Knit & Knag goes to Sweden

On July 15, 2014, in Uncategorized, by Anna

A week ago, we set off on our great summer adventure. We’ll be traveling around Sweden for about a month.

After a long flight or two we ended up in Stockholm. It was a glorious summer day – 28 degrees and sunny. This picture is taken at almost 10 PM, and it’s still bright outside.

For the next month, I’ll be posting about my Swedish summer adventure on the Knit & Knag Facebook page, so come on over and join us there.

 

Mystic Ocean KAL

On July 8, 2014, in KAL, Mystic Ocean, lace, pattern, shawl, by Anna

Announcing the new Mystic KAL!

Imagine the vast Ocean – rolling waves, thundering waves, and masses of water. It can be violent or entirely calm and peaceful, intimidating dark gray or brilliant turquoise. You could find yourself sailing on the surface of the ocean, or plunging deep down into its never-ending depths.
Mystic Ocean is inspired by the waters that cover more than two thirds of our planet. It’s a crescent shaped shawl knit in an enticing fingering weight Gradient Set from Miss Babs.

MATERIALS
1 Gradient Set (Set of 5 Yummy 2-ply Toes) from Miss Babs in Aquarius or similar colourway.

KAL START DATE: Aug 14, 2014
Clues posted every Thursday for 5 consecutive weeks.

The KAL is available at a discount until the first clue is released. At that time the pattern price will increase to CAD $8.00.

SIGN UP TODAY
CDN $6.00 (KAL price will increase to regular pattern price upon the release of the first clue)

Come join us in the Knit & Knag Designs group on Ravelry for more KAL fun.

PS. I’m announcing this KAL a little earlier than usual to give knitters a chance to order the Gradient Set from Miss Babs (if you so desire).

 

Vittran

On July 7, 2014, in Vittran, lace, pattern, shawl, by Anna

Vittran is a creature in Scandinavian Folklore. She looks like, dresses and lives like a human, and takes care of cows and goats. She is usually invisible, but sometimes humans can catch a glimpse of her. If you help her, you will likely get some kind of reward, but if you cross her, terrible things happen.

The Vittran shawl is a top-down crescent shawl knit in seductive Serenity Glitter Sock. It can be ordered as part of a kit from Zen Yarn Garden.

The pattern is also available as a PDF download for CAD $6.00

 

Cottage Knitting

On June 10, 2014, in Uncategorized, by Anna

I spent a relaxing weekend at the cottage, and managed to get quite a bit of knitting done.  My Serenity Glitter Sock is starting to be transformed to a lovely shawl.

This picture is almost from the beginning of the shawl, but it’s grown quite a bit since then.  I’m really excited about how it’s turning out and can’t wait to share the end result with you.

The other project I was working on is a top knit in Miss Babs Northumbria.

This picture shows it shortly after casting on, but it’s grown a bit since then.  I love the subtle variance of hand-dyed yarn, and this gray is just stunning.

Aside from that, I snuck in some knitting on two other projects as well.  So, all in all, a very productive and yet relaxing weekend.

 

Before Ravelry even existed, designer Anna Dalvi was running mystery knitalongs (KALs) for her gorgeous lace shawls on Yahoo groups. Dalvi’s skill at translating natural and mythical inspirations into stunning lace creations drew more than 7,000 knitters to her KALs.

Now, she has gathered all 14 of her wildly popular Mystic shawl designs into one book, stunningly photographed by Caro Sheridan. The book also includes photos of beautiful examples that other knitters created during the knitalongs, capturing the true community spirit of the KAL and the knitting world at large.

Mystic Shawls spans a wide variety of shapes and constructions, giving you rewarding knitting for years to come.

