Introducing Centrino:

Centrino is a giant doily, based on a few vintage patterns I found and adore!  I’m not a doily person, neither lacey nor frilly, but the lure to begin something that starts out quite wee and grows into an abundant orb could not be refused. This project is addictive from start to finish. I loved the simple act of working around, and around, slowly building out.  The pattern shifts slightly but not so drastically that you are forced to hide away to “learn” your next repeat. 

photo thanks to LilLadyBug
Early last Summer Amy Swenson (or Indigirl) asked me to design a shawl for the September shipment of her Year of Lace club. I was honored and decided it was the perfect opportunity to delve into my love of knitting in the round and lace.  I pulled out my beloved EZ Knitter's Almanac and devoured the chapter on knitting shawls in the round.  (FYI- this was July, the perfect travel knitting month) I then jumped right in, working the first repeat with it's increases.  When that repeat was done I designed the next one... it was so fun thinking and wondering what the next design motif would be.  And I must say a wee bit stressful as I started to wonder if I'd have enough yarn for the bound off edge.  I even borrowed a scale from a vendor in the middle of Sock Summit to be sure I had enough... living on the edge, seriously!
centrino_red1 With the help of Becca there are two versions of Centrino... the first one I did for Year of Lace was done with 2 skeins of Schaefer Anne, the second one that Becca knit for me was knit at the same gauge as the Anne version but with a lovely sport weight superwash merino, silk, milk fiber blend. I love that the same shawl worked with varying weights of yarn can have such a dramatically different feel.
You can see more pictures, get detailed information and purchase Centrino here or on Ravelry here.  There are already a fair number of projects done with Schaefer Anne on Ravelry so you'll get to see other people's versions as well!Remember, this is the 4th of the six new patterns I am releasing, one a week for six weeks.  Use the coupon code TimetoKnit at checkout to buy 2 get one free on all new patterns.  (see details here)


Weaverknits and Bohus in one weekend?

This weekend held two big treats for me... a girl could get used to this!  
On Friday Ann Weaver of Weaver Knits came out to Schaefer to visit and show me her new book, Craft Work Knit (yes, I got a copy, it is the awesome!).  I've been a fan of Ann's patterns for quite a bit and it was such a joy to get to meet the person behind all that knitwear.  Ann's aesthetic is funky and clear and it was oh so much fun to pick her brain (and let mine be picked).  Meeting designers and delving into the world of designing and publishing with them is a blast.  On Saturday I stopped by Knitting Etc for a long visit and got to see many of her samples in person.  
I think her little Le Mans jacket is enough for me to want to have another baby... almost.  Of course, I forgot to take any pics, but Ann gave me permission to use the ones above, thanks Ann!

On Sunday, I went to the Johnson Art Museum at Cornell for a lecture and workshop on Bohus Stickning given by Suzette Newbury.  I have been smitten by the pieces that came out of Bohus Stickning, a design studio/knitting cooperative in Gothenberg, Sweden  for quite some time.  Having the luxury to sit and listen to a lecture helped me understand so much more about the history and process behind these stunning sweaters and accessories.  I am in awe of Emma Jacobson, a woman who while she created work and income for rural families also managed to create a new tradition.  I never realized that among the intense stranded colorwork done at 9 sts to the inch there were also combinations of purl and knit sts that lead to the incredible depth that their patterns have. Maybe one day when I retire I can get a kit and have time to knit it!  
Suzette was an engaging and knowledgable speaker, with a wealth of information and AMAZING samples to fondle.  The space we were in in the museum was "epic" with a full view of Cayuga Lake and it's surrounded hills in full fall foliage. 
And here's something to write home about:  I am speaking in the same space at the Johnson Museum of Art at Cornell University on Tuesday November 16th for their lunch time Fiber Series.  We'll be discussing my design process and looking at samples of my work, and my inspiration in an informal round table environment... I'm looking forward to it, but to be frank am a wee bit nervous about being asked to speak at my alma matter! (and I have to admit, right after I got asked, I did write home and tell my Mom ALL about it : )!)


Tuxedo Pants for a Baby?

I am about to kill you with some cute... hope it's not too much for you!

