Designing, Updates, WiP Posts

How are things?

Wow, things sure have changed since my last post in early March! How is everyone doing?

Pretty much all of my 2020 events have been cancelled, which is understandable, but still disappointing. A pretty big percentage of my yearly income is from teaching, so that’s hurt a bit. On the other hand, I’ve had more time to tech edit, and I’ve gained several new clients – which is exciting, and certainly helps to offset some of my lost income from teaching. (If you’re looking for a Tech Editor, I have openings!) 🙂

I’ve still been designing – here’s a sneak peek at a lace shawl that will be in the upcoming issue of Cast On magazine:

This is worked with Greenwood Fiberworks Yakity Yak yarn in the color Cherry Semisolid. I loved working with this yarn! Look for the new issue later in July.

I’m working on revamping my pattern layout and design, and I’m going to try to produce something that is much more accessible for knitters that use page readers and the like. I have a few designs ready or almost ready to release, but they will likely be delayed a short bit while I learn new software and work on revamping the design. But in the end I hope to have something much more useful to more people! I’m always open to suggestions if there is something you think I should be considering.

My patterns are currently for sale mostly on Ravelry, and I know lots of people are having trouble using the new site. Many of my patterns are also for sale on LoveKnitting, so that is an alternative for those of you that understandably want to avoid Ravelry. I’m also looking into alternatives for selling my patterns via other means, so changes may be afoot in my website as well. (I have lots of research going on right now!!)

I’ve also got some new tutorial videos in the works, so keep an eye out for those!

I’ve been doing a little “fun” knitting during Zoom knit groups and the like – here’s a pair of socks that are half done. My favorite method – top down with afterthought heels. I’m not sure what color I’ll do the heels in yet. I have plenty of sock yarn to pick from in my stash for those, though!

I’m available for private or small group knitting lessons via Zoom, so do get in touch if that’s something you’re interested in! You can also buy me a coffee at https://ko-fi.com/hstorta! I appreciate your support immensely.

Until next time, Happy Knitting!!

Designing, FO Posts, Teaching, WiP Posts

FO Friday 7/19/19

Are you registered for Rhinebeck yet? Better hurry up, since lots of classes are already sold out! As of today there is one seat left in my Mosaic Knitting class, and three seats left in my Estonian Decorative Stitches class – my other two classes are sold out!

Registration for SAFF has started as well – I have 9 classes available! Go here to register. (Wow, I’m going to have a busy Fall!)

Will I see you at one or the other Festival?? I look forward to it!

I’ve finished up my current deadline design knitting – look for a new article and a fun pattern from me in the upcoming issue of Cast On magazine. It’s always a relief to have deadline work done (and in time too, lol.)

Guess what! I have a couple Finished Objects to show you today!

I finished my Wonder Woman shawl! Woo Hoo! It still needs to be blocked and the tails woven in, but I’m calling it done.

Pattern: Wonder Woman Wrap by Carissa Browning
Yarn: Malabrigo Yarn Sock in Ravelry Red, Matisse Blue, and Black. Yellow is Wooly Wonka Rhiannon in color Brocade.
Needles: (I don’t remember – I think the needle size called for in the pattern.)
Size: Unblocked, it is about 13 inches deep and 56 inches wide. I anticipate it growing a good bit when I block it.
Started: April 27, 2019
Finished: July 10(ish) 2019
Modifications: I worked the large size, and worked the first two rows of the first yellow block in black. I did the center stripes in black, and worked the last two rows of the final yellow block in black. I worked a few extra rows at the top, maintaining the increases (just because I had lots of yarn left, and I wanted the top block a bit deeper.)

I’m really happy with it, and can’t wait to wear it this Fall! 🙂

I finished up a pair of plain (aka “waiting room”) socks as well:

These are plain stockinette socks, with afterthought heels, using String Theory Colorworks sock yarn in colorway Hippocampus. (Get it? – hippocampus, the memory center of the brain – Finding Dory?) 🙂 I love these and can’t wait to wear them – they are so bright and happy!

