Sunday, December 31, 2006

Ring in the new

Most of my relatives live in Manitoba. I do have some family (both mine and hubby's) in BC. ...but our numbers are small.
A couple of years ago an aunt moved from Manitoba to join our small number. She now lives on Salt Spring Island (one of Mayne Island's larger sister islands). She thoroughly enjoys the warm weather and beautiful scenery. On December 21st, Hubby and I travelled from Mayne Island to Salt Spring Island. The visit was not long enough. It never is. She served us a wonderful coffee sup pa. (I have probably spelt that wrong. ...sorry.) It is a Icelandic tradition to serve coffee with a tasty treat. The tasty treat Auntie served us was Vintarta (a prune filled layer cake). What joy! I love this cake. It has been so long since I had some. Too long. She went a step further and gave us half the cake to take with. Generous - she. Spoiled - me. Well we ate and ate and ate that cake. It is a Christmas miracle that it lasted until December 31st. What a way to send out the old year. There is no better.
How do Mayne Islanders ring in the new year?
I will answer that question with another, what do Jamica and Mayne Island have in comman? Besides the fact that they are, of course, both islands. Give up?
We will be dancing in the new year to Raggi.

Mayne Island's dance is to be held at the Agricultural society hall.

I wish you days full of sun shine for 2007.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

New book: Yarn Therapy

From the back cover:
A quick review of ‘learn to knit’ projects reveal two problems: either the projects are too daunting or too boring.
Advising a new knitter to knit a sweater is like asking a new driver to drive across Canada. It’s not that they can’t complete the task. It’s simply that the time commitment makes the task daunting.
The solution is simple projects, that can be easily complete – a formula that is designed to give the new knitter a feeling of accomplishment. Yet too many new knitters are forced to choose between a scarf and a dishcloth. “Boring!”
First projects should be interesting, fun, and rewarding. I have designed sixteen projects that are sure to have even the seasoned knitters reaching for their needles.

These patterns include: hats, socks, gloves, and other fine accessories.
As well as the patterns will be knitting advise. Advise that you may not find any where else. Advise that I have accumulated over my 30+ years of knitting.
Yarn Therapy will be available both as an e-book and as a book in print.
Projected publication date: spring.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006


Yup, the rumours are true. I am writing my first pattern book. Log on tomorrow for a peek.
Until then can you, please pass the eggnog.

Friday, December 22, 2006

Finding the magic

Everyone, everywhere delights in the magic of the season. Whether it be the wonder of a candle. Or the victories of ancestors. Or the return of the sun. Or the magic of birth. We rejoice and give thanks.

Sadly, I must admit I had trouble finding the magic this year. I was overwhelmed. How would I finish my holiday tasks? How would I complete my planned business activities? How could I listen to one more sad tale from a charity in need? How could I struggle on with vivid memories of what had once been dancing in my head?

Even though we may have trouble seeing it, magic does continue....

-we have fun with new friends.

-we travel safely to visit those dear to us.

-we create new traditions with those we love.

From Olavia's to you, enjoy the magic.

Monday, December 18, 2006


Me: "Wow! This December is flying by and I am getting ready for May."
You: "May? Isn't that a long way away? What about right here, right now?"
Me: "Well, if you are a knitter set on knitting for spring craft sales... Or/and a writer who is planning to release two new knitting books in the better be thinking of May. So with all these thoughts of May swimming around in my little head it is hard to conjure up images of sugar plums. This leaves me sadly lacking in the December posts. Oh, but last year...last year I was inspired. So if you would like to read my thoughts about this holiday season please read my December, 2005 posts. "
Humbug...only joking. : )

Thursday, December 14, 2006


There is a new post on Leanneism. Please go to my link page and click on Leanneism. I think it is rather quitty. What do you think?

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Knitting pretty

A year after I moved to Mayne Island I opened a craft supply store.
One day as I was sitting knitting, as was my habit, a couple wondered in. The woman spotted me knitting and struck up a conversation with me.
"You enjoy knitting." She enquired.
"Yes." I replied.
"So do I." She offered.
"You should see the beautiful Cowichan sweaters she knits." The man said proudly.
I smiled at her with admiration. For you see, I knew of the Cowichan sweaters and the Coast Salish knitters. ( )
This is why I was pleased to recieve, in the mail yesterday, notification of this new book...

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

A book is born

I am proud to announce my new book: Maynely True.
It was successfully published Saturday.
It made its debeau at the Farmer's Market Christmas Craft Fair. Where I sold my first copies.
Maynely True is not a knitting book. In fact, no needles or yarn was harmed in the making of this book. Instead ...
Maynely: inspirted by island life.
True: the exploration and confrontation of truth.
Book price: $10 Canadian
Available at the Mayne Island Farmer's Market or email

Friday, December 08, 2006

Knit one on me.

