Tag Archive | Nerd Girl Yarns

FO: NGY Hitchhiker

Thanks to two weekends of great Wimbledon tennis, I finished my Hitchhiker this morning! I cast on the Hitchhiker Beyond last Saturday and most of the knitting was done over the two weekends, with a few teeth here and there during the week. This was for a Nerd Girl Yarns KAL, and I chose a NGY in her Mutiny base, which is 80/20 merino/silk. Yep, the drape is as amazing as you’d imagine. Perfect with garter stitch on my size 3 needles. I love this one so much!

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The first section says to use a third of your yarn, or about 20/21 teeth. The first time I made it, I used 30 grams and had 21 teeth, and ran out of yarn too soon, so this time I was conservative and used around 25 grams I think, and only 20 teeth. I had 8 grams leftover and a gorgeous scarf in a very wearable length. I do think I’ll block it out a bit longer, but not so much that I lose the yummy squish of garter stitch.

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The color is called The Wise Build Bridges, inspired by Black Panther, and these are totally my colors so I’ll be wearing this a lot once the weather cools off.

The KAL is still going on through August 5th, so check out the Nerd Girl Yarns group on Ravelry if you want to join. I’m tempted to do another!

NGY Hitchhiker KAL

Don’t Panic! Nerd Girl Yarns is hosting a Hitchhiker KAL/CAL this month, hoping to inspire those who have lost some crafting mojo, or need some inspiration to branch out of their comfort zone. If I’m being honest, I’m not sure I fit into either of those categories, but it is at least making me knit something other than socks, so that counts, right? I love Hitchhikers for the soothing garter stitch and the fun teeth, so I knew I’d be knitting another Hitchhiker Beyond. And you get bonus points for using Nerd Girl Yarns yarn, which narrowed it down to these two choices:

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At first I was convinced I’d be using the bottom, called Queen of the Amazons, but the more I looked at them, the more I knew I’d wear the purple color more. (Shocker, I know.) The color is called The Wise Build Bridges, inspired by Black Panther. I wound it this morning, the first official day of the KAL, while I was watching Breakfast at Wimbledon.

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See that sneaky pup? That’s Grace!

I couldn’t start it while Rafa was playing, because that match needed close attention and I have to count rows when I make Hitchhikers, but as soon as Rafa won, I cast on, and that was my project for the next few hours of tennis.

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I’m loving it so much. This yarn is perfect for this pattern, or maybe this pattern is just perfect, I don’t know.  Do you want to play along? Check out the Nerd Girls Yarns group on Ravelry for more details!

Knitting in the Heartland

This weekend is Knitting in the Heartland, a weekend-long conference that happens every other year and is put on by the Sunflower Knitters’ Guilt. They usually have a big-name keynote speaker who also gives classes. This year they have two big instructors, Edie Eckman and Franklin Habit, and Franklin was the Keynote speaker. I had so much fun the last time around that I signed up immediately, and last night the Knitting SIL and I joined my work knitting buddy and her friends for the Keynote. Franklin did not disappoint!

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His speech centered on five important women in his life, and the shawls he designed in their honor, and his speech was funny, often in very dry way, but also touching and thought-provoking. It made me think about the people who have inspired my creative life, and whether I can be that person for someone else. I really enjoyed listening to him, but I also loved just being in a big room full of knitters! You can’t go wrong with a room full of knitters, am I right? You look around and see all these gorgeous handknit items and there’s no wondering if they made it themselves: you know they did! And we could knit while he talked and nobody was judging us or thinking we were being disrespectful or not paying attention because they all KNOW. They know that we knitters are so clever that we can use our hands and our ears and our brains all at the same time. Whew. Yeah. Good times. And that was just the appetizer, because honestly, as much as I loved Franklin’s talk, the vendor fair was the main course for me.

I beelined for Show Me Yarns immediately. I’d seen a couple of special show-only items on Instagram that I really wanted, and I’m proud to say I was the first one to their booth, where I immediately snatched up a gorgeous matching set of project bag and sock yarn, made especially for KITH. This booth was my favorite two years ago, and my favorite this year too. They had the yarns I wanted the most, gorgeous colors and the self-striping sock yarn that is my obsession right now. And they’re such delightful women too, so funny and happy to joke around and have a great time with their customers. I was more than happy to give them the bulk of my yarn money last night. Their Etsy shop is on a break right now, but you should totally check back with them. I love them. That’s all.

