Thursday, August 04, 2011

Joyce Williams

At 12:25pm, our dear Joyce Williams passed away. She will be sorely missed. I met Joyce five years ago at Schoolhouse Press' Knitting Camp and was instantly drawn to the little elegant lady in green (which I soon discovered she had a love for, as her partner in crime, Amy Detjen, had a love for purple). Although small in stature, she had a larger than life spirit and passion for knitting. I admired her desire to continue growing and learning in her craft, and love to hear the stories she would tell.

I'm a night owl and have struggled with insomnia over the years, and was delighted to find a fellow knitter to knit away the midnight oil. We also are such loose knitters that we have to go down usually 2-3 needle sizes and it felt good to find someone who enjoyed knitting on size 1 and 2 needles or smaller.

A few years ago, she asked me to model the Morocco sweater from Latvian Dreams and I don't think I took it off the rest of camp, I was in love with it. This year, Meg asked me to model The Star cardigan from Latvian Dreams and again my heart was stolen. However, it was a little more than that. I felt a little closer to Joyce and her absence not so harsh with the sweater on.

As I was thinking about Joyce this morning, I thought about that sweater and the little bit of comfort it had provided me, and pulled the Latvian Dreams book off the shelf. I opened to the front where I knew that Joyce had signed the book and read what she had written, my finger slowly tracing where her pen had traced. I then turned to the page that had The Star sweater on, thinking that maybe I should consider knitting that sweater now while thinking of her. I was surprised to find that Joyce had actually signed my book a second time and was deeply touched.


It reads "Kim, Knit Your beautiful dreams, Joyce Williams 7/07"

(A picture of Joyce next to her dear friend, Meg Swansen.)

Joyce will be missed my many. For such a petite gal, she sure did make a big impact. Dream on!

Tuesday, August 02, 2011

Thou Wretched Cable Needle...

Where Art Thou???? Why must you play tricks with me? I have loved you and cherished you. Sure there are other needles I could use in your place. Admittedly I do have a collection of needles that would fill in on a moments notice, but they mean nothing to me like the way you do. They are meaningless fill-ins. You... You are my true love. The one I turn to for the twists and turns that I stumble across in my knitting path. Together we conquer those tricky roads together. Or should I say, we did!!! (insert dun, dun, dun!!!! sound effect here please - Thank you, you're most kind) Now, you have abandoned me. I turned my back for one moment and you took your chance and fled. Are you hiding? Is this some cruel game? Or have you left for good? Am I now left to wander alone through the cabled road without by my side? Won't you please give me one more chance?!!!!

Cable Needle, if from your hiding place, you observed that this afternoon I used another needle to satisfy my need of cabling on my Hand to Hand Cardigan, please know that it wasn't the same. I was just going through the motions, but I had to progress on the cardigan and you knew that.



I now have the sleeves and yoke completed on the cardigan. Now, I just have to sew up the sleeves seams and then start on the body, then it's LOTS of garter stitch. This will be the perfect cardigan for our chilly Wisconsin Fall and Winters.

I hope Cable returns to my side by Fall.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Adam's Rib

After being ill this year, I was very wary of going to knitting camp and almost backed out, but luckily I have a wonderful husband who knows what I need better than I do. The cute guy pushed hard for me to go. So last week I was lucky enough to spend wonderful quality time at the foot of the master, Meg Swansen, and lots of fun time with my favorite long time roomie Jessica (of RoseKimKnits), and giggled and knit with Stephanie and Janet.. and many other wonderful camper friends. We laughed, we knit, we ate more deep fried pickles than any person should, checked out my swatch :) (inside joke). It was just what I needed. That cute guy is a smart man.

I took my Adam's Rib Cap Sleeve Wrap (pattern by Carol Sunday of Sunday Knits) to finish while at camp and it is everything I had hoped it would be. Many of the campers fell in love with it as it looks wonderful on so many shapes and sizes, even though I haven't blocked it. Well, to be honest my lazy blocking consisted of hanging it on a hanger in our very humid hotel room - I know, pathetic, but I'll get around to it.... soon... maybe. The yarn by Sunday Knits is Nirvana 5 ply and is a merino and cashmere blend. It is aptly named. Such a heavenly yarn to knit with and spit-splice beautifully. This really is a project that I think I would knit a second project. Rarely do I really like to repeat a pattern when there are so many wonderful designs out there to knit, but this could absolutely be an exception. Carol is so very clever and writes a beautiful pattern.

(pictured above left to right: Me in Adam's Rib Cap Sleeve Wrap, Amy Detjen, Jessica in our traditional camp photo taken by the lovely Michelle - Cully Swansen's wife)

While at camp, Janet started teaching me how to spin on the spindle. Uh-oh.... new addiction has been formed. I do think I will be contacting Mielke's Farm to schedule a private Spinning lesson once the wee-one's return to school. I really appreciated how excited Janet was to take the time to teach me a skill that obviously brings her so much pleasure. Knitters and spinners are such a generous bunch.

I find myself so grateful for the gift that knitting gives me. For the first time in a long time I feel excited about something and am able to plan ahead to future events with excitement and optimism. Knitters do not just give gifts of yarn or of their time, but their warm and caring hearts.

Sunday, June 26, 2011


I know, it's been months since I last posted. Things have happened. Some good, some bad. Due to illness, the past few months have been the roughest and darkest times our family... I have gone through. I don't wish to publicly hash any of it out here, as it's private and I'd prefer to keep it that way. I will say that since I was five I've had knitting as a constant companion. It has helped me through dark days, celebrated good ones, and been there through everyday life, but for the first time since my love affair with sticks and string started, I had cast it aside a few months ago. I was angry and decided to deny myself the benefits of knitting. My family and friends encouraged me to pick up the needles but it took me a long time before I turned to my friend and allowed it back in my life. I had missed it.

And so the knitting returns....

It seems that when you turn your back for just a moment in knitting that there is an amazing new yarn discovered or the most interesting and appealing pattern or designer discovered. Help me catch up please. If you would please consider commenting on what has been your favorite new yarn, pattern, or designer (or all three) of 2011.

It seems that there is an epidemic of Pregnant Moms about to have Baby Girls in the Northwoods, so I've been whipping up some baby gifts the past couple of weeks. So far, I've made one DB Baby Matinee Jacket, two Maile Sweaters, one Autumn Leaves sweater and one pair of Fleegle's Seamless Saartje's Booties.

I've also started work finally on my camp project. How last minute can I be?

I'm still on the search for a couple of buttons for three of the baby sweaters but here is the Baby Matinee Jacket in Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino.