Sunday, April 17, 2022

Success!

The crowdfunding experiment for the 'Between the Dragon and His Wrap' pattern was a success - the campaign received 150% of its required funding! This is very thrilling and I'm so grateful to everyone who backed the project. It also means that I'm very likely to do this again with future design ideas!

Note: I've sent out thank you emails to all the backers of the campaign. If you are a backer, but haven't received an email, please check your spam folder!

What's next? Well, I'll now get to work writing up the pattern, getting it tech edited, buying the yarn, making the sample for photography, running a test knit, and finalizing the pattern. I estimate that the pattern will probably be able to go live in August, 2022, barring any unforeseen circumstances. Of course I'll be communicating with the campaign backers if there are any changes to the expected schedule. 

I am looking for two testers for this pattern, and would love to hear from interested knitters! Please contact me to indicate your interest. Be sure to include information about your experience (if any) with test knitting, and with stranded knitting projects.

Want to be notified about progress on the pattern and when it's released? Sign up for updates!

Saturday, February 19, 2022

Trying something different - wanna help?

I made a new design! It's for a rectangular, stranded knitting shawl, which I'm calling 'Between the Dragon and His Wrap'.

I haven't made it, although I have done a proof of concept, which I adore:

I haven't plugged instructions and charts into my pattern template.

I've only...designed it.

 

 

I'm trying something new this time around: I'm trying to raise the funds for the production of this pattern before I well and truly start the production of this pattern.

What this means is: I'm crowdsourcing!


Basically, by supporting this campaign, you're pre-purchasing the pattern for a 20% discount off the regular price. Other patterns of mine are also available at a discounted price via other perks, if you want to do more than just buy the future pattern.

The idea is that I will know I have the funds in hand to buy the yarn, get a tech editor, get test knitters, and give me something for my design work. Right now the campaign is already 63% funded so I'm hopeful that I'll get to the campaign goal!

Monday, December 27, 2021

New pattern release: Serendipity Throwover

 


The Serendipity Throwover is a lovely, flowy, layering piece which I put together upon discovering that eight 50g balls of baby alpaca DK weight yarn had somehow shown up in my stash. (I'm honestly still not sure where it came from.) I decided to design something which would use up as much of it as possible. 




One fancy lace-and-cables edging motif and a bunch of moss stitch later, plus garter stitch for the edgings, and what is essentially two rectangles joined at the shoulders, turned into an elegant garment that will keep you extra-warm!


Sunday, November 28, 2021

Can you use stranded knitting charts for double knitting?

A recent interaction on Twitter made me want to write this blog post. A knitter who had recently become very enamoured with double knitting took a look at my Vigil Wrap pattern, which is done with stranded knitting...


...and wondered whether it could be done with double knitting.

Of course it can - pretty much any stranded knitting chart can be used for double knitting instead - but the question is, should it? Because there's something very important you need to know about double knitting: 

It produces really flat stitches.

And thus, this blog post. Here, I will demonstrate what happens to the "aspect ratio", or "proportion of width to height", of stitches, depending on the kinds of knitting you're doing.

For instance, I'm sure we've all noticed that regular stocking stitch stitches aren't square. They're a bit squashed. That's why your typical sport weight gauge, for example, is given on ball bands and patterns and suchlike as "24 stitches and 32 rows for 4". It takes more rows (height) than stitches (width) to get to four inches, because the height of a stocking stitch stitch is smaller than its width.

And here is a teeny swatch of stocking stitch to demonstrate that:

The area encompassed by the basting in a darker yarn represents 11 stitches and 11 rows. It measures 1.75" wide and a tad less than 1.25" high, giving us a width-to-height ratio of 1.4.

However, stranded knitting, as used in the wrap pictured at the beginning of the post, is verrrry different. Stranded knitting produces stitches that are pretty much square in proportion. Here is a teeny swatch of stranded knitting to demonstrate that:


Like the stocking stitch swatch, the area emcompassed by the stranded motif also represents 11 stitches and 11 rows. But as you can see, it is much more square than 11 stitches and 11 rows of stocking stitch. Specifically, the 11x11 motif of stranded knitting measures almost 1.25" wide, and 1.25" high, giving us a width-to-height ratio of very close to 1 - i.e., a square.

(This is one of the reasons why stranded knitting is so great - you can have patterns that come out measuring the same across as they do up-and-down, meaning that geometric shapes like eight-pointed stars, squares, diamonds, hexagons, etc. - basically, just the sort of thing you see in traditional fair isle knits all the time - will look perfect. This is also why the stranded knitting swatch curves inward during the stranded knitting section, compared with the garter stitch edges at top and bottom: because the stranded knitting stitches are so much narrower.)

However, let's examine what happens when we use exactly the same motif that was used for the stranded swatch above, but with the double knitting technique:


(Yep, I should have slipped the first stitch of each row to make the edges nicer, sorry.)

Here we see that it is clearly not square. In fact, it looks very squashed. Like the stranded swatch, the motif takes 11 stitches and 11 rows, but it measures 1.625" wide and 1.125" high, giving us a width-to-height ratio of 1.44, which is even flatter than the proportions of the stitches in our first swatch, with the stocking stitch!

This is what you always need to keep in mind when you're considering adapting a stranded chart into double knitting. It's not that a motif is necessarily going to look terrible if it's not square anymore, but:

It's not going to look the same.

Whether you'll like the difference depends very much on what the motif is and whether you like it squished vertically by 30%. For example, with geometric patterns, you may be perfectly happy with the flatter look, but if the motif has recognizable imagery on it - dogs, spaceships, skulls, whatever - the difference may very well disappoint you.

So keep this in mind when considering converting stranded to double knitting!

(Note: All three swatches were worked with the same yarn, on the same needles, by the same knitter, in the same hour.)