PROJECT Linum

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Linum

A simple, linen summer tee like Linum will become a staple in your summer wardrobe! If you’ve been in the store you know that Quince & Co Sparrow (ON SALE NOW!) has practically become my summer uniform – I ADORE wearing my Gillespie so much I’m going to make another. Many people don’t bother making a summer garment because the season is short (only about 4 months around here it is). I think this is closing yourself off from opportunity, especially since our summer wardrobes are usually smaller and we tend to get a lot of wear out of what is in it. Plus, by the time you’re tired of wearing your summer knit the season is over! Over the years I’ve come up with a few key components to a great summer knit:

  1. Choose a type of garment you actually wear. If you don’t wear commercial long sleeve cardies in the summer, you’re probably not going to wear one that you’ve knit, no matter how sexy the yarn is.
  2. Choose a textile that feels cool and comfortable AFTER it is blocked. If you want to know what it’s going to be like, feel or try on a store sample.
  3. In sweaty weather, machine washability isn’t necessary but it is an asset.
  4. Choose a silhouette that flatters your body. If you want to learn more about what works for your shape I suggest you check out Knit to Flatter by Amy Herzog, I learned a lot from her – the photography exercise was especially helpful. You can buy it online or look for it from your local library.

Size

  • finished bust: 38 (43, 48, 53, 58, 63 1/4)”
  • shown in size 38″
  • intended to be worn with positive ease

Materials

  • Quince & Co Sparrow:  4 (5, 5, 6, 6, 7) skeins
  • 3.75 mm/US5 – 32” circular needle
  • 4mm/US6 – 32”circular needle
  • 4mm/US6 – 32”double-pointed needles
  • Stitch markers
  • Stitch holders
  • 4mm/US6 or smaller needle
  • Tapestry needle
  • Pattern: available as a download, or check your local library for digital availability (I know we have access in Toronto)

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Linum Combo.jpg

 

 

HACK & PROJECT Simple Skirt

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KNIT HACK: Project Searches

Sometimes a great way to browse for potential projects on Ravelry is to do it through actual projects. The main advanced pattern search on Ravelry is great, but it normally shows patterns based on their popularity, and because of that it often feels very redundant, and I don’t get to see project ideas that are not the most popular. One alternative way to browse for inspiration is to search PROJECTS, rather than patterns.

  1. I go to the ADVANCED PATTERN SEARCH
  2. Then I click on the PROJECTS tab in the top left. This will show all the projects people have added to Ravelry.
  3. You can change the order they are displayed based on various factors by clicking on the drop-down menu that is just to the right of the “search” box.
  4. So far, you still have a lot of stuff to look at. The big column of menu items on the left side of the screen will let you limit the search parameters. For example, you might want only crochet projects, or a certain weight or yarn, or a specific type of project (like a shawl, or a sweater). Today, I am searching for a specific yarn, so I went to the bottom and chose YARN NAME and put in “Rowan Denim”.
  5. I found a skirt that looked really interesting. To see more skirts made with this yarn, I put “skirt” into the search box and it pulled up all kinds of skirt projects made with Rowan Denim.

 

 

 

Simple Straight Skirt

In my search today, I found something really cool, a simple straight skirt made with Rowan Original Denim – a great little summer knit that you can wear all year. Plus, the denim yarn is pretty sturdy so it will stand up much better than a regular cotton or a wool. Plus, Rowan Denim is ON SALE NOW!

Materials (for a 19″ skirt)

  • Rowan Original Denim: 6(7, 7, 7, 8, 8, 8, 9, 9, 9, 10, 10)
  • 4mm/US6 needles (straight or circular)
  • TWO 3.5mm-24″ circular needles
  • Size I (5.5mm) crochet hook, for provisional cast-on.
  • ¾”/2cm non-roll elastic (waist measurement plus 2″/5cm).
  • Needle and thread (for the elastic)
  • Optional: Blocking materials.
  • Pattern Download

Size

Finished hip sizes (actual skirt hip measurement after seaming):  32 (34, 36, 38, 40, 42, 44, 46, 48, 50, 52)inches or 81 (86, 91, 97, 102, 107, 112, 117, 122, 127, 132)cm.

