Cataphyll (plus giveaway)

Way back in 2013, I had a lovely little pattern in Interweave’s Sockupied magazine (it showed up in the Sockupied book too and even made the cover…I was unreasonably pleased).  Ever since then, I’ve had folks asking when they’ll be able to get this one as a stand alone pattern.  I’m delighted to say that you can get it right now!  Cataphyll is now available on ravelry.

cataphyll front smallI sort of adore these.  Most of the leg is nice, easy ribbing (which means they’ll fit beautifully), but there’s also a column of lovely leaves down the outside of your ankle to keep you occupied.  The column splits apart, and half continues down your heel while the other half goes skimming across the top of your foot.

cataphyll inside 1 smallThe result is utterly charming.  It’s just the right mix of fun to knit and ridiculously impressive looking.  On the right feet, they might even qualify as dainty!

cataphyll back smallA good part of their charm comes from the delightful Plucky Knitter yarn used to make them.  My fondness for Plucky is long standing and well documented.  The socks in the picture are Primo Fingering in Dandy Lion but I happen to have a skein of Plucky Feet in Karat Stick that will be every bit as gorgeous in this pattern (because really, leaves come in orange too!), and it’s going to go home with one of you.  If you think it should be you, just tell me which of my patterns you think might be best suited to Plucky’s lovely yarns!

pluckyComments left between now and the end of the day (eastern time) Saturday, February 21, 2015 will be entered to win.  I’ll pick a winner, contact them to get their addresses, and arrange to send yarn their way.  Be sure to use a real email address so I can contact you if you’ve won (I won’t do anything with those email addresses besides notify the winner).  If I do email you, I need to hear back from you within 72 hours or I will pick a new winner and contact them.  Sorry, but I can only send prizes to US addresses.

And, just in case you simply must start these right this minute, you can use the code LEAF to get a dollar off the price between now and Friday.  Just put Cataphyll in your ravelry cart, click on the ‘use a coupon code’ button, and type in the code LEAF.  You’ll see the change in price reflected right away.

 

Fulvous & The Plucky Knitter

I’m using the Curls preorder to introduce the patterns and yarns from the book. I’ll be featuring a new pair each day. Most of the yarn companies have donated lovely prizes, so come back every day to see what’s new!
 Fulvous in Bello Worsted by The Plucky Knitter 

13 plucky knitter smallI’ve already professed my love for the two extremes of the cable spectrum.  The last project satisfied my need for the big meaty cables, this one takes care of my undying fondness for teeny tiny cables.  Just to make things even more interesting, there’s a bit of dropped stitch action going on, too.  The result is a dense, substantial, deeply textured fabric with marvelous body.  You’ll know you have this on, and you’ll love snuggling up in it.

Of course it’s hard not to love being snuggled in swaths of 55% cashmere and 45% merino yarn dyed by the lovely folks at The Plucky Knitter.  My fondness for designing in their yarns is well established.  I am pretty hopelessly smitten with all they do.  But most of my projects with them have been in lighter yarns.  This was one of the few times I’ve played with their thicker lines, and I’m impressed as always.  It’s substantial without being heavy, it feels delightful while you’re knitting, and it holds up beautifully over time.  I know you’ll love it!

Book Yarn, Part II

KCC3 is debuting soon (next month!) and I want to take a bit of time during the lead up to show off all the delightful yarns I’ve used in the book.  So without further ado, yarn.

2These are two of the many amazing yarns available from Plucky Knitter.  My love affair with Plucky yarns is well-documented and long-lasting.  So far, I’ve indulged in some delightful boy socks, some downright girly socks, a cuff, a hat, and of course the cover socks from the last book!

On the left, you’ve got Plucky Feet in Spice of Life.  This is one of my absolute favorite sock yarns.  It’s 90% merino, 10% nylon, and 100% awesome.  The 4 tiny plies make it super round and ensure it shows off your stitches beautifully.  It also soaks up color and wears like iron.  I love everything about it.

On the right, you’ve got Plucky Single in Joe Banks.  This yarn, 80% merino and 20% silk, was new to me, but I’m already looking forward to using it again.  Like any single, it asks for a tiny bit of care and attention (you don’t generally want to use a single somewhere that will see a lot of rough wear), but it rewards that care beautifully.  I may just possibly have a shawl around here that demonstrates this perfectly!

If you’re looking for the other yarns used in this book they’ll show up here as they are posted.

 

Delias eucharis Knit Along

I’ll be having knit alongs for each of the pattern pairs in The Knitter’s Curiosity Cabinet, Volume II. This month we’re starting the two patterns inspired by the Delias eucharis print.

5To start, we’ve got some delicious cabled socks (I loved them so much they had to go on the cover).

5_de_sock_bAnd if you’re not feeling the sock vibe, this hat is equally enchanting.

5_de_hat_a

These are both made with yarns from the always charming Plucky Knitter, and yes I do happen to have a beautiful skein of her yarn to give away to a lucky winner at the end of the KAL.

