Sunday, September 14, 2014

RIPPLE!!


As many of you know, I have a new video out.  It is called Knitting New Vintage Lace.  Using two projects I designed specifically for the video, we will explore the techniques used in these projects and also in many of the projects in my new book, New Vintage Lace.  Although the video is a nice technique source for the projects in the book, you do not need to have one to enjoy the other!  You can read a little more about the video AND order either a DVD or download through Interweave.

I will be hosting a KAL and technique discussion at my Yahoo Group, BadCatDesigns.  You can request group membership here.  Be sure you include something about yourself in the comment field!
We will use the group to discuss techniques and share some supplemental files.  If you watch the video you might notice some swatches and small doilies that I use to demonstrate specific techniques. We will be playing with some of those charts at the Yahoo Group.  Over on Ravelry I host a forum and we can use that forum for chat about the projects and techniques.  You can join that forum here!

What you will need
The new Interweave video, Knitting New Vintage Lace
The video includes an instructional video covering most of the techniques we will use, plus PDF files for two full projects; the Ripple Doily and the Ripple Shawlette.  
The Game Plan
We will review techniques and chat about various options for center starts, working in the round on small needles, going from a doily to a shawl design, tab starts, ideas for the top edge of your shawl, bind-off and more!  In the video you will see quite a few small “swatches” and I will share the charts for these so you can practice techniques and make some pretty, little doilies!  Then we will embark on the Ripple Projects at your own pace.
Materials for Project One: Ripple Doily
#10 crochet cotton (200-300 yards.)  I used Aunt Lydia’s color #0995 (Ocean.)  Any cotton crochet thread will work well, and if you use one that is heavier get a little more and choose a larger needle and beads size, to work well with your thread choice.
US 1 (2.25mm) knitting needles: a set of double-point needles and a 16 inch circular (or size for gauge)
                US 14 (0.75mm) and US 0 (3.25mm) steel crochet hooks
                8/0 Japanese seed beads to match your thread (you will need 84 of them.)
Gauge: 32 stitches and 48 rows in 2 inches, in pattern
Materials for Project Two: Ripple Shawlette
Sock weight yarn (462 yards/100 grams.)  I used Noro Taiyo Sock Yarn in color #3.  Any sock weight or hand-spun yarn will work.  Long color changes are ideal.  You could use several colors to get the same effect.  This would be a fun project for handspun yarns in assorted colors (maybe spun from fiber samples you have collected.) 
US 4 (3.5mm) knitting needles: 32 inch circular (or size for gauge)
US 14 (0.75mm) and US 0 (3.25mm) steel crochet hooks
                5/0 or 6/0 Japanese seed beads to match your thread (you will need 120 of them.)
Gauge: 24 stitches and 28 rows to 4 inches, in pattern

How are we going to do it? 
We will open the BadCatDesigns Yahoo group for on-topic discussion and supplemental file sharing.  You will have to join the Yahoo group if you want access to any files that I share. You have to join Yahoo to become a member, which is free.  

We will also use my Ravelry forum for both on-topic discussions and socializing.  You have to be a Ravlery member to join, which is free.  The link to join Ravelry is below.  Once you join Ravelry,  follow the second link to the new forum.

Joining the KAL is free and open to everyone, but you will need the pattern files (they are PDFs) included with the video to fully participate.  The pattern files are ONLY available with the video.

You will also need a current version of Adobe Reader (or another PDF reader of your choice.)  These are free and available on-line.  Here is the link to download Adobe Reader.

Things to Think About

Knitters of all levels are welcome but the techniques are not beginning techniques, so be prepared to have fun learning new techniques and practicing old ones.  I will provide plenty of step-by-step, printed directions to complement the video, along with fun practice projects and who know what else! The practice pieces use heavier weight cotton yarns.  I will share two versions of the Shawlette.  One is the piece shown in the video, knit using the suggested Noro yarn and the second is one I made using various colors of spindle-spun yarn, that I spun and knit during my trip to Colorado to film the video.  I would be happy to chat about spinning for lace projects when we discuss materials and techniques.  Please join us!  I have a PDF with all the above information plus some fine print with group rules.  Please feel free to email me requesting a copy.  Feel free to leave comments here, but if you want a reply be sure you are logged in and include your email address, or I can't reply:)

Photo credit goes to Joe Hancock and Interweave!


Sunday, August 10, 2014

One Skein Projects: New Vintage Lace Special and New Designs Posted!

With summer winding down, hopefully some of you are getting ready for a little vacation before returning to school and work.  I have a few ideas for your travel knitting, each a one skein project.  There is a nice assortment, with some (like Nereid) requiring more concentration than others (like Chiaroscuro.)  Not planning any travel?  These are also great for gift-giving, so jump-start your holiday knitting!


