Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Just Getting Started


I can't believe it actually happened.  I made a set of knitting needles and finally posted them on!

6-inch US 2.5 double-pointed knitting needles

Since we now have a lathe (a woodworking power tool), I will be learning how to make straight knitting needles with handmade designs.  It's very exciting that things are coming together.  I will be even happier when I make my first sale on Etsy.  I also posted a pair of socks on there as well to get that section of my shop going too.

Autumn Leaves

I'm so happy with how these turned out as well.  We'll see how they do!

Coming soon
More socks and possibly even a jumper!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Knit One, Cherish Too!

Knitting Madness

I've been going crazy these past few weeks with all the projects I'm taking on.  We lost the camera (found it this evening), so no pictures for this entry...  The good news is, I finally accomplished making my first set of handmade knitting needles.

You wouldn't think that making knitting needles would be a tedious process, but it is.  It mainly involved sanding the points with high grit sandpaper so as to not snag the yarn.  The other thing to keep in mind is the finish.  I'm testing a few different ideas.  I stained a needle, varnished a needle, and high glossed a needle.  These treaments are drying, but once they're dry, I get to spend more time buffing the finishes.

I am dedicated to bringing back the old standard of quality handmade items.  It's important to keep up with artistic traditions while bringing a contemporary or modern-time feel to designs.  The fun thing now is that I get to learn woodworking, something my late grandfather did in his spare time during retirement.  I feel as though I'm passing on a tradition.  As a result, we invested in a lathe to do more intricate designs on knitting needles and my husband got a power saw since he's a little jealous of my growing tool collection.  :)

Amidst all of this planning, I managed to finish a pair of socks, travel to some of my local yarn shops, and bake a few apple pies (we visited an orchard last weekend).  All in all, I feel like Cherished Moments is coming together nicely and within the next month we could have more things going into Etsy, which was my goal all along.  Wish us luck!

Coming Soon
Pictures of handmade knitting needles.

Friday, August 19, 2011

An Order to Chaos

Current Projects
  • Peanut's Fall Sweater: I was able to complete Peanut's Fall Sweater, which is known as "Sweater with Ribbed Yoke" by Debbie Bliss.  It seemed as though the collar took the longest, but this sweater actually looks incredibly cute on my son (unfortunately, he wouldn't pose for any pictures while he tried it on).  This sweater involved a lot of ribbing and faux cables across the top of the front and back and also at the top of the sleeves.

  • Pink Swirls: I picked up a book called "Socks a la carte 2: Toes up!" while on my Yarn Trek.  I decided to start a pair of socks, as mentioned in my previous post.  I was also able to finish this pair while visiting my parents at their bed and breakfast.  So far, I've gotten pretty positive feedback on this pair, so I definitely will be making more pairs of socks out of this book.
  • Autumn Leaves: Yes, I started another pair of socks using a leaf pattern out of the book.  I am using Berroco Sox Metallic to complete this pair.  So far, I've been able to get a bit better at casting on a toe-up sock and it's turning out great.  Hopefully, I'll be able to finish these quickly and post pictures soon!
  • Falling Leaves:  Continuing with the upcoming "back-to-school" and fall season, I designed a jumper using Sirdar Snuggly yarn.  It will be multicolored with a border containing leaves.
Knitting Madness

It's absolutely crazy the number of projects that have decided to take on in order to get my etsy shop officially up and running.  Some of the things you will see on there soon:
  • Handmade knitting needles
  • Handmade stitch markers
  • Socks
  • Children's clothing
Keep checking back to monitor our progress!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Toe-up Socks

