My latest pattern, Maras, was inspired by a linoleum floor I saw during a trip to the Sacred Valley in Peru. It's a dynamic, repeatable design that translated into the most amazing of wraps.
Worked in the new yarn Roslyn from Cascade, (65% wool, 35% silk) it's so drapey and lovely.
The pattern utilizes the technique of locked floats, which makes the back of the piece appear almost woven.
Members of TKGA have access to this pattern in the latest issue of CAST ON Magazine (Winter 15/16).
Sign on to the TKGA website HERE and join/download/cast on!
It all starts with yarn. In this case, I was enamored by the random craziness and color-changing fun of "Crazy" by Stonehedge Mill. My goal was to create an interesting (but not overly complicated) project that would show off this unique product.
I'm really pleased with the result. the pattern isn't difficult to knit, and the finished cowl is visually interesting. I'm not sure which part is more appealing; the color shifting yarns or the angled stripes. Either way, it's a cowl that I enjoyed making and am excited to share with you.
Is it a difficult pattern? Not at all. In fact, I found it to be perfect for knit night and tv watching. The color changing yarns kept cheering me on as I worked, and I found that a lot of progress was made each time I sat down to work. With this truly random yarn you have no idea what the next row will look like!
The pattern is available as a .pdf download HERE for $4.00. It requires techniques including provisional cast on, knit/purl, increase/decrease, following a simple chart, kitchener stitch, and applied i-cord.
The inspiration for the Aymara cowl arrived the day I saw Jorge del Carpio's Kickstarter campaign for Fibras Andinas. I read the story of the Chilean herders tending their flocks 11,000 ft above sea level, and learned how the development of this new project would provide an opportunity for the purchase and use of the fiber from the animals.
Over the next few months, I exchanged emails with Jorge and learned even more about his passion for helping his community. Once Nicole Snow from Darn Good Yarn joined on as the U.S. distributor, it was decided: I was going to design something special with this yarn.
The outside of the cowl is inspired by traditional Aymara weaving patterns, and the inside features round after round of adorable llamas! It's knit on circular needles, and the beginning and end are grafted together hiding all ends and making the entire piece reversible and oh-so-cozy.
This project takes two skeins each of 2 colors of sport weight yarn from Royal Llama (available in the United States via Darn Good Yarn). Is it soft, you ask? Most definitely. The fiber is de-haired llama. It's warm, luxurious, amazing to work with, and wearing the finished cowl is like getting a big hug from a long-lost friend. Of course, another benefit is knowing that your purchase of Royal Llama yarn helps support the Chilean llama herders!
Skills needed | Provisional cast on, knit, purl, working in the round, stranded color work, Kitchener stitch.
You will find the pattern on Ravelry HERE.
The pattern will be available in a kit available through Darn Good Yarn and Fibras Andinas.
Aymara is available in English & Spanish as an individual pattern (via the link below):
This is the second time I have had the pleasure of designing for Quince and Co.! This year I wanted to design a cowl that was simple enough for someone just venturing into the world of lace. Reversible, without being overly-complicated. A weekend of swatching and pondering yielded this new design.
Araminta requires basic knitting knowledge, including working in the round, increasing/decreasing, and finishing. Know how to knit, purl, yarn over, do simple decreases? Know how to do a twisted knit stitch? That's about all you need to know to make this cowl!
...And for those who have yet to work with Quince and Co. yarn, I encourage you to visit your LYS or order some online and give it a try. The colors are beautiful, and this particular yarn is soft, rustic, and familiar.
Of course, once you have the entire 14 pattern collection, it'll be hard to decide what to make first. There are options! Colorwork, cables, lace, pleats, asymmetrical wraps... the list goes on and on!
All the photography is stunning (as usual). It, along with the e-book layout is done by the uber-talented Carrie Bostick Hodge.
The yarn, I should say, is lovely. Owl is a favorite of mine because of its rustic feel. Not only does it work well with twisted stitches, it makes cables sing! Just a few weeks ago, Quince and Co. announced Owl Tweet! - the tweed version of Owl. I saw it at Stitches WEST and loved it. Perhaps someone will work Araminta in Tweet so I fall in love all over again.
San Francisco has mild (but unpredictable) weather. Traveling across the city folks who live here know it's wise to always carry a jacket. In the cooler times of year, a finely knit cowl or scarf also comes in handy. Inspired by architectural detail in San Francisco's War Memorial Opera House, Cabaletta is a fine knit that uses two different yarns from Crystal Palace to create a lightweight (but warm) cowl.
The name “Cabaletta” is a term in Italian opera defining a brisk aria that usually follows a more contemplative one. The word was derived from the Italian “Cavallo” (horse) and often the music accompanying the cabaletta can be reminiscent of a horse’s gallop.
I love the way this cowl feels. It's the perfect weight... I also think that for colder climates this design would be nice if the height was doubled.
The pattern is available on Ravelry (via the link below).
