Category Archives: pattern design

Trillium season, and knitting

I’ve spent the past week continuing the big studio project, purging what used to be the kids’ closet. Twenty years of kids’ schoolwork…buh-bye. Rock and magnet collections? Gone! The best stuff went to friends’ kids, so that was fun to curate. Now it’s time to get back to work.

But first, a walk in the park…Forest Park. I went on a hike there yesterday with friends. It’s 5,157 acres inside the city of Portland, which makes it the largest urban forest in the United States. I’d never been there before, and I’m a native Portlander!

It’s trillium season in the Pacific Northwest.

image

image

image These are one of my favorite wildflowers.

image Oxalis

image Fiddlehead ferns

image Salmonberry

image I have no idea what these are.

image I love these fungi taking over this log.

Now I’m back to my knitting, working on a design to use the leftover yarn from my Aloha Shawl. And planning the Aloha Shawlette and Shawl KAL! Sharon (Stitchjones) and I are excited to be working on this KAL together. You can use her gorgeous Pai Mei Sock yarn in Rainbow Shave Ice and Warm Sand, or you can use your own yarn. The pattern is still $2 off through April 10; use the coupon code ALOHA to purchase. And swing by the KAL thread on Ravelry!

Is it spring in your neck of the woods yet?

Introducing the Aloha Shawlette and Shawl

Last fall Sharon Spence of Stitchjones asked me to design a shawlette with her Pai Mei Sock yarn in a variegated color for her 2014 Yarnageddon Club. She had a Hawaii theme in mind, and she knows how much I love Hawaii.

I love variegated yarn, but I love it even more when it’s combined with a semi-solid. We settled on these colors, which I got to name: Rainbow Shave Ice and Warm Sand. Perfect!

Aloha Shawlette

Aloha can mean hello, goodbye, or just be a friendly greeting in general. The Aloha shawlette looks good coming and going! It features rainbows, leis, and waves. Knitting begins at the center back neck (note the three lacy flowers here), continues through the rainbows and shellflower leis, and ends with an edging that is knit onto the live stitches at the end. The shawlette uses 2 half skeins of Pai Mei Sock. The yarn is available from Stitchjones.

Aloha Shawlette back

The shawlette is a nice size both on the shoulders and worn bandanna style, but the result made me so happy, I had to have a full size shawl, too. More rainbow, more happy!

Aloha Shawl

The pattern includes instructions for both the shawlette and shawl. It is available through my Ravelry page, and will be on sale for 33% off the usual price through April 7. Visit the Aloha Shawlette/Shawl pattern page and use the coupon code ALOHA to make your purchase. I hope you like it as much as I do!

Aloha Shawl back2

Aloha details (Detail of shellflower lei and edgings for shawlette and shawl)

The Opinionated Knitter

Elizabeth Zimmermann wrote a book with that title, but aren’t we all just a bit opinionated? Here’s your chance to know a bit more of what I think about knitting, designing, and teaching. I was featured on Robin Hunter’s blog, How to Become a Professional Knitter last Friday, but am only catching up to myself today! Click the link and get to know me…

Aloha detail

And here’s a sneak peek of an upcoming design.

Ah, mystery! What’s new on your needles? Mine are strangely empty, but not for long.

Crafty Moms 12.0, a guitar, and a Tauriel winner

Yes, the 12th annual Crafty Moms weekend! I looked back in my Shutterfly albums, and the very first crafty spring beach trip was in 2003. There were four of us moms then, and we took our 4th graders and our spouses with us. The next year we ditched the kids and spouses. The group has waxed and waned in the following years; this year we had 15 moms.

I love this time away so I can reconnect with friends, and also work intensively on projects. This year, I knit most of the second version of a shawl that will be published at the end of the month.

mimosa

I can’t really show you what it looks like, but here are several other things I’ve designed during past Crafty Moms weekends.

pacific
Pacific Shawl

breezy
Breezy Market Tote

2 way rockaway
Rockaway 2-way Beach Beanie/Cowl

I loved this group of young adults hanging out on the beach.

sunset love

It was a pretty rainy weekend, with a few sunbreaks.

seagulls

rainbow

lone seagull

I’ve done some songwriting on previous Crafty Moms weekends, too. Not this time, although I was hoping my new travel guitar would arrive before I left. Missed me by 4 hours! And I had too much knitting on deadline, anyway. But this is what I found when I got home.

