The yarn for my new shawl design arrived! Since I’ve talked so much about it already, I’m going to experiment with sharing the whole design process with you guys. It’ll be self-published if it turns out well, so there’s nothing forcing me to secrecy. Might as well try something different!
The Gloss is not noticeably shiny in the skein; definitely more grey than silver. It does have a nice…I dunno, liveliness… to it that is clearly the result of the silk though. It also feels every bit as squishy and delicious as the heavier weight version. I can’t wait to start swatching with it. The next big decision is beads.
Purple to match the main wedding color? Yellow to make the other yellow accents (like our flowers) pop? Clear to really bling out the silver and make it just plain sparkle? I’m going to swatch with each color to see what I like best, but I’d love to hear your thoughts too!
I’m still trying to knock out a persistent spring cold, so I’m going to keep this short and sweet before I fall asleep again. Thanks to your lovely poll votes (and the bride’s input, of course) I finally decided on a yarn for the shawl I’m going to make. I went with Gloss Lace in Sterling, a neutral grey color. I’ve worked with the Aran version of this yarn before,
Pole in Gloss HW
and it feels incredible, so I’m looking forward to working with its lace cousin. The yarn also has a nice subtle sheen, thanks to the 30% silk. I’m hoping that’ll contribute to making the shawl read more as “silver” and less as “grey”. Now to choose beads!
I am not participating in this year’s Knit/Crochet Blog Week, but reading all my friends’ posts has lead me to realize a few things about myself:
1. My favorite overall crafting tool is boring – it’s my spreadsheet program. It really does save me SO much time when designing though. Also, does yarn count as a tool? Because then I’m significantly less boring.
I mean seriously. Yum.
2. I am probably going to break down and by a spinning wheel soon. Thanks a lot, All She Wants to Do is Knit.
3. My stash listing on Rav is seriously out of date.
4. I knit a whole lot of different colors, but almost all of the garments I knit are either blue or green.
5. My projects list is shockingly lacking in colorwork.
Last summer I got a new camera, and posted about how much better it is than my old camera. I’ve slowly been using it to take improved, updated photos of some of my patterns, while I also update the format of my old patterns to be more consistent. It has been very slow going because I’m only doing it in my very limited spare time between current designs and the day job. I channeled by typical springtime craving for all things green, and have completed my update of Flourishing Fields!
Flourishing Fields, by Christina Loman
If you are a previous buyer, you’ve received an updated copy already, free of charge, via Ravelry or an email sent by Ravelry. Whether you are a previous buyer or not, know that the content of this pattern has not changed. These are still fairly simple cuff-down socks with the exact same cables as before. All that has changed is the format, plus a few new photos. Enjoy!
I have a mission for my readers (and myself). My best friend is getting married in September, and since we will likely be outside for at least part of her evening reception, I’d like to make myself a nice, lacy shawl. The catch is it needs to go with my bridesmaid dress. I already have the perfect beads to use as an accent, but I think I want the actual yarn to be as close to the color of the dress as possible. We’re wearing David’s Bridal’s Regency color, and satin, if anyone’s ever seen it in person before. For anyone who hasn’t, it’s roughly royal purple. There are lots of royal purple yarns out there, but I don’t even begin to know what yarn is closest in color, except that it’s none of the ones at my LYS. I’m not sure I’m quite confident enough in my dyeing abilities to make that shade of purple myself. Anyone have any experience here?
It’s still definitely winter, and in fact there’s ice in the forecast for tomorrow and snow for Friday, but I’m beginning to see signs of the coming Spring, and I’m getting excited.
When we were out photographing a sample the other day, we startled a flock of robins. Robins are always my surest sign that the snow and deep freezes are done, and I can’t say I’ve ever seen them come home this early before. It’s a little unnerving, actually.
Pic by Carine06 via Wiki Commons
It’s also planting time, for things I’m starting from seed. So I set up my little indoor garden over the weekend, and while there’s nothing to see yet I’m still very excited. Outside, some of the trees are starting to get little red buds and the crocuses are getting leafy too.
Nothing to see here…yet.
