All posts by Heather

Design Coordinator at Universal Yarn.

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!

Sunday Swatch – Poems Forte

Today’s swatch is in Poems Forte.

Poems Forte swatch

I say “swatch” but it seems to have turned into a scarf.  I cast on at my local knit night and with all the good conversation and company, my little swatch ran away from me.  I found myself at the end of the ball, wondering where the time had gone.  And no wonder – on 10mm(US15) needles, this yarn knits up quickly.

Sunday Swatch - Poems Forte

This 12-stitch swatch used one ball of Poems Forte (colorway 1003 English Garden) and turned out to be 5 inches wide and 50 inches long – the 90 yards of super bulky wool went a long way.

Camilla from Poems Windfall

This is a yarn I’ve been wanting to work with for a while.  Cornelia Tuttle Hamilton uses Poems Forte in her popular design Camilla from Wisdom Book 4:  Poems Windfall.  I love the way she uses a system of yarn overs to create a fabric that is both thick and airy.  What a lovely texture.

Miller 1218's Swirling Cowl

While poking around on Ravelry, I also stumbled across this gorgeous cowl knitted by raveler Miller1218.  She modified the Swirling Cowl, a super-superbulky design to work on size 13 needles with less than a ball of Poems Forte in color 1007 Bursa, and the result is fabulous.  This would be great to knock out at the next knit night.  Based on experience, I know it’ll go quickly.

Afghan Knitalong – Color Selection Part Two

I don’t know about you, but I continue to dither over my Afghan Knitalong colors!  So since we at Universal Yarn have a warehouse full of gorgeous Uptown Worsted at our fingertips, our staff put together Amy Gunderson’s other three color selections to see how they struck our fancy.

Afghan Knitalong - Be GreenI am torn between Rocky Shore (from the last afghan color post) and Be Green.  They’re both muted and adult, and both would look great draped over my couch.

Afghan Knitalong Cupcake Parade

Cupcake Parade is the colorway that Amy is using in her afghan.  Swatches and video demos will mostly feature this group of colors.

Afghan Knigalong Proud Colors

Bright primaries reminiscent of a rainbow or the colors in a crayon box.  Gorgeous.

I’m  considering doing Be Green, but in blue, substituting 318 Navy for the Hunter Green and  a couple of lighter blues for the other two tones.  Uptown Worsted has plenty of color options to choose from, so I think I can find something that will work well.  We knitters are creative folks; we’re not obligated to follow the pack or color within the lines.

The first square goes live on Monday.  We’ll have the pattern, as well as a video tutorial on the technique used in our first square – intarsia!

 

Free Pattern Friday – Starglow Ski Cap

It’s Free Pattern Friday!

Starglow Ski Cap in Little Bird

Today, we share the Starglow Ski Cap in Little Bird.  Little Bird is a smooth and soft 100% acrylic perfect for kid designs like this Fair Isle hat.  We love the border around the brim that coordinates with the tassels!

This free pattern is one we’ve waited a little while to share.  The one color of Little Bird we had not yet received from our mill was gray.  Yesterday, we received it (and a lot of other goodies).  For this pattern, the lack of one color could be a problem, but it’s also an opportunity for reflection.

Often when we see a pattern made up, we only want it in the color shown.  And that’s fine – sometimes, we just fall in love with something exactly as it is.  But sometimes, it’s healthy to stretch our imaginations and see it in other ways.  What would you do to make this pattern your own?