Knitting On The Run

Knitting and running in 30 minutes or less

Episode 36 – 4/12/18 – Knitting and Running in 30 minutes or less

WindsweptMonique on Ravelry and Instagram, Visit my new website at and stream the podcast or read shownotes. 

Thanks so much for listening!  There are 1000’s of podcasts for you to choose from and I am you take time out of your busy life to listen to mine.

Segments this week include FOs, Wips, Pattern Stalking, Training Update and Running Talk


Hitchhiker knit out of Makimo by Fiberlady in the Scrumptious Berries colorway – goes from raspberry pink to blackberry purple.  100% bamboo.  I love it.  I love having my own hitchhiker.  I’ve worn it several times already because it’s still unseasonably cold here in New England (though theoretically that will change in the next few days!)


Changing Staircases - pattern by Jenga Knits – Mousou by Fiberlady in the Plum colorway, light to mid-tone purples in laceweight bamboo base.  I am about 40% done and I really like it.  It’s a little more brain power than a Hitchhiker, but also has more visual interest.  It’s still simple enough to knit at karate, swimming, soccer, etc.

52-st sock – this is my current car knitting so I’m slowly chugging away at it.  I’m knitting it in 2 shades of CoBaSi by Hikoo, a sock yarn made of cotton, bamboo, silk and nylon.  KNitting this in leftover Raspberry and a skein of Slated, a gray variegated yarn.


It’s still cold.  Thing 1 has worn his Star Wars Sweater twice more this last week and Thing 2 has worn a very old sweater I knit for Thing 1 in the years I didn’t document much on Ravelry.  It was a free pattern from Sirdar but I can’t find it online anymore!  I’ve worn my Maris Stella shawl and my new Hitchhiker a few times, too.


Pattern Stalking

Tisane by Maria Olson – a spring/summer coat with ¾ length sleeves cardigan/coat that buttons in front of the bust and lays open below it.  The upper portion is stockinette and the lower non-buttoned section is a lovely lace pattern.

Training Update

Still swimming as cross training and it is finally getting easier!  Last week I swam 150 yards and today I did 250! I won’t say it’s easy, per se, as my freestyle is still abysmal and I find it quite challenging.  I swim freestyle in one direction, then swim the breaststroke back, which for me is an easy stroke.

Running Talk

Let’s talk butts.  Rear Ends.  Glutes.    Your gluteus muscles are some of the most important muscles for walking and running but in so many of us they don’t work the way they’re supposed to.  Thanks so our modern sedentary lifestyles and office jobs, many of our pelvises tilt too far forward and our butts don’t actually engage when they are meant to, leaving other muscle groups to take over the load.  I’m definitely guilty of this, and of not realizing it, and I ended up with two badly sprained hamstrings during my marathon, and months of physical therapy, because of it. 

First we’ll cover a few tests to see if your glutes are week.  Then I’ll talk about some glute strengthening exercises and how to get your glutes firing again when they’re supposed to.


Test 1 – chair of death “to start this test, stand in front of a chair with your feet under it and your knees touching the seat. Put your arms out in front of you. Now squat down and try not to let your knees push into the chair. If you find that your knees are hitting the chair or you are even moving the chair, your glutes are not working properly.”

Test 2 – Bridge “Lie on your back with your knees up and your feet flat on the ground. Hold your arms straight out above you. Lift your hips up to make a straight bridge from shoulders to knees. Where do you feel it? If you feel stress anywhere but your butt, you aren't activating your glutes. “

Exercises –

Lunges and squats are great if you have proper form.  Here are a few other exercises that will help:

Prone hip extension – lie on your stomach and use your glutes to lift your leg up of the floor.

Bridges with weights –

Lie on your back, knees bent and put a light weight or soup can on your lower abdomen.  The extra weight your body isn’t used to will help make your glutes engage.  Also, try lifting your butt only a few inches off the floor and work on activating your glutes, not on the height of your bridge.

Deadlifts -

To do this exercise, stand in front of a kettlebell or 2 dumbbells or even 2 soup cans to start. Take a hip-width to shoulder-width stance, knees slightly bent.  Bend forward at the hips and grab your weights. Use your glutes and hamstrings to lift your torso and stand straight up. Now lower the weights by hinging at the hips and allowing your glutes to move backward as you keeping the weights close to our touching the fronts of your legs. the bar in contact with your legs on the way down. If you are flexible enough, let the bar touch the floor and then pull it back up. Or you can stop about mid-shin height and then raise the bar back up.


