Musing: Why I Love to Teach {Knitting}

Why I love to teach {Knitting}

Today, I’m releasing the first set of classes I’ve formally taught since the shop closed. I’ve been laying low for awhile, but I’m finally ready to get back out there and help people learn fun new knitting techniques and connect with others who love knitting as much as I do.

I had almost forgotten how much I love to teach, until I had a private lesson session a little while ago. As I drove home, I remembered how much fun it was to relay my special brand of knitting geekery to willing subjects. People who “get it.”

Then, I remembered that I had a goal of applying to teach at a large industry event, and the deadline was fast approaching, but I kept putting off my proposal for some reason. It’s not that I didn’t want to do it, it’s that I was scared, thinking of teaching on such a larger scale. What if they reject my proposal?

Well, here’s the thing. That doesn’t matter. It’s not my job to care if I get accepted, it’s my job to get my love of teaching out there to help as many people with their creativity and knitting as I can. So to pump myself up a little for my deadline (which is tonight!), I decided to write a little manifesto of why I love to teach.

Why I love to teach knitting…

Because we are all creative and I love it EVERY SINGLE TIME this statement is proven true. So many people need to discover this and feel it.

Because everyone needs a cheerleader to champion them, and their creativity. There is no better place than a group class to find someone who is as passionate about 3-needle bind off as you. Somewhere along the way, we forget to be kind to ourselves as we learn, and a group class can remind of us of that as we are kind to each other.

Because alone we are all capable, but together we can share so much more, grow so much more.

Because “Aha!” moments are magical whether you are the one having them, or just witnessing them in another.

THIS is why I love to teach. Teaching knitting has become a creative act for me, and I love it when I can pass along my passion for the craft, for the details, for the sneaky fixes.


If you want to come join me for a class in Southwest Missouri or Southeast Kansas in the next couple of months, check out all the new classes I’m offering here! I know registrations will fill up quick because people have been begging me for classes again for awhile!

There are even some semi-private lessons available for booking if you don’t see the topic you want to learn listed! If you have questions, just e-mail me at and I’ll be happy to help you 🙂

As Always,
Happy Knitting!

Tips For Picking Summer Yarns

Hi friends!

Today I want to share a couple of tips with you about picking Summer Yarns.  Now that the weather is warming up, I start to get the itch to work with lighter fibers to knit and create lighter garments that I can wear year round here in Missouri.  Yes, I am often the crazy girl wearing wool in June, here, but I really love working with Cottons, Linens, Rayons, and all kinds of other summery blends, too!

The Jetsetter Cowl, still one of my faves, made with a chainette yarn!

Some knitters take a hiatus in the summer from working on their projects because of the heat, but I’ve always found that I get even more done in the summer.  Maybe it’s the longer days helping me squeeze more out of the daylight, or my old tendency to think of the school semester and a summer break, but I love making things I can wear when I finish them in this season.  I also love to design spring and summer knits, maybe because they are sometimes unexpected.

I’m going to share with you a few tips I’ve picked up over the years about choosing yarn for your summer knits:

A linen blend kerchief that I designed, pattern available for free!

1.)  Pick your Fiber.  Here are three of my favorites!

Cotton:  A classic summer staple, from t-shirts to denim shorts, cotton is great because it breathes and is easy care (often machine wash).  One thing to keep in mind when knitting with it is that it can be physically heavy in weight (regardless of which knitting weight you’re using), and prone to stretching.

Linen:  My favorite summer fiber, especially when blended with silk or rayon.  Some people find linen to be a little stiff to work with, that’s why a blend can be favorable.  Linen has a great natural drape, making it perfect for summer knits.  It has a papery or crunchy feel to it, but it softens up with each and every wear and wash, just getting better each time!

Rayon/Tencel/Lyocell:  These manufactured regenerated fibers are made from either wood/paper/cotton waste or other natural materials, but then manufactured into a fiber that has some properties of cotton, but others, too.  They are usually cool to the touch, and drapey, making them perfect for warm weather knits.  I love them blended with cotton or linen because they lighten things up!  There are many different varieties of these on the market, so sometimes they are represented by specific trade names that you can see in the fine print.

