Wednesday, December 21, 2011

New Hat

I made a new cloche style hat today that I like.  Too late for Christmas but just fine for the New Year.  I decided as I was working on this hat that I would use unusual color combinations and fibers.  A good way to spark some creativity.

So I started the top with some pre-dyed Corriedale roving in a range of colors from orange to greenish brown.  Then I decided to accent this with some green tussah silk that I dyed sometime last year.  I had some dyed dark brown husky hair handy so added that for a bit of soft, fuzziness.  While I was in pet hair mode I grabbed some puce colored lumpy poodle hair followed by a thin stripe of dark green Suffolk wool and a couple of rows of natural medium brown Corriedale wool. Then I decided to get really interesting so made a row of some black Corriedale plied with novelty yarn in rosy red and silver.  That led to a wide stripe of rose colored Corriedale followed by another thin stripe of the green silk.  Then more of the natural brown, another thin stripe of dark green, some more orange and a wide stripe of another natural brown that I think might be Merino.  The edge ended up with green silk.  I finished it off with a rose type flower made from the same two ply wool and novelty fiber.  I'm not telling how I made the flower because it's just too silly.  But it looks great.

Thursday, November 03, 2011

The Big Blanket Project

I've been neglecting my blog due to a very large project I've been working on for the past two and a half months.  It's a custom ordered king size blanket, which I'm doing in pieced together squares like an afghan. I've been keeping a photo journal of the project as I work on it on facebook here: Blanket Project
 Here are some photos of how it looked when I first got started.  The rectangular piece goes in the center.


It's made from mostly wool, with some poodle hair and alpaca.  No two of the squares are alike, and the finished blanket will fit a California king size bed with enough extra to hang down on both sides.. It's now big enough to fit a queen size, so I'm hoping to be finished in another couple of weeks.  Then maybe I'll make one for myself!

Monday, July 18, 2011

Toy Poodle Hair Scarf

It's been a year now since the woman who ordered this scarf originally contacted me with her request.  I told her how much fiber it would take to make a good size scarf, and she said she would save it up.  I didn't hear back from her until a couple of weeks ago when a package arrived in the mail with a bag of poodle hair!  I had completely forgotten about it, since it had been so long, but luckily had saved her email.  After getting in touch with her and finding out exactly what she wanted, I made this scarf.

It's seven feet long counting the fringe and eight inches wide, and is knitted on #8 needles.  Very soft with little curls of  the hair showing here and there.  I purposely spun it that way in order to create a more interesting texture.  She loved it and sent me this photo of her dog wearing it!

Friday, June 17, 2011

Hemp Brimmed Hat

This extra large and beautiful brimmed hat was made by my daughter, Allie, entirely from hemp.  It was a custom order from a woman who lives in LA.  It's perfect for the usually sunny weather there, providing protection from the sun as well as great style.  The extra fancy flower really works well, and I'm sure this hat is getting lots of compliments.

You can find more of Allie's brimmed hats on her page at's_hats.htm.  She also has some very cute skull caps with and without flowers.

Big Custom Order

Being as how there is still snow in the mountains here in California, I recently received a custom order for a ski cap and large extra wide scarf to match.  I finished it a couple of days ago.  The scarf is 8 feet long counting the fringe and 9 inches wide.  The materials used were a variety of wools, with some alpaca, llama wool and wool/silk blend.  Big job, but I think it came out well.

And, believe it or not it is in the low 60's today in LA where I'm visiting my daughter and son in law, and it rained last nite!  I'm headed home to Ukiah next week where it's expected to be close to 100 though.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Plant Fiber Hats and Caps

This is the time of year that I usually start making lighter weight hats and caps out of plant fibers such as hemp, cotton, linen, bamboo and silk.  However it's been so cold where I live in Northern California that I just haven't had much inspiration.  People are still wearing their warm wool hats around here, and it's almost June!

So I'm just now getting around to posting the first of my "spring caps" here.  I put this hat up on the website a couple of weeks ago, thinking I would be making more soon.  Hopefully we'll have a shift to warm weather any day now, which will get me in the mood.

This cap is made from medium weight organic cotton, so is actually fine for any time of year, though it's not as warm as wool.  Cotton also works well for those with sensitivity to wool.  The olive and gray/green wide stripes are both cotton, and the thinner accent stripes are tan colored undyed linen and beige colorganic cotton, which is the natural color of the fiber.  

For more views of this hat see 

To see more plant fiber hats go to

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Pill Box With Woven Scarf

I made this scarf awhile back.  Since I didn't have a hat to go with it, I put it away and forgot about it.  Then my daughter made some really great thick lumpy yarn and gave it to me.  It was just the right colors, so I got the scarf out and made this pill box style hat to go with it.
This is the first woven scarf I've posted on my website, so I'm not sure how it will go over.  Generally I only make woven scarves as custom orders.  They are quite laborious to set up, but after that are fun to make.  I use a small table loom which I can set in my lap while working.  I enjoy the process but doubt I'll ever get into learning how to use one of the larger, more complex looms.

The lumpy yarn at the top of the hat is made from wool, mohair, and silk, and the gray band is undyed Jacob wool. It's all crocheted. This style of hat is meant to fit snugly and cover just part of the ears.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Allie's new hats

My daughter, Allie, has been making some really nice new hats out of organic cotton, hemp, linen and bamboo.  All plant fibers.  She even has some fiber made out of corn.  It looks sort of like the bamboo, which looks a lot like silk.   Hats made from plant fibers are a good alternative for those with sensitive skin or wool allergies.  They're very versatile in that they provide some warmth in cold weather and are fine for warmer weather, too.

Aliie's husband, Marshall, asked her to make him one, and this is how it turned out.  It's made from hemp and bamboo and looks great on him.  I love the subtle colors!  She also made one for her yoga teacher.  This one has more cotton in it.  It's a short skull cap, while Marshall's is what I call a round cap, meaning a skull cap that covers the ears.

To see more of these plant fiber caps, go to's_hats.htm