Knitting Pipeline is sponsored by my Longaberger home businessn and Quince & Co.

Knitting Pipeline is sponsored by Quince & Co. and Knitcircus Yarns

Friday, March 25, 2011

Episode 37 A Startling Shawl Discovery

Listen here or use the Flash Player on this site for current episode as well as all past episodes.

Come forth into the light of things. Let Nature be your teacher.  --William Wordsworth

Quince & Co offers a line of thoughtfully conceived yarns spun from American wool.  Leave a comment in the show blog to enter the contest for your choice of 3 patterns and the Tern yarn to make it.  Choose from Sabrina Mitts, Abbey Road Socks, and Barcelona Scarflet.

Pipeliner Notes

I read a letter from Elseline about seeing a large number of Short Toed Eagles.  She sent me this link as well as photos.  The Short Toed Eagle is probably a descendent of the old world vulture. 

Elseline's photo of a Short-toed Eagle.  Note the beautiful markings.
 I got to meet Jen when she visited Celtic Cross Pipes and Drums rehearsal.  I also met Kathleen!

Paula, Jen, and Kevin.

Nature Notes

My friend Mr. Fox on his way to the bird feeder.

A busy Fox Sparrow.

Visit Pileated Woodpecker Central, a site solely dedicated to this woodpecker.
Our resident Red Fox visits daily and he is very shy.  A flock/den of Fox Sparrows entertained me with their scratching in the leaves at the edge of the wood.  Fox Sparrows are the largest of our sparrows.

Panthers in Illinois

Needle Notes

Blethering Room

I finished a ribbed stocking cap that is too small for all the men in my family.  This will go to charity.
Sewing in the ends on a piece of ribbing is like magic if you know where to put it.

Find the row of bumps where a line of knit stitches meets a line of purl stitches.  I call it "the gutter". 

You sometimes have to spread the fabric a bit to see the row of bumps that is nestled in here.

Run your threaded blunt needle through the bumps for about 3 inches.

See it?

I left a little tail sticking up so you could see where the tail is threaded through.  Pretty nifty, eh?  This is the wrong side of the hat so you are essentially making a ribbed hat reversible by hiding the ends so well.

Is anyone interested in a KAL?  I have to knit this cardigan!
Estelle by Melissa LaBarre

The Leila Cap by Carrie Bostick Hoge reminds me of Flower Fairies.  I also mention Annabel Babe Cardigan because when I talked about it last week I did not say the name.

Book Notes

Knitting Traditions  Winter 2011 on display until 5/15/11  $14.99
Color, Texture, Lace:  45 Projects frm around the world
Special edition of Piecework by Interweave Knits.  Contents comprised of articles selected from Piecework's 17 year archive, favorite Interweave Books, and new stories and projects.

How could I resist with this beautiful pair of mittens on the cover?

Highly recommended for those who enjoy historical knitting, traditional knitting, folk traditions, and colorwork. 

Music is from Celtic Cross Pipes and Drums, recorded at our rehearsal on Thursday March 25, 2011.

Here another photo of the band in the St. Patrick's Day.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Episode 36 Fix It Challenge

Listen here or use the Flash Player on this site.
Quince & Co is a sponsor of Knitting Pipeline.  Leave a comment here to enter the drawing for your choice of three patterns and 2 skeins of Tern yarn. 
Japan Earthquake Relief
Our are for those who are affected by the devastating earthquake and tsunami in Japan.  There are many ways to help. 
  • One of our Pipeliners, Brenda Castiel, is giving $5 from the sale of each of her patterns.  Find her designs on Ravelry here.  She is Goodstuff on Ravelry.
  • Mary Jo, HedgehogMJ on Ravelry, has designed the Rose of Sharing to benefit Heifer International and UMCOR Pacific Emergency #3021217.  All proceeds from the pattern sales will go to Heifer International and UMCOR.
Nature Notes

I might have seen a mountain lion/cougar/panther in our woods.  It was the size of a dog (medium), entirely black, but did not move like a dog.  Actually it didn't move much like a cat either.  I had forgotten about it until neighbors on the other side of our woods reported seeing a black panther.

The woods are still barren of green but I walk there daily to see what changes Spring will bring.  I played my pipes in the woods while watching minnows in the creek.  There is life.

