Red Vines Jacket in OWool Bulky

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Here’s one of my newest (really new) creations – the Red Vines Kids’ Jacket in Organic Merino O-Wool Bulky.  Featured in the Winter 2010 issue of Living Crafts, it is sized a roomy 6/8 yrs.  Extremely versatile, an extra skein can make it into – well – something bigger!

When I first got a hold of a sample of this yarn from the Vermont Organic Fiber Company I instantly fell in love.  It was squishy and soft and I couldn’t stop fondling it. It begged for big, lush and puffy cables. While I was swatching, I started playing around with simple yet interesting cable patterns.  The yarn kind of took over – and I gladly surrendered control.  The panels started growing organically (all puns intended) into the cables and they gently moved their way up the fabric.  I wasn’t going to argue.

Once the idea and swatch metamorphosized into a pattern, the knitting was just as enjoyable .  Knitting at a steady, but not manic pace, I finished it up in two weeks.  The shaping is so simple and the end result cozy warm.  The kid is pretty adorable too, no?  That’s Zane, who takes it for granted that his mom is going to make him put on a sweater or something and take his picture in the back yard.

Here’s a “behind the scenes” shot – me styling a five year old the best one can:

That pretty much means saying, “stop rolling around on the grass, please look over here” and trying to pull the leaves and grass off the sweater before the next shot.  But Zane is an old pro.  Here’s a shot of a project from my book, “The Gift Knitter” from the early days of his career:


He might be about 10 months old here, and mere seconds after this shot, he fell off the chair and face planted into the dirt.  It’s a tough life being cute.  This is the vintage inspired “Matinee Set” – leggings, socks, jacket and patchwork blanket – worked up here in Brown Sheep Bulky Machine Wash.  I guess we’ll all just have to stay tuned to see how Zane’s modeling career continues.

Meantime – Winter 2010 Living Crafts is on its way to subscribers now and in stores soon.  If your LYS or fav craft shop doesn’t have it, ask about it.  It’s a wonderful mag full of all kinds of handwork and family friendly projects.  Enjoy, and if you are on Rav, please post pix of finished projects, I just love to see.



My desire to create has been going full blast – and the drive to make little, small, sweet things has been strong.

Here are my two new girls.  Rose and Stargazer.


Rose has kickass hair and she may be the queen of the garden.


Stargazer (for my favorite lilly) is a wild child, and has a handknit tunic in Blue Sky Alpacas Melange.

fairystargazer2They have  a little brother – the autumn fairy Aspen – a little boy fairy for Zane who was inspired by this fall’s incredible aspen colors.  He’ll come out to play in the next few days.  Fairy love!!!

It’s time for some new things and a new look for the blog of Tara Jon Manning.

Here’s a midway-halfdone peek.  Check back for progress.  xoTara


Announcing Dates for the 2010 Mindful Knitting Retreat in Vermont:
Thursday March 11 to Sunday, March 14th, 2010

Once again, The Highland Lodge will be closing its doors to the public to transform into the Mindful Knitting Retreat Northeast.

Please join us for oh so much fun!!   For full details, visit the Mindful Knitting Retreat Page on the Tara Handknitting Website.

To make a reservation right now, because you are so excited and can’t be bothered looking at some web page, contact The Highland Lodge in Greensboro, Vermont via telephone(802-533-2647) or Email

Space is VERY LIMITED – please register EARLY!  See you in Vermont!

An interview with a little bit of Adam, and more of B-man – discussing what it’s like to be an activist rock star and how the world’s definition of what it means to be a “hero” is very confused. Enjoy.

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