Archive for September, 2008

With some of the best weather all year, or so we were told, the TKGA (The Knitting Guild of America) annual conference kicked off. An amazingly efficient light rail system, a beautiful convention center and lots of art and inspiration provided the backdrop for this year’s event. It’s been many years since I’d been there, probably not since the 80’s when I actually taught at TKGA, so it was wonderful to be back and “hang” with the Crochet Dude, Vashti (who has two blogs, here and here), Doris and Laurie.

Spending time with Margaret Hubert, one of the foremost crocheters in both traditional and freeform crochet was also a real treat. Her classes were relaxing, informative and inspirational. Check out the Country yarn on the table – it was such a hit with all the TKGA teachers (Caron provided Country and Spa yarn for some of the classes).

And the Saturday night fashion show with attendees doing the modeling was also great fun. Here’s Betty Monroe’s Basel wrap which had so many attendees wanting to know where to get the pattern – and the yarn.

For more information on both the CGOA (Crochet Guild of America) and TKGA, visit www.crochet.org and www.tkga.com. They’re great organizations with exceptional value for all knitters and crocheters.

Onto the Free Patterns!

Kim Guzman’s crocheted Delhi Shawl in Country is a great mix of a tri-colored tweed-type stitch and a wide lacy edging. The shawl, in Black, Foliage and Silver Service, is perfect over nearly any outfit – and can be used as an extra layer of warmth at home – or over a coat going to work.

And for those of you heading to a baby shower, it’s Snowflake, Brenda Lewis’ knitted baby dolman and hat in Spa. Brenda held two strands of Spa Ocean and Soft Sunshine together to get the bi-color look. It’s a super-easy pattern, all done in seed stitch.


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Crochet = Knit?

One of my favorite things to spot when leafing through a mail order catalog is to note inaccurate descriptions of knitted and crocheted garments. I love it when something that is definitely crocheted – couldn’t be more obvious – is described as a “beautifully knitted piece.” But the most fun is deciphering whether a garment is knit or crocheted when it could be either. Warp knitting machines produce a fabric that is particularly deceptive – it looks like crochet until you get up close. The Flash close-up option that is now on so many websites (such as jjill.com or peruvianconnection.com) makes figuring this out almost like cheating, though (easier to see the knit stitch). Where’s the thrill??

In passing by Salaam, a local shop that has lots of young, way-cool fashions, the other day, I noted the afghan crochet hook and the knitted plastic purse in the window. Even our local ladies can’t get it right! (Sorry for the reflections, but it was a busy day today in Montpelier – state primary voting day.)

Country and Spa Free patterns

Allegra Jacket
This week, the Spa pattern is for Margret Willson’s Allegra knitted jacket is year-round perfect. Designed in Misty Taupe, the jacket is a versatile, layering-friendly piece you’ll wear with nearly everything. It’s dressy enough to wear out in the evening over a black dress and it’s understated enough to wear as a jacket to work. And, of course, over jeans and a cami on the weekend.

Dublin Throw
Just in time for fall is the Dublin Throw, designed by Tammy Hildebrand. Crocheted in three colors of Country, Deep Purple, Vicuna and Loden Forest, the Dublin throw is made from nine super-portable strips done in just three different stitch patterns.

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A Perfect Wedding

September is already shaping up to be a very busy month. For all of you planning on going to TKGA (The Knitting Guild of America) Annual Convention (and regional convention for CGOA, the Crochet Guild of America, I hope to see you there Sept 11-14 in Portland. I will be sure to share photos in a couple weeks.

But this past week, weekend to be precise, was one of the most important for Liz, our design assistant and creator of the delightful crocheted Summer Sunflower. Her wedding to long-time partner, Jim, was picture-perfect, taking place at their house and adjacent field, perfect for a late summer wedding in Vermont.

But it was Liz’ dress that I was so impressed with. Liz’ mom, Deb, was the designer/seamstress for this creation, which looked especially wonderful from the back.




On to the Free Stuff!

Doris Chan’s Archena Skirt
And do we have what all you CGOA Chain Link attendees are waiting for – Doris Chan’s Archena grannies skirt, crocheted in all colors of Spa!! This skirt is so wearable, has a slight drawstring waist and a very slight flare edging in Misty Taupe. But it’s the placement of the squares and the harmonious way all the colors work together that makes the Archena skirt such a knockout. Doris really knows how to make simple, traditional motifs and totally update them for a contemporary and so wearable design.

Juno Toddler Dress
The Juno Toddler Dress, designed by Kelly Klem, is the “must-have” (rather “must knit”) for back-to-school. Worn as a dress, it’s great for that first day – worn as a tunic over pants or leggings makes it an everyday favorite. With toddlers and even older, easy-over necklines are so important for fuss-free dressing and the Juno’s shawl-collar is just that – easy over. Its cute mini-sequined flower appliqués on the front makes it so girly. But for girly girls that so often take over the sandbox or playground, Juno is made in washable Country, in Rose Bisque.

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