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Archive for the ‘Project Inspiration’ Category

Meet a Spinnery knitter

Saturday, April 19th, 2014

If you have “liked” our page or postings on Facebook, you will have already seen some of the beautiful projects that our friend Melissa has created using Green Mountain Spinnery yarns.  We found her projects on Ravelry, and we thought it might be fun to learn a little bit more about Melissa.   We imagine that you will enjoy seeing some of her projects and finding out a bit more about what she loves to work on.

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Who taught you how to knit?

One day while exploring, my mom and I saw the book Knitting Pretty: Simple Instructions for 30 Fabulous Projects by Kris Percival.  We bought it thinking it would be fun to learn together.  At the time I had a long commute on the train, so I taught myself how to knit using that book.  About 5 years later I taught my mom; and even later I taught my daughter.

How were you introduced to Green Mountain Spinnery?

My husband, daughter and I had recently moved to New England and I saw an article about the Spinnery in a magazine.  The article mentioned that visitors could go on a tour.  I already loved the yarn and was curious to see how it was made – it seemed like a perfect reason to organize an outing.

We decided to make a girls’ trip out of it – my daughter and I met my mom in Putney and spent the weekend.  We explored the area and did many fun things. By far our favorite part was the Spinnery.

Do you have a favorite GMS yarn (and why)? ?

I love all of the colors of Mountain Mohair – they are great for colorwork.  But I bought a skein of Simply Fine (natural) at Rhinebeck and that is hands down my favorite.  I am planning to copy the booth sample of the Holden Shawlette – it was stunning.

holden

* The Holden Shawlette is a $6 pattern designed by Mindy Wilkes and is available on Ravelry.  Our sample seen above was knitted with a single skein of Simply Fine in the Variegated color.

What technique/skill have you most recently learned?

I recently knit the Lotus Blossom Hat by Melissa Johnson because I wanted to practice stranded colorwork.  It was the perfect project for that, and I knit most of the hat with yarn in both hands – it worked well, and it was a new technique for me!

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What technique/skill are you eager to tackle next?

I really enjoy knitting socks and am a big fan of DPNs, but I think I need to try Magic Looping.  That is next on my list.

You may want to friend Melissa on Ravelry so that you can see what she’s up to.  We know that whatever she casts on will be inspiring for the rest of us.  We can’t wait to see what Melissa knits up next!

Let’s root for the home team!

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2014

Baseball season starts this week, and the Red Sox’s first home game will be against the Milwaukee Brewers on Friday afternoon.  We imagine that you may be spending some time in front of the TV this weekend, or perhaps you’ll be lucky enough to be in the bleacher seats at Fenway Park.  Brrrr!

We thought that we’d celebrate the beginning of baseball season with a super-quick Knit Along that will give you something fun to work on while you are watching a game at home, and a finished accessory to wear if you are headed to the stands and need an extra layer to keep off the chill.

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Please join us this week as we all cast on for an arm-knit Infinity Cowl.  Yep, that’s right, no needles needed.  This Cowl is knit in a single quick sitting; and you’ll be using your arms as needles.

Earlier this week, we cast on with multiple strands of our favorite bulkier Green Mountain Spinnery Yarns such as Capricorn and Green Mountain Green.  And lickety-split, we had beautiful bulky cowls in no time!  I chose to use three skeins of creamy white GMG that I wound into 6 half skein balls so that I could create a REALLY bulky strand.  If you squint your eyes, they look a bit like baseballs.  Using all 6 strands at once as I worked, I had a finished cowl in under an hour!

 

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Maureen cast on this afternoon with 2 skeins of Capricorn wound into 4 mini balls.  And she now has a beautiful periwinkle cowl in less than an hour.

 

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If you’d like to learn how, Anne Weil of Flax & Twine created a series of set-by step tutorials that break the project down into its four steps: cast-on, knitting, binding-off, and finishing.  Or you can check out Simply Maggie’s video for a live demonstration.

 

 

Join us this week as we get to stitching with our arms,  and share photos with us of your finished projects.  We can’t wait to see what you come up with.

 

A Sneak Peak into our Spring Knitters’ Weekend

Thursday, March 27th, 2014
Spinnery founders Claire Wilson and Libby Mills began taking our wares to Stitches events and fiber festivals years ago and realized that doing these kinds of shows was fun and good business, but wondered how it would be to have knitters come to us. So, for more than 20 years we have been inviting folks to enjoy a weekend in New England with good food, excellent company, a fun learning experience and generally lots of yarny goodness.

Over the years we have had quite an array of instructors, from established names like Barbara  Walker, Katherine Cobey, Nancy Bush, Fiona Ellis and Beth Brown-Reinsel to more recent emerging stars in the knitting world: Gudrun Johnston, Alison Green, Kate Gilbert and others. In addition, our weekends have offered a chance for our own Spinnery designers to share their passion.