To sum up - your legs are like a fulcrum or the pendulum on a clock and your glutes power that movement. Get those glutes strong and prevent injuries down the road.  Several articles you may find helpful are linked in the show notes.





Episode 35 – 4/3/18 – Knitting and Running in 30 minutes or less

WindsweptMonique on Ravelry and Instagram, Show Notes at  Come join the Ravelry group!

Thanks so much for listening!  There are 1000’s of podcasts for you to choose from and I am so honored you chose mine.

FOs, Wips, Knitting Fail, Wearables, Knitting Talk, Out and About and On The Run


Emerald Deep shawl –This shawl is a charity knit for AGC Scholarships, a group that raises money for families dealing with infertility or who are trying to adopt.  Worked in Ito Yarn’s Kinu, 100% silk.  Kinu has a colorway, Aqua, which is almost the exact color of AGC’s logo so it was too perfect not to use.  The shawl will be auctioned off at AGC’s annual gala to raise money.  If you or someone you love would like to learn more about AGC, visit  The shawl will be auctioned off at their gala this weekend and I hope that AGC has a very successful auction on all their items and raises lots of money to help families who just want to have a family.

Star Wars Sweater – Thing 1 was sooooooo excited to get his sweater.  I knit it in secret while he was asleep or at school and it was a surprise for him.  He insisted on wearing it to school today which made this mama very happy!

Vanilla is the New Black – finished the 2nd sock last week but it’s too big!  I have very narrow feet and have problem finding shoes that fit well, so I can’t say I’m surprised.


Dancing Dragons Coat from Heike Campbell in Be Sweet’s Bamboo in the Sea Green colorway which is a tonal speckled green with blue undertones.  It’s knit bottom up in pieces – I’m working on the back panel and I’m on my 3rd repeat of chart 2 and am nearly up to the underarms.

New Hitchhiker for me out of Makimo by Fiberlady in the Scrumptious Berries colorway – goes from raspberry pink to blackberry purple.  100% bamboo

Changing Staircases – pattern by Jenga Knits – Mousou by Fiberlady in the Plum colorway, light to mid-tone purples in laceweight bamboo base.

52-st sock in  2 shades of CoBaSi by Hikoo, a sock yarn made of cotton, bamboo, silk and nylon.  60sts on a US1(2.25mm) needle was too big so after some wonderful feedback from all of you on Instagram I’ve dropped down to a 52st version and I’m using the Fish Lips Kiss Heel.  I’m almost to the arch of the foot and so far it’s fitting much better.  Using leftovers of the raspberry colorway for heels/toes/cuffs and 1 200-yard skein of Slated, a variegated gray colorway, for the foot and ankle portions.

Knitting Fail

Thing 2 decided to sit, well, more like jump on one of my knitting bags when he climbed up next to me on the sofa and snapped my Lykke US size 2 circular needles.  Boo!!



It’s gotten cold again here so we’re wearing LOTS of knits.

I’ve worn my Frosted sweater twice and my Poema sweater.  I’ve been wearing my Twist and Shout by Michele DuNaier almost every day.  The kids have been sick almost the entire time since we’ve been home from FL and that hat is a machine washable cotton, so it’s my hat of choice until the viruses subside.  I’ve also been wearing my Use Your Stash shawl and occasionally stealing my husband’s Hitchhiker Shawl.  Thing 2 has grown so much he’s now wearing some of Thing 1’s old sweaters, like the red Monomoy sweater I made several years ago.  Both boys have been wearing the socks I knit them for Christmas under their winter boots while playing in the snow.  And Thing 1 has worn his new Star Wars sweater to school several times already.


Out and About

Stitches United was from March 23-25.  I attended on Saturday, March 24th.  Come on up and say “hi!”


On The Run

Training is still going and I’m making progress. I did 2.5 miles on Sunday and that’s the most I’ve done since summer 2016 and it felt sooooooo good to walk my old running routes.  I still haven’t been able to get outside much with all the snow in March, but the sidewalks are now clear so I have hope. 

