Sunday, December 27, 2009


It was "beginning to look a lot like Christmas" the second week of December 2009. My first daughter was delighted. She had her 17th birthday party after her last day of school in 2009 ... the kids went sledding on 10" of snow, had cocoa, made s'mores at the firepit, (got my hardwoods pretty messed up).
WHO WAS IT that was "dreaming of a White Christmas"? We got 12" more from Christmas Eve through Christmas Day!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

The weather outside is frightful!

The weather outside is FRIGHTFUL and it's trying to come INSIDE! Even with the storm window closed and this old window was freshly glazed 5 years ago (glaze lasts 50 years)- the wind is so strong that the snow is sneaking up through the sill drain (purposely there so rain won't collect in the sill). If you squint you can see outside drifting on the neighbor's barbeque. It's a day for knitting! -and maybe some baking since the kids have another snow day!

Monday, November 30, 2009

copyright Kelly Sue Hitch (Klem)

Here is my very nauvice attempt to share some of my original music in this 3 part arrangement. I Knew A Man is a song I wrote, arranged and performed. My 4 year old can't figure out how I sang 3 different parts at once! I hope this song blesses you as much as it continues to bless me.


Thursday, November 26, 2009

Chocolate Pie Topper!

Use this flavored whip cream on ANY pie! It is great with fruit, pumpkin - and if you really wanna surprise your pancreas put it on pecan.

1/2 pint whipping cream

4 t granulated sugar

2 t unsweet baking cocoa

1/4 t ground nutmeg

Place all ingredients in an electric mixer, whip on medium speed for about 15 minutes or until peaks form. VIOLA! You have a Chocolate Whipped Cream with a Hint of Nutmeg! (makes a pretty light brown color)

Thursday, November 19, 2009


This little whirling dirvish is in cahoots with my creative muse and I love it!
This November I am thankful. I feel I have finally managed to go about my priorities without slighting others.
It is normal for women to feel PULLED this way toward a working career and that way to ensure being the best mother she can be.
Katie LOVES dresses. My dresses. the dresses I design and make. (Yay, I'm not the dorky mom forcing the kids to wear handmade!)
Katie looks terrific in dresses.
Katie is comfortable in dresses.
Katie feels good in dresses.
Katie is delighted over dresses.
Knowing this inspires me to please her. It's truely a WIN-WIN situation!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Approaching the GOAL!

Caron International (maker of Simply Soft, Bliss, SPA, and Country yarns) has commissioned me to design for TWO Leisure Arts books which will likely hit the shelves in 2010. Buy their yarn - they are the BEST to work for. They always give me name credit, plenty of time and yarn to work with...and in this economic downturn - Caron yarn is AFFORDABLE!

No pictures for this post...

I will also have a picture of a hat design in Annie Modesitt's compilation book "1000 Fabulous Knit Hats" which will be released in 2010.

These publications work to give me the credibility I need as a designer to pursue authoring my own book, a lifetime goal.

In the meantime, my Etsy/Ravelry pattern sales (self published) are doing well - I'm a happy girl.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Go Check on Granny

Granny's just as SQUARE as ever, she isn't as HOLEY as she used to be ...... but she isn't KNOTTY either!
Variation on the "Granny Square" by Kelly Klem.

Monday, September 14, 2009

My sweet Katie is four years old now!

Little Katie is the one who made me "quit my day job" four years ago.
As a newborn she absolutely would not sleep unless I held her. While it is completely delightful to hold a baby I needed to feel more productive for the sake of my family.
I soon discovered that I could knit to my heart's content while snuggling my darling late comer. (I was 44 years old and already had 13 and 10 year old daughters when she came into our lives)
My sweetie pie never fails to inspire my design muse.
This Reversible Wrap Dress makes Katie feel like the princess she is. (Yes, she is also my biggest fan.) You cannot put this dress on inside out. On the flip side of the cotton floral is a dressier chiffon whose skirt is gathered in three full widths of fabric. This pattern will become available at my Etsy shop: in little girl sizes 18 months, 2 and 4 years old soon. PDF.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Something Old

Grandma still had wooden spools of "boilfast" cotton sewing thread in her stash when she left us. All of them had a sale price of under a quarter.

My mother saved them but never found the ideal use. Maybe she just saved them for me, being a fiber lover.

This sewing thread is superb. It's slightly heavier than the thread made today, is still very strong, and has a wonderful twist, sheen, and color depth (unlike today's threads).

