Posts tagged ‘Madrona’

Hands Up! & Feet On The Table Trois Kits from Black Water Abbey Yarns

Mitten and Stocking kits from Black Water Abbey Yarns, which I am very sad to see is closed.
Patterns are available on Ravelry (linked below) but the kits are history.

Hands Up! mittens (back)

Hands Up! mittens (palm)

Feet on the Table Trois stockings

I bought the kits in the Marketplace at Madrona Fiber Arts Winter Retreat. I was walking past Black Water Abbey Yarns eyeing the tiny stockings and mittens and stopped dead in my tracks when the idea hit me; she saw me suddenly stop and asked “What are you thinking?!”.

A garland of mittens and stockings, her eyes lit up, I picked two kits and she customized them by swapping yarn colors so the two kits would coordinate better.

There was plenty of yarn so…


Everything is better with POM POMS!


January 29, 2019 at 2:23 pm 1 comment

p.s. Madrona Fiber Arts Retreat 2016

June Hemmons Hiatt was there.

I’m a fan, loved her book since way back.
I got the knitting belt; I tried it out, it felt pretty good, seemed like a good idea to alleviate some knitting aches I get and avoid long term damage…
Who am I kidding? she probably could have sold me acrylic yarn and a gun if she wanted to.

February 25, 2016 at 12:49 pm 1 comment

Habu Textiles Kit A-84 skirt

I love this skirt!???????????????????????????????Habu Textiles Kit A-84

It drapes and moves beautifully and feels fantastic.


???????????????????????????????border knit with a single of mohair/silk

The pattern calls for a drawstring at the waist, but I added a studded skinny belt instead.
The skirt is knit with two yarns held together; it comes on one cone of a-1 tsumugi silk and one cone of a-32 silk mohair, with no knots.???????????????????????????????

I met squiffyknits at Madrona and she gave me The Best Advice:

Mark every decrease as you knit.

I would have LOST MY MIND if I had had to try to find and count the 47 decreases on each panel of this tweedy mohairy knit!

I ran a light colored thread through the edges before soaking so it would be easier to put in the blocking wires when it was all dark wet silk and mohair.
I made a template for the pieces to simplify blocking.
I used two blocking wires at the hem, one through the main fabric (two yarns held together) and a second wire through the mohair/silk single border.

May 7, 2013 at 4:50 pm 1 comment

Madrona Fiber Arts Retreat 2013

I had a great time at Madrona!
I always do! 🙂

addi Turbo Sock Rockets:

???????????????????????????????pictured L to R – regular addi Turbo, addi Sock Rockets, and Signature Stiletto needle tips

Classes I took:
Suitable Seams with Judy Pascale
She has great stuff to teach, is full of enthusiasm and really wants her students to learn; she takes the time to make sure everyone ‘gets it’. And she’s funny too. 🙂
We learned different seaming methods depending on the pattern stitch used for the knitting, how to make the most attractive seams.

???????????????????????????????So many seams I would have done differently if “I had known then what I know now”.
Well, onward.

Yarn 101 with Clara Parkes
I hesitated to take this class, I have read Clara’s Yarn and Wool books and I have been knitting for over thirty years; I wasn’t sure I’d get my money’s worth out of the class.
???????????????????????????????Well, I am glad I took the class, I got a lot out of it, I can now better use her books as references. We received samples to touch and take home and I have better understanding of the fiber. Clara is bursting with wool and yarn knowledge, I enjoyed hearing everything she had to say.

Friday Evening Teacher’s Gallery and Presentation by Donna Druchunas on Native Alaskan lace knitting and the Oomingmak Cooperative was very interesting, both the adventure of her interest becoming research becoming a book and the stories of Alaskan lace knitting and quiviut.

History, Methods & Styles of Lace Knitting with Franklin Habit
Franklin brings a lot of information to his classes. I appreciate the depth of research and well edited presentation.
???????????????????????????????He also provided representative lace motif patterns to knit while he spoke and the class sailed by.

