Friday, October 10, 2014

Patternum Novum :: Thyri Pullover

The Knitscene Winter 2014 issue came out a few weeks ago, and I am horrified that I have not yet posted about it! Especially because (and this is a big deal for me) design made the cover.

All photos © Knitscene/Harper Point

That's right -- that long-sleeved, round-yoked pullover in a gorgeous Madelinetosh hue is mine. It's been weeks, but I'm still pinching myself and looking at the Interweave website to make sure it's still true and they didn't change their minds. When I get my own copy of the magazine? I'm totally framing it.

So what exactly is this design of mine? I'm so glad you asked! The Thyri Pullover (pronounced "TIR-ee" like the pretty character on Vikings...because Amy Palmer is awesome) is a top-down pullover with long sleeves with thumb holes -- so you can pull the cuffs over your hands if you'd like, to keep them warm during those long Swedish winters.

Thyri is part of the Scandinavian story (being of Scandinavian ancestry myself, I could not be more proud that my design was even selected, let alone the cover). I wanted to make this a super easy sweater, easy enough for beginners, so instead of placing colorwork patterns in the circular yoke, I simply added some reverse Stockinette stitch bands. So there's some interest up there, but it's very simple to execute.

And those thumb holes. I love a cuff with a thumb hole. (But they're easily left off if you don't.)

You can see more about Thyri on Ravelry here, and see the rest of the patterns in this fantastic issue here.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Patternum Novum :: Dromos Wrap

In the summer of 2013, I knit a shawl. Like with Itineris, I started with one stitch, started shaping, and let the yarn take me where it wanted. But it totally didn't work because of the colors I'd used. I won't even show you. The blue was cool on its own, but with the pink I'd chosen it looked like some sort of strange baby blanket. So I put it on the shelf, gave it a time out, and told it to think about what it had done. Then, last winter, I noticed two skeins of Anzula Cloud hanging out together in my yarn basket and a lightbulb went on. I loved that shawl. I wanted that shawl. So why didn't I just re-knit it in some colors that actually worked?

And in grey and green, my favorites, I think it really does work. And now I can share Dromos with the rest of the world.

Dromos Wrap - $5 via Ravelry (no account required)


Dromos (Greek for road) is an asymmetrical rectangular wrap that (as I mentioned) starts out with one stitch, after which the knitter is taken on a journey of increases, decreases, and short rows to create a very interesting striped piece. The final shape is somewhat unusual, but in garter stitch and fingering weight yarn (on size 6 needles), the drapey fabric is easily manipulated to be worn however you'd like. I may be crazy, but I love it.

The specs...

Finished Measurements: 63”/ 160 cm long; 20”/ 51 cm at widest point

Yarn: Anzula Cloud (80% Merino, 10% Cashmere, 10% Nylon; 575 yds/ 526 m per 114g); 1 skein each of Charcoal (A) and Avocado (C)
Anzula Dreamy (75% Merino, 15% Cashmere, 10% Silk; 385 yds/ 352 m per 115g); 1 skein of Au Natural (B)
Or, 3 colors of fingering weight yarn: 350 yds/ 320 m of A, 50 yds/ 46 m of B, and 525 yds/ 480 m of C

Needles: US 6 (4 mm) circular needle, at least 24”/ 60 cm long

Gauge: 22 stitches & 40 rows = 4"/ 10 cm in Garter Stitch

For more information about and photos of Dromos, you can check it out on Ravelry here. And, as always, please come chat about Dromos and share any in-progress or FO photos you might have in my Ravelry group.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Birthday BOGO! XXXIV

So, today I'm 34. Blah blah, non-milestone birthday, blah blah, whatevs. Plus I'm having a baby in, like, 4 weeks and that's the birthday I've been thinking about lately. Ack!

But will you still help me celebrate being one year closer to my mid-thirties? (34 is still early 30's. Please don't tell me otherwise.)

For the next 24 hours, I'm offering a buy-one-get-one-free promotion on all of my self-published patterns -- simply put two patterns in your cart (all those eligible are on Ravelry here), enter the coupon code XXXIV at checkout, and the cost of the lower-priced pattern will be automatically deducted. It all ends tomorrow at 9:30am Pacific time, so do it while you can! :)

Happy knitting!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Faux Taxidermy Knits :: The Winner

Ah, the bittersweet moment of announcing a giveaway winner. I'm thrilled for the lucky reader who gets a brand new copy of Faux Taxidermy Knits, but I'm sad because I want to give one to all of you! Alas, there can only be one. And, according to the Random Number Generator, that one is....


Congratulations! I will contact you via Ravelry shortly to get your info.

And for all the rest who entered, make sure to check out the blog hop schedule because there are still two more stops on the tour!

Thanks to all for playing, and I hope you're having a great week. Happy knitting!

Monday, September 15, 2014

Patternum Novum :: Cassini Cardigan

About a million years ago (or at least it feels like it), I created three pieces for my featured designer spot in Knitscene's Summer 2013 issue. One of them was the Saturn Cardigan which was at the time and has remained one of my favorite designs.

