Dear friends,

I do hope you and yours are safe and well. The corona virus epidemic has certainly changed life as we know it.

The practice of social distancing has its challenges, but I’m keeping up with friends and family through video conferencing (in-person meetings may become obsolete!). I’m entertaining myself by learning to cook with what’s on hand, binge watching PBS shows, and, of course, knitting.

Sadly, social distancing has caused a lot of small businesses to suffer reduced sales. Most of those in the fiber industry, who don’t have much of a cushion to begin with, are truly struggling. To encourage yarn purchases, I’m discounting all of my independent patterns (those published through Ann Budd Knits) in my Ravelry store through midnight Friday, March 30. Use the one-time code KNIT! to receive 50% off the regular price of these patterns.

Stay healthy and knit happy!

 

 

 

 

Thank you all for jumping in the raffle for one of my books. It’s especially nice for me to see so many comments on a blog post!

The winner is Roxanne Smart, who wrote: “Scarf Style 2 would be a delight for me to own. Why? 1. Because I don’t have it. 2. Because an old lady never has too many scarves. 3. Even if an old knitting lady has too many scarves they make wonderful gifts for others.”

After drawing Roxanne’s name, I was feeling generous and drew a second winner.

The second winner is Karen Berger, who wrote: “I would be very happy to win a copy of Simple Style. Thanks for the raffle!”

Congratulations Roxanne and Karen. Please reply to me at annbudd@annbuddknits.com to give me your mailing addresses.

It’s raffle time again!

In appreciation for the joys I get from knitting and helping people knit, I’d like to give away one of my books.

Tell me which title you’d like to win and why, and I’ll enter your name in a drawing for a free copy. You can find all of my titles on at annbuddknits.com — click on books.

The winner will be announced Tuesday, March 17.

 

 

I’m quite thrilled to announce my latest design, Port Townsend Swing Pullover, which debuts just in time for the Bazaar Girls Getaway Retreat 2020 in Port Townsend, Washington.

This pullover version of my top-down Port Townsend Swing Cardigan features a V-neck, long set-in sleeves, folded hems, and an A-line silhouette achieved through mirrored increases worked along the center back.

The yarn, Colinton Australia Lace Blends, is a luxurious blend of 80% fine mohair and 20% silk that is hand-dyed in Australia and exclusively distributed in the U.S. by The Bazaar Girls Yarn Emporium in Port Townsend, Washington.

I’ve included nine sizes in the pattern: 34 (37 1/2, 41, 44 1/2, 48) (50 3/4, 54 1/2, 57 3/4, 60 3/4)” or (86.5 [95, 104, 113, 122] [129, 138.5, 146.5, 154.5] cm) bust circumferences, which require 6 (6, 6, 7, 7) (8, 9, 9, 10) skeins of yarn.

The gauge is 23 stitches and 36 rows to 4″ (10 cm) on size U.S. 4 (3.5 mm) needles.

You can get 20% off the purchase price of Port Townsend Swing Pullover by using the code SWING! by midnight Mountain Standard Time Saturday, March 7, 2020.

As more of my friends and family become victim to Alzheimer’s disease, I find myself more passionate about the fight against it. That’s why I’ve registered to take part on The Longest Day this June 20th to raise awareness (and hopefully a whole lot of funds) for the Alzheimer’s Association.

The Longest Day is the day with the most light — the summer solstice. And it’s the day the Alzheimer’s Association calls on everyone to fight Alzheimer’s disease by raising funds and awareness for care, support, and research. For my part I’ll knit from sunrise (somewhere around 6:00am) to sunset (somewhere around 9:00pm). I’ll track my progress in hourly Instagram (annbuddknits) posts.

By supporting me as I knit on The Longest Day, we can stand up to the darkness of Alzheimer’s.

Can I count on you to help by making a donation?

Please visit my fundraising page and give today. Thank you!

Sincerely,
Ann

I’ve been in a bit of a nesting/cleaning mode the past few weeks.

So far, I’ve gone through 80% of the closets, drawers, and cabinets in my house (excluding my yarn stash) and have donated boxes and bags of excess clothing and household items to charity. Honestly, I believe the gust of wind you might have felt was my house exhaling a huge sigh of relief.

I bragged to my knitting group about my progress and one knitter nodded her head and said, “Oh, yes. Swedish death cleaning.” I had never heard of such of thing (my roots are Norwegian, not Swedish) and thought she was kidding.

She has since loaned me a fascinating book written in 2018 by a woman “somewhere between eighty and one hundred years old” who has death cleaned for so many others that she’s “dammed if someone else [will have] to death clean after [her].” Having cleaned out my parents’ house, I completely agree with her. With the exception of my precious yarn stash, which my family knows to distribute among my knitting friends, I don’t want my husband, kids, or siblings to have to deal with what they will see only as clutter.

Perhaps I’m procrastinating on “more important” work that has to be done at my desk, but I now feel the need to revisit all those closets, drawers, and cabinets for a second sweep!

