10 August 2012

Sotherton KAL

Sotherton is proving to be a popular pattern. I am, of course, deeply gratified and very humbled. It is very exciting when other people think something you came up with is worthwhile.

Anyway, I've started a KAL over on my Ravelry group, so please join us! I will be starting my own near the end of August with some lovely tosh dk in Byzantine. Can't wait! But until then I am happy to answer questions as best I can, and there is already a nice little gang working their way through the pattern. Until the Summer 2012 issue of Jane Austen Knits sells out, that's the only place to get the pattern. But once the issue is out of print, JAK will begin selling the individual patterns on Interweave's site.

And I'm hard at work on ideas for the 2013 call for entries!

09 August 2012

Mentioned by the Yarn Harlot

Yes, that was me that Stephanie mentioned about ten days ago in her Karmic Balancing post. I offered up a print/digital copy of Avast No. 1, which I sent to my new friend Carol, but Stephanie was really gracious in saying that I offered "what she does best". I'm going to go swan around Bath for a little while with a puffed up ego.

If you would like your very own copy, digital versions can be purchased on Ravelry. And I have a few copies of the print version with me and would be happy to send you one for $25 (includes digital copy and shipping) - shoot me an email at kathleendames at gmail dot com, so I can Paypal you an invoice.

01 August 2012

Maine: The Way Life Should Be

So, we've been here in Bath for about ten days, and aside from some marathon cleaning sessions (the caretaker wasn't the cleanest person, but you get what you pay for), it has been heaven. Moderate days, cool nights, beach time, knitting time, concerts on the green, lobster at the dock. Seriously, I should keep this place a secret, but it's too wonderful. Bath is particularly lovely IMO, since it's not overrun by tourists and t-shirt shops. There is a farmer's market here every Saturday, a farmstand just up the road, and they finally opened an ice cream parlor downtown (I've been saying they should for the past five years - next on my list is an old-fashioned penny candy store).

And there are yarn stores! Halcyon in Bath (I can walk there), Purl Diva in Brunswick (my friend Ellen stocks a great shop - she's even carrying Quince & Co. now), The Cashmere Goat in Camden (new and airy, right near the harbor), and all the way up to Heavenly Socks Yarns in Belfast, where I ended up modeling a shawl for their latest newsletter and "revealing" my Ravelry designer status.

Being a moderately shy person, I often feel weird just randomly introducing myself in a yarn store, but when talk turns to Ravelry and designs, I feel I have something to say. And it is fun talking to people about what I do (and since I didn't get that job I was interviewing for, knitwear design is what I will continue to focus on). I think my next task is to start teaching classes.

Anyway, I'm enjoying my time here and feel lucky to be able to come up for a month. I'm finishing up a submission for the Winter Knitty (keep your fingers crossed that it comes out the way I want it to, and that Amy & Co. like it), then there are some other knits that need final tweaks and photo shoots. I'm scouting locations and pondering outfits, so there will be a handful or so of new designs for Fall.

And I may have already acquired some yarn...

More to come next time we visit the library (free wi-fi)!

14 July 2012

Bixby blocking photos

There have been some questions about the photos and schematic in the magazine...

I'm a little bigger than the average model, so I didn't photograph myself in Bixby before it went off to Knitscene, but here are some blocking shots (NOT pretty - sorry!), which may convey a better idea of the neckline situation/structure. The schematic is trying to convey how the pieces appear before seaming, but it is a little confusing, so hopefully these shots will clarify a little.

I would wear it with at least one of the zippers undone a bit for a sort of punky, Flashdance-esque vibe.

06 July 2012

Bixby--Knitscene, Fall 2012

© Interweave
I have a new pattern in the Fall 2012 issue of Knitscene: Bixby Pullover. This is a dolman-sleeved pullover with massive zipper detail. The yarn used is Takhi Yarns Donegal Tweed, which is a delightfully rustic wool in Aran weight, which makes this a quick knit. And the zipper adds a sleek toughness to the mix. There are some short rows on the front sleeves to drop the neckline, as well as on the back of the yoke to raise the back of the neck.
© Interweave
 For more information, check out the Knitting Daily blog and Ravelry. And if you're the kind of knitter who prefers buying individual patterns to entire issues (but have you checked out the issue? lots of pretty stuff here), be sure to follow the blog - I'll announce when the pattern is available individually.
© Interweave
Thought you might enjoy seeing one of my sketches from the submission. Clearly, I am not a fashion illustrator, but this will give you an idea of my idea. I was going for a bit of a punky, Flashdance vibe. Try unzipping one side and letting it slip off your shoulder!

04 July 2012

Independence Day

Happy Fourth of July!

This shot from our trip to Ellis Island yesterday with Nick's parents. His mom came through there as a little girl, disappointingly for us we couldn't look her up in the system there, since it cuts off before her arrival. Still, it was so neat to see the place with her and hear what she remembered. And the boat ride was refreshing on a hot day. See the Flickr set here.

July??? How did that happen? WEBS recap

It seems that even before the kids got out of school, I got busy. And the blog has been sadly neglected.  But I have been busy in a fiber-y way.

My dear friend Annie and I met up at WEBS (she drove out from Boston, I up from NYC) the second weekend of June for some much-needed Mommy-alone time. Annie had a list, while I just wandered and pondered. But I found the perfect yarn for a women's Deckhand: Cascade Yarns' Ultra Pima, which is lovely and silky and a pleasure to knit. Annie bought a pile in a perfect red (Wine, I think, though it's really just ... perfect red) and some Natural for her stripes, while I went classic with Natural for the main color and Indigo Blue for the stripes and edgings. Annie is going to be my test knitter, if I ever get going on the pattern. I swatched and wasn't sure about my chosen needle size, but the yarn blooms a little without losing its silkiness, so US6 may be just right. The children's Deckhand was worked flat and seamed with drop shoulders, but we've been talking in-the-round with raglans for the grown-ups. Something a little more refined.

Annie also got her yarn for Sotherton. I got mine a while back at Knitty City. And I think we'll do a little KAL once the weather cools off. Much as I lovelovelove Madeline Tosh yarn, I don't want a sweater's worth of it on my lap in July or August. So, I'll announce that here on the blog and on the Kathleen Dames Ravelry group, probably some time after the *lympics. (Don't want to get in trouble with the USOC, you know.)

As you can see, we were very excited to get to WEBS!
My other WEBS purchase was a skein of tosh prairie (I know lots of knitters don't like single-ply yarns, but I really like this) in Plaid Blanket, which became my travel knitting when we went to see the folks in Door County. I'm inordinately fond of lace projects for traveling: one small/big skein (you know, lots of yardage but compact) and one needle. I made up a shawl pattern that may or may not be finished now. I have to block it before I know for sure, but it was lovely to knit. And the colors were perfect for the woods of Wisconsin: forest green, the gold of fallen pine needles, grey stones, flashes of midnight sky, and that bright green of new cedar boughs.
WEBS purchases
Prairie and Ultra Pima
WEBS purchases 2
Our haul!

There may also be three sweaters in various states of close-to-done-ness awaiting my ever-wandering attention. One needs a zipper re-sewn in (is there anything less fun than sewing a zipper in a sweater, again?), another needs the yoke reknit since one skein of yarn ended up being lighter than the other three (see, even "experienced" knitters mess up and should know better than to not alternate skeins in mildly variegated yarn), and the third needs ... something ... again (sigh).