Friday, April 24, 2009

Free Pattern: Tye Dye Kids Cardi

Our dear friend, Judy Head decided it was time to do something other than socks with the Paca-Peds. She created this adorable Tye Dye Kids Cardi that is sized from 6 months to 4 years and only takes 1 or 2 skeins of Paca-Peds HT. We are offering the pattern FREE via pdf so that you can knit with Paca-Peds HT in a new way.

See Judy's other fun designs at

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Finished Pioneer and fun new patterns!

Here it is! Our finished Pioneer sweater from Knitty, made from our newest yarn, Swizzle. Modeled by our AYC's Top Model, Tasha, you can see what a great match this yarn was for this pattern.

I love the crocheted scalloped edging around the neckline. This little touch only took a few minutes but adds miles of smiles to the finished product.

The single stitch cable is subtle and yet adds just enough spice to the back to keep it interesting (both in the wearing and in the knitting). The directions asked us to "Bind off loosely". I discovered that my version of "loosely" and the designer's interpretation of it were probably a bit different, as mine was waaaaay loose, but that all seemed to work its way out in the blocking of the finished sweater.

As you can see by the last shot, Tasha is having fun wearing the Pioneer and I had a ball knitting it. It's practically instant gratification knitting, even though it is on relatively small needles. I did get queried, did we measure the bust across the chest or under the bust. We based our sizing on an across the chest measurement. The size small knitted up to 28" inches across after blocking on size 5 needles, but there is quite a 'give' when worn, due to the low neckline.

The best part of all, we only used two and a half skeins of swizzle, approximately 550 yards to do the entire sweater! This is significantly less then the pattern suggests, which is a nice budget saver. We used the Academy Blue colorway, but I think it would also be stunning in Camo, Goldenrod or any of the colors offered. Be sure to let us know if you decide to cast on your Pioneer in Swizzle; we would love to follow your progress!

We have several fun new patterns being added to the collection this week.

Our newest design, the Surf Sock is worked in Paca Peds HT and incorporates instruction to use the separate HT skein. The repetitive design across the leg and upper foot looks like a cable stitch but is really a simple combination of increases and decreases. This sock can be knit with either the Paca Peds HT or the regular Paca Peds.

And get ready to get your cute on with the Little Jailbird Kimono!
All little girls will steal your heart if they are wearing this adorable kimono sweater. Knit in Classic Alpaca, the simple stripe design is eye catching and the lacy sleeves add interest without being too fussy. Sized for 9-12 months through 6 years, the sweater takes 3- 9 balls of Classic Alpaca. Shown here in the 18-24 month size in colors 2081 & 1430.

Be sure to check in later this week when we share our newest FREE pattern, from our dear friend Judy Head of Till then, happy crafting!

Friday, April 17, 2009

Don't overthink the pattern!

We continue with this week's installment of "Angela's Adventures in Lace"....

Ahhh, the joy of the Flit + Float Scarf! The beauty, the elegance, the simple lace pattern, the..... ack! The dreaded Provisional Cast-On!!! Yes, we have discussed this in the past. And yes, I got through it with flying colors. Or at least I thought I did. I got to the end of the ruffle, I picked up the provisional cast on and I started away on the lace portion of the scarf. But wait, something was wrong! I somehow managed to do it backwards. Yes indeed, there was a nice seam where I picked up my cast on edge. Well, we couldn't have that now, could we? So I laboriously picked out every stitch, twisted them around the proper direction and put them back on the needle. I restarted the lace pattern. Ahhh, much better. So much better, I took pictures to share with you. See how pretty they are? See the pretty sparklies in the yarn? See that nice pretty edge where I picked up the provisional cast on? Let me toddle off to Ravelry to upload the photos to my projects page so everyone can see how lovely this is going. Wait! What is this!!! My ruffle doesn't look like the other ruffles. My ruffle is... gasp... BACKWARDS! Yes, dear friends, I have taken a perfectly good provisional cast on, convinced myself it was wrong, undone it, and managed to put it on backwards. Sigh. Beth & Tasha have assured me that no one will know, well, except for everyone reading this, of course. And no, I am now almost finished Chart B, so I am not going back and frogging it at this point. It's still beautiful. It still flits & floats. It just does it to it's own tune now. So, what have we learned? You would think after years of knitting Elizabeth Zimmermann and Cat Bordhi patterns I would know by now to not overthink the pattern! Trust the designer; trust your knitting, trust that maybe, just maybe, you finally have that cursed provisional cast-on nailed and don't overthink the pattern!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Beginning the Flit + Float

