Monday, May 31, 2010

And the Winner Is . . .

The winner of the Anniversary Giveaway is . . . drumroll please . . . Natalie Jane!

Natalie Jane said: "I'm a follower, and I love the Blue and Tangerine Striped sweater. I would love to dress my baby boy in this!"

As requested, Natalie Jane will receive the Blue and Tangerine Striped Handknit Baby Sweater

Congratulations Natalie Jane!  Thanks to everyone who entered!  I had a great time!  Hope to have another giveaway soon!

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Wow! One Year!

One year ago today, I officially decided to launch Yellow House Knits.  In honor of the one-year anniversary, here are some of my favorite Yellow House Knits moments.  It really makes my day when customers send me pictures of their kids wearing my little sweaters.   Even the cutest sweater is 1000 times cuter when an adorable little kid is wearing it.  Thanks to everyone I've met during the past year!

Just a reminder that I offer a 10% discount on a future order when you send me a picture of your little one wearing a Yellow House Knits sweater for posting on Inside the Yellow House and the Yellow House Knits website.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Time is Running Out!

Your last chance to enter the Anniversary Giveaway is tomorrow.  Don't delay!  Remember the winner will receive an in-stock hand knit baby sweater of his or her choice.  The winner will be announced on Monday. 

Friday, May 28, 2010

Modern Quilts

I just love quilts.  I really wish I had the patience to be able to turn little scraps of fabric into a beautiful work of art!  Years ago, back when I was still in high school, I took a week-long intensive quilt class in Chautauqua, New York, and had a great time.  At the end of the week, we had a completed log cabin baby quilt, which I've unfortunately lost track of.  I would love to do something like that again.  If anyone knows of anything for beginners (preferably in some beautiful resort setting!!), do let me know!

I particularly like quilts with traditional (or neo-traditional) patterns with bold, funky, modern colors.  Here are two that I think are just fabulous. 

First is this great quilt, called Scrappy Illusion from Anina at Twiddletails.  I love the crisp combination of the bright colors and the pure white.  Just breathtaking!

Second is Fruit Punch by Tonya at Lazy Gal Quilting.  I dream of someday having a beach house and decoration it in shades of pink and orange (and red and yellow), and this quilt looks like it stepped right out of my dream house! 

These make me want to haul out my old sewing machine and run--not walk--to the nearest fabric store!  If only I could promise myself I wouldn't lose interest and/or patience before finishing the second block!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Aunt Stefanie in Action

I love this picture of my little niece/goddaughter and me.  (OK, it's not the best of me, but it's good enough.)  She always, always, always cries (wails actually) when I hold her, so I'm particularly happy that she seems so content here!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Repeat Customers

They say it's easier to keep an existing customer than to find a new one.  And while, I'm sure that's true from a business perspective, I love repeat customers from a personal-validation perspective.  Anyone can stumble upon a website and decide to take a chance on a purchase from an unknown entity.  But a repeat customer makes a deliberate decision to buy a product, often seeking out the shop or website.  The repeat customer has seen the product, determined it to be of good quality, style, and value and decides to buy again.

I find it incredibly gratifying--and humbling--that so many people have purchased my little sweaters and then come back for more.  I especially love when they order custom sweaters and then trust me to create what they have in their head.  That they choose to spend their hard-earned dollars in my shop means the world to me.

So extra special love today to all of you who have purchased Yellow House Knits sweaters two, three, or four (yes four!) times!  Thank you!!!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

May Special Offer

There was no special offer in April on account of the Semi-Annual Sale, but monthly special offers are back. 

TODAY ONLY: Save 50% on any single in-stock Yellow House Knits Sweater.  Mention coupon code ITHY-MAY in your convo or email ( to take advantage of this offer.  Orders/emails must be received by midnight EDT. 

Have fun!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Who Hearts Yellow House Knits?

In the interest of full disclosure, I got this great idea from Samantha at The Frosted Button.  You can see her take on it here

I love when people "heart" Yellow House Knits on Etsy because it's a sort of validation that people *do* like my little sweaters.  But it's also been a fun way to find some great new shops.  The volume of items for sale on Etsy is so voluminous that it can be hard to sort through it all, so I particularly like when I discover that the person who has hearted me has a shop of his or her own that I just love. 

So I'm going to feature some of those shops here on Inside the Yellow House.  The first is Room to Romp, a shop that specializes in clothing and room decor for toddler boys.  I've blogged before about how there are so many more great clothes for little girls than for little boys, so I love that this shop is trying to do something about the style gap. 