Taki and Minnie

It’s the Limited Edition Holden Village Taylor GS Mini Guitar on the right. I’ve named her Minerva (Minnie for short), and she has a huge sound for such a little thing! The top is old-growth Engelmann Spruce from near Holden Village in the North Cascade Mountains in Washington. The trees were harvested as part of a mine remediation project that will clean up the creek there. Part of the proceeds from the sale of each of these guitars will go to El Porvenir and Living Waters for the World. El Porvenir has a special place in my heart since I worked on a service trip with them in Nicaragua in 2012. You can read more about the guitars here and here. The combination of a fundraiser for El Porvenir plus tonewood from Holden Village (a place I’ve never been, but a place that inspired Marty Haugen to write Holden Evening Prayer, a gorgeous piece of liturgical music that we’ve sung on Women’s Retreat and at church) pushed me to order this guitar.

inlay

Larry Breedlove designed a beautiful 12th fret inlay that portrays water flowing from between two mountains. There’s a lot of inspiration in this little package, and a lot of win for everyone.

Speaking of win: We have a Tauriel winner. There were 195 comments, wow! The winner is Lynne Phelps; I have sent her an email to get her info to Bonne Marie. Thanks all, for reading and commenting. And I hope all the rest of you download and knit this wonderful pattern!

How was your weekend?

Stopping by Woods

…on a snowy evening. That was the theme for the most recent Poet’s Club shipment from Woolgirl. I was one of two designers for this month’s kit (originally scheduled for December, hence the snow theme). Carrie Sullivan (Irishgirlieknits) designed the hat.

image

I designed this bonus piece, the Snowy Woods Cowl featuring trees and more trees.

image
(Modeled photos by Vivian Aubrey)

The yarn is DK 100% Superwash Merino Wool from Oink Pigments in the Robert Frost Colorway. With hints of blue and brown, it suggests the woods in snow.

snowy woods detail

Spring has sprung in the Pacific Northwest. The first cherry trees are blooming, as are the daffodils and crocuses, but winter is hanging on in many parts of the country. This cowl is a quick knit; I hope that some club members are able to knit and wear this soon.

The Snowy Woods Cowl is a six month exclusive for the Woolgirl Poet’s Club; it will be available here in late August. Just in time for knitting for next fall and winter!

What’s happening in your neck of the woods? Winter? Spring? Are you still wearing your woolies?

Free pattern: Bamboo Rib Coffee Cozy

For the past several years, Lorajean (Knitted Wit) and I have been teaming up to donate yarn and patterns to the prize baskets for the Rose City Yarn Crawl. This year, I designed a coffee cup cozy to knit up with her Gobstoppers, mini-skeins of worsted weight yarn.

bamboo rib coffee cozy

You don’t have to win a prize basket to get this pattern. I’m offering it for free. You can download it here: Bamboo Rib Coffee Cozy

You can also download it from Ravelry, if you’d prefer.

bamboo rib cozies 2

One mini skein will make one cozy. These are also a great way to use up leftover worsted weight yarn.

In case you missed last year’s pattern, it’s the Daffy Taffy Twists. These are high fiber, calorie free treats; you can stuff them with fiberfill or catnip or lavender for sachets. This pattern is also free.

daffy

The year before we donated hat kits. This Ziggy hat pattern isn’t free, but it’s super cute, and not expensive!

ziggyhat 1

I wonder what we’ll do next year…

Sophie’s Rose shawl, as seen at Madrona

Introducing Sophie’s Rose, an asymmetric triangle shawl with an extravagant ruffle.

sophie's rose

I designed this for Anne Lindquist at For Yarn’s Sake, using two very special yarns. The main color is Sophie’s Rose, the semisolid brown with raspberry pink accents that MadelineTosh dyed as a custom color in honor of Anne’s new granddaughter, Sophie. The coordinating color is Knitted Wit‘s Madge, on her Merino Single Fingering base.

sophie's rose tosh

The theme is a garden trellis interspersed with rows of roses.

sophie's rose detail

I wore this at Madrona last weekend, and the big ruffle makes it really fun to wear.

