Sunday, September 23, 2018

Knitting a Super Duper Custom Mittens, Hat, and Scarf Set

We love when customers reach out to us with custom ideas. Recently we had a request for a matching hat, scarf, and mittens set. The hat was similar to ones we already had (just a different color), but the scarf was a new design and the mittens needed to be in a size that didn't exactly match up with what we usually make. No problem! We were up to the challenge.

yellow knit hat, mittens, and scarf set

My aunt made the hat and scarf. She has been making these on her Addi knitting machine. It's still very much a handmade process: the yarn has to be fed onto the Addi, the machine is cranked by hand, the finished item has to be removed by hand, and then there is hand stitching to finish the garment.

yellow knit scarf

Marion made the mittens, of course. They were for someone for small hands and so made to custom specifications with a short cuff.

yellow knit mittens

We are always happy to take requests for customer orders. In the event that we can't make something - we'll tell you. But in most cases we are able to work with a customer's specifications. Customer orders take anywhere from 2 weeks to 2 months to make and deliver. Timing depends on the season and how many other custom orders we've got in the queue.

yellow knit hat, mittens, and scarf set

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Sunday, September 9, 2018

Knitted Items at the County Fair - 2018 Edition

This year marked my fourth year entering handmade items in the county fair and the second year of entering some items for Marion. It's always exciting to see if we win any ribbons and to find out what comments the judges leave for our items.

Knitted Baby Sweater

Marion's baby sweater took first place! She recently gave me this vintage cardigan to list on our Etsy shop. It's yellow with an extra special white detail along the top. She's been knitting baby sweater sets in this pattern for more than 70 years. The judge's note? "Perfect."

hand knitted baby sweater

Knitted Hat

Marion's baby bonnet is knitted to match the sweater set, although I entered a plain white one that didn't match the yellow sweater. It won second place!

knitted baby bonnet

Knitted Baby Booties

These booties are typically part of the sweater and bonnet set. They won second place.

knitted baby booties


My super soft and textured purple cowl received a second place ribbon. I wasn't sure how it'd do since it's not a traditional scarf. I'm glad the judges liked it as much as I do!

textured purple cowl

Children's Mittens

I made a last-minute decision to enter a pair of our thumbless mini mittens instead of a pair of kids' mittens like I usually do. It turned out to be the right decision! My mini mittens took first place in this class.

knitted mini mittens

Interested in trying to make a pair of these yourself? The pattern is on Ravelry and Etsy!

4-Needle Mittens

This class was a head-to-head competition for us. I entered a pair of mittens that Marion made as well as a pair I've been working on this summer. Marion's were made from Caron Simply Soft Party in Fuchsia Sparkle and I used an alpaca fiber. I knitted the thumbs onto my mittens the night before entries had to be dropped off. They were a bit small but I didn't have time to do them over.

Marion, the original mitten maker, won the class! My mittens were right behind in second place. It was the perfect way to close out the fair and the summer.

knitted mittens

knitted mittens

More fun at the fair: 2017 | 2016 | 2015

Sunday, August 26, 2018

Visiting the Green Mountain Spinnery in Putney, VT

When Basketville was located in the Arlington, VT area I used to make annual trips to see what they had in store. Then the place closed down. I was exciting to discover this year that they're still open, in Putney, VT.

We planned a day trip to the area for some scenic views, basket shopping, and antiquing. When I Googled to see what else Putney had to offer, I discovered Green Mountain Spinnery, a yarn shop. That was the perfect addition to our little road trip! 

green mountain spinnery

Green Mountain Spinnery is located right off I-91. I looked around the corner at the end of the exit ramp and there it was! 

green mountain spinnery

They make and dye their own yarn right at the facility. I peeked through the doorway from the shop to see what was in process that day. 

green mountain spinnery green mountain spinnery

The shop is small but packed full of different types of fibers in a rainbow of colors. It was tough to choose, but I settled on two skeins of their Alpaca Elegance; one in a grayish purple and the other a dark green. This fiber is a 2-ply DK weight made of 50% alpaca from New England and 50% wool from Targhee (a cross between Rambouillet and Columbia sourced from herds along the Front Range of the Rockies).

alpaca elegance yarn from green mountain spinnery

I was so excited to get into the store that I didn't notice the beautiful display in the entrance. Look at all of those pompoms! This pompom make was definitely impressed. 

green mountain spinnery

I can't wait to make something from this yarn! And I have a feeling I'll be heading back for more...