Pattern Release :: Troian

Hi everyone!

It's been a while since my last post, hasn't it? While I took a bit of a break from blogging and being online much to enjoy the 48 days of no rain (!) in Washington, I assure you I was still busy knitting away and designing as much as possible these past few months! :)

Just a few days ago on Ravelry and today on Craftsy, I released the pattern for Troian:

It features cables against a reverse stockinette background:

Fun toggle and snap closures, for a little something different than the norm:

And, it's knit from the top-down using set in sleeve construction.

This was my first design using this top down construction and I absolutely loved it! I was able to  use some fun and pretty nifty techniques that I haven't been able to use very often, including the Invisible Provisional Cast On, which I also made a YouTube video for. Be sure to check it out below and let me know what you think!

Overall, I'm incredibly happy with how this piece turned out and hope you love it, too! :)


Troian (pronounced troy-an) is a sexy but sophisticated cardigan featuring cables, stockinette, and simple rib details. The cuffed, elbow length sleeves draw the eye up and to the textured front and fun snap and toggle closures placed from the collar to just below the bust.

This cardigan is knit seamlessly from the top down using set-in sleeve construction. The yoke and bodice are knit first to the bottom hem. Stitches are then picked up around the armholes for the sleeves, which are initially shaped by using short rows and then worked seamlessly in the round from the top down.

At high bust, button bands overlapping: 27 ½ (29 ¼, 32, 34, 36, 37 ¼, 40, 41 ½, 44, 45 ¼, 48 ½, 50)” / 70 (74, 81, 86, 91, 95, 102, 105, 112, 115, 123, 127) cm

Finished Measurements noted represent the circumference of the finished knitted piece at high bust (the circumference of your chest at underarm level) when worn closed and button bands are overlapping. When worn open, cardigan has no ease. This cardigan is intended to be worn with approx 2” (5 cm) negative ease at the bustline. In order to achieve the fit as shown, choose a size with a finished measurement that is approx 2” (5 cm) smaller than your actual bust measurement.

946 (1006, 1100, 1169, 1238, 1281, 1376, 1427, 1512, 1556, 1668, 1719) yards / 865 (920, 1006, 1069, 1132, 1171, 1258, 1305, 1383, 1423, 1525, 1572) meters DK weight yarn. Use a plied yarn for best results.

  • Brown Cardigan shown in 32” (81 cm) size and Pigeonroof Studios Cassiopeia DK DK, 75% Superwash Merino Wool, 15% Cashmere, 10% Silk, 260 yards (238 meters) per 100 gram (3.5 oz) skein in colorway ‘Etude.’
  • Teal Cardigan, also shown in 32” (81 cm) size, used Madelinetosh Tosh DK DK, 100% Superwash Merino Wool, 225 yards (206 meters) per 100 gram (3.5 oz) skein in colorway ‘Norway Spruce.’

  • US 6 (4 mm) circular needle, 32” (81 cm) or longer 
  • US 4 (3.5 mm) circular needle, 32” (81 cm) or longer 
  • Appropriate needles of the same two sizes for your preferred method of knitting sleeves in the round

Change needle size if necessary to obtain correct gauge.

20 stitches and 28 rows = 4” (10 cm) in stockinette stitch, using larger needles

  • (8) Stitch markers, color A
  • (2) Stitch markers, color B
  • Cable Needle
  • Tapestry Needle
  • Waste yarn
  • Sewing needle & thread
  • Buttons OR toggle buttons
  • (2) US 3 (3.25 mm) double-pointed needles for making i-cords
  • Size 10 (21 mm) sew-on snaps

$6.50 USD


the official release of Julissa's scoop neck version

Hi lovelies! Today, I'd love to officially introduce you to the scoop neck version of Julissa, released just two days ago on Ravelry and today on Craftsy.

As you all know, this pattern has been in the making for quite a while (nearly 6 months to be exact!), so I'm absolutely ecstatic about finally being able to release this pattern!

