Tag Archives: bulky

New Pattern: Gradient Hat and Scarf

How does that old saying go?  “A new year, a new pattern?”  That sounds right… yeah.

Well, however that saying goes (and whether or not it’s actually a saying), I’ve got a new pattern for you!

It’s the middle of January, and it’s real cold, so what could be better than a super-squishy, extra warm, nice and thick hat-and-scarf combo?

Nothing.  That’s what.

Introducing: the Gradient Scarf and Hat.52178220_5_medium1This bad boy is made from worsted-weight merino, held TRIPLE, so you know it’s going to keep you warm.  Both the hat and scarf are worked all over in broken rib, one of my favorite stitches.  The fabric is soft, squishy and totally comfy.   Plus, there’s a mean pompom on top of the hat.  You gotta love a pompom. I mean, look at it:52178220_15_medium21And, that’s not all!  This pattern is one of eight in Knit Picks’ new book Quick and Cozy: Bulky Knit Accessories.  Patterns like this adorable red cowl from the cover:75279d1And these gorgeous colorwork mittens:75279d1051You can order a copy of the book here!  Or, if you’re feeling lucky, comment below with your favorite thing to knit in January to be entered to win your very own copy of Quick and Cozy!  (The winner will be announced next Wednesday!)

Knitting Big

I spent my Sunday at a little local yarn festival, Knit Fit.  It’s a great way to spend an afternoon, browsing through the little marketplace, squeezing the yarn and admiring all the gorgeous colors (and wishing you had infinite money and infinite time so that you take home and use all the yarn).

Of course, I had to treat myself to a little (big) souvenir.  It’s a wheel of The Big Squeeze from Hazel Knits in the colorway “Electric Slide.”img_3861 It’s 135 yards of slightly-felted oversized single ply merino softness in the most gorgeous shades of violet, purple and fuchsia.  I’ve salivated over the Big Squeeze before, but didn’t know what to make with it.  But then I saw this gorgeous color… and it was all over.

So now I have to decide what it’ll become.  It’s soft enough that I want something I can wear against my skin, but I don’t care for super-bulky hats, and mittens are kind of impractical in this climate.  I’m thinking it’ll make a big cowl, or maybe an oversized lace scarf.

I like this cabled cowl.  I love how it twists and turns and looks like it’s been very artistically rumpled.

Rainbow Twist by Thao Nguyenphoto_medium1And I like the openwork on this cowl.  There’s something really satisfying about lacework at such a gigantic gauge.  Maybe I’ll do something like this.

Spidey’s Spiral Cowl by Abi Gregoriospiralcowl_medium21And this one is just beautiful in its simplicity.  Sometimes you just need a big tube of ribbing in a beautiful color.

Castle Leoch Ribbed Cowl by Karen Clementscastleleochribbedcowl1_medium21What would you do with a big skein of oversized yarn?

Blackout!

This Sunday we were attacked by the biggest wind storm I’ve seen since I moved here 5 years ago- maybe ever (which is saying something, coming from Illinois, where gales of wind rip across the state, since there’s nothing taller than a stalk of corn to stop them).  Trees were torn up, power lines were downed, they even had to close the 520 bridge because the waves on Lake Washington were so big, they were splashing up onto the bridge and causing dangerous conditions.

Our neighborhood lost power at about 2:00 in the afternoon.  And we didn’t get it back until the middle of the night- almost 12 hours later.

We didn’t feel safe driving anywhere, since the roads were littered with debris, and we didn’t want to leave the house, in case something went wrong (our house is surrounded by very big, very old trees- charming in sunny weather, scary in a wind storm).  So, we stayed in and watched the neighbor’s 3-story-tall pine trees whip back and forth like blades of grass.  It was kind of terrifying, but also really cool.

So, what did we do for 12 hours of powerlessness?

We played cards, listened to the music on our phones (until the batteries got too low), read books, and (of course) knit.

I continued working on a sweater design that I had already started (you’ll see it soon, but not today).  But, if I’d had time to plan my blackout knitting, I probably would have picked out patterns like these:

I would start with something super fiddly and technical.  After all, with no TV to distract me, I could really throw myself into a pattern like this gorgeous (and futzy) Fair Isle hat.

