Category Archives: ravelry

Stitch-Alongs: GAL edition

Catching up after Thanksgiving, and dreaming of knitting! So what does a designer look for, when perusing the offerings in the Indie Design Gift-a-Long, and the Fasten Off YAL? Something I wouldn’t design myself! I just ran through the offerings on Ravelry for the GAL. I’m dreaming of a yoke sweater, since apparently I like to knit them. You know I had a Love Note (designed by TinCanKnits) infatuation this year; that one was top down and a dream to knit, three times!

photo copyright Kay Hopkins

This is the Puget Sound Pullover by Kay Hopkins, aka Knit for the Soul (Ravelry link). The colorwork is done with mosaic knitting, which means one color per round. And it’s top down, so all the fun happens at the beginning. DK weight, sounds good.

photo copyright Crissy Jarvis/Amanda Scheuzger

Can a yoked sweater be even more enticing to me? This is Helenium by Amanda Scheuzger, aka HandMaineKnits (Ravelry link). Worsted weight, bottom up, so a little bit heavier, but oh, that brioche yoke! My Stopover sweaters (designed by Mary Jane Mucklestone) were also bottom up, with that exciting joining of 3 tubes to get to the yoke.

I bought both patterns, and they’ll hang out in my library while I dream of knitting. I’m still planning to look at patterns in the Fasten Off YAL, too, but that sale goes on a bit longer. The Ravelry sale ends Monday at midnight EST; use code giftalong2020 for 25% off any of the included designs by 250 participating designers. Nothing like the power of a deadline! Have you taken advantage of the GAL sale?

Next up: I’m going to peruse the YAL offerings. I’m being supervised by Calvin…and Darth Vader.

Indie Design Gift-A-Long

It’s the sparkliest time of the year: The Indie Design Gift-A-Long on Ravelry starts tonight! I’m one of 250 participating indie designers this year.

The pattern sale runs from Tuesday, November 24 at 8:00 pm US EST – Monday, November 30, 2020 at 11:59 pm US EST. The coupon code is giftalong2020 and it’s good for 25% off any of the participating patterns from all the designers.

The KAL/CALs will run from Tuesday, November 24 at 8pm (US-EST) through New Years Eve December 31 at midnight (US-EST). Check out the Ravelry group for all the details. Your project with any paid pattern by a participating designer is eligible for prizes, not just the patterns in the sale. You do need to be a member of the GAL group to win prizes.

You can see all 250 participating designers in this thread. I’m having a good time looking through the list and picking patterns I want to knit! Eventually. Or at least in my mind…

I don’t really gift knit for the holidays (too much pressure), but this is a great time to stock up on patterns for the knitting year! And participating in the KAL at a relaxed pace sounds good to me. How about you? Are you a deadline gift knitter?

Tomorrow I’ll tell you about an alternative knitalong, in case you’re not able to use Ravelry…or if you want to do it in addition to Ravelry! You can use your same projects in that KAL, too. I’ll have the same patterns available with a different discount code on my Payhip store. I’m not really sure about all the social media channels for sharing that KAL, but I’ll find out and put that in my post, too.

Onward!

Indie Design GAL 2019 kicks off with pattern sale

It’s the sparkliest time of the year: The Indie Design Gift-A-Long starts on Tuesday! I’m one of 286 participating indie designers this year.

The Gift-a-Long is a multi-designer event through Ravelry to help you kick-start your holiday gift-making. It begins with a pattern sale, and then the fun and games begin on Ravelry, with KAL/CAL activity and prizes. Here are a few of my patterns that are included in the coupon sale portion of the GAL; you can see the rest (there are 20!) in the GAL bundle on my Ravelry designer page.

GAL 2019 collage

The pattern sale runs from Tuesday, November 26 at 8:00 pm US EST – Monday, December 2, 2019 at 11:59 pm US EST. The coupon code is giftalong2019 and it’s good for 25% off any of the participating patterns from all the designers.

The KAL/CALs will run from Tuesday, November 26 at 8pm (US-EST) through New Years Eve December 31 at midnight (US-EST). Check out the Ravelry group for all the details. Your project with any paid pattern by a participating designer is eligible for prizes, not just the patterns in the sale.

You can see all 286 participating designers in this thread. I’m having a good time looking through the list and picking patterns I want to knit! Eventually. Or at least in my mind…

I don’t really gift knit for the holidays (too much pressure), but this is a great time to stock up on patterns for the knitting year! And participating in the KAL at a relaxed pace sounds good to me. How about you? Are you a deadline gift knitter?

I’m hosting this Thanksgiving year, so I’m in a whirlwind of prep. Happy Thanksgiving, y’all!

Cold feet! and Indie Design GAL

Remember these?

