7.15.2014

the Openwork T


With plenty of hot weather ahead of us I'm thankfully not too late in getting this pattern out! Made with a chunky T-shirt yarn "Tee Cakes" by HiKoo and #19US or 15mm it works up super quick.

 
The openwork section, a wide neck and generous side openings make this a perfect summer “T” and I would rate this for at least the advanced beginner because of the openwork section and how the bottom section is worked in the round.

Available as a PDF download $6.50


Here's a little sneak peak at a design I just completed for The BagSmith that will be showing the beginning of August at Stitches Midwest... kits will be available at that time as well.

The coat is made using a piece of merino/silk felt fabric (top section) with a yarn that was spun from the same fiber for the bottom section. It was nice to mix it up from the usual by incorporating the felt and since the felt makes up a large part of the piece the knitting (on a #17US, 13mm) works up in no time. Super toasty, this will be a great coat for the coming colder months.

6.17.2014

Translations

I'm happy to announce I now offer 3 of my crochet patterns in Dutch, Italian and Spanish. French and German coming soon... as well as a selection of my knitting patterns.


 



Available on Etsy or Ravelry.
Please contact me if you are having trouble accessing the translations.

4.04.2014

A little last minute but...



If you're in the Los Angeles area tomorrow stop by The Little Knittery where I'm giving a couple of free workshops on Tunisian Crochet. Times: noon & 4pm. Also a free macrame workshop @2pm along with trunk shows by Knit Collage & Julia Trice the amazing designer behind the Mind of Winter pattern line. All part of the 3rd Annual LA County Yarn Crawl. Hope to see you there!

2.07.2014

The Reluctant Hooker

I've often thought if I were to write a book of crochet patterns that that would be the title. Reluctant in that crochet doesn't flow for me like knitting does but maybe it should be "The Persevering Hooker" in that even though at times it befuddles me I'm not going to give up!

One of the main reasons for my wanting to persevere is because of the amount of requests I get from crocheters who want a crochet version of my knit designs. And because I love a challenge I can't say no, I'm always adding to my crochet "to-do" list from these requests. The above coat is the result from one of these requests. It's the crochet version of my Swing Coat (currently working on the pattern).

Made in Tunisian Crochet with a S hook and @7 skeins of Cascade Magnum (@860 yards super bulky) it works up quickly, love that about crochet!

Not sure how many of you are familiar with Tunisian Crochet but it takes elements of both knitting & crochet and is pretty easy to get the hang of... and even if you can't knit or crochet you will be working this stitch in no time.

So in preparation of this coat pattern I've worked a super simple cowl in Tunisian Crochet for you all to try.
Materials needed:
@123 yds/@112m of a super chunky yarn like Magnum by Cascade.
(color shown #9430 Highland Green)
A Tunisian crochet hook size S/19mm.
A Tunisian crochet hook is different from a regular crochet hook in that the shaft of the hook is longer and is the same size the whole length of the shaft like a knitting needle. I used a hook I purchased on Etsy from mimisneedlebasket. I bought both the R and the S but found I liked the S better with the yarn I was using. I used the S hook for the coat as well.

Finished measurements: 12"x 31" measured when laid flat before sewing together.
Gauge @1.5sts= 1"


Start by chaining 19. Going into the 2nd chain from hook pull a loop up through each chain space to end.


I went through the bump on the back of the chain because I like the way the edge looks.
When wrapping the hook the yarn should come over the top of the hook so when pulling the loop through the left leg of the loop sits in the front.

You should have 18 loops on your hook. You can see in this photo how the edge looks by going through the bumps on the back.

Now we work back. Do not turn. 
Wrap and pull 1 loop through the edge stitch. This is the 1st stitch of the next row.
Now wrap the stitch as before and pull through the next 2 loops on the hook. Work in this way down the row of loops until you are left with 1 loop on the hook.

The next row will put the loops back on the hook. Do not chain 1 before starting the next row. You may see other tutorials that have you chain 1 before starting the next row but I found it creates a nicer edge to not chain 1.
Insert hook into the 2nd stitch of the previous row. 


 Wrap and pull up a loop. 2sts on the hook.
Work this way to the end of the row.
The last stitch is worked the same as the others by going into the stitch of the previous row.
Continue working the rows as described until desired length. I used 1 full skein of Magnum and when I counted the vertical lines that you can see so prominently in the photo of the finished piece I counted 34 from the starting chain to the end. 

I ended on a row with the loops on the hook then joined that edge to the starting edge by crocheting the edges together.



Rodney looking a little unsure about wearing the cowl.... You can see the side that's showing more prominently here looks a bit like reverse stockinette stitch or a purl side and that's why I chose it for the crochet version of the Swing Coat. The knit version is worn with the purl side facing out and I thought this was a good substitute.

Maybe you'll be inspired to try Tunisian Crochet and for extra help I'm sure there are countless videos on youtube to check out ;) OR if you're in Los Angeles the first weekend of April during the 3rd annual LA County Yarn Crawl we'll have demonstrations of Tunisian Crochet at The Little Knittery so come on by!

