May 30, 2012

Last day of May Giveaway Offer

Remember to enter the iMake May giveaway for which I am offering up one skein of the handspun yarn listed in my Etsy shop.
For instructions on entering please read this blog post, but also listen to the podcast   - it's well worth it!

May 24, 2012

From weaving leftovers to knitting pattern

I have had this beautiful yarn sitting in my stash for more than 4 years: the blue colorway of Blue Sky Alpacas, Alpaca/Silk.It was leftover from a weaving project I did for a small show in Tacoma, WA.
The piece is called Walk on the Beach and includes shells, dried algae and drift wood from a beach on San Juan Island. These items were woven into the piece with the help of supplemental warp threads made of a stainless steel/silk thread.

I had 4 skeins of the blue yarn left over and finally found the perfect knitting project for it: a light shrug that drapes beautifully and features armholes so it doesn't slip off my shoulders.


It can be worn with the front panels hanging down loosely or pinned across the bust with a nice shawl pin.

Since some of my friends would also like to knit this shrug, I wrote up the pattern which is currently up for testing on Ravelry in the Free Pattern Testers group. It will be published when the test knit is compelted.

May 21, 2012

Textured Stitches - a book review

A Playful Day is a wonderful podcast and blog that I listen to / read regularly. According to the host it "attracts fellow crafters, yarnies and small dogs. It's playful because that's what life should be." A statement I heartily agree with!

Following a recent donation incentive offer by A Playful Day I won - a knitting book! Like many of us I LOVE knitting books, have 3 shelves full already and a ton more titles listed on a wishlist. However, I am often a little dissappointed when I actually get new (to me) books, usually because of my personal preferences and not due to any major problems with the books themselves.

The book I received from A Playful Day has been on my wanted list for quite some time: Textured Stitches by Connie Chang Chinchio.
This book is absolutely wonderful!
There are 11 tops/sweaters/cardigans and 8 smaller projects including gloves, hats, a shawl and a headband (women patterns only).
Most of the designs are based on larger areas of simple stockinette stitch but they include wonderful textured details created with cables, traveling stitches, ribs etc.- rather simple means to achieve great results.

What I particularly love about the designs is that most are knit from fingering or DK weight yarn - even the sweaters and cardigans. This means lots of mindless knitting interrupted by areas where you need to pay attention - a great mix in my opinion - but even beter it makes for elegant, drapey pieces.
The finishing of the garnments looks very sophisticated, clean and professional.

The layout of the book is well done: the items are modeled in full in a way that clearly shows the construction, and there is a close-up of each textured stitch pattern.The charts are large enough for comfortable reading and schematics make it simple to modify certain areas of a garnment.

The author lists errata for three of the patterns on a book errata page

I recommend this book to anyone who doesn't mind lots of stockinette knitting and loves tailored fits.

May 13, 2012

May Giveaway - 1 skein of handspun

One of my favourite podcasts is iMake. The host, Martine, not only shares her knitting adventures but many other crafts including papercrafts, sewing, jewellery making, photography, amongst others. And she provides the listeners with a little insight into Guernsey culture, a place I have never been to but now desperately want to visit!

Every month iMake offers a giveaway to listeners - and this month I am sponsoring the giveaway by offering up one skein of the handspun yarn listed in my Etsy shop.
For instructions on entering please read this blog post, but also listen to the podcast   - it's well worth it!

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