This is a new design, that I've just uploaded to my site. Usual price - £1.75 for the PDF pattern. Using an Aran weight yarn, 4.5mm DPNs I'm finally happy with the way it worked out. It caused me many a headache.
Probably the one design that has been frogged and re-worked more than any other. Previously, I'd had this theory that my best designs (most popular judging by sales) had been from those that worked themselves effortlessly, like Whirly Rib, Ribba and Urchin. Now though, I've managed to prove to myself that I can persevere and make an idea I have in my head work.
The problems, you may have guessed, lay with the bobbles. Not that the maths didn't work out for the shaping etc, but in getting the little beggers to sit neatly. Firstly I tried my usual trick for a reverse stocking stitch body by working it inside out (with one row incorporated for turning the work) but it just wasn't working. No matter how I tried, working this way just made the bobbles look pants. Awful. They didn't want to sit at the back of the work to have their moment of glory when the piece was finished. Grrr.
So to get the effect I wanted, it had to be purling. Sorry - I do try and avoid it with little tips and trick in the pattern but this calls for the good old fashioned method. Next problem lay with the decreasing... not just in getting them to balance and not twist (which is something I often make a feature of) but also to get them to be invisible. The obvious thing would be to hide them in the bobbles, but hey, that wasn't having it either. Think that bobbles on a reverse stocking stitch body cause lots more little problems than they do on a regular ground stitch. So in the end I went for working them on alternate rows, in line with the bobbles. They aren't 100% invisible but hey, I tried. I have however included a couple of notes in the pattern that helps avoid those holes that often get left with bobbles.
Still, I'm happy with it. Am having loads and loads of ideas based around sea urchins at the moment - found these 2 photos that show what I'm trying to achieve quite well:-
The next design I've been working with uses eyelets, yarn forwards etc. This Hat is finished and the pattern written, but I'm not happy with it. In my mind, good and interesting designs don't have to be that complicated - I seem to be on a mission to create designs made up of modules or clear repeats - using complicated stitches sometimes, maybe, but constantly trying to write clear, effective patterns. This one is as clear as mud.
I'll tackle it from a different angle, methinks. Firstly, there aren't enough eyelets - unless you heavily block as you would, say a lace shawl, the eyelets just sit back and go unnoticed, and I didn't want a Hat that required blocking pins. It'll still need a firmer blocking than most of my others but won't be excessive. So more of the eyelets, less plain ground, and they'll sit forward better. Also need to sort out the decreases - this one uses paired, balanced alternate decreases (or however you'd like to describe them ;) which do exactly the job but make for a messy pattern repeat. *sigh*
This next one was one I finished a couple of weeks back and forgot to blog about! Actually, this started life as a completely different style Hat.... working top-down and watching too much telly whilst increasing resulted in this cute, perk cap. Voila! Who said telly was bad?
The pattern is written for Malabrigo but any Aran weight will work fine. The cables are fairly straight forward, although perhaps a little fiddly with the first few increases. Not quite as full as the Bobble Beret above, which is a good floopy size, this is more pert, less baggy. Same as before, £1.75 for the pattern from you know where.
Rather annoyingly my template adds new items at the bottom (logic defied the template designer) and even although they have a 'shuffle' feature, it completely mucks things up.... that problem I had with the website and pattern sales about a month ago? All caused by me (ha!) trying to use the shuffle facility to put new items at the top of the page. Works fine for the yarns and Hats but does weird things to digital downloads. Time to go the FTP route and structure it meself....
Finally, not a new pattern. Actually, it's Rollin' Beret - instead of just working straight after the increase round, I just turned the work and carried on, turning it inside out when finished. Knitted from one of the softest hand-spuns in my stash. Not mine, and couldn't tell you who spun it, but I do know which fibre it is... and have just ordered a serious amount of this fibre undyed to play with.
Right, that's me done for now. Have a super furry weekend folks. Over and out.