Rohn Strong, Crochet and Knitwear Designer

Rohn Strong, Crochet and Knitwear Designer closes out the Month of September on the Yarn Thing with Marly Bird.

RohnStrongprofileRohn learned crochet at age 6, started designing three years ago and to this point self published 13 books, has patterns published in ‘every crochet magazine’ totalling over a hundred patterns. His interest has been in Vintage styles, what he calls his niche. Fashion has been so complex with knitting, but with crochet there has been room to adventure and his work has been welcomed with success.


Tunisian crochet has become a favorite technique, which he learned after purchasing Kim Guzman’s book. Her advice there was that anything you can do with knitting, can be done with Tunisian crochet. This apparently lit a fire in Rohn, who began to wonder how you would do other types of knitting patterns beyond what Kim taught. Like Fair Isle… and the Dorothy Wrap was created.

Rebecca Valasquez convinced Rohn he needed to do more with it, Ellen Gormley then forwarded it on and gave him a heads-up, and a month later he was approached by a producer to film the technique for Annie’s Crochet.

CLICK HERE for the link to the class at Annies, Rohn’s Learn Tunisian Crochet Colorwork So much information is shared by Rohn in this program, fibers to use, needles sizes recommended for different yarn weights, carrying floats, etc. over the span of four different projects that include headbands, hats, scarves, cowl and a wrap.

Another great project that we have opportunity to join in is Rohn Strong’s Holiday  2014 Crochet Sock Club. This is the link to his post about this: Check it out, as he’s created SOCKS for Crocheters in three different designs, Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Rohn is working on two new books, filming more classes with Annies and a collection of men’s wear. (He did mentioned that one of his books is inspired of the Iditerod and projects created in Buffalo Wool Co… How cool is that!) If you would like to follow Rohn’s adventures, we would recommend his Facebook page: as well as his Ravelry page: Rohn also mentioned Annie’s Catalog and their Facebook page: 

If you missed hearing today’s program, it originally aired here:

Just for Fun, if you’d like to go back in time for just a year and a half when Rohn Strong was on Marly’s show last time (recommended because so much has happened with Rohn since then) here is the earlier visit with the link in iTunes:

Laurinda Reddig Reversible Crochet

Laurinda Reddig, Reversible Crochet author, was the guest today on the Yarn Thing podcast with Marly Bird. Clearly she has some talent with a hook and fiber as Marly has claimed Laurinda as her very own!LaurindaReddig

Laurinda called in from Portland, Oregon. She told me in the chat room this was her first time on a podcast, but she didn’t admit that before the show, she sounded like this was what she does every day! Perhaps because she’s been listening to the Yarn Thing Podcast since she discovered podcasts, she knows how it’s done…

In Junior High, her Campfire Leader’s house was on the walk home from school, teaching Laurinda to crochet left-handed by sitting in front of her (mirror technique) without making a big deal of it and in fact, Laurinda did not realize she was crocheting differently till years later. She spoke about picking up yarn at K-mart… While in High School, on a roadtrip through Mexico, her father (who is a knitter!) found a little town known for crochet lace and they were invited into a local’s home and she learned to crochet lace. In College, hair nets and snoods were popular and she incorporated that into her wedding attire.

ReddigMysteryMachine She worked at Michael’s Craft Stores and taught crochet, even though she was unsure at first since she crochets left handed, but that worked out until she started having children. When her son was about six, he wanted a Scooby Doo birthday party. According to her Blog, she considered yarn bombing her own car, but in the end creating an afghan she submitted to the Crochet Guild of America which was very warmly received. In fact it won First Place in Afghans and the People’s Choice in the competitions. She began submitting to magazines and one of the contacts she made was with Marcy Smith of Interweave, who asked Laurinda to write an article about the technique involved in reversible crochet…ReddingReversibleRowanVest

Another project that has gained Laurinda much acclaim is her Reversible Rowan Tree Vest.  It was created in memory of her newborn daughter who lived for a few hours after birth. The fabric she’s created is so precise it appears to be painted. She added beads as berries on one side, and blossoms on the other, making a difference in both sides, but otherwise completely reversible. She sent it to the CGOA competition and it won the Grand Prize… She was wearing it at a TNNA gathering when Marly found her!