 

If you’re interested in joining in a live interactive interview with me, you’ll get your chance Saturday, February 8 at 3:00pm Pacific Time. My interviewer will be Suzanne Bryan, a TKGA Master Hand Knitter who has served several years as co-chair of the review committee.
Suzanne has several sweater tutorials (worldwide) that use The Knitter’s Handy Book of Sweater Patterns (written by yours truly), starting with a gauge swatch and personal measurements, then guiding listeners through using my book and her tips and tricks to design their own sweaters.
Recently, Suzanne has started doing livestream YouTube interviews, called Off The Cuff, with her knitting heroes. Claiming that I’m one of them, she asked me to participate. The live interview will take place Saturday, February 8 at 3:00pm Pacific Time.
Suzanne assures me that it will be fun. I just hope that I remain one of her knitting heroes when the interview is over.

Spoiler Alert: This post has nothing to do with knitting.

A few nights ago a group of four of us joined about twenty other budding artists at Posh Splat, Boulder’s local paint and wine studio.

Back in my formative school years, I took a lot of art classes and briefly considered it as a vocation. Forty-some years later, my youthful dreams have yet to be realized. So, as you might imagine, I was delighted for the opportunity to try my hand at painting.

At Posh Splat, each “artist” is given a blank 16″ x 20″ (40.5 x 51 cm) canvas, three paintbrushes, and a squirt each of seven colors (blue, red, yellow, green, brown, black, and white). An instructor leads the class in choosing the right brushes, mixing the appropriate colors, and making the correct brush strokes, all while giving encouragement (and serving wine to help the creative juices flow).

The painting of the night was Vincent Van Gogh’s 1888 painting Cafe Terrace At Night (shown at left below). Instead of following the actual masterpiece (which would have been paralyzingly intimidating), we followed a much simplified version with fewer buildings and without the human forms (that’s my attempt on the right).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Needless to say, I think I was wise to stick to my knitting!

This year my husband and I turned from tradition and did not stay home for the holidays. Instead, we went to New Zealand where we met up with Twin 1 and his most excellent girlfriend, who are following the Te Araroa trail from the northern tip of the North Island to the southern tip of the South Island. I’m insanely impressed by their sense of adventure that requires 4 months of backpacking along 3,000 km of trails.

We spent three days with the kids, during which time we fed them and put them up in hotels where they could shower and do laundry. We filled their backpacks with food and sent them on their way.

My husband and I then embarked on a 12-day trip of both islands. I took what for me was a lot of photos, but they don’t do justice to the spectacular scenery.

Top to bottom: Recreational Reserve on Kaikoura Peninsula (South Island), waterfall in the Milford Sound (South Island), Hobbiton (North Island), and grazing sheep near Queenstown (South Island).

 

New Zealand is a tourist destination for people from around the world. Happily for me, they speak English. However, not all visitors speak the same language so officials have come up with clever signs that can be universally understood. We ran into the sign shown here at the entrance to a suspension bridge. Fortunately, there were only four of us on the bridge so we didn’t risk tumbling into the rushing water below.

 

As you may know, New Zealand is know for its exquisite wool and wool products. Like any self-respecting visitor (and a knitter to boot), I was thrilled to find the The Merino Story and wool shop, disguised as giant sheep in Tirau (North Island). Yes, I made purchases.

Although I took my knitting (I never travel without it) and we spent many hours in the car, boats, or buses, I didn’t knit a single stitch! However, I did return home with a lot of inspiration.

 

The third Knit For Fun Retreat in Edmonton, Canada, is now open for registration!

Once again we’ll partner with River City Yarns in Edmonton, and because we like it so much, we’ll return to the DoubleTree by Hilton, in West Edmonton.

Our Rock Star teachers are Olga Buraya-Kefelian, Xandy Peters, and Canada’s own Shirley A Scott.

Olga

 

Olga will teach the following three-hour classes:

          • 3-Dimensional Knitwear
          • Brioche and Beyond
          • Novelty Cables

Olga’s optional full-day (6 hour) class is                        3-Dimensional Knitwear

 

Zandy will teach the following three-hour classes:

      • Intro to Stacked Stitches
      • Color Theory for Fiber Artists
      • Center-Out Knitting

Zandy’s optional full-day (6 hour) class is Fox Paws Workshop

 

 

Shirley will teach the following three-hour classes:

            • Wreckhouse Wristers
            • Glove Knitting for Newbies
            • Beaded Eyelet Wristers

Shirley’s optional full-day (6 hour) class is  Newfoundland Mittens in a Day

 

Registration includes three 3-hour classes (one class with each instructor) during four class periods: Friday morning, Friday afternoon, Saturday morning, and Saturday afternoon. You will be given one free period with regular registration.

In addition to three 3-hour classes, you’ll have the opportunity to sign up for one-on-one sessions of 20 minutes each with the Knit Doctor (that’s me, Ann Budd) on a first-come, first-serve basis. I’ll help you with anything that ails your knitting, from taking measurements and choosing yarn to finding your place in a piece gone wrong and fixing mistakes.

For an additional fee, you can sign up for an optional full-day class with one of the teachers opening day (Thursday, August 27). If space is available, you’ll also have the opportunity to register for a fourth class in lieu of a free period.

Take time for yourself this year and join us for three (or four) days of learning, knitting, shopping, and enjoying the company of knitting enthusiasts from around the world! Gifts and prizes may be included…

Go to Knit For Fun Retreats for complete details.

Click here to register