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This past weekend was no exception, and Marly Bird was a huge hit with the group.  Her warm and bubbly personality made the weekend more fun and full of laughter than one could imagine possible.

She is a wonderful teacher who was able to gracefully guide both knitters and crocheters through the intricacies of Entrelac.  It was inspiring to see everyone in the room working with their preferred tool, be it hook or needle.  Then on Sunday morning the group gathered to learn about thrumming and a new collection of deliciously warm mittens was born!

She inspired all of us to embrace the intention of her instructions and make them our own; reminding us that one of the reasons she became a designer was because she is not a fan of closely following directions.

Our “students” proved to be very talented crafters, and they brought some amazing hand knits with them. The collection of sweaters in the room was breathtaking.  It was also fun to see what came along in everyone’s work basket or project bag.

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It was a wonderful weekend filled with laughter, learning, and wonderful company.  One of our new friends Sue posted to our Facebook page, “Thank you, thank you, thank you for a fabulous weekend!! This was my very first knitting retreat & you have set the bar very high! I loved every moment, learned so much and enjoyed getting to know a truly great group of ladies!!”

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It is a sentiment that we all share.  Thank you to all of you who joined us.  A huge warm hug and enthusiastic thank you to Marly for traveling halfway across the country to help us make a memorable weekend.  And to all of you who hope to come and join us next time, there is always room at the table for another friend!

 

Baby and Child Project Inspiration

Friday, March 21st, 2014

What comes to mind when you think of Spring? Warmer days, fresh air, or new life in the garden, maybe? We look forward to the new little ones! Often that does mean lambs, bunnies and chicks, but there are plenty of new human babies arriving as well.  In this blog post, we’d like to share with you some project inspiration for using Green Mountain Spinnery patterns and yarns to make wonderful heirloom, traditional, and modern gifts!

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The Green Mountain Spinnery pattern collection includes more than two dozen patterns for your favorite baby or child. Several of these were included in the 99 Yarns and Counting or The Green Mountain Spinnery Knitting Book, but are now available for individual purchase! If you’re looking for an easy knit, but one with attention to detail and one that will be a treasure to hang on to for future generations, you might like the Baby Bonnet(top), Rebecca’s Little Sweater(bottom), or a Pebble Yoke Sweater and Hat set.

 

 

 

The sun may feel warm in spring but the weather can still feel cool and breezy.  A vest or sweater, in lightweight Cotton Comfort, is the perfect layer! Here we have String of Pearls, Magic Stripes and the Little Man Cardigan.

 

Very special babies are the recipients of the following projects we’ve noticed on Ravelry! Koigusue’s Pink Jasmine Lace Edged Cardigan and Booties in knit in Cotton Comfort. Cotton Comfort is also great for weaving, as shown here in Chis’s Cotton Comfort Baby Blanket, woven on a Mighty Wolf loom. The frog is actually a two-in-one toy! Goodenoughforme’s Frog-and-turtle project follows Susan B. Anderson’s Itty-Bitty Toys Reversible pattern.

Besides making these wonderful items for the wee ones, we also love to see them wear (or snuggle with) them! Share your projects and photos with us in our Ravelry group or on our Facebook page!

 

Have Fun with Your Projects

Monday, February 10th, 2014

Most of the time, knitting is an enjoyable activity. There is something special about taking the yarn and turning it into loops on a needle, and then manipulating those loops so they turn into a sweater, sock, hat, glove, or blanket. Except when it’s not. This feeling happens to most knitters at some point in time, on any given project. The Green Mountain Spinnery wants you to have fun with your projects and we wanted to share a few ideas on how to do that.

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1. Have a back-up project (or two. or more.). By putting your current project in time-out for a little bit, working on a different project can be like going for a walk to get some fresh air. It will clear your mind so you can return to the needles and hooks focused and ready to go. Small projects that work up quickly can help you feel very accomplished! (Enterprise Hat, a new design from Eric Robinson, for assortments of Mountain Mohair or Weekend Wool.)

cable sweater2. Plan ahead. The Olympic athletes currently competing in Sochi didn’t start their training last week! If you are working on a project for a special event or as a gift, allow plenty of time for you to swatch, fix mistakes, block and dry the project. Intricate charted patterns are likely to take more time than plain stockinette or garter stitch, just as an adult sweater takes longer and more yarn than a baby sweater! Giving yourself enough time on a project will help avoid stress from impending deadlines! (LindaLovesLace’s Runnin’ Down a Dream project in Worsted Wool)

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3. Embrace the fiber arts community. Here and now is a great time to be a knitter! There are so many ways to stay in touch with other knitters if you want to show off your work or ask for advice on colors and techniques. Knitting is also a great reason to get together with friends and have a nice cup of coffee or tea. These points all apply to crochet fans too! We love seeing our yarns worked up when you share them in our Ravelry group or post them to our Facebook page! Seeing what others are working on can also be a great source of inspiration for your next project. We still have room in our Sugar Season Retreat with Marly Bird and we would love to have you come visit us for a great weekend! (Gaggle of Owls by aquaknitter in an assortment of Mountain Mohair)

How do you keep your knitting and crochet fun?

