Monday, May 30, 2011

Gratitude List #2

I heart 3-day weekends.  I hope you all had a wonderful weekend.  I have a lot to be grateful for this past week (I know, technically it is Monday, but the long weekend is making me think the week is just wrapping up).

Here is my Things I'm Grateful For List #2

11. 3-day weekends.

12. Freshly groomed doggies.



13. Fresh lettuce at the Farmer's Market, which translates to yummy salads all week long.


14. Hearing La Vie En Rose on a Saturday morning.


15. Reading what other people are grateful, here,  and here.

16. Cowgirl Creamery Mt. Tam cheese.  I intended to take a picture, but um...

17.  Raspberry Buttermilk Cake.


18. That my mom is willing to walk around on rocks and sand for a sock photo shoot. Thanks mom.

Capitola 17
Capitola Socks, coming soon from Sunshine Yarns

19. Celia's speedy test knitting skills to make this photo shoot possible.

20. New project bags that were not only on sale, but match my new project perfectly!


21. Snuggles with my best friend's 7-month old baby, who was home visiting this weekend.

22. Catching up with old friends.

23. Learning to lever knit. Thank you Steph! Most of last year I really, really tried to stick it out and switch over to lever knitting. I had taken Stephanie's Knitting for Speed and Efficiency class twice and wanted to put in a good effort try!  I still don't have it down perfectly, but I do think I knit more efficiently and I also don't despise the purl stitch anymore.  Which is how this on Saturday afternoon, turned into a finished scarf today.


24.  Tosh Merino Light. I bought this last month at Jimmy Beans Wool, and love it!!

25. Uber-talented friends.  I am so blessed.


What are you grateful for this week? Please share!

Happy Knitting!
xoxo Irishgirlieknits

Friday, May 27, 2011

{this moment}

{this moment} A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. If you're inspired to do the same, visit SouleMama leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see.

Thank you for helping me raise $440 for the Walk Now for Autism Speaks Event! It was an awesome even this past weekend!

Happy Friday!
xoxo Irishgirlieknits

Wednesday, May 25, 2011


Um.  There has been some retail therapy going on in these here parts.  Don't worry.  Not yarn.  But knitting stuff that I still want to share with you :)

This past weekend I visited a new yarn store in Aptos, Yarns by the Sea.

Yarns by the sea

It was a gorgeous, spacious store with a wide range of yarns.  So friendly too, I wish I would have had more time to just hang out and knit a bit.  And look what I saw!  A sample of My Kind of Saturday in Kollage Yarns Riveting :)  Pretty fun!


The store also had exactly what I was looking for....Knitters' Blocks for blocking!  I think this is a sign that there are more lacy shawlettes in my future :)


Then yesterday, something very special arrived in the mail.  Stormy is a good friend from Sock Camp and designs simply stunning darning eggs that are available in her etsy store, That Darn Egg Art.  Check out some of the gorgeous eggs she has designed. I was so excited that she did a custom darning egg for me.



As she says, darning eggs are not just for mending, they can also be a work of ART!  I have to agree!  I'm in love with it!


Isn't it perfect?!  Be sure to contact Stormy if you are interested in these stunning works of art!

I also have been doing a bit of pattern excited to pre-order Kate Oates', of TotToppers, new book, Math for Hats. And then I also ordered Ysolda's new book, Little Red in the City. Cria is just about the cutest sweater ever.  Ok, and as soon as my paypal balance has a little bit more in it, I'm signing up for the pattern portion of Anne Hanson's Fall in Full Color Club.  How can I not??!

One more purchase.  This adorable project bag should be arriving soon.  I admit a problem when it comes to project bags.  Hello, my name is Irishgirlieknits....

Oh, and this pretty blue thing.  Well, just more stuff coming  your way hopefully in the next few weeks!

Something Plucky

Bring on summer!

Any stuff catching your eye lately?  Not that there is any paypal money left (hehehe), but I can add it to the wishlist :)

Happy Shopping, I mean Knitting!
xoxo Irishgirlieknits

Sunday, May 22, 2011


distraction: a thing that prevents someone from giving full attention to something else

This arrived in my mail last week.


It was an evil attempt by Erica to distract me.  Shiny, brand-spankin' new, never seen before, not even yet listed in Raverly new yarn (as soon as it is listed, I'll let you know, promise.)  Kollage Yarns has a gorgeous new yarn.... Lofty.

So very, very, very lofty. And lovely.


In my absolute favorite color.  I think that was the evil part.  She knows me too well!  How can one not cast on with this immediately?!


