Saturday, February 25, 2012

Episode 28: C'Mon, Vogue

On the Needles
Larch Cardigan - finally finished the 4 inches of stockinette!
Darjeeling Socks - my first toe ups. I read online through knitty how to do Judy's Magic Cast on, but this video helped me alot. The jury is still out on whether I am a complete toe-up convert.
Knitting Finds 
Nike uses knitting for running shoes. Once I get into the regular habit of running and wear out my current pair, I'd like to try these out!
For the knitting scientists - sheep breeding and genomes.
Someone finally got around to busting the myth of whether or not crochet eats up more yarn than knitting.
Knitting Travels
I was in South Carolina this week and that meant meeting up with Mary Beth again. This time we didn't go to Hobby Lobby but rather checked out The Needle Tree which is in Greenville, SC about an hour away from my in-laws. The owner was wearing a beautiful knit dress out of a tonal brown Madtosh Pashmina. I think its the Vali pattern from Rowan.
 In fact, I did go to a Hobby Lobby as one opened up less than 5 minutes away from my in-laws new house but I walked away EMPTYHANDED. Shocker. The one thing I purchased knit-wise were buttons.
After The Needle tree we walked around Greenville and had really good tacos and cheese quesadillas at Chicora Alley. We saw a sign for a place called Brew & Ewe - we thought it was a place that had yarn and beer, but turns out it was a coffee shop that had a small space dedicated to handknit crafts. There were no skeins of yarn to be had which was a bit of a disappointment.

Mel and I did spend a morning at Nintey Six Historical Site which was a colonial settlement and site of a siege during the American revolution.

Other than that its been a week of relaxing, knitting and reading.
 Review
Entangled Issue 4 came out this week. My photos of Franklin Habit's talk at Lion Brand Yarn Studio and Vogue Knitting live were featured in the "One Day In...Manhattan" article - so honored! It was alot of fun. That being said, this is one of their best issues yet - as I mentioned before, this is the one magazine I actually subscribe to. Great source of information. The founder, Genny Stevens was recently featured in her hometown newspaper.
Announcements
The Downton Abbey Swap sign-ups are closed! Someone at Vogue Knitting got wind of it and the response just exploded - which is something Sharon (stitchmistress) over at the TVKnitting Podcast and I just did not anticipate. We loved the response and the enthusiasm for the swap and we are definitely hoping that if this swap goes well, to do another round that is concurrent with season 3 of Downton Abbey.

Minimum Requirements for the Package
  • 1 Small Knitted Item (fingerless mitts, gloves, cowl, shawlette, hat) that is inspired by Edwardian/Victorian Design. Essentially it should answer one or both of the following questions: Would one of the characters wear it in the show? Or, would a modern-day version of the character wear it? Think lace, cloches, small shawls, picot. It does not have to be complex - if you have any questions or are stuck on trying to find a pattern, please contact one of the hosts!
  • 1 Skein of Yarn
  • Tea or the swappee’s drink of choice (tea preferably since that IS what the Downton ladies always drank but to be fair there are hot chocolate and/or coffee drinkers.)
  • Small sweet/food goodie to go with said beverage of choice for a proper tea.
Cost
 
Between $20 and $40 (various budgets hence the price range, but this excludes the cost of the yarn used to create the knitted item and excluding shipping).

If there are any questions or problems, please contact either me or stitchmistress ASAP.)

We are currently placing everyone up on a spreadsheet and pairing up people and hope to get that done by the end of the weekend or Monday at the latest.

In addition, Lisa and Amy of the amazing Roman Hills have generously offered a special discount to Downton Abbey Swappers and listeners of the Subway Knits podcast!

From now until April 23, 2012 (the mailing deadline for the Downton Abbey Swap), you can get 15% off yarn by using the coupon code SKDA15.
 
Special thank you to everyone who has contacted me about donating to the knitting club I am starting up at my middle school! 

Just discovered a new podcast: The Foodie Knitter. Her voice is great and its very engaging. It also involves food. Yum.

