August 30, 2013

What’s up?! So much! But most of it is secret…

Based on my blog alone, you’d think I’ve worked on nothing but Adventure Knitting for the last 2 months, which was kind of true for awhile, but not anymore, so I thought I should pop in here and show you what I’ve been up to behind the scenes!  If you follow me on twitter/instagram, you’ve likely seen a lot of these peeks already – I do love showing knitting peeks on instagram!

I turned in two patterns to two different publications yesterday; one is super secret, but the other I can talk about!  I’ll have a hat design in Holla Knits Accessories this fall, and I did a guest blog post for the Holla Knits blog, so you can read a bit about it and see more preview photos over there!  I got to use Jill Draper’s beautiful yarn, and I’m really happy with the design, I can’t wait to show you in a couple months.  Here’s my teaser shot, framed to leave out design details:

peek at upcoming design

I’m currently focused on a design I’ll be self-publishing in mid-September – a big squishy bulky knit for fall!  I’m loving it even while it’s still full on summer weather; it’s making me so anxious for some crisp autumn air!  This one isn’t secret, but I’m not quite ready to reveal the whole thing yet… keep an eye on my tweets/instas because the full reveal will likely be happening in a few days.  And, this pattern will be the first in a new trio!  Fun!

peek at upcoming design peek at upcoming design

The other things I’ve been busy knitting away on are a bit secret again, a project I can tease but I can’t fully reveal until the release in early November.  Keeping my mouth shut, but here are some images to hold you, and there will be more shots to come as I continue working on it throughout the next two months…

peek at upcoming design peek at upcoming design

peek at upcoming design peek at upcoming design

So that’s that for now, back to knitting with me!

Filed under: hats,knitting — leethal @ 12:24 pm

August 15, 2013

Adventure Knitting: now completely complete!

Okay this is finally the final Adventure Knitting blog post – I got my final draft of the print book in the mail today, so the print book is now officially available and everything is complete!  But before I get into the print book info, let me tell you the whole deal about the ebook.  I made a video!

The first few minutes of that video (on youtube here) are an introduction to Adventure Knitting, so that’s a quick way to hear about what it is, and then there are the in-depth (aka long) tutorials for folding and binding the DIY books.  Oh yes, DIY books!

Adventure knitting! Adventure knitting!

So, the pdf includes the whole Adventure Knitting: A Day in the Woods book as an ebook, readable on your computer/tablet/etc, or even on your phone screen (everything is easily readable with some zooming!):

adventure knitting on a phone adventure knitting on a phone

And then the entire book is also included in the printable, foldable, bindable DIY book format!  To make the book, you’ll only need to print out 8 or 10 pages (depending on whether you want the optional chart pages), plus 1 more for the cover, to make a 64 or 80 page covered book!

Adventure book binding! Adventure knitting!

The pdf cover page tells you exactly what’s what, and which pages to print, depending on whether you want to print just the DIY book (and read the extra notes, view the sample photos, etc, on your screen), or print everything you need – the notes, stitch patterns, samples, etc are all on condensed printable pages so that you can print everything out with minimal paper/ink usage.  So, read that cover page and you’ll know how to print only what you need out of the 44 page pdf.

Adventure Knitting book Adventure Knitting book

That’s the pdf form… and now the whole thing is also in actual print book form (above)!  That’s a few bucks more (18 vs 14), but it’s everything (written, charts, stitch patterns, samples, diagrams, techniques, etc…) in a nicely full-color printed 32 page book, no DIY-ing necessary.  It’s a paperback book, perfect-bound (not staple-bound like my smaller booklets), approx 8.5×5.5 inches – about the size of a piece of letter paper folded in half, perfect for slipping into your project bag.

Adventure Knitting book

You may be seeing it at your local yarn shop (if you think they’d be into it, let them know about it!) or you can buy it directly from me online, through MagCloud.  If you buy it online, you’ll have to pay shipping but you get an excellent bonus – the book version as a pdf!  So you can get started right away and always have the digital backup copy.  (It’s not the same pdf as the ebook format, and it won’t go into your ravelry library, it’s just the print book version as a downloadable pdf.)

Adventure Knitting book Adventure Knitting book

 (The cover is complete with discolored background to make it look like a well-loved paperback book, and the spine is green!)