One of my patterns that uses a Tencel yarn in a chainette construction.

2.)  Pay attention to yarn construction

Traditional:  A lot of people have the most experience with traditionally spun yarns.  These have bundles of fibers twisted into a yarn, and with summer yarns they can be heavy, because they have a dense construction.  Blending fibers helps with this and a few of my favorites are Bella Lino, Modern Cotton, and Vera.

Chainette:  This is a relatively new technique in the hand-knitting world, but it’s availability is exploding now that people are catching on to its benefits.  Basically, a thread of fiber is knitted into a small round tube that makes up the yarn.  There are some variations within the concept, but basically it lightens things up, so that a heavy fiber blend, like say Alpaca/Cotton, is cooler, and more supported from stretching out.  Some of my favorites are Maya, Tencel Tape, and Espresso.

Chainette yarns can be prone to unraveling, so if you use fringe, be sure to knot it or use fray check!

Other constructions:  Many companies are finding neat ways to make summer yarns, and one of my favorite recent additions is Knit Collage Wildflower.  Here, block printed fabric is cut into strips to create a yarn to knit with.  Super summery and still knits quick because it’s chunky!

Wildflower Fabric yarn from Knit Collage, and a bag pattern I need to finish…ha!

3.)  Swatch & Hang

Ok, so I don’t know where you fall on the swatch spectrum, but I’m just as likely to skip it as the next person.  But, I have learned over the years the repercussions of skipping it, so I go in eyes wide open knowing that if I screw something up I will be starting over.

Swatching can come in super handy when you’re working with summer fibers, because of their tendency to grow.  If you make a swatch, let it dry, measure it, and then hang it up for a couple of days, you can measure it after hanging and see if the growth will affect your finished project.  This means you can account for that before you cast on, instead of finishing that beautiful summer t-shirt only to find that halfway through the day it becomes more of a summer dress.  With holes.  Just saying.

A swatch also lets you test out your stitch definition for any patterning you might be doing.  Sometimes, stitch definition is fabulous in summer yarns, and sometimes it just isn’t.  Or sometimes with a nice crisp and shiny cotton, it’s too much for the design you’re making.  Swatching will tell you this before it’s too late.

Swatching will tell you how a yarn will behave in the stitch pattern, like this mesh pattern that expands and stretches out.

4.)  Check the care

Although many cottons and linens are easy care, they are prone to shrinking in the dryer, so you will often still want to lay flat to dry.  They are also prone to growing and stretching when wet, so one trick is to place these items in a mesh lingerie bag if it is labeled for machine wash.  This will support the fabric and keep it from warping when being washed.

Again, this is a place where that handy swatch can come in handy.  You can make it, and then abuse it in the wash to see how it behaves and take notes on what might happen with your actual piece.  I’m on team swatch, except for when I’m lazy, but sometimes I do it because I am lazy!  I want to do this step to test out the care on the back end of my knitted piece,  so I take the extra steps at the front end, and am lazy forever in washing something in the machine.  I call that a win-win.

I hope you find these tips helpful as we breeze into the warmer season!  Maybe you’ll find that you enjoy knitting as much in the summer as the cold months, too!

Until next time,

Happy knitting!



P.S.  The deadline for the Mystery Knit-A-Long kits is this Friday May 26th at midnight!  Click over here to check out more details or get yours ordered in time for the June 16th cast on!

P.P.S.  Love summer yarns?  I’ve got a few planned for the Yarn Year Round Club, and final signups are coming soon!  Want to know when they open for July subscription?  Enter your details in the form below to get the updates!

Friday Musing: In The Mood For Spring Knits…

In The Mood For Spring Knits…

Many people are surprised to find that my favorite knitting season is actually the spring.  It seems a bit counter-intuitive, but I love making things for warmer weather.  It’s fun to me to challenge the notion that knitting is only for the cold weather and to be done with wool.

One of the reasons I love warm-weather knitting is because I love exploring the different fiber options for this time of the year.  Next week I’ll be back on the blog with a little post about choosing fibers and yarns for spring projects, and sharing a few of my favorites.  It hasn’t always been easy to find good warm-weather yarns, but the industry is catching up with the demand, and giving us more options.