Nereid, one of the one-skein projects from my book, New Vintage Lace, is available right now as a kit, through Interweave.  It comes with the book and a skein of the yarn I used for this project.  They offer a few color options, including the color shown above, plus two other lovely colors.  Just thought I would share!
Nereid Knitted Lace Shawl Kits

Interweave is also having a really special 30% off, beginning Monday, 8/11/14, in case there are other books or goodies in your fantasy shopping-cart!
Save 30% at Interweave with Offer Code THANKS30

I also have a few new designs to share, now available in my Ravelry pattern shop.  All three are one-skein projects.  Each is perfect for travel knitting and also make perfect gifts.

1) The first new design is the Chiaroscuro Scarf, which is very simple to make and ideal travel knitting.

The yarn is Risoni, from The Loom, and I just loved working with it.  Because the yarn has so much texture and silky-sheen, keeping it simple is key.  The fabric has amazing sheen and drape.


 But of course not totally simple!  Beads AND silk always work well together, so I could not resist...


2) The second new design is Rainbow Mitts.  

This design uses one skein of Mini Mochi Yarn, from Crystal Palace.  If you want to make the pair match you will need a second skein, but I suggest that in the spirit of diversity, please feel free to allow them to be different…These were a special request, to mark Boston Pride. They are worked in the round on double-point needles, with lace and cables.  The pattern has loads of stretch and will fit most adult hands.  They are fun to work, offer a little challenger, and are perfect travel knitting.


3) The third new design is my Isle of Skye Ribbon Cowl.
 
This is also a one skein project, using Jade Sapphire Brigadoon. It is worked in the round using a simple diagonal lace stitch.  Ribbons are woven through the eyelets created by the lace after it is blocked. Beads are threaded on the ribbons ends.  It can be worn several ways, and is a fun combination of classic and modern. Works up quickly and perfect for gift-giving!  For a more simple look, omit the ribbons and beads.



Finally, a little plug for my up-coming video.  I just accidentally found this floating out there on YouTube. Did I ever tell all of you that I was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York?  No??  I am afraid that this will leave very little doubt about that...I will let you all know when the full video is available:)  

I will be back next week with another new design!  Something for two skeins.  Until then, knit on!



Monday, July 7, 2014

Live Event July 8th at 8pm EST!

Chai Latte is so very excited he wants everyone to see how much he loves lace weight yarn and internet events...  


I am doing a live web-event with Beth, from Planet Purl, tomorrow evening.  Here is the LINK with details about joining the event. We will be talking about New Vintage Lace and knitting in general. Please join the conversation!! 

Saturday, April 26, 2014

New Vintage Lace!

As many of you know, I have a book coming out in June 2014!  I am most excited!!!  Here is a link to Interweave Press, my publisher.  In the next month I will be posting about the individual projects in more detail, but until then, you can read a bit more here:

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Into Infinity: the Moebius


Our Winter project has just launched, with a small "practice piece" called Driftwood Infinity Necklace.  It uses a true Moebius cast-on, called the Chain Infinity Cast-on (the tutorial for this special cast-on, along with this project file, is already posted at the winter group.)  We are discussing various options for casting on a Moebius project and selecting materials.

BadKitten was kind enough to make these two short videos, describing what is unique about a Moebius Strip.  In the first she just explains the difference between what happens when you just cast-on and join in the round with a twist, and make a true Moebius cast-on.  It is all about having one continuous edge.  In the second video she just geeks out a little as she talks about what makes the surface of a Moebius unique.  I shot these using my digital camera and although the images are good the sound sucks.  Turn your volume up and accept my apologies!

video


video


You can read oodles more about what a Moebius is here.  If you are intrigued and want to know more about my winter group project, check out this post, or send me an email: BadCatDesigns@verizon.net

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Into Infinity...

Is everyone ready for winter?  I am ready for lots of knitting, and lovely wool yarn.  I am not ready for trying to get to work in the snow or wind chill.  This project will see you through the cold, dark months and back out into the light!

If you are ready for the knitting part of winter, join me for my Winter 2014 Group Mystery Project. What mystery???  There is a photograph, right?  Well, consider that just an appetizer!  Let me tell you a little more...

As many of you know, BadKitten, my model and fiber co-conspirator, left for college in September.  But I think very few of you know that she is studying math (among other things.)  She always finds ways to combine craft and math, and so this entire group is about infinity.  
\sum_{i=0}^{\infty} \, f(i) = a
The sum of the infinite series converges to some real value a.  So as I see it, the sum of this infinite amount of love and now seemingly infinite amount of knowledge will converge to be BadKitten, the young woman and no longer the child.  And the possibilities are infinite...


How in the world does this relate to knitting?  I am so glad you asked!  And it is more than just wanting to have an infinite amount of yarn, OK?  There are two different project sets: 

The first is all about the Möbius strip or Möbius band (UK /ˈmɜrbiəs/ or US /ˈmbiəs/, also Mobius or Moebius.  BadKitten actually knit one of these before I did and totally turned me on to the potential, from a design point of view.  Dare I say, it is infinite??  There will be four projects in the set.  Two use one skein of special sock yarn (Malabrigo Sock and Hidden Brook Farm Painted Glitter Sock, But many other options are possible.) One project uses one large skein of Soft'n'Single ColourWave from Lara's Creations and the fourth uses one skein of Linen from Marks and Kattens.  We are using two different moebius cast-ons, one of which I think I made up!

