It is time to go!

June 2, 2010

Finally, the day that I will write my very last blogpost here at this blog has come…


You guys, head on over to:


Don’t forget to update my url if you have me stated in your blogroll!

See you at the new website!


A challenging project

May 19, 2010


My wooden basket became too small for the amount of poppies I have knitted so far and I had to transfer my colorful pretties to a glass bowl.

I have knitted 80 poppies so far, only 20 more to go. My glass bowl can hardly contain this abundance of goodness and is about to overflow. I simply love it!

Knitting the poppies for my Poppies of Endearment project has been easy. The challenging part is yet to come.

A challenging project on several levels

After I have knitted a 100 poppies, I will cluster 3 poppies together, attach an affirmation/saying/poem, place them somewhere in San Francisco, take a picture and leave them behind.

Sounds easy…but to me  it is challenging on several levels!

  1. Write an affirmation, saying, or a poem in your own words. Oh boy that means I am not allowed to quote somebody. I have to find and use my own words…
  2. Place them somewhere in San Francisco. Yikes, this city is big…and I just dipped my toe in it. Oh well, it will force me to go out there, and find good spots, preferably photogenic ones,  to leave the poppies behind.
  3. Take a picture. A good opportunity to get more and more comfortable with my DSLR camera and my latest Nikkor 35mm f/1.8 lens.
  4. Leave the poppies behind for a stranger to find. Detaching from an item you spend much time on… to be gifted to a total stranger.

And lastly, document everything on the blog.

Hands down the most interesting knitting adventure I have ever embarked on!


Hey Nancy, you keep on going on about your poppies, but how about your website?

Ha! I wondered when you would ask!

Me and web developer Andy Bottman have been going back and forth over the past few weeks and I just received message that he is ready to do a final import to my new website. Don’t ask me for details, I am ignorant on how these things work.

I will let you know here on this blog, when the other one is up and running so you all can head that way when it is time.

All of you who have left a comment on this blog, will also receive an e-mail on when the new site is up.

It is very very close…

Thanks for reading and until the next entry!

The power of little me…

May 16, 2010


I was pleasantly surprised of all the positive feedback I received from you on my Poppies of Endearment project. I cannot tell you how much your feedback encouraged me to go into this project with even more fire and soul.

Also, you have inspired me to give you a deeper understanding of how and when this idea came to me. That way you will have more insight in why I am doing this Poppies of Endearment project.

Feeling helpless and powerless

At times, when I look around me and see how human beings hurt, fight and kill each other, I hang my head and try to understand why.

Fear and hate are capable of motivating people to commit atrocious crimes against humankind.

When I hear or see what cruelty occurs, I feel so helpless… so powerless. And I ask myself, what can I do? How can I help?

How can little me possibly fight this evil that hurts us?

The power of little me

While once again feeling helpless and powerless, I wished that I could place a flower in people’s hearts and make it bloom. And I daydreamed that with every blooming flower, the scent of pure love would be released.

If I can wish it, if I can dream it then ultimately I can make it tangible and make it happen.

I feel no longer helpless and powerless. Little me can actually do something and help to make a change.

Little me has the power to make a difference.

In the beginning there was a single little poppy. Then came another one. And another one…

DSC_4718 DSC_4719 DSC_4720 DSC_4721

And soon there were plenty!


The more poppies I make, the more abundance I create and the more empowered I feel to spread the love.

The power of me. The power of you. The power of us.

DSC_4730 DSC_4732 DSC_4731 DSC_4729

I can only hope that this Poppies of Endearment project will inspire you to do something similar.

This is not MY project. This is also YOUR project if you wanted to.


Once I finished my 100th poppy, I will release them into the world in clusters of 3 and a message in my own words will be attached to them.

I will take a picture of where I release them, and I will post what message I attach to them.

If you are inspired to do the same, let me know about it. Send me your picture and send me your message you have attached. It does not have to be a knitted poppy. It can be whatever you want it to be.

This is not only about the power of little me. This is about the  power of you, and ultimately, the power of us.


Lastly, I want to tell you that I firmly believe in the goodness of mankind.

I strongly believe in our ability to love.

I strongly believe in our ability to do good.

I strongly believe in our ability to inspire, to encourage and to create beautifully.

This strong belief is what makes life worth living for me. Because life is truly beautiful and grand, and I am determined to keep it that way.

Thank you for reading and until the next entry.

Poppies of Endearment

May 13, 2010

Abundance of Poppies

I did not particularly enjoy myself over the last few weeks. Packing up an entire household is not what I call fun.

Boy, am I glad that is behind us.

For days and days on end I was not able to play with yarn and knit. So when we arrived back in San Francisco last Tuesday, I grabbed my little wooden basket filled with kidsilk haze yarn and started to knit poppies.