Thanks for listening!
Closing Song: "Vogue" by Madonna

In the Conductor's Booth: An Interview with A Playful Day

This week, I am on holiday in South Carolina and while I was down here, had the opportunity to chat with Green Triangle Girl of the A Playful Day podcast. As usual we had loads of fun and were definitely playful.

In her About Me page, she lists her interests as "Knitting, photography, tea, gin and keeping a certain knitwear designer in the cupboard under her imaginary stairs." I can definitely agree to ALL of the above.

Some of the things mentioned in the show:
The Blog Hub
Haruni out of Wollmeise
Springtime Bandit
Whippoorwhill
Northbound Knitting
Amy Christoffers
Elizabeth Zimmerman

Thanks for listening!
Closing song: "Pisces" by Emi Meyer

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Get Yer Downton Abbey Yarn On!


Lisa and Amy of the amazing Roman Hills have generously offered a special discount to Downton Abbey Swappers and listeners of the Subway Knits podcast!

From now until April 23, 2012 (the mailing deadline for the Downton Abbey Swap), you can get 15% off yarn by using the coupon code SKDA15.

What better way than to spruce up your swap package by adding in a skein of Mary, The Dowager Countess or any other character? (As for me, I love Daisy, Lavinia, or Sybil!)

Tighten those Corsets and Get Your Oversized Hat: Downton Abbey Swap Signups are OPEN!

Hie thee over here and make sure you sign-up, as well as send in the questionnaire!
 Signups will run from February 22, 2012 till February 28, 2012 or until we get 50 participants (excluding venusfueri and stitchmistress, who are co-hosting the swap but are also participating) for a total of 52 participants.

The thread will remain locked until all the details are finalized and open when sign-ups are ready to go. After 51 people sign up (venusfueri’s post counts at sign-up #1), the thread will be locked again while people are paired up.

Once people are notified of their swappee’s the thread will open up for general chat, fun and hilarity.
Mailing Deadline (for both US and International): April 23, 2012.
 Minimum Requirements for the Package
  • 1 Small Knitted Item (fingerless mitts, gloves, cowl, shawlette, hat) that is inspired by Edwardian/Victorian Design. Essentially it should answer one or both of the following questions: Would one of the characters wear it in the show? Or, would a modern-day version of the character wear it? Think lace, cloches, small shawls, picot. It does not have to be complex - if you have any questions or are stuck on trying to find a pattern, please contact one of the hosts!
  • 1 Skein of Yarn
  • Tea or the swappee’s drink of choice (tea preferably since that IS what the Downton ladies always drank but to be fair there are hot chocolate and/or coffee drinkers.)
  • Small sweet/food goodie to go with said beverage of choice for a proper tea.
 Cost
Between $20 and $40 (various budgets hence the price range, but this excludes the cost of the yarn used to create the knitted item and excluding shipping).

If there are any questions or problems, please contact either venusfueri or stitchmistress ASAP.
 Questionnaire: (Please Email to Maria: subway.knits@gmail.com or Sharon: TVknittingpodcast@gmail.com)
Full Name & Address:
Email Address:
Are you willing to ship internationally?
Do you have any allergies?
Do you have pets? If so, what kinds?
Do you knit, crochet, weave, spin, dye, sew or do any other crafts? If so, which ones?
Do you collect anything?
Are there any tools or supplies for crafting on your wishlist?
What are your favourite colours?
Are there any colours you hate?
What are your favourite movies/tv shows besides Downton Abbey?
What kind of Edwardian/Victorian inspired item would you like to receive as a knitted/crocheted/crafted item?
What is your favourite tea flavour and food to accompany your tea (or other type of drink if you do not like tea, or even coffee)?
Would you prefer to live upstairs with the lords and ladies, downstairs with the servants or would you be a self-made man or woman?
Which character appeals to you most? Why?
If you could have a chance to be given one clothing item from the costumes used on the show, which one would you pick? Why?
Anything else you think your partner should know?
Would you be willing to be an Angel if needed?
 
