Spinnery News

Our “hatalong” success

Knitting with friends is so much fun.  A couple of weeks ago, several of us at the Spinnery cast on for the Fringe Association’s most recent “hatalong” project: Seathwaite designed by Kate Gagnon Osborne.

We each selected a couple of skeins of Spinnery Mountain Mohair and got knitting.  We compared progress and had a small competition to see how quickly we could go.  We finished faster than we might have done if we weren’t all working together.

This week our finished hats were blocked and we wanted to share the fun with you!


From left to right we have Maureen’s hat in Claret, Kate’s hat in Fern, Larisa’s hat in Blueberry and Megan’s hat in Blizzard.  As you can see the mohair blend creates a soft halo that does not compete with the clarity of the cable details.


This cabled beanie is created with a rolled brim for extra warmth for your ears.  It is as warm and cozy as it looks.  We had a bit of fun with our photo shoot hoping to show you every angle.


Kate made a small modification to her hat and instead of using a provisional cast on and rolling her brim, she left it long for a more slouchy version.

We hope that you’ll share photos of your hatalong projects, we’d love to see how you make the pattern your own with your yarn and color selection and any potential changes for a perfect fit.




Stop on by!

We are very proud to be participants in the oldest continuing Craft Tour in the country.  Thanksgiving weekend marks the 37th annual Putney Craft Tour:  Friday November 27th – Sunday November 29th.  23 local artists will open their studios from 10am – 5pm and give visitors the chance to see first hand how their creative process works.

putney craft tour

We’ll be offering tours at the Spinnery, so that if you haven’t yet seen how we make all our beautiful yarns, this is a perfect opportunity to see how the magic happens.  And that’s not all!

Many local restaurants will be offering special meals for the occasion:

The Putney Diner will feature a Thanksgiving after sandwich with turkey, cheddar cheese, stuffing and cranberry sauce on rye bread with fries and coleslaw.

Katy’s Great Food will offer a special menu featuring Putney Craft Tour Stir Fry:  thinly sliced carrots, scallions, tri-colored peppers, squash, zucchini and rice noodles with a sesame coconut ginger sauce served with steak, chicken, shrimp or tofu. They’ll also be offering Chilliquelles: roasted peppers and tomato chili sauce with a wine braised and house spiced rubbed chicken, corn chips, fresh salsa, sour cream, cilantro and fresh cheddar cheese curds with tow over easy eggs.

The Putney General Store will prepare a different sandwich each day of the tour. Proceeds of the sale of the PCT sandwich will be donated to the Putney Food Shelf.

Saxtons River Inn that is not normally open for lunch will open specially for the tour. The restaurant is famous for its French Onion Soup and that will be the Putney Craft Tour special during the tour.

Popolo in Bellows Falls will feature Harlow Farm Chicken Tagine with Vermont Quince Past, Goat Milk, Black Olives and served with Old Athens Farm Root Vegetables and Greens.

The Gleanery will feature a Putney Craft Tour Pot Pie.

(Participating restaurants include Burdick’s in Walpole, NH; Popolo in Bellows Falls; The Gleanery in Putney, The Putney General Store; J.D. McCliments Pub in Putney; Katy’s Great Food in Putney; Putney Food Coop; The Saxtons River Inn and the Putney Diner.)

Make a day of it and bring friends and family.  It may be a welcome break from the bustle of the holiday.  You can support local artisans and take care of a bit of holiday shopping while experiencing a charmingly quintessential New England day.  We hope to see you soon!

While you knit

Maureen and Kate just recently returned from more than a month of road trips, bringing Spinnery yarn and samples to sheep & wool festivals around the country.  They spent many hours in the van listening to crafty podcasts as they drove and knit.


One of their favorites is Ashley Yousling’s Woolful.  They were delighted when they tuned in last week to episode 39, and heard the voice of our friend Jill Draper.

We create a number of yarns for Jill including her Empire (yarn babies), Rifton (a stunning gradient) and Rockwell (a 3-ply marled yarn).  In this episode of Woolful, Jill describes her creative process and details how her collaboration with the Spinnery has grown over the years.

We encourage you to give Ashley’s podcasts a listen.  You’ll earn about all aspects of the fiber world from growers to crafters.  And be sure to tune in later this month when the Spinnery’s Coop founders David, Claire and Libby will share their story of how the Spinnery got its start.

A must read

Carol Feller’s Short Row Knits was published earlier this fall.  It’s subtitle, “A Master workshop with 20 learn as you knit projects” beautifully distinguishes this book as one that you will want to experience, not just read.


It’s clear concise descriptions of both the why and the how of various short row techniques can be best absorbed by picking up your needles and working the stitches along with Carol’s prose.  We find that getting new techniques into our muscle memory makes them far more likely to transition from theory into daily practice.

And Carol makes a very compelling argument for using these techniques.  Adding short row curves into patterns can give us the ability to customize the fit of any pattern without math. Gasp!  Yep, for those of you who aren’t a fan of “mathy” modifications, short rows can provide customized shaping without changing your stitch count.

