2015 Prize Baskets: The Dragonfly Yarn Shop

Dragonfly Yarn Shop 1

The Geek-A-Long has had some awesome benefactors in the past, and I’m always surprised by their generosity. They donate their products to the Geek-A-Long Lottery to thank you for raising awareness of Child’s Play Charity. So when one of our GAL participants contacted us, wanting to donate to the prize baskets on behalf of her family’s yarn store, I was moved. In my yarnaholic opinion, family owned yarn shops are the beating hearts of the knitting/crochet community. Each LYS holds a plethora of possibilities, from the varied selections of yarn to the hooks and needles to the camaraderie and people happy to help. So when Megan-Anne and I read the email from the Dragonfly Yarn Shop, I grinned and blushed like a preteen girl, who just caught her crush staring at her from across the room.

Before I tell you about the Dragonfly Yarn Shop and what they donated, here is a quick reminder for those of you just joining the Geek-A-Long:

We’re raffling off four prizes again this year and in order to be eligible to win one of the three prizes, you must post a picture of your completed 2015 blanket to the Ravelry GAL group by January 31, 2016. The blanket must contain 24 of the 48 squares released in 2015, be joined and edged. Just like last year, the fourth prize will be raffled off for just being a member of the group. If you’re not a member, however, it isn’t too late to join and get in on the fun! You can find everything you’ll need to know about the Geek-A-Long on the FAQ page.

Dragonfly Yarn Shop panorama

I haven’t had the pleasure of visiting The Dragonfly Yarn Shop (yet), but I’m pretty sure I’d love it there. I mean, just look at those comfy chairs in the picture above! I could see myself sitting there with a travel mug of coffee on the table in front of me, my crochet in my lap, and a few of the regulars sitting beside me with their own knitting as we each talk about what were making. In this fantasy, I’m crocheting a lace panel for a knit sweater vest. I know that’s super specific, but I’ve been thinking about the design for a long time and haven’t had the time to make it.

pirouette

The Dragonfly Yarn Shop sent us four notion boxes and four of their Pirouettes, the original ball spinner! As someone who has trouble keeping track of measuring tapes and stitch markers, notion boxes are always a must. Pirouettes, on the other hand, bring both the fun and utility of a yarn bowl. The Pirouette works like a swift for your yarn cake, allowing you to pull from the outside without having it run away or collapse in on itself. The handcrafted hardwood spins effortlessly on a stainless ball bearing and is available at the shop in either a Cherry or honey finish.

You can get your very own Pirouette at The Dragonfly Yarn Shop. They are located at 1327 North Wright Road in Janesville, Wisconsin. Here is a little bit about the LYS in their own words:

The Dragonfly Yarn Shop

The Dragonfly Yarn Shop was founded in Janesville, WI in 2004 and is the only local yarn shop in Rock County. We carry a great selection of high quality yarn, knitting needles, crochet hooks, accessories, books, patterns, and magazines for all levels of experience. The Dragonfly is also home to the original Pirouette ball spinner! We teach lessons by the hour and hold several different classes a year that include socks, mittens, and knitting techniques.

Thank you for your generous donation to the Geek-A-Long participants, Dragonfly Yarnshop! You can also find the Dragonfly Yarn Shop on Facebook, Etsy, and their website.  If you’d like to see the other Geek-A-Long benefactors, you can find them here.

~ Jac
It’s very different from my “girl with a fistful of money walking into a Trunk Show where all the yarn is 30% off” grin.

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2015 Geek-A-Long: Brigid Tenenbaum

Week 13 Bioshock (4)

Bioshock is one of my favorite video games of all time. It’s right up there with Portal and the classics, Mario and Zelda. I’ll be the first to admit that I’m terrible at first person shooters, so I usually don’t play them. But one day, Mr. Llama convinced me to give it a try on easy mode and I never looked back.

The thing that sets Bioshock (and Bioshock Infinite) aside from other first person shooters is the atmosphere and the story. The moment the underwater city of Rapture came into view as I rode the glass elevator down into the sea, I knew my husband had been right. I loved it. The Art Deco architecture and overall style of the game is gritty and beautiful. Bioshock invokes this claustrophobic mood of dread, which is exasperated by leaking pipes and the sounds of a Big Daddies groaning farther down dank corridors.

