Thursday, December 31, 2009

Columbia River Scarf Pattern. Happy New Year!

This morning I placed an order with Punta Yarns in preparation for the Bitterroot KAL coming up on January 10th. In reviewing colors with the owner, he said that his wife did not like parrot colors and that she had "New England" taste. Coming from there myself, I knew exactly what he meant. Neutrals. And it reminded me of this scarf, which is one of my absolute favorites.
Now it's been five years since I knit this, so I'm a little foggy on the names of the yarns I used, other than to say that they were from Habu. I used 4 different colors in silk mohair and 4 different colors in a sport weight merino, knitting 1 strand of the mohair with 1 strand of the merino in different color combinations. I remember buying this yarn at a shop in Portland on my birthday, returning to our B&B on the Columbia River, spreading out all these soft balls of colors around me on the pristine white duvet and saying to my husband, I am so happy. I also remember that it took me quite a bit of experimenting to get just the right pattern and look for this scarf.
It being New Year's Eve, I thought it would be a nice way to thank you for reading my blog and for supporting The Grove by posting this pattern.

Columbia River Scarf:

U.S. #6 straight needles,
4 skeins of Habu's 1/2 Silk Mohair Kasrui (186 yds, .5 oz) in ivory, taupe, pale rose, and kahki.
4 skeins of a soft sportweight merino, alpaca, or cashmere (approximately 100 yds per color in various neutrals).

24 sts = 4" in Fisherman's rib pattern.
17 rows = 4"

Stitch Used:
Fishmerman's Rib:
Set-up Row: K1, P1 rib.
Continue in K1, P1 rib but for every knit stitch (and just the knit stitches), knit into the stitch below the one on your needle; i.e., instead of inserting your right needle into the knit stitch on your left needle, insert it into the center of the knit stitch directly below that one and knit as usual. All purls stitches are worked in the usual fashion.

Finished Measurements:
Width: approximately 7"
Length: approximately 58"

Holding 1 strand of mohair and 1 strand of sportweight together, cast on 40 stitches. Starting with the Set-Up Row described above, continue in Fisherman's Rib for 36 rows.
Row 37: Color change. Here's where you get to be creative. You can continue using a new set of colors (1 mohair, 1 sportweight) or you can continue using the same color mohair but change to a different color sportweight. Repeat rows 2-36 until desired length.

Finishing: Cast off and weave in ends. Enjoy!

P.S. I'll be ordering more Habu silk mohair at the TNNA on January 9th. If you have any special requests, just let me know and I'll see if we can get some for you. The Blue Sky Sportweight Alpaca or the Punta Mericash would be perfect to combine with the thin mohair.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Blue Sky Alpaca's Multi Cotton

Blue Sky has come out with their Spring 2010 yarns and they never disappoint! They have added multi colors to their organic cotton line, which, by the way, is the best-selling yarn in our store. The oh-so-fitting delicious names of the new colors are: marmalade, punch, icing, spearmint, limeade, gherkin, and slushie. Of course, these pictures do not do the yarn justice. You just have to see how mouthwatering these yarns are. They should be arriving at the Grove next week sometime! And I think that's a pretty good way to start out a new year for knitters...happily!

Monday, December 28, 2009

Bitterroot Is Sweet

The good thing about having a cold is that it gives me guilt-free knitting time. Now I know we're having a Bitterroot KAL starting January 10th and that it is my KAL...I'm facilitating. So you would think that I could stop working on this so that I can actually knit along with the rest of the group. But no. At this rate, I'll probably be finished with mine by then! So I guess I'll be doing my second Bitterroot with "the girls"! Next one, will be a variegated one...mmm, maybe with a Pagewood Farms yarn. But I digress.

What I want you to know is how incredibly easy this pattern is. The only increases are along the edges, made with a simple yarn over. The only pattern changes in each chart (and there are several, but don't let that scare you), come mostly in the first few and the last few stitches. So for like 60 rows, you are doing the exact same repeat, in the same order but for the edge stitches. It's sort of like the Clapotis in that way. I wish I had a better camera to show you how these little mounds running diagonally from the center look like frosting on a wedding cake. (Always food with me!).
I know you are probably saying ... sure, for her it's easy, but I can tell you honestly, I am slow to "read" a lace pattern (meaning, looking at the knitted piece itself to know what to do in the next row). But after about 2" into this, you'll be able to read the pattern too. Now this doesn't mean I knit without looking at the chart. I don't, but it's more like I just check in instead of read every box in the chart. What this translates to is that it goes quickly. I cannot wait to get to the beaded section! Marcia, are you listening? I'm going to need the beads sooner than expected!

Saturday, December 26, 2009


This first morning post-Christmas is mine. Being somewhat deprived of knitting time, I am insatiable. I just realized that I have two projects going at once and my laptop on...alternating back and forth between all three and I see how torn I am after the holiday! Wanting to blog, wanting to finish Judipatuti's Turkish Bed Sock and dying to work on Bitterroot in that gorgeous new Mericash (the "cash" being cashmere). Okay. Deep breath. There is plenty of time. There is plenty of time.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Sweet success on a small scale!

Once in a while you make something that you know you will wear forever. It doesn't happen that often, and when it does, you want to broadcast the news and tell every knitter you know. And so it is with the Star Crossed Slouch Beret (free pattern on Ravelry). I used Punta Yarn's Merisoft and the drape, pattern definition, and its softness makes for the most perfect hat! And it only takes two nights of t.v. watching to make it. Because it's in that gorgeous grape color, it's tough to get a good photo. I realized to shoot it flat, wouldn't capture the essence of it. So....

I'm standing in my t-shirt and flannel pj bottoms (if you must know) and I try the hat on and I am absolutely thrilled. DH and pup are fast asleep and I'm alone trying to figure out how to get a picture wearing the hat from the back/side so you can see the shape and drape. I am too impatient to wait for DH to wake up, so I hold the camera with my right hand and stretch my arm out as far as I can and snap a couple of photos. Beautiful picture of the overhead fan. Another one of the fireplace and stained glass windows with just an edge of the hat. Good lord. Finally, I got one that actually has the hat in it!!! And here it is. I know it's not flattering, because I've broken the "no profile" rule among several others, but can you tell how cool this hat is?!# I'm risking all pride, betting you can!

Friday, December 18, 2009


Several customers have asked for cashmere recently and although I hesitate to purchase it because of the hefty price tag, I did discover Punta Yarns Mericash which is 80% merino and 20% cashmere. We got our first shipment in this week. To feel it, you'd think that it was 80% cashmere and only 20%'s that soft and scrumptious. 276 yards for less than $20 makes it an affordable cashmere-mix. The variegated yarn is hand painted. And the Christmas red is a timely color which is calling my name from the shelf!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

A Christmas Quimble

Many years ago when I was in law school, a dear friend of mine gave me this teeny tiny little cloth doll that came in a small silk case with a snap. She told me it was a quimble and that I should always carry it in my pocket for good luck. I could not resist buying this cute little sprite on Monday because it reminded me of something from my past.

As I sat down to face some neglected paperwork this morning (ugh), I thought...ah-hah! It's a quimble! Then, I looked up "quimble" (see how I get to my paperwork?) because the word just popped into my head from nowhere, and I wanted to make sure I hadn't made it up over the course of 20 odd years! Well, I did find a definition for the word "quim" which means "a woman". Okay, it also means "vulva", a definition to be ignored for our purposes. So apparently, this little one resting next to my Earl Grey tea-filled cup is a bearded quimble, brought to you by me to wish you luck during the upcoming week when holiday obligations can be challenging! (Some tie-in, eh?) Okay, back to that paperwork.