Archive for May, 2014

NORO Magazine Issue 4

Saturday, May 31st, 2014

Colour is the spice of life, and with a generous sprinkle here and there our whole world pulsates with vitality.  The same goes for knitting, we love, love, LOVE colour!!  Not only is it the eye candy that we crave after a winter far too long for our liking, it is at the heart and soul of every ball of Noro yarn, and just happens to be in full bloom on the pages of the latest issue of the Noro knitting magazine.  Take a peek inside this issue, filled with more than thirty stunning projects to knit and crochet by forward-thinking designers who challenge the rules and veer away from the mundane by manipulating colour into amazing new directions.  Contact your lys to reserve a copy, issue four is due out in the first week of June.

 

NORO Knitting Magazine Issue 4

NORO Knitting Magazine Issue 4

The only thing missing on this cover is a bright red warning label- May cause abnormal heart rate, proceed with CAUTION!  

 

Cold Shoulder Pullover

Cold Shoulder Pullover

It’s open season on lacy knitting, and this issue showcases a flurry of designs that will make your eyes marvel in delight, with vests, tunics and tees that utilize innovative techniques to create a little more breathing space.  Cold Shoulder Pullover designed by Deborah Newton in Taiyo Sock col. 17 (shown above). 

 

Waterfall Vest

Waterfall Vest

Elongated stitches and cables intersect with poetic ease on this one piece Waterfall Vest designed by Kim Haesemeyer in Taiyo Sport col. 10 (shown above).

 

Garter Stitch Jacket

Garter Stitch Jacket

Make a few waves this spring without getting your feet wet.  Pick a new project to knit from the latest Noro knitting magazine and get ready for the oohs and aahs that will follow.  Garter Stitch Jacket designed by Ann Klimpert in Silk Garden col. 357, 387 and Debbie Bliss Rialto Aran col. 26 (shown above).

 

Flower Lace Scarf

Flower Lace Scarf

Crochet hooks will be swinging in fine style as Noro showcases a profusion of blooms to rival the prettiest of gardens.  Flower Lace Scarf designed by Jacqueline Van Dillen in Taiyo Lace col. 28 (shown above).

 

Reversible Cowl

Reversible Cowl

It’s all about accessorizing the positive in unexpected ways this season, from dreamy cowls and wristlets, to fanciful hats and socks.  This time around Noro injects self-striping colour to intensify the dramatic fashion palette of animal prints, geometrics and floral patterns.  Reversible Cowl designed by Linda Medina in Obi col. 3 (shown above).

Top Ten Vests For Spring 2014

Saturday, May 24th, 2014

From brisk mornings to balmy afternoons, this time of year can have that proverbial seesaw effect on all of us.  That’s why sleeveless vests have such mass appeal, when it comes to adding a cosy layer they are by far the most versatile garment pieces.  Set your sights on the season’s best designs from breezy beach wraps to casual weekend toppers, this selection of top ten vests has a style to suit all tastes and skill levels.

 

Katia Tropic Vest

Katia Tropic Vest

Look at what’s showing up in yarn shops this season from Katia’s S/S Collection, multi-toned cotton tape in a new polar weight for days spent soaking up the sun.  This stylish vest is worked without side seams and combines a border in stocking stitch with an uncomplicated mesh pattern.  Knit on 8 mm needles in TropicTahiti (shown above).

 

Katia Jaipur Wrap Vest

Katia Jaipur Wrap Vest

Catch the breeze in a swingy wrap vest, an easy to wear crocheted style worked up in a shell stitch pattern and finished off with short and sweet fringe detail.  Choose from one of eleven gelato-hues in this lightweight cotton, Jaipur from Katia.

 

Sirdar Leaflet #7089

Sirdar Leaflet #7089

Polish and panache go a long way on this dressy vest, designed to flatter with a wide waist panel that gives a gentle cinching detail.  Choose either the v neck or shawl collar option.  Knit in Soukie DK from Sirdar, a cotton blend threaded with tiny paillettes to reflect the light.  Endless Days (shown above).