So that’s that!  Adventure Knitting, now actually complete and I’ve said all I can say… Oh in case you’re new here, check out my previous post for all the adventure sample knit items!

And a final note, to any LYS people reading this:  The print book is available wholesale through Deep South, and the pdf ebook is available in-store through ravelry for digital-friendly customers (of course, you wouldn’t want to print out the whole 44 page pdf).  Also, I’ve updated my leethalknits wholesale page and I now have a line sheet for all my wholesale patterns!

And now I’m going to get through some deadline projects that have gotten scarily behind schedule due to Adventure Knitting craziness taking over!  Worth it though! :)

Filed under: books,knitting,self-publishing — leethal @ 6:16 pm

August 12, 2013

Woodsy knits! My Adventure Knitting sample pieces!

Adventure Knitting: A Day in the Woods is now released in its entirety!  In pdf form (which includes the DIY bound book!); in a few days, it will also be available in print book form, so I’ll post one final time about it then.  For now, I want to share with you all my sample adventure knits!

adventure knit items!

I made two of each of the four items, in varying weights and color combinations.  First up:  Orange Trail (hat), in chunky Louet Riverstone solids, three colors total:

adventure knit items!

First I climbed the birch trees in blue and green, then I played in the river, with blue as the main color and green as contrasting, and then added red as a second contrasting color in the second half of the section.  I used the solid blue to climb the flat peaks for the crown.

adventure hat

The brim was closed with a sewn seam (seen here), and the size is slouchy.  When I stopped the first section (brim) it measured approximately 19 inches, unstretched, and I stopped the body second section at approximately 7 inches.

adventure knit items!

For my second Orange Trail sample, I made a fitted hat with a buttoning brim:

adventure knit items!

In worsted weight, I climbed the basket tree with 5 colors, then I used one solid (Quince & Co Lark) to swing on vines for the second section.  Since this was a leftover-busting hat, I ran out of the green towards the top of the vines and switched over to the brown (Knit Picks Wool of the Andes), which then blended into the crown, in the color rows pattern, with orange as the main color, and the contrasting brown switched to greenish beige, then to dark green at the tip.  All finished off with a yellow button to close the brim.

adventure knit items!

For the brim, with the 5 colors, I used this locking in technique to carry all 5 strands along the back side (locking 4 strands into a stitch together, as if they were 1 strand), instead of breaking them, to avoid having to weave in a million ends.  It’s pretty bulky along the brim, with the 5 strands of worsted, and it was a huge pain to keep the 5 balls detangled while knitting, but it works!  I striped in rotating color order (color A, B, C, D, E, repeat), with 2 rows, 4 rows, 6 rows, rotating throughout the brim.

inside of hat brim

This hat was originally totally different.  I knit the whole thing, using this recycled tweedy greenish yarn as the main color, with a very different vines cable design.  After it was finished, I decided to redesign the cables, frog the hat down to the brim, and reknit it in a different main color.

frogged hat frogged hat

I used the stone hilltop crown pattern in this first hat, switching between the 5 colors, which I really love.  But since I was able to use this first crown as the stitch pattern sample, I used the other crown pattern in the reknit hat, to test out all the patterns; I am sad to have had to frog this colorful crown though, love it!

frogged hat

I’m really glad I decided to redesign the cables, I like the vines pattern much better now!

adventure hat adventure knit items!

Moving on to the first Green Byway sample – mitts in 2 slightly different natural sheep colors of handspun (around sport-DK ish weight):

adventure knit items!

Even though you can barely make out the first two stitch patterns, I really love these mitts!  I started out climbing the giant redwoods in the darker yarn, then I played in the river with the dark as the main and the lighter as the contrasting.  I finished along the diamond path (with 2 pattern repeats) in the lighter yarn, with the buttoning hand closure.

adventure knit items!

The way the mitts pattern works, with the button closure, you can button the hands closed however you like, with bigger or smaller thumb holes; so the mitts are up higher on the hands, or down lower on the wrists, or even upside down!  Above, you can see with only some top buttons closed, and below with a couple on the bottom and a few on the top closed:

adventure knit items!

And then, with all the buttons fastened to make them wrist-warmers instead.

adventure knit items!

