31 May 2012

Matryoshkas and Gnomes and Folklore Crafts (Oh, my!)

Folklore Crafts: Matryoshka
Folklore Crafts: Garden Gnomes
Not so long ago, the cool people at Fabulous Publishing approached me about including Matryoshka Japonais in their Folklore Crafts: Matryoshka book. And now they've published it along with another Folklore Crafts book on Garden Gnomes. Each book contains thirteen patterns in a variety of crafts (knitting, crochet, embroidery, stamping, needle-felting, printables, etc.). There are even costumes to make! Both books are available from MagCloud in printed and digital form. Check them out!
Matryoshka costume
Gnome Cupcake Toppers
Matryoshka Japonais

A couple of months ago I knitted up a new set of Matryoshka Japonais, so Isobel could finally have her own. Next week (when I get past some deadlines - ack) I'll assemble them here on the blog so you can see a little bit of one of these Folklore Crafts in action.

If you would like a chance to win your own Folklore Crafts book, go "like" FabPub's Facebook page and leave me a comment here. I'll randomly select a winner for each book, and those cool people at FabPub will send it to you!

Blog Tour

5/28    Margot Potter    www.margotpotter.com
5/29    Joanna Montrichard    thatthingimade.blogspot.com
5/30    Vikram Goyal    craftgossip.com
5/31    Kathleen Dames    kathleendames.blogspot.com
6/1      Samantha Townsend    geekysweetheart.blogspot.co.uk
6/2      Redd Hynes    damenamedredd.com
6/3      Renee Lavinsky    myuglykitty.com
6/4      Val Hebert    valsartstudio.blogspot.com
6/5      Jessica Blaszczak    ballstonarts-craftsmarket.blogspot.com
6/6      Shayne Rioux    transcraftinental.com
6/7      Jean Yates    prettykittydogmoonjewelry.blogspot.com
6/8      Leesandra Diaz    sweetspotcards.blogspot.com
6/9      Jo Stafferton    feelingstitchy.com
6/10    Lori Anderson    prettythingsblog.com
6/11    Paul Hynes    g33kopolis.com
6/12    Alexis Lebrow-Wolf    whatthecraft.com
6/13    Anna Gailey    weeklyenthusiast.wordpress.com
6/14    Chrissy Leiberan-Titus    museofthemorning.com
6/15    Susan Beal    westcoastcrafty.com
6/16    Tonya Simmons    thetroublewithcrafting.blogspot.com
6/17    Sherezada Windham-Kent    handeyemouth.blogspot.com
6/18    Shayne Rioux    geekcrafts.com

29 May 2012

An Aran for Anne - errata

An eagle-eyed knitter (who I just deduced lives in the area - how cool!) noticed two errors in the the sleeve chart for An Aran for Anne: the fifth symbol down should read, “sl 1 st onto cn and hold in front, p1, k1 from cn”, and the seventh should read, “sl 1 st onto cn and hold in front, p2, k1 from cn.” The symbols are correct and are implemented correctly in the chart, but their descriptions in the legend are incorrect. I've bumped her comment on the Ravelry pattern page and let my editor know, so the errata should go up on Interweave's site soon.

I'm sorry for the error and hope it doesn't inconvenience anyone too much.

22 May 2012

Anne and Frederick are back home

A day earlier than expected a good-sized box arrived with An Aran for Anne and An Aran for Frederick, as well as my tear sheets and copy of Jane Austen Knits Summer 2012. Even better was a sweet note from Amy, the editor. The magazine, in case you haven't seen it, looks great! I can't wait to spend some quality time with the articles and patterns.

Of course today would have to reach the 70s with humidity over 80%, so I will not be modeling the prodigal sweaters any time soon, though I have been trying on the current project, which may be a Knitty submission, if I can finish it to my liking in time. It's been interrupted by some freelance graphic design work and a bunch of inaugural-presidential "stuff" for Penelope's preschool. And therein lies the problem, I think. I've had time to think about this knit, which leads me to think of making changes, which stops me in my tracks and makes me think more. But I think it's good; now to just get it done.

In case you were wondering, Sotherton does not get to come home. I'm not the biggest fan of knitting things more than once, especially garments, but I'm going to make an exception with this one. And I've already got the yarn:
Tosh vintage
Tosh Vintage in Byzantine
Doesn't that look yummy? I was tempted to just get more Filigree, as seen on that adorable model, since it was an awesome colorway to work with, but I thought it might be fun to try something new, something not blue (I know: who am I and what have I done with Kathleen?). So, Byzantine is a rich, spicy red, and the good people of Knitty City had enough of it (and, after The Best Day Ever, I was in need of some instant gratification!). I'd like to orchestrate a KAL for Sotherton, if anyone is interested (I know Annie*, my enabler, is - we texted back and forth about this yarn while I was in the shop). I'll post details in a week or so, and it probably wouldn't start until at least mid-June, though it might be better to wait until Fall. I'm used to having a pile of wool in my lap throughout the Summer, but not everyone is crazy like me. We'll see.

*We're going to enable each other into some SABLE (Stash Acquisition Beyond Life Expectancy) in a couple of weeks when we meet up in WEBS country for a little ladies-only adventure. No kids, no spouses - no offense. Just some girl time in the yarniest warehouse in the East.

11 May 2012

"It's the best day ever!"