I’ve been swimming once a week as cross training and I think it’s making a difference.  I feel the swimming workouts in my whole body, not just my legs and it really gets my heart pumping.  Next week I’m aiming to increase to 200 yards.

I have some topics I want to discuss over the next few weeks, including the myth that running ruins knees, yoga for runners, why runners need to do upper body and core workouts and incontinence in women which affects so many women, especially after childbirth, and keeps many from exercsising (spoiler alert on this last one – there is hope and help available!).  But I also want to hear from you – what fitness topics would you like me to research?  Come tell me in the Ravelry group or email me at

So now I want to ask you – what are YOU doing now that it’s officially Spring?  I know those of you down south have gorgeous weather this time of year while we’re still wearing mittens in the morning.





Ack! My microphone died!  Here's a short message to assure you that I have not pod-faded.  I'll be back with a regular episode once my new microphone arrives.  In the meantime I'm off to Stitches United on March 24th, 2018


Episode 33 – 3/6/18

WindsweptMonique on Ravelry and Instagram, Show Notes at

FOs, Wips, Knitting Fail, Pattern Acquisition, Out and About, On the Run

Thanks so much for listening!

Start with a quick update.  Squeezing this episode in between storms.  We got home from visiting both sets of grandparents in Florida and found ourselves in the path of a record-breaking nor’easter.  It was an intense storm! 

What is a nor’easter?  A type of cyclone storm, like hurricanes and typhoons are, that occur off the shore of New England and the Canadian Maritime provinces.  Gets it’s name from the winds coming out of the northeast on the back side of the storm, we get them all winter and they often dump lots of snow – feet of snow.  In the northeastern US we get weather coming up the coast from Florida and also weather coming across the continent west to east.  Occiaionally these two weather systems crash together and start rotating counter-clockwise and we get a nor’easter.

This was an unusal nor’easter for southern new England in that it was almost al rain.  The rain/snow line was quite a ways inland.  Normally the rain snow line is right near the coast (I live only about 20 miles from the North Atlantic ocean and normally we’re inside the snow line for most of the storm.  Instead, we got 3-4 inches of rain [7.5-10cm] out of this one storm with hurricane-force winds.  Trees down everywhere, hundreds of thousands without power in Massachusetts alone.  We’re still clearing up and we’re getting another nor’easter tomorrow!  Tomorrow’s looks like a more traditional storm, which normally wouldn’t work people much, except we still have a lot of damage from the last storm. 


One sock of Vanilla is the New Black by Anneh Fletcher.  I have skinny ankles so I adapted this by not doing the last 2 heel increases and it fit my foot very well.  Worked on this one all over Florida, even at Disney’s Magic Kingdom, and finished on the airplane on the way home.


Vanilla is the New Black – started the second sock                                                                                           

Emerald Deep shawl – Started chart 5 of 5 last night! This shawl is a charity knit for AGC Scholarships, a group that raises money for families dealing with infertility or who are trying to adopt.  Worked in Ito Yarn’s Kinu, 100% silk.  Kinu has a colorway, Aqua, which is almost the exact color of AGC’s logo so it was too perfect not to use.  The shawl will be auctioned off at AGC’s annual gala to raise money.  If you or someone you love would like to learn more about AGC, visit

Knitting Fail

I started the Peppermint Mocha sock by CC Almon from JavaPurl designs on the planeride to Florida on my US 2 Lykke needles. When I tried it on the next day it was WAAAAY too big, so once I dig out a US 0 or 1 I’ll try again.  It was my fault, not the pattern’s, as I didn’t make a gauge swatch.

Pattern Acquisition

Coinciding with the Ravallenics this year was the annual Middle Earth Games for the Tolkien group that I’m a part of, and I was lucky enough to win a free pattern!  Since I won it from a Tolkien-based group, I chose the Dancing Dragons Coat from Heike Campbell which is a spectacular and challenging knit that I am really looking forward to!  I’m hoping it’ll be my Ravelry sweater :)   I’ve linked to it and included a photo in the show notes, you have to see this one appreciate it!

