lace, neck wear, new patterns

New Pattern: Rose Trellis Lace Cowl

Introducing…

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Size large, modeled by Annelies Van Dam Barger

Rose Trellis Lace Cowl, my newest pattern just released!

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Annelies Rose Trellis 2.1 – Version 2
Size medium, modeled by Annelies Van Dam Barger

Version 2

Inspiration for Rose Trellis came as I was contemplating what to knit for a very dear friend.

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It didn’t take me long to decide that she needed a cowl…

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Size large sample cowl in progress, colorway “Clematis.”

…and to suit her personality and style, I knew the cowl needed to be bold, yet elegant, feminine, and lacy; and of course warm and cozy… 😀

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I think the combination of the rose trellis and chevron lace stitches with the hand dyed fingering weight merino wool captures this perfectly!

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I wanted the wearer to have the feeling of being enveloped in a gorgeous, elegant, soft, warm cloud…

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This is why the large size cowl is SO large – truly enormous – so that it can be worn in a multitude of ways according one’s mood and circumstances!

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And because not everyone wants to be enveloped, I included a size medium as well… 😉

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It’s nice to be able to choose the size that appeals most to our own unique sensibilities. 🙂

Personally though, I am almost always in a mood to be enveloped in warm, soft, merino lace! 😉

I used Madelinetosh Tosh Merino Light yarn to knit my pattern samples.

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This merino wool fingering weight yarn is deliciously soft, squishy, and oh so warm while giving excellent stitch definition for the lace!

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Of course, you can use any fingering weight yarn that you like to knit this cowl, but I feel that this yarn with it’s 100% merino wool content and single ply structure really contributes to creating that luxurious, warm, yet elegant and voluptuous feeling.

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The size large sample cowl (purple) was knitted in colorway “Clematis,” and the size medium cowl (green) in colorway “Lowland.”

Huge thanks go to Annelies Van Dam Barger for modeling my samples, to Allison O’Mahony of Kniterations for tech editing the pattern for me, and to Karen and Sue for test knitting!

You can purchase the pattern directly on my patterns page, in my Ravelry Store or in my Etsy Shop.

Here are the pattern specifics…

DESCRIPTION

Rose Trellis is a lovely lace cowl available in both medium & large sizes. Designed to be worn draped luxuriously once, twice, or even three times about the neck, Rose Trellis envelopes the wearer in a warm cloud of delicate lace. Knit in a fingering weight wool, it’s the perfect blend of warm & cozy with elegant style. An entertaining knit involving two different lace stitch patterns, Rose Trellis is worked horizontally in the round. While this does result in a large stitch count, it provides a continuous loop of scrumptious lace with no seaming or grafting. Its the perfect project for any knitter who enjoys lace!

SIZE & FIT

Two sizes, medium and large. Can be worn many ways, such as draped about the neck in one long, luxurious loop, about the shoulders as a luscious shawl, or looped several times about the neck for cozy comfort on a cold day.

FINISHED MEASUREMENTS

Circumference: 59.5 (114.25)” / 151 (290) cm

Length: 29.75 (57)” / 75.5 (145) cm

Width: 14.75” / 37.5 cm

GAUGE

17.5 sts & 26 rows = 4”/ 10 cm worked in the round in Rose Trellis Lace stitch pattern, measured after wet blocking.

YARN

Uses 662 (1147) yds / 606 (1049) m of fingering weight yarn. Samples shown in Madelinetosh Tosh Merino Light (100% superwash merino wool, 420 yards / 384 meters per 100 gram skein) in colors “Lowland,” and “Clematis.”

NEEDLES

Size 8 / 5 mm circular needles, 40 (60)” / 100 (150) cm cable. Or size to obtain gauge.

NOTIONS

A yarn needle, 12 (24) matching st markers (optional), plus 1 unique st marker to mark the beginning of the round.

~Happy Knitting!

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Knitting, Stash

In Progress 

I’ve been working away and making good progress with my yarn stash organizing and cataloging! It feels good to see my Yarn Stash Notebook filling up with yarn samples and data, and to see my Yarn Stash becoming more orderly, accessible, and therefore useable!

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Progress on the Yarn Stash Notebook!

I do take frequent breaks to do some actual knitting though! 😉

Right now, I’m loving knitting the sample for my newest design (coming soon!!)! 🙂

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Lacy, stripy chevrons…!

The yarn I’m using is Knit Circus Greatest of Ease in “Over The Rainbow Speckles,” and Expression Fiber Arts Resilient Superwash Merino Sock in “Pistachio.”

