Monthly Archives: July 2010


Last October I made a little baby cardigan for a friend’s baby…

I had a multi-colored alpaca yarn (Artesano Hummingbird) and I got a small ball of red Artesano dk yarn for contrast.  I had envisioned the rows of pattern stitch in alternating multi color and solid color but so much red came up in the multicolored yarn at the yoke that I didn’t quite get the contrast I was hoping for.

I did however like the basic concept so I thought I’d give an adult version a go.  So at Christmas armed with 3 different colors of Brown Sheep’s Lambs pride I began a version for myself….

This time I had a wonderful turquoise color that I loved, a little of a multi-tonal turquoise and some orange.  This version introduced the idea of  the garter stitch accent bands to combine the two colors that were similar but not the same together in a cohesive way.  Now while the orange band are fun the brightness may be a it much for some!  A lighter shade of blue would be a more subdued  way of combining a third color.

I knit this while I was on holiday and I was lazy.  I didn’t do a gauge swatch (which I should have cause my knitting can be a little on the loose side!!) and I ended up with 17 rather than 18 stitches per 4 inches.  As you can see on the sleeve there is too much room for me, and the back has too much looseness for me.

I also decided at this stage that I liked the way the stitch pattern worked when it was slightly smaller…which brings us to the third and final version of Eilonwy…..

As I was finishing up the second version Sundara contacted me asking if I wanted to use her yarn in a design.  This design immediately came to mind and we settled on the wonderful Aran Silky Merino for the final version.  When the yarn arrived Sue (who is also the model for these shots) knit the final version.  She like the way this yarn worked at a tighter gauge and after much swatching and calculations the final version was designed and knit.  I love the way the two colors blend together around the circular yoke, very subtle but still with a great texture.

Knit at the tighter gauge the yarn didn’t go quite as far as we had expected and we wanted to make full use of the contrasting color so the bottom band has changed from the alternating color version to a solid band.  When you are knitting it you can decide yourself which you like best.

Eilonwy $5.95

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Showcase the beauty of hand dyed yarn with this wardrobe staple. This cardigan is a great way of combining 2 or 3 complementary colors that blend together well and is idea for hand dyed yarn. Knit from the top down with circular yoke shaping, options are given for 2 or 3 different colors to be used.


Chest: 27.25 (30.5, 34.5, 37.5, 41.5, 44.75, 48.75, 52, 56)” / 69 (77, 87.5, 95.5, 105.5, 114, 124, 132, 142) cm
Note: Buttonband is not included in this dimension.
Length: 21.25 (22, 22.5, 23, 23.5, 24, 24.5, 25, 25.5)” / 54 (56, 57.5, 58.5, 60, 61, 62.5, 64, 65) cm
Size 34.5”/87.5 inches modelled with minimal ease.

Sundara ‘Aran Silky Merino’: (50% silk / 50% merino wool; 200yds/183m per 100g skein);
MC Color: Exotic birds; 2 (2, 2, 3, 3, 3, 4, 4, 4) skeins
Note: Size 34.5”/86.5cm uses 2 skeins almost completely, so you may require an extra skein.
CC1 Color: Classic Car; 2 (2, 2, 2, 3, 3, 3, 3, 3) skeins
For three-color version only, CC2 of desired color: 1 skein

20 sts/32 rows = 4”/10cm in stockinette stitch on US 7/4.5mm needles
20 sts/38 rows = 4”/10cm in garter stitch on US 7/4.5mm needles

Leitmotif Cardigan

My newest design Leitmotif Cardigan is out in Interweave Fall 2010.  The seed for this design started last year when I designed Raspberry Layers.  Obviously the finished pieces are very different but the basics of the construction method I used are there!  This cardigan starts at the center of the back with a provisional cast-on, works out one side (casting on the front when you come to it) and using a 3-needle bind off at the side seam.  The sleeve cap is then shaped using short rows and the sleeve is worked downwards in the round.  The second half is worked in the same way from the provisional cast on at the center of the back.  Working on half a cardigan like this at a time it can look a bit funny and floppy but the end result fits really well…and its fun to knit!

The yarn for this project was Terra from the Fiber company which was a lovely yarn to work with.  Even though it knit up to a fairly large gauge it felt really light weight a airy.  It has a very interesting mixture of fibers; baby alpaca, wool and silk.  Even though the alpaca was the dominant fiber it actually felt more like a wool/silk mixture with just a few longer hairs giving the alpaca content away!

