Just finished a weekend of Vogue’s Virtual Knitting Live. I taught 4 classes and took 2 classes. I loved the back and forth!
My newest class, Sheepy Steeky Coasters, was really fun. The knitting is done as homework, so class is devoted to securing and cutting the steek, and finishing the edges.
Look at all the happy new steekers! You can be one, too. I’m teaching this class again on Saturday February 5 for Twisted Yarn Shop via Zoom; you can register here.
One of the classes I took was called The New Colorwork, by Margaret Holzmann. It’s all garter stitch, working with blocks of color, kind of like log cabin knitting with some extra shaping and construction. The Pythagorean Theorem is our friend.
You can see the progression from the 2 striped pink blocks and small light blue box being connected with the dark blue yarn, and then closing the gap by knitting the dark blue rectangle (actually a rectangle on top of a triangle) between them. This will eventually (if I ever get to it) have 4 more pink blocks, and 3 more dark blue rectangles, to make a larger square with a dark pink diamond crossed by dark blue arms. Cool! Margaret is the designer of the Safe at Home blanket (link to her site) that’s been so popular during the pandemic. Her blankets of geometric block constructions are ingenious.
The other class I took was Keith Leonards’s Pool Party. We played with assigned pooling (center), and planned pooling (on the needles). Keith uses a much simpler, not mathy way to find the Magic Number for planned pooling; it was an epiphany.
It’s much easier than the mathy way I’ve been doing it, so I’ve just updated the instructions for my color-pooling Shall We Dance cowl, and the updated pattern is now available on Ravelry and Payhip. It’s 15% off through February 1, no coupon code needed. (Newsletter subscribers hold tight, a coupon will be in your next newsletter.) Also, I’m teaching a class with this cowl and yarn in 2 color options (Huckleberry Knits Aran 2 Ply BFL that was dyed specifically for this class) with For Yarn’s Sake via Zoom on March 6. (Yarn and pattern included in class fee.) Register here.
So much teaching AND learning! A perfect weekend. How was yours?
The crown is definitely the star of the show. Absolutely gorgeous. Both of these pictures are pre-blocking.
I didn’t knit to gauge, but I’m not willing to knit a hat on smaller than US3 needles. The hat is supposed to be 22” but mine is 23” instead, and 9” tall. I don’t swatch for hats. I go by Meg Swansen’s maxim that the hat will fit *someone*! My first hat is a great big gauge swatch.
I’m knitting a second hat, with one fewer repeat of the body stitch pattern. My kit from For Yarn’s Sake has enough of all the CC yarn for a second hat, if I buy an extra ball of the main color, which I did. (There are 5 colorways to choose from.)
I’ve adjusted my cast on, too. I know how to get the crown to work out, based on my reduced number of stitches. Math tells me that my new hat will measure 19”, which gives me some negative ease to help keep it on my head. I might try to remove a few stitches to make it a bit shorter…or not. When it stretches out to accomodate my 22.5” head, that will also make it shorter. Fabric has to come from somewhere! My hats are generally 8” tall.
I’m teaching a Zoom class for For Yarn’s Sake this Sunday, and again later in the month, based on this pattern. (Classes are full. Should we schedule a third class?) We’ll start the class with a discussion on gauge! We’ll also talk about swatching, or not, and ways to adjust the size of the hat. I’m really looking forward to it!
In other class news, I’ve picked a winner for a free class with me at January Vogue Knitting Live. It’s Lauri T! I’ll email her and let her know that she’ll be in my YO? YO! Fun and Fancy Elongated Stitches class. I’m pretty excited about that one, too. I just re-vamped the handout for class, adding more fun stitches. We won’t get through them all in 2 hours, but the handout is a good reference and jumping off point. Congratulations, Lauri!
What new knitting skill do you want to learn in 2021?
