One Skein Wonders For Babies

The wonderful One Skein Wonders Series has a new book: One-Skein Wonders for Babies by Judith Durant. The book is chock-full of beautiful patterns for babies, each using just one skein of yarn (no surprise!). Included are patterns for booties, hats, blankets, clothing, and even toys.

My contribution is a cute little bib, Tutti Frutti, done out of Classic EliteYarns Seedling. This is perfect yarn for a bib; it is an environmentally conscious, machine washable organic cotton with wonderful texture and softness. Seedling is a great choice because it's absorbent and retains its color intensity well. I chose to use a hand paint for visual interest and added pockets to catch any runaway bits of food.

The bib is a quick and easy knit that would make a great gift for that special baby. Have fun choosing a silly button!

Also using Seedling is an adorable Octopus toy, Acht the Octopus by Rachel Henry. Check it out on page 232. Rachel says, “Little Lovey (or Kleine Acht, as I like to think of her), is made of Seedling Hand Paint. It’s a quick project with very little sewing - something of a novelty in the world of hand-knit toys.”

I was very excited to start knitting when my copy arrived; I hope you will be too. Please support your LYS and shop for the book there first.
Tonia Barry

Fall Is In The Air

It has begun to be chilly enough in the Northeast to throw a lightweight cardigan on at night while I curl up in a favorite chair to knit. This means that changing leaves and cooler temps are just around the corner.

In keeping with this time of year, the magazines are releasing a new crop of patterns to take us from Fall into early Winter. These fresh new ideas from designers are now ripe for the picking.

Photo by Harper Point Photography
The 'Zigzag Wanderer' is a timeless knit worked up in neutral shades of organic Mohawk Wool. A slightly oversized shape gives the pullover a modern appeal while also making it a comfortable wardrobe staple. Designed by Laura Grutzeck, this pattern is found in the Fall 2015 issue of Interweave Knits.

Photo by Harper's Point Photography
Knitscene's new Fall issue showcases Liberty Wool Light in the 'Brigitte Headband'.  Designer Avril Lang was inspired by Brigitte Bardot. It will take you one skein each of two contrasting colors to work up the garter stitch chevron stitch pattern and have this wide headband ready before the weather that calls for keeping your ears warm has arrived.

Photo by Harper Point Photography
Front and center on the cover of this year's Interweave Knits Gifts is bulky weight Wynter in Erica Schlueter's 'Sampler Stole'. The combination of different stitches making up this shawl keeps things interesting. It also really allows this soft alpaca and wool yarn to shine. It comes in colors ranging from dusty teal to crimson, so coordinating it with your winter coat will be easy.

Photo by Harper Point Photography
With eight natural undyed shades of Vista to choose from, the color combinations for Patty Lyon's 'Houndstooth Cardigan' keep multiplying. Classic shaping and traditional houndstooth give this cardigan staying power. Yet in neutral tones and with such clean lines, it leaves plenty of room for your own style to shine through.

We love seeing what our yarns turn into when magazine editors allow talented designers like these to add their ideas to the mix. Don't you?

The Debate

I have walked into more than one local yarn shop and found myself in the middle of 'the debate'. It's a discussion with passion on both sides about the perks of cardigans versus the pros of pullovers. We knitters and crocheters are known for having strong preferences and this is no exception.

In our new book Emerald Isle, 'Skibbereen' makes both sides happy by including the option to make this sweater as either a casual pullover or a five button cardigan, both knit in the tonal shades of Big Liberty Wool.

'Skibbereen' as either a pullover or a cardigan, by Susan Mills
No matter which sweater style is your preference, 'Skibbereen' has the great details that we all love in hand knits. First there are the pockets. Topped with ribbing and set into the sweater fronts, the pockets on both the cardigan and the pullover are cozy and convenient.

The textural Seed stitch adds interest to the sweater both in front and in the back. I love how the tonal shading of the Big Liberty Wool looks in this stitch. To tie it all together, the sleeves are worked in Seed stitch from the shoulders down to the ribbing at the cuffs.

The classic shaping of both the cardigan and pullover versions of 'Skibbereen' will make either of them a welcome addition to your fall wardrobe. Which side do you fall on in the pullover versus cardigan debate?

Emerald Isle

We knitters know that if you want to get that new piece done in time to wear this fall, the knitting must begin soon. With that in mind, we've just released a new book of patterns, Emerald Isle, all ready for you to whip up something to wear this coming season.

