11/27/12

How to make a NUPP

Nupp stitch (or a little bobble) is a traditional element of Estonian Lace knitting. Nupps add a depth to a otherwise ethereal knitting and provide a little extra warmth. :)
Nupp might look a little scary if you have never tried it; but once you make a couple, it is no more difficult than p3tog or anything similar.
Here I used nupps in one of my latest shawls:


Try it, when you have a little time. Here is a video by Knitting Daily, where Nancy Bush, the author of "Knitted Lace of Estonia" shows how she makes it.




Happy Knitting Everyone!

11/23/12

Winner! November giveaway

As I promised here, I am announcing a winner of November giveaway (Dunes and Waves pattern and a skein of Drops Lace yarn). Thank you all so much for kind words about my work and designs!

So, here is the moment.
The winner is 
DRUM ROLL PLEASE
Girlknits!

My selection process was very much random  - my 6-year-old "randomizer" was a big help. 
 Here how process worked:



We had so much fun with this giveaway! I will definitely  do it again soon, stay tuned.


11/2/12

November Giveaway


Here, in New England, the foliage is done, evenings are cold and a wonderful smell of woodsmoke is in the air.
It is definitely a perfect time to start a new knitting project, isn't it?

How about a lacy shawl?


So, in a spirit of an upcoming  Holiday Season I am giving away a small present to one of my blog readers:

My pattern for Dunes and Waves shawl and a skein of  DROPS LACE in Ice Blue (30% silk, 70% wool)

To register for this Giveaway, please go to this blog post's comment section and leave a comment.
I will randomly choose a winner and make an announcement on Black Friday, November 23, 2012.

I really hope to send this little gift to you!

Happy Knitting!
Natalia Blank

10/19/12

Pattern Release: Shafts of Wheat Scarf

The lace pattern on this long and lofty scarf reminds me of shafts of wheat: simple and elegant, classic and ageless.
This scarf will make a great present for your mom and for your daughter, or —
make it for yourself and enjoy your stylish new accessory.

Materials
Yarn:  Worsted weight yarn, about  224 yards/205m in 100 g, 2 skeins
Tools:  circular or straight needles, US8 (5 mm)
Gauge: 3.5 st x 5 rows makes 1x1 inch in stockinet
Finished size: 8 x 80 inch ( 20 x 200 cm)
Pattern is charted and written in words


I am offering this pattern as an instant PDF download through Raverly (PayPal) for 
$3.50 (US).

 

You don't need to have a PayPal or Ravelry account to purchase the pattern - you can use your credit/debit card.
 

Thank you for your Interest and Happy Knitting Everyone!

10/6/12

Free Guide to Knitting Needles

I saw this blog post from Kathleen Cubey at Knitting Daily, I though you find it useful as well.
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There are so many tools that we knitters need, but there are two that we really need: Yarn and needles. We all know how many yarn choices are out there, but what about knitting needles?

The choices are amazing. Did you know that there are certain types of needles that work better for certain types of yarn? And there are also needles that work better for different types of knitting. Pointy needles for lace knitting, for example.
........
But we don't want you to have to buy a pair of every needle type out there to figure out which you like best, so we did it for you! We tested dozens of needles and we've developed our Free Guide to Knitting Needles to give you the inside scoop on which needles we liked for which type of projects.

We've also provided a handy sizing conversion guide. If you have a needle that's labelled with millimeters only, you can use the chart to see what the millimeter measurement is in US needle measurements, or UK/Canadian measurements, or Japanese measurements.

Download your Free Guide to Knitting Needles now and let us help you create a seamless transition between your hands and your project?
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And sneak-peek: I am working on couple scarves (the cold weather is coming...)
  Stay tuned - the patterns for these scarves are coming!
Happy Knitting Everyone!

9/8/12

Amy Pond and Doctor Who Or Why Did I Make a Red Scarf with Frost Flowers Pattern


Are you into "Doctor Who"? 
Doctor.... WHO? - this is exactly what I said when I was reading an e-mail sent through my Etsy store.
The e-mail was from a girl who was wondering  if I can make her a reproduction of a red scarf that was worn by Amy Pond in the episode "Vincent and the Doctor". She was looking for a piece to add to her costume for Doctor Who convention...
I am not into British TV series, but a reproduction of a knitted lace scarf sounded like a challenge! The girl sent me a couple links to pictures and after a bit of a research on an Internet and couple of e-mails we established  that the pattern on a scarf was "Frost Flowers"!
Oh! I love that pattern!
It looks so elaborate and complicated, but let me tell you - once you worked with it, you quickly realize that it is not difficult. It is real knitted lace, the YOs are on both sides, but really, it NOT a difficult pattern!!!

