Thursday, 21 December 2017

Woodland Mittens Test-Knit Call

Welcome, all, to my newest call for test-knitters!  So, this call is for my Woodland Mittens.

I've been quiet on these, since they're the January 2018 release for my Pattern Muses on Patreon.  But, they're finally to the test-knit stage, and I'm now looking for test-knitters!
A mitten knit in deep turquoise yarn laying flat.  There is a cable pattern on the back of the hand.
Photography: Stephanie Wallace

These are DK-weight cabled mittens, with a mirrored pattern on the front and back so the cables are always on the back of the hand.   The sample was knit in Baa Ram Ewe Dovestone DK, in the colourway "Eecup," using 3.5mm (US 4) needles.

If people are interested, sign ups are here on the Ravelry Thread!  You will have to be a member to view and post to the thread, but sign up is free.

The deadline for this test is Jan 9, 2018.  Testers who complete the test will receive the finished pattern for free, as well as one pattern of their choice from my self-published patterns.

A mitten laying flat, palm-up. There is a slipped-stitch textured pattern along the palm.
Photography: Stephanie Wallace
Also, if you want to be notified on Ravelry about new test knits, you can PM me on Ravelry to sign up in my test-knitter's thread.  I'll also post test-knit calls here, to my other social media platforms (Facebook, G+, Patreon), and, I'll send out test-knit calls to those on my mailing list (e-mail sign up link), so hopefully, anyone who's interested will see my test-knit calls.

As always, any questions, feel free to reach out, and thanks for checking out this test-knit call!  Stay tuned for more test-knits and other fun things in 2018!

Wednesday, 20 December 2017

WIP Wednesday: Gauntlet Socks, Take 3 (Last WIP Wed of 2017!)

**This post contains affiliate links.  Any link marked with an * will give me a reward or commission if you purchase something using that link.**

Hello everyone!

It's WIP Wednesday once again, and that means another try on the Gauntlet Socks!

The cuff of a sock on circular needles. The sock is knit on the bias. I realized that there was a way better way to do the front decrease stitches, namely, to increase stitches just after the ribbing, and to use a central decrease for the front, rather then what I was doing before. It's a lot neater, and a lot easier, plus, it means the ribbing is less likely to flare at the top of the socks (thus defeating the purpose of ribbing, in my opinion!)   I thought about going down to 2mm needles for the ribbing, but I don't like switching needle sizes on my socks (I don't quite know why, it's just something that bugs me!)

With all this frogging and re-knitting, It's a very good thing the Leelanau base from *Washtenaw Wool holds up to frogging as well as it does!  It's a bit kinked up, but that's no surprise after multiple froggings!  A lot of times, merino/nylon sock yarns tend to fuzz up at this point if they've been frogged multiple times, but this yarn hasn't done that, which is great!

Well, hopefully third time's the charm and I can get to the heel on these this time.  Ugh.  But, the pattern is coming together in my notes, it's just the question of if the yarn will actually do what I think it should do.  

And since next Wed is the 27th of December, I'm taking some time to be with family and friends over the holidays, so there won't be a WIP Wed post next week.  Stay tuned the week after that for the first WIP Wed post of 2018!

P.S.  I was given the yarn as yarn support for this design, but all opinions about the yarn are my own!

Tuesday, 19 December 2017

Free Pattern Release: Tributary Hat

**This post contains affiliate links.  Any link marked with an * will give me a reward or commission if you purchase something using that link.**  

I'm so glad I can finally show this to all you folks!  This is my Tributary Hat pattern, which is now live in the December 2017 issue of Knotions Magazine!

  A woman wearing a deep purple hat, face on to the camera.   The hat is a slouchy worsted weight hat, with a cabled band above the ribbing.
Photography: Stephanie Wallace
This hat originally came from me playing around with different cable swatches.  I loved this one so much; I wanted to feature it on something!  It was originally designed for a friend of mine who wears winter caps over visors and baseball caps, so I wanted a hat design that had enough positive ease to accommodate that.  After some experimentation, this hat was born!

The cable band is knit first, working flat, and using an optional provisional cast on.  The hat is then picked up from both edges of the cable band to form the ribbing and the crown of the hat.
 A woman wearing a deep purple worsted-weight knit hat. She is shown looking down towards the ground, you can see the top of the hat. The cable band is shown going around the head just above the ribbing. It is a Celtic knot style cable that runs end-to-end around the circumference of the hat. The top of the hat has gathers where the stitches were pulled in
Photography: Stephanie Wallace

The sample shown was done in *Queensland Collection Kathmandu Aran 100, which is a blend of 85% Merino, 10% Silk, and 5% Cashmere.  Sample was knit in the colourway "Purple."

For the direct pattern link, you can find this pattern here and the Ravelry Pattern Page is here.  If you're looking for a downloadable PDF, there's a link to it the on top right of the Knotions Pattern Page.

A purple worsted-weight knit hat laying flat.  The hat has a ribbed brim, and a stockinette main body.  Just above the ribbing, there is a celtic-knot style cable band that is knit horizontally.  The top of the hat is gathered in slightly.
Photography: Stephanie Wallace
I do hope you all enjoy the pattern! This was my first time publishing with Knotions Magazine; and I've had a wonderful time doing so! I'm really glad I can finally talk about this pattern -- unusually for me, I -wasn't- knitting until the last possible moment, so this has been sitting ready-to-go in my box of yarn things for a while now. 

So, thanks for checking out my newest pattern, and  until next time, folks!

Wednesday, 13 December 2017

WIP Wednesday: Birthday Sweater Sleeves and Interchangeable Needles!

