This is my mood board for my next pattern–the beautiful, bright blooms of rhododendrons. I love creating these mood boards and they really help me focus on the important elements of the design.
One of my goals for 2017 is to release at least one pattern a month.
Okay, I know I said I don’t do resolutions, but I do make goals. I know what I want to accomplish, and I have to have a plan to get there.
Releasing a pattern every month requires a fair amount of planning. One of the first things I’ve started to do is to create a mood board. The mood board sets the feel for the design and helps me firm up the ideas that are floating around in my head. I see themes start to emerge in regards to shapes, lines, and color. I sketch, scribble ideas, look through stitch dictionaries, and look at yarns all based on the mood board. The simple act of creating the mood board really helps me get everything finalized and ready to begin knitting and writing the actual pattern.
Here’s the mood board for February’s pattern.
February is a grey month so I knew I wanted something bright but seasonal. Frozen leaves and icy waterfalls with the promise of warmer weather to keep you going through the cold, dark days of February.
I hope you can see the inspiration from the mood board in the shawl in progress. I’m quite pleased with how things are progressing.
The 2016 Indie Gift-Along has started!
The Indie Gift-Along is a 6 week long Knit/Crochet Along with patterns from hundreds of independent designers like me. From now until November 30 at 11:59 pm EST, ten of my patterns will be discounted by 25% by using the coupon code ‘giftalong2016’.
After the sale, the GAL continues on until the end of the year. There are 2200 electronic pattern prizes to be won and hundreds of physical prizes like yarn, stitch markers, and project bags. All you have to do is cast on a pattern from any of the participating designers and share it in the threads on Ravelry. There are fun games with prizes so you’re not limited to only knitting or crocheting to win a prize.
There’s so much more information about the Gift-Along on Ravelry so let me give you all the links for everything you need to know.
All of the really important information is here. Go and read all about it.
All of the participating designers are here. There are 14 pages of designers to browse through. Go make a shopping list!
All of my discount eligible patterns are here. Don’t forget, though, ANY of my patterns are eligible for participation in the GAL, just as long as you didn’t cast on before November 22.
I still need to decide what I’m going to cast on. I have some madelinetosh Pashmina in my stash that needs to be something.
I did it.
I designed something other than a shawl.
My socks are worked from the cuff down with a heel flap and gusset construction. The leg and the toe have a zig zag stranded colorwork pattern, and the toes and heels are worked in a contrast color.
These socks are relatively simple if you’re familiar with knitting socks. The colorwork pattern is only a five round pattern and uses two colors per round and would be a great introduction to stranded colorwork.
The socks take their name from the Gauley River in West Virginia. Every fall, the Army Corps of Engineers releases water from the Summersville Dam into the Gauley turning the river into wild rapids. The zig zag colorwork pattern in the socks reminds me of how the river zig zags all over the place during Gauley Season.
If you’re an avid sock knitter, you can purchase the Anzula Sock booklet for $18. Five patterns for $18 is quite a steal. If you just want to knit these socks, the pattern is available for individual download for $6.
Finished Size 7.5 (8.5)” foot circumference and 9 (9.5)” long from back of heel to tip of toe: foot and leg length are adjustable, however, adjustments may change yarn requirements. Socks shown measure 7.5”.
Yarn Anzula Squishy (80% superwash merino, 10% cashmere, 10% nylon; 385 yd 352 m/4 oz 114 g): gravity (MC), storm (CC1), avocado (CC2), 1 skein each.
Needles Size 1 (2.25 mm): set of double-pointed (dpn). Adjust needle size if necessary to obtain the correct gauge.
Notions Marker (m); tapestry needle.
Gauge 30 sts and 44 rows = 4” in stockinette stitch.
I’m hard at work getting things up and running for my first Mystery KnitAlong (MKAL). I’m just putting the final touches on the pattern and have to send it off for editing. Designing and hosting a MKAL was one of my big goals for 2016 so I’m pretty excited to get things underway.
These are just two of the three colors used in the MKAL shawl. The third color is a light pink and is currently attached to the project while I figure out the bind off. Plain or fancy? Fancy or plain? Both options? Maybe.
