Sunday Swatch – Bamboo Pop

Today’s Sunday Swatch is in Bamboo Pop colors 108 Lime Green, 208 Pink Joy, and 102 Cream.

SS Bamboo Pop flower

Today’s swatch started as an experiment to see just how thick various i-cords were in Bamboo Pop.  Bamboo Pop is one of our most popular yarns, a lightweight blend of 50% cotton and 50% bamboo.

The entire flower was knit on size 4 needles.  The petals of the flower are one long 4-stitch i-cord, the stem is a 3-stitch i-cord, and the center is a 2-stitch i-cord curled around itself.

SS Bamboo Pop flower back side_blogI took a picture of the back side so you can see how it’s assembled.  I had hoped to put a chenille stem (pipe cleaner, for those of my generation) into the center for stability, but the i-cord was just a little too narrow to fit the jumbo-sized chenille stem that I had on hand, so instead I used some very thick floral wire for stability.  The extra wire extending from the bottom lets it stand upright without causing the i-cord to push up on itself and wrinkle.

The leaves were a last-minute addition, but they’re a nice touch.  Here’s the leaf pattern, done on size 4 needles:

CO 4

Row 1: k1, (kfb) twice, k1. (6 sts total)

Row 2: purl

Row 3: k2, (kfb) twice, k2 (8 sts total)

Row 4: purl

Row 5: k3, (kfb) twice, k3 (10 sts total)

Row 6: purl

Row 7: k1, k2tog, k4, ssk, k1 (8 sts total)

Row 8: purl

Row 9: k1, k2tog, k2, ssk, k1 (6 sts total)

Row 10: purl

Row 9: k1, k2tog, ssk, k1 (4 sts total)

Row 10: purl

Row 9: k2tog, ssk,(2 sts total)

Row 10: purl 2 tog (1 st total)

Pull yarn through remaining stitch to bind off.

I have some bits of Bamboo Pop in other colors, so I’m considering making an entire bouquet for an empty flowerpot.  It would be a nice maintenance-free addition to the front porch.

Happy knitting – and gardening!

Free Pattern Friday – Bodrum Beach Cover-up

It’s Free Pattern Friday!

Garden 3 Bodrum Beach Coverup 1_blog

Everybody say hi to Yonca!

Sunday Swatch Garden 3 blogYonca is our sales director, and also the designer of today’s free pattern, the Bodrum Beach Cover-up in Garden 3.  You may recognize part of this pattern from this past week’s Sunday Swatch (right).

Yonca wanted to make a gift for her sister-in-law in Turkey, so she whipped up this colorful number in our Garden 3 cotton thread and graciously shared her pattern with us.  Garden 3 ( 136yds/50g) is 100% mercerized Egyptian Giza cotton, a favorite for durable and beautiful garments and a great pick for this breezy summer project.

It’s called the Bodrum Beach Cover-up after the town of Bodrum in Turkey, a beautiful resort with gorgeous weather, a medieval castle, and of course the beach.  I was so happy Yonca told us about this place – it’s one more spot to put on my bucket list.

We couldn’t resist sending Yonca on a virtual trip there, if only for this blog post.  Have a great time, Yonca, and keep crocheting!

Garden 3 Bodrum Beach Coverup 5_beachified

Throwback Thursday – Ruffled Shoulder Bag

It’s Throwback Thursday!

TT Ruffled Shoulder Bag in Links_blog

The Ruffled Shoulder Bag is a great project any time of the year.  Originally knit in Links cotton from our Fibra Natura line, we suggest substituting another non-wool yarn like Cotton Supreme (100g/180yds) or Uptown DK (100g/273yds).

The frills are simple semi-circular strips sewn on after knitting the bag proper, making it easy to customize with or without ruffles as you wish.

I’m thinking this might be a good thing to work on at my local Worldwide Knit In Public Day – making a bag big enough to hold my WIPs seems like a fitting project!