And there is always the Marketplace
I was using my self control until I won an Artful Ewe gift certificate and was forced to look closely and think about projects and then couldn’t pick just one.

???????????????????????????????The Artful Ewe by Heidi LIMA-Baby Alpacka/Silk Hand-Dyed Yarn – Thank you Artful Ewe and Madrona!

I kept seeing these everywhere and finally broke down:

???????????????????????????????Slipped Stitch Studios Two Skein+ and Sock+ Project Bags

It’s always beautiful when Mount Rainier makes a showing.

???????????????????????????????the view from my room

February 22, 2013 at 10:49 am 2 comments

Madrona Fiber Arts Retreat 2010

I didn’t sign up for classes this year.
So, knit1frog2 and I made of day of visiting the Madrona Marketplace and going out for lunch.

We hit the Blue Moon booth, it’s great to see the colors in person and an extra treat to check out the Rare Gems (one off colorways) and Mill Ends.

Socks That Rock
two lightweight Rare Gems and
one heavyweight Mill End in ? Denim?

habu textiles had a booth, it was exciting to see so many habu yarns in so many colors.

I ordered yarn for my next project:

Catherine Lowe Simple Couture 4.01 Hat and Cowl

I ordered alpaca silk in black violet.

I took Catherine Lowe’s class at Madrona last year and have been pondering what I learned ever since. She is an excellent teacher and a delightful person.
It worked out perfectly that I hadn’t signed up for Madrona classes; a Catherine Lowe Design & Fit workshop is being offered locally in May and I was able to sign up for that!

Lucky for knit1frog2 and me, walking to lunch took us past
hello cupcake and we wrapped up our day with yummy cupcakes.

And who is this fun looking bunch?

February 20, 2010 at 8:02 pm 1 comment

Madrona 2009: Sally Melville, Catherine Lowe, Sally Melville

My classes at Madrona 2009:
Sally Melvilles Making the Most of Your Yarn Collection
Catherine Lowe‘s Foundations of Couture Knitting
Sally Melvilles Knit to Flatter and Fit

I looove Sally Melville.  She is The Best Knitting Teacher I’ve ever had.
I have taken other stash busting classes that didn’t inspire me, lots of ideas for things I would never knit or be caught dead in. Five minutes into Sally’s class I knew it was going to be different.

She taught us how to look at our stash, how to organize our stash, how to arrange the yarn so we can look for the potential projects, how to find inspiration in things we see to create garments that DON’T look like “I made this out of leftover yarn while I was on meds recovering from surgery”.
I left class excited with ideas and things to do.

Later I met people from adjacent classrooms on both sides of us who said they could hear us laughing and knew we were having a good time. Sally is a great teacher, charming, and makes us laugh.

Catherine Lowe. I didn’t know quite what I was getting into.
Catherine’s class was GREAT. She is very generous with her knowledge. I took the class out of curiousity about the ‘Couture’ and to maybe pick up some useful tips.

There were several times during class when I thought she must not sleep, or she must be an alien, or she is actually 150 years old, she operates on a different level.
She teaches techniques and shares information, then leaves it up to us to choose how far to go with it.
I definitely got some ideas that I will use and information about yarn that will inform my choices. I believe I will produce better knitting with what I learned.

Catherine is also super nice and encouraged everyone to come to her booth in the Market with any questions. I went the next day and she spent quite a bit of time analyzing my knitting technique and we figured out why I twist the yarn as I knit and how to stop it without sacrificing speed. I have been trying to figure this out for years!

Catherine Lowe designs are not like anything I have ever seen before. I guess that must be the ‘Couture’ thing. Her patterns are designed to the finest detail, the finishing is extraordinary. I am going to start saving my nickels and dimes…and fives and tens so I can treat myself to one of her sweater kits. For now, I bought a hat kit and I am super excited about it!

Back to Sally Melville for Knit to Flatter and Fit. Fantastic class. I kept thinking, “OOOh, I get it!”.