Out and About

Florida!  W’re home.  Had a great time.  Spent half the time with my inlaws in Ocala area, and half the time with my parents outside Orlando.  1 day at Magic Kingdom last Monday, the boys behaved so well we opened and almost closed the park.  The lines were horrendous – didn’t realize it was Mississippi and Louisiana school vacation week last week.  Luckily we got 3 fastpasses for Space, Big Thunder and Splash mountains in the morning, which Thing 1 is tall enough to ride, and mom and dad got alternate fastpasses and took Jonathan on Buzz Lightyear and Aladdin’s carpets, etc.  Then we kept getting more fastpasses for the rest of the day for rides we could all go on together and we got on 13 or 14 rides despite the crowds. 

Upcoming stuff:

Stitches United week of March 24th – not sure if I’m going Sat or Sun yet, but I’ll be there.

On The Run

Training is still going well, though I skipped anything formal our week in Florida.  I figure the 10 miles I walked at Magic Kingdom covered anything I missed, ha!

Now that it’s getting warmer I’m starting to take Thing 2 out for walks in our jogging stroller, which he loves.  My mileage is behind what I wanted to be at this point, but my body feels healthy so I’m not pushing it too much,  No more injuries!


Episode 32

WindsweptMonique on Ravelry and Instagram, Show Notes at

Stash, Wips, Knitting Fail, Out and About

Before we start – planning on getting back to having knitting and running topics, now that the holidays are over and we’re starting to get healthy again (knock on wood).  What do you want to hear about?  I have a few topics lined up but I’d love to hear from you.  Come to the Ravelry group and let me know or send me an email at


Got 4 new skeins of CoBaSi by HiKoo – sock weight yarn without wool - 55% Cotton/ 16% Bamboo/ 8% Silk/ 21% Elastic – planning on using the Blarney colorway to knit JavaPurl’s Peppermint Mocha socks, and the blue-gray multi colored Wave Caps colorway to knit the Vanilla Is The New Black socks by Anneh Fletcher

Also got my first shipment from HipString’s Cotton club.  Got 2 coordinated 2-oz braids of sunset colors, with oranges and blues – one with lighter tones and one with darker tones.  Normally I’m not a fan of orange but I have to say these two colorways are beautiful.



Vanilla sock in Berroco Comfort Sock in Bali colorway.  Still chugging along at this 2+ year old WIP, it’s my car knitting – planning on putting the heel scrap yarn for an after thought heel in today

Star Wars sweater for Thing 1 – finished the main body, on the bottom colorwork.  Using Nordic Yoke Pullover, a free pattern from Patons, as the base and altering the charts to have Star Wars characters/spaceships/icons. 

Frosted by Paper Daisy Creations - finished the first sleeve, started second sleeve.  Hoping to finish the second sleeve this week and this will be my Ravellenics entry.  Knitting up in some old stash, Longmeadow (discontinued) from Valley Yarns in white, and the blues are 2 old skeins of Debbie Bliss Amalfi (discontinuted), 1 color of Elsebeth Lavold Hempathy and 1 color of Nettle Grove from Plymouth Yarns.

Emerald Deep shawl – took this to Karate Movie Night at my son’s Dojo and finished Chart 3 and started Chart 4.  I’ll definitely have this done for the auction in March.  this shawl is a charity knit for AGC Scholarships, a group that raises money for families dealing with infertility or who are trying to adopt.  Worked in Ito Yarn’s Kinu, 100% silk.  Kinu has a colorway, Aqua, which is almost the exact color of AGC’s logo so it was too perfect not to use.  The shawl will be auctioned off at AGC’s annual gala to raise money.  If you or someone you love would like to learn more about AGC, visit


Knitting Fail

As mentioned a few months ago, I was planning on fading a Lush by Tin Can Knits using color-coordinated yarns I picked up at Rhinebeck in gold, gold with pink specks and pink with gold undertones.  I washed the pink and gold/pink yarns to wash out extra dye – and unfortunately, it looks like the pink speckled yarn wasn’t set properly.  It wasn’t just the extra dye that came out, a lot of the pink washed out of the yarn – so much so that almost looks like the gold. :(   Definitely not going to fade it with the pink now, it would be a huge change in colors and not a fade at all, more like stripes.  Maye I’ll “fade” the gold into the gold/pink and treat them as hand-dyed yarns and just alternate skeins.  I’ll let you know what I decide to do.  Very sad.