The book is filled with clear illustrations, beautifully crisp photography and careful descriptions that make it seem as though she’s right by your side guiding you through the basics.  And that’s not all.

© Joseph Feller

Included in the book are 20 beautiful patterns give you a chance to work with these concepts while creating wonderfully wearable and gift-able knits.  The collection includes sweaters and shawls as well as clever hats and socks and a darling woolen ball, Chirripo, that is worked side to side.

© Joseph Feller

This wonderful book belongs in your project bag, not your bookshelf.  We hope that you’ll give yourself the time to really play with Carol’s tips and tricks.  Mastery of these short row techniques will dramatically change your craft for the better.

And we are pleased to announce that we have a copy to give to a lucky winner!  This weekend, add a comment to our Facebook page and we’ll pick a winner at random on Monday November 2nd.  We hope that you’ll share photos and details of your favorite knitwear projects that make use of short rows.

We look forward to learning about your successes and triumphs with short rows and we know that with Carol’s guidance all of us will have more of those to share in the future!


Not long now…

There are just a couple of weeks remaining before our 2015 Knitters in the Green Mountains Weekend.  Thea Colman and Ellen Mason will be joining us for a crafty weekend of fun, fiber and festivities on Friday November 6th – Sunday November 9th.


On Saturday, Thea will impress us with her design process as she takes us from yarn thoughts to stitch motifs to actually plotting ideas for a basic design.  We’ll put that into practice as we cast on for custom cowls.  She’ll follow that up with a session in which we play with cables, where we look at things we can do with cables – pair them together, play them off of one another, change the size, add/change texture, add/change lace, make a panel, read and create a chart, etc.

On Sunday morning, Ellen will share her creative ways for sculpting a mitten thumb with her “Fried Chicken Mitten” pattern, using two at a time magic loop techniques.  Time permitting, she demonstrate a quick sewing project for a darling “runaway” hobo bag that could be used as a project bag or as a reusable gift bag (perfectly timed for the upcoming holiday season).

There are a few spots available, so if your calendar allows, we hope that you can join the fun!  More details can be found here and you can call us at 800-321-9665 with questions.

Are you ready?

We are setting up shop at Rhinebeck this weekend.  We look forward to this festival every fall.  The food, yarn, sheep and wool bring thousands of fiber enthusiasts to this gathering, but it is the mystique of the “Rhinebeck Sweater” that inspires all of us to knit a new garment each year.

We’ll have some great new samples with us in our booth and we hope that you’ll stop by to check out: Kristen, the Exit 4 Tunic ,  and Amy Christoffer’s Coolidge Cardigan, among others.

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We’ll also be debuting Suzanne Allen’s new sweater: the White Pine Pullover.  White Pines are a native Vermont tree once used for the masts of ships.  The strong vertical pine-like stitch pattern compliments the soft curve of a generous cowl neck on this comforting pullover.  Designed with lazy weekends in mind, the White Pine Pullover combines cozy comfort with effortless style.   

Suzanne has paired a light weight textured fabric with an over-sized silhouette that can be dressed up or down.  Equally perfect with jeans or leggings, you’ll want to snuggle into the generous cowl neck when temperatures drop.   This pullover is knit flat from the bottom up and seamed together.  Side vents and set in sleeves provide the perfect balance between relaxed ease and a flattering fit.

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The pattern includes a generous range of seven sizes from 31″ – 55″ busts and it calls for 6 – 11 skeins of DK weight yarn such as the Sandman Mewesic shown above.

We hope that we’ll see you this weekend at the festival.  We can’t wait to see what you’ve been working on and perhaps get you what you need for a new “Rhinebeck Sweater” that will be the hit of next year’s show.

Vermont at it’s best

We are headed to the Vermont Sheep & Wool Festival this weekend and we couldn’t be more excited.  Tunbridge is lovely this time of year.  And in our opinion, there is nothing quite so fine as a gathering of fiber enthusiasts eager to share what they’ve been working on.

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There will be sheep aplenty as well as over 70 vendors offering all your favorite fibers and yarn along with equipment and supplies.  The Spinnery will have a booth there and you can visit us to see a selection of our yarns as well as some samples that can demonstrate how our yarns and patterns work up.

Anticipating that shoppers might be eager to find a unique local offering, and inspired by Amy Christoffer’s beautiful Coolidge Cardigan, Kate spent a few hours this week knitting up a new sample with our Vermont Organic Yarn.


These creamy skeins include 250 yards of worsted weight yarn and Kate thought that a simple hat pattern that could highlight the terrific stitch definition was called for.  She knit up a Koolhaas hat, designed by Jared Flood.


The pattern includes two size options and Kate knitted the larger of the two for the deepest possible version of this unisex beanie.  She was delighted to find that she had enough yarn remaining for a second hat!


We love it when you can create two projects from a single skein!  You’ll be able to make two holiday gifts or keep one for yourself as a little reward.