If any other questions that you would like to ask your swappee over the course of the swap, you may post them here to the general chat for everyone to answer, or pass along the question to either myself or stitchmistress to ask on your behalf via PM.

In addition, Lisa and Amy of the amazing Roman Hills have generously offered a special discount to Downton Abbey Swappers and listeners of the Subway Knits podcast!
 From now until April 23, 2012 (the mailing deadline for the Downton Abbey Swap), you can get 15% off yarn by using the coupon code SKDA15.

What better way than to spruce up your swap package by adding in a skein of Mary, The Dowager Countess or any other character? (As for me, I love Daisy, Lavinia, or Sybil!)


Have fun and happy swapping! 

So This is What Happens When You Go Out of Town...

...the cat gets into your knitting.
Oh yes, the Akimbo makes for a lovely kitty blanket...

Monday, February 20, 2012

Subway Knits in Entangled Magazine!

Entangled Magazine is the ONLY knitting magazine that I subscribe to. It is online (available at Zinio) but it is so chockful of great articles that it becomes a great resource for something beyond a magazine providing knitting patterns.

Issue 4 has an article called "A Day in Manhattan" where it features many of the LYSs in Manhattan, several of which I have mentioned on the show. In addition, the article has photos taken by me from the events at Lion Brand Yarn Studio and Vogue Knitting Live! It was alot of fun taking the photos and I am so excited to be a part of this issue.
 Thanks so much to the editors of Entangled. If you haven't subscribed, go and do so now! I will be providing a more in-depth review of Issue 4 in the next episode, but I can say that it is definitely a great and informative read. 

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Episode 27: The Hardest Things to Find are Under Your Nose

Off the Needles
Abstract Leaves Cowl in School Products Handyed Cashmere. This was the cowl that I knit for my knitting groups spoilee. 


Saartje's Booties for 2 teachers at work, and they were a big hit! I had to sew on the button during one of my preps but it is technically teacher related work. I snuck into the classroom where the shower was held and put them on top of the wrapped gifts since I didn't have time to wrap them myself.



On the Needles
Larch Cardigan, which is becoming sooooo boring and slow right now, but trying to get through the first 4 inches of stockinett
Herringbone Cowl out of School Products Donegal Cashmere tweed.
Picked up my Habitat again and it was a welcome distraction from the dullness of the Larch and the Herringbone (and the minor pain and strain that the Herringbone Cowl was causing).


I FOUND MY KNITTING, which was the lost Summer Flies shawl. It was in a tote bag that I use to carry my detergent and bleach to the laundromat - I haven't had bleach in awhile, so I  was just putting the detergent bottle in my laundry basket. Sometimes if Ravelry isn't so distracting I knit while I wait for the clothes to wash.

Stashers Anonymous 
I caved. Two skeins of handspun shetland from On the Round, and a skein of Three Irish Girls' Salmon colorway (part of her yarn shop series). I blame the fact that the latter was knit up in a sample, so I could see how it looked when knitted as opposed to just seeing the color only in the skein. But I found out that a trip to Greece and Turkey is very likely in the cards this summer, so there won't be any knitting related purchases for a good while.


Knitting Finds
The Prime Minister of Australia knits - I bet like most of us she always finds a bit of time here and there. 
Two-thirds of teenagers knit! Back in 1961, however. 
Gemma of the lovely Superknits yarn company released an organic aran weight yarn called  Catherine of Aran-gon.
Give your knitting a history and voice over at Knit Expo.
Knitting Narwhal Stationery from Nut and Bee!!!
 Downton Abbey Trading cards - perhaps a cute swag item for the upcoming Downton Abbey swap that Sharon over at TVKnitting are planning to co-host. Take a look at the Valentine's too!



Swatch and Learn
I started a lunchtime knitting club at my school. Right now its 9 girls and we will break into one group of 4 and another of 5 and meet on alternate weeks. By May I hope to merge them together since this is the first time that I am teaching 13 year olds how to knit.

