Knitting

It’s A Wrap and Other Worldly Pursuits

This new design has been giving me a few fits. I’ve had to rip out at least three or four times, trying to get just the right combination of patterns. I’m working with an alpaca/bamboo, sport weight yarn that I died myself with cochineal (which is a fun experience in itself!) Here’s a little glimpse of it:
This is going to be a rectangle shaped wrap/scarf with a lot of texture/pattern which I love to see in a garment. So once I get all the patterning figured out, I will finish the sample and show you!

And elsewhere in the world . . . .

I have always admired the amazing work of Marie Wallin. She was the head designer for Rowan Magazine for eight years but in 2013 decided to start her own design company. She resides in a small village called Hoby in Leicestershire, England. You can also find her on Instagram and Facebook to name a few. She is known for her beautiful fair isle work:

Ravelry: Houndstooth Tweed Loop Scarf

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Ravelry: Georgia Fairisle Tam

Ravelry: Hartington

If you haven’t heard of Rosa Pomar or seen her beautiful designs and website, then you must be introduced to her! She is a Portugese designer living in Lisbon. I recently discovered her extensive offerings of fiber related products on her website. There is so much there, you will think you have died and gone to a knitter’s dream heaven. She owns a brick and mortar as well (see below). Here are a few examples of her work:

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… And another Fair Isle knitter. I recently discovered this article and wonderful video on Bloomberg featuring Fair Isle designer, Mati Ventrillon, who actually lives on this island raising sheep, shearing them and having the wool processed into yarn she can use in her beautiful designs. Her process is fascinating as you will see played out in the video. She does a combination of machine and hand knitting to create her designs. Be sure to watch the video, you won’t be disappointed. You can also find Mati on Facebook and Instagram.

store_imgbespoke_imageI hope you all are having the best weekend, and I have given you some good inspiration! Happy knitting.

xoxo Shannon

 

 

Knitting · sweaters · wool

A Little Plotulopi Anyone?

I recently received my “plates” of Plotulopi from Claire of The Woolly Thistle and also the popular podcast, New Hampshire Knits of which I am a listener. I highly recommend it!

She is currently hosting a KAL for the Rusty Cardigan by Steinunn Birna Guojonsdottir which is so beautiful, and one I have had my eye on for a while. And it’s free to boot! Won’t you join Claire and the rest of us? My color selections were eggplant for the body of the cardigan and cream for the fair isle work.

If you’re not familiar with Plotulopi, it is a one-ply unspun Icelandic wool yarn from Istex with a gauge for 1-ply: 19 sts to 10 cm (4”) over St st using size 4½ mm (Old UK 7) (US 7). This yarn could also be used as a 2-ply, you just pull from center of plate for 1-ply or from the center and outside of plate together for 2-ply. Lori Ann Graham of  the Lori Times Five blog features it on her Instagram feed and her Ravely project page.

And some photos courtesy of Ravelry:

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I will keep you all posted on my progress. Happy knitting and happy Sunday!

xoxo Shannon

Knitting

One Stitch At a Time …..

You know, I think that those who don’t knit realize just how therapeutic knitting can really be. And it’s not just the process that soothes, but also the wearing of the finished project. It just keeps on giving and giving and giving. And so it is with me. When I’m having a hard day, just wearing something I’ve made lifts my spirits.

It doesn’t necessarily have to be knitting I suppose. In the past I’ve enjoyed sewing, cross stitch, rug hooking. But there’s just something about wearing a knitted garment that is so comforting. And then, if it’s made by someone else as a present? Well, that makes it even more special!

The specific FO I’m thinking of is the Campside Shawl by Alicia Plummer.

IMG_3430It’s humble beginnings . . .

cropped-cropped-img_3432.jpgProgress – this was my first shawl by the way. And I never used to like them! I think it was the really lacey ones that just didn’t appeal. Then I started seeing more and more interesting and beautiful patterns out in the knitting world and this particular one appealed to me. Oh, the comfort, warmth and sense of pride it has given me.

FullSizeRenderFullSizeRenderAnd tada! Finito!

IMG_0063IMG_0116Next on the needles: Shore Cardigan by Carrie Bostick Hoge. Really enjoying this knit using Lettlopi in Color #1403. Now talking of caressing the skin, this Icelandic yarn as you know is not the softest. I’ve heard through the grapevine though, it gets softer with wear and washing. The affordability, overall quality and color sold me. I will keep you posted.

