Friday, March 28, 2014

Classes for Spring 2014

Class Schedule Spring 2014

Spring is for shawls and cute socks for those nights which still have a little chill in the air
And oh, of course, egg cozies.

These are individual classes held every Saturday morning from 10:30-11:30 am. 
The skill level for these classes is beginner/ intermediate.  Sign up quickly, classes are limited to four participants.

Saturday 4.5.  Spice Route Shawl.  This is a simple tri-angular shawl done in a Aran or Worsted weight yarn. If you have never knitted a shawl before, this one gives you a good understanding of the construction.  You will want to make more than one it is so pretty and quick to make.           This class is $30 for 1-2 and $25 for 3-4 participants

Saturday 4.12.  Bunny Egg Cozies  These egg cozies in fingering weight yarn knit up quickly just in time for Easter
Saturday 4.19. Venomous Tentacula.  This shawl is constructed sideways in a fingering weight yarn.  Depending on desired finished size you will need one or two skeins of Araucania Nuble or a similar yarn.

The following three classes on sock knitting can be taken as individual classes or sign up for all three at a 10% discount
Each one of these classes are $30 for 1-2 and $25 for 3-4 participants
·         Saturday 4.26. Judy’s magic cast-on This is a favorite cast on for toe-up socks two at a time or individual.  You can use any sock weight yarn.

·         Saturday 5.3.  Fish Lips Kiss Heel  This is a simple and well-fitting heel construction everyone seems to be talking about.

·         Saturday 5.10. Jenny’s stretchy bind off  A good and popular bind off for your toe-up socks

Saturday 5.17. Aurita  Continuing in our shawl series; this one is constructed with short rows which give it a crescent shape.  You will need 400 yards of fingering or sock yarn.

Saturday 5.24. Summer Flies. This is a half circle shawl with a lace pattern all over.  It is
worked up in a worsted weight yarn.  May I suggest Cascade cotton, Madeline Tosh Vintage or Shibui Heichi.  You will need 380 yards and US# 8 needles.

Tuesday 4.22. - Tuesday 5.13. (four weeks) 1:30-2:30pm Beginners knitting class

All Saturday classes are $35 for the instructions for one or two participants, $30 for three or four participants.
This includes the pattern which will be purchased under your name at the time of sign-up and e-mailed to you prior to the class.

The Tuesday class for beginners is $95 for one or two participants, $75 for three or four participants.
Materials are extra and you are advised to come ½ early to purchase them.
Classes are limited to four participants.

Please e-mail me to sign up and also with special requests for classes you would like to see offered.

Private lessons
The  cost for private lessons at The Knitting Garage at AL Stickle is $35/ hour.
 For private lessons held at your convenience call or e-mail to schedule an appointment.

Knitting classes and Private Instructions at A.L.Stickles in Rhinebeck 
By Doris Formby (

Thursday, March 27, 2014

What's on my needles (week 10)


Before I tell you about my wip's (works in progress) I want to let you know about some of my designs.

A few weeks ago I received a message from the yarn company "Lantern Moon" asking me if I would mind if they used my pattern "Candle Flame Scarf" for a sample showcasing their new line of Indochine Yarn, a 100% Silk yarn in DK weight. I told them to go ahead; after all it is a free pattern available on this blog, on ravelry and on
A few days ago I received this feed-back:

"Hi Doris
We took the Candle Flame Scarf knit in Lantern Moon Indochine yarn to VK Live in Seattle and people liked it - so thank you very much for the beautiful design and allowing us to use it.
I am dropping 2 skeins in the mail today for you.
We will be going to TNNA in May and will have the Candle Flame in our boot. If you are inspired to do another pattern we would be happy to show it in the boot and link to your site.
Hopefully it is as beautiful in your part of the world as it is here today. Blue skies, white mountains and pink cherry blossoms."

I am so inspired by this that I had to share :)
Here are pictures of their sample and of the yarn I received in the mail:


I finally finished the pattern "OWL'S C-OWL" (click on the link to check it out on ravelry) and I am VERY pleased with it.  I thought that since I am finishing it so late in the Season I would not have much chance to wear it till next winter, but I have been wearing it quite a bit.  Not that I was asking for the cold weather, no, you cannot blame me for that.
I thought back and forth how much to sell it for and decided on $5; a lot of work went into it and I have seen simpler patterns sold for more.
It is geared to the intermediate knitter or the beginning knitter who wants to learn  a new stitch and technique.  If you decide to buy it, you can simply click on the button below or buy it through my ravelry store.
Here are some pictures:

buy now

Now without further ado let me tell you what is on my needles:

At The Knitting Garage at AL STICKLE

I am working in the Araucania Nuble, a truly nice to the touch and budget-friendly Merino and Silk blend yarn.  I was hoping to have the Venomous Tentacula store sample finished by this weekend to show off the yarn during the Hudson Valley Yarn crawl, but I am only about half way done.  Still, I will display it this weekend for all to see how beautifully this yarn knits up.

