To celebrate, every La Maison Rililie pattern will be sold at a 20% discount!
No coupon needed...
(The sale starts the 13th at 00:01 CEST and ends October, 14th at midnight CEST.)
Today, the 13th of October I will be officially older (and hopefully wiser)!
To celebrate, every La Maison Rililie pattern will be sold at a 20% discount!
No coupon needed...
(The sale starts the 13th at 00:01 CEST and ends October, 14th at midnight CEST.)
My new pullover pattern has just been published!
I am especially happy for this one, because it was (and still is) one of these experiments where you have a dozen of different ideas that you want to implement all of them in one project and the resulting garment that comes to life right in front of you is evolving by it's self, having it's own personality.
There are different all over textured patterns on the body and the sleeves - on the sleeves it's one of the rare times I am using lace, since I do have quite an ambivalent feeling towards lacy patterns. The pullover also uses a different way to work the raglan increases: the back of the sleeve is worked on a different rate than the front, to produce a deeper section of the lacy pattern at the rear side.
The whole concept of this pullover is related to my love of sail-boats. Since boats do have a different name for the port (left) and the starboard (right) side of the vessel, I thought it would be fun to make two different sleeve versions. These can be reworked in the same manner as shown, or - for the knitters that do prefer absolute symmetry - one of the two versions can be chosen for both right and left sleeve...
In mediterranean sailing terminology a boat is said to be sailing Orza when its sails are trimmed in tightly and it is sailing as close to the wind as possible. This point of sail lets the boat travel diagonally to the wind direction, or 'upwind' - the most photogenic way to travel on a sailing boat, since one side is very close to the water and you get the dramatically loop sided position of the vessel, that looks (and feels) like you are the most incredibly accomplished skipper when doing it!
Hopefully the Orza pattern is going to produce a similar feeling of being the most accomplished knitter when finishing it...
You can either download the pattern for this little summer top on my website here or find it directly on the ravelry pattern page, together with many other beautiful versions, knitted up by talented ravelers.
Today is the day!!
The day a new yarn-baby has been pushed out into this great big world for us to caress and to love.... the Maai Yarn of Shibui has just been released!!!!
I am considering myself extremely lucky to be one of the few that had the opportunity to try this baby out before... I got a very generous sample by post and couldn't resist in casting on immediately for a new project (the hat from my last post), leaving my overflowing to-do list completely untouched.
It is this soft and beautiful!
In the same generous bag I got some other beautiful samples... Here you can see an array of different yarn bases in the same gorgeous colour "mineral" - I really want to use them all together in a project to showcase their differences and subtle variations.
The idea of mixing yarn bases is very popular with Shibui and by looking at all the different hues and textures that one gets in the same colour, I totally understand why!
...Of course I had to order some yarn for my next dream projects, too! I am afraid that only by looking at the incredible pictures on the Shibui site one can't help but wanting all of the lovely beauties they have on offer...
But back to the main idea for this post... I wanted you guys to see and feel for yourself the beauty that is called Maai and I thought that a give-away of a skein of this little wonder is in order: 3 persons that comment on this post will get one skein send to them by post.
A little present from me and Shibui!
To make the whole thing a little more fun I thought of a little game: You just need to continue the sentence of the one person that commented before you. It can be completely irrelevant or stupid, whatever you like. Hopefully we get one extra long ridiculous sentence written by all of us in the end...
... and 2 skeins in the colour "Poppy" and one skein in the colour "Blueprint" will be sent out to three different destinations each, when the time is up.
The winners will be drawn by a random generator 2 days after this post goes live and I will announce the winner at the bottom of this little article when the moment has come!
(I will also write an email to the winners to ask about postal addresses - which can be anywhere in the world - no restrictions!).
So... let's start the game!
Who will be the first to start the sentence???
Update on 17th September:
The three winners have been drawn!!!!
(I used a random generator for this difficult task... )
CONGRATS to the lucky winners!!!
Thank you everybody for playing!!!
The long sentence you guys wrote is really fun, sometimes very poetic and quite dreamy... with unicorns and elephants making unexpected appearances!
I loved reading through it and every new comment made me smile!!!!
I couldn't wish for more inspired readers!!!!!
I will write an email to each of the winners right now, to ask about where to send the yarn!!!
...or how to have a good excuse for playing around with balloons as an adult!
I just finished my new hat yesterday and thought I'd try out this trick I remember reading about somewhere. It allows you to block out stitch patterns on a hat, without getting folding lines at the sides (something that usually happens when laying it on a flat surface to dry after washing).
And now the real fun begins! Wet the hat up until it's completely soaked in water!!!
After the wool is completely dry, fluff the badly treated pom-pom up a little bit with your fingers before taking the air out of the balloon.... And then admire your hard work: Bloomed stitches and a neatly blocked out hat without folding lines!!!!
The hat is worked in Shibui yarn (Maai) and will probably become a pattern soon...
The pom-pom was made by following my latest tutorial crush in this youtube video.
The balloon on the other hand has been thrown away quite unceremoniously...
