Afghan Knitalong – Block Five

Square Five "Check It"

Block Five is called “Check It” (link here).

How’d we do with lace?  I have to say, that last square went pretty quickly for us in the office, with no major malfunctions.  I feel like we’ve mastered that technique.  Good thing, too, since we’re on to something new!

Block Five is called “Check It” for obvious reasons – it uses slipped stitches to create a colorful checkerboard.  It’s a clever way to create blocks of color without a lot of picking up and dropping of yarn as you go.  As usual, Amy Gunderson has provided us with a video to demonstrate.

Block Five "Check It" back sideHere’s a view of the back side that shows the stitches slipped across the wrong side of the work.

I’m very excited about this block.  Slip stitch is such an easy way to create a colorful design!

We’d love to see what you’ve done – share it here, on Facebook, or in our Ravelry group.  We’ll see you in two weeks with another great block!

Sunday Swatch – Superwool

Today’s Sunday Swatch is in Superwool.

Sunday Swatch Superwool_blog

Superwool is one of those yarns that you touch, then you pause and squeeze because you can’t quite believe what you’re feeling.  Superwool is super stretchy!  It’s an acrylic/nylon blend that’s specially spun to provide a lot of give.  Frankly, as, shall we say, a “substantial” knitter I am delighted to find a yarn that’s going to be kind to my curves – especially a super bulky one that knits up quickly.

Quick Cowls Lava Flow Cowl Superwool_blogThis swatch is a cable taken from the Lava Flow Cowl pictured at right, a one ball pattern that’s part of our free Quick Cowls e-book.  It works up very quickly on size 17 needles.  I knitted this swatch in a coffee shop and foolishly left my cable needle at home, so I wound up using a Sharpie magic marker to hold my stitches.  I felt quite resourceful.

If I hadn’t had my tools, I still could have made a quick project – this yarn works great for arm-knitting.  It’s simple to make this 50″ long “Supercowl” using just your hands and one skein.  Superwool’s elasticity makes it a natural fit for arm-knitting.  It’s very easy to move the yarn over your wrists.

I just might unravel this swatch and use it to teach my daughter how to arm-knit.  What a fun project in a fun yarn!

Free Pattern Friday – Jest Scarf

It’s Free Pattern Friday!

Jest Scarf

Today, it’s the Jest Scarf in Jubilation Kettle Dye and Deluxe Worsted Superwash.

Amy Gunderson brings us this whimsical design.  Colorful petals in Jubilation Kettle Dye Worsted are set against a neutral background of Deluxe Worsted Superwash.  There’s no purling in this pattern, just straight knitting back and forth with the curves created by short rows.

I love this unique design.  I can envision this in Jubilation color 108, yellows and reds and oranges, to create a cascade of falling leaves.  Regardless of color choice, this is definitely a design that tells people you’ve got a light spirit.  Surrounded by petals of yarn, how could you not smile?

Jest Scarf Wrapped

 

Sunday Swatch – Little Bird Colors

Today’s Sunday Swatch is in Little Bird Colors.

Little Bird Colors

This is color 203.  With a name like “Grass Stain” it just had to come outdoors to play.

Little Bird Colors, like its sibling Little Bird, is a smooth machine-washable 100% acrylic with a cottony feel.  This yarn  glided along my needles with ease.  Little Bird Colors comes 344 yards per 100g, so this swatch barely made a dent in the ball.

Little Dreamer PulloverThe stitch used is the same as in the free pattern Little Dreamer Pullover at right.  This baby and toddler sweater was designed for Little Bird solids, and I was curious as to how it would look with the stripes of Little Bird Color.  Answer – great!  The swatch was knitted to the same dimensions as the smallest size of the sweater – 61 stitches wide, with five rows of twisted rib on a US Size 3 needle and the body knitted on a slightly larger US Size 4.  I’m tempted to keep going, since baby shower season is upon us and it’s always a good idea to have a spare gift on hand.

For those curious as to what the back side of this slip stitch rib looks like, it’s even and smooth, as you can see.

Little Bird Colors Swatch back side_blog

This was also excellent practice in slip stitch – the next Afghan Knitalong block releases on May 12th and features this technique, so it was a good time to brush up.

We hope you spend a little time outdoors among green and growing things today.  Happy knitting!

Free Pattern Friday – Day Trip Tote

It’s Free Pattern Friday!

Day Trip Tote in Good Earth

Today’s Free Pattern Friday is the crocheted Day Trip Tote in Good Earth.  Can’t you feel yourself relaxing just looking at it?  I can’t decide – should I take it down to the beach, or sling it over a shoulder and bring it to the farmer’s market?

Southwest SunsGood Earth is a cotton/linen blend that’s perfect for cool and breezy projects.  Available in solids and multis, it’s a popular choice for crochet, as in the Southwest Suns shawl  at right from our Contrarian Shawls e-book.  Works great in knits too – the free pattern Lakeside Tee is in my queue.

We love this yarn.  In fact, we’re adding a new member to the Good Earth Family – Good Earth Adorn uses a spray-dyeing technique to give it interesting color without pooling.

We hope your weekend is filled with relaxation, and plenty of time to enjoy whatever craft you choose.

Good Earth group_blog