I’m thrilled to be teaching at Vogue’s Virtual Knitting Live in January. It feels like a lifetime since I taught in NYC last January, in very different circumstances! Someday, we’ll all knit together in-person again, but for now this will do. We’ve been doing virtual events since May, and it’s going pretty smoothly. For the January event, Vogue is adding some very NYC flair, including a virtual fashion show.
I’m teaching Tink Drop Frog/Fixing Mistakes, Syncopated Brioche/Syncopation Shawl or Scarf, Minerva Entrelac Cowl, and YO? YO! Fun and Fancy Elongated Stitches. And! I’m giving away a spot in one of my classes. Leave a comment and let me know which class you’d like to take if you win, and why. I’ll pick a winner on January 5. You can also leave a comment on my Dec. 29 Instagram post, Facebook post, Twitter post, and/or in reply to my newsletter! I’m PDXKnitterati everywhere…
I sat in on a couple classes at Virtual VKLive this weekend. I enjoyed them both!
The first was Lucy Neatby’s 2 color double knitting in the round. I originally took this class in 2017 at Madrona, but I never did anything with it. Time for a refresher! I re-learned how it works, and several different ways to manage 2 yarns. It was fun, but it still doesn’t speak to me like brioche does.
I also sat in on Franklin Habit’s mosaic knitting class. I’ve done lots of slip stitch knitting before (most recently Half the Knit Sky), but not actual mosaic knitting, as defined by Barbara Walker. I learned a bit about how to chart mosaic knitting, and considered playing with different textures. All garter stitch? Garter on stockinette background? Stockinette on garter background? My personal preference is garter on a stockinette background, like in Half the Knit Sky and my Dotty Cowl and Dotty Cake hat.
I don’t love the waffle weave look of all garter stitch mosaic. And that’s when I realized…my Dissent Cowl is garter stitch mosaic. The waffle texture is most noticeable on the dot pattern at the beginning. But the collar portion is so iconic, it doesn’t come off as mosaic garter stitch. Well played.
The cowl is coming along nicely. It’s pretty intuitive knitting. I adjusted it to make it smaller, and the neck a little shorter. We’ll see how that turns out over all, soon. You know, of course, this just makes me want to knit a second one, with more modifications, but I don’t think I want to invest that much more time. So many things to knit!
What’s on your needles? I have this and Rio Calina, and maybe mitts to go with the Deep End Hat. I’m not feeling too excited about the mitts right now. I’m not sure I want mitts at this gauge? Would a cowl be more compelling? You couldn’t wear it with the hat (too much all together around your head/neck), but it would be a nice option for those who don’t wear hats. What do you think?
It was a big week! I did a little knitting, and a lot of teaching.
Here’s the little knitting, before. I ripped back my Rio Calina a bit. I learned that it’s not so much the direction of the cable cross that drives me, but the over/under. I didn’t like long snakey lines that continued uncrossed on the top of the fabric, so I changed it! Do you see what I did?
I like it a lot better this way.
The squash I’ve been pollinating (plant sex!) in the garden did some sneaky growing while I wasn’t paying attention. It got big!
I guess the bees can manage from here on out.
I used one of the squash on a pizza. Same basic structure as the puff pastry tarts in previous posts, but this is a little more substantial than the puff pastry.
Do you remember mug cakes, from a few years ago? We needed a small dessert, so I made a mug cake. This is half, plus some goodies. Here’s the recipe.
I taught 4 classes for Virtual VKLive, including Syncopation, which made its VKLive debut. It was really fun; my students were awesome!
Now I’m working on more video tutorials, and launching a Payhip store. More on that later.
It’s on! Round 2 of Virtual Knitting Live from Vogue Knitting. I’m teaching or lecturing every day from Wednesday (today) through Sunday. There’s still room in my Friday class, Intro to Lace and Beads: Fern Shawlette, and there is always room in lectures. My lecture on Thursday is Blocking: It’s Magic!
