Bednobs and Broomsticks Anyone?

WOOOHOOO! Let us make some magic happen shall we? We can trade and swap and revamp and blend…with a MILLION possible outcomes!

Having said that, let’s avoid half of those outcomes being the type that make you want to tear out your hair… can I get an “Amen Sister!” ?

Before we make the magic happen, let us begin at the start! Take a moment and introduce yourself to me (and other knitters) below!  Since we are going to be spending time together as a group learning, laughing, cringing and AH-HA-ing together, please share yourself now! Where are you from? How long have you been knitting? Have you knit a sweater before? Do you have a fave? Which? Why? What yarns do you love knitting with and why? I can’t wait to hear all about YOU! So go ahead! Get us caught up on YOU in the comments! Do be social and give a welcome to those intros before and after you!

OK, after you do that you have a few other things to do! These will post over the next few days so be sure you check back here on those days even if you aren’t done with the previous work! You need not be done with the work, I am simply staging it out so you concentrate on just a little at a time! And you guys have an “OVERACHIEVER AWARD!” up for grabs here! YUP! I will present a special trophy to the winner in class! More on that to come…

For now simply click on an image below and start that portion of your preparation!

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And now we continue the adventure! 



Listen to the podcast all about substitution! 

Still Ahead:

Revamped Lehua Pattern begun in class with activity pdf (4/17)

{Original Lehua pattern here!}

Sampler Shrug Pattern (4/17)

Furthering Your Discoveries audio presentation and activity pdf (5/1)

13 thoughts on “Bednobs and Broomsticks Anyone?

  1. michelleowls says:

    Hello fellow classmates. My name is Michelle aka MichelleOwls on Instagram. I am from Southwest Ohio near Cincinnati. I have been knitting every day since November 2013, before that I knit every once in a while. But at the end of 2013 some knitting bug bit me and I have been knitting ever since. Before that I was a crocheter. It runs in my family, almost all the ladies in my family do it. I crochet left-handed so even though I was around it in my youth I just couldn’t do it right-handed. Once I moved out of my parents house I found a book that showed how to do it left-handed and it took off from there. I definitely never crocheted as much as I knit now though. Knitting is a huge passion of mine.

    I have knit several sweaters and it is hard to pick a favorite, but I would say my Rocky Coast cardigan because of the fun cable pattern and my Ginny’s cardigan because of the owl motif on the back. As far as what yarn I love to knit my sweaters in it would have to be a worsted weight 100% wool. Reasons being they are perfect for the climate I live in and that weight is what I have used to knit most of my sweaters. I will say though, that I have knit a couple sweaters in a sport weight which does have a lovely drape and I think is perfect for a more mild climate or a bit warmer season like spring. I do have a plan to knit a fingering weight sweater sometime in my future and I am sure that would make a nice sweater for spring or summer. I love knitting with 100% wool because of the blocking process, I soak it and spread it out and I love watching it bloom and soften. But then again, its the only kind I have knit my sweaters in so maybe my mind will change once I make one that uses a blended yarn.

    Can’t wait to meet you all at the Frolic!!!! Less than a month away. I am so excited!!! It will be my first retreat.


  2. Chris Dunlap says:

    Hi All,
    I’m Chris from North Carolina. This will be my first Carolina Fiber Frolic and my daughter and I are both THRILLED to be doing this weekend event. I’m especially interested in Mel’s yarn substitution class b/c I am NOT a rule follower! It’s a rare day that I pick up a pattern to knit, go buy just the yarns that are prescribed and knit the project as per directions…where’s the fun and adventure in that? This approach to knitting obviously has many fun and successful outcomes but I’ll admit there have been some definite pitfalls along the way. Yes, I’m the one who’s made the gigantic sweater with the arms that weigh a pound each.:)
    Also, I’m a HUGE lover of knitting (and weaving) with my own handspun yarns. I’m hoping this class will help me to understand how to use my own yarns in published patterns. I’m not so much interested in reproducing the yarns you can buy at the store…although this is also a great talent. I’m hoping I can learn to successfully substitute my yarns for the ones called for and come out with projects that I love.
    I’m so excited to meet everyone at the Frolic and to learn about classmates ahead in these posts. I’m also excited about all these activities in preparation for the class. How great to have a better idea about what we’ll be learning in the class before we even get there! Thanks so much, Mel, for putting all these interactive activities together ahead of the class date.
    See you all at The Frolic!


  3. Amy Martin says:

    Hello all, I’m Amy. I’ve been knitting for…Oh I can’t really remember when I started as an adult. I knit most days and generally have several projects going at once. I also crochet and do some spinning. In my other non creative life I’m a chemist so the occasional dye experiment appeals to me as well. My favorite yarns? depends on the project I suppose. Wool/nylon blend for socks ( I do a fair number of these). Linen/Cotton blend for summer sweaters, sport weight or finer. I have made several sweaters with varying success though they all have things about them I like. And things I wish I’d done differently. But I do wear most of them so they aren’t too awful. Currently looking for a good pattern for a worsted weight winter sweater. Recommendations will be welcome. My favorite sweater/tunic that I’ve made is a linen/cotton/hemp blend that I made up as I went along. Nice drape, cool ( I live in Georgia where its god-awful hot so often) and goes with almost everything.

