Friday, May 31, 2013

In the Bag

If there are two things I always have with me in my bag it's my knitting and my Kindle. I have the Paperwhite edition and I use it daily. I'm currently in the middle of The House at Riverton by Kate Morton and it's a great read.

I saw this great knitted Kindle cover on Etsy from a fantastic shop in the UK called Crafty Mrs P.  I love the coziness of the yarn and the whimsical stripes. Great gift idea for graduations! I love supporting other knitters both locally and online. This Kindle cover is one of the hippest I've come across! Happy Weekend! xo

Thursday, May 30, 2013

A New Look

I am always hoping to come across a new scarf stitch that lays flat and looks great on both sides...sometimes a hard find, it seems! I saw this on Pinterest today and I love it! This Rick Rack stitch is shown in a great cashmere by Jade. Perfect instructions for learning are included. I'm excited to give this a try. Huge thanks to Purl Soho for such detailed photos & directions! xo

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Getting to the point

I have written many times how much I love working with wooden knitting needles...their texture and warmth has won me over. I am a huge devoted fan of the hardwood needles from Lantern Moon. I have found lately though that tons of knitters love the needles from Signature. These aluminum needles are just stunning & you custom design the finished product. There are three points available: stiletto, middy and blunt. You also select an end cap. I love the colors & sleekness of pretty!  Do you have a knitting needle preference?

Signature offers single point, double point and circular needles that are all amazing!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Nearly June

I am slightly addicted to Anthropologie, and now that the warm weather has arrived, they have so many unique offerings for summer! I love a perfect drapey blouse...alone or with a cardigan. This Split Image Top is my new favorite. So cute with skinny jeans, ballet flats & silver earrings. xo

Anthropologie Split Image Top by Meadow Rue

Love these! SS Jewelry Creations

Monday, May 27, 2013

Memorial Day Weekend

There was a time 9 years ago....though it feels like another lifetime....when my spouse was deployed to Tikrit in Northern Iraq. He was a JAG prosecuting war crimes. For two years I was home alone with two babies. During this challenging time, I was very focused on yoga and knitting to stay relaxed and healthy. Both helped tremendously....they made a world of difference. So, this Memorial Day I thank those who are currently serving our country and those who are at home raising families. God speed for a safe and fast return. xo

If you are knitting this weekend, I have found a great fingerless glove pattern! It is one of those ideas that's never crossed my mind to do fingerless gloves like this until I saw this idea on the Shi Bui website. Beautiful! A general free pattern and gauge is included...just size it as needed.

Love these...knit on circular needles!

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Summer Reading Ideas

I love going through lists of summer reading suggestions. Newly published lists interest me as do people's favorites....books that stick with you long after you have read them. This short list of five novels are some of my very most favorite reads by authors that I love.

1. The Little Stranger by Sarah Waters: This story takes place in an English manor that the owners are struggling to keep up. They live in a time when the world around them is changing and they are not managing well the transition to a modern era. Their family doctor who is kind enough to make regular house calls soon realizes the secrets that reside at their home.

2. Falling Angels by Tracy Chevalier: This is the first novel I read by Chevalier and my very favorite. While the author is well known for The Girl with the Pearl Earring, Falling Angels is a wonderful book where the same story is told from different points of view. 

3. Sister by Rosamund Lupton: I told every person I know to read this book just so I had people to talk to about it! I loved this novel and I was so excited to discover the work of Lupton. Her second novel, Afterwards, is terrific as well. "Sister" involves two in New York City and the other in London. One sister goes missing and the story that follows is the search the other sister conducts to find her. Amazing!

4. Slammerkin by Emma Donoghue: The definition of the word Slammerkin is "a loose dress or a wanton woman." I picked this novel for my book club and it was a great, great book to discuss. The central character leaves her village and the only way to survive is prostitution until she is taken in to work in the household of a respectable family. She hides her past from them as long as she can. Donoghue later wrote "Room" which was on every possible Best Book list I came across. I love this author and how her writing differs so dramatically with each book.

5. The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton: I love this author and I was so fully captivated by this book. It's the type of story you get completely wrapped up in.  A little girl comes off a ship alone, with no adult accompanying her. The dock master and his wife take in this toddler who only carries one suitcase.  Inside is a book of fairy tales that holds a secret to her identity.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Holiday Weekend

I'm happily going into this long holiday weekend with a new book on my Kindle and a great knitting project. Just purchased "The House at Riverton" by Kate Morton. Years ago I read "The Forgotten Garden" and it became one of my very favorites. Excited to start reading this book! new project is a scarf for one of my girlfriends. I had knitted a long, skinny seed stitch scarf using Knit Collage Sister yarn in Rich Eggplant. We were at Starbuck's and my friend (who is not a knitter) commented on how great the yarn texture was. So I'm surprising her with the scarf knitted in Bubble Gum pink. I love this thick/thin, super bulky yarn. Happy Weekend! xo

Perfect super bulky for size 17 US needles.