We have been making some nice goodie bags for the yarn crawlers, so, come and make the Knitting Garage one of your first stops. :)

NEWS-update:  All Madeline Tosh and all Shibui yarns will be on sale for 15% off this Saturday and Sunday!!  A really great deal for some awesome yarns!

At Home

Tony's "Lucky Socks" are slowly getting done and Sascha's baby's baby blanket "Fortuna Fan's Baby blanket" is about half way finished.

I extended most of my energy into the cowl and writing out a class schedule for this Spring which I will post in a separate post.
AND (one more reason why I have not knitted so much) while my husband is visiting with his Mom I have been doing a lot of tidying up to the point of moving furniture around and switching rooms with the help of my son Matthew :) The good news to that is that I will have all my knitting stuff in one place and Tony will have all his fishing stuff in one place and Matthew will have a bigger bedroom!

Friday, March 21, 2014

What's on my needles (week 9)

First of all my apologies for posting later in the week than usual, but I was very busy yesterday with my new pattern.  For five hours (!) I wrote, test knitted, wrote more and double checked.  I am now done with a rough draft which I will still need to proof read and add pictures to.
I also woke up with an idea of adding something  to the finished cowl :)

At the knitting garage at AL Stickle

The new space is awesome.  We have more room for classes and lessons and -not to forget- YARN!

Remember next weekend , March 29-30 , is the Hudson Valley Yarn Crawl.  The perfect time to check out the new space if you need an excuse ;) (click on the link for more information)

I will have a new class schedule out before then; promise!
Remember that private lessons, scheduled to suit you, are ongoing.

Meanwhile here is another finished project from the cabled headband class I gave a couple of weeks ago:
Liz finished the headband and her daughter modeled it.  It goes so perfectly well with her eyes that Liz may just have to make another headband :)

My WIP (work in progress) store sample, the Venomous Tentacula, is slowly growing.  It is a simple knit and shows off the yarn beautifully.

At Home

Lucky Socks

My husband's socks are on the back-burner; I just have to finish the cuff, but it is that boring phase of endless repetition and he does like a long cuff so I will just keep going until I run out of yarn.
He is leaving today to visit with his Mom for a couple of weeks and I know I will have the socks done by the time he gets back.  They will be a nice welcome home item.

Fortuna Fan's Baby Blanket

I started a baby blanket for my sister's younger son.  He and his wife are expecting their first child this August; a boy.  They asked for red and white as the colors.  They are the colors of Fortuna Duesseldorf, the soccer team they support.
I fretted about the color choice quite a bit because to me that seems to be the worst color combination with the red possibly bleeding into the white.  But I am now happily knitting a diagonal blanket in Cascade Aran.


And then there is the cowl; for that see my notes above. :)

Monday, March 17, 2014

About spinning, knitting and the cosmos

Thank you to Carolina who found this amazing video

I like that in this video Renate Hiller tries to link the movement of spinning to something very primal , the spiral found embedded in the cosmos and our own DNA.  And I like that she points out how far we have removed ourselves from the original forms of things surrounding us and thus have lost our own basic original selves and that we need to re-introduce the hands-on learning experiences to children.

Click to open the link:

Thursday, March 13, 2014

What's on my needles (week 8)

At The Knitting Garage at AL Stickle

Change is in the air

 Here are some pictures of phase 1 of the changes at the shop.
I love how this lay-out opens up the space more :)

But wait here we are going into phase 2.
You can see there will be more space for classes and yarn by expanding into the area which was behind the curtain.  This will help with the air flow, too, so that it will be warmer in winter and cooler in summer; yeah!
Leah has been busy moving things around, painting and hanging curtains even though she was sick with a cold.  Thank you, thank you, thank you :)

Speaking of yarn:  We just got a big order of Madeline Tosh in both Light and Vintage.  Come while there are still lots of choices.  The colors look much prettier "in person" so you will need to come in and see for yourselves.

Store samples

The Fortune's Wheel is finished and came out beautifully!  Leah ordered more of the Dyelot Stimulus Package which is on back-order, but we have a couple of skeins left if you don't want to wait. 
This shrug/ vest is a perfect garment to greet Spring and Summer; actually I would wear it year round.  The best part is that it is an easy knit.

For more information on this check out my earlier posts on this blog or my notes on ravelry :  Strickliese's Fortune's Wheel.

