Thursday, March 26, 2009

Odds and Ends

A Cure for Knitting Ennui
A few days ago I was flipping through my pattern collection in search of Something Different. At last count, I've been knitting for 58 years (urk!), which means I am abysmally jaded. The old saying "What Goes Around Comes Around" certainly applies. The same sweaters/hats/scarves/dishcloths/tippets have gone around and come around so often that I can point to a picture and recall at least five previous incarnations.

I was grazing through this season's knitting magazine offerings and for the first time I can remember, I bought neither Interweave Knits nor Vogue Knitting. The offerings in the former were tired and the projects in the latter made me laugh.

Fortunately, I have a dear friend in England (Thanks, Jo!) who faithfully traipses to her news agent every month and ships me a lovely package of Across-the-Pond knitting magazines. Although Simply Knitting is for the beginner/intermediate knitter, every issue carries an Alan Dart toy pattern, and I dearly love these. I couldn't resist this one:


It went right to the head of the queue. The yarn is sitting in front of me waiting for me to finish this blog post.

Some brilliant English publishers thoroughly perused American knitting magazines and decided that they could do it better. And they certainly did! My last two care packages included an issue of a brand-new offering entitled The Knitter.




A few sample photos:





Intended for the experienced and adventurous, the two first glossy issues have been inspiring and beautifully laid out--treasures of knitterly eye candy. The only problem with it is that the magazine is not yet available in the US. I hope the publishers will consider overseas distribution, because advanced knitters here will surely snap up every issue. It's apparently available at bookstores and yarn shops in the US and Australia, so go get a copy!

Pattern Obscura
There's a wonderful thread on Ravelry entitled Favorite Obscure Patterns--I cruise through it often (Warning! Big Time Sucker!). Thanks to the diligence of the posters, I've added an embarrassment of items to my queue. The Internet also offers zillions of patterns that never seem to rise to public acclaim, and I want to tweet my kazoo about two of my recent favorites.

The first one is a lace shawl called Something Wicked Comes This Way, designed by Karen Walker. It's stunning! It's unusual! You can purchase it here. Go ahead--you know you want to!


--Photo Courtesy of No Two Snowflakes/Karen Walker (Thanks!)

The second pattern comes from the famous White Lies Designs. However, I haven't seen anyone get excited about this pattern...
....but I think it's eyepopping. And I have sufficient Yubina worsted-weight cashmere to make it. I have asked Harry dye the yarn for me in the requisite luscious shade of crimson, and he's agreed to do it in exchange for our new car and a year's supply of chocolate-covered beetles. A fair trade for him.

Yarn Obscura
Artist's Palette Yarn is one of my favorite Internet stores. Yes yes, she's in England. but the postage isn't punishing and the yarn will make you weep with delight. I've purchased a variety of her offerings--the quality is superb and the dying exquisite. Do give her store a try if you are looking for a little treat. Here are a few of her many types of yarns.

Glisten is a luxurious 2-ply 100% silk yarn, soft as down. I actually bought all four skeins--1200 yards will make a lovely shawl. Sorry, folks.


Damsel is 80% Extra Fine Merino 20% Silk cobweb weight, with 1200 yards per skein. She's currently having a 20% off sale. Don't you hate it when I tell you things like this?


And finally, I want to also report that I have also fallen in love with the yarns from No Two Snowflakes. Her stock isn't extensive and goes quickly, so you'll have to regularly troll her Etsy shop and see what's available. I snagged a skein of Roses and Lilacs cobweb-weight silk:


...and two skeins of Juicy Nectarine cobweb weight 50% silk, 50% wool.


Have fun grazing!

28 comments:

Kathryn said...

Just this morning I looked through the second issue of "The Knitter" at Joann Fabrics! It was their last copy.
I'd read on the Mason-Dixon blog that it was supposed to be available at Barnes and Noble, but ours hasn't had it yet.

Tikabelle said...

Oh, EVIL Fleegle! That Artist's Palette is just... wow. It's a good thing I have to head to work right this instant, or I'd be in big trouble.

Susan (and SmokeyBlue in spirit) said...

