Sunday, December 2, 2012

Saltspring Slouchy Hat

Today I have published my "Saltspring" slouchy hat! A fun, big slouchy hat knit from worsted weight yarn that requires some knowledge of short rows (I have not included directions for the theory of short rows themselves - there was many wonderful tutorials on for free on the internet that explain them much better than I! My favorite is from the Purl Bee -

Please download the pattern here!

or check it out in my Ravelry Store with my other patterns!

From the pattern notes:

"Anyone who has travelled to this small island off Vancouver Island’s coast can tell you how beautiful and unique Saltspring is. Home to an unlimited amount of crafty talent, robust little farms, and the welcoming community of Ganges, this area is one of the highlights of our province. It has its own laid-back style, and I tried to capture that charm in this slouchy hat. This long toque uses short rows to create a fun and funky shape, and its simple pattern really emphasizes the use of any colourful or textured yarn. Try it with worsted weight handspun, or with a special handpainted yarn. "

As always, please send along your feedback if you knit this pattern, and I just LOVE seeing photos of finished objects too!


Monday, November 12, 2012

Manning Park Hat

Today I have published my Manning Park Hat! This is a SUPER simple hat, ideal with quick Christmas gifts with out of any worsted weight yarn.  I have seen many of these hats completed out of handspun and they are just beautiful! I will try to post some photos of those soon (as soon as I get permission!).

You can download the pattern here, or check it out in my Raverly store!

From the pattern notes...

"This hat is my default “Man Hat.” It looks good on every guy, and the stretchy rib accommodates most head sizes. It is easily adjusted for any weight of yarn, and you can use a nice bouncy wool or a drapey alpaca and still get a pleasing result. It is ideal for showing off those unique 100g skeins of handspun that spinners always have lurking in the back of their stash, and is an easy enough project that you work on it while enjoying a movie or sharing a cup of tea with friends. Choose between the long and short sizes: the long size can be rolled up to give the hat a nice brim, and short version has a trim clean look to its length."

Even though I've stated above that it's a good hat for men, it really is a unisex pattern: I wear this hat myself under my bike helmet now that the weather is getting cooler!

As always, if you knit this pattern please let me know what you think! And I would LOVE to see some photos of your finished projects!


Sunday, October 21, 2012

Spinning on Saltspring

Ohhhh my GOSH!
This past September, I had the most wonderful experience taking a spinning course on Saltspring Island, just a ferry ride from my home town of Vancouver BC.  The course was called "Colour Control in Spinning", and took place at the Jane Stafford Textile Studios under the instruction of the fabulous Cheryl Wiebe.

I travelled there with Jo Anne and Linella, and we were lucky enough to have gotten to stay at Jane Stafford's farm stay house.  Before we arrived at the studio, we took a small detour for some DELICIOUS Saltspring coffee, a peek at the local yarn store Stitches, and had a tour of the Gulf Island Spinning Mill Cooperative. We got to see where many of the local sheep and alpaca farmers send their fleece to be cleaned and/or spun.  Although we were hoping there would be more fleece for us to purchase on hand, it was still really neat getting a chance to see the process in action!

We had a wonderful evening in Jane's company before our course started on Thursday morning.  There were 7 people participating in the course, and I was glad to meet every one!  Ros and Sara were travelling from England, Charlotte works at the studio, and Linda lives off-island as well, like our trio from Vancouver.

I learned SOOO much over the next two days - about colour of course, but also new things about my wheel, how to Andean ply, and other tips and tricks that you ONLY learn by being snug in a room with so many spinners for HOURS.  We tacked on a few extra hours to our workshop at the end of Day 1 so us Vancouverites who had to leave early to catch a ferry wouldn't miss out on anything from the workshop.  We were all pretty tuckered out, but really, in the best way possible. ;)  Jane kept up a steady supply of coffee and treats, and tons of fibre samples kept flowing our way.

I can't say enough how much I enjoyed this course.  I would HIGHLY recommend a spinning course by Cheryl, in fact, I have already signed up for her next course in January this year, "Know Your Fibre, Know Your Wheel."  And really, any excuse to have a vacation on Saltspring is worth it - what an AMAZING place.

If you would like to check out any other photos from your trip, I have put together an album from our trip!

Happy Spinning! I know I'm inspired to jump back behind my wheel right now in fact... Cheers!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Penticton Penny Hat

Today I have published my Penticton Penny Hat! I designed this hat for my friend Tyler when he got married this summer - I wanted to make him something fun and original, and I thought putting a good luck charm in the brim would be a neat idea.

You can download the pattern here, or check it out in my Ravelry store!

It's a beanie-style toque requiring just under one skein of worsted weight yarn.  There is a little hole in the brim designed to accommodate a penny (or any other special coin or charm) for a personalized touch.

As always, let me know how your projects work out - I appreciate all your feedback!
And I would like to give a big shout-out to my buddy Kris for modeling it for these photos!


Wednesday, September 26, 2012

September Knit Night!

This September we had a wonderful 'Knit Night' at my friend Jo Anne's place... the joys of a 'knit night' with my fellow members of a spinning and weaving guild is that every craft get represented!
Here are a few photos from our evening... Jo Anne and I were knitting sweaters, Barbara was spinning on her beautiful little castle wheel, and the Griffiths sisters were hemming their latest weaving projects.

Ruth's piece with the dragons is made from handspun, and Janice's multiple tea towels each represent sometime from her family.  So cool!

Jo Anne has also recently finished her lately handspun project - a BEAUTIFUL shawl, check out more info and pics here on Raverly!

