Friday, June 27, 2008

The Summer Sampler Project heats up! Hold onto your lifelines!

In honor of the official start of summer, which recently passed us, I thought I would warm things up...

I offer you Pattern Five. I call this pattern The Grand Spider. I believe I made it up...
A few quick notes before you dive in:
1) Only the odd numbered rows are charted. The even numbered rows are purl straight across.
2) I suggest you put a life-line in before you begin this particular pattern, even if you don't usually use them.
3) I suggest you make a 29-stitch swatch and work about 16 rows using one repeat of the shaded section to try this pattern out in scrap yarn before you add it to your Sampler.
4) If you don't enjoy working this pattern after giving it a fair try, replace the 7/7 with (knit two, yarn-over, double-vertical decrease, yarn-over, knit two.) It won't look the same but it will look pretty and work fine.

Following is a short stitch tutorial for the 7/7 move...

First, if you knit like most Americans, slip the seven stitches to be used and replace them so that they sit on the needles as illustrated above. If you knit in the European Crossed-Uncrossed way, this is how your stitches are already sitting. The point is that you can insert your right-hand needle into the back leg of all seven stitches more smoothly and with less stress on your hands and the yarn. For those of you working projects with nupps, think about the above concept...
Insert the right-hand needle into the seven stitches, and knit the seven together, but do not remove the stitches from the left-hand needle.
Make a yarn-over, insert the right-hand needle into the same seven stitches, make a stitch and again, leave the seven on the left-hand needle. You have three stitches made on the right-hand needle.
Again, make a yarn-over, insert the right-hand needle into the seven stitches, make a stitch, leaving the seven on the left-hand needle. You have made five stitches on the right-hand needle. Make a yarn-over and for the last time, insert the right-hand needle into the seven stitches, making your final stitch. You have seven new stitches on your right-hand needle. Allow the seven stitches on the left-hand needle to slide off.

Viola! Grand Spiders! It is actually really fun once you get into it. Remember to work loosely, and mind the order of those seven stitches when you purl them on the return row, because it is easy to cross them if you don't watch closely. Also, note that they are not turned the way you usually see them, so either purl them from the presenting stitch leg, or re-position them. Again, those of you working on nupps, think about how easy it would be to purl those stitches together if you wanted to...

A little surprise arrived at BadCatHouse this past week. Jane, who owns Jade Sapphire Yarn Company, sent me this lovely box, containing four balls of the Lacey Lamb I am working my Summer Sampler in.

I intend to give two balls each, to two different people. Some of you know the pleasure I get in seeing my designs knit by other people. Once I post the final installment of this project, I will ask those of you who have been working with me to send photos of your finished pieces. I think that the first two people who send me finished Summer Sampler photos will each get two balls for their next Sampler. How does that sound to you? I need to limit this offer to those of you in North America, because shipping to Other continents is just too darn expensive. If you are off my continent and want to play for the yarn, you are welcome to if you are willing to cover the shipping via PayPal, OK? OK...

And finally, this is the newest design I am working on. The yarn is Malabrigo Lace in the Paris Nights colorway. The beads are actually more purple than they read in the picture, because the glass is amber, but the have another color lining them, if you know what I mean. It is a triangle, and you see the center spine and pattern as it grows from the center. Tell me what you think.

See you next week, for some July Fourth fun. Until then, knit on!


  1. Very pretty. Up close it looks like spiders, but from a distance it looks like people.

  2. really lovely pattern for the sampler! and a terrific way to do nupps too, thanks for all this.

  3. Ooooh, that will be a challenge for me, since I naturally knit tightly, and I've never done this kind of maneuver before. I'll try it this evening!!

  4. Lovely lace pattern! Thank you for sharing it.

  5. The knitting professor has done it again! Inspiring us with your knowledge , talent and experience. thank you, I love that you are sharing this with us as I learn so much from you and look forward to each clue like a present.

  6. Wow, I'm a couple of charts behind everyone else, but I can't wait to get looks really fun :) Thanks for all this!

    BTW, are you going to have a button we can post on our blog showing off our participation in this? Just asking.... :)

  7. Well I spent all weekend trying to catch up. I finally (read FINALLY) made it through the 1st spacer chart and onto pattern one, another spacer and on to pattern tow (which I ADORE!) I have 1/2 of that one done so far. If I can get caught up really quickly I might even finish this near to the others, though I doubt fast enough to win the LOVELY Lacey Lamb yarn. Presents are nice, but finished is a good thing too.

    have a great day and THANK YOU for the wonderful pics with the stitches. I think they look like Angels and STILL can't see a spider in there to save my life.

    denise/deBRAT in rain is coming again soon Tampa Bay Florida

  8. I cannot see any spiders, either, but just like DENISE/DEBRAT I CAN see angels, as well - either way, it's a lovely pattern - Thanks BadCat!

  9. gorgeous pattern! And it's lovely that you are sharing your wisdom with us mere lace mortals! :)

    Many thanks,


  10. So how are you enjoying the Malabrigo yarn. I really enjoyed using this for the Veil of Isis. Your design is beautiful as always. Look forward to working on this new pattern, looks like fun. :)

  11. Beautiful pattern. Definitely one I'll be swatching soon!

  12. I like the Paris Nights shawl you are working on! I'm quite smitten with Malabrigo lace yarn so it's not hard for me to swoon when i see it combined with a great lace pattern. Good Luck!

  13. I like the glimpse of the Paris Nights triangle shawl! hope it's going to be available to us all!
    Colleen in Australia