I especially like the duck pillows (the one big pillow and other smaller pillows make me think of Make Way for Ducklings, which I still adore) and the lime green T with the elephant applique. 

If you're looking for something for a special little boy, Room to Romp might have just the thing!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Beach Reading Round Up

Sadly, for me, vacation is over and it's back to real life.  All in all, it was a great trip.  The bulk of my time was spent with my nose in a book--either at the beach, on the porch, in the pool, or somewhere else.  Here's a quick rundown of what I read.  I think it was a nice mix of fiction and non-fiction, serious and frivolous.

The Sinner's Guide To Confession by Phyllis Schieber: The story of three friends, each with long-held secrets, who struggle to come to terms with those secrets.  A good "beach" book.

Putting Away Childish Things by Marcus Borg.  A religion teacher and her students struggle to understand the role of Christianity and the Bible in today's society.  It does a nice job of framing the important issues dividing Christians today.

Game Change by John Heilemann and Mark Halperin.  Insights into and analysis of the 2008 election and the lead-up thereto.  I also thought it was an interesting view of how elections are run (and won).  The book does not play favorites--all of the players are at times portrayed in a negative light. 

Freakanomics by Stephen Dubner and Steven Levitt.  Real world application of economic principles from standardized test scores to real estate agent commissions to bringing down the KKK.  I've been wanting to read this book for a while now, and it was worth it.  Fascinating.

Slavery by Another Name by Douglas A. Blackmon.  An account of the forced servitude of convicts (often arrested for such crimes as selling cotton after sundown) to private businesses and forced to work in mines and at other hard labor during the period after the Civil War when slavery had supposedly been outlawed.  Graphic.  Sobering.  Heart-wrenching. Important.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Pink & Green Thursday

Today is Pink & Green Thursday over at Pink Preppy Lilly Lover.  Over the weeks, I've enjoyed seeing Trish's preppy pink and green picks and thought it would be fun to play along.  I think pink and green is such a great color combination.  This week I decided to highlight two of my favorite little baby sweaters, which are (surprise!) pink and green.  These sweaters highlight the different personalities of pink and green, depending on which shades are involved.  Sometimes the colors are bright, almost candy-colored, as in the first sweater, which is bubble gum pink and sour apple green.  Other times they're more subdued and more sophisticated, like the moss green and raspberry in the second color.  Either way, they're great fun!  Hope you had your own Pink & Green Thursday! 

Giveaway Reminder

Just a reminder about my ongoing giveaway for a Yellow House Knits sweater of the winner's choice.  Even if these sweaters aren't sized to fit one of yours, they make great presents!  Click here for details and entry rules. 

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Island Art

Since I'm in a Hilton Head state of mind, I looked on Etsy to see if I could find any Hilton Head-themed items for sale. I did find a few things, but the one that really caught my eye was this charming print from Deborah Cavenaugh's Beach Nautical Print series.  I really, really want it, but I can't think of a suitable location in my house right now.  So I'll have to keep it in mind if I'm ever looking for just the right piece.  Maybe someday when I buy the beach house I've been dreaming about . . . 

When I checked out Deborah's website,, I discovered that, in addition to beach-themed prints, she also does house prints and makes lovely jewelry.  Truly a multi-talented artist.  I particularly like the house prints and would love to have one of the Yellow House.  I'll add it to my wish list for my upcoming birthday!  But I also think they would make great, one-of-a-kind gifts.  Definitely something to keep in mind. 

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Hello From Hilton Head!

Checking in from vacation.  So far, I'm having a wonderful, sun-drenched, relaxing vacation, which is just what the doctor ordered.  The weather early yesterday was a little bit of a bummer, but the sun came out late in the afternoon and I managed to make it to the beach.  Otherwise, the weather has been outstanding.  Today was a perfect beach day (see below): cloudless blue sky, low humidity, nice breeze. 

One thing I love about Hilton Head is that, as you can see, the beach is very quiet.  So I really feel like I can relax and enjoy the natural beauty of this glorious place. 

My daily routine is something like this: wake up late; ride my bike to Harbor Town for breakfast; sit in the rocking chairs at Harbor Town, reading and watching the boats; ride my bike home; sit on the porch looking out at the ocean and check email, etc.; go to the beach; walk down the beach to the Beach Club for an ice cream sandwich; go out to dinner; lights out.  It's a rough life, but I think I could do this professionally!

