I have been working on new patterns

Here is one:
This shawl does not have an official name yet, even though I have knitted it 5 times already working out the design and quirks in the pattern.
This is somewhat less-usual design, because the shawl does not have a "spine" (central stitch that runs down the back). It has a lace back panel. The increases happen around the panel.

It also has a unique almost collar-like band that goes around your neck and down the sides of the shawl. Why is it unique? NO SEWING! NO GRAFTING! The shawl is knitted as one piece!

Stay tuned: the pattern will come out in early January 2012.
Happy knitting everyone!



It has been while since I posted the last time  (my, my  - it seems like I start every post with this phrase). We, people in academic world, measure our time by quarters or semesters. So, another semester is done, students are on vacation, and I am back to posting.
Even though I was absent from the Blogger, I have been knitting. A lot. Here I want to show you one of the custom projects I did for my Etsy store customer: Taygete shawl by Rosemary (Romi) Hill.
The yarn was a very nice Shetland tweed.
I absolutely love the pattern: well written, beautifully illustrated, clear and straight forward.
The shawl came out VERY nicely, slightly over-sized and drapes beautifully.
More projects are coming. 
Happy Knitting Everyone!


Knitted Flounce Scarf

It is autumn here in New Hampshire. Leaves are almost gone, the air nice and crisp in the mornings.  Its is time for a new scarf!
Do you have one skein of a self-striping yarn? 
Do you like knitting quick fun projects?
How about this ruffled scarf?

Knitted with a garter stitch and shaped with short rows, this scarf has soft-draping ruffles along its length. 

It is not easy to find a pattern for a self-striping yarn. This one works well with solid colors as well as with stripes and marbled yarns.

Do you like the scarf? Do you want to knit it for you (and your mom, and your best friend ever and...  - you got the picture!).
I am offering it for sale as an instant  PDF download for US $4.00
Yarn: Patons®  Lace yarn
          (3 oz/498 yards; 85 g/455 m)
Color: Woodrose
Tools: Needles, US 7 (4.5 mm)
Finished size: 8 x 58 inch (20 x 150 cm)

Pattern is written in words.

Thank your for your interest!
Happy Knitting Everyone!


How to use Florence Knitting Silk. Part I

A  couple months ago Kate from Knitty blog talked about a great digital resource: The Winchester School of Art Library at University of Southampton in the UK is the home of the rather remarkable Knitting Reference Library. I am very interested in knitting traditions and ESPECIALLY (surprise!) lace traditions.
As I browsed the books ( they are in PDFs and free!) I was thinking that we, modern knitters, have a great advantage: pictures! Most knitting books from 1800-s had only written patterns, very few had drawings of the patterns.
I did find several with pictures. One of them is
This one had an illustration with every pattern. As I understand it was an advertisement  for a company that made silk for knitting ( kind of like the modern yarn companies put out pattern catalogs for their yarns).
Along with socks, mittens and purses the book has several lace edgings that I wanted to try.
It took me while to figure out how to read the patterns (some abbreviations are the same, some a different, so it took some trial and error). Some patterns I have seen before, some are quite original.
Here is one of my first attempts.
This is the pattern from the book:
 Look at the picture! not bad details for 1885 book!
Here is how it looked on my needles. Rather nice, I have to say, for a only 4-row pattern.
If you are interested, I have charted it here:
to be continued... Happy Knitting everyone!


Girl's gotta have sweaters!

Here is Part II of my "What have I been doing" report.
I discovered for myself Japanese Lace Patterns. Well, decided to try one (or two) out.
Here is the first attempt:
and couple close ups:

The pattern is from Couture Knit 14 (Here it is on Raverly). Here is the picture from the magazine:

I LOVE -LOVE-LOVE how this sweater came out. It looks great. I am also proud to report that the yarn here is a re-claimed wool ( I think) from a sweater that was given to me to "get rid of". So, would it be a "recycling" or "re-using"? :)

The other sweater was made using the pattern from Couture Knit 7. The original sweater looked like that. Lovely, isn't it?
I started to knit this sweater with a full intention to replicate the original, but 2 inches into the project I realized that I would have to spend MONTHS (if not YEARS) if I wanted to do so. The combination of the pattern and the yarn just was not good for a quick knit. So, I have truncated the pattern. Here is what I came up with. (the sweater is still in a blocking stage). You can see the main pattern on the front panel.
Here it is finished:
 and a close up detail on a sleeve:
By the way, the yarn I used was SPA by Naturally Caron: Spa is a silky bamboo blend, multi-ply yarn that offers knitters and crocheters lustrous finish and ultimate drape for all your projects. ( Fiber: 25% Rayon from Bamboo; 75% Microdenier Acrylic; Weight: 3 oz / 85 g; Length: 251 yds / 230 m).

The finished sweater feels great, but I really do not recommend this yarn. I am a fast knitter and this yarn slowed me down because it splits into threads all the time. Plus, gets very stiff if sucked on by your 4-years old (don't ask - long story).

OK for now with Part II of the report. Still to be continued...

Happy Knitting Everyone!


Free Pattern: Ruffles Skirt

Cute little skirt with fun colorful ruffles that your girl will love.
Knitted in round, it uses only knit and purl stitches.
The ruffles are joined with the rest of the skirt during the knitting. The pattern includes a photo-tutorial on just how to do that.

Pattern is written in words for sizes 3, 4 and 5 years.
Finished sizes:
3 years (3T), waist  diameter 46 cm (18 inch)
4 years (4T),  waist diameter 49 cm (19⅟₄ inch )
5 years (5T) , waist diameter 52 cm (20⅟₂ inch)

Materials (for all sizes)
White yarn: KnitPicks Bare (Fingering weight 462yards/100 g), 1 skein
Multicolor yarn: KnitPicks Felici, Rainbow (Fingering weight, 218 yards/50 g), 1 skein
Tools: 2 circular needles, 24 inches, 3.25 mm (US3)

I am offering the pattern as 
an instant  FREE PDF download. 

