Absolutely perfect

Do you know what I love most about my camera lens? I love that it makes all the toys and things in the background of my photos just look so pretty instead of so messy.

Holden in Handknits 002

Do you know what else I love? Or who, rather. Meghan. She's a sweetheart. She so thoughtfully knitted this for baby Holden a while back with a skein of my Philomath Worsted, in my favorite color (Silver Screen). Is that too sweet or what?

She's a fantastic designer and has even more patterns on Ravelry, which you should check out. Especially if you love shawls.

Holden in Handknits 001

I love the xoxo motif on the sides of this little vest. And I absolutely love that she made it big enough so that it's just a tiny bit too big for him now that he's right at 6 months old. That means it'll be absolutely perfect for him for our Georgia fall and winter and he'll probably be able to wear it straight through to spring. And then I'm going to put it away and keep it until maybe one day when Holden's son will get to wear it.

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Knitters are wonderful and generous folks, I've learned.

Which reminds me, if you're a yarn dyer or any sort of maker whatsoever, and you feel you could use a pick-me-up, just give something away on a blog. Right now I'm giving away some yarn over on the Knitty Blog and the comments I'm reading are making me smile!

You can also check out the Small Things blog this weekend, where I'll be giving away a skein of Muscadine Sock for your autumn knitting pleasure.

In pattern news, there's a new crochet shawl pattern that was designed with 2 skeins of my Eulela DK. Shibaguyz used my Olivine colorway for Tiamat - very dramatic!

And last, but most definitely not least, one of my customers (hi K!) used some of my yarn for a test knit she was doing for Yarn Madness' brand new Dyning pattern. I was thrilled to see my yarn as one of the suggested yarns when the pattern was released! Madeleine is a new-to-me designer but I've already bought two of her patterns and I'm planning to knit them ASAP. Vinkel is a really cute sweater with an interesting design that I think will work great here in Georgia, where it's not always so cold, even in winter. And of course I had to get Dyning, which I'm thinking of knitting long enough for it to be a dress for Miss V, but we'll see when I get there.

In the meantime, I'm working on a hat for R and still trying to overcome my second sock syndrome on a pair of Nutkins! But what about you? Are you knitting anything fun this fall? Any new-to-you designers I should know about? Do tell!

& the winners are...

The winner of the Henri pattern is Laura, who said:

Gorgeous! I would love to win :) .

The winner of the yarn is Kelly, who said:

I really like this pattern and it was nice to see a smaller version in the video although I do love your colourway in the larger version!!

Congrats, you two! And thanks to everyone who entered.

Holla Knits! y'all! ~ a pattern & yarn giveaway!

Welcome to the Springtree Road portion of the Holla Knits! blog tour!

Have you checked out the Fall/Winter 2012 collection from Holla Knits! yet? So many fun patterns here. Like Jilted. Love this one.

Jilted Knitting Pattern Jennifer Dassau Holla Knits Roman Hills Gissing8

And Sexxxy Librarian. I am all about the cables.

Sexxxy Librarian Knitting Pattern Lilith Ubbelohde Dirty Water Dyeworks Edna5

And then there's Henri, which was knit with my Praline DK. I'll let Allyson from Holla Knits! tell you more about it.

Henri by Ann Leachman from Patrick Tracy on Vimeo.

I love that each pattern page has its own video and that Allyson gives you different ideas on how you can knit it up to make it uniquely yours. What a great idea!

Through the end of September, I have a special dye-to-order listing in my shop so you can order your own sweater set of Praline DK like the indie sample was knit with.

But you can also win 2 skeins of Praline DK in the colorway Idyl, the same gorgeous green that Henri was knit with. A second winner will win the Henri pattern.

Henri Knitting Pattern Ann Leachman Holla Knits Springtree Road Praline DK11

To win, just leave a comment on this blog post by Thursday, September 27th, and I will pick a winner at random on Friday, the 28th. International entries are welcome.