As you also see, some new additions to my knitting library: “Knitting From the North” by Hilary Grant, “Knitted Cable Sourcebook” by Nora Gaughan, and “In the Footsteps of Sheep” by Debbie Zawinski. I would highly recommend all three. They are all quality books offering great patterns, photos and inspiration.

IMG_0133cropped-img_3393.jpgAnd… a little swatching with some lovely local alpaca died by moi using cochineal. The truer color is in bottom picture. I’ve always loved cables and Norah Gaughan’s new book provides the best inspiration!

Hope you all are enjoying Spring! I don’t know about you, but I for one am ready. Bring it on.

xoxo Shannon

 

Knitting · wool

my summer project

 

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Campside Shawl in Progress

I’ve been wanting to try this shawl for a looong time. Alicia Plummer’s classic design is free too, you can get it here. So far it has been an easy and enjoyable knit, I’m moving right along with no problems. It starts with a Garter Tab Cast-On then rotating and picking up stitches, a set-up row then off you go with increase section, lace work and ribbed edging.

My yarn of choice is Araucania’s Huasco DK hand-painted merino wool in #119 Silversea colorway (below).

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Glorious

I am truly loving this yarn, the color, the tight twisted plies, and the stitch definition it’s giving me. How do you like my cat and yarn pillow? It was my grandmother’s; not sure if she made it or someone else did, but it is definitely handmade. The cat looks a lot like my own Miss Squeakers with the same colored eyes! Too funny.

I hope you are all having a great summer so far. Taking any interesting knitting projects with you on vacation? Part of any good KAL’s?

Here’s a run-down of some summer KAL’s for you:

  • Woolful’s KAL starts today and runs until September 1st! You can choose from one of Hannah Fettig’s patterns out of her newest book, Home and Away. 
  • Organic Knitters have chosen the Gerbera Shawl by Linnea Ornstein, running until August 14th. They are offering kits starting tomorrow.
  • At the Berroco Design Studio, they have started Astilbe, a lovely free cardigan pattern by Amy Christoffers.
  • Olga Buraya-Keflian of Olga Jazzy is hosting one to start on the 4th of July! The pattern of choice is one of her designs, Tetrapods, a dazzling shawl.

Have a Happy Friday and 4th of July for me! I will not be doing too much, maybe a few fireworks and a little grilling, some ribs possibly and definitely some knitting.

xoxo Shannon

color · Knitting · Knitting, Crafts, Food · wool

Tea, Fiber and Some Knitting Catch-up

Hello all, Happy New Year! Where has the time gone? The months got away from me. I hope you are all doing well, healthy and excited for 2016. It feels good to be talking to you all again. I’ve missed you.IMG_3060Here is my latest dyeing venture with black tea bags and 100% merino wool from Camellia Fiber Company. I love the way these turned out: a soft, classy color, very warm and nice. What do you think?

 

FullSizeRenderSome past Christmas knitting in progress: I ended up making three of these (Jason’s Cashmere Hat) in red, blue and green for each of my sons. They loved them and I was so proud of myself, cranked these babies out in about four days each. That was fun. I felt very accomplished.

Here’s a little Instagram update for you:

It is finished. #baby #blanket #knitting #knittersofinstagram #knitstagram

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My latest FO for a certain pregnant someone who will remain unnamed just in case she pops in. This was a very quick, satisfying project done in a cotton yarn which I will have to say has never really appealed to me in the past. But this was a nice quality yarn from Berroco, “Modern Cotton”, worsted. The pattern, “Chevron Baby Blanket”, is a freebie and can be found here.

#Ley Lines #shawl coming right along by #Joji Locatelli #knitting #knitstagram #knittersofinstagram

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Ley Lines” is getting close to being done. It’s a little fiddly in Section 5 where you start to bind off the sections on the even rows. Not sure if I’m doing this right. It’s unique and different from any other pattern I’ve tried.

#sock #knitting #knittersofinstagram #knitstagram #wool #blue #white

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How do you like my new #knitting #bowl from a kind #friend #knitstagram #knittersofig #knittersofinstagram

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A fairly new project I’m attempting. Having a little trouble at the point in the pattern where it says to “turn the work inside out and work in opposite direction to finish the sock”. Pattern is “Hugs Socks” by Jean Moss from her book, “Great Little Gifts to Knit”.  Anyone attempted this one yet?

