Tag Archives: stitchmarker

April Phat Fiber Sampler Box – How Does Your Garden Grow?

My past month was sort of crazy, and I had to work very hard to get my samples into Phat Fiber headquarters in time for the box this month. I really wanted to be a part of April’s garden, because I had so many ideas floating around in my head. In the end I think I was a bit inspired by the volatility going on in my life, because I chose a Wars of the Roses theme, continuing my Tudor series at Exchanging Fire.

The Wars of the Roses were a series of dynastic wars fought between supporters of two rival branches – the Houses of Lancaster and York – for the throne of England. Both sides were descendants of the House of Plantagenet, which had ruled England during the Middle Ages. The symbol of the rose came into being during these battles for control of the throne of England, when the York supporters wore white roses to show their loyalty. The origins of the Rose itself stem from Edward I’s use of “a golden rose stalked proper” as a badge of England’s Royal House.

The White Rose of York

The wars ended when a relative unknown Lancasterian living abroad, Henry VII, the father of the infamous Henry VIII, was raised up to be the next king. He married Elizabeth of York, uniting the two dynasties together and creating the House of Tudor, which ruled for the next 120 years.

The Red Rose of Lancaster

Don’t forget, if you purchase anything in my store from April 20 – May 17 you are eligible for the Phat Fiber Superbox Giveaway! To win this month’s Phat Incentive, which includes the contents of the April Video (aka The Superbox) AND A $150 Gift Certificate to one of the participating shops, you need to join the Phat Fiber group on Ravelry and then post what you’ve purchased in the incentive thread.

 

February Phat Fiber Sampler – Doctor Who Series

Since my designs were sent off this morning to the Phat Fiber headquarters I thought I’d share with you everything I’m sending in this month for the Phat Fiber sampler box. The box is a great way to try out indie designers and dyers. This month’s theme is “geekery,” which really speaks to me, and that meant that I had far too many ideas! So since I couldn’t decide, instead of one design, I’ve included what seems like a billionty designs.  But they are all framed around one specific geek love of mine – Doctor Who. The first four designs pictured are part of my companion series and the next four are part of my regular Doctor Who series. And yes, everything’s up in the Exchanging Fire shop!

Rose Tyler

Donna Noble

River Song

Amy Pond

Bigger on the Inside (perfect for knitting the shawl of the same name)

The Last Centurion

The Doctor’s Wife

The Only Water in the Forest is the River

Don’t forget, if you purchase anything in my store from February 15 – March 15 you are eligible for the Phat Fiber Superbox Giveaway! To win this month’s Phat Incentive, which includes the contents of the February Video (aka The Superbox) AND A $150 Gift Certificate to one of the participating shops, you need to join the Phat Fiber group on Ravelry and the post what you’ve purchased in the incentive thread.

Here I am in featured right at the beginning of the Phat Fiber video for this month:

Want  to know how you can get one of these boxes? For a Phat Fiber community edited guide to snagging a box, visit this thread in the Ravelry group. The cost of the box is $36 including shipping. Good luck!

Enjoy the new designs, which are up in the Exchanging Fire shop!

These Are a Few of My Favorite Things – Christmas 2013

Creating a new stitch marker design is a little bit like jumping off a cliff. Yes, I know that these beads and that charm and the little filigree accents are adorable, but will anyone else like it? Will it photograph well? Did I just spend a gazillion dollars on beads no one will want?! Eventually, you have to stop thinking about it and just shut your eyes and let go. The new design will either sink or swim, and there’s no way of knowing if it will succeed until you take that chance.

Suffice to say, when a design that I love takes off I feel immensely pleased with it, like a proud mama duck who’s duckling is clearly the best swimmer in the pond. And at the end of the year it’s always fun to look back and see which stitch marker designs were the most popular, most loved, and most talked about. So, without further ado, these are a few of my favorite things!

Flying Colors of the Storm

This summer I stumbled across these awesome little acrylic beads that have a handpainted effect created by being hand-dipped in a variety of painted colors. The double (or triple) dipping creates this amazing swirling effect, much like one of my favorite childhood desserts, the marble cake. I always wanted to make one because it looked so cool, so these beads were like having my cake and eating it too, only without all of the carbs. They eventually became my Flying Colors of the Storm stitch markers, and I was thrilled to see how much everyone else liked them as well – I’ve had to reorder the beads three times since August because I was overwhelmed by the demand!

Confetti

I have this awesome tissue paper that I love using when I ship out packages – it’s white (so it matches anything) but it’s got sparkles embedded in it that turns it from a Plain Jane into a Glittery Glinda type of paper. So when I saw these adorable enameled coin-shaped drops in what seemed like a million different colors I knew I needed to make stitch markers out of them. I usually avoid open jump rings because I’m paranoid about things catching on my yarn, but I made an exception for these little guys. They make the most perfect dangle-free stitch markers and they really do look like Confetti – I feel like it’s a party every time I use them.

Secret of the ChromastoneI first saw these color-changing beads over two years ago, and they took me back to the days of childhood when I had found my mother’s old mood ring – a large, oval thing set in brass with an adjustable band – and wore it around the house as part of my queen costume. That outfit consisted of a long rust-colored ’70s rayon dress with an attached cape, a real fox fur collar from the generation before that had been my grandmother’s, and of course, my scepter – a glittery silver star wand.

