Category Archives: Knit Picks Designers

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Enjoy color with the Hue Shift Afghan!

Now that it's cuddle-up-on-the-couch season, it's just the right time for a new afghan. Add a little splash of color to your decor with the Hue Shift Aghan! This afghan is knit in Garter stitch mitered squares. The squares are picked up and knit off of each other in four large segments, so that the only seam required is to stitch the four segments together. Because of this, it makes an easy travel project, because no one section is very large. The 10 colors in the patterning of the afghan are arranged in such a way that they create a wash of 100 slightly different, shifting shades. This pattern is available in two colorways as a ready-to-knit kit: Rainbow and Decor. But, if you want to create your own colorful masterpiece, get the downloadable version and choose your own palette. With a little imagination, the color possibilities are much greater! For instance, if you wanted a rich, jewel-toned blanket, try these colors...

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Design A Sweater, Lesson 1: Swatching and Measuring

Ok, are we all ready to start swatching? Last week we discussed yarn choices and design dreaming, and this week we are going to solidify our yarn choices (if you haven't already!) and find the right needle to get the fabric that your design requires! I've done some extensive swatching (the results of which I share in the videos below) and have settled on knitting my Swish Worsted on US 6 Zephyr needles. Swatching can seem boring when you're itching to cast on a project, but it is one of the most essential parts of the design process, so it deserves a lot of time and attention! In this lesson, I'll be giving tips on how to swatch for the fabric your design needs, and then covering the measuring of gauge from your swatch, and the measurements needed for a succesful knit. All this information ins contained in the pdf linked below, which also has diagrams and blanks for you to fill in with your personal gauge and measurments. Don't worry if you're math-phobic; I've done my nest to keep it simple and to walk you through all the claculations step-by-step! Lesson 1: Swatching and Measuring Read on for more info and Videos...

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I want a Snow Day

When I think of taking a Snow Day this winter, I imagine myself cozied up on the couch, watching fireplace videos, and knitting happily on all of the tiny treasures in our new Snow Day Ornament pattern!

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Design a Sweater, Lesson 3: Shaping the Torso

Hi there! As you'll see in this week's video, my sweater is coming along swimmingly! Now that I am deep in the process of working the waist shaping, I am remembering why my row counter is my best friend! This week, we'll be discussing how to calculate the increases and decreases that will shape the torso of your sweater to the finished dimensions you desire. It may be helpful for you to look over and print out this week's handout so that you can follow along with the video lesson, in which I'll be walking you through all the math required in this step. I promise, it's not terribly hard :) Click the link below to get the handout: Lesson 3 - Shaping the Torso And check out the videos below!

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Design A Sweater. Lesson 4: Sleeves!

I raced through the body of my sweater in order to stay ahead of the class, but even if you haven't finished that sections, you can always start on a sleeve! Knitting sleeeves can be a welcome break from working the torso of a sweater--they are more portable, and smaller, so each round goes much faster and the length gows perceptibly, for a real feeling of accomplishment! In this lesson, we'll go over the math behind sleeve shaping, and discuss some potential modifications that allow you to get custom sleeves! Click the link below for the handout: Lesson 4: Sleeves And check out our videos, where I (somewhat tiredly--apologies! I should maybe not shoot these lessons on Monday!) walk you through the math and show how the formulas in the handout gave me the sleeve I want!

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Design A Sweater, Lesson 5: Planning the Neckline

I am not usually a monogamous knitter, and the recent heat has made my wosted-wool sweater project even less appealing. So I am a little behind myself and I suspect some of you are, too! In the next phase of our sweater designing, we will work the yoke and neckline, which means two sets of calculations that must be worked at the same time! To make that a little easier on everyone,and to give you all some time to catch up, I've divided this section into two lessons. This week's video covers the basic shaping and construction o fthe neckline, and gives ideas for how to decide what knid of neckline you want. Watch the videos below:

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Design a Sweater, lesson 6: Working the Yoke

The yoke is the most complicated part of a raglan sweater, but I think you’ll find that if you take it slow and workcarefully, it is not very hard at all! The trickiest thing is that the raglan decreases and neckline shaping will be workedat the same time.This is also the most exciting part of the sweater--we arenearing the finish line and for the first time, you’ll get to see your work really start to come together. Pun intended.Let’s get started! Read on for the videos and worksheet:

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Design A Sweater, Lesson 7: Finishing!

Hi Knitters! This final edition of the sweater class is all about finishing. In this week's video and handout, I'll discuss weaving in ends, how to finish your turned hem, closing up the underarms, and working the neckline trim! Whew! Each step goes pretty fast, but make sure to take the time to do these steps right, as a well-finished sweater will look a lot better than one with sloppy finishing. Check out our tutorials on finishing, too--they'll give you a lot of information on how to execute the techniques discussed in this lesson. Finshing Tutorials Another resource I really like and use a lot is Nancie Wiseman's Knitter's Book of Finishing Techniques, which is a wealth of information on every bit of swea=ter finishing you could imagine! And without further ado, here's your handout for this week:

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Teaching an old dog new tricks

Here at Knit Picks headquarters, there are a lot of talented folks. Between us, Connecting Threads (our quilting division) and Artist's Club (our painting division), there are lots of different skills represented. Recently we started having some lunchtime classes to share these skills, and over the past two weeks I've been learning to crochet! Now, this isn't the first time I've learned to crochet. I believe this is actually the fourth. Each time I try to learn, I inevitably do something really wonky, and give up the failed attempt. But this time, I'm determined to make it stick. I grabbed one of our Harmony Crochet Hooks and some Brava Bulky, and set to making quite a mess of things. But after two lessons and a lot of "no, no, through that loop," and "you're going the wrong way!" from Jenny K and Kim, I managed to make my first granny squares! They're not stellar, but it is the first time I've ever crocheted something that looked like the thing it was supposed to be...

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Choosing colors for Colorwork

A very common question I get is, "how do I pick colors for my colorwork project?" The short answer is that that's a really personal decision. You know what colors you like or that you like to wear, and there's no set aesthetic regarding what colors 'should' go together. (believe me, since art school, my personal color palette includes all of them!) Generally, a safe bet for a 2-color sweater is to go with a light and dark version of the same color. So, that means a dark red and light red, dark blue and light blue, and so on. These colors can be interchangeable, so it can be a light or dark background. This is great if you have a favorite color in mind, or want to be completely sure that the colors will look good together. If you want to use two colors that you know go well together, be sure to use a light version of one and a dark version of the other. That said, choosing a basic palette for a garment starts with a few basic steps.

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