28 February 2010

Free Pattern Friday: Bome (Spring)

Despite 20" of snowfall here in the city, which closed the schools on Friday (hence, the belatedness of this post), I'm ready for Spring. Or perhaps it's because of all that snow. Anyway, this pretty fairisle cardigan is so springy with its colors and knitted-in message (Bome means Spring in Korean), as well as the pretty neckline, 3/4-length sleeves, and lacy edging. I'm pretty sure I couldn't whip this up in time for Spring, especially since I still live a steek-free existence, but a girl can dream!
[Ravelry link / Pattern link]

21 February 2010

King Charles Brocade

The project I was working on before the Olympics started is a pullover for me in Swan's Island Organic Fingering yarn (Robin's Egg blue) in King Charles Brocade. It's on hold until my Games project is complete. But imagine my surprise when I saw these images [color photo / ultraviolet photo] yesterday of the original vest King Charles wore on the day of his execution. Apparently, they are going to use some high-tech tests to determine if the stains on the pullover are the king's blood. Ah, the times we live in. How crazy that the color is so close to my sweater's!

20 February 2010

Free Pattern Friday: Vinterblomster

Yes, it is Saturday, but I was working on something else (freelance projects, teething 18-month-old, world's greatest knitting book idea), so you had to wait until this morning. I know you've been waiting...

And I'm waiting for Spring, so these pretty Vinterblomster mittens seem perfect. Heidi Mork came up with a lovely, modern, stranded knitting pattern that will have you raiding your fingering-weight yarn stash for pretty Spring colors or whatever else strikes your fancy (lots of color combos on Ravelry, if you're looking for inspiration). I love the almost hand-drawn feeling of the flowers. Go on, you know we have more winter to wade through, and if you have a pair of Vinterblomsters, you'll look forward to the next snow storm. [Ravelry link / Heidi Mork's blog link / PDF link]

12 February 2010

Free Pattern Friday: Tempest (and Knitting Olympics insanity)

If you haven't knit a Tempest yet, what are you waiting for? I mean, you have delectable sock yarn that you're "saving" for the right project, right? This is it! A lightweight cardi knit out of two skeins (well, four if you're using Koigu or Claudia Handpaint's or something that is, like, one skein per sock) of sock yarn. I lovelovelove my Tempest. And since it's written by Ann Weaver and published by the lovely Knitty people, you know it's a good one. And you work it on larger-than-usual-for-sock-yarn needles, so it does not drag on forever. Wait, did I tell you that I love mine? I'm wearing it tomorrow. [Pattern linkRavelry link]

The other reason I'm recommending Tempest this week is because I'm insane. I've decided to enter the Knitting Olympics to knit up a sweater of my own design in the next 17 days in Madeline Tosh merino light, a lovely fingering-weight single (that's a skinny sock yarn with only one ply for you non-knitters reading this on Facebook - I know who you are, people!), so I've been checking out other fingering-weight sweater patterns on Ravelry. I have various plans, and I have swatched this yarn (on US5s, so it's not complete insanity, not like deciding to do a Bohus for the Olympics or something, so this should be a doable but challenging challenge, which is the point of the Knitting Olympics. Wish me luck. I so want that medal!

And I forgot to mention in my last post that I also knit up a pair of Amy March's Slippers in my little fit of knitting little things, since the pair I worked for myself some time ago resides in Maine, while I'm in New York in a blizzard. My feet are much happier now, though I may re-knit them, double-stranding the yarn. I used Sheep Shop Sheep 1 in a pale blue (shocker, I know), which is an aran weight yarn, and it's a little thin (the pattern calls for bulky). Yes, as I'm typing this I'm realizing that I really should reknit, holding the yarn double, to make them perfect.

Apologies for the lateness of this post, but I've been working my derriere off on a work project. Working from home is amazing, but I am a tough lady to work for! My standards are very high, and I've been slacking off for too long, so I have to whip myself back into shape. InDesign4 is a whole different kettle of fish from my "old" days at Course Technology.

10 February 2010

Thanks to the test knitters!

I know I shouldn't be surprised by how helpful and great knitters are, but I was thrilled with the quick response to my call for test knitters and how many people like Vines even before I've published it. Hopefully, all my lovely test knitters will come back with great little garments by the end of the month, and then I'll be able to offer the pattern for sale.

I have some more projects in the pipeline but have also been busy knitting smaller things, like a Ripley for me in the delectable Lobster Pot Cashmere. I was kind of hoping to get a picture of me in it today outside during the snow, but a certain little person needed a nap, so I stayed behind (and worked and worked on a really interesting but challenging project). Ripley is a great little hat with a lace edge from Ysolda Teague's Whimsical Little Knits 2 (did you see how much that lovely creature raised for Haiti? to quote Rachel Zoe, "Uh-mazing"), which I bought last month in a fit of Help-Haiti-on-Ravelry-itis. Mary-Heather's Simple Things Shawlette and Snowbird by Heidi Kirrmaier also whizzed through the magical portal of PayPal into my Library.

I also knit up a little double-cowl for Isobel from half a skein or so of Malabrigo Lace in Intenso (luscious reds and pinks). She picked out the yarn from stash and has been pestering me to get it started (and then finished). I'm so glad I did because she just loves it. She's even worn it to bed and all day at school. Little cutie. I did a picot bindoff (not a picot hem, the little points), which would be lovely except the edge totally rolls and no one sees it, since the thing is just a jumble of Valentine-y goodness around her neck. I'll have to see if I can snap a picture of her in it. And I may need to make a single cowl for me, if I can figure out the best way to show off those picots. Hmmm.

So, now I'm working on something for my sister in some great Malabrigo Sock yarn acquired when I did a little hanging with the bloggers a couple of weeks ago. Ms. Babycocktails took the bus down from Beantown, and we met up with the Subway Knitter herself for a little Soho yarn crawl. It was so much fun to hang out with fellow knitters/designers.

09 February 2010

Vines (call for volunteer test knitters)

I whipped this little tank/camisole/vest (which would you call it?) up after the NYC Yarn Crawl in the Fall with some lovely tosh dk (it was labelled tosh worsted when I bought it but they've changed it now that they've added a heavy worsted to the line; it's a light worsted weight yarn) from Downtown Yarns. I started to write up the pattern, then the Craft Fair and holidays were upon us, and benign neglect set in. Plus I was a little daunted by the notion of grading the pattern but didn't just want to offer it in one size. Now it's graded, and I'd love some test knitters to see if I did it right.

I think it's a great layering piece for now and into the Spring. Knit in a bright color, it will add a bit of pop to your wardrobe. In this Inky blue, it goes with all my clothes ;)

So, please send me an email (kathleendames at gmail dot com) if you'd like to volunteer to test knit Vines. I've knit up the medium, which took 270 yards (exactitude - I love my little kitchen scales!) and have graded the pattern from XS to XL - I'm looking to see if I've done this grading thing correctly and to verify my yarn amount guesses. The pattern is both written out and charted, the lace is simple to work and remember but lovely nonetheless, and it only took me five days to knit (of which at least a day was spent pondering how I wanted the top edge and straps to work out). Check out my project on Ravelry for more details.

05 February 2010

Free Pattern Friday: Little Hearts

Time is running out for a little knitted love this Valentine's Day, so how about these Little Hearts? Just a little bit of worsted yarn can show someone you care. Plus, you'll get to practice your figure-eight cast-on. [Ravelry link]