If you’d like to join in, swing on by the ravelry thread and get knitting.  This is pretty laid back for a knit along (too many rules make my head hurt).  The general idea is cast on any time now…knit…post a picture showing your finished project by the end of November (each installment of the KAL runs for two months, so you’ve got plenty of time).  And, if you want to chat (pick yarns, ask questions, show off progress pics, whatever), I’d love it.  We’re a friendly bunch!

We’ll be doing a new installment of the knit along every month (and each one will run for two months), and we’ll work our way through the book in order.  The knit along for the Polyommatus corydon patterns is still going strong, and you’re welcome to join that still.

As each pair of patterns comes up for the knit along, the individual patterns will become available to purchase (so if you love one of the patterns but don’t want the whole book, there’s a way for you to get it).  Look for these two patterns later this week.  I hope you’ll join us!

Sockupied

Some time last year, the charming Anne Merrow, editor extraordinaire of Interweave’s Sockupied, got in touch and asked if we could hatch a plan.  Um, yes.  The answer was definitely yes.  So we plotted and planned.  Swatches were made, yarns were procured, patterns were written, and socks were knit…all in breathless secrecy.  Some time last September the socks and pattern went off to hang out with the folks at Sockupied, and I got back to my regularly scheduled programing.

Then, earlier this month, I got to see the socks again…all laid out and with absolutely adorable photos (I swear Interweave takes some of the best knitting photos out there, they’re consistently charming…and make me want to wear long skirts).  And holy smokes do I love these socks.  But once again, I had to sit quietly and patiently wait for all the versions of the magazine to be available before I could talk about them.  But now they are, so now I can squee like a deranged chipmunk and do the ‘check these out’ dance.  So, without further ado, I’m pleased to present Cataphyll.  (These pictures all belong to Sockupied and are used with their permission.)

These are made with The Plucky Knitter’s Primo Fingering in the color Dandy Lion, which is an absolutely delightful yarn to work with (round and crisp, it shows off your stitches perfectly).

These are not the easiest socks you’ll ever make (Sara, my valiant sample knitter, did a beautiful job with them).  They’re mirrored, those leaves have a few tricks, and the patterning goes right down to the heel and toe.  But, you do have some nice simple ribbing for most of the round to give you a chance to catch your breath before the tricky bits.  And really, these are prettier than super easy socks.  I think they’re worth the extra effort, don’t you?

If you find yourself wanting to make them too, you can get latest issue of Sockupied for either your ipad or your computer (there might just be a little profile of me in there too).

Book Yarn, Part V

Next on the list, The Plucky Knitter.

I first encountered Plucky Knitter yarns at Sock Summit.  I fell for them immediately, and I fell hard.  I may possibly have walked to the register cradling the yarn in my arms, as there was too much of it to simply hold in my hands.  Part of that purchase got turned into Whippersnappers within just a few months.  Plucky yarns can be a little tricky to get, but I assure you they’re well worth the effort!

On the right is Plucky Feet in Sticky Toffee.  This is a 4 ply, 90% merino 10% nylon mix and is pretty much everything you could ask for in a sock yarn.  It’s round enough to show off your stitches, sturdy enough to last, and soft enough to feel marvelous.  I’ve got a secret project in the works with this stuff (can’t tell you a thing about it now, but you will totally hear me making noise about it when it comes out).

On the left is Primo Worsted.  This is a 4 ply, 75% merino, 20% cashmere, 5% nylon blend in a lovely smushy worsted weight.  It’s amazingly versatile.  I, in my fat sock yarn moments, would totally make socks out of it, but it would be marvelous for accessories or garments as well.  It’s what I used for Uproar, (which is the piece of knitting that gets the most compliments ever when I wear it).

Rabble Rousers Yarn Giveaway (yes, more!)

Lots and lots and lots of good stuff to get through today!  First, business.  This is the last day of the Rabble Rousers preorder.  That means the preorder discount ends today, so this is your last chance to get the book (plus a free extra pattern of your choice) at the lower price.  Tomorrow the full electronic version goes live.

Next up, more yarn to give away.  I’ve got piles of it to go along with the release of Rabble Rousers, and I know you guys are going to love it.  Today’s lovely prize is the Primo Worsted by The Plucky Knitter.  This is the yarn I used to make Uproar, and people…it’s irresistible.

It’s a merino cashmere nylon blend.  Now that’s always a lovely mix, but there’s something about the way this one is spun that makes it stand out above the rest.  It’s plump and round and just undeniably substantial.  It’s the sort of thing you pick up and pet and carry around and end up falling in love with.  And of course Sarah’s colors are amazing.  She does the most exciting semi-solids you can imagine.  They are truly beautiful, and somehow they all look marvelous together.  I’ve never seen a single one I didn’t like.

And once again, I’ve got some to give away (no really…it’s going to be a theme around here for the next few weeks, you’ll want to stick around).  Now, one of the best things about Uproar is how freakishly quick a project it is.  It’s just a tiny little cuff, but undeniably satisfying.  And, it only takes a little bit of yarn.  That means that I can once again split this skein of Plucky Knitter Primo Worsted between two of you (you’ll each get more than enough to make a pair of Uproar cuffs with plenty of yarn left over).