Electric Snow Fair Isle Hat by Don Godec4127721009_cc9c8f6a81_z[1]Then, when the sun started to go down, I would switch over to a pattern that used super bulky yarn.  With lowered visibility, big yarn is a must, and this hat’s simple design would be perfect for knitting in the dark.  Have you ever tried to knit by candlelight?  It’s not easy.  Trust me.

The Vermonter by Abi Gregoriovermonter2_medium2[1]

And, of course, no power means no heat (at least in my house).  So I would need as many blankets as possible!  This garter-stitch one would be perfect- squishy and warm!

Buncha Squares Blanket by Kay Gardiner and Ann Shayne2188346768_0ffdfd92b9_z[1]

Luckily our power’s back on now and we’re all back to normal (though it still feels luxurious every time I can open the fridge without worrying about the food spoiling).  But next time, I’ll be prepared!

Have you ever had a blackout in your neighborhood?  What did you do to keep yourself busy?

Inspiration: Bulky, Bulky Pins

As I mentioned on Friday, I’ve started Pinning (Pinteresting? Someone tell me what the proper word is!).  And, well, I can see it becoming something of a problem.  I’ve been spending way more time than I probably should poking around Pinterest and looking at all the beautiful things that I will never have time to make.

(Also, sometimes I like to look at the Everything tab.  It’s about 15% hair tutorials and makeup tips, 30% extra-calorie cheesecake recipes, 25% diet salads that “Actually taste good!,” 15% workout routines, 5% inspirational quotes, and 10% stuff I’m actually interested in.  Point in case, I just spent 20 minutes looking at “Super Simple Manicure Ideas.”  Why?  Because they were there.)

Anyway, I looked over my pin boards (is that what they’re called?)  and I found a trend in some of the knitting I’ve been pinning:  Super bulky stuff.

This scarf/shawl/shoulder blanket is part of the new Ferragamo Men’s collection, and was shown in Milan (so you know it’s chic).  I’d wear one, even though I’m not a dude.  It looks like a great long swath of stockinette, maybe knit in the round, so that there isn’t a “bad side.”

628x471And I just love this fantastically chunky Brioche Cowl from Diane L. Augustin.  Aren’t those colors to die for?  I would like to just wrap myself up in a cocoon made from this.IMG_4128_50_medium2[1]If we’re talking about chunky knitting, you can’t get much chunkier than this amazing arm-knit blanket.  It’s of super-thick yarn, but you could use slightly felted wool roving, if you wanted.  Using arm-knitting for this project is really smart; that way, you don’t have to worry abut finding knitting needles two inches in diameter.Untitled-3-copy-1024x854Well, now I’m off to dream of Pinterest and spend more time looking at a particularly interesting list of “the 52 easiest DIYs.”

Pattern: Hogwarts Scarves in a Weekend

Sometimes you need a little more magic in your life. Sometimes you need something to keep the chill away while reading your favorite teenage-wizard-themed novels. Sometimes you’re invited to a Harry Potter party, and you need a quick costume accessory.

This Hogwarts Scarf is just what the Medi-Wizard ordered. It’s crocheted at a huge gauge with extra-bulky yarn, so it works up in almost only a few hours. Feel free to make the scarves longer (or shorter) by adding more (or fewer) stripes.

So get out your magic wand (or crochet hook), and conjure up a scarf this weekend!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAGet the pattern for free here:

Hogwarts Scarves in a Weekend

Inspiration: Knitting in Fall

The temperature has finally settled in the low 60s, the mushrooms are sprouting on anything that stands still for more than a minute, and the fog has descended.  It is officially fall in Seattle.  I know that makes fall sound less than fun, but I absolutely love autumn in the Pacific Northwest (maybe I’m a masochist. You be the judge).  There’s something incredibly cozy and comfortable about getting up in the morning and putting on a flannel shirt or a fluffy sweater, drinking your cup of coffee and seeing nothing but gray mist outside your window.

(Interestingly, though, it’s almost impossible to take a good photo of fog.  So, instead of making you look at the crappy ones I took, I will steal one from the internet.  But, really, this is what my street has looked like every morning this week.  Except, my street has more houses.)b0a416d5ce158c4654afa438dc27868e[1]It makes me want to curl up with a mug of hot cider, Jazz music on the radio, a fire in the fireplace, and a knitting project that uses massively bulky yarn.

We could start small(ish) with a cowl so thick and cozy you could burrow into it and practically turn into a (very warm) tortoise.

The Gathering by Kalurah

DSC_2956_medium2[1]I can only imagine how quickly this gorgeous sweater would fly off the needles.  Do you think I could finish it by this evening?  It’s supposed to drop into the 50s tonight.

The Big Cable by Justyna Lorkowska

bigC3_medium2[1]Or I could just give up on any pretext of leaving the house for the next six months and hunker down under this (perfectly named) blanket.

A Blanket For Seriously Cold People by Sylvia Bo Bilvia

6443776281_f97d115886_z[1]All this talk of super-plush projects has gotten me in a very cozy mood.  There’s only one thing I can do now… I’m off to go put on as many scarves, sweaters and slippers as I can find, and bake myself a pumpkin pie.  Happy Fall, everyone!

Pattern: Sailor Jane

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September in Seattle means fog rolling in and waving goodbye to the sun until next Spring. But, it also means breaking out your favorite squishy, cozy woolens and curling up with hot apple cider. This scarf is the perfect accessory to keep the winter drizzle at bay and protect against the chilly winds that come off the Puget Sound.

Sailor Jane is knit on the bias, starting from one corner and finishing at the one opposite. A thick cable, reminiscent of nautical sweaters works its way continuously around the entire border, framing a pane of thick and cozy garter stitch. It’s a remarkably quick knit, worked in bulky yarn, the scarf is finished in no time. And, the suggested undyed superwash merino makes the scarf both cozy and virtually indestructible.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAGet the pattern for free here:

Sailor Jane

It’s Cold As Balls (of Yarn)

I’m spending my Christmas break with family in the Great White North (of northern Illinois/southern Wisconsin).  It’s cold, it’s snowy, it’s windy. I’m spending the week curled up with my leftover Christmas knitting and a cup of hot cocoa.

But, when I leave the house, there’s nothing I want more than to wrap myself up head-to-toe in three sheep’s worth of woolens.

I’m going to go fill up the kettle again and daydream about these super chunky patterns.

150-4 Little Red Riding Slippers – Slippers with cables in Eskimo by DROPS design

4-2_medium2[1]Twiggy Cardigan by Jane Richmond

Twiggy_Cardigan_070_medium2[1]wham bam thank you lamb! neckwarmer by Susan Chang

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Inspiration: X-Men First Class

I was flipping channels last night, looking for something to watch, and I came upon X-Men, First Class.  It happened to be starting, and I happened to be in the mood for some good old-fashioned superhero action.

Actually, I was really into the X-men when I was a kid.  I watched the cartoon every day after school for years.  I have nothing against other superheroes, but I always preferred the X-Men.  Maybe it was because they acted as a team, maybe because they included some lady superheroes (which, except Wonder Woman, don’t really exist), or maybe because they did the whole “We fight for justice, even though the whole world hates us” thing, which is pretty much calculated to tug at a pre-teen’s “I feel like a weirdo” heartstrings.

Anyway, the recent X-men movies have been pretty terrible, so I kind of gave up on them for the last few years.  But this was on TV (and therefore free).  So, why not?

Result?  Awesome.  Super good, and it has the feel of the cartoon (not like these new really dark and twisted superhero movies.  Batman, I’m looking at you.).  And, most importantly, it included this hat:

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It was worn by the character Moira MacTaggart, who I had never heard of before, and frankly was neither a super compelling nor necessary character.  But she wore a cute hat.  So she’s got that going for her.  It’s a basic (ish) seed stitch beanie knit up with a k1p1 brim in bulky yarn.

Want to release your inner super powers?  Try one of these patterns:

pompon and seeds hat by Carolin Gall

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Autumn by Jane Richmond

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And, for the little mutants in your life:

Autumn Leftovers by Jane Richmond

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