Did you know that Craftsy sells yarn and kits in addition to the classes?
In the fall, Craftsy launched a new line of yarn, called Cloudborn. I’ve had the chance to work with Cloudborn yarn a fair bit, and I have to say I’m really impressed.
My Cheshire Cat shawl was knit in Cloudborn Merino Superwash Sock Twist, which is a light fingering weight yarn. It’s was a great yarn to use for shawls, and I thought that the colours of Alice in Wonderland’s dress would be fabulous for the Cheshire Cat shawl.
Salacia is another shawl I’ve designed with Cloudborn yarn. For that one I used Cloudborn Alpaca & Highland Naturals – a fingering weight 50/50 wool-alpaca blend with a slight halo that lends itself wonderfully to warm shawls.
I’m also in the process of knitting up a blanket in Cloudborn Superwash Merino Worsted Twist. The colours are vibrant and the yarn is smooth and good to work with. The pattern isn’t out yet, but when it is, it will be available as a kit from Craftsy.
My kits, and many others are available at Craftsy. As I am a Craftsy instructor, if you do shop there using my affiliate link, you will also be supporting me as a designer. The yarn is very affordable and versatile. Lots of options out there!
The Mystic Haven KAL started yesterday. As always, it’s really fun to see the beginnings of people’s shawls. Here is mine, up through the first clue.
The shawl is knit with one gradient skein like this:
As you can see, the pattern does not just use the gradient from one end to the other, but breaks up the segments and alternates them. I just love how the colours in this gradient work together, and by using both ends of the yarn, we get to see the different colours touching in the shawl. It’s a little hard to see in the picture of my shawl, but right near the end of clue 1, the colour is starting to get darker and darker, and we’ll see more of that colour in clue 2.
If you’d like to join us, sign-ups are still open. Also, if you haven’t already found the Knit & Knag Designs group on Ravelry, come check it out. There’s a discussion thread as well as a spoiler thread with progress pictures of the shawl.
The Salacia shawl is now available as a single pattern as well as a in a kit from Craftsy.
I got a chance to design the shawl in the fall as a part of Craftsy launching Cloudborn Yarn. There were many amazing yarns to choose from, and I was immediately drawn to the Cloudborn Alpaca & Highland Naturals yarn. It’s a fingering weight yarn, with a 50/50 blend of alpaca and wool. It’s wonderfully soft and airy, and the naturals just have such an amazing depth to them. The shawl actually uses three different shades – smoke, stone and espresso.
The shawl is knit from the neck to edge with the sand coloured sections filled of tiny bubbles made by the waves lapping the shore. The edging has large, dark pearls – jewels of the sea for the sea goddess – and ends in waves.
So often in lace knitting, there are straight lines. There are lots of stitch patterns with diamonds and such, but knitting circles and bubbles is a little less common. I found that the sandy sections were very relaxing to knit. As I was knitting my little bubbles, I was just enjoying the soft yarn. The pearls required a little bit more attention to the chart, of course, but it’s neat to see how the circles form.
The Salacia Shawl is named after the the goddess of the sea and springs in Roman mythology. Salacia was the queen of the oceans and the wife of Neptune.
I usually try to limit myself to three active WIPs at a time. I find that if I have more, some tend to fall by the wayside. And they do. It doesn’t necessarily mean they won’t be finished, mind you, but it does mean that they will take longer than they really should.
At the moment, my most active WIP is my new blanket. It’s coming along nicely. I’m very excited about this design and project. I’ve been wanting to make a new blanket for the cottage, and this will be it. We close down our cottage for the winter (as it is an uninsulated log cabin), but once temperatures get to be consistently above freezing (hopefully in less than a month), we’ll be opening it up, and then it will be great to have a new blanket to cuddle under.
I’ve already written up the pattern, but I need to finish the whole blanket and take some nice pictures before it can be released, of course.
I’m also working on a new shawl pattern for my next book. Can’t say too much about it at the moment, but here’s a teeny tiny sneak peak of scrumptious red yarn from Spirit Trail Fiberworks and the early beginnings of a new shawl.
The third project that is at the front of my mind this week is of course Mystic Haven. While the knitting is complete for me (the ends are sewn in, it’s blocked, and I’ve taken lots of nice pictures that I can’t share), I’m doing the layout for the pattern files for the individual clues. Nykki (sammiegray on Ravelry) has offered to create the written instructions for this pattern, so in addition to the charts, there will also be full written out instructions for anyone who wants them. Sign-ups for the KAL are still open, of course, and the first clue will be released on March 30.
And of course I would be remiss, if I didn’t mention that I’m also working on the next Mystic KAL design. I have yet to wind the yarn – I’ll probably get to that after Easter – but I do have a clear idea of where this shawl design is going, and I’m very excited about it.
Craftsy recently blogged about “Romantic Knits” and featured my Mystic Desire in the #3 spot.