Last year I sold my first pair of thread crocheted earrings to a very enthusiastic woman who shared with me that they would not only be worn on her wedding day but, also, be passed down through the new family line she would begin with her new husband. (She returned to buy more.)

How wonderful is it that a 19 cent item would become so cherished and important?

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

ECO Sock Rows 34-41 extension help!

I understand that the ECO Sock pattern becomes TRICKY in Rows 34 through 41 as the top of the sock is gradually increased. The increases work in the tubular double knit technique but the sock is NOT YET tubular! (a brain bending feat is at hand) -- so, let's more appropriately call this a "Flatfold" technique.
During the heel rows the bottom of the sock is established. In Rows 34 through 41 a FLATFOLD is created at each end of the needle and seems to get REALLY COMPLICATED.
The fold at each end distinguishes the bottom sock stitches from the top sock stitches. Right side knit stitches begin to be called "back stitches" and wrong side purl stitches are suddenly named "front stitches" as the piece is worked back and forth knitting odd rows and purling even rows.
After Row (RND) 41 the foot rows will be worked in tubular double knit.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Stranded Roving

I'm working on developing a technique called "stranded roving" - inspired by the thrum technique. The stranded roving adds a wool lining which will be perfect for this cotton and pencil roving wool lined hotpad!
I gotta thank my GREAT FRIEND, Theresa M., who sent me the most gorgeous roving in 3 sizes!!!!
How I LOVE to explore the possibilities that knitting opens up to me.

Saturday, May 16, 2009


I'm so pleased to announce that the previous post is a WINNER in TKGA 2009 design competition! 
I've gotta give credit to my adorable model, Katie (who really wants her dress back!) She's my biggest fan and she's only 3 years old. My heart is always warm and fuzzy because she, firstly, inspires a great many designs and, secondly, she prefers wearing what I've made to all the store bought clothing she has!
My husband was out of town on a fishing trip when I got the GOOD NEWS and I was busy being a mom (carting children to their events) - so I gotta also thank my dear friends on and the wonderful gals on for sharing in my joy! I famous yet?...

Monday, May 11, 2009

Pins and Needles!

It's already a winner with my little model, Katie!
She keeps asking when she will get "her" dress back. Her dress is the design I entered into this years TKGA design competition. The fact that she loves everything I make for her is good enough for me - but if I can share it with others - well, that's just icing on the cake (of life).
We find out this week how well the dress did in the competition being held in Portland. Wish I could be there but : the husband is on a long deserved fishing trip with his best buddy and SOMEONE needs to cart our 3 kids to their sporting events, school concerts and award banquets that coincidentally pop up on a weekly basis at this time of year.
I was fortunate to meet two other contestants on Ravelry (a knitter's online community) and wish them the very best as well!

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

I'm a FINALIST in The Knitting Guild Association contest!

Design etiquette does not allow me to show the entire item before final judging...

I'm so happy to be promoting DOUBLE KNIT in this design, seamlessly knit in tubular double knit with DOUBLE KNIT finishing that is quite unique (and was a blast to figure out!).

Knit in Tahki Yarn "New Tweed" - a gorgeous wool/silk/viscose blend with a beautiful garment drape. The colors are heathered and work well in combination with other "New Tweed" colors.

The Knitting Guild Association Design Competition in association with final judging takes place May 15, 2009 at the TKGA National Convention Knit & Crochet Show in Portland (May 14-17)

--that means I gotta wait (while wearing my adrenal glands to a frazzle) for a month and a half.  In the meantime, it is so encouraging to know that I've been recognized already!

This year, for me, is all about establishing myself as a designer in knit wearables.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Patterns, Here I Come!

I've toyed with the idea of self publishing and selling my patterns at my Etsy shop for awhile now.  Last year Caron International kept me very busy with projects and I did not have time to work on self publishing. When you get $100 to $400 for a pattern from a yarn company and they keep you in stitches - there's no need. However, Caron (very kindly) informed their designers that in 2009 they will not have as many projects, due to the economic crisis. I thought it was VERY considerate of them to tell us that and began preparing PDF patterns for self publishing.
I'm pleased to share that in the first week that my ECO Sock pattern went up for sale I sold 20 copies! So, maybe self publishing is a thing to pursue in slow times. Magazine, book, and yarn company publishers of patterns are a wonderful venue because they reach a HUGE market.
I will continue to pursue them but, in the meantime, here is a preview of my next release at that is knit in the round on a pair of straight needles (who said you couldn't make lace in dk?)