12.19.2013

Addi-ctive


I wish I was clever enough to come up with that title, but my friend Asuka used it after seeing my new Addi Express machine in action.... and it is addictive!

Asuka is the Director of Education and Public Programs at the Santa Monica Museum of Art and had hired me to teach a couple of workshops at the Museum. For the 2nd workshop I brought the Addi machine and was so glad I did. It's hard to offer a workshop or to teach a class where you walk out with a completely finished project but it happened that night! We all walked out with finished hats having cranked out the bulk of the hat on the knitting machine. To set it up and crank it out takes probably 10 minutes tops. The most involved part is getting the work off the machine then knitting the ribbing on the bottom edge and binding off.

I first saw it in action at a trunk show the rep for Addi had at The Little Knittery and Kat and I were immediately taken with it (you can check out videos on youtube to see it in action.) After my daughter kept asking if we could get one I thought, what the heck and justified it by thinking of all the Christmas gifts we could crank out... as of yet not one :(

Here's Wilhelmina, my 6 year old working on it. It's a very simple machine to use, she has no problem doing the set up row, making the piece and taking it off by herself. The flat pieces are a little trickier but she's trying.

Here's a flat piece on the machine. Kat and I were making fingerless mitts and were getting a little frustrated with how it would sometimes skip at the ends and we would have to redo it but we weren't sure if it was our inexperience with the machine or if flat pieces are just trickier.

Here's a flat swatch and a bit of a hat showing at the top of the picture. The hat I used Misti Alpaca Chunky and it worked great. I used a 10.5 US needle for the ribbing and did a kitchener bind off. The flat piece was a lighter worsted and it worked great too. I want to work on a sweater with a lighter worsted... I think the needles on the machine are the equivalent to a US 10 or 10.5 so the lighter worsted would have a nice drape.

Here's Ursula wearing the hat she made (with a little help from mom). Again we used Misti Alpaca Chunky. For the bottom we held it together with a thin strand of something sparkly. There are a few rounds of this yarn that was like ric rac that she wanted but it was such a pain to work with we nixed it before it ruined the whole thing.


But what threw me off track with the machine and my intent to make lots of Christmas gifts was a job I had knitting for The Ellen Show last weekend. They wanted a matching hat and scarf in a bulky yarn (unfortunately the yarn was too thick for the machine.) It's always a good feeling to finish within a deadline and although I didn't get to see it a friend of mine sent me this photo and I thought it looked pretty good!



OK finally, hope everyone is having a great Holiday Season... better sign off to get cranking on some gifts! All the best in the New Year!




11.20.2013

Santa Monica Museum of Art Workshops

Join me this Saturday, November 23rd at 10am for a beginning knitting workshop at the Santa Monica Museum of Art... already know how to knit then come on by December 3rd from 7-10pm for project knitting.

These workshops are in connection with a collaborative exhibit by artists Yutaka Sone & Benjamin Weissman. Check out the museum's website for a sneak peak or stop by tonight for the opening reception.

Hope to see you there!




11.13.2013

Wild Oats Fingerless Mitts


These fingerless mitts I made for an Intro to Cables class we had at The Little Knittery.  But I'm liking it as a great project for Holiday knitting, certainly meets all my requirements for gift knitting: quick, pretty easy and doesn't require much yarn... gotta keep chipping away at my stash!

These used 1/2 a skein of Pediboo by Frog Tree, so 2 pairs from one skein!


Materials:
1 skein Pediboo Yarn (182yds/165m) A blend of 80% Machine Washable Merino and 20% Bamboo Viscose.
#9 (5.5mm) needles
Darning needle
Cable Needle
Gauge 4sts = 1" in Stockinette Stitch
Finished measurements: 6"x 4"
If any adjustments are made to the pattern in regards to the stitch count add or subtract in multiples of 4, the number of stitches between the *'s.

Glossary:
K: knit
P: purl
St(s): stitch(es)
Stockinette Stitch (St st): alternate rows of Knit and Purl.
Sl 1: Go into the stitch as if you were going to purl and slip it from the left to the right hand needle.
 * : repeat
CN: cable needle
LHN: left hand needle
BO: bind or cast off

Cast on 35 stitches.
Rows 1-7: K
Row 8: P
Work 4 sets of Wild Oats Pattern. 32 rows total.
On the last set of the Wild Oats Pattern Knit Row 8.
K 7 more rows. BO
Sew side seams leaving a hole for the thumb @2.25" from the top and 2" from the bottom or how best it fits your hand.

Wild Oats Pattern (multiples of 4 +3)
Rows 1 and 5: (RS) Sl 1, * K2, sl1, K1, rep from * to last 2sts, K2
Rows 2 and 6: Sl 1, P1, * P1, sl1, P2, rep from * to end, P1.
Row 3: Sl 1, * Slip next 2 sts onto CN and hold at back of work, K the slip st from the LHN, K2 from CN, K1, Rep from * to last st, K2.
Row 4: P
Row 7: Sl 1, K1, * K1, slip the slip st onto CN and hold at front of work, K2, K1 from CN, rep from * to end, K1.
Row 8: P
Rep these 8 rows.