I haven’t stopped knitting my poppies ever since. I am on a mission…

Poppies of Endearment

Abundance of Poppies

A few months ago, my friend Jenni had made a beautiful display  for the yarnshop Closeknit in Portland; she decorated several branches with lots and lots of poppies.

It sure was a pleasure for the eye those sweet little colorful knitted flowers… I wish I had taken a picture!

Then, on a sunny afternoon, I took the branches with poppies home with me and as I walked down the street something remarkable happened.

Every single person I encountered on my way would stop me and literally go gaga over the poppies! Even this rough looking guy walked straight up to me and caressed the poppies.

Right there and then I realized : these  little knitted poppies have the power to endear. And I knew I had to do something with that…

Poppies with an endearing message

Abundance of Poppies

For the next few days I am going to knit at least a hundred poppies. I already knitted 50 in all kinds of colors.

When I have knitted one hundred poppies, I am going to set them free in the streets of San Francisco with a little message attached to them.

This message will be an affirmation, a poem, a saying. This message has to convey something sweet, encouraging, inspiring. And last but not least, this message has to be written in my own words.

I will leave the poppies with message attached randomly in neighborhoods. On a bike, on a doorknob, on a bench, attached to a fence, in nooks and crannies, in somebody’s mailbox, in restrooms, on branches.

I hope that the finder will be endeared. I hope that the finder will smile. I hope that the finder will melt.

Because we need that feeling of endearment… We need to let our guards down every once in a while and I hope that these little poppies will disarm and endear.

Thank you for reading and until the next entry!

More on the Poppies of Endearment project:

The power of little me

Abundance of Poppies Abundance of Poppies Abundance of Poppies Abundance of Poppies Abundance of Poppies

Where have you been revisited

May 1, 2010

I am very busy packing and running around doing all kinds of stuff and have absolutely no time to blog!

I can however, show you one of my favorite blogpost called “Where have you been”. I wrote this in July 2007. Enjoy…

Where have you been..?

“I have always been here, you silly. Waiting for you to open the gates…”

~ Inspiration

This morning I heard a firm knock on my front door. It woke me up immediately and a sweet sense of excitement bloomed in my heart. With my hair still ruffled and my eyes swollen from a good night’s rest I rushed to the front door, unlocked it and swung it wide open.

Blooming excitement

A gentle morning breeze caressed my face and I smiled from ear to ear as I set sight on my visitors: several swirling energetic colors, some fine spun yarn, a croaking toad, a honeybee, some rays of sunlight, laughing fuchsias, timid pansies, a pair of bamboo needles, written words, embracing light tones of music, secrets of life, deep conversation, giggling forest fairies, a sea of Love and… and… and so much more sweetness gracing my front porch.

“WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN?!?!”, I cry out.

My visitors all look at me as they morph into one being of Inspiration and reply: “I have always been here, you silly. Waiting for you to open the gates.”

Open the gates

Comfortable in Monotone Simplicity

Knit 4, bring yarn to front of work in one gracious movement, purl 4, bring yarn to back of work in another gracious movement. Repeat 4 times more, turn work, feel the yarn while it caresses your fingers.

Now start with purl 4, bring yarn to back of your work, don’t forget to be gracious in your movement, knit 4. And repeat 4 more times… Over and over and over again, row after row.

Slip slip knits, yarnovers, knit two togethers, knit three togethers, wrap and turns are all not present. It is just me, the yarn, the needles and the two most basic stitches of all stitches; Knit and Purl. We are happy and satisfied in the soothing drone of Monotone Simplicity.

Square after square

One little square after another is completed with so many different dk and very light worsted yarns: Rowan cashsoft, Artyarns Supermerino, Lonesome Stone Mountain Feat, Lonesome Stone 100% Alpaca, Araucania, Colinette, Misti Alpaca and Mountain colors.


The stack of little squares is getting higher and higer, the strands of yarn form a colorful streaming river.

mountain and river

I squint my eyes when I detect the pattern floating among the many strands. I approach it and ask: “Pattern… it is time to write you down and reveal you. Do I have your permission?”

It looks at me and teasingly replies: “No. Not untill I say so. First you seam that mountain of squares into little gloves.”

I sigh and reluctantly gaze at the stack of squares. The pattern continues:

“It may look like a mountain and nearly impossible to conquer, but trust me, seaming is not that hard. Take a deep breath, make the darning needle your friend, and seam. It is merely the last step in your journey of creation.”

Now if you all excuse me. I have a mountain to seam.

Finalizing things in Portland

April 29, 2010


Last Tuesday, we arrived in Portland to finalize everything here and put up our house for sale.

As soon as we got off the highway and before we even arrived at the house I said to my husband: “Drop me off at the yarnshop!”

He wasn’t even surprised. He too knows that my real home in Portland was my precious yarn shop Closeknit on Alberta Street.

Still a little bit of me in the shop!