 

Katia Belice Hoodie

Katia Belice Hoodie

Off for a walk around the block with the dog or a bike ride to the park with the kids?  This casual hoodie may become your new BFF.  A cosy layering piece outfitted with handy slash pockets for keeping your cell phone and keys right at your fingertips.  Knit in cool, comfortable Belice, a wash n wear mix of cotton and acrylic.  Look for Lilac (shown above) and more inspiring colourways at your lys.

 

Katia Mali Vest

Katia Mali Vest

A quieter neutral palette combined with crisp seed stitch texture makes this vest all the more tempting.  An easy breezy project for novice knitters requiring no buttonholes, just a pretty shawl stick as a closure, this design is knit in Mali, a natural cotton with an unique twist available in eighteen shades.  Beige (shown above).

 

Sirdar Leaflet #7004

Sirdar Leaflet #7004

Cables create all the drama needed on this loose-fitting v neck vest which can be knit short or long to suit your style preference.  Knit in Simply Recycled Aran, a washable cotton blend from Sirdar.

 

Katia Cotton Ribbon Vest

Katia Cotton Ribbon Vest

Looking for that pie-in-the-sky project to keep your fingers busy this spring?  Don’t be fooled by the complex look of this cotton vest, it really is much easier to knit than it looks.  The back is knit in straightforward garter stitch and the fronts are constructed by domino knitting, a technique which applies centre decreases to form a block which leads right into the next one without any seams.  Knit in Tropic, a multi-hued cotton ribbon yarn from KatiaCuracao (shown above).

 

Katia Tie Front Vest

Katia Tie Front Vest

Play up those summer whites with this Kool-Aid inspired vest from Katia’s Casual Collection.  Wear it loose and flowing or tied at the midriff for a figure-flattering fit.  Knit in Jaipur, a lace weight cotton yarn featuring eleven self-striping picks.

 

Katia Tahiti Vest

Katia Tahiti Vest

Make waves at the beach with a trendy shawl vest, knit from side-to-side in one piece mixing pretty openwork with garter stitch.  Knit in Tahiti from Katia, a cotton tape showcasing an eye-catching range of vibrant hues.  Surf (shown above).

 

Katia Iris Vest

Katia Iris Vest

Without a doubt, linen is the shining star of sultry weather.  It has a carefree vibe and offers plenty of air circulation on hot, sticky days.  This openwork vest is ideal over sleeveless tops and knits up in the blink of an eye with double wrapped stitches.  Knit in Iris by Katia, a lightweight blend of linen enhanced with a metallic sheen.  Lavender (shown above).

 

A Creative Hook

Saturday, May 10th, 2014

There was a time not too long ago when crochet had its place, typically in the rec room as a multi-coloured afghan draped across the sofa or as a pair of comfy slippers to slide into on a chilly morning.  A homey craft, easy to learn, it was passed from one generation to the next like a well-earned Brownie badge, yet somewhere along the way it hit a rut, and knitting passed it by only to leave it lying in the dust.  It wasn’t until the turn of this century that crochet suddenly revved up its jets again, this time appealing not only to weekend crafters, but attracting a huge following of artists as well.  Crochet has evolved into a higher art form, artists have emerged with solo exhibits in major galleries inspired by the creative possibilities that this craft allows, adapting easily to sculptural shapes, it is organic in texture and fluid in movement.

 

Crochet Portland by Jo Hamilton

Crochet Portland by Jo Hamilton

Paying homage to her hometown, Portland Oregon, artist Jo Hamilton created this fascinating cityscape entirely with a crochet hook, “My work is large scale and may appear realistic at first, but the saturated colors, textures and hanging threads reveal my process and medium. I work directly from photographs and use no sketches or patterns; I begin in the middle and work out from there until the piece is complete.”  Along with landscapes, Jo also crochets vividly-detailed portraits on commission.

 

You Can't Live Scared by Josh Faught

You Can’t Live Scared by Josh Faught

San Francisco textile artist, Josh Faught combines weaving and crochet to create substantial three-dimensional collages, this one above is worked entirely in hemp and formed on a garden trellis.  “This could be about time or the limits of a material, or it may be about formal strategy and process. I want to introduce strong language, strong statements, but then take a step back in order to render something both visible but also more open and fragmented, to let it unravel.”  Josh’s work gives off a raw organic energy and is exhibited extensively across the U.S. and Canada.