I don’t often get a chance to knit for myself but I’m working a a version of this for me.  I had some purple cascade eco plus wool in my stash that is knitting up to a good gauge for the project.  I’ve done one half of the body but I’m so busy right now I’m not sure how long I’ll have to wait to get the second half finished!

Iced Version 2

Last week the second version of Iced (in green this time) that Torya knit arrived.  It took me a few days to get around to weave in ends, put on buttons and block it but I eventually got it finished up and we took a few photos.  This time it is knit in the small size which has around 1″ negative ease for my bust.  To compensate I put the buttons on the button band so that it doesn’t fully cross over (you can see in the details below).  I’ve also shown a small detail of the side showing the waist shaping which you couldn’t really see in the first version.  For anyone going to UK knitcamp in Scotland next month I’ll have this version with me for the Knitty Fashion show.

I’ve also had a new pattern come out in Interweave Fall 2010 here.  Its called ‘Leitmotif Cardigan’ and I’ll blog very shortly with more details about it and some of my own photos.

Btw if anyone has hairstyle ideas send them to me..I was leaving my hair grow this year (as well as having my MIL’s hairdresser attack me with dye at Christmas!) but I’m contemplating cutting it again.  I just love getting a new hairstyle!


I didn’t expect to be blogging again so soon…2 days in a row, unusual for me!  Yesterday evening I went out for a few hours and came home to a new Knitty!  Lots of fun stuff in this issue, I love the lace back of Milly and Mythos is a really flattering sock weight cardigan.  My contribution to this issue is Iced.

I got a few balls of Drops Ice a couple of years ago.  It is an unusual yarn, a bulky cotton/acrylic blend that has almost a velvety rope texture (if you can imagine that!).  I began by knitting several swatches in different stitch patterns but they really didn’t work with the yarn.  It sat for several months unused until I picked it up again and realized that it really need something simple.  So Iced was born..I knit it in time for a Florida holiday, simple and casual.  Neutral enough to be worn with everything (I pack light and didn’t bring anything else warm!).  This is good TV knitting, top down with raglan shoulder shaping.  The front shawl collar is knit in garter stitch with a little short row shaping at the back. (As with almost all of my designs there is of course some waist shaping!)

When we arrived in Florida we met my sister in law (Nicki in the photo) and she tried the cardigan on and fell in love.  It was made for me so it was a little large on her but that kind of suits here style.

Here is a photo of me half asleep on the beach wearing the cardigan.

I still love the cardigan as a great everyday staple, Torya ( thank you!) has made a second version for me in green that just arrived this morning that fits wonderfully.  When I put some buttons on it and block it I’ll share a few photos.  This version is in the smaller size so there is no ease, if you feel the fit is too loose it works well with little to no ease also.  Anyone inn Knit Camp in Scotland will be able to see this version in the Knitty Fashion Show.

Summer Holidays and Yarn

All the boys are at home this week on their summer holidays which is both lots of fun and frustrating.  Its nice to be off the treadmill of constant schedules and planning ..getting them out of pjs by mid day is a chore!  However finding time for some mental space is pretty hard.  I actually like quiet alone time so summers can get a little overwhelming!

I’ve been busy planning my classes for Knit Camp in Scotland and have some good news for anyone taking my Knitting From the Side class.  Fyberspates have kindly agreed to donate the yarn for this class.  You’ll all get a chance to try out their wonderful Scrumptious yarn.  The Raspberry Layer pattern we will be using in the class uses a chunky yarn that she is no longer producing but the DK weight held double produces the correct gauge so that’s what we’ll be using in the class.  This is a great class for a knitter who is past the basics and wants to learn some new techniques.  The cardigan begins with a provisional cast on at the center of the back, works out each way one at at time and uses short rows to give shape to the cardigan and also uses short rows to produce a little sleeve cap.  I have a pattern coming out shortly that also uses a similar construction technique but looks quite different.

I’ve got several new patterns (2 published elsewhere and 2 self-published) coming out over the summer.  I can’t talk yet about the other patterns but the next self-published pattern uses delicious Sundara Aran Silky Merino.  This was knit and modeled by Sue and I’ll leave you with a tiny little sneak peak….you should be able to see the completed piece in a few weeks!