From the back cover:
From waters to desire to delight, each of Anna’s patterns will keep your needles spellbound as every stitch slowly unfolds the beauty of her lace motifs. The exquisiteness and integrity of each design is always revealed in anything Anna decides to design before the first stitch is made. Knitting her vision culminates in a masterpiece. Join her in her journey…

–Roxanne Yeun, Creative Director, Zen Yarn Garden
It only takes a glance at one of her shawls to see that Anna Dalvi is one of the top lace designers in the industry. Her eye for combining lace patterns and designing pieces that are truly magical is unmatched.

–Marly Bird, crochet and knitwear designer and host of the Yarn Thing Podcast

The e-book version of Mystic Shawls is available right now, or you can preorder the print version (and receive the PDF copy immediately) here.

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Upcoming Projects

On June 3, 2014, in yarn, by Anna

I have a few really exciting projects in the pipeline.

The excellent Roxanne of Zen Yarn Garden recently sent me 2 skeins of Serenity Glitter Sock in this gorgeous colourway (Nitro J).They are going to become a shawl, and I’m mulling over the design as we speak.  I’ve got parts of it worked out already, but there are a few more things to figure out before I can start knitting.

I also got a wonderful package from Babs & Helen at Miss Babs.  This is the first time I’ll be working with their yarn, and it looks so scrumptious I’m really itching to cast on.  In fact, I believe I’ll cast on tomorrow.  I have two projects planned.  One will be using this 3-colour gradient set in Northumbria Handpainted yarn.

That set was absolutely calling my name.  I know EXACTLY what it will become – I have a perfect design for it, and I just can’t wait to start knitting.  Like I said, I think tomorrow is the day.

And finally there is this 5-colour gradient set in Yummy 2-ply toes.  Expect to see this in a new Mystic KAL.

I don’t have a date yet, but I’ll keep you posted.  In the meantime, shh!  :-)

The Fiber Optic Paintbox set I showed you when I came back from Maryland Sheep & Wool is coming along nicely.

I expect this pattern will be out in the fall – probably September or October.  Right now it is looking like a rather pretty blob, but it’s not quite ready to face the world yet.

Finally, I have a super-secret-super-exciting project on the needles right now.  Can’t share much except a sneak-peek of the yarn, which is Solemate from Lorna’s Laces in Navy Pier.  It contains all sorts of pretty blues (not navy though).

I think that’s it for now.  So, while it may seem a little quiet at the moment, rest assured that things are happening behind the scenes.

Happy knitting!

 

FOs: Mystic Supernova

On May 27, 2014, in KAL, Mystic Supernova, lace, pattern, shawl, by Anna

The last clue of the Mystic Supernova KAL was published last week, and the FOs (Finished Objects) are starting to show up on Ravelry.

Here is a circular version of the shawl, knit by Bobbi Ann in Boise, ID.  (Looks like it’s dog-approved!)

Ginni in St. Paul, MN knit a semi-circular Mystic Supernova, which I think looks lovely.

And then Ann in Boston, MA has a gorgeous circular Supernova that looks almost black.  Swoon!

Many people are still knitting, and I’m hoping to see more FOs as they become available.  So far, everything looks amazing.

If you missed out on the KAL, but still want to knit your own Supernova, the pattern is available in PDF format for CDN $8.00

 

My Summer Top

On May 26, 2014, in Uncategorized, by Anna

I have a summer top that I knit a couple of years ago.  I really like it, and I often wear it.  I especially like to wear to various knit events, so when I went to Maryland Sheep & Wool festival earlier this month, it was an obvious choice.  Also, it’s rather warm in MD in early May (by Ottawa standards at any rate), so a knit, short-sleeved top seemed like a good idea.  And it was.

Anyhow, after I came home, I washed it, and when I pulled it out of the water, I saw this:

As you can imagine, I was NOT happy.  I really don’t know what happened.  I mean, there are lots of things one could snag the shirt on – both at the festival, and also the zipper of my bag, I suppose, but I never noticed a thing.

I figured that I had to have a little bit of spare yarn from the same skein lying around somewhere.  But how to find it?  After rummaging through the stash, I identified three likely options.  All Wollmeise (the top was knit out of Wollmeise, Sabrine), but of course none of them still had the label.