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Flatfold Knitting and Thrumming with silk

I consider my "Flatfold Knitting Technique" to be a progession on the technique: tubular double knitting, developed by the late Beverly Royce.
In the work above, the knit work was cast on closed and thrummed with silk while being knit in the round on a pair of straight needles. It is primarily knit inside out for the convenience of working "knit 1 back stitch, slip 1 front stitch" in one motion rather than moving the working yarn to the forward and back positions. This lends itself well to thrumming.
As you can see, after working the tube, I began knitting back and forth to create a slit opening at the chest and then proceeded to use bind off decreases until half of the total number of stitches were on one needle. These will be folded in half and kitchenered to make the hood of the silk thrummed baby swaddle pod.

In the second photo is the ECO Sock in progress. Half of the total number of sts was cast on and worked back and forth to make the heel. Increases are worked on the other side of the Flatfold and needle until the total number of sts have been increased. The foot rows will then be worked in tubular double knit on a pair of straight needles.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Every three months someone in our immediate family has a birthday -- except for those New Year's celebration babies of which we have two (in September).
This year we now have TWO teenagers (and a 3 year old! .... hrumph ... New Years celebrations...) This birthday girl was my birthday present 13 years ago (which means I'll get a year older in 3 months!)
She was the piece of life that helped me look forward to keep on livin' after my mom died. She has kept me on my toes ever since.
Her kindergarten teacher put it well, "Heidi will always be happy" - because she seeks fun - constantly.
What did she want? (thank God her birthday finally CAME...'cause the ideas of "what she wanted" kept coming in - daily!) The first was an apron (shown below) and a chef's hat - the pattern for this will be available soon. (I think she likes the hat - she's had it on all day!)
She also got an original sweater (by me) - a skinny sleeve, cropped cable jacket in cotton and wool - knit with absolutely NO SEAMS.
At the very last minute she wanted some fuzzy I made those too. I can't believe I got it all done. And baked her a cake, too!
Happy Birthday, darling...ya drive me nuts but I wouldn't have it any other way. MOM

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Messy Cooks

So...I worked out a deal with Etsy shop: CraftsByCarer (fantastic person) to get my little cook an apron for her upcoming birthday.

We had insufficient light (doggone it!) for this preliminary photo shoot...but it's just so funny I had to share it anyway. Hey, isn't the apron perfect?

Monday, February 9, 2009

How Old Am I Gonna BE?

I am Kelly's daughter...and I am about to have a birthday on March 9. I was "due" on my mom's BFF's birthday but -- I always jump the gun!
Please have some fun guessing how old I am gonna be!
Okay...I KNOW you need a few perimeters:
1. I am old enough to be IN school but not old enough to be OUT of school.
2. I have acted in 5 full length plays.
3. I have only broken 1 bone.
4. I have been asked "out" but not gone "out".
5. I love boys in general but none in particular.
6. My armpits stink if I don't deodorize them.
7. I shave my legs.
8. I am a diva.
9. I do not have any idea my mom is doing this.
10. When I was 0-5 years old I was the spittin' image of Mom and we have pictures to prove it.
11. Now, I look very much like my Dad's mom (go figure!)
12. I am completely adorable when I'm not hell on wheels.
13. If you can't guess now...

Sunday, January 11, 2009

TEEN Fashion Trend 16 year old daughter came to me a week and a half before Christmas with a picture of some slipper boots (all the rage with teens) from Urban these colors...that were no longer available for purchase!
Okay - I did think that they were gorgeous, however, they were slipper boots: meaning they were soft sole...and...hello!...we live in Nebraska! (and I KNEW she'd be wearing them to school).
...a lightbulb went off...I've had these perfectly comfortable KEDs tennis shoes (all broken in) but "looking" broken I knit a fair isle upper in Caron Bliss and a turqoise sport yarn which no longer had a label (from my stash)...knitted feverishly...lined the upper in bright pink stretch fleece...stitched and glued it to the shoes and ... VOILA! A slipper boot that is more a boot and less a slipper. Was she happy? Ya think?

Friday, January 9, 2009

The Daring Old Chic!


It's not difficult for me to show old pictures of myself (or look at them). However it IS HARD to see new pictures of my OLD SELF!

I am doing this as an exercise to live out loud in 2009 - and do this without apologizing - YAY me!

This is the way I look to most I look up from constant knitting!  

My New Year's Resolution is to write as many patterns as I can. And I have a STRONG start: I've written a tubular medium weight sock in DK, a tubular sport weight felted fingerless glove in DK, a scoop front medium weight cotton socklet (like a ped) in DK, and a mitten with foldover mitten flap glove pattern (take a breath!) all this year!!!