I’m using madelinetosh Twist Light for the yarn and the colors are gorgeous.
When I’m not working on the MKAL or taking care of one of a million things that need to be done around here, I’m trying to sneak in some reading. I’m currently reading Mrs. Jeffries Learns the Trade by Emily Brightwell, which is a compilation of the first three Mrs. Jeffries stories. I’m on a huge mystery novel kick right now, and it shows no signs of going away.
Linking up with Yarn Along.
What do you get when you have an indie dyer who is a University of Cincinnati graduate and a designer who lives in Cincinnati?
You get Rookwood.
Rookwood is a crescent shaped shawl, worked from the bottom up. The bottom edge has lace, garter stitch, and twisted rib. The body of the shawl is worked in garter stitch with simple short rows.
Jeanne from Destination Yarn dyed the colors found in the pottery from Rookwood Pottery. I used a stitch pattern that mimicked the lines and curves found in the pottery.
I think we did an awesome job translating the colors and lines from the pottery to yarn and design.
Rookwood is available for purchase on Ravelry. Jeanne will be opening up pre-orders for a kit that contains the yarn and a download code for the pattern on her website. There will also be a knit along for Rookwood hosted in the Destination Yarn Ravelry group. I hope you’ll join us for fun and prizes!
Gradient yarns and mini-skein packs are so trendy right now and for good reason. They’re beautiful!! I’m a sucker for a beautiful gradient. Back last year, the LYS where I work started carrying Wonderland Yarns Mini-Skein packs. I bought a pack with no idea of what to do with it.
I decided I was going to keep it simple. An asymmetrical, all garter stitch shawl.
The pattern is going out to test knitters today, and it will be ready for release by the end of March.
Maybe I’ll knit another one with one of the two other mini-skein packs I have. I just can’t resist them! Do you like gradient yarns? Do you have a bunch of mini-skeins? What do you like to knit with them?
Way back in the Summer of 2014, I received the best surprise when my design, Baya, appeared on the cover of Pom Pom Quarterly. I screamed out loud, and I totally scared my kids with my reaction. I have a copy of the magazine cover hanging over my workspace. The design that appeared on the cover, Baya, is now available to you as an individual download.
Baya is a crescent-shaped shawl that is worked from the bottom up. The bottom edge is worked in a lace weight yarn in a lace and cable pattern. The shawl body is worked in fingering weight yarn in squishy garter stitch. Short rows are used to create the crescent shaping. Like the rest of my patterns that use this construction, there are no wrap and turns for the short rows. You just turn the work and start the next row.
Baya is a two-color shawl, using two different shades of pink from SweetGeorgia Yarns. You can get creative in your color choices or you can go for a monochromatic look and choose the same colors for the edge and body. If you use SweetGeorgia Yarns, you have tons of fun color choices!
Sizing and Measurements: One size: 144 cm / 56½” wide by 26 cm / 10¼” deep at central point.
Yarn: Yarn A: 375 yards (343 m) lace weight yarn. Shown in Sweet Georgia CashSilk Lace (55% silk, 45% cashmere; 366 m / 400 yds per 50 g), Orchid. Yarn B: 325 yards (274 m) fingering weight yarn. Shown in Sweet Georgia Tough Love Sock (80% merino, 20% nylon; 389 m / 425 yds per 115 g), Raspberry.
Gauge: 16 sts & 40 rows = 10 cm / 4” in garter stitch with B and US 5 (3.75 mm) needle after blocking.
Needles: 3.75 mm / US 5 circular needle, 100 cm / 40” length, 3.5 mm / US 4 circular needle, 100 cm / 40” length.
Always use a needle size that will result in the correct gauge after blocking.
Notions: Cable needle, tapestry needle.
It’s time to check out this year’s Indie Design Gift Along!
335 indie designers from around the world are offering thousands of patterns for sale from November 19 (8:00 pm EST) through November 27 (11:59 pm EST). All of the sale eligible patterns are 25% off with the coupon code ‘giftalong2015’.
That’s not all! The fun doesn’t end when the sale ends. From November 19 (8:00 pm EST) through December 31 at midnight, ALL paid patterns from participating designers are eligible for prizes in the KAL/CAL. You can check out all of the rules here. Want to browse all of the participating designers and see what they’re offering? Check out the thread here.
