New Pattern Release: Cèilidh Fingerless Gloves

Ceilidh Fingerless Gloves

I’m very happy to announce the release of my newest pattern, Cèilidh Fingerless Gloves!

I’ve actually had this pattern, and another to be released soon, on the drawing board for a while. It all started with me playing around with what would eventually be this cable. I wanted something that gently curved and twisted, inspired by the dancers at a cèilidh.

Traditionally, a cèilidh in Scotland and Ireland was any kind of social gathering that brought together everybody from the community. Stories were told, food was eaten, and dances were held. Modern usage of the word places the emphasis heavily on the dancing, where groups come together in formal and informal settings to dance in groups. Then and now, however, it’s about bringing people together in the community, and this cable was inspired by that.

The gloves are the first of two patterns I designed to highlight this cable – the second will be coming out in the first week of November, so stay tuned for future announcements!

As always, my newsletter subscribers receive a special discount code to use, so if you’d like to receive these in the future, be sure to sign up for my newsletter via the form to the right hand side of this page.

Making Me Happy #3

1. October
Yep, the whole month makes me happy. It’s the one time of year where everybody else is as into spooky stuff as I am. I love Halloween. I love it more than any other holiday (even Christmas where, you know, I get presents). I love Halloween so much, we even celebrate “Spooky Christmas” in my house (which involves all manner of Halloween decorations transplanted into Christmas). I love horror movies, and ghost stories, and spooky nights. And I love it when everybody else loves it as much as I do. While fall is never my go-to for favourite time of year (summer is over, damnit), I love everybody else getting into the spirit of things as much as I am the rest of the year.

Pauly2. Pauly
There is this weird shop in a little shopping district not far from where I live – while the district used to be full of punks and music stores, it’s now (to my great dismay) gentrified quite a bit over the past 15 years. And while it’s no longer the street I used to bum around in high school, it does still hold little vestiges of its past. One of these is a store, up above another with next to no signage. Up there is a jumble of games, second hand clothing, and (my favourite section) taxidermy and skeleton bits. On Friday I came across Pauly – a weasel skull that I had to add to my collection. He’s very small, and he now lives with my other collection of bones that I’ve known to pick up at odd places (all pre-cleaned, I don’t have the stomach to do that part myself).

But the second part to what makes me happy about this, is the fellow that owns it takes special care to make sure anything he buys or sells is ethically sourced, by either being part of an old collection, or the animal died due to old age or misadventure. Of great sadness to me is people buying taxidermy bats, not realizing they’re being killed en masse in Asia for that purpose, decimating the population (I really, really like bats). So, in addition to Pauly this week, it makes me happy to know there’s an ethical dealer that I can purchase items from close to my neighbourhood.

The Calm Before The Storm

swatches Going through a burst of ideas is walking the razor’s edge. On the one hand, you get a bunch of ideas and you’re super excited to try them all right now. On the other hand, for me at least, I can get frustrated because my fingers can’t work as fast as the ideas come. Especially when one of those ideas doesn’t go as easily as I hoped, I spend a lot of time on it, and still it doesn’t work the exact way I want.

I think part of the reason that I’ve had a flurry of ideas lately (which I’m all really excited about) is because I’m in a bit of a lull. I have four patterns in varying states – two currently in testing, and two just waiting for the yarn to arrive so I can cast on. I have another that I’m still stubbornly trying to figure out the math on, and two more that are in the drafting stages (one’s going better than the other). That’s a lot of things up in the air, and quite a few patterns (for me anyway) in the drafting stage at one time. I have nothing to actually knit and work on, so my mind is freed up a bit to think more about possibilities than hard concrete projects that are in process.

So, it’s a double edged sword – lots of ideas, but nothing that I’m actually knitting, which makes me feel slightly antsy. Which is why I’ve been a swatching machine lately.

I actually quite enjoy swatching. I get to see how a yarn will react with a particular pattern before I cast on, and I can work out ideas beforehand and see if they need adjusting so I don’t have to do it while I’m making the finished piece (I hate ripping things out, and will avoid it at all costs). It’s nice to finish a swatch too and have a tiny finished piece that didn’t take a lot of time, but still gives me the satisfaction of doing something.

Some day I’ll make the most epic (and possibly ugly) blanket out of all these swatches I have lying around.

New Pattern: Dappled Shade

Dappled Shade Knitting Pattern

Dappled Shade is now live!

I live for spring and summer. Despite my love of warm comfy cables (which are just not conducive to wearing when it’s 30C outside), spring and summer are really my time to shine. I am outside in my large veggie patch every day (an average of 40 different types of tomatoes is not out of the norm for me), digging in the dirt, watching the bees do their thing, and watching the wind move my plants around, creating constantly changing shapes in the shadows.

I named this pattern dappled shade because it has that strong link to my garden for me – the light falling through the lace incorporated into this pattern very much remind me of those dancing shadows I find in my garden.

It’s knit on the bias, with two different lace stitches, along with a smaller eyelet panel, all of which create varying shapes and forms the whole length down this shawl or scarf.

I for one plan on wearing it as much as I can through the fall and winter to keep me connected to that deep feeling of calm I find in my garden, and having it remind me that soon this winter will pass, and I will be out there again.

You can see more about the pattern here, or view the Ravelry page here where it is available for purchase.

Did you visit Lael & Larry of Hearthside Fibers at the Wisconsin Sheep & Wool Festival? If you did, pull out the card you got from their booth and receive 30% off the pattern price upon checkout!

Wisconsin Sheep & Wool Festival Special for Dappled Shade

Are you going to the Wisconsin Sheep & Wool Festival this weekend? Be sure to look up Hearthside Fibers, the yarn sponsor for Dappled Shade, and get a card with a special discount code for the pattern when it’s released!

This coupon code will give you 30% off the price of the pattern, and will only be available to those who visit Lael & Larry at their booth, so be sure to stop by, check them out, and get some of their gorgeous yarn for yourself (seriously, the Champagne Lace is to die for).