I have been wanting to knit with this yarn for ages. Thick, lofty, soft as soft can be, it’s the perfect antidote to the winter knitting doldrums. It comes in a range of beautiful colors, as all Malabrigo is known to do. In a strange twist, I was drawn to a color unceremoniously called ‘Natural’. If you’ve been coming round for any amount of time, you’ll surely have noticed that I tend to go for the brighter side of the color spectrum. But since knitting up these mitts in a tweedy oatmeal shade, I have a new respect for the quiet pleasure of knitting in natural shades. It’s a peaceful break for the eye, an opportunity to reposition your color sensibilities and coast along in neutral for a bit. It’s a little like a palate cleanser during a savory meal; you feel refreshed and ready to tackle the next course!

So the other evening, I wound up the skein, grabbed a Barbara Walker stitch dictionary and my size 15 needles, and parked it on the couch for a couple of hours. While catching up with some of my favorite television shows, I whipped up this delightful, chunky neckwarmer.

  • Pattern: Hush by Peaceful Knitter (Ravelled here)
  • Yarn: Malabrigo Rasta, 1 skein (90 yards)
  • Needles: US size 15/10mm

Texture is the star of the show with this piece. It lets the pencil-thick yarn really do its thing, not detracting from the loveliness of the yarn. I threw in three buttonholes, because surely a neckwarmer this big and bold needs some equally brash buttons, right?

This knit up just in time to enjoy during our first winter snowstorm here in Oregon (I know, right?). The thick, quiet flakes arrived just in time to blanket the spring flowers that had just gone into bloom. I hope my daffodils make a full recovery; they’re my favorite of the early bloomers, followed by vibrant hyacinth and graceful tulips.

I’m calling this neckawarmer Hush because knitting with the yarn was a mind-quieting, soul-soothing experience. The yarn reminds me of the thick, insulating quiet of a snowfall. It all just goes together so nicely, it seems it was meant to be. But really I got the idea from one of the books PB and I have been reading lately, a story whose overall-wearing feline protagonists are named Brush and Hush. Shhh…

Craft Fair Rundown

I spent Friday morning making the final preparations for the craft fair on Saturday.  I packed my largest suitcase full of supplies: baskets, label maker, Styrofoam heads (with custom stands crafted by Sweetie), tape, scissors, a knitting wip, bags, tissue paper, and more.  In my car I had a table, some camp chairs, an orange chrysanthemum, some fake pumpkins, and some real cornstalks.  Those things are a mess, but worth it to create that autumnal feel in our booth.

Putting it all together on Saturday morning was a little hectic, but NutmegKnitter and I (with the help of TheatreKnitter) ended up with a great booth.  We were fortunate to have a clear, sunny day even though it was a bit chilly.  That fall chill probably made people even more interested in our warm wool accessories!

It was satisfying to see all of my work laid out on a beautiful table in the fall sunshine.  This day was the culmination of many ideas for both NutmegKnitter and myself.  From brainstorming ideas over knitting at Stitch ‘n Bitch to designing and knitting original neckwarmers, it was a challenging creative process.  I had to push myself through the roadblocks of boredom, knitter’s block, sore hands, and the temptation to start other projects.  But in the end I am so glad that we did this, and proud of the results.

And as a reward for all that hard work, a trip to the New York Sheep & Wool Festival in Rhinebeck was in order.  More on that next time…for now I need to go get a hot drink, rest, and wipe my nose–being outside for two days straight took its toll!

Blue Ribbon Bangs

Look mom, I got bangs!

With the new season in full swing, I decided that I needed a new look, too.  Bangs are fun; they give your face a whole new appearance, and you can style them according to whim.  Here they are seen full frontal, while yesterday I wore them in a side swipe.  But more interesting than bangs is my knitting!

  • Pattern: Checkerboard Neckwarmer by yours truly

  • Yarn: Cascade Lana D’Oro Paints (merino/superfine alapca) in color 9921, 100 yards

  • Needles: US size 8

  • Notes: A simple knit and purl checkerboard pattern makes up this vibrant neckwarmer.

This yarn is scrumptious.  It’s made up of a luxurious blend of merino wool and superfine alpaca, which means it is soft, supple, and slightly sheddy.  And this particular ball is hand dyed to dramatic effect:

This would probably bother me on another garment, but on this neckwarmer the pooling couldn’t have looked more intentional.

And what’s that down there?


It’s my very first blue ribbon and blogging award!  It was granted to me by Michelle at PDX Knitterati, one of my regular readers and someone whose knitting and blogging skills I admire greatly. Thank you!

Like any good award, it’s best when you pass it on to others.

My nominees are…drumroll on your desks, please….

Princess Pea, Knitting Pretty in DC, Cosy Makes, and Brainy Lady

These are all blogs that I can’t wait to read every week.  Their projects and photographs are incredible to look at and read about. Take a moment to check them out if you haven’t already!

Here are the instructions for the award recipients:

1. Please put the award on your blog. (save it to your own computer, please)
2. Add a link to the person who awarded you.
3. You must nominate at least 4 fellow bloggers for this award.
4. Add links to the recipients.
5. Leave a comment so the recipients know they have received an award.

If you would like to grab this ribbon and start awarding it to your favorite bloggers, go for it!  It’s all about sharing the love here in Knit-Blog Land!