I’m also really enjoying my “just for fun” knit…

The very start of my Leaves of Grass shawl!

The pattern is “Leaves of Grass” by Jared Flood (Brooklyn Tweed)…

Feeling like I need to switch to a longer cable soon…!

The yarn I’m using is Madelinetosh Pashmina in “Thoreau.” It’s super soft and squishy and feels lovely in my hands as I knit. I can’t wait to snuggle up in this shawl on those cool Autumn evenings (they are still a long ways off, so I have plenty of time to finish!) 🙂

This is the very first time I’ve ever knitted a circular shawl, and I’m finding that I’m really taken with the ease and simplicity of the Pi Shawl construction! At the beginning of this project, the one piece that I had absolutely no idea how to do was the circular cast on. This tutorial by Knit Picks was super helpful, and I quickly discovered that it’s not as hard as it looks! 🙂

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Working on Leaves of Grass with grass for company! 😉

Something I’m really enjoying with this knit is the excitement whenever I finish one chart and move on to the next! It’s fascinating to see how the different motifs fit together, play on each other, and seem to grow together! (This effect with the stitch patterns will be easier to see after blocking!)

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Leaves of Grass shawl.

Now that I’m on the second-to-last chart and have completed the last increase round, I have a total of nearly 600 stitches on my needles! Even though each round now takes a while to complete, I’m still excited and enjoying working this shawl! I can’t wait to see it finished! (And I’m sure I’ll be knitting another circular shawl before long!) 😉

And last but not least, I’m trying out something new – knitting with beads!

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Practice Swatch: Arrowhead lace with beads.

This is just a little practice test swatch I’m working with some leftovers of a gorgeous alpaca yarn and some seed beads I have on hand. It took me awhile to decide where to place the beads with this Arrowhead Lace stitch pattern, and I’m still not quite sure I’m happy with the result. I think I’ll knit on it a little more and then block it and see what I think then. 🙂

Of course, I’d love to hear your thoughts too! 🙂 Where would you place the beads in this stitch pattern? Have you ever used beads in your knitting before? If so, what do you think of the technique? Do you like the effect?

I’d also love to hear about whether you’ve knitted or considered knitting a circular shawl before! If you’ve made one before, did you enjoy the experience? Why or why not?

As always, best wishes to each of you, and happy knitting!

~Sarah

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Family, Knitting

In Progress

I’ve always been the sort of knitter who prefers to focus on one project, watch it grow, customize it along the way, block it with a flourish, and then move on to the next project.

But I have not been true to form lately. Before I’ve finished one project, I’m starting another, and then another…

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A pile of works in progress!

I don’t think I can honestly claim to be a one-project-at-a-time knitter any more because I currently have:
… four shawls,

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Lacey Leaf Shawl
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Echo Flowers Shawl
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Serape Shawl
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Willow Shawl, worked in brioche stitch

… one pair of socks…

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Daisy Field Socks
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The second Daisy Field sock making some progress

… and a baby blanket on the needles…

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Simple garter stitch baby blanket with picot edging

With a baby sweater just about ready to be blocked!

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Yarn for baby sweater – Madelinetosh Tosh Merino Light in Celedon and Fallen Cloud
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Baby Wrap Cardigan in progress!
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Just need to sew on the ties & block!

Waiting in the wings are: several pairs of mitts for friends , various baby items for my newest niece or nephew on the way, and two toy rabbits!

All in all, I’m feeling a bit overwhelmed and quite behind with my knitting. As much as I hate to do it, I think it may be time to work on bringing my knitting expectations back into line with reality again… 😉

What does your To-Knit list look like? Are you a knitter who enjoys working multiple projects at a time, or do you prefer to focus on one thing at a time?

Blogs I love, Knitting

A big welcome to my guest blogger Sarah

I was super excited to have the wonderful opportunity to write a guest post for a blog that I truly love – knittinginfrance! Bogga writes about her life, knitting and hand-dying, in Normandy, France; and her small business selling her hand-made treasures on Etsy! You can check out my guest post here, and while you’re at it, I encourage you to check out Bogga’s lovely blog and the gorgeous items in her Etsy shop!

