Saturday, January 31, 2015

Mitt research

My pal Bev and I often talk about our creative work when we're together, and as we do the similarities in our processes have become apparent.  She's a writer (here's her blog).   

I decided to set a few weeks aside in January to focus on fingerless mitts.  They'd be easy, I thought, allowing me time to rest a bit before taking on a next, more strenuous, cardigan design.  I started by studying patterns from other designers to understand mitt fit and measurements, then set out on my own.  A 1960s knitting dictionary I rediscovered on the shelf yielded several fresh abbreviated lace patterns (what a find!) that fit well into the condensed mitt format.

I was right, the mitts have been quick to knit (and fun).  Their design, however, has come with unique discipline, that made me think of Bev's blog posts and her challenge of creating a complete story with fewer words in a limited space – that she does so well.

I'll be posting an ebook with 4 patterns in a week or so, named for my girl Juliet's Lacy Mitt Series because she clamors for them, and now so do I.  We'll share.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Western obsession

My girlfriends can tell you all about my fascination with cowboys.  We've had more than a few laughs about it over the years :).  So in keeping with my patterns' personal naming theme, I dub this, my latest knitting design (with cowboy fringe!) – Bonanza.

Dad and I used to watch this 1960's tv series on Sunday nights, before (or after?) Ed Sullivan.  Maybe this is where my western obsession began.  Is it an accident I married a Hoss?  hee hee, a topic for my therapist..

Creating the fringe, a new-to-me technique, turned out to be very fun and easy.  Fabulous testers are working now to proof the numbers and text of my pattern, that I plan to launch mid-January.  It will be my first for 2015 – a nice start for the brand new year.  Yee-ha!

Thursday, October 16, 2014


Super cute, no?  (The sweater too.)  Juliet and I had a fun day yesterday over breakfast, picture-taking, then lunch!  I got to spend lots of quality time with my favorite girl who, by the way, is recently engaged to the wonderful James!  Smiles all around.

Recalling art school days, and drawing 101, Crosshatch seemed a fitting name for this piece with its variegated yarn criss-crossing vertical ribs.  Testers are finishing up as I prepare to launch this pattern over the weekend.  I'll link from here when I do, but I just couldn't resist the early posting.  I get so excited.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Paper toys 2014

Christmas in September! at least for me, as I put aside my knitting and orchestrate annual gift giving assignments and their paper toys for special delivery to my 16 brothers and sisters-in-law.

We lost our brother Bill this year – our marathon runner.  All the Hoss men are athletes and by now most have settled into golf for sport.  Bill remained a runner to the end, competing in 66 marathons during his lifetime.  He, and we, are particularly proud of his 1981 Boston Marathon – finishing first place for his age group in a time of 2 hours, 34 minutes, and 15 seconds.

This one's for you Bill.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Estelle's Envy

Lillian Hildegarde, my great aunt, was born in 1898 the oldest daughter in my grandmother's family.  I knew she had polio as a child, that she had walked with a cane since then.

I knew she was the keeper of our family tree.  I spent one preteen summer with our royal typewriter re-keying her name lists onto new clean sheets.  I still have these pages.  I'm their keeper now.

Unlike most young women of her day she went to college. Single, independent, she lived alone in an apartment on Park Drive. Through family albums I learned more about her work at MIT.  She was a librarian. I saw her smiling back from photographs taken at her retirement party.

But it wasn't until much later that I discovered she was a writer a writer of steamy novels never published, about life, love, romance, and heartbreak. She wrote her chapters in Scribble-in Books little blank hardbound journals.  I have the one with pages numbered from 626 to 778.  I wish had more more.

As sweater tribute to my novelist, I plucked the fitting family-inspired name of my latest design from one of her characters a young woman named Estelle.  

Introducing Estelle's Envy – a slim pullover with alpaca collar abundance.

Pattern writing and testing are underway EPD (estimated publish date) 9/15/2014.

Monday, July 21, 2014


I'm having a great summer of knitting.  Let's Dance and Beach Weekend are published and my most recent, Innamorata, is nicely underway.  

This design is named for a Dean Martin song circa 1955 (almost before my time).  Marlene was a fan and if I close my eyes I can hear it playing from the stereo in our living room. 

Innamorata, Italian for "in love" and I've also seen translations as "sweetheart" and "soul mate" all of which I find fitting for this simple, delicate, and thoroughly romantic summer tee.

I hope you'll agree.  

Monday, June 30, 2014

Goings on

Let's Dance was published on June 23rd – hooray! – after another delightful experience with a great group of test knitters (thank you!).  This design is a first for me – top-down – and mastering that turned out to be a great experience too.  So much so that currently in test is Beach Weekend (below), that I spun off from this one.

Beach Weekend, named for a favorite pastime and because it's where much of its knitting happened, reused the Tilting Blocks lace, but this time I placed it on the sleeves, that are elbow length. The neckline is deeper, and the bodice is shaped instead of a-line.  My hoped-for publish date is July 21st and so far so good.  Test knitters seem to be having fun.  Me too :).   

Busy days at Deb Hoss Knits enterprise :).