Sunday Night Etsy Site - Penny Rose Yarns

Ok, so I am totally loving all my little segments on my blog (like From the Queue Friday and the reviews that have been popping up on Wednesdays). So, now to introduce a new regularly scheduled blog segment. . . The Sunday Night Etsy Site!

So, I think that is pretty self-explanatory. Here we go.

I am starting out with one of my absolute faves. It's Ruth of Penny Rose Yarns! I 'met' Ruth on Ravelry a couple years ago. It didn't take long to realize that this lady has a real eye for color!She is known as the Queen of the Pastels among indie yarn dyers. But, she doesn't just do pastels well, she does it all so well.

Here is just a sampling of the stuff you can find in her shop:
That's right. The woman doesn't just dye yarn, she also writes amazing sock and lace patterns. Seriously, go check her out.

Ruth's etsy site can be found at http://fritzl.etsy.com

Happy Etsy shopping!

Note: Pictures are from Penny Roses' Etsy site.


From the Queue Friday - Felting!

After talking about that felted bag last week, I started thinking about how I must have other felting things in my queue, right? Right! I mean when you have a Ravelry queue that has more patterns in it that any one person could reasonably knit in a lifetime, certainly there must be a few in there.

Hey look! A felted bag!

Photo from Peggity2006's Flickr Page.

The above bag is called Suzzane's Purse by Debi Tuttle. I just think it is adorable. And, the pattern is free, and you can't beat that. You can get the pattern for Suzzane's Purse here.

Here's another felted gem that is in the ol' queue. Felted Fortune Cookies? Yes please!

Photo from indigomuse's Flickr Page.

I think these fortune cookies are so awesome. Alex and I once tried (and failed) to make real fortune cookies and then put work related fortunes in them. He thought it would be hilarious to have all these IT things in them, and I thought it would be funny to have things like "Your GC will calibrate on the first try" in them. The cookies never came out right and the idea died. But, aha! Felted Fortune Cookies to the rescue. Yeah, I think I might need to make these.

The Felted Fortune Cookies by Tanya Brooks is available on her blog for free here.

So, what's new in your queue?


Pumpkin Baby Hat

Last Sunday, when I was getting ready to leave to head out to my knitting group, I realized that all I had on the needles was a lace shawl that I am trying to design myself (more on that later). I mean, I can sometimes knit lace successfully while with my knitting BFFs, but usually not so much. :) So, I checked the ol' Rav queue for some easy baby thing I planned to knit for the baby that is cooking in my sister's uterus. And the Pumpkin Baby Hat was born:I seriously cannot resist the baby hats that are meant to look like something else. Pumpkins, berries, flowers, candy corn...I want to make them all!
This has to be one of the easiest baby hats ever. I knit it in just a couple hours. And, damn, it sure is cute. I can't wait to see some ridiculous picture of the baby next to a pumpkin wearing the pumpkin hat. Makes me want to squee just thinking about it!

The Specs:

The Pattern: Pumpkin Hat by Susan Esser. Available for free from Knitting on the Net here.
The Yarn: Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran, maybe a little more than 1/2 a skein of the orange, and maybe 1/4 of the green.
The Needles: US Size 7
The Time to Knit: A couple hours.
The Mods: I started knitting the leaf that was in the pattern, and I personally thought it was way way to big, so I winged a couple of smaller leaves.

I love all the stuff I knit for Baby Rambo so far, but I think this might be my fav.

Happy knitting!


WIP Wednesday: Design Your Own Shawl Shawl

Sorry guys. No review this week. I have been so busy with my Design Your Own Shawl Online Class with Stefanie Japel that I haven't had time to review anything. Next week. I promise. :)

So, since I have been working so hard on this shawl, I thought I would show off some of the progress.

The first step in the class was to come up with a sketch of what you wanted your shawl to look like. Here's mine:The next step was to pick some stitch patterns and knit a swatch. I am not a swatch knitter really, but for this class I see where it is absolutely necessary. So swatch I did:The next step was to knit a triangular swatch. This is where I kind of started doing my own thing. I decided if I was going to knit a triangle, I might as well knit two triangles together and get a shawl out of it. So, that's where I am with it now. Nearly done with my shawl. I have also been working on getting the charts just right, which is seriously hurting my brain.

Pics of all that stuff soon.

Happy knitting!


Peapod Baby Sweater

I have been on such a baby knitting kick it's not even funny. I literally cannot stop myself. My niece or nephew to be is going to be one stylish baby in all those handknits!