Now Sarah, because she is a superwoman and wants to spread the love of all things Plucky, is off doing Stitches Midwest stuff at the moment, so her online store isn’t quite as bursting with goodies as normal.  But I want to show you guys these colors, so your best bet is to take a look here (and scroll down).  See how amazingly well those all go together?  If you’d like to be entered to win the yarn I’ve got to giveaway, just leave a comment here letting me know what your favorite of the colors is.

I’ll leave comments open through Friday evening my time (eastern time), and come back with a winner next Monday.  And yes, there will be still more yarn to give away next Monday too!  Just be sure to use a real email address so I can tell you if you win.

Finally, let’s make someone’s day extra fun.  Knittingdancer and Sosoclever are the winners of the Briar Rose yarn giveaway.  I’ll be emailing you for your addresses shortly.  And to those who didn’t win, remember that Chris has generously given everyone 10% off any Briar Rose purchases through the end of August if you use the code “Hunter” at check out.  I may just have to get myself a goody of my own.

Stacks

I feel a tiny bit bad that it’s been so long since I’ve put out a pattern.  The last one was Chamfer in what, February?  Now to be fair, the e version of The Knitter’s Curiosity Cabinet did go live in March, so it’s not like you’ve not got something to keep your needles busy.  But still, I’m used to putting out an individual pattern every month or so, and the longer time frame is making me a bit twitchy.  But never fear, it’s all in the service of a bigger project!

After seeing how much fun Knitter’s Curiosity Cabinet was, I decided to experiment with taking some of the things I’d usually do as individual patterns and combining them into a mini book.  That’s what all the things you’ve seen around here since March or so will be used for.  I think it will work well, but it does mean that the once a month timeline sort of falls by the wayside.  Now I know waiting’s no fun, and I also know I find waiting easier if I know what’s going on in the background while I’m waiting.  So I thought I’d let you know where things stood.

The photo shoot is this Sunday.  As of this morning, all the projects for the mini book are done and blocked.  I’ve even got proof!  The only thing left to do is sew buttons one one piece (anyone taking bets on whether that will happen Sunday morning).

Down at the bottom there are the Ruction cowl and mitts in Malabrigo Arroyo.  They’re reversible, and I’m totally smitten with them.  Next up the stack is the Clamor hat in Briar Rose Wistful.  It’s scrunchy and slouchy and looks unreasonably adorable on everyone.  Peeking out from the middle is the Tumult cowl in Handmaiden Silk Twist.  I think it might be my secret favorite, and I want the photoshoot over with so I can wear it.  Next up are the Fracas hat and cuffs in Schaefer Yarn Company Nichole.  My secret plan is to send them home with Lauren as a thank you for her help modeling.  And on the top there are the Uproar cuffs in Plucky Knitter MCN Primo.  These are knitting crack and you should never ever start making them as you won’t want to stop.  You’ve been warned.

All the patterns are done, and testing is wrapping up.  The pattern text is over with the tech editor, and I’m finalizing the other, non-pattern, text this week.  The plan is to have the files to the printer in early June.  That means the e version will likely be available in late July, and the paper version available a week or two later.

Alright, I feel better now.  It’s still not quite as good as having a pattern ready to go for you.  But hopefully it works to show that I’m not just lazing on the patio sipping lemonade!

Continue the Tradition

The yard work wasn’t nearly as disturbing as the painting (nor did it go on for weeks and weeks).  But I’d set a precedent with the cuffs and the painters last time, so I wanted to continue it.

I started this little cuff on Monday (since that’s when I thought the yard folks were coming) and worked on it on and off while they were here on Tuesday.  I finished it up Wednesday.  Yesterday was blocking and button hunting (I’m not sure this is the right button, but it works for now).  Today, I show it off.

It’s cute and quick, almost more of a fashion statement than something to keep you warm.

The yarn is by Plucky Knitter, some of the stuff I brought home from Sock Summit.  The whole cuff took all of 35 yards and about 3 hours of knitting.  I should have the next one banged out soon.  They’re a bit addictive.

Think I could make 2 or 3 in different colors and different widths and wear them all together?  Could they be the grown up version of jelly bracelets (please tell me I’m not the only one here old enough to have worn jelly bracelets as a kid…I had zillions of the things), or would that be a terrible idea?

If they’ve caught your fancy and you want to make your own, the pattern is up for testing over on ravelry.  The green ones from the other day are up too.  Swing by and volunteer.

Look, Knitting

Just in case you were worried I’d not been knitting, I’ve got a tiny reminder.  I’m awfully pleased with these.  They’re orderly somehow, almost stately.  I’ll cast on the second one in a day or two, and might even finish them up this month (an unheard of level of knitting fidelity truth be told).  I have a suspicion they’ll look even cooler when I’ve got a pair of them and they’re on real live feet.