Laura Ricketts Designs

"She seeks wool and flax, and works with willing hands..."

Laura Ricketts Designs is a personal and business website for Laura Ricketts, hand-knitwear designer, author, teacher, crafter, mother and wife.

Another magazine in the mail

The recent PieceWork came in the mail. It, too, has one of my projects as well as a companion article in it. (If you click the link above, it will take you to a digital version of the magazine.)

The current July/August PieceWork magazine. My article is inside.

The current July/August PieceWork magazine. My article is inside.

Inside is an article I wrote about the Australian crocheter and designer, Mary Card. I really appreciate her artistry in the many designs she made, and her incredible courage when she moved to new continents, first to the US and then to England during WWII. She was a single woman and moved seeking career advances in the designs and crochet business.

Poppies breakfast curtains

Poppies breakfast curtains

The curtains I designed and crocheted for the project were an amalgamation of two of her designs -- a poppies crochet piece for a hand towel, and the background for another piece.

My thoughts were also with the various centennial anniversaries of WWI -- or the war to end all wars. This is especially poignant since my family visited Flanders Fields just two weeks ago.

In Belgium

In Belgium

I have made two of these curtains, now, and they brighten my breakfast area at home.

Love of Knitting

Look what landed in my mailbox!

The King's Road Cowl by me

The King's Road Cowl by me

This is my first pattern in the Love of Knitting magazine, and I'm so glad to be in it. Love of Knitting is the first knitting magazine I have published in that is carried locally.

The yarn is a beautiful, soft Malabrigo. It's a wonderful, easy pattern to knit for the fall or for a cold office.

Yarnover

I had a most excellent time teaching at Yarnover in Minneapolis last weekend. Yarnover is the once-a-year conference for the Minnesota Knitting Guild. June Hemmons Hiatt was the keynote speaker Friday night. She wrote the amazing The Principles of Knitting tome. Everything you would ever want to know about knitting is inside it.

Her website is PrinciplesofKnitting.com. Her latest passion has been belt knitting, the very efficient knitting method made famous on the Shetland Islands. June and her son Jesse have created a new fangled version of the knitting belt -- beautiful and in multiple colors.

I taught a class on methods of color knitting based on a beautiful flower motif in Jokkmokk Flowers pattern. This gorgeous pattern is based on a mitten in Erika Nordvall Falck's wonderful mitten collection from Norrbotten, Sweden. The flowers are a regional pattern, and widely used in Sami mittens. Her former mother-in-law used the motif often in family mittens knitted in many colors.

When a knitter works a larger color work motif, like the the flower in the Jokkmokk Flowers mitten, he or she must know what to do with longer stranded floats. In the class we sampled methods of stranding, variations on what to do with long floats, and experimented with two alternative ways of doing color work. 

I had great fun, and the students were the best! Seriously! Gold stars, guys.

I also had a chance to meet up with River City Yarn store owners, Barb and Cynthia. River City Yarns is a great store in Edmonton, Alberta. Being dyed-in-the-wool Canadians, Barb and Cynthia have named their store brand yarn "Hat Trick," dyed in the National Hockey League team colors. They interviewed me along with Lars Rains. Here is a part of that fun...

Baby hat stint

The reception went really well for my exhibition opening. Thank you to all who came! The exhibition is still up through March 4 at MoonTree Studios. Please, come out and see it.

I'm gathering information and the knitted goods I reserved from the exhibition to travel up to Wisconsin this weekend to speak and teach. Now, I have to go the library and get some books on tape for my listening pleasure as I drive.

Swim season has wound up and I have finished off and sent in three projects for upcoming publication. Two are for the Fall Knitting Traditions magazine, and one for PieceWork -- I'm not exactly sure which month. I'm glad this teaching trip is in a brief spell of no deadlines! When I get home, the yarn should be here for the Winter Love of Knitting project. And, that, of course, will come just in time for soccer season. What do these spectator parents do that don't knit?

In the meantime, I've been working up some hats: one for my mom, and two baby hats. A number of friends are expecting wee ones. I did some stash dives, waved some sticks in the air, and Presto! Bang! 

Mum's Hyacinth Bucket hat done in Brown Sheep worsted

Mum's Hyacinth Bucket hat done in Brown Sheep worsted

Sweet little Norwegian baby cap 

Sweet little Norwegian baby cap 

Norwegian baby cap 2; Plymouth Happy Feet and Koigu

Norwegian baby cap 2; Plymouth Happy Feet and Koigu