Week 13 Bioshock (1)

Many scientists attributed their madness to the underwater city of Rapture, and then the floating city of Columbia. Jac and I deliberated over which scientist to chose from the Bioshock games, but ultimately we decided to honor Brigid Tenenbaum. She was like a light in the darkness in the first game. Alright, so she might’ve played a large role in creating the Little Sisters, but at least she wanted to repent in the end and save them.

Week 13 Bioshock (2)

We considered putting Brigid on the square and then we thought about putting some representation for ADAM on it. The final version is an interpretation of the icon for the “Rescue Little Sister” plasmid that Brigid gives the player. One of the things I love about the game is the choices it forces the player to make. In a very Milgram-esque situation, you can either rescue the Little Sister and gain Tenenbaums approval and gifts, or harvest them for ADAM. It’s worth noting that the gifts are worth less ADAM than you can get from harvesting. So doing the “right” thing can really screw you over. This square pays homage to one of Tenebaum’s greatest scientific achievements, and since that achievement is truly awful, we’ve chosen an image that is representative of her attempt to atone. Most of our squares don’t have that much subtext. ;)

Week 13 Bioshock (3)

Whether you’re knitting, crocheting, or cross stitching this square, you can download the Little Sister pattern here. When you’re finished making it, don’t forget to tweet or instagram your squares at me @Doctor_Llama or Jac @jac_attacking with the hashtag #geekalong, so we can all oooh and ah at it together.

If you’re having trouble with double-sided knitting, we have a how-to video here, and if you would like to learn to crochet, Jac has a fabulous tutorial here.  You can find moral support in the Geek-A-Long group on Ravelry here.

~ Megan-Anne
This square stared at me while I knitted it.

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If you enjoyed this post, please consider making a donation to Child’s Play Charity. Here is a direct link to our donation page benefiting the charity. Please help us raise $1,000 this year! No contribution is too small.

Homespun Yarn Party

I’m going to be honest. We don’t get out of the house much. We frequently intend to go to all kinds of places. But either some impossible deadline comes up or I fall over and break something, and we just don’t wind up getting there. We actually have a full calendar of fiber festivals this year, but either weather or clumsiness has kept us from them so far.

Slipped on the ice and fractured my ankle :/ upside: I guess I have no choice bit to put my foot up an knit #WinterInPA

A photo posted by Dr. Megan-Anne Llama (@doctor_llama) on

Despite the odds, we made it though March unscathed and were able to attend the Homespun Yarn Party in Savage, Maryland. I had never been there before, and OMG it was so fun!

The show was incredibly well put together. It had the perfect mix of mostly yarn vendors peppered with a few standout “knitter accessory” booths featuring yarn bowls, shawl pins, etc. I’ve been to shows where every other booth is soap or a yarn bowl. I like those things and even tend to buy them, but a great show is at least 80% exciting new yarns. Getting back to my point, Homespun found the perfect blend of items and brought them all together under one of the cutest roofs you’ve ever seen.

If you find yourself in the Baltimore area, the Historic Savage Mill is a great place to visit. Though it only teems with knitters and yarn one weekend a year, it’s still a really fun place. I lost Jac for a while in this super cute bookstore, but ultimately the prospect of new fibers pulled her out.

Having a blast at the Homesoun Yarn Party in Maryland! #knitting #HomespunYarnParty #yarnporn

A photo posted by Jacquline "Cappuccino" Rivera (@jac_attacking) on

I had a blast visiting every booth, but two vendors really stood out for me, Dragonfly Fibers and Starknits Bags.

I hadn’t had the privilege of checking out Dragonfly Fibers yarn previously, and it was definitely my “find of the day.” I snagged myself a skein of Nautilace in Heroine and it is seriously rub-all-over-your-face soft and luxurious. The show was packed (which is the problem you want to have!), so I wasn’t able to spend as much time as I would have liked talking yarn with the owner, but thanks to the glory of the interwebs, I could find everything I wanted to know about them on their site.

Dragonfly Fibers is an indie yarn company specializing in artisan dyed yarn. We dye high quality knitting yarns and spinning fibers in deep, rich and sometimes crazy bright colors for your crafting pleasure. You can find our yarns and fibers here in the shop and in brick and mortar yarn shops across the country, as well as at various fiber festivals throughout the year.