Hope you're having a great week back in the real world!!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

My Life According to James Taylor

I saw the "My Life According To ____" game on Cream & Cotton and had to play along.  She chronicled her life according to Tom Petty; I went with one of my all-time favorites: James Taylor.  Here are the rules: Using only song names from ONE ARTIST, cleverly answer these questions. You can't use the band I used. Try not to repeat a song title. It's a lot harder than you think! Repost as "my life according to (band name)."

Wanna play too?

Incidentally, JT and Carole King are going to be in D.C. at the Verizon Center twice in June.  I'm really thinking I should go . . .

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Pick Your Artist
James Taylor

Are you a male or female:
She Thinks I Still Care

Describe yourself:
Something in the Way She Moves

How do you feel:
(I`ve Got to) Stop Thinkin` `bout That

Describe where you currently live:
Her Town Too

If you could go anywhere, where would you go:
Carolina In My Mind

Your favorite form of transportation:
Walking Man

Your best friend is:
Shower the People

You and your best friends are:
That’s Why I’m Here

What's the weather like:
Sunny Skies

What's your favorite time?
Brighten Your Night with My Day

If your life were a TV show, what would it be called:
Secret O’ Life

What is life to you:
Golden Moments

Your last relationship:
My Romance

Your fear:
Don’t Let Me Be Lonely

What is the best advice you have to give:
Never Die Young

Thought for the Day:
Shed A Little Light

How I would like to die:
Fire and Rain

My soul's present condition:
How Sweet It Is To Be Loved By You

My motto:
You’ve Got a Friend

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Free Shipping During Vacation

Starting today, I will be on vacation until May 22.  (Hooray for me!)  All orders placed while I'm out of town will ship on Monday, May 24.  To apologize for the delay in shipping, all in-stock orders placed during this time will receive free domestic shipping.  Note that I always ship via FedEx or UPS. 


Friday, May 14, 2010

Charm Party

Ultimate Blog Party 2010

I got home late last night to find a nice surprise: my prize from the Ultimate Blog Party.  I won a "Treasures Party Kit" from Amy Peters' Studio.  Amy makes lovely inspirational word jewelry like these great chunky chokers.

The Treasures Party kit provides all of the supplies--chains, shapes, and words--for 8 to 12 kids to make their own pewter charm necklaces, bracelets, and anklets.  It all comes packaged in a charming wood box with Amy's logo burned into the top.  The kit sells for $140, so I made out pretty well!

I don't want to open the package until we're ready to make the jewelry because I don't want to lose any of the little pieces, but this picture from Amy's website shows what comes in the kit.  I think it looks like a great party idea!  For other party ideas, check out this cool "comic" on Amy's website.

I know some young ladies who are just going to love the Treasures Party Kit!  I can't wait to get creative with them.  I'm already thinking about what my own necklace will look like.   I call the flower shape . . . !

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Anniversary Giveaway!

The end of May marks the one-year anniversary of Yellow House Knits.  I've been selling handknit baby sweaters for a while now, but it wasn't until last year that I formalized the arrangement and officially launched Yellow House Knits.  And what a year it's been--I've met so many wonderful people, made some beautiful (I think!) sweaters, and had a great time figuring out how to navigate this crazy process.  

To celebrate the Yellow House Knits anniversary, I am having a giveaway!  The winner of the giveaway will win the in-stock sweater of his or her choice.  The giveaway begins today and ends at midnight EDT on May 30.  The winner will be announced on May 31.  

Here are the rules:
(1)  You must be a public follower of Inside the Yellow House to enter.  
(2)  First entry: Visit or to see the Yellow House Knits collection.  Leave a comment on this post telling me which sweater you would like to receive if you win.  
(3)  You may receive additional entries for each of the following.  Please leave a comment for each entry:
--Tweet about this giveaway (one entry per Tweet, one Tweet per day).  Please leave the URL of the Tweet in your comment.
--Add one or both Yellow House buttons to your blog (two entries per button).  Please leave the URL of your blog in your comment.
--Blog about this giveaway with a link back to this post (four entries--plus one additional entry if you include a picture of a Yellow House Knits sweater in your post).  Please leave the URL of your blog post in your comment. 

