Sunday, April 4, 2010

Looks Good on Paper

Today marks the launch of the FrogBlog! - I have wanted a cool, spiffy, visually appealing blog, but in the end I will just have to settle for a simple format. My talents do not include Internet skills, or photography either. Without further ado, here we go, bare bones and all!

After going through the usual process of designing, frogging, writing, test knitting and editing, the Talinay Gloves pattern are almost ready for prime time. I am very much looking forward to starting this mini-KAL at the Ravelry 2010 Lace Kalendar group.

Here they are in Sanguine Gryphon Skinny Bugga! in a green colorway

What is special about this pattern is that its proceeds will be set permanently for charitable purposes. Long after tragedies like the earthquakes in Chile and Haiti are out of the news and out of mind, the staggering need for help remains. Once out of the public eye, the stream of donations dries up. Let's keep it coming! The income we collect during the KAL will go entirely to Doctors Without Borders. Any income afterwards will be invested in a socially responsible site such as Microplace , which offer unsecured micro loans which borrowers can invest in, let's say, starting a new business. You can choose the type of investment you want your money to go to- I favor investments that focus on women in very poor countries. After the loan term is over, you may or may not get your money back with interest (that is the meaning of unsecured - you are not guaranteed to get it back).

Do you have $20? That is the minimal initial investment you can make. That's the price of a skein of sock yarn.

The Talinay Gloves are a fun knit, which take about 1/2 skein (230 yd) of sock/fingering weight yarn. A good chance to use up one of those gorgeous skeins, too pretty to hide in your feet, and you can make a second pair to share.

Don't they look pretty in Malabrigo Sock in Springtime colorway? Variegated colorways are hard to compliment, but slip stitches and changes in direction of the knitting help take advantage of the color variations.

The pattern is written with the beginner lace in mind, as it teaches a couple of skills you will need when planning a lace border: picking up stitches and applying a knitted-on border. A section at the end full of detailed notes will help you get through the project, do some basic fudging and understand the details of the construction.

I hope you can join us for the KAL!!!

Meanwhile, I have been bit by the creative bug again in the worst possible way. I have spent most of my short Easter break planning a new pattern. I just can't get over how pretty our March pattern was, and I wanted to include it in a project to really make it shine. So I have started on a triangular shawl.

This is my work table - graph paper, calculator, pencil, lots of erasers, rulers, colored pencils, notions, and lots, lots of coffee. Did you notice? not a computer in sight.

I settled for English Mesh as my background/beginning pattern. Looks good on paper, it is a very simple, effective pattern of 6 stitch repeat. Easy, right? Lo and behold, that sucker was a major headache - it has a triple decrease that causes the pattern to shift, and adjusting to it took many charts and a good bit of frogging. But it has been conquered! the increase ratio is a bit odd and it makes the center stitch sway a little, but it is pretty minor and may be able to block out.
Six charts later, I have the bare bones for a nice triangular shawlette. Do you know about creation being 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration? Well, I still have a whole lot to perspire before this is over.

Of course, with the dandelion image in mind, I felt I REALLY needed to work this in yellow. Of which I do not have a single skein in my stash. After much surfing for the right shade of dandelion-y yellow, I landed in Wabi Sabi Yarns where a half-off sale was in progress, and found the "it" yellow. Can't wait for it to arrive! I am settling again for sock weight, and shooting to stay in the 400 yard range - about the same as an Ishbel.

And speaking of yarn, check out this lovely, from Impulse of Delight Yarn . I can't even begin to describe how soft and yummy this is - A silk/cashmere blend in colorway Purple Broccoli. A definite splurge! The original yarn is really much more purple with pink highlights, but my camera seems to be really bad in capturing purples.

How about these lovelies from the new Spring colorways from the Sanguine Gryphon?. I am a sucker for SG yarns. From top to bottom, it is Differential Grasshopper, Sea Urchin and Ruby-Tailed Wasp. Grasshopper is really a neon green with orange splashes, while Urchin is a coral pink, much more orange than the photos.

Ready for some spring time knitting??? I sure am.


  1. Awesome! Welcome to blogging. :) The mitts are gorgeous. I like the sounds of Microplace, it sounds like another one I am familiar with, but don't recall the name right now. Dead brain here. ;(

    Purples are very difficult to capture a good color on film. I have heard, but not tried, making a light box to photo yarn and projects nicely. A friend made one with an aquarium and white paper taped to the inside.

  2. Congratulations on your new baby (FrogBlog). Good luck. In texas we don't wear mitts but am very very interested in your triangular shawl. Looks like a winning pattern . Arly

  3. great read.. congrats.. and keep designing... we are all so looking foward to what you have coming up with our kal.. and the mimis also.

  4. Your pictures are fine. The bottom one is especially good. Hope you are able to keep up with this great start to blogging.

  5. Beautiful mitts! I'm looking forward to knitting them.

    I enjoyed the trip through your design process and seeing your new yarns. I've never heard of Impulse of Delight before and must check them out! SG is already quite the obsession for me...

  6. I am enjoying knitting the 2010 KAL and love the look of the mitts. The dedication to help those in need just makes the mitts even more special. Thank you for all you do and I look forward to following your blog.