Welcome to Knitting in France

Hi there, today I’m super excited to introduce you to one of my followers, Sarah Inskeep, which is also a blogger like myself. A while back I posted about the idea of having guest posts on my blog as an added fun for all of us and Sarah was quick to contact me and offer to do a post. And now I have received her post and I’m very happy to share it with you all:)

Sarah lives in the United States and she blogs about her life and love of knitting and spinning. You can visit her blog Sarahinskeep – Life, love and happiness by clicking here

Now before I share her post, I’d just like to reiterate my offer for guest posting. If you like writing, if you have a blog yourself, if you love knitting/crochet/spinning/felting, if you enjoy sharing your passion and would like to do a…

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Knitting, Maryland Sheep and Wool

Current Events

The Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival is this weekend, May 2nd and 3rd! I’m so excited, I can hardly wait!! Mom and I go together every year, it’s our tradition! We missed last year because of my surgery, so we’ve been looking forward to this a long time! This year is also special because Annelies is planning to bring Vera and join us! It’s going to be loads of fun!

At the Maryland Sheep & Wool there are so many fascinating vendors with lovely yarns; wools for spinning, dying, and felting; and beautifully handmade fiber craft tools. And I love seeing the animals – sheep,  alpacas, llamas, and angora rabbits! The sheepdog trials are always such fun to watch! And the people! So many interesting people, and so many of them wearing gorgeous handmade items they crafted themselves, or gifted to them by a loved one or friend! If you are in the area this weekend, I heartily encourage you to make the time to stop by!

In other news, I decided that my Lace Leaf Shawl needed to be knit on larger needles…

So, during a car ride of several hours a couple weekends ago, I started over on size 7s (4.5mm). (I had originally been using size 5s (3.5mm)).

Having a second ball of “Row of Tulips,” I played it safe…

I cast on with the larger needles and the second ball of yarn, knit for awhile…


… and then compared the two fabrics. I decided that I liked the fabric resulting from the bigger needles better, so I kept knitting on that one, and pulled out and re-wound the other!

 There’s been plenty of knitting time, so I’ve made good progress…

ready to begin the edging
finishing up the edging


I’m just starting to cast off. Perhaps I’ll have it done in time to wear to the Sheep & Wool?!

Knitting, Lace Leaf KAL

Ready!…Set!…

Today is an exciting day, folks! You all know what I mean…! Not only is it the last day of March, it’s also Lace Leaf KAL Eve!

Are you excited? I know I am!

Today I’m making final preparations before the KAL begins tomorrow. For me, that means I’m doing things like:

Reading my Lace Leaf pattern through one more time, to be sure there isn’t something I missed… 

Winding my yarn into balls…     

Laying out my needles… 

And setting up my project on Ravelry!

In fact, would all of you fellow KALers set up your Lace Leaf KAL project on Ravelry and then select the option to “share” it with our Lace Leaf KAL group please? That way, we can all share, see, and enjoy each other’s work as the KAL progresses!

Once your project is set up, all you need to do to share your project with our KAL group, is to go under Groups (right hand side of your project page), click on the “Share with a group” drop down box, and select our Lace Leaf KAL from the list, as shown below:

What are you all doing to get ready for tomorrow? Feel free to share your favorite KAL prep tips!

Happy Lace Leaf KAL Eve, Everybody! See you tomorrow!

P.S. If you haven’t signed on to do the Lace Leaf KAL yet, but would like to, you are more than welcome to join us! Just join our group on Ravelry; then decide whether you want to knit the Blackthorn Shawl pattern, or the Lace Leaf Shawl pattern!

Blocking, Knitting

Finishing!

I’ve mentioned before that blocking is not my favorite part of knitting…

…but it is an important part of finishing! It’s been said that blocking is to knitting like ironing is to sewing, and I firmly believe that to be true!

In order for your knitting to look its best, a good blocking is an absolute necessity.

So I recently scrubbed my bathtub good and clean and blocked a couple of large shawls that I had finished knitting a while ago but hadn’t forced myself to block yet!

Alpaca shawl going in for a soak!
Alpaca shawl going in for a soak!

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Wool/silk blend shawl going in for a soak!
Wool/silk blend shawl going in for a soak!

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It was totally worth it because the stitches evened out and opened up, allowing the stitch patterns to be fully seen and appreciated!

Alpaca shawl drying on my living room floor
Alpaca shawl drying on my living room floor
Wool/silk blend shawl drying on my living room floor
Wool/silk blend shawl drying on my living room floor

I always dread blocking, but I’m always so glad that I made myself do it after I’m done!

How do you feel/what do you think about blocking? Do you always do it? Never do it? Sometimes do it? Love it? Strongly dislike it?