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Then I grabbed more yarn, and basically didn’t stop for about an hour. It was terrible, or do I mean wonderful? Yeah. Both. Mostly wonderful. And I saw fun fun stuff. Nerd Girls Yarns was awesome, as always. Not just the yarns, but her displays too.

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Isn’t that Captain America shield so cool?? And the Wonder Woman shawl is the crochet version, which I hadn’t seen in person. I still like my knit version better, but the crochet version was beautiful too, very drapey.

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And I saw these sock hangers, which I thought were SO COOL!! I mean, look at them! You could totally hang your socks in your closet! If I didn’t have such a small closet, I would be all over this idea. As it is, my socks will have to stay in a drawer.

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Whew, it was such a fun night. I just get such a high from being around so many neat people who understand why knitting is so important, people who love it as much as I do.

What? You want to see the yarn? Well. Okay. I mean, I’m not going to do individual photos because that would be too many and too long and I’m almost embarrassed as it is to do a group shot of it all. But since you insist, here you go.

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I KNOW. It’s a lot. And it’s all seriously gorgeous. Most of it (top row) is from Show Me Yarns. The purple/gray and blue/purple are from Nerd Girl Yarns, and the orange/pink/green and purple project bag are from Supernatural Yarns.

And now I just want to wind yarn and knit all day long and all day tomorrow and all day for the rest of forever. That’s not unreasonable, is it?

Nerd Girl Field Trip

I’m lucky enough to have a fantastic indie dyer only thirty minutes away: Nerd Girl Yarns. Her colorways are exactly what you’d expect (Doctor Who, Harry Potter, superheroes, and much more), the colors are gorgeous, and the yarn is always a treat to knit with. In the recent past, she’s been primarily an online seller, without a brick and mortar retail location, but she’s in a new space now and had a Grand Opening this weekend. Of course I had to go, and I haven’t gotten to hang out much with Knitting SIL lately, so she joined me. We weren’t disappointed: the new location was beautiful!

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The wood glass-fronted cabinets are stunning, especially filled with yarn. She also carries a bit of tea, so we saw tea accessories too. When you first go in, you see a cabinet full of crystal teacups and flasks, each holding yarn.

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But as pretty as it all was, we were there mainly for one thing: yarn!

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Her selection of already-dyed yarn is limited, but it’s all tempting. There was pima cotton in bright pinks and oranges and yellows, plus plenty of merino in a variety of colors. There were also tie-dyed sock knitting bags, which I resisted (It was hard), and dyed wool for spinning. (Is that called roving? I don’t know.)

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There was plenty more bare yarn, and if I dyed my own yarn, this would be the place to go, since she had all different weights, plus some with sparkle!

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So what did I get?? This was my little impulse purchase, rainbow scissors up by the register. Love them!

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This is merino worsted in a color called Too English to Say Anything. I think I want to look for a solid or two to go with it.

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Originally my goal was to only buy one skein. But then I found this one, a fingering weight called Queen of the Amazons, and of course it had to come home with me.

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It was a fun little field trip in an otherwise busy weekend. I’m glad we were able to squeeze it in!

A Couple of Cowls

I have two cowls to share today, one older and one brand-new. Let’s start with the older one. A while back, I used my one and only skein of Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Worsted to make a Boomerang Cowl (pattern by MollyGirl Yarn). Here’s my Berry Cowl unblocked. IMG_5340I finally got around to blocking it yesterday. I blocked it pretty aggressively for a few reasons: the bind-off was really loose and I wanted both edges to be the same, I wanted it to be wider, and most importantly: I wanted to show off the pattern. I like the results! IMG_5706IMG_5707

I should be able to get a couple of wears out of it before it gets too warm. And now I need to do the same for my Take the Crown cowl, which I finished yesterday thanks to a few hours of outside knitting time.

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The puppies kept me company, one by my side and one in the sun.