The Colors of Happiness are created and shared with the world by Kate Chiocchio and the amazing Team Dragonfly – made up mostly of friends based in the Washington, DC area.

Dragonfly Fibers at Homepsun Yarn Party

“What are the odds of buying one of each color without my husband noticing when I get home?”

I would have considered the day to be a win at that point, so it was a pretty big bonus to round a corner and see Starknits had a booth at Homespun too! We’ve seen her around on Instagram, and when you have a project bag habit like ours, it’s pretty normative to have your finger on the pulse of nerd-themed handmade bags.

At least that’s what I tell my husband when he notices that I bought another bag. I won’t apologize. I need these bags. And now I’m one bag richer. :)

Starknits at Homespun Yarn Party

Starknits’ bags are higher quality than most, which is sort of hard to quantify in text, but take my word for it: They hold the heck up. And I realize this doesn’t necessarily impact the experience you’ll have with the product itself, but Allena Williams (the woman behind the bags) is such a sweetheart!

I ran into @starknits at #HomespunYarnParty! It was great meeting in person, and I bought one of her cute bags while I was there.

A photo posted by Jacquline "Cappuccino" Rivera (@jac_attacking) on

Jac and I had a blast at the show and will definitely be back there next year. If you are in the area or feel like taking a road-trip, it’s worth the drive. Hope to see you there next year!

~Megan-Anne
FINE. Don’t take my word for it. But come anyways since there are door prizes raffled off every 30 minutes.

Yarnaholics Anonymous

spring cleaning

Look at my shame. LOOK AT IT.

This is the story of how two well-meaning crafters came to terms with how they’re Yarnaholics. It’s a common story in the knitting/crochet community. A women buys her first skein of yarn and suddenly ten years have passed and her yarn stash has taken over an embarrassing large portion of her house. It has its own storage area in the basement and the office. It’s hidden inside the end tables in the living room. It’s squirreled away in clear plastic bins underneath the guest bed, and now her own bed too. The house is bursting at the seams, and she makes jokes with her husband about how he’ll be thanking her when the apocalypse comes and they’ll have plenty of yarn to make nets and sweaters and other post-apocalyptic essentials.

For Megan-Anne and I, yarn hording sprouted from necessity. There was a time when we exclusively knitted and crocheted items to sell at craft shows. We were coupon queens and bought one-pounders of acrylic yarn at the big box stores. We made blankets, socks, and a plethora of amigurumi and winter accessories. We had a blast and used the extra money to help pay for Megan-Anne’s premed program.

Then it occurred to me a few weeks ago, we haven’t attended a craft show (as a vendor) in nearly two years!

I went downstairs and stared into our storage area full of purple plastic bins. A couple of them held Geek-A-Long stuff and another housed our super secret project. The majority of them, however, contained yarn waiting to get turned into craft show wares. Even though I knew our circumstances wouldn’t change and there probably wouldn’t be time in 2016 either, I told myself we would do craft shows again next year. Like a true yarnaholic, I convinced myself we needed that yarn. Then, I went upstairs, made myself a cup of coffee, and tried to ignore the nagging feeling in the back of my mind.

The next morning, Megan-Anne and I went to our favorite diner to have a meeting over breakfast skillets and coffee. We were supposed to discuss sock designs and yarn, but it quickly dissolved into:

We need more space.

I don’t know if every designer or indie dyer dreams of the day they can buy a property to run their growing business out of, but I do. Almost every afternoon, as I get lost in answering a stream of emails about the Geek-A-Long, my mind wanders to how much easier it would be to launch our line of yarn if I didn’t have to climb over boxes of it just to get to my desk.

Umm… Did I mention Lattes & Llamas is developing a line of sock yarn? Yep, you heard right! Megan-Anne spilled the beans earlier than we’d planned. You can expect to see a formal announcement in the coming weeks, but here’s a sneak peek at our tonal primary colors:

Anyway, there we were, sitting in our usual booth, bickering about where to store our growing supply of Lattes & Llamas Vacation Yarn. Then the image of those purple bins popped into my mind and I blurted out that we were yarn hoarders.

Megan-Anne said, “We’re not yarn hoarders, Jac. We’re building a stock for the launch. It’s necessary.”