I hope you all love it as much as I do, and I look forward to seeing your sweaters, if you decide to make a Julissa of your own! :)

By the way... For those of you who have already purchased the pattern for the original Julissa on Ravelry, a discount will automatically reflect in your cart when you purchase the pattern for this version using the same Ravelry username. If you are purchasing both patterns at the same time, a discount will reflect in your cart as well :)

This rendition of Julissa puts a new spin on the original, boat-necked pullover. The lower, scooped neckline along with a bit of waist shaping and flattering sleeve length all together create a modestly flirty and feminine piece that will complement a variety of body types. 

This pullover is knit seamlessly from the top down using raglan shaping and a worsted weight yarn, which lends beautiful stitch definition to the cable and lace details. Choose from cap or three-quarter length sleeves and wear with a neutral or colored camisole underneath.

2X-Small (X-Small, Small, Medium, Large, X-Large, 2X-Large, 3X-Large)

30 ¼ (32, 34 ¾, 36 ½, 40, 43 ½, 48, 51 ½)” / (77, 81, 88, 93, 102, 110, 122, 131) cm circumference at high bust

Intended to fit with approximately 0-2” (0-5 cm) negative ease. Choose a size up to 2” (5 cm) smaller than your actual bust measurement.

804 (850, 923, 969, 1062, 1155, 1275, 1367) yards / 735 (777, 844, 886, 971, 1056, 1166, 1250) meters worsted weight yarn, with 3/4 length sleeves

Pullover shown used Madelinetosh 80/10/10 Worsted MCN [Worsted, 80% Merino, 10% Nylon, 10% Cashmere, 187 yards (171 meters) per 100 gram skein]

• 32” (82 cm) long or longer circular needle, size US 6 (4 mm) 
• 32” (82 cm) long or longer circular needle, size US 5 (3.75 mm)
• Appropriate needles of the same two sizes for your preferred method of knitting sleeves in the round

Change needle size if necessary to obtain correct gauge.

18 stitches and 28 rows = 4” (10 cm) in stockinette stitch, using larger needles

• (4) Stitch markers Color A 
• (6) Locking or Split Ring stitch markers Color B
• Cable needle
• Waste yarn
• Tapestry needle

Both written and charted instructions are included, as well as instructions for 3/4 length and cap sleeves.

Pattern File Size: 16.5 MB

$6.50 USD


this time, I'm back for good!

Hopefully, anyway! :)

So, it seems I may have spoken too soon in my last post! After the last time I went off the grid and made a reappearance, apparently, another month and a half has gone by. Whoa! I know it's a cliche to say this, but the time is seriously flying by this year, and it seems that any sort of balance and routine I had in my day to day life just stopped working as of January 1st! But, I promise I have good reasons this time, and also some things to share with you. 

If you follow me on Ravelry, you may have seen the final photos of my scoop neck Julissa pattern:

With 3/4 length sleeves in Madelinetosh 80/10/10 Worsted MCN, colorway 'Carmine'

I'm extremely excited about this version and couldn't be any happier with the final product. My only regret is that I didn't get the samples knit and the pattern written up faster!

The short sleeve version that I posted a sneak peek photo of earlier in March is also now off the needles as of April 20th:

With cap sleeves in Fiberphile Super Squish Worsted, colorway 'Night Walker'

The next step is to get this pattern through the test knitting phase, so I'm afraid I'm not announcing the pattern release quite yet. But, I hope to have some news on an estimated release date around mid-June if all goes smoothly! :)

While busily getting the first draft of this pattern wrapped up, the month of April flew by in general - my day job kept me busy (but I won't bore you with the details of that!) and, more excitedly, my husband and I were planning and preparing for a vacation to celebrate our fifth wedding anniversary on May 7th. 

We've never really taken an actual vacation before, so we made a whole 9 day road trip of it. On Saturday, May 5th, we loaded up our car and hit the road on the way to Reno, Nevada. I wish I had thought to take pictures on the drive down - the scenery was so beautiful, and the gradual difference between states and terrains was amazing! On Sunday, we drove from Reno to Las Vegas, where we spent our actual anniversary day and the majority of the time. My hubby made this photo collage of our view of the Strip from our hotel balcony at different times of the day: 

(click to enlarge)

There was so much to do in so little time and we were sad to leave, but made our way back home through California Thursday-Sunday that week, stopping over in Los Angeles, driving up the Pacific Coast Highway from Morro Bay to Monterey, and spending an afternoon in San Francisco before eventually getting home late Sunday night.

