Posts from the ‘Crochet’ category

2013 Potholder Swap

The State of the Coffee Table

After a one-year hiatus, the potholder swap is back and we couldn’t be more excited!   We’ve changed some things around, so be sure to read the rules thoroughly.


Signing up:
There’s no need to sign up or notify anyone in any way that you intend to swap. Have your potholders at the destination below by April 1 and you’ll be swapping. If you don’t have them there on time, they’ll be returned to you. Feel free to participate in the Flickr and Ravelry groups, but it’s not a requirement.

Your Potholders:
Each participant is required to crochet (and only crochet) 3 potholders in the same pattern. Please do vary the colors as you see fit. We don’t want you bored to tears! Please be sure your hot pads and potholders measure between 6 and 8 inches across and are double thick. THEY MUST BE WITHIN THESE SIZE PARAMETERS OR THEY WILL BE RETURNED TO YOU. To make a double thick potholder, crochet the same pattern twice, or do a fancy side and a plain side, then join at the edge. Please make your potholders at a reasonably tight gauge. We don’t want burned fingers!

2011 Swap Potholder #1
We’ll be using 100% cotton yarns exclusively. No blends, please.

Label each pad/holder with maker and care instructions. Feel free to include yarn and pattern info. Affix the label with a safety pin or tie it on. No straight pins, please. We had a lot of trouble with labels coming off during the first swap. We don’t want to accidentally send you one of your own potholders.

These are absolute requirements and if you don’t follow them, you won’t be able to swap.

The Actual Swapping:

After the potholders are received, your hosts are going to get together and have a grand time looking at all of your gorgeous work and selecting 3 different beauties to send back to you.

The goal of this swap is to produce and receive little pieces of crocheted art. Use beautiful yarns, color combinations, and patterns. Don’t feel pressured to use teensy little crochet cotton. Thicker cottons like Tahki Cotton Classic, Rowan Cotton Glace, and Elann Sonata make great potholders. Have a ton of fun.

Postage + Envelope:
US participants need to include a self-addressed, postage-paid, large First Class Envelope. You will have to provide your own Self-Addressed Stamped (Non-Priority) envelope. The current first class rate for a large envelope weighing up to 13 oz. is $3.38. We will make sure all packages stay under 13 oz. so that we’re sure your postage is covered. You will have to purchase the stamp(s) to cover this. Postal regulations have changed since the last swap, so to be sure you receive your package, we require first class envelopes only. People have trouble every year with a postal employee trying to be helpful and telling them to do something different than what we are saying to do here. PLEASE buy a large envelope (Bubble wrap-lined is good, and so is Tyvek. Those heavy ones filled with paper pulp are bad because they will put you in Priority Mail territory with their weight alone), address it to yourself, put $3.38 worth of stamps on it, and include it with your potholders. DO NOT SEND PRIORITY MAIL TYVEK ENVELOPES.

Non-US swappers, the only way for us to collect postage fees from you is PayPal. We expect packages to weigh under 10 oz., so postage should be between $8 and $14, depending on where you live. You must include your email address ON the outside of your package, with your address, so that we may email you for your postage fees. If you don’t, we won’t be able to contact you and send your package back.

We’ll need to receive your potholders by April 1. Please mail them to:

Hello Yarn
P.O. Box 19
Shelburne Falls, MA 01370

Charcoal Hex Potholder Back

Inspiration + Patterns:

We’ll create a thread in the Ravelry group for pattern and yarn suggestions. Please add to it!

Keep us abreast of your progress, both on Ravelry and in the Flickr group. Talk about yarns, show your in-progress hot pads, and tell us about patterns. This will be a blast!  There’s also a really nice group on Flickr for showing off potholders.  It’s great for inspiration.


Feel free to contact me using the button in the upper right hand corner.


Leave a comment

Potholder Swap Crocheting is Underway

It’s time for the 3rd annual potholder swap! There’s a Ravelry group and a Flickr group if you missed the announcements and want to participate.