This week in Missouri, it has been raining cats and dogs, and they are calling for even more this weekend.  Even though we’ve already had a nice taste of warm spring weather, this dreary week has felt like it’s pulled us back into winter, and is really giving me Spring Fever!

I want to cast on all the linen-y things with their crisp, crunchy, papery hand.  I’m daydreaming about every drapey and meshy fabric around.  I’ve been stash diving to see what I can come up with in cottons, rayons, silks, linens, and tencel.  The three spring sweaters I have in progress have finally made their way out of hibernation, and I’m working to finish them up so they can make it into the rotation for pretty toppers for spring dresses, and cover ups for cool evening breezes.  Don’t forget the overly air-conditioned room that plagues those of us who live in high humidity locales!

In the spirit of spring knitting, I’ve put together a little Spring Fever Pattern Bundle special to help you get jump started with your spring/summer knitting.  It’s got 6 of my favorite warm-weather knits, bundled together for just $15.  You can save $11 off the normal retail of these patterns!  So even if you already have 1 or 2 of these in your collection, it’s still a great deal!

Click the photo to shop the bundle!

Here’s what I’m including in the bundle:

The Airliner Cowl (above), and the Jetsetter Cowl (below).  These two cowls feature a chevron lace pattern, one in bulky, one in worsted.  The Jetsetter gives the option for three color-blocked sections, while the Airliner features just one oversized version of the stitch pattern.  Both are fun to work in cotton blend chainette yarns, and can be worn as a cowl, or pulled down over the shoulders for a different look.

The Color Of Summer Cowl (below) is a fun knit that takes advantage of pooling to make an awesome graphic statement.  The mesh edges and knotted fringe top it off and make it a truly unique piece.  There is even a video tutorial to accompany the cast on of this project!

The Quench Cowl is a convertible piece that can be worn around the neck as a cowl, or worn double as a small wrap.  Perfect for ever-changing inside temperatures, and the sample I knit out of Linen/Silk ensures you are never over heated.

The Summer Simplicity Wrap is a very easy knit using laceweight yarn.  I’ve worked it up in linen here, but it would work great in any laceweight where you wanted something simple to show off gorgeous hand-dyes.

Although this one is named the Winter Wonderland Wrap, it’s great for transitional weather because of the long dropped stitches that make an open and drapey fabric.  I’ve made it up in a cashmere blend sock weight here, but I think it would be gorgeous in a bamboo blend, too!

Last, but not least, the ever popular Sunset Sky Shawl, with eyelets and dropped stitches.  Again, I’ve used a sock yarn here, but I’ve seen a few people make it up in a linen blend to gorgeous effect.  Hmmmm…maybe I’ll go cast one on now….

So there’s a jump-start to your Spring/summer knitting!  All you have to do is head over to Ravelry and put all 7 designs in your cart to get the special deal!  No coupon code necessary.  I’ve also made it so that any previous purchases of these patterns individually will count towards the promo, so if you already have one or two in your collection they will go towards the total.  (This is only on single pattern sales, I think, so unfortunately e-books do not count.  Let me know if you trouble with this since it’s my first time trying it!)

7 patterns for $15!  Check out the pattern bundle on Ravelry here to get details on all the patterns and to purchase!


So tell me, do you love spring/summer knitting as much as me?  Are you in the mood for Spring Knits?  Leave a comment to let me know!

Happy Knitting!

-Sasha 🙂

Tuesday Tip: Pick Up An Abandoned Seasonal Project {And a Mystery Survey!}

If you are like me, you have a tendency to have more than one knitting project going at any given time. Somewhere in the 2-24 range…ha! Sometimes I envy those of you who start and complete one project at a time, before moving on to the next.

It can be tempting to get overwhelmed, or bogged down when you don’t complete something for awhile. Sometimes I beat myself up over the stack of unfinished projects, and especially when a season closes and moves into a new one. This winter, I had intentions of finishing sweaters, mittens, and gifts, but they just didn’t get done.

Last year, in the spring and summer, I was all about the warm-weather knits, and although I finished a few, there were plenty left unfinished, too.

