Winter Continues While Needles Click and Hooks Bob!
Newsletter Subtitle Month Year
Emma says,
Join us on
March 13th
for a
winter storm
play day.
Plan for
it now.

Emma on porch
  February Already!
I flew back from Portland, OR on Feb 1. For some reason the changing to this month seemed strange and I don't know why. Time seems to fly and then to stand still. But there always seems to be more to do than I have time to get done.

I am teaching a needle tatting course starting next Thursday. It was suppose to start last Wednesday but was changed to Thursdays by popular demand. It seems that many of the regulars that come on Thursday Open Knitting wanted to take it and many couldn't make it on Wednesdays. It has been awhile since I have taught it and figured that I had better go through my notes and handouts to see if they need to be freshened up. Of course that meant digging through my old samples and meant that I found some unfinished projects. And of course that meant that something that I was working on was set aside so I could finish the old projects. The good news is that I will have some new samples in needle tatting to show and some new ideas for using them but that also means that something else is behind planed progress.

I also thought of some ways to use the needle tatting to embellish the 'itty bitty baby' clothes. What little girl wouldn't like lace trim on her baby's bonnet or dress? The babies are being adopted but we still have some in the baby basket waiting for a sponsor. Of cource some of the sponsors have bought a second baby to dress for themselves. If you don't know about the project check our website's outreach page.
Quilters are
using tatted embellishments in their quilts too. The photo above shows a tatting needle with a finished circle and another in progress. The photo belows shows a free tatting pattern from Handy Hands of a quilt with a tatted embellishment. A detail photo of the tatted insert is at the bottom.

In March I will be teaching a second tatting class, this time using a tatting shuttle.
For more information check our  classes page

Why would knitters be interested in needle tatting? Well, because you can get tatting needles to accommodate almost any size thread or yarn. It is possible to Tatt a border on a knit item using the very same yarn that the item was knit in. This opens all sorts of possibilities for finishes on sweaters, afghans, baby items, wash cloths or what have you. Just use your imagination!

Cross over thinking, where you use one handcraft either on or bordering another opens all sorts of possibilities. We have been doing it for some time with beads but there are many other handcrafts that can be used with our knitting and crocheting. Let your imagination soar! Why not a quilt of knit pieces? Use the old sweaters, mittens, hats that have no longer a life as their original form to make a crazy quilt. Crochet or knit sleeves on a favorite jean jacket that has worn out elbows. Turn an old pair of jeans into a jean skirt with a crochet over panel or even a knit one. Play with the idea and let me know what you have come up with or better still put them up on our Facebook page: Playing-With-Yarn-in-Knife-River-MN .

Detours ugh! We have been dealing with a detour here in Knife River since the first of November. The old rail road bridge was torn down and a new one is suppose to be built before Mid-June. They were suppose to open up the road - the North Shore Scenic Route - mid December and then close it again in the Spring. Instead it has remained closed. We are assured that it will be completed by Grandma's Marathon. Now we hear that the bridge over the Lester River will close the week after Grandma's Marathon and remain closed for eight to ten weeks, It will reopen for the In-Line Skating Marathon in September, maybe even before. This will give us up to ten plus months of dealing with a detour of some sort.

This makes it difficult for some people to find us. I really didn't realize how many until I started to get phone calls from people asking how to get around the detour. It actually isn't that hard if you know how, but it is a real pain if you don't.

So, How To Get To Us:
At present, you can still cross the Lester River in Duluth and take the Scenic Drive to the Holmsted Road, turn up to the Express Way, turn right and go to the Knife River turn off. Turn right into Knife River and turn left before you drive into Emily's Restaurant. We are 1/2 mile up on the right. There are signs.
Or, you can turn up at the Lester River and follow the Express Way to Knife River and then follow the directions above.
After Grandma's Marathon in June, we aren't completely sure how the detour signs will look but
traffic will be directed to Superior Street at some point and the Express Way entrance comes off of Superior Street.
If you want the Scenic Drive view, I am sure that there will be signage directing you down to the Scenic Drive and that should be open through Knife River.
Hopefully this bridge work means jobs for a number of people and those jobs will out way anyone's inconvenience at finding us or the other Knife River businesses effected. Come visit us often and see how we are dealing with the detour.
Moss Space from Marks & Kattens
We have a limited supply of this wonderful super bulky, 70% wool and 30% acrylic yarn for $4.00 a ball. It knits at 2.5 stitches per inch and has 55 yards per ball. The sweater below has been knit by one of the Monday night knitters and she loves it. It takes between 10 to 14 balls, depending on size. Sizes range from extra small to extra large and it is knit on size 13 needles. We also have patterns for a turtle neck pullover sweater and mittens, scarf and hat for both adults and children. This is a real buy and we are offering it as our Detour Special.