The second project set is all about fractals.  This is a modular project, and I will be showing a blanket and a stole or shawl as options.  You can make the blanket any size you like.  I am showing options using KnitPick's Fingering Chroma and Wisdom yarn's Limerick, but there are oodles of other choices that we will discuss.  These designs work well using a yarn with very long color repeats.

All told, the group will cover 6 different projects, at a minimal, with an infinite number or possibilities!  Did I catch your attention?  Here is the fine print:

The group will begin enrolling now.  We will discuss techniques and materials.  The first project will be posted January 1st, 2014, and we will continue on until the spring.  As with all my group projects, we will use YahooGroups and I created a unique group for this project.  All project files will be posted at the group as PDFs and you will be in charge or downloading any files you want to save.  Although this group is not attached in any way to Ravelry, I will add the project pages there, for anyone who wants to add their projects, and we can open a discussion forum there if anyone would like that.  The cost for access to the group and all the project files is $16 (US dollars) payable through PayPal.  This is payable to badcatdesigns@verizon.net, via PayPal.  If you need me to send you an invoice or have any other questions, please send me an email request with Infinity in the subject line.  Once payment is received, an invitation to the BadCatInfinity group will be sent to you and you can join and introduce yourself!

It has been a little while since I had a nice, big group project and I am really excited.  I hope you can join me!

Andrea

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Winter Extravaganza Wrap Up!


At long last, I am sharing some finished projects from my Winter Extravaganza project.  I would like to thank everyone for a great group and especially thank those who sent me there photos to include here!  If you would like to see all the project details, check our this link!

If you would like to buy a copy of the pattern, you can do that right here: 


If you want to see all the finished projects on Ravelry: check them out here!  You will be able to see the yarns people used and how they customized the piece for themselves.

Without further fuss, and in no particular order...
From Dawn
Yarn:  Kaido Lame
Beads:  Silver-lined gold #8 Japanese seed beads


From Gala!


From Jean
I missed the instructions to move the start of the first 39 or so rows one stitch to the right so I substituted YO/K2tog for the double YO/double central decrease to  make the start easier. It produced a lovely flower,  
Yarn: Classic Elite Pirouette Color: Caribean Sea 3.5 skeins
 Beads: #8 silver lined seed beads
Blocked size 66 x 23




From Cynthia
I blocked it to the same measurements as yours, on a size 4 needle.  The yarn was YarnArt Kid Mohair Transparent, Color 3.  It’s 60% Kid Mohair and 40% Acrylic.  I was terrified it would block horribly.  My fears were unjustified.  It was wonderful.

From Sue
I used Iridaceae lace yarn, Iridae, in Emerald
US 4 needles
Emerald 8.0 beads

Did a garter stitch instead of ribbed borders



From Sheila
Yarn is Crystal Palace Kid Merino, color, Ultra Blues, 6 skeins
Beads are dark amber or root beer ABs 8/0 - chosen for their complimentary contrast to the yarn.
I made a tapered sleeve and added more beads to the corners and sleeve details.



From Mary Rose!

Ouida, at STITCHDRAGON is offering the Winter group a lovely prize for three winners (a circular needle of the winner's choice!)  Names drawn from BadCat's hat, the three winners are: Sheila, Cynthia and Jean.  I will be sending you an email with details!  Also, all gallery participants will be getting a gift of the Ravelry pattern file for The Winter Wrap, so keep an eye out for the link.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Lucy's Gift


I released a new pattern today. It is free and available on Ravelry.  Just follow this link to get yourself a copy of the file.


You can make this small shawl in any yarn you choose.  Here is what I did:
I used one ball of Einband yarn.  The yarn is produced in Iceland, using Icelandic wool, by the Alafoss (Istex) company. Each ball weights 50 grams and is 273 yards.  The sample used just one ball, in a color that matched Lucy’s eyes, but feel free to use more if you want a larger piece.  Lucy was actually as soft as cashmere and had a double coat.  Icelandic sheep also have a double coat, but are not particularly soft.  They are very rugged and can survive the Icelandic winter in style.  We took to calling them BadAss sheep on our recent trip and Lucy shared that same quality.  Small package, big attitude, strong will.  I might knit a second sample in fine, gray cashmere and use a few purple crystals, because she would approve…
-I am working on a second sample in Malabrigo Silky Alpaca and will share photos once I finish.



This piece was inspired by the Hallgrimskirkja church, which I visited recently while traveling in Iceland.  The church has long, clean lines and sits high on a hill in Reykjavik.  It can be seen from off shore for quite a distance.
 


I dedicate this project to my darling cat, Lucy (affectionately known as LucyFur) who died on March 26th, 2013.  She was my constant companion, lap warmer and blocking assistant and she will be terribly missed.  She was a tiny kitty, weighting in at just over five pounds, but her purrsonality was enormous.  Please consider making a small donation to the Humane Society of New York if you enjoy knitting this project.  You can make the donation in Admiral LucyFur’s memory, and they accept PayPal.  Meow on sweet gray girl…