December 15, 2016

Book review: Norah Gaughan’s Knitted Cable Sourcebook

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I’m so excited that the publisher sent me a review copy of the Knitted Cable Sourcebook, because it instantly became one of my favorite knitting books! I’ve been a fan of Norah Gaughan for years, because her designs are amazing. This new book may seem like just an awesome cable pattern stitch dictionary, which it is…

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…but it’s way more than just that! In addition to 152 cable stitch patterns, written and charted, she explains each cable, how they relate to each other, her design process of how one cable design evolved into another, and other notable tidbits, like reversibility and mirroring. Super helpful stuff for incorporating the cables into improvised projects, or substituting one cable for another.

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The designs go from very basic all the way up to crazy complex, some charts taking up a whole page or spread. The categories include: ropes, braids, and horseshoes (narrow columns); adding breadth (wider columns); expanding (wide columns or panels); finding motifs (different patterns that grew out of one); drawing (elaborate drawings made with cables).

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One of my favorite things is the stockinette stitch equivalent system. Every pattern in the whole book has an “SSE” number – how many stockinette stitches would achieve the same width as the cable – so that you’ll know which cables can be substituted for each other, or so you can more easily design or improvise projects using the cables.

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And lastly, the item patterns! There are 15 sweater and accessory patterns, all of which use cable patterns from the book, but can be switched out for other cables using that SSE system, so cool!!

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These are just a few of my favorites, but because they are designed by Norah Gaughan, I basically love every single design in this book.

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If you get easily bored, this sampler-style sweater is perfect for trying out a bunch of different cables at the same time:

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I think this cardigan is the project I want to knit (and wear!) the most of all. SO COZY!

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So yeah, love this book! Yay!

Personal side-note: I am phasing out of my career as a knit designer, which means I’m looking forward to a future of being able to knit other people’s patterns, for fun, instead of 100% of my knitting time being work knitting. I have big plans, so many sweaters, yes!!

Filed under: books,knitting — Lee Meredith @ 12:26 pm

December 11, 2016

Knit kits! And other stuff! Yeah!

Kits! I now have kits! Just barely in time for last-minute holiday gifting, they are mostly small quick knits…

kits! kits!

All kits are with recycled yarn, some of it hand-dyed, and everything else you need except the needles. There are five different kit types. First, light-switch plate cover (pattern info):

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I just knit up a new one in this tweedy yarn, love it!

kits! kits!

A kit comes with enough yarn, the pattern on cardstock, and a switch plate. Some of the yarns are self-striping, and some are speckley variegated.

kits! kits!

The other two small kits are for pen tube bookmarks (bookmarks that hold a pen on the outside of the book/sketchbook, pattern info) and lapel flowers (pattern info). All the small kits come with a leethalknits I’m a baller pin, just for fun.

kits! kits!

The pen tube bookmark kits come with enough yarn, and a button.

kits!

kits! kits!

And the lapel flower kits come with three tiny balls of yarn, enough to make one flower, and a pin back.

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kits! kits!

And then there are some bigger kits. The cuff kits include eight balls of yarn, each with two buttons, so you can make eight cuffs from the Ten 10 yard Cuffs pattern collection.

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Each kit is packaged in a recycled tennis ball container, and includes the pattern as a high quality booklet with lots of photos of the ten cuff pattern options.

kits! ten 10 yard cuffs!

And lastly, Double Scoops ice cream earmuffs kits! (I used to sell these on my website a few years back.) Each kit includes four mini balls dyed to look like ice cream flavors, a coffee-dyed yarn for the waffle cones, and a larger ball for the lining.

kits!

The earmuffs look like this, but your flavors will be different, and your straps will be the color of the lining:

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There are three kits in the shop, with different flavor options, so you can choose your favorite!

kits!

In other news, the final hat for the VIP club is being knit right now, Jalouse! And I just sent out a new treat for club members, connect-the-dots holiday cards. Pictured below is a couple of cards made by pasting the connect-the-dots print outs onto reclaimed blank greeting cards. If you join the club before the end of the year, you’ll get all six hat patterns, 20% off all my patterns, and the treats!

leethal VIP club hat #6 connect-the-dots holiday cards

Some of the VIP hats could make good last-minute holiday gift knits – the new one is for bulky weight, Provocateur (below, left) is for worsted or aran weight, and Vanguard (below, right) is for any weight, pictured here in bulky:

Provocateur Vanguard

Mokia is for any weight and has tons of options so you can definitely knit up a quick version – below left is an aran weight textured one, and right is a bulky weight cabled one:

Mokia Mokia

Some other patterns that could be fun gift kits are Incenter and Directrix from In Triplicate! The full 9-pattern In Triplicate collection is only available till the end of the year!

Incenter, by Lee Directrix, by Lee

Here are some other patterns of mine that could be perfect for quick gift knits… Twist on a Classic are super quick bulky fingerless mitts, made with stretchy sideways garter stitch and a perpendicular cable, all modularly constructed:

Twist on a Classic mitts

Haka is a fun and easy bulky hat, which can be made with or without the cables:

cabled Haka hat

Lemmy is a larger item but can be made with super mega bulky, like this sample made with three strands of bulky weight held together:

Lemmy

Barry is for any gauge, so it can be made very quickly, like this bulky sample:

Barry in superbulky

All my Remixed patterns are for any gauge, so they can be made pretty quickly; pictured below are samples of Wild is the Wind, Rumours, Rejuvenation, and Either/Or, all in bulky weight:

Wild is the Wind Rumours Rejuvenation Either/Or

Siskiyou isn’t so super quick, but it’s worsted weight so it’s not too bad, and is good for a giftee who likes trees:

Siskiyou hat

For a more specific gift, Warren was designed for the metalhead (or fan of supernatural/evil kinds of stuff) in your life, and Andrew can be made with or without secret hidden pentagrams:

A peek at the Dark Trio pattern coming later this week! There will be an evil version + a chaotic version, for those who don't want satanic symbology on their heads ;) Andrew mitts

Lastly, I have a new fabric design up on Spoonflower! It’s a repeating pattern of interlocked k‘s, hand-drawn:

fabric from my pattern design!

It’s a pattern I designed for my intro to Typography class a few months ago; the final design was filled in, but I scanned it when it was just the outlines, and put it over a yellow background. And I’ll leave you with this in-progress shot of projects from that graphic design class – I’m about a month away from starting the official graphic design program, exciting!

When my teacher saw my rough draft last week he said "I apologize in advance for how much your hand is going to hurt next week." It's now next week and I accept his apology. Still so much more to go!

Happy holidays!

Filed under: gifts,home stuff,kit creations,knitting,leethal store,quick knits,yarn — Lee Meredith @ 2:27 pm
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