Her new book, Reversible Color Crochet, incorporates techniques using different sized stitches, carrying yarn invisibly and working partial stitches with the different colors of yarn. The book has detailed instructions and graphics to explain the process. When she was working on an earlier publications, Charles Voth advised her as her tech editor to pursue publishers who liked promoting new techniques.

Laurinda Redding will be teaching her class at Oregon Flock & Fiber Festival (OFFF) on Reversible Intarsia and judging the crochet competition, and later teaching at the Astoria Stitch Fest. We’re going to see more of her as she continues to share her love of this art form.

Follow her at her website: Laurinda also has a Facebook page and Ravelry Design Page with Ravelry Group Page

If you missed getting to listen, please go to the original post: or in iTunes:

Buffalo Wool Company

Teresa Miskin of Buffalo Wool Co was the guest today on the Yarn Thing Podcast with Marly Bird. As one of our sponsors, it’s a great pleasure to get caught up with this enabler of American Made products!


Teresa’s grandmother attempted to teach her to crochet as a child but apparently it didn’t take as all Teresa can remember is the fiber twisted around her fingers. Ron came into The Buffalo Wool company through his father, Cecil, who is a great advocate for bison in the US. Teresa and Ron have been married for 21 years. As a teenager Teresa knew Ron as her cousin’s ‘silly drummer friend’ and then they were co-workers at a oilman’s club.

When they decided to create projects with this wonderfully soft bison fiber, they were told ‘No, you can’t do that’. This thought is amazing as when their products are seen and felt, whether it’s a read-to-wear product or their marvelous yarns, they are instantly adored.

As for as their yarn lines, they feature: HEAVEN (Pure Bison), SEXY (Bison & Silk), BUFFALO SKIES (Bison & Merino Wool), which will be used with one of their partners in a ready-to-wear assortment of accessories. They also have blankets that are milled and machine knitted, brand-new, as well as felted hats, soon including a bowler style. They’ve also created new colorways with indie-dyers such as Lorna’s Laces. Calamity Jane and Annie Oakley were two such creations, for which a pattern book Cowgirl-Up! e-book was created.

Right now, Buffalo Wool Company is in the finals for the Martha Stewart American Made Accessories Division and would welcome your help, up to 6 votes per day.

They are also encouraging two knitters who have designed shawls in a contest to be worn by Stevie Nicks while on tour with her new album. Check out Judy Ellis and Lynette Meeks by clicking on their names to view their submissions at Tallenthouse Art Works and vote for their designs made with Buffalo Wool Co fiber.BetsyatSM

Buffalo Wool Co will be at Taos, New Mexico, for the Taos Wool Festival October 4 & 5. They will then drive across country in Miss Betsy to be at Stitches East in Hartford, Connecticut, October 10-12, then to NY Sheep and Wool, October 19-20. Southeast Animal Fiber Fair or SAFF October 24-26. BUSY OCTOBER for BWC! You can look up their calendar at their website to see if they will be in your neighborhood or follow their adventures on Facebook

Buffalo Wool Company has been a wonderful sponsor of the Yarn Thing Podcast with Marly Bird, and for that we are thankful and encourage you to visit their website or their booth at an upcoming event!

If you missed getting to listen here is the link where it aired this morning:

Knitwear Designer and Author Andrea Jurgrau

New Vintage Lace Cover

New Vintage Lace, published June 2014

Knitwear Designer and Author Andrea Jurgrau was today’s guest on the Yarn Thing podcast with Marly Bird.

Andrea was taught to knit by family, Grandmother and great-aunts were all knitters. They didn’t use patterns so for a long time, neither did she until she had a copy of an Elizabeth Zimmerman book. She became serious about knitting when in college during lecture hall at about the time she got that EZ book, where she learned patterns were always ok but not necessary.