I started it in San Francisco International Airport waiting for our flight to South Africa in September 2012 and, by the time we boarded, had finished the first two raised stripes. Ten hours and three movies later, we were in South Korea and I was separating the sleeves from the body. By the time we were on safari some days later I was working on the sleeves, and I finally added the button bands in Stellenbosch wine country. Lots of memories are knit into this cardigan, including my touching experience with a young guard at the embassy (I talk about it at the end of this post)...and I personally think it's cute, too.

Which is why I'm thrilled to say that it is now available as an individual download, with updated pattern instructions, a broader range of sizes, fresh tech editing, and a brand new name.

Cassini Cardigan - $5.50 via Ravelry (no account required)

The specs...

Finished Measurements: Finished bust: 30 (32.75, 35.75, 40.25, 43.75, 48.25, 52.25, 56.25, 60.25)”/ 76 (83, 91, 102, 111, 122.5, 132.5, 143, 153) cm
Length from back neck to hem: 20.5 (20.5, 21.75, 22.5, 23.25, 23.25, 23.75, 24, 24.25)”/ 52 (52, 55, 57, 59, 59, 60.5, 61, 61.5) cm
Sample shown in size 32.75” / 83 cm with 1.25”/ 3 cm of negative ease in the bust.

Yarn: MC: Shibui Knits Sock (100% Merino; 191 yds / 175 m per 50 g); 5 (5, 5, 6, 7, 7, 8, 8, 9) skeins in #2003 Ash
Or, 800 (875, 955, 1075, 1170, 1290, 1395, 1505, 1610) yds/ 730 (800, 875, 985, 1070, 1180, 1275, 1375, 1470) m of a fingering weight yarn
CC: Shibui Knits Sock; 1 skein in #0340 Kiwi
Or, 25 (30, 35, 35, 40, 45, 50, 50, 55) yds/ 25 (25, 30, 30, 35, 40, 45, 45, 50) m of a fingering weight yarn similar to MC

Needles: US 4 (3.5 mm) circular needle, 29-60” / 73-150 cm long (depending on size made), or size needed to obtain gauge and same size needles preferred for working a small circumference in the round (e.g. circular needle long enough for Magic Loop, dpns)
Gauge: 22 stitches & 29 rows = 4"/ 10 cm in Garter Stitch

For more information about Cassini, you can check it out on Ravelry here. And, as always, please come chat about Cassini and share any in-progress or FO photos you might have in my Ravelry group!

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Faux Taxidermy Knits :: A Review + Giveaway

Hey there! Today I'm excited to share a very fun book with you. "Faux Taxidermy?!" you might be saying. "That sounds creepy!!" you might be saying. But bear with me...these are some clever and adorable knits.

When I first saw the cover of Louise Walker's Faux Taxidermy Knits, I'll be honest -- the fox stole on the cover reminded me a whole lot of a design by my pal Tiny Owl Knits. But upon closer inspection, I realized that not only were the designs completely different, but these two designers have aesthetics all their own. Absolutely no ripoffs here.

So, Faux Taxidermy Knits. This book is a riot and each design had me smiling. The pieces in the book are definitely modeled after, well, dead animals, but what's so not-creepy is that they're so cute! They're all knitted in such a way that they don't look like dead animals. They look like happy animals thrilled to be accessorizing your outfit or decorating your home.

The book is split into two sections: Wearables (hats, stoles, slippers, and the like) and Habitat (mounted animal heads, a door stop, pheasants to hang in your kitchen, that kind of thing), and each design is more charming than the last. Here are a few of my favorites:

Raccoon Hat (I dare you not to smile when you see this)...

Photography © F&W Media International Ltd

Wolf Headdress (this is really beautiful, IMO)...

Photography © F&W Media International Ltd

Moose Head (seriously. adorable.)...

Photography © F&W Media International Ltd

and Bear Coasters (LOVE)...

Photography © F&W Media International Ltd

In addition to the pretty photos, each pattern includes charts or line-by-line instructions, clear diagrams for assembly, dimensions -- everything you'd need. Though I haven't made any of them (yet!), the patterns seem extremely thorough, which is nice for unconventionally constructed pieces such as these. And there's a thorough technique section in the back diagramming any knitting maneuvers one might not be familiar with, as well as a write-up on measuring gauge. Fantastic!

All in all: I love this book. LOVE IT. The designs are quirky and fun, and it's beautiful to look at while you're planning which project you're going to make next.

You can check out more about Faux Taxidermy Knits, here and see more lovely knitting book offerings on the Stitch Craft Create books page.

OR, if you'd like to win your very own copy of Faux Taxidermy Knits, leave me a comment here telling me a) which type of knitted animal you'd be most likely to wear and b) a place to contact you (RavID, email address, etc.). You have until 11:59pm Pacific time next Tuesday, 16 September, and I'll draw a winner on Wednesday morning.

And be sure to check out the Blog Hop Schedule - there have been and will be several more looks inside Faux Taxidermy Knits and chances to win in the next couple of weeks.

Good luck, and happy knitting!

Friday, September 5, 2014

An Interview with Robin Hunter

Hi there, and happy September! I hope everyone's month is off to a good start.

I'll be back with more soon (including a giveaway, woo hoo!), but wanted to pop by and let you know that an interview I did with Robin Hunter has just gone live. If you're curious about my business plan (spoiler: I don't have one, eek!) and how I handle criticism as a professional designer, you can check it out right here.

Happy Friday!