Many thanks to Spongebob Squarepants (and consequently, my children and in-laws, for acquainting me with the porous fellow and his song--there will be ear-worm-ish music at that link--you've been warned!) for today's post title. Actually, it was yesterday that was the best day ever for me, at least as far as notice on Ravelry goes. Check it:
SQUEE!!!! After Veera's lovely Color Affection, which is blowing up right now thanks to the Yarn Harlot's latest FO, my two sweaters were "hot right now" all day yesterday. As of this writing Sotherton has 540 hearts, and An Aran for Anne 144. That's in, like, one day. I've never had a day like that, and it feels so very, very nice.

To be honest I've been moping around a little this spring. After banging out two sweaters and three patterns in a month-and-a-half, I was pretty fried, mentally and physically (my hip is still kind of wonky from sitting in my "groove" on the couch knitting away for such long stretches--clearly I need to follow Rebecca Watson's advice in the Summer 2012 issue of Interweave Knits). That's on top of all the usual family wrangling and presiding over the PA at Penelope's preschool and my ex's father passing away and, just, life. Then I had to whip my existing patterns and Avast No. 1 into shape for print to do the trunk show in March, which reacquainted me with my Art Director muscles.

The dreaming-up and knitting-up portion of this job I'm creating for myself are the parts I love, and the wrestling with spreadsheets and numbers gets my inner geek going, but the sales and marketing parts are challenging for me, so I'm working on that. I purchased Tara Swiger's Market Yourself the other day (though I'm having a problem with the download that has yet to be resolved) and am exploring all the ways to get myself out there more (for a homebody like me, that's more challenging than you might think).

So, thank you so much to everyone who hearted and queued Sotherton and An Aran for Anne! And extra thanks to those of you who discovered one of my older patterns. This is the kind of marketing I like best :)

10 May 2012

An Aran for Anne--Jane Austen Knits, Summer 2012

Not one, but two of my sweater designs are in the new Jane Austen Knits! Today's "share" is An Aran for Anne, my companion to An Aran for Frederick, which you may recall from last years issue of JAK (and may see below in the pictures from the magazine).

After I submitted Frederick last Spring, a bag of Louet Gems Worsted, procured from the lovely Loopy Yarns in Chicago, started pestering me. It was the perfect foil to the Brooklyn Tweed Shelter of Frederick: smooth and sleek in contrast to Shelter's airy, worsted-spun yarn. And by late summer it was a pretty sweater with empire-style waist shaping and Elegant Ribbing to enhance the shapeliness. Like Frederick, Anne is worked in the round from the bottom up and has a saddle-shoulder style hybrid yoke, which allows the cables and twisted stitches to keep going all the way up the back. The neckline is wider, almost a boat-neck, and, thus, flattering to the delicate collar bones of elegant ladies.

As you can see, I knit this sweater for me with 0-1" of negative ease. Not all models are as voluptuous as I am :) , yet it still looks very pretty on the lovely model from JAK (I need that skirt!).

Originally, I planned to release the pattern myself last Fall. I dropped Amy, JAK's editor, a note about it, and she asked about the possibility of including it in the Summer 2012 issue. For various and sundry reasons I kept putting off releasing it myself (I'm not even sure why now), and so it is now a part of this lovely collection. Yay!
© Kathleen & Nicholas Dames

© Christa Tippmann, Jane Austen Knits

© Christa Tippmann, Jane Austen Knits

© Christa Tippmann, Jane Austen Knits

© Christa Tippmann, Jane Austen Knits

© Christa Tippmann, Jane Austen Knits
You can check out An Aran for Anne on Ravelry. Print copies of Jane Austen Knits, Summer 2012 may be pre-ordered here. And if you can't wait, you can purchase the digital edition here.

09 May 2012

Sotherton--Jane Austen Knits, Summer 2012

I'm so excited to share my latest pattern! Sotherton is in the Summer 2012 issue of Jane Austen Knits, now available as a digital edition (and arriving at your LYS by the beginning of June).

Sotherton is worked in-the-round from the bottom up with a round yoke and a Gothic grillwork-inspired twisted stitch pattern. Designed with negative ease and empire-style waist shaping, you can see how wildly flattering it is on the beautiful model! Madeline Tosh's tosh dk in Verdigris is the yarn, and it was lovely to use--the different shades of green with spikes of verdigris and golden sunlight is perfect.

4" of negative ease - don't fear negative ease!

Check out the Ravelry page (even if you are not a member of Ravelry, I believe you can access pattern pages). You can also pre-order your print copy here, if you can't wait for your LYS to get their copies.

All photographs of Sotherton are © Christa Tippmann, Jane Austen Knits.

10 April 2012

OTN: Mermaid's Cardigan

Bunch o' tosh in Baltic
Here's what I have on my needles right now. I'm about two-thirds of the way through turning this delicious pile of tosh dk in Baltic (love that colorway) into a cardigan. Working with a dk/worsted weight yarn is a nice break from the laceweight thing I've been wrestling with (now in time out for a second time). I've been working on this in fits and starts, since I've had some soon-to-be published patterns to review thrown in there, which I'm very excited to share with you as we approach the publication date.

Not much else to report here. Easter was quiet. And I've got the urge to design a new shawlette - lots of lace and fingering weight yarn giving me the eye from the stash. Still mulling over ideas,  but I think something will crystallize soon.