When a friend started a yarn company, she supported her friend by creating patterns using the yarn, and that was the beginning of her design career. She also wrote a blog and shared designs through there.  She still has a blog: The name Bad Cat was inspired by a kitty they owned named Lucy Fur who lived up to her name!

Enchanted Knits cover

Enchanted Knits, published 2014

Writing patterns made her realize ‘how imprecise’ the language of patterns can be, and using charts and tech editors has been an adventure. She knits for her own pleasure any type of projects, from socks to sweaters, and loves to knit lace. When designing, she shares her love of knittin glace and in her new book New Vintage Lace, many of her designs are beautiful shawls, scarves, doilies and hats. They were inspired by Andrea’s collection of vintage patterns, many of doilies, some of which came without written instructions. The challenge was recreating these patterns to lie flat, fix mistakes in the stitch counts and to work-up in a modern way. The patterns are set up in the book that a beginner could start at the beginning and work through.

SIDE NOTE from Tammy: Recently, Andrea’s design made the cover of the special edition magazine Enchanted Knits (both the magazine and the book are from Interweave). The design shown in red is one of a pair in the magazine inspired of Snow White and Rose Red, and there is a Udine Shawlette inspired by mermaids and a Giant Slayer Vine Scarf in the magazine.

Find Andrea Jurgrau in Ravelry too:

Hopefully, you heard the program today, if you missed it, it aired at this link: Also, available at iTunes:



Yarn Pop by Top Shelf Totes

Yarn Pop by Top Shelf Totes, owner Lori Jordan, our guest today on the Yarn Thing podcast with Marly Bird. And we LOVE our Bags, don’t we?


Lori was taught to crochet by an aunt at about 12 years old, and her first project was a blanket. About 10 years ago, she picked up knitting because she was inspired to knit socks! She says socks are still her favorite GO-TO project and that she taught herself and later on, through her local yarn store.

Lori Jordan was working at Paramont Pictures to get movies uploaded in services like iTunes and Netflix, at the time knitting was her zen, she says. She and her husband decided to start their own tech company. While on the plane, she realized it would be nice to have a bag that prevented her yarn from rolling down the aisles. She sewed when she was at home, and began with a bag with grommets for the yarn to thread through. Someone suggested taking her bags to Stitches West. Her first time there, she realized that while she thought she had enough, she ran out of inventory by Saturday of the show and spent the rest of it knitting and handing out business cards.

That was the moment of clarity when she realized she’d found her bliss.

She found manufacturers close to her, in fact, the prints are all milled, made and printed in the US. The fabric is a heavier canvas that resists stains and hold their shape and still be machine washable. The prints she uses are great for making the bags coordinate while not ‘matchy-matchy’ although lots of people like having their various bags all the same print.

YPSinglebagShe loves working with the community, the people, the other vendors at shows, the yarn stores and doing the trunk shows. It’s obvious that these are the things that love her products too!

The first bag was The Single. The yarn threads through the grommet, as stated earlier, and your project can be tucked back in the, there’s a gap that allows the yarn not to get caught in the zipper. She created this bag in this size to be perfect for her socks. Naturally, The Double came next as an option for attendees at the shows, for sock two-at-a-time. Later came The Gadgety, with a pocket for a cell phone with a place to thread the headset cord through. The Commuter came with room for the larger devices like tablets to carry your pattern around with your project. And then the POPULAR Toteable to carry everything!

The bags are becoming collectibles because Lori tries to keep themes and update them. People like the Owl prints, and other people will love the Giraffes. The company is known for the Dandelion print as well.

If you didn’t get to listen to this visit yet, here is the link for where it aired originally: or you can find it in iTunes:

Crochet Scarf Pattern and Youtube Video: Game Day Scarf

NEW PATTERN RELEASE! This Crochet scarf pattern and Youtube video are the newest in a series of beginner projects designed to teach the new crocheter a fantastic skill and how to create a wonderful new project. Let me introduce you to the Game Day Scarf pattern and YouTube video on the Single Double Combination Stitch.