Summer is almost over... well, not exactly here at the Mediterranean coast with a new heat-wave arriving shortly, but in theory the summer months are coming to their end in the northern hemisphere!
My summer was quite stressful - that's the main reason I have been so silent lately on the blog.
I had some knitting related mishaps: My first sample for a magazine submission decided that it didn't want to have stripes and the darker colour bled into the light coloured striping... it bled all over the place and the whole project was ruined in minutes - after weeks of work!
All of this had to happen on a Saturday night - and I found myself searching frantically on the internet for yarn shops that offered express shipping...
(I had to reknit the whole thing immediately since the deadline-clock started ticking louder and louder while my nerves were getting tighter and tighter).
Well, I can inform you, that there are none! At least I didn't find any online shop that would ship express internationally with a guaranteed arrival of the yarn in a couple of days...
Thankfully I remembered Rachel, the owner of the UK based yarn shop Tangled-Yarn, whom I "met" on the wonderful knitting forum ravelry and I wrote her a freaked out message, telling her what happened and asking her if she would be able to send me the yarn immediately, like... NOW!
Rachel answered on Sunday morning (!) and she had already researched all the possible shipping methods and told me exactly what costs how much and when it would arrive and...
...well, to cut the story short: she totally saved my butt!!!!
So 2 days after that I held the yarn I needed in my hands (and maybe even a little more than I actually needed, I mean... since you pay for express shipping you need to take advantage of it, don't you?)
But for the project I needed to start as quickly as possible I chose my trusted old friend: Coast yarn from Holst. I am a little Holst fanatic, I admit it freely - but I just knew that this yarn would neither loose any colour nor provide me with any other bad surprises...
I re-calculated and re-knitted everything in just under a week....
...and now I can breath again!
I sadly can't show you anything of the project in question - hopefully you'll see it next year (if it doesn't get lost on the way or anything else).
But I can and will say a huge thank you to the lovely yarn-shop owners out there, that are life saviours whenever a stupid knitter messes up and who listen to all our woes and..
well, provide us with the loveliest yarn ever!
THANK YOU Rachel!!!!!!
These are the short-rows I always use as a knitter, but I suggest them also in my own patterns as a designer. Whatever the instructions may be... the german short-rows simply are the most discreet and incredibly easy to work, in my humble opinion at least!
Until recently there was this great tutorial on the socktopus website about how to work this rather amazing technique. I used to put the link to said tutorial in all my patterns that used the german short-row method (as a quick explanation for knitters that weren't familiar with it) - but recently the domain went down and this had as a result that all my patterns were pointing to a "blank" page!!!
I myself have made some tutorial in the past and I generally prefer to make photo-tutorials that showcase something new, something that is not already to be found on the internet: usually about innovative methods that I have came up with or, in some rare exceptions about already known methods, where I couldn't find a tutorial that was clear and concise enough.
For one, I think that there is no point in having a ton of different tutorials about the exact same technique on the net. But I also believe that it is a nice gesture of appreciation for the hard work of knitters that create informative tutorials and videos to link their sites in patterns or on personal blogs and to provide traffic and make them known to a wider audience.
That's what I thought until recently.... (and I still do)...
But I didn't think of the possibility that these great tutorials can just simply disappear, like in the case of the german short-row technique on the soctopus-site...
(RIP soctopus and thank you!!! It was a great informative read)!
Well.... Since I will need to change all the related links in my patterns in the next days, I decided that I'd have to write up my own tutorial about this method - which hopefully will stay online for a looooooooooooooooooong time!!!
Edit: If you choose to work this technique by following a pattern that uses the Wrap & Turn method (which is a different short-row technique commonly used in Anglo-Saxon regions), you would need to work one stitch more than indicated in your pattern:
The slipped stitch of the German Short-Rows is equivalent to the W&T stitch.
(thank you Love2stitch for this clarification!)
To see a higher resolution of the tutorial below click on the image.
As usual, you can find this tutorial together with a bunch of others on this page here, where each PDF is also downloadable for further reference.
...And on a completely unrelated note: there is an interview Robin did with me on her blog.
And I am very excited about this!!!!
You can find it here if you are interested to read something about me!
...is finally published!!!
I have been working on this baby since April! But with the workshop and my stay in Berlin for the whole of May and some other things that kept popping up, this pattern really took a long time to get finally out there!
I have to admit that I am very pleased with the SpliTTop! It has so many elements that make it quite unique (at least in my book). A lot of new stuff in terms of seamless techniques, that I discovered while experimenting with yarn & needles in my living-room (all of which are shown step by step in photo-tutorials as usual) and an unusual construction that allows for a (hopefully) very fun project and beautiful finished garment!
...you hold the package you recently ordered, full of knitting related goodies!!!
No, it wasn't yarn this time (but I am waiting for a shipment of some lovely wool, too... I am addicted to internet shopping, I know)!
This one is probably even better: I bought knitting accessories..... striped project bags, a fancy Japanese yarn clipper and a statement tote from Fringe Supply Co!