It was so good to see my friends Jenni and Sharon at the shop as soon as I walked in,  and it felt so good to be surrounded by gorgeous colorful skeins of yarn! All the vibrant colors made me so happy!

I was also happy to see that some of my creations were still present at the shop and so beautifully displayed:


It was as if I had never left.

Packing and really leaving


It is funny how packing and moving out of our house, coincides with me moving from this blog to my website.

In the tangible world, I am packing our stuff into boxes and know that I will unpack and arrange everything neatly in our new house.

Moving from this blog to my new website is exactly the same. My web developer is importing all my old blog post to my new website, and once all those old blog posts arrive there, I have to rearrange and make everything tidy.

That is a lot of work, but all so worth it. Also we are fine tuning at the moment and really getting into details!

Needless to say that I am very busy at the moment… No time for knitting.

We plan to leave Portland for good coming Tuesday. I shed no tears for selling the house.

I shed tears for leaving my dear friends and yarnshop Closeknit behind…

Thanks for reading and until the next entry.

I broke through!

April 25, 2010


I did it! I broke through!

For the past few days, I wrapped my head around my website, figured out stuff, explored, played and got things done.

This morning, me and web developer Andy Bottman have had some e-mail correspondence in which I gave him my feedback and together we are going to make it happen.

We still have to get down to the nitty-gritty, and you know how the devil is in the detail, but I stepped away from the preconceived notion that everything has to be perfect.

I feel so relieved and free now… the only one that keeps you from doing great things, is yourself, so I have noticed.



You know, all the encouraging comments I have received over the past few days were so needed to pick me up and give me a push in the back.

Sometimes, when something bothers you, it is good to speak up and put it in words.

It is almost as if you break a binding spell by doing that. You set it free and let it go.

This also made me realize that it is okay to ask for help. And you all have been so generous to provide for such encouraging words. I needed that, and I am so incredibly grateful for you…

So… what’s next?


First of all, I feel so liberated, all I want to do is be happy and celebrate that I overcame this strange hurdle.

I truly feel like a flower has blossomed in my heart and I want to enjoy that feeling as much as I can today. Thank you my dear friend for helping me feel this way.

Next, I am going to dive in some more website things, which I am not going to bother you with. Unless you get excited about me talking about “Categories”, “Tags” and “Taxonomy”?

In the next couple of days, Andy Bottman will give me feedback and then it will be my turn again to take action.

I will report to you here what is going on so you can hold me accountable and keep me from slacking!

I am really really really so excited to show you what we worked on… see, my website is going to be an inspirational vehicle and I cannot wait for you to jump on with me.

Cannot wait for us all to buckle up, because it going to be a FUN RIDE.

Thanks for reading and until the next entry. Enjoy your Sunday!

Procrastination..? What is that?

April 22, 2010

I have been very productive over the past month. Very productive.

I finished 3 shawls:


Next up was the Hilde hat, and then several Nettie hats:

Hildehat2 RavelryNettieHat Photo 153

Aside from the knitting, I have been blogging regularly and even published two patterns with picture tutorials.

If you think I am taking it easy now, you are mistaken. Over the past few days I have been working on another hat pattern of which I have finished two prototypes, and a third prototype is laying flat to dry as I type this.


When it comes to knitting, designing and writing patterns, I am highly productive. I have no explanation how come.

Am I fully focussed, my goal is to finish a project as quickly as possible and move on to the next project without missing a beat.

Procrastination..? What the hell is that???

What is holding me back?

As productive as I am in knitting, there is one area where I am procrastinating like there is no tomorrow.

Not a day goes by and I am thinking about it.

Not a day goes by and I am asking myself why I didn’t work on it yet again.

And that my dear knitter is a project I have been stalling for the past 4 months: my website ““.

Web designers and web developers have been working on my website and now I have to take action. But I haven’t been taking action at all.


Reasons for my procrastination

Am I afraid that you all won’t like it?
Am I setting the bar too high for myself?
Am I too much of a perfectionist?
Am I afraid to fail?

Oh, Lordy… I need your help on this one, my dear friends…

As from today, I need to work on my website so that it finally can be launched.

By coming Sunday, I must at least have given my web developer something to work on. Please, please, please hold me accountable for that.

I really need your encouragement in this one.

There. I asked for your encouragement. See, I am not perfect.

I have insecurities that plague me, and I am afraid of failing.

But didn’t I promise that I would reach for my highest potential?

I can reach it, I know it. But sometimes, I too need just a little bit of help and encouragement…

Thanks for reading and until the next entry! Wish me luck, I need it!

Free Pattern: Nettie Hat

April 18, 2010


Inspired by the Felicity Hat designed by Brooklyn based crafty queen Wanett Clyde, I am presenting to you the Nettie Hat.

Special thanks to Wanett Clyde for granting me permission to publish the Nettie Hat for free here on Getting Purly With It. Wannet’s Ravelry name is “Nettie” and to honor her I named this hat after her!