You can still register for classses, or you can just register for the virtual marketplace ($4.99) which gets you access to the market and other marketplace extras like virtual knit nights, trivia, meditation, and most fun: At the Drawing Table with Franklin Habit. Well worth the price of admission.
In light of recent events, Vogue has issued this statement:
We at Vogue Knitting stand in solidarity with Black communities and the Black Lives Matter protests happening around the world, and with everyone who is fighting for justice and equality in this country. In support of this, we will be donating a percent of net proceeds from this show—those already collected and yet to be collected from this show—to Color of Change, which is the nation’s largest online racial justice organization. “Color of Change helps people respond effectively to injustice in the world around us. As a national online force driven by 1.7 million members, we move decision-makers in corporations and government to create a more human and less hostile world for Black people in America.” For more information about Color of Change, please click here.
And as part of the whirlwind week, I’m part of a Facebook Live Zoom with Wool and Fiber Arts and Bead Biz. Come talk about design and beads with 2 knit designers and 2 crochet designers. That’s today, this afternoon, 3 pm Pacific/6 pm Eastern. Link here.
My Facebook Live Zoom with Knit Picks has been postponed from June 11 to June 18. That’s next Thursday, 8:30 am Pacific (I’ll let you do all the figuring for your various time zones). There isn’t a specific event listed; they usually do these on their page every Thursday morning. Link to the Knit Picks Facebook page here.
OK, deep breath, and off to prep for the day’s events. Brioche class tonight!
I’ve just updated my Fern Shawlette pattern to streamline it for classes. The i-cord edging, garter stitch body, and lace edging are now all on the same chart, and together in the instructions, instead of my previous modular approach.
I’m leaving both versions in the downloads section on Ravelry, so you can choose which way works better for the way you think! If you previously purchased Fern, you’ll find an update notice in your Ravelry library.
To celebrate this update, I’m offering 10% off the pattern through May 29. Use coupon code FernUpdate on the Fern Lace Shawlette Ravelry page here. Current newsletter subscribers, check your inbox for your code.
I’m using this pattern at Virtual Knitting Live in June. If you’re taking this class, make sure you download the file that says “Fern Shawlette for classes 05.20” for the updated version!
Vogue’s Virtual Knitting Live was much fun we’re doing it again, June 10 – 14. Registration is now open; jump if you want to take a class. Last time most classes sold out in 48 hours.
This time around I’m teaching 2 sections of Petite Brioche (Intro to 2 color brioche in the round, one section is already sold out), Intro to Lace and Beads: Fern Shawlette, Minerva Entrelac, and Next Steps in Brioche: Increases and Decreases, featuring Heliotrope hat or cowl, or Brioche Pastiche. I’m also giving a lecture: Blocking: It’s Magic!
Heliotrope and Brioche Pastiche
Registration for any class or lecture includes a ticket to the virtual marketplace, and lots of fun extra activities. If you’re not ready for classes, a $3.99 ticket to the marketplace comes with those extra activities, too.
I just finished a fun week at Vogue Knitting Live…Virtually. It’s been a great pivot from in-person events to getting together online. It felt like a safe haven in a world that’s been turned upside down. It was so cool to have students across 5 time zones! And all the money you saved on travel, you could spend in the market. Winning all around.
Thanks to all the intrepid knitters who came to the event, to classes and lectures and other free events…and to the virtual marketplace! And thanks to VKL for dreaming this up in the wake of our cancelled Seattle show. It was so successful, we’re going to do it again, June 10 – 14. Keep an eye on the Knitting Live site, and sign up for their newsletter if you’d like to join us at a future event. Classes sell out quickly! And sign up for my newsletter, if you want to know when and where I’m teaching, too.
Here’s my little corner of my office/studio where I teach. It’s the command center! The cats don’t actually get to be in the room during class, but they like to help with setup.
Another Virtual Knitting Live event is coming soon…June 10 to 14. On your mark, get set…