2nd knitting fail – started knitting handspun for the Ravellenics, but I have the wrong needles.  Whereas the 2.5 and 2s I swatched with were too big, the 0s are too small and using magic loop is just not working.  So I’m putting this homespun earband on hold until I get 16 inch US size 1s

3rd knitting fail – I’m on a roll, eh?  Got to the heel of my ancient Vanilla Socks and realized I hadn’t increased for the wide par of the foot before reaching the heel.  Boo!  Lots of frogging there.  They won’t be ready for Knit Aid’s deadline.


Out and About

I did not make it to Boston Fiber event – had some previous commitments that ran over.  Heard from some friends that they had a great time and saw pictures if beautiful, squishy yarn.

Will be away next week visiting both my parents and my in-laws, so no episode next week.  But expect some Instagram posts involving pools or palm trees as we’re headed to Florida!

On The Run

I’m back :)   I've been cross-training and strength training and even hopped in the local YMCA pool for a few laps and discovered just how out of shape I am!


Episode 31

KAL, Wips, Out and About, Knitting Fail, Spinning On the Run


KAL – Thank you very much to those of you who participated!  Our group may be small, but as Margaret Mead said, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has.”

  • Knitting Travels – a copy of the Reflections of the Sun hat designed and donated by Leah Bothe
  • Java Jennie - Any 1 single pattern of your choice from the JavaPurl Designs Ravelry storedonated by CC Almon
  • DMBrown – Gradient kit of your choice from Birdie’s Knits
  • LeahBothe – Any 1 single pattern of your choice from the Knit/Wit Designs Ravelry Store donated by Sarah Jordan

Should we do this again?  What time of year?


Frosted by Paper Daisy Creations, finished the colorwork yoke on the way to/from Vogue (you get a lot done with 4 hours each way on a train), body nearly done – on the bottom ribbing.

Star Wars sweater for Thing 1 - Using Nordic Yoke Pullover, a free pattern from Patons, as the base and altering the charts to have Star Wars characters/spaceships/icons.  I separated for the sleeves and am working on the stockinette body

Vanilla sock in Berroco Comfort Sock in Bali colorway.  Still chugging along at this 2+ year old WIP, it’s my car knitting.

Dahlia pattern by Brenda York from Berroco – working on this in Juniper Moon Farm’s Neve in a variety of colorways.  Turquoise main body, with a mint green for the flower vines and yellow and burgundy

Emerald Deep shawl – this shawl is a charity knit for AGC Scholarships, a group that raises money for families dealing with infertility or who are trying to adopt.  Worked in Ito Yarn’s Kinu, 100% silk.  Kinu has a colorway, Aqua, which is almost the exact color of AGC’s logo so it was too perfect not to use.  The shawl will be auctioned off at AGC’s annual gala to raise money.  If you or someone you love would like to learn more about AGC, visit

Use Your Stash Shawl

Oh my gooness you guys!  Can’t thank you enough for your reaction to the Use Your Stash Shawl!  Hot RIght Now on Ravelry??!!?  Wow, thank you so much.

Out and About – Vogue Knitting Live! NYC!

I had a blast at Vogue.  It’s very different than other knitting events I’ve been to, and it was soooooo much fun.  I basically went for the day.  I took the late train down Thursday after my husband got out of work and got to NYC around 11pm and checked into my hotel.  I should have stayed onsite, I forgot just how bad the hotel I stayed at was.  Remember in NYC, you get what you paid for.  My room was literally 85 degrees.  But it was clean, the shower worked, and the door locked.

I woke up early to the sounds of NYC, had breakfast at the hotel, checked out and dropped my rollerboard at the back drop at my hotel and walked up to the Marriot Marquis.  Since I signed up early, registration took about 2 minutes and I was off to class.  I took the designer intensive with Josh Bennett.  He’s designed sweaters for Tommy Hilfiger, Bergdorf and is currently designing hand-knit sweaters for Marvel – they were gorgeous, by the way.  I’ll admit the class wasn’t what I expected but ironically it was exactly what I needed.  We spent the day designing a line of patterns and presenting them.  Having hours to just brainstorm, then talking with Josh one-on-one for a few minutes about my patterns was completely worth it.   Then off to the market for 90 minutes before running to catch the late train home.

