Sunday, August 08, 2010

Twisted Knitters

More from the gals of Mason Dixon Knitting on yarn, cats, and bad attitudes.

Friday, August 06, 2010

Need a weekend knitting project?

How's your weekend shaping up?

This little triangle wrap is available to knit in two sizes.

Have a little time? Knit the 2 ball scarf size
Have a lot of time? Knit the 4 ball shawl size

This triangle shawl/scarf pattern uses Knit One Crochet Too's ribbon yarn.
Click here to get the pattern.
Click here to get the yarn - available in 5 wearable colors.

Thursday, August 05, 2010

What I knit out of Plymouth Ampato Baby Alpaca...

Ampato Baby Cap - One-ball knitting project!
My daughter's teacher recently had a baby so we surprised her with a soft cuddly hat made out of Plymouth's Ampato yarn - it's a new baby alpaca with a very natural look and feel. I picked this yarn because it is so soft, it has a nice tweed look that adds a bit of depth to my knitting, and I thought it looked so cute with the little puppy dog button. Most importantly, I knew it would only take one-ball to knit up this project and I finished it while watching a couple of my husband's tennis tournaments in just a weekend.

I used one of my favorite knit hat patterns, Ann Norling Pointed Stocking Cap. What I love about Ann Norling patterns is that they are very versatile. They allow you do use just about any yarn, you just need to know the gauge of the yarn before you get started. I wanted my hat to have a bit tighter feelt than what was recommended on the label, so I used size US 6 circular 16" and double pointed needles. That allowed me to follow the 5 sts/inch gauge on the pattern.
Here's a quick list of everything needed to make the Ampato Baby Cap:

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Hot New Yarn for August

Happy August! The new Flower of the Month Yarns have arrived from Fiesta and they are gorgeous. Three sumptuous yarns; La Boheme, Baby Boom, and Starburst Rayon Boucle have arrive drenched in the lovely tones of Gladiolus. Still dripping with summer brights, yet featuring enough depth to be easily transitioned into fall, Gladious is one of Fiesta's best color blends to date.
Three projects selected for each yarn are sure to wet your appetite for knitting.
P.S. Gladiolus is only produced this month, August 2010, and will then be retired. Quanitities are limited and these yarns and patterns.

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Guess my KeyDots! Which KeyDots are You?

Guess my KeyDots! Here's a hint...

And here's my KeyDots! I'm "I Paws for Yarn"

What are KeyDots
KeyDots are vibrant and adorable key identifiers made by our friends at PolarKnits. They are available in 5 styles and available for $3.99 each. The styles are: Knitting Queen, I Paws for Yarn, Knitty Kitty, Knit Wit, and Pink Ribbon.

Why I love my KeyDots
Not only are they so cute..on both side with a little character, the other side with a cute "yarn-loving" saying, but they also feel good in your hand. KeyDots are made from a soft squishy material so they are easy to slide over most standard keys.

But the biggest reason I love my KeyDots...
My husband has a knack for forgetting where he placed his keys, so he just grabs mine..grrrr. On occasion, he has even tried to convince me that they were my keys missing in the first place! Not anymore! I now have my adorable new KeyDots clearly marking my keys!

Monday, August 02, 2010

Interview with DangerCrafts Designer, Rebecca Danger

Get to know our favorite designer of all knits cute and cuddly, DangerCrafts designer, Rebecca Danger.

NobleKnits: How long have you been knitting?
Danger: I have been knitting for about 13 years now.

NobleKnits: When did you become a knitwear designer?
Danger: I officially started designing patterns when I wrote my first one in February 2009.

NobleKnits: What got you started?
Danger: My Grandma taught me to knit when I was about 13 and I haven’t really put down the needles since. I have always just sort of made up all the patterns for my knit items, but never been disciplined enough to actually write down what I had done. I closed a business in the fall of 2008 because I had worked myself to exhaustion with it and I had really turned to my favorite hobby, knitting, for some mental healing all year that year. When I made the decision to close my business I thought, “Wouldn’t it be great if I could sit at home, watch old movies, knit all day and make money from it?” So, I gave it a try and voila! Here we are a year later with 17 patterns in my etsy shop, 2 free patterns on my blog, 2 patterns written for 2 different yarn companies, 2 patterns written for other people’s books, and my own book of patterns due out January 2011. So much for calming it down apparently!

NobleKnits: What is your inspiration?
Danger: I really love life and just about anything inspires me. Sometimes it is the yarn, sometimes it is my pugs with their ridiculous under bite, sometimes it is drawings in books, and sometimes I think ideas just some flying out of no where and hit me in the head.

NobleKnits: Do you draw out your design first..or does the yarn lead the way?
Danger: I really do both. For my toys and monsters I generally start with a sketch, but I help out at my local yarn shop and every day in there I seem to find a new yarn that has me saying, “I could make the best monster out of that!”

NobleKnits: Do you have a favorite yarn for your projects?
Danger: I am a total yarn-a-holic and can find beauty and a use for anything that is put in my hands. Personally, I love merino and anything with cashmere in it. My favorite yarn right now is Malabrigo Sock and I am trying to figure out and knit every project in the universe that I could use that yarn for! On the other end of the spectrum I do really love Berroco Comfort for my toy knits since it really seems to knit up beautifully and be ideal for that type of project.

NobleKnits: Who are some of your favorite knitting designers?
Danger: Though I rarely have time to knit for myself anymore it seems, I love a lot of knitting designers and dream about having a whole wardrobe full of hand knits. Right now that dream has just translated into a large bookshelf of knitting books. It is so hard to pick favorites, I seem to fall in love with just about every knitwear design I see. But, Kim Hargreaves is probably my absolute favorite designer, I think how she styles her recent books is somewhat miraculous. I absolutely adore just about anything Debbie Bliss does, I love the Twinkle series for delicious, chunky inspiration, and Louisa Harding is pretty wonderful too. There are so many more I could list too, but some of my favorite designs really do come from vintage patterns. It pleases me to no end how much easier it is to find some of the really amazing patterns from the 1940-1950’s than it used to be.

NobleKnits: If you could be any one of the creatures you designed, which one would you be?
Danger: Who boy, that’s a great question! It is so hard! I have to say Sammie the Sock Monster since I am a girl who loves clothes, shoes, and accessories, and he is the only one with any sort of flair.

NobleKnits: Do you have any new patterns coming for fall?
Danger: I do have new patterns coming out for fall! Last year I put out about a new pattern every month and this year I am aiming for every other month. I just put out Zeke the Aloof Alpaca in April, and I have another new pattern coming out in June.

NobleKnits: When you're not knitting, what else do you like to do?
Danger: It is very rare to find me not knitting, but if you do I might be walking with my husband and my pugs, roller skating, doing pilates or yoga, cooking, watching bad Sci-Fi from the 50’s and 60’s, or sewing. Pretty much everything else in my life includes knitting!

NobleKnits: When it comes to sock knitting what kind of gal are you - top-down or toe-up?
Danger: Top down, 2-at-a-time using Magic Loop!

Shop Dangercrafts Knitting Patterns and her adorable new Iris the Gourmet Monster Knitting Kit featuring Lorna's Laces hand dyed Shepherds Worsted.

Sunday, August 01, 2010

Pardon Me (I didn't Knit that for You)

Very funny! Sung by the authors of Mason Dixon Knitting, Kay Gardiner and Ann Shayne.