Doesn't Erica know I have designs I have to knit?  Patterns to finish writing?  Why, oh, why does she attempt to distract me?!  All I want to do is knit this stuff up.  It would make a gorgeous Winter Wonder.  Or Snowboarder Hat that Rocks.  Or. or. many potentials!  100% Merino Wool, with a suggested gauge of 14 stitches = 4" on US 10.5 (6.5mm), you KNOW this would knit up so quickly.  A cabled hat is calling its name.  I know it.  Erica knows it.  Evil temptress. And in my favorite jewel-toned color, Seaport. 

But I resisted.  If only because I have a deadline looming. I'm not sure how much longer I can resist though.


I did finish the second Sunshine Yarns sock.

Any yarn or pattern distractions for you guys this past weekend?  If you need additional distractions, I love the Ravelry Roundup posts that have been happening on French Press Knits.  Although I don't want to be distracted more, I would love to hear what has been catching your eyes tell!

Happy Distraction-Free Knitting!!
xoxo Irishgirlieknits

Friday, May 20, 2011

{this moment}

{this moment} A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. If you're inspired to do the same, visit SouleMama leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see.

Happy Friday!
xoxo Irishgirlieknits

p.s. Jen, you know this one is for you, right?!

Thursday, May 19, 2011


Happy almost just about Friday!  Thank you guys for your super supportive comments on Tuesday's post.  I've been doing a bit of thinking lately, and I think I'm going to try a bit more to focus on the positive things in my life.  As Stacey suggested, maybe starting a gratitude journal.  I really enjoy reading Tammy's 1300 things to be grateful for list, and it led me to Violet's blog, who inspired Tammy.  Although I'm not quite ready to jump right in and commit to a list of 25 things each week, I think I'm going to do some modified version.  I'll give it a try.

Things I am grateful for this week

1. Being able to stop by the farmer's market today after work.  I bought Ranier cherries! Yum!

2. My friends suggesting we see Bridesmaids after knit nite on Tuesday (our knit nite meets at a restaurant a few doors down from the movie theater).

3. Going to see Bridesmaids and laughing so much for two hours.  Pretty fabulous movie.  Go see it with your girlfriends this weekend.

4.  Casting on a sock project with a sock yarn I haven't tried before, and loving every second of it.

5. Sunny days. Today was one of those!  Especially delightful since it was raining??!?!  a few days ago.

6.  Having enough daylight when I came home from work to take a picture of that sock project I'm loving.


7.  Raising $420 for this weekend's Walk Now for Autism Event!  Thank you all for purchasing my Walk Now pattern and showing your support.

8. That tomorrow is Friday and I have a fabulous weekend planned.

9. The ability to give away pattern prizes!!  Some awesome blog suggestions....thank you!! Five lucky winners of a copy of Sweet Home are....

Renee Ann

Shoot me an email at irishgirlieknits AT gmail DOT com and I'll email you the pattern pdf.  Congrats!!

10.  Making the time to blog tonight. 

Anyone want to join me?  What are you grateful for this week?

Happy Knitting!
xoxo Irishgirlieknits

Tuesday, May 17, 2011


I'm not sure if balance is the exact word I'm looking for, but for now, it will do.  Lately, I'm feeling like I'm trying to figure out how to balance everything, find time for everything, and still relax and slow down and take things in stride.  Make time for the little things that I so love to do.  Spend more time with family and friends.  Travel more.  Read more. Knit more.  Work productively (note, not more....just productively!).  Finding that happy medium.  You know what I mean?

Stephanie called it juggling.  Just today Gigi talked about a simpler life and unplugging a bit.  I'm sure Oprah has a word for it too.

I tried to do that this weekend with the farmer's market, knitting, hanging with the doggies.  Spending time with family.

Yesterday I went to the gym.  Not necessarily the fun type of balance, but making time for the gym and working out and being healthy tells me I'm taking the time to do the things I want to do.  Even if they make my thighs hurt alot the next day.

I read a few new blogs.  Thank you all for the suggestions.  (Keep them coming by the way.  I'll end the contest in the next day or two!)

Then I knit on my new design.  I heart Plucky Primo!  Seriously love this. 

Matchy-matchy.  I know. I can't help it.  My new design journal from Punk Rawk Purl!

I tried to balance my knitting projects just a bit too.  I resisted winding and casting this on immediately, despite wanting to!  I'm so close to finishing the infinity scarf, that I'll wind the yarn tonight.


Sunshine Yarns, Classic Sock.  Lovely. Lovely.

And I'm balancing writing this post and knit-nite.  I wanted to do both tonight, but also want to relax when I come home and just knit.  Read. Maybe go to bed early.  So I'm writing this post, keeping it short and sweet, and heading to knit nite, albeit late.

I'm trying to find that balance. Zen. Happy Place. Any tips you guys want to share?  I'm pretty sure I'm not the only one feeling this way, right?

Off to knit nite.

Happy Knitting!
xoxo Irishgirlieknits

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Weekend Wrap-Up!