Now that I’ve been there once, I know how I would change my plans in the future - next time I will be staying on site and spending 2 nights (or more) so I can get at least a moderate amount of sleep. 

Knitting Fail

Not a fail in the traditional sense, but definitely a minor fail for the Emerald Deep shawl for AGC Scholarships.  I thought the gala was in May and I was planning on designing a shawl and giving profits to AGC – until on Martin Luther King Jr Day I learned that the gala was in March.  DOh!  So, I chose the Emerald Deep by Romi Hill since I’ve worked it before and I know it would work well in the chosen yarn.


I finished the second single I mentioned last episode and plied them together – I needed to find a better way to ply.  Since I only had one spindle, I used a ball winder to wind each cop off the spindle into a center-pull ball and and plied them using the center pulls.  I ended up with 135 yards of a two ply of the brown and white spun together.  And since the white cotton was much better spun as a single, I got nearly 37 yards of a two-ply yarn out of the leftovers!  And since then, I got a 2nd spindle, spun naturally greem cotton and some dyed gray cotton and plied them together using a drop spindle.  Drop spindling is a completely different beast!  The green is fun because if you add Washing Soda when you scour it, it changes color!  We made a fund chemistry experiment with it for Thing 1.






On the Run –

Not much new running, I’m on the 3rd week of my slow-and-steady training plan.  Legs are holding up well, though I’m getting knots in my calves for some reason.  My knee is also holding up, and Thing 2 and I have come to a truce – I carry him down the outside stairs and he walks up them.  He’s learning numbers and I’ve made it into a counting game which he loves.



Episode 30 - 1/11/18

Windswept Designs on Facebook, WindsweptMonique on Instagram and Ravelry, come join Ravelry group

KAL, Pattern Release, Wips, Pattern Acquisition, Spinning, Out and About, On the Run

KAL – get your FOs posted ASAP!  I’m going to lock the thread tonight on my way to Vogue Knitting Live

Pattern Release – First off, a HUGE thank you to all of you for making 2017 an amazing year, knitwise.  I started this pordcast, attended multiple festivals and conventions, including FINALLY getting in to SSK, and I even learned to spin!  I’ve met such wonderful people both in person and online.  The fiber community is AMAZING.  So I’ve put this pattern for sale and if you use the coupon code THANKYOU you’ll get it free through January 16th.  This is my thank you to you, the Use Your Stash Shawl


Frosted by Paper Daisy Creations, on snowflake 5 of 5 on the stranded colorwork yoke.  Was planning on using 3 colors but after doing flakes 1 & 2 in color 1, then flake 2 in color 2 I decided that really they should all have been different colors.  But I was not going to rip it out again, so I dug a skein out of stash, Plymouth Yarn’s Nettle Grove in colorway 42, a denim-ish color that matches the rest of the blues I’m using fairly well.

Star Wars sweater for Thing 1 -  Using Nordic Yoke Pullover, a free pattern from Patons, as the base and altering the charts to have Star Wars characters/spaceships/icons.  I’m about 25% through the yoke collar, currently working on R2D2’s head.  Body of sweater will be red as that’s his favorite color

Vanilla sock in Berroco Comfort Sock in Bali colorway.  Still chugging along at this 2+ year old WIP, it’s my car knitting.


Pattern Acquisition

Derwentwater by Tess Young, won it during the Indie Gift-a-long KAL, forgot to mention it last week!


New segment - I finally figured out this spinning thing!  Working on my 2nd single in undyed cotton

Out and About

Off to Vogue Knitting in NYC tonight!  If you’re there stop me and say hello.  Just to warn you I’ve had a lot of sleepless nights recently with the kids and my husband being sick, so if I seem a little dazed or perhaps a little overly caffeinated, that’s why.  But please come say hello anyways.  I am really looking forward to the 2 classes I am attending on Friday. 

On the Run

I’m on my 2nd week of my half marathon training plan, and unfortunately I am dealing with some unexpected knee pain. 



As you can probably tell from the sound of my voice, or if you've seen recent social media posts, you've probably realized I'm sick.  The Be-A-Helper KAL was supposed to wrap up today but I just want to go back to bed, so I'm granting an extention.  I'll lock the thread on Thursday, January 11th at 7pm EST when I board my train to Vogue NYC.  Thank you so much for helping to make the world a little bit better!