You can look at my Gift Along bundle and click on each pattern to see more details.
Pour yourself a cup of your favorite hot beverage and look through all of the patterns. What patterns do you like? What’s going straight onto your queue? I’ll highlight some of my favorite patterns and designers over the next few weeks, but I want to see your faves too!
Unexpected Cables is the latest book from Heather Zoppetti. Her first book, Everyday Lace, was published in 2014 and focused on patterns that featured easy, wearable lace. Unexpected Cables focuses on designs with modern cables. From the Introduction in the book:
When many people think of cable knitting, the first images that come to mind are big, boxy fisherman sweaters. This is exactly NOT what you will find in Unexpected Cables. The goal of this book is to update the cable from heirloom to modern in unexpected ways. By using sleeker garment shapes, mixing cables with lace, and constructing garments and accessories in abstract ways, I hope to motivate the knitter to explore cable knitting in unexpected ways.
The book is divided into three chapters: Refined, Lace, and Abstract. Each chapter contains multiple designs that exemplify each concept. Personally, I am most drawn towards the patterns in the Refined chapter. My favorite pattern in the book is in this chapter.
The book has patterns for both garments and accessories. Sweaters, vest, socks, hats, cowls, and shawls are all here. All of the patterns use lightweight yarns–nothing heavier than a worsted weight. What the book doesn’t have are instructions to actually teach you how to cable. There are a variety of illustrated techniques and tricks (like how to cable without a cable needle), but this book isn’t for someone who is new to cabling. The book also only has charts; there are no written instructions for the charts.
Let’s take a look at some of my favorite patterns.
First up is Leola. Leola is a ruffled shawl/scarf with twisted stitches.
Leola is in the Refined chapter.
Next is Safe Harbor. Safe Harbor is a cowl that combines lace & cables and is found in the Lace chapter.
My favorite pattern in the book is Rheems. I love everything about this pullover.
Rheems is also found in the Refined chapter.
Here’s the fun part: I have a copy of Unexpected Cables for you! Just leave me a comment and tell me what pattern from the book is your favorite. I’ll close comments on November 19, 2015 at 12:00 pm EST and draw a winner.
All photos courtesy F/W Media.
I design shawls. I do. I love shawls. I love lace too. But, sometimes, I want to design and knit something else. I’ve never designed anything with colorwork. Until now.
Oh, yeah! I like it a lot. Like, a lot a lot. Tell me, do you knit the same things over and over again or do you change it up every now and then?
I have a pattern in the latest SweetGeorgia Yarns Fall with Sweet Georgia, Vol. 1 collection.
Winter Sunrise is an asymmetrical triangular shawl that blends two weights of yarn. The shawl starts with simple, classic garter stitch in Tough Love Sock, a fingering weight yarn. The shawl moves from garter stitch to lace and also switches to a lace weight yarn, CashSilk Lace. The shawl shifts back into garter stitch and ends with a picot bind off.
I’m kind of obsessed with this asymmetrical shawl shaping so I wanted to play with weight and texture in this design. If you’re curious about how this kind of shawl is worked, you can see my original sketch to see the direction of knitting. You only cast on a few stitches and increases are worked along one edge of the shawl.
My original swatch for the design used the same color of both yarns so you can easily change this from a two color project to a one color project. Even though they’re different weights, I think these two yarns work wonderfully together and with SweetGeorgia’s amazing colors, it’s hard to go wrong with either the two color combo or a monochromatic look. Winter Sunrise is available for purchase from SweetGeorgia or on Ravelry. SweetGeorgia are also hosting a KAL in their Ravelry group beginning on October 12 with some lovely prizes available. I wish I had the time to knit along.
I released a new pattern yesterday. Laidley is a striped asymmetrical shawl with lace panels and a knitted on edge. Laidley came about after I started playing around with shaping and a Tweet from Amanda Jarvis from Lorna’s Laces. Interesting combo? Let me explain.
Amanda was looking for a few designs to showcase new colors of Lorna’s Laces that would debut at TNNA in late May. I responded that I was interested and could meet their deadline. We e-mailed back and forth talking about ideas and yarn choices, and I proposed an asymmetrical shawl in a heavier weight of yarn.