Oh, it is Sunday afternoon already, and although this weekend has zoomed by, I feel like I was able to get lots accomplished this weekend!  I feel like I have so much to catch you all up on, so here goes.  A bit of my weekend, a bit of an update, and heck, a contest if you make it through the end of the post.

1. New designs in the works!


An infinity scarf design featuring The Plucky Knitter Primo.  I'm loving this one!!  Oh, and yes, it matches my new project bag perfectly. 

Sunshine Luxury Sock

I showed you a peek at my new design for Sunshine Yarns on Friday, but thought you'd enjoy a close-up.  I'm on to sock two now, and since this is a sportweight yarn, Luxury Sport, it is knitting up quickly.  And I"ll admit, this yarn is a bit like crack.  Seriously.  Love love love.  I keep looking at the website to see what other colors I would knit this with and try really hard not to click order.

2. Another pattern has been reformatted.  Here is Winter Wonder. It's never too soon to start thinking holiday knitting.


On all of my new patterns I'm now featuring suggested yarns instead of limiting the pattern to just the one or two yarns I used to design it with. There are so many lovely yarns out there that would often work. For this pattern, in addition to the Malabrigo Rios, Kollage Yarns Fantastic and The Plucky Knitter MCN Lite, I've added a few other yarns to tempt you with: The Plucky Knitter Primo Worsted, Miss Babs Yowza, Blue Moon Fiber Arts Gaea, A Verb for Keeping Warm Toasted.

Winter Wonder is also now featured on Malabrigo Yarns website here! So cool!  And once again, Knitterella has done an amazing job with my pattern layout!  If you need any graphic design work, she is fabulous!

3.  Doggies!! Lot's of snuggle time this weekend with Bailey and Puddy!

Hi Bailey!

Hi Puddy!

How can I resist those eyes?!!?!

4. Walk Now for Autism Speaks is just a week away, and so far we've raised $340 from the sales of my Walk Now pattern.  Thank you all so much!  I'd love to get to $400 by the time of the walk next weekend!

5.  A bit of retail therapy arrived on Friday.  A new project bag from Knitterella!


Love!! Seriously cute! She has a few other designs here!

6. I spent a bit of timing updating things in our Irish Girlie Knits group over on Ravelry.  Can you believe we're up to 287 members!!!  So fun!   Our Sweet Home KAL is coming to a close at the end of the month and I just posted our lovely prizes from Kollage Yarns and Dubai Knits.  It's not too late to join the KAL here.

7.  Cotty was picked for the Year of Stash Socks June KAL!  Yay!!  I'm doing a coupon code for 20% off Cotty from now until May 31st with the coupon code: yoss     Come join the fun!

8. I've also spent some time this weekend adding new blogs to my Google Reader.  When bloglines went away, my blog reading dropped a bit.  But now that I've figured things out with Google Reader and Flipboard on my iPad, I'm back in blog reading mode!  I've discovered a few new non-knitting ones that I'm enjoying too ( Crafting an MBA, Single Dad Laughing).

So for today's contest, leave me some fun blog recommendations to add to my google reader!  If you have a blog, let me know too!  Knitting blogs, foodie blogs, other blogs I should be reading....let me know! And then from the list of comments I'll pick 5 winners to receive a copy of my Sweet Home PatternETA:  You guys rock the baking blogs (already added a few!).  Keep them coming, but for the sake of my tummy, if you have any healthy eating/cooking blogs to recommend I'd love those too :)

ETA: Contest closed.  Check for winners here.

Phew! I think we're all caught up on my end!  So how was your weekend?  Catch me up :)

Happy Knitting!
xoxo Irishgirlieknits

Friday, May 13, 2011

{this moment} and {that moment}

{this moment} A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. If you're inspired to do the same, visit SouleMama leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see.

New design coming soon, featuring Sunshine Yarns Luxury Sport, colorway Desert Classic

And something special today, because it is May 13th, what would have been Cotty's 93rd birthday.

{that moment} Not a Friday ritual. A few photos - no words - capturing a moment from the past. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see.


 Cotty and Bailey 

Special happy birthday thoughts for Cotty today!  My first (and most popular!) sock pattern was named after my great-aunt Cotty, so I thought it would be nice to do something special today.  All of my individual Ravelry Store Patterns will be 20% off today with the coupon code:  cotty

It has been four years since Cotty passed away, and although I still miss her very much, I know she's looking down on me!  

Happy Friday!
xoxo Irishgirlieknits

Monday, May 9, 2011

More Sunshine


Look what was waiting for me when I came home from work today!  My sister rocks!  A little more sunshine to get through a Monday.

And Gaylen blogged about her Maryanne Socks that she test knit.  She claims they are a fast knit. Although they feature an easy-to-memorize lace pattern, I think it is Gaylen that is the fast knitter.  She whipped up a pair of socks while I was cramming to finish knitting the second! Thanks again G!!

