Sunday, February 1, 2015

Episode 13: Refocus

Natalie knitting on her Breezy Cardigan


This week’s segments include Master Status, Master Plan, In our Hands, Masterpieces, Study Hall, Simply Selfie, Raise your hand, and Comfort Zone.


Master Status (1:19):

Alicia discussed her plan to stay motivated. She organized her binder and started re-knitting swatches. Natalie explained her strategy and knit swatches 10 and 11.


Master Plan (4:17):

Natalie is going to stick with her Monday and Wednesday program knitting.

Alicia is going to stick with her time goal. She will re-knit swatches 7 and 8, remembering to keep them labeled correctly.


(6:05) Alicia and Natalie remind you to participate in the #AgainstTheGrainKAL.


In our hands (7:24):

Alicia cast onAutumn by Jane Richman with Lion Brand Thick and Quick, Grey Marble. She is also working on Swivel Pullover by Kerri Blumer with Debbie Bliss, Cashmerino Aran

Natalie has been spending a lot of her knitting time on herBreezy Cardiganby Hannah Fettig usingKnit Picks Caprettain the Caviar colorway.  She is spinning the black corriedale locks by flicking them and spinning from end.  She is enjoying is and part of AgainstTheGrainKAL


Lish finished her January socks! She went #AgainstTheGrainKAL by trying a new heel.


Master Pieces (14:40):

Alicia finished:

  1. Knit Hat for EveryonebyKathy NorthwithKnit Picks Wool of the Andes, Lion Brand Wool Ease (BGSU)

  2. Vanilla Latte SocksbyVirginia Rose Jeanes. Patons Kroy SocksinGreen Striped Raggcolorway

  3. Peek-A-Book Mitts by Abi Gregorio (purple)

  4. Reindeer: Christmas Balls Knit Ornament Pattern Set By Amy Gaines

Natalie finished Diamond Transitions Hat, and original design using Blue Sky Alpaca Sport. She discussed a hiccup in the process. She found a chart creator online to make a colorwork chart for the design. She also discusses possible matching mittens!


Study Hall (23:45):

Natalie will be teaching a colorwork class at Stash on Feb 21st and 9:30 AM.

Alicia will be teaching a class on Thursday January 29 and February 5, 5:30-6:30, at Tranquil Grind. Class is full!


Simply Selfie (27:30):

Alicia is preparing for beginner knitting class on Thursday! She has been super productive at work. She is finally finding what is working for her. Natalie is very excited about bathroom renovations. The bathroom is complete.  She enjoyed an afternoon with tinyant. Welcome new nephews, Magnus and Sheamus.  


Raise your Hand? (36:48):

This week we ask: How do you use Ravelry?

Natalie explains how she was inspired by the Knitting Butterflies podcast for tagging her work. She shares her experiences going through all of her work.

Alicia discusses her love for ravelry through friendships, inspiration, yarn trades, swaps, and groups.


Comfort zone (44:09):

Alicia is enjoying her Christmas ornament swap from the Christmas Knitting Ravelry Group! She is falling back in love with her home. She has been using Grandma Biddy’s tape measurer that is fabric.

Natalie is enjoying a clean house, although it doesn’t last long with two little ones. Natalie has been using her Aunt’s double pointed needles.  

Thank you for joining us for episode 13 of Mastering the Knits. You can find shownotes at or on our ravelry group Mastering the Knits Podcast.   You can email us at Follow us on Twitter @MtKnits.  Alicia is knottyknitter17 on Ravelry, Twitter, Instagram. Natalie can be found on twitter, Instagram, and ravelry as barknknit.

Check out this episode!

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Episode 12: Against The Grain

Natalie’s latest finished Hitofude Cardigan


This week’s segments include Master Plan,  Masterpieces, In Our Hands, Future Stitches, Study Hall, Simply Selfie, Raise your hand, Happy Tails, and Comfort Zone.


Master Plan: (1:22)

Alicia and Natalie discuss how they are going to get re-motivated to take on the Master Knitter Program Level 1. Natalie plans to knit swatch 9 and 10, start questions, and organize binder.  Natalie’s plan is to schedule Monday and Wednesday nights as Level 1 work nights. She was inspired from the By the Fibreside Podcast.

Alicia is going to set aside time each week to dedicate to program. She is going to work on program at a minimum of 3 hours per week. She is going to be flexible on the days she works on it. WIth every hour she  will earn a point. Each point will equal $1 for a  sock yarn fund!

What is going to motivate you to get back on track this year? Share your strategy with us in the Ravelry group or on Facebook.