We decided on using two colors in the shawl, instead of just one, and as soon as I received the yarn, I got to work.
The shawl begins at the small tip (only cast on 2 stitches!), and you increase only along one edge of the shawl to create the asymmetrical triangle shape. Two row garter stitch stripes make up the body of the shawl and the stripes are broken up by two lace panels. The lace is a simple 8 row pattern and the shawl shaping continues in the lace. The shawl is finished by working a knitted on edge.
The yarn I used for Laidley is Lorna’s Laces Honor. Alpaca and silk! What a lovely yarn! I’ve worked with Lorna’s Laces before, but this was my first time using Honor, and it was a dream.
The pattern is available to purchase from Ravelry for $6.00.
Color A: 365 yards (334 m) DK weight yarn. Shown in Lorna’s Laces Honor (70% alpaca/30% silk; 275 yards/100 g).
Color B: 450 yards (411 m) DK weight yarn. Shown in Lorna’s Laces Honor (70% alpaca/30% silk; 275 yards/100 g).
US 6 (4 mm), 40 inch or longer circular needles, or size needed to achieve gauge.
60 in (152 cm) wide x 41 in (104 cm) long.
We could be the talk of the town tonight. Carry home your shoes in the morning light. Or we could just stay here a while. Wrapped up in the quiet life.
Partially inspired by the yarn and partially inspired by the song, The Quiet Life by Kasey Chambers and Shane Nicholson, Quiet Life is new today. Knitted mostly in stockinette stitch, the shawl has a simple cable panel down the center that flows into a cabled edge. Quiet Life is worked from the top down like a standard top down triangular shawl; however, the center cable panel changes the shape of the shawl to a rounded triangle/half-circle.
Instructions to work the cables are given in the pattern. The pattern includes both fully written and charted instructions. The pattern has been professionally tech edited by Katherine Vaughan and has been test knit.
Main Color: 390 yards (357 m) aran weight yarn. Shown in Foxhill Farm Cormo (100% cormo wool; 195 yards/113 g), Natural.
Contrast Color: 125 yards (114 m) aran weight yarn. Shown in Foxhill Farm Cormo (100% cormo wool; 195 yards/113 g), Silver.
US 9 (5.5 mm), 40 inch or longer circular needles, or size needed to achieve gauge.
60 in (152 cm) wide x 28 in (71 cm) deep.
Skills needed include: basic knitting skills, yarn over, cables.
$4.50 until 3/26/15. $6.00 after.
Athalia uses 3 colors of Baah Aspen, a 75% merino/15% silk/10% cashmere sport weight yarn.
Athalia is a crescent shawl worked from the bottom up. The lace edge incorporates all 3 colors of the shawl, and the shawl body is worked in one color. The shawl body uses short rows to shape the shawl. While the lace edge is a little more toothsome, the shawl body is a breeze to knit. It’s a nice meld of mindful and mindless knitting.
The e-book is $15.50 and the individual pattern is $6.
I have a pattern in the Spring 2015 issue of Knitscene.
The shawl begins with a picot cast on. If it’s not obvious, I love picots. I sometimes have to stop myself from adding picots on designs. I just love them so. Anyway. The bottom edge of the shawl has little floral buds on a background of reverse stockinette stitch. The shawl body is in stockinette stitch and is shaped with short rows.
The nature of the stitch pattern on the bottom edge creates a scalloped edge, and with the picots, it’s my favorite thing about the shawl.
Arnica is included in a larger editorial story called Gold Dust Woman. All of the patterns featured in this story are worked in golden hues. When I first saw the call for submissions, I was inspired by the thought of a field of golden flowers, like daffodils or even dandelions, in the Spring. The yarn I used for Arnica was Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sport in Louisville. I loved it. It had subtle shades of different yellows even some green-gold hues. Yellow’s a tough color to wear for a lot of people including me. Tomorrow we’ll talk about what to do if you like a pattern but the yarn color is not something you’d choose.
I released a new pattern last week, and it’s not a shawl.