Have fun!  Enter early and often!!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Sprint to Vacation

Do you ever feel like vacation just isn't worth all the effort it takes to get there?  I leave early Saturday morning for a week on Hilton Head with my family.  I'm super excited about it, and I know that once that plane touches down, all of the hassle will be worth it, but I'm starting to wonder if I'm going to make it!  My work to-do list keeps getting longer and longer--instead of shorter and shorter--and I have tons of meetings tomorrow and Friday, so I'm not sure how I'm supposed to be crossing things off that list.  Plus, I've given no thought to what I will pack, need to do loads and loads of laundry so I have something to pack, and have to go shopping for travel/beach essentials.  I also have to give a talk in Chicago the Tuesday after I get back, and I've given no thought at all to what I'm going to say, which is starting to stress me out more than a little bit.  At this point, I'm not sure how I'm going fit it all in.  On top of that, I'm really crossing my fingers that the swim suits I (just ordered yesterday) get here in time and look decent!

I'm hoping that in three days, when I'm lounging on a beach in sunny South Carolina, all of this stress will be forgotten . . .

Monday, May 10, 2010

Red, White, and Aqua Sweater

I  just posted a new sweater at and in my Etsy shop.  I think of this sweater as patriotic with a twist--red, white, and aqua.  Maybe I should have saved it for the Fourth of July?

I started knitting this sweater a few months ago and worked up the front on a flight to Colorado at the end of February.  (I'm not usually such a slow knitter, but I had to put it aside to handle a number of custom orders and have just now been able to get back to it.)

One of the flight attendants, a lovely woman named Shirley, told me how much she liked the colors, and we got to talking about my sweater business.  I gave her my card, and we have since worked on several custom sweaters together, including a cardigan version of this sweater, which she is giving as a shower gift to a mom-to-be due on Flag Day.  I think it's an absolutely adorable gift idea!  Anyway, I think that story just exemplifies how great customers find us in interesting ways.  (Hi Shirley!)

Happy Monday everyone!  Hope you have a great week!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Pups in the Park!

Yesterday, I worked at Pups in the Park at Nationals Stadium.  Pups in the Park is a fundraiser for the Washington Humane Society.  For an extra $5, Washington Nationals fans were allowed to bring their dogs to the game.  The event is wildly popular and sells out every time.

It was so much fun!  There were tons of dogs there, and they all had a great time.  They sniffed and socialized and even had their own seats.  (Seeing the dogs in the stands was absolutely hysterical!)  I think they even had some hot dogs and nachos too . . .

Also, in attendance were a bunch of dogs who are available for adoption, who got lots of love and attention and a couple of solid adoption applications, which was exciting.  People also donated a lot of money, which is always good.

Perhaps the highlight for me was getting my picture taken with Abe Lincoln, one of the Racing Presidents (the Nationals' mascots).

I hope the Nats will do Pups in the Park more often (and offer more dog tickets at each event).  It raised money and awareness for a GREAT cause, and it's a really good time!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Dash & Albert Rugs Take D.C.!

I have always loved Dash & Albert rugs, particularly the striped ones in funky colors.  Come to think of it, they're not unlike my striped sweaters in funky colors. . . .

Anyway, I was helping a friend pick out a rug for her nursery (I love that she is thinking bigger than a traditional "baby's" room) and noticed that mousing over some of the rugs on the D&A website reveals shots of the rugs in my own Washington, D.C.  When I poked a little closer, I noticed that the 2010 catalog seems to have a D.C. theme (and a dog theme!). 

I think the pictures of the rugs out about town are super clever. I particularly like the ones of the rugs "at" the FDR Memorial and "at" the Federal Triangle metro stop, which is my work stop.  I think the rugs themselves are really fun, but I love that the company has a sense of humor as well.  Now I just need to find a use for a cool new Dash & Albert rug. . . .

Friday, May 7, 2010

I Want One

The National Zoo has just released a series of photos of the two clouded leopard cubs born at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute in Front Royal, Virginia, on Valentine’s Day.  Apparently, the zoo staff has only recently been able to determine that both cubs, which are considered to be quite valuable from a genetic perspective, are male. 

From the Zoo's Flickr feed: "The cubs are now eating up to 88 grams of feline diet, two times per day, in addition to formula. The cubs are growing at a steady and healthy rate—the larger cub weighs 4 pounds and 9 ounces and the smaller cub weighs 4 pounds and 7 ounces. In addition, the cubs now 'chuff,' which can be described as a puffing sound and is considered a sign of recognition.  They are very playful—rolling around and chasing each other—after each feeding."

Too bad they aren't on display at the actual zoo in D.C.  So instead, I'll have to make do with these pictures. Wow, they're cute!!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Everything I Need To Know

Much More Than Mommy has a great post today about being jealous of her dog because her husband and kids are always happy to see the dog--even if they've had a bad day or the dog has made a mess on the carpet.  The lesson she ultimately reaches is:  "She [the dog] gives unconditional love and respect, so she gets unconditional love and respect."

