Tag Archives: handmaiden

1 skein – 2 days – 4 baby hats

Knitting hats for a new born can be challenging. I always make them too big, it’s hard to imagine that their heads are literally  a size of an orange. This is why I made 4, one of them is bound to fit.
4 hats from 1 skein of luxurious yarn –  Handmaiden 4ply cashmere , made in Canada!
Swirl Hat SwirlSuper Stretchy Hat 1 Super Stretchy Hat 2
My first attempt was Tegan (first photo from the top), it turned out great, but I think it might be too big.
Second attempt was Swirl Hat (second photo from the top). It came as a recommendation from a friend, who made it for her newborn daughter. The hat is really stretchy, which means it will probably be worn for at least 4, if not 6 months, but it is definitely too big.
Third attempt was Super Stretchy Hat (last 2 photos). This simple pattern comes in 3 preemie sizes, but it’s pretty stretchy and I think it will be just the right size. I made the medium size and was so happy with it – I knit a second. One can never have enough hats! Even Goldilocks would be happy with this selection.
Now to wait for juniors arrival.
Happy Knitting!!!

Born on the Bayou

I had entertained calling this post “Rock the Casbah” but then I reproached myself.  That’s just a little too easy, isn’t it?

by Handmaiden

3 out of 5 Knitters put Casbah on their Favorite Yarns of 2011 List.
Let me tell you why.  It rocks!
It’s a sock yarn made with merino wool with a dose of cashmere and a dab of nylon (for strength). There are other yarns with this make-up, but this (in my opinion) is the nicest of it’s kind.  There is something extra dreamy about Casbah and the Knit Cafe just got a whole lot richer with it.
Kate was recently in Nova Scotia and was able to take time for an excursion to Fleece Artist/Handmaiden HQ.  She hand picked some stunners and had them sent along by post. The best thing about this shipment of Casbah in comparison with the other orders we have received of the same, is that the colours came in batches this time.  Usually we get one-offs, sometimes twosomes, but now with bunches of 4 to 8 skeins all the same – make yourself a Casbah sweater why don’t ya? Heaven! Casbah is $29 for 325m.

The special ingredient in Fleece Artist/Handmaiden yarn is Nova Scotian bog water.  I was told this by Kate who got the inside scoop whilst gathering wool.

Craftily yours

go goat!

Cashmere goats in Tibet↑
If you want to produce cashmere you will have to work at it.  Get out the big hairbrush and become a goat-stylist. The softest, warmest, and lightest finds will be under the chin and on the belly.  The rest of the hair is just good for  paint brushes. A good week of brushing should do the trick.  Have fun in the mountains!

Hand dyed 100% cashmere from Handmaiden.  One skein is enough for a hat or a neck warmer.  I made the Jacques Cousteau Hat with a skein, just recently.  The hat needed to be just a”hair” shorter to accommodate the yardage.  How much will depend on your tension.  In my case about a half an inch.  This makes very little difference on a hat with this long a brim.  Or ask us at the Knit Cafe about the Devin’s Toque(pictured here), a pattern by Handmaiden made just for this yarn.

Speaking of shearing; here is something closer to straight off the sheep then we are used to seeing it.  Merino hand dyed fleece from the Fleece Artist can be spun into your own yarn or used in felting projects. Needle felters can separate the colours so one bundle becomes a whole pallet. Or try this↓
A beautiful example of a Thrummed Mitten if I ever saw one.  Which I have.  I made a half dozen of these when I first learned how to knit. This insulated mitten originally haling from Newfoundland is fun to make especially when you have colourful thrum (a fancy term for fleece) to work with. That’s what gets my goat!

Craftily yours

waving the flag

Big fat thanks to Jana for lending us her beautiful flag bunting for our window this month.  It is high on the gorgeous scale ! It was a communal effort – friends knit together a banner of love for Jana’s wedding.
We are so well decorated, with our window full of life and our shelves filling plump with yarn.  Here are some that have arrived just this week. 

Maxima by
Manos del Uruguay.
-Single Ply
-Hand spun
-Hand dyed
-Fair Trade
-Brilliant colours
-Soft as the dickens!
-Worsted weight 

Fleece Artist
Silver Merino Roving. 
– for Spinners
-and Felters
-and Thrum Mitten Makers
-dyed by hand
-soft  fleece
– delicious colours

Fleece Artist Trail Sock
-with nylon for strength
Handmaiden Silk Lace
-yum, yum!
Sea Silk
-silk and seacell (seaweed)
-also lace weight
-also amazing
-hand dyed in NS and BC

As I write this more boxes arrive.  To be continued…
Craftily yours