Now that I'm back, I'm feeling very relaxed and ready to take on the rest of the year! I'm hoping that now, the dust is settling and that things get back to normal. 

Until next time! :)


where'd she go?

I seem to have had a bit of an unexpected hiatus away from Ravelry, my blog, and even my knitting since posting the last time earlier in March. I have no other reason why except that I've just been purely exhausted from my busy 40 hour work weeks and life's responsibilities. It's been very disheartening for me to feel so disconnected from the things I love, and I've missed you all and my knitting so much. If you've commented, e-mailed or sent messages without as quick an answer as usual, please know that I'm going to make every effort to get back into my routine this month and that I appreciate your patience and understanding immensely.

With that said, I also feel like I owe everyone somewhat of an update on Julissa's makeover! The pattern write-up is coming along nicely - all numbers and instruction have been figured out, so all I've got left is to get everything together into some coherent instruction, which I'm diligently working on now. The little knitting I've been able to do since posting the first sneak peek picture has gotten the sweater quite a ways along and it's proving to be a very quick knit when I am able to focus on the project. It now has both sleeves and much of the bodice done, and I'm already halfway through the hip increases. I'll get to work on it again this weekend and hopefully have some more pictures soon :)

Hope everyone is having a beautiful start to Spring!


a little off topic :: zucchini bread

Most of my friends and family know me well enough to know I'm not really the domestic type. Sure, I'll do the laundry and do some basic cooking from time to time, but that's pretty much the extent of it. My hubby has been great and very accepting of this and he does a lot of the cooking and cleaning, which also (thankfully!) gives me more time after a long day of work to sit down and knit. Every once in a while though, something really special comes along the way and I'll get the itch to bake or cook something myself, which is what happened recently. A co-worker of mine brought a zucchini bread to the office and invited everyone to help themselves. I did, and it was love on first bite. I didn't skip a beat before asking for the recipe. It was that good! It's also so good that I'd like to share it with all of you!

What you'll need:
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 2 cups chopped walnuts
  • 2 cups shredded zucchini

What to do:
  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour two loaf pans. (8x4 or 9x5 inch)
  2. In a large bowl, beat eggs, sugar, oil and vanilla extract until smooth. Beat in the cream cheese. Whisk in flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, salt and nutmeg. 
  3. Fold in walnuts and zucchini. Evenly divide batter between the two prepared pans. Bake at 350 degrees for 60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  4. Remove from oven and allow to cool in pan for 10 minutes on a wire rack, then remove from pans and allow to cool completely.

In a temporary lapse of excitement and pure newbishness, I dumped more than 2 cups worth of walnuts into my batter, so... you might notice that there are just a tad too many walnuts in the above photo of my first attempt at this yummy bread. Ah well! I'll know better next time :)


Julissa's getting a makeover

Hi all! Wow, is it really already March 11th? This month - no, make that this year - is just going by way too fast. I can't complain too much though. After what has been a pretty crazy Winter, Spring is starting to make an appearance here in Washington and the sneak peeks of sunshine we've had over this past week are much appreciated. I'm ready for Summer. :)

Anyway, about that title! For those of you who follow my projects on Ravelry, you may have seen my most recent Julissa work in progress. For my third iteration of my first sweater pattern, I wanted to change things up a bit, and what better way than to change the neckline?

After I posted this picture on Ravelry, I got several comments and messages requesting that I write up this pattern variation. It meant so much to get this kind of feedback, and I figured, why not?!

Unfortunately, since I had no plan whatsoever while knitting this lovely green version of Julissa for myself, I didn't take into account the things I normally would while working on a design piece, like, no fudging allowed! ;) So, this is only a rough prototype and idea of what the final pattern sample will look like. Since I do need a proper sample knit up for this new pattern however, this past Wednesday, I happily cast on my fourth Julissa (does that make me crazy?). I'm very happy with the way it's coming along:

I chose some very yummy Madelinetosh 80/10/10 Merino Cashmere Nylon worsted weight in the color 'Carmine,' which I'm absolutely in love with!