The Nettie Hat is an easy stockinette stitch based hat which I offer you in two different versions. (Scroll all the way down to get to PDF files.)

Nettie Hat Version 1 is knit in the round using US5 and US7 circular 16″ (yarn used in this picture Malabrigo Silk/Merino):


And Nettie Hat Version 2 is knitted flat using US7 circular 24″. This version has a fun element to it: ruching which bunches up at the base of the hat (yarn used in this picture Madeline Tosch DK):


How to create the ruches

I think the Nettie Hat version 1 is pretty straightforward; in the round, decreasing for top, and there you have your hat.

Nettie Hat version 2 might need a mini picture tutorial, so here we go!

Version 2 is knitted flat and after you are done with decreasing for the top, and you have threaded the remaining stitches and fastened it off, your piece should look like this:


In the above picture my piece is laying flat to dry because I wet blocked it. I always wet block my pieces, you don’t have to if you don’t want to.

Wet blocking is optional but I have to say, it does eliminate somewhat the curling of the edges since this piece is knitted in stockinette stitch.

Seam the sides of hat together using the mattress stitch aka invisible seam stitch:

NettieHat5 NettieHat6

If you don’t know how to do the mattress stitch, go to, click on their “tips” tab, scroll down until you hit “mattress stitch” and watch the video.

Once it is seamed, bunch up your hat by pushing the end up along the your seamed tail:


How far to bunch it up is all up to you. Do a little bit, see how you like it and if you want some more ruching, go ahead and bunch it up some more.

I like the outcome of Nettie Hat version 2:

Photo 60

NettieHat NettieHat2

The many different yarns I used for the Nettie Hat

This hats needs 140 yards of  light worsted weight or heavy DK weight yarn.

So far I have used the following yarns:

Venezia worsted by Cascade, Malabrigo Silk Merino, Madeline Tosh DK, and Cotton/Bamboo by Classic Elite.

I think it is especially nice when you use somewhat slouchy fiber such as silks, cotton, bamboo mercerized cotton, rayon. Great since we are heading into warmer weather!

And now for the PDF files!

Click on the links below to get the PDF files of your Nettie Hat:

Nettie Hat Version 1

Nettie Hat Version 2

I am leaving you with a slide show of all the yarns I used to make the Nettie Hat.

Have fun with your Nettie Hat! Wheeeeee!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

How I celebrate

April 16, 2010


A few days ago, when I was strolling down 18th in the Castro district in San Francisco on my way to Imagiknits, it suddenly occurred to me that I started this blog 3 years ago.

I also realized that I had never celebrated any blog anniversary!

While any excuse to buy yarn is a good one, a third year celebration is a pretty legitimate one too… So I got me some Madeline Tosh in Scarlet, and to stay in color, I treated myself on some delicious strawberries.


Happy 3rd anniversary to Getting Purly With It, and here’s to many more years!

A learning experience

When I started “Getting Purly With It” back in April 2007, the sole purpose was to write about yarn and knitting simply because I could not shut up about it.

Being a fairly newbie knitter at that time, I could not stop thinking about knitting and desperately needed an outlet to get it out of my system. Otherwise, my head would explode.


Soon enough, I had the urge to not only write about yarn and knitting but to also produce picture tutorials and issue free patterns.

This pushed me into digital photography and I wanted to be a better photographer. I went from working with a point and shoot camera, to exploring an entry level DSLR.


Then in 2008 I decided to work with models to showcase my knitted items, and although it was quite scary to me at the time, I did it.


Finally, I had enough confidence to publish patterns for sale!

This is it2

Step by step, little by little, I have learned so much from blogging. It has been such a great learning experience for me, and I am very curious what more knowledge I can obtain, and how to broaden my horizon.

The purpose of this blog

Back then, the purpose of this blog was only to write about my knitting progress and that was basically it.

Nowadays I define the purpose of this blog differently:

The purpose of this blog is to inspire, encourage and to help everybody who is interested in knitting. With my passion for knitting and the fire that I feel in my heart and soul, I hope to reach out to you and inspire you to knit.

Evaluating GPWI51

This wonderful thing that we knitters do, with just two sticks and some strand, still grips me with much wonderment and I am in awe of the capacity that we have to create.

Knowing that there are knitters out there who have made items from my patterns and who have gifted these items to loved ones, fills my being with warmth and gratitude.

Knowing that there are newbie knitters out there that felt encouraged to take their knitting to the next level by choosing one of my patterns with picture tutorials, gives me infinite joy.


This little light of mine…

I would like to thank you personally for reading this knitting blog of mine.

I am having lots of fun around here and I hope you do too!

Ever since April 2007 I have gotten over 110,000 views and I am very grateful for that…

Thank you for letting me shine my light!

Photo 132