Saturday, February 12, 2022

Two New Patterns

I'm pleased to announce that I have recently published not one, but two patterns. And - wait for it - one of them is knit. (Gasps resound from crocheting readers around the world.)

Let's start with the crochet pattern. This is Crystallon, a lacy shawl inspired by thoughts of crystallized water (Crystallon means "frozen drop" in Greek):

Crystallon uses only chain, single crochet, and double crochet. My sample measures 55" across by 25" deep, and took 142 gm (about 621 yards) of sportweight yarn.

The yarn is Hobbii Cotton Kings Sultan (color Apatite), a stranded gradient yarn consisting of four threads that change color one at a time, every hundred yards or so. This yarn is unplied, and takes a bit of getting used to, but it blocks beautifully and is a very affordable option for gradient-yarn lovers.

Crystallon includes charts and full written instructions, with options for a beaded or picot edge. Find the pattern here in my Ravelry store, and enjoy a 25% discount until February 20 with code ICY at checkout.

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And here is my new knitting pattern: iHat!

iHat knits up quickly in worsted weight wool, and features simple stranded colorwork, subtle decreases, a quirky spiral crown closure, and contrast color nupps made with a crochet hook.

The nupps can be worked as-you-go (videotutorial here), or after the hat is complete. Having tried both methods, I found the afterthought nupps easier to make, with more consistent results. Your mileage may vary.

Afterthought nupps on the left, as-you-go on the right

The grey/yellow hat was worked in Knit Picks Wool of the Andes Worsted (colors Mist and Creme Brulee); the sand/purple hat was worked in Shepherd's Wool Worsted (color Beaches) and Wool of the Andes Worsted (color Columbine). All the yarns were lovely to handle, and blocked well.

iHat includes charts, full written instructions, and illustrated tutorials for two nupp methods. Find the pattern here in my Ravelry store, and get a 25% discount until February 20 with code MIHAT at checkout.

Thanks for viewing, and happy crocheting. And knitting!

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Friday, January 21, 2022

January Days

A cloudless day in January can be a glorious thing. As I write this post, the sky is clear and palest blue; on the horizon is a rosy flush, turning gold and apricot as the sun approaches. There, it's up, and the shadowy blue-grey snow outside is lightening visibly every second. If the weather holds, the day to come will be bright blue and sparkling white, with tracery of trees standing out clear and sharp against the sky. (Some of them not so sharp after all; last year's long autumn coaxed many to bud out before their time, and their outlines are still feathery.)

Then there are days like last Sunday, when I took these photos. Clouds lay like a heavy blanket above the earth; a fine dry snow was falling, growing heavier as I walked, blurring and softening the lace of the trees. The world seemed a grey and brown sort of place, but there was still beauty to be found.

Tiny dried blossoms:

The miracle of snow on my jacket...

...and on the ground:

An avenue of lacy trees:

Lichen on bark (with more of that lovely snow):

Ghosts of Queen Anne's Lace:

Marvelously sculptural dried flowers:

Bud-beaded twigs:

An intricately-veined leaf in the snow, with bonus berries attached:

Birdsong from the tangle of branches around a pond:

On my way home, a train whistle sounded from the next town over. In summer, that sound would make me long to be out riding my bike. On a cold grey January day, it made me grateful for a warm house at the end of the road, and I walked a little faster to get there more quickly.

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I'm sorry this blog has been silent for so long. When my dad died last year, the urge to write and create seemed to die along with him. But time really does heal wounds, and the creative (and communicative) urge is finally coming back.

How have your January days been?

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