July 25, 2014

Subtle Ombré Yarn.

So!  When getting back into this yarnie game I spent some time poking around Ravelry getting ideas and inspiration.  And one trend - that I've seen many times outside the world of knitting - really stuck out for me.  Ombré:
Left:  Ombre Cowl by Purl Soho, image by Purl Soho.  Right: Ombré by Tanis Lavallee, image by tanisfiberarts 

So pretty!  So trendy!  So much fun to knit!  Usually this effect is achieved through mixing different colors of yarn by holding two or more yarns together.  Several yarnies even offer kits of mini-skeins for this purpose.  Very cool.  And something I might consider doing in the future.  I also found yarn that was dyed to be self-striping with the stripes changing color along the skein.  But I wondered:

Could I dye a skein of yarn that transitioned colors from one end to the other in a more subtle way?

Self-striping yarn is great but that's not what look I wanted.  I wanted to basically recreate the subtle gradient created with several yarns held together.... only with one skein.  No ends to weave in.  Easy.

So I took to the dye pots and did some experimenting:


And some more experimenting:

The result was this:
Once I was pretty sure I had an actual Ombre happening I test knit a bit of a shawl starting at one end of the skein and then the other to see if there was any difference:


 Did it work?

YAY!  Those samples are knit from the same skein of yarn.  The only difference is that for the orange I started at one end and for the purple I started at the other.  It absolutely worked.  SO MUCH YES!

As of now I have only produced repeatable results on Souvenir - my DK weight, 100% superwash merino yarn.  Which lends itself perfectly to the one-skein projects that showcase this unique yarn perfectly.  Ombré  Hats!  Scarves!  Cowls!  Shawls!  Ombré All the Things!


I LOVE the way the transition turned out:

And watching the colors change was so interesting that I designed and knit this shawl in less than a week.  That's crazy for me.

Selfie in the driveway crazy.
I'll have more information on the pattern soon - here's the Ravelry link.

The Subtle Ombre yarn will be available - in several colorways - at the Destination Yarn Trunk Show at River Colors in Lakewood TOMORROW.  After that I will list some of it on my etsy site (if any of it is left that is!).

Yay Ombre!

July 22, 2014

Happy Birthday Cleveland!

So!  You guys!  Cleveland is REALLY having  moment right now.  The RNC is coming!  LeBron is back (and even vaguely apologized for debacle that was "The Decision") It's almost like the rest of the world is finally catching a clue as to how great it is here!

Like us Clevelanders have been saying for years.  SIGH.

Anyways! In the spirit of all the Yay Cleveland that's going around right now - and because it's my city's birthday today - I thought I should post about all the fun we've been having here this summer.  In handy listicle form.  So here we go!

Top 10 Things That Have Been Awesome In Cleveland This Summer

(I had to narrow it down quite a bit)
((the list is in no particular order))

1.)  The Westpark Independence Day Parade:

We were very festive.  ROCK FLAG AND EAGLE.
 Um... I'm not sure how we've never been to this before.  It travels literally right around the corner from us and is one of the largest Independence Day Parades in the area.

We will most definitely be making this one a tradition!

2.)  Wade Oval Wed.

Band!  Outside!  Gyros and Lemonade!  What's not to love?  We missed last week but hope to go again this week.... although I have been wanting to check out Edgewater Live and keeping the kids up at a festival two nights in a row might be rough... SUMMER!

3.)  Edgewater Yacht Club:

Not a bad place to spend a morning in Cleveland! Thanks @ashleytaseff ! #THISISCLE #CLEVELAND #lakeerie #edgewater
A friend of mine has a membership there and invites us to go swimming sometimes.  Pool, view of the city, and a playground attached?  YES.

4.)  Mitchell's Ice Cream:
I don't have a picture of us actually eating it so how about one of the happy post-ice cream baby?

Yeah I'm not sure how it took us so long to discover this one but in the last few weeks I've been to all of their west side locations.  Avon with my knitting group, Rocky River with my family, and the new Ohio City flagship store with some out of town friends.  Their Salted Caramel is DELICIOUS.  I might have a problem.

No picture of the flagship store but here's the kids frolicking around Ohio City.