Knit Along!: (5:13)

Alicia and Natalie announce a new ongoing KAL!  #AgainstTheGrainKAL. The goal of the knit-a-long is to go contrary to the natural inclination of your craft or technique. We aren’t limiting the KAL to just those who want to learn a different style of knitting but crafting anything that is opposite of what you normally do.  Feel free to surprise us!!  Be sure to use the hashtag on instagram, facebook, and post to our Ravelry group!


Natalie’s Family Stockings

Master Pieces: (8:15)

Natalie finished Grace, Carmen’s Kindness Elf. She used Bell, the Garden Elfby Ala Ela in Wool of the Andes Sport in several colors.She didnt take them seriously when she had to stuff the head and had to add more so the neck wasn’t floppy.She finished up her stocking using A NEW Family Portrait - A Collection of Three Christmas Stockingsby Dorene Delaney Giordano using cascade 220 sport in burgundy and bare. She also finished a Hitofude Cardiganby Hiroko Fukatsu using The Fiber Seed sprout in their elephant colorway. She discussed some mistakes in the lace and how she got passed them.Finally, she finished up anEasy Scrap-Buster Slouch Hatby Swoon Fibers using some blue Encore someone gave me. She knit this for Halos of Hope. Knit the body of this hat all in continental for the #AgainstTheGrainKAL

Alicia finished up the Barley HatbyTin Can Knits. She also knit many variations of the Knit Hat for EveryonebyKathy Northwith Knit Picks Wool of the Andes, Lion Brand Wool Ease, and Cascade 220. She knit the Super Soft Simple Baby HatbyPurl Bee, TheOhio State colors and Pittsburgh Steelers colors withKnit PicksBrava Bulky. She also caught the sock knitting bug and finished Sock Recipe: A good, plain, sockbyStephanie Pearl McPhee, Knit Picks Felici in Cheer.


Alicia’s finished socks for December

In our hands:(24:30)

Alicia is currently working on Vanilla Latte SocksbyVirginia Rose Jeanes. Patons Kroy SocksinGreen Striped Raggcolorway. She discovered a split stitch creating possibly a weak stitch in a pair of socks. Natalie suggested to duplicate a row of stitches to strengthen.

Natalie is currently working on Anne, Ria’s Kindness Elf.  She is usingBell, the Garden Elfby Ala Ela in Wool of the Andes Sport in several colors.During her road trip she cast on her Christmas present of yarn from Lollipop Yarns.  It’s the We need a little Christmas colorway. She is using her own sock pattern that she published recently that she used to teach a class. It’s called One More Row socksby Natalie Martinez Rush. Finally she cast on the  Breezy Cardiganby Hannah Fettig using some knitpicks capretta in the caviar colorway.


Future Stitches: (40:23)

Alicia plans on casting onthe following:

1.Swivel Pullover by Kerri Blumer

2. Hat for Sheena The Vermonter or The Champlain Baret

3. fingerless mitts for Laurel in NYC


Natalie plans on casting on the following:

  1. Colorwork hat to work out pattern for the class she plans to teach. Using Blue Sky Alpaca in Currant and Calla Lily

  2. Spinning project.  Plan to use the cleaned black corriedale locks to spin up some DK weight for maybe a Blank Canvas by Ysolda Teague.

  3. Kenny’s Valentine’s day gift will be My Dear- A Deer Trophy.


Study Hall: (52:36)

Alicia will be teaching Knitting 101: Basics at Tranquil Grind Coffee Shop in Toronto, OH January 29, 5:30pm.You can register at The Main Street Gallery.  

Natalie published a sock pattern that she used to teach a class. Feel free to download One More Row Socks. She is planning a colorwork hat class for February at Stash A Place for Yarn.


Simply Selfie: (56:54)

Alicia has been spending time with family working on basement renovations, and ready for the new year. She is pushing forward for LPC certification and helping her trainer with a Fitness Challenge. Check it out, You can join anytime!

Natalie had a great Thanksgiving weekend. She was excited to have all the decorations up.  The rest of the weekend was baking pumpkin rolls, cleaning, and helping hubby put up lights. She traveled to Ohio to visit family and of course Alicia! She twin nephew’s are coming! Check out

Sarah and Shari’s reaction.


Raise your Hand?: (1:04:15)

This week we ask: What are your goals for new year?

Natalie posted personal goals to her blog so if you want to see personal goals check them out at She plans the following crafting goals:

1. Organize stash so it's visually pleasing and not just stored away.


3. Take more classes.

4. Teach more classes.

5. Travel to a fiber festival!!  

Alicia’s theme for the year is to be present. She is also going to work on the following crafting goals:

  1. Socks! I would like to knit a pair of socks each month

  2. Teach more classes


Happy Tails: (1:08:40)

Colleen Pappin from Australia shares her touching story of how her whippet puppy chose her.


