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Archive for the 'Knitting' Category

My first attempt at repairing a lace shawl

Thursday, March 10th, 2016

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Soft alpaca wrap!

Saturday, January 9th, 2016
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Friend Helen finished this delectable #alpaca wrap! You should sink your fingers into this piece. #knitting

Do I have to tell Annette that she left this at my house?

Friday, January 8th, 2016
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What do you think? Button question

Saturday, January 2nd, 2016
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Been a long time since I cast on to size 0 (2mm) needles

Tuesday, December 29th, 2015
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Another Accidental Colorway

Monday, December 28th, 2015
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Accidental color combo makes me smile

Monday, December 28th, 2015
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32 fringe I-cords w/ ends worked in. 58 more to go

Saturday, December 26th, 2015
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My Birthday Gift to You

Saturday, November 29th, 2014

legwarmersview1tapFish-200x300NOTE: Sale extended to December 31!

On Friday, I turned 56 years old and this blog turned 12. I’m celebrating, in part, by going on a trip down memory lane. You belong in this story… join me if you will.

I gave myself ColorJoy (the blog… “Art as an everyday attitude”) as a birthday present in 2002, after wanting one for a long time. You know, my family owned small-town newspapers and both my Grandma Ruthie and Uncle OT wrote columns for those papers. My Gramma Illa wrote a column for a several-state-wide farming magazine, too. It just felt natural that I would write one also.

Six Baby Chippy SocksWordPress says that this is my 3,250th post! There would be no point in posting if nobody was out there listening. Since the very beginning, I’ve enjoyed getting to know you. Several folks have been with me since the very beginning.

As a community-focused person, I value you and your input here. Life is much better with you in it.

Patterns for this Community

When I first started knitting again, I made things up on the needles. That’s just how it made sense to me. I was a computer trainer, and an after-hours artist. Right away you started asking me for patterns. And thus this new life started.

Road-Tested Noro LegwarmersOn Ravelry.com, I now have 38 patterns available as downloads in my PDF pattern store. I’ve written more which were published by others (Knitty.com, Willow Yarns, the book Joy of Sox and more). Adding those in, I show 59 designs on Ravelry. Whew! And you have been with me every step of the way… test knitting, encouraging me, keeping me grounded.

A Thank You Sale (not on Black Friday)

Though my Blogiversary was on Friday, I could not stand to offer you a thank you sale on that day which is full of other you-don’t-need-this sales at malls and big box stores. Ugh. I waited until the frenzy had slowed down a bit.

So… to thank you for being on this lovely journey to creativity and colorful knitting, I’m offering a sale now.

One-Day NeckwarmerUntil December 7 31, buy 3 of my single patterns (regularly $6) and get one more free! Just choose 4 patterns, put them all in your shopping cart; when you check out, you will see the discount in your total.

That is only $18 for four of my designs, written by me, in language you know you understand. This is less than dinner with a friend, and it will give you hours of enjoyment.

I test and proofread (with help from this community) before I release patterns. If you have any hiccups while working through the pattern I am here to make sure you succeed.

(You don’t need a Ravelry account or a Paypal account to participate in this offer. I use these companies to deliver your order.  No signing up required (though Paypal makes that option a little hard to find).

Your Favorites

But which ones might you choose? Here are some hints. Of course, there are more to choose from when you go directly to my Ravelry online store.

Colorama Crescent Shawl in 4 sizesShown here are some of your favorite patterns over the years. The Road-Tested Legwarmers outsell all my other Ravelry patterns by leaps and bounds. Let’s face it, lots of us get chilly and winter coats are often not long enough for comfort. These can be for dance, for fun, for staying warm in a drafty home, or for fashion. They include knit to fit instructions for any legs and any yarn gauge.  Here I show them knit in purple solid Brown Sheep Lamb’s Pride Worsted and Noro Kureyon.

Also shown are my Chippy Socks for Kids (thus named because I couldn’t stop at knitting just one pair). These are perennial baby shower gifts.

twistedcoloramaBThe Keys and Coins Hat can be made with or without ear flaps. My friend Bonnie has made close to two dozen of these, and has the pattern memorized now. They are pretty quick knits and very impressive as a gift.

Colorama Crescent Shawl comes in 4 sizes and can be knit in zigzag stripes or in one yarn (which shows off beautiful feather-like stitchwork as seen in the final photo… that one is knit in handpainted yarn from my friend Meg at Twisted Fiber Art). It is a very pleasant knit with a nice rhythm to it. There are only 3 places where you need to pay close attention. The rest is knitting that can be done while chatting with friends. And it’s very wearable! Small versions can scrunch up like a scarf and I wear my Goddess size wrapped around me like Stevie Nicks in 1978.

What else? The holiday-gift favorite One-Day Neckwarmer, which made the Patternfish Top-Ten Cowls… distinction. It really does knit up in part of a day. It takes less than 50 grams of light worsted weight yarn in two colors, so two 50 gram balls gets you two gifts. I have one in merino and angora that I wear in our house when I get chilly.

Is it Too Mushy…

LynnH…too mushy to say I appreciate you… that I am so deeply grateful that I’m in this place in life that I can write to you here? That we have this community together?

It’s way better than a newspaper column. You can comment back and we can chat.

I hope you enjoy my Blogiversary as much as I do! Hugs from Lansing, Michigan, USA!

The Unveiling! Lookie!

Thursday, September 11th, 2014

colorfulkidzCoverbig  Finally! The project that obsessed about 9 months of my 2013 for a number of reasons. This one was a lot of firsts for me. I’ve had to remain relatively vague about it until it was published. The time is now.

May I present to you my children’s collection of knitting patterns? The Colorful Kidz collection ebook, produced by Willow Yarns!!!