Lion Brand Yarn Studio generously donated needles and skeins of yarn to help me get started. I culled some yarn from my stash and my friend Theresa also donated. I am still in need of needles of various sizes especially 16" circulars since the girls expressed an interest in knitting hats and I beleive a hat is a great beginner project because you can teach multiple skills and not have the person bored and thus encourage them to knit more.

If anyone would like to donate or is interested, please email me or send me a PM through Ravelry. It is my goal to turn this into an after school program so any help is greatly appreciated.

The other knitting related item connected to school is actually for grad school. A long term project for my class this semester is for us to go through the writing process themselves - we can write ANYTHING we want. Clearly my mind went to knitting; I am going to try to write a small piece about some part of the history of the world, through sheep. It's alot harder than it looks.

Announcements
Jessica of Knitting Brooklyn is starting up a Remembering Remy preemie hat KAL. More information can be found at Our Little Remy and Knitting Brooklyn.

Subway Knits has been featured in The Knitter Magazine Issue 42 along with other amazing podcasts.
I feel honored and humbled to be considered and included in such good company.  Thanks to AuntiAipee of Knit. Spin.Cake (a lovely podcast) for providing the photos!

Thanks for listening!
Closing Song: Barton Hollow by The Civil Wars

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Episode 26: What's Your (Knitting) Sign?

On the Needles
The Summer Flies shawl for my swappee is officially lost. I cast on for something in cashmere and its a bit tedious, so I am scrambling to finish it. I think I won't get the yarn again because it was hard to knit with due to the way it was plied and the yarn was coming off onto the needles and my hands as well.


I swatched for the Larch Cardigan and even when washing my swatch (done in Shelridge Yarns DK in Azure) I still got gauge. Now the question is: what size? 38 or 41? The sweater is done with minimal ease so I need to figure out which size is best for me.

Lastly, I cast on for Jo March Mittens in 100% handspun Wensleydale gifted to me generously by Rachel from On the Round. I might have to frog it and redo in a smaller needle size because the cuff part is too big, and I like my mitts snug.

Stitching the Past
This week, we jump across the pond back to the United States and to November 24, 1941 when Life magazine published an article on "How to Knit" and it was featured on the front cover. I came across this site from Washington State called HistoryLink.org which is a great source if you want to go into more detail about knitting in America during WWII.


Knitting Finds
Knit-strology: Over at the Canary Sancturary blog is Teresa, a designer on Ravelry who has been doing a blog series on your knit-strology, that is your knitting sign.

This pattern is adorable for a shelf in my knit nook: Red Roof Croft Cottage by Julia Marsh, who is based in Scotland. Done in the right colors, it will definitely give my knit nook that Japanese zakka-esque quality with an British country flair - I definitely want to weigh these down somehow so that I can make them as bookends! Or if not, at least enough so that it looks pretty on a shelf.

There are two new knitting collections out by  Finnish designers Mari Muinonen & Suvi Simola called Hold Your Needles.

They come in parts 1 and 2 which go for 15,90 euro each but By purchasing 2 books together, you will recieve a discount of 6,80 euros so the bundle will cost you only 25 euros (regular price 31,80). My favorite out of the two is Hold Your Needles 1:  love the Reha Sweater and Muikkuset hat and mittens set.

On a more serious note, the BBC recently published an article about a study from the journal Environmental Science and Technology which states how "microplastic" is a threat to coastlines. The microplastic - beleive it or not - actually came from clothing which has synthetic fibres. the article states, "which release up to 1,900 tiny fibres per garment every time they were washed" this gets into the water supply and into the ocean and animals tend to eat these synthetic fibres.

Finally, there is a really nifty link out to help you design your own custom lopayesa.

The SuperBowl is tomorrow, and people in Indianapolis are going crazy for handknit (and crocheted) Super Bowl scarves. 

Review
New Knitscene is out! And this one is all the more special because there is an article in there about the different types of handdyed yarn - and it is Lisa and Amy of Roman Hills who did the samples!

The Knitty Winter Surprise is also out and the two patterns are adorable: Freja Mittens and Majestic Moose Vest.