Now, I have discovered the treasure chest of unfinished projects. Searching for some knitting inspiration (after finishing up the knitting for the soon to launch stash book!), I fell into a well of untapped potential. Half-finished spring things!!

Just in time for the warmer weather, I have changed my perspective on these abandoned projects. Now that it is April, and the cooler weather is giving way to more consistently warm weather, I’m craving cottons, linens, and lightweight things to knit. Lucky me, I’ve got a whole slew of them that can be finished up in no time!

A short sleeve cardi that just needs the sleeves. A pullover boxy top that is ¾ of the way finished. A linen-y wrap design with all the details already worked out. I went project stash diving and I came up with things that can be finished within a month and worn at that time!

Now, maybe you don’t have this backlog of projects right now, but since we are at the close of another season, I figured it’s a great time to remind you not to beat yourself up about that unfinished cowl-neck sweater. Instead, take a proactive approach and leave yourself a gift for October!

Here are a couple of tips for putting something into a seasonal hibernation:

  • Make notes! Which needle size are you currently using (and which style, wood, metal)? Do you already have all the supplies? Where are you on the pattern? Make notes of all these details, so that when you go to pick things up later, you won’t wonder what the heck you were doing!
  • Put it all together! Gather everything for the project in one place, so that when you go to pick it up later you won’t have to search for the extra skein, or the front piece you have already blocked. If you are robbing the needles, again, make sure you put the stitches on waste yarn, and make a note of which ones need to return to the project when you work on it.
  • Let it go! Don’t fret about not finishing…move on to what feels inspiring to work on now! Maybe even leave yourself a note on the project to pick it back up next season. Treat it like a time capsule: “Do not open until October 2017.”
  • Pick it back up! When the time is right, dive back into the project. Sometimes, time away from something gives a whole new burst of energy to it when you return. Maybe you’ll have the insight you need to get past that stitch that was troubling you, or you’ll finally make the decision about sleeve length that you kept putting off before.

Sometimes, I feel like we have a tendency to ignore the seasonal nature of life and try to force ourselves to push through something we have no business doing. In our knitting, this is one small way we can let some of the pressure off, and rediscover a hidden treasure next season!

Happy Knitting!

-Sasha 🙂

P.S.  I’ve been scheming about creating a Mystery Knit-A-Long….would you help me by giving me your feedback?  Take the survey here!  I’m going to give one survey participant a free pattern if I go ahead with the plan!

Tuesday Tip: 4 Ways to Use Ravelry to Knit From Stash

Happy Tuesday!

You may have heard that I’m getting ready to host a Yarn Stash Challenge later this month (Click here to join us!), so the topic of stash is top of mind for me right now!  Last week, I shared about the Joy of Stash, and this week, I want to share something a little more concrete & helpful!

If you haven’t heard of it before, is a site for knitters and crocheters that features yarn & pattern databases, discussion boards, groups, and so much more.  It’s free to join, and I’ve been a member since very early on.  I loved it when I first started knitting because I didn’t know anyone else who did it, so I could connect with others that had the same interests.  It was also a great resource when I owned the shop, because we could sell patterns directly to our customers, while still supporting independent designers.

Well, one thing I love about it is that it helps me match my yarn to a pattern or project.  Today, I’ve got a video sharing 4 ways that I use Ravelry to help me knit from my stash.  In it I demonstrate the Advanced pattern browser, and a couple of other ways I use the website to find inspiration or ideas for projects!

So, what do you think?  Will the advanced pattern browser be helpful to you in the future, or do you already use it?  Comment below to let me know!

Sometimes, it’s fun to just take some time to play with the search feature to see what you can come up with.  You might discover there is a different tool or filter that you didn’t even notice before.  I’ll warn you though, it’s addictive!

Also, don’t forget to hop over to, or scroll down below to signup for the upcoming Yarn Stash Challenge!  It will be a week of prompts to help you find more joy from your stash, ending with a free stash-busting pattern and chance to win a giveaway for those who are signed up to be a part of the challenge!

Happy Knitting!


Friday Musing: The Joy of Stash

Let’s bring it back….