This version of Julissa will no doubt be more feminine, a bit flirty, less sporty, and also, perfect for a summer sweater worked in a cotton or bamboo blend yarn. I plan to make the bottom ribbing shorter since there will already be a lot less of the front cable and lace panel running down the center, and I'll also include instructions for super cute cap sleeves, in addition to the original 3/4 length.

I'll be knitting like a mad woman over the rest of the weekend and into the week, so stay tuned for more photos very soon! :)


New Pattern Release :: Meira

After last weekend's preview, I'm so excited to announce the release of my new shawl design, Meira! 

I can't say exactly what inspired this piece, to be honest. All I know is that all of the elements that came together in this shawl, and especially how they fit together, spoke to me the same way every time I sat down to sketch some new ideas. I knew I had to get this off paper and onto the needles as soon as I found the perfect yarn. Madelinetosh Pashmina definitely added to the beauty of the finished product, wouldn't you say?

After getting the charts in order, the knitting itself didn't take long at all and made for a very fun and enjoyable knit. I'm very happy with the finished result, and hope you love this shawl as much as I do!

A beautiful balance of stockinette, lace and texture come together to create Meira, a crescent shaped shawl knit in a versatile, sport weight yarn. This piece will be easily worn throughout the year, no matter the season! Its generous wingspan wraps gracefully around its wearer in a variety of ways, providing just enough warmth on a crisp Spring day, a cool Summer’s eve, or bundled under a coat during the Fall and Winter.

Length: 68” (173 cm) across the top edge
Width: 13” (33 cm) down the center stitch

Measurements were taken after blocking.

• (2) skeins Madelinetosh Pashmina Sport, 75% Merino/15% Silk/10% Cashmere, 360 yards (329 meters) per 100g skein. Shown in colorway ‘Tart’
• OR approximately 515+ yards of any sport weight yarn

• 32” (82 cm) long or longer circular needle, size US 6 (4 mm)
• (1) US 10 (6 mm) spare straight or circular needle (used for bind off only)

21 sts and 32 rows = 4” (10 cm) in stockinette stitch, unblocked

Getting exact gauge is not critical, but it will affect the final size and yardage needed for your shawl. Final size is also dependent on how gently or aggressively you choose to block your shawl.

• (19) Stitch markers
• Tapestry needle
• Several rust-proof pins
• Blocking wires or smooth, strong string

$6.00 USD


Featured Finished Object Friday :: February 24, 2012

Since the last Featured Finished Object Friday post, the Knit Rhapsody user activity feed has been wonderfully sweater filled. It's definitely a sweater time of year, isn't it? I have a few on the needles myself and can't wait to share what they become with you, but for now, take a look at these beauties made by other lovely knitters :)

The first project I'd like to share with you is SplitStitch's Julissa. I adore everything about her sweater: yarn choice, color, and fit! Plus, this was Jesse's first sweater, and I'd say she did an amazing job, wouldn't you?

Next, is another Julissa, this one made by jessibean on Ravelry. Jessica used a beautiful dove gray yarn, dyed by Tanis Fiber Arts and the finished sweater looks gorgeous on her. And, after seeing two very lovely Julissa's made with this yarn base (including one made by the dyer herself), I'm thinking it's a must try yarn! I'm also quickly realizing why so many knitters love gray yarn! :)

This next project is a stunning example of my Ardelise design, which I haven't seen very many of quite yet:

Not only is the fit awesome and the color absolutely perfect for Spring, but after seeing the back of Davina's cardigan, I was even more inspired:

She cleverly used one of my personal favorite cable embellishments from the well known Gathered Pullover to add some visual interest to the back of the cardigan, and I really love this mod! I'm thinking I may need to follow suit and make a DK weight Ardelise a la sabinaknits, and add this cable detail a la twouglyducks! :)

I hope you've enjoyed seeing these projects as much as I have! Until next time ♥

Note: The photos featured in this post are not my own and are the Copyright of the wonderful knitters mentioned above. Click the links provided to see the Raveler's project page and more gorgeous pictures!


A Playful Day podcast, and a new pattern preview!