After careful consideration in bright daylight, I determined that the right-most scrap of yarn must be it.  I believe the three colours are (from left to right) Pfefferminz Prinz, Neptune and Sabrine.  They really are remarkably similar (and obviously I must like this type of colour, since I have 3 versions), but with good lighting, the choice was obvious.

I then set out to mend the hole.  Luckily it was only one strand of yarn that had broken, so I duplicate-stitched that row, starting about 4 cm to the right of the hole, and then went through the hole, mending the gap, and then continued another 4 cm or so to the right of the hole.  You can barely see it.

 

Supernovas and New Adventures

On May 16, 2014, in KAL, Mystic Supernova, lace, by Anna

The Mystic Supernova KAL is coming along.  This week I released clue 5 (out of 6), so it’s really getting closer to the end.

This is what mine looks like (with the final clue stripped out).  All the progress pictures in the Knit & Knag Designs group on Ravelry look great so far.  My favourite this past week has got to be Kim’s from NJ:

Kim has stretched out her WIP as a steering wheel cover.  Awesome!  And handy for knitting at stoplights (just kidding – don’t knit and drive).

It reminds me of when I was at Rhinebeck a few years ago.  I was working on Ra & Apep from Ancient Egypt in Lace and Color

and I had a nice-looking blob on my needles.  I was in a restaurant, knitting away, and the waitress stopped at my table and said “Wow, that’s a lovely crocheted hat!”
What could I say other than “Thank you!” and try not to laugh?  :-D  But I still affectionately think of the shawl as the crocheted hat.  And from now on, I think the Mystic Supernova will be known as the steering wheel cover.  :-D

Aside from that, I’m busily at work at another upcoming pattern – it will definitely be a Mystic KAL, but likely not until the fall, since it’s a large project again.  I’ll show a bit of a sneak peek here:

The yarn is 2 boxes of Fiber Optic Yarns 100% Merino wool laceweight  in the Damson-Gold gradient.  900 yds/3.6 oz per paintbox.  Simply stunning.

 

I just spent the weekend at the Maryland Sheep & Wool festival.  Cooperative Press had a booth, and I was there all weekend with the preview copy of Mystic Shawls – my very very very new book.

In fact, it is so new that it didn’t even make it there.  But we brought a gorgeous preview copy, and took orders.  For those of you who didn’t make it to MDSW, the book is available to order here.  The book contains the 14 Mystic patterns published to date (Mystic Waters, Mystic Light, Mystic Star, Mystic Roses, and Mystic Earth, to name a few).

The booth was quite busy over the weekend.  Shannon Okey, Andi Smith, Elizabeth Hope and I worked hard all weekend.  We also had the pleasure of spending the weekend with Sally & Kitty of knitCompanion, as well as a number of visitors, like Heather Ordover who stopped by on Saturday, and of course Sam & Sarah of Cephalopod Yarns.

And of course no fiber festival would be complete without some yarn.  One of my favourites was the gradient kit from Fiber Optic Yarns.  I came home with two sets, for a total of 1800 yds of radiant goodness in damson-gold gradient.  I’ve been so excited about this yarn that I’ve already cast on.  Brace yourselves.

I also had the pleasure of meeting Jo & Carl of Ashton Studio Arts.  They have some really lovely yarn, and I brought home several skeins of different bases and colours.  I look forward to working with these yarns soon.

Stephanie of LunabudKnits had some lusciously soft and squishy yarn too.  Can you tell I was in a “blue” frame of mind?  I was also drawn to the name, I have to admit.  It was well matched with another colourway called Tardis.

Finally, my favourite non-yarny find of the weekend was this amazing project bag made by Andi Smith of KnitBrit.  I moved into it immediately, and I LOVE it.

In addition to all of the above, I also had the chance to visit with Gryphon at the Verdant Gryphon booth, and chat for a while.  And of course many, many others.  So much to knit, so little time.  I had a great time, and look forward to next year’s festival.