Can't wait til next month!
PS - we missed you April!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Crofton Cuffs

 Today I have published my free Crofton Cuff pattern! It is available for download here!
Or check them (and my other patterns) on my Raverly store.

From the pattern notes...

"Don’t lose your mitts again! These cuffs are easy to pull up over your wrists so you can wash your hands or take care of any other dirty business without taking them off. The long sleeved version will keep your arms warm on an early morning run, and the short version fits nicely under a jacket sleeve. A seed stitch or ribbed flap on the back of the hand can be flipped over the top of your hand to cover your fingers, keeping you extra toasty warm."

They are an easy Christmas gift, good for both men and women. They would be an excellent glove for anything from running to walking the dog to racking up those fall leaves.

As always, if you decide to cast these on, please share your work! I'd love to see how they turn out and hear your feedback!


Sunday, September 9, 2012

Spinning In Public at Artful Sunday

This year the Greater Vancouver Weavers and Spinners Guild was asked to come on out and demonstrate their talents at the Artful Sunday event at Britannia Community Center along Commercial Drive.  On August 26th 2012, on a beautiful Sunday afternoon, we hauled out our spinning wheels, charkhas, looms, and drop spindles and set up under a wonderful blue sky and crisp white tent generously provided for us by the Artful Sunday's organizer, Katherine.

It's always so inspiring to watch my fellow spinners at work, and I find it really satisfying to get to share my craft with complete strangers that maybe never thought that spinning yarn could still be a viable hobby now-a-days.  Commercial Drive is such an open and creative neighbourhood - we met TONS of people with looms, who knit, who play with other forms of fibre, and it was great to get to chat to everyone walking by.

I took a few photos of our day out, check them out here if you like!

I really hope we get the opportunity to go out again next year!

Monday, September 3, 2012

Lillooet Legwarmers

 Introducing... the Lillooet Legwarmers!

I am releasing this pattern as a free Raverly download today! Or feel free to download the pdf here...

From the pattern notes:
"These simple but versatile legwarmers are designed to fit YOUR style!  Knit them long and wear them pulled up past the knee to give the illusion of a stocking that will keep your legs extra toasty warm, or scrunch them down to the ankle for a more traditional80’s look.  Use a neutral colour to create an elegant pair for an evening out on the town, or alternatively, play with some stripes or bright colours for a more funky style!"

So make 'em long, pull 'em, push 'em down! But most importantly, keep those leggies toasty warm! As always, please show me if you decide to make a pair, and if you have any feedback, I would love to hear it!


Friday, August 17, 2012

Bridal Falls Gloves

Ta-da! I have released another free pattern today!  You can find it here:

or on Ravelry of course!

From the pattern:
"These gloves were designed for all the lucky gals I know who are getting married this summer. The left glove has a special little embellishment below the ring finger; two intertwined wedding rings are cabled into the back of the hand. The right glove has a similar line to the ring finger, minus the cable-work. They look lovely knit in a traditional white, or choose a more dramatic colour to match the personality of your blushing bride."

Thanks again to Jo Anne Ryeburn and Laura Gorrie for the test knitting and feedback! And thanks to Crystal Sing as well for the use of her lovely photo (that's her in the red version of the gloves).

I made quite a few of these this summer as wedding gifts, and Jo Anne made a LOVELY pair out of handspun that just makes my heart go 'pitterpatter'.


Monday, August 6, 2012

Whiskey Creek Scarf!

Today have have posted my very first pattern to Ravelry!
Please check out the free download for my Whiskey Creek Scarf Pattern:

From the Pattern notes section:

"This scarf is designed to showcase those self-striping and multicoloured yarns that can tend be too muddy or busy for many interesting lace patterns. The simple, open design can also display any sport or fingering weight hand-spun yarn to its maximum advantage. This scarf, knit to bias to the left, is cast on one corner, increases in size to the width of the scarf, then continues to the opposite point. It can be blocked into a rectangle if desired, especially with the help of tassels on each end. Enjoy the organic shaping and the detail of the subtle cable-work that adds some movement in the body of the scarf.
Additional notes:

  • This pattern includes charts and written instructions.
  • This scarf can be completed in sock weight or sport weight yarn.
  • For best results, make sure you block your project to open up the eyelets nicely!"

I made two example projects for this pattern: one is a fingering sock yarn (the light blue/green/brown colours) and one in a sport weight yarn (the darker brown Noro version).  Same needle size, but the different gauges created a different drape and texture in each scarf, which I found rather pleasing!

Check out the pics below:

If you knit up this pattern, please share your work and feedback with me! I am a new designer, and even though this pattern has been edited and tested, I would love feedback and to see your final work!

Cheers! And I hope you enjoy!

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Finally! My work will be up soon! I now have three patterns with final photos, editing, and layout complete, and another three to package before they can be released! As soon as I have fine-tuned a few other things, I will be publishing the patterns for a scarf, a pair of mitts, and some legwarmers. Whew! This endeavour has been going a little slower than expecting, but I am still enjoying it and I can't wait to share my work!

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Why, hello!

Hello there!
My name is Grace, and I am a gal from British Columbia, Canada.  I have been knitting since 2003, and started learning to spin my own wool last year; now I want to learn how to write my own knitting patterns.  I am creating this blog to share my progress and finished designs.  I won't be updating often until I have something to show, but when I have a few patterns under my belt I will post them here!
Until then, Cheers! And please feel free to reach me on Raverly under the name 'sprouts'!