Bring back Stash as possibility, as a representation of untapped creativity. A wishing well of projects that could be. An escape from the world when you are weary. A scrapbook of all the things that have inspired you, the places you have been, the ideas you have had. Your favorite colors are mingling right there at the edges if you will let yourself see them. Unlimited potential waits for you in that extra bedroom closet, under the bed, or in that dresser drawer (or 12).

You can explain your yarn stash to someone who doesn’t get it until you are blue in the face. Or you can simply enjoy it yourself. Let it be a place of beauty in the now. Admire the colors and textures in their present form. Don’t worry so much about what you plan(ned) to make or if it has to become something.

Let it bring you joy on a day when you are uninspired. Cast on something new without guilt. Remember how much fun that trip was when you dig out that souvenir skein. Grab that pink, the one that is perfect for your mom, and let it tell you what it wants to be. Listen closely when your stash speaks to you.

Has the joy been stolen from your stash? Let’s get it back! Join me for a Stash Challenge, later in April, where we will start to get it in tip-top shape again, and make it a source of inspiration once again. Let it fuel your creativity and bring you warm fuzzies all over again! (Signup at

So tell me, how does your stash bring you joy? Leave a comment and share!

Happy Knitting!



P.S.  Only one more day left to get in on the Yarn Year Round Early-Bird Pricing!  Check out the details at  by the end of the day April 1st!

I Think I’ll Use A Lifeline, Regis

Today’s How-To is something even “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire” contestants know to be true.  Sometimes you just need to use that lifeline.  Phone a friend, poll the audience, doesn’t matter!  A lifeline can save you when things get down to the wire!

Have you heard of lifelines for your knitting???  This was always one of my favorite tips to share with customers back when I had the store.  I’ve seen so many people do a little happy dance or jump up and down after hearing about lifelines.

So good 🙂

Here’s the idea:  you place a piece of waste yarn through the live stitches in your work, to save your place, or make it easier to go back to that point in case you make a mistake or need to rip back to a certain point.

This can be handy in many circumstances:

Shawls/Blankets/Projects with a zillion stitches.

Complex patterns, especially those Yarn-Over heavy ones where it is impossible to pickup a stitch if you drop it.

Design or pattern modifications, where you’re not sure if what you will be trying next is going to work or look how you want it to.

In any project, it just gives that extra bit of insurance that you can always go back to the place where you know things were ok!

Here’s a video where I share how to insert one and give a few other tips & tricks:

Hope this helps you!

As I mention in the video, sometimes I try a little lifeline psychology because it seems like when I put them in, I rarely need them, but if I live too dangerously I always with I had one in place!  HA!

Has this ever happened to you?  Share in the comments below.  Had you heard of a lifeline before today, and do you find them helpful?  Or is this new, and you know just the project to try it on?  Let me know!

As Always,

Happy Knitting!


P.S.-  Yarn Year Round is coming back in July!!  Hooray!  Early-Bird registration and pricing is going on through this Saturday April 1st, over at so click over if you want to be a part of it!

P.P.S.-  Did you like the peeks of this shawl shared in the video??  It’s going to be a part of my “End The Stash Struggle” e-book coming out next month, and we’ll be doing a Yarn Stash Challenge to kick things off.  If you want to be a part of it, just fill out the form below this post to get the announcements and join us!

Taking a Break & Last Chance to Buy Club Leftovers

Hello all!

What is it about February that brings on the sense of overwhelm? Today, I’m writing to share a couple of things with you.

I’ve decided to take a break for the remainder of the month to give myself a chance to finish up some lingering projects. Many of you know that Stitch Space is no longer my full time job, and extra hours to finish the projects I already have going and generate new content at the same time are dwindling quickly. I had a flash of inspiration to host another Finished Object February Knit-A-Long, but was relieved to find that my friend Amy at Knit Collage already had something up her sleeve with #FinishItFeb so if you are looking for a similar challenge, head over there to join in with the fun!

As for me, I’ve decided the main problem is not with my lingering knitting projects, but with my projects like the “End The Stash Struggle” book. I’m planning to take this next month to really work on finalizing the book, so that it can get out to those of you who did the pre-sale, and also the public. This project has turned out to be a massive one, and this last push up the hill seems to be much longer than I thought! I want to get this sucker completely finished before I shift towards opening up the Yarn Year Round Club again. It’s my Gemini nature to have several irons in the fire, but lately the promise of more projects has had me spinning my wheels, not driving inspiration, so it’s time to let those ideas rest awhile while I finish up the book.