5.)  Taste of Tremont:
Fun times at taste of tremont!   That btw was the dudes reaction reaction to Lolita ' s mac n cheese. #tremont #thisiscle #CLEVELAND #stevensonpartyoffive
The Dude's reaction to the Lolita Mac'n Cheese.
It was super blowed up this year but still one of our favorites.  Next year we'll try to go earlier in the day and beat the crowd.

6.)  Edgewater for Fireworks:

2014-07-05 00.30.51
So I've never done this before.  Or at least not in recent memory.  It was AWESOME.  We sat on the burm right out side of the park.  First of all while waiting for the fireworks you get a sunset over the water view.  Then we watched Lakewood which seemed to be rightnexttous.  Then we watched Brahtenal and Euclid and who knows how many other communities over the lake.  We were literally surrounded by fireworks.  You could see them being shot off all along the shore.  Very, very cool.  Finally we had a stunning view for Cleveland's show - Water, Fireworks, City Skyline.  YES.

7.)  The Transient Marina:

North Coast Harbor
Have you guys seen this?  It's a marina for transient boaters that just opened up on the North Coast Harbor.  It finally opened this summer and it's an amazing amenity for Cleveland to have downtown.

North Coast Harbor

8.)  The Cleveland Flea:

We finally went for the first time and it was super fun.  Although we'd plan a little better next time with food trucks / kid's hunger levels.  I always forget that food truck food takes a bit to prepare...

9.)  Fresh Fork!

Spinach with beets, goat cheese, and walnuts. And with this simple dish I actually like beets! @freshforkmarket #freshforkmarket # beets #csa
We are very much enjoying our CSA.  I know it's been rough for the farmers what with the cool, wet, basically crazy summer we've had.  And the peach destroying awful that was the Polar Vortex.  And yet our bag is full of awesome week after week. Trevor and his crew have really hit it out of the park this year!

10.)  The Circle of Life Carousel at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo:

The new Circle of wildlife carousel at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo is about the coolest thing ever. He got to ride a shark!!! @clevemetroparks #thisiscle #zoo #stevensonpartyoffive
We finally went a few weeks ago after much anticipation.  It lived up to it's reputation.  Possibly one of the coolest things in our city.  Every "horse" is a different animal.  Each is neater than the next.  The Girl rode on an iceburg with penguins (like Elsa).  The Dude rode on a Shark (because of course he did).  They both have big plans for the next time we go.

So yeah.  Yay Cleveland Summer!!!

PS - I hope to see everyone at the Destination Yarn Trunk Show at River Colors this Saturday!!!

July 16, 2014

Summer of Socks!

So!  We're going to ignore my hiatus there.  It happens.  I have 3 kids and it's summer.  Anyways!  I have been loosely participating in the fun that is Summer of Socks.  Which basically means I"m knitting a lot of socks and I'm dying a lot of sock yarn (wait... what?):

Plain old sock in nice yarn = happy times. #destinationyarn #operationsockdrawer #summerofsocks #sos2014
Plain sock knit out of Destination Yarn in the colorway The Road Ahead.
Enjoying a cocktail and some knitting outside - well deserved after spending all day planting things! #operationsockdrawer #felici #knitpicks #knitting #knit
Groovy Sock knit out of Knit Picks Felici.
And even finishing some:
Handknit socks for my husband for Father's Day. Because nothing says "I love and appreciate you" more than large guy socks knit on size 1 needles. #operationsockdrawer #knitting #destinationyarn #socks #summerofsocks
I actually finished those up for Father's Day for Matt.  Because nothing says I love and appreciate you more than guy socks knit on size 1 needles.  SERIOUSLY.

I also have been doing something super, super exciting.  I put dye to yarn for the first time in well over a year.  YES.
I put dye on yarn today for the first time in over a year. #happy #indiedyer #destinationyarn #operationsockdrawer
Many bright colors of yes.
I"m preparing for a Trunk Show at River Colors in Lakewood on July 26.  I will be there from 11:30 - 3:30 and I'm bringing the pretty:


Lots of the pretty:

Busy getting ready for a show at River Colors on July 26! #destinationyarn #indiedyer #yarn #handdyedyarn #knit #knitting

There will be some new stuff and some old friends and YARN!  For the first time in a year!  It's very exciting.  Hope to see you there!

