Category Archives: lace

Triumphant Return

My friends, there has been KNITTING.

Most of the summer and fall (and spring too? I don’t even remember) has been spent on tiny bites of knitting here and there — a few rows in the car, or during before-bed-tv, or any time the baby-turning-toddler (!) and toddler-no-wait-preschooler (!!) would allow. And, because knitting is magical like that, even these tiny bits add up and eventually there is this complete object. Kind of like life.

Nikolai shawl, knit in IndigoDragonfly Merino/Cashmere “Neither Bloody Nor Bowed”
Nikolai shawl

I really love having a smallish scarf-shawl with me, something to wear under my coat but also around an over-cooled office. This scarf-shawl fits the bill perfectly, and the cashmere content makes it warmer than you’d expect (and luxurious too!).

And what goes better with a fall shawl than some quick fingerless mitts?

These Short and Sweet Fingerless Mitts were exactly what they claimed to be — short and sweet. I knit these up in just a few days, and the pattern was perfect for making a lovely little pair that “goes with” but does not “match” the scarf-shawl, sharing a leaf motif. I should have remembered I always knit loose and gone down a needle size, and maybe I should block them someday, but whatever, I have a pretty and toasty-warm (thank you cashmere) pair of mitts to wear until it’s full on mitten weather.

Which will be really soon, I’m guessing… Glenna’s just reworked her Podster Mitts pattern, maybe I’ll try to make some of those for the next phase in the fall-to-winter transition. Until then, these actually finished objects are serving me quite well!

What about you? Anyone else experiencing a triumphant return into the world of knitting?

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Filed under FOs, knitting, lace, mitts, shawls, Uncategorized

Fall New KNITTY!

Hey folks, it’s time once again for Knitty.com to release a new issue!

Knitty has been even further improved by what looks like even more patterns than they usually give out, and now, all of them come with a “printer friendy” button — no more reformatting in Word, yay!

I haven’t shown him yet, but I know Dru is going to want me to knit him the Mangyle.

For me? I just want a Nightcap!

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Filed under free patterns, knitting, lace, sweaters

Gatsby Girl Redux

Remember the Gatsby Girl?

That great pattern published in IK Fall 2006 by my talented knitter/artist friend Jodi Green?

That sweater I had to reknit the sleeves about 75 times (or so)?

That little feminine number that looked oh-so good when I first tried it on?
The Great Gatsby Girl
Appearances can be deceptive…

That sweater, which upon washing, grew in size and broke my little heart? (Curses, gauge and superwash!! That’ll learn me to wash my swatches, won’t it?)

Yeah, that one…

Well, after several months balled up at the back of my wardrobe, the pendulum of it’s fate vacillating between ripping it out or consigning it to an oubliette for eternity, a glimmer of hope emerged. It may not fit me, but perhaps it would fit someone, right? I invested too much good knitting to have it go to nought. So the other night I threw it into my bag as I headed over to the PP.

Turns out that I knit Gatsby Girl in the perfect size, for Jennifer at least!
gatsby girl sweater on jennifer
(Even better, the Purl carries the brand of yarn from which I knit it!)

I still love that sweater. It makes me very happy that now, someone else can too!

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Filed under FOs, knitting, lace, rambling, sweaters, Uncategorized

Eye-of-Partridge Shawl

Consider this lace-weight yarn liberated.


eye of partridge shawl

Eye of Partridge Shawl, 100% cashmere.


eye of partridge shawl -- back view

Back view: shoulder shawl.

eye of partridge shawl-- front view
How I’ll wear it most, with the point front-facing, tucked into my coat.

eye of partridge shawl -- stitch texture
Love that stitch texture!

This is a dead-simple triangular shawl that takes full advantage of eye-of-partridge stitch, creating a cozy double-thick fabric with subtle, elegant diagonals. Due to the alternating slipped stitches, this pattern also makes the colours in variegated yarns “pop” dramatically, and helps eliminate pooling.

I used one single skein of Handmaiden 100% cashmere 2-ply (lace-weight) yarn, in the colourway “Mineral” (274m/50g), and 3.75mm Addi Lace needles (80cm circular).

Eye of Partridge Shawl Pattern

Cast on 2 sts.
Set-up rows:
R1: Knit into the front and back of both stitches. (4 total)
R2: K2, yo, k2 (5)
R3: K2, p1, k2
R4: K2, yo, k1, yo, k2 (7)
R5: K2, p3, K2
R6: K2, yo, k1, sl1, k1, yo, k2 (9)
R7: K2, p5, k2

Pattern rows:
Even rows (RS): K2, yo, *k1, sl1* to last 3 sts, k1, yo, k2
Odd rows (WS): K2, purl to last 2 sts, k2

Repeat pattern rows until you get sick of it, or begin to worry about running out of yarn.