"Santa Hat"
One size fits most adults.

1 ball whiteworsted weight
1 ball redworsted weight

Knitting needles: US 7/ 4.50 mm or size to obtain tension
Tension: 1" = 5 stitches using stockinette stitch

1 x 1 rib stitch
Row 1: *knit one, purl one - continue from * to end of row.
Repeat for pattern.

Stockinette Stitch
Row 1: knit - to end of row.
Row 2: purl - to end of row.
Repeat for pattern.

Cast on 80 stitches
Work 1 x 1 rib stitch for 3 inches in white yarn
Work in Stockinette stitch in red yarn
Decrease two stitches after the 5th row and then every 4th row
Work to desired length. (Mine measures 36 inches long.)
Cast off.

Finishing: Sew side seam

Fringe: Cut twenty strands of white yarn approximately 12 1/2 inches long. Using a darning needle, thread through tail of hat. Tie using over hand knot.

In recent variations of this hat, I have lengthened the ribbing to 6 inches. So that I can hold over the brim. I find that it stands on better.
(This pattern, of mine, was previously available on another web site. I simply moved it home for the holidays. Thus this patterns appearance should in no way indicate that I have changed my stance on free patterns. I will not undervalue my work by providing them.)

I hope you enjoy knitting the hat for the Santas in your life.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

all wrapped up

The fashion show was a slice. It was fun to see friends and neighbours all dressed up. Everyone seemed to have fun: participants and audience alike.
I resolved two things as I sat and watched. I will probably produce my wraps as patterns rather than ready-to wear. Really, Tree Frog (an island dress shop) is all wrapped up in wraps, shawls, and capelets. There is no need for me to make and try to market them. Besides, the sure work involved in producing them requres a great investment in both time and material. I think that the concept is good. Producing a garment that can easily grace any body type. However, I think smaller accessories would be better. A few ideas are currently hatching in my brain. Yarn and needles will reveal which make the cut. Wish me luck.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

The plight of a wrap designer

I have to share some bad news. I am afraid that my new wraps will not be making their dabeau this Sunday. I have bitten off more than I can chew. My wrists are aching. So I have changed my plans. I will have baby sweaters. I will have hats including Santa hats. I will have some "Islandia"s. I will have my book on CD: Novelty Yarn. I also hope to have my new book: Maynely True. I will also demonstrate my new technique: the three needle cast on. ...but sadly my wraps will just have to wait. I simply have run out of time. Sorry.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Art show

Wow! Do you ever get the feeling that you are running simply to stand still?
December is busy.
I almost forgot about Trincomali Community Art Council's Art Show. Mayne Island art council has a monthly art show. This show will showcase the entire group.
Opening night: Thursday, Dec 7th 7 - 9 pm.
Novelty Yarn will be on display. (My book on CD). I will also be announcing the launch of my new book: Maynely True.
Maynely: inspired by island life.
True: the central theme is the exploration and confrontation of truth.
My baby has been at the printers. I just paid a visit this morning. It is coming together very nicely much thanks to Alea design & print. Thanks, Bette.
Hope you can swing on by the library on Thursday and then visit the "Ag hall" on Sunday. I'll be there....
(more on the plight of a wrap designer in tomorrow's post)

Monday, December 04, 2006

New design: wrap

I am developing a variety of wraps. My altimate goal is to have knitted and kitted wraps ready for the Mayne Island farmer's market and for Salt Spring Island's ArtCraft. So the deadline is May, 2007.
The knitted wraps will be made from a variety of natural fibres: camel, llama, alpaca and mohair blends. The kits will all be alpaca.
On December 10th (Christmas craft show), I will have samples ready for sale.
This is my first version. As you can see, it is a hooded wrap. It is knit from a Llama blend.
(So glad that I was able to finally post this picture. More to come.)


Once again I logged on this morning only to have all hopes of posting a picture of my new design dashed. I am hoping that the powers that be can eventually fix this problem. If not, I am afraid that I may have to develop a new blog elsewhere. I hope those of you who enjoy reading this blog will follow me.
With fingers crossed...

Friday, December 01, 2006

Take a break

Okay, so a vacation is nice. ...but a forced vacation is not so. Read about mine on Leanneism (you can access Leanneism from the link page).
Thankfully I was able to get a little work done. I will begin to reveal these new designs as soon as they are finished. : ) They will be for sale at the Christmas Craft show (Dec. 10th).
I'm glad to be back. : )