My Concentric Slipper Socks. So beautiful in this lovely panoramic gradient from Knit Circus. But they’re an expensive slipper because they’re double-stranded with four 50g balls of beautiful gradient yarn. You could knit these with any worsted weight yarn and be very happy. The gradient just makes them extra lovely.

So this happened.

I frogged the slippers, which I loved, because I want to make single-stranded bed socks. Those four balls should make two pairs of bed socks, if I use a contrasting yarn for heels and toes.

GAME ON.

You’ll note that I’m using some very interesting needles. These are Skacel’s FlexiFlips, which come in a set of 3. (I reviewed them before, here.) It’s a hybrid of dpns and magic loop or two circulars; there’s a bit of cable between the two tips. Divide your work in half, and the third needle is the working needle. I like having fewer transitions than when using dpns, and no fiddling with sliding stitches on cables.

I had started these socks with magic loop on 32” cables which felt too long, and moved to 24” cables which felt too short. The FlexiFlips are just right. They each have a pointy end and a blunter end, so you can choose which suits your knitting style. And I find I don’t need to re-tension the yarn in my throwing hand when I switch needles, which is saving me time.

(Edited to add: More thoughts on the Flexi-Flips here. They were too short, once I picked up the gusset stitches! Back to magic loop.)

I’ll let you know how the bed socks turn out…soon! Worsted weight yarn means quick socks!

What else is going on? The Indie Design Gift-A-Long starts on Friday!

What’s a Gift-A-Long? It’s a multi-designer event through Ravelry to help you kick-start your holiday gift-making. It begins with a pattern sale, and then the fun and games begin on Ravelry, with KAL/CAL activity and prizes. Your project with any paid pattern by a participating designer is eligible for prizes, not just the patterns in the sale. Here are a few of my patterns that are included in the coupon sale portion of the GAL; you can see the rest in the GAL bundle on my Ravelry designer page.

The pattern sale runs from Friday, November 23 at 8:00 pm US EST – Thursday, November 29, 2018 at 11:59 pm US EST. The coupon code is giftalong2018 and it’s good for 25% off any of the participating patterns from all the designers. The KAL/CALs will run from Friday, November 23 at 8pm (US-EST) through the New Years Eve party December 31 at midnight (US-EST). Check out the Ravelry group for all the details.

And! Happy Thanksgiving to those who celebrate it! I hope you get a lot of knitting time in over the holiday weekend. What else would you do while the turkey is cooking? I was planning to knit these bed socks, but then this happened:

The car door and I had a difference of opinion. Click. I went for an x-ray (my hands are very important to me!) and found that my knuckle is just bruised and swollen, nothing broken. It will just slow me down for a few days. I’ll be knitting…gingerly!

I’m very thankful it’s not broken. Happy Thanksgiving, y’all!

Indie Design Gift-A-Long 2017

The fifth annual Indie Design Gift-A-long is live on Ravelry!

What is Gift-A-Long? It’s a multi-designer promotion through Ravelry to help you kick-start your holiday gift-making. It begins with a pattern sale, and then the fun and games begin on Ravelry, with KAL/CAL activity and prizes. You don’t have to belong to Ravelry to buy patterns, but you do have to join if you want to participate in the KAL/CAL games and prizes. Your project with any paid pattern by a participating designer is eligible for prizes, not just the patterns in the sale.

The pattern sale runs from Tuesday, November 21nd at 8:00 pm US EST – Tuesday, November 28, 2017 at 11:59 pm US EST. The KAL/CALs will run from Tuesday, November 21 at 8pm (US-EST) through the New Years Eve party December 31 at midnight (US-EST). The sale discount is 25%; use the code giftalong2017 at checkout. Check out the Ravelry group for all the details.

These are just a few of the 20 designs I’m including in the sale portion of the event. You can find all 20 designs here; scroll down to the Gift-A-Long 2017 bundle and click.

Here’s the list of all 311 participating independent designers. I’m pleased to be in such a creative group!

New this year: We’re having an Instagram Challenge. Here are the prompts, and I can’t wait to see the pictures! Use the hashtags #giftalong2017 and #gal2017 to share your pictures, and to search to see what everyone else is up to. I’m pdxknitterati on Instagram; what’s your IG name?

Are you knitting gifts for the holidays? My little secret, which is not really a secret: I don’t like deadline pressure, so I knit all year and then “shop” out of my knits for gifts. You can do that, too, starting this week. Grab some patterns, participate in the KAL, and just have fun!

Ready, set, KNIT! (or crochet…)

Hurricane Harvey Relief Fundraiser

The photos of the devastation in Houston are heartbreaking, the result of unimaginable rainfall from Hurricane Harvey. I’ve been looking into charity efforts, trying to figure out how to help.