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I decided to trust the pattern and finish it rather than frog it, and I think I made the right choice. IMG_5704Blocking should get it to a good width for a closer-fitting cowl. I found it fascinating to see how the colors pooled in the ribbing at the beginning (the bottom ribbing) but not at the end. This will be wonderful if I make it to any Royals night games this season!IMG_5705The pattern, which is a zigzag, does get a bit lost in the yarn, but I like it because in my mind, it represents the points of a crown. And again, blocking should open it up nicely. Details: the yarn is Nerd Girl Yarns Clever in color Take the Crown and it was heavenly to knit with. Soft but not limp, not splitty at all, just flowed wonderfully over the needles. This pattern is River Deep, Mountain High by MollyGirl Yarn and this makes my fourth.

What about you? What are your go-to patterns, the ones you knit over and over?

To Market: All the Yarn

Okay, are you ready for this? Maybe you are. Maybe you’ve been to markets at knitting events before. But this was my first, so I was a bit overwhelmed. Walking into the room, I saw yarn everywhere. Knitters were swarming certain booths, so I avoided those. Nerd Girl Yarns was the first booth I saw, but it was packed. I just walked for a while, absorbing and touching and admiring. The yarns were all gorgeous, hanging in long hanks or piled in neat skeins. Plus there was fiber for spinning (is that called roving? I’m not up on all my fiber vocabulary yet.) and there were project bags galore. There were shawl pins and tool kits and a few stitch markers, and one booth had a long table of books too. It was just SO MUCH.

Going into it, I’d thought I’d just buy a project bag, maybe stitch markers. I really didn’t think I’d buy yarn, or if I did, it would just be one skein. I know, I know. Are you done laughing now? I’m telling you, I didn’t know what I was getting into! The first time I got in trouble was at a fantastic booth called Supernatural Yarns. They had a long table with piles of project bags in all sorts of nerdy fabrics, like Doctor Who and Harry Potter and superheroes. I liked the Harry Potter ones; they were pretty tempting. But I was really on the lookout for Wonder Woman. Lo and behold, guess what I found: IMG_5674I admired her yarns too, which were gorgeous colors with fun pop culture names like Voldemort and Elsa and You Go, Glen Coco. IMG_5658All the pretties! All the happy knitters!IMG_5659But it was still early in the game, so I resisted. I needed to see what else was out there.

Around and around I went, and there was so much yarn calling my name. One booth had piles of bright primary-color skeins, deep reds and blues and vivid yellows and oranges, but the crowd at that table was so thick I couldn’t get close. I admired other project bags, touched more yarn, tried to make some sense out of it all. A couple of yarn stores were there, but I really wanted to support the indie dyers. By this point, I knew I’d be buying yarn, and I knew I wanted some Nerd Girl yarn, so I circled back to her booth. IMG_5660The crowd had thinned, thank goodness. I poked around and knew I’d found a winner when I saw this blue/white/gold skein named Take the Crown. A souvenir both of the event AND my Royals winning the World Series last year! Perfect! IMG_5667Wandering around more, I found myself going back to the TreasureGoddess Yarn booth a second time. She had a ton of pretty yarns, but I couldn’t get this one out of my mind. It had to go home with me too. It’s called Avast, Ye Wildcats, which I think has something to do with some Kansas university, but I don’t care about that. It’s purple, gorgeous purple.IMG_5670That was all I needed. That was plenty. One bag and two skeins? Sure, that was enough. But I couldn’t make myself leave. I kept circling the market, and realized I was still thinking about another project bag I’d spotted at Supernatural Yarns. It had classic Disney villains on it and was dark and purply. I found myself in that strange fugue that probably happens to most knitters in times like this: “Oh yes you NEED that it’s okay it’s a souvenir it’s a special event go ahead it’s all right just BUY IT.” And I had no one to talk me out of any of it! So yes, I bought the darn bag. IMG_5672As if that weren’t enough, here’s the other side: IMG_5671I mean, come ON! Perfect, right? Right. Sigh. Somehow, en route to pay for this, I ended up with another skein of yarn in my hand. IMG_5668It’s merino DK called Don’t Call Me Nymphadora! Love it. Love the colors, love the name, love the feel.