Isn't the little black yarn-clipper cute? I like the simple "mechanical" no-nonsense look of this one... makes me feel very accomplished when I cut my yarn with gusto!
And although I really didn't need another handbag for my overflowing collection, I had to have this tote! I mean, as a die-hard-knitter one has to share one's conviction and show that we knitter mean business wherever we go...
But the main reason for my internet-hunt was the need for a representable project-bag! I had a cloth drawstring bag that I lost somehow and soon found out that it was a really bad idea to keep your knitting without any protection together with all the other random things that accumulate in a large handbag (you know what I am talking about: The Miss-Marple-Effekt of opening a handbag and shoving all kind of meddled clutter on the table).
I always admired some really beautiful handmade project-bags, where you can store your knitting while on the go without having your yarn and needles all over the place. But most of the ones I found were a little bit too flamboyant and overly decorated for my taste....
The ones I got are called Bento-Bags and apparently they can be used as lunch parcels, too...
or indeed for whatever else you need to keep secure in your handbag. For my part they will have the one and only honourable job to exclusively house my precious WIPs!
They come in different sizes to hold small project like socks up to whole garments together with lots of yarn! I am thrilled!!!!!
Aren't they cute? Such an easy and practical design... I noticed that I like simple and clean lines with an unfussy shape that's easy to use.
And Fringe Supply & CO has just this aesthetic that I love!!!
So... now I definitely need to go somewhere just to sport my new tote with my WIP neatly packed in it's lovely project bag, where it belongs!
But I thought that it'll be the perfect time to make some smaller updates to 2 of my older tutorials, that you guys know already from older posts:
The first update is another, quicker way to work my LK2tog left leaning decrease.
A couple of months ago Steffi (a very nice member of my Ravelry-Group) told me about this variation and I was very happy with her excellent idea and thought I'll share it with you...
It's technically the exact same technique as before, only that Steffi's way made it quicker by eliminating some of the last steps. This version might work better for tight knitters than for looser ones, but tell me how it works for you.
Click on the images below to read the whole tutorial in higher resolution.
The second update is a photo-tutorial for the Purled CO with twist (until now only a video-tutorial was made about this method). Nothing has really changed at all with this technique... it's just that the new PDF format allows you to download it and to look at it offline or also print it and keep it as a reference (if you like it, of course).
Both of these updated PDFs can be found on the tutorial page of this site, here
Well, summer continues and we are testing out my new lightweight top at the moment. The very helpful and fun team of Testers work really hard on Ravelry so that I will be able to make the pattern available about mid of July!
Here is a sneak-peek of the new SpliTTop!
I hope you'll like it as much as I do....
So... what are you up to for summer? Do you knit at all?
And if yes... what is your favourite knitting project for the hot season???
You know the eternal problem with binding off a cuff on a toe-up sock: often it comes out too tight or it looks a little bit strange, like some kind of a mishap-ruffle that might be stretchy enough but somehow stays stretched out and never gets back into "pole-position" when not worn...
I usually like the i-cord bind off for garments, while for socks & mittens and the like I prefer the tubular bind off. Both of them are stretchy enough and look gorgeous, too.
But quite often I am not in the mood for these long-winded methods (although it's true, they are worth their while) and I just want a simple, straightforward and quick ending to my ribbed sock cuff that preferably stays in place when unworn and stretches out enough to pass over my foot without squeaky yarn sounds (or worse, squeaking me-sounds)!
So... as usual I experimented a little bit and I thought I'd share my "findings" with you:
(You can click on the pictures to read or download the PDF in a higher resolution).
For a simple stockinette fabric I would alternate the Increase Bind-Off and a traditional Bind-Off (every second stitch would be done in the Increase BO) to have an elastic version that does not flare. This variation might also be of interest for all the loose knitters out there, even for ribbing...
So.. that's the Increase Bind-Off... (sounds like an oxymoron, but that's probably why I chose this name! Stupid word-plays never fail to make me happy!). Well, I decided that I like the result of this cast-off technique and that all my next pairs of socks will definitely feature it!
I am sure that someone else has already thought about this simple method of discretely increasing stitches before binding them off before me, butI couldn't find anything similar looking when browsing the web:
The methods I have found on the net are the Lace-bind-off (the k2tog tbl version, which definitely is stretchy, but has aforementioned problems of bouncing back when unworn) and another technique, which also is perfect for Lace knitting and Casting-Off of shawls: The yarn-over method (or better known as Jeny's surprisingly stretchy bind off). It is decorative and beautiful, but a little bit too decorative for what I wanted for my ribbed cuffs in this case.
There is also a newer method by Lorraine LeGrand, which I still need to try out (she calls itLory's Twisty Bind Off).
And since we are talking bind-offs, here is a link to knitty.com with a compilation of different known bind-offs, stretchy or not, which you might find useful.
But do tell: What is your preferred method for a super-stretchy bind off?
I am always eager to learn....
If you like the tutorial you can also find other similar stuff on this page...