So, let me show you the result:

 And here is the picture that I was working from:

Here is a little bit of a detail on my version:




 Do you want to try Frost Flowers yourself? 
(The written instructions can be found there too)




Happy Knitting Everyone!


7/22/12

Pattern: Long Skinny Scarf or What to Do with Your Novelty Yarn

I don't know how about you, but I sometimes (ha!) buy yarn not because I have a project in mind, but because it looks pretty in a store. 
Sounds familiar? 
Especially those novelty yarns: the fuzzies, the sparklies, the ladders and the ruffles. 
I'd think: Oh, I will find something to make with it - it is so pretty!.
Then I would come home and try this and that, and nothing really looks good in this yarn, so it gets stashed at the back of my yarn closet (did I mentioned that I graduated to a YARN CLOSET?)

The other day I was going through that closet, found these yarns and it struck me - 
LONG SKINNY INFINITY SCARF (a.k.a. - long loop)!!!.

So here are my before and after pictures:

Novelty yarns (Fun Fur and Ladder yarn - I don't even remember the manufacturers)
Two Scarves:
and in combination:
and a close up:
It turned out to be a Fun-Fun-Fun accessory to play with and find more and more ways to wear it. 
So, if you happen to have a ball of a pretty novelty yarn and like my idea - here is the pattern:

Free Pattern: Long Skinny Infinity Scarf
Take your favorite needles: size does not really matter.
Cast on 3 st.
In every row: slip1, knit 1, purl 1
Work until you run out of yarn - the last row: k3tog, pull the yarn through.
Make a knot using yarn tails from cast on and cast off to make a long loop. 
Weave in the ends.
Enjoy Playing with your new accessory!



Let me know if you have made your novelty scarf - I would love to see the pictures!
Happy Knitting everyone!


7/12/12

Can you follow the pattern?

One of the ladies in my knitting group asked me if I ever follow the pattern.
Hmm... good question. Do I follow the pattern...I could not remember from the top of my head when was the last time I did that.
So I set up to "follow the pattern as it is written".
I knew exactly what I wanted to make: I just got my new issue of "Knits"
The shawl on the cover is a "Summer Blooms Shawl" by Susanna IC from Interweave Knits. It is one of those crescent shawls that are shaped by working short rows.

I had a very nice cotton yarn in an ocean shades, so off I went.
Well, after I was done with the lace border - I realized that if I follow the direction precisely, I will get a very skinny shawl, more like a scarf -  so, I had to improvise and make the lace border much wider.
This is the closeup of the original :

 
and this is my modified version

You can see the resemblance, but it is different.
Here is the finished shawl:

and one more:

I absolutely LOVE how it came out - the colors, the drape, the lace!
But the question still remains - can I actually follow the pattern all the way?
 I guess I will have to try again... :)

Oh, and if you are interested in the original Summer Blooms Shawl - it is here:

Happy Knitting!



6/29/12

Pattern Release: Quatrefoil Lace Scarf


Why are we women so drawn to lace?

             Maybe because like the intricate pattern of the lace shawl put over the plain dress transforms it into an evening gown - in the same way, when we put that lace shawl over our shoulders, we are transformed into that elusive Princess who lives within each of us, but is often lost within the haze of our everyday lives...



The Quatrefoil Lace Scarf has this transformative quality.  The simple rectangular shape allows for the showcasing of Estonian lace inspired pattern with flowers and nupps.   It might require some time to make it, but the beauty of it is worth the effort. 

Bring out your inner Princess - make this scarf for yourself! 

 Materials
Yarn:  KnitPicks Gloss Lace Yarn (70% Merino Wool, 30% Silk), 440 yards/50 gram – 2 skeins
Colorway:  Natural
Tools:  needles, US 6 (4 mm)
Notions: tapestry needle, blocking wires and pins
Finished size: 21 x 74 inches (52 x 190 cm)

Notes 
This rectangular scarf is worked in two parts from the middle point down to each end using a provisional cast on.  The pattern has nupps, but they can be substituted with beads if desired. 
The pattern is has both CHARTED and WRITTEN instructions. 


I am offering this pattern as an instant PDF download through Raverly (PayPal) 
for $5.00 (US).

You don't need to have a PayPal or Ravelry account to purchase the pattern - you can use your credit/debit card. 

Happy Knitting everyone - and Thank you for reading my blog!

6/22/12

Five Favorite Lace Shawl Patterns

If you are reading my blog you are probably into lace knitting, or almost into lace knitting, or even tried once, but got scared of all those charts and skinny yarn... :).

