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Accessories

Double Swirl Beanie

“Pump out a hat, you’ll feel better after.” – Chantal of Knitatude

Whenever I’m in a knitting funk, I recall these wise words. She’s not wrong either. If you have a number of wips happening but don’t have the drive to work on any of them, make a hat. Or a headband. Just piece that is going to give you pretty instant gratification so you feel like you’ve accomplished something.

And that is where the idea for the Double Swirl Beanie came from. I always have multiple wips but I was feeling bleh about knitting and felt a need to stash bust and just work something up. I grabbed my skein of Briar Rose from Handmade Home Fibers and a random tonal pink that matched and looked through one of my stitch books.
Upon finding a texture pattern that would look good with solid or variegated yarn I got to work.

Also in my collection was the most perfect deep magenta pom from Rose and Purl.
It was named the Double Swirl because of the double stranding and the texture creates a swirl design. I also did a double brim because they are just so much more cozy.

You can find the pattern here.

Happy Knitting!

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The Visage Tee

My latest pattern, the Visage Tee, is a garment that started a snowball of an idea. One that I hope to turn into an avalanche of good.
Originally named the Key to my Heart Tee, Visage was suggested and I ran with it.

Named for Michelle Visage from Drag Race, I had the idea of creating a line of garments inspired by Drag Queens. I have two more ideas brewing so stay tuned for those. But I have a goal of 6 designs total.
Ultimately, I want a percentage of the sales from those 6 pieces to go to a local LGBTQ+ charity. Because at the end of the day, I just want to help people.

Being cis-het, white, straight-sized and of middle-class, I have privilege. And I recognize that. So I want to do what I can for those who don’t have those same privileges.

I’ve mentioned this before, I make garments that I want to wear. In doing that, I also am trying to make sure anyone of any shape can not only make my patterns, but wear them proudly. If there is a pattern of mine that you don’t think will fit you as you want, email me and we can work it out together.

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What even is “Industry Standard”?

I’ve always stated that my patterns are based off of the standards given by Craft Yarn Council. And it didn’t really occur to me that I don’t know where that information even originally came from. Then my dear friend Erin posted a snippet from a pattern by Evolve Crochet that asks that question. Colleen includes info on how to make a part of the pattern for a different measurement because “what even is industry standard?”.

The more you know
Grading a pattern to include as many sizes as possible involves a ton of math. Math that sometimes doesn’t always work out the same for every size. Which is why we need testers so that we know the various numbers will in fact work out. However, it turns out that basing something off measurements that only fit a specific amount of people and not including information on how to make adjustments didn’t sit right.
Therefore, going forward I have decided that with the re-working of my older patterns to include the sizes/measurements given from CYC, that I’m also going to change how my patterns are written.

What does that all mean?
It means that you’ll still be able to follow the pattern and make the garment. However in addition to stitch and row counts I will include inches/options to go to the desired length.
In short it will be easier for you to have the garment fit your specific body better.

When I make something, I’m making it for my body shape because I’m making it for myself. However, I realize not everyone making my patterns have that body shape.
Full disclosure, I have an hourglass shape. Which means my hips and bust are closer in size and I have a narrower waist.
To put that into perspective, CYC classifies a Large as:
Bust: 40-42″, Waist: 32-34″ and Hips: 42-44″ and my measurements are:
Bust: 40-42″, Waist: 34.5″ and Hips: 41.75″.

The option of having a longer notes section in the patterns on possible ways to adjust things did occur to me. When it comes down to it though, I think that straight up writing it with more wiggle room, while still giving you all the necessary information for making the piece itself, is the best idea for everyone.

Happy Knitting!


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Size Doesn’t Matter

After seeing the post that Nicole of (Woolfield Studio) made yesterday, and knowing her struggle about posting photos of herself, I felt inspired/driven etc to write a post as well.
Which then turned into a blog post the more I thought about it.

My mindset has changed a lot since having my daughter last year. Society has us believing that once you pop out a baby you should be bouncing back to your “pre-baby body” as soon as possible. And I kind of bought into it. Once I was given the go ahead by my doctor, I started working out. But I didn’t keep at it because I was fighting my body. I was fighting the thing that grew a damn human because I didn’t like the belly that was sticking around.