 

Crocheted Vessel by Caroline Routh

Crocheted Vessel by Caroline Routh

Canadian artist, Caroline Routh began her career as an art teacher before making the switch to multi media artist.  Working with cotton thread and embroidery floss as her medium, Caroline mixes strands of different hues to achieve a painted effect in her tapestry crochet designs.  Colours are woven along and under each stitch, which are worked over a wire skeleton to reinforce the shape of the vessel.  “My works are carefully designed, intimate views of the forms, colours, textures and patterns in the world around me. I try to shine a new light on these elements, all brought together in an unconventional composition in an effort to create magic.”

 

Fern by Jung Jung

Fern by Jungjung

Japanese artist, Jungjung began honing her crochet skills at a very early age using only fine cotton thread and a steel hook.  Since then, her craftsmanship has blossomed into a true artistic form.  Showcasing her work primarily in solo exhibits, and also in an instructional book of botanical designs for the average crochet enthusiast to follow, Jungjung dyes an uniquely-muted palette to capture the essence of plant life in miniscule detail.

 

Aura by Susanna Bauer

Aura by Susanna Bauer

After a career in tv and film designing miniature sets, British artist Susanna Bauer rediscovered her love of handicrafts through a connection to her German heritage and by walking in the forest, taking time to notice the simple things in nature.  “I go walking, I find a leaf, a piece of driftwood – or sometimes it finds me, I take it home and its new life begins.”  Working with very fine cotton or linen thread and a crochet hook, Susanna illuminates the fragile beauty in found objects.

Gifts For Mom

Sunday, May 4th, 2014

Flowers may brighten her day and chocolates may tempt her sweet tooth…… better yet, make mom swoon with delight on her special day with any one of these cleverly-designed products from Knitter’s Pride.  Take a peek below at the crème de la crème of knitting tools and gadgets, and wrap things up nicely with a bright pink bow for Mother’s Day-

 

Cable Needle Set

Dreamz Cable Needle Set

Easy on the eyes and well-constructed to meet a knitter’s expectations, these cable needles are crafted from laminated birch with grooves to keep stitches from slipping off.  Packaged in a handy little pouch including three sizes from 3.25 mm to 5.50 mm.

 

Magma Pattern Holder

Magma Pattern Holder

Help to keep mom organized and reduce her neck and eye strain at the same time with the Magma Pattern Holder.  Available in two sizes, this clever gizmo folds flat when not in use and snaps easily into place as an easel-style pattern reader complete with three super strong magnets for holding the page and one long magnetic strip for row-by-row reading.  A  large bonus pocket is attached to the back with a pen for marking rows or making quick notes.

 

Lace Blocking Mat

Lace Blocking Mat

With lace knitting quickly rising in popularity, mom might just require a portable blocking mat.  This one is lightweight and flexible in a set of nine twelve inch squares that fit together like pieces of a jigsaw puzzle.

 

Symphonie Dreamz Needle Set

Symphonie Dreamz Needle Set

Replacing mom’s mismatched needles is a lovely gesture, especially with the Symfonie Dreamz set, easy to keep in order in a black jacquard zip case.  These needles are extremely durable in laminated birch, and sized from 3.00 mm to 8.00 mm in zesty crayon colours.  Choose either ten or fourteen inch lengths.

 

Exotica Daisy Shawl Pin

Exotica Daisy Shawl Pin

A piece of jewelry is the crowning touch on mom’s newly-finished handknit shawl, vest or cardigan.  Knitter’s Pride has a full range of shawl pins crafted from wood and horn.  Exotica Daisy (shown above).

 

Cubics Deluxe Interchangeable Set

Cubics Deluxe Interchangeable Set

Give mom’s hands a break with the Cubics Deluxe Interchangeable Set, packaged in a clear vinyl case, these are shaped more like a pencil for an easy grip.  Set includes four separate cords up to 40 inches long with 8 end caps, a set of markers and 4 cord keys.  Sizes 4.00 mm to 8.00 mm.