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Relax just do it July 1, 2010

This last year has been really great! Traveling around the country a little more than I usually do, I’ve met and chatted with a lot of knitters in different parts of the country, from different parts of the country.

What’s really intriguing to me right now, as the temperatures climb back up the scale here in the Big Windy, is what Warm Weather Knitters are doing and making. I’m putting the finishing touches on some wool-work for the Fall collection and I’m just more and more curious about those who knit in climates where wool would be INSANE because its making me more than a little crazy to touch the stuff right now! My knitting is usually different from others because I’m on an off-set deadline merry-go-round of releases where nothing is in-sync with what the weather is actually doing. Viva la mode!

But I still like to sneak in the occasional personal project and this I Know: Even though for a lot of the year in Chicago, we are overheated to compensate for the COLD, come summertime, we suddenly FREEZE ourselves indoors to compensate for whatever WARMTH is shining down on us outside (and, my friends, it fries). This IS one of our sweet mysteries of life!

What this means is that you can never be without something to protect yourself from the often sudden attack of the air conditioning; that we all need a little something to ward off the best intentions of over-zealous building managers everywhere!

A few weeks ago, I went to the Oriental Theatre to see “Billy Elliot” and proactively brought a cotton shrug with me to ward off the inevitable chill.

But how did I reallly end up wearing it? Over my shoulders like a stole! Even in its smaller size, it protected my bare arms (sleeveless to endure what was really going on Outside) inside the building enough to make the light bulb go on!

Why didn’t I have a Stole?

Having made only one shawl in my life, I’ve realized that perhaps they are not my cup-o-tea. But stoles? I’ve started (and flaked) on a couple. One stalled and disappeared back to stash because I made it too wide and it became oppressively heavy. It became this instead. The other is still in progress and I hope to re-catch the Muse at some point and finish it.

But what also dawned on me at the show (my mind was drifting a lot because there was a Big Barrel-Headed Guy sitting in front of me blocking my view for most of the performance and it was like listening to a radio show so I automatically began multi-tasking) was that I really liked what I’d made my shrug from: mercerized cotton.

So, to reward myself for the Marathon that is TNNA and releasing a Fall Collection, I got some more, this time in a sportweight: Elann “Lara” in a lovely lovely Navy Blue they call 308 Marine.


My plan? An urban, chic stole to wear over the collection of sleeveless dresses and looks already in the house. Will this translates to a little lace? Maybe a little texture?

And like being too rich or too thin, one cannot have too many stitch dictionaries…

I recently got this in the mail:
Vogue Knitting Stitchionary Volume 5

This is the 5th book in the Vogue Stitchionary series and I must say, it is my favorite! (And so nice of them to shoot some of the pictures in the same color that my yarn is! Heh!) This volume is packed full of gorgeous lace work.

The instructions include both charted and written out versions so the knitter can relate easily to their favorite presentation without fussing about.

I especially like the clear photography of the samples. Lately, and clue me in on why, some of the books I’ve seen have rather blurred, non-professional pictures – maybe the paper? maybe the post-processing? (in a recent one, all of the pictures had a weird yellow cast).

This edition has wonderful example pix that in many of the entries are a 4×4 swatch! The charts use standard, simple symbols with the same no-clutter look that I use on my charts: easy to read and legible. Unique stitches are explained and each entry has a stitch key right by its instructions, so there’s no waffling back and forth in the book trying to decipher the charts.

But my favorite thing is there’s quite a few renditions I have not seen before and that’s very nice. Well done Vogue!

If you would like to have a copy of this book, leave a comment saying hello below and we’ll draw a random winner on July 18!

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192 responses to “Relax just do it July 1, 2010”

  1. Vanessa says:

    Living in Minnesota, I completely understand the too hot, too cold thing. Can’t wait to see what you do with it! Love your patterns

  2. Susan says:


    Chicago transplant living in Seattle area. It’s cool here most of the time- perfect for stoles. Can’t wait to see you end result! Would love the book!

  3. kathy says:

    I love this series of Vogue knitting books and would love to win a copy. I have been purging my knitting library, but I’d love to add this volume.

  4. Leslie says:

    Would love to win a copy of this book.

  5. Kim says:

    Great color! I can’t wait to see the finished stole. Cranked up AC makes me crazy!

  6. SeattleAmy says:

    Love the idea…and yarn!

    I can’t wait to see the final product…hopefully, it’ll be available to the rest of us when you’re finished!!

  7. Peggyann says:

    Hello! So inspiring to see this so pretty shade of blue just waiting for your creative hands.

  8. Debi says:

    ooh I would love a copy, I just bought by first stictionary – Vogue volume 4! I would love an entire library of all the volumes!