Here is the Peapod Baby Sweater I finished a couple days ago:
I have to be honest, that sewing in of the sleeve probably could look a little better, but it is the one thing I struggle with the most with in my knitting. Oh well, the baby will wear it a couple times and grow out of it anyway, right? :)It sure is a cute sweater though. And, you can't beat that cotton blend yarn. Soft and machine washable!The Specs:

The Pattern: Peapod Baby Sweater by Kate Gilbert (pattern was at one time available through the Interweave website. At this time, the pattern is not available).
The Yarn: KnitPicks Comfy Sport, 3-ish skeins
The Needle: US Size 4
The Time to Knit: About three weeks
The Mods: None really. Pretty much followed the pattern.

So, yeah, I have been on a huge finishing kick lately. And, I have been working hard at not starting too many things at once. I think I am doing a good job. Other than a couple of chronic unfinished things, I only have one other thing on the needles right now. I can't remember the last time I was knitting so few things at once. It may have never happened before.

Have any good finished things lately?

Happy knitting!


Sock Yarn Club - Just Yarn

So, I have been thinking long and hard about wanting to do some kind of sock yarn club. Some people have told me they would be interested in it, so I have decided to go for it.

Here are the details from Etsy:

Knitting Like Crazy 3 Month Just Yarn Sock Yarn Club

Shipments are as follows:

Shipment 1: Ships March 22-26
Shipment 2: Ships May 24-28

Shipment 3: Ships July 26-30

Please Note: This means you will be getting yarn EVERY OTHER month.

The shipment will include a different base yarn each time. One shipment will contain Insanity Sock, which is a 100% superwash merino yarn, 420 yards, per 4oz skein. One shipment will contain Treehugger Sock, which is of 65% Superwash Merino /35% Bamboo, 500 yards per 100g skein. One shipment will contain my new Crazy Cash Sock, which is 80% Superwash Merino/10% Cashmere/10% Nylon, 420 yards per 100g skein.

The first shipment will contain a variegated colorway. The second shipment will contain a semi-solid colorway. The final shipment is knitter’s choice. Please let me know in the note to buyer section when purchasing if you would prefer a variegated or a semi-solid yarn. If there is no preference listed, then it will be a surprise for you (which could be fun too!) All colorways will be new ones!

I am not sure which yarn bases will be for which shipments. That will depend on availability of the yarn.

Basically, this club is for those that just love yarn. The kit will contain yarn only. No pattern, no extras.

The cost of the club is $86, including shipping. For people within the US, your yarn will ship via USPS Priority Mail. For those in Canada, the UK, and everywhere else, your yarn will ship via USPS First Class International.

To sign up, check out my listing on Etsy: http://knittinglikecrazy.etsy.com. Or you can email me at jenATknittinglikecrazyDOTcom, and I will send you a Paypal invoice directly.

I also wanted to say to those people who I know IRL (ie my knitting group BFFs). If you ladies want to join, I will send you Paypal invoice excluding the shipping that is included in the Etsy listings. I see you once a week or more, I will hand deliver you yarn! :)

That's it. There are fifteen spots, so get 'em before they are gone. I will be closing sign ups on 2/20 or when I have the 15 spots filled, whichever comes first!

Happy knitting!

The Yarn Dyeing Mojo

Well, I know that every now and then I have said on the blog here that I have lost my yarn dyeing mojo. And I did. For a long time last year I just couldn't get it together. My full time job is less than ideal and has kind of had me in a funk for a good long while. Then with Alex and I buying a house and my sister's wedding, there just wasn't time. But, now that we are settled in the house, I have a permanent yarn dyeing space, and I have stopped stressing so much about work (although I will say it does still totally suck there, but I am slowly starting to handle it a little better), I totally have the yarn dyeing mojo back. Big time. There is yarn coming in and out of here so fast. It's awesome.

So, anyway, here are a few of the lovelies from last weekend's yarn dyeing adventures:
They are all my new Insanity Sock yarn line. It's 100% superwash merino and holy cow is it every squooshy. I have plans to be dyeing A LOT more of this soon.

So, yeah, stay tuned, I don't think the yarn dyeing mojo is going anywhere any time soon.



From The Queue Friday: The Japel Addition

This week's From the Queue Friday brings us to a designer I was already in love with (but now that I am taking her online "Design Your Own Shawl" class the love may be quickly becoming an obsession, but I digress) - Stefanie Japel.

I have lots of her patterns in my queue, but here are a couple that are jumping out at me this week. First up, it's Mirth:

Mirth is a loverly fitted ranglan shawl. Oh that lace! Oh that shape! What's not to love? You can Mirth from Stefanie's Ravelry store here. It's $5.

