Posh Petals

I can finally share what I’ve been test knitting for Rose Beck. It’s a brand new shawl and I’m rather enamored with it. The pattern, called Posh Petals, will be released this week. This sample is knit in The Plucky Knitter Primo Sport, a merino/cashmere/nylon blend that is so lush and fabulous.

The shawl is available in two sizes – this is the largest, which is larger mostly in length, not in depth.  You start at the bottom of the shawl (the darkest color) and join these lovely layers as you work along.  The top section has short rows to give it a round shape and it’s finished off with i-cord.

My shawl features these colorways of the Primo, from darkest to lightest: Mr. Spacely (the darkest “trim” color), Bohemian Blue, Skies of November, Early Light, and Silver Lining.

I love knitting for Rose.  Her patterns are so clear and pleasing to work on.  This is the third pattern of hers I’ve knit, and I’m positive it won’t be my last.

Keep an eye out for it on Ravelry this week!

My First Lopapeysa

Hi everyone!

I am shifting my thoughts to the next season…I usually do that when the HOT days of summer arrive.  In my mind it’s already fall, cool and crisp, and my knitting is following suit. I’ve put down a lot of my superwash merinos in bright colors and have traded them in for tweedy heathers and rustic yarns, slowly becoming cozy sweaters.

A huge part of my knitting life right now is poring over knitting styles that are associated with certain regions of the world. I’ve been obsessed with Iceland again, and Icelandic sweaters. I came across a list I made at the beginning of this year, and one of my goals was to finally make a traditional lopi sweater. I knew I couldn’t wait any longer – I bought my wool (the Icelandic lopi the pattern calls for) and decided on my pattern – Iðunn, a freebie from Knitty. I thought doing only a 2-color lopi would be a good way to ease into learning this style of sweater. This sweater will also contain my first steek, and I’m super excited about that – let’s cut some knitting!!

This is also my first time knitting with lopi.  It is hard for me to describe it.  It’s not next to skin soft (which I think is due to the flyaway fuzziness of it, not the wool itself) and at the same time it has this comforting softness to it.  I know that may not make sense, but you should give it a feel.  It’s beautiful and lightweight and going to make for an awesome winter garment.  In my head I’m already hiking in the mountains with my lopapeysa!

I’ve learned with this sweater how to tension my yarn with both hands (shown above).  It makes colorwork go almost as fast as plain stockinette.  I’m so excited to have learned this method, I urge you to try it as well if you are a colorwork knitter or considering venturing into colorwork.

My Effortless is definitely my easy comfort knitting right now. Those long, soothing rows of stockinette. And I love the Rowan Felted tweed even more every time I pick it up. I can’t wait to see what it does after it is washed.  I may just be knitting my way through that entire Knitbot book.  I’ve already got another pattern in my queue and yarn in the stash to go with it!

I’m using the magic knot method on my sweaters, have you tried this? For projects where you have to join many balls of the same yarn throughout, it’s fantastic. No ends to weave in! Though I must admit, a little voice in the back of my head keeps trying to make me nervous and think one day the knot will fail in the FO. Let’s hope not!

Other recent obsessions:

I want to try this yarn.
Laughing at this.
This pretty food (and more) blog.
I don’t even own a pair of leggings (or tights for that matter) but this pair would be amazing for being cozy at home.
Has anyone tried this yarn? The linen gives it a tweedy look. It would make a beautiful sweater, I think…

Fish Lips Kiss Heel

I’m back! I was sort of surprised when I started to blog today and realized it’s been about two weeks since we last spoke.  I didn’t mean to take a break, and it certainly isn’t for a lack of knitting.  In fact, I’m more inspired and excited about knitting right now than I have been in a long time… perhaps ever?

One reason I’m such a happy knitter at the moment is because… I finished my first pair of socks using the Fish Lips Kiss Heel method. I’m pretty sure I am a permanent convert to the method now. Let’s talk details:

Pattern: None (but using Fish Lips heel)
Yarn: Blue Moon Fiber Arts Socks that Rock Lightweight in Pickle Family Circus – I bought my skein here
Needle: Addi Sock Rockets, 1 (2.25mm), magic loop

I’ve found that 60 stitches is the perfect number for my feet using the size 1 needle.  I did these toe up, using the awesome template method recommended by the Fish Lips pattern.  I’m telling you, this will change your sock knitting forever!!  You basically make a cardboard cutout of the foot of the person you are knitting for.  You take a couple other measurements, and you are done.  No more asking your loved ones to keep trying on socks to check fit.  You knit using the template as your guide.  I have done heels for this pair as well as one for my husband, and the fit is SPOT ON.