 

New Year, New Patterns

Wednesday, January 29th, 2014

Are your needles and hooks ready for something new? In this blog post we are rounding up the newest published patterns, including several from Green Mountain Spinnery, to inspire your next project!

First, the latest designs in your favorite Green Mountain Spinnery yarns. The Little Man Cardigan by Rachel Stecker is a top-down raglan sweater with inset pockets, contrast detail, and a pint-size shawl collar in Cotton Comfort. The Enterprise Hat by Eric Robinson is a great way to use up small amounts of Mountain Mohair or Weekend Wool. A garter stitch brim is worked flat, then folded for double warmth. When doubled around your neck the soft frills of the Frilly Mobius Cowl by Cap Sease will keep your neck warm with style; calls for Simply Fine.

Did you spot these recently published designs? Marly Bird, our featured workshop teacher for the upcoming Sugar Season Retreat, designed the Nottingham Sweater, which was the cover item on the Winter 2013 Love of Knitting. This sweater was originally knit in Wonderfully Woolly; Mountain Mohair or Weekend Wool would be great choices to substitute. Amy Herzog’s Noanet Peak set knits up quickly, is cozy warm, and has kicky stripes to keep you interested. Any combination of the Alpaca Elegance colorways would look wonderful. Calabash, designed by Amy Christoffers for the Winter 2013 Twist Collective, feels traditional and modern.

Like most of the United States this month, we’ve been dealing with truly frigid temperatures that make us glad we can stay warm in our handknit layers and under a pile of wool! Have any of the recent snow events or temperature dips inspired you to cast on a new project? Let us know on our Facebook page or in our Ravelry group!

 

Quick and Festive

Wednesday, December 18th, 2013

Here we are, in the week before Christmas! We hope that you are looking forward to the upcoming Christmas and New Year holidays. In this blog post we want to share with you a few projects in Green Mountain Spinnery yarns that will work up quickly if you find yourself in need of a last minute gift or just want to make something quick for yourself, which is ok – you deserve it!

Capricorn, our bulky-weight yarn that is lofty and very warm, is the obvious choice for “finish in a weekend” sort of projects.  From left to right: nutmegknitter’s Cloudy Sky Mobius Cowltonyfan4ever’s Angie’s Earwarmers, and SpindlBratt’s Pillbox Party Hat.

Winter weather is here and maybe having extra hats, scarves, or mitts would be handy as you rush about to finish errands or see family. These projects are each made from free patterns. From left to right: mrstex’s Christmas hat for MIL, FarmerGirl’s January Scarf each in Mountain Mohair, and deborahh’s Toasty1 in Sylvan Spirit.

This wreath is not knit or crochet, but does use Spinnery yarn. Spinnery friend Tedd Kapinos made this for us and we proudly and lovingly display it each year!

We have had a wonderful year thanks to all our fiber friends! We are looking forward to a wonderful 2014 as well. Be sure to keep an eye on your favorite social media channel (our Ravelry group, our Facebook page, Twitter, even our newsletter and of course this blog) for all the Green Mountain Spinnery news and events!

Holiday Project Inspiration

Thursday, December 5th, 2013

There is no denying that the holiday rush is on. This year in the United States, our Thanksgiving holiday was as late as it could possibly be. The weather in Vermont at the Green Mountain Spinnery has been seasonal and we’re getting ready to enjoy winter sports! Though you may be busy knitting and crocheting your holiday gifts, we wanted to take a moment to share project and decoration inspirations that are sure to bring a smile as they are brought out each year.

Stockings are a Christmas classic and a wonderful way to welcome a new person into your family. The projects we have selected to share with you here are all are knit in Mountain Mohair. The color range of this yarn allows you a lot of opportunity to select a traditional or modern palette. From left to right: quiltingblockhead’s Piper’s Christmas Stocking, kfife’s Luna’s Christmas Stocking, and georgieanna’s Tomte Stocking.

