Yoli Loop

 Accessories, New Release, Patterns  Comments Off on Yoli Loop
Dec 242014
 

Yoli Loop cover | The Knitting Vortex

My gift to you on December 24, this pattern is free with the code HOLIDAY until midnight on Christmas Eve, US Eastern time. Thank you for a wonderful year, and wishing you joy and peace.

Diagonal mesh and simple garter edges run the length of this long and narrow infinity loop. Yoli Loop begins with a provisional cast on and is worked in one piece to the end, then grafted. Wear it looped as many times as you like; the reversible stitch pattern looks great from both sides. Easily customizable in length and width, the Yoli Loop can be adapted to any amount of yardage.

Techniques & Skills Used: provisional CO, knit, easy lace, grafting; this pattern includes a link to my grafting tutorials.
Size: 92” circumference and 4.5” width; customizable for varying amounts of yardage, see Designer’s Notes.
Yarn: Malabrigo Yarn Silky Merino (51% silk, 49% merino wool, 150 yards); 2 skeins, shown in Green Grey. The sample used all 300 yards.
Other Materials: US 7 (4.5mm) needle, or size to match gauge; Stitch markers (2); Scrap yarn for provisional CO; Yarn needle.
Gauge: 16 st and 32 rows in diagonal mesh pattern, after blocking. Gauge is not critical for this project, however a different gauge may result in a smaller or larger finished loop, and different yardage requirements.

See it on Ravelry, to read more or purchase the pattern. 

Yoli Loop seated | The Knitting Vortex   Yoli Loop worn long | The Knitting Vortex   Yoli Loop closeup | The Knitting Vortex

Yoli Cowl

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Dec 182014
 

Yoli Cowl cover | The Knitting Vortex

A comfy infinity scarf with fun construction, the Yoli Cowl has garter stitch edges framing mesh worked with short rows. The edges grow wider and narrower, while the short rows add ease and dimension, allowing the cowl to scrunch and tuck cozily around your neck. Worked sideways from a provisional cast on and grafted, this extra long reversible cowl can be worn right off the needles, either as a long scarf or double wrapped around the neck or head to keep out the chill.

Techniques & Skills Used: provisional CO, knit, short rows, easy lace, grafting; this pattern includes links to my short rows and grafting tutorials.
Size: 46” circumference and 12” height.
Yarn: Malabrigo Yarn Merino Worsted (100% merino wool, 210 yards/100g); 3 skeins, shown in Zinc. The sample as written used 525 yards.
Other Materials: US 9 (5.5mm) needle, or size to match gauge; Stitch markers (2); Scrap yarn for provisional CO; Yarn needle.
Gauge: 16 st and 26 rows/4” in garter stitch. Gauge is not critical for this project, however a different gauge may result in a smaller or larger finished cowl, and different yardage requirements.

See it on Ravelry, to read more or purchase the pattern.  

Yoli Cowl detail | The Knitting Vortex   Yoli Cowl hooded | The Knitting Vortex   Yoli Cowl project infinity scarf | The Knitting Vortex

Dec 122014
 

Yoli Hat cover | The Knitting Vortex

Diagonal mesh and fun sideways construction make the Yoli Hat interesting to knit, with just the right amount of modern style. Worked sideways in one piece from a provisional cast on and grafted, the garter brim fits comfortably while the short rows create slouch and naturally shape the crown. Finished carefully, Yoli is reversible and can be worn right off the needles.

Techniques & Skills Used: provisional CO, knit, short rows, easy lace, grafting; this pattern includes links to my short rows and grafting tutorials.
Size: S/M (M/L); 18.5 (20)” brim circumference and 9 (10)” crown, unstretched.
Yarn: Malabrigo Yarn Merino Worsted (100% merino wool, 210 yards/100g); 1 skein, size S/M shown in Verde Azul. The sample as written used 140 yards.
Other Materials: US 8 (5mm) needle, or size to match gauge; Stitch markers (2); Scrap yarn for provisional CO; Yarn needle.
Gauge: 18 st and 28 rows/4” in garter stitch, 16 st and 32 rows in diagonal mesh pattern.

See it on Ravelry, to read more or purchase the pattern.  

Yoli Hat | The Knitting Vortex   Yoli Hat back view | The Knitting Vortex   Yoli Hat Last Look | The Knitting Vortex

Interview: Laura Patterson of Fiber Dreams

 Random Thoughts  Comments Off on Interview: Laura Patterson of Fiber Dreams
Dec 102014
 

The Indie Design Gift-A-Long is in full swing on Ravelry, with so many talented designers participating, and such an array of beautiful patterns. Today I’m talking with the very talented Laura Patterson of Fiber Dreams, who has an amazing catalog of designs all of which feature thoughtfully combined elements and detail, as well as evocative names and descriptive inspiration. I asked Laura about her work, and she graciously shared the answers that appear below:

How did you get started designing?