Next up is the Fern Wrap:
This one I saw as an ad in a knitting magazine some time ago. I just love everything about it. This is one I definitely could see myself knitting soon. This one is also available in Stefanie's Ravelry store for $5.
So, what's new in your queue?


Blue Lady Bag: A Felting Success!

I am not really the felting kind of knitter. I don't know why, really, I love the idea of it, but it's something I never really gotten into. Well, until last weekend. I worked on finishing up knitting and felting some French Press Slippers (more on those soon), and when I was done felting those I had this weird urge to felt something else. Luckily for me I had a project on the needles, stashed in the closet several months ago that was going to need felting. The 'Blue Lady Bag.'I had only knit about 3/4 of the bottom of the purse, and in just a couple hours I had the thing finished. And into the washing machine it went.
I really loved the way it turned out. Nothing looks too wonky, it came out the size I was expecting....a true felting success for me! :)
The Specs:

The Pattern: Pink Lady Bag by Shelley Boardman. Ravelry tells me it is available for $5 (but doesn't say where to get it). I got mine in the Flat Rate Box Swap a few months ago. Maybe your LYS will have it.
The Yarn: Patons Classic Merino Wool, about 1.5 skeins
The Needles: Us Size 15
The Time to Knit: Two days. Ok there may have been six months between those two days. :)
The Mods: None

Super excited about this bag. Can't wait to felt again!

Happy Knitting!


Podcast Review: Stitch It!

I think it may be time for another podcast review. As, I have been listening to podcasts for almost two years now, I think it only makes sense to be starting with the faves, you know. :)

A few weeks ago I reviewed The Knitmore Girls and this week brings me to their buddy, Meghan, who is the voice behind Stitch It! Podcast. Stitch It has been around a little over two years and one that I have been enjoying almost that entire time. In fact, it is one of the few that I have gone back and listened to the earlier podcasts that I have missed. Yes, it's that good.

Meghan typically podcasts once a week. Each week brings many different segments including Townhomesteading, Babble, Fibery Goodness, and a Favorite Thing. Sometimes other sneak in there for fun (like the occassional contest). I really love the usual segments that are in this podcast. Townhomesteading is all about gardening and making things from scratch and finding ways to be self sustaining. I love it! Meghan is THE reason I want to plant a garden this year. In Fibery Goodness you can find out everything about what she is knitting and spinning. And, Meghan is just so knowledgeable about spinning I find myself learning all kinds of stuff about that I never knew before.

Stitch It is one of those podcasts that I listen to and I feel like I am having a conversation on the phone with one of my BFFs. Meghan is just so calm and relaxed and so easy to listen to.

You can find the Stitch It Podcast on iTunes. The shownotes are located at http://stitchitpodcast.com. If you hang around Ravelry, you can find Meghan as itsjustmeghan or head over to the Stitch It Podcast group. I also love following Meghan on Twitter. She's itsjustmeghan there too.

So, have any new fav podcasts? Do you have a knitting/spinning/fibery podcast and want me to take a listen and do a review? Just let me know!


Help for Haiti

Well, I don't think that is a secret to any of the knitters out there that the KnitSignal has gone out. And, the knitters are out in full force donating to Doctors w/o Borders. So many knitters are involved, that even on Ravelry you can search for patterns with the "Help For Haiti" tag (where the designer has pledged that a certain amount of each sale to an organization that is helping with relief in Haiti):

So, I have decided to throw my three little pay patterns into the mix.
50% of each pattern sale will go to Doctors Without Borders from now until 1/31. You can purchase my patterns by following this link here.

The knitters are amazing. Let's go out and do our thing.

Car Seat Blanket for Baby Rambo

Well, I was quite productive with the knitting over the weekend. Lots of finished things to be showing off in the next few days.

First up is the Car Seat Blanket:
I like this one because it is small (meaning quick work for the knitter). Also, I like the lace. Just enough to keep me interested.The pattern didn't call for any kind of border or finishing around the blanket, but I thought it looked very unfinished with the stockinette just curling ever so slightly. So I finished it with a round of single crochet and then a round of double crochet. Easy, and I think it makes the blanket look like a million bucks (even though the cost was zero dollars as my knitting buddy, Jen gave me this yarn for free during her destash recently)!
The Specs:
The Pattern: Baby's Car Seat Blanket, available for free from Creative Knitting Online
The Yarn: Lion Brand Cotton Ease, a little more than two skeins. I will say 2.3 skeins
The Needle: US Size 8
The Time to Knit: Just under 3 weeks
The Mods: Just added the border, and I did one extra repeat in the middle because, well, I wasn't paying attention to how many I needed to do, so I did one extra and then decided to leave it in there.
The Finished Size: 24 inches by 30 inches. Perfect for covering baby while in the car seat.

