The Corner of Knit & Tea: Episode 114, December WIP Mania

Welcome to episode 114!  I’m making lots of progress on my WIPs to clear my needles by the end of the year. I also announce the prizes for the Gift-a-long… there’s still time to join!

Please come and join the Ravelry group.

You can also find me on Ravelry as FluffykTwitter, Instagram as Fluffykira, and in my shop The Corner of Knit & Tea.

Tea:

Wearing

Knitting:

Spinning:

Extras

  • The Gift-a-long is back! Knit something for someone else (Christmas gift or otherwise) between November 1st and December 31st and enter it in the FO thread to potentially win prizes. Why not have a chance at prizes for something you’re doing anyway? WIPs count if you do at least some amount of work on them in the time frame specified (sorry just weaving in ends or sewing on buttons doesn’t count!).  Check out the Ravelry group for details!

NaKniSweMo 2016 in the books!

A month ago I shared with you my plans for NaKniSweMo 2016. As I suspected, my sweater didn’t end up being 50,000 stitches, but I did finish in time and I’m thrilled with the finished sweater!

Just so the details are all in one place:

The Pattern: Lady Marple by Nadia Cretin-Lechenne

The Yarn: Spirit Trail Fiberworks Zalti in Hydrangea Blue

The Needles: US 8 MarblZ

The Buttons: Briar Rose Fibers

Knit Me: Louet Gems Worsted

About a month ago I was contacted by the folks over at Stitchcraft Marketing to see if I would be interested in knitting something with Louet Gems yarn.  Gems is Louet’s 100% Superwash Merino yarn that is both machine washable and dryable, making it a great choice for easy care knits. I had a choice of the sport or worsted weight, and I selected two skeins of the worsted weight in the colorway Peacock.  The worsted skeins come in 100g skeins with 175 yards per skein.

With two skeins, I decided to knit a scarf for my nephew for Christmas. I wanted something simple because he’s almost 12, and I figured he might not like anything fussy.  I settled on the Wheat pattern by Tin Can Knits.  Wheat is a garter stitch scarf with a simple ribbed panel throughout.

The Gems yarn was very nice to work with. It was very squishy and not at all splitty. I really liked the hand of the fabric and it only got softer and more enjoyable with a washing and blocking.  I will definitely be using Gems in the future for knits for my nieces and nephews. The colors offered are vivid and fresh, and I can imagine any number of sweaters or winter accessories. I will be interested to see how the Gems yarn wears over time, but so far I am completely pleased with it.

If you’re interested in purchasing some Gems yarn you can do so at the Louet website. As a special bonus, if you spend over $100 you can get a free copy of the new Fall 2016 pattern book, She Made them Her Own featuring patterns by Trudy Van Stralen.

A special thank you to Stitchcraft Marketing and the folks at Louet North America who sent me the Gems yarn (retail: $31.00) for free. I received no other compensation for this review. All opinions and photos are my own.

The Corner of Knit & Tea: Episode 113, NaKniSweMo ’16

Welcome to episode 113!  I just got back from a wonderful Thanksgiving week with my family. I finished my NaKniSweMo sweater and another WIP. Now I’m turning my attention to those last few holiday gifts and getting my needles clear for 2017.

Please come and join the Ravelry group.

You can also find me on Ravelry as FluffykTwitter, Instagram as Fluffykira, and in my shop The Corner of Knit & Tea.

Tea:

Knitting:

Spinning:

Extras

  • The Gift-a-long is back! Knit something for someone else (Christmas gift or otherwise) between November 1st and December 31st and enter it in the FO thread to potentially win prizes. Why not have a chance at prizes for something you’re doing anyway? WIPs count if you do at least some amount of work on them in the time frame specified (sorry just weaving in ends or sewing on buttons doesn’t count!).  Check out the Ravelry group for details!

Holiday Gift Guide: A little bit knittea.

With the Thanksgiving holiday, the season is set into full swing and Black Friday heralds the opening of shopping season. I wanted to pull together a few suggestions for the tea and knit lovers in your life.

Subscriptions

At the top of my list are subscriptions for wonderful gifts that keep on giving all year long.

For the tea lover in your life, you might consider a description to the Plum Deluxe Tea of the Month club. Club memberships are done on a quarterly basis, so you can give anywhere from 3-12 months of tea to someone special in your life. Send them one tea a month for $10 per month, or double their pleasure with 2 teas a month for $20 per month. I’m a member and have been enjoying the surprise in my mailbox each month!

For the knitter in your life there are too many options to choose from!

You could check out Yarnbox.com for a variety of knitting box subscriptions. Each month your favorite knitter will receive a box with yarn, a pattern and some fun extras at his or her door.  Boxes range from $19.95 to $69.95.  I haven’t personally tried this one, but I’ve heard good things and see beautiful items people receive!

Other reliable places I have ordered from include Simply Socks and The Loopy Ewe. Anything you can find in their clubs and kits sections is sure to delight!

Special Gifts

If you’re looking for one special gift for your special someone, advent calendars are a great idea.

I particularly love the David’s Tea Advent Calendar which is 24 days of delightful tea and can be snapped up for $40. Get this one quickly because they always sell out!

For your knitter friend check out the Opal Advent Calendar box for 24 miniskeins of colorful Opal yarn for $60. The knitter could make ornaments for his or her tree, or a wonderful pair of stripey socks!

Black Friday Tea

If you’re planning to partake in a little Black Friday shopping, I could point you in the direction of a few of my favorite black teas!

