January 15, 2018

F.O. Boneyard Shawl by Stephen West

Pattern: Boneyard Shawl  (free pattern)

Boneyard Shawl

Designer:  Stephen West

Yarn: The Blue Brick Niagara MCN (70% merino, 15% cashmere, 15%nylon):  discontinued  500yards (457 metres)

Colourway:  Iceberg
Needles: 4.0mm
In progress

Glacier colourway

my notes

Added Notes:

This is such a basic pattern I almost feel silly blogging about it.  However, I am choosing to write this blog to draw your attention to how beautiful the Blue Brick yarn is.  The reason I chose to knit such a simple pattern is because this yarn is so pretty, I only needed a very basic pattern to showcase it.  I love the passion and work of Shireen Nadir and her husband Tito of The Blue Brick, two Canadian hand dyers.  Each yarn they produce is based on a photo that this talented couple has taken, often from nature.  The Blue Brick's specialty is handpainted, ombre and gradient yarn, as well as tonals. Check out all the beautiful colourways available here.  I knit the Starshower by Hilary Smith Callis knit in The Blue Brick Killarney Sock in the gorgeous Labradorite colourway.  Have a look:

Killarney Sock:  Labradorite colourway

Starshower in progress

I had the pleasure of meeting Shireen at the Frogpond Organic Winery Art Show in Niagara-on-the-Lake last summer.  

Wearing my Starshower knit in The Blue Brick Killarney sock
I have been a long time fan of Shireen and have admired her many skills (including knitwear designer, photograper, and jewellery designer to name a few).  If you read The Blue Brick's blog or follow them on Instagram, you would have seen many pictures of their two gorgeous dogs.  I was so touched when I read the adoption story of their dog Sammy last year. I encourage you to check it out.

It's true that owning your own business has its challenges, but Shireen and Tito had an exceptionally hard year last year, as described on their blog.  Hopefully 2018 is better for them. I look forward to seeing The Blue Brick grow their business, and create new colourways and products.  So much talent!

January 11, 2018

F.O. Clarke #2 by Jane Richmond

Pattern:  Clarke Pullover
Designer:  Jane Richmond
Yarn: Julie Asselin Hektos (75% merino, 15% cashmere, 10% silk)
Colourway:   Brume:  7skeins (two colours in one skein)
Romance:  1 skein (for ribbing on cuffs, hem and neckline)
Julie Asselin Hektos

Colourway:  Brume

Colourway:  Romance
Needles: 4.0mm & 4.5mm

Ravelry: my notes

Clarke Pullover
Added Notes:  
When I visited the Julie Asselin both at Knit City, my eyes were instantly drawn to the Brume colourway.  Somehow I missed the fact that I was purchasing two separate colourways, that were joined together, to look like one skein.  When I got home and opened the skeins, I saw to my surprise, two colourways.  Luckily, I didn't mind at all, as these two colourways were gorgeous.  However, I had to rethink my choice of pattern for this yarn.

Surprise!  Two colourways!

I immediately thought of the Clarke Pullover.  Of the many sweaters I have knit, the Clarke Pullover is one of my most frequently worn.  I knew that it would work well with two colourways, producing a much more subtle stripe than the original one I knit.  Also, the cashmere and silk content would produce a very different fabric.  (You can read about that sweater here). 

Clarke Pullover #1
I cast on Clarke for a second time.  The original pattern calls for ten rows of the main colour and four of the contrasting colour.  Having only bought seven skeins I knew I would not have enough of the main colour.  Instead, I knit ten rows of the main colour, followed by six rows of the contrast colour. That turned out to be a good decision, as I only had a tiny amount left of the main colour when it was finished.  I used a third colour (Romance) for the hem, neckband, and ribbing on the sleeves.  I am very happy with the result, and I can see myself wearing this sweater quite a bit. The yarn was a dream to knit with and creates a luxurious fabric, one that I can't wait to wear.

This is my first F.O. of 2018. Have I convinced you to knit the Clarke Pullover yet?  It is an easy knit and it produces a sweater that you will wear again and again.  It works well with any worsted weight yarn in stripes or a solid colour. What are you waiting for?

Happy Knitting!