What's New in Yarns and Needles
We do have some new yarns that arrived last week and with them came some square double pointed needles. I tried some square needles last market and rather liked them. I figured that if I did others would too. I only ordered small sizes, mostly for socks and I hope to get feed back on how others like them. The 0s and 3s are in stock and they cost $12.70 a set. Along with the needles came three different yarns from Kollage Yarns.

First of all there is Creamy in undyed and dyed. Creamy is 80% milk and 29% cotton. It knits at 7 stitches per inch, has 200 yards and is $17.25 a ball. Creamy dyed has the same yardage but sells for $!8.65. It feels so soft!


Another cotton blend from Kollage is Luscious, a 63% cotton and 37% nylon elastic. It knits at 6 - 8 stitches per inch on a 1 - 3, has 345 yards and costs $19.85. Besides socks, this is a great yarn for baby wear and it too feels very soft.
  Scrumptious - don't you love these names? - is 70% angora and 30% silk, knits at 4.5 stitches per inch on an 8, has 100 yards and costs $20.05. You only want to feel it if your planning on buying it or you will have horrible withdrawal pains. Can you imagine anything nicer than angora/silk?  

You know that it is time to think about summer knitting. That is knitting things to wear in summer. We have some wonderful cottons and cotton blends to choose from. Start planning now because you will want to get your garment knit before summer so that you can wear them. I still have my Butterfly Super 10 sweater to finish from last year.  I do plan to wear it this summer!                                     

Upcoming Event - Our Winter Play Day
Join us for a storm day celebration without a storm day. Bring you projects, some munchies to share. Come when you can, stay as long as you can!
March 13, 2010 from 10 to 7
If there is a real storm the storm play day reschedule day is March 20th
276 Scenic Drive
Knife River, Minnesota 55609

And they say that it is snowing!
The weatherman says that it is snowing and we are in a snow warning. But we are barely on the edge and we have powdered sugar on the deck and the driveway is melting as fast as it comes down. If it wasn't Bo would be out there shoveling it. I really think that he loves to shovel or maybe not love it but gets such satisfaction from his removing it with an 'old-fashion' shovel. He recently renewed two old shovels by buying one new one. He took the scoop to off and put the handle on his favorite shovel and the hand piece went onto another one. I don't know where he has stored the new, unused part but I am sure that it is some where waiting for future use. We have been married long enough that I don't question it.

But snow brings out the best in some of us. We wait for it and plan for it. Some people ask us if we live here all year round.,they don't understand that we need the seasons and enjoy each one. Bo and I get cranky when we aren't living near water and we get cranky when we don't have snow in the winter. If Bo can't take his snow shoes and head out to tramp around our back 40, he is not pleasant to live with. I wait for the days when I can spin wool and knit warm things. I love the days that I can wrap in a shawl and play with my yarn.

And I am not alone. There are those of us who plan for a blizzard and have very special projects tucked away to take out when one comes. It is time for hot chocolate with marshmallow floating on the top, home made soup, old folk music, a Yorkie on your lap and another one under your chair - there are two of us so that's two Yorkies each - and our special project. And in the background the smell of drying wool. Heaven in Northern Minnesota!

Join us for our storm day celebration, Or plan one for yourself. There is something to be said for enjoying the weather, it isn't going to go away.

Unraveling yours,
Judy, Bo and the Yorkie Girls  - Emma, Lilly, Winnie & Jossie

Contact Info
Playing With Yarn
Judy Casserberg
877-693-2221    218 834 5967
P.O. Box 5, Knife River, MN 55609