Ahhh, it's time for The Masters. To me The Masters is always the unofficial kick-off of spring. Even though it may still be cold and blustery here, the azaleas are blooming in Augusta and I can vicariously celebrate the spring via my tv and some good knitting. Golf is the perfect sport for knitting. Lots of long stretches of nothing happening and you can always tell when you should look up at the tv to see a spectacular shot or horrible miss.

With that in mind, I am getting ready to settle in for four days of blissful golf & knitting. Yesterday I cast on for my Flit + Float scarf. I read the directions a few times and it occured to me that it might be easier to knit the scarf differently then written. My thought was to knit the body of the scarf first and then knit both ruffles at the end. But then after looking at the photos of the other projects on ravelry, I realized that the money shot is the ruffle and I am excited to she how it flutters in the new Mint Kiss Glimmer. So I sucked it up and did the provisional cast on called for. Provisional Cast-on. Ugh. I got through it, although it did take me a time or two. I'm not sure where my mental block is with that one, but it's been the bane of my exsistance for my entire knitting life, so why should this week be any different.

At any rate, the cast on has been conquered, and the first eleven rows have been knitted. I'm using a size 5 Addi Lace Turbo circular needle for the knitting. The pattern calls for a 4, but I'm a rebel and I'm doing it on the 5. It's interesting to me that this is the same needle that I used for the Pioneer and even with the vast difference in the weights of the yarn both are making a pleasing fabric.

Here is a first wip photo. No, it's not much and I think I photographed the wrong side -- it's hard to tell at this point which is which -- but it's a start. More in progress photos to come as I get my golf on and do my on version of hitting the sticks. Oh, and in case you wondered, "Go Phil Mickelson!!!"

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Westward Ho! Pioneer Completion!

So I didn't get the Knitty's Pioneer finished in a week, like I thought I might (bragged I might?), but I did get it finished in practically no time at all. What struck me the most by this knit was how little yardage I used compared to what the pattern led me to believe I would. I had set aside four balls of Swizzle, but only used 2.5 balls. Just about 550 yards, not the 800 predicted for a size small. What a great bonus! I drug Tasha away from the dyepots long enough to get a quick photo of it being modeled, then it was off to be blocked. I'll get some real photos of the completed, blocked, amazing sweater up later this week, but I was just so thrilled by the finished product I just had to share!

We have an gorgeous new color of Glimmer to share as well. It's called "Mint Kiss" and it is the perfect color for your springtime knitting and crocheting projects. Glimmer is a super soft baby alpaca enhanced with a hint of golden iridescent holographic fiber. It is a fingering weight and perfectly suited for shawls and scarves with it's beautiful drape and sparkle.

I was so excited by this newest color, I couldn't wait to cast on something with it as soon as I got the Pioneer off the needles. I decided that the Flit + Float scarf from the Spring '09 Knitty would be the perfect project. Stay tuned for WIP photos soon! And remember, if you want to stay up to date with lots of photos and chat, follow us on Plurk or Twitter!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Phat Knits

Wow, and I thought Snuggle was bulky!

Netherlands based artist Bauke Knottnerus approaches design on a macro level using large threads to create large scale woven objects. “PHAT KNITS” is a series of giant threads used to create, knitted or not, interior products.

Can you imagine how great a rug or bath matt would be made out of this stuff?