Good luck!

The rest of the blog tour is as follows:

Sept 10th: The Sweatshop of Love
Sept 11th: I Knit 2 Purl 2
Sept 12th: Wooly Wonka Fiber
Sept 13th: Stash, the Knit Picks Blog
Sept 14th: Knits in Class
Sept 17th: The Owl and the Bee
Sept 18th: Periwinkle Sheep
Sept 19th: Knitting Vortex
Sept 20th: Roman Hills
Sept 21st: Under the Red Umbrella
Sept 24th: Springtree Road
Sept 25th: Magical Grammar
Sept 26th: Dirty Water Dyeworks

Name this yarn base - win a free skein!

I have a new yarn base in my possession. I'm dropping everything else to start dyeing it on Monday. I'm so very thrilled with it.

And I'd like your help naming it.

Name Me

About the yarn - it's DK weight, 100% Superwash Merino, single ply, super soft and squishy. So exciting! It's a single! Singles remind me of handpun yarn. I've been wanting to add a single ply hand-dyed yarn to my shop for a good year now.

But back to the name. I'm all give out! Thinking of baby names! Yarn colorway names! Names for all the cats and dogs that V wants to get! I do a lot of naming. So I would love your input.

I have a naming theme going on for my yarn bases - Southern things - Julep (as in mint), Praline (as in pecan), Muscadine (as in vine). I've also used place names - Navarre is a little town in Florida (where R & I honeymooned) and Philomath is a little town in Georgia. I intend to stay with the Southern theme. 

Unique names are best (there are plenty of yarn bases named "magnolia" and "hummingbird"). Place names, food names, pretty names, something else I haven't thought of - all good as long as it feels particularly Southern US.

While I can't promise that I will definitely pick one of your suggestions (though I want to and I very well may), I can promise that I will pick a winner and send that person pictures of the colorways I dye next week before I list them in my shop, let you choose one skein as a prize, and then send it to you (anywhere, worldwide). So you get first dibs! And the first chance to knit with my new yummy yarn base!

So...ideas? Show me what you've got! Just leave a comment before Wednesday, November 16th, at 8pm Eastern and I'll consider it. Thanks so much!

Knitcircus giveaway

Look! It's the latest issue of Knitcircus!

CoverSU2011 (4)

There are lots of patterns to love in this issue. I really like Isis by Chriss Storch, Litha by Allison Haas, and the adorable Girly Gansey by Marie Grace Smith, but there are many other beauties to choose from.

Another one I'm particularly fond of is Michelle Miller's Saffron Baby Hat.

Saffron baby 1
She's taken the fabulous idea of using the Fibonacci Sequence to shape the crown of this hat - it looks intricate and beautiful, just as nature intended. And Michelle used my Muscadine Sock yarn (coloway: Fleur d'Oranger) in the design of this hat!

Saffron detail
If you don't subscribe to Knitcircus, you should! It's a great knitting magazine. And here's your chance to really check it out - I'm giving away a one-year subscription! Your subscription will start with the current summer pattern collection.

Also, for 3 runners-up, you'll receive the current summer pattern collection!

Pretty sweet, huh? 

Just leave me a comment on this post and you're entered to win. Yay!

Contest is open until Friday, May 13th, at noon & I'll pick/post the winner soon after then!

Bees & giveaway(s)!!

I think we had the best day ever today! We took a day trip to Chattanooga. We saw some bees along the way. I'm going to share a few more photos once I go through all (629) of them.

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And Tonya is holding a giveaway on her blog, Plain and Joyful Living. She knitted an adorable baby vest from the yarn she won in my last giveaway and now she's giving the vest away - how gracious and lovely she is! So if you're having a baby soon or know someone who is, head on over to enter!

