Off the needles : Pinnate Cardigan

There are some patterns out there than you can just feel yourself knitting. You know you will knit it with exactly the yarn it was designed for [no substituting yarn, absolutely not] and spend a ridiculous amount of time deciding upon which colour you will choose. Pinnate Cardigan was one of those for me. In fact, I think anything designed by Amy Christoffer over at Savory Knitting wins me over, again and again.

I was intrigued by the yarn – Hempathy – that this pattern calls for. It is a 41% Cotton, 34% Hemp, 25% Modal blend that is perfect for lightweight knitting. When I think of hemp blends all I know is scratchy, but this yarn is far from it. What is even better about Hempathy is the range of natural tones it is available in. It took me a while, but not really, because I knew I wanted to knit it in green, a vibrant green. Of course, as soon as I received the yarn every free moment I had for the next 5 days was thrown into working on this cardigan. I had a deadline ahead which encouraged me a little, but, you know how life goes, and I lost momentum somewhere in the middle.

Think the front looks neat? Check out the back!

Its a clever pattern in that you knit the body in one big piece, working up to the under arm and diving the two fonts and lacy upper back. You bind off the upper back panel and continue knitting the front sections, working a stretch of fabric 2 inches or so wide, that is then grafted around the back of the neck and seamed. The result is a very relaxed and comfortable fit. You can see it a bit better here.

Annnyway, the deadline was a date that wasn’t shifting so I spent a many long car-days driving to and from Las Vegas knitting the final few inches of the body and the sleeves. I was literally just a few inches from finishing the last sleeve and the deadline came upon me. No new cardigan to wear to that event. Naturally it sat for another 2 months before I found it a just few days ago whilst unpacking a [very random] box from the pile we haven’t yet got to since moving. I was mesmerised by the colour and the stitch pattern again and took it along with me to a new knitting group and finished her off!

Seaming wasn’t too painful – actually was incredibly quick. Another aspect that I love about this cardigan is at the cuff of the sleeves. Because I was up against a [failed] deadline I made the sleeves 3/4 length and if I were to knit it again I think I would knit them up longer. But that doesn’t make me love it any less!


Falling rain and leaves

Today we received a good dose of the weather we are to expect these next couple of months up here, on the Northern Californian coastline. It goes a little something like this;

Not handy when you have lots of jobs to do outside; hay feeders to put up, troughs to mount etc. There comes a point, however, when you are just plain wet and cold, and the idea of something warm is just too tempting. Say, coffee? Yes please. How about a wood stove?

This wood stove had not been used for a while and was on our to-do list to fire it up and check that everything was all still a-ok. Perfect time? I think so. Anyway, whilst H was busy with logs and fire I finished up a mini project I had been working on this past week… with the help of two very lucky dogs that were allowed in out of the rain to join in with some of the warmth.

The result:

A mini string full of little crocheted leaves. I think its one of my first crochet projects I’ve shared! All of the yarn used came from my stash and  I couldn’t tell you what they all are, but, I used everything from acrylic [ugh,] to wool, to cotton, in different shades of green, orange and brown.

I took two of the leaves out of the amazing crochet pattern book by Lesley Stanfield; 100 Flowers to Knit & Crochet. They are the oak and clover leaves you can see which are ‘variegated’. The book has hundreds [well – one hundred] of lovely flowers and even lovelier leaves, but I was most attracted to these two because they require two differently coloured yarns and felt they would add more depth to the line up. For the three remaining little leaves I used Jennifer’s pattern over at Wind Rose Fiber Studio for her Veined Leaf. I can think of  many, many ways to use them all over the place – they’re so neat!

I wove in all the leaf ends and then joined them  with a single crochet chain every 15ch and then went back 1sc in each ch to make it more rope like.

And voila!

I suppose you could hang this anywhere, window, wall, tree… but there is a specific place I have in mind for this guy and I will let you know later on this week.

Alas, the rain eventually lessened and we stepped back outside to finish our duties, but, this time surrounded by the comforting smell of wood smoke. Sigh.


FREE Pattern Release : Two Tone

It’s not fair aisle fairisle* Who knew? The wonders of slipped stitch patterns – they look far more complicated then they really are. I design only what I like to knit and this cowl is fun. It’s quick, rhythmic and instantly satisfying. The slipped stitches result in a unique and eye catching pattern, in addition to providing strength and structure to hold form when around your neck.

Sizes : One size
Measurements :  32” around, 14” wide.
Yarn : 2 skeins Naturally Dyed by Annie Claire [100% organic wool, 4oz, 250yds], one lighter yarn A and darker yarn B, shown in yarn A : ‘Indigo’ and yarn B : ‘Lichen’
Needles : US 10.5 [6.5mm], or size to obtain gauge.
Gauge : 18 sts and 17 rows = 4 inches in slip st pattern.
Notions : Tapestry needle, stitch marker.

Download the Two Tone PDF

On Ravelry

* My mother corrected me on the spelling and wanted me [and everyone] to know that “the pattern originates from an island between the Shetland Mainland and the Orkneys, way up North Scotland, ie. Fair Isle.” Rightly so Mother, thank you!