Pink & Plaid

One of the super fun parts of my job is getting to see projects other people are making in our yarn. Recently, Linda Davis, owner of Tail Spinner in Richlands, NC sent us photos of a fantastic weaving project. Although not woven on a rigid heddle loom (as most of our projects  in this column will be), I had to show this beautiful throw to the world! Made in Deluxe DK Superwash this throw will be able to be machine washed.

Claire

Meet Claire, a high school student local to Linda. Claire doesn’t knit or crochet (yet!), but her favorite subject in school is environmental science. Here are some details on this lovely project, courtesy of Linda:

In our county, each senior is required to do a project their Senior year to learn about something which they had never done before.  Claire’s grandmother has a countermarch, 8-shaft loom that she wants to give to her, and Claire was very intrigued by the thought of weaving.  So, she decided that learning to weave would be a great project.  She found out that I taught weaving after some investigating, and she called me last September to see if I would mentor her for her Senior project.  I said I would be glad to, and we proceeded on with her journey.  Her first project was done on the rigid heddle loom.  She created a moebius scarf using chenille and ribbon as the warp on an 8-dent heddle and weaving loosely with a simple fingering wool.  Then, we moved on to doing the throw on the 32-inch, four-shaft table loom, using a 10-dent reed.  She used the Deluxe DK Superwash for both the warp and the weft.  The throw is basically a sampler using a point twill.  She had to choose the yarn and the colors and decide the repeats of color throughout the warp and then figure out the weft repetitions.  Another of Claire’s assignments was to select the patterns she wished to use and alternate them every nine inches.  She chose a Bird’s Eye repeat over 6 ends: 3/2/1/2/3/4; and then, she mixed up the patterns using 2/2 and 1/3 twills.  So, she essentially designed the whole piece, which ended up being 30 inches wide and over 60 inches long.
seniorproject 006 (640x428)

Thanks Claire and Linda!

Afghan Knitalong – Block Seven

Block Seven is live!

7 Echolate block_blog

Cables!  I love ’em.  They can give flow and movement to a piece  that is hard to achieve any other way.  But they’re also one of those things that some knitters never try, just because they seem intimidating.  Nothing could be further from the truth!

For Block Seven “Echolate” we’ve got a video to walk you through the process of knitting both right and left-leaning cables using a cable needle.  If you don’t have a cable needle, grab a spare double-point and use that instead!

In this block, I’m particularly fond of the little rippling cables at the left.  I may incorporate that into more of my knitting!

This block also calls for a few M1 (make one) increases on row 7.  As a bonus, Amy Gunderson has put together a short video demonstrating exactly how this kind of increase works.  Easy peasy!

We hope you enjoy this foray into the world of cables.  We’ll see you in a couple of weeks with another block that builds on this technique.

Happy knitting!

Sunday Swatch – Garden 3

Today’s Sunday Swatch is in Garden 3.

Sunday Swatch Garden 3 blog

This crochet swatch in Garden 3 is actually a WIP by a member of our sales team.  It’s a piece that she’s made the front of already, and is now making the matching back for.  I’ve seen it in person, and it’s beautiful!

Garden 3 is excellent quality 100% mercerized Egyptian Giza cotton, smooth with a bit of a sheen.  Garden is part of our popular Nazli Gelin line and is available in both 50 gram balls and 500 gram cones perfect for larger projects.

Our diligent salesperson is using a US E/4 (3.5mm) hook and it’s working out beautifully, as you can see above.  Another of my favorite Garden 3 designs, Sarah Read’s  Love Ewe Nesting Dolls to the right, works up on smaller hooks.  It’s available as a free download (yay!) with website signup from CrochetMe.com.  Here’s the link.

Happy crafting!

Free Pattern Friday – Sunflower Dress

It’s Free Pattern Friday!

Sunflower Dress in Garden_blog

Today, something bright and summery for the crocheters!  The Sunflower Dress in Garden 10 is a sunny delight.

Sunflower Dress in Garden_altWritten and charted, this crochet confection uses our Garden 10 100% mercerized Egyptian Giza cotton thread.  Garden comes in both 50 gram balls and in 500 gram cones, handy for larger projects.

This is exactly the kind of design that inspires me to stretch my wings when it comes to crochet.  Just gorgeous.

Happy crocheting!