Game Day Scarf (crochet) 

Show your team spirit every day with this simple crocheted scarf. The pattern can easily be customized to the colors of your favorite team. Create the perfect crocheted scarf for someone you loved, or for yourself.

 *small print: this is for a .PDF download of the pattern, not the actual finished product*

Skill level: Easy

Sizes: one size fits most

Yarn: Red Heart, “With Love” (100% acrylic; 370 yds 338 m/198 g): MC Peacock, 1ball; CA White, 1 ball; CB Mango, 1 ball.

Hook: Size H/8 (5 mm) or size needed to obtain gauge


Need a little help? Here is a YouTube Video by me, Marly Bird, for the Single Double Combination Stitch.


Joji Knits


Joji Locatelli

Joji Knits, designer Joji Locatelli was today’s guest on the Yarn Thing Podcast with Marly Bird, all the way from Argentina! This made for a Great adventure for a live program.

Joji (pronounced Ho-Hee) says she learned to knit at about age 8, mom taughter her to a garter stitch scarf. Not exciting and the yarn was not a thrill so that was it till she was in University she started thinking about taking crafts up. At 24, she was about to get married but decided to quit smoking. Her mom had left some needles at her house and she picked up knitting again.

At first she didn’t have access to patterns, with her mom’s help she was able to improvise in her knitting. Then she found Ravelry. There she was able to follow her favorite designers and improve her skills, till she became a designer herself.


Joji and her current favorite design, Boxy

When she starts a design, she has an idea of what she wants to make but it sounds like the particulars work themselves out in process. In the beginning, she was so engrossed with what she was working on, she would forget to write things down as she worked on them. Even without completely understanding English her designs communicate classic beauty.

In spite of the changes in import/export laws, which makes it hard for someone like Joji to purchase yarn. she says ‘Don’t Worry’ she has a good supply at hand. Malabrigo is from Uruguay, right next door to Argentina! Sometimes, the colors she is sent by a yarn designer is not what she had in mind, and then she finds the design becomes based on the yarn itself.

Her latest design, Japan Sleeves, based on another of her cardigan designs, Old Romance, incorporates lacework from Japanese charts, and has been very popular among JojiKnits fans. Old Romance was very well received, which inspired her to continue the thought of the lace panels down the sleeves and the rest of the sweater constructed from that. Then she was sharing her inspiration for Japan Sleeves and the thought of stripes and her friend reminded her stripes in this would be like shawls that you see often. Working out the stripes in the short rows, but she loves that the design came together well.


Her website, She can also be found on Facebook:

Another of Joji’s designs that is popular is Boxy and Buttony. a next step after Boxy, by their nature as oversized and their boxy shape becomes comfortable and drapey. (Joji later shared that she personally likes the Boxy design so much she wears it all the time!) She also discussed how the feminine shape of Meridien comes together.

Joji says she gets most of her designing done in the evenings after her two boys go to bed. Her husband does freelance work as well, so this works for her family very well! Check out her designs in Ravelry:

If you missed listening LIVE, the show can still be heard at: or if iTunes is more convenient:

Pepperberry Knits Yarn

Pepperyberry Knits yarn, creator Heidi Hennessy, was the guest on the Yarn Thing Podcast today with Marly Bird, and it was all about the CASHMERE! Marly wanted to meet Pepperberry Knits at TNNA in May, but the booth was so busy. Those that did get in are still talking about it!


Heidi Hennessy, of Pepperberry Knits

Heidi is the mom of four boys and after her third son was born, she picked up a booklet and knit gloves using double-pointed needles, then a cable sweater. She found herself hooked, as it made sense to her. She shared with others at yarn group what how to cable, or other techniques, which progressed to teaching. Recommending yarns to others lead her to wonder about creating her own yarns.


Being entrepreneurial, she began with deconstructing cashmere sweaters found at the thrift stores, plying on her Ashford spinning wheel, and selling recycled cashmere. Of course, knitters LOVE cashmere and wanted a sweater’s worth. Heidi searched sources that would sell smaller quanities. The cones of color would come in laceweight and she would ply them together in solids and marled colorways. In two years, the work has grown into Pepperberry Knits


Karen Double Layer Mitts

Heidi has been so busy creating skeins to fill the demand, but amazingly has had some time to design a bit. Some designs come to her in her sleep. That’s where The Karen Double Layer Mittens came about.