Decorations and ornaments make wonderful little gifts or items to pop into a stocking. Some are small and light enough to tuck into a card or letter! And maybe best of all, they work up very quickly! We thought these projects (inspired by free patterns) were simply adorable! Shown from left to right: tiger2paws’s Pint Size Pines in Alpaca Elegance, quiltingblockhead’s Mitten Ornament and sparklefaerie’s Snowman Ornament, each in Mountain Mohair.

Click on over to our Jolly Holiday Pinterest board for more ideas for decorations and project ideas that would look wonderful in Green Mountain Spinnery yarns! We would love to chat with you about your holiday project progress in our Ravelry group or on our Facebook page, too!

Knitting Staples

Friday, November 8th, 2013

It feels like this year the holiday season is coming fast and furious. We hope that in the midst of searching for your must-have recipes for those holiday dinners and locating the cherished decorations you have out every year, you find more than a few moments with your yarn and needles (or hooks). Here are just a few of our favorite knitting staples and classics, most enjoyable when worked in your favorite Green Mountain Spinnery yarns.

Hats are a great “go-to” project for knitters of all abilities. The construction is usually similar between different designs but there is room for modifications or improvisations to create something totally unique.  The Warmest Winter Hat, designed by Spinnery friend John Crane in three different weights, is a reversible hat for the person who’s a bit buttoned-down on the outside but jazzy on the inside. It will keep the head toasty-warm on the coldest and windiest days of winter. The only hat s/he’ll ever want to wear! Pictured in Alpaca Elegance and (far left). The Ascutney Mountain Hat & Earwarmer prototype was “borrowed” by our staff members for ski outings to various mountains! This classic design by Melissa Johnson is warm and flattering hat with a cabled band that is knit sideways and an attractive double decrease at the crown. The cabled band can be knit alone to wear as an earwarmer. Pictured in Lichen Weekend Wool (center left). Hopefully you could find time to devote one pleasant evening to knitting and end up with this versatile Beret! A seed stitch band snugs over the ears on a winter’s day, or fits comfortably on the crown of a lucky head. Pictured in Pistachio Mountain Mohair (center right). Riley’s Hat is a design by Maureen Clark for her grandson. This retro-styled hat with earflaps ties under the chin to stay on through all sorts of winter fun. Pictured in Blue Opal and Rose Quartz Sylvan Spirit (far right).

Portable projects are wonderful to keep with you when you have to wait for something. These could be the hats we mentioned above but socks, mittens, or scarves are also great choices. Isabelle Hegemann, also known as IBH, had twenty-six grandchildren and great-grandchildren and knit socks for each of them annually. Her step-by-step teaching pattern, IBH’s Toasty Socks , will have you confidently knitting a rib pattern in the round on double-pointed needles, turning a heel, and finishing the toe with kitchener stitch. Pictured in Natural Grey and White Vermont Organic (left). Little Hands, designed by Cap Sease, are quick knit mittens for the younger set. You can make a pair with each chart for your favorite child. Pictured in various colors of Mountain Mohair (center). There’s no denying the appeal of the Simple Pleasures Scarf constructed in garter stitch on the diagonal. What could be more simple, yet simply elegant? Any of our soft yarns will do – Mountain Mohair, Green Mountain Green or Alpaca Elegance. Pictured in Vincent’s Gold Mountain Mohair (right).


What are the projects you turn to again and again? There are many more patterns to choose from on our website, including Green Mountain Weekend, our new ebook! We’d love to hear about them in our Ravelry group, on our Facebook page, or even by Tweet! Check out our Pinterest boards for even more project and pattern inspiration!

Green Mountain Weekend

Wednesday, October 30th, 2013

Green Mountain Weekend EbookGreen Mountain Spinnery is pleased to present the brand-new ebook, Green Mountain Weekend. Fall is prime time for weekends in Vermont. For more than 20 years, our Knitter’s Weekend Retreats have provided great company, good food, wonderful learning experiences, and of course, yarny goodness. In addition,our weekends have offered a chance for our own Spinnery designers to share their passion. We invited these folks to celebrate their Green Mountain Spinnery experience by creating a design just for us. This e-book is available for purchase as a digital download and features 8 patterns. Click on the photo below for the Ravelry project page details.

 

Aria

Aria

Reawick

Reawick

Odiorne

Odiorne

Putney Mountain Vest

Putney Mountain Vest

Flower Garden

Flower Garden

Lodestar Mittens

Lodestar Mittens

Rahm

Rahm

Margaret's Tam

Margaret’s Tam

As always, we love when you share your projects with us. Check out our Ravelry group, where we are already seeing projects from the ebook. Here is a pair of Lodestar Mittens and here is Margaret’s Tam! You may also post to our Facebook page or send us a Tweet. If you are on Pinterest, you can find our Green Mountain Weekend board set up and ready for you to repin!

Green Mountain Weekend e-book

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