How I ended this:
Last even row: K2, yo, *k2og, yo*, end k2
Last odd row: K2, purl to last 2 sts, k2
Cast-off row: Russian bind-off (k2, k2tog with these 2 stitches, *k1, pass previous k2tog st back, k2tog*).
This edge curls. If you don’t like that, then I’d probably just work several rows of garter stitch and bind off loosely.
Fancy-pants among you could also chose to finish with a small knit-on lace border.

* * * * *
I enjoyed knitting this so much that I’m considering casting-on an eye-of-partridge cowl now: the plan would be to cast on a large, even number of stitches, *k1, sl1* for one round, knit all for one round, *sl1, k1* for the next round, then knit all… and repeat until I run out of yarn. (Some of you out there might be pleased to note that this iteration would involve no purling whatsoever.)


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Filed under FOs, free patterns, knitting, lace, shawls

Laceweight, Liberated

I’ve been inspired by Amy‘s recent “Liberate your Laceweight” campaign.

liberate your laceweight!

She’s completely right, you know — too long have beautiful lace-weight yarns lingered in people’s stashes, languishing for being “too pretty”, looked over for being “too hard”, left behind while the sockyarn and worsteds get all the fun. No longer, say we! Liberate that laceweight!!

Ahem. Well, yes. Good idea, don’t you think?

As well as that amazing purple silk I just picked up, I’ve had a skein of Handmaiden 2-ply cashmere in the “Mineral” (more like precious metals!) that I bought as a “Christmas present” to myself when I should have been thinking of others / had no power to resist / have had in my stash for about a year now, waiting for the “right” pattern for it to arise, partly afraid to knit it up because it was “too nice”. It is so soft, so fine, and despite having a lovely soft haze there is a sheen and glow to the colours. It’s beautiful, and yet it has been a laceweight stash-prisoner for lo these many months. It’s time to rectify this situation!

Of course, never being one to take the easy road, I decide not to make a lovely “tube” a la Ms. Knitty. While I actually do not want to knit a full-on lace shawl here, I also (for this yarn) have rejected the idea of stockinette in the round. Yet she’s definitely on to something with the idea of a double-thick laceweight fabric: it would be smooth and soft, pretty and warm, fun and simple to knit. How to capture these elements in something other than stockinette?

Ah ha! Another liberation strike, that’s it! Think on poor eye-of-partridge stitch, so pretty and clever, yet consigned to sock heels for eternity. I love the way it’s slightly-raised lattice texture arises from such simple slipped and twisted stitches. It forms a beautiful double-thickness fabric with little work or thought. And when applied to a scarf, worked on mid-gauge needles, is sturdy and soft, simple and decorative. The perfect stitch!

liberated lace-weight
I promise a better photo when there is daylight!

Armed with a super-easy pattern, reasonably-sized needles (3.75mm), and heavenly yarn, this baby’s flying along. Vive la liberte, laceweight!

ED: you can now find the full pattern for this on my blog here!

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Filed under free patterns, knitting, lace, originals, rambling

Happy Holidays!

Back again from the Grand Holiday Tour, and hoping everyone had as happy holidays as I! Apart from being internet-free for the better part of a week (and none too active before that) many things have been happening!

I survived my pre-holiday bake-a-thon, including Icing Night (a new tradition of mine), and all my friends and family got cookie trays.


christmas cookies

Thanks to the Pioneer Woman, I had beautifully decorated sugar cookies this year.

I finished all my holiday knitting (mostly). Some things were gifted to other folks than I had originally been knitting for (Koolhaus, Endpaper mitts), but everything worked out just right.

The big one was a Swallowtail Shawl I was knitting for my MIL — finished knitting at 5:30pm Christmas eve, blocked in secret later that night, ready for sneaking under the tree in the morning!
swallowtail shawl
Swallowtail’s lacy tip.

I myself got some fibery gifts: Vogue Stitchionary #1, a 1/2lb Coopworth and 1/2lb merino-silk blend to spin, oh, and just a tiny bit of something else…
qiviuq yarn
My brother in the Yukon loves me!

Also received, not as a Christmas present but coincidentally timed…
wheel whorl

And now I’m back home, looking forward to New Year’s parties, hanging out with friends, spending days in my pyjamas, and knitting things just for me!
knitted clog

FiberTrends felted clog, pre-felting — it’s huge!

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Filed under fibre, FOs, knitting, lace, out & about, rambling, spinning, yarn

Lovelace

Remember when I was bemoaning my fate, pining for my unattainable love, the Princess Shawl? I shall never forsake my dreams of knitting her, my darling always, but there is a coquettish new lace project that has turned my head, and may yet capture my heart.

Have you seen the soaring beauty of Anne‘s blackbird-wing shawl, (designed to harmonize with Blue Moon Fiber’s new Raven Clan colourways*)? It is stunning and graceful, challenging and clever. It has captured my imagination, and fulfils many of my lace knitting desires (and will be sold as a kit, and for a reasonable price!).

I think I have found a new love.

*I’m totally digging all of these, but most particularly “Rook-y”!

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Filed under knitting, lace, yarn