To submit your own story, please go to  and fill out a form.  We will read your animals rescue story on future podcasts.


Comfort zone: (1:11:45)

Alicia and Natalie share what is currently taking them to their happy place.

Alicia enjoys knitting on some socks at Tranquil Grind.

Thank you for joining us for episode 12 of Mastering the Knits. You can find shownotes at or on our ravelry group Mastering the Knits Podcast. You can email us Follow us on Twitter @MtKnits.  Alicia isknottyknitter17 on Ravelry, Twitter, Instagram. Natalie can be found on twitter, Instagram, and ravelry as barknknit.

Check out this episode!

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Episode 11: "Sweather" Weather

Natalie’s students knit socks!


Master Status (2:40):

Holidays are practically here! We have decided to put our program on hold until after Christmas to focus on family, travel, and gift knitting!


In our hands (3:28):

Natalie is working on the Hitofude Cardigan by Hiroko Fukatsu inThe Fiber Seed Sprout Solids. She is also knitting Bell, the Garden Elf by Ala Ela. She is making a kindness elf, sort of Elf on a Shelf but more along the lines of the Magic Elf. Alicia caught the sock bug. She has another pair of socks on the needles. She is using the Sock Recipe: A good, plain sock by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee and using Knit Picks Stroll in the colorway Aloha Multi. She is also knitting Knit Hat for Anyone! by Kathy North in Cascade 220 for a childhood friend.


Dropped stitches (13:33):

Alicia had to rip!!! Not because the pattern wasn’t clear, just because her brain wasn’t on and she took on too many commission knits! She will continue on the Fontainebleau Lace Scarf by Joan Hughes knit withSeed Lace fromThe Fiber Seed when she has a little less on her plate.


Master Pieces (16:18):

Alicia finished up Knit Hat for Anyone! by Kathy Northwith Chocolate Lion Brand Wool-Ease and Vanna’s Choice oatmeal stripes. She also finished up an arm knit infinity scarf in Billowby Knit Picksin Ash Colorway. Lish shares her experience using Billow. She also finished her last Punkin Hat by Tara Thomsenfor the season!

Natalie finished a chunky seed stitch infinity cowl in an improvised pattern.

Some of the many pumpkin hats, Lish made!


Knits in the Wild (23.31):

Alicia has been wearing herCupcake MittletsbyShantha Ramachandran, Bohemian Fibers Boheme DKin the Walker colorway (Inspired by Sophia). She also has been wearing her YsoldaBlank CanvasinMalabrigo Arroyo. Natalie has been wearing her Calligraphy Cardigan out of handspun.  She also wore her new infinity scarf to a family gathering. She has also been wearing all of her hand knit socks.

Natalie with her “Knits In the Wild!”


Study Hall (25:51):

Natalie Shares her experience with teaching a toe-up, afterthought heel, class at Stash. She had three students and it went really well! She was nervous but  got very good feedback from all the students. She is looking forward to teaching more in the new year!


Simply Selfie (29:13):

Alicia shares about being in her cousin’s wedding. Her friend, Taylor, asked her to be in her wedding. She is applying for an Ohio school counselor license.

Natalie is battling being sick with her family with the changing weather. She went to the HorsePower Farm festival with the girls and hubby. They rode ponies, trains, went to the pumpkin patch, and got their faces painted.  The weekends have been filled with lots of family time. They had a shuffleboard party at her sister’s home.


On the Road (39:00):

Alicia had the opportunity to go to theHomespun Christmas Tour located in Columbiana, Leetonia, Washingtonville, Lisbon, Salem, New Waterford, OH. Her friend Stacey, freshH20purls, did not realize the adventure they were getting themselves into. Alicia shares her experiences with the adventure. There were 10 stops on the trip and you were to have your brochure stamped at every stop to enter the prize basket at the end. Some of the great stops along the way included Acorn Acres Alpaca Farm. Amazing farm. They explained a little bit why they got into raising Alpacas and Fiber Animals vs. Show Animals. We checked out Candle shops, sewing shops, and the All Good Things Natural Market. She picked up some alpaca silk blend Brown with multi flecks and Ohio State Yarn Alpaca Merino Silk Blend.


Comfort zone (44:42):

Natalie is enjoying outdoor fires, pumpkin rolls, and “sweather” weather!

Alicia is enjoying warm fuzzy feelings. She is that person that puts their Christmas stuff up before thanksgiving.

Thank you for joining us for episode 11 of Mastering the Knits. You can find shownotes at or on our ravelry group Mastering the Knits Podcast.   You can email us at Follow us on Twitter @MtKnits.  Alicia is knottyknitter17 on Ravelry, Twitter, Instagram. Natalie can be found on twitter, Instagram, and ravelry as barknknit.

Check out this episode!