After much thought, I decided not to reinvent the wheel, which I really feel the urge to do when it comes to this swap, and just make something that revs my engine. I love old-fashioned potholders and I love a million bright colors, and I LOVE LOVE LOVE little picots, so there you have it.

2011 Swap Potholder #1

Pattern: Granny Mandala (rav link). The back is a solid dc circle (I like and use Bea Aarebrot’s Potholder pattern).
Yarn: a mix of Aunt Lydia’s, DMC Cébélia, and Knit-Cro-Sheen in size 10, held double
Hook: 2.5mm
Confession: I can’t get the dc2tog in the Granny Mandala work for me. There are always 3 on the hook to pull the tread through at the end, not 2. It works and looks fine, so I guess it’s fine.
Inspiration: I completely flipped out when I saw this pillow and started planning these potholders. This potholder put me over the edge.

2011 Swap Potholder #1

I wanted a slightly lighter fabric than I got with Tahki Cotton Classic, which I used for the past two swaps’ potholders. The plan was to use the yarn held single, but I am just not made of strong enough stuff for that, especially since I make potholders for the other organizers and helpers, bringing me up to 8 total. Size 3 thread would be perfect, if it came in decent colors, which it decidedly does not. It turns out the doubled size 10 is fantastic and doesn’t cause any problems while crocheting. This required rewinding all the yarn into center-pull balls, which might have put me off the idea if I hadn’t already gotten the yarn before realizing it!

It’s so fun sitting with this box of colors in my lap, lining the colors up and making these simple potholders.

Like a Paintbox

Made of Awesome:
* wool clothing- I’m obsessed with finding a nightshirt like the ones Hanna Andersson has, but wool. I think I’m going to have to sew the thing. There’s cool fabric to be had, though!
* cowls- I dyed up some chunky wool in a pale, silvery blue for this cowl (the white one with popcorn stitch). Isn’t it so cozy and gorgeous?
* bread- Cold weather gives me such an urge to bake. This scallion bread looks delicious.

There’s a shop update tomorrow, 1 pm EST. All the items are already shown in the shop so you can see them now.


Join Us for the 4! Ounce! Challenge!

Orchard Corriepaca

The lovely David of Southern Cross Fibre contacted me and Amy of Spunky Eclectic recently with a fantastic idea. Since we, and a great chunk of other hand-dyers, sell our fibers in 4 oz. pieces, we should encourage the designing of objects and the writing of patterns that use that amount of fiber. If you’ve been around Ravelry’s spinning boards, you know “What can I do with just 4 oz.?” is a common question. We, and everyone who joins us, will help make the answer a whole lot easier.

On top of that, there are really good prizes- a grand prize of a $150 fiber pack from Spunky Eclectic/Hello Yarn/Southern Cross Fibre (about three 4 oz lots from each) and a random prize draw with three $50 prizes (one 4 oz lot from each SE/HY/SCF). People who spin and create an original item through August/September will get one entry in the random prize draw. Those who publish the pattern get an additional entry in the random draw. The grand prize ($150 fiber) will be judged based on published and submitted patterns only.

The rules are:

1. During August and September, spin up 4 oz. of handpainted fiber from Spunky Eclectic, Southern Cross Fiber, or Hello Yarn and knit/crochet/weave something from this handspun yarn with no other yarn added. You can use less than the 4 oz., but not more. Spin it bulky for a hat or super fine for a giant shawl, we love it all.

2. Write up a pattern. While not necessary, even to be entered into the random prize drawings, it’s kind of the point and everyone will appreciate it. Publish said pattern, either on Ravelry or your blog, either for free or for sale. Please follow current pattern-writing guidelines. Not sure what they are? Knittyspin has a great set of guidelines. Please note that the grand prize will be judged on the basis of the actual pattern submitted, not just prettiness.

3. Email us with your object and a bit about it or email us the pattern.

There’s a ton more info in the Ravelry group we’ve created for the contest. There’s a FAQ and you can ask any questions and discuss your plans in the forum.

We hope to see you there! I’ll be trying my hand at writing a spinning/knitting pattern right alongside everyone else. Enjoy!