Introducing:  Tuxedo Pants
Tuxedo Pants is another pattern I originally designed for  Circular Knitting Redefined, and the copyright has reverted back to me!  Inspired by my friend Wendy and her absolute dedication to keeping her babies (all 7 of them) clad in wool pants I decided to take a spin on designs I'd seen and make some with a bit more of a tailored look.  I will tell you, this is what I make for my people when they get pregnant, I CANNOT resist the cuteness of knit baby pants!

The details:  Worked in the round, from the top down, with a casing for an elastic band waist, short row shaping to make room for the diaper,  ribbed stripes that go down the leg, long legs that cuff to give added length when your baby grows, and a wee bit of flaring at the bottom. Seriously, who can resist Baby Tuxedo Bellbottoms?  Sized for 0-3 months through 3T, you can see exact sizing and measurements here.  I knit them in Schaefer Yarn's Nichole, a durable heavy fingering weight superwash wool.You can read more details about Tuxedo Pants and purchase it on my website or on Ravelry. 

Ready for more pics?
tux_vinda3 tux_vinda2 ian_1 ian_backtux_vinda4

Thanks to the adorable Baby Vinda and Impish Ian for their excellent modeling debuts!

 Remember, this is the 3rd of six new patterns I am releasing, one a week for six weeks.  Use the coupon code TimetoKnit at checkout to buy 2 get one free on all new patterns.  (see details here)


Rhinebeck Day Trip!

Yesterday morning, Caitlin, Cathy and I woke up EARLY and boogied on down to the NYS Sheep and Wool Festival in Rhinebeck, for one of the most fun filled day trips I have ever had! The sheer number of people and amount of wool and animals is phenomenal... there was amazing knitwear and inspiration everywhere I looked.  I purposefully didn't make concrete plans to meet up with any friends down there but ended up running into LOTS of my internet knitting peeps.  Of course, I'm always so excited by the moment I forgot to take lots of pics, but what a blast!

I also spent some time communing with these guys....

And then I spent a wee bit o pocket change...
Twist and Knit by Miriam Felton, (both signed by the authors), 
a gorgeous 8 oz. of merino roving that Cathy is going to spin for me to use for the colorwork in my Cascabel, and my "impulse" purchase, a hooked rug kit by J. Conner, because I REALLY REALLY need a new passion, right? 

Anybody out there done any rug hooking?  I can't wait to start this baby, but I'm thinking maybe I should read a book first... any suggestions?  My goal is to get it done by next year so I can buy a "big" one!

And then, what I didn't buy:
It's a good look for me, right?

Next year I'm staying for both days!


It's time for a Cowl!

Have you noticed that cowls are everywhere this fall?  I designed Listado Cowl last year for Circular Knitting Redefined, and the copyright has reverted back to me just in time!
Listado Cowl is sized two ways, a little neck warmer, and an elegant whole head covering; either way this is a fast and simple ribbed lace cowl worked entirely in the round!  Once you get the hang of the 4-round stitch repeat it is smooth sailing. The stitch is comprised of alternating sections of stockinette stitch and matched increases and decreases that create the lace ribbing.  The stitch pattern is the same for both sizes, it is just worked over more stitches for the larger cowl.  
The best part is that I was able to get 1 large and 1 small cowl out of one skein of Schaefer's Heather, or three small cowls... this means you can make one for you, and one or two as gifts!  The small cowl takes around 130 yards, and the large one around 260 yards.  This cowl is a serious stash buster for your finger weight leftovers!

Remember, this is the 2nd of the six new patterns I am releasing, one a week for six weeks.  Use the coupon code TimetoKnit at checkout to buy 2 get one free on all new patterns.  (see details here)


Cascabel- the first release

Time for the first release in the festival of new patterns!
Do you remember me asking for names last winter?  Well, it took some time, and there were some serious contenders including, my personal fav: Black Mamba Firedragons.   In the end thanks to Maya, I decided to name this design Cascabel.  The cascabel pepper is a cute little round hot pepper and the colorwork on this sweater definitely reminds me of that!
The Details:  Cascabel is a traditional seamless yoke sweater with little round chili peppers around it’s neck! Worked from the bottom up, the pattern starts with the sleeves to give you a chance to check gauge and get in the groove.  There is subtle waist shaping at the "princess" seams to allow for a fitted look.  You can certainly choose to skip this if you'd like the pattern to be less snug.  My model, Caitlin, is wearing the small with no ease.  I used Schaefer Yarn's Miss Priss, a wonderful 100% merino wool worsted weight yarn.  This yarn is up there on my list of Schaefer favs and I really enjoyed knitting a whole sweater out of it!  I chose a subtly solid color for the body (Ash) and then a single skein of handpainted yarn for the colorwork (Rosa Parks).
I purposefully made this sweater too big so I wouldn't be tempted to wear it and have it not be in great shape for trunk shows so, now I need to decide what to make mine in.  I'm thinking maybe using Brooklyn Tweed's new yarn Shelter, along with a skein of Miss Priss for the colorwork.  Loving his new domestic woolen spun yarn!
You can read the details about Cascabel and purchase it on my website or on Ravelry