“I know. I’m talking about the craft show yarn.”

Megan-Anne looked at me sideways. “What about the craft show yarn?”

Then we ordered apple pie and had what Grandma Betty liked to call a “Come to God” talk. We discussed the reality of ever having time for craft shows again, and whether we would even want to use that yarn if the time came. Ultimately, we agreed to donate it to our local women’s shelter.

As knitters and crocheters, it’s easy to hoard yarn. Each skein is full of possibilities. You can hold it in your hands, rub it on your cheek, and think about what you could make with it. And the hardest part is knowing whether “could” actually means “will.”

If I’m being completely honest with you and myself, there were skeins of luxury yarn I should’ve added to the donation pile, but I couldn’t bring myself to part with them. I know I’ll never search the internet for someone selling the retired colorway I need. I know I only kept a few, because they were gifts, even though I hate the color or find it too scratchy.

Baby steps.

If your stash has gotten a little big and you’re ready to give spring cleaning a try, I highly recommend you donate the yarn to your local women’s shelter. During our Lent giveaway last year, Megan-Anne touched on the realities of domestic abuse shelters from the child’s perspective, but the same is to be said for the adults as well. They had to leave their lives behind, and what people forget is that usually means personal possessions as well. To combat this, Shelters try to provide activities in an attempt to rebuild normalcy and relieve stress. And as we yarnaholics know, a pair of knitting needles and a skein of yarn holds a lot of stress relief power. So, if you’re ready to purge a few skeins of yarn, give your local shelter a call. They’d love to put that yarn to good use.

~ Jac
“Every new beginning comes from some other beginnings end.” – Semisonic, Closing Time

2015 Geek-A-Long: Bunsen and Beaker

Week 12 Bunsen and Beaker (3)

Muppet Labs, where the future is being made today.

If I had it my way, the 2016 Geek-A-Long blanket would feature only Muppets. I’m not joking. I tried to convince Megan-Anne that it would be perfect for 2015, but she said it was too narrow of a scope for the GAL’s sophomore year. I humbly disagreed, but was ultimately overthrown as you can tell. She promised me that one day — in the very distant future, I’ll bet — we would do a Muppets GAL blanket.

I will have my day.

My deep love of the Muppets aside, (When I married Mr. Cappuccino, I walked down the aisle to a string quartet’s rendition of the Rainbow Connection.), we can’t have a Mad Scientist themed GAL blanket without Dr. Bunsen Honeydew and his assistant Beaker.

Week 12 Bunsen and Beaker (2)

The absence of Bunsen and Beaker in my Muppet Show chess set is an absolute travesty.

Dr. Bunsen Honeydew PHD is a scientist, inventor, and founder of Muppet Labs. His inventions have changed the way we live our lives today. I mean, when I wake up in the middle of the night and think, “Oh, goodness — gasp — is there a gorilla in here?” I know there isn’t, because I have a gorilla detector.

Bunsen also brought us such life altering inventions as the Magnetic Carrots, Edible Paperclips, Nuclear Shaver, and Elevator Shoes. He also spent time working at CERN with the Large Hadron Collider in 2011 with his assistant Beaker. And he passive aggressively graciously sent a congratulatory letter to the Mars Rover Mission team in 2004 when they beat him to landing on Mars.

Week 12 Bunsen and Beaker (4)

Of course, when speaking of Bunsen, we must also pay homage to his long-suffering assistant Beaker. The sweet and extremely anxious Beaker is often used as Muppet Labs very own lab rat. But, Beaker is more than a stream of meeps and comic mishaps. He’s also an artist. From an Ode to Joy to Bohemian Rhapsody and Ringing of the Bells, he shows us how much feeling one meep can convey.

Week 12 Bunsen and Beaker (1)
Whether you’re knitting, crocheting, or cross stitching this square, you can download the Bunsen and Beaker pattern here. Instructions for both knit and crochet are listed in the pattern. When you’re finished making it, don’t forget to tweet or instagram your squares at me @jac_attacking or Megan-Anne @Doctor_Llama with the hashtag #geekalong!