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So I think I'll have another contest. I'm looking for someone who has a blog where you talk at least occasionally about the things you're knitting/crocheting. You must be willing to knit/crochet something from my yarn using a pattern that can be found on the Internet (free or not) and blog about it within a month's time. If that sounds just like you, leave me a comment and I'll pick a winner to get a free skein of yarn. I know which one I'd pick (my new favorite)!

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Sound good? Just leave me a comment. I'll close comments sometime on Friday, July 16th (both my anniversary and my Etsyversary!) and announce the winner as soon as possible after. International contestants are welcome!

Love to knit? Have a knitting blog? Not too busy? A working giveaway

Hiya! I want to have a giveaway - let's call it a working giveaway ... or maybe a collaboration. Yeah, that sounds nice. I want to have a collaboration!

Here's what I need - someone who:

  • would like to try my handspun yarn
  • has a blog that is at least a bit about your knitting or crochet
  • has the time to knit/crochet a small project within the next month
  • is willing to blog about the project with photos and links I provide

If this sounds like you, then leave a comment and I'll pick one person. You'll receive one skein of yarn of your choice from either of my shops, knit up a project of your choice (it can be your own design, but the pattern needs to be available online - does not have to be a free pattern, but must be available) , and blog about it within a month from when you get the yarn.

Anybody game? Comments will close sometime on Sunday, June 13, and I'll email the winner once I close the comments.

Simple Small Bear - FO!

Finally! I finished the Simple Small Bear from The Best-Dressed Knitted Bear! Could I have taken any longer?

Probably. If I'd tried just a little bit harder.

Anyway, here he is in all his glory.

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All my pictures of V with the bear look pretty much like this:

simple bear 017

So R was kind enough to help me out.

simple bear 027

Whew! I'm going to go update my Rav status as soon as I finish this post! Victory is mine!

Ok, so here's the thing - I'm glad I made him, but I'm not so sure that I want to make another. Or really any other sort of knitted stuffed animal. I love them, they're just not my thing.

So I figured I'd give this book away here on the blog because I'm sure there are plenty of people who would enjoy knitting several bears and the outfits that go with them.

simple bear 035

Am I right?

So here are the details to win The Best-Dressed Knitted Bear book:

Your comment is your entry.

If you want to tweet it, Facebook it, blog it, or something-else-I-haven't-thought-of it, go ahead and do that. Just make sure you leave me at least one comment telling me what all you did and with links to where I can find it. That'll get you extra points. If you want to tweet it 10 times, that's way cool, but only the first time will get you an extra point.

Comments will be open until sometime Tuesday morning - whenever I can get to the computer. I'll close the comments then and announce it soon after.

Contest is open to folks around the world. Woot!

Ok...I think that's it.

Morsel (& a winner at the end)

The other day, I saw a post that reminded me of a little cat we had for about five minutes named Morsel. Natalie's mom was looking for a name for her new kitten and Natalie asked her readers for suggestions. I said Morsel because I think it's a great name for a cat (it didn't win, but that's ok).

Like I said, we had a cat named Morsel when I was a teenager but Morsel was a feral cat and he disappeared when his mom disappeared. Long, sad story I don't really feel the need to revisit, other than to explain that that's how I decided to name my new Kitty Morsel.

"What? Another cat?!" I can hear you cry. "Aren't three enough?!!!" Even Roxy disapproves.

hello kitty 052

Ahem. Yes. Three are enough. But this Kitty is a good bit more sedate than the other other three and instead of cat food he eats fiber, or he gnaws on it a little bit and then spits it out, which is actually a lot more wonderful than it sounds.

Ok, I'm getting weird here. Meet Morsel - here's his fat little belly.

v hello kitty 013

Morsel is my new Fancy Kitty drum carder. Ain't he sweet?

v hello kitty 006

I like his orange stripes.

v hello kitty 046

Drum carders are the coolest thing going. You can take all sorts of fibers in all kinds of colors and add some sparkle and blend them all together into what's called a batt and then spin them into really cool yarn. (Here's a video of how they work)

v hello kitty 007

Once they've come off the drum (that's his "belly" I was talking about above and in the photo below) the batts are light and fluffy and make spinning loads of fun. Last night I was working on an idea for a Halloween yarn I want to make this week that I think is going to be really cool. I carded together some fiber and then spun a sample and knitted it up. The effect blew me away and I can't wait to do a whole skein of it.

