Friday, February 29, 2008

What to do with bamboo yarn

I love love love bamboo! The poor man's silk, it shimmers, it's oh so soft and slinky and has a gorgeous drape. I still have it hanging from my living room ceiling to dry and even though it is dry, I don't want to take it down.
It is perfect for spring and summer as it has a nice cool feel to it. I've been dyeing up a storm of bamboo and now I'm working on some patterns to go along with it. Bamboo and lace go perfect together. Here are a few sneak peaks at what I'm working on.

And finally, a bolero I'm writing up now that uses the stitch pattern "Frost Flowers" from Barbara Walker.

Yes, I froze my arse off for these pictures.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Dyeing Frenzy!

I've got yarn hanging all over the house. I don't know what came over me, I've just been in the mood to dye. Now that I have all this hand-dyed bamboo, I need to write up some patterns to go with it :-) I've got a couple things in the works.

I love having bamboo hanging from the ceiling. Every time I walk near it, I get an overwhelming urge to fondle it. Mmm, so soft and smooth.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

How cool am I?

My most favorite thing about my "job" is seeing people all over the world knit my patterns. I've sent patterns to Australia, Germany, England, Canada, Croatia and just this morning, Tasmania! How cool is that?! I think I might start a little map thing to show who all in the world is knitting my designs.

Gotta love the internet!

Monday, February 25, 2008


Me, manning the station.

My latest creation. I couldn't believe how simple these were to knit. I'm still working on how to put a gusset in them without having to knit it separate. Best part, no short rows! To make them completely seamless, there is a lot of grafting though. Yes, I will write it up into pattern. It should be quite simple, but I'm sure it'll be a couple months before it's done.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Yes, I'm still alive!

Holy cow! It's been over a week since I've blogged. I have no excuse, just shear laziness on my part, or maybe it's because I haven't really done anything all week. I've just been working on swatches for summer tops, trying to decide what I want to make next. I have a ton of linen and bamboo to use. It's just hard to think warm weather with it being so cold here. By the time I get the design all written up and tested, it'll be warm enough to wear.

Oooh, one thing I've been working on this week is awesome and I can't wait to finish it. Sideways longies! Why? Because I can and plus if you use self striping yarn or hand painted yarn, it makes a really cool effect.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Mad Hatter

I'm in a hat mood lately. Hats and cables. I think I'm going to make a whole hat collection. Cables, chunky cables, ultra chunky cables, braided chunky cables, all sorts of crazy cables.

I finished up ultra chunky cables last night and am in love. Even has a little hole for my ponytail.

I have chunky cables in my lap right now (will post pic when finished).

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Knitting Find of the Decade

I might say century, but we have 92 years left and who knows what the years may bring.
From the sporting goods section of Walmart, for only $5.95:

I love this! I got this great idea for Ravelry (of course). It could use a few more sleeves, one for each needle size would be nice. But this will do until I can get more sleeves. I can sort all my needles by size, stuffing each with dpn's, crochet hooks, and all lengths of circular needles.

Friday, February 8, 2008

Turning a heel

Forgive the horrible pictures. My beloved tripod piece is still missing (about which I am extrememly annoyed). I can't do videos or take decent pictures without it. It is also frickin' freezing here so I can't get good lighting. Excuses, excuses.

For this tutorial, I'm only showing how to work the short row heel. I may do one in the future that shows it from the toe up, but not today :-)

I work my socks on 1 long circular needle, magic loop method.
The heel is worked on just 1/2 for the stitches. You will just be ignoring the second half (the instep).

Knit to 1 stitch before the end of the first needle, turn.

Backward YO,

slip the first stitch,

Purl to 1 stitch before the yo of the previous row, turn.

Backward Yo,

slip the first stitch, knit to 1 stitch before the yo of the previous row, turn.

Repeat the above steps, backward yo, sl first stitch, knitting (on the rs) or purling (on the ws) to 1 stitch before last yo, turn; until you have the 1/2 amount of stitches between the yo's as you cast on for the toe. In the case of this sock, it is 4 stitches. Knit to the first YO.

Correct the mount of the YO, knit YO together with the next st.

Turn, purl across to next YO, ssp (slip slip purl)the YO together with the next stitch.

Knit to 1 stitch before the next YO.

Knit the next stitch, the yo, and the follow stitch together, (k3tog).

Purl across to 1 stitch before the next yo:

sssp: slip next 3 stitch separately knitwise and coming from the back, purl all 3 stitches together.

Continue in this manner, k3tog on rs and sssp on ws, until all yo's are worked.
Knit across to the very last YO:

Slip that YO to the second needle with the instep's stitches:

Knit YO together with the next stitch:

Knit across the instep to the last stitch. Slip st knitwise:

slip yo from sole's needle:

and ssk those stitches together:

All done!

Monday, February 4, 2008

A call for testers!

I just finished up a little pattern that I designed specifically with indie dyers in mind. Not too complicated so that the design over takes the beautiful yarn, but interesting enough to keep you attention. Knit from the top down, you should be able to make both hat and gloves with just 1, 218 yd skein or worsted wool.
Gauge: 5 sts per 1"
Materials: I used hand dyed 100% Purewool on US 7 needles.

If you would like to test it, please email me at I only need about 3 testers, so email me fast!

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Gauge, in the round or not in the round...

I've had this question come up a few times this week and thought I would talk about this here. When I first learned to knit in the round, I was taught that you want to work you gauge swatch in the same manner. Now, seriously, if you gauge is that much different knitting in the round (itr) than knitting flat, maybe you ought to practice purling more. Yes, people do tend to purl a little looser than they knit, but if your purl row is so much looser that it causes your gauge to be more than one stitch off than knitting itr, you need to work on tightening up your purl stitch.
Anyway, that's just my opinion. Hope I don't ruffle too many feathers with this one :-)
Knitting a swatch itr is a big pain (knitting a swatch flat is annoying enough). It needs to be twice the width as a flat one and thus take almost twice the time. I have a hard enough time convincing people to do a gauge swatch anyway, I'm not gonna tell them they have to do itr as well.

So, in conclusion, knit your gauge swatch flat. It'll be ok.