Before repeating anything a little bird told you, be sure it wasn't a cuckoo. --Source Unknown

Patterns referred to in this episode

Duffers by Mindie Tallack
Striped Study Shawl by Veera Valimaki (need umlaut on both a's in last name)

Quince Patterns
on Carrie Hoge's Blog ( a boatload of cuteness here)
Needle Notes

I forgot the wool for my Wool Peddlers Shawl aka Comfort Knitting when I visited my parents.  I re-knitted the toes of a pair of Scottish Kilt Hose that I knitted in 1996.  The pattern is from Folk Socks by Nancy Bush.

1996 Project.  This was before fixing them.

This is how much I took off he end of the toe...all that is hanging beyond the green sock.

My challenge to you is to go through your knitted items to see what needs repair, mending or reknitting.  Feel free to share!  This usually does not take as long as we imagine it will.

The Norwegian Setesdal Sweater is coming along.  I am almost done with the body of the sweater.  What topics do you want to hear about that relate to Norwegian or color pattern knitting?

Blethering Room

I tried to organize the types of comfort knitting from Pipeliners.  It's too complicated to write about.  Just listen to the episode. ;)  Can you tell I'm tired of show notes right now?

Pipeliner JanMarie referred to The Sweater Workshop by Jacqueline Fee.

The music was supposed to be a live recording of Celtic Cross Pipes and Drums from St. Patrick's Day 2011.  Since I cannot seem to upload the file this will have to wait until next week.  Meanwhile, enjoy

Irish Ground (Tollett) performed by DaCamera available on

In the Piping Circle
Celtic Cross Pipes and Drums led the parade in Peoria on St. Patrick's Day.  In this video from the Peoria Journal Star site I am in the beginning of the video, front and center, for about one second.  You can see my feet marching along for another second.

Celtic Cross at one of the Peoria Pubs wearing our Pub Crawl T-Shirts.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Episode 35 Comfort Knitting

Listen here or find all episodes on the Flash Player on this site.

Thank you to sponsor Quince & Co for the giveaway this month.  Leave a comment below to enter a drawing for your choice of one of 3 gorgeous patterns and your choice of Tern to make it!  Tern is a blend of American wool and tussah silk in soft, natural colors.  What is your favorite color in Tern?

Abbey Road Socks by Ann Budd

Barcelona Scarflet by Pam Allen
Sabrina Mitts by Cecily MacDonald

Comfort Knitting aka Mac n Cheese Knitting

Thanks to Pipeliner Kim for sharing with me that the Clapotis is her comfort knitting, which she also called "Mac n Cheese Knitting."  So fun.  My idea of comfort knitting is a garter stitch shawl.

  • Sweet Baby Cap. (from Alison C)
     My note: This pattern has been floating around Scandinavia for over 35 years.  I knitted many of these little caps and shared the pattern with Elizabeth Zimmermann.  She had never seen it before.
  • Socks (from Lee, Mette, Kristin)
  • Dishcloths (Kathy)
  • Easy stockinette, such as a stocking cap in the round (from Mt. Mom)
  • Complex lace (Gail and Kristin)
  • Chic Knits Pullover or other easy stockinette pattern (from Eden Stein)
  • Multnomah Shawl (from Rohan Knitter)
  • Socks for the Drinkin' project and more complicated pattern, such as a cabled sweater for the Thinkin' project.  (from Debi)
 What is your idea of Comfort Knitting?

Nature Notes

The Red-Wing Blackbird scouts are back in central Illinois.  We saw our first Eastern Meadowlark of the season at Emiquon Preserve.

We drove to the Emiquon Preserve to see this phenomenal migration of Snow Geese.

This photo reminds me a little bit of Denmark but it really is Illinois.

Migration Article: A Collective Force (article from Peoria Journal Star)

 To stand at the edge of the sea, to sense the ebb and the flow of the tides, to feel the breath of a mist moving over a great salt marsh, to watch the flight of shore birds that have swept up and down the surf lines of the continents for untold thousands of years, to see the running of the old eels and the young shad to the sea, is to have knowledge of things that are as nearly eternal as any earthly life can be.  -Rachel Carson from Under the Sea-Wind

Needle Notes

I started a Wool Peddlers Shawl by Chery Oberle but with a different method of starting the shawl. I used what might be called the Garter Tab method. My thoughts for this method:
  • Sometimes the pattern calls for a provisional cast on for 2 or 3 stitches. I don't bother with a provisional cast-on now.  I have tried it both ways and it isn't worth it in my opinion.
  • I usually knit two more rows on the tab than the pattern calls for which makes it easier to pick up the required number of stitches.
I am about 3/4 of the way through the body of the Norwegian Sweater.

