Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Dué Amori Unveiled

I think it's time for a little unveiling... this is the first glimpse of my new design that will be released soon, right after the workshop that will be happening on Vancouver Island in early September. It might be a little premature because the patterns are not completely ready, but I just couldn't wait any more!

The Dué Amori Glove in its shorter version, medium size. There is also an opera-length version, and two more sizes available.

The start of the Dué Amori Scarf, unfinished and unblocked. Note the beaded cables and lovely little cable needle... more on that later.

The Dué Amori Glove and Scarf set is shown using a stunning yarn in a new and very ethereal colorway: Blue Moon Fiber Arts Seduction in Quilla, one of the brand new Spirit Colorways. I feel so privileged to be working with this yarn... it is literally angelic in look AND feel. I am using size 6/0 pearlized seed beads, which lend a sweet Victorian air to the design.

I do hope you like them so far... more progress shots promised soon.

In other news, a big thank you to all who expressed such delight in the new stole pattern, Midnight Lace Stole from Alt Fiber. I have now added the pattern to Ravelry so you can queue it up! Go over and do it right now!!!

And a little word about a beautiful knitting tool from Leslie Wind, the sinuous, lovely cable needle necklace in bronze. I don't have it on a necklace as I prefer to keep it stowed in my knitting tool box, so forgive me Leslie! I love the heaviness of the bronze which makes it stay put while you are doing your other manipulations, and the squat shape of mine (each one of her cable needles are completely unique in size and shape) is perfect. Leslie will even customize your cable needle for the size of yarn you use most. What more can you ask for????

You can go here to view a video of the cable needle necklace in action and purchase your own. I was fortunate enough to get mine in person at Three Bags Full.

Happy knitting to all...

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

And now for something dark and silky...

It's out! It's out!

What, you may ask?

Why of course, Alt Fiber: 25 Projects for Knitting Green with Bamboo, Soy, Hemp, and More, Shannon Okey's newest knitting opus, which includes a stole design by yours truly!

And what is the stole like, do you say?

Well, as a matter of fact, it is a not-completely-rectangular type of stole, which in this case means that it includes the lovely little back panel treatment that I have been exploring lately in all my designs. Here is the schematic that I submitted to the book folks in the beginning (in case you are at all interested):

I have found that adding a little shaping to the back of a shawl or stole helps tremendously in the ability of the garment to feel comfortable and stay on the shoulders.

This particular design felt like a real departure from "the norm" and I walked on eggshells until I saw that it was indeed going to work out, quite well indeed as a matter of fact. Wearing this stole (which is really more of a wrap) is a lovely experience, and the long side panels look and feel like wings. Really nice to wrap and wrap and wrap around yourself.

The yarn is sea silk in the Midnight colorway. A sensuous experience in itself.

Here are a couple of (rather bad) pictures of the final product:

I really can't wait for the official book pictures to come out so I can salvage some self esteem and look good again, in print anyways...

From the Book Summary:

Twenty-five projects to knit and crochet using environmentally friendly plant fibers from a popular craft author, teacher, blogger, and shop owner.

Although DIYers have been using salvaged materials for years, the fastest growing trend in knitting and crochet takes reduce-reuse-recycle to a whole new level. In ALT FIBER, craft author and teacher Shannon Okey presents 25 patterns for sweaters, wraps, socks, hats, pillows, bags, and more using non-allergenic plant fibers. From the seaweed-derived Seacell yarn, which transmits vitamins and nutrients to the skin when worn, to soy-based yarns made from tofu manufacturing waste, alternative fibers are readily available, easy to care for, and good for the environment. And because these fibers work up, drape, and wear like no other yarns, Okey teaches crafters of all skill levels about each fiber's properties, how to incorporate them into existing patterns, and how to hand-dye them. Knitting green has never been so easy.
I haven't actually seen the book myself yet, but I have high hopes that the book truly delivers what it promises to. Please drop me a line and let me know what you think!