And finally a few knittea related items I have seen this season:

Starbucks Cable Knit Double Wall Traveler Mug, $19.95

Yarn Mugs from Bread and Badger, $25.00

The Corner of Knit & Tea: Episode 112, Happy Thanksgiving!

Welcome to episode 112!  This was a pretty crafty week. I finished the gifts I needed to, made good progress on my NaKniSweMo sweater and even finished a spin.

Please come and join the Ravelry group.

You can also find me on Ravelry as FluffykTwitter, Instagram as Fluffykira, and in my shop The Corner of Knit & Tea.

Tea:

Knitting:

Spinning:

  • Finished: Hello Yarn Shetland/Silk in Peak Color

Extras

  • The Gift-a-long is back! Knit something for someone else (Christmas gift or otherwise) between November 1st and December 31st and enter it in the FO thread to potentially win prizes. Why not have a chance at prizes for something you’re doing anyway? WIPs count if you do at least some amount of work on them in the time frame specified (sorry just weaving in ends or sewing on buttons doesn’t count!).  Check out the Ravelry group for details!

Drink Me: Adagio, Spiced Apple Chai

When I ordered from Adagio a few weeks ago, I decided to try some of their Spiced Apple Chai.  If you’ve been reading for a while, you know how I love a good spicy tea around the holidays.

From the package, Spiced Apple Chai contains black tea, cinnamon bark, ginger root, cardamom, orange peels, cloves, and apple pieces.

Spiced Apple Chai is available in a variety of sizes: sample for $3.00, 3oz for $8.00 and 16oz for $24.00.

When I opened the package I smelled both the sweet apple and the savory spices.  I love a good spiced tea so I had high hopes. The tea itself tasted wonderful – lots of apple cider-like taste, with a heady kick of spices.  I will definitely be adding this to my rotation. It’s a perfect blend of tea, fruit and holiday spice!

The Corner of Knit & Tea: Episode 111, Two steps forward, One step back.

Welcome to episode 111!  This was a long week with lots of ups and downs, and I’m talking about my knitting. Lots of projects on the needles and deadlines are looming.

Please come and join the Ravelry group.

You can also find me on Ravelry as FluffykTwitter, Instagram as Fluffykira, and in my shop The Corner of Knit & Tea.

Tea:

  • Orange Chai Spice mix

Knitting:

Spinning:

Extras

  • The Gift-a-long is back! Knit something for someone else (Christmas gift or otherwise) between November 1st and December 31st and enter it in the FO thread to potentially win prizes. Why not have a chance at prizes for something you’re doing anyway? WIPs count if you do at least some amount of work on them in the time frame specified (sorry just weaving in ends or sewing on buttons doesn’t count!).  Check out the Ravelry group for details!

Drink Me: Adagio, Cranberry

Two weeks ago, I received an email from Adagio Teas advertising a holiday giveaway. I went to the site and sure enough I won 3oz of their Cranberry blend with my next order. I’d been meaning to order more new teas to try, and the holidays are approaching, so I did!

From the package, Cranberry contains black tea, raspberry leaves, natural cranberry flavor and cranberries.

It is available in a variety of sizes: sample for $2.00, 3oz for $7.00 and 1lb for $19.00.

When I first opened the bag I smelled the raspberry leaves most strongly, but also a hint of tangy cranberry towards the end. Once brewed the tea had a very berry aroma.  The tea itself was fairly smooth and strong, with a nice raspberry flavor.  I wish the cranberry flavor were a little stronger, but there is a nice hint of it at the finish.  I’m tempted to brew this one over the holidays, maybe with some mulling spices?

Knit Me: June Cashmere, DK

About a month ago I was contacted by the nice people over at Stitchcraft Marketing with an opportunity to review a skein of June Cashmere yarn.  June Cashmere works with farmers in Kyrgyzstan to ethically source cashmere. The fiber is then spun into yarn in Scotland and then dyed in rich jewel tones in Maine.

June Cashmere offers two weights of yarn: DK and Lace.  I opted for a skein of the DK weight yarn and chose the Scarlet colorway.  The DK yarn comes in 50 gram skeins with 150 yards of 100% pure cashmere.

The yarn arrived packaged beautifully with an 8.5″ x 11″ color booklet full of photographs about how the June Cashmere yarns come to be, as well as a color card (handy for future purchasing decisions).

I knew immediately that I wanted to make a rich luscious cowl out of this yarn.  I selected the Zuzu’s Petals pattern by Carina Spencer.  I did have to make a few modifications for gauge and yardage, but I couldn’t be more pleased with how the cowl turned out.

This yarn was pure joy to knit with.  It was so luscious and soft and the color is very intense.  I had a little trouble photographing the true color because it is so rich and saturated, and looks slightly different in different lights.  It had a lovely hand and I really enjoyed seeing the cowl take shape. After a simple blocking to open up the lace edging, the cowl is so amazingly soft and warm. I plan to give it as a holiday gift, but I’m sorely tempted to keep it for myself.

I will definitely be looking to June Cashmere for future cashmere purchases!

As a bonus for my blog readers, June Cashmere is conducting a drawing for three lucky winners. If you win, you have your choice of the DK or Lace weight in any color.  You can enter by signing up here with your email address.  The contest will be open until midnight on December 19, with winners drawn by June Cashmere on December 20. Good luck!

A special thank you to Stitchcraft Marketing and the folks at June Cashmere  who sent me the yarn (retail: $44.00) for free. I received no other compensation for this review. All opinions and photos are my own.