As a designer, I have had the wonderful privilege of meeting and befriending many knitterly people through Ravelry and Twitter. I don't know very many knitters in person, so it's nice to have a dedicated way to communicate with like-minded creative people!

More recently, I've had the opportunity to chat with the voice behind A Playful Day blog and podcast. If you haven't already tuned in to her show, be sure to check it out! She is very fun and a joy to listen to, and in her most recent episode, Episode 23: Stop! Sweater Time!, she talks about Julissa, which totally made my day. A very special thank you goes out to her! :)

In other news, I have a new design to share with you today!

I'd been wanting to do another textured yet lacy shawl since designing Sarai, and after some sketching and picking up the perfect yarn (Madelinetosh Pashmina in Tart-yum!) at Sock Summit last Fall, came up with this piece.

The pattern is in its final stages now, and I hope to be able to release it very soon. Stay tuned! :)


First FO of 2012

So today I'd like to share with you my first FO of 2012 - I know, I know... it's already February and I'm only just now getting something off the needles. But, I love this little FO lots, so it's still worth sharing :)

A friend of mine is due to have a little baby girl in one week, and since most of my friends and family have had baby boys, I had to take this opportunity! Knits for baby girls are always fun.

I didn't want to use the typical baby pink/pastels, so I decided to use a skein of Wool Candy Fondant Merino DK in Berry Compote from my stash. I loved working with this yarn, and am so glad I still have a sweater's worth for myself, especially since the dyer just had a baby of her own and discontinued the brand. The colorway is awesome, with splashes of light pink, brick and burgundy reds, and hints of coral. 

As you can imagine, the hat knit up beautifully as well:

My friend really loved a cabled hat I wore recently, so I settled on cables for this pretty little piece. After some trial and error, everything worked out and I really love the result!

In the meantime, even though I don't have any other FOs to share quite yet, this doesn't mean I haven't been been busy planning several projects, swatching and number crunching any minute I get, so I hope to share more with you soon. Until next time! :)


Featured Finished Object Friday :: February 3, 2012

In keeping with my New Year's Resolution of finally getting into the habit of blogging once and for all, one of the bi- (or tri-) weekly blog post themes I'd like to get started again is "Featured Finished Object Friday," which will showcase some of the gorgeous projects that pop up on my Ravelry Designer's User Activity feed 2 weeks up to the Friday of the post. As I mentioned in my first post of this series (back in April 2011-whoa!), browsing other knitters' FO and progress pictures of projects made with my patterns is one of my favorite things to do on Ravelry. I'm always inspired by yarn and color choices, modifications, and really love reading positive comments about my designs. It makes my day every time!

So, without further adieu, here are some of the finished beauties that popped up over January 21-February 3, 2012!

sabinaknits' Ardelise

SOWaters' Alivia

skilovr's Sarai

molliebatmit's Julissa

pfong001's Julissa

Note: The photos featured in this post are not my own and are the Copyright of the wonderful knitters mentioned above. Click the links above each photo to see the Raveler's project page and more photos. 


Swatching :: Hermosa Fiber Company - Hermosa Worsted

Earlier this month, I bought this extremely gorgeous batch of Hermosa Fiber Company's Hermosa Worsted in Sterling:

Isn't it amazing? I was on the hunt for the perfect gray, and fell head over heels in love with this colorway after seeing the dyer's Julissa in the same yarn.

The stitch definition is incredible, and the fabric is very soft and squishy. I'm so excited to get started on this design project! :)


My Very First YouTube Video :: Figure 8 Cast On

I'm very excited to share my very first YouTube Video Tutorial with you!

This video is about the Figure 8 Cast On, which is usually used for toe up socks. I used it as a provisional cast on of sorts for my two recently published sweater patterns, Ardelise & Chantalle. Check out the video below:

Both patterns mentioned above include a photographic tutorial of the technique as well, but I thought a video might be helpful to more hands-on visual learners. I am a 99.9% self taught knitter - with the exception of the long-tail cast on and the knit stitch! :) - and personally understand the value of instructional videos for anyone teaching themselves to knit or adding to their personal skill set, so I hope and plan to make YouTube video tutorials a regular part of my presence in the knitting community. I hope you like the video! :)