Another bit of sunshine....if you haven't seen it already, Sweet Home has a new pattern layout now too!  Perfect timing as we have a few weeks left of our Sweet Home KAL over in our IGK Ravelry Group.  It's not too late to join!  Plus, I'll be announcing our prizes soon (we have some awesome donors!)!


Special thanks once again to my fabulous graphic designer, Jill Zielinski, aka Knitterella.  She did another fabulous job with the layout.  If you are looking for a graphic designer, I highly recommend Jill!

As I continue to reformat some of my patterns (and design new ones!), I'm going to need a few more test knitters (e.g., a few new designs in the works for socks, scarves, shawlettes) and sample knitters (e.g., for existing patterns that we are reshooting the photos for such as Love Letters, Queen Alice).  If you'd like to be added to my list, please send me an email at irishgirlieknits AT gmail DOT com  I've got a few specific projects that I'll need in the next month or two, so let me know what you might be interested in.  I'll also start a thread in the ravelry group in the next day or two, just wanted to give you guys a heads up!  Thank you all so much!

Now, if I can get to knit night tomorrow night, well, that will be even more sunshine!  Here's hoping!

Happy Knitting!
xoxo Irishgirlieknits

Little Bits of Sunshine

Sometimes you have one of those weeks.  One of those weeks that tries to knock you down with week-long-sinus/head pain.  Or drama.  Or tears.  Or tons of work.  One of those weeks, that despite trying to knock you down, picks you up with those simple things that remind you of how blessed you are, those moments that make you smile despite the icky pain, those little bits of sunshine.

As Sunday turns into Monday, with a fresh new week ahead, I thought I'd share my little bits of sunshine from last week.

Freshly wound skeins. A cheery new project bag. A few moments to sit by the pool while one little person is quite happy that the warm weather is here for evening swims. Thoughts of actually feeling well enough to possibly swim next week.

The first attempt to knit in over a week. Swatching. Plucky Knitter Primo. New design ideas.

Driving to work, trying not to cry from the pain in my head, telling myself I had just one meeting I had to get myself to, and then receiving the messages from my friends telling me that my class for sock summit was sold out.  A very exciting bit of sunshine.

Friends who know when you need a drink, and make a really yummy one too.  

Knowing you are going to be sitting, laughing, crying, and knitting with friends and this view for the rest of the day and no where else to go.

No where else to go because this is dinner.

And this is dessert. Friends that don't care that you had two pieces.

Yarn that is practically so squooshy soft that it knits itself. Cashmere. New sock ideas. Yummy yummy yarn. The ocean. 

So what little bits of sunshine have been filling your days?
Happy belated Mother's Day too!  Here's to a new week filled with more little bits of sunshine! 
Happy Knitting!
xoxo Irishgirlieknits

Friday, May 6, 2011

{this moment}

{this moment} A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. If you're inspired to do the same, visit SouleMama leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see.

Farmers market!

Happy Friday!
xoxo Irishgirlieknits

Monday, May 2, 2011


I am so excited to share my new design with you.  Miss Babs and I collaborated to bring you this  pattern and it will be featured in her booth this coming weekend at Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival!



My mom, Maryanne. Loving, beautiful, strong, joyful, elegant.


With these socks I tried to capture what I love so much about my mother, from the beautiful lace, to the strong, elegant lines that form as the lace transitions to the toes.



Perfectly paired with Miss Babs' Windsor Handpainted Sock Yarn, in a colorway aptly named Forever.


I love you mom, forever.

Pattern:  Maryanne 
Notes: Instructions are written for a cuff-down sock.  Charts are provided on the last page.

Yarn: 350-380 yards of fingering sock yarn such as Miss Babs Windsor Hand-
Painted Sock Yarn

Materials: US 1.5 (2.5mm) needles or size needed to obtain gauge, 
DPNs or circular needles, stitch markers, tapestry needle

Gauge: 36 sts and 36 rows = 4" over stockinette stitch

Sizes: adult women's medium (large)
Finished measurements: 7" (7¾") unstretched (up to 8½" (9¼") slightly stretched) foot circumference; 
6¼" (5¼”) ~leg length

A special thanks to Miss Babs for collaborating on this project with me.  I'm so excited that she is my first official wholesale account!  If you'll be attending Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival this weekend, please stop by her booth to check out the pattern and her gorgeous yarns!

Once again, my fabulous test knitter, Gaylen did an amazing job under very, very tight deadlines!  What would I do without you G! Thank you!

Another thank you to my amazing graphic designer, Jill Zielinski, aka Knitterella, for her asssistance with the pattern layout!  She continues to make my job so much easier!  Look for more reformatted patterns from IGK soon!


And thank you mom!

Happy Knitting!
xoxo Irishgirlieknits