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Posts from February 2010

Snow Day Fun

February Flakes
We've had a few good snow storms in these parts over the past few weeks. The kids have been thrilled to have a good bit of time off from school. The most recent storm which ended yesterday left us with 20+ inches.

Not one to waste her free time, artist IJK got to work with the materials at hand. 

If You've Got Some Free Time and a Pile of Snow 

Izzy's Idea of a Good Snow Day Activity

Snow Face

Mouth and Nose


52:7 Suddenly Someone is There at the Turnstile

Last year I enjoyed seeing photos that members of the Crochet Potholder Swap posted on Flickr. I kicked myself repeatedly for not joining the fun - I just didn't have the crochet confidence or the time. A few weeks back I was thrilled to see that Maryse (check out her new Very Braidy Cowl pattern), Adrian, Maritza and Stacie decided to host the swap again this year. I jumped right in and ordered a good bit more yarn than was necessary from Elann. Despite ruminating that I really didn't have the time to participate this year either I got to work. It turns out that crocheting 5 potholders isn't really that large a commitment. I managed to make my five in 3 or 4 days.  Now I'm back to secret, deadline knitting as I obsess about making more potholders.




Potholder Backs 

Potholder Bliss 

Bee Sides 


Pattern: Potholders by Bea Aarebrot (I didn't actually use a pattern - I improvised. But my potholders look just like this pattern.)

Yarn: Elann Sonata (except for the lime green that's Rowan 4 Ply Cotton)

Hooks: I used a 3.5mm for two of them and 3.0mm for the other 3. I think both sizes worked equally well and will probably use the 3.5mm if I make any more. The yarn kept slipping off the 3mm hook.

A note on the swap: If you decide to join in be sure to read the rules. Potholders will be sent back to those who do not follow the rules exactly.

Clepsydra Mittens

Just in time for "Snow-mageddon 2", we've got a new mitten pattern. (My apologies to those of you who are not in the mid-Atlantic or north eastern US. Our recent snows are a bit of an obsession in these parts.)

Clepsydra 1 Introducing "Clepsydra".

Clepsydra: klep-si-druh“an ancient device for measuring time by the regulated flow of water or mercury through a small aperture.” -Dictionary.com

These mittens are worked in blissfully soft Creatively Dyed Yarns, Holi. Holi is a lovely blend of wool, alpaca & silk. If you've never used Dianne's yarns before, you're in for a treat. She's got an amazing way with colors. The wool, alpaca & silk blend makes this yarn blissfully soft and gives your projects a delicate halo.

Clepsydra 2

The Clepsydra mittens have twisted cables that flow from cuff to fingertips. A cabled icord adds interest and rings the wrist. Worked in Creatively Dyed Yarn’s Holi (Wool, Alpaca, Silk) they are a decadent treat for yourself or gift for a dear friend.

Clepsydra 4

Clepsydra (on Ravelry)

Measurements: Width 7.5” measured around palm, not including thumb. Length 10” overall, 5.5” from inside of thumb gusset to top.
Gauge: 22 sts & 32 rows=4”(10cm) in stockinette, blocked
Yarn: Creatively Dyed Yarn Holi;  50% Wool, 40% Alpaca, 10% Silk; approx 190 yds/173m per skein; Colorway: Merry, 1 skein
Needles: 1 set of 5 US 6/4mm DPN’s or size to obtain gauge
Additional materials: Scrap yarn, 2 place markers, cable needle (CN), tapestry needle

Price: $6.00 US

Thank you to Beverly, Raquel & Jodie for test knitting.


The Hamamelis or witch-hazel is one of the earliest shrubs to bloom in the spring. In my New Jersey garden this hardy plant will send out its fringe-like flowers as early as late February. These hopeful little flowers bring a smile to my face each year and remind me that despite bitter winds and snow, spring will be on its way. 

Hamamelis 4

(Do you think Sofie might be feeling those bitter winds just a bit in the photo below. What a trooper she is to put up with her mother's constant demands for a model.)

Hamamelis Shawl 2 

The clean lines of the Hamamelis Shawl will easily take us from late winter into spring. Worked in a leaf pattern on a background of garter stitch, Hamameils knits up quickly and showcases beautiful yarns like Hazel Knits Artisan Sock.

Hamamelis 2

I had a group of very quick test knitters on this pattern. A huge thank you to Anne, Alex, Rachel, Cristi & Mary for their hard work, keen eyes and insights.

Check out Cristi's gorgeous Hamamelis. Cristi used Sanguine Gryphon's Bugga Sock yarn. The color actually reminds me a bit of the blooms of the witch-hazel plant.


Hamamelis is worked from the top center out by increasing until you reach the bottom edge. The pattern has both charts and written instructions. The photos all show the medium size which took all but about 10 yards of Hazel Knits Artisan Sock on my brown shawl. Cristi said that she ran out of the Sanguine Gryphon Bugga Sock yarn just shy of the last few rows, but due to the nature of the border, she simply bound off and the shawl looks great as is.

Hamamelis 1 

The Data

Hamamelis Shawl (on Ravelry)

Sizes: S, M, L
Measurements:  Approx 20 (25, 30)” from top edge to point, 44(54, 64)” across top, blocked
Gauge: 16 sts & 38 rows = 4”(10cm) in garter stitch, blocked
Yarn:  Hazel Knits Artisan Sock, 90% Superwash Merino, 10% Nylon, 400 yds/366m per 4.23 oz/120g skein. Colorway: Equinox, 1 (1, 2) skein (note: for the medium sized sample shawl all but about 10 yards of the yarn were used. It may be helpful to have a second skein or a contrast color available in case you run out. Alternately, due to the nature of the border, the shawl may be bound off earlier with satisfactory results.)
Needles:  US 6/4mm 32” circular needle or size to obtain gauge
Other Materials:  Crochet Hook, 4 Place  Markers, Tapestry Needle, Scrap Yarn

Price $6.00 US