DENIM HACKS

Denim yarn is a lot like the denim your jeans are made of, and it is dyed with the same type of dye, indigo. All the things that happen with your jeans also affect denim yarn. You should definitely not avoid using denim, and knowing a few hacks in advance will make the experience fun.

1. Shrinkage

Denim shrinks in length (like jeans), so I suggest you make your project a little longer than you normally would, maybe buy an extra ball. If you are using a pattern written by Rowan for their denim yarn, all of this will already have been taken into account, so you don’t have to worry about this.

2. Dye

Due to the nature of the indigo dye, it bleeds. The two darker colours come off on your hands quite a bit, and I’ll admit that that is a constraint unless you live in a world where everything you own is a dark colour. The lightest colour isn’t as bad, the colour transfers a little bit but not a ton.

  1. I skein up the yarn and secure it in at least 4 points. If you’re making something big you can join the skeins and made a super-skein to save time down the road.
  2. I fill a basin with cold water and white vinegar (maybe a cup? I just splash a bunch in). I use the Allen’s Cleaning Vinegar, it is double strength and seems to stabilize dye better than regular white vinegar.
  3. I leave the yarn in the solution for at least 15 minutes – I like to give it a good soak for good measure.
  4. I hang the yarn to dry.
  5. With the two darker colours I will wash the yarn a second time in a fresh vinegar bath, to set any residual dye.

It’s a little bit of work, but in the summer it’s fun to do some experimentation and light chemistry experimentation.  I do it in my bathroom and the indigo has never stained my white ceramic. It’s also a fun thing to do on the deck or balcony.

Other Denim Hacks & Lore

 

 

PROJECT Mira

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Mira

This oversized top is a quick, easy knit, in soft & comfortable Quince & Co Kestrel (ON SALE NOW). It’s casual and easy to wear, just throw it over a tank or a cami and you’re good to go! Kestrel is machine wash and dryable, very easy to knit with and wear.

Notes

Linen is VERY STRETCHY, especially at this tension, and I suggest you look closely at the size measurements and go down a size (or go down a needle size). The garment is designed quite oversized and I think there is a lot of flexibility in choosing a size, depending on how you want it to look. This can be a real plus, you may not need to buy as much yarn if you’re normally a medium/large/extra large!

Size

  • 54 (60¾, 66, 72¾)” [137 (154.5, 167.5, 185) cm] bust circumference
  • Shown in 54” / 137 cm on a 34” / 86.5 cm, 5’8” / 172.5 cm tall model with 20” / 51 cm positive ease.
  • Designed to be worn with 16-24” / 40-60 cm positive ease.

 

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Colours

We have 6 or more skeins left in the colours pictured above, but don’t wait too long because the yarn is on sale now and won’t last long!

mira combo 2.jpg

 

PROJECT Davis

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Davis

My friend Dawn was looking to take advantage of our summer sale and made a summer sweater, so I pulled together a Ravelry search for her and when she came across Davis she kind of made a swooning sound. I figured if it was swoonable for her, everyone should eyeball it. It’s an oversized pullover, which means it’ll have lots of room to move and lots of casual elegance. It’s made with Quince & Co Kestrel, a gorgeous chunky weight, 100% organic linen tape – one of my favourite summer yarns because it’s easy to knit with, works up fast, and washes and wears extremely easily. Plus, it’s ON SALE NOW!

Size

  • Finished bust: 41½ (44¾, 48, 51¼, 54½, 57½, 60¾)” [105.5 (113.5, 122, 130, 138.5, 146, 154.5) cm]
  • shown in size 44¾” [113.5 cm] with approx 11″ [28 cm] positive ease

Materials

Kestrel combo.png

We currently have the following colours in stock in sufficient quantities (depending on size desired):

  • Aegean 511 (lot 2)
  • Ash 515 (lot 20)
  • Bordeaux 520 (lot 1)
  • Pebble 504 (lot 20)
  • Senza 500 (lot 6)
  • Terrapin 523 (light khaki green, lot 1)
  • Wave 516 (lot 2)

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Kestrel Davis Combo .jpg

 

 

 

 

PROJECTS Neckwarmers

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Neckwarmers Adult 1

Neck-warmers

A series of little projects on my needles have been NECK-WARMERS. Yup, warm & woolly neck coverings. They’re simple little projects, no intellectual or emotional bandwidth necessary, and they make great gifts. Being a yarn store owner I’m always really bad with holiday gifts, since my fall knitting is consumed by store projects. I’m feeling pretty good about myself at this point – I’ve never had all my holiday gifts finished ahead of time, especially not before the end of the fall, much less before the start of fall!

