. The item I am proudest of is the Princess Cadence toy. I designed her wedding gown myself!
Trolls. Today, they are strange creatures that lurk the internet, causing anger and chaos wherever they go. This has not always been the case. There are different sides to the troll, that has been somewhat forgotten in American culture.
The trolls first appeared in Scandinavian culture centuries ago, and they still play a huge part in Scandinavian tradition today. Long ago, trolls were basically diminutive versions of the mountain giants of Nordic myth. The legends surrounding them grew and diversified with time. According to legend, they turn to stone in the presence of sunlight, just like in J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit. Many rock formations in Norway and Sweden are named after trolls and were believed to be trolls that were exposed to sunlight.
The fiber arts world has been abuzz all this year with the word Hygge (HUUE-ga), a movement started in the Scandinavian countries embracing a feeling of warmth and calm. The hygge movement encourages people to get back to basics, get away from the electronic stimulation and busy pace of life and just be. No agendas. No lists, just cozy calm living.
The Hygge life encourages people to take time out to enjoy warm drinks, time with friends, and old fashioned pursuits like reading and crafting. In the fiber arts world, this has resulted in an abundance of items made in chunky or bulky yarns and Nordic style colorwork patterns. Bulky and chunky work up quickly, making a boon for Christmas sales. Hygge also emphasizes grey, black, white, browns, tans, and pastels more than other shades making a more neutral palette.
I appreciate the ideas of quietness and calm that hygge projects to the world. I’ve always been attracted to the idea of a quiet orderly house to live in, though, the emphasis on white puts me off a little… anytime I wear white, I manage to get something on it! Through my exploration of hygge, and the intervention of a friend, I discovered the wonderful world of Moomin, the Finnish children’s book character who simply IS hygge. I’m working on a review of the cartoon available on YouTube and will be getting out books from the library for review, as part of the exploration of this concept. Thanks T.k. Wilson!
Lyn here! Hygge is really nothing new. It’s been a concept in home decor, fashion, and even cooking for years. While I’d date myself in a big way (may call for radiocarbon dating) I remember seeing my Aunts crocheting or knitting up beautiful blankets, pillows, scarves, hats, socks, mittens, decorative wall hangings and the like. The thing I liked most about it at the time was that it was not limited to the fiber arts. The current look of Hygge is broad it covers so many art forms from painting to wood crafts. Since Hygge reappeared on the landscape collaboration between the arts has been maximized.
I’m really enjoying this renaissance of this traditionally Nordic look. In fact I looked back in some of my magazines to find a copy of Selvedge Magazine from December 2007 Issue 20. https://www.selvedge.org/products/issue-20-scandinavia?_pos=1&_sid=1a664c1ba&_ss=r The emphasis of this issue of the magazine was Scandinavia. The writers of Selvedge Magazine painted a gentle portrait of a culture rooted in the past but living very much in the present. Everything from clothing to rocking chairs have some simple decorations. Creating that cozy look we all crave in the busy world in which we exist. Living in the Adirondacks there has always been a bit of the Scandinavian feel to life here but with our own flavor.
The warm and endearing nature of Hygge encompasses everything including, and maybe especially children. Family centric homes with bright, colorful touches, dot warm, placid rooms. In this link from Hygge Design there are hints of happy colors all through the sample home decor photos. https://hyggedesign.blog/2019/04/29/7-hygge-rugs-perfect-for-bedrooms/ (this page the emphasis is on rugs)
Hygge need not be expensive. If you like the look or simply want a home with a more welcoming air, there are simple ways that craftspersons can help with your design needs. Texture, color, homey touches, everything from carved wooden pieces to pillow covers. These photos are some of the pieces I’ve been working on lately. (I expect that some will be included in a sale we have coming up in December) Deep texture, calm colors with added, interest from brighter pops of yellow or blue. Just remember it only has to look rich, you do not have to be rich to achieve this look of warmth.
**Opinions expressed on blogs about which I write are the opinion of the blog authors and DO NOT necessarily reflect my own opinion.