I have another pair of plain socks in progress- these going top down 2 at a time:

The yarn is Must Stash yarn in their perfect match sock base – colorway Martian Rainbow. Talk about bright! I love them. I’ll be doing an afterthought heel (and the toes) in a contrasting color (not sure what color yet, maybe my leftover black from the Wonder Woman shawl.) I am almost ready to start the toes on these.

I have one other WiP that I just started – I’m designing a sweater vest for Rhinebeck! This is a Fair Isle vest in a vintage-inspired silhouette. I’ve only just started the colorwork section above the wide ribbing:


I’m hoping to have this done in time to wear it to Rhinebeck, and I’m writing the pattern as I go as well, so hopefully I can also release the pattern around then, too. I do have more deadline design work creeping up on me, but I should have a little bit of down time to work on this before that ramps up.

Anyway, that’s what has been going on with me lately knitting-wise! (Life-wise we’re selling our house and buying a new one, so that’s adding a whole other layer of crazy around here! Life is never boring, that’s for sure!)

Until next time, Happy Knitting!!

WiP Posts

WiP Wednesday 3/28/2019

I’m busy prepping for the Dallas Fort Worth Fiber Festival! (April 4-7th.) One of my classes is sold out, and the other only has a few seats left – and Master Knitter Day is also sold out! (There’s still space in my Tisket Tasket Entrelac Baskets class if you want to add a class to your schedule…) I’m really excited – it should be loads of fun. Who will I see there? I’ll be participating in the stitch marker swap, so if you see me around, stop me and swap with me! Here are the stitch markers I am bringing with me:

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Also, if you stop me and ask about one of my patterns, I will give you a coupon for a free Ravelry download of a pattern of your choice*! I’m only bringing 50 coupons, though, so when I’m out, I’m out!

Ok, let’s get to my WiPs! I am finally blocking my Vitamin D cardigan, because I’m hoping to wear it sometime in Dallas — or at the very least show it to Claudia of Claudia’s Handpaints! (Hopefully the weather is warmer than last year!) It bled like crazy when I soaked it, so I’m hoping the color didn’t fade too badly. We’ll see when it’s dry…

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I finished up my most recent plain socks as well:
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Yarn: Twisted Owl 2-Ply Sock in colorway ‘Happy Birthday to EWE’!
Needles: Size 0
Started: Oct 13, 2018
Finished: Feb 12, 2019

I’ll have to go stash diving to find a skein to start my next plain socks with. Don’t worry, it won’t be hard, I have a lifetime’s worth of single sock skeins to choose from! lol (Sock yarn doesn’t count as stash. That’s what I tell myself, anyway!)

My current WiP is design work, and these are *almost* done. Good thing, since they are due soon! These will be in the next issue of Cast On magazine.

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Once these are done, I have loads of design ideas floating in my head that I want to work on! Sweaters, shawls, and more. I’m not sure which design will win the fight for my attention first, but I’m excited to find out.

I will do my best to post a few times from Dallas! At the very least I will post a recap afterwards.

Until next time, Happy Knitting!

(*Patterns available are my for-sale Ravelry patterns. Patterns for sale elsewhere are not available with this coupon.)

FO Posts, Teaching, WiP Posts

WiP Wednesday, FO, and Reflections

Hi everyone!
I hope 2019 is treating you well so far! I’m getting ready to go teach at a retreat in the mountains – the Kanuga Knitting and Quilting Retreat. I thought I would touch base here before I leave, and I might try to do a post of two while I’m there.

On my needles: I’m still working on my plain socks. They’re plain – and not very exciting, lol. But they make good tv knitting. 🙂

I’m also casting on a new project to take with me tomorrow to the Kanuga retreat. I decided on Persian Dreams blanket by Jenise Hope. I went stash diving for a bunch of different colors of Palette yarn to use – it’ll make a nice thing to work on in fits and spurts! No picture yet – but as soon as I start a hexagon I’ll share my progress.