#roguedemonhunterkitty is always so "helpful" on photography days. #cats #geekalong #muppets #BunsenAndBeaker #lattesandllamas

A photo posted by Jacquline "Cappuccino" Rivera (@jac_attacking) on

If you’re having trouble with double-sided knitting, we have a how-to video here and a tutorial on crochet here. Want to hang out with other people making the blanket? You can find moral support in the Geek-A-Long group on Ravelry here.

~ Jac
“Now, Beaker, you forgot the beaker. Get the beaker, Beaker.”

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If you enjoyed this post, please consider making a donation to Child’s Play Charity. Here is a direct link to our donation page benefiting the charity. Please help us raise $1,000 this year! No contribution is too small.

2015 Geek-A-Long: The Flash

week 11 The Flash (1)

If you are not a big ol’ comic book geek like myself, you may not realize there are actually four Flashes: The Golden Age and original Flash, Jay Garrick; The Silver Age Flash, Barry Allen; and two Modern Age Flashes, Wally West and Bart Allen. Normally, I’m a Golden-Age-girl. But in this, and a few other select cases, I love one of the new heroes more. So this week, the Geek-A-Long honors Barry Allen, my favorite Flash and forensic scientist.

The Flash is one of my absolute favorite comics, and the Flash of Two Worlds is a crown jewel in my collection, second only to my copy of Supergirl’s introduction.

Coupled with the iconic Flash Logo, this week’s square depicts Barry’s origin story of being struck by lightening in his lab. One of the things I really like about Barry’s story-line is that he was a fan of the Golden Age Comics featuring Jay Garrick as The Flash, and after the accident that left him with super-speed he named himself after the original Flash.

week 11 The Flash (4)

This was one of the first squares we designed for this year, and I feel like it’s a really strong representative of GAL 2015. Oh, and have you guys been watching The Flash on the CW? If you’re not, give it a try. It has the quirkiness and humor of something based on a Golden/Silver Age hero, and I love Barry’s relationship with Oliver Queen (The Arrow). Plus, let’s face it, Grant Gustin is just crazy adorable.

week 11 The Flash (2)

Whether you’re knitting, crocheting, or cross stitching this square, you can download the The Flash pattern here. When you’re finished making it, don’t forget to tweet or instagram your squares at me @Doctor_Llama or Jac @jac_attacking with the hashtag #geekalong, so we can all oooh and ah at it together.

week 11 The Flash (3)

If you’re having trouble with double-sided knitting, we have a how-to video here, and if you would like to learn to crochet, Jac has a fabulous tutorial here.  You can find moral support in the Geek-A-Long group on Ravelry here.

~ Megan-Anne
I have GOT to get one of those STAR Labs shirts. 

P.S. Happy Birthday Jac!!!

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If you enjoyed this post, please consider making a donation to Child’s Play Charity. Here is a direct link to our donation page benefiting the charity. Please help us raise $1,000 this year! No contribution is too small.

Interview with Pam Powers

dress-to-impress knitted scarves

Back in January, Megan-Anne reviewed Pam Powers’ new book, Dress-to-Impress Knitted Scarves, when it hit the shelves. If you didn’t catch her review of the knitting pattern book, you can view it HERE. Needless to say, we both adored it. So much so that we asked Pam Powers to join us for an interview!

- – – Q & A with Pam Powers – – -

The fabulous Pam Powers

What drew you to knitting? 
I was taught to knit as a child by my grandmother, but never picked up needles again until about 10 years ago. I had wandered into my local yarn store and was amazed by how modern the designs were. I bought a copy of Rowan magazine, yarn and needles, and I was off to the races.

What is your favorite thing to listen to while knitting?
I usually knit at night, so I watch TV. Currently I’m watching the HBO series Girls and Togetherness, did a marathon of Sonic Highways last weekend. Sometimes I listen to audiobooks—I’m a big David Sedaris fan. Did I mention Downton Abbey?

Every designer we’ve spoken to has a different take on designing patterns. What is your process like?
I find my inspiration from fashion, so I spend a lot of time on the Internet. I try and design accessories that I think work well with clothing. I sketch a shape, sometimes make a prototype out of fabric, then find stitch patterns and make a swatch. I then write and / or chart the pattern and make the sample.

One of our favorite patterns from Dress-to-Impress Knitted Scarves was the Quilted Lattice Ascot. What is your favorite from the book?
It seems to keep changing. Right now, I’m stuck on Duchess Wrap.