Announcements
A very belated congrats to Jasmin, Gigi and the rest of the Knitmore family - they welcome Geneveive Danger Knitmore earlier this month. They will be returning March 5, which is incidentally the day my practicum class starts, so you know I will be listening to that episode while heading to the Upper East Side for class.


Several podcasts have sadly come to an end: Stitch It and Knitajourney. These were some of hte first podcasts I listened to when I started to knit and were such an inspiration for me to pick up the mic - I wish Susan and Meghan all the best in the future and hope that they do return once in awhile to update us on their latest knitting and other fibre related adventures.


That being said, there are some new podcasts out on the horizon: Knitting Brooklyn, TVKnitting and With Pointed Sticks. They just started and have a few episodes out but do try and give them 3 bites as Gigi woul say - I remeber when I first started to podcast and still internally cringe when I think about my first episode and that 1.5 minutes of silence because I couldnt figure out GarageBand. Learning how to podcast definitely requires patience and has a learning curve so remember that it is a process and give the new podcasters a chance.

We have a lively Downton Abbey thread, complete with hilarity from the Downton Abbeyonce tumblr thanks to Lisa. I'm thinking of hosting a Downton Abbey swap. Anyone interested?What would you want in a DA-themed package? What kinds of questions would you want in the questionnaire?

Knit-Alongs
The reason why I swatched and have the mojo to knit the Larch Cardigan is because of the Amy Christoffers KAL over in the 2012: A Sweater Odyssey Group. There are prizes and there is alot of fun and chatter to be had.

The second round of the QAL has begun! The last day to enter patterns into the queue to qualify for the Spring edition was January 31, and it will run from February 1-April 30. Guidelines are in the Knit the Queue-Along thread and the following have been donated for prizes. Thank you so much to our sponsors! Please see this post for details.

Thanks for listening!
Closing Song: "Constellations" by Jack Johnson

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Knit the Queue Along: Midwinter Edition

Today the second round of the Knit the Queue Along begins!

After some thought after the first round ended, I decided that this will be a bi-annual QAL with a decent amount of time inbetween - I don't want to run people ragged and let the momentum of the QAL lose steam very early on in the beginning.

As such, there will be the Midwinter QAL (February-April) to help us finish up any last-minute Winter knits before Spring arrives (or make up for lost time with the Christmas knitting) and a Fall QAL (October - December) for the new Fall/Winter knits and Christmas knitting.

Of course, everyone is always welcome to contribute to the general chat thread for the QAL - during the break between the QALs, some people still continued to knit off the queue which was great.

Here is a refresher on the guidelines:
  1. There are two threads: the QAL Chat thread and the QAL FOs thread. The latter is no chat because your post number is the entry number for the RNG.
  2. The project that you submit to the QAL FOs thread must have a queue date. This can be found on your project page on the lower right hand corner of the page, it will say, “Originally Queued: Date Goes Here.” The idea of the QAL is to knit off the queue, not add more to it, there is a deadline for projects that can be added to the queue, while will be February 1. If you submit a project that has an “Originally Queued” date after February 1, it will not count for the QAL.
  3. WIPs are not allowed.
  4. You can submit as many FOs as you like.
  5. The end date for the Spring QAL is April 30.
Now for the fun stuff! We have prizes from three amazing sponsors: 
Allyson Dykhuizen of the Sweatshop of Love is 3 copies each of the Madison Cowl and Mitts for  lucky winners who will recieve a set of these patterns.

In addition, Allyson is offering Subway Knits Listeners 30% off her patterns with the following code: SKQAL30 from Feburary 1-April 30.
Reni of Knit Girl in Idaho donated a set of Sock Monkey stitch markers (1 regular sized and 1 mini sized) and a set that say Knit Girl and Proud of It and Sock Knitter and Proud of It.
Piddleloop Sewing Team has donated 2 project bags!

A total of  7 lucky winners will receive one of these prizes via Random Number Generator conducted on or the weekend after April 30. Thank you so much to the lovely sponsors and have fun!