January 2014


Stitchin’ Times


Publication of the Cactus Needles Knitting Guild

January 2014




   Letter from the President

Wishing everyone a wonderful year fulfilled with happiness and many fun hours of knitting!

Being a member of a community is more than just living in an area…it is helping those around you. Cactus Needles Knitting Guild is a wonderful part of the knitting community in the Phoenix area. We have a unique gift to share and have done a great job giving to Linus Blankets, scarves for veterans, the Red Scarf Project, knitting hats for the hospitals, and more.

In 2014 I think it would be great for our altruistic projects to focus on local organizations. We have a number of opportunities for knitting in our own community, from hats to blankets to knitted knockers! We have a wide range of knitters in our group who may have a passion for helping out in a variety of ways. When we offer choices of organizations that our members can support everyone benefits

Recently two organizations have been brought to my attention that I thought we should add to our altruistic efforts. One is Helping Hands the other is Knitting Hats for Homeless Teens. Both organizations help the youth in the Phoenix Metro area. Helping Hands is in need of booties, baby clothes and small children clothes.

Lesley and Mali have been sending patterns to Barb for posting on our website so we have variety of things to knit for charity. There are patterns that fit all skill levels. You can find the patterns under <Members Only> <Altruistic> <New for Patterns for 2014>

 We can make a difference in our community by doing something we love…Knitting! So grad your needles, yarn and a pattern and have fun. 







Five ways to tie a scarf

 You've found this great yarn, got out your  needles and knit this great scarf. Now what??

You throw it around our neck - it looks fine, but doesn't quite earn the grade. Considering the time and energy (not to mention money) you spent, you're a little dissapointed because you really want it your scarf to pop!

Courtesy of Jackie Awerman, here is a link to show you five different ways to adorn that beautiful scarf.

Click here.



Knitters use knitting to value-add to the world. 

Stephanie Pearl-McPhee




The major creativity and skill building  classes & supplies  site, CRAFTSY, will be publishing our own Jackie Awerman's “Everlasting Sweetness” photo(s) and pattern for Valentine’s Day.
Just in case some Guild members aren’t familiar with the site or don’t subscribe, here it is-SWEETNESS FOR YOU, CNKG!
And Toss A Penny Scarf might be fun, too. 

Knitting Quotes     



 Website Watch



Program Highlights 

 December's meeting was replaced by our annal Holiday Party. Once again, Macaroni Grill was the location of the affair. Prizes were distributed throughout the night in the midst of our gift exchange, our Project Linus presentation and an all-out evening of fun. Thanks to the Holiday Party Committee, Martie Warden, Sandy Grunow, Francine Ebersman and Joann Mullen for all of the hard work you put into our evening. A special thanks to Lance Decker who did all of the photography for the event.

January hosted our annual Yarn Exchange. This was  a chance for everyone to bring in yarn from their stash that they could trade in for "Cactus Notes". These in turn could be used to bid for new treasured yarn, giving everyone a chance to clean out and stock up!

Be sure to join us for the February program featuring Brioche Knitting by Mali, In March, Marsha will sharing her unique index carding technique to help organize your knittitng.

See you then! 




The Pragmatic Knitter:  Knitting Without ... Yarn??

by Georgia K. Green 

Perhaps the first (or even the second) time you read the topic of this column, you saw it as “Knitting WithoutTears,“ the classic 1971 book by Elizabeth Zimmermann, or possibly the (not-quite-so-classic and more macramé-oriented) 1968 book by Peggy Boehm entitled “Knitting Without Needles.“  Hardly surprising, if so, since an overwhelming majority of knitters do in fact knit with yarn.

Yarn comes in many varieties, of course.  Yarn can be spun from staple fibers like cotton, linen, or wool.  Silk, rayon, nylon, and other continuous filaments can be formed directly into yarn.  Plied yarns can be created by uniformly twisting individual similar strands together; slub yarns can be made by leaving some portions untwisted.  Yarns can be bonded, bleached, mercerized.

Broadly, yarn is considered either natural or synthetic, and natural yarn is further subdivided into animal and plant.  Polyester, wool (from sheep) and cotton, respectively, are the most commonly used.  Other animal fibers often used include alpaca, angora, mohair, llama, cashmere, and silk.

Less frequently used are yarns of camel, yak, possum, qiviut (musk ox), cat, dog, wolf, rabbit, buffalo hair, turkey, or ostrich feathers.  Another often-used plant fiber is linen, while less frequently used are bamboo, hemp, corn, nettle, and soy.  Other synthetic yarns include nylon, acrylic, and olefin.

And yet …  This abundance of materials is apparently not enough for some of us.  It is time to look at w hat else knitters have put upon their needles.  Let’s now explore knitting without yarn.  Here, in no particular order, are a few of the things with which knitters have knit:


 Interested in some ideas? Click here to read the entire article.



Upcoming Events



February  3 – CNKG Meeting 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM*

February 17 –A Second Look Knit-Together – 6:00 PM to 8:30 PM

March 3 – CNKG Meeting 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM*

March 17 – A Second Look Knit-Together – 6:00 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.