The Mason-Dixon Knitting gals are one step ahead of me; they’re donating all proceeds from their Ravelry pattern sales through August 31 to the Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund, a fund established by Houston’s mayor and housed at the Greater Houston Community Fund, a 501(c)(3) public charity. This is brilliant.

I’m following suit. From now through Saturday, September 2, 2017 (midnight PST), I’m donating all proceeds from my Ravelry sales to the same Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund. If you’ve been thinking about buying a pattern, now is a great time to make it count a little more. Here’s a link to my patterns on Ravelry.

I know we as knitters want to help. Cash donations are the best way to get help to where it’s needed. While we’d love to knit something to help, Houston doesn’t need our knitted goods. Mary Mooney of the Oregonian suggests other ways to help.

I’ll be making a donation to the Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund, and hope you’ll help me make it that much bigger.

Linden Leaf, knit with Mason Dixon Knitting’s Euroflax mini skeins, in Forest.

SeaScape Scarflette, also knit with Mason-Dixon Knitting’s Euroflax minis, in Sea.

All my Ravelry patterns are included in this effort, but I wanted to highlight the MDK connection. Thanks for your help.

Happy Thanksgiving, and meet Zephyr!

Happy Thanksgiving!

It’s been a great year, knit-wise. I’m grateful for a life of designing and teaching, and meeting lots of fun knitters along the way. Knitters are the best people! We don’t have to agree on everything to be able to knit together. (Steek? Yes! Kitchener? No!)

The Indie Design Gift-A-Long is in full swing on Ravelry. Go join the group, use the coupon code giftalong2016, and join the KAL/CAL fun!

Zephyr Shawlette

I’m introducing another new design today. This is the Zephyr Shawlette, an asymmetric triangle knit on the bias. It’s named after the west wind. The lacy arrow represents the wind blowing west to east. The eyelets are like bubbles rising on the wind. I love that the yarn I used is called Bollicina, which is Italian for bubble. It’s 65% cashmere, 35% silk which makes it soooo luxurious. Sadly this yarn is discontinued, but any other fingering weight yarn will make an equally lovely Zephyr.

Zephyr wingspan

I had 550 yards, so this knit up into a gorgeous large wrap. The pattern is easily adapted to your yardage; it starts at the narrow point and grows from there.

Zephyr Shawlette gradient wingspan

Ann Berg test knit this for me with a Canon Hand Dyes William gradient, 460 yards of gorgeous shifting color.

Zephyr detail

And Rachel Nichols test knit this for me with the Fiber Seed’s Sprout fingering in Robin’s Egg, 480 yards.

Thanks for knitting, ladies! And thanks to Amanda Woodruff for tech editing. This is one of my favorite kinds of knitting, mostly stockinette so I can read blogs or my Kindle, or watch TV, and only pay close attention for a little bit. It would also be great for meditative knitting.

The pattern is on Ravelry, and it’s 15% offf through December 5, 2016, no coupon needed. But if you’re subscribed to my mailing list, you can get 20% off instead, with a coupon code from my newsletter. Let me know if you’d like to subscribe.

Trellis Vines Mitts

One more new release this week, this one through Knit Picks. I’m releasing a mitts only version of my Beanstalk Mitts and Scarf. It’s called Trellis Vines Mitts, and they coordinate with my Trellis Vines Stole Poncho.

Trellis Vines Stole Poncho

Same lovely lacy leaf and trellis pattern, using the same sport/dk weight yarn.

What else is going on? I’m taking a Harmony Singing by Ear class with Anne Weiss over at Artichoke Music in Portland. I’ve sung in her classes before; she is knowledgeable, supportive, and fabulous. I put class to use last weekend while singing with friends in church. I’m the low harmony on the verses of this version of Leonard Cohen’s “Anthem.” Click this link if you want to listen.

Rolling up my sleeves and getting to work in the kitchen. Here’s the recipe for my favorite turkey stuffing. My Baba (daddy) used to make it this way. I love that he used to just make things up, and suddenly we had our own Chinese version of an American tradition. I miss him lots, since 2001.

Chinese Sausage/Oyster/Water Chestnut Rice Stuffing, enough for a 15-20 lb turkey
2.5 cups uncooked rice (I like brown medium grain, but whatever you have is fine)
3 Chinese sausage (lap xuong)
2 (two) 8 oz jars of fresh small shucked oysters, drained and cut in half if they seem large
3 stalks celery, sliced 1/4 inch on diagonal
1 onion, chopped
1 can sliced water chestnuts, drained
3 eggs, scrambled (if you want it to be prettier, cook separately before adding so you have ribbons of scrambled egg)
1 tbsp soy sauce

Pre-cook rice, along with sausage. (Lay the sausage on top of the rice when you turn the heat down after it boils; they will be perfect.) When rice is done, remove sausage and slice 1/4 inch on diagonal.