Anyway, wherever you are in a lace knitting journey  - I want to share with you a recourse that you might like.  Interweave recently released this new e-book




There are projects for very skinny yarn and not so skinny one. 
Here is a picture of a table of the contents.  
I bet you recognized the Estonian lace in a top left corner and lovely semi-circular design by Susanna IC in the bottom right one. 
Oh, I have to fit that one into my over-committed schedule....
 
 You can find this e-book instant PDF download here.

Happy Knitting everyone!

6/15/12

Little Buzzy Bee Hat. Free Pattern

As promised earlier for those of you who have been working on Buzzy Bee Baby Blanket and have some yarn leftovers.
This hat is made for a 6-months old baby, but I don't have one currently available for modeling - so my model is of a slightly different nature!
So, presenting: 
Little Buzzy Bee Hat. 

Size
6 months, head circumstance 15.5 inch (40 cm)
Materials
  Yarn: Knitpick's Swish worsted, Yellow - less then 1 skein (less than 50 g), Black - leftovers
( you can use any worsted weight yarn)
Needles: US 4 (3.5 mm), straight or circular
Gauge: 6 st x 1 inch (2.5 cm) in garter stitch

Pattern
Cast on 96 st.

Rows1-4 (yellow yarn): knit
Rows 5-6 (black yarn): knit
Rows7-10 (yellow yarn): knit
Rows 11-12 (black yarn): knit
Rows13-16 (yellow yarn): knit

Continue  working the hat with yellow yarn in stockinette stitch  (RS: knit all, WS: purl all) until the piece measures 4 inch (10 cm) from the cast-on row. Switch to black yarn for shaping of the top:

Row 1: *ssk, k22, repeat from * 4 times
Row 2 and all WS rows except 14: purl all
Row 3: *ssk, k21, repeat from * 4 times
Row 5: *ssk, k20, repeat from * 4 times
Row 7: *ssk, k5, repeat from * 12 times
Row 9: *ssk, k4, repeat from * 12 times 
Row 11: *ssk, k3, repeat from * 12 times
Row 13: *ssk, repeat from * 24 times
NOTE WS: Row 14: *p3tog, repeat from * 8 times
Row 15: *ssk, repeat from * 4 times - at this point you should have 4 st on your needle.
Work the last 4 st in I-cord fashion for 4 more rows. Pull thread through the stitches, cut the yarn.

Saw the sides of the hat, weave in the ends, wash according to yarn specifications. 

Have fun! It is such a nice feeling - to make things for a new human being that is coming into this world!


Happy Knitting!

5/23/12

Pattern Release: Summer Sunday Shrug


I love shrugs!
So cute, so handy, so quick to make! 
And how nice it feels to put it on a sunny Sunday morning with a pretty dress, even if you are not going anywhere...

The Summer Sunday shrug features an attractive construction with back/front worked as one piece. The shrug gradually widens towards the shoulders giving you a freedom of movement and comfort.


The 2-stich cable pattern is as eye-catching as it is simple. The sides are picked up from the front/back piece and worked straight, so the only two seams that you will need to sew are the sides.
It will look stunning in solid or variegated yarns.
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Materials: Any yarn of worsted weight 630-650 yards (model on the picture is knitted in Caron Simply Soft, 315 yards/6 oz, 2 skeins )
Needles : US6 (4 mm)
Notions: 1 pretty button, sewing needle
Size : S/M/L/XL . Lower edge width: 28/30/32/34 in.; length from the neck to the bottom  of shrug 14/14.5/15/15.5 in.
Gauge: Stockinet pattern:  4.5 st x 7rows in 1x1 inch square (16 st x 25 rows in 10x10 cm square)

The pattern is has WRITTEN instructions.
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I am offering this pattern as an instant PDF download through Raverly (PayPal) for $4.00 (US). 
You don't need to have a PayPal or Ravelry account to purchase the pattern - you can use your credit/debit card.

Thank you for your interests and Happy Knitting Everyone!
 


5/14/12

Buzzy Bee Blanket Featured!

Hello everyone!
I can not contain the news any longer! As you might have already guessed (hee-hee) one of my patterns, Buzzy Bee Blanket has been chosen for KnitPicks Kits and is featured in this month KnitPicks catalog!


I got the whole page!!! Look at that:
 
I have to tell you: that is a pretty awesome feeling to see your designs professionally photographed like this!

By the way: if you happen to buy the kit or just a pattern and have some yarn left over - stay tuned. I am almost finished writing a pattern for this hat, that will take care of those leftovers.

Little Buzzy Bee Hat

Happy Knitting Everyone!