How is your year going so far? Trying anything new? Be brave, go knit something good.

xoxo Shannon

Knitting

Ravelry Pattern Review and a W.I.P. Update

Indigo Frost” by Isabell Kraemer

This speaks to me of snowy woods, winter time, sleigh rides, and Little Red Riding Hood. You know, something that is just calling for you to make. I love the way it hangs in soft, loose folds around the body, the ribbing, the eyelet design, the Fair Isle work at the yoke and the adorable pom poms. It all just comes together very well. Isabell is a prolific designer as evidenced by her Ravelry page and if you are looking for a good cardigan or sweater pattern, you have come to the right place. Check out her blog here.


poncho collage


At the top of Ravelry’s “Hot Right Now” list, this could be the perfect gift for someone or a great addition to your winter wardrobe. And to make it even better, it is worked seamlessly from the top down. The color work is a simple 4-color slip stitch pattern (sounds like some Mosaic knitting to me).

Elsewhere:


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…. And talk about color knitting, the second color has been added to my surprise project! It is coming along swimmingly (do people really use that word anymore?). The only problem I have had knitting this project is my stitch count keeps getting messed up somehow and it throws off my mitered decreases and yarnovers. So far I have been able to fix it. It is frustrating at times, though, grrrr. Other than that, I love the project. It is pretty fast knitting and I am enjoying the color changes.

I hope you all are having the best day and happy weekend!

xoxo Shannon

design · Knitting · stitch patterns · sweaters · texture · wool

Pom Pom Mag Review, Issue #14

I now own my very first issue of Pom Pom Magazine, #14. I must say, I do love it. So concise, and just the right size to fit into your bag (6 1/2 ” x 9″ to be exact), as well as the obvious. It includes great patterns and articles such as the discussion of different breeds of sheep and their wool and how John Arbon Textiles in North Devon got their start to name a few. There is even a recipe for pumpkin spice cake included!

Here are some of my design picks:

Hitchcock” by  Alexa Ludeman of Tincanknits

Love, love, love this t-shirt sweater design. The richness of the “Pomegranate” color way gives it such great depth and the fact it is a simple, classic design puts it in the staple category, something I would want to knit over and over in many colors. There is one change I might make to the pattern. Since I am fairly short waisted, I would probably shorten it to just below my waist which would be an easy thing to do. This sweater seems to have been fashioned after the classic Henley. It is unisex so you can make it for your boyfriend, spouse, brother, sister. This is definitely going in my knitting que.

Stats:

  • Category: Sweater, pullover
  • Yarn: Swans Island, worsted in shades Pomegranate or Frost. This certified organic wool is hand-spun in New England and hand-dyed in Maine.
  • Sleeves knit first
  • Body worked from bottom up in one piece to underarm
  • Ribbing at hem, cuff trim, neck trim and buttonhole strip
Karusellen” by Erica-Knits

Adorable, rustic and whimsical. Really liking the tweedy texture of Shelter, a great pick! What a cozy, cute and quick knit. I have not personally worked with Shelter yet, but this design has me itching to!

Stats:

  • Category: hat, beanie, toque
  • Yarn: Brooklyn Tweed’s Shelter, worsted in shades Woodsmoke and Thistle. 100% Wyoming-grown Targhee-Columbia wool
  • Colorwork
  • Ribbing at bottom rim
  • Pom pom
Magdalen” by Joji Locatelli

There is so much going on in this outstanding scarf by Joji Locatelli! Where do I begin? First of all, the color caught my eye immediately, one of my favorites. Then the design patterns! The dimensions coupled with the dramatic take this over the top.

Stats:

  • Category: scarf/wrap
  • Yarn: O-Wool Classic Worsted (a 100% certified organic merino) in Begonia
  • Size: One size at 16″ wide by 69″ long
  • Patterns: Honeycomb cable on the body and Twisted Rope cable for trim

Note: I ordered my copy of Pom Pom Quarterly from Fringe Supply Co. Unfortunately they are sold out right now, but have a few other good publications still for sale.

I hope you are having the best day!

xoxo Shannon