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Tutorial: Short Rows using the wrap & turn method

Tutorial: Short Rows using the wrap & turn method

Short Rows are one of my very favorite knitting things, ever. Need to shape a hem, make a bust dart or a shoulder slope? No seaming, no binding off, no problem – just work short rows and you can have angled sections of knitting that create shape and make a garment better fitting, or a shawl more interesting. There are many ways to work short rows, all of which involve working a partial row (thus, the “short”) and then using one of several methods to turn the work and go back in the opposite direction, while making the turning point unobtrusive and attractive. Perhaps the most common and basic is the wrap & turn method, sometimes abbreviated to w&t. To work it, here’s what you have to do: To w&t on a knit row: 1. Knit to the turning point; with yarn in back, insert the right needle tip purlwise into the next st, and slip it to the right needle. 2. Bring the yarn to the front. 3. Slip the wrapped st back to . . .

Tutorial: how much yarn for the bind-off row?

Tutorial: how much yarn for the bind-off row?

I like to use every last bit of my yarn whenever possible; it both appeals to my frugal side, and justifies the purchase of new stash, since I’m using what I have so wisely. My ideal shawl is one like Sundry, where you can knit until you run out of yarn, leaving only enough for the bind off. I also find myself eking out sweaters with slightly-too-little yardage, by saving the sleeve cuffs for last (even after finishing!) and working both simultaneously until zero yarn remains. That still means you have to make sure you actually have enough so that you don’t get a dozen stitches from a completed bind off with 1″ of yarn remaining – one of a knitter’s most painful moments. There are several ways you can estimate how much to leave, in order to maximize your yardage. 1. The rule of thumb is to leave about 3 times the length of the row, or approximately 1″ of yarn per stitch. These guesstimates can both be done quickly, and you can choose . . .

Sneaky Sorbet

Sneaky Sorbet

I finished the knitting last night, so today was all about weaving in ends – and with a multi-striped sweater, there were a lot of them. Working in the round and twisting the colors created a tidy RS, but a bit of work to do on the private side. After a soak and block, I’ll see how the final result looks. And I’ll just mention that with the coming of spring (finally!), my mind is totally on sorbet; blueberry, raspberry, strawberry, pistachio . . .

Clubbing with Katie

Clubbing with Katie

Probably my all-time favorite movie is Gone With The Wind; I love everything about it – the period costumes, the sweeping narrative, the human frailties. And of course the heroine, Katie Scarlett O’Hara. As flawed a human being as she is, with her childish, manipulative, selfish temperament, she is also unflinchingly strong and unfailingly loyal to the people and places she considers her own. Certainly she qualifies as a heroine in my view. Last year, Anne from Wooly Wonka Fibers invited me to design two shawls for her 2014 Heroines Shawl Club, and asked me to pair my choice of heroines with her lovely hand-dyed yarns. And so I designed two shawls, using Artio Lace and Aerten Sock to depict two admirable heroines. The first of these is the design in the March 2014 club kit, Katie Scarlett.    It’s a semi-circular laceweight shawl, knit from a garter tab cast on, with four tiers of lace patterns that represent Miss Scarlett’s trajectory through life. The beautiful, jewel-green color is the exclusive Twelve Oaks colorway, meant . . .

Inside the Vortex