I do have a FO to show you – I finished my Vitamin D cardigan! It still needs to be blocked, but I went ahead and wove in all the ends. I’ll block it when I get home from the retreat. After I block it I’ll get a picture of me wearing it and I’ll include all of my project notes.

Close up of the back of the neck

Anyway, I’m looking forward to Kanuga! I’ve never been before – it sounds lovely, and I’m excited to meet my students and have a wonderful weekend teaching in the mountains!

On another, more serious note, if you weren’t aware – there have been some important conversations happening over on Ravelry and on Instagram and online about racism in the knitting community. I’m not ready to join in the conversation yet – but I did want to let my readers know that I have been following along, reading/listening, and most importantly – learning. It’s a difficult topic, but an important one, not just for the knitting community. The world is full of a diverse and beautiful mix of people, and we need to be able to peacefully and compassionately exist among all of that beautiful diversity. I don’t have the time to link to resources here right now (I need to pack for my trip!) – but if you do some digging you can find all kinds of great resources. I have just begun working through the “Me and White Supremacy” workbook by Layla F. Saad (I will link to that!) — so I have a ways to go in my voyage, but I am determined to learn and grow. It’s a complicated topic/subject, but a worthwhile one and an important one.

So with that, I will sign off. 🙂

Until next time, Happy Knitting!!

Updates, WiP Posts

Happy New Year!

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season, and I want to wish you all a happy, healthy, wonderful 2019!

My 2018 was pretty good, so I’m hopeful that my 2019 will be even better!

In 2018 I published 11 new patterns – 7 in publications and 4 as self published. As well as converting another 6 patterns into self published designs from previously published. Not too bad! I also taught at Masters Day in Dallas, at Unwind Getaway, and 15 different classes at my ‘home’ LYS, Cheers to Ewe!

I finally joined TNNA, I became a certified Knitting Instructor, I was appointed as a Co-Chair on the Master Hand Knitting Committee, and I became the editor of the K2TOG newsletter. When I spell it all out like that it makes me realize how much I actually accomplished this year!

2019 looks to be just as exciting! I’m teaching at Kanuga in a couple of weeks, and then I’ll be teaching at the Dallas Fort Worth Fiber Festival in April – not only on Masters Day but two other classes as well. This will be my first ‘non-regional’ teaching gig (aside from teaching at Masters Day there last year), and I’m pretty excited about it! I’ll be at Unwind Getaway again (mostly as a participant this time – but I will be doing a little bit of teaching.) And I have class proposals in to several other events throughout the year. (Fingers crossed!) I’m thinking of tackling the TKGA Knitting Judge certification this year, and I want to grow the Tech Editing side of my business as well, in addition to more designing too (of course.)

On the knitting front, I just wrapped up my two pillow designs that will be in the next issue of Cast On magazine – along with the article to go with them. I really need to not commit to designing over the holiday break – I really stressed out this year – there was so much going on! (Which is 90% of why I haven’t posted since Thanksgiving!) But I’ve finished everything ahead of my deadline, so I call that a win! 🙂

I’ve finished one sock and have started the second – these are my plain ‘waiting room’ knitting. Cuff down, short row heel.

I really need to go through my WiP pile and dig some stuff out to finish. My Vitamin D cardi is still sitting near my desk asking to be finished, so I think I may dig that back out and finally finish it soon!

I’m not going to really do any ‘resolutions’ this year, but I did pick a word for my year – this year it is ‘mindful’. I’d like to be more mindful of how I spend my time, and how I spend my money, and what I spend my precious knitting time on. And also work on being mindful of living in the moment. Do you have any resolutions for 2019, or do you also pick a word of the year to focus on? I’d love to know what knitting resolutions you have – drop me a comment with them below!

Until next time – Happy Knitting! Here’s to a wonderful, knitting-filled 2019!