Blog Archives

Episode 163: Hat Trick

Welcome to episode 163! This week I knit a ton of hats, most of which I show you here. I’m still working on my Opal Advent blanket and loving it, and I’ve got 3 more hats to cast on this week!

Please come and join the Ravelry group.

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

Tea:

Knitting:

Spinning:

Advertisements

Drink Me: Capital Teas, Christmas Cookie

Another tea I added to my last order from Capital Teas was Christmas Cookie.

From the website, Christmas Cookie contains organic crystallized ginger (organic cane sugar, organic ginger), organic cinnamon, organic apple pieces, organic ginger, organic star anise, organic licorice root and organic barley malt.

It comes in a variety of sizes: 2oz for $8.95, 40z for $17.90, 8oz for $34.01, 1lb for $64.44 and 2lbs for $121.72.

When I got this one and opened the bag I was so excited because it smelled sweet and spicy. The resulting tea was good, but it lacked the spicy punch I had hoped for. I will try brewing it again stronger. It was, however, a really nice afternoon herbal tea and I enjoyed it with some lemon holiday cookies from a friend.

Crafty: Last gasp of Christmas.

I didn’t grow up celebrating Christmas, which might explain my enthusiasm for it as an adult.  This year I was excited to pull out the tree and the ornaments and make the house festive. As I unpacked the ornaments and stockings, my husband remarked that we didn’t own a tree skirt.  I’ve only put a tree up for a couple of years and hadn’t quite gotten around to a tree skirt.

But then I started to think about it, and my husband suggested I knit one and a crazy project was born.

I chose to knit the Hemlock Ring Blanket which is adapted by Jared Flood from a doily pattern.  He suggests using a rustic bulky wool to upsize the doily into an heirloom blanket.

Hemlock Ring Blanket, pattern & photo by Jared Flood, available for free on Ravelry

The blanket is knit in the round so I immediately had to decide whether I would knit the project back and forth, and create an open seam;  knit it as a whole piece and steek it; or just leave a hole in the center. I opted for the last option.

I also had to decide what yarn to use, particularly since I didn’t have anything in my craft room that would work.  I ultimately went with Lion Brand Lion’s Pride Woolspun, which I’m not sure was the right choice.  While I liked the price point and easy care, I think I should have chosen a yarn that was wool (rather than an acrylic/wool blend) for ease of blocking. When it came down to blocking, I decided to do what’s known as “killing” the acrylic, basically steam blocking it which is irreversible in acrylic yarns.

Anyway, regardless of how I might improve upon this project if I were to tackle it again one day, I am pleased with my efforts. I knit the entire project in less than 2 weeks and created something I’m sure we’ll use for years to come.

Drink Me: Adagio Teas, Candy Apple

The final holiday themed tea I ordered this year was Adagio TeasCandy Apple.  I might add that Adagio had all sorts of holiday teas and I look forward to ordering and review others in the coming years.

Candy Apple includes black tea, apple pieces, caramel flavor and cinnamon bark.

It is available in the following sizes: sample for $2.00, 3oz for $6.00 and 16oz for $19.00.

 

When I opened the package I could smell the caramel. Once I started brewing the tea, a sweet tangy apple scent emerged.  The tea was a good black tea with hints of apple and caramel.   It wasn’t super sweet, but it was pretty tasty. If you love caramel apples in the fall you should give this one a try!

Teaccessories: Teapots for Christmas Eve

If you’re looking to sip tea and enjoy Christmas eve in the glow of your twinkle lights, might I recommend one of these teapots in red?

Christmas Red teapot for the Holidays, Dprintsclayful, $49.98

 

Le Creuset Oolong Tea Kettle, Williams Sonoma, $80.00

 

Santa Teapot, Dprintsclayful, $45.89

 

Curve Teapot, Indigo Tea Company, $27.95

Holiday Crafts

Last week I featured the holiday wreaths, but if you’re looking for something small to knit for the holidays, either as a gift or to jazz up your own home, might I recommend the following?

Snowball Buddies by Susan Claudino, Pattern available on Ravelry, $5.50

Pint Sized Pines by Julie Tarsha, Pattern available on Ravelry, Free!

Sheep Balls by Dona Carruth, Pattern Available on Ravelry, Free!

And my personal favorite, especially for leftover handspun scraps:

Smitten, a Holiday Garland by Emily Ivey, Pattern available at Knitpicks, Free!

Craftea: Christmas Decor

Are you feeling crafty and in need of some holiday decor?

I’ve been drooling over the yarn ball wreaths that are posted on Pinterest and I found this great tutorial at Cherished Bliss:

 

Yarn Ball Wreath DIY Tutorial, Cherished Bliss

A few others that caught my eye…

Jill Bauer, QVC Community

Christmas Yarn Ball Wreath, made by Whimsysworkshop on Etsy

 

Not feeling knitty? How about a tea wreath? You can use this tutorial from Kojo Designs:

DIY Tea Wreath from Kojo Designs

DIY Tea Wreath by Kojo Designs

 

Drink Me: Tea Market, Vintage Christmas

Since this is the month for all things holiday, I was thrilled when I stopped in at Tea Market a few weeks ago and found their winter blends available. I was totally intrigued by “Vintage Christmas.”

While Tea Market doesn’t have an official ingredient label, I know this tea contains chocolate, mint, sprinkles, silver balls and popcorn, among other things.  It is available for $4.65 per ounce.

Opening the package was amazing – if you love chocolate and mint it smells just like chocolatey minty Christmas. I loved the sprinkles and silver balls in the blend, even if they don’t add anything but a bit of pretty sugar. I was most skeptical about the popcorn, but I didn’t even notice it in the tea.  The taste was great – actually very simple and sweet. It would be delightful on a cold evening.

Drink Me: Republic of Tea, Downton Christmas Blend

I found myself at home unexpectedly yesterday afternoon, and what better way to enjoy an afternoon free from work than with a cup of tea? It is finally what I consider Christmas season (I don’t start until after Thanksgiving) and I have a few great holiday teas to share in the upcoming weeks.

This afternoon I decided to start with a cup of Republic of Tea‘s Downton Christmas Blend, in my very own Downton Abbey mug.

From the packaging the blend contains black tea and mulling spices, including cinnamon, cloves, licorice root and apple pieces.

It’s available in a canister of 36 tea bags for $12.00. Be sure you order soon because it’s marked as a limited edition!

 

When I first opened the package I smelled cloves and maybe a bit of orange. The orange isn’t listed in the ingredients, but I wonder if there’s a bit of peel in the mulling spices?  Once brewed I smelled the cinnamon.  This was a great black tea with the extra flavor of the mulling spices. It would be perfect for a cold night in the snow, or an afternoon spent decorating for the holidays. This one is definitely going to be a favorite – so how many tins should I stockpile?