Happy knitting! Hope you have been on a finishing kick too.


Rare Gems Stash Enhancement

Like the Cookie A. patterns I mentioned in a From the Queue Friday the other week, I don't think it is a secret to anyone that reads this blog that I have a serious love affair with Blue Moon Fiber Arts Socks That Rock.
So, when there was a Once in a Very Blue Moon Sale on 12/31 and I had the chance to get some Rare Gems, you bet I snatched that right up!
I got four skeins of lightweight, two in the 'Water' color spectrum and two in the 'Earth.'Yum, yum, yum. I love them all.

Anyone else have any good stash acquisitions lately? Happy Knitting!


From The Queue Friday - Another Shawl

I am realizing that I still have a bunch of shawls in the queue, so why not show you one more on this lovely From the Queue Friday?

Here we have the Karen Shawl by indigirl:

Someone on Twitter linked to this a couple weeks ago and it immediately went to the queue. You all know about my new found love of the one skein shawl. And, this one is just so darn pretty. You can get the Karen Shawl as a Ravelry download for $4.50.


Baby WIPs

As my sister continues to grow a baby, I continue to knit for it. I have a couple projects on the needles right now. Both are likely to be finished up in the next week or so. First up, it's a Baby Peapod Sweater:Ok, a Baby Peapod Sweater, minus the sleeves. I will be knitting those soon. I swear.

And then there is the carseat blanket:
This one is quite a bit further along than what you are seeing here. Had lots of good knitting time in the last few days, and I have been pretty dedicated to working on this one.I am really liking this car seat blanket. Small, cute, and enough lace to keep a knitter interested!

The Peapod Baby Sweater is currently unavailable (I printed it off the Interweave website a few years ago) and the Car Seat Blanket is available for free here.

Happy knitting!


Book Review: Little Box of Socks

This week's review brings us to The Little Box of Socks by Charlene Schurch and Beth Parrot.
This book really isn't a book at all - it's a box! Actually, it is quite literally a little box of socks. This box contains 20 pattern inserts and one insert on special techniques. When I opened this one, I quite literally squeed and said 'How cool!' before pulling out all the pattern inserts.

Each sock pattern has it's own glossy folded card and has all the instructions you would need to knit the sock (cuff, heel flap, gussets, toe, etc.). And, these cards seem pretty sturdy. They would definitely hold up much better than all the folded up patterns that I end up throwing in the bottom of my knitting bag!

There were lots of socks that I think I would enjoy knitting in this book. My faves include Lace Rib Socks, Slip Stitch Cable Socks, Faceted Rib Socks (which seems to be the popular one on Ravelry) and the Small Wings Socks.

This book is for a knitter who has some experience knitting socks. Like I said, there is one insert for special techniques, but if you have never knit socks before, I would recommend trying a different pattern or book (and then moving on to this one). I think a lot of these patterns are easy and not too complicated, which is perfect for someone who wants more experience with sock knitting but isn't quite ready to knit Twisted Flower or something. :)

The Little Box of Socks is available from Martingale and Company. You can find a wee bit of errata on their website here. And, you can get your copy of The Little Box of Socks on Amazon for less than $15!

So, read any good knitting books lately?


Stash Sock Club of the Month - Bellatrix!

I mentioned last week that I made my own stash sock of the month club with the yarn I have in my stash (a la yarnharlot).

Well, I am happy to report that the first pair of the year is done!
I pretty much everything about these socks. The pattern, the color, the way makes the pattern makes the colors all non-pooly and lovely.These are some quick knitting socks too. I knit them in just five days. I consider myself a quick knitter, but that sure is quick, even for me.Ah, Bellatrix, you are a good pair of socks.

The Specs:

The Pattern: Bellatrix by Monkey Toes (free Rav. download there)
The Yarn: Knitting Like Crazy, Crazy Soft Sock in the City of Blinding Lights colorway (there is still another skein of this in my shop, tempt, tempt.)
The Needles: US Size 2
The Time to Knit: 5 days
The Modifications: I knit six repeats on the leg instead of seven. I sometimes get nervous with my size 11 feet about running out of yarn. I had bunches of yarn leftover though. Probably could have done 8 repeats!