It’s a cowl! When I chose the yarn for this project, I saw that there was some variegation in the color so I wanted to use stitch patterns that would work with the colors.
Eyelet ribbing and a slipped stitch cable frame a center panel of daisy stitch. The daisy stitch gives the cowl lots of fun texture and all of the stitch patterns work to break up any weirdness that might happen with variegated yarn. The stitch pattern is a simple 4 row repeat, and I found that after just a few repeats, I had the pattern memorized and could knit without the pattern. It was a great project for sitting and watching Netflix.
The yarn is Fiberstory One DK. This yarn base is new and isn’t listed in her store, but it’s a great yarn. It’s a single ply that is spun thick and thin. It reminded me a lot of Malabrigo Worsted, just at a lighter weight. One of my test knitters used Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sport and hers turned out great.
450 yards (411 m) dk weight yarn.
US 7 (4.5 mm) needles, or size needed to achieve gauge.
6 stitch markers, crochet hook, waste yarn, spare needle, yarn needle.
15 in height by 34 in circumference (38 cm height by 86 cm circumference).
basic knitting skills, knit two together decrease, slip slip knit decrease, yarn over increase, p3tog decrease, provisional cast on, 3 needle bind off. Pattern includes instructions to work cable stitches.
When the giftalong started last week, I was debating with myself on if I should participate as a knitter. I had finished up the last bit of knitting on the last deadline project for 2014 so I had no pressing deadlines, but I have designs that have been on the back burner for the past few months and now is the time to get started on them, right? Nope. I convinced myself to purchase a few patterns and actually knit something designed by someone else for a couple of weeks. In the meantime, I do have two patterns to send to the tech editor and some other patterns to revise for re-release so it’s not as if I won’t be working.
Anyway, I finished a hat last night. Juliana got very into the idea of the giftalong and wanted a new hat. We looked through a lot of the eligible hat patterns on Ravelry, and she chose Asher by Julia Trice. We went to the yarn store, and she chose the yarn for her hat.
She’s super pleased with her new hat and has worn it almost all day long. All of the details can be found on my Ravelry project page.
It’s time for the 2014 Giftalong. Last year, a bunch of designers banded together to offer patterns at a discount and hosted a KAL/CAL for eligible patterns. We’re doing it again this year.
From November 13 8 pm EST to November 21st 11:59 pm EST, all eligible patterns are available at 25% off with the coupon code ‘giftalong2014’. I am offering 16 of my self-published patterns for sale. To see all of the other participating designers and to browse through all of the patterns, check out the thread in the Indie Design Gift-A-Long group. Please note that you have to be a member of Ravelry to participate. There are over 3,800 patterns on sale starting on Thursday.
I’ve chosen 16 of my patterns to be available for the 25% off discount. You can see them all here.
The KAL/CAL starts at 8 pm on the 13th as well and runs through December 31st at midnight. Any paid pattern from a participating designer is eligible for the KAL/CAL. That means there are over 11,000 patterns available for the KAL/CAL. Pick your projects, join the group, and start posting.
There are thousands of prizes to win. From physical prizes, like yarn, stitch markers, and bags, to electronic patterns, you have a good chance of winning something. Of course, you can win a prize for finishing a project, but there are prizes for posting pics of your WIPs and for answering trivia questions. You don’t have to finish something to win.
Join us over at the Indie Design Gift-A-Long group!
The Summer 2014 issue of Pom Pom Quarterly is out so that means it’s time for me to show you my latest pattern. First of all, if you’ve never heard of Pom Pom, you seriously need to go check them out. Listen to their podcast (or Pomcast) while you’re at it.
This is Baya. Baya is a crescent shaped shawl worked from the bottom up. The bottom edge of the shawl is a lace pattern that incorporates some simple cables to make a swoopy, leafy edge. The body of the shawl is worked in garter stitch so after all that lace at the bottom, you can just knit away at the top.
Oh, wait a second. It’s the COVER!
What makes Baya just a little bit different is the yarn. The lace edge is worked in SweetGeorgia Cashsilk Lace, and the body is worked in SweetGeorgia Tough Love Sock. Two different weights of yarn AND two different colors, although you could use one color in both bases for a monochromatic look.
You can order Pom Pom through their website.