Good news. I bought both issues of Knitter at Barnes and Nobles. Granted issue #2 did not go on the shelf until last week, but it was here to purchase.

Tricia said...

I bought issue 1 of "The Knitter" in Borders in Geelong, Victoria, Australia, yesterday. It is very classy.

Hunny Bunny said...

That Alan Dart frog is to die for! What issue is it in? I must go get a copy!

Laritza said...

I want the frog! Lovely stuff. You do dig out some nice stuff!

GJabouri said...

Oh, I saw that Something Wicked Shawl, and loved it! Thanks for sharing this. On my home from work, I'll definitely check out the stores for The Knitter ... they should pay you royalties!!

fleegle said...

FYI, the Frog Prince is in tne January '09 issue.

Carol said...

So that means Vogue knitting did accomplish something worthwhile..since it made you laugh. That pillow is amazing! and the White lies design is beautiful (as are many of theirs)

Jane said...

I love the frog, but also the jacket from White Lies designs. Must find someone who knits to do this for me!!

jane

Anonymous said...

I found The Knitter at my local Barnes & Noble earlier this week (southwestern Virginia)...

GJabouri said...

Forgot to mention ... I also love frog princes ... but I think he should have red lips, and have them pursed ... you know, ready to be kissed!!!

Smitten Knitten said...

Oh, those yarns look luscious! After knitting his little chick and egg I can't wait to make my next Alan Dart pattern!

Hege said...

You are such a bad influence! :) The silk yarn is scrumptious! I have seen The Knitter at my local Borders, but I had not checked it out. Like you, I had been disappointed in the recent VK and IK magazines, and I have started going with Verena and Filati. I also love the toys, they cheer me up!

Kitty Kitty said...

the frog is absolutely delightful... The yarns are also to good to be true.

Jane said...

Stop! Stop! You are killing me LOL! You have to knit the frog Prince if only to taunt one uppity spider who hangs out at your house. The magazines, patterns, yarns, links! Let's just say I will be drooling over all the yummy stuff for quite some time. Thanks for all the great info.

yarnlot said...

The Knitter is really nice, together with Yarn Forward Magazine.

Harry should dye the yarn in a natural way: he could catch some cochineal lice to obtain a nice crimson colour...

Soo said...

What a great collection of inspirational odds and ends!

I'm hopeful that The Knitter will become a 'must have' -- so far I want to love it more than I do.

grannypurple said...

Just so you know, the Something Wicked shawl pattern is all sold out! How do you sell out of a pdf????

fleegle said...

Granny--Selling out of a PDF would seem impossible. I am sure if you asked Karen Walker, she would sell you a copy.

Dorothy said...

Well - aren't you the little enabler this morning!!! You are truly evil. There goes my morning. By the way, the shawl pattern is available. I just bought it. Just click on the picture of the shawl to the right of the big picture and it will take you to the right page.

Beth in Maryland said...

Just when I think I've gotten myself under control, along comes Fleegle! "This is very, very bad," I thought to myself three minutes ago. "Not really, you still have a job, check these out," I thought one minute ago. Writing this comment is purely a delaying tactic...

Kay said...

58 years? You must have been knitting straight out of the womb!

Connie said...

Thanks for the heads up on the Artist Palette!

Opal said...

this post is so full of gorgeous eye candy, my eyes just about popped out! :-D thanks for the yummies!

MoniqueB. said...

Hi,
I've been an admirer ever since I saw your version of the Spider Queen. I'm a laceknitter too, but a 'toddler' compared to you.
I love your taste in yarn, the colours and the qualities.
Except for the rubyred thingy, that's not up my alley.
Hope to see the frogking soon, we need a good prince...

Monika said...

I've subscribed to The Knitter and have all three issues. :o) The Frog Prince is adorable, because he's so round, I just want to squeeze him. Lovely yarn you've got there. You certainly make me want to go yarn shopping, even though I really, really, don't need anything. You are so bad! Thanks for sharing the links. :o)

Kate said...

I LOVE Ruby but don't know if I have the "frame" (where by frame I mean tits) to pull it off. But it's gorgeous.