The yarns are for the most part old stuff, dug up from my stash (except the kids’ below, they chose their own colours). That’s another great thing about neck-warmers, they don’t use much yarn. They’re proving to be a wonderful way to use up those random skeins of nice yarn that have been lingering for years (you know, the ones you found on sale, or you picked up while you were travelling, or from that yarn club subscription).

Oh, a few more things I’ve found about making neck-warmers ….

1. The’re small and travel extremely well, great for summer getways.

2. They’re fast little knits, and by the time I’m bored it’s off my needles.

3. They’re a fun way to play around with different yarns, see how things work up.

Guidelines

  • All my neckwarmrs have been worked in a 1×1 (k1, P1) rib – it helps maintain a bit of shape and elasticity when worn.
  • I’ve been using 4mm/US6 needles with worsted weight yarns, and 3.75mm/US5 needles with DK and sport weight yarns.
  • Different fibres have different qualitites, so the size is never really exactly the same, but it doesn’t matter. For worsted/aran weight cashmere about 100 sts seems to be right for an adult, for worsted merino about 110 sts seems good for an adult, for DK/Sport weight cashmere 110 sts looks ok. Sizing is all really a bit of a crapshoot, I never really know how the fit is working until the garment has been worn for a little while and stretches to fit the wearer. Standard wools (like merino) are fairly bouncy and keep their shape well, cashmere and other luxury fibres like camelids have little memory and can stretch with wear.
  • All of the project details are in my Ravelry Project Pages

 

Neckwarmers kids 1

Kids Neckwarmers

Each of the kids’ neck-warmers used less than half a skein of their respective yarns. I think I might have enough left over for a matching hat for each of them, but maybe I’ll dive into a second skein just in case.

The colours were chosen by the kids themselves (although if I had to choose a colourway for a seven year old girl I’d have bet on the same halucious rainbow my niece picked out for herself). My nephew was INSISTENT on a purple & green colour combo, but that’s a tall order and he finally settled for purple, green & blue (I don’t think I got to the green part of the colourway).

LEFT Manos Del Uruguay Alegria Grande, colour 9275 Locura Fluo (see project)

RIGHT Cascade 220 Superwash Wave, Colour 114 Spring (see project)

 

FINISHED Quick Sand

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Quicksand kestrel senza 1

Quicksand kestrel senza COMBO 2

Quick Sand

I just finished this little cardie for myself, and I think it worked out really nicely! It’s a simple, top-down cardie made with Quince & Co Kestrel (ON SALE ALL JULY). The colour is ‘Senza’, an ecru. I modified the pattern and made it cropped, so I only used 6 skeins instead of 8. I also made one size smaller than I would normally wear (all the details are in my Ravelry Notes). You’ll probably see me wearing it around the store very soon, I think it’s going to become a summer wardrobe staple.

Materials

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Quicksand kestrel senza COMBO 3

FREEBIE French Market Bag

 

 

French Market Bag

Here’s a great one for the people who aren’t afraid of the hook – a gorgeous french market bag made with DENIM! I love Rowan denim, and I love small summer projects that are high on satisfaction and low on commitment. Plus, the yarn is on SALE all month – how can you go wrong?

Materials

Notes

If you want to read more about knitting with denim yarn see the recent post by Mason Dixon Knitting, they’re denim fanatics and know all the ins & outs. Personally, my only advice (when making a market bag) is that the indigo dye comes off (it’s supposed it, that’s what good indigo does), so use metal needles, wear dark colours, and don’t sit on light coloured furniture when you work with it – its a nice throwback to when I was a kid and my mom dressed me up in dark clothes when I chose to play in the mud.