  9. LizzieK8 says:

    Stitch books are the only knitting books I buy….

  10. lori says:

    hi! i’m coveting that book – thanks for such a nice giveaway!

  11. What beautiful yarn. I love that color! I will really feel like a real knitter when one day I can create projects around stitch books!

  12. ikkinlala says:

    Gorgeous yarn! I hope you enjoy knitting your stole.

  13. Mary Hinman says:

    Hello. Would love to have a look inside that book!

  14. Diane LoDico says:

    Love the color of that yarn. I am into blue in a huge way. One of my livingroom walls is that color. I am new to your website and patterns, and I really enjoy both. I would love to have a copy of the new book!

  15. Debbie says:

    How coincidental, I am knitting my third clapotis now, in Rowan Denim which looks a lot like your cotton marine. I was inspired by a similar lightbulb moment involving the first and second clapotises (first one Katia Jamaica in aqua/green/navy and second one in Noro Silk Garden # 87) and a cold air conditioned car ride. Have made several shawls this year but no stoles — you may be on to something! Would love the stitch dictionary!

  16. Lori says:

    Hello, I have been regularly following your blog over here in Germany and I really enjoy it. I would love to have a copy of the book, in case you would also send it overseas.

  17. kelly says:

    Love the yarn! We have the same type of thing going on in the south…we’ll blast you with the a/c because the minute you step outside you’re melting from heat and humidity. Would love the stitch dictionary!

  18. Barb says:

    excellent color blue, will be anxious to see your creation
    the book sound like one that needs to be in my library.
    thanks for the opportunity

  19. Adore the colour, looking forward to seeing the finished object. Would love to win the book, no Vogue stitchonaries in my library yet.

  20. Rosemary C says:

    Great blue color! I do not have that book and would love to win it. Please……………

  21. Tara says:

    I’m sure the stole will be lovely. The color is beautiful.

  22. Renee says:

    this is my first visit to your spot, via Lisa Souza. What a find!!

  23. Huguette says:

    Love the blue of your yarn selection– a gorgeous jewel tone. And you can’t go wrong with lace. Fergit the book– I think I want the stole! (but I’ll gladly take the book, if my name comes up! ;)

  24. Bee says:

    That would be a fantastic prize. Thank you!

    I can’t wait to see your shawl as well. I’m currently searching around for shawl designs and the navy of your cotton looks just gorgeous

  25. AmyP says:

    I’m sure I can stretch to something more than “hello”, can’t I?!

    I have some rather well-loved Harmony guides but the colours are rather … of their time and the photographs not always clear. I love them nonetheless.

  26. Joanne says:

    Just found your site thru ravelry. Plan to come back here!

  27. Sandra M. says:

    Thanks so much for offering such a wonderful prize. Can’t wait to see the finished project!

  28. Sharlene says:

    Hello Bonne Marie! Would love to be entered in the contest. Thanks so much. :)

  29. Joan says:

    Ooh, can’t wait to see what you come up with for the city-friendly stole! And I would love to win that book. Thanks for the chance!

  30. Lynda says:


  31. Jean L. says:

    Thanks for having a drawing for the book. That’s awesome! Also, the blue yarn is beautiful.

  32. Ruth says:

    I looked at that book on Friday and almost came home with it. It would be wonderful to win! Can’t wait to see what you do for your stole.

  33. Evie says:

    Hi! The book looks lovely. Thanks for doing the drawing!

  34. Sheryl says:


  35. Melissa says:

    Love your designs. I made CeCe and have Cerisara waiting patiently in the wings. I would love to have the book and thanks ever so much for sharing.

  36. Judy says:

    What a fun idea! Never too many books.

  37. Linda Playter says:

    Hello – Can’t wait to see the stole! Would love the book :)

  38. Carol says:

    What a combination–my favorite color and book series–can’t wait to see what you come up with. Hope I win.

  39. Eliza says:

    Hello! I’m in. That is a gorgeous blue! It even matches the swatches on the book.

  40. Melisa says:

    LOVE the color of that yarn! I’ve been wanting a good lace stitch dictionary with charts. Maybe I’ll win! If not, I’ll know which one to order. :)

  41. Linda H says:

    Can’t wait to see what a stole looks like in your design! I looked at the Lace Stitchionary in Chapters and thought I would wait for it to come up in KnitPicks periodic 40% off book sales. So winning it would be a huge bonus! Thanks!!!

  42. deidre corbet says:

    Gorgeous yarn!! I’ve been dreaming of a stole also, just haven’t found the right “pattern” yet. Easy,but not boring. a stitch dictionary would probably help alot.

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