3. Mystic Desire
“The Mystic Desire shawl imbues our roundup with a touch of dark, Gothic romance. At over 1,000 yards of lace weight yarn, this shawl is definitely a long-term project that requires a certain commitment from the knitter. But wouldn’t you agree that the result is quite magnificent, glamorous and worth the effort? Switch to an ivory-colored yarn and Mystic Desire transforms into a gorgeous wedding shawl.”
Mystic Desire was originally published in a mystery KAL format. I can’t believe it’s been almost 6 years since it was first released in May 2010, but there you go. Time flies when you’re having fun (and knitting lace). I knit mine in Laci from Blue Moon Fiber Arts in the colourway Thraven. Blue Moon Fiber Arts has a series of colourways they call Raven Clan and they are all overdyed black colours. Black with a shade of green or black with a touch of red or…. Thraven has blue-greens (almost teal in parts) on black, and it’s amazing.
But I like Craftsy’s idea above of knitting Mystic Desire in cream or ivory to make it into a wedding shawl.
OR you can get it in my book Mystic Shawls, which is available either in print on Amazon or in PDF format on Ravelry. Mystic Shawls includes Mystic Desire AND 13 other Mystic shawl patterns. The e-book is $16.95 and the print book $26.95.
One of my favourite projects this winter has been a new double-knitting design called Glistening Stars.
Glistening Stars is an exploration in Nordic Star motifs. The many different stars spread out over an unusual shaped shawl, full of twists and turns. Glistening Stars is a double-knit shawl.
2 x 150 g of Kauni Effektgarn weight yarn in contrasting colours will give you a shawl which is 195 cm (76,5”) long and 30 cm (12”) wide at the midpoint.
For my Glistening Stars shawl I used Kauni Effektgarn EZ and EY, but there are several other yarns that would work well, including Wollmeise 100% Sockenwolle, or Bugga from the Verdant Gryphon, or Palette from KnitPicks, or just about any other sport/fingering weight yarn.
The pattern includes detailed instructions on double-knitting. So it is an excellent way to learn a new technique. If you’re already a double-knitting expert, just enjoy the shawl.
Since it is double-knit, the shawl is fully reversible.
Grab your needles and some yarn, and curl up in your own personal knitting haven. Mystic Haven is a lacy triangular shawl, and a fairly relaxing knit that lets the yarn shine.
Mystic Haven is a triangular shaped shawl, published in mystery KAL format. You will need approx. 400 yards of gradient fingering weight yarn.
KAL START DATE: Mar 30, 2016
Clues posted every Wednesday for 3 consecutive weeks.
(Note: the pattern price will increase when the first clue is released)
The shawl is designed for the gradient kits from KnitCircus Yarns (see below for details), but can also be knit in two contrasting colours of fingering weight yarn.
1 skein of Greatest of Ease from KnitCircus Yarns (80% merino, 20% nylon, 400 yds/100 g) or similar yarn
4.5 mm (US 7) needles
Large-eyed, blunt needle
FINISHED (BLOCKED) SIZE
wingspan: 152 cm (60 in), height: 50 cm (19.5 in)
KnitCircus has a treat for all of the participants in the Mystic Haven KAL. If you would like to purchase their yarn to use for the KAL, you will get a 10% discount if they use the code mystichaven at checkout.
If you use that code, KnitCircus will do their best to expedite the order so you have the yarn in time for the KAL.
Here’s the link to the yarn I used but be sure to check out their other colour ways as well – there are tons of amazing options.
The Advent KALendar knit along is going very well. We have lots of active participants in the Knit & Knag Designs group on Ravelry.
It’s also really fun to see the shawl knit up in a number of different colour combinations and yarns. Here are a few different ones, knit by suzieville, CaroKinkead, tanasay, Istenno and bratsche51 – to showcase a few different yarn choices. I think they all look absolutely wonderful.
We’re 1/4 of the way through the Advent KALendar, and with the small daily clues it’s totally possible to still catch up if anyone else wants to join us.
Treat yourself to your very own knitting advent KALendar fun!
The Advent KALendar is a shawl knitalong that is published in 24 daily clues, from Dec 1-24, 2015. Each day you will get a piece of the pattern to enjoy, and by Christmas you will have a completed shawl.
The Zorya are ancient Slavic sky and light goddesses. They are sisters; Utrennyaya, the morning star, and Vechernyaya, the evening star. Their purpose is to guard the doomsday hound Simargl who tries to eat Ursa Minor, the little bear. If the chain should ever break and the dog should ever get loose, the universe will end. The Zorya serve the sun god Dažbog. Zorya Utrennyaya opens the gates to his palace every morning for the sun-chariot’s departure. At dusk, Zorya Vechernyaya closes the palace gates once more after his return.
Two contrasting colours of fingering weight yarn.
Colour 1: 382 yds/350 m, 100 g
Colour 2: 325 yds/298 m, 85 g