Duchess Wrap by Pam Powers

Where did your love affair with ascots begin?
I live in Southern California, so there are not many times during the year you need to wear a long scarf or cowl wrapped around your neck. There have been occasions where I have been out wearing a double-wrapped infinity scarf and seen someone walk by in a tank top and shorts. Probably the appropriate outfit was somewhere in the middle, but we Californians don’t have a good grasp on how to dress for the weather.

The ascot is a great neckwear option because of the way it lies flat and you can tuck it inside the neck of your coat. Sometimes that’s all you need. Did I mention how quick it is to make?

Quilted Lattice Ascot by Pam Powers

Quilted Lattice Ascot

What’s next for Pam Powers? Any new and exciting projects on the horizon we should know about?
I am currently working on a couple new designs for spring, and then I will be putting a collection together for fall, and possibly an e-book.

Do you have any other hobbies besides knitting?
I wish I had time to do something else. Probably photography would be the closest thing I do to a hobby, but it’s mostly work-related.

And now for the fun questions. What is your favorite caffeinated beverage?
Hot soy latte.

If you could have any superpower, what would it be?
That’s easy—time travel. Sadly, I tend to dwell on my past mistakes, but I suppose that’s how we learn. It would be nice though, to go back and do things differently.

Thanks for including me in your fabulous blog!

- – – – – – 

Thank you for joining us, Pam! We loved having you and can’t wait to see what you put out this year.

Dress-to-Impress Knitted Scarves is on shelves now, and you just can’t go wrong with it. Whether you want a preppy cowl, girly bow, or funky western bandanna, there’s something in here to make you happy. You can find Pam Powers on her websiteFacebook, and Instagram.

~ Jacquline
Who doesn’t love Downton Abbey???

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Knits for Boys

Knits for Boys by Kate Oates

One of the greatest parts of my job is getting to fill my grabby-hands with new knitting books. I love books pretty much across the board, but knitting books are special. There’s just something about a brand new untapped wealth of stitch patterns, color charts, construction techniques, and shaping options that makes me feel all tingly with potential. So when Kate Oates kindly offered us a copy of her fabulous new book, Knits for Boys, I was all over it.

Plus, my friends keep having baby boys, and frankly, the universal scale of cute knits for baby girls vs. baby boys is woefully out of balance.

Library Cardigan by Kate Oates

Library Cardigan from Kate Oates’ “Knit for Boys”

Kate Oates, the fiber wizard behind Tot Toppers, outdid herself with this book. It was so refreshing to see patterns that were actually designed with real little boys in mind! Every pattern in it thoughtfully considered how it would really be worn, and not just how it would look in photographs. I think the Library Cardigan and the Long John Pjs are my favorites. Seriously guys, knit pajamas.

I could stop right here and you would be more than justified to run out right now to get a copy of “Knits for Boys.” But there’s more. Many of the patterns are designed with grow-with-me elements that allow for maximum wearability. The Library Cardigan is shown in the book on models who are five and seven years old. They are pictured wearing the same sweater. The design elements allow it to keep on fitting for years.

Look, we all have to knit for kids. Friends tell me they’re having a baby and in the back of my mind I start thinking:

Great. I’ll have to make that little nugget a sweater since I made so-and-so’s baby a sweater and I don’t want to seem unfair. I’ll spend 20+ hours knitting something that will fit the kid for about 20 days.

Don’t get me wrong. I love my friends and their kids, and I love being able to give them a special hand-made piece. I just don’t enjoy making sweaters that get worn once since kids grow so fast. “Knits for Boys” has an entire section with tips and tricks for making hand-knits fit as long as possible. Frankly, it’s totally changed the way I look at knitting for kids.

Speaking of knitting for kids, I had to take the patterns for a test drive right away.

Working on something special for a new human :D #knitting #knitsagram #KnitsForBoys

A photo posted by Dr. Megan-Anne Llama (@doctor_llama) on

I had some Mountain Meadow Wool on hand in Fern, which seemed just right for a little boy’s hat. It’s intended for a good friend’s baby boy, but Gambit was eyeing it so hard that I had to let him wear it. The hat will still find it’s way out to the little one, but the Great Gambino will miss it. ;)

Knits for Boys is on shelves now, so there’s no need to wait! You can also check out Kate’s work on Instagram, Ravelry, and the Tweetys.