Devlin and Kildare by Tian Foley
Devlin and Kildare are great pieces for when there's just a bit of chill beginning to form in the air. The vented sides of Devlin, and the lightness of the Inca Alpaca it's knit of, make Devlin a perfect layering piece.  Kildare is knit in Mohawk Wool, whose organic shades result in neutral pieces that can easily be mixed and matched with most of your existing wardrobe.

Kilkee and Dungloe by Tonia Barry
Cast on now and as the chill in the air gets a little more intense, these could be waiting for you to cozy up in. The relaxed boxy shape of Kilkee is modern. The positive ease also makes it everyday comfortable. The bulky weight yarn means that you can go quickly from start to finish. Casual with jeans, or dressed up with a fitted skirt, you're sure to get a lot of mileage out of this pullover and its striking side cables.

I always want the option of wearing my fall jacket just a few weeks longer before pulling out the bulkier winter one. Do you? Wrapping a warm scarf like Dungloe around your neck will extend 'light coat weather' by keeping your neck and upper body a bit more toasty. Knit up in our new bulky weight, Big Liberty Wool, the tonal shades add even more depth to the textural stitches.

Kinlough by Edith Murphy and Clifden by Tonia Barry
By the time it's downright cold outside, you'll be more than ready for snowball fights and sledding with the Kinlough mittens. The fibers in the Big Liberty Wool mix team up to make these mittens both warm and durable. To keep the bitter cold off your neck? Clifden's double layers of cables will keep you snug as a well dressed bug in a rug, even in the deepest chill.

With such a varied assortment of yarns represented, in so many lovely jewel tones and natural shades to choose from, the hardest part may be limiting yourself to casting on just one project from Emerald Isle. Then again, who says you have to limit yourself?

Two Right Sides

Although the weather is still balmy, it's time for us, as knitters, to begin creating the things we will want to wear when the chill in the air arrives. Each fall, I am drawn to the thought of a new scarf. When I find a scarf with two beautiful sides, as opposed to having an obvious wrong side that might be exposed, I feel especially motivated to begin knitting one up.

Lacole in Ava and Marvel from pattern book 'All Seasons'
The versatility and reversibility of Lacole (from our pattern book 'Winter Lace') offer up so many possible cozy ways for it to be wrapped and worn. The width of Marvel makes it a cross between a wrap and a scarf. Firefly's drape pairs perfectly with the airy drop stitch pattern of this scarf, which is also reversible.

Haystack from 'Autumn Leaf' and Wabasha from 'Classic Fall'
Organic Mohawk Wool is lovely against the skin, and it has great stitch definition making the lace of Haystack really pop on both sides of the scarf. The twist of Wabasha is that the center cables are reversible. It's an easy technique with plenty of star power! Shown above, on the right, in the softly heathered Stream colorway, this year's new saturated colors of Avalanche would be a great fit for this scarf as well.

So, before the nip has already returned to the air, pick a new scarf for yourself and cast on. I've got mine on the needles already.

Happy 10th Anniversary to Knitscene

Ten years ago, an Interweave editor and the heads of three yarn companies sat in a West Coast hotel room hashing out the details of a new kind of knitting magazine. One of those people was our very own Betsy Perry (owner of Classic Elite Yarns). The result? Knitscene was born, 'a magazine for knitters who can't get enough of knitting' (according to the Editor Note in the very first issue).

#43 La Gran Pom Pom Scarf by Kristin Nicholas

 Lots of things have come and gone in the knitting world since 2005, but CEY's flagship yarn La Gran which was featured in the premiere issue is still going strong. This yarn was featured in two of the first Knitscene patterns. One of these is the 'La Gran Pom Pom Scarf' that was spotlighted as the free pattern in our Web-Letter this week.

#05 Tweed Jacket by Leslie Scanlon
The other is the #05 Tweed Jacket, a lovely mix of La Gran and Inca Alpaca. With one strand of mohair and two strands of alpaca held together as you knit, the fabric created is interesting and unique. How would you mix and match colorways to create a fabric all your own?

#06 Neck Warmer by Emily Bixler
Inca Alpaca is another long running CEY yarn. The softness of this yarn makes it ideal for anything that will cozy up against your skin like the #06 Neck Warmer, also from the premiere issue of Knitscene. Two strands of alpaca are held together as you knit giving you ever so many possibilities of color combinations.  Choosing two similar hues will result in a tonal look. Picking two contrasting hues to hold together gives more of a tweedy feel. My favorite patterns are the ones like these that give us, as knitters, enough room to let our own personal choices really shine.

Congratulations to Knitscene on the last 10 years and here's to many more to come! We at CEY are so glad to be part of the magazine that "brings you the stuff of knitters' dreams. Now wake up and get clicking!".


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