So the heel… I love it!  The special stitches she teaches you are easy and fun.  This heel rocks because: no gaps, no counting rows, you can adapt it for any number of stitches easily, you can do it toe-up or cuff down, two at a time or one at a time, doesn’t mess up striping patterns in self striping yarn… I could go on.  Bottom line, I will be surely plugging this heel into most sock patterns I make in the future.  I urge you to give it a try.

A couple of other exciting things happened this week….

I started a new sweater.  This is going to be a Reverb.  I’ve wanted to make this pattern for so long, with this yarn – it’s Patons Classic Wool Worsted.  I’ve never used this yarn before, but it is crisp and heathered so I think it will work well as a substitute.  It’s heavily cabled (but not difficult) and it’s fulfilling my extreme obsession with cables at the moment.  Having so much fun with this sweater already.

Lastly, this arrived at my door this week:

This arrived as a surprise for a test knit.  All I knew was a package of yarn was to come to my door sometime this week… little did I know it would be PLUCKY in about the most gorgeous colors you can imagine.  This is her Primo sport weight, in an MCN base.  I never have bought from The Plucky Knitter before – mostly because I am terrible at shopping for yarns where you have to stalk the updates because they sell out so quickly.  So I am feeling like quite the lucky girl this week.

How are things in your neck of the woods?

Warm Winter Woolens

Happy Friday!

One of the first things I decided to do when I got back home from  Florida was finish my cross stitch project.  I feel a little self conscious about showing my stitches this close up, but whatever, here you go:

I am pretty happy with it!  It seems to skew a little bit on the linen, does anyone have any tips on how to fix that?  I’m afraid to wash it, because the floss clearly says “not colorfast” on the label and the last thing I need is dye bleeding all over my finished project.  I do love stitching on linen now!  I just need to figure out what my next project will be. Pattern & materials here.

Last week I started a new pair of socks – I finally decided to try the Fish Lips Kiss Heel everyone has been talking about using Socks that Rock in the Pickle Family Circus colorway. I have since done one heel on this sock and it’s pretty cool. It will take me awhile to memorize it, but let me say this pattern is so full of information for being $1… seriously… what costs $1 these days!! I won’t say too much but it does involve tracing a foot template onto cardboard for whoever you are knitting for. My entire family has Sharpie marks on their feet now. ;)  I’ll share what the finished heels look like soon, as well as my opinions on the fit and such later.

Lastly I’ve started a sweater.  Mostly because I am so tired of being stumped by this yarn!! I bought it to make a vest and was hating it. Frogged the thing and now I’m making an Effortless. I’m short on yardage so will be playing a bit of yarn chicken… I will be shortening some things here and there to compensate. We’ll see. I’ve also realized this will be my 4th yellow sweater. I need to take a break from the yellow garments for sure after this!

Other things I’m geeking out about right now:

+ This awesome inside-outside house.
+ Rebecca Artemisa – I love her artwork. I have this print in my home and it makes me smile. I only wish I could buy everything in her shop!!
+ This hat pattern – I have to make it.
+ My husband’s recipe for raw chocolate coconut macaroons is a favorite treat right now.
+ Socks that Rock, checking for new colorways all the time!

Thanks for reading guys!! See you soon!

A Summer Yarn

Hello friends!

It’s officially summer in the US.  I’m learning to love summer slowly over the years.  I used to despise the sticky southern heat, but I’m learning to live with it for now.  It’s just part of the package deal that includes hours and hours of sunshine and more time with my girls.  Can’t complain too much.  Plus the 4th of July is right around the corner, and I find the holiday just irresistible.  Love it.  Explosions and good food?  Yes, please!!

Do you like my new handspun?  It’s the latest Moonrover club shipment, the June braid.  I am so excited I joined her club.  When her package arrives at my door, I can’t wait to see what colors she has put together.  My brain usually goes wow then preeetty and lastly what?!? because there always is a color in there that blows your mind.  It’s unusual and stunning at the same time.  You don’t think it goes together, yet somehow it’s wildly cohesive.  Awesome!

The colors this month reminded me of salt water taffy and honey and the ocean.  A summer yarn.  I spun it from braid to finished 2-ply yarn in less than 24 hours.  About 225 yards of worsted to bulky.

Spinning feels like a total treat.  I’m so thankful I’ve gained this skill in my life; it brings me so much happiness.

I’m cooking up all sorts of new projects.  More on that next time!