September 2013


Stitchin’ Times


Publication of the Cactus Needles Knitting Guild

September 2013




   Letter from the Editor

We are off to a wonderful start to our new year. Harriet has some very interesting programs coming our way and we have had a few new members join the guild too. We are excited to welcome them to our guild and look forward to their enthusiasm and ideas. Thanks to everyone who has stepped up to chair a committee. Transition can be a challenge so if you have suggestions or can offer help please let me know.

Over the summer a number of our members worked on the Summer Mystery Shawlette project. It was suggested that everyone who worked on the summer project bring them to the Holiday Party in December so show off their creation.  So if you didn’t work on one over the summer you can find the instructions on the Guild website and still have time to make one.

We were lucky to see a blanket that was made for “Ground Cover” project. It was brought to our meeting in July by Judy who was a guest of Joanna, and she has since joined the Guild. She knitted in a wonderful message in the middle of the blanket for the recipient to read (a picture can be found in last month’s newsletter.) Dawn is also working on a blanket for the project; I am hoping she brings her blanket to a meeting for us to see before sending it in. If you haven’t heard about the project visit http://groundcoveraz.com/ and read about this ambitious project and how it will benefit the homeless in the Phoenix Metro area.

One other fun thing we are doing again is the “Prize Closet” which we will be talking about more at our next meeting. Thanks to Lesley for suggesting the closets revival!

Happy Knitting!!




Knitters  Extraordinaire

Cindy Adams

By Cynthia Peplinski

Although Cindy is a consummate knitter, she can’t really remember exactly when she started knitting.  She can, however, remember buying her first needlepoint canvas and sewing her first garment (multi-talented) but knitting has always just seemed “built in.”  She can probably give “knitting credit” though to her two aunts in Northeast Texas who might have wanted to just keep her busy while she was visiting.  She thinks one of her aunts helped her make a couple of crude knitting needles from wooden dowels sharpened in a pencil sharpener with buttons glued on one end!  Unfortunately, as much as Cindy enjoys knitting, she grew up in Texas and has spent 35+ years in Arizona where the need for knitted garments is, shall we say, minimal!

Cindy, as we have said previously, being multi-talented, also crochets.  Which does she like best?  Well, knitting uses less yarn (always a financial factor) and you always know where to insert the needle but crochet goes much faster and the projects are easier to shape!  (Creating is never easy!)  She loves belonging to the Guild because she has met so many people who are also crazy about knitting and practically had to add on to their homes to accommodate their stashes! But she also began her design career because of a Guild meeting.    She was at a TKGA convention, in the restroom, and a lady came up to her occupying “her space.”  She then pulled out a business card and said, “Call me when you get home.  I want to talk to you about designing for us.”  Cindy forgave her her eccentricities when she found out that she was the executive director for the American School of Needlework Publishing!  And Cindy is still designing doing what she loves to do -----------and getting paid for it!  Don’t be surprised if one of your favorite designs turns out to be in one of the four books she has published or found in one of the innumerable magazines that were fortunate enough to garner one of her designs!






Website Watch


Love zippers? Hate to sew? This might be the answer for you:

Click here

Yarn bombing at its finest:

Click here

And here

If you don't subscribe to Knitting Daily, join up to get this "free" booklet. to unravel the mystery of increasing and decreasing:
Contibuted by Judie and Regina - thanks!




The Pragmatic Knitter: Increase + Decreases = Stitch Patterns

by Georgia K. Green

After graduating from the rectangular scarf and/or the afghan square, one of the most basic tasks a knitter confronts is learning to shape the knitted piece, making it wider or narrower, whether vertically or horizontally or both, typically to create a garment shape such as a curved armhole or a sloped shoulder edge. Very practical (even pragmatic, one might say), and reason enough to learn the various increases and decreases, each with variations in knit and purl, or to the right of a certain stitch and to the left of a certain stitch.

Shaping, while essential, is not the focus of this article, as there is another use for increases and decreases, one which could easily be avoided by an (admittedly unimaginative) knitter forever, but is so much fun that it would be a real shame to do so. After a brief review of increases and decreases, we are going to explore how they can be used to create stitch patterns with decorative elements and interesting texture.

Once you have read this article, I hope that you will design your own original stitch pattern (based on increases and decreases) to show at a future CNKG meeting!














Centennial Blanket Now has a Home!


Francine Ebersman and Jo-Ann handed our Centennial Blanket over to Ashley Smith, representative of the Arizona Historical Society Museum at Papago Park in Tempe.  Ashley was also given copies of 

our guide for viewing the blanket, our business cards and note cards to archive with our blanket.  We discussed handling, storage and future display of the blanket and Ashley is very knowledgeable about these matters.  We left feeling that our creation is in the right home and will be cared for with TLC.  And, always looking for so

mething different for the Guild, Ashley will notify us any time the  blanket is on display in this gem of a museum so that we can pay it a visit. 






Sponsored by

Lacey Ladies of Arizona


Lace knitting is a style of knitting characterized by stable "holes" in the fabric arranged with consideration of aesthetic value. Lace is sometimes considered the pinnacle of knitting, because of its complexity and because woven fabrics cannot easily be made to have holes 

Want to learn more? Here's your chance. Join the Lacey Ladies of Arizona on October 9 for the 22nd Annual Lace Day.

Click here for a brochure with all of the details

Click here for a list of vendors






Program Highlights 


As much as we love to knit, fatigue can set in, especially in the hands and neck. In August, we had a program on stretching to help relieve some of the aches and pains.

Click here for instructions

September's program was the start of a fun project called "fibonacci kniiting"..

There is a number Phi (1.6180339887498948482) that is an expression of something called the golden ratio. Since ancient times, it has been known that using this golden ratio enabled designers to create art and buildings that were most pleasing to the human eye. Even Mother Nature used the golden ratio when designing spiraled things such as shells and sunflowers!

In the 13th century, a guy named Leonardo Fibonacci (Fee-bo-nah-chee) discovered that when he took a number (starting with 0), added the previous number to it and continued doing that with each resulting sum, he arrived at a unique sequence of numbers (0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21...) that had golden ratio-like properties. As he went further and further out in the sequence, he found that the ratio of one of the numbers to the one preceding it began to approach the golden ratio!

Read more here: http://www.star-telegram.com/2013/04/29/4806818/younger-knitters-are-in-it-for.html#storylink=cpy 

Architects and designers have been using the golden ratio and Fibonacci numbers for eons to make eye-pleasing work--and so can knitters! For example, the fabric of these scarves, wristlets and capelet (designed by Adina Klein) are particularly appealing because all of the stripes are worked in garter stitch with the total number of ridges in any stripe being a number in the Fibonacci sequence.

Working with this theory (thanks, Georgia) Harriet came up with a pattern for a scarf. Don't forget to bring your finished scarf to the next meeting for donation to the Navajo Reservation

Click here to view or print a copy of the pattern 

October's program will feature  Binka Schwam, a Master Knitter and currently a Co-Chair of the TKGA Master Hand Knitting Committee. This is a "not to miss" program.

Also, October is CNKG birthday month. Bring a beverage and save some room for a slice of cake!


Upcoming Events


September 16 – Fry’s Marketplace Knit-Together – 6:00 PM to 8:30 PM

October 7 – CNKG Meeting 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM* 

October 21 –  Fry’s Marketplace Knit-Together – 6:00 PM to 8:30 PM

November 7 –CNKG Meeting 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM*




*Dinner for Hungry Knitters – 5:00 Streets of New York.


Don’t forget to Host your Own Knit Together! Refer to the “Latest News” under “Members Only” for a list of available months.