The Market.
A dangerous place for a body on a budget.
I have gotten better at ‘using my self-control’.
A couple of hanks of Blue Moon STR Mill Ends (di$counted) in colorway 
Space Dust.
Sally Melville’s Style, so I don’t have to rely entirely on my notes. And yeah, I will be buying her new book as soon as it comes out in March.
Catherine Lowe’s The Ravell’d Sleeve  journal and Headgear IV hat kit.


Every time I looked in the Blue Moon booth my eyes would zoom in on the STR in Bella Coola and my pal knit1frog2 would say, “yeah, those are your colors” or “you have to get that”, but I held off, I’m on a budget.
When I wasn’t looking, knit1frog2 went back to the Market and dug through the entire booth to find The Last Hank of lightweight STR in Bella Coola and she gave it to me.  Happy!

February 16, 2009 at 10:53 pm 4 comments

Madrona 2009 Homework

Homework is more fun when the materials arrive in a cool package in the mail:

Catherine Lowe Merino 5 and Homework Swatch Instruction Booklet

custom packaged for Madrona 2009

Swatches knit for
Catherine Lowes “Foundations Of Couture Knitting”

I hope they behave better after blocking

I had my Unpleasant Photo Session over the weekend for
Sally Melville’s “Knit To Flatter And Fit”:
1. Dress in close-fit lingerie.
2. Standing straight, with arms slightly away from your side, have someone take a straight-on photo of you.

 ye-NO. I won’t be posting those pictures

Fortunately, we are using an outline traced from the photo, NOT the actual photo!

February 9, 2009 at 8:47 pm 2 comments

Madrona 2008

Madrona, the 2008 Madrona Fiber Arts Winter Retreat,
I took Jean Wong’s two-day Tailored Knitting the Japanese Way class. Wow! It was GREAT. She showed us how to Measure For and Layout a pattern along with lots of design tips and guidelines throughout. It was so much information, I couldn’t process it all during class, I had to go home and keep thinking about it. I had heard good things about Jean Wong and her classes and it was all true. She has a head full of knitting knowledge and is determined to impart as much as possible into her students. Kind of like an adorable Drill Sergeant.


It got to the point where I started photographing her notes:


Yeah. That’ll help.

(In truth, it does make sense. Sorta. Um. I need to think.)

I’m glad I signed up for only one class, because I could not handle any more learning immediately after her class. I was full up.

For my homework pattern I chose this sweater from Poetry In Stitches by Solveig Hisdal:


Here is the beautiful Hifa2 yarn:


Here is my swatch:


Notice the difference between the bottom row and top row. On the bottom row I carried the pink yarn below the green yarn and in the upper row I carried the pink above the green. The difference is most noticeable in the leaf veins. I tried the two different carries because I took Sally Melville’s color classes last year at Madrona. She is fantastic, if you ever get a chance to take a class with her, do it. She is a great teacher. I have her Color book, which is also fantastic. She emphasized being consistent with carrying yarns because it affects the appearance.

So now I have to decide which one I like better.

Oh Yeah! here’s my fairly controlled yarn purchases, I managed control only because my stash is getting ridiculous:

from Blue Moon:

STR: Braun’s Woods, Turquoise, Rare Gems one-of-a-kind, Lover’s Leap, Haida, Rook-y

The Raven Clan colors are cool, but I don’t think I could possibly choose without seeing them in person.

from Knit Purl:

HABU cashmere A-34 color 3701 (red) and color 4707 (eggplant)

The yardage is 202yds for the red and only 182yds for the eggplant. Weird.

also from Knit Purl:

Shibui Sock in Sky 3115. Someone referred to this as “neon turquoise” and that is a perfect description.

I love Knit Purl in Portland, OR, they have the most fabulous selection of cashmere and silk and ooooooooo. And everyone is super nice.

February 20, 2008 at 10:16 pm 3 comments




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