Episode 29 – Happy New Year!

Wips, Knitting Fail, Pattern Acquisition, On The Run


Mahalo Socks by Dana Gervais – on the 2nd sock in CoBaSi by Hikoo and progressing nicely

Hibernatum hat by Talitha Kuomi – full disclosure, I know Talitha, we’re part of the same knitting group at our recently closed LYS and she is an amazing human being and also a very talented designer.  I’ve never knit one of her patterns before, so when I stumbled upon her Hibernatum hat designed for Alpaca yarn while trying to find a hat to knit with my Criativ DK, an alpaca blend, it was too perfect not to choose!  Oh, and it’s a free pattern put out by Classic Elite so go knit this yourself. It would totally work with other fibers too.  I cast this hat on Christmas Eve and it’s rather potato chippy because it’s a knit row followed by a simple pattern row and I kept wanting to knit just one more row.


Frosted Sweater by Paper Daisy Creations, my Christmas cast on – a snowflake-patterned colorwork yoke sweater.  She used a gradient mini kit so the snowflakes go from light to dark using 5 colors of a warm blue with a green tint to it on a white background. I found 2 skeins of Debbie Bliss Amalfi in Pale Blue and Denim and also a skein of Hempathy by Elsebeth Lavold in a color just between those two shades so I’m only using 3 colors and I’m hoping I might have enough to make the matching hat.  

Plain Vanilla sock in Berroco Comfort Sock in the Bali colorway.  I started this pair of socks 2 years ago and got Second Sock Syndrome.  It’s now my purse knitting so I’m hoping to finish them this winter.  I’m on the second foot, going toe-up with an afterthought heel.

Lush by Tin Cast Knits, my New Years Day cast on

Knitting Fail

Frosted Sweater – take 2.  I did run into one issue with this sweater.  The Medium would probably fit well if I got gauge, but I have 24 sts per 4 inches instead of 25 which gives me an extra 1.8 inches around the bust in size Medium…  that’s just too much.  Plus, after trying it on the collar is too wide for a New England winter.  So I did the math and I’m going to knit the small but add one pattern repeat of the snowflakes which will give me an extra 12 sts around the bust which, if my gauge holds true, should give me a perfect fit, not too tight, not too loose.

Had to tink back 4 rows on my second Mahalo sock – note to self, don’t start gusset increases while making dinner when boys are cranky.  While the gusset increases themselves came out fine, I totally screwed up the lace pattern, by 2 rows, then dropped a stitch and had to tink back to more to fix the now-wobbly looking increases.

Pattern acquisition

Berroco had a pattern sale this past week – one free pattern per person and I picked up the Dahlia shawl by Brenda York, a worsted weight colorwork shawl, experienced level, by a new-to-me designer (never bought a Berroco pattern before, though I love some of their yarns).  It’s gorgeous and there are no projects on Ravelry!  Looking forward to making mine the first.

Vanilla is the New Black by Anneh Fletcher – I’m finding purl bumps uncomfortable and I heard this pattern is reversible, so I want to give it a try!

On The Run

Still No running for a while – it hurts my back, but walking does not, soooo…. I’m going to train to walk a half marathon in September!  I’ve set up a very gradual training plan to slowly work up to 13.1 miles over 9 months and I’m going to take you on that journey with me.  I’ve found  a half marathon in Salem, MA with both runner and walker divisions, so it’ll be perfect whether or not I get to start running between now and then.




Episode 28

FO, Wip, Stash, Wearables, Knitting Plans, Knitting Talk – wool allergies, On the Run, Out and About


Purple shawl in some deep stash, Queensland Sugar Rush, for myself!  Also, it’s the last sample made of a new pattern that I will be releasing over the holiday weekend – keep an eye on Instagram/Facebook/Ravelry group because it will be free for the first few days as a thank you to the knitting community.  This year has been amazing and a lot of it is thanks to the amazing women and men in the fiber world.  I started this podcast, went to Stitches United and SSK for the first time, went back to Rhinbeck and have interacted with so many of you and this is my small way of saying thanks.