Not long after I started knitting, I began tweaking the patterns I knit. I didn’t like the rolled collar on a pullover, so knit ribbing instead, I added length and pockets to a too-short cardigan, worked a different top treatment on a sock or changed the toe. Mostly it was little stuff like that, but after a while there was almost always some change I made. Then I started making more drastic changes, like changing the gauge for a sweater I loved to work with the yarn I had on hand. Throughout all this my husband said, repeatedly, that I really should just design my own knits. It finally started to sink in, and I started out with a design for a lap blanket, Pinwheel, for him to use at his desk in the winter using scraps of yarn left over from decades of afghans I’d crocheted. Six months or so later I released a little sock pattern, Forget-Me-Not. A couple months later the slippery slope of lace shawl design began with South Seas Stole. I’ve been designing ever since.

south seas stole

I notice lace is a feature of many of your designs; can you tell us what inspires you about working with lace?

The balance, the mathematical precision, of planned yarn overs with left- and right-leaning decreases is very soothing. The ebb and tide, the flow of the lace as it comes off the needles. When broken down, many lace designs are much simpler than they appear at first sight. The actual knitting of them is very satisfying, as is finding and modifying just the right stitches to combine to make a whole design. The real magic, though, happens with blocking, when the beauty of the lace is revealed in its final form. It’s quite addicting. Of my lace designs, my husband’s favorite is Domus Aurea. My favorite is usually what most recently came off the needles, but over the course of time my two absolute favorites are Clematis and Spanish Dancer. Both designs have miles of easy garter stitch with simple lace borders, and were very satisfying to knit.

domus aurea          spanishdancer

What are some of your favorite materials, including yarns or knitting tools?

Fine wools, alpaca, cashmere, yak, silk — all these are favorite yarn fibers, alone or in combination. I have to admit to being quite spoiled by the high end yarns that I am normally given by independent yarn dyers to work with. Their generosity never ceases to astound. As to the tools… For knitting small things in the round, such as socks and fingerless mitts, my go-to needles are the bamboo sets from Crystal Palace that I bought years ago. For anything else I use circulars. My favorite lace needles are ChiaoGoo Red Lace. Their sharp points and flexible cables are the perfect combination for most of my lace projects. When sweaters have simple stitches, I love my handmade wood needles from Indian Lake Artisans. For everything else I use Knitter’s Pride interchangeables. My all-time favorite tools, though, are the tiny steel crochet hooks I use to insert beads into my lace. They belonged to my grandmother, and so are very precious.

Do you knit holiday gifts? If so, what are you hoping to make this year?

The short answer is, no, I do not. The longer answer is this: Like when I resolved to never again make a New Year’s resolution, I’ve never been happier than when I vowed to never again knit, crochet, or stitch holiday gifts.

Will you have any new releases during the GAL 2014 period?

I’ll have at least one new release during the GAL: another crescent shawl in a beautiful red hand-dyed yarn from The Sheepwalk Fiber Arts Studio. This one is a top-down design with lots and lots of lace. My tech editor is currently beating me about the head and shoulders, trying to get the correct numbers into the pattern, and to get it to make sense over all. We’ll get it sorted before long, though. Once we do, it’ll be a quick release for me, as the photos and layout are already done. I’ve even named it already. Hooray!  (author’s note: here is the very recently released Desiderata shawl – lovely!)

desiderata

Laura’s designer page on Ravelry is full of additional richly detailed, compelling work. I love North Coast and Cirrhosa, two crescent shawls with fabulously extravagant yet totally accessible borders. And short rows – my favorite!

north coast        cirrhosa

Choose your favorite and join the Indie Design Gift-A-Long KALs, which climax with the New Year’s Eve party on December 31. I’m also taking this opportunity to add to my queue for the future. Thanks, Laura!

 

 

 

Dec 012014
 

Elizabel cover |The Knitting Vortex

Feminine fit, sporty stripes and a fancy rib split hem combine in the versatile Elizabel sweater. The simultaneous set-in sleeves, short row shoulders and lightly scooped neckline flatter the upper torso, while gentle waist shaping continues the attention to your curves. Bracelet length sleeves and a refined I-cord neck finish are pretty and practical at work or play anytime.

Techniques & Skills Used: cable CO, knit/purl, short rows, picking up stitches, increasing/decreasing, simultaneous shaping, backwards loop CO, provisional CO, applied I-cord, grafting.
Size: 30 (32, 34, 36, 38, 40, 42, 44, 48, 52)” bust; sample shown in fourth size with 1” positive ease.
Yarn: RYC Cashsoft DK (57% extrafine merino wool, 33% microfiber, 10% cashmere; 142 yards/50g); 5 (6, 6, 6, 7, 7, 8, 8, 9, 9) skeins MC, 2 (3, 3, 3, 3, 3, 3, 4, 4, 4) skeins CC, or approximately 700 (750, 800, 850, 900, 950, 1000, 1050, 1150, 1275) yards MC and 275 (300, 325, 335, 350, 375, 400, 425, 475, 525) yards CC dk weight yarn. The sample yarn has been discontinued;choose a similar wool or wool blend dk weight that knits to gauge.
Other Materials: US 5 (3.75mm) 32” circular needle or size to match gauge; Stitch markers (4); removable stitch marker (1); Stitch holders (2); Yarn needle.
Gauge: 22 st and 30 rows/4” in stockinette stitch, after blocking.

See it on Ravelry, to read more or purchase the pattern.  

Elizabel front view | The Knitting Vortex   Elizabel Last Look | The Knitting Vortex   Elizabel side view | The Knitting Vortex