Don't forget... I am releasing a pattern a week for the next six weeks! 
Use the coupon code: TimetoKnit to buy 2 get 1 free on all of my new patterns.  (See more details on this here).


What to do?

Wow... somehow I turned my back for a second, and I have SIX patterns to ready to release.

How did this happen, you ask?  

Well, one is a pattern I had ready for TNNA in June that was definitely not appropriate for summer knitting!

Three are patterns that were part of a book, copyright has reverted to me, and I can release them to you!

One is a stunning piece I did for a yarn club a year ago and copyright has reverted to me, WOOT... I LOVE this design!

And the final one is a pattern I wrote years ago that got resized for worsted weight yarn as it is just too practical a pattern to have available only for sock yarn!

So, three + one + one + one = SIX Patterns... now I sound like Sesame Street, are you with me?

I've decided to release one pattern a week for the next six weeks with a special promotion: 

Buy 2 new patterns and receive 1 free!
Use coupon code: TimetoKnit
Expires Nov 30, 2010

I've set this up with Ravelry's new promotion tool on their website, super fun playing with a new toy!  You can choose to purchase the patterns as they come live, or wait until you see more of them... the Ravelry shopping cart is so slick that it can "track" your previous purchases and will supply the discount once you have purchased 3 patterns.  You can even use the coupon code more than once!

So, come back tomorrow for the first release... I'm really excited about this, and hope you are too!


The Happiest of Home Days

As the end of the week approached I suddenly realized that this was my first weekend at home in a month.... crazy!  Yesterday we made the most of it with a home day of epic proportions.  I vowed not to look at or think about work, and I almost did it.

We made granola, homemade applesauce, gingerbread, picked pumpkins, went for a stunning fall hike, collected acorn caps and then, because I couldn't bear to not play with yarn all day, I made these:

based on acorns by Resurrection Fern


Stuff n' Stuff

*   This week I re-coded my website so that my shopping cart links to Ravelry.  Now, whether you are a Ravelry member, or not (but you should be!), your purchases will go through Ravelry's excellent pdf delivery system.  This is something that has been on my list for months, and it ended up only taking a few hours... I cannot tell you how good it felt to cross it off the list!

One of the reasons I did this is because last week I realized I had not one, not two, but SIX new patterns to release to the public.  How did this happen?  I'll explain in another post... just know that I am devising a plan to release these.  When I figure out what it is, you will be the first to know, promise!  There have been some sneak peeks of some of these designs on the blog here and here, but that's all you are getting out of me!

*  I COVET this tissue box, designed by my friend Betz White, it is a knitter's dream, the prettiest tissue box I have ever seen... when I find them locally, watch out!

*  I am enamored with the Mythos's (Is that a correct pluralization? Any English majors out there?) being made!  If you have a moment take a peek... I am particularly in love with this one by Ingbe:
Don't you love how the front is done with the button loops?  Also, a bunch of knitters have decided to knit Mythos seamless by starting the sleeve in the round and using Judy's magic cast on for the body when they are done with the sleeve.  This is BRILLIANT, and I really wish I thought of it!  Though if I ever knit another one, I am going to do it like that.  A KAL is starting on Ravelry in my group, join us if you'd like!

*  Which brings me to my next thing, I'm hoping I'll be teaching Mythos at Knitting Etc in Ithaca, NY for a number of Wednesday mornings through the fall.  I can't wait to work with everyone and see what kind of new mods we come up with.  Coffee, knitting, and new friends, fun, right?

*  And finally, look at this new book, Silk Road Socks that just went up for pre-orders by Hunter at Violently Domestic.  There is a beautiful pair, Khotan, knit in Schaefer's Nichole, that are officially on my list!