Her post reminded me of the following bit of wisdom I see frequently in greeting cards and floating around the internet.  There are various versions, but this one is my favorite.  There's so much to learn from the simple world view of a dog. 

All I Really Need to Know I Learned from my Dog

Never pass up the opportunity to go for a joy ride.
Allow the experience of fresh air and the wind in your face to be pure ecstasy.
When loved ones come home, always run to greet them.
Take naps and stretch before rising.
Run, romp, and play daily.
Be loyal.
Never pretend to be something you're not.
Eat with gusto and enthusiasm.
If what you want lies buried, dig until you find it.
When someone is having a bad day, be silent, sit close by and nuzzle them gently.
Thrive on affection and let people touch you--enjoy back rubs and pats on your neck.
When you leave your yard, make it an adventure.
Avoid biting when a simple growl will do.
No matter how often you're scolded, don't buy into the guilt thing and pout--run right back and make friends.
Bond with your pack.
On cold nights, curl up in front of a crackling fire.
When you're excited, speak up.
When you're happy, dance around and wag your entire body.
Delight in the simple joy of a long walk.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Sweaters for Spring Baby Showers

In the spring--when the flowers are blooming and temperatures are rising--thoughts of cozy sweaters seem about as far from our minds as snow.  But spring baby showers are actually the best time to give handknit baby sweaters as gifts.

Think of it this way: If a mom-to-be is showered in May or June, she is probably due in June, July, or August.  That means that her baby will be about six months old in the dead of winter--when a little sweater will be much appreciated--and perfect for a little one making a first appearance at day care or a play group. 

One way to bridge the warm weather/cold weather gap is to give a sweater with happy spring colors and playful shapes--like this pink sweater with bobble trim.  Come winter, it will be a breath of fresh air!

Monday, May 3, 2010

Book Club

I realize that I'm a little late to this party, but I just started reading The Help, and I have to admit that it's totally worth all the hype.  I'm about 150 pages into it and am already loving it.  I used to be something of a voracious reader, but more recently, my reading has fallen away in favor of staring aimless at the TV.  I have consistently vowed to do better--to no avail--but I think it's just a matter of finding something that grabs me.  The Help has definitely grabbed me, so I'm hoping it will be my ticket back to the reading world.  (Hopefully my upcoming week in Hilton Head will also help to remedy my reading void.) 

I have a special fondness for Mississippi.  I spent a fair amount of time in Northern Mississippi when I lived in Memphis, and I've also been to the Gulf Coast a few times--both pre- and post-Katrina, so I'm really enjoying reading about this part of the country, even if the stories can be hard to hear.

I have no idea how Kathryn Stockett is ever going to follow this one up, but I will be excited to see what she comes up with next. 

Sunday, May 2, 2010

My Kind of Town

Yesterday, I indulged a long-time desire to take the double-decker bus tour around D.C.  I've wanted to do it forever now, but the time and weather were never quite right.  But since I'm still not feeling particularly great, the tour seemed to be a perfect way for me to enjoy this weekend's beautiful weather while still taking it easy.

I had a great time!  The tour was about two and a half hours, but I stopped in Georgetown for some water and chocolate ice cream.  The narration was a little lame, but the bus ride itself was really pleasant.  It was a fun day.  Here's what we saw.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

I Heart Betty White

I am a huge Betty White fan, so I was really excited to see the feature on her in Entertainment Weekly this week.  The Mary Tyler Moore Show is--hands down--my favorite TV show, and Betty's Sue Ann Nivens frequently makes me laugh out loud.  And, I essentially grew up with The Golden Girls.  My brother and I watched religiously on Saturday nights.  I even love watching her on Password and Match Game.  She has such an easy--but sharp--sense of humor.

I think a real testament to her comic genius that she's still so in demand.  Her Catherine Piper was a great foil to James Spader's Alan Shore on Boston Legal.  She was hysterical in The Proposal, and I can't wait to see her on Saturday Night Live next weekend.  How great was that Snickers Super Bowl commercial??

It should come as no surprise that I find her devotion to animal welfare to be particularly admirable.

Betty has something of a timeless quality about her.  She's obviously gotten older since her Happy Homemaker days, but she's always looked more or less like Betty White.  So I was excited to find this picture of her hosting the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade (with Lorne Greene from Bonanza) in 1965.  Doesn't she look absolutely beautiful?!