Thank you!
Happy Knitting Everyone!


Four month of absence, well, not from knitting!

 As I am sitting here to write this post I realize that it has been more than 4 months from my last one.
What happened? Well, let me try to summarize it:
1. New responsibilities at work: my University is starting a new program and I am named as a director. So, I spent a lot of time this spring trying to make things happen ASAP.
2. A promotion at work (aside from the directorship). That also required a lot of preparation and thinking.
3. Couple conferences to attend and present.
4. A four-week trip out of the country.
5. A kid who finished daycare in May and does not start a preschool until September.

All these kept me away from blogging, but not from knitting!
So, here is a Part I of the "What have I been doing" report:

A few custom-made projects:

From: "Knitted Lace of Estonia" by Nancy Bush. Slightly modified "Lilac Leaf Shawl". Yarn: Gloss Lace by Knitpicks

From: "Knitted Lace of Estonia" by Nancy Bush. "Triinu Scarf". Yarn: Bare Lace by Knitpicks
From: "Knitted Lace of Estonia" by Nancy Bush. NO-NUPP version of  "Mikell Shawl". Yarn: Shadow Tonal Lace by Knitpicks

A few Lace things for my Etsy Store:

StellaLuna in white by me. Yarn: Bare Lace by KnitPicks

Dunes and Waves in White, again by me. Yarn: merino/viscose by Colourmart

From: "The Haapsalu Shawl" by Siiri Reimann and Aime Edasi. The motif name is "CUBE Pattern" (page 154). Yarn: Super-Thin Sim (Mohair) by Oki.

Oooof, good for now! The "What have I been doing" report is to be continued...
Happy Knitting Everyone!


Pattern Release: Dunes and Waves

This stunning stole is feminine, romantic and not difficult to make.

If you have never knitted lace, this is a good first project: no sew-on lacy edges, no provisional cast-ons, no kitchener stitches.
You start at the one end of the stole, and finish at the other. The pattern will do the rest. It will create the waves and pointy tips. Pattern uses one of the signature stitches of Estonian Lace: a twisted stitch also known as gathered 2x2 stitch.

The model is knitted from a light-weight lace yarn, but any weight lace yarn can be used instead.

Yarn: 75 g of lace weight yarn
(~ 1300 yards/100 g)
Tools: needles US size 4 (3.5 mm)
Finished size: 24 x 71 inch (60 x 180 cm)

I am offering the pattern for this shawl for sale as 
an instant  PDF download. 
Please note: pattern is charted. 
 Your cost: $4.00 via Raverly / PayPal 

Thank you!
Happy Knitting Everyone!


Free Lace Knitting Patterns from KnitPicks

The life is crazy, absolutely no time for knitting, so I thought I will show you some more free lace patterns (Free Patterns!) from Knitpicks.com . KnitPicks is a yarn company that has a variety of yarns that I like to work with. Mainly merinos, but some cottons and silks too. On their website they have patterns developed for their yarns (see some of my work there: Diagonal Stripe Hat,   Fun Twirls Hat and (soon!!) Buzzy Bee Baby Blanket ).
Some of the patterns are FREE, so enjoy the lacy ones!

Till I have a little more time:
Happy Knitting everyone!


Estonian 2x2 gathered stitch fascinates me

Quick note on what I have been up to lately. I was playing with Estonian 2x2 gathered stitches:

The stitch I am referring to on this picture is one without yarn overs and creates sort of a "curly" fabric. I was introduced to this rather unusual stitch when I knitted Maikell Shawl from Nancy Bush's "Knitted Lace of Estonia". Absolutely loved the way it looked after the shawls were blocked. It has a 3-D feel to it. Here is a scheme and explanation:

The thinking led to designing, the designing led to writing down a scheme, the scheme  - to needles, and here is a result. A stole! ( I know - big surprise :). Here are  few more pictures of it.

The name for this shawl is still in works. While I was knitting it I was thinking: Dunes of Baltic Sea, but I am not yet sure. Suggestions are welcome!

PS: It is snowing where we are...

Happy Knitting Everyone!


Same but Different

While ago I read a great paper by Elizabeth Lovick "The Same, but Different. Shetland Lace in a European Context".
The big surprise for me was a realization that traditional lace patterns, developed in areas separated by thousands of miles look very similar. In some cases they even have the same name. On the sampler below, there are 3 traditional patterns. Bottom one comes from Shetland (Scotland), middle - from Orenburgh (Russia), top one - from Haapsalu (Estonia).

In Shetland they call it "Cat Paws", so they did in Estonia; but Russian knitters saw a "strawberry" in this combination of yarn overs and decreases. Isn't it interesting?
At the first glace - all three are the same, but if you look closer ( or if you look at the chart below), you can notice slight variations in center. Another big difference is a base stitch: Shetland and Orenburgh knitters preferred the garter stitch, that made the fabric reversible, while Estonian ones used stockinette stitch.

Here is how the "Strawberry" Pattern is used in modern Orenburgh Shawl ( they are put together in a chain).

and here is an Estonian Paws in a scarf:

It is fascinating to me how humans (miles and miles away from each other) can think along the same lines...

Happy Knitting everyone!


Winter Wipeout Sale at Interweave

Just saw it: 
Interweave.com has a 40% off sale on many books!

Winter Wipeout Sale

Sale starts on January 20, 2011 and ends January 24, 2011.

Was: $14.95
Sale: $8.97

Was: $19.99
Sale: $11.99


 Lace and Eyelets
Was: $22.95
Sale: $13.77
 Just thought you might want to know!
Happy Knitting Everyone!