Posted by: Mare F | September 7, 2020

Labor Day

It’s certainly been an interesting year. So many things, good and bad have happened that it’s rather hard to believe that it’s only been a few months since I last posted. I’m not quite sure how we managed to get to Labor Day already, but it appears that the long, hot summer is almost over and that fall is waiting to welcome us in.

It’s been an interesting gardening year. Being at home for Spring and a good portion of the summer I’ve been able to catch my yard up, mostly, and it feels very good. I didn’t get the dye plants into a bed this year because I got distracted by fun plant seeds in interesting colors. Oh, but that the purple pole beans stayed purple for Dilled beans and carrots. Can you imagine the just how intriguing those canning jars would look?

To make a plan of the container bed I set up and the flower beds for winter planning has been on the top of my list for at least a month now, but yet I haven’t managed to draw it up. Staff has been back to school for 2 weeks, the students for a week, and the hybrid plan is exhausting, both mentally and physically. However, listening to the geese as they fly overhead makes me smile so there is that. Perhaps today I’ll get the layouts drawn and put into a notebook. I’m leaving the seed inventory and wish list for a raw, rainy day. Seems a good choice, don’t you think?

A constant project for the past few months has been knitting/crocheting preemie afghans to go with hats for Angel Babies. It’s a lovely stash buster (who doesn’t love a reason to play in their yarn stash), they are easy projects, and if they make someone just a bit happier, how can I not?

So, what yarns, patterns, and/or yarns have gotten you through this very challenging year? Do you have many projects started or are you being wonderfully organized and working on one thing at a time? Just know that I’m thinking of all of you when I’m not having mini meltdowns and sending mental hugs out daily.

Posted by: Mare F | March 16, 2020

Tidying up

Cleaning up on-going projects has been my plan for this year. It’s had mixed results on it’s success. I have finished a few things which I had tucked away, I’ve made the necessary arrangements to finish a couple (rewriting graphs to index cards,) and then I’ve just sallied forth and started new things!


The covered hanger have been a staple in my personal closet for years. They keep blouses from falling off of the hangers or getting those lovely points in the shoulder area. I started making these back when I worked in offices and could run more quickly in 3″ heels than I could do in flats. The hangers remain…the heels did not.


In addition to keeping blouses on the hanger, they hold shawls and scarves very nicely during the shows. Especially the outdoor shows. You know, the breezy days that have awnings flapping and items swinging. I rarely have to pick up any of my hanging items from the ground.


So, of course, making them in assorted  colors to accent, or coordinate, with each item is essential for my orderly side. Not to mention, they are a delightfully simple pattern that will easily fall into the “can’t decide what to do” days. I have to thank the lovely people at Workbasket magazine for the pattern. That was such a great magazine, it’s a shame that it’s no longer about. So happy that I have lots of the old ones. They make for very entertaining reading for both patterns and recipes. Do you have a favorite craft magazine?

Posted by: Mare F | March 9, 2020

A symphony of shawls

When you find a pattern that you truly enjoy, both in constructing and end result, stick with it! I found just such a pattern recently at Yarnspirations. It’s the Red Heart Oversized Style Shawl. The first one that I made was with yarn from a “mystery bag” purchase and just made me smile.


It worked up so quickly and easily that I immediately fell in love. The second one was made of yarn from another “mystery bag” purchase (I do love them as well – always a surprise and an inspiration.)


These were made over the course of one long weekend. I decided that perhaps I should work on a solid, neutral color as not everyone is as color obsessed as I, so the next one came was made up from, can you guess where this is going?  Yes, yet another “mystery bag” of yarn. This was in a lovely soft white.


There is one more, in a deep chocolate, not a “mystery bag” purchase, but one made at WEBS a few years ago with a very dear friend, that I meant to keep for myself, but it turns out that I have enough yarn for two, so I think I shall share the wealth. What was the last “perfect” pattern that you found?

Posted by: Mare F | March 2, 2020

Hello, again!

It has been almost a year since I last posted and it’s been a bouncy ride for the most part. So many ups and downs, but in the end it’s all good. I’ve changed jobs while managing to stay in the same school, I gave up my online studio because I just couldn’t keep up with it, and I’ve been purging  my house of many things that, while they made me happy, I no longer needed so that they could make someone else’s day brighter. And, of course, I’ve been knitting and crocheting.


This was an experiment for felted flowers that still needs a bit of work. The order for which these were started was cancelled, delightfully early, and opened up some avenues for this year’s craft fairs. It will be a bit before I play with them again, but I do have a basket of left over wool to work so when the spirits move I will be ready.


These small shawlettes were a favorite and the pattern came from Piecework. I made a few from both cotton and wool, but since we are all aware that I am a lazy knitter, I crocheted edgings on to the simple base. Lots of fun and an easy carry along project.


