On the Road: April Tour Dates

The April road show starts today!

Friday, April 17, 11 a.m.: Ewe-Baa Street Yarns, Redding, CA

Sunday, April 19, 1 p.m.: Stash, Corvallis, OR

Thursday, April 23, 3 p.m.: Knitting Bee, Portland, OR

Friday, April 24, 1 p.m.: Yorkshire Yarns, Lakewood, WA

Saturday, April 25, 2 p.m.: So Much Yarn, Seattle, WA

Sunday, April 26, 2 p.m.: Serial Knitters, Kirkland, WA

Monday, April 27, 4 p.m.: Allyn Knit Shop, Allyn, WA

Make sure you plan to meet Sabrina and Logan as they bring a huge assortment of our yarns to your LYS! Can't be there in person? Join them on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram!

Pattern Highlights: March

So many great patterns were released in March - let's hop to it!

Vera Sanon's Camellia MKAL is all finished up, so we were able to finally see the AMAZING finished project. Make this one in Meridian! 

From Steve of Barrington Knits / It Takes Balls to Knit, March saw the release of this wonderful double knit cowl, Barrington 5.0. Knit this one in Cricket for a soft and squishy cowl you'll love to cozy up with! The pattern includes video support for double knitting as well as making and using a knitting thimble.

I know as soon as some of you see this, you'll be struck by Cupid's Arrow and cast on right away! Kaitlin Massey Arteaga released the Cupid's Arrow Shawl shown below; it would be a light and romantic shawl for summer if knit in Cloud. But it can be knit in any weight from Lace to DK. 

I love the cowlette trend, and this is one of my favorite ones I've seen so far. The Clairmore Cowlette is knit in Cricket (so you know it's got the soft squish factor) and it has lots of lace and texture throughout. This pattern is from Corrina Ferguson (who we interviewed on the blog not long ago for her contributions to the Stitch Sprouts pattern booklets).

A quick knit for a wee one might be just what you need for that baby shower coming up, and Two Stix Studios has you covered! The London Baby Cardigan takes a skein or less of Cricket and knits up quickly. 

Another great use of a skein of Cricket would be to knit the Driftwood Scarf by Christopher Bahls. This scarf is knit sideways with a cable pattern running down the center - no cable needle needed

Combine Squishy and Nebula like designer Sue Mitchell did, or use your favorite combo of our fingering weight yarns to knit the Pretty Poppy Cowl. Click through to see more ways to wear this cozy layer!

For something a little lacier, check out Fiber Dreams' Margaret Street cowl. It is knit in Squishy and the pattern includes options for four different sizes. 

Crocheters have a few new patterns to choose from as well. Tian Connaughton has released the Harwinton Easy Lace Boomerang in Squishy.  

And from Elizabeth Kay Booth a lovely top crocheted in Breeze, the Summer Colorblock Top

You can always check out Ravelry for more patterns that are available in our yarns in both crochet and knit!

Meet the Designer: Sivia Harding

We have been introducing you to Stitch Sprouts designers who worked on the recently released pattern booklets in three of our most popular yarns - For Better or Worsted, Cricket, and Squishy. To conclude the Q & A series, we are talking today to the amazing Sivia Harding!

What drew you to designing?

I was already a graphic designer when I learned how to knit. It didn't take long for me to start putting design ideas together once I knew the basics.

How do you encourage a novice to take up knitting?

I hand them beautiful yarn and nice needles. It helps so much to have good tools. Modern knitting is all about the aesthetic of beauty and craft and the lovely rhythm of working the stitches. And I point new knitters toward Ravelry, KnittingHelp, and YouTube. Online community helps tremendously.

What's your favorite LYS?

Hmm... so many here in Portland!! I do love to hang out at Twisted, Knitting Bee, and Happy Knits, but all the other ones are wonderful too.

Favorite Anzula colorway? Line?

Dreamy might be my favorite. I used it for my Wild Iris cowl and it is SO wonderful to wear against your skin! I also adore Cricket, which I used for the Akiko Mitts. Wonderful stitch definition!! And hmm.. colorways. I haven't met one I don't like, but I have to say that I love neutrals, and it has been wonderful to spend time with Shiitake (for the Wild Iris). The purple undertones are amazing!!

Do you have other patterns available in our yarns?

Yes, the Wild Iris Cowl and Cuffs.

Tell us about your project in the booklet!

Akiko is a Japanese word meaning "Autumn," and these mitts that feature twisted stitches, twisted ribs, beads, and lace, mark the happy onset of autumn for me. Crisp days and chilly nights call out for mitts! 

The Akiko Mitts feature a rather densely organized design with twisted stitches occurring several times in quick succession on some of the rounds. I love twisted stitch patterns! I have included a fun alternate way to do them without a cable needle, which speeds up the process so much. 

Favorite TV show to watch / music to listen to while knitting?

Audiobooks! Especially ones that are narrated with English accents. Right now, I am listening to Anne Perry's William Monk series, which are narrated by the same person who narrates the Outlander series. The narrator is really important ;-)

What's the most overlooked aspect of designing or knitting a finished piece?

The process itself, which can be lengthy. I am not a fast designer, and I sometimes go back to the drawing board many times before a design sees the light of day. It can take months, which isn't something you would ever know from seeing a pattern pop up on Ravelry.

Do you teach classes? Where?

I teach all over the US and Canada for yarn shops, guilds, and other events, and offer my own retreats in the San Juan Islands as well. Between now and June 2015, I will be teaching at Madrona Fiber Arts in Tacoma, WA, then a flurry of dates in Maryland, California, Toronto, Buffalo, San Diego, and an Alaska cruise. You can find more details (and how to register) on my website here.

You can catch up with Sivia on her website, Ravelry forum, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest!

Thank you so much to Sivia and all of the amazing Stitch Sprouts designers that participated in our interviews! You can get your pattern booklets now on Ravelry or soon at your LYS.