Here I am again, with yet another installment of WIP Wednesday!  Serious thanks go to all my readers, who've been reading along with what I'm making!  I wouldn't have continued this long with out all of the positive words you folks have given me.

Well, this week is further progress on the Birthday Sweater.  Like I mentioned on this week's Patreon Behind-the-Scenes, having a cold actually means you get a surprising amount of knitting done!  So, I've finished the front and am now onto the first sleeve.
A ribbed cuff live on circular needles.

What does this mean?  Well, it means a) this sweater just became my travel project.  The sleeves are smaller, and the pattern is simpler.  The huge, gorgeous cable charts that were on the front and back aren't on the sleeves, so it's a part of the pattern where I don't have to constantly be referring to the charts.  It also means b) new needles!  The ribbing for this pattern is done on  smaller needles (for me and my tension, that meant 4mm needles).  But, my 4mm needles are all tied up in other projects right now (the Lorien Cowl being one of them), so I needed a set of new needles.

The Purple Purl, (where I often go for Knit Night) has recently started carrying Lykke interchangeable needles, specifically, the Lykke Driftwood needles. Now, I've usually steered clear of interchangeable needles, since I've heard too many horror stories about how the tips can snap off, or unscrew.  But, I did some research, and it seems that many people are quite happy with the Lykke needles.  Plus, they have a really good warranty!  So, I bought myself a set of 4mm tips, a cord, and went off to the races.  One of the women at Knit Night graciously showed me how to attach the tips to the cord (there's a key to tighten it up), and off I went.  All that, and the tips and cord were cheaper then the fixed circulars I would have bought, so added bonus!

Well, I have to say, I'm really quite impressed. They feel wonderful on the hands.  I think I'll be getting the Lykke needles so long as I can. They're light-weight, and the ability to take the cords off and put stoppers on is great for someone with a million WIPs, like me!   I only wish they went into smaller sizes -- according to the website, the smallest size they go to is a 3.5mm.  Oh well, that's not the end of the world.  I have my dpns and fixed circulars for those sizes, so if that's the only drawback, it's a small one.

Now, I just must remember to put them away when I'm done -- the tips would undoubtedly be perfect cat toys. . .

Until next time, folks, and thanks as always for reading!

Wednesday, 6 December 2017

WIP Wednesday: Back to the Birthday Sweater

**This post contains affiliate links.  Any link marked with an * will give me a reward or commission if you purchase something using that link.**

Hello again, and welcome back to the first WIP Wed in December!

So, the Birthday Sweater is still on the needles (and even more belated, but it's taking longer then I thought it would.)  Pattern isn't mine, it a free pattern from Bernat, and while it's free and not a bad pattern, I have some issues with how it's written.

That said, I've been quiet about this one for a bit, so I'm happy to show where I'm at.  Admittedly, I haven't done as much as I'd like -- I've got other deadline knitting on the needles, plus I've been knitting less and pattern-writing more, since I've re-organized my schedule.  Add to that the inevitable viruses that tend to go around when the weather gets cold, and I've not been as productive with my knitting as I would like.

An image of a green cabled sweater-in-progress laying flat.  There is a tabby cat on the top edge of the sweater
(Also, my apologies for the photo.  The sun comes in at such an angle now with the winter it's hard to get things in good light.  And yes, the cat decided to photobomb!)

I'm done to past the armhole cast-offs, and, as mentioned I did  TechKnitter's show-row stepped shoulder trick for the armholes (and I'll do that again for the shoulders, too).

Yarn is the now-discontinued Dream in Color Groovy, in "Emerald Darkness."  It's a bulky-weight 100% Superwash Merino. Needles are still the  Hiya  Hiya 4.5 mm needles, with the *24-inch cord, I believe.   The cuffs, top and bottom ribbing are knit on smaller needles (4mm for me) but otherwise, it's quite consistent.

I'm quite happy with how it's coming together (it seems the cat is fond of it too!) and I'm hoping to get to the sleeves soon.  It's over 2 months belated, and while my giftee is awesome,  I don't want her waiting any more then necessary.  

Well, that's the update for this week.  Stay tuned for more WIP Wed, and thanks for reading!

Friday, 1 December 2017

December Featured Pattern and Mini-KAL: Snowdrop Lace Cowl

The December 2017 Featured Pattern is here: The Snowdrop Lace Cowl is 50% off at $2.75 CAD for the month of December!  This is a quick-knit pattern, so it's perfect for holiday crafting or as a gift for an unexpected guest!

Photography: Douvlak Photography
You can buy the pattern through Ravelry or Etsy, the discount is available on both platforms.  The discount should be applied automatically on Ravelry, and be visible on Etsy.   As always, let me know if something doesn't work!

Now, onto the Mini-KAL!

For the month of December, any finished Snowdrop Lace Cowl has a chance to win a pattern from any of my self-published patterns!  To enter on the blog, simply post a link to your completed Snowdrop Lace Cowl(s) in the comments of this post by December 31, 2017.  Please note that the Cowl doesn't have to have been started in December, just finished in December!

You can also win by posting to the giveaway on Facebook, and in my Ravelry Group, giving 3 chances to win in total!*

I always look forward to seeing your Finished Objects! Please post them to various social media with #SarahDawnsDesigns, and/or to my Ravelry Group if you're on Ravelry.  That way, I can see the awesome that you folks make!

*One entry per person for each project per platform (three entries total for each completed project). Winners will be drawn at random using random number generation. Winners must have a valid e-mail address to receive the patterns. Participants may enter the same project on more then one platform, but may only enter each project once per platform.