Category Archives: Uncategorized

2016 Knits

As I did last year, I always like to look back at the year and see what I crafted.

This year’s official tally includes:

  • 25 hats (baby and adult included)
  • 10 pairs of socks (mostly adult, but a few for Roxy)
  • 5 baby/kid sweaters
  • 6 shawls
  • 4 cowls
  • 4 toys
  • 2 pairs of slippers
  • 3 pairs of mittens
  • 4 washcloths
  • 5 adult sweaters
  • 2 blankets
  • 1 scarf
  • 10 mug cozies

Many, but not all, of the items are pictured above. I can’t wait to see what 2017 brings!

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

Drink Me: Tea Forté, Sweet Orange Spice

Last week I wrote about my visit to The Perfect Blend Yarn & Tea shop in Saugerties, NY.  While there I picked up a can of Tea Forté in Sweet Orange Spice.

Sweet Orange Spice contains black tea, cinnamon, orange peels, clove buds, natural orange flavors, and natural cinnamon flavor.

I was able to purchase 2.1 oz of Sweet Orange Spice in a beautiful tin for $13.50.  It doesn’t appear that you can order from The Perfect Blend Yarn & Tea shop online, so I include a link to Tea Forté’s Sweet Orange Spice page.

When I opened the canister I could smell the cinnamon and cloves and my mouth watered. I absolutely love spicy teas! Once brewing I could smell a bit of the orange. The taste was wonderful. It was sweet, but not too sweet, and the cinnamon and cloves added a spicy undertone.  This was perfect for a chilly afternoon.

Arttea: Moving House Essentials

I saw this cute illustration on Instagram yesterday. Now if only there were a knitted sock or a garter stitch scarf in there, it would be perfect!

 

Rhinebeck Sweater

For years now I have wanted to go to Rhinebeck, or the New York Sheep & Wool festival held in the Rhinebeck Valley in New York in the fall.  Late last year Ana and (sadly blogless) Beth and I decided that 2016 was the year.

In our flurry of preparations, we have each been talking about knitting a sweater for the event for months now. The “Rhinebeck sweater” is a ritual that many festival attendees create each year.  I spent some time trying to decide what kind of sweater I would want to wear at Rhinebeck (I’m hoping the weather cooperates – some years it is hot and others it is snowy!).  Frankly, I wanted it to be a sweater of the “magnum opus” variety. That is, I wanted to knit something spectacular to wear there.  So I perused Ravelry and came up with something I really thought would be a good fit for me. Cables? Check. Tunic length,  meaning excessive yardage? Check. Overall cozy New England feel? Check. Good for use in Kansas winter? Check.  I selected Dallas by Amy Miller.

Dallas by Amy Miller, pattern available via Ravelry (photo: Amy Miller)

Next it was time to ponder yarn choices.  The pattern called for Plucky Primo Worsted which was a little out of my budget. I debated whether I wanted my yarn to be buttery soft, but with potential for pilling (thank you Yarn Harlot for making me realize I was making yarn noises!), or a bit hardier but eliciting a fewer oohs and ahhs.  I also wanted to buy a color I didn’t already have in my wardrobe.  I ended up deciding to use Cascade 220 in a fabulous green shade called Irlande.

Then I set about swatching for my sweater. I don’t always take the time to swatch carefully before knitting (I know… I know…) but I really wanted this sweater to be a success.  As I knit the swatch, however, I found that I wasn’t completely excited about the sweater.  I don’t know whether it was the seed stitch in the cable, or the suggested positive ease of 4-9 inches, but I wasn’t feeling this sweater.

So I had a little heart to heart with myself (and some text messages with a friend).  I went through the pattern search on Ravelry again.  I looked for my cables, and my extra yardage, and my “New England feel but good for Kansas weather” sweater. And I re-swatched. And I’m happier with my second choice – Ardara by Carol Feller.

Ardara by Carol Feller – pattern available via Ravelry (photo: Carol Feller)

So now I wait for the swatches to dry and I contemplate all the possibilities for my Rhinebeck sweater. I guess I’d better get to knitting pretty soon, right?

 

Knittea: Stuff You Love

Earlier this week a friend posted some delightful looking mugs from Stuff You Love. I had to go check it out for myself.  These are my favorites!

 

Knit Happy Orange Scribbles Mug, 15oz; Stuff You Love, $11.99

Knit a Round Blue Mug, Stuff You Love, $12.99

Knit Happy Purple Retreat Mug, 16oz, Stuff You Love, $12.99

Drink Me: Teapigs, Tung Ting Oolong Tea

I have had several readers ask me to review unblended or unflavored teas recently, so another selection I added to my last Teapigs order was their Tung Ting Oolong Tea.

This blend contains nothing but Tung Ting Oolong tea.

Tung Ting Oolong is available in a sample size for $2.50 and a pack of 15 tea temples for $14.99.

I really like oolong teas in general because they are slightly milder than black teas, but still have that nice tea flavor.  This one smelled fairly complex – it definitely had a bit more of the taste like a green tea and a bit of smokiness too. And yet it was very light and refreshing. I added just a bit of sweetener because I like my teas sweet, but I think it would be delightful plain to. It was the perfect complement to my stir fry lunch, but I think it would be wonderful with a mid-afternoon tea and cookie break as well.

Literary Tea Co.

You might imagine I could get behind a company whose slogan is “Drink more tea, read more books.”  The Literary Tea Co. is a purveyor of organic teas “inspired by literary geniuses.”

Why not try a cup of William Shakespeare Tea, a blend of black tea with orange peels and rose petals?

Or perhaps some Charlotte Bronte tea, organic peppermint with lemon peel and apple?

Check out these and others including writers from J.R.R. Tolkein to Edgar Allan Poe.

Tea & Cake: London Fog Cake with Earl Grey Buttercream

Recently a friend sent me the link to this London Fog Cake with Earl Grey Buttercream on A Beautiful Plate (photo credit goes to her delightful shots). If ever I needed an excuse for tea and cake…

The Corner of Knit & Tea: Episode 89, Break in case of emergency.

Welcome to episode 89!  Lots of progress on my WIPs this week and some spins as well. Also I announce the winner of the Manos Marina giveaway!

Please come and join the Ravelry group.

You can also find me on Ravelry as Fluffyk, Twitter, Instagram and Periscope as Fluffykira, and in my shop The Stashbuckler: Adventures in Yarrrrrrrrn.

Sipping:

Knitting:

Spinning:

Extras:

  • It’s the last week to join us for the Shawl KAL that I am co-hosting with with Anne of the Wooly Wonka Fiber podcast, store, and designs. Come over to either of our groups on Ravelry to check out the details!
  • I’ve started a Corner of Knit & Tea Tour de Fleece team. Are you interest in joining? Please come chat about it in the group.