Violet is now nearly 15 months and that belly is still here. However (and it is still a daily battle to some extent) now I’m not as angry at it. I started doing yoga instead of the intense pilates I had been because I was getting frustrated with anything jumping related because everything jiggles.

I’ve also changed my mindset from a workout to lose weight way of thinking to a workout to get stronger and just be healthier for my family. I just want to feel better and if some of the fat leaves along the way then so be it. But thin doesn’t equal healthy and that’s something we need to make the world realize.

I also don’t want Violet growing up seeing a mom who hates her body. I remember my mom complaining about her wide feet or just not wearing things because she didn’t think she should. And so, because everyone said I looked like her I too thought I had wide feet etc. It wasn’t until adulthood I realized we have completely different body types.

Therefore, my recent garment design, the Iris Cropped Sweater, is my most inclusive sized garment written for busts from 30” to 62” using the Craft Yarn Council standards.
I’ve had issues in the past getting testers for my designs at all, but with the creation of the Instagram account Fat Test Knits I was able to have testers up to 58”.

I’ve also decided to update my current designs with a broader size range. So by the end of the year, all my garments will be written for the aforementioned sizes. The last thing I want is for someone to see one of my designs, go to buy it and then realize it’s not written for them. We already have the issue of some patterns being written with 42” busts as the XL or 2X (an XL is actually 44-46 for comparison), which is why I use the Craft Yarn Council, because it’s a good standard to go by and all the measurements are there for anyone to use.

I’m also trying to be as mindful as I can about different body types without making my patterns a million pages long. So my notes sections will get more detailed with information on how to adjust things accordingly. We should be able to wear whatever the hell we want to and not feel bad about it. Because, say it with me now, SIZE DOESN’T MATTER. 

Categories
Garments

Iris Cropped Sweater

It’s funny how you don’t understand all the trial and error that goes into a pattern until you start designing.
When I started the design it was a much different image in my mind. It was originally going to be over-sized and baggy. However, my cast on was way too big. Think the width of my love seat too big. I wanted positive ease but not that much!
So I tried again.
This time with the vision in mind that is now the final product. A cropped, fitted v-neck sweater that has lovely arm detailing. I have a soft spot for the latter, which is evident in this pattern and in my Rose Tyler Cropped Cardi.

This was my first time designing a v-neck but I’ve made them before so I wasn’t going in completely unawares.
I also decided it was high time I start being more inclusive in my sizing. In the past, my designs have gone up to XL or maybe 2X. This time, using Craft Yarn Council guidelines, I wrote from XS to 5X. So busts ranging from 30″ to 62″ can make this sweater!

I also plan on reworking my other garments over the rest of the year, I’ll need testers to confirm yardage and measurements so keep an eye out!

You can grab the Iris pattern from Ravelry or Etsy. I hope you have as much fun making it as I did!

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Amethyst Grace Cardigan

It was never my intention to design a raglan cardigan. At least it wasn’t on my list of pattern ideas, so who knows when it would have actually happened. Then my mom asked how much it would be to make her a cardigan. I didn’t giver the actual amount but we agreed upon a (much lower than normal) price. Plus I decided I would design it so that I could sell the pattern as well. It’s been my most popular pattern to date!

The Process

She showed me a couple of store-bought cardigans she had and gave me the aspects she did and didn’t like. I took those ideas and the Amethyst Grace Cardigan was born! Named as such because her birthday is in February but there was a number of Amethyst Cardigans already. So the Grace was added since she shares that middle name with my daughter.

Design Overview

It features a large ribbed shawl collar that folds over and uses a provisional cast on for a seamless look.
Length can be customized to your personal preference but I prefer a long one for extra coziness. Short rows round out the bottom so it doesn’t create a straight rectangle.
The sleeves, oh those sleeves. There’s lots of ribbing but it’s worth it! It’s written so the sleeves are a little snug when you’re putting it on so there’s no decreasing required but that also means they fit so good when it’s on. Plus then the ribbing from the forearm down fits better too and doesn’t hang down (because you didn’t need to decrease!)

Since it’s top-down you can try it on quite easily when you’re making it so you can be sure it fits you just right. There is some shaping as well but you can always add more if you desire!

Make your own!

If you want to make it in the same colour, I used Brava 500 Worsted from Knit Picks in Dove Heather which is more of a heavy worsted.
Click here to get your copy!