While on my Yarn Trek, I came across a book for knitting toe up socks: Socks a la carte 2: Toes Up!  As much as I love to knit socks - and I even have my own master pattern - I have never done a toe-up sock.  Probably out of fear of the unknown...  Using the figure-eight cast on, I attempted (and failed) to start a toe-up sock a good 20 times until I gave up that day.  Even with the pictures, it just wasn't working.  Thanks to the group Sock Madness on, I was able to get a few hints on how to do this cast on and make it look good.  Here's what I learned:
  1. When doing the cast on, include the slip-knot stitch as your cast on stitch.
  2. Knit a few rows - I knit a total of 2 - on each needle once you've done the cast on in order to make sure that the cast on was good.  It also creates a good-looking toe point if you're using variegated yarn.
  3. The book tells you to distribute the stitches a certain way for a lot of the different toe patterns.  For the double-up toe, slip 4 of the sts of one of the needles onto a third needle and then you should have the sts distributed. You'll have to knit the sts on what would be needle 3 (N3) in order to get to the beginning of the round.  Then and only then will it work.
Knitting Madness
Yarn Trek took a total of four days.  On days three and four, Peanut and I visited four more shops.
  • Grafton Yarn Store  The shop is absolutely awesome!  It's in an older building and set up very well.  I got more baby yarn, picturing a back to school/fall colors jumper.  The owner was very friendly and invited me to join her Ravelry group to follow sales, etc. 
  • Main St. Yarn Shop This took a while for us to get to from our hometown, but it was definitely worth it.  I got some good business start-up advice from the owner, who was actually willing to talk to me about owning a yarn shop.  I also picked out some yarn that I plan on using to design a few fall items for my etsy shop.
  • Xpressions Beads & Yarn This was a little bit of a smaller shop, but it is equally devoted to yarn and beads.  You can purchase items on their website, or email the owner and put in a special order.
  • Fiddlehead Yarns  Another quaint shop, but it is much larger than it appears.  There is even another room off of the main shop, which I assumed was for classes and/or private knitting. 
Coming Soon
Handmade knitting needles!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Knit Trek: On a Mission to Find Local Yarn Shops

  1. The new website has officially been launched.  It's only a skeleton, but as the portfolio and designs build, we'll have plenty more going on. 
  2. Our shop is up and running as well.  There are two listings so far that include our handdyed sock yarn.  Keep checking out cherishedmomentswi on for new designs and yarns!

Knitting Madness
This weekend I decided to set out on a trek around the southeastern portion of our state in search of local yarn shops.  I figured, it would be a great idea in order to find out a little bit more about the craft business and also to find new and fun yarns.

  • The Knitting Knook (  This was the first stop on our trip.  Peanut immediately fell in love with the fact that the yarn was all out in the open.  I liked the set up of this shop because it was cosy and inviting.  The shop itself is in a house that is shared with three other businesses.  It was interesting to see the different kinds of yarn, but I also recognized a few from magazines: Manos del Uruguay and Debbie Bliss yarns!  This is definitely a place that I'll be visiting again.
  • Ruhama's Yarn and Needlepoint (  Next stop on the tour was Ruhama's.  This was by far my favorite shop of all that I had seen.  Located in a suburb of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, this yarn shop was the most organized.  The store's yarns were organized by weight and there were signs that gave a lot of information about each individual yarn.  I spent the most money here, as I found an interesting set of soft yarns for some baby clothing designs.  I will probably be coming here most often.
  • Cream City Yarn (  I think Peanut enjoyed this particular shop the most.  We watched one of the women wind yarn into a cored ball a few times and then searched the shop for more fun yarns.  There was a significant stash of Cascade Yarns, which I haven't seen anywhere except online.  The woman who was winding yarn invited Peanut to play with yarn ball winder when she was finished and also led him to a secret stash of toys by the baby yarn.  A great atmosphere here and modern feel.  LOVED IT!
  • Knitch ( The last stop on our tour was Knitch.  It's located in a small town in between Milwaukee and Madison, which meant it also had a cozy, welcoming atmosphere.  I checked out this store a little bit faster than the other shops, mainly because Peanut was starting to get sleepy.  I found some Baby Cashmerino yarn, which I quickly bought in order to make yet another vest design for the holiday season.
I orginally did a google search for a lot of different yarn shops, but found that half of them had closed.  There was also one place that was listed as a yarn shop online, but it turned out to be a quilting shop that had a tiny room of felted wool.  While it was disappointing to find that some places no longer existed, I was glad to have done the work and now I have a few more resources to go to for yarn.