For my other mitts sample, I used aran weight Imperial Yarn Columbia, all in the solid color, with buttoning wrists and sewn closed hands:

adventure knit items!

I started out up the bristlecone pine trees, then tried out the footpath, before ending along the chain-lined trail (with just one pattern repeat).

adventure mitts

With the hand sewn closed, you can customize it to your liking, sewing more or less, to fit your hands and have a taller or shorter top part; you can also sew it up from the bottom of the third section if you want the thumbhole positioned differently.  With the size and shape of these particular mitts, it worked out perfectly to sew them closed along the cables, so the plain stockinette parts are where the thumbholes are.

adventure knit items!

On the Aqua Passage, I made this squishy, bulky, colorful cowl!  I busted through a bunch of leftover bits here, a couple different colors (brown and yellow) of Brown Sheep Lanaloft Bulky, an unknown similar bulky yarn (red), and an aran weight blue held double.

adventure knit item!

I started (at the top) with the giant redwood in brown, then I had fun at camp, starting with the red as main and brown as contrasting, and adding the yellow as a main in the third repeat, and blue as main in the fourth repeat.  I finished it off along the dipping track, using red until it ran out, then yellow until that ran out, then blue at the end.  You may prefer a more planned color design, but I like the colorful, scrappy look!

adventure knit items!

This is such a comfy, cozy cowl, in the smaller loop size with the body knit to 8 inches, so squishy in the bulky with the slipped+twisted stitch pattern; I can’t wait to wear it in the fall!

adventure knit items!

For my second cowl, I made the long loop size, so it wraps around twice, with the button closures on both first and last sections.

adventure knit items!

Using a solid purple Louet Riverstone worsted, and a self-striping Knit Picks Chroma, I started up the birch trees (with works excellently with a solid + gradually striping together!), then I used the Chroma to hike along the footpath for the second section.  Because of the loooong rounds, the Chroma stripes changed colors quickly instead of gradually, so that you can’t see the stitch pattern too well, but the stripes do look cool and textured, so I’m happy with the result.  I switched back to the solid purple for the last few rounds of the second section, then used that for awhile in the third section, trekking along the hilly pathway:

adventure knit item!

Then I switched to a solid bright yellow-green Malabrigo Merino Worsted for about three quarters of the last section, for an extra pop of contrast!  I’m really happy with the look of the final piece!  I chose the pink buttons to make that single row of pink in the center pop a bit.  I’m really looking forward to wearing this one, as well; love it!

adventure knit item!

And then there’s the Gold Route – the quick knit option, a coffee cup sleeve.  I made this one in sock yarns – starting (at the top) with Black Trillium variegated Merilon yarn (crazy colorful Hazel colorway), climbing the basket tree.

adventure knit item!

Then I added some plain grey Knit Picks Palette for the second section contrasting color, to have fun at camp for awhile.  I used the solid grey for the third section, to finish along the hilly pathway; and both first and last sections are closed with buttons for some extra fun!

adventure knit items!

I really love this sleeve!  Fun, colorful, buttony, and practical – so many good things!

adventure knit items!

My final sample, a solid (well, hand-dyed semi-solid) coffee cup sleeve, in all cable patterns, was made with lovely Knitted Wit Superwash Merino Worsted green yarn.

adventure knit items!

I started up the bristlecone pine, then swung on some vines, and ended on the twisty road, for cabley goodness in all three sections.  These ends were grafted closed.  The cables make for great squishy bulk for a useful coffee cup sleeve:

adventure knit item!

In case you can’t tell, I really love all my adventure samples!  This project has been SO MUCH FUN to design, write, knit, organize, and follow along with knit-a-longers.  So much fun.  This will not be our last adventure!  I think adventure knitting is the perfect summer knitting activity, so I’m planning to hopefully, probably, almost-for-sure, make this a summer tradition!  At least for a few years until the next fun thing takes its place, who knows what the future will bring!

adventure knit items!

For now, you can still have woods adventures, of course, and if you have any feedback I can consider to make next summer’s adventure even more fun, let me know in the feedback thread.  Thanks!  Adventure on!

Filed under: hats,knit-a-longs,knitting — leethal @ 12:50 pm
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