My next store sample

For my next store sample I am using a yarn we just got in:
Araucania Nuble.  This yarn is a fingering weight Merino and Silk blend and at $12/ 240 yard skein quite a steal.  For the shawl I only need one skein.  I expect this yarn to be flying off the shelves latest at the next yarn crawl later this month.
Here is the beginning of the Venomous Tentacula
This is a sideways knit garter stitch shawl.  The lace border is created by simple bind offs and cast ons. The electronic version of the pattern is available for purchase at the store.
And this is how it will look like all finished:


At Home

The cowl for my owls

The cowl for my owls' sweater is coming along nicely.  I still have to knit another 3 or so inches and I have to make some decisions on how to finish it.  But as soon as I have done that and have written out the pattern you will be the first ones to know about it.

Lucky socks for Tony

Last not least here is my update on the socks I am knitting for Tony.
Thank you to Patty Joy White aka the Sox Therapist for the FLK Heel! (click on this link and it will take you right to her ravelry page)

I should really go on and on about how amazed  I am about the simplicity of this heel construction.
When I first heard about this new way of knitting a heel and purchased the pattern which is a steal at $1, I was a daunted by the number of pages (16 pages in all) and was reluctant to try something new just as time was of the essence knitting up Holiday gifts.  
I finally started on these socks for my husband and decided to give the FLK a try.
I traced his foot and marked the ankle bone point at which I needed to start the heel.  On Friday I had knitted to the right point and put the socks aside.

Getting up early on Sunday morning while everyone else was still running on Wintertime and fast asleep, I had all the time and quiet I needed to investigate this FLK :) 
After reading the instructions which are very clearly written and watching the instructional videos on the "twin stitches" I "got it" and was not only able to knit the heel for the first sock following the instructions step by step, but I was able to knit the heel for the second sock without so much as a glance at the directions.  It just makes sense and the numbers are easy to remember and adjustable to knitting socks in any size with any weight yarn.  So, this is really cool!

Not only is this an easy way to knit the heel, but it also looks good and it fits even my husband's feet with their high arches.

Let me share a trick with you.  When knitting two socks at the time you can easily get your yarn tangled up while you knit flat on just one sock during the heel construction.  This happened to me while I knitted the first heel, but was easily remedied by putting the yarn into the sock I was not working on.  Such a simple thing to do and probably others do just that, but I never thought of it until now and it was a happy "Eureka moment" for me.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

What's on my needles (week 7)

At The Knitting Garage at AL Stickle

Saturday class

Saturday 3.1. we held a class at The Knitting Garage using my pattern "Cabled Headband" which is a free pattern on ravelry and on  allfreeknitting.
Liz, Dale and Ann had great fun learning
1) the provisional cast-on
2) How to work a Cable and
3) How to do Kitchener Grafting

Update Friday 3.7.  :  Here is Dale's headband all done.  It came out beautifully; good job, Dale.

If you live in the area, check out my current class schedule on this blog. Classes are held every Saturday morning.

The Fortune's Wheel

I am almost finished with this project.  I can't wait to get to the shop and bind off my 424 stitches and see the actual size of this sweater/ vest.  I still have to knit the edge around the armholes, but the edge is worked over five rows, so that will take no time at all.  With no yarn ends to weave in because I used the "magic knot" method to join the yarns (see earlier post week 4) it will be done by next week and I am looking forward to post pictures of the finished piece (Yeah!).

Leah already lined up my next project which is a cute lacy girl's cardigan in a lovely pink; I expect to have started on it by next week.

At Home

My softest Owl sweater 

My sweater is off my needles, blocked and I have been wearing it already.  It fits perfectly!  It is fitted, but not tight and I am glad about all the adjustments I made to the pattern for the body and arms.  The owls are amazing!  With the temperatures still below freezing this sweater keeps me perfectly warm and it is fun to wear; may I say it is a "hoot" to wear? ;)!


I am working on a matching cowl in the same yarn as the owl sweater.  After three starts the cowl finally looks the way I imagined it.  I am writing out the pattern as I am knitting it up and will post it when it is completed (can you live with that kind of suspense?)

Tony's Lucky Socks

Tony's socks are growing and I prepared a foot pattern out of cardboard as per Patty Joy's (aka SoxTherapist) instructions.  Just a few more inches and I will be working the Fish Lips Kiss Heel.  Tony doesn't care much for a complicated pattern on his socks or rather doesn't care if his socks have one or not.  He just loves the fit, feel and warmth of hand knitted socks.  So I am making these in simple stockinette stitch two at the time toe-up.

Congratulations to ravelry

Last but not least I want to express a special congratulations to ravelry for welcoming their 4,000,000th member!  I think yours is an awesome website and I am lucky to be one of the 4,000,000 !
Click here for some fun facts: