I’m truly savoring every cold minute we have left to us, living in dread of the swamp heat I know will be here soon, but also trying not to lose sight of the coming loveliness of Spring. I am eager to trade in my heavy wool pea coat for a cozy scarf or shawl, and there is one that shot straight to the top of my list last week: Linda by Deb Hoss, from Quince’s Scarves Etc. 4 collection. I love the proportions of this thing. And the dense side fringe? Even better than how great it looks is that it’s very cleverly achieved.
I have the exact right amount of yarn left over from my Bellows. Wouldn’t it make it easier on me, when I must give Bellows up for the season, to have this to take its place?
PREVIOUSLY in New Favorites: Modified ganseys
Following last year’s Eek hat for the Giles Fall ’14 collection, my friends over at Wool and the Gang had more knits walking the runway at London Fashion Week yesterday. This time they collaborated with Christopher Raeburn on his shark-themed Fall ’15 collection. As seen in the photos here (from @woolandthegang and @jade_harwood) the pieces include a pair of shark-shaped mittens plus a killer multi-color slouch beanie and big fringed scarf. The mittens, dubbed the Bruce Knitmitts, are available on their site straight away, both as finished goods and a knit kit, and they’ve promised to let me know when the hat and scarf patterns are available later this year. My compliments to the Gang on what must have been another thrilling ride. And to Raeburn, who looks pretty pleased with those mittens.
p.s. They were kind enough to send me an Eek hat kit when I was crying for a fast break from my four months with Amanda, but I haven’t knitted it up just yet. Love. That. Hat.
p.p.s. If I had the sewing chops, I would totally be making my own version of that olive-drab duffel coat with Grainline’s pattern. That is my dream coat right there.
Jocelyn Tunney has an obsession with garter-stitch triangles and chevrons, and I have an obsession with these designs. Love this blanket. Love this scarf. And this one. But I think it’s all been leading up to this. When I walked into the Manos del Uruguay booth at the trade show last month and saw her Mariscos wrap, above, draped on one of the dress forms, it stopped me in my tracks. This thing is huge and gorgeous, and looks like it would be both interesting and soothing to knit. Jocelyn kindly sent me the pattern as soon as it was ready, knowing how much I love it, so now all I want to do is sit around picturing it in every possible color combination. Because as soon as I figure it out, I am casting on — it’ll make a perfect project to pick and put down amongst more mentally taxing things for a few months.
UNRELATED: the Etta+Billie skin balms are back. Let there be dancing in the streets!
PREVIOUSLY in New Favorites: the chevrons of BT Winter ’15
Of the things I’d like to try my hand at this year, mosaic knitting is probably at the top of the list. And it seems to be in the air; it’s everywhere I look these days. Mosaic knitting is colorwork without the stranding or floats. By working one color per row, and strategically slipping the stitches from the previous row, you wind up with a reversible fabric. It sounds like magic! I’m particularly smitten with these two big fringed mosaic scarves from two of the winter knitting mags, both of which include multiple mosaic patterns—
TOP: #05 Long Fringed Scarf by John Brinegar from Vogue Knitting Winter 2014/15
BOTTOM: Tessellating Leaves Scarf by Ann McDonald Kelly from Knitscene Winter 2014
If I try the technique and it seems doable, I might have to go with the whole amazing blanket. And in fact, this looks like a very good issue of Vogue Knitting — I like this and this and this and this. Bonus points for the toned down styling!
PREVIOUSLY in New Favorites: Favorite New Favorites of 2014
Not long ago, in one of my favorite installments of Knit the Look, I recommended adapting Stephen West’s free Ferocious Briocheous cowl pattern to knit a rich, cushy, all-black scarf. Today instead of paring that pattern down, I’m suggesting ramping it up! I love the multi-marl infinity scarf on this unidentified beauty, and again it’s Stephen’s pattern to the rescue. The pattern is written for fingering-weight yarn, while this scarf is much chunkier and marled. So we can kill two birds with one stone by holding the yarn double and casting on roughly half the stitches specified in the pattern. (Do a swatch to figure out the right needle size for this — US8, perhaps? — and what the stitch gauge works out to be, so you can multiply that by your desired width.) To get the mixed marl effect, knit most of the scarf holding one strand of charcoal with one strand of ivory, then swap out the charcoal for a bit and hold two strands of ivory, then hold one ivory and one red, and back to two ivory. I used luxurious Road to China Light in Hematite, Riverstone and Ruby for the photos, but these are easy enough colors to approximate that any neck-friendly fingering-weight wool would do. Or if you want it even chunkier, hold two strands of worsted!
See Vanessa Jackman’s original post for another shot of this gorgeous girl and her gorgeous cowl.
UNRELATED: The Wabi Mitts kits were restocked on Friday and announced to the shop mailing list over the weekend (are you on the list?) so the stock is a bit depleted again, but there are still four colors available at the moment! More on the way …
PREVIOUSLY in Knit the Look: Preetma Singh’s rollneck sweater
Street style photo © Vanessa Jackman; used with permission
I promise we’re going to talk about sleeves this week, all of you following the whole #fringeandfriendsknitalong series, but home life took precedence over knitting this weekend so I don’t quite have that together yet. Which is good, because it gives me a minute to publicly drool over these new patterns. Kristin Ford has been a big cheerleader for Fringe for some time, and I’m so thrilled to be able to shout about her new yarn company, Woolfolk. (Named for her grandmother, Katherine Woolfolk — is that too wonderful for words, or what?) I got a sneak peek at the yarns in May — have had a gorgeous little canister of them sitting on my desk ever since — and this weekend it all went live with the launch of the debut pattern collection, which Kristin smartly enlisted Olga Buraya-Kefelian to design. Kristin is a former architect with a taste for clean lines and smart construction, and I’ve been known to describe Olga as “our foremost knitting engineer.” It’s kind of a match made in heaven. I wasn’t privy to the creative brief or anything, but Olga put together a capsule wardrobe of knits — eight understated but flawlessly detailed pieces — and it’s been beautifully styled and shot. I’m blown away by it. These four I can’t live without:
TOP LEFT: Flet is just a perfectly shaped raglan turtleneck with chained ribbing and a stand-up collar (and I’ll take the pants and shoes too, please)
TOP RIGHT: Fure is a simple pair of ribbed mitts (which you know I can’t get enough of) made irresistible by their length, suppleness and fold-back top
BOTTOM LEFT: Vinkler is the scarf I want for winter, plain and simple — love what the geometry of the stitch pattern does for the edge of the fabric
BOTTOM RIGHT: Knop, likewise, is exactly the shape I want a hat to be, with the added panache of that shaped front brim (I definitely prefer it in the front!) and gorgeous use of fisherman’s rib
You can see the whole collection on Ravelry and find out more about the exquisite yarns at Woolfolkyarn.com. Congratulations, K&O — amazing.
PREVIOUSLY in New Favorites: the City Cape
You all know I like things pretty spare and simple — aesthetically, at least — but I think that’s especially true of scarves. Whenever I’m admiring beautiful, intricate scarf patterns, I’m always thinking, “but how does that go with my/your coat?” Or hat. Or outfit. Or whatever. Plus there’s so much pleasure in a knitting project that is just tricky enough to not be boring or plain, but still simple and repetitive enough to work as mindless knitting at the end of a long day. These two scarves fall squarely into that category, while also being super wardrobe-friendly, especially if knitted in a nice neutral. Bonus: suitable for any age or gender!
TOP: M.1 by Shellie Anderson (free with purchase at participating yarn stores)
BOTTOM: No-Purl Ribbed Scarf from the Purl Bee (free pattern)
PREVIOUSLY in New Favorites: Slouchless beanies