(yes, my fiber studio is a gloriously girlie pink - the bottom half of it, anyway. the top half is white. i'm not so crazy about that part. but one day i'll finish getting it together and then i'll share pictures. i need a chair and shelves and other shelves and picture frames and  ...)

v hello kitty 027

I'd looked a lots of batts for sale on Etsy before I got the carder and they seemed so expensive to me - but once I started using the carder, I could understand why. It's lots of fun, but more work than you'd think. And I've already stabbed my fingers pretty well a couple of times with those sharp teeth while trying to clean Morsel. He's feisty! But I don't mind - there's nothing like spinning up a drum carded batt. I want to have more for sale in the shop, but I'm slow about it. I put a lot of thought into the colors and what the yarn might look like when spun. And I like to spin up a little sample before I finally make my batts and these things all take time.

So that's my new Kitty. I love him so! I think Morsel is really going to be happy in his new home.


I was so pleased with my little contest. I think I announced it on twitter three times and that's all I did to promote it. I wanted it to go to someone who actually reads my blog on at least a semi-regular basis, so I loved each and every one of the 18 comments on that post. I threw all those names into a hat and the felted rock will go to Puna. So Puna, if you'll email me your address to springtreeroad (at) yahoo (dot) com, I'll put it in the post for you.

If you didn't win one, don't be sad. You never know when I could get a hankering for some more rock felting. Or some other kind of felting. Or something else entirely. Hmmm...

A very tiny giveaway

I was in my backyard just now, taking pictures of yarn to list. It was about to rain so the wind was blowing and the clouds were ominous and I hurried to finish.

But I had to take pictures of the clouds in black and white, because they looked like this.

yarn 003

Excuse the house and the dish and stuff, but what can I do? I live in suburbia (I'm not complaining).

yarn 005

I've given up on the first day of the month in black and white, at least for now. Too many other things going on. But there's still the flickr group and you're more than welcome to come and look or come and join in and that's where I'll be putting all my b&ws from now on.

Today I cleaned off my drum carder after blending some wool so that I could card some more wool and muck it up again. Anyway, I got all these little bits of wool off in various colors that are pretty much good for nothing. So I asked V if she wanted to felt them to make some balls for the cat to play with and she did. So we did.

Then I remembered I had some green left over from the Tink yarn I did (which has sold) and the Tink batts (which haven't). And I thought about the smooth rocks I picked up at the beach in Topsail, NC, a couple of months ago and how I keep meaning to take pictures of them. So I felted some of the Tink leftovers onto one of the rocks.

It turned out pretty.

yarn 024

And I was thinking about it, how the felt covers the rock and it feels really nice in my hand. Felty, but with a bit of weight. And I was thinking about how I've gone from editing other people's words to creating my own yarn. Yarn that I'm proud of, that I love, that I can't wait to get up and do it again tomorrow even though I haven't even started spinning tonight yet.

And today held another blessing because another one of my yarns was on the front page of Etsy, which was wonderful and exciting and made me feel like I've finally answered the elusive question of what I want to do with my life.

So I want to give you advance notice that I'm going to do a yarn giveaway on Shealynn's blog. I think it starts tomorrow, but I'm sure I'll mention it here. She did a giveaway on my blog a while back and now I'm doing one with her. But I also want to give something away myself, a very tiny thing.

Just because.

I want to give away the felt-covered rock. Silly maybe, because it is such a very small thing, but there are a lot of good, positive feelings wrapped up in that little rock. And if you'd like some of those, just leave me a comment telling me why, and I'll choose someone on Saturday. I'll keep the comments open until sometime Saturday morning and then choose someone right after.