I actually think the Secret of the Chromastone design was one of the first times I took a chance that an investment in a design would work out – I saved up for months and months before taking a deep breath and placing the large order for them. Beads that change color can be expensive, so I knew I’d need to price these markers a bit higher than normal and I hoped that everyone else thought they were as great as I knew they were. And you know what? They did! Currently over 200 sets of these awesome little stitch markers are all over the globe, hanging on people’s needles and marking their stitches as they knit or crochet. They are probably the most favorite stitch markers of all.

I Love Coffee

I sang in an a cappella group in college, and one of my favorite songs we sang was an old classic from the ’40s called the “Java Jive.” The chorus goes, “I love coffee, I love tea, I love the java jive and it loves me! Coffee and tea and the jivin’ and me…a cup, a cup, a cup, a cup, a cup.” The way the words “a cup” roll off your tongue when you sing them repetitively is a great memory. Here’s a great version from a German a cappella group if you’d like to hear how the song sounds.

But I have a confession to make – I don’t drink coffee. I come from a family of tea drinkers, and while occasionally I have a toffee nut latte at Starbucks, it only happens once or twice a year. But you know what I do love? Chocolate-covered coffee beans. They are delicious! So nothing makes me happier than seeing cute little coffee beans hanging from knitting needles – especially when you are knitting in your favorite coffee shop.

Arabian Nights

There are some songs that just get stuck in your head like an earworm that will never leave. I Can See Clearly Now is one (I tend to sing that line when anyone exclaims, “Oh, I see!”) and for some reason, the Spice Girl’s non-hit If You Can’t Dance is another. Then of course there is the opening song to the Disney movie Aladdin. While I was first designing these stitch markers that song – ok, the chorus – rattled through my head incessantly. I love Moroccan lanterns and beads that seem to light up from the inside. The ornate brass accents and rich colors make these stitch markers seem like they could light up Arabian Nights very well indeed.

These are some of the favorites from my shop, but there are loads more. I have special memories attached to each, be it the song they were inspired by or even sometimes what tv show was running in the background while I was working on them. What stitch markers are your favorites?

June Phat Fiber Sampler – Tron

I’m pleased this month to unveil my new villain-themed stitchmarkers – Tron, part of my superhero series, now available at Exchanging Fire!

Tron

Tron is an abstract take on the eponymous 1982 movie, using awesome geometric-shaped acrylic beads that represent the computer generated realm of Tron. Four cool blue stitch markers represent the virtual game Kevin has been trapped in, while the large bright red bead represents the evil Master Control Program, out to take over the real world. Just like last month’s superhero stitch markers, these too look very “grown-up” but can still feed your inner geekery!

Here I am in featured halfway through the Phat Fiber video for this month (at minute 6:15)!

Don’t forget, if you purchase anything in my store from June 15 – July 15 you are eligible for the Phat Fiber Superbox Giveaway! To win this month’s Phat Incentive, which includes the contents of the June Video (aka The Superbox) AND A $150 Gift Certificate to one of the participating shops, you need to join the Phat Fiber group and the post what you’ve purchased in the Incentive thread.

Sign up now to be entered into the giveaway!

Farm fresh stitch markers for your needles

It finally feels like spring again. Last night a spring storm rolled through, knocking off a branch from the fully-blossoming magnolia tree. This morning I found magnolia petals trapped between the screen and the window where the wind had blown them in the midst of all that thunder and lightning. So in honor of spring, I’m adding to the Farm Fresh Series I started last year around this time.

These newest limited edition stitch markers are made using vintage mid-century beads from the Baltics. They look particularly like sky blue berries (the kind that have little drupelets on them). When I was looking at the types of berries that are related to the raspberry, I was tickled to discover the unassuming cloudberry, a mainly European species of berry that is rare but well-known in the Scandinavian and Baltic regions. Yes, the real cloudberries are actually a light to reddish orange color, but I like to think this is a “tip of the hat” to them. Enjoy my take on cloudberries.

 

Cloudberries

These stitch markers join my Farm Fresh collection, which includes a few of my favorite fruit-related sets.

Strawberry Fields Forever

When possible, I’ve tried to use some of my favorite classic song lyrics that relate to the farm fresh fruit in question.

On Blueberry Hill

Check out the rest of the Farm Fresh Series on Etsy!

It’s beginning to “stitch” a lot like Christmas

“It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…”

Take a look at these awesome Christmas-themed stitch markers and other goodies I’ve got up in the Exchanging Fire shop:

A few of these designs are old favorites,like the one of a kind Jingle Bell Rock markers (only two left in stock!), but I’m especially proud of my newest creations. They are the Wonderful Christmas tree lights ones:

“The party’s on / The feelin’s here / That only comes / This time of year / Simply having a wonderful Christmas time…” – Paul McCartney. “Wonderful Christmas Time”

…and these gorgeous Silver and Gold ornament stitch markers:

“Silver and gold, silver and gold / Mean so much more when I see / Silver and gold decorations / On ev’ry Christmas tree…” – Vanessa Williams, “Silver & Gold”

Making the Yarn Harlot’s holiday gift list makes my Christmas wishes come true

Wow! Author and knitter Stephanie Pearl-McPhee, otherwise known as The Yarn Harlot, just featured my stitch markers on her blog! The stitch markers talked about were my Secret of the Chromastone markers, which have color changing capabilities when you hold them – just like mood rings from the ’70s. They were listed as part of the Yarn Harlot’s Gifts for Knittters 2012 list, and I’m tickled pink by the shout out.

The Secret of the Chromastone