Sweater, legwarmers, hat, mittens and socks… all in a wonderful washable yarn which comes in a LOT of colors (pick your favorite three) and three weights. Each item comes in lots of sizes, too!

kidzhatsThe knitting is rather simple… kidzwarmerseven the sweater front, which is the most challenging part of the series, allows newcomers to intarsia (color block knitting) to experience the most simple version of this technique and for very few rows. The instructions are clear… after all, my first love is explaining.

Thanks to my project team:
Diana Troldahl
Cindy Wright
Wendy Sweet
Annette Tanner
Rae Blackledge

Colorful Kidz CollectionI had a multitude of learning curves with this project and I couldn’t have done it without you! Also big hugs to the Creative Haven community who were my moral support on rough days.

The Ravelry.com page for the collection is here.

Here is the Willow Yarn page for the collection (get individual patterns, the whole collection, or even kits with yarn included).

kidzsweater(Note: The pattern prices are lower than my self-published designs, because they already paid me. Thanks to Willow Yarns for hiring me, with such enthusiasm, for this project.)

Yarn Bombing Elderly Instruments

Friday, July 25th, 2014

Look what we did on our lunch hour this Wednesday!


My weekly lunch date, Cynthia, works at Elderly Instruments (a very fine music store, where Brian also works). For years, at the corner of Elderly’s front lawn was a huge, overgrown evergreen bush. It blocked part of the sidewalk and also the view of the front door.

A week or two ago, the bulk of the bush was taken down. In the near future, we hear that a sign will be placed here. Meanwhile, it’s looking a bit unfinished!

Last week as Cynthia and I walked past, I mentioned that its raggedy look would be improved by a yarn bomb. She agreed.

So this week, we spent our lunch date yarn bombing. Some of the scarves were used originally at the MSU Horticulture Yarn bOMb project. They were sun faded, but we turned the brighter side out and got double duty from them!

We have casually talked about yarn bombing the yarn shop Sticks and Strings literally across the street from Elderly. We have said we would do it for a couple of years. I guess it helps to have a deadline!

Now that we know how much we can do in a lunch period, perhaps we need to get ON with it, yes? I must go dig out more recyclable scarves from MSU, perhaps.

Meanwhile, Cynthia has had a lot of good feedback on the project. The point is to give people something to smile about. I think it worked !

Darn It!

Monday, October 14th, 2013

Tonight I teach a sock-darning class called “Darn that Sock!” It’s been a slow summer, I haven’t taught a single *knitting* class since May. I’ve taught other things, and spent a lot of time singing on stage… but I really love teaching and I’m ready for fall to click in. It’s too late to post tonight’s class (it starts in half an hour, I’m on my way out).

However, for those of you in the greater Lansing, Michigan area, here are a few more coming up soon (all at Sticks and Strings Lansing, in Old Town). These are my all-time most popular classes, and they are fun as well as incredibly informative. Please consider joining me.


Buttons and Beads/Polymer for Fiberartists
Saturday, October 19 11:00 – 3:00
Material fees:
$10-15 for clay and optional slicing blade paid to the instructor.

Have you ever made a beautiful item by hand, and then had trouble finding the right buttons? Learn to make your own. Blend colors and make the perfect thing! Buttons, beads, tie-ons for baskets, and jewelry items, all can be made with polymer clay using simple tools found in most homes.

Fix & Finesse
Tuesdays, October 22 & 29 6:00pm – 8:00pm
Costs: $30.00 plus materials

Do you panic when your needles fall out of your project? Do you rip out a project when you find a mistake, because you don’t know how to fix it? Learn about how stitches look, how they work, how to fix them. Make friends with your knitting, and learn to be the boss of your project!

We’ll cover picking up dropped stitches, tinking (unknitting one stitch at a time),  changing colors, weaving in ends, avoiding knots in knitted items, the  difference between DK, worsted and Aran yarn weights… and much more.   You get an illustrated handout to take home. ========================

Post-Toronto Touching Base

Monday, August 19th, 2013

Wowie, I hit the ground running when I got back to Lansing! I took so many photos and videos there that I can only hope to catch up here.

This video I took on Saturday (I got home about midnight Wednesday and was out of town all day Friday singing with Brian). Please forgive my focus off screen, I’m still getting used to video. I get more comfy onscreen in the last little bit, but you can tell I’m in there by my voice.

I considered stripping out the visual and posting just my voice… Would you like that, or do you prefer the video even if it’s less than Hollywood style? I find it a bit distracting that somehow I focused off camera. Does that bother you?

My Canadian Yarn Collection

Friday, August 9th, 2013

I added one final skein of Koigu yarn to the other yarns I have purchased on my trip. All were dyed in Canada.
Left to right:

  • Koigu PPPM #P123 B367, 50gm / 160m
  • Rhichard Devrieze Pepino #Eaton Street 3, 65gm / 206m
  • Fleece Artist Merino 2/6 #none, 125gm / 350m
  • Rhichard Devrieze Pepino #Pastoral 2, 65gm / 206m

People keep asking me what I will make. I don’t know.

Usually, yarn calls my name and then whispers what it wants to be. Sometimes that whisper takes a while.

This yarn is all fingering weight 100% merino wool. That would suggest a shawl/ wrap or perhaps a long sleeved tee? Socks often use this weight of yarn but can wear out prematurely without nylon or silk to strengthen it.

I’m done with the yarn crawl for this trip. Good yarn adds up fast!

I’m having lunch with a knitting friend Friday/ tomorrow. Looks like Indian food is on the agenda. Yum!
Birthday Girl
This last photo is a young woman with balloons celebrating her birthday. I saw her group of friends taking photos of her, so started to sing the happy birthday song as I walked past. They joined right in.

It was fun!