The last batch of felted hats gave me fits, but there is time to refelt…not sure if it was because it was a bitterly cold day and my washer is in the mud room or if it just wasn’t in the stars for that day. I also hope to add some felted flowers, and possibly other felted decorations, to the current stock for this year’s shows. So many ideas and so little time.


So, please join me with a hot beverage and catch me up on what I’ve missed in your life over the past year. I’d love to hear what new projects and techniques have won your hearts!

Posted by: Mare F | May 20, 2019

CT Draft Horse Rescue Event

I had a very nice time yesterday. Met new people, made a bit of money, donated to a worthy cause, it was a success in my eyes.


The day started out overcast, it was sprinkling when I left home, but those were the only raindrops I spied all day. The sun came out right around noon.


I didn’t get a chance to meet the horses, but they hold visiting hours every Saturday morning from 10am to noon. I see a road trip in my future.

IMG_2685 Do you have a favorite rescue to which you donate time or money?

Posted by: Mare F | May 13, 2019

Upcoming show

So in the mood to settle in front of the fireplace with my knitting, which by the way, is a keyhole scarf. I hope to have a few more made by the end of the week for the show this coming Sunday at the Connecticut Draft Horse Rescue in East Hampton, CT.


This promises to be a fun day and I’m looking forward to it. I’m not sure just what I’ll have for stock as this is a very early show for me and I’ve spent a good amount of time this year working on orders, but I intend to make a show of it. I’d hoped to start packing the car this past weekend, but Saturday was yard work and Sunday was just plain raw and dank. I don’t know that it stopped raining at all yesterday never mind the snowflakes and sleet that mixed in. Very nice day, though, for that fireplace knitting thing.


I also need to send a picture of the item I’m donating to their silent auction and I can’t quite decide what to offer. It’s always a bit tricky for me when it’s a new show and I’ve no idea on the clientele. What do you like to see at silent auctions or raffles?

Posted by: Mare F | May 9, 2019

Springtime chaos

I’ve completely lost track of the past few weeks. In addition to being busy at work and in the yard….kind of, we attended a lovely wedding this past weekend in South Carolina which brought up it’s own set of interesting preparations. It is the first time that our two cats have been left alone in the 6 and 3 years they they have been living with us so that brought a special kind of concern, but luckily we had good friends who came in the morning and evening to feed and entertain them. Doug paid a higher price when we returned, but it was a brief punishment so all is well now.

hobo in sink

Hobo really doesn’t look too concerned now, does he? Miss Kitty was very forgiving also.


And I managed to knit a scarf while I was in the many airports and hotel room. Oddly enough I couldn’t find a local yarn shop anywhere in the area. It was a relaxing weekend for the most part and a very lovely wedding, but I am very glad to be at home and I’m looking forward to sliding back into my routine. How do you feel about traveling?


Posted by: Mare F | April 15, 2019

Spring Break

It’s finally here and starting with a bang. Wicked thunderstorm and heavy rains are the backdrop for this morning. I was struck yesterday with the urge to finish up some of the many projects I have going to free up some floor space. I’ve baskets and tote bags everywhere. The two that I started with are a shawl in Lion’s Brand Homespun.


The second, and I’ve been thinking about this one quite a bit, is filet crochet. I don’t know how I get separated from my cotton, but I do and I really need to work on this one. There is just something about doing this kind of handiwork that is even more soothing for me than the yarn work.


Do you have a favorite fiber for your projects?

Posted by: Mare F | April 11, 2019

Thursday chat

My rainy Monday blahs were more or less banished when the postman dropped off my copy of The Art of Shetland Lace. It was just the thing to chase away the blues and I thoroughly enjoyed my first run through it as the rain hit the windows. Shetland lace history was the perfect topic with my cup of Prince of Wales tea.

IMG_2538 (1)

Posted by: Mare F | April 8, 2019

Rainy Monday blahs

We are a week out from Spring Break at school and it shows. Nothing I start is amusing me, patterns aren’t catching my fancy, and even my yarn has gone silent. I can tell that warm weather is close, but it’s not close enough to do something outside in the gardens other than clipping bittersweet vines and multiflora rose stalks.


dyeing party weather 002

Not my most recent rainy picture, but you get my drift. However, my seed potatoes arrived on the door step Saturday so I know that planting can’t be too far behind especially as I hope to grow them on the deck in garden bags. New plan this year so that will be interesting.

lack of tea cozy 001


So my plan is to go home, brew a pot of tea, pick up a good book, and knit a simple scarf. I’ll get my fix and add to stock while not having to think to heavily about patterns or colors. This time of year is always a bit dreary for me, but once the cold weather is past everything falls right into place. Do you have a dreary time of year?


Older Posts »