Correction from last week:  Charlene Schurch's last name has a silent "S".  It is pronounced "Church". 

Book Notes

I am thrilled to give an enthusiastic 5 star rating to The Knitter's Guide to Hand-dyed and Variegated Yarn: Techniques and Projects for Handpainted and Multi-colored projects  by Lorna Miser.  Watson-Gupthill c2010.
Lorna Miser's new book takes some of the mystery out of those gorgeous skeins that entice knitters and then sometimes surprise, confuse, or disappoint us.  Learn how to evaluated your multi-colored yarns, choose appropriate projects, and have a boatload of stitches and techniques to make these yarns really work for you.

In The Piping Circle

Celtic Cross Pipes and Drums is preparing for St. Patrick's Day and our competition season.
Celtic Music

A great Scottish Folk band,  Aff the Cuff shares traditional reels:  Spootskerry, Willafjord, and St. Anne's Reel from their CD, CLAP.
Subscribe the their podcast, Aff the Cuff, on iTunes!

Remember to leave a comment to enter your name in the drawing.  If your comment does not direct me to our blog, please leave your Ravelry name or another way to contact you.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Episode 34 Socks at Last!

Listen here or use Flash Player on this site.

Quince & Co is a sponsor of this episode.  Sign up for their free e-newsletter at to keep up on the latest patterns and natural fiber news.

Thank you to everyone who contacted me this week.  A special thank you to The Knitmore Girls, Jasmin and Gigi, as they have mentioned my podcast several times on their show.

Nature Notes

We set a new snow record in Central Illinois.  2010-2011 is now officially our snowiest winter on record.  The previous record was 1978-79.  We are a little over 52" with a good chance of adding to that during March, our transition month from winter to spring.

The woods are bare and a lot of animals are moving around.  I've seen a coyote trot past the window by my studio and a small herd of deer.  There are fewer birds at the feeder with the snow melted but we still have cardinals, goldfinches, woodpeckers, nuthatches, and more. 

Talithia share that the local garbage dump is a good place to view wildlife.

There are flowers everywhere, for those who bother to look.
-Henri Matisse 

 We Like March

We like March, his shoes are purple,
He is new and high;
Makes he mud for dog and peddler,
Makes he forest dry;
Knows the adder's tongue his coming,
And begets her spot.
Stands the sun so close and mighty
That our minds are hot.
News is he of all the others;
Bold it were to die
With the blue-birds buccaneering
On his British sky.          ---Emily Dickinson

The Blethering Room

Faroe Islands are Scandinavian and linked to Denmark.

Fair Isle is part of Britain, specifically Shetland.

Both place names are derived from Old Norse and mean "Sheep Island".

Tip from a Pipeliner Tea aka Teacosy.  Store small stash in large glass jars.

Beautiful and practical way to store those little leftovers in your stash.

Needle Notes

I frogged the man's sock I was knitting from Toe-Up by Chrissy Gardiner.

Camo sock (toe-up version) before frogging.

 I used the Happy Feet yarn to knit a pair of socks for my size foot using The Faceted Rib Sock pattern from The Little Book of Socks by Charlene Schurch and Beth Parrott.

Faceted Rib Socks with no pig's eyes.

Techniques learned:

  • German Twisted Cast-on is a wonderfully stretchy cast on and not difficult.  The set up is the same as for the Long Tail Cast On.
  • There is a technique for eliminating the pesky hole (also known as a pig's-eye) where you join the heel flap with the instep.  Wonderful!
  • A new toe shaping that fits very well.

I also finished a pair of wristers "Those Mitts" by Leslie Friend with my modifications and a Care Cap for a friend who is having chemotherapy treatments.

Book and Product Notes
The Little Box of Socks by Charlene Schurch and Beth Parrott.  Clever format.  Recommended.
Kollage DPN's.  I decided to try these square needles after hearing a positive review from Abby on The Knit Knit Cafe Podcast.  I am going to add more of these needles to my collection.
It looks better on the recipient.

Music is from the group Musica Pacifica.  CD Dancing in the Isles on Magnatune.   "Irish Lamentation" (English Country Dance)  Beautiful!

About Me

My photo
I play the Great Highland Pipes, knit, observe nature, and read. My name on Ravelry is PrairiePiper. Find me on Instagram as KnittingPipeline.