After that, I had to be done, right? I’d done more damage than I thought I would, definitely more than I should have done. But on my way out, I had to go by that one booth, that one with the rainbow skeins and thick crowd. And wouldn’t you know it, the crowd had thinned at that booth too. This was Show Me YarnIMG_5657Soon, even these people left, and it was just me petting all the yarns, the pretty pretty yarns. IMG_5661I wanted the pink, and the green. I liked the rainbows, but they were sock yarns. There was a lovely purple I was eyeing, but I kept coming back to this red, a color way called Purdy. Then somehow I was caressing a black and white skein called Elephant Rocks, and man, these girls were good. “Oh, those look gorgeous together!” they said. (They did.) “They’d make this gorgeous hat, let me show you the sample!” (Hat? My ears perked up. I do love hats. And having a reason to buy the yarn? I love that too.) They couldn’t find the sample but showed me the pattern on Ravelry, and it was indeed something I think I would like making. While they were writing up the sale, I found myself playing with the purple again, and one of the girls pointed out a cowl/mitten set on display, said I’d get one of the patterns for free with the purchase of the yarn. Gosh darn it. I asked if I could call her a bad name, and she said yes, if I bought the yarn. I bought the yarn. (But no, I didn’t call her a bad name…out loud. Seriously, all three ladies at that booth were marvelous. I had a great time chatting and joking with them.) So there I was, adding three more skeins to my KITH shopping bag. IMG_5666Sighhhh. Can you blame me? I was alone and defenseless.

The next day I made zipper pulls for my new project bags. IMG_5677IMG_5678And I wound two skeins of yarn. Today is opening day for the Royals, so in their honor, the Take The Crown yarn was the first to be cast on. IMG_5682I’m using my favorite cowl pattern, River Deep Mountain High, and it will be for me.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go figure out which child I need to sell to pay for all this yarn!

Two Knitted Hats and a Cute Puppy

Okay, shhhh, do you hear that? Yes, that! That, my friend, is silence. Something that has been hard to find in the last three weeks. The husband went back to to work on Monday and today the children went back to school. I have enjoyed having them all home with me (for the most part) but we had enough togetherness. Now it is time for the alone-ness. Okay, sure, the puppy is home and soon enough will be pestering me because I don’t want to take him for a walk in 5 degree weather with wind chills of 15 below. But right now he is sleeping and I am listening to just the wind blow outside and it’s delightful.

Right, so, knitting! Yesterday at this time I had two half-finished hats. This morning, I have two completed hats! Once we did our running around, I had nothing to do but knit. Of course, first I had to survive errands with two kids who were tired of each other and me. But we managed to get shoes at Target without ANY unplanned purchases. We went to Joann and left empty-handed because the yarn was all 25% off so I couldn’t use my coupons. I’m telling you, I was strong yesterday! It must have been because I was wearing my new “I Am Strong” necklace. I must wear that every time I go to Target.

Okay, seriously, hats. I am pleased as punch with them. First up, we have a Spring Beret knit in Misti Alpaca Pima Cotton & Silk.IMG_3606 IMG_3607This yarn was heavenly to knit with: soft but strong. It didn’t slip around while I was doing the lace bits, which was nice. And it’s the prettiest baby blue color, my photos don’t do it justice. I think it will be perfect for those April days when we’re all tired of the brisk wind and eager for the return of warmer temperatures. I used this Spring Beret pattern and followed it exactly (except for when I made mistakes and had to maybe k2tog or m1 to get my stitch counts right) for the less slouchy version.

Secondly, I finished the swirly beanie for the boy.IMG_3610 IMG_3612This was the easiest swirl pattern ever, and yet I made so many mistakes. I had to frog back several rows once, and then frog the whole thing and start over. But once I realized I had to work on it alone, it was fine. It’s called Odessa and written to include beads, but of course I left those off. My 11yo son might not appreciate beads. So he got some fantastic Nerd Girl Yarn in the Foxy line. The colorway is called #nofilter and the colors are so bright and vivid. I truly love this yarn and can’t wait to start knitting up more.

It felt good to get those done. I’m down to only 4 WIPs, which of course means I will be starting something new today. Our snow and cold, plus the peace and quiet, means I will be snuggling in with a blanket, yarn, tea, and some Grey’s Anatomy. I expect great progress today. For now, I will leave you with a photo of puppy, Captain Jack. He loves the cold and snow. He wants to smell all the smells and eat all the crunchy things.IMG_1097