Archives for category: Patterns

Infinity scarves are here to stay, and based on what I see at stores like Anthropologie, there’s a trend towards multi-colored, richly textured ones. I decided to knit such a scarf from a beautiful yarn called Bamboo Bloom Handpaints. It is a lovely, soft combination of bamboo, wool, and acrylic.

Scarf in Fallen Petals

I’ve been searching for just the right item to make for my knitting fundraiser this year, and I think this is it! It meets all of my criteria: an quick-to-knit accessory in high-quality, affordable yarn. I bet they’ll be popular. And I know I’m going to have fun making them.

Would you like to make one as well? Download my free pattern. Enjoy!

–Karen

 

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I’ll admit it. About ten years ago, I became severely addicted to making felted purses. I made over a hundred of them, and I sold them at holiday boutiques, gave them as gifts, and kept a few for myself. It was crazy. At some point, though, I got bored with making them and stopped cold turkey. I was done with making felted purses.

Or, perhaps I was just on a hiatus?

I recently dug out my old stash of felting yarns, determined to use some of it up for Stash-n-Burn’s 2013 “Use It Or Lose It” Challenge. I found a beautiful cone of rust-colored tweedy wool yarn, and decided to knit it into a felted purse. Because of the autumn colors, I started thinking of cooler weather and cabled aran sweaters, and created a design with columns of cables that are carried over to the straps. Here’s what it looked like before I put it in the washing machine:

Knitted purse before felting

And here is how it looks finished, with wooden buckles attaching the straps to the purse.

Photo of Autumn Aran Purse

I lined the purse, adding interior pockets, my personalized label, and a magnetic snap closure. It looks “legit,” as my teens would say.

Picture of the inside of the purse

You can download my free Autumn Cabled Purse pattern. If you make one, please post a photo on Ravelry. I’d love to see yours!

Photo of 6 braceletsMy friend Mary Ann recently told me about “zero waste” clothing design, an approach to creating patterns that don’t leave any left-over scraps of fabric. According to the NY Times, the reason to pursue zero-waste design is sustainability. Millions of tons of fabric scraps are tossed into landfills each year because it’s cheaper than recycling.

In the spirit of zero waste design, I’m on a mission to use all of my scraps of fingering weight yarn that are left-over from other knitting projects. My Wrap It Around Bracelet is the perfect design to use for this.  Not only can I make something with just a small amount of scrap yarn, I can also sell them to raise money for a charity that I care about. Win-win!

I love the scarp yarn I used to make these bracelets. It’s a soft merino/silk yarn from Big Alice Dyes in beautiful shades of burgundy, blue, and purple.

I was able to make seven bracelets. Six are shown here, and one was a gift to Mary Ann. I hope she enjoys her “zero waste” bracelet!

Photo of my braceletI love the look and simplicity of a wrap bracelet. It’s basically a long cord, adorned with beads, that you wrap around your wrist a few times. When I saw how thrilled my teenage daughter was when she received one as a gift last month, I decided to try to design one. Perhaps it would be a good item for my fundraising.

Being a knitter, I naturally decided to make mine from a knitted i-cord, or tube. Using some some bamboo and cotton DK weight yarn from my stash, I started making i-cords with different needle sizes. The size 1 needles turned out the best looking cord.

While knitting an i-cord is downright boring, I made it more interesting by watching some TED videos from my “when I have time” list. Before I knew it, I had made one that was long enough to wrap around my wrist six times. (44 inches, to be precise.)

Next was a trip to the craft store to pick up a clasp and some beads.

Photo of the beads and the clasp

When I got back home, I threaded 10 beads onto the cord and attached the clasp. I love the finished bracelet!

Would you like to make one as well? Download my free pattern. Cheers!

–Karen

Photo of the bracelet

Dress Me Up Close UpAs I start thinking about my fundraising sales for next year, I’m considering purses. Accessories tend to be popular and sell well, and I think purses could be just the thing! Last month, I wrote about the Japanese Ruffled Knot Bag that I designed using chenille and a ruffled novelty yarn. Today, I’m happy to share another ruffled purse pattern I designed, the Dress Me Up Purse.

This pattern has a simple construction; you knit it in the round using a chenille yarn, working in the ruffled yarn every 8 rounds. You finish the top with an I-Cord bind-off, and close the bottom edge with a sturdy three-needle bind-off. You then attach a purchased chain as the handle.

I used Lion Suede in the Eggplant colorway for the body, and  Red Heart Sashay in the Rumba colorway for the ruffles. Unfortunately Lion Suede is no longer available, but perhaps you have some in your stash?

Dress Me Up Purse

The pattern is available as a free download on my pattern page.

–Karen