Sound good?

Sneaky Weasel winners (yay!)

Whew, what a day! Meant to do this earlier, but here are the winners of the Sneaky Weasel giveaway:


You four lovely ladies, please send me your address ASAP.

I wish everyone could have a copy, but if you didn't win and would like to buy a copy, you can get one here at my Amazon store or at your local bookseller. If you do, please let me know what you think if you have a moment. It's really a wonderful book.

Sneaky Weasel + giveaway (yay!)

Comments are closed - I'll announce the winners later today. Thanks for playing!


Does this little girl look like she's in the mood for her mama to take her photo?

v Sneaky Weasel 004


Let's try again.

v Sneaky Weasel 024

Ok, now that's more like it!

Recently, I got my weaselly little mitts on a really great children's book, my favorite in a while. It's called Sneaky Weasel and it's by first-time children's book author/illustrator Hannah Shaw.

v Sneaky Weasel 087

The premise is simple: Sneaky Weasel is a bully and, when he finally realizes that nobody likes him, he mends his fences and his ways and then there's a party.

v Sneaky Weasel 057

It's a good story on its own, but the illustrations! Oh my! This book is vivid. Right down to the font and word choices, there is a lot of really fantastic artwork going on here. V and I could spend all afternoon picking out things we didn't notice the last time and laughing over just how sneaky that weasel is.

v Sneaky Weasel 043

At 3 & 1/2, V is just now getting to the point where she understands the moral of a story and can begin to relate it to her own life. And we've just scratched the surface of this book - it will continue to unfold for her for a long time to come. Right now, we're just enjoying the book and talking a bit about it in connection with situations in our lives, but there are opportunities here to talk about bullying, apologizing when you're wrong, being a good friend, and what to serve a hedgehog at a party (apparently, they quite like chocolate bars).

v Sneaky Weasel 040

Our favorite part is where Sneaky Weasel comes up with his "being good plan." V likes to talk about how Sneaky Weasel paces around the table and comes up with a few plans that won't work before he finally hits on a solution. We're big on thinking about our problems and talking it out to find solutions and this part of the book is a nice reinforcement. If it worked for Sneaky Weasel, it can work for you.

v Sneaky Weasel 018

We also like how Sneaky Weasel retains some of his sneaky nature at the end. As we all do - even the sweetest among us has a mischievous streak.

v Sneaky Weasel 007

Wait, one more time. Ah, there she is - there's my sweet girl!

v Sneaky Weasel 035

Now, here's the part I'm really excited about - the lovely folks at Random House are letting me give away four copies of Sneaky Weasel. Is that nice or what? This is a really great book and I'm thrilled to give four of you the chance to find that out for yourselves.


1. The giveaway is only open to those living in the US.
2. Please leave a comment on this post if you'd like to be entered.
3. For a second entry, please tweet a link to this post & come back and leave me a comment with the link to your tweet.
4. For two extra entries, blog about the contest and leave me two comments so I can count both entries.

I will close comments on Tuesday morning, May 19th, and announce the winners later that day.

Good luck!

P.S. Don't blame me, her Grandmo bought her the Crocs!

v Sneaky Weasel 020


Please join me at Julia's party, Hooked on Fridays, to see what everyone else is hooked on this week!

An awesome day & book & giveaway

Don't hate me, but it's 65 degrees here today. So we went outside to play.

Check out that sunshine and the lovely breeze...

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We took out V's beanbag, some pencils/crayons and paper, and An Awesome Book to read.

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I plan on doing a lot more of this, at least until it gets really hot - it's much more fun than drawing and reading inside.

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I was a lucky ducky and got Dallas Clayton to send me his book, An Awesome Book.

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I especially like the drawings - very detailed. V says they're silly and lots of fun.

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The message of the book is to be sure to dream. Without dreams, life would be megaboring.

So true.

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V likes to dream about playing with lots of kittens and puppies. I like to dream that I can fly.