Yay Summer of Socks!

Perfect day for knitting at the park. #destinationyarn #yarn #handdyedyarn #knit #knitting #indiedyer
Waaaaaaait.  Isn't that a shawl???!

June 25, 2014

Vines of Vines.

So!  We were out of town all weekend and I am now behind on EVERYTHING.  GAH.
Kid in the pool!  Worth the laundry pile.
Matt swinging with the dude. #stevensonpartyoffive
Tarzan Matt  my new fav picture ever.
Also my iphone finally died the One True Death.  It's gone.  No more.  Which means I've upgraded to one of these bad boys:

I have no idea how it works.

I got a new phone and I have NO IDEA how to use it! #samsung
It can take selfies!  Now what?
So instead of one of the real blog posts I had planned I"m gonna go play with my new phone and try to figure out all of the many, MANY, features. Tips on samsung, adroid, using google to manage everything, the cloud wars, really any of it would be appreciated.  This is a WHOLE NEW WOOOOOORLD.

Victor with his ladies. #stevensonpartyoffive
A new fantastic point of view.

So how about some vines of... vines?


Aaaand that's all I've got for right now.  Yay new phone!!!

June 20, 2014

Three turns ONE.

You guys. I'm not sure how this happened but all of a sudden the little guy is ONE:

Who, Me?  I was just born like yesterday
His first birthday was spent like much of the rest of his life... being dragged around after his siblings:
You would think I would have a problem with this.  You would be wrong.
But between the ballet camp performance (you tube video here) and picking the dude up from grandma's house we made plenty of time to celebrate:

Balloons!!!!  BEST DAY EVER!
We just had a small family get together.  Like we do for first birthday's.  Just some grilling out with the grandparents.  And to be honest his gifts from us were new to him hand-me downs from his siblings (sorry, kid.  I love you but we have enough plastic in our house):

I don't know the difference.
But we made sure to include his favorites.  We had cheesy mashed potatoes as the side - his favorite food EVER.

For dessert we skipped the cake.  I know there's the whole cake smash tradition thing for first birthdays... but he's no stranger to the cake game.  One of the many benefits to being #3 - you get cake way before you probably should.  And it's just not his favorite.  He likes it but not nearly as much as he likes bananas.  Or ice cream.  So we skipped the cake and did banana splits.

It was a celebration all around.  We made it!  We handled the Year of Three Kids 4 and Under!  We got through the newborn/toddler/preschooler insanity!  


 And it is so, so worth it.  I am so glad this little one came into our lives:


 He is a very serious guy.  You have to earn your smiles with him.  He doesn't give them away easily:


But that doesn't mean he's unhappy.  Just thoughtful.


 He doesn't talk much - even now that he has a few words he's content to point at what he wants instead of vocalize.  Part of it is his serious nature - he's never going to be a person who fills the air with words - part of it is having an older brother who never lets anyone get a word in edgewise:


He's happy to go along with whatever his siblings want.  I've joked that he's the chihuahua who thinks he's a mastiff because he's a baby who thinks he's a big kid.  He wants to be in the fray no matter what adventure we are dragging him on or what his crazy siblings are doing:

His siblings dressed him up like a pirate and then put him to work in the ship's kitchen. #11months #siblings #stevensonpartyof5 #pretend
His siblings dressed him up like a pirate and put him to work in the ship's kitchen.  Seriously.
His likes and dislikes are becoming more and more clear every day.  Likes:  Sand, wheels, army crawling, mashed potatoes, ice cream, stuffed animals, his hedgehog, pointing, and chasing his siblings. 
Wait for me!!!!
Dislikes:  Snakes (seriously the kid is terrified of them), being treated like a baby, crackers that don't have peanut butter on them, and his car seat.


It has been so fun watching him learn and grow and his little personality develop.  I can't wait for all that comes next!

What a difference a year makes!  Happy birthday to my littlest one!  #stevensonpartyof5 #one
Happy Birthday, Little Guy!

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