Friday, May 24, 2013

A Well Grounded Life

I just finished reading The Aviator's Wife by Melanie Benjamin and I loved it. It came highly recommended by a friend so I went into it excited with high expectations...I love the era and I'm a huge reader of historical fiction overall. It surpassed what I had hoped. It's a well written novel of a woman, her hero husband, her family and a country that was in awe of them and isolated them at the same time. 

It begins in 1974 as Charles Lindbergh is facing death and his family is flying him to the quiet of Hawaii as he instructed. It chronicles back immediately to Anne Morrow and her time at Smith Collage when her prominent father was Ambassador to Mexico. A time prior to Lindbergh...a figure then only known to her on the screen & headlines as the boy who recently flew across the Atlantic. As the novel moves forward she becomes The Aviator's Wife and the well educated Smith girl with great writing potential lives in his shadow. Her life soars and crashes through loneliness, fame, family, kidnapping, The Great Depression and war.  

Things are never exactly how they appear and as a country hailed an aviator who reached the heavens at home his wife was required to keep a home built around the concept of a cockpit...always control cost and never keep what you don't deem absolutely necessary. Pennies were counted and household goods, like soap, were required, by Lindbergh, to be inventoried by Anne so that clutter could be eliminated.

Anne Morrow Lindbergh shows her strength and determination to survive even as her ideas of everything around her are reshaped and restructured. It's an amazing novel of personal growth. It's one of the best historical fiction books that I've ever read. Happy Weekend! xo

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Tossing Around Ideas

I love throw pillows. Cozy & warm....I just adore them. So, when I came across these mini bundles of Mary Flanagan textured felted wool fabric....I had an idea. Each fabric piece is about 8 by 7 inches. All from the same dye lot. Ten in a grouping: I could piece together nine fabrics and make a quilted throw pillow. I'll use one large piece of coordinating material for the back.

I love the variation in texture and vibrant colors. These bundles are available on the Purl Soho site and I can't wait to get started. A few pillows would be so cute in my older daughters room. A perfect autumn reading corner idea! xo

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Rainy Day

It's overcast here with a chance of thunderstorms. I love a rainy day. A good storm is one of my very favorite things! I have errands I should run but want to skip them and knit. I found a (new to me!) yarn company on Ravelry. I love Milana Hilados. They offer so many amazing yarns! I found great aran, bulky and super bulky yarn in beautiful neutrals....and I love the soft & cozy textures. I can't wait to start a project with one of these! Happy Knitting! xo

Love this Milana Mapuche...beautiful aran weight yarn.

Love this! "Dancing with Lurex"....super bulky. Mohair and wool blend.

"Dancing with Lurex"....perfect stormy hue!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013


I think everyone has a favorite spot to knit. To grab tea or coffee and find a few moments to just be creative. In the winter, I don't stray far from our fireplace . In the warm weather, I can be found on my front porch. This is my quiet spot (that's not always so quiet!) but does usually allow me a tiny peaceful break in my day.....

I love this hand spun merino wool yarn that I found on Etsy in the shop FeistywomanHandspun.  "Azaleas" is a soft merino wool that reminds me of spring. I love the pink hues and thick/thin texture.  

I was knitting yesterday and devasted by the news. The images in the town of Moore are overwhelming. Keeping everyone in Oklahoma in my prayers and hoping today that more families are quickly reunited. xo

Monday, May 20, 2013

Bright Days

I often wonder if some people knit seasonally, taking a break as the weather turns warmer. I knit all year and take my knitting on our summer travels. It's like a good book....I always have my yarn and needles within reach. I found two great suppliers of hand detailed wooden needles that are unique, beautiful and whimsical! It's like they are made for fair weather knitting! xo

Love these wooden & painted needles from Soup to Knits on Etsy!

Peace Fleece Needles from Scrumbobbly on Etsy. Crafted of maple & birch.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Blue Skies...

Sunny weekend afternoons are the best. I love reading & knitting outside....that's my perfect Sunday! I was peeking last night at a new catalog that I had never received before.... Olive & Cocoa. They have great unique and eclectic items....I completely love the style of this company! Two of my favorites would be perfect for the warm weather: beachy, laid back accessories that would be fun to decorate with!

Love this aqua burlap pillow with pretty bright white lettering! So cozy!

"Blue Bird Rug": So welcoming and charming! Love this!

Saturday, May 18, 2013


Weekends are the best time for searching out new yarns! I'm so addicted to bulky yarn but love grabbing it in lighter hues in the spring & summer. This new wool yarn I found on Etsy (in the shop Fiesta Cat Yarn Company) is so bright & cheerful! A great, soft bulky... it has a perfect combination of tangerine, white and purple. Hand spun in Oregon, the artist has lots of unique yarns available!

Friday, May 17, 2013

Tiny details

The last two weeks have been crazy busy and in an attempt to get the big things done it's easy to overlook the small details of everyday. Yesterday I took time to do the hardwood floors and polish the woodwork. Not because I didn't have zillions of other places to be but I needed to slow down and stop rushing and concentrate on something simple and immediately gratifying. 