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And because he's a nice guy, Dallas has offered me two signed books to give away. Wanna win one? You've got up to four chances, but I ain't your momma, so you're responsible for following the rules:

For one point: leave a comment, telling me what you like to dream about.
For one point: twitter a link to this post and then come back and leave me a comment with a link to your twitter post.
For two points: write a post on your own blog, mentioning the contest and linking to this post and then come back and leave me two comments. Yes, two comments - this will make it so much easier for me.

Contest deadline is Wednesday, February 18, at midnight and I'll announce the winner on Thursday, February 19.

Good luck!


I entered this post at Julia's Hooked on Fridays party. Come on and join us!

*Shey* [B] Giveaway

Have you seen *Shey* [B]'s etsy shop? She's making the cutest camera strap covers you ever did see. I want one of these myself.


Shey is also one of my twitter friends. Lucky me, huh?


Actually, lucky you! Because Shey has been kind enough to offer a giveaway here, on Springtree Road.

This one is my favorite, though the black and white one is probably more my style. I wear a lot of black. Maybe I should branch out.


Which one is your favorite? Go visit Shey's etsy shop and then come back and let me know in the comments which one you would pick for your very own, and you will have one chance to win.

You can also twitter the contest and then come back and leave me a comment with the link to the tweet. That'll give you two chances to win.

And, if you really want to be a sweetie pie, you can blog about it and then come and leave me a comment with a link to the post and you'll get two extra chances to win, which will give you four.

Since Shey is such a sweetie pie herself, she tells me that she'll ship anywhere, worldwide. So my photographer friends in Italy, Australia and India (just to name a few), please join in! You can't win if you don't play.

I'll close comments on Monday morning, January 19, just as soon as I can drag my sleep deprived self out of bed, and then I'll announce the winner later that same day. So good luck!

(FYI...I submitted this post to Hooked on Houses' new feature, Hooked on Fridays. So if you want to see what other people are hooked on, check it out!)

We have a winner!

we have a winner 001

With just 9 entries to choose from, I let V pick the winner of the contest to guess the artist/title of the song in my banner - and she picked Amy of commonplace. The song is called "Winter" and it's by Tori Amos - it's one of my favorite songs on my player in my sidebar.

we have a winner 002

Congratulations to Amy!

I may not do a contest every month, but I'm sure I will do it again soon, so if you didn't win but wish you had, be sure to come back and visit - you never know when the mood will strike me.

Mr. Pine's Purple House - giveaway

Leonard Kessler's Mr. Pine's Purple House was my favorite book when I was a kid.

different things 056

It's the story of a man who lives in a little white house...

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...that sits among 50 other little white houses, all in a row.

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When Mr. Pine plants a pine tree in his yard so that he can more easily tell which house is his, his neighbors think it's such a great idea that they all do the exact same thing. So he plants a bush next to the pine tree, and the next day he wakes to find that yet again his house is no longer unique. Eventually, they all work it out and everyone gets to show his or her individuality. Or at least their house color preference. Ha.

I started looking for this book a couple of years ago so that I could get it for V, but it was really hard to find. When I did find it, it was outrageously expensive. Purple House Press to the rescue! Their mission is to "revive long lost, but well loved children's books." I can get behind that (*wink* to R!). When I found their website the other night, I noticed that they sell remainders at a discount and I had to get one. In fact, I got two. One for me and one for you! These books have a small black remainder line, but otherwise are in absolutely perfect condition (I'm all about a deal).

So if you would like the chance to win my second copy, please leave a comment by Tuesday, October 14th, at 11:59pm EST. If you blog about my giveaway on your blog, I will enter your name twice (leave two separate comments, if you would be so kind). And if you come over to my house and help me finish unpacking, you can have any of my books that you want and I'll bake you cookies. (Just kidding about that last part. Sort of.) I will announce the winner on Wednesday. Best of luck! International entries welcome.