Sophie's Rose mlb

This pattern is available through Ravelry, link here. The MadelineTosh Tosh Merino Light is available at For Yarn’s Sake, and they also have a good supply of Knitted Wit‘s Single Fingering in Madge. You can see it during the Rose City Yarn Crawl, and after, too. I’ll be wearing mine at For Yarn’s Sake on Saturday, March 1; I have a trunk show there from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Come by and say hello while you’re on the Crawl!

Sophie’s Rose is live!

Just a quick placeholder, details later. Sophie’s Rose is live; pattern available soon on Ravelry. (Anne’s having a little technical difficulty getting it to publish, but hopefully today, Saturday.)

Ravelry link

I’m at Madrona, wearing this, so if you’re looking for the pattern, click the link!

sophie's rose

Rosaria, RCYCMKAL revealed

The first completed shawlettes from the Rose City Yarn Crawl Mystery Knit Along are rolling in. You can see them in the Ravelry project pages here.

Here’s my original design knit of this shawlette.

Rosaria

Rosaria 2

I designed this last fall for the Rose City Yarn Crawl. I’ve had to keep it under wraps until now, since it was a mystery. Now that we’re finishing up the KAL, it’s time for the reveal.

Rainy gray skies, a band of roses, a scattering of leaves, the hint of a spider’s web, or are those sun rays amid the rain? How very Portland.

The shawlette’s name is Rosaria, as in the Mythical Realm of Rosaria, Portland’s beloved land of make-believe. The word Rosaria is the plural of rosarium, or rose garden. I like the way the plural sounds, and it’s very fitting because we’ve made so many of these rose gardens in the KAL.

When I finished knitting the original last fall, I had a lot of yarn left from my 4 ounce/115g/475 yard skeins. I knew that I would want to give options for extending the shawlette. At the same time, the pattern had to work with less yardage too, since many fingering weight yarns are put up in 100g skeins.

image

Our recent snowy Portland weekend was perfect for getting my knit on. This is Midnight in Rosaria. I’ve added extra roses to the second set of stripes. Another option would be to just extend the stripes. Or you could add more leaves near the end. As long as you don’t add more than about 20 more rows after the last set of increases, the pi construction works. Technically, you could add a few more, but that puts a lot of stretch on the outer band of leaves.

Midnight Rosaria Mookie

Mookie helped me block it.

Rosaria edge detail

I added beads. A lot of beads. I still have 36g of the darker MC left, and 48g of the CC, so I could have made it a little larger. But I didn’t want to stretch out the leaves too much near the end.

Leading this KAL has been one of the most fun knitterly things I’ve done! The camaraderie of the Ravelry forum has been great, and I still have the Yarn Ball and the actual Yarn Crawl itself February 27 – March 2 coming up. It will be so cool to see all these shawlettes in person.

Did you participate in the KAL? Are you going on the crawl? Hope to see you! But first, I’ll be at Madrona this weekend, with Rosaria and other favorite knits.

KAL color musings

The Rose City Yarn Crawl MKAL kicks off tomorrow morning. Here’s my new yarn…

RCYC MKAL colors

I’m using Knitted Wit Single Fingering, Tugboat and Clematis. I was going to use the paler color for the sky (MC), and the darker color for the roses, but…

What if the darker color is the sky at night, and the roses are white roses that look blue in the moonlight?

If I turn it around that way, the dark color would be the MC, and the MC is slightly predominant, and I LOVE this deep purplish blue/bluish purple…

Guess I’ll have to decide by tomorrow!

Just in case you need help with your garter tab cast on, I made a video just for you. (youtube link)

Hope to see locals at Twisted for the cast on party, Friday January 17, 5-8 p.m.!

Also, the winners of the Thrumbelina patterns are…

Lucinda and jrbecca! I’ll be sending patterns along through Ravelry shortly. The Thrumbelina KAL begins on Tuesday, January 21. Pop over to the Ravelry discussion and tell me what yarn/fiber combo you’re planning! Here’s mine. This is Knitted Wit Merino single ply in Winter’s Night, and her merino fiber in Turks and Caicos.

image

(Gee, I wonder what my favorite color is?) Are you ready to cast on? I am, and I am!