There really is nothing like working with handspun yarn. And wearing a hat made from woolen-spun yarn is a comfy, cozy, toasty treat!
I designed this hat for PLY Magazine's Winter 2013 issue using woolen spun 3-ply yarn made with Kyle William dyed BFL in the colorways Silver Thaw and December Sky (often available in the shop HERE).
Carefully spun by NY spinner Aaron Bush, it was really a treat to be able to make a hat using materials that had been so lovingly prepared.
The fibers come in 4 ounce quantities, and the hat uses under 100 yards of each color. When Aaron spun up the fiber, he blended the colors together by creating rolags of built-up tufts of fiber. This method created an evenly-varigated finished yarn.
If you aren't yet a spinner, talk to other fiber friends, or check artist sites like www.etsy.com for options. Compare the yarn you're considering to the details in the project, and if it's close, chances are, it'll make a nice finished hat.
And for those who prefer commercially spun yarn, a light worsted or DK yarn should fit the bill. This pattern is a little more difficult than others to re-size since the pattern repeat is so large. Altering needle or yarn size will change the finished dimensions.
...and beyond my small contribution, I have to tell you. PLY Magazine is chocked full of thoughtfully worded articles and beautiful images. Want to learn to spin? Already an expert? Seriously, this magazine has a lot of great information (it even includes some great product reviews!)
I hope you'll check it out while you can!
Full details about this design are included on the pattern page HERE.
This men’s half-zip pullover uses a gently shifting motif to create a modified houndstooth motif. Carefully tailored with set in sleeves, and solid cuffs and hem, a zipper finishes off the neckline and completes this timeless design.
This pattern is worked flat and requires basic knitting knowledge, including knit/purl, increasing, decreasing, reading charts, stranded knitting, and finishing.
I had a great time working with Cascade Casablanca knitting this cowl! It's a new (FREE!) pattern up on their website and it's a fun way to watch the colors interact with each other. The pattern is part of their collection of free designs and is a great project for someone new to stranded knitting!
Worked in the round, this cowl features a geometric pattern that comes alive with Cascade’s Casablanca yarn. Choose two similar colors for a subtle cowl, or go for the dramatic by picking two contrasting colors. Whatever you decide, the result will be a fun, warm cowl full of graphic interest that’ll be well loved when winter arrives.
This pattern requires intermediate knitting knowledge including: cast-on, working in the round, reading charts, and simple stranded color work, on circular needles.
The Jack cardigan began its life back in October when I talked with Classic Elite about contributing to a collection of men's garments for release Fall 2013. After a few emails, we agreed on design, materials, and colors.
This design began as a swatch in different yarn, and different colors... but once I got going on it I was infatuated with the sheer luxury of Classic Elite Yarn's Inca Alpaca.
I LOVE. LOVE. LOVE. this yarn. Seriously. It was glorious to work with (and I want to work with it again VERY soon) and the finished cardigan is so comfy and soft it was really hard to send away. I want to knit another for myself for chilly San Francisco days!
The pattern is part of Classic Elite Yarn's new booklet #9231: Leader of the Pack, available for purchase on Ravelry, and pattern and yarn both should be waiting for you at your local yarn shop. More information about this and the rest of the collection can be found HERE.
Back in mid-March, I mailed off a little bundle to Amy Clark Moore and her staff at Interweave. My very own contribution to the Unofficial Harry Potter Knits! Here it is, 4 month later, and I am finally able to share this project with you.
The Order of the Phoenix Winged Vest uses Zitron Lifestyle (100% extrafine superwash Merino) in #54 Nutmeg and #33 Corn. It features a solid front and, when worn with a jacket, others can't know the secrets it holds.
The inspiration comes from the idea of the "hidden identity" of everyday superheroes. People (like policemen, nurses, and counselors) in our communities work hard to protect, educate, and serve. Out of uniform (or out of the office!) they blend into the crowd, unnoticed. We don't recognize they are the ones that do so much good when duty calls.
It is interesting to me how these individuals carry with them such strength and knowledge, and others can so easily be unaware. They walk by us... on the streets or at the mall... but at work; when they're needed, they dive in. Head-first. Selflessly.
While I was designing this vest I had in mind this idea of carrying around that "hidden identity"... it's more than the "secret powers" of heroes like Harry Potter - it's the real power of knowing what to do when a problem arises. It's also important to note that everyone has the ability to make a difference in the lives of others. Listening... Offering emotional support... Teaching "the tricks of the trade" to someone new to your field... Taking time to write a letter... Visiting people in the hospital. The small efforts we make turn us into true heroes in the eyes of others.
I hope the Order of the Phoenix vest will help others appreciate the heroes of their communities, and to find time to recognize the knowledge and talents of those around them.
The Unofficial Harry Potter Knits will be available at your Local Yarn Shop or through the Interweave website. If you can't wait to cast on this (or any of the other AMAZING projects) in the magazine, you can hop on over HERE and download an electronic copy right now! (Due to copyright restrictions, this magazine is only available for sale in the U.S.)