Afghan Knitalong – Block Two

It’s time for the next block!

Afghan Block Two - Do The Wave

“Do The Wave” is a slightly more complex design, but you can do it!  It’s just a matter of shifting your color over by one or two stitches at a time.

Waves block back side

Looking at the back of the block, you can see that the principle is the same as the first block’s little squares.  You’re still twisting your stitches around each other to lock them in place as you pick up your new color and knit.

And speaking of the back side, Amy added a bonus to this square’s video – in addition to demonstrating diagonal intarsia, she also gives tips on weaving in ends.

 

If you’re not following us on Facebook, you may want to – we’ve had some great color combinations shared there.  We also have a Ravelry afghan group going.

We’ll do a check in next week and see how we’re doing.  After that, we’re moving on… to basic lace!

Sunday Swatch – Infusion Handpaints

Today’s Sunday Swatch is in Infusion Handpaints.

Sunday Swatch - Infusion HandpaintsInfusion Handpaints is a 50/50 blend of acrylic and superwash merino wool, a good combination of softness and durability.

Painted Wings Shawlette in Infusion HandpaintsI picked some bright colors today to chase away the winter blahs.  Wouldn’t these be great for a machine washable children’s garment?  Of course, if you want something more grownup you could try the Painted Wings Shawlette shown at right, a nice single skein project.

This stitch pattern on the sock swatch uses the same yarn-crossing principle as the smocked stitch on our Jubilation Kettle Dye sample a couple of weeks ago, but it’s even easier.  It goes like so, over a multiple of four:

Round 1: Knit.

Round 2: *K2, with yarn in front slip 2 purlwise* over round.

Round 3: Knit.

Round 4: *With yarn in front slip 2 purlwise, k2* over round.

It’s good “on the go” knitting since it’s so easy to memorize.  This sample is 56 stitches on a US Size 2 needle, so the rest of the sock should go pretty quickly.  The Infusion Handpaints page has  a couple of socks patterns using size 3 needles and a 48 stitch leg for even more instant gratification.

We’re fans of this yarn here in the office, and we have good things in the works for it – stay tuned for more details!

 

Free Pattern Friday – Little Peep Dress

It’s Free Pattern Friday!

Little Peep Dress in Little BirdToday, something adorable!  The Little Peep Dress is designed in soft, smooth Little Bird.  It’s a sleek, high quality 100% acrylic that knits up easily here on a US Size 3 needle.

Little Bird 3 balls

Designer Amy Gunderson was inspired by the figures on the Little Bird label to create a cute set of feathered friends suitable for any little chickadee.  This is a great warm-weather dress for Spring.

These birds are a classic example of the kind of designs you can make with intarsia.  If you’re participating in our afghan knitalong, these would be a great use for your new skills (which we’ll be refining further with our new square on Monday).

Happy knitting!

Afghan Knitalong – Block One Check-in

Well, we’ve had some interesting developments here in the office!  Two of our knitters chose the Uptown Worsted Rocky Shore colors, but they each went their own way with it.

First, let’s look at Jen’s block.

Square 1 Jen

Jen chose 321 Chocolate Brown as her background.  Having seen the light background of the Cupcake Parade example, this hadn’t occurred to me to do!  It’s certainly a more sophisticated look.

And now Katie’s block.

Katie 1 Cubed

It’s the exact same colorway, but she reversed the main color and the upper left block from Jen’s choice, making 303 Cream her background.   It’s going to be fascinating seeing how these two variations on a theme turn out!

For my colors, I mixed and matched from several options.

Heather 1 Cubed

The main color is 322 Silver Grey, with accents of 336 Coffee, 302 White Glow, and 331 Sapphire.  It was a bit of a nail-biter picking a different group of colors, but I’m pleased so far.  I’ve got another color to add in for the next block.

Of course the back side of all of our blocks is a bit of a nest.

Heather 1 Cubed back side

Not to worry, though.  Amy’s got a video coming up with tips on weaving in ends.

Want to join us?  You can click here for a link to the first block pattern.  Stop back by the afghan topic on our blog or check in on our Ravelry knitalong group to stay up to date.  We’ll see you next week with the second intarsia square!

Sunday Swatch – Poems Socks

Today’s Sunday Swatch is in Poems Socks.

Poems SocksYou’ll have to forgive the beat-up appearance of the ball.  This one’s been in my personal stash for a while, pressed into service for testing out quite a few stitch patterns.  Today it’s being used in the Crocus Scarf originally from Interweave Crochet Magazine, Spring 2007.  I’m happy to see that they’ve re-published it and it’s now free with registration on the Crochet Me site.  I’m always up for a good free pattern.

I used it here in a lengthwise scarf to show the advantage of Poems Socks’ gradual color shifts over long distances.  It’s easy to achieve sweeping bands of color organically without having to change yarns.  And since there are 459 yards per ball of Poems Socks, I’m done with the scarf (minus blocking) and still have half a ball left.  It’s a pretty pattern – maybe I should just keep going and see how far one ball can go!

 

Free Pattern Friday – Dynamo Dolman

It’s Free Pattern Friday!

DynamoDolman_FB

Today, the aptly named Dynamo Dolman in Uptown DK!

Like all members of the Uptown family, Uptown DK is 100% anti-pilling acrylic and incredibly soft.  In fact, I toyed with the idea of doing my Don’t Be A Square Afghan in either this or Uptown Baby Sport and turning the afghan into a baby blanket.  Uptown’s softness and machine washability makes this a great yarn for gifts.

And man, is that 136 Neon Yellow vibrant!  Neons are still a big fashion trend, and with warm weather coming up they’re going to be even more appropriate.  As we shake off the grip of winter, this lacy top is perfect for the move into summer.

How about you?  What’s your favorite kind of project to work on when the weather starts to turn?

 

Afghan Knitalong – Let’s get started!

And away we go!

1 Cubed blog

Amy Gunderson starts off our knitalong with a geometric square called “Cubed.”  You can get the pattern at this link.  It takes our “don’t be a square” theme and turns it on its head with squares within a square.

This square is a great basic introduction to intarsia, a method of working blocks of color without carrying your yarn over long stretches across the back of your work.  We’ve put together a video tutorial to further explain.

 

Our next square in two weeks will be slightly more advanced intarsia (but only slightly!) and will also feature a video.  Amy will also take us through some great methods for weaving in ends.

We’re casting on here at at the office and are already enjoying seeing how each others’ colors are working up!   Feel free to share your own work here, or on Facebook or in our Ravelry afghan group.

Let’s get going!