So, I guess my friends were right. I probably should make 24 kits for this year instead of 12. But, my thought is I have lots of other things I want to knit. So, I am going to go with 12 kits for now and if I start running out I will make more at a later date. Because right now I have baby knitting fever (it's my sister that is preggers...def. not me)!

Anyway, happy knitting! Coming up later this week: baby knitting WIPs and some STR Rare Gem goodness.


From The Queue Friday - Neck Warming Edition

Since we are into that part of the year here in the Midwest that I cannot stand (January. Ugh. Always so so very cold.), I thought I might share a neck warming pattern or two that has made it's way into my Ravelry queue.

The first is the Twilly Neckerchief:

This one is available through the Interweave website. It is one of the free Knitting Daily patterns. I think it just looks so warm and so pretty. Perfect for when you need to bundle up while scraping all that ice off your car after a long work day.

As I said, the pattern is free and available here.

The next one is one I saw on Ravelry a few days ago and immediately bought the pattern. It's the Thermis Cowl:

This one is by KrisKnits and is available as a Ravelry download for $2.49 here.

I really love this little cowl because I think it looks quite fancy. Like you are wearing a nice handknit sweater under your coat. I may be casting on for this one very soon.

So, what's new in your queue?


Book Review: Big Girl Knits

It's time for another book review! This time it is one of the books I received for Christmas: Big Girl Knits by Jillian Moreno and Amy R. Singer. I asked for this book because I had seen some very nice looking stuff from it on Ravelry, and knew that I needed to check the book out for myself.
Photo from Random House website.

Now, if you follow me on Twitter, you know that last week I tweeted that I had a knitting book bring a tear to my eye. It was this book! I know, I know, it sounds totally crazy, but as I read through the 25+ pages at the start of the book about shaping and how to make things look good on your body it just all made sense. I wondered where this book has been all my knitting life. There is so much info on measuring and how to adapt patterns for shaping to make them look good on your body.

After all the squeeing over the shaping and stuff, I finally took a look at the patterns. And, there are a lot of them! The pattern section includes Pullovers, Cardigans & Coats, Tanks & Shells, Bottoms, and Accessories. Some of my faves were the Lift & Separate Cardigan by Amy M. Swenson, Bombshell by Stefanie Japel, and Cherry Bomb by Joan McGowan-Michael. I know there is a Bombshell sweater in my near future. It's that awesome.

I also really really appreciated that there were a couple pages dedicated to making socks fit your feet and calves. While I don't personally have an issue with the usual socks knitting patterns fitting my feet (other than I always have to knit the foot for like a million inches due to my size 11 foot!), I know there are lots of plus size ladies who struggle with making well-fitted socks. Problem solved if you follow some of the tips in this book.

Overall, I think this is a great book. I truly mean it when I say that the book is worth it just for the measuring and shaping sections. The cute patterns really are the icing on the cake. I think all larger ladies could benefit from having this book.

Can you tell I am completely in love with this book!?

You can get yours for just $15 and change on Amazon. Big Girl Knits is published through Potter Craft. Oh, and there is just a wee bit of errata here.

So, what are some of your fav knitting books? Any books that you would like to see a review for?


Stash Sock of the Month Club

Over the weekend, I was hanging around on Twitter, and saw that Stephanie Pearl-McPhee was planning on taking her own advice and was going to make a sock of the month club out of her stash. I remember her saying this somewhere else before (in one of her books or on the blog or something, I think) and it seemed like a really good idea. So, I organized one out of my stash: Sorry for the bad iPhone pic there. It's all I have of the Sock of the Month kit making. I dug through the stash and went through my Rav. queue and some of the books that have been much neglected on my bookshelf and came up with 12 kits. The plan is to pull one out at random at the beginning of each month and knit the kit. Good use of the stash, I say! And who knows? Maybe I will get through them quickly. My knitting bud Jen seems to think I could do 24 in a year, but I don't know. That's a lot of socks.

So what do we have for January? Well, it's something out of this yarn:
Which is my own hand-dyed yarn. It's Crazy Soft Sock in the City of Blinding Lights colorway. (I have another skein on etsy...tempt, tempt). And, the pattern?

Why, it's Bellatrix! This pattern has been in my queue for well over a year and it was time. It was the perfect yarn for the pattern. A great start to my Stash Sock of the Month kit! Currently I am on the cuff of sock number two. It's a really quick knitting sock.
So, what are you knitting this week? Planning on making any kits of your own?
Happy knitting!

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