Wednesday, January 18, 2012

OPP's...Other People's Patterns

Occasionally, I make the time to knit other designer's patterns.  It is very rare though, since I feel guilty that I am not working on my own designs.  But, sometimes...I just need a break, or I want to try something new or I just want to knit without all the preamble that designing requires.  

Yesterday I made a Monster Chunk, these guys are so cute and so quick! I do have Rebecca Danger's The Big Book of Knitted Monsters and I love the monsters in the book, but I wanted something the Chunks won out! This weekend I am heading up to VA to have a little joint birthday party with my adorable nephew and this a little present for him.

Monster chunk

Isn't he cute?! I used Malabrigo Merino Worsted in Apple Green and Blue Surf, the safety eyes are from 6060 on Etsy and I grabbed the felt at A.C. Moore.

Friday, January 13, 2012

How I Wore It: Ovate

Hey guys! Here's me, wearing my Ovate (large)...

Ovate Shawl

Black jeans (which is totally branching out for me!) and a white turtleneck, nothing exciting, but I love wearing the large version of Ovate like this.  I attach the toggles along one edge and the pull the end of the other side through the "loop" it makes. It is easy, looks great and won't slide off the shoulders!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Sneak Peek: Cordate

Here is a better look at Cordate for you guys! I finished up the draft today, shot the pictures and got it out to my testers.  I do need to re-shoot the photos, because I didn't get the detail that I wanted, but there was a storm rolling in. Plus, I realized that the wrong side of the scarf was showing in about half of the pictures and I was making ridiculous faces in some of the others >_< Anyway, enough talking, here are the pics:





See...wrong side, at least it doesn't look that bad!  I did have a ton of fun editing these in photoshop (got it for Christmas, a nice upgrade from elements!) and RadLab, which really is quite rad! If you have photoshop and are looking for a way to make editing really simple and awesome you should check it out (no, they don't pay me, I just love it)!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Swatch It!

I am sure everyone knows the importance of swatching...but I admit that I am still amazed when I hear people say that they don't swatch.  It is such a small thing, that right off the bat, can determine the success or failure of a project.  It is a lovely "first date" with your yarn (without all that awkwardness and sweaty palms!), where you get to know each other and can determine if you two will work well together in the long term.  You get to learn what needles your yarn works well with and how well behaved it is after an introduction to water.  Sometimes it just doesn't work out, or you may find that yarn is better suited to another project down the road.

Me, I love swatching, if you can't tell from that lead in! It wasn't always this way, but after many hours and a couple of ill-fitting sweaters in my early knitting career, lesson learned.  Now, sometimes I am more excited about swatching than any other part of the project. I love trying new yarns and stitch patterns and also trying out different needles (bamboo, hardwood, stainless steel) to see which will be most comfortable and easiest to work with.

All of my designs are based off of the gauge on my swatch. Before I got into designing I didn't realize all the math involved and that the key numbers that rule everything are the stitches and rows per inch.  All of the stitch counts, finished measurements and grading starts with those numbers, so it really is important!   I can guarantee that in most instances, if you do not obtain pattern gauge, it will not come out the size stated in the pattern...size and gauge go hand in hand. By simply taking a little extra time before you start, you can ensure an awesome FO!

So after my little ode to swatching, I will try to offer a weekly piece wherein I feature a swatch that I am working on.  Heck I could probably feature a swatch a day with the number I have hanging around here ;)

Friday, January 6, 2012

Gamine is DONE!

Hello! Just a quick little post today to let you know that Gamine is now available for download!  I finally got my act together and finished it up this week, along with the help of my editor and a lovely group of test knitters. 

It has been a long process with this one...this was actually the first design I sketched out in my little notebook.  Hoping at the time, that one day I would have the ability to turn it into a wearable garment. Here it is, at long last, and I am pretty pleased with the results ;)



Thursday, January 5, 2012

How I Wore It...

Now, I am definitely not the most fashionable girl on the self-consciousness and need for comfort tend to get in the way. Plus, I don't really do a lot of exciting stuff.  I don't find myself out having cocktails multiple times a week at swanky venues, so my wardrobe doesn't extend far beyond casual.  I base my designs around my lifestyle and what I like to wear...which is how I came up with this idea.  I plan on showing how I wear my knits...there will be a lengthy hiatus once it heats up down here (in a couple of months), though! But I thought this might be a fun way to see the design beyond the "pattern page" photos.

Here I am in my large Belmondo, getting ready to go shopping:

I wear this shawl all the time, usually wrapped as a scarf or around my shoulders when it is a little chilly. Jeans and t-shirts are usually the order of the day for me, so hopefully this won't get too boring as the weeks go on ;)

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Happy New Year!

I hope everyone is having a great 2012 so far! Right now I am bogged down in the editing of Gamine...or I could say avoiding editing Gamine >_<  At this point, where I need to do the final revisions with my editor, I always seem to hit this wall and don't even want to look at the pattern anymore.  Hopefully I will find more motivation after I take down the Christmas decorations...or that I will do some editing to avoid that! The house always looks so sad after the decorations come down...maybe that is a sign that I should work on redecorating my house ;)

I have been a bit scattered the past month. I haven't really been able to focus on anything, especially knitting.  This year (here comes the resolutions!) I want to make an actual work schedule for myself.  Since I design full time, I do it whenever I want...which usually alternates between days of nothing but knitting or writing and then a week of nothing. Plus, I feel guilty when I indulge in my other artistic endeavors, since I feel that it is taking away from my design time. As much as I have fought against it, I need to add a little structure to my designing so I don't burn myself out. 

Another good thing about the schedule...I will be setting aside time each week to dedicate to blogging.  Yeah, that means consistent posting! I hope I will have plenty to share, and if there are any questions or anything you want to know...definitely leave a note in the comments! Also, I just started a tumblog that I have been posting pictures of other stuff I make and do...from photography to nails and is just a mishmash of stuff that doesn't fit here, if you ever want to stop by.  So here's to sticking with resolutions in the wonderful year to come ♥