~ Megan-Anne
It bothers me how good my cat is at Blue Steel.

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2015 Geek-A-Long: Indiana Jones

Indiana Jones 2

That belongs in a museum!

Nothing surprises Indiana Jones, he’s a scientist. Professor of Archaeology, expert on the occult, and how does one say it… obtainer of rare antiquities, Indiana Jones isn’t just another sexy man in a wide-brimmed fedora back-lit against the setting sun. He hates Nazis and snakes. And he knows that in the Latin alphabet, ‘Jehovah’ begins with an ‘I’.

Indiana Jones was the most talented bum Professor Abner Ravenwood ever trained. He also might’ve been named after the dog, but he had a lot of fond memories of that dog. Either way, Indy taught me that Archaeology is the search for fact, not truth. (If it’s truth you’re interested, Dr. Tyree’s philosophy class is right down the hall.) I also learned that when you lose, it doesn’t mean you have to like it and ‘X’ never, ever marks the spot.

Indiana Jones 1

Sidebar: Before I continue writing a post made almost purely out of quotes from the movies, I don’t want to hear any crybaby flak about Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. If the thing you didn’t like about it was the alien, then you need to take off your nostalgia glasses and come to terms with how there is supernatural stuff in every single one of those movies. Harrison Ford was delightful as always (hope you’re healing up well after your crash Mr. Ford!) and I was pleased to see Karen Allen reprise her role as Marion Ravenwood. I love her character; she has moxie.

Super-Extra Sidebar: Megan-Anne and I saw Karen Allen speak about weaving at Vogue Knitting Live in New York a few years ago. It was very informative. And you know we have to support our fellow fiber enthusiasts. ;)

What I love about Professor Henry “Indiana” Jones Jr. is that no matter how many times he sees crazy stuff like the Ark of the Covenant melting Nazi faces or glowing Sankara stones, he remains a scientist. He continues to approach mythology and folklore from a scholarly perspective until he’s proven otherwise. Indy is also the perfect storm of kissable and smarts, and for that reason we had to memorialize his back-lit form in yarn.

Indiana Jones 3

Whether you’re knitting, crocheting, or cross stitching this square, you can download the Indiana Jones pattern here. Instructions for both knit and crochet are listed in the pattern. When you’re finished making it, don’t forget to tweet or instagram your squares at me @jac_attacking or Megan-Anne @Doctor_Llama with the hashtag #geekalong!

If you’re having trouble with double-sided knitting, we have a how-to video here and a tutorial on crochet here. Want to hang out with other people making the blanket? You can find moral support in the Geek-A-Long group on Ravelry here.

~ Jac
Fortune and glory, kid. Fortune and glory.

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2015 Prize Baskets

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Lattes & Llamas is raffling off four prizes again this year to participants in the 2015 Geek-A-Long on Ravelry, and we feel as if it’s only right to include a little something from us. Before I tell you what we’re putting in the pot this year, here is a quick reminder to those of you just joining us:

To be eligible to win one of the three prize baskets, you must post a picture of your completed 2015 blanket to the Ravelry GAL group by January 31, 2016. The blanket must contain 24 of the 48 squares released in 2015, be joined, and edged. Just like last year, the fourth prize will be raffled off for just being a member of our Ravelry group. If you’re not a member, however, it isn’t too late to join and get in on the fun! You can find everything you’ll need to know about the Geek-A-Long on the FAQ page.

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Every hand-knit has a story behind it. These have whole books. ~ Kniterary by Lattes & Llamas.

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In addition to the recently released Kniterary eBook and the soon to be released Kniterary: Crochet Winter Accessories, Megan-Anne and I each made a special handmade item to add to the lottery pot. Megan-Anne made four identical sets of stitch makers and I sewed up four different notions pouches. Each notion pouch has a zipper, fleece lining, and measures 5 inches x 5.5 inches. We had a blast crafting them up for our future lucky winners.

As we add prizes to the GAL lottery this year, you can find them under the Geek-A-Long Benefactors tab at the top of the page, which also features the prizes from last year.

~ Jac
Um, you can’t be the Craft-Master, Megan-Anne. I’m older. I called dibs.

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