Then, there’s my intense craving for green. Admittedly, green is my favorite color so I always crave it a bit, but this time of year it gets out of control. All I want to wear is green, all I want to knit is green, and absolutely nothing is as exciting to me as discovering a new bit of green outside. It doesn’t help that I can’t photograph the sample currently in test knitting until it gets greener outside. I’m so impatient!
I had a pretty impressive “Messy” post in the works, but the truth is I’ve been sick and am just not up to the work involved at the moment. Which, I suppose, is its own kind of messy. I’ve been rather minimally productive all week, spending as much time ripping and re-knitting as actually creating anything. Illness is not good for my brain, or my coordination. I’m also waiting on the weather to cooperate so I can photograph a sample before sending it off to the tech editor, and cooperate it will not. Who’d have thought I’d be hoping for fog and mist? It’s really not the right time of year for it, unfortunately. Plenty of grey and rainy, but no mist.
So in the mean time, I’ve been quietly encouraging myself with a sensory feast. I’ve been spinning this lovely, saturated silk blend:
Plugging away at a bit of lace in a color that reminds me Spring isn’t so very far away:
And being utterly charmed by these stubborn little garlic shoots who do not seem to care that it’s been a good 20 degrees below the seasonal average this week, and that even the seasonal average should still be too cold for them to sprout:
It doesn’t hurt that this morning’s icy ugliness resulted in a “Snow” Day and so I get a surprise 3-day weekend to work on fighting this upper respiratory blech. Hope you’re holding up out there too!
I’m very excited to announce the release of my newest pattern, Potomac!
Potomac is a bottom up, worsted weight sweater designed for a combination of warmth and simplicity for an active winter’s day. The recommended yarn is very warm for a DK weight, mainly because of the silk content (which also adds a pretty hint of shimmer, like the Potomac River on a sunny day).
The subtle color variations of a kettle-dyed yarn lend themselves particularly well to a simple pattern like this, where they won’t be overwhelmed by heavy texturing. Don’t fear the miles of tedious stockinette, however, because there are also simple cables up the front and back that provide just the right amount of interest without being complicated enough to distract from the yarn.
I had a lot of fun designing this sweater, and the inspirations for it are totally local. The yarn, the color, the pattern name – they’re all Home to me. Although I know most of you are not from this area, but I hope you’ll love Potomac as much as I do!
Between the steady rain for the last 3 days, and the 2 days of heavy fog before that, I have not seen the sun since Friday. It is also disgustingly cold. Sadly, this is pretty typical for mid-winter around here. For someone whose mood is as dependent on the weather as me, it’s easy to fall into a steady state of “blah”. How do I combat it?
1. I wear as much sparkle and shine as I can get away with while still looking like a reasonably respectable professional. Sometimes that means hiding a bit of sparkle under a tamer cardigan or dress.
2. I wear lots of deep, saturated colors in a semi-deliberate attempt to counter the dark and grey outside. Bonus points if I can combine the rich colors with some shiny.
3. I wear the warmest, softest, most decadent clothes I own – this is where being a knitter comes in handy. The warm and fuzzy against my bare skin is a little tactile treat that almost replaces the warm sun on my bare skin.
4. I work out like a madman. This is partly because the workout itself boosts my mood, but also partly because it leaves more room for the comfort foods that also boost my mood. Bread and soup, anyone?
What do you do to keep the “blahs” at bay?
It took me a few days to get the blog post together, but I did complete my Sky Scarf on the 31st. It is awesome! It really did serve its purpose of making me more mindful of the weather (and noticing how much it really does affect my mood) and serves as a nifty souvenir of 2012. It turned out really super long:
But luckily I intended to connect the end and wear it as a big, showy cowl. As an added bonus, I get to look at a much larger proportion of the stripey goodness all the time.
I’ve worn it out in public twice now, and raised surprisingly little interest. There was one fellow knitter (apparently) among the parents dropping their kids off at work who latched on right away to the fact that I’d probably made it, but most people haven’t even looked twice at it, let alone commented. It seems off for a cowl (infinity scarf?) this massive and colorful, with such irregularly placed stripes and beads. I’m sure happy with it though!