New Favorites: Bobble hats

New Favorites: Bobble hats

It’s raining bobble patterns. I had fun knitting the nupp rows on my Trillium (which I am THIS CLOSE to finishing) and between the last two months of sweater knitting and all the talk around here of smaller projects for the warmer months, I’m eager for hats. So much the better if they’re bobble hats, and this week the universe presented a few options:

Diode by Erica Smith is the restrained entry in the field. Relatively tiny sport-weight bobbles create an overall texture, and I love the doubled brim. York Bobble Toque* by Tara-Lynn Morrison is characteristically chunky but also written for aran weight — above is the chunky version pictured on her way-too-cool daughter. And last but far from least is Anna Maltz’s Archipelago. which I’ve been waiting for ever since she posted it on Instagram and was begged by many to write the pattern. Like everything Anna is involved with, it looks like a ton of fun.

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*pattern sent to me by the designer

New Favorites: everything Leila Raabe

New Favorites: everything Leila Raabe

I think of myself as a Leila Raabe fan. Her Peabody sweater and Ashby shawl, for instance, have been on my dream knits list since almost the day I learned how. Stasis is a perpetual candidate for casting on. Her name comes up here fairly often, I’m sure. And yet I must never have gone to look at her complete oeuvre before. (Don’t you hate that word?) Because how else did I not know about some of her best designs? Or maybe I looked long enough ago that my taste in knitting has changed? Who knows.

In the comments on Monday’s spring scarves roundup, Indiecita mentioned Thayer, above left, which is what prompted me to take another look. Once there I found Wexford, above right, which is equally lovely. Apart from the fall-ish photos, either of these would have been lovely additions on Monday. And look at Spire, below — another amazing square shawl/throw that should totally have factored into last week’s New Favorites, alongside her Tilt. Pay better attention, Karen!

Regardless, now it can be said: There is not a single, solitary thing on this page that I wouldn’t want to knit … and in fact I’m just mentally trying to sort them into what order.

New Favorites: everything Leila Raabe

New Favorites: Square shawls

New Favorites: Square shawls

Last week Hannah Fettig released a new pattern called the Sans Kerchief which is nothing but a linen stockinette square. I’d laugh, but look how lovely it looks tied around that model’s neck! (The whole vibe makes me think of this.) It’s really sort of brilliant. It got me thinking again about square shawls — I’m still dreaming about this one — and since then, everywhere I look I see Tilt. It’s a big square shawl by Leila Raabe, knitted in the round!, and it’s one of those things I find irresistible. Especially with all the traveling I have in the coming months, I’m loving the idea of a big wrap that serves as a lap blanket on a plane, or a throw in a hammock, etc etc. So I’m wanting this, but also adding it to the list of possible shawls for my mama.

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PREVIOUSLY in New Favorites: Helga does it again

New Favorites: Helga does it again

New Favorites: Helga does it again

My lack of Pinterest time is showing. How else to explain that Helga Isager released a new collection of knitting patterns in December and I’m just now seeing it? The Map Collection doesn’t quite leave me feeling faint like some of her previous designs have, but it’s great stuff nonetheless. It’s very ’80s — some of it maybe a little too ’80s for my comfort — but I am in want with these four pieces.

Top to bottom: The Normandy Sweater, Shetland Cowl, Siberia Anorak (love those pockets, not sure about the funnel neck), and Himalaya Sweater.

You can browse through the whole collection on her site. Doesn’t look like it’s been printed in English yet, but there’s cause for hope.

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PREVIOUSLY in New Favorites: A bit of mesh

New Favorites: A bit of mesh

New Favorites: A bit of mesh

I’m aware that it’s still snowing in some parts of the US, but it’s been spring here for 3 or 4 months and I know everyone else is ready for fewer layers and lighter clothes. This “winter” has actually been warmer than our “summer” typically is, so I have no idea what we’re in for this year. But with global weather no longer following traditional patterns, I’m into the idea of flex-weather sweaters such as these little mesh-patterned beauties. Above is the Zigzag Mesh Pullover by Carolyn Noyes for the new issue of Knit.Wear. I know: Purple chevrons, what is up? But I’d prefer this one in a neutral. Below is the Perkins Cove Pullover by Pam Allen, which is the same basic idea as that drop-stitch sweater of Iz’s that Meg made me a sleeveless version of, and that many of you have been clamoring for a pattern for! Here it’s done raglan-style in a finer gauge, in linen, and it is lovely lovely lovely.

