June Inspiration : A Dogwood Winter

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This month’s photo inspiration comes from Suzanne of Owensboro, Kentucky. This photo was taken at her sister’s house, just down the road from Suzanne. She wrote to us that they were experiencing a Dogwood Winter. As you can see the fireplace is in use on this particular spring day. I had to look up the definition of a Dogwood Winter. Which is when in late spring … a freak cold snap hits and reminds you that winter only ended a few weeks ago. Before modern calendars and the Farmer’s Almanac, our ancestors relied on the signs of nature around them for indications of the different season beginning and ending. Dogwood Winter usually falls during late April or early May, right around the time dogwood trees start to bloom. I’m not sure why I have never heard this expression before Suzanne’s email; maybe it is because I am a Texan and we hardly experience any sort of winter weather.

There are a couple of reasons Suzanne’s photograph was chosen for this month’s inspiration–first, pink and green is one of my favorite color combinations, and the pinks in these dogwood blooms are amazing. Secondly, there is the thought of an unexpected cold snap in the middle of the spring that to a Texan sounds wonderful. Where I live temperatures in late spring are quite often in the upper 90s, pushing in on that all too familiar 100 to 110 degree weather we have all summer long. And we Texans have a lloooonnnnggg summer. Thank you Suzanne for sharing. We will be sending her a skein of the yarn inspired by her photo, which we are calling Dogwood.

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Dogwood

The majority of the yarns we dye are created with the immersion method but we decided to try hand painting the yarn for our Dogwood colorway. We used 20 oz plastic soda bottles in which we drilled a hole in the caps to apply the dye solution. This method gave us more control over where we place the dye as compared to immersion method we most often use. But not quite as much control over dye placement as we use in our self-striping yarn, where every 4 yards is marked for a color change. We are VERY pleased with the results. We also hand painted our Painted Lady colorway. The colors reminded me of a saloon girl costume I once made. The petticoat was a collection of red and purple ruffles trimmed in gold. That was a fun costume to make then and this was a fun yarn to make now! I am sure Kitman and I will be creating many more hand painted colorways.

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Painted Lady

  

Happy knitting and crocheting,

Diana Story and Kitman Figureoa

Tumbleweed Yarn

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Grandma

I love being a grandma! Even though I cannot believe I am old enough to be one. Aging is funny the way it creeps up on you. One day your eyesight is a little blurry and you seem to find it harder to get up from a seated position on the floor in a fluid graceful movement. I’m not sure I was ever able to really do that but you know what I mean. Despite the slowing down of my body, I have found the benefits of aging out weight the disadvantages. And at the top of the benefits’ list is being a grandmother! My two beautiful granddaughters, Isabella and Juliana, have been a joy. When my older granddaughter Isabella was born I wondered what kind of grandmother I would be? What was my role? But it all seemed to come so naturally. Everything they do seems so cute and funny to me. For example, lunch time with spaghetti. Juliana seems to get more on herself and the floor then in her tummy. HA!

juliana

I remember the same sort of things being done by my own children– but not being so cute and funny to me at the time.  (Benefit of aging—you seem to have more patience).  And because of my new business and the quest to call myself a knitter, I did a very grandmotherly thing. I knitted for my sweet granddaughters.  Because I have just begun to learn to knit, I missed the opportunity to knit booties and I am not yet skilled enough to knit a full-fledged garment. So I decided to knit them a toy.

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These little monsters are from designer Rebecca Danger.  I read a great article about her in the Spring/Summer issue of Vogue knitting magazine.  My younger granddaughter, Juliana who is 18 months old, was initially startled by her mama and baby monster but after big sister Isabella explained that these were nice monsters like the ones on Monster’s Inc. she now finds her duo cute and cuddly.   Isabella wondered why I gave them moustaches; I had to explain they were teeth.  You see how cute and funny they are?  I love being a grandma.

 My next knitting project will include learning to cable.  I have a scarf in mind and a friend I will be knitting it for.  I hope it turns out well.  My friend dresses very fashionably and I really want him to actually wear the scarf.  As always Kitman and I are working in the studio to create more colors to add to our inventory.  If you would like to see all the colors we have to offer please visit our Etsy store.

Toro

Toro

Indigo

Indigo

Glo Worm

Glo Worm

Outlaw

Outlaw

Campfire

Campfire

Campfire

Campfire