If a trip to Tunbridge Vermont is on your agenda this weekend, we look forward to seeing you soon.  If some knitting time on the couch at home is more your speed, we wish you happy knitting!

And that’s not all…

Last week we shared with you Amy Christoffer’s Coolidge Cardigan pattern, a lovely moss stitch and lace creation that Maureen has already cast on for.  She is making a version in Pumpkin Weekend Wool that just might be ready to make its debut at Rhinebeck.

This week we wanted to draw your attention to the handful of other recently published patterns available on Ravelry that call for Spinnery yarns.

© Annie Rowden

Among our favorites is Annie Rowden’s Polka Dot Tunic.  This pattern includes sizing for 6 months to 12 years and the design could transition from a dress to a tunic worn over leggings as the little one who wears it grows.  Annie knit this up with Spinnery Sylvan Spirit.

This pattern is part of the Knittin’ Little Fall 2015 Collection that includes designs from 6 popular designers with a little something for every discriminating kiddo that you may be knitting for.

© Therese Chynoweth

Our friend Therese has designed a lush cabled pillow that is perfect for snuggling into on long winter evenings.  Her Long Weekend Cabled Pillow pattern calls for Alpaca Elegance and would satisfy a project need for those of you eager to nest as our days get shorter.

© Knitscene/Harper Point Photography

If a smaller project is more your speed, you may want to consider Amy Palmer’s top-down Mewesic Socks.  This pattern is available for FREE when you purchase either the digital or physical edition of Knitscene Winter 2015 from the Interweave online store. Never fear! The pattern  will be available for free to everyone in the near future.

And for you hookers out there, Marly Bird has recently published a beautiful shawl that also calls for Spinnery Mewesic yarn.

© Love of Crochet

You’ll find her Camilla Shawl in the pages of the Fall 2015 issue of Love of Crochet.  It calls for a skein each of two colors of our DK weight wool yarn.  Just beautiful!

There are even more patterns for you to choose from.  Browsing the selection on Ravelry may help you find the perfect new pattern to start next  Feel free to give us a call or stop by the Spinnery; we’d love to help you find the perfect yarn selection for your next project.

As promised

When we first spun and plied our Vermont Organic yarn we knew that we had a winner.  Maureen and Kate took a dozen skeins with them to Squam in June and our friend Amy Christoffers was among those who couldn’t resist these skeins.  She buried her nose in a handful of this yarn and told us with a huge grin that they smelled like home.


Amy has spent the summer crafting a stunning cardigan with her yarn.  We’d like to introduce you to Coolidge.

© Savory Knitting

Amy has married moss stitch texturing with an ephemeral leafy lace that looks a bit like an angel’s wings.  And the yarn makes every stitch crisp and clear.

This is a sweater that love has built.  All of that detail is breathtaking.  It will be a showstopper that would clearly identify you as a maker who loves the craft.  Amy’s clear and concise pattern is very straightforward and a pleasure to follow.

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Maureen is working on a version of her own with Spinnery Weekend Wool in pumpkin.  She knew that for her, a sweater with a bit of color would get much more wear and we can’t wait to see this new addition to her winter wardrobe. (photos will be shared on Facebook as soon as possible).

We hope that you find Coolidge as inspiring and beautiful as we do.  Let us know if we can help find the perfect yarn for yours.


New for Fall

We have two new patterns that we are debuting at the Wisconsin Sheep & Wool Festival this weekend.  For those of you that would like a virtual preview we’d like to introduce you to the newest designs to feature our Mountain Mohair.

© Gale Zucker

Exit 4 is an oversized Tunic designed for us by Bonnie Sennott.  Named after the Interstate 91 exit that leads to Green Mountain Spinnery in Putney, Vermont, Exit 4 is a loose-fitting cabled tunic that’s joined at the sides with decorative buttons. It’s designed to be worn with 5 in / 13 cm or more of positive ease.

It features a bold center cable pattern on the front and back that creates a strong vertical visual impression that can be slimming.  It can easy be worn over other layers when winter’s chill arrives.

© Gale Zucker

The pattern includes a size range to fit actual bust sizes from 32 – 52.  It calls for 7-9 skeins of Mountain Mohair.  It is pictured here in Spice.

We also have our first adult hoodie pullover sweater.  Kristen was designed for us by Kristen TenDyke.

© Gale Zucker

This cozy hoodie is knit seamlessly from the bottom up, beginning with the sleeves, then the body. (Hopefully this will help with those of you who suffer from second sleeve syndrome).  As you can see, it also features a beautifully organic cable panel that runs up the front and back.

© Gale Zucker

The pattern includes sizing for a range from actual bust sizes of 29½ – 51¼ and calls for between 10 – 15 skeins of Mountain Mohair.  It is pictured above in Blizzard.

Both of these patterns show Mountain Mohair at it’s finest.  We hope that you’ll get a chance to see (and try on) our samples at any of our upcoming Festival appearances or by stopping into the shop in Putney when the samples return home with Kate and Maureen in early November.