THIS pattern available to fans of the Yarn Thing podcast till SUNDAY NIGHT, September 7th. You can pick up this pattern at the Pepperberry Knits website and get 50% off with codeword yarnthing (yes, all one word and all lower case). Isn’t that great? Marly wants to add to this: to assist those that have not knit mittens or gloves she has a Craftsy class, use this code and get 50% off!  CLICK HEREFunsizebundle

What people were so excited about at TNNA was mini skeins, in theme colorways and put together in Fun Size Bundles that can be used to create cowls. It’s a great introduction to using cashmere and at very reasonable, unexpected prices.

They will be at VKLive NYC in January and StitchesWest in Santa Clara, CA, in February, then in Colorado for Interweave in April. Bookmark her Ravelry page for details:

If you missed getting to hear this live it was originally broadcast from this link: it’s also available in iTunes, if that’s easier for you.

Creation Crochet


Lorene Eppolite

Creation Crochet is the featured subject, Lorene Eppolite was kind enough to join Marly to let us know what’s going on with her!

Lorene is relatively new to crocheting, only 5 years ago, taught herself. She sold finished products and was approached for patterns. Two years ago, she started her website Cre8tion Crochet and publishing patterns. At this point her finished products have completely gone away!


She works from home now (raising her kids) and finds most of her designing happens at night.  Her best designs and most popular are those that she just picked up a crochet hook and yarn and went to work as the idea strikes her.


The Owl Stuffy

Writing the patterns is still a challenge for her, but one that she meets well as is obvious by the quantity of her patterns listed in Ravelry and even as her skills improve finds a need to go back and tweak the older ones.

The Owl Stuffy has become the most favorited in Ravelry. Toys aren’t generally her favorite but these fun little guys are cheerful and bright. Perhaps that’s why they are so popular, with their friendly expressions! Well, the fact that it’s a free pattern can’t hurt either…

Lorene has become the Crochet Designer of choice for A Darn Good Yarn. Her patterns so far include hats and scarves made of their wonderful recycled fibers. Follow that website, too, to see the new patterns as Lorene creates and they are published there.

One thing that was cool to hear on the program is that Lorene considers’ Laurinda Redding a mentor. Coincidentally, Laurinda will be a guest on the Yarn Thing podcast with Marly Bird later this month!

If you missed hearing this episode you can go to the original program live, this is the link in Blogtalk:, Tammy shares the iTunes link because it’s easier for her to rewind if she missed something.

Knitting Expert Candace Eisner Strick

Knitting Expert Candace Eisner Strick learned to knit at the tender age of three! Her mother taught her to knit and play piano. While music has always been a part of her life, knitting has been the thing she loved.


Candace Eisner Strick and ‘the parrot who owns her’ 

Deciding she wanted to write a book about Harrisville designs, she approached them and heard the owner ‘Give Candace any yarn she wants’! She picked one of every color… Well, who wouldn’t? She created designs and put together ideas and began approaching publishers until finally Down East said they would publish her book for her. That first book Sweaters from a New England Farm Next came Sweaters from New England Sheep Farms … she has become known for her fearless designs, which include cables, lacework, steeks. Socks fit into her  talents easily with fun because of the beautiful colorways, self-striping and techniques. Thus Strick-ly Socks which she convinced her husband to help her with to become her first self-published book.

Think Ouside the Sox is a great collections of socks that was compiled by XRX (Knitters Universe Magazine) and Candace has a pattern included.

Candace has a YouTube channel and it can be helpful resource for techniques when knitting socks:  and she also has her own website

Once she got rolling with designs and writing books, she got hold of a booklet from a Stitches Event, admired all the teachers and decided she wanted to be one of those people.  This is the link to her upcoming classes at Stitches East in October.

If you missed hearing it live, you can catch it at the original location or in iTunes: