Tag Archives: light

Summertime, and the living is… muggy

It’s officially been summer for about a week, and it is officially summer.  It’s hot and muggy and there isn’t even a breeze.

(OK, fair enough, it’s “Seattle Hot”, so it’s in the mid-to-upper 70s.  But I’m officially a hot-weather weenie, so it’s hot to me.)

Ollie agrees- he needs a haircut, and is impatient for us to fill up his kiddie pool.13495497_10106435157559480_5717683599402702824_o (1)I’m currently working on a big cabled sweater (a Christmas gift for someone, so I can’t tell you about it) which is just too much to be knitting right now.  All that wool!

What I’d like to be working on is something light and breezy.  Something at a tiny lace gauge.  A lovely, summery tank top.

This tank is simple, drapey and lovely.  If I worked in an office, it would be super cute to wear with a blazer or a light cardigan.

Bonny by tincanknitsIMG_4731-ed-sm_medium2[1]I love the little details on this top- the tiny cap sleeves, the delicate lace at the hem, the split sides.  So cute!

22.2 Top with lace edges by Karen Noe22.1-Top-m_medium2[1]I love the all-over lace and the flattering, swing-y shape.  I would totally wear the heck out of this tank.

Just a Wisp by Pamela SchwabDSC_6755_medium2[1]I can’t wait to finish the big sweater so that I can make myself a new tank top or two.

What summery projects do you like to make?

Pattern: Magnolia Sweater

What’s that?  A new pattern?  In a new KnitPicks collection?  Ooh boy!

This collection is just in time for spring! And it might be my most favorite collection ever!  It’s dreamy, light, and feminine but somehow not too”girly.”  The sky outside my studio window is blue and I can see tulips blooming in my yard.  It’s all too perfect.

These 16 gorgeous garments is collected in KnitPick’s newest book, Aura!

75230DI’m loving the openwork cardigan, Solana, from the cover.

75230D113And I’ve never been tempted to make a knitted t-shirt, but this Rippling Top is to die for.75230D128And I am just in love with this light-as-a-feather Muse Top.  Sigh.75230D119Oh!  I almost forgot to show you the pattern that I made, I’m so enchanted by the other patterns!

It’s the Magnolia Pullover!75230D101It’s a slightly over-sized sweater, meant to be loose at the bust and upper arms, but well-fitted at the waist and cuffs.  Knit in super-soft Stroll Sock and Stroll Glimmer (The back is glittery!  I know! Exciting!), this sweater is super comfy, but light enough for sunny spring days.  (I made mine in black, and it looks super cute with a bright colored shirt underneath.  Just sayin’.)

75230D102Do you want this collection?  (Yes, you do.)  Comment below with your favorite Aura pattern, or your favorite springtime activity for a chance to win a copy!  I’ll be holding the drawing next week!

Pattern: Flower Power

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThis pretty little project will light up your life (literally!). When the bumblebee lands on the flower, an LED lights up in the center of the flower. Attached to a pin or hair clip, this flower would be a one-of-a-kind statement piece. A great introduction to soft circuitry, project is a fun combination of knitting and a simple electronic circuit.

The flower is knit in several small pieces, then assembled around a base of plastic canvas, giving the flower shape and strength. Conductive thread, a nickel-sized battery and a tiny LED (available through Sparkfun and other online retailers) make up a simple circuit. Two little neodymium magnets (available at most well-stocked craft stores) hold the bumblebee in place on the petal, completing the circuit.

Finished flowerThe pattern is available here for free!

Flower Power

A Short Explanation of a Circuit

So, what do you think about giving this soft-circuit thing a shot? I’ve got a pretty cute (if I say so myself) pattern in the works for Monday, but in the meantime, let’s talk about circuit basics.  (WARNING: I’m so not an electronics person, so if I use the wrong words, or if I say something backwards, I apologize.  This is just what I’ve managed to figure out bumbling around on my own.)

Let’s make a little imaginary circuit.

We’ll start with an LED. I bought mine from SparkFun. They’re sold in packs of 5 for about 4 bucks. It’s tiny- about a half inch long, and less than an eighth of an inch wide, but it’s super bright when it lights up.  See on the two little holes on either end? Those are the connections to attach it into a circuit. You sew your conductive thread through those, as if you were attaching a button.

10081-02[2]We’ll also need a battery (duh).  I’m using a little coin battery (also from Sparkfun).  It’s the size of a nickel.

Let’s use two “wires” (pieces of conductive thread) to attach the battery to the LED, like this:Circuit 1

See how the + side of the battery is attached to the + end of the LED? And the – side of the battery is attached to the – end of the LED? That’ll make sure that the LED will light up.

Now, we could stop here. We have a lovely, bright, and shiny LED. But, where’s the fun in that? I’d like to try turning the light off and on.

You can buy switches, buttons and other devices for turning your circuit off and on, but they all follow the same principle:  When you make a hole in one of the wires, the circuit is broken and the LED will turn off. If you patch up the hole, you complete the circuit, and the LED will turn on again.

See?  (The switch is shown in red)

OFF:Circuit 2ON:Circuit 3Easy! Frankly, the hardest part of this is making sure that your wires don’t accidentally cross and create a short circuit, but even that’s not too difficult!

Think you’re ready to try your hand at E-Textiles?