Only other wip I worked on was my Mahalo sock by Dana Gervais.  Full disclosure, she’s my tech editor, but she’s also an amazing sock designer and I am loving this pattern.  I have scrawny ankles so I tweaked the narrowest size to be a little narrower and it was easy to adjust – you could also easily adjust it bigger, and the lace pattern is memorizable after a few times through so I’ve really enjoyed working on it.  Knitting it in CoBaSi by Hikoo, a cotton, bamboo, silk and nylon blended sock yarn.


Coming Next Week


It’s been cold the last 6 weeks and I didn’t have time to put this segment in the last episode, so I’ll quikly summarize – I’ve been wearing Poema by Vera Sanon a lot.  Also, I’ve been wearing my (until now) only two shawls a lot, Maris Stella by Anna Victoria and May Flowers, an old pattern of mine, over store bought sweaters to stay warm.  Also I’ve been going back and forth between wearing my Hamilknit Hat by Emily Straw from Knitting Butterflies podcast and the Twist and Shout hat by Michele DuNaier which is a simple cabled hat.

Knitting Plans

I want to lengthen the sleeves of my Empire Tunic by Lily Go, knit in Frog Tree’s Picobo, a cotton/bamboo blend.  I love this top but since I’m always cold I’ll get more wear out of this if it has long sleeves and not ¾ sleeves.

Also, I want to pull out my English Garden Wedding Kimono that I knit years and years ago and finally do the embroidery.  This is from the Unofficial Downton Abbey Knits from Interweave and I picked this pattern because the embroidery makes this sweater just amazing.  The Firefly I got at my LYS the last few weeks are destined for that.

Knitting Talk

I’ve had a couple of people ask about my wool allergy recently so I thought we’d devote this section to fiber and animal allergies.  I am not a medical professional, so please take what I am saying with that in mind, but I will share what I know with you.  First off, yes, wool allergies are real – you can be allergic to sheep just like you can be allergic to cats and dogs.  Unfortunately, I’m allergic to all 3 to varying degrees, and also to horses and goats.  I just happen to get the worst physical reaction to sheep whereas I have 2 cats and all I get is a stuffy nose sometimes when they shed.

You can also have a reaction to the lanolin in the wool – if that’s the case then you might be able to work with a superwash wool where all the lanolin is stripped out so they can smooth down the scales in the wool fibers.  Well meaning knitters often try to tell me I’m just sensitive to lanolin.  I usually just nod and smile.

Lastly, your skin could just be sensitive, in which you get itchy with certain wools.  This isn’t an actual allergy but a form of contact dermatitis, which is just a fancy way of saying that your skin is sensitive and something is irritating your skin.  Wearing a t-shirt underneath usually solves the problem.

So, how do I know I’m allergic to sheep?  I found out when I was 4.  My great-grandmother bought me a lovely little coat and hat set.  Mom bundled me up and sent me off to pre-school and I came home covered in hives. Poor Gram felt awful, but she had no way of knowing, I just happen to have very severe allergies. A skin-prick allergy test the next year confirmed I am allergic to every animal they tested for, to varying degrees. 

Last time I had a major reaction was 2002 in London, England.  My now-husband and I had just gotten to Europe for a 45-day backpacking trip around the continent.  We went to bed very jet-lagged and I never even thought to check the content of the blanket because in the US budget hotels do not have nice blankets.  It was hot and we didn’t pull it up over us.  Sometime in the night I must have tucked my feet under the blanket because when I woke up in the morning my ankles had literally doubled in size.  I could get 2 pairs of socks to fit, but none of the 3 pairs of shoes I brought.  I finally had to un-lace my sneakers and jam my feet into them so I could leave the hotel room.  It took about a week for them to shrink back to normal size – if I hadn’t been power-walking around European capitals it probably would have gotten better a bit faster but I was NOT about to miss anything, swollen ankles be damned.

Out and About

January – Vogue Knitting Live in NYC, if you’re coming too let me know!

March – Stitches United in Hartford, CT.  A quick note for any of you debating coming, Stitches United 2018 is in CT but in 2019 it will be in Georgia.  Knitting Universe has announced that Stitches United will be alternating between the Northeast and the Southeast.  So, if you were planning on going to CT in 2019, go this year instead.

On the Run

Keep on walking and strength training


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