Now it’s time to really cook!
Sauté sausage, onion, and celery in 1 tbsp oil. When onion is soft, add oysters and cook until they are just barely done (there will be a lot of moisture in the pan). Add water chestnut and eggs; cook ’til eggs are done. Beginning adding rice, one cup at a time, working it in. You may not use all the rice. When you have enough rice worked in (so that the ratio of rice to goodies looks right), add a bit of soy sauce for color (go lightly!). Salt and pepper to taste. Stuff the turkey, or not!

This is basically fried rice, with oysters and chinese sausage. yum….

I hope you’re having a peaceful weekend with people you love. Lots of time to knit while waiting for a turkey to roast. And then the mad rush to make gravy. Cheers!

Coming soon: Indie Design Gift Along 2016

It’s looking like a tradition: The third annual Indie Design Gift-A-long is beginning on Ravelry this week (Tuesday).

gal2016

These are just a few of the 20 designs I’m including in the sale portion of the event. You can find all 20 designs here; scroll down to the Gift-A-Long 2016 bundle (Summertime Blues poncho picture) and click.

What is Gift-A-Long? It’s a multi-designer promotion through Ravelry to help you kick-start your holiday gift-making. It begins with a pattern sale, and then the fun and games begin on Ravelry, with KAL/CAL activity and prizes. You don’t have to belong to Ravelry to buy patterns, but you do have to join if you want to participate in the KAL/CAL games and prizes. Your project with any paid pattern by a participating designer is eligible for prizes, not just the patterns in the sale.

The pattern sale runs from Tuesday, November 22nd at 8:00 pm US EST – Wednesday, November 30, 2016 at 11:59 pm US EST. The KAL/CALs will run from Tuesday, November 22 at 8pm (US-EST) through the New Years Eve party, Thursday, December 31 at midnight (US-EST). Check out the Ravelry group for all the details. If you want to preview all 300+ designers before the sale begins, that thread is already open here.

The sale discount is 25%; use the code giftalong2016 at checkout. Remember that it starts working Tuesday, Nov. 22) at 8 p.m. Eastern, which is 5 p.m. Pacific. (When we lived in New York, my PDX Mom would always ask “What time is it there?” when she called me. Twenty years later, and we still joke about it.)

Are you knitting gifts for the holidays? My little secret, which is not really a secret: I don’t like deadline pressure, so I knit all year and then “shop” out of my knits for gifts. You can do that, too. Grab some patterns, participate in the KAL, and just have fun!

Ready, set, KNIT! (or crochet…)

Gift knitting deadline looming near

Are you still trying to knock out last minute gifts for Christmas? (It’s too late for Hanukkah this year; all the candles have been lit.)

menorah and christmas stockings

Solstice? That’s even sooner than Christmas!

I don’t do deadline gift knitting; I don’t like the pressure. But I’m shopping through my ever-growing stash of knitted design samples for some very nice gifts.

If you’re the kind of knitter who thrives on holiday gift knitting, don’t forget about the Indie Design Gift Along. You can win prizes for participating, which is a bonus on top of getting your gift knitting done. The GAL/KAL/CAL runs through the end of the year; check out the action on Ravelry.

And here’s a very cute “T’was the Knit Night Before Christmas” to keep you amused…

Indie designer: Yarn Intercept Designs

Heladas Hat

Last night I cast on my first Indie Design Gift-Along project, the Heladas Hat. I love the clever 2-color quilted lattice stitch on the wide band. A very fun stitch that adds a lot of interest!

Heladas

The Heladas (frost) Hat is designed by Beverly S, yarnintercept on Ravelry. I’ve followed Beverly’s blog for many years; back in 2011 she even interviewed me for her blog!

Beverly is a middle school math teacher who also designs knitting patterns. She’s not afraid to use math in her design work! She designs accessories: hats, mitts, socks, and shawls. Her asymmetrical Bricktown Shawl is a very appealing use of slipped stitches and eyelets using two complementary yarns.

Bricktown

Bricktown

I had been planning to cast on Beverly’s Frozen Spires Cowl. This lovely cabled cowl would be perfect for the extra skein of Malabrigo Merino Worsted that’s left over from my Edin cardigan. Even better, I have an extra 1/5 skein from the sweater, so I can make this cowl one repeat bigger and even squishier than the original seen here.

frozen spires

And I still may. But right now, the hat is humming along. I’m using Malabrigo Arroyo in Purpuras and Borrajas, and I love the way it looks.

Malabrigo Arroyo purpuras y borrajas

Check out these designs and more on Beverly’s Ravelry designer page. And stock up during the Indie Designer Giftalong sale!

(All photos by Beverly S/Yarn Intercept Designs, except my cast on.)