    Looking forward to our class!!


  4. Renate Huebner says:

    Hi, i am Renate from Charlotte NC. I have been knitting forever. I usually design my own sweaters, which fit me – but I am determined to follow a printed pattern. This morning I ripped up sweater #3. The first 2 were to small – this one was to big!!! I started out all 3 times with the
    perfect gauge. 3 patterns, 3 different yarns, 3 failures! Mel, help me – if anyone can – it is you!
    Looking forward to seeing you again.


    • Chris Dunlap says:

      So glad you’re also taking this class, Renate! I’m so looking forward to what we all can learn from each other and from Mel. Here’s hoping these next 3 weeks pass quickly!


  5. Amy says:

    Hi, My name is Amy and I am from Charleston, SC. I have been knitting since I was quite young and that is a loong time. My aunt taught me to knit and I am so glad she did. I knit almost every day and sometimes get so caught up in the project that the day just passes. Having been out of town for a week, I am really behind on the homework but I promise to get caught up. This is going to be fun trip!


  6. Laura says:

    I’m Laura from Columbia, SC. Leslie brought me to last spring CFF, and I had found my tribe. I’m taking both Mel’s classes because everyone raved about how wonderful they were last year. I’ve made many sweaters over the years, am very comfortable modifying patterns and substituting yarns, though I rarely do. I usually knit patterns in the exact yarn called for in the exact color shown because otherwise, I’m never happy with it. So I order the exact yarn. Then I go to yarn stores and buy more yarn I like. Then I go to fiber festivals and buy sweater quantities of yarn that doesn’t know what it wants to be yet. And that’s how I end up with a voluminous stash that will last my daughter Kate through her lifetime. You’ll meet her, too, this time.

    I hate to be the weak link, but there is no way I will get to homework at all. I’m currently knitting a sample sweater for Spirit Trail for MDSW and hope to have it off the needles before CFF. But I’m having to be dedicated. Add to that that I never swatch (and that’s never been a problem) and that mostly, my yarn is bought for specific projects with just enough to cover what I want to do with it. But if I manage to be done a day or two before we leave, I will try. I tend not to design. But I will look through my pile of loose printed patterns and try to pull some sweaters I love. Mostly Knitspot’s Anne Hanson, I’m sure.

    Can’t wait to see everyone again and meet new friends. And I’m looking for forward to talking about sweaters and swatches. The only thing I like more than talking about yarn is playing with yarn.


  7. Hi, I’m Sallie from Belmont, North Carolina, near Charlotte. I took Mel’s swatch class last year and learned a lot, so decided to take the yarn substitution class this year. I have made sweaters in the past, none in recent years. The ones I’ve made in the past tended to have a problem fitting the person for whom they were intended. And I don’t think I’ve ever made anything from the yarn the pattern called for. I learned how to knit when I was 12 by reading a pamphlet from Woolworth’s. Didn’t knit for years, then a little in college, then none for a long time, but the last 14 years I have been trying to knit more. Since I learned how to spin a few years ago, I have built up a lovely stash of fiber, handspun, and commercially spun yarn. Here’s to learning better how to use it1


  8. Dr. Linda Sokalski says:


    I’m Linda from Flat Rock, NC and a retired telecommunications engineering manager. I’ve been knitting for 62 years and teacher certified in knitting and crochet since the 1980’s. I’ve knit and designed dozens of sweaters but hope to learn more about the impact of yarn structure in this class. Although I’ve researched and written about ethnic techniques, my current passion is modular knitting, which can combine all sorts of yarns and colors. Favorite designers are Horst Schultz and Frankie Brown.

    One of my favorite tv programs is The Goldbergs because Beverly Goldberg often wears some of the sweater patterns I knit or wished I could have knit back then. The 1980’s was probably the zenith of crazy sweater design. I wish they still made Melrose Cravenella. Not sure we’ll ever see all that glitz, angora and beads again, but it sure was fun!


  9. Ophelia says:

    Hi to all! I live in Highlands, NC with close ties to Newnan(kids) and LaGrange, GA(Mom). We sold our house in GA last July and decided to become mountain folks. Love it! Still making frequent trips to the Atlanta to check on the family there.

    I knitted a little in high school and then none for years. I picked it up again Summer 2012 while we were spending a lot of time in Highlands and still working/living in Senoia, GA. I retired May 2013 and now can enjoy a much more versatile schedule. I can still knit in the car and while Gene is watching sports. What a perfect hobby!

    I have knitted lots of scarves, some hats, a chevron throw, a couple of vests – but no sweaters. I’m not afraid to try anything, just had other items on the agenda. I’m ready now – and looking forward to our class.

    See you all next weekend!


    • Ophelia says:

      The sweater comment was meant for the sweater class that I am taking. I am very excited to explore new yarns. I usually show up at my LYS and fall in love with something there – which makes the pattern and the yarn selection easy -lol. I do have a yarn stash – I mean, what knitter doesn’t – so I’m working on this homework. Can’t wait so see what everyone else has!


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