New Favorites: A bit of mesh

PREVIOUSLY in New Favorites: Colorwork without the work

New Favorites: Colorwork without the work

New Favorites: Uncommon colorwork

There’s a way to do colorwork that doesn’t involve stranded knitting (i.e., alternating between different yarns within the same row/round) or intarsia (changing colors mid row and then changing back again later). It’s basically just stripes — anyone can knit stripes, right? — except you jumble them up by knitting into the row below here and there instead of knitting straight across. So it’s colorwork without the work! I’ve long been intrigued by it but have never done it, and in the past couple of weeks, two tempting patterns have hit the airwaves.

The one above is the Midwinter scarf by Wendy Baker and Belinda Boaden of True Brit Knits (for the Quince and Co. Scarves 2014 collection) and looks almost like crochet! It’s a stitch pattern that is apparently called English Rose Tweed, which I only know because it’s also one of three stitch patterns artfully combined in The Purl Bee’s Stitch Block Cowl (free pattern). Worked at a slightly smaller gauge than Midwinter, it looks a little more like weaving. Even more so for the Checked Rose Fabric stitch pattern it’s paired with. (My favorite might be the one-color part of the Purl Bee pattern, the Rambler stitch.) But it’s fun to see what a difference the change of scale makes, and makes me want to play with this stitch pattern at an even wider range of gauges.

New Favorites: Uncommon colorwork

IMPORTANT SHOP NOTE: I’m in a van today on the way to Seattle for this weekend’s Vogue Knitting Live event, and will be gone through next Monday. (Don’t worry, I have blog posts lined up!) But the very capable Anie is here to take care of your orders*, and I’ll still be checking email as much as possible while at the show. I have several things with me that are new, and I’m excited to announce them after I’m back! Meanwhile, there are a few more Bento Bags on the webshop shelves (more, including more XL’s, coming soon — I promise) AND there’s a new size of the beloved Doane Utility Notebooks. It’s 5×7 and feels so right and great in the hand, I’m completely in love with it. Check it out!

*With the exception of international orders — those will ship next week when I’m back.

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PREVIOUSLY in New Favorites: Rosa Pomar’s blanket hat

New Favorites: Rosa Pomar’s blanket hat

New Favorites: Rosa Pomar's blanket hat

In all seriousness — no hyperbole or exaggeration of any kind — this is the single best hat I have ever laid eyes on. It’s Gorro Montanhac, which I believe means (roughly) “blanket hat” in Portuguese. It’s by one of the most inspiring people I’ve run across in the knitting realm, Rosa Pomar, owner of Lisbon’s Retrosaria Rosa Pomar. I’ve been following her on Instagram for a while and am deeply smitten with her knitting and her style and her photos and the whole equation, and dying to travel to Lisbon to visit the shop. (We both have a penchant for shooting our knitting on the floor, but she has far more interesting floors. And more interesting knitting, for that matter. I’m also hoping to get her to do Our Tools, Ourselves …) But anyway, this hat is just killer. It’s knitted Portuguese style, meaning the purl side of the fabric is facing the knitter. I’m planning to google it and see if it the method is any more complex than that — did I mention I’m also desperate to have her book? — or if you could simply work it right side out with no problem. (Anyone know?) But it’s so cool I will actually try that if, for some reason, it must be done that way. Make sure you look through her Instagram feed for all the variations she’s done, including the cowl version that turned into a mini-skirt. Too too good.

New Favorites: Rosa Pomar's blanket hat

PREVIOUSLY in New Favorites: Svalbard