I did go to Tesori the other day & bought the prettiest Susan Zulauf earthenware dishes. They are a bold floral...perfect for when I host book club and for serving appetizers. I'll photograph them this weekend. I also found this tassel for the front foyer door.  I love tiny details and this tassel is a bit oversized and I love the material....kind'of a mix of twine, wool & hemp. 

If you're looking for a great free pattern for a quick weekend project....I love this cowl from Ravelry. Contributed by Nina: A Well-Knit Shop. Knit with Misti Alpaca on a size 17 US needle,  I love that it's bulky and cozy. This cowl is hip & fun and yet has the perfect vintage inspired vibe to it. With a fitted tee and jeans.... this would be super cute!

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Hitting the Streets

Do you have summer favorites that you practically live in? Things that you use every day? I have a few staples that it seems I grab every time I go out! I love the shoes and bags by Yosi Samra. His ballet flats come in all kinds of interesting fabrics....leather, satin, patent, metallic or suede....the list is long of the choices he offers! His ballet flats are super soft and bendable....not at all stiff. He has a great celebrity following and his prices are reasonable. Love this line all year but especially in the warmer weather! 

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

A Spring Project

As you can tell from my blog, I'm a scarf and cowl girl. I can wear them every single day when it's blustery out. What I'm not....a coat person. Which is not always my wisest attribute considering our winters here in New York State. But...I much prefer leggings, boots and a fitted sweater with a perfectly wrappy, drapey scarf. So, even now in spring, I'm always on the hunt for the perfect cowl.

I saw this great free pattern on Ravelry and it's originally from Purl Soho. This Herringbone Cowl is stunning. The texture is amazing and I love Blue Sky Alpaca yarn. It's knit in the round and seamless. The cream color it's shown in is exactly what I'd want to knit this up with. Completely perfect! Happy Knitting! xo

I completely love both the color and the stitch chosen....perfect!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Jackson Five

I cannot tell you how many times I ripped out my latest project but I think I finally got it right! After four or five times of changing gauge and then switching stitches, I'm well into an oversized bulky cowl that will be super soft and drapey. I'm knitting with Tahki Jackson yarn. I've never used this yarn before. I found it at a yarn store I seldom have a chance to drop into it. It's a great bulky wool, made in Romania, that knits up quickly. I bought it in "silver" and it's a soft grey with slubs of white running through. At about $10 a skein, for 131 yards, I thought this yarn was a great price for such nice quality. I'm using two skeins for my cowl and combining it with a dove grey kid mohair. Happy Knitting! xo

Monday, May 13, 2013

Unusual Twist

I love art yarn...Hand spun, hand dyed, one of a kind amazing yarn! The color combinations are stunning, unique and open up endless possibilities for knitting projects. There is a New Jersey based shop on Etsy called The Gingko Leaf. The artist uses local wool to create beautiful skeins. Her online shop is easy to navigate, organized by color and very detailed. I just love this yarn! Are you in the middle of a great knitting project?  What's on your needles? Happy Monday! xo

Love this blend of merino, silk & alpaca!

Perfect for fingerless gloves

Love the silvery sparkle to this yarn....

Sunday, May 12, 2013

London Calling

I love blouses in the warm weather...casually worn with skinny jeans or denim shorts or over a bathing suit. Nothing to me is more summery & classic than liberty florals. Perfect ones are made of soft, broken in fabric that's just light as air. 

I love the idea of using this look  for decorating as well! Purl Soho has lots of beautiful Tana Lawn fabric, sold by the yard, from Liberty of London. This would be great for making pillows for the porch! We have a large white porch swing that I love reading and knitting on. It would be so cozy to stack a few soft pillows in contrasting floral prints....the detailing is just terrific. I love the vintage inspired look that's perfect for a lazy afternoon! To everyone celebrating Mother's Day....happiest of days! xo

Pink Lodden floral print


Love this Misti print in green

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Ringing in the Weekend

I love simple accessories. A beautiful long pendant necklace against a chambray shirt or a ring with a beautiful stone that completely stands out. I'm a huge fan of the jewelry from Delezhen on Etsy. The designs are brilliant! The artist lives in New York and creates amazing work. I completely love the look of hammered gold on the rings she offers combined with the cushion cut of the stones! Happy Weekend! xo

perfect simplicity: aquamarine.

love this warm look of citrine

Friday, May 10, 2013

Round Two

Did you ever have one of those rip it out and start all over kind of days? Please tell me I'm not the only one! It's rainy & thundering here and I can't get this cowl right. So, smaller circular needles are needed....hello, size 11. Some kid mohair and Tahki chunky yarn. Maybe this time will be the charm....

The only thing working here for me was the coffee!

Long, cozy days...

Remember when you were little and days used to feel like they lasted forever? I want my girls to step away a bit from all the running here & there and have a moment to simply enjoy that feeling of contentment. 

I'm still working on my youngest daughters room, removing any clutter and adding sweet, cozy touches. I love simple accessories that have a great vintage vibe to them. I was excited to come across Bramble & Oak on Etsy....this shop is amazingly charming! The artist lives in Ireland and uses upcycled materials to create her treasures.  Happy Friday....may your weekend be long & lingering! xo

I love the knitted detailing of the hat and scarves!