This also means I’m offering up the last of the Yarn Year Round Extras at 60% off, and then closing up the online shop for the rest of the month, too. There are only a handful of these yarns left, and you can shop them here through the end of the day Tuesday. T-shirt orders will ship as scheduled, once I get them back from the printer later this week. This way I won’t have to worry about shipping orders this month, either. Of course, you’ll still be able to buy last years club pattern book, or the individual patterns from my Ravelry store, since those work automatically.

I hope you’ll hang with me for this break, and maybe take a few moments to evaluate what’s working for you right now too. Sometimes we fill in with busy to avoid the other things that need attention, and it’s such a slippery slope. I expect to come back in March with fun new content to share! I think I’ll still be sharing a bit on Instagram throughout the break, but much less than I was doing before. If you’ve been following recently, you may have seen one of my part time jobs/my new cow friends 😉

Until next time, Happy Knitting!


Friday Musings: Starting Over

Sometimes you just have to start over….

In knitting and in life.

I’m having a hard time with this concept lately, maybe because I’m smack dab in the middle of a new life, where one of my biggest dreams and goals is in the rear-view mirror.

There is plenty of joy and awesome in my everyday life, and wonderful things coming, but somehow, I still find myself resisting starting over.  It’s like your brain forgets how to do it while you’re so busy living a normal everyday existence.

Logically, you know that the project has to be scrapped, but emotionally, you have connected to those stitches as you’ve made them.  I’ve got a project that is for the upcoming “End The Stash Struggle” book, and it hit a place where I knew it wasn’t working out how I wanted it to.  The harder I pushed forward, the worse it got.  Then I hit a wall…creativity slowed to a trickle, then a drip.  I was fighting so hard to make the original version of the design work, even though I just knew it wasn’t going to.  Panic set in, as I have self-imposed goals and deadlines looming to deliver on these projects that are promised to the world.

It got worse.  In my experience, it usually gets worse before it gets better. 😉

Hmmmmm….  Days, a week, more frustration.

Then it dawned on me.  I had to give it up.  Had to start it over, let it go.  Let it be.  Stop chasing it and let it come to me.

And it finally flowed.  And there are still hiccups, like anything in life.  But it is a much better version of what it was always supposed to be.

WELL CRAP.  If that isn’t a life lesson I don’t know what is…

Has this happened to you?  What do you need to start over, in knitting or life?  Leave a comment or reply to this e-mail to share!

Tuesday Tutorial: Working Dropped Stitches


Today I’m revisiting one of my video tutorials that never got a proper introduction on the blog.  That video is from the Yarn Year Round Club in January 2016, showing how to work the dropped stitch sections on the Wonderland Wrap.

I just love the dropped stitches in this pattern, the Wonderland Wrap!

The technique is one of my favorites, because it makes the fabric build quickly, and it is great for showing off beautiful color in hand-dyed yarns.  This pattern shows off our custom colorway, “A Winter’s Eve,” created by SweetGeorgia yarns.  (Pssst!  There are a few skeins left for sale in the Yarn Year Round Extras Shop here!)

There is more than one way to do dropped stitches, and in fact, I use a different one in my Sunset Sky wrap.  The one shown here, for the Wonderland wrap, though is simple enough for an adventurous beginner, who is willing to be patient, and careful not to get the extra wraps too tight!  Check out the how-to below:

That’s all there is to it!  Hope you enjoy revisiting this technique, and will try it soon!

Have you ever worked dropped stitches before?  Do you enjoy it?

Tell me in the comments!

Happy Knitting!


P.S.  Don’t forget there is only one week of pre-sale left for the new Knitting t-shirts!  You can save 15% off when you order at pre-sale and guarantee that you’ll get the size and style you like!  Head over to to shop the 4 new styles before the deadline, January 31st!

Here’s my favorite, so far, the Knitting is Yoga tank top.  Love!